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November 1, 2014 / 8 Heshvan, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘mosque’

Civil Administration Demolishes Illegal Mosque

Tuesday, December 4th, 2012
The illegal mosque on the slope of Mt. Hebron which the state has been refusing to take down.

Before.

A convoy of bulldozers arrived on Tuesday morning at the outskirts of the Arab village Al-Mofkra near the town of Avigail and demolished a mosque that had been built illegally. The mosque was built by the villagers, members of the Hamada clan, in violation of a court settlement and as a challenge against legal construction in Avigail, Jewish Voice reports.

The mosque demolition followed a Regavim movement’s appeal to the Supreme Court, after the movement’s field coordinator, Oved Arad, had determined that the Arabs built the mosque illegally. These same Arab villagers had gone even further and continued to build and pave the mosque despite the explicit prohibition by the judges.

At the hearing on the petition a month ago, the Supreme Court justices urged the Civil Administration to demolish the mosque as soon as possible. President of the Supreme Court Justice Grunis even gained some notoriety at the time, when he joked that illegal structures in Judea and Samaria should be “killed when they’re young.”

The Regavim movement released a statement saying “the law should be kept regarding the Palestinians, too. The demolition of the mosque is a warning to the residents of Al-Mofkra and the entire South Hebron Hills, that they must obey the law and build only in designated areas.”

Regavim officials said they “will continue to document Palestinian delinquency, and each illegal construction will be handled in the judicial and public arenas.”

Iranian Jewish Woman Stabbed To Death in Isfahan

Sunday, December 2nd, 2012

A Jewish woman was stabbed to death in Isfahan, Iran, as part of an ongoing religious fight between the woman and her Muslim neighbors.

Tuba N., 57, was killed on Monday, following a long period of harassment of her family, during which Muslim neighbors tried to drive her from her home and take her property to use as part of the next door mosque.

UPI reported that the mosque even appropriated part of Tuba’s property, attaching it to the courtyard of the mosque.  The family appealed to the courts, but Tuba was murdered while her husband was away in Tehran, her two sisters tied up while the attackers stabbed her and then cut off her hands.

Supreme Court President on Demolishing Illegal Mosque: ‘Must Kill Them when They’re Young’

Thursday, November 15th, 2012

A miracle of sorts took place today at the Israeli Supreme court, which could be the sign of good things to come. It was during part of an ongoing discussion of Illegal Arab construction in Judea and Samaria, and this time the issue at hand was a mosque built illegally in Al-Mofkra (Regavim), on the southern slope of Mt. Hebron.

According to The Jewish Voice, the panel of judges headed by Supreme Court President Supreme Court President Grunis, with Justices Miriam Naor and Edna Arbel, opened the discussion by saying that illegal construction cannot be allowed to go on at all, especially in Judea and Samaria. The panel added that enforcement activity should be performed efficiently.

In this context, Justice Grunis said that “we must kill them when they’re young” (the literal translation from Hebrew would be “We must destroy them when they’re little”). The quip was made in front of representatives of the State Attorney’s Office, who told the court they intend to destroy the illegal mosque in the coming weeks.

Supreme Court chief justice Asher Gronis. Photo: Yoav Ari Dudkevitch/Flash 90

Supreme Court Chief Justice Asher Gronis. Photo: Yoav Ari Dudkevitch/Flash 90

The reason this can be considered a minor miracle is that both of Grunis’s predecessors, chief justices Aharon Barak and Dorit Beinish, would not have been caught dead saying something so un-PC about a Muslim house of worship. The fact that Justice Grunis was able to joke about it – and then do the right thing and force the state to take down the ugly thing – is very much a step in the right direction for the court.

Following an appeal by the Regavim movement, the Attorney General made a commitment to destroy the mosque once it was determined to be illegal. But while the civil administration was dragging its feet and not getting around to demolishing the mosque, the Regavim movement reported that mosque owner, one Mahmud Hamemda, continued to live there and had said that no matter how many times the mosque is destroyed, he would keep rebuilding it.

Following the Attorney General’s commitment to give a high priority to destroying the mosque, Attorney Boaz Arzi, representing Regavim, expressed his satisfaction. “Given the fact that the justices accepted our appeal, and gave us the relief we asked for, our petition has become moot and there is no reason not to delete it,” he stated, adding that,”if the civil administration does not do its job and we’ll see the mosque was not destroyed, we’ll have no problem submitting another appeal, until justice is done.”

