St. Peter’s Church, New York, NY

Please do not be misled by the dishonest anti-Christian media or by urban legends about New Yorkers and New York’s Catholics; see for yourself who these people really are and what they do…

The Roman Catholic Parish of St Peter has a history of nearly a quarter of a millennium in Lower Manhattan and is home to the Shrine of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton; Mother Seton is our first American-born Catholic Saint. Saint Peter’s Church is the oldest parish in New York City. This is a true American Roman Catholic Church, that pre-dates the American Revolution, and its community is truly a reflection of what it really means to be New Yorkers.

Here is their Mission:

We are the Roman Catholic parish of St. Peter’s – Our Lady of the Rosary, encompassing
St. Peter’s Church, Our Lady of the Rosary (the Seton Shrine) and St. Joseph’s Chapel
(The Catholic Memorial at Ground Zero).

We are the first Catholic parish in New York State (est. 1785) but our legacy in Lower Manhattan pre-dates the American Revolution. The parish has served as a safe haven both in the past for needy immigrants and more recently for victims and rescue personnel in the wake of 9/11, without regard to religion. St. Elizabeth Ann Seton and the Venerable Pierre Toussaint, who performed many works of charity in this parish, inspire us to a tradition of service to the residents, the many people who work in the area, and the multitude of visitors who come from around the world. We strive to serve our neighborhood in that spirit, with welcome and compassion for all because we are all children of God.

The Church is located just a street away from The World Trade Center, which was attacked by islamic terrorists on February 26, 1993, and, again on September 11, 2001. Via the St. Peter’s website, here is their story about what happened on both occasions:

  • “Prior to September 11th we were accustomed to look at the Twin Towers as the symbol of America’s strength and power in the world of trade, commerce and finance.  But as those buildings turned to dust before our eyes, we came to look to each other to see where our true strength and power lie.  Our true strength was in all those acts of compassion, those deeds of generosity and self-sacrifice that were performed that day and in the days, weeks and months afterward.”    

    – Fr Kevin Madigan

     

    WE WILL NEVER FORGET

    The World Trade Center cast a shadow over the Church of St Peter’s, a street away.  The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 profoundly affected our parish and without a doubt made us stronger and more connected.  Here is an account of how we opened our home and hearts at our three places of worship and how faith helped to resurrect downtown in New York City after the terrorist attacks on 9/11.

    ST PETER’S CHURCH AND 9/11 TIMELINE

    At 8:45am, the impact of the first plane hit the first World Trade Center and shook St Peter’s Church with a violence that caused the parish secretary, Patricia Ruggiero, to scream.  She ran outside and took a look at the enormous gash surrounded by flames and billowing smoke. Rushing back inside she called out to the pastor, Reverend Kevin Madigan, that the plane had hit the building.  Fr Madigan looked out the window and saw the almost instantaneous response of fire engines and ambulances, and he hurried out to find out where the wounded were. At 9:03am, Fr Madigan was speaking with the police when the second plane crashed into the South Tower. Debris blew everywhere from the second impact; many larger pieces were on fire.
    “I remember seeing a wheel of the plane fly over my head”, Fr Madigan told American Catholic Magazine.

    Fr Madigan rushed back to St. Peter’s to make sure the staff got to safety and then returned to the street.  He met the Assistant Fire Chaplain and started walking southbound on Church Street when the South Tower began to collapse at 9:59am. Thinking quickly, Fr Madigan led the assistant chaplain down into the nearby subway station where they took temporary shelter with transit police officers and emerged safely after some of the dust had settled.

    When Fr Madigan returned to St Peter’s, he found out the landing gear of one of the airplanes had pierced the roof.

    STAGING GROUND FOR 9/11 RESCUE AND RECOVERY

    Roman Catholics were the most represented faith group of those lost in the attacks.  The parish can’t be certain of all the members of the parish who were lost, since many don’t register but we do know that a lector at St Peter’s and a parishioner at the mission of St Joseph’s Chapel were killed on that day.  After 9/11 far fewer were coming to weekday morning and lunch hour Masses because the roughly 50,000 workers in the towers had to work in new locations

    During these operations, Fr Madigan celebrated Mass, heard Confession and provided pastoral care to rescue workers and those allowed to enter the area.  The church was open twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week for the workers until the end of October 2001 when martial law was lifted and workers returned to work downtown.

