The American Kafir

2010/07/15

Let’s roll! Your chance to stop Ground Zero mosque

Source: WND

Firefighter who lost 93 friends in 9/11 attacks fights to preserve ‘landmark’

By Chelsea Schilling
© 2010 WorldNetDaily

Tim Brown at November 2009 press conference by 911 Never Forget Coalition

A former firefighter and Sept. 11 first responder is urging New York City officials to block construction of a 13-story Islamic mosque to be built just steps from Ground Zero where Muslim terrorists murdered nearly 100 of his personal friends in the name of Allah.

Tim Brown, who survived the Twin Towers’ collapse, is represented by the constitutional law firm American Center for Law and Justice as he urges New York City officials to landmark the site of the planned Islamic mosque.

The ACLJ attended a July 13 hearing before the Landmarks Preservation Commission, a New York City agency responsible for identifying and designating city landmarks. The commission has been asked to designate the current building near Ground Zero as a landmark. The hearing record has been left open for one week to allow for written public comment.

The ACLJ is asking Americans to add their names to its committee to stop the Ground Zero mosque. At the time of this report, the petition had been signed by more than 4,000 people.

Atlas Shrugs blogger Pamela Geller noted that Council on American-Islamic Relations leader Zead Ramadan attended this week’s hearing and testified for the mosque, claiming opposition to the mosque is due to “Islamophobia.”

But ACLJ Deputy Political Director Sam Nunberg told the commission, “It would be a travesty to permit this building to be removed. It would be like removing the sunken ships from Pearl Harbor in order to erect a memorial for the Japanese Kamikazes killed in the surprise attack of U.S. troops.”

Brown, former member of the elite Mayor’s Emergency Response Team, said he was eating breakfast on the third floor of Seven World Trade Center when the first plane hit.

In his 2002 testimony, Brown said at one point he went outside to look at One World Trade Center.


Wreckage from plane that hit the twin towers fell on the same building that may serve as an Islamic cultural center.

“The whole plaza area was burning debris, plane parts and bodies; a lot of fire in the plaza area,” he said.

Brown instantly responded to the command post in the lobby of One World Trade Center.

He described a somber moment with two fellow firefighters, Terry Hatton and Chris Blackwell, in which he saw them for the last time.

“I gave them both hugs. Terry said to me, ‘I love you, brother. It might be the last time I see you.’ Then he went in the stairwell,” Brown recalled. “Then Chris Blackwell looked at me and said, ‘This isn’t good, Tim.’

“That was the last I saw him also.”

After the second plane struck, Brown was directed to Tower Two. He exited the building to gather an emergency medical services crew and re-entered the lobby.

“[W]e heard the roar above us,” he said. “I know I never looked up. I don’t think anybody ever looked up. But there was no question what it was. It was a very tremendous sound … So we just turned and ran for our lives. Now it was the flight/fright thing, because everybody knew we were all going to die. …

“Everything started blowing toward us that wasn’t nailed down. You could not any longer run into the wind because you were getting pummeled by stuff. You couldn’t see anybody to communicate.

“You couldn’t hear anything. It was becoming our grave.”

Brown escaped death by taking cover in the doorway of the Tall Ships Restaurant at the World Trade Center Marriott Hotel between the towers. He climbed through the debris and assisted teams of rescue workers as he searched for trapped victims.

In a May interview with Fox News, Brown said he lost 93 of his friends in the terrorist attack.

Now he is speaking out against construction of the new Islamic mosque that plans to open its doors Sept. 11, 2011 – on the 10th anniversary of that fateful day.

“I don’t understand the need to put it there,” he said.

Formerly known as the Cordoba House and renamed Park51, the mosque is the creation of the American Society for Muslim Advancement. As WND reported, the building at Park Place, just blocks north of the former World Trade Center site, was the site of a Burlington Coat Factory until a plane’s landing-gear assembly crashed through the roof when 19 Muslim terrorists hijacked airliners and flew them into the towers.


Aerial photo of World Trade Center Ground Zero following Sept. 11 attacks. Red square to right of Ground Zero marks former Burlington Coat Factory and proposed location of the 13-story mosque.

The building was purchased last July by real-estate company Soho Properties, a business run by Muslims. Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, Kuwait-born founder of the Muslim society, was an investor in that transaction.

Rauf has announced his plans to turn the building into a complete Islamic cultural center, with a mosque, a museum, “merchandising options” and room for seminars to reconcile religions, “to counteract the backlash against Muslims in general,” Speigel reported. The project may cost as much as $150 million. Plans for the facility also include a 500-seat performing-arts theater, fitness center, swimming pool, library, public conference rooms, basketball courts and restaurants, according to the Tribeca Tribune.


