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Local Muslim Civil Liberties Group Applauds Bin Laden’s Killing


Aired 5/3/11

The Council on American-Islamic Relations in San Diego says bin Laden never represented Islam.

San Diego Muslim leaders seized the news of Osama bin Laden's killing as a renewed chance to condemn terrorism.

Video unavailable. Read transcript below.


The Council on American-Islamic Relations or CAIR, as it is known, said it welcomed news of bin Laden's death by U.S. forces. The group said the Al Qaeda leader never represented Muslims or Islam. CAIR spokesman Edgar Hopida said people should remember that bin Laden was also responsible for the deaths of Muslims.

“He had to be brought to justice for the crimes he committed not only against Americans but thousands of Muslims who are also victims of his network of terrorists," Hopida said.

Hopida said it’s time for Islamic extremists to put down their arms.

"The U.S. has made it clear that they will go after terrorists and if possible bring them to justice. I think it's not in the best interest to for these terrorists to continue this fight against the U.S," Hopida said.

Hopida also urged Americans not to become overzealous in their celebration of bin Laden's death and transform the event into an attack against Muslims.

San Diego CAIR Executive Director Hanif Mohebi says he hopes bin Laden’s death ushers in a more peaceful era between Americans and the Muslim world.

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Avatar for user 'jahmonkey'

jahmonkey | May 3, 2011 at 11:06 a.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

"Hopida also urged Americans not to become overzealous in their celebration of bin Laden's death and transform the event into an attack against Muslims."

Clean your own house first...the ones attacking Muslims are fellow Muslims not 'overzealous Americans'...hypocrites!

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Avatar for user 'randolphslinky'

randolphslinky | May 3, 2011 at 1:05 p.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

Bin Laden only represented what the Quran teaches. The irony of any Muslim organization seizing on the opportunity to condemn him isn't lost on me. What would really be helpful is an honest dialogue as to why there is so much violence and oppression from this faith. For anyone who isn't intellectually dishonest it's crystal clear that much of the problem lies within the pages of Quran itself.

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Avatar for user 'sublime619'

sublime619 | May 3, 2011 at 2:45 p.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

Hateful and disturbing comments. As a person who knows Muslims and has learned about Islam, bin Laden does not in any shape or form represent the teachings of Islam. He is a terrorist and criminal.

If the problem is Islam itself or the Quran as our mistaken commentator randolphslinky has said, then there would have been over a billion terrorists to deal with. That isnt the case at all. Terrorism expert Robert Pape also disagrees that religion is the core reason for OBL and other terrorists.

Jahmonkey, apparently you havent read the news lately. An Islamic Center was vandalized in Portland, Maine just after the news hit that OBL was killed. Wrong is wrong period.

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Avatar for user 'randolphslinky'

randolphslinky | May 3, 2011 at 9:52 p.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

sublime619 points out one act of anger toward an Islamic Center in Portland and then follows with the usual line about how millions of Muslims live in peace. I don't condone acts of violence against Mosques but I also don't hold back from speaking the truth.

What sublime619 and many others like him/her? attempt to do is paint Islam as all rosy, it's followers as victims, and that anyone who can't see this is just being hateful, or a meanie.

What sublime619 doesn't mention is the almost daily reports of violence, murder, and mayhem committed by Muslims worldwide in the name of Islam wherever they dominate. Doesn't mention this faith's oppression to women, minorities, homosexuals, and anyone who is of any other faith. Ignores their rabid hatred of Jews, and anyone that questions their supremacist attitudes and quest for global domination.

I don't give a rip what Robert Pape or anyone else says when there is a tsunami of evidence to the contrary. Political correctness is for politicians and fools. If a person were to be the least bit curious they could easily research and find that there is definitely something wrong in the camp of Islam. And when you boil it all down, most of it lies in the pages of the Quran itself. When you believe what is written in it, then a culture springs from that, and that culture then condones and promotes so much of the behavior that most of us here in the West find abhorrent.

While most Muslims are probably not going to behave that way here in America (where they are vastly out-numbered and know that it won't be tolerated), that is not the case in places in the world where Muslims outnumber the rest of the population. This is just fact, not opinion, and so if you want to call that hateful and disturbing I would agree with you - that is, that Islam is very hateful and very disturbing.

