Archive for Terry Jones

Angry, Paranoid and Sporting a Fu Manchu: A Triumphant Terry Jones Does Dearborn

Posted in Loon Pastors with tags , , , , , , , , on April 7, 2012 by loonwatch

Terry Jones

Terry Jones is a crackpot “Reverand” who gained infamy by publicly burning the Qur’an.

Last year Jones was denied a permit to protest on Good Friday in front of the Islamic Center of America in Dearborn, Michigan, prompting howls of protest all across the looniverse. Anti-Muslim bigots accused the court of subverting the US Constitution and caving in to Sharia.

Dearborn is home to America’s largest Muslim community, and a model of interfaith tolerance. Jews, Christians, and Muslims responded to Jones’ hateful message by holding their own rally and carrying a banner that read:

“We, as caring neighbors in southeastern Michigan, stand together in condemning the actions of those who spew hate and fear, and who misuse and desecrate holy books of faith.”

Before and during the rally, hundreds of people signed a 50-foot-long banner that exhorted them to oppose Jones and remember the best parts of their faith. Jones was briefly jailed and banned from returning to the mosque for three years.

This year, a Michigan judge overturned the decision to ban Jones, and the “Reverend,” dressed in a dapper black leather ensemble and sporting a carefully trimmed fu manchu, delivered an impassioned speech about the grave danger Islam poses to America–to all 20 of his supporters.

Florida pastor at Dearborn protest: ‘Islam has one goal — that is world domination’

By Niraj Warikoo, Detroit Free Press

Speaking today in front of the biggest mosque in Michigan, the Florida pastor known for burning the Quran blasted Islam and called upon Americans to take back their country.

Islam has one goal — that is world domination,” said Terry Jones, wearing sunglasses, jeans and a faded black-leather jacket. “It’s time to stand up.”

Holding signs in English and Arabic that read “I Will Not Submit,” about 20 supporters cheered as Jones and his assistant spoke outside the Islamic Center of America, a Dearborn mosque that sits off Ford Road. Framed by the mosque’s minarets, Jones said he’s concerned that the growth of the Muslim population in metro Detroit and the U.S. will lead to the oppression of non-Muslims.

“Muslims, no matter they go around the world … they push their agenda on the society,” said Jones. “We must take back America.”

The mosque was placed on lockdown Saturday afternoon, with about 30 police cars from Detroit, Dearborn, Wayne County and Michigan surrounding the complex, which also includes several churches. Traffic in and out was prevented, disappointing some worshippers who were not aware of Jones’ rally and couldn’t access the mosque. During the anti-Muslim rally, an electronic billboard with the Islamic Center read: “Happy Easter.”

About 500 feet from Jones was a group of counter-protesters, some of whom were with an activist organization, By Any Means Necessary (BAMN). Police prevented them from approaching the grassy area in front of the mosque where Jones spoke. Muslim leaders had urged people not to attend the counter-protest. Unlike Jones’ last two visits to Dearborn, this one was uneventful with no arrests and no street clashes.

Jones said during his talk that he’s also concerned about the free speech rights of Americans. Over the past year, Jones has battled the City of Dearborn for the right to speak in front of the mosque. Last year, a Dearborn judge threw him briefly in jail and ordered him to stay away from the mosque for three years. That decision was later overturned by a Detroit judge.

Last month, the city asked Jones to sign a legal agreement before protesting. Jones then filed a lawsuit, prompting a Detroit federal judge to rule Thursday in his favor. Jones was represented for free in his battles with the city by the Ann Arbor-based Thomas More Law Center, a conservative Christian group established by Domino’s Pizza founder Tom Monaghan.

During the talk, some supporters of Jones made derogatory remarks and jokes about Muslims. When Jones criticized Rev. Al Sharpton and Rev. Jesse Jackson during his speech, one supporter blurted out: “Throw ‘em in the pit with the Muslims.”

After the rally, supporters of Jones posed for photos in front of the mosque.

A crew from Real Catholic TV, a media outlet based in Ferndale that’s owned by a member of Opus Dei, was at the rally. Its host, Michael Voris, said he supports Jones’ right to free speech and some of his views. Jones, who was a pastor in Germany, said Europe is increasingly under the sway of Islamic law.

“There are whole sections of London ruled by sharia law,” Voris said. “I think there’s the potential to happen in the U.S. what has happened — and is happening — in Europe.”

Tim Voss, 64, of Wayne, said he came Saturday to support Jones because “sharia law is the most dangerous thing. We can’t have it in this country.”

Down the road, counter-protester Laura Dennis, 38, of Detroit, held up a sign that read: “God Loves Us All.”

Speaking about Jones, Dennis said: “This guy’s just a hate monger, no different from the Klan or a Nazi.”

The Anti-Muslim Inner Circle

Posted in Loon People, Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 22, 2011 by loonwatch

The Anti-Muslim Inner Circle

By Robert Steinback
Illustration by Bri Hermanson

The apparent recent surge in popular anti-Muslim sentimentin the United States has been driven by a surprisingly small and, for the most part, closely knit cadre of activists. Their influence extends far beyond their limited numbers, in part because of an amenable legion of right-wing media personalities — and lately, politicians like U.S. Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.), who held controversial hearings into the radicalization of American Muslims this March —who are eager to promote them as impartial experts or grassroots leaders. Yet a close look at their rhetoric reveals how doggedly this group works to provoke and guide populist anger over what is seen as the threat posed by the 0.6% of Americans who are Muslim — an agenda that goes beyond reasonable concern about terrorism into the realm of demonization.

Of the 10 people profiled below, all but Bill French, Terry Jones and Debbie Schlussel regularly interact with others on the list. Most were selected for profiling primarily because of their association with activist organizations. People who only run websites or do commentary were omitted, with two exceptions: Schlussel, because she has influence as a frequent television talk-show guest, and John Joseph Jay, because he is on the board of Pamela Geller’s Stop Islamization of America group. Three other activists, Steve Emerson, Daniel Pipes and Frank Gaffney, have interacted with many of the core group as well and also have offended many Muslims, but they are somewhat more moderate in their views of Muslims than those who are profiled below.

Bill FrenchBILL FRENCH
ORGANIZATION
 Heads the for-profit Center for the Study of Political Islam in Nashville. 

CREDENTIALS Former Tennessee State University physics professor; author of Sharia Law for Non-Muslims (2010; under the pen name Bill Warner).

SUMMARY French has no formal training or background in law, Islam or Shariah law — which in any case is not an established legal code, as the book title implies, but a fluid concept subject to a wide range of interpretations and applications. He garnered attention recently by leading the opposition to a proposed mosque in Murfreesboro, Tenn.

IN HIS OWN WORDS “The two driving forces of our civilization are the Golden Rule and critical thought. … There is no Golden Rule in Islam. … There is not really even a Ten Commandments.”
—Quoted in The [Blount County, Tenn.] Daily Times, March 4, 2011

“This offends Allah. You offend Allah.”
— Quoted in The Tennesseean, Oct. 24, 2010, speaking to opponents of the Murfreesboro mosque while pointing to an American flag

Brigitte GabrielBRIGITTE GABRIEL 
ORGANIZATIONS Founder and head of ACT! for America and American Council for Truth.

CREDENTIALS Author of Because They Hate: A Survivor of Islamic Terror Warns America (2006) and They Must Be Stopped: Why We Must Defeat Radical Islam and How We Can Do It (2008). Co-producer and co-host of weekly ACT! for America television show.

SUMMARY Gabriel views Islam in absolute terms as a monolithic threat to the United States, Israel and the West. She is prone to sweeping generalizations and exaggerations as she describes a grand, sophisticated Muslim conspiracy bent on world domination. Of the people profiled here, she alone has focused on building a grassroots organization, claiming 155,000 members and 500 chapters around the country. Questions persist about the accuracy of her autobiographical account of being a victim of Muslim militancy in Lebanon.

