Subject: “Mischief in Manhattan” – Raheel Raza & Tarek Fatah question the need for the Ground-Zero Mosque

August 7, 2010

Mischief in Manhattan

We Muslims know the Ground Zero mosque is meant to be a deliberate provocation. It’s an act of “fitna”

Raheel Raza and Tarek Fatah
The Ottawa Citizen

Last week, a journalist who writes for the North Country Times, a small newspaper in Southern California, sent us an e-mail titled “Help.” He couldn’t understand why an Islamic Centre in an area where Adam Gadahn, Osama bin Laden’s American spokesman came from, and that was home to three of the 911 terrorists, was looking to expand.

The man has a very valid point, which leads to the ongoing debate about building a Mosque at Ground Zero in New York. When we try to understand the reasoning behind building a mosque at the epicentre of the worst-ever attack on the U.S., we wonder why its proponents don’t build a monument to those who died in the attack?

New York currently boasts at least 30 mosques so it’s not as if there is pressing need to find space for worshippers. The fact is we Muslims know the idea behind the Ground Zero mosque is meant to be a deliberate provocation to thumb our noses at the “infidel.” The proposal has been made in bad faith and in Islamic parlance, such an act is referred to as “Fitna,” meaning “mischief-making” that is clearly forbidden in the Koran.

The Koran commands Muslims to, “Be considerate when you debate with the People of the Book” — i.e., Jews and Christians. Building an exclusive place of worship for Muslims at the place where Muslims killed thousands of New Yorkers is not being considerate or sensitive, it is undoubtedly an act of “fitna”

So what gives Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf of the “Cordoba Initiative” and his cohorts the misplaced idea that they will increase tolerance for Muslims by brazenly displaying their own intolerance in this case?

Do they not understand that building a mosque at Ground Zero is equivalent to permitting a Serbian Orthodox church near the killing fields of Srebrenica where 8,000 Muslim men and boys were slaughtered?

There are many questions that we would like to ask. Questions about where the funding is coming from? If this mosque is being funded by Saudi sources, then it is an even bigger slap in the face of Americans, as nine of the jihadis in the Twin Tower calamity were Saudis.

If Rauf is serious about building bridges, then he could have dedicated space in this so-called community centre to a church and synagogue, but he did not. We passed on this message to him through a mutual Saudi friend, but received no answer. He could have proposed a memorial to the 9/11 dead with a denouncement of the doctrine of armed jihad, but he chose not to.

It’s a repugnant thought that $100 million would be brought into the United States rather than be directed at dying and needy Muslims in Darfur or Pakistan.

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.

The Koran implores Muslims to speak the truth, even if it hurts the one who utters the truth. Today we speak the truth, knowing very well Muslims have forgotten this crucial injunction from Allah.

If this mosque does get built, it will forever be a lightning rod for those who have little room for Muslims or Islam in the U.S. We simply cannot understand why on Earth the traditional leadership of America’s Muslims would not realize their folly and back out in an act of goodwill.

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.
Raheel Raza is author of Their Jihad … Not my Jihad,> and Tarek Fatah is author ofThe Jew is Not My Enemy (McClelland & Stewart), to be launched in October. Both sit on the board of the Muslim Canadian Congress.

© Copyright (c) The Ottawa Citizen



  • Abe Wone says:

    News Alert: President backs Islamic complex near Ground Zero in New York
    08:30 PM EDT Friday, August 13, 2010

    President Obama said on Friday that he supports the construction of a mosque
    near Ground Zero in New York, saying that opposing the project is at odds with
    American values. “Let me be clear: as a citizen, and as President, I believe
    that Muslims have the same right to practice their religion as anyone else in
    this country,” he said at a White House ceremony marking the traditional
    breaking of the daily Ramadan fast, according to prepared remarks. “That
    includes the right to build a place of
    worship and a community center on private property in lower Manhattan, in
    accordance with local laws and ordinances.” Some leading Republicans have urged
    that the mosque project be halted.

    For more information, visit washingtonpost.com:

  • John Hancock says:

    Thank you for your sensible words. I am currently ghost writing a book that deals partly with Islamists and Sharia. It is very difficult because I do not want to paint all Muslims with the same brush. But moderate Muslims do not make it any easy by being silent. By doing so that are allowing extremists to be the face and voice of Islam. This does nothing to gain acceptance and understanding of their beliefs and, I believe, does not bring honor to Allah. Excuse me for speaking out of place but it is frustrating to watch good and decent Muslims sit silently as if none of it affects them. The reality is that the longer they stay silent the more problems they will have with non-Muslims since their silence is seen as acceptance or approval.

  • Shane says:

    A wonderful piece! Thank you.

  • Farooq says:

    from a fellow muslim – you are an idiot – stay out of american disagreements…

  • dz alexander says:

    Last I heard you were heading off to deliver a letter to Faisal Rauf.
    How did that go?

  • Nancy Pearce says:

    Thank you for speaking out so clearly about the concerns which so many have today. What in the past, seemed to be a reluctance on the part of the Muslim community to recognize that the extremist element of Islam is doing tremendous damage to the faith, has needed to be addressed. Your reasoned and plainly spoken concerns about the practices by some branches of Islam is welcome. I have a great deal of concern about the current acceptance of the manner in which many women are treated by the male members of their families…the assumption that women are not only not equal to men, but are inferior is so contrary to Canadian beliefs. Muslim women in Canada should expect to be treated as non Muslim women are. This could start by educating women in public schools where they are accepted on an equal footing with everyone who attends.