Tuesday, June 21, 2011
CAIR OFFERS USOC LANGUAGE FOR NEW WEIGHTLIFTING HIJAB POLICY - TOP
U.S. Olympic Committee requested language to be discussed at June 26 meeting in Malaysia
(WASHINGTON, D.C., 6/20/11) -- A prominent national Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization today offered the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) draft language for a policy change on Islamic attire (hijab) for consideration by the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) when it meets later this month in Malaysia.
The Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said the USOC requested language for a rule change that would help the IWF resolve the case of a Muslim weightlifter in Georgia who wishes to compete wearing modest Islamic attire (hijab).
Following intervention by CAIR, the USOC said it would ask the IWF's technical committee to review a policy preventing the Muslim athlete, 35-year-old Kulsoom Abdullah (http://liftingcovered.com/), from competing in the USA Weightlifting Senior Nationals to be held this July in Council Bluffs, Iowa.
USA Weightlifting is a United States Olympic Committee National Governing Body (NGB). Officials of USA Weightlifting cite IWF rules in barring Abdullah from competition.
The IWF committee's recommendation will be presented to the body's executive board, which meets the next day in Penang, Malaysia. [Abdullah is seeking to travel to Malaysia to offer a presentation on the issue of religious attire at the meeting.]
The draft language submitted to the USOC for consideration by the IWF committee states:
"Officials will provide reasonable accommodation for the religious practices of competitors on condition that the accommodation requested does not provide a competitive advantage."
In his letter to USOC CEO Scott Blackmun, CAIR Staff Attorney Gadeir Abbas wrote:
"We believe that discriminatory international rules and regulations can never supersede American laws and traditions guaranteeing religious freedom. The issue of religious attire for athletes can be addressed successfully in a mutually-agreeable manner that maintains the legitimate rights and needs of all parties.
"Therefore, if the IWF rules against allowing reasonable religious accommodation, we request that the USOC and USA Weightlifting respect our nation's longstanding tradition of religious inclusion by allowing Ms. Abdullah to compete wearing hijab."
Abbas said that a 15-year-old Canadian Muslim soccer referee was recently told she could not perform her job while wearing hijab. Earlier this month, an Iranian women's soccer team was barred from an Olympic qualifying match in Jordan because of the athletes' modest attire.
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 National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, or 202-488-8787, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, 202-341-4171, E-Mail: email@example.com
NYT COMMENTARY: DEFEND MUSLIMS, DEFEND AMERICA - TOP
Aziz Huq, New York Times, 6/19/2011
With an eye toward the 2012 elections, legislators in six states have been debating laws explicitly prohibiting courts from considering or using Sharia law, with 14 more looking at wider bans on "foreign law." They're taking a clear cue from Oklahoma's wildly popular Sharia ban, which voters approved as a state constitutional amendment last year by more than 70 percent.
Such laws are discriminatory and pointless. Civil liberties groups are fighting them in court and calling on state legislators to abandon such bills. But there is an additional reason everyone, including would-be proponents of the laws and the federal government, should oppose them: they pose a significant threat to national security. (More)
NY ANTI-MOSQUE LEADER DEFENDS FAR-RIGHT ANTI-MUSLIM GROUP (Newsweek) - TOP
Mark Hosenball, Newsweek, 8/30/2010
A leader in the movement protesting plans to build an Islamic cultural center two blocks from Ground Zero in lower Manhattan is defending the actions of a right-wing, anti-Muslim group that was involved in violent clashes with British riot police over the weekend.
Pamela Geller is a conservative blogger, activist, and a principal organizer of Stop Islamization of America (SIOA), which seeks to block construction of the proposed center. The group is sponsoring a protest rally at the site on the 2010 anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, a week from Saturday. In a posting on her Atlas Shrugs blog, Geller expresses sympathy for the goals and actions of the English Defense League (EDL), a far-right group implicated in violent clashes with police during an anti-Islamic demonstration last Saturday in the northern English city of Bradford. "The stated goal of the EDL is to oppose militant Islam and the sharia," Geller writes. "What's wrong with that? Everything to the PC, leftist slaves in the media and the government." (More)
BACKGROUNDER: WHO'S BEHIND NY'S ANTI-ISLAM BUS, MOSQUE CAMPAIGNS? - TOP
The anti-Islam New York bus ad campaign and the campaign to block construction of an Islamic community center in New York are both headed by an extremist Muslim-basher who claims that "Hitler and the Nazis were inspired by Islam."
