“Ground Zero Mosque” opponent supports terrorists

From the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), Aug. 19:

CAIR: Park51 Opponents Linked to Admirer of Terror Group Founder
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said today that leaders of the main hate group opposing the planned Park51 Islamic community center in Manhattan are partners with an individual who says he is an admirer of the founder of two terrorist organizations.

In an Internet profile, John Joseph Jay, a founder of American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI), named “rabbi meir kahna” (sic) as one of his “heroes and inspirations in life.” This is an obvious reference to Rabbi Meir Kahane, the founder of the groups Kach and Kahane Chai, which have been listed as Designated Foreign Terrorist Organizations by the US Department of State.

Jay has in the past called for the killing of all Muslims. He wrote: “[T]here are no innocent muslims. islam is subject to killing on grounds of political expediency on the same basis as islam kills its victims, and islam cannot ethically and morally claim otherwise.” (Note: Grammatical errors in the original text have been maintained.)

AFDI’s other founders include anti-Islam extremists Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer, the leaders of an affiliated anti-Islam hate group Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA), which is the main opponent of the planned Park51 Islamic community center in New York City.

The Rev. Jesse Jackson, one of the nation’s leading civil rights activists, recently endorsed an open letter by a coalition of Muslim, Sikh, Asian-American, and other civil liberties groups sent to FBI Director Robert Mueller seeking an explanation of why Spencer was invited to train state and federal law enforcement officers.

SIOA is an outgrowth of a similar group in Europe that seeks to block the construction of mosques on that continent. SIOA’s sister organization, Stop the Islamization of Europe, “considers Islamophobia to be the height of common sense.”

Spencer’s group has invited anti-Islam Dutch extremist Geert Wilders to speak at a September 11 protest against the proposed Islamic community center in New York City.

The independent national media watch group Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) identified Spencer as one of “Islamophobia’s Dirty Dozen” who systematically “spread fear, bigotry, and misinformation.” In its report, FAIR said, “By selectively ignoring inconvenient Islamic texts and commentaries, Spencer concludes that Islam is innately extremist and violent.”

Pamela Geller has claimed that “Hitler and the Nazis were inspired by Islam” and offered rhetorical support to both accused Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic and slain Apartheid-era leader Eugene Terre’blanche.

She has posted images on her blog that include a fake photograph of Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan in a Nazi uniform, another fake image of President Obama urinating on an American flag and drawings purporting to depict Islam’s Prophet Muhammad as a pig. In a June 25 blog entry, Geller posted a video claiming that Muslims engage in bestiality.

The United States Patent and Trademark Office refused to grant SIOA a trademark because: “The applied-for mark refers to Muslims in a disparaging manner because by definition it implies that conversion or conformity to Islam is something that needs to be stopped or caused to cease.”

CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

See our last post on the “Ground Zero Mosque” controversy.

  1. Bitter fruit of Islmamophobic propaganda
    From the New York Taxi Workers Alliance, Aug. 26:

    Ahmed H. Sharif, 43, a yellow taxi cab driver slashed across the neck, face and shoulders by a passenger during an anti-Muslim hate crime will stand with fellow New York Taxi Workers Alliance members, and community, immigrant and Muslim organizations to call for an end to the bigotry and anti-Islamic rhetoric in the debate around the Park 51 Islamic Cultural Center, referred to as the Ground Zero Mosque. “I feel very sad. I have been here more than 25 years. I have been driving a taxi more than 15 years. All my four kids were born here. I never feel this hopeless and insecure before,” said Mr. Sharif. “Right now, the public sentiment is very serious (because of the Ground Zero Mosque debate.) All drivers should be more careful.”

    On Tuesday, August 24th, 2010 Mr. Sharif picked up the perpetrator at 24th Street and Second Avenue, his first fare for the shift, and headed toward Times Square. The man, 21, started out friendly, asking Mr. Sharif about where he was from, how long he had been in America, if he was Muslim and if he was observing fast during Ramadan. He then first became silent for a few minutes and then suddenly started cursing and screaming. There, at about 6:15pm at Third Avenue between 40th and 41st Streets, he yelled, “Assalamu Alaikum. Consider this a checkpoint,” and then slashed Mr. Sharif across the neck. As Mr. Sharif went to knock the knife out, the perpetrator, continuing to scream loudly, cut the taxi driver in the face (from nose to upper lip), arm and hand.

    “While a minority of has-been politicians spew ignorance and fear, itā€™s the working person on the street who has to face the consequences,” said NYTWA Executive Director Bhairavi Desai. “This kind of bigotry only breeds more violence and makes taxi drivers all the more vulnerable on the streets where there are no bully pulpits or podiums to hide behind.” The US Department of Labor reports taxi drivers to be thirty times more likely to be killed on the job than other workers.