NSA Spied on Muslim-American Leaders

The list of prominent Muslim-American leaders that the NSA and FBI spied on has been released from documents leaked by Edward Snowden. Included in the list are Faisal Gill, a Republican who has a top-secret security clearance and served in the Department of Homeland Security under George W. Bush; Asim Ghafoor, a lawyer who represents people in terrorism cases; Hooshang Amirahmadi, an Iranian-American professor at Rutgers University; Nihad Awad, the executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), which is the largest Muslim civil-rights organization in the U.S.; and Agha Saeed, a former professor at California State University who supports Muslims’ civil liberties. They appeared on a spreadsheet with 7,485 email addresses that were monitored between 2002 and 2008. Most of those are foreigners believed to be linked to al Qaeda, Hamas, or Hezbollah. According to The Intercept, which published the names, “none [of the Americans] advocate violent jihad or is known to have been implicated in any crime, despite years of intense scrutiny by the government and the press.” In one document that details how intelligence personnel are to format memos justifying FISA surveillance, the fake name offered as a placeholder was “Mohammed Raghead.”