Separation of Church and State Should Apply to Saudi Government in U. S. Mosques
August 25, 2010, New York, NY, (in spirit) – by El Marco
The virality of information in this galloping technological age was brought home to me the other day, when I received an email tip about a Bill Kelly article in the Washington Times. Titled Mystery WTC Mosque Protest Photos Causing Internet Stir, the article featured a slideshow of photographs I made of the June 6 protest at ground zero in New York City. Odds are you have never heard of that huge historic rally because of a nearly complete media blackout on the event.
I sent an email to Mr. Kelly to thank him for publishing my photography, which he had encountered as a viral email. To my surprise, a Washington Times editor responded. She invited me to the Communities section to write a regular column.
Mr. Kelly, who is a political satirist, wrote in his column: “Sometimes a subject is so serious that even we need to take a step back and let the story tell itself. This is one of those times. … Despite public opinion, the mainstream media has virtually ignored the protests against the WTC mosque. According to internet reports, not one major TV network or camera crew covered this recent protest. … Uncredited photos of the New York protests have surfaced, bypassing the mainstream media’s unbalanced reporting, and have since caused a stir on the internet. Few words are necessary. The photos of the mystery photographer speak louder than any words ever could.”
Pamela Geller organizer of June 6 rally holds photo of plane parts
Kelly wrote those words on August 12, more than two months after the “feminist AynRandian” blogger and human-rights activist Pamela Geller led a massive rally at Ground Zero in New York. The purpose of that rally was to draw attention to grassroots opposition aimed at the proposed mega-mosque headed by the controversial Imam Feisal Rauf. This past week, the story that the dominant liberal establishment media tried to keep from you has gone international and become one of the defining issues of recent times.
With a recent Rasmussen poll showing 62% of Americans are against the 13 story mosque, Geller’s efforts to inform public opinion have been more than vindicated as mainstream. The 38% who support Rauf’s plans include the Democrat leadership, the elite mainstream media and the radical 1960s left, who together have formed an arrogant, chauvinistic machine, pushing the mosque project and vilifying those who oppose it.
Imam Feisal Rauf is the man who heads the Cordoba Initiative. He plans to build a Sharia-promoting Islamic complex and mosque 560 feet from where 9/11 terrorists crashed planes into the World Trade Center towers.
New Yorkers and the American public are becoming aware that there are many Islamic groups like Rauf’s who claim to be moderate, but are fronts for the Muslim Brotherhood. Imam Rauf is a radical extremist cleric who plays to the sensitivities and ignorance of those who live in the liberal/left media and academic bubble. They fall over each other praising him and attacking anyone who questions his motives. Time magazine online, in the space of two weeks, ran four articles characterizing anyone opposed to the mosque as being racist bigots.
As a Canadian, I can point with a sense of relief to an article in the Ottawa Citizen by Ms. Raheel Raza and Tarek Fatah of the Muslim Canadian Congress. The article is titled: Mischief in Manhattan – We Muslims know the Ground Zero mosque is meant as a deliberate provocation. Their words tell us what true moderate moslems sound like:
“Let’s not forget that a mosque is an exclusive place of worship for Muslims and not an inviting community centre. Most Americans are wary of mosques due to the hard core rhetoric that is used in pulpits. And rightly so. As Muslims we are dismayed that our co-religionists have such little consideration for their fellow citizens and wish to rub salt in their wounds and pretend they are applying a balm to sooth the pain.”
“As for those teary-eyed, bleeding-heart liberals such as New York mayor Michael Bloomberg and much of the media, who are blind to the Islamist agenda in North America, we understand their goodwill. Unfortunately for us, their stand is based on ignorance and guilt, and they will never in their lives have to face the tyranny of Islamism that targets, kills and maims Muslims worldwide, and is using liberalism itself to destroy liberal secular democratic societies from within.” – Ottawa Citizen
Does Time magazine rate authentic moderate muslims, like these Asian immigrants to Canada, as racist bigots also? What Raza and Fatah show us is that the Koran can be interpreted in a mild, nonpolitical way. The bad news is that the most powerful trend in Islam is the Muslim Brotherhood’s political Islam, which controls every aspect of adherents’ lives with Sharia Law. They aim to dominate the West and are active in ninety countries, where they promote a doctrine of both violent jihad and stealth jihad. Violent jihad is the terrorism we see throughout the world today. Stealth jihad is, in part, the manipulation of the press and the government in order to topple a target society or a nation from within.