The Regavim movement announced that the decision to demolish the illegal mosque should serve as a warning to the Palestinians in Al-Mofkra village. “Every illegal construction will be documented and an appeal will be submitted to the Supreme court as needed,” a movement spokesperson said. “The state’s decision to demolish the illegal mosque is proof that nearby structure are equally illegal and their fate will be the same.”

Islam Overtaking Catholicism as Dominant Religion in France

Thursday, November 8th, 2012

A majority of people in France, according to a new poll, believe that Islam is too influential in French society, and almost half view Muslims as a threat to their national identity.

The survey reveals a significant degradation of the image of Islam in France. The findings also show that French voters are growing increasingly uneasy about mass immigration from Muslim countries, which has been encouraged by a generation of political and cultural elites in France dedicated to creating a multicultural society.

The survey conducted by the French Institute of Public Opinion (or Ifop, as it is usually called) and published by the center-right Le Figaro newspaper on October 24, shows that 60% of French people believe that Islam has become “too visible and influential” in France — up from 55% in an earlier survey two years ago.

The poll also reveals that 43% of French people consider the presence of Muslim immigrants to be a threat to French national identity, compared to just 17% who say it enriches society.

In addition, 68% of people in France blame the problems associated with Muslim integration on immigrants who refuse to integrate (up from 61% two years ago), and 52% blame it on cultural differences (up from 40% two years ago).

The poll also shows a growing resistance to the symbols of Islam. Nearly two-thirds (63%) of French people say they are opposed to Muslim women wearing the veil or Islamic headscarves in public, compared to 59% two years ago.

Furthermore, the survey shows that only 18% of French people say they support the building of new mosques in France (compared to 33% in 1989, and 20% in 2010).

“Our poll shows a further hardening in French people’s opinions,” Jerome Fourquet, head of Ifop’s opinion department, told Le Figaro. “In recent years, there has not been a week when Islam has not been in the heart of the news for social reasons: the veil, halal food, dramatic news like terrorist attacks or geopolitical reasons,” he said.

France, which is home to an estimated six million Muslims, has the largest Muslim population in the European Union. There are now, in fact, more practicing Muslims in France than there are practicing Roman Catholics.

Although 64% of the French population (or 41.6 million of France’s 65 million inhabitants) identify themselves as Roman Catholic, only 4.5% (or 1.9 million) of these actually are practicing Catholics, according to a separate survey on Catholicism in France published by Ifop in July 2009.

By way of comparison, 75% (or 4.5 million), of the estimated six million mostly ethnic North African and sub-Saharan Muslims in France, identify themselves as “believers;” and 41% (or 2.5 million) say they are “practicing” Muslims, according to an in-depth research report on Islam in France published by Ifop in July 2011.

Taken together, the research data provides empirical evidence that Islam is well on its way to overtaking Roman Catholicism as the dominant religion in France.

This trend is also reflected in the fact that mosques are being built more often in France than are Roman Catholic churches; nearly 150 new mosques are currently under construction in France.

The total number of mosques in France has already doubled to more than 2,000 during just the past ten years, according to a research report, “Constructing Mosques: The Governance of Islam in France and the Netherlands.” The rector of the Grand Mosque of Paris, Dalil Boubakeur, has called for the number of mosques in the country to be doubled again — to 4,000 — to meet growing demand.

By contrast, the Roman Catholic Church has built only 20 new churches in France during the past decade, and has formally closed more than 60 churches, many of which are destined to become mosques, according to research conducted by La Croix, a Roman Catholic daily newspaper based in Paris.

In recent weeks, tensions have flared over the proposed conversion of an empty church into a mosque in the central French town of Vierzon. The controversy involves Saint-Eloi’s, a small church located in a working class neighborhood that has been taken over by immigrants from Morocco and Turkey.

With six churches to maintain and fewer faithful every year, Roman Catholic authorities in Vierzon say they can no longer afford to keep Saint-Eloi’s. They now want to sell the building for €170,000 ($220,000) to a Moroccan Muslim organization that wants to convert the church into a mosque.