The old Burlington Coat Factory building, site of proposed Ground Zero mosque

But Brown wants to know where the funding for the project is coming from. In his appearance on Fox News, he personally asked Imam Rauf who is paying for the mosque.

Rauf responded, “It came from members of our community.”

Brown replied, “I know. You said that. But that does not answer our question. Is the money from Shariah-compliant financing?”

Rauf did not answer Brown’s question. Instead, he responded by defending Shariah financing, saying, “All Shariah is ultimately is about God’s law, about doing things which are about justice to everybody. This is about building trust.”

As WND reported, Rauf has made a variety of controversial statements, including the following:

  • Rauf asserted that the Quran “certainly doesn’t counsel terrorism, murder or mayhem,” said special agent James Margolin, spokesman for the FBI New York office. And he said terrorists have misinterpreted the Quranic term “jihad” to mean violent, or armed, struggle against nonbelievers. Rauf claims it means internal struggle.
  • The Sydney Morning Herald reported Rauf said the U.S. and the West must acknowledge the harm they’ve done to Muslims before terrorism can end. He said the West must understand the terrorists’ point of view – and he blamed Christians for starting mass attacks on civilians. “The Islamic method of waging war is not to kill innocent civilians. But it was Christians in World War II who bombed civilians in Dresden and Hiroshima, neither of which were military targets,” he said.
  • In an interview with BeliefNet on Islam and America, a reporter asked Rauf, “Some Islamic charities are being investigated for terrorist ties. Have you seen what you consider to be reputable Islamic charities being financially damaged?” Rauf responded, “We believe that a certain portion of every charity has been legitimate. To say that you have connections with terrorism is a very gray area. It’s like the accusation that Saddam Hussein had links to Osama bin Laden. Well, America had links to Osama bin Laden – does that mean that America is a terrorist country or has ties to terrorism?”
  • The New York Times reported Rauf said he believes “Islamic terrorists do not come from another moral universe – that they arise from oppressive societies that he feels Washington had a hand in creating.”

As WND reported, Rauf recently refused during a live radio interview to condemn violent jihad groups as terrorists. He repeatedly refused on-air to affirm the U.S. designation of Hamas as a terrorist organization or call the Muslim Brotherhood extremists.

WND also reported a scholar and charity head appointed to President Obama’s White House Fellowships Commission is closely tied to Rauf and the Islamic center project.

Meanwhile, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani has said he objects to the idea of an Islamic mosque at the site of Ground Zero.

Likewise, former U.S. representative and Republican candidate for New York governor Rick Lazio has requested an investigation into the project’s funding sources. In the following video posted on YouTube, Brown publicly thanked Lazio for standing with him in his effort to block the mosque construction at Ground Zero:

In June, a crowd estimated at between 5,000 and 10,000 people thronged the site of the future mosque in protest of the plans.

Now the Landmarks Preservation Commission is expected to determine whether to block the building plans and designate the building as a landmark. A decision could come as early as next month.

The ACLJ says it is preparing court action and will seek an injunction, if necessary, to prevent a rushed procedural violation that would sidestep the rules and “disrespect the memory of the Sept. 11 victims.”

The legal group notes that the commissioners have landmarked some 22,000 buildings in the city – including one at 18 West 11th St. where Bill Ayers’ terrorist group, Weather Underground, was building bombs when one detonated.

“If the commission felt it appropriate to landmark that building, the location under debate now surely deserves landmark status due to the fact that a wheel from Sept. 11 ringleader Mohammed Atta’s hijacked American Airlines Flight 11 [e]mbedded in the building itself,” the ACLJ website states.

ACLJ chief counsel Jay Sekulow said in a statement today, “The fact is that this is not the location to build an Islamic mosque. This is sacred ground, and for many family and friends of the Sept. 11 victims building an Islamic mosque on this site would be offensive.”

He added, “We’ve heard from thousands of Americans – and many New Yorkers – who understand that such a move would be a tragic mistake. We will continue to pursue all avenues to ensure that this mosque is not built near Ground Zero.”

(Editor’s note: Concerned individuals may e-mail Robert Tierney, chair of the Landmarks Preservation Commission, or send a letter to:

Landmarks Preservation Commission
Municipal Building
1 Centre St., 9th floor
New York City, N.Y. 10007)

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