    The doors of St Peter’s stayed open to America’s heroes, and the church transformed into a relief supply station. “We were the first place they were bringing all the emergency equipment. Everything was in disarray,” Fr Kevin Madigan stated. “Supplies were piled six feet high all over the pews, bandages, gas masks, boots, hoses and cans of food for the workers and the volunteers, many of whom were sleeping in the pews on bedrolls.”

    FATHER MYCHAL JUDGE

    Father Mychal Judge OFM, the beloved chaplain of the New York Fire Department, was early to the scene of the disaster, giving absolution and prayers for the wounded and dying.  Late that morning, he was in the North Tower lobby surrounded by rescue workers when the South Tower collapsed.  The force of the building falling on itself blew cement dust and debris at speeds estimated to be 100mph. The impact of the implosion was so violent that parts of the compromised North Tower building fell.  Obscured by the cloud of dust, it was only after the incident that the men nearby saw that Fr Judge had been struck down and killed.  Fr Kevin M. Smith, another fire chaplain from Patchogue, NY blessed the body on curb.  Eventually his body was carried by two firemen, an FDNY medical technician, a police lieutenant and a civilian bystander into St. Peter’s and laid in front of the altar.  Fr Fussner, a priest at St. Peter’s Church noticed that Fr. Judge’s neck was swollen and appeared to be broken.  Resting on the marble, Fr Judge’s body was covered in a white cloth with a fresh stole from sacristy on top and his chaplain’s badge and helmet resting on his chest.  Fr Fussner added that the firemen pulled two of the candles close to either side of his body and a Franciscan friar later pointed out that the resulting pose resembled a bas-relief sculpture of Christ immediately behind the body.  At around 2pm, two Franciscan friars from Fr Judge’s residence carried his body to a fire station across from his residence.

    Fr. Mychal gave the following sermon at a Mass for New York City Firefighters at Engine 73, Ladder 42, Bronx, NY on September 10, 2001:

    You do what God has called you to do. You get on that ring, you go out and do the job. No matter how big the call, no matter how small, you have no idea of what God is calling you to, but God needs you. He needs me. He needs all of us. God needs us to keep supporting each other, to be kind to each other, to love each other.
    We love this job, we all do. What a blessing it is! It’s a difficult, difficult job, but God calls you to do it, and indeed, He gives you a love for it so that a difficult job will be well done.
    Isn’t God wonderful?! Isn’t He good to you, to each one of you, and to me? Turn to God each day — put your faith, your trust, your hope and your life in His hands. He’ll take care of you, and you’ll have a good life. And this firehouse will be a great blessing to this neighborhood and to this city. Amen.

    WORLD TRADE CENTER CROSS

    Two days after the 9-11 attacks, Ground Zero looked and felt like hell on earth.  The ground was scorched, the air held the odor of incinerated building material and felt heavy with the weight of thousands of departed souls.  Long shadows of autumn sun and lights erected to illuminate the wreckage gave the area an amber glow.  Police, firemen, first responders and many volunteers began to search the rubble for a few survivors and scarce remains.  Many of the men who flocked to the site to volunteer were experienced hands that knew how to cut steel and move rubble so the search could continue and the area cleared.

    (Frank Sileccia found the World Trade Center Cross)
    A volunteer construction worker named Frank Silecchia discovered the cross in a carved out area of the pile in the lower core of Building 6.  There he spotted a cross made of steel standing upright.  Fused to one side of the cross was large piece of melted metal that resembled a rumpled cloth which brought to mind the cross and shroud of resurrected Christ.  Frank Silecchia fell to his knees as did many who came to see it later.  Firefighter John Picarello described what he saw in a story published by Christian Broadcast News: “Just the way the sun shone down…it looked like an amphitheater with benches.”  Believers and non-believers came and bowed their heads or knelt.  Many of them came back again and again over the course of eight months to reflect, worship and hope.  Mayor Giuliani remarked that the cross, “kept a lot of people going”, especially those directly involved in the recovery efforts.
    Ten days after the cross was found, Frank Silecchia took Fr Brian Jordan, OFM, a Franciscan priest, to see what he thought was a revelation:  that God had not abandoned us.  Fr Jordan saw it as a sign.  Some time later the men were concerned that in the reconstruction efforts the cross might be taken away to a storage facility or destroyed, so Fr Jordan contacted the mayor’s office.  Mayor Rudolph Giuliani replied quickly that, ‘we will keep that cross as a reminder of God’s love for all of us’.
    Fr Jordan then reached out to Fr Madigan who agreed to host the cross. In October 2006, a group of about 150 workers from the site, relatives of those killed in the attack and onlookers watched over as volunteer workers labored to move the 6,000-lb steel cross three streets and set it down outdoors on the side of the Church at Barclay and Church streets.  People from all over the world and all faiths came to see the cross.  In 2011, the relic, borne of the terrible events of 9-11, was lifted by a crane, loaded onto a truck and taken to its current location at the 9/11 Memorial Museum.

