The Muslim Student Association – Persian Speaking Group (MSA-PSG) will hold its 43rd annual conference in Denver, Colorado, which will draw the participation of several anti-Semites, conspiracy theorists and Holocaust deniers.
The conference, titled “Awaiting the Savior,” is scheduled for December 26-29 and will include lectures and workshop sessions with the purported aim to discuss “how Islam can help guide us in our awaiting time to be the true supporters of our Imam,” also known as the Mahdi, a messianic figure for Shi’a Muslims.
The MSA-PGA was founded in 1970 by Mostafa Chamron, an Iranian anti-Shah activist when he was a student at the University of California – Berkeley. Chamron subsequently returned to Iran after the 1979 Islamic Revolution and served as defense minister and a member of parliament for the Islamic Republic of Iran.
The organization has a history of inviting anti-Semitic speakers and extremists to its annual conference. Among the list of speakers invited this year, and in previous years, are Muhammad al Asi and Abdul Alim Musa. Al Asi and Musa are frequently invited to speak at anti-Israel events on campus where they engage in anti-Semitic rhetoric during their speeches and lectures. Additionally, both individuals have publicly sworn allegiance to Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Musa is also the leader of Sabiqun, an anti-Semitic Muslim group that advocates for the creation of a global Islamic state.
Anti-Semitic conspiracy theorists Mark Glenn and Mark Dankof are also invited to speak at this year’s event. At the 2012 annual MSA-PSG conference, Dankof made a series of conspiratorial and anti-Semitic claims that Muslims and Christians are under threat by Zionists. Moreover, Dankof made a series of allegations that Jews are in control of American politics, economics and media, and that Jewish conspiracies are behind important U.S. events, such as the assassination of President Kennedy and the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
The organization, which is primarily based in Los Angeles, adheres to the strict principles of Twelver Shi’a Islam and the virulently anti-Semitic and anti-West ideology of the founder of the Islamic Republic, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. Contrary to its name, members of the MSA-PSG are not necessarily students. Many members are of Pakistani or South Asian origins who have previously spent time at Iranian seminaries and religious institutions. Previous years’ conferences have primarily been held in Houston and Chicago.
Another scheduled speaker is Hamza Sodagar, an Iranian-born cleric. At the 2010 Muslim Congress (MC) convention, Sodagar made several conspiratorial charges, including one where he alleged Zionist control over U.S. Muslims.