Why this site?

Here at What if they were Muslim we question what would happen if a Jewish, Christian, Hindu, ______(insert religion of choice) were to commit a crime in the name of their faith. Would it be treated the same way if a Muslim committed the exact same crime? Would very little emphasis be put on the perpetrators religion? Would it be stressed that the act is an aberration, a misrepresentation of the religion? Would the religion be mentioned at all?

Another Tid-Bit...

WITWM is not a site that opines on the “what if” scenario of your favorite Hollywood star being a Muslim. It has nothing to do with Angelina Jolie or Johnny Depp, etc. It has everything to do with the double standards in both media and pop culture that perpetuate the myth that Islam is inherently more violent than other religions or the root cause of misdeeds by Muslims.

Archive: Double Standards

Feds indict Klansman trying to build an anti-Muslim X-ray cannon

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This would be a huge story if the two were Muslims.

Feds indict Klansman trying to build an anti-Muslim X-ray cannon

(RawStory)

Federal prosecutors moved forward with a terrorism case against a purported Klansman who had been soliciting money from Jewish businessmen to build a bizarre — but technologically feasible — X-ray cannon intended to secretly kill Muslims.

Eric J. Feight, 55 pleaded guilty Wednesday to domestic terrorism-related charges in a federal courtroom in Albany, N.Y., and faces up to 15 years in prison. His alleged co-conspirator, Glendon Scott Crawford, 49, pleaded not guilty to the charges Wednesday after being indicted on three federal felony counts. The indictment filed in U.S. District Court in Albany, New York last week charged Crawford with attempting to produce and use a radiological dispersal device, conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction, and distributing information relating to weapons of mass destruction.

The Times-Union of Albany reported that Feight and his lawyers may seek a plea agreement in exchange for testimony against Crawford.

Investigators began looking at Crawford in April 2012, after the self-described Klansman approached a Schenectady synagogue, looking for financial support to build the radiation device.

“Crawford planned to create a mobile, remotely operated, radiation-emitting device capable of killing people silently from a distance with lethal doses of ionizing radiation,” according to the indictment. “Crawford’s intended targets were Muslims, Muslim-related organizations and persons Crawford believed were contributing to the demise of the United States.”

Crawford struck out in New York, then went to North Carolina looking for backing. The FBI had been tracking him at this point, notes the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Crawford “described to the [undercover FBI agents] his radiation emitting device, his remote initiation device, mobilizing the radiation device and discussed operation security concerns,” a criminal complaint filed last June said. “Crawford again solicited money to finance his scheme (primarily to fund the purchase or acquisition of an industrial strength x-ray system).”

Canada: Caught with a Pipe Bomb? You Can Still Board the Airplane if You’re White

Canada_PipeBomb

Canada: Caught with a Pipe Bomb? You Can Still Board the Airplane if You’re White

If his name was Abdul or Mohammad, no doubt he would be on a plane ride…to some undisclosed location for interrogation.

What if they were Muslim? (h/t: BBoyBlue)

Man found with pipe bomb at Edmonton airport allowed to fly

An 18-year-old man who was allowed to get on a flight at Edmonton International Airport in September after he was caught bringing a pipe bomb to security has been sentenced for possession of an explosive device.

Skylar Vincent Murphy was caught with the pipe bomb on Sept. 20. Security took the explosive away, but Murphy was given the go-ahead to continue on his flight.

Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) alerted RCMP to the case four days later. Murphy was arrested by Leduc RCMP on Sept. 27.

In an email response to questions from CBC News, CATSA spokesman Mathieu Larocque did not address why Murphy was allowed to get on the plane.

“Screening officers do not have the authority to apprehend or detain passengers,” he wrote. “When they see something potentially illegal, the(y) contact the police.”

On Dec. 5, he pleaded guilty and was sentenced to one year probation and a $100 fine.

He is also prohibited from possessing explosives, firearms or ammunition for one year, and must also make a $500 donation to the University of Alberta burn unit.

Why are Christian Militias never “Christian Extremists”?

A Christian man chases a Muslim with a dagger.

Why are Christian Militias never “Christian Extremists”?