IN HER OWN WORDS “America has been infiltrated on all levels by radicals who wish to harm America. They have infiltrated us at the C.I.A., at the F.B.I., at the Pentagon, at the State Department.”
— Quoted in The New York Times, March 7, 2011

“The difference, my friends, between Israel and the Arabic world is quite simply the difference between civilization and barbarism. It’s the difference between good and evil and this is what we’re witnessing in the Arab and Islamic world. I am angry. They have no soul! They are dead set on killing and destruction.”
— From a speech delivered to the Rev. John Hagee’s Christians United for Israel Convention, July 2007

“Tens of thousands of Islamic militants now reside in America, operating in sleeper cells, attending our colleges and universities, even infiltrating our government. They are here — today. Many have been here for years. Waiting. Preparing.”
— ACT! for America website, undated

P. David Gaubatz

P. DAVID GAUBATZ
ORGANIZATION Society of Americans for National Existence (SANE).

CREDENTIALS Co-author of Muslim Mafia: Inside the Secret Underworld That’s Conspiring to Islamize America (2009). As director of operations for SANE’s Mapping Shariah project (see David Yerushalmi, below), a privately operated effort to infiltrate American mosques in an attempt to expose radical elements, Gaubatz was paid $148,898, according to Sheila Musaji of The American Muslim website.

SUMMARY A civilian agent who worked in the Middle East for the U.S. Air Forces Office of Special Investigations, Gaubatz made it a personal project — and the theme of his book — to prove the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) is linked to international terrorism. In October 2009, four members of Congress led by Sue Myrick (R-N.C.) held an embarrassing press conference claiming the book revealed a Muslim plot to infiltrate government. Their hardest “evidence” was a document showing that CAIR had encouraged young Muslims to become Capitol interns — much like many other Washington, D.C., interest groups.

IN HIS OWN WORDS “As an ideology [Islam] is a terminal disease that once spread is hard to destroy. Once the ideology (cancer) takes hold it is like trying to remove millions of cancerous cells in one’s body. Not impossible to remove, but very, very unlikely.”
— Essay on the Northeast Intelligence Network website, June 10, 2008

“[T]he political ideology of winning over the West and the world for an Islamic Caliphate is NOT specific to some extremist group of Muslims. This is mainstream Islam and Shari’a. … The goal remains the same: all of the non-Islamic world, and indeed all of the Islamic world, must submit to Shari’a. A Muslim who refuses to do so will be killed. … A non-Muslim, assuming he is not a pagan (typically a Christian or Jew) might be given the opportunity to live in a subservient status in an Islamic society and pay a special head tax to prove his submission. But this option is left to the Caliph or ruler at the time.”
— Essay carried by the Assyrian International News Agency, Feb. 13, 2008

PAMELA GELLER Pamela GellerORGANIZATIONS Executive director and co-founder (with Robert Spencer; see below) of Stop Islamization of America (SIOA)

and the American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI), an umbrella group encompassing SIOA. Both are listed as hate groups by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). Runs the Atlas Shrugs blog.

CREDENTIALS Self-styled expert on Islam with no formal training in the field. Co-produced with Spencer the film “The Ground Zero Mosque: Second Wave of the 9/11 Attacks,” which was first screened at the 2011 Conservative Political Action Conference. Co-author with Spencer of The Post-American Presidency: The Obama Administration’s War on America (2010).

SUMMARY Geller has seized the role of the anti-Muslim movement’s most visible and influential figurehead. Her strengths are panache and vivid rhetorical flourishes — not to mention stunts like posing for an anti-Muslim video in a bikini — but she also can be coarse in her broad-brush denunciations of Islam. Geller does not pretend to be learned in Islamic studies, leaving the argumentative heavy lifting to SIOA partner Spencer. She is prone to publicizing preposterous claims, such as President Obama being the “love child” of Malcolm X, and once suggested that recent U.S. Supreme Court appointee Elena Kagen, who is Jewish, supports Nazi ideology. Geller has mingled with European racists and fascists, spoken favorably of South African racists and defended Serbian war criminal Slobodan Milosevic. She is a self-avowed Zionist who is sharply critical of Jewish liberals.

IN HER OWN WORDS “Islam is not a race. This is an ideology. This is an extreme ideology, the most radical and extreme ideology on the face of the earth.”
— On Fox Business’ “Follow the Money,” March 10, 2011

“No, no, they can’t. … I don’t think that many westernized Muslims know when they pray five times a day that they’re cursing Christians and Jews five times a day. … I believe in the idea of a moderate Muslim. I do not believe in the idea of a moderate Islam. I think a moderate Muslim is a secular Muslim.”
— Quoted in The New York Times, responding to a question as to whether devout practicing Muslims can be political moderates, Oct. 8, 2010

“In the war between the civilized man and the savage, you side with the civilized man. … If you don’t lay down and die for Islamic supremacism, then you’re a racist anti-Muslim Islamophobic bigot. That’s what we’re really talking about.”
— Quoted in The New York Times, Oct. 8, 2010

DAVID HOROWITZ

ORGANIZATION Front Page Magazine (online), published by the David Horowitz Freedom Center.David Horowitz

CREDENTIALS Organized “Islamofascism Awareness Week” which brought prominent anti-Muslim activists to college campuses in 2007. Author of several books including Unholy Alliance: Radical Islam and the American Left (2004), which claims that American leftists support Islamic terrorists.

SUMMARY Horowitz, who spent his young years as a Marxist, has in recent years become a furious far-right antagonist of liberals and leftists. He also provides some funding support for other anti-Muslim ventures, including, according to the blog SpencerWatch.com, paying Spencer $132,537 to run the JihadWatch website. Horowitz sees no philosophical gradations; if you’re not in total agreement with his view of Islam, you’re in favor of Muslim hegemony. He believes the Muslim Brotherhood and “Islamofascists” control most American Muslim organizations, especially Muslim student groups on college campuses.

IN HIS OWN WORDS “I spent 25 years in the American Left, whose agendas are definitely to destroy this country. The American left wanted us to lose the Cold War with the Soviets and it wants us to lose the war on terror. So I don’t make any apologies for that.”
— On the “Riz Khan” Show, Al Jazeera, Aug. 21, 2008

“Some polls estimate that 10 percent of Muslims support Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda. An al-Jazeera poll put the number at 50 percent. In other words, somewhere between 150 million and 750 million Muslims support a holy war against Christians, Jews, and other Muslims who don’t happen to be true believers in the Quran according to
bin Laden.”
— In the Columbia Spectator, Oct. 15, 2007

“There are 150 Muslim Student Associations on American campuses. The Muslim Student Associations were created by Hamas and funded by Saudi Arabia. … [The associations] are Wahhabi Islamicists, and they basically support our enemies.”
— On Fox News’ “Neil Cavuto Show,” Aug. 15, 2006

JOHN JOSEPH JAYJohn Joseph Jay
ORGANIZATION summer patriot, winter soldier (a website; Jay doesn’t use capital letters in his website’s name or in his writings). Board member, SIOA. Listed as one of the founders of American Freedom Defense Initiative, SIOA’s umbrella group (see also Pam Geller, above).

CREDENTIALS Jay worked for 25 years as a prosecutor and criminal defense attorney in Washington, D.C. Geller’s Atlas Shrugs blog describes him as a constitutional scholar. In addition to his anti-Muslim commentary, Jay blogs prolifically on the right to bear arms.

SUMMARY Jay is remarkable for his unreconstructed hatred of all Muslims. He believes attacks by Muslim terrorists justify any violence directed at any Muslim, adding that, as he sees it, the Koran itself justifies such blind retaliation.

