McCain’s Syrian group Re-hires Controversial figure

Ahmad Soliman used to be a Research Associate with the SETF before he was unceremoniously let go. He’s back as a Policy Fellow and his controversial past should raise eyebrows.

The Syrian Emergency Task Force (SETF), a group that Senator John McCain (RINO-AZ) aligned himself with some time ago, began incrementally scrubbing its website when it became a focus of media attention thanks to McCain, who cited the group’s then Political Director Elizabeth O’Bagy in a Senate hearing to make his case for bombing the Bashar al-Assad’s regime. One of the most troubling figures, who was jettisoned from SETF’s website shortly thereafter – Ahmad Soliman – has now rejoined the group.

Ahmad Soliman: Out at SETF... and now back in.

Ahmad Soliman: Out at SETF… and now back in.

Soliman was listed as an attendee at the 2012 Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) University of Michigan Reunion in Washington, D.C. The ISNA is a Muslim Brotherhood group.

In the weeks that followed McCain’s inadvertent outing of O’Bagy as something other than what she professed to be, the SETF began to slowly drop other members of its staff – to include O’Bagy – until Executive Director Mouaz Mostafa was the only one who remained. McCain has since hired O’Bagy as a legislative assistant.

It can no longer be said that Moustafa and the SETF do not know about Soliman’s connection to at least one Muslim Brotherhood group in the U.S. – the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA). Less than one week after McCain brought the spotlight to the SETF, Soliman was scrubbed from the website. Now, as of October 25, 2013, Soliman is back with the group as this screen shot (taken today and absent his photo) demonstrates:

Soliman: Back with the SETF.

Soliman: Back with the SETF.

In fact, as of this date, the SETF’s staff page is devoid of any photos of staff members.

Another interesting figure who has been identified as a Field Director with the SETF is Razam Shalab Al-Sham:

Al-Sham: SETF's new Field Director.

Al-Sham: SETF’s new Field Director.

Razam Shalab Al-Sham posed with Senator McCain on the latter’s trip to Syria this past May. Also accompanying McCain was O’Bagy and Moustafa:

(L to R): John McCain, FSA General Salim Idris, and Razan Shalab AlSham

(L to R): John McCain, FSA General Salim Idris, and Razan Shalab AlSham

Of course, during this same photo shoot, McCain was photographed with two men who have been identified as terrorists:

What's in the bag, John?

What’s in the bag, John?

Let’s see… McCain is now associated with the SETF and its Executive Director, who has re-hired a man with connections to a Muslim Brotherhood group in the U.S.; he has hired the group’s former Political Director, Elizabeth O’Bagy; and while in Syria, posed with two terrorists and a woman who is now the group’s Field Director.

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