By Juan Cole (Informed Comment)

The dramatic events in the Central African Republic no doubt seem distant and complex for a North American audience. CAR is geographically as large as France, but with a population of only 4.5 million (similar to Lebanon or Costa Rica). It consists roughly of 25% Muslim, 25% Protestant Christian, 25% Catholic Christian, and 25% adherents of African faiths.

Last spring, the Seleka coalition of Muslim clans made a coup, which has provoked Christian-Muslim faction-fighting. Christians have organized militias, which they maintain are self-defense forces aimed at expelling Seleka goons from their villages or neighborhoods. In the fighting, some 440,000 people have been displaced.

The anti-Balaka Christian militia massacred 24 Muslims this week. Whereas Selaka is often called extremists in the US press, the Christian militias are almost never called “extremist Christians.” Moreover, Western press reports imply that the massacre is understandable since these Seleka members are connected to high-ranking Seleka coup-makers.

While Western press reports do speak of Christian militia members, on the American side the E-word was little applied. But surely massacring 24 non-combatant people is extreme.

The BBC reports:

Greeks Protest Against Planned Mosque in Athens

Louisa Gouliamaki—AFP

Louisa Gouliamaki—AFP

PLANS FOR THE CAPITAL’S FIRST OFFICIAL MOSQUE WERE ANNOUNCED 13 YEARS AGO.

Some 700 members and supporters of Greek neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn protested in Athens on Saturday against the construction of the capital’s first official mosque.

Shouting “Greece belongs to the Greeks” and “No mosque in Athens,” protesters gathered in the city’s central Eleonas neighborhood, where the mosque will be constructed.

Lawmaker Eleni Zaroulia—the wife of Golden Dawn leader Nikos Michaloliakos—and three more of the party’s elected deputies reportedly participated in the protest. Michaloliakos is currently in pre-trial detention, charged with running a criminal organization following a musician’s murder by one of the group’s supporters in September.

In November, the government announced that a Greek consortium had been chosen to lead the construction of the Athens mosque, 13 years after plans were first announced. Five previous attempts to find a business group to back the project had failed.

Athens is one of the few European capitals without an official mosque, but in recent years several nonofficial places of worship have appeared in the Greek capital thanks to an increasing numbers of immigrants from countries such as Pakistan.

In 2011, the Greek government was forced to adopt a law ensuring the mosque’s construction. But concerns over where to place the mosque and protests from the far right led to the failure of five contract tenders. The only official mosques in Greece are situated in the northeast region of Thrace, where a minority group of Muslim Turks lives.

Priests lead Orthodox anti-gays in violent Tbilisi clashes with rights activists, police (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

Priests lead Orthodox anti-gays in violent Tbilisi clashes with rights activists, police (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

Thousands Orthodox anti-gay activists broke through police cordon and pursued gay rights protesters in Georgia’s capital, Tbilisi, injuring at least 28 people in the process. The violent brawl marred the May 17 International Day Against Homophobia.

The first sanctioned anti-homophobic rally in Georgia organized by Identity NGO activists had to be moved to a public garden on Tbilisi’s Freedom Square after a 10,000-strong Orthodox crowd gathered at the initial rally spot on Friday.

But heavy police cordons failed to contain furious anti-gay activists led by priests, who rushed to the new gay parade location. Upon breaking into the public garden, the agitated crowd engaged in a violent pursuit, beating and throwing stones at all the people who were thought to be representing and advocating for the minorities.

At least 28 people were injured in clashes, and 14 of them hospitalized, Georgian Minister of Health David Sergeenko said. A journalist suffering blunt force trauma to the head and a passer-by who had his leg broken were among the injured.

The police and special task forces managed to evacuate the rally participants using minibuses, but several vehicles were attacked in the process. Counter-demonstrators blocked the way and smashed the windows of a yellow van, in which minorities were thought to be carried.

Georgian ombudsman Uchya Nanusahvili was also compelled to leave the scene guarded by a dozen police after trying to persuade the Orthodox believers not to obstruct the gay rally, according to Interfax. The angry crowd responded to the rights commissioner plea by shouting insults.