I would also add that Islam has the potential to cause a lot of problems for us here in America if we continue pretend to "see no evil, hear no evil, and speak no evil" about a religion that makes no qualms about our value as non-Muslims.

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Avatar for user 'sublime619'

sublime619 | May 4, 2011 at 4:29 p.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

Sounds like you dont know too many Muslims or know too much about Islam based on valid sources but rather anecdotal evidence.

I'll take the Director of the Chicago Project on Terrorism and Security (CPOST)'s (Dr. Robert Pape) research over you any time. Unlike you he has data from 1980-2009 that supports his conclusions on suicide terrorism. It has nothing to do with political correctness but with data and facts.

Michael Scheuer , the CIA operative in charge of the Bin Laden monitoring group even echoes this. He says terrorists like bin Laden and other groups dont hate us for who we are but rather what we do, in other words foreign policy.

Dr. Eli Berman who is the Research Director for International Security Studies, University of California Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation also says terrorism is not religiously motivated. He actually wrote a book on Terrorism from the economic angle.

So I will take those experts who studied terrorism indepthly using data and research rather than some armchair scholar putting up comments on kpbs.

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Avatar for user 'randolphslinky'

randolphslinky | May 5, 2011 at 8:42 a.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

Sublime619 as a matter of fact, I have been to several countries in the Middle East and have had extensive experience both here and abroad with Muslims.

My experiences have shown me that our political issues are only a piece of the pie, that part of it only explains resentment to America, but does not explain honor killings, oppression of women, hatred toward homosexuals, hatred towards Jews, and so many other facets of their dark ages behavior.

We've had Muslims who were born here, went to school here, and had every available opportunity any other American would have and yet they have turned on us. It isn't just politics, it IS religion. Remember Maj Hasad at Fort Hood? How about Anwar al-Awlaki? And there have been many others, this isn't just about politics.

Imagine if for example the American Indians had been Islamic. Do you think we could keep them on reservations?

Okay, so I could go on and on here for as long as the day is long, but the fact is Osama Bin Laden and Al Qaeda do not exist alone because of American Imperialism, or because of western oppression, they exist because of a belief in the Quran and what is written in it.

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Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | May 5, 2011 at 9:39 a.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

@Jahlionmonkeyman, there are plenty of verbal attacks on the air waves.

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Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | May 5, 2011 at 9:42 a.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

See, that's where you anti-religious bigots are wrong, Slinsky. You give him way too much credit for the sincerity of his convictions! LOL LOL LOL If that doesn't prove your anti-Muslim bigotry--and anti-religious bigotry in general, I don't know what the hell does! Bin Laden was as much a Muslim as the Identiy Christians up in Idaho are TRUE Christians.

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Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | May 5, 2011 at 10:37 a.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

SLINSKY, find me "oppression of minorities" in the Koran or the Hadith or shut your mouth. If the Kurds were persecuted in Turkey and Iraq it is for pan-Turkic and pan-Arab racist causes--it had nothing to do with the Koran or the oral traditions. Likewise, the tribalism that exists both in the Middle East and Africa, has ABOSULTELY NOTHING to do with the their religion. The rioting between Arbas and Berbers in secular Algeria during the 90s also had NOTHING to do with religion. And the superiority complex of the Pushtuns over Hezaras and others in Afghanistan and Pakistan has like NOTHING to do with the Koran or the orad tradition. Furthermore, as a an example closer to home, Malcolm X broke away from the cultish Nation of Islam AFTER visiting the Middle East and seeing for himself that things were not as Elijah M. claimed.

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Avatar for user 'randolphslinky'

randolphslinky | May 5, 2011 at 11:21 a.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

When people get rankled over something I’ve said about Islam I expect it. I know there will always be “defenders of the faith” so to speak. They will paint me and anyone else who simply states that the Quran condones the very behavior that Muslims say they are against – as essentially being ignorant bigots.