    TRIBUTE CROSS

    On August 11, 2011, a new custom cross was installed to stand in the same place on the side of St. Peter’s.  The modern sculpture commissioned by the Archdiocese of New York, was made by artist Jon Krawczyk.  Crafted in Malibu, California, the cross was transported through sixteen states to reach New York.  On the journey, many stopped the artist to inquire about the cross and share a moment of reflection over the events of 9-11.  The “Tribute Cross”, as it is now called, represents the resurrection of the neighborhood.

    ST JOSEPH’S CHAPEL BECAME A FEMA COMMAND STATION

    On September 11, the cloud of dust and ash from the imploding World Trade Center towers also engulfed St Joseph’s Chapel. During the week of the disaster, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) designated the chapel as a command station.  The Chapel and its furnishings were a great help to the rescue effort and even altar cloths were used as temporary bandages.  Following the rescue operations, the chapel became a temporary sanctuary where construction workers, police offers and firefighters could come to eat, email their families, talk with spiritual counselors and rest from the physically, emotionally and spiritually exhausting work at Ground Zero.  The priests of St. Joseph’s continued to celebrate Mass in a gym nearby..

    After opening her arms to so many, the chapel interior suffered extensive damage.  The pulpit, pews and chairs, which were moved outside, were destroyed in a rainstorm.   After a degree of normalcy resumed in the downtown Battery Park City neighborhood, the idea for a Catholic Memorial was brought up in discussions about the need for a renovation. The initial thought was to express the journey of grief and healing the parish had taken as a faith community.  But as we clarified our vision through discussion and prayer, we determined to create a memorial that would respond in a broader way to the event from a Catholic perspective.  The memorial also affirmed our belief that life is stronger than death and love is stronger than hate.

    Fundraising commenced and the Mission of St Joseph’s Chapel received the support of Cardinal Edward M. Egan and Mayor Rudolph Giuliani.  In a letter, Mayor Rudolph Giuliani wrote, “St Joseph’s Chapel in Battery Park City is creating a Catholic Memorial at Ground Zero to honor those who were lost, and pay tribute to those who responded with such heroism and bravery in the face of mortal danger.”  (Read full letters written by Cardinal Egan, Mayor Giuliani and Fr Madigan.)

    Fr Madigan and a committee of parish leaders commissioned artwork to honor the heroes of 9/11 for “their bravery, sacrifice and love.”  (Details about Catholic Memorial artwork.)

    In May 2005, Cardinal Edward M. Egan held a ceremony to bless the refurbished St Joseph’s Chapel.  Cardinal Egan remarked that, “the memorial affirms the presence of God in a place that has tested the faith of many.”   The completed Catholic Memorial at Ground Zero honors those who died, those who performed heroic and selfless acts on that day, and all of us who survived to bear witness.  The memorial compliments the 9-11 National Memorial and gives visitors an opportunity for prayer and reflection in a quiet sanctuary.


    OUR LADY OF THE ROSARY REACHES OUT TO BRETHREN

    After September 11, 2001, Our Lady of the Rosary held a memorial service for the sixty-seven British and twenty-four Canadian citizens who died in the World Trade Center attack. The church kept its doors open and, for seven Sundays, hosted the services of Trinity Episcopal Church. Trinity had to shut its doors until they were assured the historic building was structurally sound.  Two months later when Trinity held a ceremony at their reopening, they thanked
    Fr Peter Meehan, the pastor of Our Lady of the Rosary and Seton Shrine, for the generosity.

    THE FIRST ATTACK IN 1993

    February 26, 1993, a truck loaded with bombs, parked in a public garage below the North Tower of the World Trade Center and exploded.  Terrorists set of the powerful homemade bomb by way of a twenty-foot fuse.  The blast killed six innocent civilians.  The bomb was powerful enough to create a 200 by 100 foot hole in the building.  Approximately a thousand office workers suffered smoke inhalation injuries.  One hundred and twenty four of those injured were rescue personnel.  Seventeen kindergarteners were trapped when the electrical power line was knocked out and one woman in labor was airlifted out of the area to a hospital.

