On September 13 and 14, ex-FBI agent turned anti-Muslim law enforcement trainer John Guandolo will visit Omaha, Nebraska and Oakland, Iowa for a series of presentations.
Guandolo visits the Heartland on the invitation of the Omaha-based anti-Muslim Global Faith Institute (GFI) and Tactical 88, an “elite training organization” with firearm range sand readiness training centers in both Nebraska and Ohio. Guandolo and his partner Chris Gaubatz head the anti-Muslim group Understanding the Threat (UTT) and will be presenting on the Muslim Brotherhood’s “secret strategies for the USA.”
Guandolo promotes himself as a former FBI agent and an expert on terrorism who can help law enforcement and others uncover the “secret” terrorist cells in their area, but in reality Guandolo’s trainings are little more than anti-Muslim witch-hunts. What he doesn’t tell you is that he left the Bureau in disgrace for a number of ethical breaches and bizarre conduct which included admitting to having affairs with female FBI agents and a confidential source he was assigned to protect during the corruption case of former U.S. Rep. William Jefferson (D-La.); he also solicited that witness for a $75,000 donation for an anti-terrorism group. Since his departure, Guandolo has devoted himself to a rabid brand of anti-Muslim activism, working closely with some of the most powerful and influential anti-Muslim groups in the U.S., on a flurry of accusations against government officials Guandolo says have ties to terrorist organizations.
In his spare time, Guandolo works closely with ACT for America, the largest anti-Muslim group in the country. He helped the group build “The Thin Blue Line Project,” billed as a “one-stop internet resource for information concerning the perceived threat of Muslim infiltration and terrorism in the country.”
Its key component is a “Radicalization Map Locator,” listing the addresses of hundreds of Muslim Student Association (MSA) members around the country as well as a number of mosques and Islamic institutions billed as suspected national security concerns. In 2015, Guandolo told a crowd in South Carolina that the sole purpose of MSAs is to “recruit jihadis”; many in the anti-Muslim movement claim MSAs are a front for the Muslim Brotherhood. In short, the “Thin Blue Line” project identifies targets for law enforcement and government agencies to monitor, a tactic that has gone too far in the past.
Guandolo has a long history of anti-Muslim statements. He once claimed mosques were fronts for the Muslim Brotherhood, and that mosques in general, “do not have a First Amendment right to do anything.” More recently, in a 2016 radio interview, Guandolo said Americans would soon see “dozens of jihadis doing multiple operations in conjunction with the Marxist and socialist groups like Black Lives Matter, which will be, you know, burning and looting cities like they did in Ferguson [Mo.] and Baltimore.” He has also promoted conspiracy theories such as claiming that Muslims are purchasing hotels, gas stations and convenience stores in anticipation for “a jihad here in the United States.”
Throughout 2016 and early 2017, Guandolo traveled to a number of states to train law enforcement, buoyed by an official endorsement from the head of the National Sheriffs Association (NSA). But at the NSA conference in Reno in June of 2017, Guandolo was involved in an altercation which ended with him being arrested after punching Hennepin County Sheriff Richard Stanek. The Center for New Community broke the news of this story after obtaining court records relating to the incident. Since then, Guandolo’s NSA endorsement has been pulled, and he has resorted to doing presentations for anti-Muslim groups instead of law enforcement.
The Omaha-based Global Faith Institute certainly shares Guandolo’s bigoted views about Islam and Muslims. Run by Mark Christian, a former Sunni Imam who converted to Christianity, the GFI website includes anti-Muslim commentary like, “Islam doesn’t exist to reach comfortable accommodations with other faiths. Islam doesn’t exist to stand side by side with non-Muslims. Islam exists to subjugate the earth, and all in it, to Allah. Either Islam reigns supreme, or Islam fights. To do as Pope Francis, is merely illustrating weakness and foolishness to the Muslim mind. There is no admiration of Western culture among Muslims; they dismiss our successes as the benefits accruing to those who serve Satan. There is no desire to assimilate with Western societies, because that would mean assimilating into a coven of worship with which their Prophet has commanded them to subdue and destroy. No amount of foot washing or ecumenical interfaithery will ever change that. It only facilitates it by opening doors better left shut and leaving foxes in charge of the hen house.”
Despite Guandolo’s long history of racism, the chairman of the Pottawattamie County, Iowa Republican Party, Jeff Jorgensen is encouraging those in the area to attend the event, according to Iowa Public Radio. Guandolo’s event on September 14 is taking place at the Oakland Community Center, run by the City of Oakland.