FBI ASKED TO PROBE BIAS MOTIVE FOR HARASSMENT OF ORE. MUSLIM - TOP Harassment allegedly began after victim began wearing Islamic scarf
(SEATTLE, WA, 12/21/10) -- The Washington state chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-WA) today called on the FBI to investigate a possible bias motive for alleged verbal threats and physical intimidation of a Muslim woman in Gresham, Ore.
CAIR-WA said the threats and intimidation by a neighbor, which reportedly occurred over the past two months, began when the victim converted to Islam and began wearing an Islamic head scarf and appear to be motivated by anti-Muslim sentiment.
The alleged victim reports that the verbal threats made by the neighbor included, "I'm going to kill you, you f***ing b**ch," "I'm going to shoot your dog and [rape you] while you pray with your head on the ground." Alleged acts of physical intimidation include shoving the victim against a wall, monitoring her with binoculars and attempting to unlawfully enter her apartment.
Though local law enforcement authorities have aided the victim, she believes police officers have not recognized the seriousness of the threats and the fear with which she reacted. Police dispatchers have begun to transfer 911 calls from the victim's daughter's cell phone automatically to non-emergency, despite the fact that an emergency still exists.
CAIR-WA today sent a letter to the FBI asking for an investigation of these incidents as possible hate crimes.
"Immediate action should be taken by local and national law enforcement authorities to send a message that bias-motivated intimidation of American Muslims will not be tolerated," said CAIR-WA Executive Director Arsalan Bukhari.
Other recent anti-Muslim incidents in the Pacific Northwest region include an arson attack on an Oregon mosque, a bias attack on an Oregon Muslim inmate and an incident of physical and verbal assault on Muslim women in Seattle.
Mosques in California, Ohio, Tennessee, New York, Illinois, Wisconsin, Arizona, Louisiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Texas, and Florida have faced vocal opposition or have been similarly targeted by hate incidents in recent months.
American Muslim individuals and institutions are being urged to review advice on security procedures contained in CAIR's "Muslim Community Safety Kit."
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.
CONTACT: CAIR-WA Executive Director Arsalan Bukhari, 206-367-4081 or 206-931-3655, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, or 202-488-8787, E-Mail: email@example.com; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, 202-341-4171, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
MUSLIM WOMAN REPORTS ATTACK NEAR MOSQUE - TOP Andrew Welsh-Huggins, Associated Press, 12/21/10
COLUMBUS, Ohio – A Muslim woman says she was harassed and then assaulted with pepper spray outside an Ohio mosque. (More)
CAIR: DELAWARE MUSLIM FAMILY FIGHT'S SON'S DEPORTATION - TOP Blog posts hurt Del. man's deportation case By Sean O'Sullivan, The News Journal, 12/21/10
[UPDATE: The son was granted $5,000 bond today. He should be released tomorrow.]
It starts with a knock on the door, someone flashes a badge, a flurry of people in uniforms rush in, then a family member is marched away in handcuffs, sometimes forever.
Shagufta Masood and her family have now experienced that twice.
The first time was Oct. 22, 2002 -- her wedding anniversary -- when immigration officials took away her husband, Masood Sadiq, for overstaying his visa.
It happened again Nov. 12. This time, it was her oldest son, Moiez, weeks before he was to be married. (More)
VIDEO: CAIR REP DISCUSSES KING'S PLAN TO TARGET MUSLIMS (O'REILLY FACTOR)- TOP
CAIR Government Affairs Director Corey Saylor talks with Bill O'Reilly about Rep. Peter King's (R-NY) plan to hold hearings on "Muslim radicalism."
PETE KING'S PLAN TO GRILL MUSLIMS IS FLASHBACK TO JOE MCCARTHY'S HOLLYWOOD WITCH HUNT FOR COMMUNISTS - TOP Joanna Molloy, New York Daily News, 12/21/10
Rep. Pete King's proposal to hold hearings on the "radicalization" of American Muslims is something straight out of the Bad Ideas Department.
Make that the Worst Ideas Department.
Just substitute the word "movie" for "Muslim" and you've got McCarthyism. As in Sen. Joe, who called in actors from Lucille Ball to Judy Holliday simply because they had had naughty liberal thoughts.