Local media said that acting US Ambassador to Georgia Bridget Brink was caught in the turmoil too. Brink arrived at the scene before the clashes started and left without public comments, but her car was taken for a retreating vehicle of a gay rights defender and pursued, Georgia-Online reported.

The thwarted parade had been allowed by the city authorities, despite the call by the head of Georgia’s Orthodox Church to ban the event. Georgian Patriarch Ilya II on Thursday said it would be “an insult” to Georgian tradition. He also called homosexuality an “anomaly and illness.”

“The people do not want propaganda from minorities,” Orthodox priest Father Ioanne told AFP, as he stood among the jubilant anti-gay crowd in the center of Tbilisi. “When these people want to demonstrate then it becomes a problem,” he said.

Other priests who led the rally told reporters they would not allow “rampant immorality in Georgia.

Meanwhile, the Georgian parliament voiced its support for the minorities’ rights.

“The constitution assumes freedom of faith and views and no one has the right to go beyond the constitution and law,” Chairman of the Georgian Parliament David Usupashvili said at a Friday plenary session.

One of the parliamentary majority’s leaders, Georgy Gabashvili, has blamed the authorities, saying “the government has not taken sufficient measures to protect the rights of sexual minorities.” The parliamentary minority led by the Georgian president Mikhail Saakashvili has also spoken in support of the gay parade, according to Interfax.

Orthodox Christian activists run during clashes with gay rights activists at an International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO) rally in Tbilisi, May 17, 2013. REUTERS/David Mdzinarishvili (GEORGIA – Tags: CIVIL UNREST RELIGION SOCIETY POLITICS) – RTXZQ70

Israel Evicts Bedouins From West Bank Village

This is ridiculous. To be exact, this is what an Apartheid state does: state-sanctioned racism. Imagine for one second how the media will react if Muslims kicked out Jews or Christians out of a certain area because they declared the area a “live-fire training zone”, the world will create a huge media event surrounding it.

Israel Evicts Bedouins From West Bank Village

Army Declares Restricted Military Zone

Israeli soldiers evicted several hundred Bedouins from a village in the occupied West Bank on Monday after the army declared the area a live-fire training zone.

The residents of Wadi al-Maleh, a village mostly inhabited by shepherds in the arid area bordering Jordan, had almost all left their homes by an evening curfew and retreated to neighbouring villages, Aref Daraghmeh, a local leader told Reuters.

The displacement coincided with several demolitions of Arab properties in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, which come as the United States is trying to revive stalled peace.

In January, villagers received a similar eviction order and left without resisting, only to return after 48 hours. Almost all of their 90 buildings, including shelters for their animals, were demolished in 2010, local rights groups said.

Israeli troops prevented outsiders, including journalists, from accessing the area saying it was a “closed military zone”. The military did not respond to a request for comment.

Wadi al-Maleh is located in “Area C,” a swath of land making up two-thirds of the West Bank under full Israeli control and where most Jewish settlements are located.

Half a million settlers live in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, territory captured in the 1967 Middle East War which Palestinians want for a future state.

Israeli army firing zones comprise 18 percent of the West Bank, roughly the same size of “Area A,” the land including major cities and towns which is under full Palestinian control.

According to the U.N. Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), 5,000 Palestinians in 38 herding communities live on army firing zones, along with several sprawling Jewish settlements and farms.

Besides al-Maleh, 12 Bedouin villages throughout the length of the Jordan Valley have received eviction orders since 1999, according to the Association for Human Rights in Israel.

The International Court of Justice and most governments deem Jewish settlements in the West Bank illegal. Israel disputes this and cites Biblical and historical links to the land.

Israeli authorities razed two family homes in the East Jerusalem neighbourhood of al-Tur on Monday morning, displacing 18 Palestinians who failed to acquire elusive building permits, local officials said.

The army also demolished a well near a Palestinian refugee camp south of the city of Hebron and cleared an agricultural area of dozens of olive trees east of Bethlehem, according to Palestinian government media. Israeli officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Pastor charged in murder has first appearance

 

He Murdered his wife and shot his daughter. If Pastor Greer were Muslim, this would sound a lot like an honor killing yet the picture painted in the press is that of a psychologically troubled man.

