August 19, 2010 |
The debate over the "ground zero mosque" has evolved into something much bigger than whether a Muslim center should be built two blocks from hallowed ground. This debate is really about whether Americans still have the self-confidence to stand up for our Constitution's principles - or whether we've become so fearful that we're eager to junk them. I say this although I believe the idea of building a mosque in this place at this time is unwise. And I sympathize with the families of 9/11 victims who are uncomfortable with the prospect (although some of the families support it)
May 23, 2010
An American Story of Love and Fear in the Homeland By Stephan Salisbury Nation Books. 312 pp. $26.95 Reviewed by David Cole Much of the debate surrounding the effectiveness of the Bush administration's response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, focuses on zeros. Defenders of the administration point out that there have been no successful terrorist attacks on the U.S. mainland since 9/11. Critics note that the Bush administration cannot point to a single imminent attack averted through its preventive initiatives, and that of the more than 5,000 foreign nationals it detained in the U.S. in the first two years after 9/11, none stands convicted of any terrorist crime.
August 17, 2010 |
A proposal to build a mosque in Lower Manhattan just blocks away from the site of the 9/11 terrorist attacks has emerged as the hot-button issue of the moment in the midterm campaigns, putting candidates on the spot. In Pennsylvania, the candidates for U.S. Senate are lining up on opposite sides of the question. Republican Pat Toomey says he does not believe the mosque should be built there, while Rep. Joe Sestak, the Democratic nominee, says that guarantees of religious freedom in the Constitution confer the right for Muslims to worship anywhere - not that he's endorsing the specific project, mind you. "It is provocative in the extreme to build a mosque in the shadow of ground zero," said Toomey spokeswoman Nachama Soloveichik.
January 18, 2012 |
THE IMAM and members of the board of a prominent West Philadelphia mosque went to court yesterday in an effort to overturn a hostile takeover by rival factions, which include supporters of the ousted imam, Shamsud-din Ali - a central figure in the 2005 City Hall bugging scandal. Elected officials of the Philadelphia Masjid, the city's oldest continuous African-American mosque, filed an emergency injunction Jan. 13, a week after fights erupted inside the mosque. Court documents allege that some rival members interrupted religious services on Jan. 6 and assaulted Imam Malik Mubashshir and Rafiq Kalam id-din, chairman of the mosque's board.
November 6, 2003
Misconceptions about Muslims, harmful anonymous flyers and accusations of political correctness have clouded a debate over a proposal to build a mosque to serve 15 families in Voorhees, Camden County. Tonight's zoning board meeting over the final site plan should focus on facts, not emotions. Residents turned out in force at earlier zoning board meetings. While some expressed reasonable worries associated with houses of worship - traffic, lighting, loss of property taxes - the particular mistrust and unease in this case clearly trace back to Sept.
October 27, 2012 |
KABUL, Afghanistan - A suicide bomber detonated explosives outside a mosque packed with senior regional officials in northern Afghanistan on a major Muslim holiday Friday, killing 41 people. The officials escaped unhurt, and many of the dead were soldiers and police. The attack was the latest in a series of deadly strikes in recent weeks against Afghan army, police and government officials. The choice of targets suggests that the insurgents are increasingly turning against Afghan authorities and security forces now that NATO is drawing down toward a final withdrawal of foreign combat troops in 2014.
May 31, 2013 |
THE LONG-RUNNING tug-of-war over who will run Philly's oldest African-American mosque has come to an end for now. More than a year after elected officials of the Philadelphia Masjid sought an emergency injunction to resolve a fight for control of the West Philly mosque, a Common Pleas judge ruled two weeks ago that those officials can retain their positions until July. The judge also ruled that members of a rival group known as the "concerned believers," whom the elected officials said wrongfully removed them from their posts in a hostile takeover, will serve on the board for the next three years.
November 11, 2012 |
Not long after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, a small Muslim congregation in Voorhees looked into building a mosque, but ran into opposition from critics who claimed its members had terrorist connections. Lori Volpe, a Buddhist who teaches yoga and mindfulness, was among the first to support plans for the mosque. Now, she and others involved in the fight to build the Voorhees Islamic Center have another mission: helping their South Jersey neighbors achieve inner peace. That, at least, is the goal of a new interfaith community group, Tapestry, which will hold a public meeting at 2 p.m. Sunday at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Cherry Hill.
August 16, 2010 |
A place is made sacred by a widespread belief that it was visited by the miraculous or the transcendent (Lourdes, the Temple Mount), by the presence there once of great nobility and sacrifice (Gettysburg), or by the blood of martyrs and the indescribable suffering of the innocent (Auschwitz). When we speak of Ground Zero as hallowed ground, what we mean is that it belongs to those who suffered and died there - and that such ownership obliges us, the living, to preserve the dignity and memory of the place, never allowing it to be forgotten, trivialized, or misappropriated.
October 13, 2003 |
In August, my family and I visited Toronto, where we offered our daily prayers in a mosque within a few minutes of where we were staying. This afforded us a great opportunity to meet local people and learn their issues and culture. To promote this practice, we are working on establishing a mosque at Berlin Road and Lafayette Avenue in Voorhees. A coalition of people of various faiths will meet at my home Thursday to build support for the project. Some have tried to equate a mosque with terrorism, which is appalling rhetoric designed to scare people.