IN HIS OWN WORDS “every person in islam, from man to woman to child may be our executioner. … there are no innocents in islam. … there is no innocence in islam. all of islam is at war with us, and … all of islam is/are combatant[s.] … islam has established without intellectual doubt that there are no innocent muslims, that the myth of the ‘moderate muslim’ is precisely that, and that muslims are no more entitled to exemption or protection from retaliation that [sic] any of the other ‘non-innocent’ combatants in the world. … there 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.”
— From his website, July 14, 2010

“in short, dear muslims, g_d in his infinite wisdom saw in advance this struggle between men and religions to win his favor, and the only thing that is foreordained, is that the strong and the resolute shall win his favor, and so far, it has been amply demonstrated that he has chosen the jews as his people, and favored christianity with science, technology, culture and military power. to islam, he has given the hind and dry tit, and the sewers and the deserts of the world in which to inhabit, and in which to fester.”
— From his website, June 27, 2010

TERRY JONESTerry Jones
ORGANIZATION Dove World Outreach Center of Gainesville, Fla. Listed by the SPLC as a hate group.

CREDENTIALS Pastor of Dove World; instigator of “International Burn a Koran Day,” which was slated for Sept. 11, 2010, but canceled after worldwide protests and calls from senior officials of the Obama Administration. On March 20, however, Jones did burn a Koran, leading to several days of rampages in early April by religious rioters in Afghanistan, including the storming of a United Nations compound, that resulted in the deaths of at least 20 people. Jones showed no remorse over the deaths, which included at least seven foreigners. Author ofIslam is of the Devil (2010). Jones has admitted never having read the Koran. He has no academic or theological degree; his “doctorate” is honorary.

SUMMARY A true fanatical extremist who seems to be driven mostly by the need for self-promotion and publicity. Operates entirely outside of the core circle of anti-Muslim activists. Jones is also virulently anti-gay.

IN HIS OWN WORDS “Here’s your opportunity, all you so-called peaceful Moslems [Jones’ pronunciation]. … We are accusing the Koran of murder, rape, deception, being responsible for terrorist activities all around the world. … Present to us your defense attorney who is going to defend the Koran. Let us really see. We challenge you: do it. Let us not talk. Let us have some action and proof. … The Koran, if found guilty, can be burned … Or the Koran will be drowned. Or the Koran will be shredded into little bitty pieces … or the Koran will face a firing squad.”
— From an undated video on the Dove World Outreach website announcing “International Judge the Koran Day”

“The world is facing a great danger, which, if it is not stopped, will sooner or later be a threat to freedom in all nations and specifically to the United States. This danger is the growing religion of Islam.”
— From the introduction to Islam is of the Devil, 2010

DEBBIE SCHLUSSELDebbie Schlussel
ORGANIZATION Columnist; eponymous website.

CREDENTIALS The granddaughter of Holocaust survivors, Schlussel is a Detroit-based attorney and MBA. Frequent guest on conservative talk shows.

SUMMARY Uncompromising, viciously anti-Muslim commentator who dismisses ostensible allies if they are willing to believe in the concept of moderate Islam. She has even berated Hollywood for its failure to depict Muslims as sufficiently villainous. She has referred to Muslims as “animals.” Her intense animosity toward Muslims appears rooted in strong pro-Israel sentiments.

IN HER OWN WORDS “So sad, too bad, Lara. No one told her to go there. She knew the risks. And she should have known what Islam is all about. Now she knows. Or so we’d hope. … How fitting that Lara Logan was ‘liberated’ by Muslims in Liberation Square while she was gushing over the other part of the ‘liberation.’ Hope you’re enjoying the revolution, Lara! Alhamdillullah (praise allah) [sic].”
— From her website, following the gang sexual assault on CBS Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent Lara Logan in Cairo, Feb. 15, 2011

“[T]he fact is that the majority of Muslims support terrorism. The vast majority. Not just a few hijackers and a few suicide bombers. But the MAJORITY. This isn’t me saying it. It’s Muslims saying it. And not just in poll after poll of Muslims around the world including in America. Go to the streets of ‘moderate Muslim’ Dearbornistan [Dearborn, Mich.] and see how many Muslims dare condemn Hezbollah and HAMAS. It’s like playing “Where’s Waldo?”
— From her website, Oct. 8, 2008

ROBERT SPENCERRobert Spencer
ORGANIZATION Runs the Jihad Watch website, a project of the David Horowitz Freedom Center. Co-founder with Pamela Geller (see above) of Stop Islamization of America and the American Freedom Defense Initiative.

CREDENTIALS Spencer has a master’s degree in religious studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Co-produced with Geller the film “The Ground Zero Mosque: Second Wave of the 9/11 Attacks” (2011). Author of numerous books including The Truth About Muhammad: Founder of the World’s Most Intolerant Religion (2007) andThe Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) (2005).

SUMMARY Spencer is entirely self-taught in the study of modern Islam and the Koran. Critics have accused him of doggedly taking the Koran literally — Spencer considers it innately extremist and violent — while ignoring its nonviolent passages and the vast interpretive tradition that has modified Koranic teachings over the centuries. Spencer believes that moderate Muslims exist, but to prove it, they’d have to fully denounce the portions of the Koran he finds objectionable. Spencer has been known to fraternize with European racists and neo-fascists, though he says such contacts were merely incidental. Benazir Bhutto, the late prime minister of Pakistan, accused Spencer of “falsely constructing a divide between Islam and West” in her 2008 book,Reconciliation: Islam, Democracy, and the West. Spencer, she wrote, presented a “skewed, one-sided, and inflammatory story that only helps to sow the seed of civilizational conflict.”

IN HIS OWN WORDS “Osama [bin Laden]‘s use of these and other [Koranic] passages in his messages is consistent … with traditional understanding of the Quran. When modern-day Jews and Christians read their Bibles, they simply don’t interpret the passages cited as exhorting them to violent actions against unbelievers. This is due to the influence of centuries of interpretative traditions that have moved them away from literalism regarding these passages. But in Islam, there is no comparable interpretative tradition.”
— From The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades), 2005

“Where is moderate Islam? How can moderate Muslims refute the radical exegesis of the Qur’an and Sunnah? If an exposition of moderate Islam does not address or answer radical exegeses, is it really of any value to quash Islamic extremism? If the answer lies in a simple rejection of Qur’anic literalism, how can non-literalists make that rejection stick, and keep their children from being recruited by jihadists by means of literalism? Of course, as I have pointed out many times, traditional Islam itself is not moderate or peaceful. It is the only major world religion with a developed doctrine and tradition of warfare against unbelievers.”
— Jihad Watch, Jan. 14, 2006

DAVID YERUSHALMIDavid Yerushalmi
ORGANIZATION President of the Society of Americans for National Existence (SANE); principal of Stop the Madrassa.

CREDENTIALS General counsel for the Center for Security Policy (see Frank J. Gaffney Jr., above); also, an attorney representing SIOA. Yerushalmi drafted a proposed law filed this year in the Tennessee legislature that would subject anyone who advocates or adheres to Shariah customs to up to 15 years in prison; he drafted a similar bill in Georgia in 2008.

SUMMARY Yerushalmi equates Shariah with Islamic radicalism so totally that he advocates criminalizing virtually any personal practice compliant with Shariah. In his view, only a Muslim who fully breaks with the customs of Shariah can be considered socially tolerable. He waxes bloodthirsty when describing his preferred response to the supposed global threat of Shariah law, speaking casually of killing and destroying. Ideally, he would outlaw Islam and deport Muslims and other “non-Western, non-Christian” people to protect the United States’ “national character.” An ultra-orthodox Jew, he is deeply hostile toward liberal Jews. He derides U.S.-style democracy because it allows more than just an elite, privileged few to vote.

IN HIS OWN WORDS “On the so-called Global War on Terrorism, GWOT, we have been quite clear along with a few other resolute souls. This should be a WAR AGAINST ISLAM and all Muslim faithful. … At a practical level, this means that Shari’a and Islamic law are immediately outlawed. Any Muslim in America who adopts historical and traditional Shari’a will be subject to deportation. Mosques which adhere to Islamic law will be shut down permanently. No self-described or practicing Muslim, irrespective of his or her declarations to the contrary, will be allowed to immigrate to this country.”
— A 2007 commentary entitled “War Manifesto — The War Against Islam,” as reported by The American Muslim

“The more carefully reviewed evidence, however, suggests that because jihadism is in fact traditional Islam modernized to war against the ideological threat posed by the West against Islam proper,there is no way to keep faithful Muslims out of the war. If this is true, any Muslim who sticks his neck out of the mosque to yell some obscenity at the West should be considered an enemy combatant and killed or captured and held for the duration of the war. If you kill enough of them consistently enough, those disinclined to fight in the first place will find a way to reform their religion.”
— Review of Mary Habeck’s book Knowing the Enemy on the American Thinker website, Sept. 9. 2006

Florida pastor Terry Jones returning to Michigan to protest Islam

Posted in Loon Pastors, Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 17, 2011 by loonwatch

Someone should tell pastor Terry Jones that all Arabs are not Muslims and all Muslims are not Arabs.

