Friday, August 13, 2010

Aland Mizell on Fethullah Gülen's Islamist Movement

From KurdishMedia:
In May 2010 media outlets and blogs spots across the Internet discussed Bill Gates’ Ten million dollar donation to the Gulen Movement’s publically funded charter schools in Texas whose agenda is to spread his version of Islam. Did the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation not do their homework? Did they know about Gulen’s revolution? In the past Islamic groups have tried methods to impose their authority over people and take charge, but they mostly use force or violence to accomplish that goal. This kind of method gave Fethullah Gülen’s missionaries the advantage to grow fast as an alternative to these seemingly more radicalized Islamic groups...

...Why does America support Gülen’s missionaries in Central Asia and around the globe and even in the US? After the collapse of the Soviet Union the balance of power in the world changed, and more than 15 countries got their independence from the Soviet Union. There was a gap in power in the region seeking to be filled; additionally, most of these newly independent countries such as Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan were rich with the underground resources of oil, gas, gold, and other materials. However, a void for religion developed as well, so there was a competition among an Iranian brand of Islam, a Saudi Arabian version of Islam, and Gülen’s missionaries to fill the void. The US government gave its support to Gülen, because it mistakenly believed that Gülen‘s missionaries were less harmful compared to the Iranian Islamic movement Hezbollah, Saudi‘s brand of Islam Wahhbism, or other fundamentalist groups. The US thought that Gülen’s movement could be managed in the right way by using it to suit America’s purposes. Because many naively believe that Gülen’s preaches nonviolence and dialogue between the western and Muslim worlds, they let their guard down and fail to see behind his proclaimed agenda. They fail to understand that he is incrementally moving toward a return of the Islamic state such as the Ottoman Empire undertook. That is why when Gülen applied for a green card, he could not get it. Then some ex-CIA officers gave him reference letters for his application to demonstrate that he was a safe immigrant. Prior to this attempt, when Gülen could not get a green card the first time, he was looking for a place to go; if the US did not grant him a visa, he would have gone to China to continue his undercover operation. Gülen’s missionaries are trying to build the same platform as he used in Central Asia in the US by opening many NGOS, charter schools, Turkish cultural houses, and interfaith dialogue forums. In addition, he brings students from Central Asia as graduate students to teach in universities or to obtain official positions, opens TV channels and newspapers, organizes trips to Turkey, establishes Rumi forums, and holds conferences so that soon he will exert more influence in the US as well. Because he is wearing a moderate Islamic mask and because he is using education, he is perceived as less dangerous and therefore as an alternative to fundamentalism, but let’s see how long this honeymoon lasts between Gülen and America. America fails to understand that in the Middle East Gülen’s missionaries will be a future threat to the American national interest. Presently they do not have enough power to stand against America, but when they gain power, they will make their true intent known. They will be a threat to the American national interest; it is just a matter of the right time and power. The difference between Gülen’s missionary group and other Islamic groups is its focus on education and technology. By using the platform, they ensure that those who join them are wholeheartedly pledging their allegiance to the man and his cause and thereby avoiding direct conflict and arguments between the state and themselves. In the meantime the movement has placed its loyal members in various government agencies. Gülen and his followers are thirsty for power, because with that power, they will be able to do anything and to accomplish their objectives. They will not publically condemn or praise the other fundamental groups who use force to gain power. Because they know they are competing with the various powers first to gain a presence in the US and then to augment their influence, the movement enjoys being seen as the rational alternative to the overtly radical groups. However, simultaneously as Gülen extends his command in the US, he looks to enlarge his movement across the globe and to give an alternative to the West and to America to support his movement rather than those that use force to advance their cause. Gülen knows the West and America cannot be an enemy with Islam because of the world’s political climate, but that they want some kind of modern Islam that will embrace peace and not violence. But what the West’s leaders do not understand is that Gülen’s missionaries are one of the most dangerous forces against world peace. In 1999, in his speech, he advised his missionaries not to act until gaining all the power of every constitutional organization in Turkey and continues to his methodical plan there under the current Turkish administration. Now he is advancing this strategy in the West and in America.

But with his undercover methods, his leadership mostly avoids violence or direct confrontation with governments. One of Gülen’s methods of indoctrination is to focus on how to keep secrets and not to tell the truth, because Gülen’s missionaries teach that followers have to know the truth, but they cannot tell the truth anywhere or anytime, which means that his followers cannot tell their real goal. They can deny their actual purpose, and they do not tell that they are missionaries or that they disseminate Islam. For example, many of his followers did not wear the headscarf in Central Asia when they first went there because people would not be as attracted to them; consequently, Gülen ordered his female followers not wear the headscarf. Another example is that when the students were asked if they prayed five times a day, they would deny it, and they will not pray in front of their students. Now they are advancing their movement in Europe and in the US with different methods but still lie about their main objectives. They openly read Gulen’s and Said Nursi’s books, but do not reveal the plan to return to the Ottoman’s Quranic law. They believe Islam allows them to lie because they are in Dar al- Harb (at war) with infidels since Islam does not dominate in the region until they acquire enough power. Like a Trojan horse, they surreptitiously enter the territory but still act completely in the interest of the missionaries in order to help take over the agencies they are working inside of. In the beginning of the early 1970s, Gülen’s missionaries begin their undercover operation and over time made a significant breakthrough, so that his missionaries have taken over significant arenas in Turkey. Gülen’s agenda is not limited only to Turkey, but he aims to conquer the whole world. During the early time of Islamic history, Mohammed ordered all Muslims to have a good relationship with Jews because in that time Jews were in charge of commerce and were powerful, but after he got enough power, then he fought with them to establish an Islamic domain. Before that shift Muslims were praying toward Jerusalem, but then later when they got power, Mohammed changed the direction of prayer to Mecca.

Today Turkey is increasingly polarized between Turkey’s Islamic ruling party of Islamic Muslim missionaries (Gülen’s movement), the country’s old elites and the secular military. Secularists are trying to keep religion and politics entirely separate. His administration engages in ongoing battles to take control of the media, police, judiciary, and key government actors and remove them from the control of the secularists and military power...