    The terrorists intended for the North Tower to come crashing down and topple the South Tower. Seven men have been convicted for their role in the attack but only six have been caught.

    Many have forgotten the first truck bombing of the World Trade Center in the wake of 9/11.  A son of a victim in the attacks, Stephen Knapp Jr., is quoted in the New York Times:  “It started on Feb. 26, it played out on 9/11, and it is still going on now.”

    Our Parish has not forgotten.  Every February, the families and friends of people who died and those who were injured, hold a memorial Mass at St. Peter’s Church.


  • This account of what transpired on September 11, 2001 and in the aftermath of the attacks has been prepared by parish volunteers.  The research and fact checking continues and will soon include further quotes from our clergy.

May God continue to bless St. Peter’s Church, parish, and people, and may the Good Lord forever bless New York, America, and you as well.

*******

MJ Stevenson, AKA Zilla, is best known on the web as Zilla of the Resistance at MareZilla.com. She lives in a woodland shack near a creek, in one of those rural parts of New York State that nobody knows or cares about, with her family and a large pack of guardian companion animals – including Siberian Husky Dalmatian Lab Puppies and their parents. Zilla is a proud New Yorker and a parishioner of Saint Denis Church in New York’s Hudson Valley

See also by Zilla at DaTechGuyBlog:

Remembering Saint Scholastica

Sept 11 is here again and once again America is going to spent it with solemn remembrance of our dead of that day, listing names, ringing bells and generally being sober.

In other words once again we are doing it wrong.

If the war on terror was over. If the states that sponsored terror were defeated, humiliated, their armies destroyed, their leaders overthrown. If the groups like ISIS and Al Qaeda were just memories, their fighters reduce to dust and ash, their madrassas rubble and their imams laid to rest in pigskin coffins, THEN all of these ceremonials would be appropriate. Then it would be time to mourn our dead with the knowledge that the war was won and that when we say “never forget” we meant it.

But until that is done, the only thing all of our solemn tears do is enable our enemies thus encouraging them to launch the next Benghazi attack, to tell their youth that America is weak, to encourage every single lone wolf that you can be remembered as a hero and bring a nation to its knees.

All we are doing today is giving our foes an easy propaganda victory.

This is a huge mistake, and it’s a bipartisan mistake, George W bush made it, Barack Obama made it and I suspect whoever wins in November will make it too.

In 1836 Texans remembered the Alamo by defeating those who attacked it.

In 1941 Americans remembered Pearl Harbor by declaring war and eventually bringing Japan to it’s knees.

We should remember 9/11 the same way, by destroying these enemies and making them an object lesson to any who would consider following in their footsteps.

Once that’s done, then we can memorialize the dead all you want and I’ll be right behind you,

Update:
Glenn Reynolds was right, unfortunately his predictions have held up really well and closes with this line:

God bless America. We need it.

Alas I think these days the most significant line of scripture for America is this one:

Everyone who acknowledges me before others I will acknowledge before my heavenly Father. But whoever denies me before others, I will deny before my heavenly Father.

Matthew 10:32-33

Every single day I pray the 4th sorrowful mystery of the Rosary and ask Mother Angelia & Justice Scalia to pray it with me for our country.  I suggest you do the same.

Update two here is a prediction of Glenn’s that wasn’t correct:

And the TV footage of jubilant Palestinians just proves what I’ve always suspected — they just don’t get it. They’ll learn. Oh, how they’ll learn

What they’ve learned is there is no penalty for celebrating the death of Americans and they’ve learned that lesson well.

Update Three:  Jazz Shaw and uncomfortable truths

As much as I refused to admit it for years after the attacks, there is no separating out the bad apples from the rest of the basket… at least not entirely. We’re fighting an evil ideology which has deep roots in Islam. This is not to say that every Muslim in the world – and certainly not every one in America – supports terror. But it’s equally foolish to deny that this is the fountain from which the poison water flows. I don’t particularly like the look of the guy in the mirror who makes a statement like that, but it would be dishonest to deny it.

Or as I put it to answer Catholic turned Muslim Rep Keith Ellison who today talks about beating “Islamophobia”

Every day that doesn’t happen brings us a day closer to the necessity of us convincing them in a more forceful way because it’s going to come down to either our submission or their defeat.

brussels
Brussels, Belgium on March 22, 2016

by baldilocks

Originally posted on September 11, 2006.