Florida pastor Terry Jones returning to Michigan to protest Islam

Terry Jones, the Quran-burning pastor from Florida, is to lead a three-hour rally against Islam today at Dearborn City Hall followed by a 2-mile walk to the Arab International Festival, where he will further speak out. The three-day festival is the largest outdoor gathering of Arab Americans in the U.S. and is held in Dearborn, known for its sizable Muslim population.

Jones, who led a rally at City Hall in April, gained worldwide attention for his threats to burn the Quran last year on the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. He didn’t go through with it, but he led a Quran-burning in Florida in March. He tried to protest outside the Islamic Center of America in Dearborn in April, but a jury ruled he would likely breach the peace, thwarting his plans. Jones has appealed that decision, which was criticized by the ACLU and some constitutional law experts as an infringement of his free-speech rights.

Jones said the decision was an example of sharia, or Islamic law, coming to America, which he said is a growing threat. Today, Jones plans to speak out against sharia again as part of a five-point plan he said will help fight Islam. One point calls for the “monitoring of all mosques to assure that they are places of worship and not of Islamic propaganda.”

Dearborn Mayor Jack O’Reilly Jr. has said repeatedly that the city has never implemented sharia.

In a letter sent this week to residents, O’Reilly said Jones and his supporters “are coming here to promote the concept that Islam is a false faith and that Muslims by teaching and nature are violent. We know that there is no substance to their message — their goal is to promote fear and hatred in others.”

Referring to Jones supporters, O’Reilly said he is urging the public to “ignore them and their empty words. Their goal is to bait and anger us so that they can then misrepresent who we are in order to serve their personal agenda.

“Debating them and confronting them at this event or in our city can produce no positive result for us.”

Contact Niraj Warikoo: 313-223-4792 or nwarikoo@freepress.com

Utah church offers free Korans in Easter gesture

Posted in Anti-Loons with tags , , , , , , on April 26, 2011 by loonwatch

In juxtaposition to those who would burn Korans, a Church in Utah is giving away free Korans.

Utah church offers free Korans in Easter gesture

By James Nelson

SALT LAKE CITY

(Reuters) – A Utah church is giving away free copies of the Koran in an Easter season ecumenical riposte to the recent burning of the Islamic holy book by a controversial Florida pastor.

The Wasatch Presbyterian Church has ordered 50 copies of the Koran to be distributed at a local bookstore starting on Monday.

“We’re not promoting Islam, we’re not saying the Koran is the Bible,” said Scott Dalgarno, the church’s pastor. “We’re just saying that if people are curious, if they want their consciences informed on this issue … then let them pick up a copy on us and read it and decide for themselves what to think.”

Dalgarno says each Koran, which the world’s nearly 1.6 billion Muslims believe is God’s final testament, will have a bookmark insert that reads: “This book was donated by the leaders of Wasatch Presbyterian Church who are not afraid of truth wherever it can be found.”

He said the giveaway was a response to Terry Jones, the leader of a fringe, fundamentalist church in Gainesville, Florida.

In a move that prompted riots in Afghanistan, Jones’ tiny church in northern Florida burned a Koran last month following a mock “trial” of the text.

“When we found out that Terry Jones had actually carried through on this and 20-plus people had died as a result we thought we can’t stay silent here,” said Dalgarno.

Jones was in court on Friday in Dearborn, Michigan — home of one of the largest Muslim communities in the United States — where he wants to hold a demonstration outside the Islamic Center of America, the largest mosque in the country.

Dalgarno says he has received some negative feedback since word of the Koran giveaway was announced but that he would do the same thing for other faiths.

“If someone in Salt Lake burned a copy of the Book of Mormon, we’d probably do the same thing,” he said. “We’d buy copies of the Book of Mormon and say read it and inform your conscience.”

(Editing by James B. Kelleher and Peter Bohan)

Original post: Utah church offers free Korans in Easter gesture

Terry Jones: Mustachioed Yosemite Sam Going to Dearborn

Posted in Loon Pastors with tags , , , , , on April 19, 2011 by loonwatch

The loon’s at it again.

Update: As’ad Abu Khalil mentions that the portion about the supposed death threat against Jones from Hizbollah is a fabrication:

Seeking fame and publicity, kooky pastor, Terry Jones said that Hizbullah put a bounty on his head.  It is made up.  There is no evidence of that whatsoever.  But then again: you can say anything about Muslim and Arab organizations and you don’t need proof, especially if those organizations are opposed to Israel.  Like if I say that Hamas stole my car here in California, the media would report that and would not even bother with asking me to provide evidence.

Quran-burning pastor, Terry Jones, still coming to mosque

DEARBORN — Pastor Terry Jones preaches the Gospel for a living, but the second holiest day in Christianity just slipped his mind.

The Quran-burning provocateur, who is expected to protest in Dearborn next week, said he didn’t realize before he committed to coming here that the protest is planned for Good Friday.

“This might be hard to believe,” Jones said, “but honestly we didn’t realize (it was Good Friday) or that Sunday was Easter.”

Oversight now recognized, Jones said he still plans on coming and that he would be traveling with about five associates for the protest, which tentatively is planned for outside the Islamic Center of America. The location, he said, was chosen because of its symbolism as one of the largest mosques in North America.

The protest originally was organized by a Port Huron militia group known as “Order of the Dragon,” but has very much become the Terry Jones-show since he announced his intention to join.

Asked whether he thinks Dearborn’s Muslim community is jihadist or wants to institute Sharia – Islamic law similar to Christianity’s Canon law – Jones said he is uncertain.

“I don’t know Dearborn’s Muslims so I can’t say,” said Jones, who acknowledges never having read the Quran. “But when you see what’s happening in Europe in Muslim-dominated countries, it wouldn’t surprise (me).”

Jones has said in press statements about the protest that he has no problem with Muslims or Islam; rather the extremist interpretation terrorist groups have embraced. He does, however, say he disagrees with Sharia, saying, “it discriminates against women.”

Jones’ small Gainesville, Florida-based church, Dove World Outreach Center, gained notoriety last fall for widely condemned plans to burn Qurans on the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks at the World Trade Center and Pentagon.

Facing pressure to cancel the event coming from as high up as President Barack Obama, the plan was scrapped. But in late March Jones put the Quran “on trial.”

With his congregants as jury, the holiest book in Islam was found guilty and the sentence was burning.

While the media largely ignored the event, Jones and others released videos of the burning online. The imagery sparked widespread violence against Western forces in Afghanistan and numerous death threats against Jones, including a $2.4 million bounty issued by the Lebanese paramilitary group Hezbollah, which is designated a terrorist organization by the United States government.

“We get the threats and we pass them along to the FBI,” he said.

As for the violence Jones’ stunt precipitated, he said he doesn’t bear responsibility.

“Yes, we were warned,” he said of the exhortations against burning the Quran for fear it might provoke violence.

“But there is no excuse for what happened in Afghanistan, and we do not believe we are responsible. People are responsible for their own actions. If anything this proves there is a radical element to Islam.”

Jones is aware his trip to Dearborn is being met mostly with opposition. Interfaith leaders from across Metropolitan Detroit have criticized his plans and at least six groups have formally requested permits for counterdemonstrations, Police Chief Ronald Haddad said.

“We know there will probably be a lot more people there against us than for us,” said Jones, who was unsure how many more people would join him aside from the group he is traveling with.

