NOTICE: Citizendium is still being set up on its newer server, treat as a beta for now; please see here for more.
Citizendium - a community developing a quality comprehensive compendium of knowledge, online and free. Click here to join and contribute—free
CZ thanks our previous donors. Donate here. Treasurer's Financial Report -- Thanks to our content contributors. --

Investigative Project on Terrorism

From Citizendium, the Citizens' Compendium
Revision as of 05:59, 27 December 2009 by Howard C. Berkowitz (Talk | contribs)

Jump to: navigation, search
This article is developing and not approved.
Main Article
Related Articles  [?]
Bibliography  [?]
External Links  [?]
Citable Version  [?]
This editable Main Article is under development and not meant to be cited; by editing it you can help to improve it towards a future approved, citable version. These unapproved articles are subject to a disclaimer.

Formed in 1995 by Steven Emerson, the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT) studies radical Islamist groups. It is a non-profit organization that accepts no funding from outside the United States, or from any governmental agency or political or religious institutions.[1]

It is frequently cited by groups that urge strong action against Muslim groups in the U.S. and abroad. The group tends to regard security as more critical than fine distinctions of legal rights, and often opposes any discussion with groups it suspects of terrorism or ties to terrorist organizations. Some have argued the site is primarily publicity for the controversial Emerson.


  • "The Investigative Project on Terrorism is critical to our nation's security. There is no other non-governmental group that has better intelligence or data on the threat to the United States and our allies. Making do with a bare bones budget, the IPT is a national treasure whose influence and achievements are unparalleled." Rep. Pete Hoekstra
  • "[The Investigative Project] was a decade ahead of its time in focusing on the terrorist threat to the United States and to our homeland from Islamic extremism..." U.S. Representative Brad Sherman D-CA
  • "The Investigative Project is the only one out there who is really doing substantial research into what is going on in the world and here in America. They are actually researching, they are recording, they are verifying how this [radical jihadist] movement is taking place … I don't know of anyone else who is doing the same thing." U.S. Representative Sue Myrick
  • "When FBI said there were no Web sites in the U.S. that were recruiting jihadists for training in Afghanistan or soliciting money for terrorist front groups, I asked Steve Emerson to check. Emerson had written the book American Jihad, which had told me more than the FBI ever had about radical Islamic groups in the U.S. Within days, Emerson had a long list of Web sites sitting on servers in the United States. I passed the list to Justice and the FBI…" Richard Clarke

Activities and commentary

Legal process

The Federal courts are considering whether warrants are necessary before seizures of alleged terrorist assets, a matter which may need resolution by the Supreme Court of the United States. Two cases at the appellate level made different determinations in – Kindhearts v. Geithner and al Haramain v. United States Department of the Treasury, the plaintiffs in which, respectively, were accused of funding Hamas and Chechen organizations. IPT observed that if the matter is taken up by the Supreme Court, "hopefully the Justices will agree with the Oregon court that not only is the primary purpose of asset seizures the prevention of future acts of terrorism, but that requiring a warrant prior to such action is not a viable option." [2]

IPT reported on the Federal appeals court denial of disbarred attorney Lynne Stewart's challenge to her 2005 conviction for helping her client, Sheik Omar Rahman, relay messages to collaborators. The court spoke of her breach of trust in following agreements on security rules. IPT commented "As the Justice Department begins preparations for the criminal trial of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in the Southern District of New York, it must remain vigilant to ensure that sensitive information is not leaked by defense attorneys. While this case surely will be used as a prime example for why terrorists should not be tried in civilian courts, it is important to remember that Stewart was an anomaly. Her actions violated not only the Rules of Professional Conduct governing attorneys, but court orders and common sense."[3]


Emerson said it was the "wrong choice" for the Union for Reform Judaism, the largest Jewish denomination in North America, to have talks with the Islamic Society of North America.[4]

IPT published a letter from seven Democrats to Attorney General Eric Holder,[5] asking he meet with representatives of Islamic groups, all of which it describes as linked to radical Islam. The signers indicated the meetings could improve relations in the U.S., and expressed concern over due process in law enforcement:[6]

The letter was signed by:


  1. About the Investigative Project on Terrorism, Investigative Project on Terrorism
  2. When a Warrant Isn't Warranted, Investigative Project on Terrorism, 16 November 2009
  3. "When "Zealous Advocacy" Crosses the Line", Investigative Project on Terrorism, 17 November 2009
  4. Nathan Guttman (4 March 2009), "JCPA Approves Effort To Build Dialogue With Muslim Groups", Jewish Daily Forward
  5. Letter to Eric Holder, 24 July 2009
  6. "The Investigative Project on Terrorism: Radical Islamic Groups Backed by Members of Congress", Reuters, 29 July 2009