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A Temple and a Mosque; Worship in America


By Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich

On August 5,  a Sikh temple in Southern Wisconsin was attacked.  Six worshippers lost their lives before the gunman was killed.   There was an outbreak of condemnation – rightly so.  President Obama ordered flags at public buildings to be flown at half-staff and Mrs. Clinton called her Indian counterpart. Mitt Romney offered his prayers to the families of the victims.   Left ignored, was the burning down of a mosque in Missouri -  predictably so.  Worship in America is a political prerogative in sink with U.S. policies.  

But India and Indian Sikhs have privileges; so why were Sikh worshippers targeted?  It may well be that the perpetrator, Wade Michael Page who allegedly had links to the white supremacist movement ignored the political relations in favor of his ideology -- white supremacy,  articulated by President T. Roosevelt who said of America: “Democracy has justified itself by keeping for the white race the best portion's of the earth's surface."

Or perhaps, as CNN opined, “Sikh's "unfairly" mistaken for Muslims and targeted.” This would not be the first time, and as Public Radio International (PRI) has reported, since the events of 9/11, Sikh men have been targeted as Moslems.  Even the cordial relations with India could not prevent the perception that an Indian Sikh resembles a Moslem and fair target. 

Scapegoating Moslems had been planned as early as 1991 (see full article here).   The end of the Cold War had left neoconservatives fearful that with the demise of the Soviet Union, and the splintering of the America’s right wing faction, there would no longer be an unconditional support for a U.S.-Israel alliance.  The threat of communism was replaced with the threat of Islam.  The promotion and branding of Islam as an enemy came to fruition with the events of 9/11.

In line with this neoconservative strategy, the mainstream media in the US framed September 11 within the context of Islam, ignoring all other inquiry, including the fact that a new U.N. Human Rights Council assigned to monitor Israel was calling for an official commission to study the role neoconservatives may have played in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks (New York Sun[i]).   As neocon Bernard Lewis was busy teaching the concept of ‘jihad’ versus‘crusade’[ii]Moslem bashing, Moslem killing, and Mosque burning became fair game.

The strategy of demonizing Islam was so successful that in 2008 the presidential candidates centered their qualification for Office on Moslem-bashing.  Former New York mayor and the hero of 9/11, Rudy Giuliani, made the threat of 'Islamic terrorism' the centerpiece of his campaign.  Podhoretz also joined Giuliani (later he joined McCain), as did John Deady who resigned after it came out that he said the following of Giuliani: "He's got, I believe, the knowledge and the judgment to attack one of the most difficult problems in current history and that is the rise of the Muslims. Make no mistake about it, this hasn't happened for a thousand years, these people are very dedicated and they're also very, very smart in their own way. We need to keep the feet to the fire and keep pressing these people until we defeat or chase them back to their caves or, in other words, get rid of them."  Renowned Evangelical Pat Robertson gave Giuliani his endorsement[iii].

Tony Perkins, head of the Family Research Council, allegedly dissuaded contender Mike Huckabee from “reaching out” to the 'Muslim world'.   Mitt Romney, a contender in 2008 and the 2012 GOP presidential hopeful, raised eyebrows when he suggested that mosques be wire-tapped[iv].   For almost a decade, U.S. military officers were being taught to wage a ‘total war’ on Islam and target civilians.  

The Sikh Temple shooter, Wade Michael Page, a former U.S. Army veteran, is condemned for the violent and meaningless murder of innocent worshippers, but is he alone responsible for this act of insanity?  If these killing were truly a case of mistaking Sikhs as Moslems,  should those who implement seeds of hatred not be held accountable aslo? 

Who will persecute those who taught army officers to kill Moslems -  the  Commander-in-Chief hopefuls and their advisors who promoted hatred and persecution of Moslems, and the neoconservatives who planted the seeds of hatred among us?  Will their deeds be buried with Page? What of all the other hate crimes against Moslems, the burnt mosques? As Jonathan Swift said: “I never wonder to see men wicked, but I often wonder to see them not ashamed.”

Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich is a Public Diplomacy Scholar, independent researcher and blogger with a focus on U.S. foreign policy and the role of lobby groups. 




[i] Eli Lake, “U.N. Official Calls for  Study of Neocons’ Role in 9/11”,  The New York Sun, 10 April 2008

[ii] Bernard Lewis, ‘Learning the Lingo. Jihad vs. Crusade. A Historian’s Guide to the New War’, Wall Street Journal (27 Sept. 2001).

[iii] “The Religion Card; GOP Candidates Play on anti-Muslim Sentiments”The Progressive, Biography Resource Center, USC Feb 2008

[iv] The Religion Card, Ibid.

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I'm glad to have read this, for I had only seen a very brief mention about the killing of the Sikhs the above article is about and didn't have a clue who committed this disgusting, outrageous violence.

And, yes, the criminal war leadership in Washington should have to answer for this crime.  They should also be held to account for many other crimes they're guilty of committing; very high crimes that include supreme international war crimes.

It's interesting to learn about "the fact that a new U.N. Human Rights Council assigned to monitor Israel was calling for an official commission to study the role neoconservatives may have played in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks".  This study hopefully will be truthfully and very thoroughly performed.  After all, the neocons definitely played a role in the 9/11 attacks.

Two very good resource websites are the following ones and the editor, who's the same for both websites, also provides recommended links to other good resources on 9/11.

http://www.911review.com

http://911research.wtc7.net

The NY Sun article about the UNHRC study is the following one and it's from April 10, 2008, so isn't quite new anymore.

"U.N. Official Calls for Study Of Neocons' Role in 9/11"

http://www.nysun.com/foreign/un-official-calls-for-study-of-neocons-role/74465

Excerpt:

WASHINGTON — A new U.N. Human Rights Council official assigned to monitor Israel is calling for an official commission to study the role neoconservatives may have played in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

On March 26, Richard Falk, Milbank professor of international law emeritus at Princeton University, was named by unanimous vote to a newly created position to report on human rights in the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Arabs. While Mr. Falk's specialty is human rights and international law, since the attacks in 2001, he has devoted some of his time to challenging what he calls the "9-11 official version."

On March 24 in an interview with a radio host and former University of Wisconsin instructor, Kevin Barrett, Mr. Falk said, "It is possibly true that especially the neoconservatives thought there was a situation in the country and in the world where something had to happen to wake up the American people. Whether they are innocent about the contention that they made that something happen or not, I don't think we can answer definitively at this point. All we can say is there is a lot of grounds for suspicion, there should be an official investigation of the sort the 9/11 commission did not engage in and that the failure to do these things is cheating the American people and in some sense the people of the world of a greater confidence in what really happened than they presently possess."

...

Mr. Falk yesterday did not return e-mails and phone calls asking for a comment. But in 2004 he wrote the foreword to the book "The New Pearl Harbor," by David Ray Griffin. Mr. Griffin has posited that such an inside job is the likely explanation for the attacks.

In the preface, Mr. Falk writes, "There have been questions raised here and there and allegations of official complicity made almost from the day of the attacks, especially in Europe, but no one until Griffin has had the patience, the fortitude, the courage, and the intelligence to put the pieces together in a single coherent account."

When asked for a comment about the appointment of Mr. Falk, a former American ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton said, "This is exactly why we voted against the new human rights council." ...

See the 9/11 Web resources I already mentioned, Michael Springmann and Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer videos at YouTube, and there possibly are some videos with Sibel Edmonds about 9/11. There're videos for two former FBI agents or officers who resigned because they were obstructed in work they were doing in relation to the 9/11 attacks. They became "whistleblowers", but I don't recall their names.  And it's either a provable fact that 9/11 was a "false flag" operation, or it's like 99% or 98% certain, not insignificant probabilities.

"War is a Racket" -- USMC Major General Smedley Butler

"War is a Lie" -- David Swanson

With this said, though, I haven't heard of this UNHRC study into the neocons role in 9/11 actually happening.  The article of this Web page is the first time that I've heard about this study.

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