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Anti-Muslim Bigotry

Islamophobia: “Christian Identity” White Supremacists Charged on Plan to Destroy US Mosque

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Cross-posted on DailyKos & StreetProphets

Three men, Eric Ian Baker, 32, Michael Corey Golden, 23, and Jonathan Edward Stone, 19, had planned for a week to burn down the Islamic Center of Columbia, according to the First Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul O’Brian.

Two of the men Stone and Baker told officers they were members of the Christian Identity movement, an extreme doctrine that claims white Europeans are God’s chosen people.

According to the complaint, Stone said he earned “two stripes” for the act from Baker, who was described as his sponsor in the movement. “Stone admitted to special agents that he is a member of the Christian Identity movement and that stripes or promotions are earned for committing acts of violence against ‘enemies,'” the complaint said.

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The men are accused of using gasoline, rags and empty beer bottles to set fire to the storefront mosque on Saturday. They also painted a swastika and the phrases “white power” and “we run the country” on the mosque’s exterior.

Meanwhile a church offered its support and raised $1000 for the mosque, and offering up space for worship on Fridays at First Presbyterian Church. This again reminds me of the ayah in the Quran:

“…and nearest among them in love to the believers will you find those who say, ‘We are Christians,’ because amongst these are men devoted to learning and men who have renounced the world, and they are not arrogant” (5:82)

Of course, had these people been Muslims and God forbid if a synagogue would be involved, there wouldn’t be one major news network that wouldn’t have made this front and center for coverage. And making it as sensationalist as possible, using words such as Islamic-terrorist, etc. But we cannot fall into the same trap. These three weren’t “Christian-terrorists”, they were simply terrorists, who had perverted and misused what they called their “Christian Identity”. These same people would have no problem attacking blacks or other minorities. That is why Islamophobia and racism usually go hand in hand.

Also remember the pyramid of hate that I talked about in my post on Islamophobia. These incidents suggest that hate has started reaching towards the top of this pyramid, and thus Muslims are in for dangerous times, may Allah protect us all. And this is yet another proof in the pudding that Islamophobia is real and that such actions motivated by anti-Muslim feelings are also real. This is an excerpt from the Islamophobia post, which talks about the pyramid of hate:

Similarly, one can think of racism or prejudice as a pyramid, with the bottom base being a myriad and widespread negative opinions and beliefs, which I have already described in the preceding paragraphs. The next, less-widespread, step up on this pyramid would be hate-talk. A step further up will be actions motivated by hate, like throwing a pig’s head into a mosque. Further steps up (less frequent but of higher intensity) would include direct attacks on Muslims and eventually to Muslim deaths and even large-scale terrorism (a plan by a Florida doctor to bomb Muslim educational centers was derailed in Florida in 2002 before it could be enacted). The question is not whether such hate-crimes will happen (because they already are); rather the question is when and how many. [Islamophobia Part 1- It Exists]

More info. @ AP & Al-Arabiya

Hat-tip to Islamophobia-Watch

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Abu Reem is one of the founders of MuslimMatters, Inc. His identity is shaped by his religion (Islam), place of birth (Pakistan), and nationality (American). By education, he is a ChemE, topped off with an MBA from Wharton. He has been involved with Texas Dawah, Clear Lake Islamic Center and MSA. His interests include politics, cricket, and media interactions. Career-wise, Abu Reem is in management in the oil & gas industry (but one who still appreciates the "green revolution").

24 Comments

24 Comments

  1. Amad

    February 14, 2008 at 9:42 AM

    Islamophobia is of course a myth.

    Someone needs to tell that to the congregationalist at Islamic Center of Columbia.

  2. Faraz

    February 14, 2008 at 9:56 AM

    Is there anyone denying that Islamophobia is real? I don’t understand why that statement needed to be in bold. Seems like a pretty accepted reality around these parts.

  3. theManOfFewWords

    February 14, 2008 at 10:01 AM

    Are you implying that there is such a thing as Christian terrorists even though the conventional wisdom is that ONLY Islam has violent extremist terrorists?

    Furthermore, are you also saying that the media is biased and not fair and biased?

    Also are you implying that some of the lovely pacifistic white folk of this country might actually be racist despite all their noble efforts at spreading democracy to unworthy Arabs and unruly, ungrateful Afghans?

    Ha! Next you will be saying that there’s such a thing as police brutality.

    Well that’s just ridiculous! Love it or leave it, buddy, love it or leave it! This is America! Home of the brave land of the free. Dont bring those communist ideas up in here!

  4. Amad

    February 14, 2008 at 10:39 AM

    MOFW: What police brutality? That is a figment of imagination found in the inferior black race, don’t you know?

    You are right, these brown/black/yellow socialist/communist folks are taking over our good country. We need an honorable man like Tancredo to save us.

    -An unbiased commentator from Jihadwatch

  5. whirl

    February 14, 2008 at 12:16 PM

    Islamophobia, a catchy phrase made up just for the benefit of the press.

    My concern here is that any violence is committed in the name of a deity, it’s all wrong; with white supremacists adding to the yet another self-justified hate campaign because of an individuals skin colour.

    There is no more Christian Identity Movement than there is the National Rifle Association (aka the KKK). Whomever carries the gun is deluding themselves that control is exclusive to them.

