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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Pennsylvania Pasha

by Paul L. Williams, Ph.D.

Who is Fethullah Gulen?

The Turkish pasha presents himself as a moderate Muslim who espouses peace, goodwill, and interfaith dialogue.

He has produced a documentary to attack the claims against his movement that have been made on this website – - including the claim that he maintains an armed fortress in Saylorsburg, PA.

But trips to Gulen’s complex prove otherwise.

His neighbors have complained of fully automatic gunfire erupting from his complex and of a low flying helicopter that combs the area in search of any intruders.

Is Gulen really a benign old Muslim gentleman who retired to the Pocono Mountains from his native Turkey for reasons of health?

Is he really an educator of international renown? Has he really captured the love and admiration of political and religious leaders, including Hillary Clinton and Pope John Paul II?

Or is he the alleged “most dangerous Islamist on planet earth, a committed jihadi who manifests the Muslim practice of taqiyya and seeks to establish a universal caliphate ruled by shariah? Little about Gulen, as U.S. Attorney Patrick Meehan discovered, is known – - not even his date of birth. Some of his followers maintain that he was born in 1934; others 1938; and still others 1942.

On his website, Gulen says that he received the UNECO award from Pope John Paul II in October, 2005. But the John Paul II died on April 2, 2005.

Gulen, in his application for permanent residency in the United States, maintained that he was “an educator of extraordinary ability and renown.” But Gulen does not possess an elementary school education, let alone a high school diploma. He is semi-literate and speaks no English. To substantiate his ability and renown, Gulen, on his application, provides a long list of his scholarly works. But all of his works have been published by The Light Publishing Company and Tughra Press, two firms that are owned by the Gulen movement.

Gulen states that his works are the subject of entire courses in schools throughout the country. Maybe they constitute the subject of classes in the Gulen charter schools that he has established throughout Central Asia, Europe, and the United States. But not one leading college or university offers a course on Gulen and his educational philosophy.

In his application, Gulen further maintains that he has delivers scholarly addresses to gatherings of scholars and academics. But no audio or video evidence, let alone first-hand report, exists that these speeches were ever delivered.

Who is Fethullah Gulen?

Are the hundreds of charter schools that he has established throughout the U.S.A. really places where children are indoctrinated in the principles of political Islam and the plot to restore the Ottoman Empire? The answers come from Gulen himself. In 1999, Turkish television aired footage of Gülen delivering sermons to a crowd of followers, Gulen revealed his aspirations for an Islamist Turkey ruled by Shari‘a (Islamic law) as well as the methods that should be used to attain that goal by saying:

“You must move in the arteries of the system without anyone noticing your existence until you reach all the power centers … until the conditions are ripe, they [the followers] must continue like this. If they do something prematurely, the world will crush our heads, and Muslims will suffer everywhere, like in the tragedies in Algeria, like in 1982 [in] Syria … like in the yearly disasters and tragedies in Egypt. The time is not yet right.

You must wait for the time when you are complete and conditions are ripe, until we can shoulder the entire world and carry it … You must wait until such time as you have gotten all the state power, until you have brought to your side all the power of the constitutional institutions in Turkey … Until that time, any step taken would be too early—like breaking an egg without waiting the full forty days for it to hatch. It would be like killing the chick inside. The work to be done is [in] confronting the world.

Now, I have expressed my feelings and thoughts to you all—in confidence … trusting your loyalty and secrecy. I know that when you leave here—[just] as you discard your empty juice boxes, you must discard the thoughts and the feelings that I expressed here.”
He continued:

When everything was closed and all doors were locked, our houses of isik [light] assumed a mission greater than that of older times. In the past, some of the duties of these houses were carried out by madrasas [Islamic schools], some by schools, some by tekkes [Islamist lodges] … These isik homes had to be the schools, had to be madrasas, [had to be] tekkes all at the same time.

