USA: bloggers force new Cleveland imam to resign

October 31, 2007, Robert Spencer, Jihad Watch

... from Associated Press:
An imam who was to become the new spiritual leader of Ohio's largest mosque resigned because of allegations by bloggers that he is anti-Semitic, he said.

Imam Ahmed Alzaree said the Web postings so poisoned the atmosphere in the community that he and his wife, Marwa, decided to look elsewhere.

"Cleveland now is a nightmare for her," Alzaree said Monday, three days before he was to start at the Islamic Center of Cleveland in suburban Parma. "It will never be a good start for me and the Jewish community."

Alzaree, 38, an Egyptian-born cleric, was to be the mosque's first permanent imam since Fawaz Damra, who was deported in January after a 1991 videotape surfaced showing him disparaging Jews and raising money for the Palestinian militant group Islamic Jihad.

Damra apologized and said his views had changed but was shunned by the interfaith leaders who once worked with him.

Alzaree, who previously led a mosque in Omaha, Neb., said bloggers such as Central Ohioans Against Terrorism and Jihad Watch continued to attack him for a 2003 sermon in which he referenced the Hadiths, a collection of Prophet Muhammad's sayings.

"The hour of judgment shall not happen until the Muslims fight the Jews," the sermon quotes a Hadith. "The Muslims shall kill the Jews to the point that the Jew shall hide behind a big rock or a tree."

Alzaree has said the sermon gave many examples of Islamic teaching on the Day of Judgment and that it is clear that Muslims in the present are required to "strive and struggle in the world doing the good."

Bloggers also attacked him for an appearance at the Omaha mosque by Wagdy Ghoneim, an Egyptian and former imam at the Islamic Institute of Orange County in California who was forced to leave the United States in 2005 because of immigration violations.

Ghoneim had come to the attention of the U.S. Homeland Security Department, which believed his speeches could be considered supportive of terrorist organizations.

Alzaree said it was the administration of the Omaha mosque that had invited Ghoneim to speak.

Leaders of the Ohio mosque said they investigated Alzaree's background and that a major reason they hired him was his commitment to interfaith work. And just last week, Alzaree said he still planned to come to Ohio and make an extra effort to reach out to Jewish and Christian leaders.

But Alzaree said bloggers made it impossible for him to have a good beginning.

"I leave the field" to the bloggers, he said. "I have peace now." Alzaree said he will decide among a half-dozen other job offers....
"I leave the field...I have peace now." And so the noble man rides off into the sunset, without ever having explained whether he actually believes that Muslims will spend their days during the end times killing Jews, or, for that matter, what he believes about Islamic supremacism in general. And no AP reporter, or any reporter, is informed enough or free enough of PC blinders to ask him.
Ohio Mosque Promotes Murder, November 30, 2005, David Ben-Ariel
One day - I'll never forget it - my former "Palestinian" student-neighbors purposely showed me a newsletter from the Islamic Center in Perrysburg, Ohio that had a story from the Haddith - sayings attributed to Mohammad - that spoke of a war in the last days between Jews and Muslims, and how Jews would hide behind trees and the trees would say, "There's a Jew behind me, kill him!" except for one tree that would shelter the Jews.

The next month the singles' club from the Worldwide Church of God went to the mosque for a dinner-tour, followed by a question and answer session with the Egyptian imam/religious leader ...

I repeated the "spiritual lesson" to the imam and asked him if the Muslims had any such saying. He replied that the Jews create such spurious sayings in order to discredit Islam and Arabs. I then shocked him, and the audience, when I asked: "If that's not a Muslim story, and is spurious and created by the Jews, then why would you, as the leader of this Islamic community permit that very story to be published in your newsletter last month?" He was speechless.

So I know, firsthand, how many people can profess that their religion is "peaceful" to a naive Western audience and whistle a totally different tune to their own masses ...

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