Also still unclear is whether the protest will even be granted the necessary permit. Haddad, who is responsible for determining whether a demonstration permit is granted or not, previously said he hoped to have a decision by Friday. But because of the numerous counter-protest permit requests and other new, undisclosed developments related to the event, Haddad said he now hopes to have his decision by early next week.

“There are some late developments that we need to take into consideration,” said Haddad. “My primary concern is security and making sure everyone is safe.”

Undoubtedly playing into Haddad’s decision is that Altar Road, where the Islamic Center is located, will be bustling with activity that day. In addition to the mosque, Altar Road is home to several Christian churches that will be holding Good Friday services.

J. Patrick Pepper covers public safety and politics in Dearborn and Dearborn Heights as well as Dearborn government affairs. He can be reached at (734) 246-2702 or at jpepper@heritage.com.

Burning the myths about Islam

Posted in Anti-Loons with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 13, 2011 by loonwatch

What Pastor Terry Jones did was uncalled for, and what the people in Afghanistan did was uncalled for, but in no way can we equate one’s reaction as more barbaric as the other. Terry Jones is living in his little heaven up in Gainseville, Fla. compared to how the people in Afghanistan are living: facing a war, oppression, deep poverty, etc.

Burning the myths about Islam

The ‘Arab Spring’ shows that the Quran burning riot in Afghanistan had little to do with Islam itself.

by: Anas Altikriti, from AlJazeera

“]The complete apathy of the ‘Arab spring’ in regards to the burning of a Quran reveals how anger-fuelled riots are borne from suppression of freedom, not the allegedly violent qualities of Islam [REUTERS

The recent violent protests in Afghanistan – a reaction to the burning of the Quran by a small church in the United States last month – recalled an inescapable reality.

Extremists on all sides – whether in free, democratic America, or in corrupt, occupied Afghanistan – create havoc and chaos, demonstrating the danger brought about by a deadly cocktail of ignorance and idiocy. Ultimately, they cause the deaths of innocent people.

Some cite the difference between the two acts: one saw the burning of a book, while the other claimed human lives.

This is of course true, but what exactly did the mastermind of this foolish and hate-filled act expect, other than a reaction somewhere on the Muslim side?

His bark worse than his bite

Pastor Terry Jones, of the formerly obscure Dove World Outreach Church in Florida – a parish of no more than a few dozen weekly followers – has been enjoying fame and possibly even fortune since calling for a ‘Burn the Quran’ day last September.

He was dissuaded from carrying out his act following a worldwide outcry from Christians and denunciation from American political, religious and community leaders.

But it seems that Jones had an itch that simply had to be scratched, and in March, he and some of his comrades burnt a copy of the Quran.

Strangely though, whilst last year’s threat resulted in outrage throughout the Muslim world and mass protests in most Arab countries, the act itself – once carried out – brought almost no reaction from the streets of those same countries, apart from the ones in Afghanistan.

Hundreds of thousands hit the streets of Cairo, Damascus, Amman, Sanaa and many other Arab cities last summer denouncing Jones, burning effigies and flags and calling for a global campaign to ‘protect the Quran’.

I recall receiving hundreds of emails and texts messages expressing outrage, and calling for immediate action in protest against this heinous act.

Yet now that Jones has actually carried out his threat, not one single demonstration was held, no mass protest was called for, no texts or email messages criss-crossed the ether, and no days of anger were organised.

Recapturing a people’s dignity

One would have expected such protests to come easily to the masses already camping on the streets of Cairo, Tunis, Damascus, Sanaa and Benghazi. Logistically, the scene was set; all would have been ready for such action, but nothing of the sort came to light.

There is no suggestion that those masses revere the Quran any less, or that they see the act carried out by Jones as any less repugnant. So why the apparent inaction? Because the ‘Arab spring’ has elevated minds as well as aspirations, a trend absent still in the contexts of Afghanistan, Pakistan and other countries where corruption is still riding a wave.

One cannot say for sure whether it was the upheavals in the region that had the Arab nations looking elsewhere to exert their collective energies, but it is without a shadow of a doubt that the absence of ‘anti-Terry Jones’ protests was not due to a lack of energy or of ability.

For several years, those studying the Arab world through the mobility and narrative of the masses have emphasised that the number one priority for the Arab people (and Muslims by extension) is the pursuit of freedom and the recapture of their long-lost dignity.

Manifestations of religious, ideological, and cultural extremist behaviour were essentially a reaction to stagnant political climates imposed by despotic regimes, lack of human rights and absence of any hope in a better future.

Thus those people – who considered it their ultimate objective a few months ago to demonstrate anger and outrage for the threat to burn the Quran – today were in no doubt whatsoever that today their priority was to remove those regimes that have ruled them so inhumanely for so long.

Defying political models

Therein lies an important message for those Westerners who make a living from counter-terrorism and eradicating extremism: Supporting despotic regimes and dictators for short-term political and economic gains begets extremism that takes shape in a religious, social, political, ideological or cultural format.

The claim that removing or compromising regimes, such as that of Mubarak, Ben Ali, Saleh, Gaddafi or Assad will inevitably bring an extremist element to government is baseless, as demonstrated by events unfolding before us.

In all of the examples of the nations that revolted against their tyrants, rather than witnessing violence, the world saw protesters insisting on peaceful means despite them being confronted hired thugs and armed security forces.

Those same nations exemplified the meaning of national unity in practise rather than words. Muslims and Christians protected each other, came to each other’s aid and guarded each others’ holy places of worship against the threat of arson and vandalism by elements who had an interest in anarchy and division breaking out.

As soon as the opportunity emerged, those who had lived their lives merely dreaming of living under a democracy someday turned out to be brilliant democrats in practise.

What remains to be seen is whether the West will adapt to the new terrain and change its ways too.

The mood for change

Travelling the region extensively and conversing with people from all walks of life, one cannot miss the the new air of confidence about the Arab citizen.

Whether in Egypt where the revolution is in full swing and some significant fruits have been borne, or in other countries where no mass protests have been reported, there is no doubt that the mood is one for change and transformation.

Conversations in the Arab street are much more bold, brazen and uncaring about who might be eavesdropping. It’s simply a matter of time, but change is certainly now a matter of ‘when’ rather than ‘if’.

Once free, the Arab and Muslim nations will not resort to violence, extremism and isolationist practises, as some would like the world to think.

Once free, those nations will see the act of Terry Jones as the petty and foolish gesture that it undoubtedly was, and will realise that it brings more damage upon him and his reputation than upon the object of his deranged hatred.

Anas Altikriti is president and founder of the Cordoba Foundation.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Al Jazeera’s editorial policy.

Terry Jones Actually Burns a Qur’an and No One Notices

Posted in Loon Pastors with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 23, 2011 by loonwatch

Crazy old Terry Jones went ahead with his Qur’an burning which he dubbed as an “International judge the Koran Day” after he said he wouldn’t “burn a Koran.” 30 people showed up and they burnt one Koran…and then…everyone went home.

Koran burnt in Florida church

GAINESVILLE, Florida — A controversial US evangelical preacher oversaw the burning of a copy of the Koran in a small Florida church after finding the Muslim holy book “guilty” of crimes.

The burning was carried out by pastor Wayne Sapp under the supervision of Terry Jones, who last September drew sweeping condemnation over his plan to ignite a pile of Korans on the anniversary of September 11, 2001 attacks.

Sunday’s event was presented as a trial of the book in which the Koran was found “guilty” and “executed.”

The jury deliberated for about eight minutes. The book, which had been soaking for an hour in kerosene, was put in a metal tray in the center of the church, and Sapp started the fire with a barbecue lighter.

The book burned for around 10 minutes while some onlookers posed for photos.

Jones had drawn trenchant condemnation from many people, including US President Barack Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, over his plan to burn the Muslim holy book in September.

He did not carry out his plan then and vowed he never would, saying he had made his point.

But this time, he said he had been “trying to give the Muslim world an opportunity to defend their book,” but did not receive any answer.

