Sheikh Abdullah al-Faisal, also known as Trevor William Forrest, was indicted on Friday, August 25th and charged with recruiting would-be terrorists for the Islamic State. Al-Faisal was arrested in Kingston, Jamaica, and he will be extradited to New York following his court appearance.
Al-Faisal’s arrest comes after a year-long investigation by the NYPD Intelligence Bureau and Manhattan District Attorney’s Office’s Counter Terrorism Program in which an undercover officer communicated remotely with al-Faisal. According to the NYPD, al-Faisal sent the officer propaganda material from official ISIS channels and offered to help him travel to the Middle East “to support foreign fighters abroad.”
Friday’s indictment is significant for counterterrorism efforts, as al-Faisal was directly linked to the radicalization of Richard Reid, the would-be “shoe bomber,” as well as Jermaine Lindsay, one of the perpetrators of the July 2005 bombings in London— detailed by ADL here.
Al-Faisal’s lectures, videos and website, Authentic Tauheed, openly encourage violence and incite murder; Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance said al-Faisal “dedicated his life to terror recruitment,” and his website was updated as recently as August 16th, 2017.
His August 14th post on Authentic Tauheed illustrates his anti-Semitic, extremist rhetoric. In “The Reality of Racism,” al-Faisal calls Jews “the most racist people on earth,” and writes that “[the Jews] prefer to go to hell rather than follow the Prophet…because he is not from their lineage of Isaac.” He also labels Israel as one of the “most racist countries in the world.”
In the past two years, Authentic Tauheed has published nearly 200 posts on topics ranging from anti-Semitic, anti-Christian, anti-American and anti-gay to blatant endorsements of the Islamic State.
On March 18th, 2017, al-Faisal released an audio message, “Can the Khilaafa Survive (Audio),” in which he lists the “many enemies of the caliphate,” including the Jews. — al-Faisal says, “I don’t think the Jews would be happy with a caliphate. I can’t see the Jews being happy with a caliphate.” The other enemies, he says, are the Christians: “Christians put together sixty-eight nations to fight the caliphate…the biggest coalition of human history.”
Calling those coalition members “Crusaders,” al-Faisal commands followers to “fight them til there’s no more fitnah,” an Arabic word meaning trial, affliction or distress. Discussing coalition airstrikes in Raqqah and Mosul, al-Faisal states, “If the kuffar [unbelievers/infidels] kill your women and children, you are allowed to kill their women and children.” Later, he suggests the only way to control the caliphate’s skies is to “shoot down the planes of the kuffar” with surface-to-air missiles.
Al-Faisal’s message advocating violence against non-believers makes him a significant threat to the United States, Jamaica, and the rest of the world. His indictment comes at a pivotal time, as ISIS-inspired attacks, such as those in Barcelona and Brussels, continue to terrorize the West.
Most recently, al-Faisal’s Authentic Tauheed page appeared in the ‘like’ section of Parveg Ahmed’s Facebook profile. Ahmed, 22, a US citizen of Queens, was arrested August 28th on charges of attempting to materially support the Islamic State. In June, Ahmed traveled to Saudi Arabia, allegedly to celebrate an Islamic religious holiday, but upon his arrival, attempted to travel to Syria. He was deported back to the United States and arrested at John F. Kennedy International Airport. If convicted, Ahmed faces a potential 20-year sentence. It is not immediately clear the extent to which al-Faisal’s works impacted Parveg Ahmed; but, the latter’s public endorsement of al-Faisal’s page is notable.
Below, a verbatim sampling of the rhetoric found in al-Faisal’s Authentic Tauheed (posts from 2015 to 2017). All spelling variations and errors are taken directly from the website:
- “Another example is the Jews in Palestine. They are racist toward the non-Jews but are equally racist towards the black Jews.”
- “Muslims think that the Jews are united but fear of the Muslims conquering them is what keeps the Jews together. Otherwise, they would be fighting each other.”
- “The Jews are the most racist people in the world because they reject Muhammad in the name of racism.”
- “The Jews wrote a book called the Talmud. This book is the most racist book. The book states that the Goy (non-Jews) were created to work as slaves for the Jews.”
- “The Jews use gentiles to fight gentiles to fight their dirty wars.”
- “The former US president, Jimmy Carter, stated that the apartheid in Israel was [worse] than the apartheid in South Africa. In South Africa, the white man gave good infrastructure to the people although they divided the people based on race, whereas the Israelis don’t.”
- “Being black and Jewish: Ethiopians bear the brunt of Israeli state racism”
- “Allah has made takfir [declaring an individual as a non-believer] on the Jews and the Christians many times in the Quran”
- “Another example is if a Muslim man cannot find a Muslim woman to marry and he has the option of marrying a Christian or a Jew he should marry the Christian and shun the Jew because Allah said those who hate Muslims the most are Jews and Pagans”
- “The Jews who hate Hitler are far worst than Hitler in character”
- “Hitler killed freemasons, homosexuals, and people who practice black magic”
- “There is no such thing as a gay muslim”.