  6. Nadia

    February 14, 2008 at 1:38 PM

    It’s scary how people can be so blinded by hate and think it’s ok to set fire to a mosque or church.

    MOFW: I think you misunderstood. The article didn’t imply any such thing as there being Christian terrorists as said here:

    “These three weren’t “Christian-terrorists”, they were simply terrorists, who had perverted and misused what they called their “Christian Identity.

    There is no such thing as a Christian terrorist or Muslim terrorist. Just terrorist. And when a terrorist justifies their acts by their religion it still doesn’t make them a Christian or Muslim terrorist, but a terrorist who follows Islam or Christianity, because putting the word terrorist and affiliating it with a religion automatically gives the indication that the religion teaches terrorism and extremism, which we of course know is not true. A terrorist will always find justification somewhere, and where they get it from doesn’t mean that source advocates it. Often times it’s quite the opposite.

  7. Amad

    February 14, 2008 at 1:45 PM

    Nadia, I think MOFW’s comments were tongue in cheek.

  8. theManOfFewWords

    February 14, 2008 at 1:55 PM

    I think its funny that Nadia tried to clarify the whole, who’s a terrorist thing, but didnt try say anything about me calling arabs and afghans ungrateful, unworthy and unruly.

    Classic case of tacit approval. She’s probably a desi and thinks that stuff it true. HA HA (personal attack folk, get ready for the chutNAY!!!)

  9. Nadia

    February 14, 2008 at 4:26 PM

    lol, think what you want it doesn’t bother me. No I’m not desi, i’m american, and some of my best friends are arab. and even if they weren’t, I don’t have anything against arabs or afghanis, they’re just humans like me. sorry I didn’t reply to your whole post, i know staying silent about something does show approval, so let me just clarify that i don’t approve of your views of arabs or afghans, but I can’t do much to change that. whereas what you said about Christian terrorists was something I could refer back to the post about, which is why I did so.

    Nah man, it’s cool, don’t see it as a personal attack. Would you like beef or chicken samosa with that chutney?

  10. theManOfFewWords

    February 14, 2008 at 6:36 PM

    Nadia, American is a nationality not an ethnicity. I am also an American, by which i mean I am an American citizen born and raised. You are trying to cleverly conceal your desi racism. But u see you cant mess with me. (deliberate corny rhyming like this should be BANNED!)

  11. niamah

    February 14, 2008 at 9:09 PM

    LOL..at desi racim…unfortunately that racim against desis/black muslims exists in Arab community as well, which is disease of our hearts.

  12. Nadia

    February 14, 2008 at 10:41 PM

    Ok brother, I don’t know where you’re coming from but I resent the fact that you assume I’m racist. That actually hurts. I don’t know what you read between the lines of my posts but that is not something I intended to put forth. Astaghfirullah al Adheem. Allah is the judge between us all. And believe me I’m not trying to mess with you. Let’s just clear the air and move on. Salam aleikum.

  13. amad

    February 14, 2008 at 11:05 PM

    Nadia, I think MOFW is just trying to be funny (a bit obnoxious :) but not intentionally).

    OK, MoFW, come clean dude…

  14. theManOfFewWords

    February 15, 2008 at 12:41 PM

    I give in. I was just messing around. Subhanallah, you would think that was obvious. Now there’s all this drama, other people have gotten involved, a crowd is forming, samosas are flying, someone filled a super soaker with chutney. Really everyone just calm down, relax and smell the masala.

  15. Hid

    February 15, 2008 at 3:33 PM

    MOFW causes controversy where ever he goes =) i still remember his posts on Almaghrib forums =) hehe

  16. WM

    February 15, 2008 at 4:14 PM

    MoFW, you free spirit of a man, you are hilarious. Don’t allow the philistines of the world to get to you.

  17. ibnabeeomar

    February 15, 2008 at 5:41 PM

    “Now there’s all this drama, other people have gotten involved, a crowd is forming, samosas are flying, someone filled a super soaker with chutney. Really everyone just calm down, relax and smell the masala.”

    this is quite possibly the funniest thing i have read on MM

  18. theManOfFewWords

    February 15, 2008 at 9:10 PM

    I resent that, some of my best friends are philistines. LOL

  19. Kashmiri Nomad

    February 17, 2008 at 10:41 AM

    Trackback:

    Muslim Matters on the case of 3 American men charged with targeting a mosque in Tennessee.

    http://kashmiri-nomad.blogspot.com/2008/02/islam-and-west-accelerated-links-for-17.html

  20. DrM

    February 18, 2008 at 5:31 AM

    Good Nazis are dead Nazis.

  21. Faiez

    February 19, 2008 at 6:48 PM

    “super soaker with chutney”

    brings back memories from high school….except we used shan masala. Man did that stuff burn…

  22. SaqibSaab

    February 19, 2008 at 7:13 PM

    Remember at the picnic? It practically singed the concrete…

  23. Pingback: Updated | In the Wake of “Obsession” Hate-DVDs: Muslim Children Gassed in Ohio Mosque | MuslimMatters.org

  24. Pingback: Updated-2 | In the Wake of "Obsession" Hate-DVDs: Muslim Children Gassed in Ohio Mosque | Sabbah Report

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