From October 9 to 12, London-based barrister Abdur Razzaq will visit Washington, D.C. to meet with White House officials, legislators, House committee staffers and analysts at a number of think tanks. That a lawyer is speaking with politicians is not particularly worrying. But the fact that Razzaq is also an assistant secretary general of the violent South Asian Islamist group, Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), is an enormous problem. Are D.C. officials aware of who exactly they are meeting?
Founded in Lahore (then British India) in 1941 by the Islamist theorist Abul Ala Maududi, JI has established branches in countries all around the world, including a substantial network in the United States. JI came to prominence in 1971 after its operatives assisted in the murder of hundreds of thousands of Bangladeshis fighting for freedom from Pakistani rule. Three million people reportedly died in the catastrophic war and millions fled to neighboring India as refugees.
In the decades since the 1971 war, JI has committed violent acts all across South Asia and, today, the Bangladeshi branch is closely involved with Islamist terror in both Bangladesh and India. JI leaders have openly expressed support for Taliban terrorists and mourned their deaths. And in 2017, the U.S. government designated Hizbul Mujahideen, a Kashmiri jihadist group and JI Pakistan’s “militant wing,” as a terrorist organization.