McCarthy found nothing on Holliday, but ruined her life and scores of others in Hollywood.
What's next, internment camps?
I wondered if that thought went through the mind of King's colleague, Rep. Doris Matsui. She was born in an internment camp in Arizona, where her parents were locked up during WWII for the crime of being of Japanese descent.
Under an executive order from President Franklin D. Roosevelt, 110,000 Japanese were relocated and kept behind barbed wire, including George Takei and Pat Morita, who were children at the time.
Haven't we learned by now that it's never a good idea to isolate people by race or religion? (More)
CAIR: PETER KING'S TERROR HEARING TEST: IF HE'S HIS OLD DEMAGOGIC SELF, RADICALISM INQUIRY WILL BACKFIRE - TOP Bill Hammond, New York Daily News, 12/21/10
Bashing plans for an Islamic cultural center in downtown Manhattan was the wrong thing for any politician to do in a country that cherishes religious freedom.
But it was particularly reckless for Long Island Rep. Pete King to join in last summer's demagoguery.
That's because - unlike Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich or Carl Paladino - King is a serving elected official with an important role to play in protecting this country from radical Islamic terrorism.
And his ability to get that job done has now been seriously compromised by his history of pushing anti-Muslim buttons.
Remember that King spent much of the summer leading the opposition to the so-called Ground Zero mosque - which, as fair-minded people realize, was not really a mosque and not really at Ground Zero.
Joining the chorus of attacks, he called the project "an affront to the memory of all those murdered on 9/11" - as if all Muslims, even the peaceful moderates behind Park51, bear responsibility for the actions of extremists. ...
Little wonder, then, that the Council on American-Islamic Relations is predicting the hearings will devolve into a McCarthyite witch hunt. That suspicion is the price King pays for his own ill-considered words. (More)
ELLISON CONFRONTS KING ON PLANNED MUSLIM INVESTIGATIONS - TOP By Andy Birkey, Minnesota Independent, 12/21/10
Republican Rep. Peter King of New York says he wants to hold investigations into the "radicalization" of American Muslims in his new position as chair of the House Committee on Homeland Security, but Rep. Keith Ellison said on Monday that targeting one community would hamper homeland security efforts.
"I believe it's important to have this investigation into the radicalization of the Muslim community," King said in an interview with Fox News this week. "We have to break through this politically correct nonsense which keeps us from debating and discussing what I think is one of the most vitally important issues in this country. We are under siege by Muslim terrorists and yet there are Muslim leaders in this country who do not cooperate with law enforcement."
Ellison, who became America's first Muslim member of Congress in 2006, said that investigations like the one proposed by King will not cause members of the community to cooperate with law enforcement. He said it might have the opposite effect. Ellison said he confronted King on the House floor on the issue.
"I got so concerned that when I heard about it I actually approached Congressman King on the House floor and told him that, you know, look, we all need to be concerned about violent radicalization, but not just against Muslims, against anybody," he said on the Ed Show on MSNBC on Monday. "What about the guy who flew a plane into the IRS or what about the guy who killed a guard at the holocaust museum?" (More)
BLOOMBERG SPLITS WITH PETER KING OVER MUSLIM 'RADICALIZATION' HEARINGS - TOP By Jill Colvin and Julie Shapiro, DNAinfo, 12/20/10 http://www.dnainfo.com/20101220/manhattan/bloomberg-splits-with-peter-king-over-muslim-radicalization-hearings
MANHATTAN -- Mayor Michael Bloomberg distanced himself Monday from a Republican Congressman's plans to hold hearings on Muslim "radicalization."
In an op-ed published in Newsday, Long Island Rep. Peter King, who is set to become chairman of the Homeland Security Committee, said that as part of his duties, he intends to hold hearings on topics including the "radicalization of the American Muslim community and homegrown terrorism."
"As chairman of the Homeland Security Committee, I will do all I can to break down the wall of political correctness and drive the public debate on Islamic radicalization," he wrote, adding that the hearings are "what democracy is all about."
Asked about the remarks during a press conference at City Hall urging Congress to pass the 9/11 health bill, Bloomberg told reporters that while he agreed with King on many topics, this time around, "I think we probably part company quite severely."
