This section looks at Internet responses to the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. It provides examples of commentary from a wide variety of groups, from civil rights groups to extremist organizations. This includes both the strongly positive and the strongly negative.
The intent is to provide a snapshot of responses to the tragedy, not to comment on or to categorize the inherent nature of these groups.
League of Palestinian Ulema. Added 9/25/01. The League of Palestinian Ulema, an organization representing more than 500 religious scholars and figures in the Palestinian Authority, issued a fatwa prohibiting Muslim states from joining the U.S. in actions against Afghanistan or any other Muslim countries. One member, Sheikh Nayef Rajoub-brother to Palestinian Authority Preventive Security Chief Jebril Rajoub-asked, "Why haven't we seen a similar international coalition against Jewish terrorism which killed hundreds and wounded tens of thousands in the past 12 months, do the Americans bleed redder, or are we children of a lesser God?"
Wasel, Dr. Nasr Farid. Added 9/25/01. Dr. Nasr Farid Wasel, Mufti of Egypt, issued a statement asking Pakistan and other Islamic countries to refuse to facilitate any U.S. attack on Afghanistan. Wasel said that allying with the U.S. or others to hurt Muslims was not acceptable.
Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML). Added 9/25/01. WLUML, an organization created to "break women's isolation" and provide support for "all women whose lives may be affected by Muslim laws," issued a statement on September 21 extending its "deepest condolences" to "the aggrieved, their families and the people of America following the crimes against humanity" committed on September 11. WLUML claims that "our sorrow is particularly heartfelt because many of those linked through the WLUML network have directly experienced terror and the devastation that goes with it." The statement urges the U.S. and its allies not to pursue "fruitless retaliation with military force," but instead focus on "transparent investigation" and bringing the perpetrators to justice through international law. It expresses concern that "legitimate grief" is being exploited as a cover for increased military spending, and also that there have been moves towards "sweeping restrictions" on civil liberties. Any military action, WLUML contends, "will de-stabilize an already unstable and nuclearized region. Women in Muslim countries and communities in particular may suffer the direct impact of militarization and a potential backlash from politico-religious movements."
American Muslim Council. Added 9/25/01. On September 14, 2001, the American Muslim Council issued an appeal for financial support, stating that its resources were pushed to the limit. According to the AMC, the "real fight for our rights is just about to begin." Because of the attacks, Americans will want to tighten security, perhaps at the expense of civil liberties: "Already there is talk about wiretapping, changing racial profiling laws and other laws that protect Muslims." AMC promised to be in the "forefront" and to do all it could to make sure that civil rights will not be forgotten, knowing that "Muslims could overwhelmingly be targeted in the upcoming months."
Islamic Center of Boca Raton. Added 9/25/01. The ICBR posted on its Web site an essay titled "Why can't the Jews and Muslims live together in Peace?", which called Jews "usurpers and aggressors," as well as "people of treachery and betrayal" who were unworthy of trust. It also suggested that Muslims had to fight and kill Jews before Allah's final day of judgment. When asked about the diatribe, Center spokesman Dan McBride said the posting "shocked" mosque leadership and was removed after people in the community complained. McBride said that someone must have hacked into the Web site and inserted the text. McBride apologized "for any offense we may have caused."
Council on American-Islamic Relations, Southern California. Added 9/25/01. On September 18, CAIR-LA issued an "action alert" claiming that the Simon Wiesenthal Center "promotes intolerance and hate." According to CAIR-LA, the SWC "displayed an incredible amount of insensitivity" by placing a wire photo of Palestinians celebrating the Sept. 11 attacks on its Web site. Rather than promoting tolerance and understanding, CAIR-LA claimed, the SWC is "unfortunately inciting a backlash against the American Muslim and Arab American communities." CAIR stated that because of the "increasingly violent hate incidents" that are taking place against the American Muslim community, religious and media institutions should make efforts to avoid contributing to "an atmosphere of intolerance and Islamophobia."
National Muslim Organizations' Position on the Prospect of War. Added 9/25/2001. A group of national Muslim organizations issued a statement in Washington, D.C., on September 19, 2001, to express jointly their opinions on the prospect of war. The position taken by the American Muslim Council, the Muslim American Society, the Islamic Circle of North America, the Islamic Society of North America, the Muslim Public Affairs Council, the United Association for Studies and Research, and Solidarity International for Human Rights states that they would like to make it "absolutely clear" that they join all other Americans in their "unequivocal condemnation of the attacks as un-Islamic, barbaric, and inhumane." They also stress that retaliation against the perpetrators is a "must," in order to protect against future possible similar incidents. They urge the U.S. government to establish "internationally accepted factual legal evidence beyond reasonable doubt" before any response plan is developed or executed. Retaliation, moreover, must be limited to the perpetrators, their accomplices, and their network of associates. They stress that it is important to present the "legal evidence" to the world and to the nation harboring the suspected terrorists, and to demand surrender of terrorists by an announced deadline before targeting any nation with the prospect of war. If such considerations are not taken into account, they warn, it may lead to the "increase of anti-American sentiments and extremism, which are salient factors in terrorism."
Said, Edward. Added 9/25/01. Edward Said, the American academic and Palestinian activist, published an essay in Counterpunch titled "There are Many Islams," in which Said acknowledges that "spectacular horror" of the sort that struck New York and Washington, D.C. has "ushered in a new world of unseen, unknown assailants, terror missions without political message, senseless destruction." Said finds depressing what he feels is how little time Americans spend trying to understand America's role in the world. "You'd think that 'America' was a sleeping giant," he writes, "rather than a superpower almost constantly at war, or in some sort of conflict, all over the Islamic domains." He suggests that "rational understanding" rather than "drum-beating" is what is needed, and that the Bush administration clearly wants the latter. "Yet to most people in the Islamic and Arab worlds," he adds, "the official US is synonymous with arrogant power, known for its sanctimoniously munificent support not only of Israel but of numerous repressive Arab regimes, and its inattentiveness even to the possibility of dialogue with secular movements and people who have real grievances." Said claims that Israel is now "cynically exploiting the American catastrophe by intensifying its military occupation and oppression of the Palestinians."
Hard-Core White Supremacists/Organizations
American Nazi Party. Added 9/25/01. In a September 20 e-mail message, American Nazi Party Chairman Rocky Suhayda promotes a "two-prong" approach to "deflecting 'public opinion' " about the attacks "into the direction that we would like to see it maneuvered." According to Suhayda, one prong should "be against the SAND-NIGGERS, and ALL OTHER ALIENS residing in our nation," and the other should "be to put the DIRECT BLAME for this situation where it BELONGS! 'JEW-S-A' support of the JEWS and 'israel'!" Suhayda encourages his followers to spread "INTELLIGENT" literature," call in to talk radio programs, add slogans to the many banners that are "springing-up...with the 'rah-rah patriotism' nonsense," and mail carefully worded propaganda letters to the editor. "Do NOT take ACTS that 'support the SYSTEM'," cautions Suhayda, "nor do ANYTHING that the system will smash you for...in 'hitting back at THEIR enemies'!"
Hammerskin Nation. Added 9/25/01. The online bulletin board for this racist skinhead group has added a pop-up window that reads "BLAME ISRAEL" over a picture of the burning twin towers of the World Trade Center. "The United States has looked the other way while the Jews have murdered hundreds of Palestinians, and stolen land from them," the Hammerskins write. "We've bombed Arab country's [sic] like Baghdad [sic] because Hussein invaded its neighbor," they state, "yet our country looks away from atrocities done by the Jews." According to the Hammerskins, "our ties with the state of Israel are what brought on this act, this is mere retribution on [the] part of the Arabs because of these strong ties with Israel." The message concludes by urging the bombing of Israel.
National Alliance. Added 9/25/01. In his September 22 "American Dissident Voices" broadcast, William Pierce, leader of the neo-Nazi National Alliance, blames America's support of Israel for the September 11 attacks. "We were attacked because we have been letting ourselves be used to do all of Israel's dirty work in the Middle East," Pierce claims. "Everyone in the world with even half a brain understands that, even if talking about it is considered Politically Incorrect." Pierce asserts that Israeli objectives will continue to drive American policy, and he claims that "the principal determinant of the American response will be whatever the Jews think is best for Israel." According to Pierce, Jews want America "to send in ground troops, whip [Arab] armies, take over [Arab] countries, and install puppet governments that will follow [their] orders" so "they can control and milk the whole area." Pierce claims it is "likely that the government of Israel had some intelligence about the attack ahead of time and deliberately withheld that intelligence from the United States." He explains that this does not "serve America's interests" because as long as the U.S. supports Israel it will remain a target for the "patriots and the religious fundamentalists" of every other country in the Middle East. "Yes, the people responsible for the attack are evil and should be hunted down and punished," Pierce admits. "But we don't have to go to the Middle East to find the responsible people and punish them." According to Pierce, President Bush and his "last 10 or so predecessors in the White House" are responsible because "they've all danced to whatever tune Israel was playing." Pierce also asserts that the terrorists were evil, "not because a great many Jewish lawyers and Jewish financial consultants and Jewish middlemen had offices in the World Trade Center," but rather because "thousands of young White women who worked as receptionists and secretaries and file clerks in both the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were killed, along with hundreds of airline passengers and crew members." Until the U.S. regains control of its own news and entertainment media, Pierce concludes, "and have leaders whose sole concern is what's good for America -- not what will win them Jewish support in the next election -- we'll remain a nation adrift, hated by all, respected by none, and fair game for anyone who has a grievance against us."
World Church of the Creator. Added 9/25/01. In his September 19 call-in "hotline" message, WCOTC head Matt Hale claims that the "anti-White, pro-Kike United States Government is pushing this country headlong into a war that it cannot win." Hale claims military action will just make matters worse because "the more intrusion of the United States Government in the affairs of other countries, the more animosity there is towards America." According to Hale, the only solution to terrorism is to eliminate those conditions that make such terrorism possible, namely "America's slavishly pro-Israeli foreign policy" and "America's insane immigration policy." The first, Hale says, will take away the "whole motivation" for terrorist acts. On the second, Hale claims that "the more you flood a land with different and indeed conflicting people, the more ripe that land is for self destruction." The government, he adds, "never asked you or I whether we want sand niggers in America." Hale also urges followers to "step up activism on all fronts," because people are right now very receptive to WCOTC messages.
Miscellaneous Hate Groups/Anti-Semitic Groups
Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust (CODOH). Added 9/25/01. John Weir, writing on the CODOH Web site, blames U.S. support of Israel for the attacks. According to Weir, an "arrogant U.S. policy" that has ignored the Palestinian refugee problem and encouraged "Zionist tyranny in Lebanon and the occupied territories" is likely at the root of the problem. Weir believes that there is no good reason to continue supporting Israel because "the U.S. gets nothing from this relationship-except the tab." He fears that Americans are often disinterested in foreign policy. "For everyone-other than perhaps a small group of Zionists--foreign policy doesn't measure high in polls," he explains. "Zionist Jews, however, are well organized and politically active. They contribute to candidates. They are involved in the political parties. When it comes to foreign policy, they have no domestic competition in setting the agenda."
Council of Conservative Citizens. Added 9/25/01. The Web site of this large, Missouri-headquartered racist group displayed a headline titled "Dirty Rotten Arabs and Muslims," with pictures of Michael Muhammed of the New Black Panther Party, Ole Miss Chancellor Robert Khayat, and former Senator Spencer Abraham. "America is now drinking the bitter dregs of multiculturalism and diversity," the Web site states. "American colleges harbor Moslems of every sect and nationality, yet the Islamic faithful loath [sic] Christian Civilization as wicked and corrupt. Worse, Middle Eastern parasites have taken control of many important institutions in this country and are eating away at Anglo-Saxon control of some vital institutions." According to the Council, "the threat of Muslim-Arab mischief is not confined to the blood lust of Osama Bin Laden," for "Arab treachery and deviousness have been a scourge since biblical times," and "Islam is a religion of hatred and vindictiveness!" In an essay on the Council's site, a writer identifying himself only as "Confederate Dreadnought" writes that "the answer to this problem of terrorism is to segregate ourselves from the Arabs, Muslims, and/or all others who will do us harm," whether they are "Arab terrorists, or Chinese scientists stealing our nuclear secrets, or blacks raining murder, rape, and theft down on us." The writer calls for displaying the Confederate flag, which stands for Christianity and white social and political supremacy. The "seeds that Abraham Lincoln sowed," states the writer, have "now destroyed New York City." God is waging war on America: "There will be no cease fire in this war until America turns from her sins, forsakes her religion of equality and unity, and turns to God and worships His Son, Jesus Christ."
Taylor, Jared. Added 9/25/01. Jared Taylor, editor of the racist magazine American Renaissance, states that the main reason Islamic fundamentalists "hate" and "want to kill" Americans is because the United States supports Israel. "Can anyone deny that if we were not Israel's enthusiastic backer those thousands of Americans would still be alive," Taylor asks in an article posted on the Web site of the Council of Conservative Citizens. "To Muslim fundamentalists we and Israel are one and the same," he writes, "and we have given them ample reason to think so." Taylor questions whether the United States should spend $20 billion "to kill Muslims, and thereby expose [its] cities to inevitable reprisal for the sake of Israel."
Weber, Mark. Added 9/25/01. Mark Weber, director of the Holocaust-denying Institute for Historical Review, posted a statement titled "Learning from the September 11 Attacks" on the IHR Web site on September 17. According to Weber, "those who carried out these devastating suicide attacks…were enraged by this country's decades-long support for Israel and its policies of aggression, murderous repression, and brutal occupation against Arabs and Muslims, and/or American air strikes and economic warfare against Afghanistan, Sudan, Iraq and Iran." Weber believes that awareness of the attacks will "encourage growing numbers of thoughtful Americans to see through the lies propagated by our nation's political and cultural elite, and its Zionist allies, to impose their will around the world." Weber predicts that "over the long run" there will be a "sobering reassessment of this country's perverse 'special relationship' with the Jewish ethnostate" and increasing "rage" against "those who have subordinated American interests, and basic justice and humanity, to Jewish-Zionist ambitions."
LaRouche, Lyndon. Added 9/25/01. Fringe figure and conspiracy monger Lyndon LaRouche stated in an interview appearing on his Web site that the attack on the U.S. on September 11 came from "some kind of rogue operation inside the security screen of the United States." It did not come from the Middle East, or Europe, or South America, he asserted. "The operation is very sophisticated," he said, "and no one could do an operation like this, from outside the United States at present." On another LaRouche Web site, LaRouche states that the attacks involved "elements which were recruited by the United States and other intelligence services of Europe and Israel, back during the days of the so-called Iran-Contra operation."