Two men [original link unavailable].

Based on the accounts of witnesses and loved ones’ knowledge of the two men’s characters, a devastating picture emerges of that tragic morning. [SNIP]

When the first plane hit the building, [Abe] Zelmanowitz, 55, and [Edward] Beyea, 42, both systems analysts for Blue Cross Blue Shield, fled the office with their co-workers. The elevators were not working, and Beyea, a 300-pound man in a heavy mechanized wheelchair, could not get down the stairs, which were choked with streams of panicked workers. [SNIP]

“He couldn’t have left him,” said Zelmanowitz’s sister-in-law, Evelyn Zelmanowitz of Flatlands, N.Y. “That’s what made Abe, Abe.” [SNIP]

Both men were lost in the collapse of the north tower that morning. [SNIP]

There is some indication that they had made it to the 21st floor when the building collapsed. Their bodies have not been recovered.

Why are such men hated?

On that very day, I was sad, then furious and then filled with hate. I don’t feel the latter much any more, but, occasionally, it flares up again; especially when I read about people like Misters Zelmanowitz and Beyea. Their families have nothing to bury; they only live with the memory of loved persons. And, meanwhile, other men and women are dying for having breathed in the dust of their bodies, along with the dust of their desks, their computers, the dust of Mr. Beyea’s wheelchair, the dust of the building in which they worked, and are dying from just plain grief.

Why don’t we hate them?

Do I hate them—the terrorists who murdered Misters Zelmanowitz and Beyea? No, not most of the time. Nor do I hate their liked-minded living brethren. Do I fear them? Most certainly not, but that’s merely because I learned to not fear that which can kill the body—also because I knew a long time ago that the goal of any terrorist is to instill fear. Can’t give them that particular victory.

But why shouldn’t I hate those who would murder such seemingly innocuous, harmless and loving men like Zelmanowitz and Beyea? Because it does nothing for either me or those two men; I’m here and they’re bodies are now an integral part of New York City (along with those of hundreds of others who were never found in the wreckage of the Twin Towers).

So why does the story of these two formerly living men fill me with so much anger?

Because they were simply living well and they should have been left alone to go on living the same way. That they died well and honorably—like so many others on that day—is uplifting in a way, but guess what? I would have preferred that they had gone on living anonymously rather than to have become one of the footnotes in many a 9/11 post like this one.

And that’s why I hate the terrorists. Sometimes. Okay, often.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. (Her older blog is located here.) Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2012. Her second novel will be done in 2016. Follow her on Twitter.

Please contribute to Juliette’s Projects JOB:  Her new novel, her blog, her Internet to keep the latter going and COFFEE to keep her going!

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baldilocks

“It is altogether fitting and proper,” a phrase from Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, comes to mind on this day.

Three thousand died on September 11, 2001, among them a father and a son, Joseph Angelini and Joe Angelini, Jr., both Firefighters. I never met them, but, for as long as I am able to blog, I will post their obituaries at my blog on this date. A brother, Firefighter Michael Angelini, was on duty as well, but, in a move that probably saved his life, left when asked to help carry out the body of the Rev. Mychal Judge, the Fire Department’s chaplain.

Many died from injuries related to the rescue effort. Untold thousands still are directly affected by this unspeakable atrocity.

I went through the World Trade Center every workday from 1979 to 1985. On September 11, 2001, sixteen years after I stopped commuting to New York City, I was forty miles away. The events of that day changed my life.

Now, on the fourteenth anniversary of the second attack at the World Trade Center (the first one, in 1993, killed six people and injured more than 1,000), we must examine a Prediction From the Grave (emphasis added):

Very few would have predicted on September 11, 2001 that the headlines 14 years later would feature an American president arming Iran; that there would be millions of Middle Eastern Arabs flooding into the heart of Europe. Or Saudi Arabia, while refusing to accept any refugees from an Islamic civil war in Syria, would instead offer to build 200 mosques in Germany, one for every hundred who has arrived to spare the Germans the trouble and expense of building the mosques themselves.

Few could have imagined that rail and road transport from Hungary to Germany would be interrupted to hold back floods of people in numbers unseen since World War 2. Not many would have guessed that the Palestinian flag would fly over the UN in New York, despite the objection of the United States.

