Success stories of Palestinian achievers from all over the world

Sami Al-Arian

Личная информация

  • Страна местожительства: Palestine
  • Пол: Male
  • Born in:
  • key_age: 65
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Sami Amin Al-Arian (born January 14, 1958) is a Palestinian political activist who was a professor of computer engineering at the University of South Florida. During the Clinton administration and the Bush administration, he was invited to the White House. He actively campaigned for the Bush presidential campaign in the US presidential election in 2000.

After a controversial interview with Bill O'Reilly on The O'Reilly Factor after the September 11 attacks, Al-Arian's tenure at USF came under public scrutiny.

He was charged on February 17, 2003 under the Patriot Act. The jury acquitted him on 8 counts and deadlocked on the remaining 9 counts. He later entered into a plea bargain and pleaded guilty to one of the remaining charges in exchange for his release and deportation by April 2007. However, as his release date approached, a Virginia federal prosecutor demanded that he testify before a grand jury in a separate case, which he refused to do, claiming That it would violate the plea bargain. He was held under house arrest in Northern Virginia from 2008 until 2014 when federal prosecutors filed a motion to dismiss the charges against him.

He was deported to Türkiye on February 4, 2015.

Early life and education
Kuwait and Egypt
Al-Arian was born on January 14, 1958 in Kuwait. His parents, Amin and Laila Al-Arian, were Palestinian refugees after the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948. After the Palestine War in 1948, Amin was forced to leave the family's soap factory in Jaffa and flee towards the refugee camps in the Gaza Strip. Amin's family immigrated to Kuwait in 1957, where Sami Al-Arian was born. Under Kuwaiti law, his parents were legal residents but he was not eligible for citizenship. In 1966 his family was expelled from Kuwait after refusing to become informants for Kuwaiti intelligence. He received his primary and secondary education in Cairo, Egypt. During the early 1970s, Sami learned English from American television programmes. He left Egypt in 1975, and returned in 1979 for a visit when he married Nahla El-Naggar.

United States of America
Amin El-Erian used all his savings to send Sami to America for an education. In 1975, El-Erian came to the United States to study engineering at Southern Illinois University. In 1978, he graduated with a major in Electrical Science and Systems Engineering. At North Carolina State University, he earned his master's degree in 1980 and his doctorate in 1985.

Graduated from the University of South Florida
He moved to Temple Terrace after being appointed as a teaching assistant professor of computer engineering at the University of South Florida on January 22, 1986. He was granted US permanent resident status in March 1989. He was promoted from assistant professor to permanent associate professor. He has received numerous teaching-related awards including the Jerome Krivanik Distinguished Teacher Award in 1993 and a salary increase based on merit grades through the Teaching Incentive Program in 1994.

Community involvement and wisdom
He was very involved in the local community. He served as imam of a local mosque and charter officer for the local seminary. In 1992, he hosted a local cable show, Assalamu Alaikum.

He rose to national prominence for his quest for civil rights for Muslim Americans and for raising awareness of the Palestinian plight. Al-Erian criticized the peace process led by Palestinian National Authority President Yasser Arafat and called for support for the Palestinian uprisings against the Israeli occupation during the 1980s and early 1990s. On October 20, 1988, Al-Arian founded the Islamic Concern Project, which included a dedicated committee to raise charitable donations for Palestine. In 1990-1991, his continued involvement in promoting dialogue between the West and the Middle East led to the establishment of the Institute for World and Islam Studies (WISE), which served as a think tank that fostered public policy initiatives. WISE and USF formally agreed to cooperate on March 11, 1992. The Institute for World and Islam Studies published journals, supported graduate student education, and conducted seminars among American and Middle Eastern scholars.

Emerson Film and Investigation
Steve Emerson published a controversial film in November 1994 that accused the Institute for World and Islam Studies of being a terrorist front organization, which Al-Arian vehemently denied. In May 1995, Michael Fisher expanded into the Emerson film. Fechter's articles have been criticized by fellow journalists for inciting intolerance through reckless journalism. Sami Al-Arian's daughter, Laila Al-Arian, criticized Emerson and The Turbine for posting pictures of their home, school and family car. In November 1995 federal agents investigating "violations of perjury and immigration laws" searched Sami Al-Arian's home for six hours to confiscate 1986 bank statements, travel authorizations, telephone bills, travel maps, family videos, audio tapes, and computer disks. A three-month independent investigation led by Tampa attorney and former US military chief William Reese Smith included hundreds of documents and 59 interviews. The investigation reported in May 1996 that there was "no evidence" to support the allegation that Al-Arian or the Institute for World and Islam Studies supported terrorism. The report went to the conclusion that USF officials acted appropriately in cooperation with the Institute for World and Islam Studies. USF President Betty Castor praised the 99-page report for its "comprehensive, thoughtful and detailed analysis." In June 1996 Charles Reed, Chancellor of the Universities of Florida, said that their investigation found no links between WISE and terrorist organizations.

