Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Opponents pack hearing on 'Cordoba' Initiative mosque near ground zero

Developer Sharif El-Gamal speaks to reporters during a Landmarks Commission hearing on proposal to build a mosque near the World Trade Center site, Tuesday, July 13, 2010 in New York.

Christians an others would never get away with anything like this in the Muslim world ~ what is amazing is that no one asks Muslims to be tolerant of others ~ and in their own countries they don't have too!!

This is what the whole Muslim advancement means ~ they aim to assert their influence and subjugate all others...

We have 'Islam means peace' rammed down our throats ~ but pick up the Koran and it calls for violence ~ someone is lying!!

Islamaphobia ~ where are all the churches in the Islamic world?? Attempt to repair a church in places like Egypt ~ let alone build one.. and you meet with red tape and once approved after a decade or so, then you face attack!! Let's talk about this!

And where is the money coming from to build this insult of a mosque ~ well, from the very place that allows no churches ~ to tell the Saudis to be tolerant ~ then you become a 'critic' of Islam ~ and an 'Islamophobe' ~ how convenient to have all your critics labelled as being in need of help!!

Rarely do westerners get angry ~ but I think this is a worthy cause!!

NEW YORK (AP)— Dozens of opponents and some supporters of a mosque planned at a building near ground zero attended a raucous hearing Tuesday about whether the building should be designated a city landmark and protected from development.

Republican gubernatorial candidate Rick Lazio, who has sought an investigation into the funding of the mosque, was among the witnesses who testified in support of giving the building landmark status, which could complicate plans by Muslim groups to develop a community center and mosque there.

After noting the lower Manhattan building's history and architectural significance, Lazio said it also warranted landmark designation because on Sept. 11, 2001, it was struck by airplane debris from the terror attacks against the nearby World Trade Center. That connection to the attacks, he said, made it "a place of deep historical significance and a reminder of just what happened on New York's darkest day."

Lazio has called on state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, his Democratic opponent in the governor's race, to investigate the funding of the project. On Tuesday, he repeated that request and said the pace of the landmarking process should be slowed to allow time to thoroughly investigate the matter.

Sally Regenhard, who lost her son Christian Regenhard during the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center, speaks out against a proposal to build a mosque near ground zero during a Landmarks Commission hearing Tuesday, July 13, 2010 in New York.

Nearly 100 people attended the hearing at a college campus on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Fifty-six people testified at the hearing, which turned contentious at times, with some speakers drowned out by shouts from the audience and with one man escorted out by campus security.

The mosque and the related community center are a project of several groups, including the American Society for Muslim Advancement and the Cordoba Initiative, which promotes cross-cultural understanding between Islam and the West. Cordoba's director, Imam Faisel Rauf, has refused to disclose the sources of funding for the mosque.

But Sharif El-Gamal, the CEO of the company that owns the property, said that the project's backers were committed to transparency and were working to set up a nonprofit organization.

"We are going to go through a capital campaign," which will consist of equity debt, bonds, grants and fundraising from the grass roots, he said. They were committed to working with the attorney general's Charities Bureau, which supervises charitable organizations and works to protect donors, he said.

El-Gamal testified at the hearing, saying they were opposed to landmarking because the building does not meet the requirements of historical significance.

"This is not the Woolworth building, this is not the Chrysler building," he said later in an interview.

The five-story building on Park Place, a few blocks north of Wall Street, was completed between 1857 and 1858 and is an Italian Renaissance-inspired palazzo. It formerly housed a department store, which closed after the building was damaged on Sept. 11. Muslim prayer service is held at the building at least one day a week.

Landmark status could require the owners to obtain the approval of the city's Landmarks Preservation Commission before making significant changes. It's unlikely that, if granted such status, the building could be demolished.

The city's 11-member Landmarks Preservation Commission is expected to vote later this summer on whether the building meets the standards of architectural, cultural and historic characteristics to qualify it for landmark status.


Anonymous said...

i pray for the death of the imam

Dawn said...

If you're a registered voter, check out http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/killcordoba/

Pass it along!

ampedrage said...

Of course Christians couldnt get away with this in Muslim lands. But this is America Remember, we are suppose to be better than that. The only thing this Mosque threatens or Provokes is your narrow minded racism.