He said he felt that he couldn’t have a real trial without a real punishment.

The event was open to the public, but fewer than 30 people attended.

Life in the normally quiet city of Gainesville is centered around the University of Florida. And while there were public protests against Jones’ 9/11 activities, this event was largely ignored.

Jadwiga Schatz, who came to show support for Jones, expressed concern that Islam was growing in Europe.

“These people, for me, are like monsters,” she said. “I hate these people.”

Jones said he considered this event a success.

“This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience,” he said.

Joe Kaufman O-Meter #3: Paying Homeless Folk to Attend his “Protests”

Posted in Feature, Loon Blogs, Loon People with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 16, 2011 by loonwatch
Joe Kaufman

What did we expect from Joe “nuke the Mooslims” Kaufman? For years now the gum-shoe “investigative journalist” has been gathering his handful of protesters to demonstrate at the conferences, gatherings, festivals and events of American Muslim organizations or leaders.

By now most in the American Muslim community and otherwise view Kaufman and his handful of protesters as curious sideshow distractions, oddities, mere nuisances and objects of fitful laughter, kinda like the Westboro Baptist Church people or Pastor Terry Jones.

Kaufman’s crew recently had one such protest on Jan, 08, 2011 at an ISNA (Islamic Society of North America) event in his home state of Florida:

Here’s a sampling of some of the…”Interesting”…messages:

“What’s Next, Fort Hood?” and “Don’t Tread on Me” flag

Granma’s scared of Mooslims:

“No Islam” and “Obama evil Mooslim”

If they weren’t holding signs claiming that “Obama (the “b” is replaced to read Osama) chooses Muslim needs to show victory over Americans…” and other general wacky anti-Muslim conspiracy theories you’d think a group of senior citizens had gathered on the corner waiting to be picked up to go to their weekly bingo game.

This in it self would be comedic gold, but it doesn’t stop there, a source who wishes to stay anonymous informed us that Kaufman and his buddies are asking homeless people to join their protests in return for pizza and spare change.

“Red” is on the bike

After Kaufman’s most recent protest ended our source noticed that they left one of their fellow protesters behind, a local homeless man who goes by the name “Red.”

Red we are told is a very nice man, he told our source that he was “paid in pizza to help in the protest” and he was also given some “spare change.” He didn’t know what the protest was about, but he was hungry and wanted to eat. So he helped!

The source also mentioned homeless people in photos of previous protests that Joe Kaufman and Americans Against Hate held, such as the one at the Islamic Center In Pompano Beach. He was told by Muslim neighbors of the Center that the people at Joe Kaufman’s protest are local homeless people.

For Kaufman this may be a new low, trying to up his pathetically low numbered “protests” by paying homeless folk. I can’t say I am surprised at Kaufman’s sleazy antics, just astonished that there are even a handful wasting their retirement. I guess the moral of the story is if you’re ever hungry and near a Kaufman protest you can assure yourself some Dominoes pizza…but unlike the homeless individual who was truly hungry you might be selling your soul, and we all know how hard it is get your soul back once you sell it for yummy food:

Who is he?:

Joe Kaufman, has been on the Anti-Muslim scene for quite a while now and is dubbed by the far Right-Wing FrontPageMag as, you guessed it…another one of their ”Investigative Journalists.”  That he has been influenced by Meir Kahane and the Kahanist ideology is well documented, as is his love and angst for Kahane.

In the past he has been accused of contributing to the terrorist organization founded by Kahane known as JDL (Jewish Defense League) while others accuse Kaufman of at the very least holding views that parallel JDL positions.

Kaufman’s unsavory associations and views are quite real and they are only dangerous to America if you’re stupid enough to swallow his conspiracy theories but other than that he is simply a half-baked paranoid conspiracy theorist, some what along the lines of the “9/11 Truthers.”

In every nook and cranny there is a “Mooslim”…hiding and ready to get ya…so beware and be afraid. Be veryyyy afraid goes his story.

In this special LoonWatch series we will detail the exploits and punchlines that Krazy Kaufman throws out there and attempts to pass on as serious journalism, commentary and investigation.

 

2010: The Year of Islamophobia

Posted in Feature, Loonwatch Updates with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 30, 2010 by loonwatch

2010 has been an unbelievable year! Can we say that we are happy that it is finally over? Only if that means that the wacky anti-Muslim Islamophobia that reached unprecedented and at times demented levels will recede. However, it doesn’t appear as though that will be happening any time soon.

Looking at the year in review we see that right-leaning and populist anti-Muslim/xenophobic organizations and party’s increased their power/influence across Europe while also initiating and passing discriminatory legislation in their countries.

  1. Rise of Geert Wilders and the Freedom Party
  2. EDL (English Defense League)
  3. Sweden Democrats
  4. Switzerland’s banning of Minarets
  5. BZO Austria
  6. Pia Kjaersgaard (DF)
  7. France and the face veil controversy
  8. Belgium’s banning of the face veil
  9. Catalonia face veil proposal

In the United States we saw the convergence and solidifying of a network of Islamophobes across the nation who joined arms with their brethren across the Atlantic ocean. We were also treated to the Republican party’s instrumentalization and usage of Islam for purposes of fear-mongering during the the run-up to the 2010 elections; add to this mosque controversies, hate crimes, anti-Muslim rallies and your run of the mill nuke Mecca suggestion and you had 2010.

The beginning of the year saw a slew of hate crimes, it also saw our piece, “All Terrorists are Muslim…Except the 94% that Aren’t,” go viral and become one of our most popular pieces ever, getting picked up by various mainstream media outlets.

Joseph Stack’s attack

Events picked up shortly after that with Joseph Stack flying his plane into a IRS office kamikaze style and the failure of many, especially on the right to equate the act to terrorism.

Such double standards were consistently exposed by us throughout the year, particularly in our “What if they were Muslim?” segment. We documented the colossal double standards that exist both in media and popular perception when it comes to judging crimes committed by Muslims against those committed by individuals of other faiths. Invariably, when a Muslim commits a crime it is blamed or linked to Islam, whereas if someone else does it his or her faith is not mentioned — even if it was the motivation.

Of course we would be remiss if we did not mention the biggest story of the year; the Cordoba House, i.e. Park51 or as it has come to be known by many, “the Ground Zero Mosque controversy.” This was a story that raged for months and was “whipped up into a frenzy by a pair of bigoted anti-Muslim bloggers, Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer, two individuals who should be summarily dismissed as loons that have zero influence in the mainstream media or amongst any of our politicians.”

The Republicans latched onto this story and attempted to make it the wedge issue that they could use to ride to victory during the elections. A dozen or more candidates incorporated this issue into their platform with some making it their sole selling point, (un)surpirsingly a handful actually came out victorious, most prominently the looniest of them all, Allen West.

This was also the issue that catapulted Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer into their 5 minutes of fame. We had been reporting on these two, their financiers, networks and supporters ever since we started Loonwatch, our pieces on both of these goons especially “Pamela Geller: The Looniest Blogger Ever” was picked up by mainstream media outlets including the New York Times, Salon.com, Christian Science Monitor and the Washington Post.

Both Geller and Spencer were irked to no end by this and though they attempted to play the silent game were forced at some point to respond to Loonwatch, but they did so only with ad hominemattack and zero interaction with the substance of our articles. Geller resorted to calling us a “Goebbels-style hate site” while Spencer wished to inflict “100-101 lashes” on Danios who he labeled a “slick liar” while continuing to run-away and evade Loonwatch’s open challenge to a radio debate.

Today the controversy over Park51 is still simmering though the rhetoric and verbiage on it has cooled down quite a bit to the chagrin of Spencer and Geller. The spill over from Park51 left a terrible residue and sparked controversies around the nation.

It seemed that the issue with mosques (i.e. Muslims) was not simply about proximity to “hallowed ground,” but the right to build and freely worship was being challenged all over the country.