A 1991 Muslim Brotherhood document obtained by the FBI outlined their strategy: “[members] must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and Allah’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.”
Imam Rauf defends Wahhabism, calls for Sharia law in America, and the elimination of the state of Israel (one state final solution). He also has defended Bin Laden by claiming that America made him into the terrorist that he is. He apologizes for radical Islam and justifies acts of violence by blaming the United States and the West in general, and never blames terrorists for waging war against western countries. What he does is blame the U.S. for aggression against Islam. He couches a lot of his rhetoric in soft new-age speak, yet one of Rauf’s partners in the Cordoba Initiative is Jamal Barzinji, one of the founders of the extremist Muslim Brotherhood in America. Barzinji founded Dar al-Hijrah mosque in Falls Church, Virginia, which incubated numerous terrorist plots, including the 9/11 attacks and the Fort Hood murders.
Rauf is seen by liberals today as something of an all-knowing, spellbinding spiritualist who even quotes John Lennon at times. When he speaks, the press and even some Christian clerics and rabbis go gaga and proclaim him as a great example of enlightened moderate Islam. He knows the gullible left, and spoon feeds them interfaith pablum talk which they lap up while ignoring all his other statements excusing terrorists.
The Wall Street Journals Bret Stevens pointed out that the elite liberal media couldn’t tell an ax murderer from a moderate muslim if their lives depended on it.
Imam Rauf originally named the proposed Islamic center/mosque Cordoba House. That name has historic significance for Islamists. It refers to Cordoba, Spain, which was occupied by muslim invaders for three centuries. After 800 hundred of years of war, Spanish armies forced the muslims out of Spain in 1492. While occupying Cordoba, the Islamic conquerers built an architectural wonder of a mosque over that city’s main Catholic church. Muslims have vowed ever since their expulsion to retake Spain, claiming that it is their rightful Islamic land. Once muslim, forever muslim.
The greatest domed church ever built in Christendom, the Hagia Sofia in Constantinople, was converted into a mosque after the fall of that city to muslim forces in 1453. In India, countless Hindu temples were razed and their stones used by muslim invaders to build mosques which still dominate ancient Hindu holy sites today.
To be fair, one must acknowledge that this is exactly what Constantine the Great and later Roman emperors did, after considerable bloodletting, when they replaced pagan temples with Christian churches. The Spanish in the New World also built many churches on the sites of Mayan, Aztec and Inca temples. This is one aspect of supercessionism. Supercessionism has no place in the modern world, and should be seen for what it is: an ancient pretext for conquest that should be banished to the dustbin of history.
But modern Islamists don’t see it that way. In 1999, in Nazareth there was an attempt to build a huge mosque directly beside the Church of the Annunciation. Muslims bought up adjacent land, and with Israel’s approval, began building a mosque whose minarets would tower over the Catholic church. This caused an uproar from Christians worldwide and led Israel to rescind construction permission in 2002. In the Nazareth case most Islamic leaders were also against the project.
In 2008, the English people were shocked to learn that land had been purchased to build Europe’s largest mosque adjacent to the 2012 Olympic Stadium in London. Public opposition against the proposed mosque was so great that planners “missed some deadlines” and finally “let the idea die”. This brings us to the Burlington Coat Factory, site of the proposed Ground Zero mega-mosque.
The Burlington Coat Factory was purchased by the Cordoba Initiative at a bargain price. Its value plummeted from 19 million to less than 5 million when it was rendered uninhabitable by the terrorist attacks of 9/11, 2001. A huge chunk of airplane landing gear (see Geller with photo above) crashed through the roof and straight down through several of the upper floors of the building. The entire area was coated by a layer of DNA-laden dust and debris, which was several feet deep on some streets. In fact, Imam Rauf’s book What’s Right with Islam is What’s Right with America, was first released in Malaysia under the ghoulish title A Call to Prayer from the World Trade Center Rubble.