But anyone with enough education to read can pick up a translated version of the Quran and see that it is crystal clear on what the fate of non-Muslims is to be. It’s clear about what our value is, and it’s clear on how we are to be dealt with. It is therefore understandable that so much violence is incubated in this faith toward anyone that isn’t a member. In fact, it’s the same reason why Muslims kill other Muslims. If you’re not pious enough, or not a follower of the “correct” sect you could be a target. We see this routinely in the news. You don’t see this routinely for any other faith.

Political types will never admit to such things because it would be a career ender. And the same is true for any political analyst that values their position or any professor that wants to maintain their status at a university. Look what happened to Juan Williams at NPR. When it comes to the subject of religion in this country, we tip toe around it carefully, and that is especially true of Islam.

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Avatar for user 'Natalie Walsh'

Natalie Walsh, KPBS Staff | May 5, 2011 at 1:13 p.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

Please keep the discussion civil. Our guidelines for posting are below if you would like to review them.

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Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | May 5, 2011 at 2 p.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

@RANDOLPH 1) Political correctness is for politicians and fools" Do you feel that way about "politcal correctness in reference to gays? Bingo.

2) I'm not a "defender of the faith," but I do respect the major religions without having to embrace any of them and I am certainly not going to do a "Juan Williams."

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Avatar for user 'randolphslinky'

randolphslinky | May 5, 2011 at 4:05 p.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

@mission - Most of the time I really can't understand what your point is, but I'll be a sport and take a stab at what I think you're asking.

Homosexuals should be treated as human beings. If you have a disagreement with a human being about something, you can make your point through a valid argument.

I don't respect any religion. I don't necessarily go out looking for a fight when I say the things I do - what I really want is to get people to think critically about what they say and believe. I try to do the same.

You don't have to "do a Juan Williams," that's your choice. I haven't read too much on Juan lately, but he expressed something that many Americans probably feel but would probably not admit, at least not on national television.

I'm glad Juan said what he did. Islam scares people. If Juan had said he felt nervous whenever he saw Catholic priests around children would he have been treated as harshly? I'll bet not.

"Many of us saw religion as harmless nonsense. Beliefs might lack all supporting evidence but, we thought, if people needed a crutch for consolation, where's the harm? September 11th changed all that."
— Richard Dawkins

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Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | May 6, 2011 at 11:50 a.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

Oh, I think you very much know what I'm trying to say. Irony of ironies how the very same people anti-gay people use the tarm "political correctness" in their rants, just as you do know aginst Muslims

I am all for critical self-analysis, but more often than not, you make fallacious statements, just like the very faith-believing people you criticize. That's the problem. Otherwise, I wouldn't even bother to respond. Believe what you will, but please be CONSISTENT and non-aggressive.

People like JW need to examine themselves, (and to think some consider him far-out Left!!!!!!!). Radical Islam has replaced the "Red Scare" as the new Boogeyman (3000 lives compared to 55,000 in the name of a self-defeating policy! Oh, wait, the 3000 was at Home, so that gives it a new meaning!). People such as yourself and Mr Williams need to acquaint themselves with Richard Hofstadter's classic THE PARANOID STYLE IN AMERICAN POLTICS and Barry Glasser's THE CULTURE OF FEAR (1999).

Dawkins is being ethnocentric and just like the middle-age white male warmongers ar Faux, gives Al Qaeda to much credit in the Sincerity Dept. They are no more "true" Muslims than a Tony Alamo, Jack Chick, or the Identity Christians up in Idaho. But hey, at least you're more even-handed in your hostility.

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Avatar for user 'randolphslinky'

randolphslinky | May 8, 2011 at 2:40 p.m. ― 5 years, 10 months ago

Things have been said about me and others (like Dawkins), which are emotionally based and not based on fact. I must assume based on these responses that these comments come from either a believer in God or Allah, and that these individuals have issues with women, homosexuals, Jews, atheists, and anyone else who dares to simply read their books with a sober mind.

My statements about Islam and Osama Bin Laden stand. One need not be hostile about Islam, but simply factual about what is written in it's Quran to draw fire. This doesn't surprise me when Muslims have been known to riot and kill over a cartoon of Muhammad.

Some like to pretend that Islam is a religion of peace and love, and that it isn't any different from any other religion - I'm just going to have to respectfully disagree based on the mountains of evidence that say otherwise.

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