Center for Security Policy

SOURCE:  Wikipedia, 2020-05-29

  • Formation: 1988
  • Legal status: 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational organization [not required to disclose donors]
  • Location: Washington, D.C., U.S.
  • Founder and President: Frank J. Gaffney Jr.
  • Revenue (2015): $4,562,641
  • Expenses (2015): $4,945,226
  • Website:

    The Center for Security Policy (CSP) is a far-right, anti-Muslim, Washington, D.C.-based think tank. The organization's founder and current president is Frank J. Gaffney Jr.. The organization's mission statement is "To identify challenges and opportunities likely to affect American security", where main activities are focused on exposing and researching what it believes to be jihadist threats to the United States; a number of these beliefs have been widely discredited, such as its false claims about American ties to the Muslim Brotherhood.

    The CSP bases these claims among other things on an order by Judge Jorge Solis of the US District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division, dated 1 July 2009 in the Holy Land Foundation case (criminal case no. 3:04-CR-0240-P), which states: “The Government listed CAIR (Council on American Islamic Relations), ISNA (Islamic Society of North America) and NAIT (North American Islamic Trust) as entities who are or were members of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood’s Palestine Committee and/or its organizations.” The CSP has been criticized by the Anti-Defamation League and the Southern Poverty Law Center, among a wide variety of other media and research organizations, for propagating conspiracy theories and Islamophobia, and described as a hate group.

    History and programs

    In April 1987, Frank J. Gaffney Jr. was nominated to serve as Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs during the Reagan Administration. He served in that role for seven months until was forced from his post in November of that year. In a meeting with former Department of Defense officials after Gaffney's ouster, Richard Perle, for whom Gaffney had previously served as a top deputy, said, "What we need is the Domino’s Pizza of the policy business. ... If you don’t get your policy analysis in 30 minutes, you get your money back." Gaffney founded the CSP a year later in 1988. One of the Center's annual reports later echoed Perle's words calling the CSP "the Domino's Pizza of the policy business."

    In 2010, James Woolsey and Joseph E. Schmitz co-authored a CSP report that claimed sharia law was a major threat to the national security of the United States. In 2012, Gaffney released a 50-page document titled, "The Muslim Brotherhood in the Obama Administration." The document questioned the Obama administration’s approach to the Muslim Brotherhood in the Middle East. The CSP has since accused a number of US officials of having ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, including Huma Abedin and Grover Norquist.

    In 2013, CSP received donations from Boeing ($25,000); General Dynamics ($15,000); Lockheed Martin ($15,000); Northrup Grumman ($5,000); Raytheon ($20,000); and General Electric ($5,000). The group has also received $1.4 million from the Bradley Foundation.

    The CSP helped to organize a rally on Capitol Hill on September 9, 2015 against the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, commonly known as the Iran nuclear deal. Republican presidential candidates Ted Cruz and Donald Trump spoke at the rally. In a separate report about Iran, the CSP declared that Susan Rice, Richard Haass, and Dennis Ross were being secretly controlled by a covert "Iran lobby."

    On March 16, 2016, Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz announced he would appoint Gaffney to be his National Security Advisor. Cruz also said his foreign policy team would also include three other employees of Gaffney's think tank: Fred Fleitz, Clare Lopez, and Jim Hanson. During his presidential campaign, Donald Trump cited a widely debunked CSP poll in support of his call to ban Muslims from the United States.

    Trump administration

    Since 2017 several people with ties to the CSP have joined the Trump administration, including Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway in 2017, chief of staff for the National Security Council Fred Fleitz in 2018, and Deputy National Security Advisor Charles Kupperman in 2019. Kupperman served on the board of directors for CSP between 2001 and 2010.


    The Center for Security Policy and Frank J. Gaffney Jr. have been criticized for propagating conspiracy theories by Dana Milbank of the Washington Post, Simon Maloy of Salon, CNN national security analyst Peter Bergen, Grover Norquist, Jonathan Kay, Georgetown University's Prince Alwaleed Center for Muslim–Christian Understanding, Center for American ProgressMedia Matters for America, the Southern Poverty Law Center, The Intercept, the Anti-Defamation League, and the Institute for Southern Studies, among others.

    In 2016, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) labeled the CSP as a hate group and a "conspiracy-oriented mouthpiece for the growing anti-Muslim movement", a characterization disputed by the CSP. SPLC representatives have characterized the CSP as "an extremist think tank" and suggested that it is led by an "anti-Muslim conspiracy theorist." The SPLC further criticizes CSP's "investigative reports", saying that they are designed "to reinforce Frank Gaffney's delusions."