Abd Al-Rahman Al-Rashed, the director-general of Al-Arabiya TV, wrote that the Ground Zero Mosque will become “a monument to those who committed the crime … I do not think that the majority of Muslims want to build a monument or a place of worship that tomorrow may become a source of pride for the terrorists and their Muslim followers…” Washington Times
Rauf’s building, even in ruins, is now an active mosque with 400 to 500 men attending worship services on Fridays. Imam Rauf will not say where the funding will come from and has refused to rule out Saudi or Iranian money. 80% of mosques in the U.S. are controlled by Wahhabis. The deeds are held by NAIT (The Islamic Association of Islamic Trusts) which is a Saudi funded Fannie Mae for mosque building. That’s the reality and it’s those types of mosques that attract and produce terrorists. Two years ago this month the NYPD issued a report warning that Wahhabi mosques in America were incubators for “homegrown” Islamic radicals.
Separation of church (mosque) and state in America should be applied to foreign states like Saudi Arabia also. This comes at a time when it has been disclosed that the U. S, State Dept. is spending 26 million dollars renovating mosques in a dozens of countries.
This photograph shows that, at last, redevelopment is underway at Ground Zero. The Cordoba House site on a street to the left of this photo. It is closer to me than the trees on the other side of the pit in this image. St. Paul’s chapel can be seen nestled amongst the trees of the ancient graveyard. Built in 1766, it is the oldest continuously occupied building in New York City. It remained undamaged as the Twin Towers collapsed just at the graveyard’s wrought iron gate. When built, it was surrounded by farmland and orchards and considered a remote “country church” to serve parishioners living on the edge of town. (Bigot Alert: El Marco is neither Christian or Jewish)
In 1789, George Washington prayed here after his inauguration as the first President of the United States. He attended services here on numerous occasions. The most distinguished French officer buried in the United States, Lt. Col. Rochefontaine, lays at rest here. His tomb in St. Paul’s churchyard honors the aid rendered by France during the American Revolution. He is not the only revolutionary soldier buried here.
The Bell of Hope is a gift from London, England. It was unveiled on September 11, 2002, and is rung every September 11. The bell was rung on March 11, 2004, when trains were bombed in Madrid, Spain, and on July 7, 2005, after the London subway and bus attacks.
Directly in front of the bell, on the far side of the pit, rises the Freedom Tower. This bell is almost exactly the same distance from the base of the new tower as Cordoba House. To get to Cordoba House you walk to the new tower and then right two very short blocks.
A sign in the graveyard at this spot is titled: Unwavering Spirit – Hope and Healing at Ground Zero.
It reads in part: In the wake of September 11, an extraordinary volunteer ministry emerged at the chapel. It brought together thousands of people of every nationality, race, and religion to provide care and solace to the recovery workers at Ground Zero.
In the aftermath of 9/11 the chapel was used as a service and staging area for rescue workers. Meals and counseling were coordinated here. The entire church area and surrounding streets were covered in several feet of dust mixed with blood and bone and debris.
When I visited in November 2001, almost all of the dust was gone but the entire area still smelled of death. In front of the church the wrought iron fence became a memorial of photos and notes, with people from all parts of the world writing messages on large canvases.
In view of the Islamic supremacist historical tradition, there very well could be a reason Rauf wants to build Cordoba House 15 stories tall. The planned mosque will dwarf Saint Paul’s chapel. The mosque will become the tallest religious building in lower Manhattan. There can be no doubt that if Imam Rauf could have obtained land closer to the pit or right beside the chapel, he would have. It’s easy to understand that this chapel, in the minds of supremacist muslims, is a symbol of American Christianity unlike any other.
While Islamists and leftists frame this worldwide debate as “muslims the victim of American religious intolerance” they turn a blind eye on religious minorities suffering every kind of violent horror in muslim countries, including genocide. Pamela Geller’s June 6 rally included Hindus, Sikhs, Christians and Jews, all with first hand knowledge of Islamist bigotry and brutality.
Simon Deng, who is a human rights leader and south Sudanese Christian spoke of the crimes perpetrated on his people by the Islamic government in Khartoum. Collin Powell called it Genocide and George W. Bush brought full American pressure to bear on Khartoum, which in 2005 resulted in a three point agreement to stop the slaughter. The third point was the right for southern Sudan to vote to succeed by a referendum in 2011. Most observers believe the vote coming this January will lead to renewed genocide when Arab Khartoum cracks down on the Christian black south.
