It would seem that Imam Feisal at this point in time does not have authority to make any binding decisions on policy, or even the name of the project. He wouldn’t be able to make a deal with Rev. Jones, or anyone else, to move the center, or even to keep it where it is, as he doesn’t own the property. Whether or not this can be corrected in some way to put Imam Feisal in control can only be a matter of conjecture.
The Park 51 people have applied for non-profit status to set up a fund for donations to this project. Before that paperwork has even been completed and finalized, Sharif El-Gamal held a fund raiser at a NYC mosque and collected $10,000. I will be very interested to see if that money is deposited in this fund as soon as it is approved by the State of NY.
I don’t know if I would trust these people even to honor whatever agreements they have with Imam Feisal. We have no control over whether or not this project is built We have no control over the public reaction to whatever decision is made by those in control. We are in the unenviable position of having no control over any of the decisions already made, or yet to be made, but having to live with the consequences of whatever those decisions are.
I hope that Imam Feisal will make a public statement clarifying whether or not he has any real leadership over the direction that this is going, and what he believes is the least damaging choice for the good of everyone at this point in time. I would hope that he is already conferring with the recently established Majlis ash-Shura of New York, and with leaders of the Muslim community across the country in order to obtain their advice on the best solution to this current situation.