    One of the CSP's "Occasional Papers" accused Huma Abedin, then Hillary Clinton's aide, of being an undercover spy for the Muslim Brotherhood. On June 13, 2012, Republican members of Congress Michele Bachmann, Trent Franks, Louie Gohmert, Thomas Rooney and Lynn Westmoreland, sent a letter to the State Department Inspector General including accusations against Abedin cited to the CSP. The letter and the CSP's accusation were widely denounced as a smear, and achieved "near-universal condemnation", including from several prominent Republicans such as John McCain, John Boehner, Scott Brown, and Marco Rubio.

    Writing in Religion Dispatches, Sarah Posner described the organization as "a far-right think tank whose president, Frank Gaffney, was banned from the CPAC (Conservative Political Action Conference) ... because its organizers believed him to be a 'crazy bigot'." The Center for Democratic Values at Queens College, City University of New York has said the Center is among the "key players in the Sharīʿah cottage industry", which it describes as a "conspiracy theory" that claims the existence of "secretive power elite groups that conspire to replace sovereign nation-states in order to eventually rule the world."

    In March 1995, William M. Arkin, a reporter and commentator on military affairs, criticized the CSP's Gaffney as a "maestro of bumper-sticker policy" who "specializes in intensely personal attacks" and who has "never met a flag-waving, pro-defense, anti-Democratic idea he didn't like." Gaffney has also generated controversy for writing in 2010 that the logo of the U.S. Missile Defense Agency "appears ominously to reflect a morphing of the Islamic crescent and star with the Obama campaign logo" and was part of a "worrying pattern of official U.S. submission to Islam."


  • SOURCE:  Disinformation troll  Mark Steyn

    Mark Steyn received the Center for Security Policy's "Mightier Pen" award in 2007, receiving it at an event that featured a convocation by Jewish scholar and rabbi Yitz Greenberg and remarks by Board of Regents Honorary Chairman Bruce Gelb.


  • Funded (in part) by the Bradley Foundation.

    Additional Reading

  • [2020-09-14]:  At Homeland Security, Anti-Muslim Activist Katharine Gorka Maintained Ties With Islamophobes.  Gorka worked on CVE programs, which have faced increased allegations of anti-Muslim bias under Trump, FOIA documents show.  Discusses Clare Lopez, a far-right activist and longtime top figure at the anti-Muslim group Center for Security Policy.


    Virginia "Ginni" Thomas

    [ ... snip ... ]

    DAVIES: Now, you cite many circumstances in which conservative groups or individuals that Ginni Thomas has some association with have filed amicus briefs before the Supreme Court that her husband sits on. I thought we would look at one case, and this involves Frank Gaffney. You want to explain who he is?

    MAYER: Sure. He's a well-known figure in Washington, D.C.. Frank Gaffney is a very, very outspoken defense hawk who has, over the years, been vociferous in his fear that Muslims are posing an existential threat to America.

    DAVIES: And what connection does Ginni Thomas have with him?

    MAYER: Well, he has a - sort of a advocacy group that's called the Center for Security Policy. And in 2017 and 2018, according to filings that he submitted to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Frank Gaffney hired Ginni Thomas' consulting group [Liberty Consulting], each year, for over $100,000, to work for him. She was earning a decent chunk of change from Frank Gaffney in 2017 and 2018 from his nonprofit.

    He, meanwhile - this is where it begins to get - sort of the plot thickens and it gets concerning - is that Frank Gaffney, meanwhile, was very much advocating publicly for Trumps' so-called Muslim ban  [Trump travel ban] that was going to try to exclude Muslim countries from having immigrants come to the United States. Gaffney was advocating publicly for that ban, and, privately, he was part of a group that submitted an amicus brief in front of the Supreme Court when that ban was being considered by the Supreme Court. So Ginni Thomas is working for someone, as it turns out, and making money from someone who has joined a case in front of her husband. But nobody could see this at the time. You have to really kind of, you know, put on your green eyeshades [eyeshade: blindfold; sun visor] to find it.

    DAVIES: And an interesting question is, where would Frank Gaffney and his organization get the $200,000 or more that they used to hire Ginni Thomas as a lobbyist? And you did some reporting on this. What did you discover?