The permission did not come from the state, or the state’s laws, or the people who govern us. The permission was given by God … who wanted His name learned and talked about, studied, and discussed in those houses, as it used to be in the mosques.”
In another sermon, Gülen said:

“Now it is a painful spring that we live in. A nation is being born again. A nation of millions [is] being born—one that will live for long centuries, God willing … It is being born with its own culture, its own civilization. If giving birth to one person is so painful, the birth of millions cannot be pain-free. Naturally we will suffer pain.

It won’t be easy for a nation that has accepted atheism, has accepted materialism, a nation accustomed to running away from itself, to come back riding on its horse. It will not be easy, but it is worth all our suffering and the sacrifices.”
And, in yet another sermon, he told his followers:

“The philosophy of our service is that we open a house somewhere and, with the patience of a spider, we lay our web to wait for people to get caught in the web; and we teach those who do. We don’t lay the web to eat or consume them but to show them the way to their resurrection, to blow life into their dead bodies and souls, to give them a life.”

What takes place in the Gulen charter schools that receive millions from the American taxpayer?

Noted Middle Eastern scholar Rachel Sharon-Krespin writes: “His (Gulen’s) followers target youth in the eighth through twelfth grades, mentor and indoctrinate them in the ışıkevi, educate them in the Fethullah schools, and prepare them for future careers in legal, political, and educational professions in order to create the ruling classes of the future Islamist, Turkish state.”

Even more telling is a comment from Nurettin Veren, Gulen’s right hand man for 35 years, who says: “These schools are like shop windows. Recruitment and Islamization are carried out through night classes.”

Is Gulen really dangerous and a threat to the United States and the Western World?

Gulen, on his website, says that he came to the United States in 1998 for reasons of health, since he allegedly suffers from diabetes.

But, in truth, Gulen fled his native Turkey to avoid prosecution on charges that he was attempting to undermine Turkey’s secular government with the objective of establishing an Islamic government. Court records show that he possesses more than $25 billion in financial assets. Under the Justice and Development Party – - Adalet ve Kalkinma, AKP – - a party which Gulen created from his headquarters in Pennsylvania and Houston, Texas – - the reclusive pasha has gained control of the Turkish government.

Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is a Gulen disciple – - as is Turkey’s President Abdullah Gul. Thanks to such Islamists, Turkey has transformed from a secular state into an Islamic country with 85,000 active mosques – - one for every 350- citizens – - the highest number per capita in the world, 90,000 imams, more imams than teachers and physicians – - and thousands of state-run Islamic schools.

Despite the rhetoric of European Union accession, Turkey has transferred its alliance from Europe and the United States to Russia and Iran. It has moved toward friendship with Hamas, Hezbollah, and Syria and created a pervasive anti-Christian, anti-Jewish, and anti-America animus throughout the populace.

His movement with six million adherents has spread throughout Central Asia and has served to unite such newly created Russian republics as Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, and Azerbaijan into a pan-Islamic state.

These countries were populated by Turks – – Turks who were once part of the Ottoman Empire – – Turks who still speak Turkish and practice Turkish customs. Turkey, under the AKP, has forged a strong alliance with Iran. This alliance was largely achieved through the workings of the Gulen movement among the Azeri population of Iran who speak Turkish rather than Farsi.

In the wake of the AKP’ attempt to lead a fleet of ships, filled with pro-Palestinian activists, through the Gaza blockade on May 31, Turkey has strengthened its ties to Syria, Lebanon and much of the Muslim world. Placards depicting the smiling face of Tayyip Erdogan are omnipresent in Saudi Arabia.

Gulen’s dream of creating a universal caliphate is becoming a reality, and he has garnered support from such US dignitaries as Hillary Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama.

In May, Gulen created his latest lobbying group in Washington, D.C. – - the Assembly of Turkic Federations (ATAF), which already has shelled out millions to American politicians so that they will remain sensitive to his efforts to further the cause of militant Islam.

ATAF celebrated its formation with a gala celebration in a plush lounge of the Willard Hotel in Washington, D.C.

Among those in attendance were U.S. Senators Richard Lugar, Robert Casey, Frank Lautenberg, Jeff Ningaman, Roger Wicker, Mark Warner, Kay Hagen, and fifty-three members of the U.S. House of Representatives.


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