Obama’s perceived weakness will make a bad outcome much more likely. Bill Clinton’s failure to lift a finger to stop the Rwanda genocide casts a shadow over southern Sudan. An op-ed in the New York Times warned “this is President Obama’s Rwanda moment, and it is unfolding now, in slow motion. It is not too late to prevent the coming war in Sudan…”
On June 6 at the corner of Liberty and Trinity (ground zero) Simon Deng spoke in the strongest terms against the Rauf mosque. Will the American left call Simon Deng a bigot also? Knowledge of ongoing Islamist atrocities against non-muslims and muslims worldwide illuminates the depth of hypocrisy that people like Rauf and his boosters engage in when they point fingers at the West.
At the June 6 rally, overcome by emotion at the conclusion of his speech, Simon Deng is about to receive a big hug from organizer Pamela Geller.
I first photographed Simon Deng and Pamela Geller in 2006 at the Sudan Freedom Walk commencement in front of the United Nations. In September Mr Deng will be leading a second Sudan Freedom Walk from the U.N. in New York to the U.S. Senate in Washington D. C.
” (I)s it bigoted to oppose bigots? Consider an interesting historical antecedent. In 1993, a controversy similar to the current one unfolded when residents of a Washington, D.C., suburb sought to use zoning laws to shut down the local mosque, ostensibly on grounds that it was a traffic nuisance. “Worshipers of many faiths said closing the popular mosque . . . would amount to discrimination against one of the area’s fastest growing religions,” the Washington Times reported at the time.
The mosque in question? None other than the Dar al-Hijra, later to be known as the “9/11 mosque.” So were the petitioners who sought to shut it down bigots? Or is it that they got a whiff of its extremism, and didn’t like the smell? “We are appalled at the ill will and friction,” the paper quoted one Sylvia Johnson, “who said mosque-goers have yelled at her and blocked her driveway.”
Here, of course, the argument will be made that, unlike Awlaki, Mr. Rauf really is a moderate. And that might well be so—by the standards of his native Kuwait. But a man who claims to condemn all forms of terrorism yet refuses to call Hamas a terrorist group is not a moderate by American standards, which happen to be the relevant ones when you’re trying to build a mosque two blocks from Ground Zero. Mr. Rauf still has a perfect legal right to go ahead with his scheme. But his supporters need to choose between defending him on grounds of his alleged moderation (in which case his views are relevant), or on the principle of religious liberty (in which case they’re not). They can’t have it both ways. Bret Stevens
Politicians of every stripe are staking out turf or digging foxholes to hide in. One politician who in my opinion rises above the rest, Rudy Gulliani strikes at the heart of the issue with these words directed as a challenge to Imam Rauf and his gang:
“This project is divisive. This project is creating tremendous pain for people who’ve already made the ultimate sacrifice. All you’re doing is creating more division, more anger, more hatred…The question here is of sensitivity, of people’s feelings, and are you really what you pretend to be. If you want to claim to be the healer, then you’re not on the side of the person who’s pushing those divisive issues.”
“I was the first person on Sept. 11 to step forward in the heat of battle and say, ‘No group blame, do not blame Arabs, it’s a small group’. But the reality is that, right now, if you are a healer you do not go through with this project. If you’re a warrior, you do.“
There is plenty of evidence that those behind the Cordoba Initiative are not moderates at all, but are in fact islamists practicing stealth jihad.
On September 11 at 3 p.m. Pamela Geller will lead a second rally in New York against the Cordoba initiative mosque.
The Freedom Tower Rises in New York City
Starting today El Marco writes a regular column called Art and Politics at The Communities at the Washington Times.
El Marco distills life and Politics into Art at Art and Politics Blog.com
Enjoy El Marco’s Art Photography at Looking at the World.com
Read the photo-essay that went viral, the story the Dominant Liberal Establishment Mass Media (DLEMM) chose to hide from you. Stop the Mosque at Ground Zero – Part II
See other El Marco Photo-Essays on Islam:
- 9/11 – NEVER FORGET – NEVER GIVE IN
- Islam Clouds Bali’s Horizon
- 9/11 Families Rally Blasts Obama’s Show Trial Travesty
- Cartoons To Die For
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THANKS FOR VISITING! – NEVER FORGET and NEVER GIVE IN !