208 G Street, NE
Phone :202-548-4200 URL: Website
Supports Hamas and Hezbollah
Routinely involved in anti-Zionist campaigns
Has featured calls at its conferences for the killing of Jews
Supports Palestinian "right of return"
Incorporated in 1999, American Muslims for Jerusalem (AMJ) is a nonprofit organization headquartered near Capitol Hill. Publicly, AMJ defines its mission as: "to ensure [that] … the concerns of the American-Muslim community regarding Jerusalem and its environs are understood and respected by the formulation of U.S. policy; to present accurate and timely information to the mass media and other interested parties; to educate, inform, and mobilize the American Muslim community; to raise the awareness of the American society in general and work for a just and comprehensive solution to the issue of Jerusalem; [and] to cooperate with other organizations having similar objectives.” Appealing for "a Jerusalem that symbolizes religious tolerance and dialogue," AMJ advocates free access by all to the city's religious sites, rejects any form of sovereignty gained through force, and endorses the “right of return” for Palestinian refugees. The organization neither echoes the radical Palestinian assertion that Jerusalem is the capital of Palestine, nor denies Jewish historical ties to Jerusalem.
As Islam scholar Daniel Pipes points out, however, at private events AMJ adopts positions that are much more radical. For example, at the organization’s first major event, a November 1999 fundraising dinner, featured speakers Nihad Awad (a founding member of the Council on American-Islamic Relations) and Abdurahman Alamoudi (founder and Executive Director of the American Muslim Council) derided the State of Israel and American Jews, blaming the latter for exerting undue influence upon U.S. politics and brainwashing American Christians. The keynote speaker, Issa Nakhleh, a Christian member of the Arab Supreme Council for Palestine, alleged that the Israel lobby spends $20 million annually to persuade members of Congress to legislate in a manner advantageous to Jews and Israel. Nakhleh advised Arabs and Muslims to counter this practice by dispatching fundraising delegations to Saudi Arabia and the emirates: "I am sure you will get $10 million from these two, and Iran will give you $10 million," he said.
In 1999 AMJ co-organized a boycott campaign against Burger King, in protest against the fast-food franchise’s decision to build a restaurant in an Israeli settlement community, which AMJ called “Palestinian territory occupied by Israel.” Said AMJ, “This settlement was built illegally on land seized from Muslims and Christians by Israel after it conquered the territory around Jerusalem in 1967.” That same year, AMJ also pressured the Disney Corporation not to list Jerusalem as the "Jewish capital" of Israel at a World Expo in Florida.
Terrorism expert Steve Emerson has characterized AMJ as an organization that "routinely involves anti-Zionist campaigns and has featured calls at its conferences for the killing of Jews." The organization frequently publicizes stories about Christians and Muslims being discriminated against by Israel in Jerusalem, while behind the scenes it maintains close ties with the American Muslim Council, whose leader -- the aforementioned Abdurahman Alamoudi -- is a supporter of both Hamas and Hezbollah.
In February and April of 2001, a number of the world's most extreme Islamic terror groups held a pair of meetings in Beirut and Tehran, respectively, to set aside their differences and unite for jihad (holy war) against Israel and the United States. These unprecedented events, together dubbed "the Jerusalem Conference," drew more than 400 militants seeking to unite behind the Palestinians and win total Arab control over Jerusalem. The attendees agreed on the creation of an organization now known as "the Jerusalem Project," and crafted a document that stated: "The only decisive option to achieve this strategy is the option of jihad in all its forms and resistance … America today is a second Israel." The participants in these meetings included leaders of al Qaeda, Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Hezbollah, as well as militants from Egypt, Pakistan, Jordan, Qatar, Yemen, the Sudan, and Algeria. According to an August 8, 2001 report on the Jerusalem Cloakroom website, AMJ Executive Director Khalid Turaani attended the Jerusalem Conference.
AMJ was a signatory to a MAY 20, 2004 “Joint Muslims/Arab-American Statement on Israeli Violence in Gaza,” which "strongly condemn[ed]" Israel's "indiscriminate killings of innocent Palestinians, including many children," and its "demolition of Palestinian homes."