A small group of inter-connected foundations, think tanks, pundits, and bloggers is behind the 10-year-old campaign to promote fear of Islam and Muslims in the U.S., according to a major investigative report released here Friday by the Center for American Progress (CAP).
The 130-page report, ‘Fear, Inc.: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America’, identifies seven foundations that have quietly provided a total of more than 42 million dollars to key individuals and organisations that have spearheaded the nation-wide effort between 2001 and 2009.
They include funders that have long been associated with the extreme right in the U.S., as well as several Jewish family foundations that have supported right-wing and settler groups in Israel.
"Together, this core group of deeply intertwined individuals and organisations manufacture and exaggerate threats of ‘creeping Sharia’, Islamic domination of the West, and purported obligatory calls to violence against all non-Muslims by the Quran," according to the report whose main author, Wajahat Ali, described the group as "the central nervous system of the Islamophobia network."
ther key disseminators include media figures, especially prominent hosts on the Fox News Channel and columnists in the ‘Washington Times’ the ‘National Review’; as well as grassroots groups, such as ACT! For America, local "Tea Party" movements, and the American Family Association, which are behind current efforts by Republican-dominated state legislatures to ban Sharia in their jurisdictions.
Indeed, Spencer’s blog, ‘Jihad Watch’, a programme of the David Horowitz Freedom Center, another group identified by the report as part of the Islamophobic network, was cited 162 times, while Pipes and the MEF receive 16 mentions, and Gaffney’s CSP another eight.