Eleven years ago, like every citizen elected to serve in Congress or any person appointed to any federal position, I swore an oath to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies foreign and domestic.”
I’ve always thought it significant that the Founders included domestic enemies in that oath of office. They thought liberty was as much at risk from threats within our borders as from outside, and French political thinker and historian Alexis de Tocqueville agreed with that warning.
Plans to build Cordoba House, a 15-story Islamic Center two blocks north of Ground Zero, received a major boost yesterday when a Manhattan community board backed the proposal by a 29-to-1 vote. Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf said the center would help “bridge and heal a divide” among Muslims and other religious groups.
Perhaps the Imam is sincere but I find the whole project an outrage. The name Cordoba House at best conveys a total insensitivity to the families of victims of the attack at worse it shows sympathy with the terrorist’s goals. Cordoba, was the Capital of Al-Andalus the Islamic Caliphate that ruled much of Spain during the Middle Ages. One of Al-Qaida’s main goals announced after the 9/11 attack was the restoration of the Cordoba Caliphate in Al-Andalus.
The Project is said to cost $100 million and no one seems to know who is paying for all of this. There are hundreds of Mosques in the New York area in a nation dedicated to religious freedom. If the Imam wants to “bridge and heal a divide” among Muslims and other faiths he should look beyond Manhattan. There are no churches or synagogues in Mecca, Riyadh or Kuwait. In Egypt, Iran and other Islamic nations those who don’t adhere to Islam practice their faiths at great risk to themselves and their families. I don’t understand why Mayor Bloomberg and other local officials are supporting this project.
Did you know that downtown Manhattan has a huge Muslim population. That’s right, a Muslim population so huge that it can only be serviced by a 100 million dollar mosque to be constructed in a 13 story building.
With that kind of project, you would have to assume that there’s a local Muslim community in the tens of thousands that need to be served by a Muslim center. In fact there is no such community. The existing local mosques, including a nondescript metal door stamped Masjid, 5 blocks from Ground Zero, mainly cater to vendors selling burned meat from stores and carts, the “Halal Mafia” who insist on sending waves of foul smelling black smoke everywhere in their vicinity and are known to violently assault other vendors who want to do business in their vicinity.
Then there are the employees of closeout and discount stores selling everything from items bought up from stores that have gone out of business to used clothes and pirated movies in the vicinity of City Hall. These are being gentrified out of business as the neighborhood continues attracting a better class of businesses. Also the majority of those who work there are women. There are a few Muslims working at financial firms on Wall Street, but they are a minority, and they are also not neighborhood residents.
Planting a mosque just two blocks from where Muslims murdered Americans on 9/11 in the name of Islam is a huge slap in the face. Why shouldn’t Muslims be sensitive enough to realize that a huge mosque planted right near the horrific wound to the U.S. created at Ground Zero by Muslims is outrageous to us? They claim a right to be insulted by cartoons mocking their prophet, even to the point of beheading people.
The Imam of the Ground Zero Insult, Faisal Abdul Rauf, is not the nice guy he likes to hold himself out to be. At his Friday afternoon khutbah services and in his book What’s Right With Islam Rauf states that he wants the mosque to be a place where inter-faith understanding is fostered. His sonorous voice is smooth and almost hypnotic. His writing style appears to be rational and unthreatening.
However, this does not jibe with the aspects of him that are downright hostile and frightening.