The brouhaha over the proposed Ground Zero mosque occupies most of the column inches, but that doesn’t mean that other less notorious Muslim Brotherhood real estate ventures aren’t of equal (or greater) consequence to New York City and the rest of the country.
Wealthy Middle Eastern businessmen are quietly and continuously establishing partnerships and joint ventures in the United States to launch ambitious building projects of all kinds. Some of them — the Islamic centers and mosques — are directly related to Islamic da’wa, or proselytization. Others are simply lucrative, and serve the Muslim Brotherhood more indirectly by being profitable. Funneling money back to the sheikhs in Saudi Arabia and the Emirates is also useful to the Great Jihad.
Regular GoV reader Heroyalwhyness did a little digging and collected some information about the Muslim building boom in New York City. Much of the information below is derived from the SkyscraperPage forum. She sent this in a while ago, but I just got around to organizing and formatting it.
I don’t have anything concrete (pun intended)… but here are some dots — culled from construction blogs and financial papers to consider and explore further. We know Mayor Bloomberg is expanding his financial arm into sharia compliant finance, as is Carnegie.
1. Imam Rauf and Daisy are planning to be in Abu Dhabi, September 2, 2010 (on our dime)
2. Aabar Investment, a company controlled by the Abu Dhabi Government, is helping fund the development of a 73-story luxury apartment building and hotel in New York City, across the street from Carnegie Hall…higher than the three tallest skyscrapers within the area: Carnegie Hill Tower, the Metropolitan Tower, and CitiSpire… incidentally named “Carnegie 57” constructed by Extell, run by Gary Barnett
- Extell Avoids a Landmark, Sells to Abu Dhabi (first project in NY for this partnership)
- An Abu Dhabi government-controlled investment company has become the majority shareholder in Extell
- These are probably the same foreign men that Matt and Shvo were entertaining at Bagatelle a few months ago — supposedly they spent $90,000 on champagne at a brunch there with a group of Arabian looking men. Looks like it is paying off now that they’ve got these guys buying their units for $2,000 a foot. link
- “You can see Gary’s fingerprints all over the city in what has been done and will be done.”
3. Carnegie Corp of NY’s scholarships promote sharia law, Islam.
4. Aabar Investment, a company controlled by the Abu Dhabi government, has paid Extell for a majority stake in the project, and the deal could be the “start of several property projects in New York” from the Middle Easterners. The Essex House right behind the vacant lot is owned by Dubai’s Jumeirah, so maybe this neighborhood should now be called the Emirate? 5. The actual developer of the GZ mosque, El-Gamal rose from waiter to real estate mogul with financial help from one “Hisham Elzanaty”
Hisham Elzanaty is interviewed along with Ghazi Khankan providing the following description of mosques in NYC to a reporter from the Daily News in March of 1999:
“When I came to New York in 1960, there were probably four Islamic centers, or mosques,” said Ghazi Khankan, a leader at the Islamic Center of Long Island. “Now you have over 200.”
“Here’s a point nobody is mentioning and one that is still confusing me — this organization has 100 million dollars to build this mosque. They are building it in a commercial area with a very low residential density that probably has a few families of practicing Muslims (if any at all). They say they aspire to be a community center akin to the 92st Y (which is built in a highly residential neighborhood) yet they continue to try to build it specifically here. If you have a 100 million to build this ‘community center’ you can essentially afford to build one anywhere in the city, in locations where this center might actually be used by people of the Muslim faith. Instead they keep pushing on building it right by the WTC.”
(via skyscraperpage.com forum)
The city dwellers drop like flies
Delirium and madness in their eyes…
It’s worth the wait, surreal estate
Surreal estate, no time, no date
Accept no fake surreal estate
Design by fate, surreal estate.
— from “Surreal Estate” by Be Bop Deluxe