UPDATE: Pam Geller, The Face Of Park51 Opposition, Now Downplaying Serbian War Crimes
Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA), the anti-Islam hate group behind both efforts, is led by Pamela Geller.
[NOTE: 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."]
Geller posted images on her blog purporting to depict Islam's Prophet Muhammad. Several of those images show the prophet as a pig. Another image, headlined "Piss Be Upon Him," shows one of the controversial Danish cartoons of the prophet covered in urine. ("Piss Be Upon Him" is designed to mock the traditional phrase "Peace Be Upon Him" that Muslims use when mentioning any prophet of God.)
She has in the past referred to President Obama as a "ball s**ker" and posted a photoshopped image of him urinating on an American flag.
On her personal blog, Geller has written of President Obama: "[O]ne thing is for sure: Hussein is a muhammadan [sic]." Geller also wrote: "[I]t is well known that Obama allegedly was involved with a crack whore in his youth."
Geller has been vocal in her criticism of the black population in South Africa and seemingly supportive of the slain South African apartheid leader Eugene Terre'blanche. Following Terre'blanche's recent murder, Geller wrote: "All I see in South Africa is Black supremacism. Terreblanche [sic] may have been a white supremacist, but he's the dead one." She has also offered rhetorical support to accused Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic. In one blog entry, Geller posted a video claiming that Muslims engage in bestiality.
SIOA is an outgrowth of a similar group in Europe that seeks to block the construction of mosques. That group, Stop the Islamization of Europe, "considers Islamophobia to be the height of common sense."
SEE: SIOA is an Anti-Muslim Hate Group
Fox Opens Its Airwaves to Anti-Muslim Activist Geller
Her blog has in the past featured categories such as "Advancing Islamic Lies" and "Islam 2008: Religion of Barbarism." She was recently involved in a Florida conference that invited extremist anti-Islam Dutch politician Geert Wilders to speak.
In one 2009 blog post, Geller wrote in reference to Islam's Prophet Muhammad: "And frankly I find the whole new 'Abrahamic' narrative really galling. 1,400 years ago some maniaic [sic] decided to spin the origin of a 5,767 year old religion to advance their own evil end and said it was Ishmael that Abraham was to kill and now it's taken as.....gospel? Puhleeeze."
She also claims Muslim groups "control information and how it is processed at senior levels of the CIA, the FBI, the Pentagon, and the various branches of the military."
Geller once called for the destruction of Islam's Dome of Rock in Jerusalem. She wrote: "The dome has got to go. It is sitting atop the great Jewish temple. The dome has got to go."
Geller and the deputy head of SIOA, anti-Islam blogger Robert Spencer, offered support for a call to wipe the nation of Pakistan off the map using India's nuclear weapons. They both used their blogs to promote a video urging the mass killing of all Pakistanis.
Geller wrote of the girl featured in that video making the call to genocide: "Perhaps with an online Colb. (collaboration) we can run her for president in '16. She gets it."
Spencer wrote: "The girl is right: do not fear. Fight back against the jihad. Fear hands the jihadis a weapon."
SEE: Pamela Geller: The Looniest Blogger Ever
Geller has even been criticized by other Islamophobes for her extremism and for supporting far-right fascist groups in Europe. In fact, SIOA is an outgrowth of a similar group in Europe that seeks to block the construction of mosques on that continent. That group, Stop the Islamization of Europe, also "considers Islamophobia to be the height of common sense" and, like Geller, claims that Islam "considers lying to be not only acceptable, but obligatory."
ANTI-MUSLIM BIGOT BRIDGITTE GABRIEL, ACT! FOR AMERICA EXPOSED - TOP
Franklin Lamb, 6/19/11
Hanan is the Islamophobic Lebanese woman, Hanan Qahwaji who as a child lived in the South Lebanon village of Maryoun overlooking the Lebanon-Palestine border during three years of the on again off again Lebanese Civil War before she became an Israeli collaborator and fled to Israel. Hanan, repackaged as "Rachael", soon quickly landed a job with Israeli TV and specialized in telling stories about how Muslims terrorized her and her Christian neighbors.