Hardly anyone would have foretold the return of the Russia to the Middle East, spearheaded by a legion of forces who had honed their skill at “hybrid warfare” — then and unknown term — in Ukraine. Not just anyone mind you, but as Michael Weiss in the Daily Beast notes, “the Kremlin isn’t sending just any troops to prop up the Assad regime. It’s dispatching units that spearheaded Russia’s slow-rolling invasion of Ukraine.”

Except one man: Osama bin Laden.

. . .

Bin Laden knew that the weakness of the West lay, not in it’s armed forces, technology or economy, but in the alienation of its own elites.

You must read Richard Fernandez’s post in full. He eloquently explores in depth what my friend Maggie Petito stated in the first email I opened this morning: “Obama has declared on 9-11-15 that his pro-Iran Deal, aiding Jihadist terror is done. It is altogether fitting that we sharply remember the dead of 9-11 from Muslim Jihadists.”

It is, altogether, fitting, and proper, that we must.

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S. and Latin America politics, news, and culture at Fausta’s Blog.

In fact they didn’t just destroy them, they occupied them with a military force that remains to this day which not only forced cultural changes to prevent them from being a threat to the civilized world but led them to become on of the richest , most technologically advanced and civilized places in the entire world.

It’s a good thing too because if my father’s Generation treated Pearl Harbor the way we treat 9/11 Not only would Japan still hold a Pacific Empire including China, Korea the Philippines, Indochina and Singapore, their military ruling it under an iron fist that would make the likes of Mao & the Kims of North Korea blush but they would still be a threat to us today.

So you’ll pardon me but I’m not going to weep, or attend moments of silence or any of those other things to remind our enemies of their greatest single victory in the war on terror. I decline to give Islamists a propaganda victory they can use to recruit the next generation of people who want to kill our children and grandchildren.

When we have destroyed them, when we have occupied them with a military force and so subjugated to the point that they are no longer a threat to the civilized world, then it’s time to hold memorials. I’ll give the last word to a man named Sherman

We cannot change the hearts and minds of those people of the South, but we can make war so terrible … [and] make them so sick of war that generations would pass away before they would again appeal to it.”

If we truly want to end the threat of Islamic terror and want our children to be able to live without fear as we once did just a generation ago we should do the same to the Islamists of Isis and Al Qaeda and any nation that supports them.

We have the power, we simply do not have the will.

See it?
See it?

By John Ruberry

“See it
For the same reason no one ever
Pointed a telescope at the sun”
The Clash, Red Angel Dragnet.

The last 100 years can safely be placed into the following eras. World War I (1914-1918), Interwar (1918-1939), World War II (1939-1945), the Cold War (1945-1991), and the present epoch, the Age of Islamic Terror (1991-present). Certainly there were Muslim-inspired terror acts before 1991, such as the assassination of Anwar Sadat ten years earlier by an Islamist. But the Cold War was the driving international political force then.

Now Islamic terror and the rest of the world’s response to it is the global impetus of change, for good or for ill.

And what has happened since 1991? Some of the atrocities include the first World Trade Center attack, Osama bin Laden’s two jihad fatwas, al Qaeda’s African embassy bombings and its bombing of the USS Cole, 9/11, the 2002 Bali bombings, the 3/11 bombings in Madrid, Hamas’ takeover of Gaza, Iran’s pursuit of a nuclear weapon, the 7/7 bombings in London, Hezbollah’s war with Israel, the 2008 Mumbai attacks, Fort Hood, thousands of sectarian murders in Iraq and Pakistan, the Boston Marathon bombings, the rise of Boko Haram in Nigeria, Benghazi, the ascent of the Islamic State in Syria and northern Iraq, and this month’s Charlie Hebdo slaughter in Paris. This rundown reads like a listing of the theaters of conflict during the Second World War.

Sometimes radical Islamists attacks other Muslims, such as last week’s removal from office of the president of Yemen by Iranian-backed Shi’ites.

For the most part world leaders ignore or obfuscate the reality that they are living in the Age of Islamic Terror. President Obama regularly refers to Islamic terror as “violent extremism,” a term that is broad enough to include gang-bang murders on Chicago’s South Side. Great Britain’s prime minister, David Cameron, says his nation is not at war with radical Islam, countering it’s “just a huge challenge our society faces.” But the war is there. Just as the sun is there as well–even if we don’t point a telescope at it.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

MosqueBy John Ruberry

Five days ago free expression was attacked in Paris when Cherif Kouachi and his brother Said, who were trained by Al Qaeda in Yemen, screamed “Allahu Akbar” (God is great!) while killing 12 people with AK-47s, most of them journalists employed by satire magazine Charlie Hebdo. The terrorists were killed by French police two days later.

