Terry Jones and Friends

Yesterday I noted Pastor Terry Jones’s new “Stand Up America!” organisation – not to be confused with the established right-wing group of that name – with which he intends to come to the UK in February to address the English Defence League. The group’s main focus is

standing up for the Christians & minorities in Islamic dominated countries. In Egypt Christianity is persecuted everyday and America closes its eyes. Even the Christian churches in America refuse to see to the brutality and inhumane treatment of those that do not accept Islam as their religion. Stand Up America! will continue to protest and speak out on these issues as well as abortion, homosexuality, same-sex marriage and other areas that the modern church of today shy away from…

To this end, Jones held a protest at Ground Zero on 16 November, and a protest outside the Egyptian consulate in New York on 11 December. His site lists various allies in these activities:

The Truth TV

The National Coptic Association

The American Coptic Association

The International Christian Union

The American Defense League

The 9/11 Ground Zero Truck

The “9/11 Ground Zero Truck” – owned by a certain Mark A. Niemczyk – can be seen in action here, while the American Defense League appears to be a British-created offshoot of the EDL – Real Human Rights notes that the group’s Facebook page has a url which uses the British “Defence” spelling. There is also a “Denver Division” with a Facebook page here. In the run-up to Saturday’s protest, Emily Sapp – the daughter of Jones’ weird assistant pastor Wayne Sapp – stopped by the Facebook page of the Youth Defense league to plug the event and Jones’ book. However, this page is for fans of a 1980s skinhead band of that name, rather than having any connection to the EDL; probably Sapp didn’t realise the difference.

The National Coptic Association and the American Coptic Association appear to be both the same outfit, actually the National American Coptic Association, run by a certain Morris Sadek (vars Morris Sadik; Maurice Sadek). He describes himself as

one of Egypt’s leading human rights advocates. He is President of the Egyptian Center of Human Rights for National Unity in Cairo. In October 1999, he became Advocates’ Counsel for Middle East Affairs with a special focus on Egypt, as well as a director of our International Institute for Law.…Morris Sadek Esq is a president of national American coptic Assembly – non profit org

He has a somewhat chaotically-written blog here. According to a recent entry (probably an Arabic report that has gone through Babelfish):

Morris told the National Assembly approved Prime Coptic-American that he went at the request of the U.S. administration calling for the moratorium on the export of wheat to Egypt, due to the exposure of Copts in Egypt of oppression – as he claimed -.

Sadiq said in a protest march organized by the Copts in New York, featuring the Rev. extremist Terry Jones, owner of a lawsuit burning the Holy Quran, to condemn the riots that occurred in the city of Abu Tisht recently, “Hey America, Wake-man Egyptian and Christians in my country burn their homes,” and claimed in Htavath that “The Egyptian government persecutes Christians and exclude them from high political positions.

Further garbled details from appear on this site:

Called Rev. extreme “Jones” His idea of burning the Koran in the area of the twin towers of World Trade in America to march to protest on Eid al-Adha, in the same area starting at eleven am to two hours to stand in mourning for the victims of the accident the eleventh of September.

Jones said in the statement, which was launched in partnership with – Ahmed Abaza, Head of Channel truth of Christianity in America – and Maurice Sadek National Assembly President Coptic America under the name “coalition of the Giants” The march is aimed to find out to mourn the martyrs of America, Egypt and Iraq who are affected by the hand of treachery Islamic descendants of Arab invaders occupiers the land of Egypt, Coptic and Pharaonic on behalf of the doctrine of Islam fascist ideology espoused by all the Muslims of the world such as Mohammed Atta, Ayman al-Zawahiri, and Omar Abdel Rahman, and their tails of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, according to a statement.

The statement called for Jews to continue to liberate “Jerusalem” from the hands of settlers and the expulsion of Muslims, also urged residents of southern Sudan to continue in their battle for a state separate from the north, saying,”O brave people of South Sudan, O triumphed on the Arab Muslims in Sudan have continued in your state New South Sudan Christian, we support you and are ready to make precious and cheap for the liberation of southern Sudan from Islamic fascism,And will soon be freed of Egypt Coptic Muslim settlers, as liberated Spain, Israel and South Sudan.

However, not everyone is impressed with Sadek; according to one report from 2009:

Other than serving as president of the National Coptic Assembly, Sadek is also president of the Human Rights Center for National Unity in Egypt, which was established in 1995. He was an advisor for Middle East affairs with Advocates International based in Fairfax, Virginia in 1999-2000.

His provocative views have turned-off former associates, including those who initially joined him in establishing the human rights center in Cairo. Leading activist and Copt, George Ishaq, is one of them. He thinks that Sadek is in search of wealth and power.

“[Sadek] is ignorant and does not have a clue about what he is talking about,” Ishaq told the Middle East Times in his downtown Cairo office.

“Here in Egypt, Sadek is not listened to because he doesn’t know anything and is only trying to make himself famous and get people to give him money,” Ishaq said, adding, “What we need to talk about is citizenship, because essentially we are all Egyptians and we need to live together and stop seeing religion as a dividing issue.”

….[Sadek] wrote: “Although the Palestinians are the invaders of the land, instead of thanking Israel for food and help, they declared war. This is Islamic hate. Their place today should be the Higaz [Saudi Arabia] where they came from; and instead of thanking Israel for giving them a piece of its land to live on, they declared war.”

Ishaq said that while Sadek’s views are also held by some within Coptic communities abroad, in Egypt, he is seen as “crazy.”

…Sadek argued that Egypt was the rightful home of Copts, “not the Arab descendants that now live in the country” and has told Muslims to leave the country. On the Web site, he explicitly wrote, “I am an Egyptian. Do not call me an Arab.”

Ahmed Abaza and Truth TV, meanwhile, have an Arabic language website here; the site advertises Abaza’s association with Terry Jones. Abaza is the author of a memoir, I Was Blind, But Now I See: A chilling escape from the mask of Islam, into the new found light. According to the blurb:

Ahmed Abaza was born and raised in Egypt, of a very famous, influential and well known family. At age 17, he began the challenge of converting from Islam to Christianity. In 1991, Mr. Abaza graduated from Alexandria University with an Economics Bachelor degree. After seeking religious refuge in many countries he now lives in North America. Mr. Abaza published his book I Was Blind, But Now I See in Arabic and English. He has appeared on various news channels, live talk shows and pre-recorded tapings on satellite stations that air internationally. He wrote for newspapers such as The New York Times, USA Today, The Washington Post, The Jewish Express, The Windsor Star, and Voice of an Immigrant (the New Jersey publication). Through the Voice of an Immigrant, he addressed President George W. Bush in an editorial letter. Mr. Abaza currently speaks at various events, seminars and conferences to discuss the persecution in the Middle East. Mr. Abaza has been called “the Sword in Islam” by various Middle Eastern newspapers like The Arab World due to his frankness and forthright comments about Moslems and their brutality. For the past nine years he has hosted chat sessions on PalTalk.com to help reveal the truth and to minister to others. He is in the process of launching a new satellite station called The Truth Broadcast Network (TTBNTV), airing in July 2007. This station will focus on religion and persecution without censorship. He feels it is his duty to expose the Middle East’s corruption in reference to the torture and killings of Ex-Muslims and Christians. Ahmed Abaza’s mission is to reach the Moslem community and minister to them by bringing out the truth that lies in the Koran in the various hidden passages and to minister to anyone seeking knowldge.

He also uses the name “Hope Shine”, and a bio can be seen here.