Back in June, Michael Carl wrote a three-part series for WorldNetDaily telling the story of Kamal Saleem, who presents himself as a former terrorist who was, in Carl's words, "indoctrinated in radical Islam on his mother's knee" but now has "renounced terrorism, adopted a home in America, found Christ and has spoken against terror and radical Islam at universities across the nation."
What Carl made sure not to do, however, is address any of the questions that have been raised -- and continue to be raised -- about the story Saleem tells about his background.
Well before Carl's interview was published, it was reported that Saleem has portrayed himself as the descendent of someone called the "The Grand Wazir of Islam" -- a title and position that does not exist in the Arab world, let alone Islam, which has no overarching clerical hierarchy. Carl made no mention of that title issue in his series.
Since Carl's interview, more questions have been raised about Saleem's background.
The Michigan Messenger reports that Saleem once told a former employer that he was a placekicker for the University of Oklahoma football team and won a game with a last-second field goal -- which, according to school records, did not happen.
Further, Carl made a big deal out of recounting Saleem's story of his conversion to Christianity after being in a severe car accident:
"I cried out for Allah, but Allah didn't come to save me. I cried, 'Allah where are you?'" Saleem added.
He said his rescuer was a doctor.
"His first words were, 'Son we're going to take care of you and everything's going to be all right.' He was assuring me that everything's going to be taken care of and 'we're' going to be with you," Saleem said.
Who is this "we," he wondered.
"Many people read in the Bible about Jonah and the whale, but I was Kamal and the 18-wheeler. The second day, the head of physical therapy, he comes and does the same thing. On the fifth day, these men come together, one after the other to visit me," Saleem recalled.
"They started hugging each other and telling each they love each other. They were Christians. When I realized they were Christians, I got really scared because I thought it was a conspiracy," Saleem said.
At first, Kamal says he thought the conspiracy was from the dark side.
"I thought the conspiracy was from the demons because I thought the demons had found me. But these men had something so special. I did not understand it because the Word of God says in 2 Corinthians that the god of this world has blinded their eyes lest the Gospel open their eyes and ears of understanding," Saleem said.
He says suddenly he realized that he was the one who was blind.
But, the Messenger reported, history professor Douglas Howard points out that Saleem has never identified what city or state this near fatal accident occurred in, nor has he ever identified the Christian doctor who allegedly gave him refuge and helped him pay his bills while he was recovering.
Plus, there's also the question of Saleem being in the U.S. while claiming to be an ex-terrorist. After all, if he is an admitted terrorist, he should have faced justice somewhere along the line, and there's no evidence that he has. Also, how did an admitted terrorist get admitted into the U.S. in the first place?
If this sounds familiar, that's because it is. We've detailed how WND has promoted another self-proclaimed ex-terrorist, Walid Shoebat, while ignoring questions about his background. In fact, it was only after CNN began raising questions earlier this year that WND ran to Shoebat's defense, mostly by uncritically regurgitating Shoebat's own defense.
WND clearly has some skin in this game -- namely, that Shoebat and Saleem reinforce its anti-Muslim agenda -- so WND really can't be trusted to tell the truth about these to self-proclaimed ex-terrorists, and as Carl's hagiographic series on Saleem demostrates, it certainly has no motivation to go out look for it.