- “Also, there’s no such thing as a gay masjid. A place of worship for gay’s is a temple.”
- “This is an oxymoron.”
- “Allah made takfeer [declaring an individual as a non-believer] on the Gays in the Quran.”
- “Therefore, Allah didn’t give Gays the right to be Muslims.”
- “They don’t take their Shahadah [profession of faith] because it’s impossible for them to reconcile their gay lifestyle with pure teachings of Islam.”
- “So a gay CANNOT be a Muslim and anyone who believes otherwise becomes a kafir [unbeliever/infidel].”
- “Gay is a belief, religion, lifestyle, and community.”
- “Therefore, when you come ‘Out of the closet’ and say “I am gay,” you have left the fold of Islam.”
- “Muslims don’t agree fully with the legacy of Barack Obama because he was the first gay president.”
- “Homosexuals try to use Qiyas (analogy) with the mistreatment of black people with themselves. This is the wrong Qiyas. You can't compare a black person with a homosexual because the black person didn't choose to be black. Whereas, the homosexual chose that lifestyle.”
- “A homosexual CANNOT be a Muslim. This is an oxymoron.”
- “For example, homosexuals believe they are Muslim and have established a gay temple in South Africa. “
- “Their leader is named Mohsin Hendricks [imam of South African LGBTQ-frienfly mosque].”
- “They call their place of worship a masjid but that's an oxymoron. They think their lifestyle and sin is normal.”
- “The sin has been desensitized. “
- “The sixth person who is killed by the Shariah is the homosexual”
- “In the Hadith below of ibn Abbas the Holy Prophet (saw) has commanded us to kill all homosexuals who are caught in the act.”
- “Ibn ‘Abbas (RA) said: The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said: “Whoever you find doing the action of the people of Loot, execute the one who does it and the one to whom it is done.” [Sunan Tirmidhi (4/57) No. 1456, Sunan Abu Dawud (4/158) No. 4462, Sunan Ibn Majah (3/594) No. 2561, Musnad Ahmad (1/300) No. 2732]”
- “If a person confess to being a homosexual he is asked to make tawbah [retreat] from his lifestyle and his beliefs”
- “The Caliph's, Abu Bakr and Ali, killed the homosexuals by burning them and never prayed janaza [funeral prayer] over the evil-doer.”
- “The Christians pray to Jesus(AS) and they pray to Muhammadﷺ [peace be upon him]. Therefore, we make takfir [declaring an individual as a non-believer] on the Christians because of this worship, so we have to make takfir on the Sufi, Barelvi and Shia.”
- “They are the Christians in the Ummah [worldwide community of Muslims].”
- “To call Jesus(AS) God, like Christians, is shirk [the sin of practicing idolatry or polytheism].”
- “Also, shirk [polytheism/idolatry] is believing in the ‘trinity’.”
- “The Ghulaat Murjia [early Islamic school of divinity] believe that Christians and Jews are not kuffar [non-believers] and that they will be in Paradise on the Day of Judgement.”
- “However, Allah has made takfir [declaring an individual as a non-believer] on the Jews and Christians and said they are the worst of created creatures in the Ayah below:
- Verily, those who disbelieve (in the religion of Islam, the Qur'an and Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him)) from among the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians) and Al-Mushrikun will abide in the Fire of Hell. They are the worst of creatures. (Al-Baiyinah 98:6)”
- “Because according to Shariah Law, doubt cannot be used to make a verdict on the meat of Jews and Christians [is] haram [forbidden].”
- “The same Ayah [Quranic verse]that says we can eat the meat of the Jews and Christians is the same ayah that mentions the legality of marrying their women.”
- “ex: Christians believe Jesus is God”
- “If you die on this belief, you will be in hell forever.”
- “United Snakes of America is the most racist country in the world. The white man in America is a dictator because he suffers from white supremacy. He goes to countries and tries to dictate how the country should run and operate.”
- “The white man suffers from a superiority complex.”
- “The natural resources of the world are in the hands of Muslim and Black countries. Therefore, it doesn't make sense to hate them.”
- “Abraham Lincoln didn't die a successful man because he didn't succeed in abolishing slavery. Slavery is too profitable.”
- “The New Slavery is the Prison System in the USA.”
- “Many black men are killed or serve prison time for crimes never committed.”
- “In 1955, there was a white woman who cried rape by a black man named Emmett Till. She later confessed in old age that it was a lie.”
- “The human devils in Europe and America want us to give up our blessed Shariah for evil manmade laws and human authority.”
- There is no doubt that the Americans and Russians are crusaders; therefore, it is haram [forbidden] for any scholar to pass a fatwa [ruling on point of Islamic law by recognized authority] to allow their armies to invade Muslim lands.”