"I don't happen to agree with him that that's necessary, said Bloomberg, who has been a vocal proponent of religious tolerance in the past, including supporting the right of Park 51 to build an Islamic center near Ground Zero -- a plan King has vehemently opposed. (More)
ISLAM-BASHING BIGOTS TRAIN COUNTERTERRORISM AGENTS - TOP Chip Berlet, Huffington Post, 12/20/10
"Kill them...including the children."
That's how to solve the threat of militant Muslims?
This quote is from what one official involved in homeland security said was the theme of a speech by Walid Shoebat at an anti-terrorism training in Las Vegas in October 2010.
Our source had turned around after Shoebat's speech and asked the woman in the chair behind them at the conference what she thought was the solution offered by Shoebat.
"Kill them...including the children...you heard him," was the full response.
Shoebat's Las Vegas speech was described by our source as "frightening."
Bigoted trainers including Shoebat are highlighted in today's Washington Post article on "Monitoring America." Much of this information is new. Some of it was previously documented in a PRA Report, "Platform for Prejudice." (More)
RIGHT-WING BACKS FORMER MUSLIMS TO PROMOTE MILITARIST AGENDA - TOP Apostate Politics: How Some Recanted Muslims Have Bolstered Militarist US Policies Samer Araabi
There is a tendency among right-wing think tanks in the United States involved in Middle East policy to employ "experts" from the region to bolster their pro-war advocacy campaigns. One of the more infamous cases is that of Ahmad Chalabi, the darling of the neocon crowd during the lead up to the invasion of Iraq who, after his return to Iraq, leveraged his wealth and connections to become a major political figure there, often to the embarrassment of his erstwhile comrades.
More recently, there has emerged a cadre of high-profile individuals from the Greater Middle East who, unlike Chalabi, have turned against Islam and embraced their lives in the West. In doing so, they have adopted views strikingly similar to some of the more hawkish factions in U.S. politics. Notable examples include Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Wafa Sultan, and Nonie Darwish, all known for their vociferous condemnations of Islam, their affiliations with prominent neoconservative organizations, and the anger they have aroused from both Arabs and Muslims worldwide.
Though the research and analysis produced by these self-styled "apostates of Islam" often has limited scholarly value, they have played an important role in providing a purportedly moral justification for Western military campaigns in Muslim countries. (More)
CAIR-MI: HATE MAIL TO MOSQUES UNDER INVESTIGATION - TOP Oralandar Brand-Williams, The Detroit News, 12/21/10
Dearborn -- The local office of a national Muslim civil rights group says they have met with postal investigators about several anti-Muslim hate mailings that were sent recently to area mosques, Islamic centers and Muslim organizations.
Officials for the Michigan office of Council on American-Islamic Relations, located in Southfield, say they were investigating mail received by a local mosque that contained pornographic references to Islam.
Lena Masri, the staff attorney for CAIR-MI, said the organization has turned over several pieces of obscene mailings. (More)
CAIR-MI: CHELSEA RESIDENTS PLAN ISLAM FORUM AS PART OF MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. DAY CELEBRATION - TOP Lisa Allmendinger ,AnnArbor.com, 12/21/10
A group of about 10 to 15 Chelsea residents have been meeting since the summer to plan a forum on tolerance of religious diversity for Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Jan. 17 that will take place at the Chelsea District Library.
"Differences without Divisions: Islam in America," will feature nationally recognized Islamic leaders who will provide a broad perspective at the 7-9 p.m. event.
Included topics are:
Contemporary issues for Muslims living in America.
A place for Muslims in the world today.
American media representations of Islam and its practitioners.
Islam and youth.
The role of women in Islam.
Islam and humanitarian service.
The future of Islam and its role in America and the world.
"Islam is practiced by roughly a quarter of the world's population and is the majority religion in close to 50 countries," said Micky Howe, who spoke at a recent Chelsea City Council meeting about the upcoming program.
The focus of the forum will be contemporary issues facing Muslims in America. Speakers include Imam Sayid Hassan Al-Qazwini, a scholar and religious leader at the Islamic Center of America in Dearborn; Najah Bazzy, a nurse specializing in transcultural health care and the executive director of Zaman International; and Dawud Walid, executive director of the Michigan Chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations. (More)