Muslim apologists quickly filled the airwaves, explaining that such atrocities are not compatible with Islam and that murderers such as the Kouachi brothers are outliers of the faith–bad apples.

Maybe.

I generally don’t agree with HBO’s Bill Maher, a strident atheist, but when he said last week about Islam, “When there are that many bad apples, there’s something wrong with the orchard,” I have to admit he’s on to something.

Radical Muslims were of course behind the 9/11 attacks in the United States, as well as the 3/11 Mardid and 7/7 London bombings. The jihadists who have seized much of Iraq and Syria–while murdering thousands of Christians and Yazidis–have announced the founding of a new Caliphate. The Fort Hood murderer considered himself a Soldier of Allah. And while western journalists were devoting the lion’s share of its coverage to the Charlie Hebdo killings last week, another Islamist group, Boko Haram, murdered all of the residents–2,000 people–in the Nigerian village of Baga. These are the same criminals who kidnapped 200 teenage Nigeria girls who were the subject of Michelle Obama’s #BringBackOurGirls Twitter campaign. It didn’t work–the teens are still missing.

Islam–you have a problem. Yes, there are many Muslims that I know who like most people, just want to live their lives and be left alone.  But my guess is that the radicals oppose them too.

Egypt’s president, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who did his nation and the world a huge service by ousting the Muslim Brotherhood from power, is calling for a “religious revolution” within Islam. In a New Year’s Day speech, Sisi said, “Is it possible that 1.6 billion people should want to kill the rest of the world’s inhabitants—that is 7 billion—so that they themselves may live?”

If the rest of the world’s inhabitants don’t accept Islam, what Sisi said of the radicals very well may be true.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

by baldilocks

Nearly all major news agencies have been reporting on the recent Islamic terror attacks in Paris: the ambush of Charlie Hebdo journalists and responding police officers and the hostage-murders at a Kosher grocery store. But those of us who pay closer attention to what’s going on in the world know about this also.

abubakar-shekau
Newsweek say that this is Boko Haram’s leader, Abubakar Shekau. (YouTube)

Hundreds of bodies – too many to count – remain strewn in the bush in Nigeria from an Islamic extremist [sic] attack that Amnesty International described as the “deadliest massacre” in the history of Boko Haram.

[…]

District head Baba Abba Hassan said most victims are children, women and elderly people who could not run fast enough when insurgents drove into Baga, firing rocket-propelled grenades and assault rifles on town residents.

“The human carnage perpetrated by Boko Haram terrorists in Baga was enormous,” Muhammad Abba Gava, a spokesman for poorly armed civilians in a defence group that fights Boko Haram, told the Associated Press.

He said the civilian fighters gave up on trying to count all the bodies. “No one could attend to the corpses and even the seriously injured ones who may have died by now,” Gava said.

An Amnesty International statement said there are reports the town was razed and as many as 2,000 people killed.

Boko Haram’s previous high body count in Nigeria was achieved last year: 600.

It’s interesting to note that the name ‘Boko Haram’ means ‘books forbidden’—that is, books for girls and women. However, I doubt that any of these demonic vessels are, themselves, making their way through the Great Books.

Also interesting: how the mainstream media treats Islamic terror in Europe as compared to how they are recently treating far worse attacks in Africa and in other places which are openly acknowledged to be Muslim lands. There’s not much outrage. But, this wasn’t always so.

Here’s why this slightly smaller, Nigerian version of 9/11 gets less coverage in the mainstream media: the continent is conceded as theirs—or so the designated reporters of the news now believe.

We’ll see how long it takes for Europe to be deemed Muslim. French Jews aren’t waiting around for the announcement this time.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. (Her older blog is located here.) Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2012. Her second novel, tentatively titled, Arlen’s Harem, will be done in 2015. Follow her on Twitter.

Please contribute to Juliette’s Projects: Her new novel, her blog, her Internet to keep the latter going and COFFEE to keep her going!

Or contribute to Da Tech Guy’s Tip Jar in the name of Independent Journalism—->>>>baldilocks

 

by baldilocks

Report: ISIS eyeing Mexican border to infiltrate America and execute terrorist attacks

Islamist militants tweet gruesome images of dead American soldiers and vow to blow up embassies

Saudi King warns that the west jihadis’ next target

dandelions (1)

The weeds of fear are the favored crop of any terrorist.