Iranian Woman Strikes a Few Blows (and Kicks) For Freedom

Friday, September 21st, 2012

Reported:

Iran Cleric Pummeled by ‘Badly Covered’ Woman After Warning

An Iranian cleric said he was beaten by a woman in the northern province of Semnan after giving her a warning for being “badly covered,” the state-run Mehr news agency reported.  Hojatoleslam Ali Beheshti said he encountered the woman in the street while on his way to the mosque in the town of Shahmirzad, and asked her to cover herself up, to which she replied “you, cover your eyes,” according to Mehr. The cleric repeated his warning, which he said prompted her to insult and push him.

“I fell on my back on the floor,” Beheshti said in the report. “I don’t know what happened after that, all I could feel was the kicks of this woman who was insulting me and attacking me.”

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Bacon Hate Crimes and Islamophobia Witch-Hunts

Wednesday, August 22nd, 2012

The NYPD is taking a break from investigating multiple shootings in four of New York City’s boroughs, including the attempted murder of an NYPD Sergeant, to head down to the city’s much overlooked fifth borough, Staten Island, to investigate a case of littering.

Muslims arriving at the New Dorp football field, a few blocks away from the New Dorp High School, discovered some bacon lying on the ground. The field is usually home to the New Dorp Central Cougars and the Staten Island Tech Seagulls, but that day instead of boys and girls running around joyfully in the sun, robed men had come to attend a Ramadan event. The media and police were quickly summoned and now the NYPD is investigating the bacon as a hate crime.

The Ramadan event had been organized by a local chapter of the Muslim American Society. The Muslim American Society is a front for the Muslim Brotherhood, and some of its chapters have called for the murder of Jews. Calling for the murder of Jews however falls under freedom of speech. Unlike bacon which is a hate crime.

Staten Island had 226 robberies, 342 felonious assaults, 380 burglaries and 1,129 misdemeanor assaults last year. The figures are probably even worse this year and the NYPD has better things to do than train bacon-sniffing dogs to track down litterers. But the case of the lost bacon is not New York’s most absurd Islamophobia witch-hunt to date.

Last year Osman Daramy, an 11-year-old boy, was charged with a hate crime for trying to pull off a girl’s hijab in school. Osman had a long history of violent misbehavior but no real disciplinary action was taken against him until he went too far and pulled off a hijab. Newspapers, which generally avoid printing photos of children being arrested unless they murdered someone, gleefully ran pictures of him being led away in handcuffs and leg irons.

Somewhere in the middle of all the madness, Osman’s stepfather explained to the press that the Daramy family is Muslim and that Osman participates in Muslim prayers. “How could a Muslim have (committed) another hate crime against a Muslim?” he asked.

The year before that, New York City was treated to an even more horrifying Islamophobic hate crime. On a hot August day, the wire services reported that a man had invaded a mosque, accused the worshipers of being terrorists and then urinated on their prayer rugs. “Start of a bigger trend?” MSNBC asked. “Without a significant response by mainstream political leaders, this disturbing trend will only continue to grow,” a CAIR spokesman warned.

But the disturbing trend of mosque carpet urinators did not take off. The perpetrator, Omar Rivera, had been drinking for five straight days after the death of his sister and had never mentioned terrorists. His only crime was accidentally soiling some prayer rugs lying outside the mosque. The only hate came from inside the mosque which had an article on its website accusing the Jews of being responsible for homosexuality and AIDS.

Omar Rivera and Osman Daramy were swept up in the Islamophobia witch-hunt. But they weren’t the only ones. Innocent New Yorkers, like Eddie Crespo, an off-duty MTA officer who tried to break up a fight involving a Muslim Imam, have also been caught up in the Islamophobia hysteria. And now the NYPD is hunting for bacon-lovers while prosecutors wonder how to convince a jury that littering is a form of intimidation, just like a swastika or a burning cross.

The Islamophobia witch-hunt is not the NYPD’s fault. The NYPD is under severe political pressure to fight Islamophobia and it has to make the requisite number of arrests to show that it is serious about it. The Islamophobia establishment and its media allies are the ones responsible for unleashing the witch-hunt that led to a Latino MTA officer nearly losing his career and a grieving Latino man nearly being locked up for a minor offense. And even Muslim children, such as Osman Daramy, can be caught up in the hysteria of the Islamophobia witch-hunt when there aren’t any actual bias crimes against Muslims to be found.

