Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Proposed Mosque near Ground Zero - Part I

Those curious why the Muslims, seeking to build a Mosque/Community center close to ground zero, would name their project the “The Córdoba House” should check out the site depicting the mosque at Córdoba,Spain. In case you desire a little more history, you can find it on Wikipedia. Reading about this city’s location provides another clue to the naming of this architectural venture. That is the fact the city is one of a very few cities in the world, in geographical terms, known to be an almost exact antipodal city. The definition is not as important in this case as the derivative of the word which is from the Greek words: anti- "opposed" and pous "foot". To me this is very symbolic and if Islamic Radicals are anything, they are steeped in symbolism; e.g. the Twin Towers were destroyed because they “symbolized” American Capitalism; the Pentagon was attacked because it “symbolized” American Power and I believe that Flight 93 was supposed to attack the White House which of course “symbolized” American leadership. A Mosque erected near ground zero would “symbolize” the Islamic “opposite” (my interpretation of antipode) to the “evilness of the Christian backed Capitalistic system known as America”. Actually more like the Triumph of Islam over Christianity and reclamation of Islamic lands previously lost to King Ferdinand (not the one who sponsored Columbus but he was canonized by the Catholic Church). Besides, dedicating this Islamic tower on the tenth anniversary of the destruction of the twin towers is not what I call an attempt “ smooth relations between the U.S. and the Muslim world”; at least as far as American citizens are concerned.

Now that I’ve established the symbolism behind the placement of the mosque, unlike Nancy Pelosi, I’d like to research:
The organization pushing to erect the Mosque
The Imam behind the “Córdoba Initiative”
The funding of this enterprise.

First the funding because last I heard, at the time of this writing, Rauf’s organization had less than $20,000 in its bank account while it needs about $100,000,000 to erect the structure. Proponents of this project, as well as the Imam himself, maintain that “No Money from Terrorists” will be used in constructing this mosque, however, Feisal Abdul Rauf will not denounce Hamas as a terrorist organization. Therefore, monies collected from that organization would not be considered as a “terrorist” source according to his perspective. Additionally, he is currently on his fourth State Department sponsored (taxpayer funded) tour; two under the Bush administration and once earlier this year, via the State Department’s Bureau of International Information Program. Many in the “Main Stream Media” (news organizations controlled by the Obama Administration) denounce the significance of objections to the Imam’s participation in this program because he agreed to volunteer to participate in this project before plans for building the Mosque were announced. Oh, and don’t forget, he has promised the State Department that he would not attempt any Córdoba House fundraising. Great, so by applying this logic to our Civil War, if this program had been in place back in 1861, I guess Jefferson Davis would have been provided trips to Southern states even after Confederate forces had fired on Fort Sumter on April 12 of that year if only he had volunteered to participate in the program at an earlier date. And if Davis had promised not to attempt to raise money for the Confederacy on these trips, there could be no questioning of his motives or intents either. I almost forgot, the State Department has forbidden any news reporting on this trip by any organizations other than “local” media to prevent any “out of context” news coverage. Good move, ignore our first amendment rights because Aljazeera has such a stellar reputation for reporting facts in an unbiased manner. Considering this administration has displayed such antipathy towards our Constitution, what else could we expect?

The Córdoba Initiative is the organization behind the push for constructing this Mosque/Community Center was established by the Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf. It seems to me that a Website for an institution copyrighted in 2006 would have more than a "Coming Soon” banner on its Homepage. When I check some of the other pages available, like the “About us” page, it contains a quote by Elie Wiesel, inferring the backing of the Nobel Laureate for this Islamic group, which is extremely doubtful considering Wiesel’s documented views on Jerusalem and Islam. Besides the Imam, others listed on this page that should be investigated are:
John S. Bennett
Courtney Erwin
Josh Martin

John S. Bennett is a former Mayor of Aspen. Colorado and details about his association with the Garrison Institute seem to have been obscured. Interesting that he is listed as a “…founding Executive Director of the Garrison Institute” because a check on the Garrison Institute site only mentions him as a Senor Program Advisor and a member of the Advisory Council in the Summer of 2004 and 2005 newsletters. Checking out other items on this site reveals that this organization is little more than a propaganda machine for the “Green Movement. After all, on the Garrison Institute’s page Supporting Bold Leadership on Climate Change provides reference of creation and a link to the 1Sky organization. Clicking the Allies TAB and then selecting the “Notable People” category produces the following list:
President Bill Clinton (Now we know why Hillary has ignored this issue)
Van Jones, Green For All (Isn't he an avowed Communist?)
 Rev. Sally Bingham, The Regeneration Project
 Professor James Hansen, Columbia University
 Bill McKibben, Middlebury College
 Gus Speth, Yale University
 Dr. Joel Hunter, Senior Pastor, Northland Church
 Sheila Watt-Cloutier, International Chair, Inuit Circumpolar Conference
 Stephen Heinz, President, Rockefeller Brothers Fund
 Professor Jon Isham, Middlebury College
 Edward Mazria, Founder and Executive Director, Architecture 2030

Also, under the list of National and International Environmental Organizations there is one member listed that has no clickable link: Environmental Support Center. A check on this organization reveals why they would not want you to easily access this site, especial when you inquire on their Institutional Supporters and find scary, progressive organization such as The Ford Foundation and The Underdog Fund of the Tides Foundation. Did I mention that when you click on the About Us link, you can find a beautiful picture of Van Jones?

The “Programs” page sports a partial quote by the 2003 Noble Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi, which would be a more impressive endorsement if not for the fact that this award is considered as an assault on the Middle East policies of the United States. This fact alone seems to ring a false note considering the very first program listed on this page, which is to “...improve the relationship between America and the Islamic world”. It’s a concern to me that all I can find on this page about the “The Shariah Project” is the following quip:
“Shariah (Islamic holy law) requires a nation to care for its citizens’ welfare, provide religious freedom, offer educational opportunities, protect minorities, and allow citizens to participate in their own governance. The Shariah Project will enumerate the societal – as opposed to religious – obligations that Shariah requires of a nation governed according to Islamic principles. The Project will strengthen the capacity of moderate Muslims to employ the vocabulary and principles of Islam to reduce conflict and promote democratic values in Islamic societies.”

…a quip that I do NOT believe because Shariah law is what the Taliban imposes in Afghanistan and we all know how well that is working to ease the life of all Afghani’s, including women and any NON-Muslims that have not been executed to date.

The History contains a quote of the American loving and scandal free administration of the former leader of the Protector of the World organization called The United Nations, Kofi Annan. Funny thing about the history page is that it contains no entries after November 2006.

The Advisors page, which starts with an out of context quote by John C. Danforth implying that religion is problematic, lists such notables as Karen Armstrong, Mrs. Samia Farouki (pictured with her husband Mr. Abul Huda Farouki who like John S. Bennett have ties to Aspen, Colorado), Rabbi Bradley Hirschfield, Julia Armstrong Jitkoff, John Edwin Mroz, Elaine Pagels and Shashi Tharoor.

Finally, the Contact page is adorned with a partial quote or poem from Rumi, a 13th century person I know absolutely nothing about. The most significant item to me on this page is the second address listed for this organization: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Why is this interesting…because Malaysia does not recognize the State of Israel…Funny place to locate an office of an organization that implies to be supported by a Jew, Elie Wiesel.

Lastly, I would like to look into the Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, but this blog is getting too long to continue for now, so I’ll cover him in a separate Blog.

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