Two years after that bit of unpleasantness in New York City, in Washington, DC, and in the Pennsylvania countryside, I wrote this:

Terrorists commit their acts not for the benefit of the dead, but for those who remain alive. “Look at what we’ll do to you and yours,” they say, “if you don’t do what we want you to do.” They revel in our horror. They rejoice in the sorrow of the families who will never bury the atomized [or beheaded] bodies of their loved ones. They say, “yeah, we did it and we’ll do it to you unless you….submit.”

Does anyone remember the story of Emmett Till? Several years before I was born, Till, fourteen-years-old, was the victim of another set of terrorists. This young black man, not knowing or not caring about the ways of the South of that period, was murdered for allegedly making an indecent remark to a white woman. He disappeared and, days later, his body, beaten and shot, was found in a river. The men who were tried for his murder were acquitted. Emmett’s murder wasn’t an isolated case of a man supposedly defending the honor of his wife. As we know, all over the South, black men were being murdered for “stepping out of their place,” whether they actually had stepped out of their “place” or not.

Those who committed these crimes did so not only for “revenge” on the dead, but to send a message to and strike fear in the living. That’s what made it terrorism. Sound familiar?

In 2001 (and 1968 and 1979 and 1983 and 1988 and 1993 and 1998 and 2003 [added: and in 2014] and every year in between), the players are different from that of 1955, but the message is the same: do what we want or this will happen to you or to those whom you love. In this case, it is “worship in the way we worship; bow five times a day to Mecca or else.”

I mention the Till case not to compare the two sets of terrorists, per se, but to compare the dissimilar reactions of the victims’ loved ones. Mamie Till, Emmett’s mother, had an open-casket funeral for her son. […]

[Till’s] head–monstrous from the beating, the bullet and the decomposition–contrasted against the normalcy of the casket and the suit that Mrs. Till had picked out for the body. It gave the picture that much more ugliness: your worst nightmare in banal black and white.

But Mamie Till’s steely words about the open-casket decision were electrifying: “I want the world to see what they did to my son.”

Well, the “world” did see and, though there was much more sorrow to be had–as it is with any major upheaval of a society–things changed. Some of us even think that things have changed for the better…such home-grown types of terrorists still exist, but when caught, they usually sit on death row rather sit at home having beers with their friends. We can send our message as well.

Keep sowing, jihadis. Most of us are good at pulling up weeds–and at cleaning metal.Baldilocks mini

All die once. But the feaful die twice.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game,
was published in 2009; the second edition in 2012. Her new novel, 
Arlen’s Harem, is due in 2014. Help her fund it and help keep her blog alive!

by baldilocks

When Malaysia Flight 370 went missing and no wreckage could be found, most normal people had quickly figured SkyWorldthis out:

At a press conference today in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak confirmed what many, including Slate, had already inferred about the fate of missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370: that it had not succumbed to an accident but instead been diverted as a result of “deliberate action by someone on the plane.”

It turns out that Flight 370 flew on for seven hours after contact was lost.

But, some observers are still failing to think outside the box of normalcy.

If the plane landed safely and the passengers weren’t killed, why haven’t we heard any ransom demands? The perps might be covering their tracks, or they might be letting the world media whip themselves into a frenzy.

Ransom demands? Really? That’s so August 2001.

For some set of persons to be bold enough to commandeer a triple-7 should not be so surprising. Isn’t that the very reason that our country has inflicted the TSA on airline passengers in the USA for the last twelve years?

I certainly hope that there are at least a few intelligence agency employees who have more imagination than Slate’s JeffWise.

Here’s what I think:

  • The pilot/co-pilot or both were in on the plan.
  • Many of the passengers were in on it.
  • They all landed safely.
  • Innocent passengers have probably been killed.
  • The perpetrators are planning some creative mayhem with their new triple 7—more creative than 9/11.
  • No one non-Muslim will like it when this plan comes together. This was merely the first phase.

I remember when voicing these kinds of suppositions would elicit labels like conspiracy-theorist and paranoid lunatic. But, then I remember being told that I was out of touch with reality when I called Barack H.Obama a socialist. That was in 2007.

Our new, abnormal world has been long in the making, but it’s still pretty easy for some to hold onto their normalcy bias. That won’t last much longer.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2009; the second edition in 2012. Her new novel, Arlen’s Harem, is due in early 2014. Help her fund it and help 

Baldilocks mini

keep her blog alive!

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