In May 1996, Villanova University canceled a seminar featuring several speakers including Al-Arian after the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) complained about possible riots. The Middle Eastern Studies Association of North America (MESA), the largest association of Middle Eastern scholars in the United States, approved a resolution reprimanding the association for "creating an atmosphere of intimidation that led to the cancellation of an academic event." USF placed Al-Arian on paid administrative leave in May 1996 pending the outcome of a federal investigation that had an indefinite time frame. The students complained in August 1997 after Al-Arian's graduation requirements course was cancelled. After consulting with authorities who did not press charges after a three-year federal investigation, USF decided to reinstate him in August 1998.

He applied for US citizenship in January 1994. Although he was informed that he had passed all requirements for citizenship in September 1994, he was neither granted nor denied citizenship. Federal law requires notification within 120 days after the citizenship check. In October 1995, he filed a lawsuit to grant him citizenship directly. His petition for citizenship was denied in March 1996 citing illegal voting in the 1994 local election in Hillsborough County. But the state investigation found no inconsistencies and exonerated him because voter registration deputies gave Al-Arian a mail-in voter registration card to vote in the 1994 local election.

Mazen Al-Najjar
Mazen Al-Najjar, Sami Al-Arian's brother-in-law, was imprisoned for nearly five years, on charges of having links with Palestinian resistance fighters. In May 1997, Al-Najjar was imprisoned in Miami, Florida without charge, and held indefinitely on the basis of secret evidence. Although Judge McHugh found the carpenter a respected member of the community, McHugh denied bail based on secret evidence in May 1997. In May 2000, U.S. District Judge John A. Leonard ordered a retrial because the carpenter's right to a fair trial was violated when the government did not give up evidence for the carpenter to defend himself. On the first day of the hearing in August 2000, the government called Al-Arian to testify. Many legal analysts and Al-Arian were convinced that Al-Arian, not Al-Najjar, was at the center of Al-Najjar's case. On the advice of his lawyer, Al-Arian cited the Fifth Amendment for 99 of 102 questions. Because al-Najjar was a Palestinian born in Gaza during Egyptian control of the area, al-Najjar had essentially no citizenship anywhere, and allegations that he had ties to terrorists marred attempts to find a country to take him, his wife and three other people. little girls. Al-Najjar was released in December 2000 after a judge ruled that the government had no evidence of his continued detention. Al-Najjar was arrested again in November 2001 by the Immigration and Nationality Service (INS). He was officially taken into custody for overstaying his student visa in the 1980s. His supporters accused the government of undermining civil liberties in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks. Al-Najjar obtained a two-week tourist visa from Bahrain. On his way to Ireland, however, Bahrain reversed its decision to accept al-Najjar. After negotiations, al-Najjar flew to Italy and then landed in Lebanon, which granted him a visitor visa for six months as of August 2002. He overstayed his US student visa, and was deported in August 2002.

Political participation
Inspired by al-Najjar's predicament, Al-Arian co-founded the Tampa Bay Coalition for Peace and Justice, which focused on the use of classified evidence and other civil rights issues in the Anti-Terrorism Act, the Effective Death Penalty of 1996, and illegal immigration reform and immigrants. Liability Law of 1996. In 2000, El-Erian co-founded and led the National Coalition for the Protection of Political Freedom. Newsweek called him a "major civil rights activist" for his efforts to eliminate the use of secret evidence in trials.

Al-Arian visited the White House four times from 1997 to 2001.

During the 2000 presidential election, Al-Arian contacted the Al Gore campaign and the Bush campaign to address the use of secret evidence to detain American citizens without charge. Al-Arian met Bush during a campaign stop at the Florida Strawberry Festival to protest the Clinton administration's use of classified evidence. After presidential debates in which Bush denounced the use of classified evidence as a form of racial profiling against Arab Americans, Al-Arian launched Bush's campaign as the candidate most likely to end discrimination. During the White House conference announcing Bush's election victory, El-Erian secured a front-row spot for voter education efforts in Florida. On June 20, 2001, Al-Arian joined 160 American Muslim activists at a White House briefing with Bush's senior advisor (Karl Rove). But at a separate White House event on June 28, his son Abdullah, a congressional trainee, made national headlines when he was escorted out by the Secret Service without explanation. Twenty-four Muslim community leaders also walked out to protest Abdullah's expulsion. The Secret Service later apologized for the incident, citing "the confusion of one of its guards." President Bush personally apologized in a letter to Nahla and thanked the family for their charitable contributions to Muslim communities around the world.

The Tampa Bay Muslim Alliance (TBMA) and Al-Arian helped resettle 50 families who fled the Bosnian War. Al-Arian and other coalition leaders condemned the September 11 attacks in the immediate aftermath. Al-Arian encouraged the nation to pursue those responsible but at the same time discourage acts of war that might affect the innocent. He discouraged radio talk show hosts from spreading hate speech and calling for national unity. Al-Arian led the local Muslim community in organizing a blood drive in solidarity with the victims of 9/11.


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