last updated: March 7, 2011
Please note: The Militarist Monitor neither represents nor endorses any of the individuals or groups profiled on this site.
- Clarion Fund: Advisory Board
- Minnesotans Against Terrorism: Executive Director
- Christians United for Israel: Advisor
- JCRC: Former Board Member
- Israeli Defense Forces: Former Captain
- Made in Israel: Cofounder and Co-owner
Ilan Sharon is the executive director of Minnesotans Against Terrorism and a member of the advisory board of the Clarion Fund, a controversial film production and distribution group that is tied to rightwing groups in Israel and the United States. He is also an advisor to the rightwing Christian Zionist group Christians United for Israel (CUFI), which is led by John Hagee.
According to his Clarion bio, Sharon is the “son of Jewish refugees from Libya and Egypt… [and] lectures frequently on the issue of terrorism, the threat of Radical Islam, and the struggle for Peace in the Middle East. He aided in the production and distribution of [the Clarion films] Obsession, The Third Jihad, and Iranium.” (For more about these films, see Right Web Profile: Clarion Fund.) He also participated in the production of Moderate and Extremist Palestinian Supporters Square Off in Minnesota, Hamas collides with Fatah, a short video report available on YouTube.
Ilan was born and raised in Haifa, Israel, and educated at MAMRAM, which in Hebrew stands for the Center of Computing and Information Systems. This is the Israel Defense Forces’ (IDF) central computing unit, which manages and develops the IDF’s computer and network systems.
Following his army service, during which he attained the rank of captain, he started a software company in Israel that later merged with a Minneapolis-based company. In an interview on Clarion’s companion site, Stop Radical Islam, Sharon claims that while being a trained software engineer is “his favorite job,” he realized that the “mainstream media was bending over backward to not portray the Palestinian radical Muslim terrorists as terrorists. This is when I realized how dangerous these groups might be and when I decided that I need to do something about it.”
Ilan sees his group Minnesotans against Terrorism (MAT) as a success, arguing that one measure of success isthe degree to which some people are purportedly “trying to prevent us from speaking out.”
As a way to call attention to the controversy surrounding the film Iranium, which MAT and Aish Minnesota co-sponsored in March 2011, they used the banner headline: “Come see the film that Iran wanted banned.”
MAT claims “to shape public opinion in support of the war against terrorism. [It] promotes fair, accurate media coverage of terrorism against Americans, Israelis, and other innocent civilians around the world. The non-profit, non-denominational, non-partisan organization, co-founded by Minneapolis attorney Mark Rotenberg and marketing executive Marc Grossfield who both witnessed a terrorist bombing in Jerusalem in December 2001. MAT disseminates information and educational materials and sponsors events in support of its mission. Minnesotans Against Terrorism is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and contributions are tax-deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Minnesotans Against Terrorism relies on private donations for its operating budget. Your financial help is imperative so we can continue our programs. We operate on a streamlined budget, and every donation makes a difference.”
According to his biography on the website of Christians United for Israel (CUFI), Sharon serves as the Jewish Liaison Director for CUFI Region 8 and “advisor to regional and state advisors on all Jewish related affairs.” The bio adds: “Ilan and his wife Cindy visit Israel often; they were sad to see the effect of Palestinian terrorism on the Israel economy, especially the small stores and the artists that highly depend on tourism. They decided to take an action and in 2003 they formed an organization called Made In Israel. The organization helps more than 70 stores, small manufactures, and artists to market their products in the USA.”