Terror for Passover
It’s only a few weeks until Passover, a holiday that Jews throughout the world will be celebrating. And throughout the world, Muslims appear to be doing their part to help in the celebrations. In Milan, home of trendy fashions, a Moroccan Muslim man was arrested for organizing a bomb plot against a synagogue. Mohamed Jarmoune, a namesake of the prophet, had set up a covert Facebook group which included American and British Muslims to crowdsource the terror using social media.
Over in London, a Muslim woman was arrested for involvement in the same plot. Meanwhile in New York, the trial of two Muslim men accused of plotting to blow up synagogues continues. The two men, Ahmed Ferhani and another Mohamed, Mohamed Mamdouh, had contemplated dressing up as Hassidic Jews and walking inside with a hand grenade and a gun. But in all fairness, Ahmed and Mohamed hadn’t limited their homicidal interfaith fantasies to synagogues; they also considered blowing up churches.
After briefly flirting with becoming a model, Ahmed Ferhani had announced that he wanted to become a martyr instead, and in court his lawyer was doing her best to make him one. Ferhani’s lawyer, the appropriately named Elizabeth Fink, told the court that her client was just an innocent mentally ill violent ex-con who had been set up by the Islamophobic cretins at the NYPD.
Fink, who presents herself as a civil rights attorney and has an article on her website titled, “Attica is All of Us” seemed to be doing her best to exhaust the patience of even a liberal New York judge. When she began comparing the surveillance of Muslim terror suspects to the detention of Japanese-Americans, Judge Obus sighed and foreseeing a closing argument consisting entirely of Fink reading from “A People’s History of the United States”, said, “This could be a long trial.”
For her part, Fink, having spent the previous night watching a marathon of earnest lawyer movies like “And Justice for All”, “To Kill a Mockingbird” and “Legally Blonde”, declaimed, “What’s happening in the city of New York is evil, judge. It is wrong, and this case will expose it.”
Fink, like all finks, didn’t mean that blowing up synagogues was evil; she meant that arresting people who want to blow up synagogues is evil. There are of course plenty of finks out there. Some of them argue cases before the bench while others sit comfortably on the bench.
When Judge Colleen McMahon sentenced four Muslim terrorists to prison over a plot to blow up synagogues and aircraft at a National Guard base, she accused the government of having “made them terrorists” by helping them fulfill their fantasies of killing Jews, which she assures us they would have never acted upon on their own.
The Shadow radio program used to begin with the words, “Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men?” The answer apparently is Judge Colleen McMahon, a Clinton appointee and former speechwriter for Carter’s UN ambassador, whose husband works as a senior advisor to Soros Private Funds Management, and who can assure us that a charming fellow like Abdul Rahman, who said that, “With no hesitation, I will kill 10 Jews”, didn’t really mean it.
In a brilliant bit of legal reasoning that is sure to go down in history, McMahon told the final terrorist she convicted, “You were prepared to do a terrible thing, and you tried to do a terrible thing, and you tried to do it for a terrible reason. Maybe it doesn’t make you a terrorist, but it makes you a criminal.”
Over in Washington D.C., Amine El Khalifi had considered attacking a synagogue, but settled for trying to attack the U.S. Capitol instead. A few months from now, another Fink will be declaiming that he was the victim of entrapment by the government and another Colleen McMahon will “tsk” sympathetically at the poor boy who was turned into a terrorist by the government, and not at all by the Koran.
Attacks on synagogues are as much a staple of Islam as Ramadan and Zakat, a sizable percent of Muslim terrorist attacks in America, included either attacks on synagogues or proposed attacks. Al-Qaeda’s largest post September 11 attack in America, the Chicago bomb plot, included synagogues among its targets. There have been more Muslim attacks on American synagogues than on Israeli consulates and other “Zionist” targets discrediting the myth that Muslims are Anti-Zionist, rather than Anti-Semitic.
While for Jews, Passover is a celebration, in Islam, the period that Muslims associate with the Jewish exodus from Egypt, is a time of mourning. The clash of religions is highlighted by a Hadith in which Mohammed tells Jews commemorating Passover, “We have more right to Moses than you.” According to a variant Hadith, Mohammed added it as a fast day, because it was a time of celebration for Jews.
The underlying reasoning of, “We have more right to Moses than you” fuels the violence against Jews. In 2002, Hamas carried out the Passover Massacre at a Seder in the Park Hotel in Netanya, killing dozens and injuring over a hundred. The dead were mostly senior citizens. In 2004, the Palestinian Authority’s Al-Aqsa Martyr’s Brigade plotted to detonate a bomb with HIV positive blood during Passover. In 2007, a car bomb with 220 pounds of explosives was supposed to be detonated in Tel Aviv when the suicide bomber backed out at the last minute, making for a happy Passover.
How can there be a better way to establish a claim to Moses than by killing off his people?
Hardly a year passes by without similar incidents and the consequences can be seen in the growing security precautions taken by synagogues to keep their worshipers safe. European Jewish facilities are constantly tightening their security in response to a spree of violence that has been going on for decades. In 2000, European Jews experienced the worst series of synagogue attacks since 1938. And year after year synagogues continue to burn around the world.
In Tunisia a week after Passover, a gas truck was detonated outside the Ghriba synagogue, the oldest synagogue in North Africa. It wasn’t the first time Muslims had targeted the synagogue and it would not be the last. The synagogue, one of the final outposts of Jewish life in the Muslim world, is also one of the most heavily protected synagogues in the world. There were once over a hundred thousand Jews in Tunisia. Today there are less than two thousand and their fading presence is a grim reminder of the fragility of Jewish life in the Muslim world. That fragility now extends beyond the Middle East and North Africa to Europe and the United States.
In Istanbul attending a synagogue requires advance notice and pre-approval. In Cairo, there are bomb sniffing dogs outside. In Milan, home of the latest Muslim synagogue terrorist plot, bags are checked. Metal detectors, bulletproof glass and armed guards are not unusual features of European synagogues. American synagogues are belatedly starting to catch up without acknowledging the source of the problem.
As the NYPD is under siege from the finks for trying to protect synagogues from Muslim terrorism, it may be wise to look to the modern exodus of Jews from the Muslim world, leaving behind Dhimmism for freedom, as the inspiration for a renewed determination to resist the oppression of those who wish to bring back the age of caliphs and pharaohs.
Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.