In an effort to “enhance Islamic values, identity and understanding among Malaysian students in the United States and Canada,” the Malaysian Islamic Study Group (MISG) was founded in Peoria, Illinois in 1976. Today MISG has chapters in almost every U.S.-based university where Malaysian students are enrolled. The organization identifies its current objectives as:
“To increase the awareness and concern of [faith] and love of al-Islam as a way of life among students, for them to fulfill their duties in Islam.”
“To shape students with true Muslim personality, thus creating intellectuals with taqwa (God consciousness) in their hearts.”
“To find ways to expand every aspect of Islamic knowledge among students, including aqidah (belief), syariah (jurisprudence), economy, social [sic], politics and culture …”
“To train workers to propagate the message of Islam.”
MISG promotes the foregoing values by regularly disseminating communiques to the many subscribers on its two email lists. One list consists of male and female subscribers alike; the other is open only to females, and focuses largely on the needs and concerns of women and children. MISG has also established a Facebook page to enable its members nationwide to network with one another.
MISG’s most important program is known as Lujnah Da’wah & Tarbiyah. This initiative hosts weekly study circles where Malaysian students in the U.S. and Canada can gather to discuss contemporary issues that are relevant to them. At universities with a large number of Malaysian students, these meetings are held on campus. For schools with smaller Malaysian representation, MISG hosts the events via online conferences. Moreover, the organization occasionally hosts inter-campus visits designed to strengthen the bonds among its members in far-flung locations.
MISG was named in a May 1991 Muslim Brotherhood document — titled “An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Group in North America” — as one of the Brotherhood’s 29 likeminded “organizations of our friends” that shared the common goal of destroying America and turning it into a Muslim nation. These “friends” were identified by the Brotherhood as groups that could help teach Muslims “that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands … so that … God’s religion [Islam] is made victorious over all other religions.”
Also named in the Muslim Brotherhood document were: