Here are my questions:
1. What is the current situation of the mosque? Is it still under construction?
I don’t know whether any construction work is going on right now, but as I understand it the space has been used for Friday prayers for several years at least. So it has been a mosque for many years, since long before the controversy arose. According to recent news reports, they are planning construction work, and applying for government funds to help pay for it. So in that sense it is definitely “under construction.”
2. Why isn’t anyone speaking up about the issues with the name “cordoba” and its history?
That’s a good question! Cordoba was the most intellectually and socially advanced city on the planet during much of the time Muslims ruled Spain. It was known as a place where Jews, Christians, and Muslims got along and worked well together. The word “Cordoba” is a reminder that the three big monotheistic faiths can get along – and also that Islam is the most tolerant and inclusive of the three faiths. Perhaps the people who own and run the media – which is dominated by Zionist Jews who support the Jewish nationalist project in Occupied Palestine and all the ethnic cleansing it entails – do not want to remind people about Cordoba. (Here is a thoughtful essay, by a Jewish journalist, about Jewish domination of the media and its consequences: http://www.mondoweiss.net/2008/02/do-jews-dominat.html )
3. How are you handling all the 9/11 victims and their protests?
Only a small minority of 9/11 family members are protesting, but their voices are being wildly over-amplified by the media. In fact, according to Bob McIIivaine, who lost his son Bobby in the Towers, more than half of the family members know that 9/11 was an inside job – i.e. a false-flag event designed to libel Muslims and legitimize their mass murder in wars of aggression. Here is a Fox News segment about a commercial in which pro-9/11-truth family members express themselves about Building 7, the “smoking gun” of the 9/11 inside job: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pFPobKeSzKQ
I think the best way to handle the protestors is to try to help educate them about what really happened on 9/11. Once they learn that it wasn’t Muslims that did it – in fact, it was the enemies of Muslims – they will support an even bigger mosque at Ground Zero.
4. Do you think that after the mosque is built, the stereotype of islam will change?
I think it will be the gradual acceptance of 9/11 truth, rather than the building of the mosque, that will change the stereotype of Islam.
5. What does the cordoba house include besides the mosque?
It has already been functioning as a mosque for many years. The plans are to expand it to include a community center with exercise facilities, day care, a meeting space, and so on – all of which would serve the entire Lower Manhattan community, not just Muslims.
6. Have there been any attempts in the past to build a mosque in order to clear misunderstandings about muslims?
Here in Madison, Wisconsin, a nonprofit I work with called the Madison Muslim Dawa Circle has established a mosque as part of our dawa (Islamic outreach) work. Though our mosque is currently a “storefront mosque” in a rental space, we are working on building a permanent mosque. Our organization’s primary purpose is to help educate our community – including locally, nationwide, and worldwide in that order – about the realities as opposed to the stereotypes about Islam. We began our project almost ten years ago – slightly before the NYC mosque project. I’m sure there have been other efforts like ours, though I don’t know of any offhand.
I think that all mosques in non-Muslim-majority countries should include outreach (dawa) centers as well as prayer space. Ideally, every mosque in America would also be a community center! Unfortunately we have a long way to go before we reach this goal. Many American Muslims have caught the fear contagion engineered by the 9/11 inside job, and have reacted by becoming even more insular than they were before. Muslims need to get active and inform their neighbors about Islam and Islam-related issues – and above all, that 9/11 was an inside job. There is a million-Muslim-march being planned right now to do that.
Thank you for your time and cooperation. Signed, TK
You are most welcome! Thank you for your questions, and good luck with your research project. If I can be of any further assistance, feel free to stay in contact.
Dr. Kevin Barrett