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Monday, May 25, 2009

Coming Attractions?

Date: Thursday, May 21, 2009, 12:50 PM

Pipes May 21, 2009

Seattle Responds to Its Jihadi, Naveed Haq
U.S. Judge Permits Scrutiny of Muslim Convert's Name
More on the North Carolina Jihadi, Mohammed Taheri-azar
A History of Muslim Terrorism against Jews in the United States
by Daniel Pipes
May 21, 2009

The arrest yesterday of four would-be jihadis before they could attack two synagogues in New York City brings to mind a long list of terrorist assaults in the United States by Muslims on Jews. These began in 1977 and have continued regularly since, as suggested by the following list of major incidents (ignoring lesser ones that did damage only to property, such a series of attacks on Chicago-area synagogues):

March 1977: Hanafi Muslims seized three buildings in Washington, including the headquarters of B'nai B'rith, and held hostages for 39 hours, leading to one death and one severe injury.

November 1990: El Sayyid Nosair assassinated Rabbi Meir Kahane in a New York hotel.

February 1993: Ramzi Yusuf, the mastermind of the bombing of the World Trade Center in New York, which claimed 7 lives and injured more than a thousand people,, declared the towers not a civilian target but a military one, by virtue of the fact that it might house a "Zionist official."

June 1993: "Boom! Broken windows. Jews in the street," is how one of the plotters described the carnage that would ensue from a planned "day of terror" with simultaneous bombings of the United Nations complex, the Lincoln and Holland tunnels, and other New York landmarks..

March 1994: Rashid Baz, a Palestinian immigrant, opened fire on a van carrying Orthodox Jewish boys across the Brooklyn Bridge, killing 16-year-old Ari Halberstam.

July 1997: 'Ali Hasan Abu Kamal, a 69-year-old Palestinian, shot seven tourists atop the Empire State building, killing one and severely wounding another; in his suicide note, he accused the United States of using Israel as "an instrument" against the Palestinians.

July 1997: Ghazi Ibrahim Abu Maizar's near-explosion of a pipe bomb in the New York City subway system.

July 2002: Hesham Mohamed Ali Hadayet's attack on the El Al counter at Los Angeles International Airport, killing two

September 2005: Jam'iyyat Ul-Islam Is-Saheeh plot against two Los Angeles-area synagogues, disrupted due to a dropped mobile phone.

May 2009: Four arrested in attempt to blow up two New York City synagogues.

(This listing is drawn in part from a 1999 article of mine; I shall add to it as needed.)


(1) Inexplicably, Muslim-on-Jewish violence peaked in the years 1990-97 and has declined since.

(2) Muslims of immigrant and of African-American origins have each engaged in a share of the attacks roughly proportionate to their demographics.

(3) As I concluded in a 2005 article on this subject, "Even though most Jews resist acknowledging it, the Muslim threat is changing Jewish life in the United States. The golden age of American Jewry is coming to an end." (May 21, 2009)

Related Topics: Antisemitism, Muslims in the United States, Radical Islam, Terrorism

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Dhimmitude at British Midland Airways
by Daniel Pipes
April 30, 2009

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British Midland Airways Limited, known as BMI, has taken two steps toward Islamization recently that should set off alarm bells.

It fired Lisa Ashton, 37, a stewardess, in April 2008 because she refused two directives concerning her time in Saudi Arabia: in public areas there she must wear the abaya, the black robe that covers everything but the face, feet, and hands; and she must follow behind her male colleagues. When Ashton turned down flights to Saudi Arabia, claiming discrimination, BMI dismissed her. Ashton brought suit against BMI. Describing her case, she said that "It's not the law that you have to walk behind men in Saudi Arabia, or that you have to wear an abaya, and I'm not going to be treated as a second-class citizen. It's outrageous. I'm a proud Englishwoman and I don't want these restrictions placed on myself." Ashton lost the first round when an employment tribunal ruled that BMI was justified in imposing "rules of a different culture" on its staff and cleared the company of sexual discrimination. Ashton may seek a judicial review of the decision.

The digital map on BMI writes Haifa as "Khefa" and does not name Israel.

Its digital maps on the airlines' twice daily flights from London's Heathrow Airport to Tel Aviv's Ben-Gurion Airport, the kind that passengers watch while on the plane, marking the flight's progress, did not show Israel. Mel Bezalel explains in the Jerusalem Post: "Instead of viewing Tel Aviv or other Israeli cities signposted on screens, customers flying on two BMI-owned Airbus A320 airplanes have instead been exclusively shown Haifa, spelled 'Khefa' - the Arab name of the city before 1948." BMI apologized and proffered an excuse: namely, that the digital maps were inherited when BMI bought British Mediterranean Airways (BMED) in 2007. BMED flew primarily to the Middle East and tailored its maps to the many Muslim passengers on its flights. BMI spokesman Phil Shepherd said that the "old maps" were due to be deactivated and new maps, which do mention Israel and Tel Aviv, will appear on screens in two weeks.

Comment: These two incidents vividly demonstrate how close commercial ties to the Muslim world, and especially Saudi Arabia, often involve cultural and political influence. Whether BMI or BMED, Western corporations in general need to work especially hard to maintain their integrity when encountering this pressure. (April 30, 2009)

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Drag Racing vs. Islamic Civilization?
by Daniel Pipes
April 22, 2009

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In an amusing article, "Drag Racing's Patron Sheik: Speed-Crazy Prince From Qatar Spends Millions in Bid to Dominate Sport; Sushi at the Dragstrip," Matthew Futterman writes in the Wall Street Journal about Sheikh Khalid bin Hamad Al-Thani, 22, a son of the emir of Qatar, and his well-funded love for car-racing.

The most important figure in drag racing this year isn't some good-ol' boy who grew up hot-rodding around the sport's birthplace in southern California. … A drag-racing fanatic since age 12, Mr. Al-Thani has made a long-term commitment to the sport and is spending an estimated $10 million this year to support a team with the best cars, crew, equipment and research available.

Research, Futterman explains, is the name of the game:

Sheikh Khalid bin Hamad Al-Thani, left, with Al-Anabi team executive Chad Head.

While drag racing looks simple, it's really a scientific chess game where engineers play as large a role as the driver stomping on the gas pedal. The trick is to synchronize the engine and clutch during a massive controlled explosion as track conditions change. Intricate adjustments, such as the addition of just a few grams of weight in the clutch, can be the difference between winning and losing, or even a fatal crash into the wall at 300 mph. …Most teams have the same equipment, but more money allows for more research and testing, which makes for smarter decisions on race day about an infinite number of adjustments. Mr. Al-Thani hopes his investment will one day make him international drag racing's dominant owner.

The article goes to explain how Al-Thani's lavishly funded efforts at a moment of recession could indeed help achieve his dream. But the larger question, left unasked in the article, is how Al-Thani reconciles the good-ol' boy culture of his favorite sport with the strictures of Islam as understood in his native Qatar. Put differently, as these two cultural giants, Islam and the United States, face off in one young man, which one will prevail? Will he bring Islam to the track or racing to Qatar? Or some unpredictable mix of the two?

This should be interesting to watch develop. (April 22, 2009)

Related Topics: Muslims in the United States, Persian Gulf

(Daniel Pipes sends out a mailing of his writings 1-2 times a week.)

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