Before the 21st anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, New York City issued an official “Halal Guide” to its landmarks and tourist attractions.
The guide, featuring Muslim women in hijabs in front of skyscrapers, informs us that Muslims are “making an indelible mark on the City” and boasts of the “over 275 mosques spread across all five boroughs—more than any other metro area in the US”. That’s almost one mosque for every 9 people murdered in and around the World Trade Center by Islamic terrorists.
The guide, to its credit, begins its Manhattan section with the 9/11 Memorial in its “Must See & Do” section, but that’s probably in alphabetical order. Beyond halal eateries, it seems clueless about what Muslims might want to do in New York City, recommending a visit to an “avant-garde theater” in a warehouse featuring a production of 4:48 Psychosis, a play by a suicidal British playwright who then killed herself. The play was described as a “75-minute suicide note”.
That might also be a good description of New York City’s decision to issue a Halal Guide.
The Halal Guide also advises Muslims to visit The Lit. Bar, a bookstore/wine bar with a sizable LGBTQ section. That’s not so much a suggestion as a hate crime.
But the Halal Guide also makes a point of appending the location of a nearby mosque, one of those 275, to each American landmark. And the Guide’s choices have quite a history.
The Halal Guide recommends the Islamic Society of Bay Ridge. The ISBR was a target of NYPD surveillance before the De Blasio administration dismantled the city’s potent counterterrorism machine.
Shahawar Matin Siraj, a Pakistani who worked at the Islamic Society of Bay Ridge’s bookstore, was sentenced to 30 years in prison for a plot to bomb a midtown Manhattan subway station.
After the attack, Zein Rimawi, a founder and board member of ISBR, ranted, “You see Afghanistan, and it’s a war against the Muslims. Iraq, it’s a war against the Muslims. Palestine, it’s a war against the Muslims. Chechnya, a war against the Muslims.”
The ISBR’s alleged support for Hamas came up when another Muslim terrorist opened fire on a van full of Jewish boys after attending services at the mosque. A newspaper account stated how the Islamic terrorist, “heard the imam at Bay Ridge sermonize about the importance of jihad and about how the Jews harbor eternal hatred for Muslims”.
A secret NYPD document had stated that the police believed that “individuals believed to be supporters/members of Hamas may have links to the Bronx Muslim Center and the Islamic Society of Bay Ridge.”
Is the Bronx Muslim Center in the Halal Guide? Obviously. The Bronx Muslim Center is promoted as the prayer destination of choice for devout tourists visiting the Bronx Zoo.
But things get much worse when the Halal Guide goes back to Brooklyn.
Want to go to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, nearby Prospect Park (the borough’s answer to Central Park) or visit the Brooklyn Museum? The Halal Guide recommends Masjid At-Taqwa.
Wahhaj is famous for saying things such as “you don’t need nuclear weapons or even guns! If you have faith in Allah and a knife!” and “I will never ever tell people, ‘don’t be violent, that is not the Islamic way.’ The violence has to be selected”.
Also he’s spoken in favor of stoning people to death and cutting off their hands. “If Allah says 100 strikes, 100 strikes it is. If Allah says cut off their hand, you cut off their hand. If Allah says stone them to death, through the Prophet Muhammad, then you stone them to death.”
New York City is guiding tourists to his mosque and hoping they won’t have any body parts chopped off.
Three years ago, the FBI raided a compound owned by his son and found the remains of a 3-year-old boy. Members of the Wahhaj family were indicted for “providing material support to terrorists” and “conspiracy to murder an officer or employee of the United States”.
The NYPD conducted surveillance of the Al-Taqwa Mosque. The city noted in a legal filing that Wahhaj had “testified as a character witness for Clement Hampton El, a Masjid At Taqwa attendee who was convicted as one of the Blind Sheikh’s coconspirators in the Landmarks Plot.”
That was a plot to bomb tunnels and bridges, and other locations on July 4th.
The filing also noted that “members of the mosque’s security team have instructed individuals on how to disarm police officers” and terrorists who attended various mosque combat classes.
In Queens, the Halal Guide recommends the Masjid Al-Falah or the Al-Falah Mosque. The mosque was associated with the Tablighi Jamaat movement and was described by Stratfor as its North American headquarters. Tablighi Jamaat has been linked to multiple Islamic terror attacks and movements. “We have a significant presence of Tablighi Jamaat in the United States,” the FBI’s deputy chief of international terrorism section had warned, “and we have found that Al-Qaeda used them for recruiting now and in the past.”
The Halal Guide touts the Al-Falah Mosque for anyone visiting Corona Park or the Queens Museum. And if you don’t like Al-Falah, there’s the Al-Iman Mosque which was at the center of the false claim that it had been attacked by an Islamophobe who peed on their prayer rugs.
The actual story was that Omar Riviera, a Latino man on a bender, urinated on the street near the entrance to the mosque. After the media was saturated with false claims that he had shouted “anti-Muslim slurs” and “terrorists” and was accused of a hate crime, the case collapsed. Meanwhile the mosque appeared to host antisemitic conspiracy theories.
And if those options don’t seem good, try the Hazrati Abu Bakr Siddique mosque.
The Afghan mosque was also the choice of Najibullah Zazi, an Afghan terrorist trained by Al Qaeda who wanted to bomb subway trains during rush hour in time for Ramadan.
The mosque was at the center of a legal battle between the imam and its founders who accused each other of supporting the Taliban. Also, allegedly a member of the mosque, was Saifur Rahman Halimi, a representative of Afghan terror warlord Gulbuddin Hekmatyar who had been allied with Bin Laden, and whose forces were responsible for the murder of American soldiers.
All of this is considered fit for a Halal Guide issued by New York City.
Stroll through Central Park, the guide advises, pay your respects at the 9/11 museum and memorial, then go on to Brooklyn and Queens, stop by a few terror mosques.
The Halal Guide closes with a shot of downtown Manhattan past the Brooklyn Bridge. On top of the tower is an American flag. One of the two made famous when people, fleeing the carnage of the Islamic terrorist attack on September 11, walked across it, some covered in ash. The picture’s angle conveniently evades the two towers that are missing. And will always be missing.
The Halal Guide, unintentionally, tells the story of what they took from us and what replaced it.