An Entire State Behind the Vicious Smear Campaign Targeting Hazim Nada

In a shocking revelation, an article published in the New Yorker Magazine has exposed a sinister smear campaign orchestrated by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) through a Geneva-based private intelligence firm. The targets of this malicious campaign are innocent individuals, one of them being Hazim Nada, a Swiss businessman of Egyptian descent and son of Youssef Nada, a former member of the Muslim Brotherhood.

The article sheds light on the UAE’s relentless pursuit of silencing political opponents, even resorting to extreme and criminal measures to spread hateful misinformation associated with anti-Muslim conspiracy theories. Despite no evidence of advocating violence, Hazim Nada finds himself caught in the crosshairs of this damaging campaign.

Youssef Nada’s past association with the Muslim Brotherhood had led to his wrongful inclusion on a US terrorist list. However, he fought tenaciously to clear his name and emerged victorious from legal battles against baseless allegations. Unfortunately, this did not deter the UAE from launching an equally malicious campaign against his son, Hazim, revealing the regime’s ruthless tactics in targeting citizens of other countries.

Hazim Nada, who had a completely different upbringing with a Western outlook, was a successful businessman, holding a Master’s degree in physics from Cambridge University and a doctorate in applied mathematics from Imperial College London. Despite this, he found himself entangled in a web of deception in 2017. Suspicious automated text messages and deceptive calls to banks were just the beginning of his nightmare. Anti-Muslim conspiracy theorists also took aim at him, with journalist Sylvain Besson’s book linking his company, Lord Energy, to a supposed Muslim Brotherhood cover.

The UAE’s smear campaign against Hazim Nada involved enlisting the services of the Geneva-based private intelligence firm Alp Services. Mario Brero, a key player in the operation, compiled a report aiming to tie Hazim to a global Muslim Brotherhood conspiracy based on flimsy second-hand associations. Brero recruited controversial figures, including Lorenzo Vidino, known for producing anti-Muslim research, to lend credibility to their false allegations.

The campaign escalated in 2018, with Brero requesting more funds to target Nada’s company. His objective was to associate Lord Energy with terrorism in compliance databases and watchdogs used by banks and multinationals. The UAE reportedly paid Brero a staggering €200,000 per month ($216,849) for his efforts. The smear campaign expanded to include over fifty potential European targets, including Islamic Relief Worldwide, a charity unjustly targeted.

Between August 2017 and June 2020, the UAE paid Brero at least €5.7 million ($6.1 million) for his role in the damaging operation. Meanwhile, Hazim Nada claimed to have lost over a hundred million dollars by early 2019 due to the campaign’s impact on his business. He is now contemplating a class-action lawsuit with the support of US lawyers.

The New Yorker Magazine’s exposé serves as a stark warning to democracies worldwide about the threats posed by authoritarian regimes willing to use any means to silence dissent and undermine innocent lives. It shines a light on the dark underbelly of the UAE’s actions and raises critical questions about the recruitment of individuals who spread harmful conspiracy theories about Muslims. As the world becomes more interconnected, the need to safeguard against such campaigns and protect the sanctity of truth and justice becomes ever more crucial.

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