  1. Murfreesboro, TN.
  2. Temecula, CA.
  3. Sheepshead Bay
  4. Sheboygan County, Wi
  5. Florence, KY
  6. Selden, LI
  7. Ohio
Ahmed H. Sharif

There are about six more places from our count where mosque controversies were raging, but the above sampling gives you an idea. The worst spillover of the mosque controversy undoubtedly manifested itself with the near fatal stabbing of New York City cab driver Ahmed H. Sharif. Passenger Michael Enright entered his cab, asked him “Are you a Muslim?” and when the cabdriver replied, “Yes,” slashed his throat.

There were other notable Islamophobiapalooza moments during the year as well. For instance Rima Fakih, the first Muslim Miss America drew the ire of right-wingers and Islamophobes who didn’t like seeing a brown lady with the crown, let alone a Mooslim. There was also the South Park/Revolution Muslim controversy and the resultant Everybody Draw Mohammed Day on Facebook which descended into an orgy of bigotry and hatred. Later this would reveal the epic double standards and failure of the moribund perception-makers in the media when contrasted with the way it dealt with the story of Pastor Terry Jones and his wacky Dove Outreach Church’s “International Burn the Koran Day on 9/11″ (Read: Islam and the Media in the Age of Islamophobiapalooza).

The final focal point with which Islamophobes and their cynical cohorts in the Republican party attempted to garner populist support through anti-Muslim fear-mongering was surrounding the buzz word: Sharia’. Sharia’ is the boogey monster that Muslims, 1% of the population of America is going to impose. Forget the fact that most of those advocating this conspiracy theory are themselveswoefully ignorant of the Constitution, a document that they subvert with every statement and move they make. It got so bad that Oklahoma overwhelmingly passed a measure banning Sharia’ which has (thankfully) been overturned for being unconstitutional, it should also have been overturned for being unbelievably stupid.

This leads us to consider the biggest Islamophobic conspiracies of the year, which could be a feature piece on its own:

  1. Sharia take over of the United States
  2. Park51 being a “victory mosque” for “Islamic supremacism”
  3. Barack “Hussein” Obama being a secret “Mooslim”
  4. Muslim Congressional Spy Interns
  5. Rep. Keith Ellison working for Hamas
  6. Google’s “e” as an Islamic crescent

At the end of the day, all hope was not lost. There were many whose eyes were opened and Loonwatch helped by being picked by prominent and diverse bloggers as well as media venues as varying as AlJazeera, NPR, Christian Science Monitor, The Independent, AlArabiya etc. Many concerned citizens spoke out eloquently to reject and counter Islamophobia, our segment “Anti-Loons” vividly  showcased the best of those who opposed bigotry and were sincerely and effectively working to counter hate and ignorance on all levels, especially against Islam and Muslims. Lesley Hazelton’s profound lecture describing her experience with the Quran left us with hope, that those who make an effort may come to see beyond the stereotypes, the ignorance that shackles us and fosters animosity between humanity.

“Part of the problem I think is we imagine that the Quran can be read as we usually read a book. As though we can curl up with it on a rainy day with a bowl of popcorn in reach, as though God, and the Quran is entirely in the voice of God speaking to Muhammad, were just another author on the best-sellers list. Yet it is precisely because so few people read the Quran that it is so easy to quote, that is to misquote, phrases and snippets taken out of context, in what I call the highlighter version, which is the one favored by Muslim fundamentalists and anti-Muslim Islamophobes.” –Lesley Hazelton

 

SPLC: Geller, Jones Up anti-Muslim Hate

Posted in Loon Blogs with tags , , , , , , , , on December 29, 2010 by loonwatch

Pamela “the looniest blogger ever” Geller is on the front page of the SPLC hate report. The SPLC should feature Spencer’s hate diatribe and association now as well.

Geller, Jones Amp Up Anti-Muslim Hate Rhetoric

The annual observances in New York City of the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks on the World Trade Center are normally somber and subdued. But with anti-Muslim acrimony in America escalating, apparently stoked by anger over a proposed Islamic cultural center two blocks from Ground Zero, this year’s commemorations were sometimes downright ugly.

Public figures such as Newt Gingrich and Sarah Palin helped fuel that discord with harsh denunciations of the proposed Muslim center. But no one did more to fan the flames of fear and hatred over the “Ground Zero mosque” than Pamela Geller, co-founder of Stop Islamization of America (SIOA).

Earlier this year, Geller — who also has questioned whether President Obama was born in America — bought anti-Muslim ads that were displayed on New York City buses for a month. She warned that Muslims will “turn to further intimidation, murder and terrorism” if they can’t achieve a political takeover. Her comments were so incendiary, in fact, that several neo-Nazi organizations even ignored the fact that she is Jewish and published her diatribes. She in turn commented favorably on the South African, apartheid-defending terrorist Eugene Terre’Blanche after he was murdered, blaming his death on “black supremacism.”

Pamela Geller
Pamela Geller

On Sept. 11, Geller led a rally near the proposed Muslim community center, where protesters carried signs (“No mosque on sacred ground”) and heard speeches by her and Geert Wilders. Wilders is a hard-line Dutch lawmaker who has compared the Koran to Hitler’s Mein Kampf and made frequent speeches in the United States warning that Islam is an ideology, not a religion, intent on world domination.

At the same time Geller’s demonstration was being staged, a rival rally was held just blocks away. Those demonstrators called for tolerance and carried their own signs — “The attack on Islam is racism” was one.

Citing police estimates, The Wall Street Journal said there were about 1,500 people at Geller’s anti-mosque rally and 2,000 at the counter-demonstration. The New York Post said the pro-mosque crowd outnumbered the anti-mosque protesters, 3,000 to 2,500. Both these estimates infuriated Geller, who accused the “liberal establishment mass media” of a “massive distortion” meant to minimize her cause.

Terry Jones
For several days this September, Gainesville, Fla., pastor Terry Jones and his plans to burn Korans were world news. Then the Muslim- and gay-bashing chief of the Dove World Outreach Center sank back into obscurity.

Meanwhile, an obscure pastor from Gainesville, Fla., drew vastly more publicity than the far better known Geller by announcing a plan to mark the 9/11 commemoration with “International Burn a Koran Day.” News of Terry Jones’ plans tore across the Muslim world, igniting fury in Afghanistan and elsewhere.

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates phoned Jones in an effort to persuade him not to burn copies of the Islamic religious text. Gen. David Petraeus, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, warned that Jones could endanger the troops. President Obama said if Jones followed through on his plan, it would be “a recruitment bonanza for al Qaeda.” The right-wing pastor, who has also bitterly attacked “homos,” received death threats and a visit from FBI agents. The international police agency Interpol issued a warning to governments worldwide of an increased risk of terror attacks if Jones proceeded with his plan. The U.S. State Department also warned Americans living and traveling abroad of the potential for violent protests.

In the end, Jones canceled his Koran burning event, saying he had an agreement that would move the Manhattan Islamic center to another site. That wasn’t so. Gainesville law enforcement agencies later said they would bill Jones for the costs associated with his planned Koran burning. They are expected to exceed $200,000. That would bankrupt his 50-member Dove World Outreach Center, Jones said, a prospect that clearly delighted many residents of Gainesville.

 

UK: Terry Jones Invited to EDL Demonstration

Posted in Loon Pastors, Loon Violence, Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , , on December 12, 2010 by loonwatch

The alignment of Robert Spencer’s favorite UK organization and the loon pastor of Florida, Terry Jones.

Theresa May pressed to halt visit by anti-Muslim US preacher

(Guardian)

Home secretary Theresa May is under intense pressure to ban controversial anti-Muslim preacher Terry Jones from Britain after far-right activists said he had agreed to address them at a demonstration about “the evils of Islam“.

The English Defence League (EDL) said it was “proud to announce” that the US pastor, who caused outrage with plans to burn the Qur’an on this year’s anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, would be attending the event in Luton in early February. Jones confirmed that he would be arriving in the UK. The pastor’s website said he intended to visit the EDL’s “biggest demonstration to date” in February. The website stated: “During the protest, Dr Terry Jones will speak against the evils and destructiveness of Islam in support of the continued fight against the Islamification of England and Europe.”