Pastor charged in murder has first appearance

(cbs42.com)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) – An Alabama pastor charged in the shooting death of his wife has made his initial appearance on a murder charge.

Court records filed Thursday show the Rev. Terry Greer participated in the brief session earlier this week after being jailed in the January slaying of wife Lisa Greer.

Greer is jailed without bond after spending almost two months hospitalized while recovering from a suicide attempt the day of the killing.

Records show Greer was informed of the charges and told he has a legal right to remain silent.

A judge scheduled a preliminary hearing in Greer for March 21.

Greer was pastor of a large United Methodist church in Gardendale at the time of the killing. He transferred there last year after spending eight years in Decatur.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Copyright 2013 WIAT-TV CBS 42

Number of Anti-Government Groups Hits Record High


The number of conspiracy-peddling anti-government groups hit a record high last year, according to a report put out Tuesday by the Southern Poverty Law Center, which also found that hate groups in general remain at near-record levels.

Between 2000 and 2012, the number of hate groups, defined the by SPLC as those that verbally attack minority groups, rose from 602 to more than 1,000. The number declined slightly last year—from 1,018 to 1,007—but the number of so-called “patriot groups,” groups that generally believe the government is conspiring to take Americans’ guns and freedoms and impose one-world rule, hit a record high of 1,360 in 2012, up from 149 in 2008.

“We are seeing the fourth straight year of really explosive growth on the part of anti-government patriot groups and militias,” Mark Potok, senior fellow at the SPLC said on a conference call Tuesday. “That’s 913 percent in growth. We’ve never seen that kind of growth in any kind of group we cover.”

Why so much hate and paranoia? The culprits are pretty predictable: a liberal black president, the wider shift in demographics in the country, and the mainstreaming of formerly marginal conspiracies like Agenda 21, says Potok.

Although these groups aren’t necessarily involved in violence or criminality, their rise still has advocates worried. “Only a small percentage acts violently, but they should raise red flags and cause concern,” Daryl Johnson, former senior domestic terrorism analyst at the Department of Homeland Security, said during the conference call. And Potok says that immigration reform, gun control legislation, and the increasing social acceptance of LGBT rights have the potential to further fuel growth of these groups.

On Tuesday, the SPLC sent a letter to the Department of Homeland Security urging it to amp up its non-Islamic domestic terrorism monitoring. The agency has done a lot less monitoring on non-Islamic terror since 2009, when a leaked DHS report revealing a resurgence of the radical right caused an uproar amongst GOP lawmakers and right-wing talk show hosts. The controversy spurred Homeland Security secretary Janet Napolitano to withdraw the report and dismantle the domestic non-Islamic terrorism unit that had written it.

Johnson, whose team at DHS wrote the report, says that since then, “nothing at the Department of Homeland Security regarding this issue has changed. DHS has one or two analysts looking at right-wing extremism. Meanwhile it has dozens of analysts and resources looking at home-grown Islamic extremists.”

“We need to stand up a domestic terrorism unit and start analyzing this threat,” he says.

 

Sri Lanka’s Buddhist Extremists Threaten BBC and Muslim Journalists

No-Halal-Sign-300

Sri Lanka’s Buddhist extremists threaten BBC and Muslim journalists

(Colombo Page)

Feb 18, Colombo: BBC Sri Lanka Correspondent Charles Haviland said that he and his crew were threatened while they were filming a rally of Sinhala Buddhist extremist organization Bodu Bala Sena yesterday at Maharagama.

The hardline Sinhalese Buddhist group called Bodu Bala Sena held a protest rally Sunday at Maharagama to call for the abolition of the Halal certification of foods and asked the business owners to remove Halal certified food from their stores by March 31.

“As we finished filming at the rally, our three-member BBC team and driver were seriously threatened with violence by some members of a mob of more than 20 young men who told us not to drive off,” Haviland said in a statement.

“Some police arrived and looked on as my Sri Lankan colleagues were verbally abused in filthy language, described as “traitors” and accused of having “foreign parents” and working for a “foreign conspirator” who was “against Sri Lanka”,” Haviland said.