    MAYER: Yeah. Good question. Where does the Center for Security Policy find the cash to pay over a hundred thousand a year to Ginni Thomas' consulting firm? It's just a little nonprofit. So where's this coming from? And if you push back further and kind of, you know, turn the rocks over further, what you find is that Gaffney's center was funded by a political group which was chaired by Rebekah Mercer  [Wikipedia: Rebekah Mercer], the sort of well-known Trump backer. She's an heiress and part of the Mercer family [Mercer Family Foundation] that's made tons of money on Wall Street. And Rebekah Mercer backed all kinds of Trump causes and Trump's election.

    And so what you can see is the money has gone from Trump backers to the Gaffney nonprofit and from that to Ginni Thomas' consulting firm. And there you've got the wife of a Supreme Court justice basically receiving these funds that are one step removed from Trump backers while her husband is sitting in judgment of Trump's policies. It's just - as one of the legal scholars I interviewed, David Luban  [local copy], said, it's slicing the baloney a little bit too thin.

    DAVIES: And we should just note that the group which provided this money to Gaffney's organization, which is headed by Rebekah Mercer, is called Making America Great or Make America Great, right?

    MAYER: It was called Making America Great.

    DAVIES: OK. So - right. So we have a case here not simply of ideological alignment. It is no surprise that Ginni Thomas and Frank Gaffney might hold the position that they have held with respect to the Muslim travel ban. But now we have this movement of money from an active pro-Trump group to a private advocacy organization, to Ginni Thomas' one-person lobbying firm while this case is before the Supreme Court. Wow. You know, it may be that Clarence Thomas would have voted the way he voted, to uphold the Muslim ban, anyway. Not hard to imagine that. But I suppose other parties in the case might like to at least have known that these arrangements were afoot, did they?

    MAYER: No. I don't think anybody knew at the time other than the Thomases, maybe, you know, and Frank Gaffney. No. And, you know, of course, the other side would like to know that there's - that the Justice Thomas' family was being paid by somebody who had filed an amicus brief. But there was no disclosure of this. And as you say, given Clarence Thomas' record and his point of view, he might very well have upheld that Muslim ban anyway. He certainly did vote for it over and over again. He was one of the most consistent supporters of Trump policies.

    But it's the aura, again, that we get back to here, which is the image problem, the appearance of a conflict of interest that undermines the public confidence that the Supreme Court is ruling in favor of justice rather than in favor of a justice's pocketbook.

    DAVIES: And just this one little detail - I mean, Justice Clarence Thomas is required to file annual financial disclosure statements. Should these payments have appeared on that disclosure?

    MAYER: So I spoke with experts in this subject. Like, there's somebody named Gabe Roth  [local copy], who has a group called Fix the Court. It's a nonpartisan group. And it's trying to get more public disclosure of this kind of thing. And he said, absolutely. He thinks that, you know, Justice Clarence Thomas should amend the financial disclosure, put out more information on this and also that there needs to be some reform in these rules so that justices are required to recuse if their family members are involved in amicus briefs in front of the Supreme Court.

    DAVIES: Let me reintroduce you here. We're going to take another break. We are speaking with Jane Mayer. She is a staff writer and chief Washington correspondent for The New Yorker. Her latest article in the magazine is titled "Is Ginni Thomas a Threat to the Supreme Court?" We'll continue our conversation after this short break. This is Fresh Air.

    DAVIES: This is Fresh Air. And we're speaking with The New Yorker staff writer and chief Washington correspondent Jane Mayer. Her latest article is about the conservative activism and influence of Ginni Thomas, the wife of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

    Another interesting thing you note about Frank Gaffney, this person who heads this group, the Center for Security Policy - you report in 2019 it was reported that the White House had Ginni Thomas and Frank Gaffney and some associates to brief President Trump on some policy and personnel issues. What do we know about that meeting, how it happened, what occurred?

    MAYER: So there's been some excellent reporting on this in The New York Times and in Axios by Jonathan Swan and Maggie Haberman at The New York Times. What we know is that for months, Ginni Thomas had been trying to get into the White House to have the meeting with President Trump. And she wanted to bring in some of her crowd with her, including Frank Gaffney. The White House was not informed that Frank Gaffney was actually a lobbying client of hers [Ginni Thomas]. But at any rate, she'd been pushing hard for this for quite some time.

    [ ... snip ... ]

  • Source: [, 2022-01-27] How Ginni Thomas, wife of Justice Clarence Thomas, influences the Supreme CourtThe New Yorker writer Jane Mayer discusses the conservative beliefs and influence of Virginia "Ginni" Lamp Thomas, an activist who's been associated with some groups involved in the 2021-01-06 2021 United States Capitol attack.

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