President Barack Obama warned in September that Jones’s planned Qur’an burnings would be a “recruitment bonanza” for al-Qaida and the US state department said it would put the country’s citizens at risk across the world.

Tonight the British anti-extremist campaign, Hope Not Hate, launched its own petition urging May to ban Jones from Britain, while MPs demanded immediate action from the home secretary. Hope Not Hate’s campaign co-ordinator, Nick Lowles, said: “Pastor Jones’s presence in Luton will be incendiary and highly dangerous. He will attract and encourage thousands of English Defence League supporters to take to the streets of Luton.

“Like the EDL, Pastor Jones indiscriminately targets all Muslims and their actions can only lead to increased tensions and racism in our communities. His appearance will rightly cause concern and fear among Muslims across the country.”

Jon Cruddas, Labour MP for Dagenham, said he would table an urgent parliamentary motion tomorrow demanding that the pastor be banned from coming into the country.

“We have seen how Pastor Jones, with a very small congregation in Florida, created a firestorm by urging the Qur’an to be burned,” Cruddas said. “We should not allow racial hatred to be whipped up in this manner in our country.”

The EDL announced Jones’s planned visit on its Facebook site today, saying he would attend “our biggest demo to date” and describing it as “the big one”. There are fears that copies of the Qur’an could be burned by extremists.

The last time the EDL marched in Luton, 250 of their supporters went on the rampage through an Asian area of the town. Shop windows were smashed, cars overturned and a number of people were attacked. Thirty-five people were arrested as a result of the violence. Eleven people were arrested yesterday as 500 EDL supporters marched in Peterborough.

“The EDL march in February has the potential to be far worse,” Lowles said. “Only extremists will benefit from his visit and, as we know, extremism breeds hatred and hatred breeds violence. Pastor Jones, a preacher of hate, must be stopped from entering the UK.”

The home secretary has the power to exclude or deport an individual if she thinks their presence in the UK could threaten national security, public order or the safety of citizens. She can also do so if she believes their views glorify terrorism, promote violence or encourage other serious crime.

May has been keen to show that she is tough on extremism. Five weeks after the coalition government came into power, she banned a radical preacher who claimed that “every Muslim should be a terrorist” from entering Britain. Zakir Naik had been due to give a series of lectures at Wembley Arena and in Sheffield in June.

However, visitors from other countries cannot be banned just for having opinions that other people would find offensive. In the past, May has said the powers can only be used in “very serious” cases. She has already acted against the EDL, banning a march in Leicester in November.

News of Jones’s planned visit comes as the head of the police intelligence unit on domestic extremism reveals that the EDL and related splinter groups have become his biggest concern.

Adrian Tudway, the national co-ordinator for domestic extremism, told the Observer: “We look at the extreme right and left, but currently our biggest single area of business are the various groups which call themselves defence leagues. These defence leagues can be found across England.”

The unit is monitoring a “number of individuals” connected to extreme rightwing groups, details of which are disseminated to local police forces.

At the height of the controversy over Jones’s threat to burn the Qur’an, effigies of the pastor were burned in Afghanistan and there was widespread condemnation across the Muslim world. Jones is a Pentecostalist who bases his theology on the literal text of the Bible. He runs the Florida-based Dove World Outreach Centre, which objects to Islam because it “teaches that Jesus is not the son of God, therefore taking away the saving power of Jesus and leading people straight to Hell”.

 

SPLC: Dove Outreach on Hate Groups List

Posted in Loon Pastors with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 3, 2010 by loonwatch

The SPLC has put the “Dove World” organization on their hate groups list. We are still waiting for the SPLC to put Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA) on the hate list.

Dove World to be listed as a hate group

By Chad Smith
Staff writer

Published: Thursday, December 2, 2010 at 9:11 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, December 2, 2010 at 9:11 p.m.
Dove World Outreach Center, the Gainesville church behind the “Islam is of the devil” signs and plans to burn the Quran, will be listed next year as a hate group, joining the likes of the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazis, the Southern Poverty Law Center announced this week.

“It wasn’t a very hard call to be honest with you,” said Mark Potok, who tracks extremism for the Montgomery, Ala.-based civil rights organization and serves as editor of its magazine. “Essentially (Dove World Pastor Terry Jones) is completely over the top with his hatred of gay people and of Muslims.”

In the latest issue of the SPLC publication, the church was featured with 17 other small groups around the country that “pump out demonizing propaganda aimed at homosexuals and other sexual minorities.”

SPLC noted Dove World’s anti-gay stances, including its “No homo Mayor” signs during the city’s spring elections and its joining with the controversial Westboro Baptist Church — a small Kansas church that protests military funerals and other denominations — when that church was in town in April.

“I don’t know of any other group at all that has demonstrated alongside the Westboro Baptist Church,” Potok said.

Dove World will become the third Gainesville-based hate group on the SPLC’s list, joining an Imperial Klans of America chapter and a skinhead group called The Hated. Others listed include the Nation of Islam, the Jewish Defense League and Westboro.

Jamal Alshaer, the former interim director of the Islamic Center of Gainesville, said Dove World qualifies for the list.

 

Rick Sanchez Interviews Pastor Terry Jones of Burn the Koran Day

Posted in Loon Pastors with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 3, 2010 by loonwatch

Rick Sanchez interviews the pastor behind the “burn the Koran day.”

The guy is a definite moron.

A good article from Think Progress on this whole episode.

Pastor Hosting ‘International Burn A Quran Day’: ‘We Have Nothing Against Muslims’

On September 11, 2010, the extremist evangelical Dove World Church — whose pastor, Terry Jones, has written a book called “Islam Is Of The Devil” — plans to host “International Burn A Quran Day,” when it will burn Muslims’ sacred text and encourage others across the world to do so as well. Churchmember Wayne Sapp has even posted an instructional video that explains how and why to burn the Islamic text.

CNN host Rick Sanchez invited Jones on his show yesterday to ask him about the inflammatory action. When Sanchez pressed Jones about why he would try to anger the world’s Muslims by burning their sacred text, the evangelical pastor replied, “Well, for one thing, to us, the book is not sacred,” provoking laughter from the CNN host.

Jones later went on to explain, “What we are also doing by the burning of the Quran, we’re saying stop, stop to Islam, stop to Islamic law, stop to brutality. We have nothing against Muslims, they are welcome in our country.” When Sanchez asked him how he would feel if Muslims burned the Bible, Jones admitted he wouldn’t like it but emphasized that it was his “right” to burn the Islamic text because “we live in America”:

SANCHEZ: Do you know how many Muslims there are in the world?

JONES: I think there are 1.5 billion.

SANCHEZ: Yeah. I ask you that because that’s a very big number. Why would you want to do this to 1.5 billion people by burning their most sacred book? That’s crazy.

JONES: Well, for one thing, to us, the book is not sacred.

SANCHEZ: But it is to them, it’s sacred to them. […]

JONES: What we’re also doing by the burning of the Quran on 9/11 is we’re saying stop. Stop to Islam. Stop to Islamic law. Stop to brutality. We have nothing against Muslims, they are welcome in our country. […]

SANCHEZ: How would you feel if a Muslim said to you, what you just said to them? I have no problem with you Mr. Christian, you’re welcome in my country, but I’m burning your Bible.

JONES: I would not like it. But it’s our right. We live in America!

The National Association of Evangelicals (NAE), the nation’s largest body of evangelicals, put out a statement yesterday condemning Dove World’s actions. Quoting Thessalonians, NAE President Leith Anderson invoked the Bible’s teachings that Christians should “always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else.”

The Dove World Church has made a name for itself by engaging in a host of attention-seeking tactics to preach their hate. In the past, the congregation compelled children to wear t-shirts that bore the slogan “Islam is of the devil.” Earlier this year, they held an unsuccessful campaign to stop the election of Gainesville’s first openly gay mayor by posting a “No homo mayor” sign. Despite their failure to stop the mayor’s election, they plan to hold a protest on the steps of City Hall in August.