Later, repackaged as "Nour Semaan", a name she still sometimes uses, Hanan tells American audiences that she became a Middle East "anchor" in Israel. Forgetting to mention that her job was with Pat Robertson's, Christian Broadcasting Network, working to spread his politically conservative, Pentecostal faith in the Middle East which includes Robertson's vision of rapture and how righteous Jews will all convert when Jesus comes again. The others will burn in Hell according to the Pentecosts. Hanan is sometimes known as, Nour Semaan, Rachael Cohen, "Dark Angel" and more recently, Bridgitte Gabriel, founder of the anti-Islam Zionist hate group "Act! For America". (More)
BACKGROUNDER: BRIGITTE GABRIEL AND ACT! FOR AMERICA - TOP
ACT! for America leader Brigitte Gabriel claims an American Muslim "cannot be a loyal citizen" and that Islam is the "real enemy." She once told the Australian Jewish News: "Every practicing Muslim is a radical Muslim." She also claimed that "Islamo-fascism is a politically-correct word. . .it's the vehicle for Islam. . .Islam is the problem."
View an image of the original article here.
When asked whether Americans should "resist Muslims who want to seek political office in this nation," Gabriel said: "Absolutely. If a Muslim who has -- who is -- a practicing Muslim who believes the word of the Koran to be the word of Allah, who abides by Islam, who goes to mosque and prays every Friday, who prays five times a day -- this practicing Muslim, who believes in the teachings of the Koran, cannot be a loyal citizen to the United States of America."
Gabriel stated: "America and the West are doomed to failure in this war unless they stand up and identify the real enemy: Islam."
Along with her stated desire to have Muslims barred from public office, Gabriel has also claimed that Arabs "have no soul" and that Muslims worship "something they call 'Allah,' which is very different from the God we believe [in]."
SEE: A Case Study in Sincere Hypocrisy: Brigitte Gabriel
Video: Brigitte Gabriel Says Arabs Have No Souls
A person staffing an ACT! for America information table in Florida was caught on video bragging that he desecrated the Quran, Islam's revealed text, and urinates in the washing stations Muslims use to perform their ritual ablutions (wudu) for prayer.
That person states: "Their foot baths, I love pissing in them. . .The Quran makes worthless toilet paper. It just kind of scratches my a** a little bit. . .To me, I like desecrating their [Muslims'] holy stuff."
According to an expose of Gabriel and her group published in the New York Times:
"Through her books, media appearances and speeches, and her organization, ACT! for America, Ms. Gabriel has become one of the most visible personalities on a circuit of self-appointed terrorism detectors who warn that Muslims pose an enormous danger within United States borders. . ."
Another expose of Gabriel's hate group published on Politico.com quoted an Arab-American activist who said: "The idea that congressional staffers would agree to meet an organization led by a woman whose agenda is pure unadulterated hatred and whose purported life story is a laughable fiction -- it's sad."
MISSIONARIES TAKE ON MUSLIMS, CATHOLICS AT ARAB FESTIVAL - TOP
Niraj Warikoo, Detroit Free Press, 6/19/2011
A young Muslim girl broke down in tears after passing by a group of Christian missionaries who continued to yell insults Saturday at Muslims and others during the Arab International Festival in Dearborn. The missionaries are also now targeting Catholics.
"She's crying because of what they said," said the father of the young girl who cried after hearing the missionaries on Warren Avenue in Dearborn, as depicted on a You Tube video. The Arab International Festival, which continues today, is the largest outdoor gathering of Arab-Americans in the country and so has increasingly attracted Christian missionaries who believe Islam has taken over the city of Dearborn. (More)
CAIR: US REPUBLICANS URGED TO REJECT ISLAMOPHOBIA - TOP
Mick O'Reilly, Gulf News, 6/20/11
Dubai: The presidential election in the United States may be 18 months away but concern is already growing at the extent of anti-Muslim sentiments being expressed by leading Republicans seeking the party's nomination.
Following last week's first debate of Republican runners organised by CNN, at least two prominent groups representing mainstream American Muslims have issued statements expressing alarm at the spread of Islamophobia by those GOP candidates.
Both the Council on American-Islamist Relations (CAIR) and the American Muslim Taskforce on Civil Rights and Elections (AMT) issued statements condemning anti-Muslim sentiment expressed by candidates during the nationally televised debate in New Hampshire. (More)
HOW THE REPUBLICAN PARTY LEFT ME - TOP
Hesham Hassaballa, Middle East Online, 6/20/11
Ever since I was old enough, I voted in almost every election. In many of those elections I voted Republican. In fact, I became involved in local Republican politics, being a Committeeman and assistant Committeeman for my local township Republican party. I felt truly at home in the Republican party, with its emphasis on conservative social values and limited government intrusion intopersonal life. Even though I didn't vote for George W. Bush in 2004, I still remained loyal to the Republican party. It simply felt right.
