Remember the piece I ran: Atlas EXCLUSIVE: Paul Williams explosive expose on Jamaat ul-Fuqra and Islamberg. Well, Paul went back. Apparently they have de-camped once exposed. Where have they relocated to? Here?
Paul L. Williams, Ph.D., with the able assistance of Patrick Walsh and Michael Travis, returns to Islamberg, New York:
Islamberg resembles a ghost town.
The Muslim settlement captured national attention two years ago when a story entitled “Springtime in Islamberg” appeared in Atlas Shrugs, Canada Free Press, and other news pages. Since the publication of this expose, Islamberg became an item of interest for ABC News, Fox News, CNN, and other national news outlets; a subject of attention by such best-selling authors as Robert Spencer and Brigitte Gabriel; and the centerpiece of a documentary by Christian Action Network.
But much has changed within this 70 acre Islamic settlement that is located in the dense forest between the small rural villages of Deposit and Hancock in upper New York State.
The sentry post is gone and no guards are in sight.
A handful of children play in the mud and muck before rows of rusty old trailers and a few women in full burqas saunter along the rutty dirt road that leads to the heart of the squalid Muslim compound.
Young men in Islamic garb no longer congregate before the makeshift mosque, and no students are in attendance at the one room shack that serves as Sheikh Gilani's “International Quranic Open University”.
The few residents who remain, clearly are not environmentalists. Sewage seeps from septic tanks and outhouses into the creek that flows at the base of the settlement. Bags of rotting garbage remain stacked between the trailers. And the once pristine countryside is now littered with junk cars, moldy mattresses, empty tanks of propane, and old appliances.
Gunfire no longer can be heard from the firing ranges along the eastern parameter of the 70 acre property - - and no grunts come from new recruits at the obstacle course.
A new sign at the entranceway reads, “Welcome to Holy Islamberg: The International Quranic Open University.” Next to this sign, which features the image of a mosque emerging from the mountains, is a pot of plastic carnations. Another sign proclaims that the community is home to the “United Muslim – Christian Forum.”
Such statements of welcome are offset by the “No Trespassing” signs that have been nailed to trees throughout the compound.
On the opposite side of the road leading into the community is a rack of metal mailboxes bearing such names as Abdul-Haqq, Abdul Jalil, Mumim Roberts, Abdullah Simonds, and Salam Insan.
What has happened to this once bustling complex of radical Islamists - - a place where the cries of muezzins were accompanied by the incessant rat-tat-tat of machine gunfire? Where are the Arab dignitaries that used to visit this remote community in chauffeur-driven limousines? Where are the armed sentries who warded away all intruders?
“The place was scary,” a barfly at Cuzin’s Tavern in Deposit, says. “The last time I went there, I was surrounded by twenty-five Muslims with shotguns and Uzis. I haven’t heard much about it lately.”
Is the place still scary?