The protesters have threatened the newsman and his crew and warned them not to return to the location.

A reporter from the Navamini Muslim newspaper was also harassed by the crowd and handed over to the Maharagama police. Police detained the reporter until 8:30 p.m. before releasing him.

The Sri Lankan government and the Muslim clerics’ organizations have repeatedly said that Halal certification is voluntary for Sri Lankan businesses and it is necessary when Sri Lanka exports food items to European, Middle Eastern and South East Asian countries.

The President has also urged the extremist Buddhist group not to arouse communal disharmony inciting violence.

Alabama White Supremacist Charged For Plot To Blow Up Black Classmates

Source: Ledger-enquirer via Kirsten Savali on BPNEXT

(newsone.com)

Alabama White Supremacist Charged For Plot To Blow Up Black Classmates

A 17-year-old Alabama high school student, Derek Shrout, who was arrested last week for allegedly plotting to kill 6 Black students by blowing them up with homemade grenades, has been released on $75,000 bond, reports the Ledger-Enquirer.

Shrout, known at Russell County High School as a self-proclaimed, White supremacist, was arrested last week after a teacher turned a misplaced notebook over to authorities where he had written that the bombs were “a step or two away from being ready to explode,” said Russell County Sheriff Heath Taylor.

“The first thing I wanted to know was if you did exactly what he wrote, would it blow up,” said Taylor. “And everybody that I’ve consulted with has said that it would absolutely blow up exactly the way he wrote it.”

Taylor also revealed that from all indications the explosion would have been serious.

“He has a lot of pent-up anger toward blacks,” he said.

Bomb-making material, including tobacco cans and shrapnel, were discovered when police searched his home last Friday. Two large cans were labeled ‘Fat Boy’ and ‘Little Man,’ referencing the two atomic bombs that the United States used to decimate Hiroshima and Nagasaki during War World II.

After Shrout and his military family moved to the area, he joined the Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC), but soon became involved with a White power group.

“In the hallway, at breakfast, at the lunch tables, after school where we have our bus parking lot, he’d have his big old group of friends and they’d go around doing the whole white power crazy stuff,” JROTC 1st Sgt. David White said.

Classmate Jessica Watkins, who described Shrout as “quiet and sweet,” said that she was horrified when she sat in his desk Monday:

“It said, ‘white power’ with the F-word, and it was covered in Nazi symbols,” Watkins said. The teacher tried to scrub it off, she said, but couldn’t because it was in permanent marker.

Shrout often would holler “white power” and make a “W” sign with his fingers and hold it to his chest, Watkins said. “But I always thought he was joking around,” she said.

Watkins said Shrout’s behavior was even more puzzling because, even though he said n*gger and other racial slurs, his best friend at school is Black.

His parents declined to comment, but have fully cooperated with authorities, allowing them full access to their home.

Shrout’s attorney, Jeremy Armstrong, who entered a “not guilty” plea for his client in response to one charge of first-degree attempted assault, said that everyone is over-reacting because of the tragedy that occurred last month at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, when Adam Lanza, 20, walked into the school and murdered 26 people, including 20 children, before killing himself.

“Our position is that our client had no intention to harm anybody,” said Armstrong.

Shrout also claims that the notebook, which he began writing 3 days after the massacre at Sandy Hook, was fictitious.

“When you go to his house and you start finding the actual devices that he talked about being made, no, it’s not fiction anymore,” Taylor said. “Those devices were – all they needed was the black powder and the fuse – he had put a lot of time and thought into that.”

The teen also wrote about shooting students and faculty at the school. There were several weapons in his home, including his father’s hunting rifle, shotgun and handgun.

“He just talks about some students, he specifically named six students and one faculty member and he talked about weapons and the amounts of ammunition for each weapon that he would use if he attacked the school,” Taylor said.

As conditions of his release, set forth by Judge Albert Johnson, Shrout “must remain at home; wear a GPS locator bracelet on his ankle; refrain from initiating contact with anyone connected to the school; and be monitored by a parent while on the Internet,” reports the Ledger-Enquirer.

The judge scheduled his preliminary hearing for Feb. 12 at 9 a.m.
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