During the past three decades, terrorism, hate and violence have mostly been associated with Muslims. Yet today, we are attacked and harmed by a terrorist whose profiler does not match the usual stereotype.
The connection between Muslims and terrorism was mainly triggered by the 1979 Iranian Revolution when the monarchy government of Iran led by Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, was overthrown by the Shiite Muslim opposition, led by Ayatollah Khomeini.
On April 1, 1979, Khomeini declared an Islamic Republic with a new constitution reflecting his ideals of a Islamic government. Although many demonstrations were held in protest of the new rules, such as extreme regulations on women’s code of dress and the forbidden social interaction between young men and women in public, it was too late.
The Iranian people were in for a rude awakening as the modern Iran quickly deteriorated into a religious state with extreme fundamentalist values.
The terror began on Nov. 4, 1979, when the Iranian Islamic students attacked the U.S. embassy in Tehran, taking 66 people hostage, mostly Americans. Fourteen hostages were released before the end of November as the rest were held until Jan. 20, 1981. The remaining hostages were released after long negotiations between the two nations when U.S. compromises to transfer money and export military equipment to Iran.
Since then, Muslims have brought a new title upon themselves throughout the world, “terrorists.”
The 88-year-old gunman who opened fire inside the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington D.C., on June 10, 2009, however, reminded all of us that terrorism comes in every color, race and ethnicity.
Despite all assumptions, this terrorist, James von Brunn, is an anti-Semitic World War II veteran with ties to white supremacist groups.
Von Brunn’s website, Holy Western Empire, says he “attempted to place the treasonous Federal Reserve Board of Governors under legal, non-violent, citizen’s arrest,” nearly 30 years ago. The site also notes he was “convicted by a Negro jury, Jew/Negro attorneys, and sentenced to prison for eleven years by a Jew judge.”
Von Brunn who is well known within hate group circles, wrote a book called “Tob Shebbe Goyim Harog” (Kill the Best Gentiles), which is about how to “protect your white family,” according to his website.
As von Brunn opened fire with a rifle inside the crowded museum, he shot a museum guard before being shot and critically wounded himself by officers. The Holocaust Memorial Museum later announced that the guard, 39-year-old Stephen Tyrone Johns, died as a result of the gunshot. Johns was black.
As the assailant was hospitalized, authorities and critics are left with many uncertainties as to the motive behind this crime. Some, of course are relating it to President Obama, saying von Brunn believed that the president is not a citizen of the United States and therefore has no right to the presidency.
Information and Diaspora Minister Yuli Edelstein of the Israeli government said the shooting was “further proof that anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial have not passed from the world.”
“We condemn this apparent bias-motivated attack and stand with the Jewish community and with Americans of all faiths in repudiating the kind of hatred and intolerance that can lead to such disturbing incidents,” said the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
“This outrageous act reminds us that we must remain vigilant against anti-Semitism and prejudice in all its forms. No American institution is more important to this effort than the Holocaust Museum, and no act of violence will diminish our determination to honor those who were lost by building a more peaceful and tolerant world,” said President Obama from the White House.
This sad and tragic incident helps us realize that not all Muslims are terrorists or fundamentalists. Not all Jews are materialistic, power hungry and dishonest. Not all blacks are poor, lazy, and lack work ethics. Most definitely, not all whites are a racial hate hoaxes or prejudiced.
Unfortunately, terrorism, discrimination, injustice and hate exist in every nation, every society, every race and every color and it is solely in the hands of the new generation to put an end to the ruthless beliefs and stereotypes that have crippled not only this nation, but the world.