That all changed in the 2008 Presidential election. The repeated smears among Republican and right wing circles, that Obama is somehow a stealth Muslim, was particularly distasteful to me. The repeated stoking of fear and hatred against American Muslims for cynical political gain, and the failure of Republican leadership to repudiate it solidified my resolve to leave the party. So in 2010, I voted in my first primary election as a Democrat.
Now that the 2012 election season has begun to rev up, and the field of Republican candidates for President begins to come into clearer view, the question has entered my mind: Did I make the right decision? Was I correct in leaving the Republican Party as an American Muslim? Or was my decision too hasty, based on emotion rather than facts about where the Republicans stand?
And my answer is: Absolutely not, leaving the Republican Party was exactly the right thing to do. (More)
MUSLIM 9/11 HATE-CRIME VICTIM SEEKS TO SAVE HIS ATTACKER (NPR) - TOP
Just 10 days after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, Rais Bhuiyan was working at a gas station in Dallas when he was shot in the face by a man named Mark Stroman.
Stroman was on a shooting spree, targeting people who appeared to be Muslim or of Middle Eastern descent. Stroman is due to be executed July 20; Bhuiyan, the only survivor of the attacks, is fighting to save his life. (More)
- MEDIA ADVISORY -
: CAIR, to Release First Annual Islamophobia Report
Groundbreaking report lists ‘worst’ Islamophobes, ‘best’ of those pushing back against growing anti-Muslim sentiment
(WASHINGTON, D.C., 6/21/11) -- On Thursday, June 23, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the, Berkeley’s Center for Race and Gender will hold a news conference on to release “Same Hate, New Target,” the first-of-its-kind annual report outlining the disturbing growth of Islamophobia in the United States during 2009-2010.
[NOTE: A number of CAIR chapters around the nation will hold similar news conferences to release the report.]
The groundbreaking report also lists the “worst” Islamophobes and the “best” of those pushing back against growing anti-Muslim sentiment in American society.
WHAT: CAIR, UC Berkeley to Release ‘Same Hate, New Target’ Islamophobia Report
WHEN: Thursday, June 23, 11 a.m.
WHERE: CAIR National Headquarters, 453 New Jersey Ave., S.E., .
CONTACT: CAIR National Legislative Director Corey Saylor, , E-Mail ; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, , E-Mail:
“This groundbreaking report creates a benchmark for examining the troubling growth of anti-Muslim sentiment in our society and offers a who’s who of those promoting or challenging Islamophobia,” said CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad. “As the recent GOP presidential debate demonstrated, Islamophobia is moving toward the mainstream and therefore must be challenged by all Americans who learned from those periods in our nation’s history when other minorities were similarly targeted.”
CAIR Says GOP Candidates Seem at Ease with Anti-Muslim Sentiment
Muslim Bashing by GOP Candidates? Nothing New Here (Wash Post)
Based on available data and interviews with experts, the report offers a definition of Islamophobia, an overview of its growing negative impact in the United States and names of individuals and institutions known for promoting or opposing the phenomenon. It has special sections on the manufactured controversy over the Park 51 Islamic community center in
The report also offers a vision regarding Islamophobia in America, looks toward the time when being Muslim carries a positive connotation and presents an initial set of recommendations for moving toward that goal.
CAIR is 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.
Become a Fan of CAIR on Facebook
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- END -
CONTACT: CAIR National Legislative Director Corey Saylor, 202-384-8857, E-Mail firstname.lastname@example.org; UC Berkeley Professor Dr. Hatem Bazian,
Monday, June 20, 2011
o Video: CAIR-MI Rep Defends Free Speech Rights of Anti-Islam Pastor
· CAIR-LA Helps Mark Juneteenth with Voter Drive
· MN: Hijab-Wearing 'Flash Mob' Protests Bias Incident
o Video: Hijab Flash Mob At RightOnline
· Rudy Giuliani Joins Rally for Designated Terror Group
o Muslim Bashing by GOP Candidates? Nothing New Here
· Canada: Soccer Referee Sidelined for Wearing Hijab