In the last five years there have been multiple Muslim plots to bomb synagogues. The NYPD is investigating bombs in synagogues, not bacon, because there really is a disturbing trend of anti-Semitic hate crimes. The best evidence that there is no similarly disturbing trend of Islamophobic attacks is that the NYPD is bagging and tagging bacon at a Staten Island football field.

The New Mega-Mosque in Paris: ‘Building a French Islam’

Friday, July 20th, 2012

The Socialist government in France has inaugurated a new mega-mosque in Paris as a first step towards “progressively building a French Islam.”

The new mosque, located in the northern Paris suburb of Cergy-Pontoise, is not only vast in its dimensions (photo here), but is also highly visible and symbolic: its towering minaret, which has purposely been designed to change the suburb’s skyline by being taller than any church steeple in the neighborhood, is supposed to become the “new symbol of Islam in France.”

The blue-domed mega-mosque also has an important political dimension. French President François Hollande owes his May 6 electoral victory to the large turnout by Muslim voters, who cast the deciding votes that propelled Hollande into the Élysée Palace. It is now political payback time, and the mosque at Cergy is one of at least 150 new mosque projects that the Socialist government has pledged to support.

Speaking on behalf of President Hollande at the inauguration ceremony of the mosque in Cergy, French Interior Minister Manuel Valls articulated the Socialist government’s policy vis-à-vis the construction of new mosques in France. He declared: “A mosque, when it is erected in the city, says a simple thing: Islam has its place in France.”

The 2,000 square meter (21,500 square foot) three-story mega-mosque in Cergy can accommodate up to 1,500 worshippers at a time; it has two main prayer halls (one for men and one for women), ablution rooms, two kitchens, a tea room, an apartment and office for the imam, a funeral hall, classrooms and a multipurpose room.

The mayor’s office in Cergy, which is controlled by the Socialist Party, has tried to downplay local concerns about the size of the mosque, which has a price tag of €3.7 million ($4.5 million). It has justified the project by arguing that the mosque is being financed exclusively through local donations (many if not most of the major mosques in France and other European countries are financed by foreign governments such as Morocco and Saudi Arabia).

But the Socialist Mayor of Cergy, Dominique Lefebvre, has actively worked to make the mosque project a reality by circumventing French laws on secularism. Under his leadership the town council agreed to provide the mosque with a lease of land at very low rent for a term of 99 years. The town council also agreed to provide the mosque with a bank guarantee so it could obtain a €2.5 million loan for construction.

Lefebvre has justified his efforts on behalf of the mosque by saying he wants to “ensure the free exercise of religion.” But at the ceremony inaugurating the mosque, he also joked: “I am often asked if the minaret is higher than the steeple of the church.”

Separately, a French appeals court has granted permission for the construction of a mega-mosque in the southern city of Marseille, home to the largest Muslim community in France.

The ruling, which overturns an October 2011 decision by a lower court to annul the construction permit for the mosque, represents a major victory for proponents of the mosque, long touted as the biggest and most potent symbol of Islam’s growing place in France.

The €22 million ($27 million) project would have the Grand Mosque – boasting a minaret soaring 25 meters (82 feet) high, and room for up to 7,000 worshippers in a vast prayer hall — built on the north side of Marseille’s old port in the city’s Saint-Louis district, an ethnically mixed neighborhood that suffers from poverty and high unemployment.

Several decades in the planning, the project was granted a construction permit in November 2009. At the time, city officials said the new mosque would help the Muslim community better integrate into the mainstream and foster a more moderate form of Islam.

The first cornerstone of the 8,300 square meter (90,000 square foot) project was laid in May 2010. The elaborate stone-laying ceremony was attended by Muslim religious leaders and local politicians, as well as more than a dozen diplomats from Muslim countries.

Full-scale construction of the Grand Mosque — which will include a Koranic school and a library, as well as a restaurant and tea room — was scheduled to begin in February 2012.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/analysis/the-new-mega-mosque-in-paris-building-a-french-islam/2012/07/20/

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