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Wednesday, October 22, 2008

SOLDIER, HERO, MUSLIM, AMERICAN

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MANAHAWKIN, NJ'S FINEST, 20-YEAR OLD GAVE HIS LIFE FOR HIS COUNTRY

KAREEM KHAN, AMERICAN MUSLIM, DIED FIGHTING FOR FREEDOM IN IRAQ



This Is Just One Of The Millions Of Muslims And Arab-Americans Dishonored, Disrespected And Discriminated Against By The Republican Hate-Machine Today

John Sidney McCain III and his running mate, Sarah Palin, have now entered the home stretch of a losing race for President and Vice President of the United States of America. Though their tactics are hurting them in the polls, they will desperately cling to their hateful base by attacking anyone and anything smaller, weaker, different.

This includes those human beings among our friends and neighbors, schoolmates and co-workers, families and comrades in arms who worship the same God we do, in a different language. Allah, as they call Him, is God, or Jehovah, as the Jews call him. They are one and the same, just different names for the one true God we all believe in, we three billion "People of the Book." Yes, we all three read and revere the Old Testament, the Hebrew Bible. And we all try to follow its' tenets and strictures.

Our common beliefs have led us to stand up for what we believe is right, to fight when required, and to die for our causes. Kareem Khan died for our cause. He died believing in the ideals and freedoms intrinsic to the United States. Chief among them is the freedom of conscience. Unlike his ancestral home, America is dedicated to protecting the religious rights of all citizens of all creeds. At least, most of us are dedicated to that.

Today our dedication to that particular freedom is being sorely tested. Our "Christian" nation, founded by Deists, is under attack from within by forces that would have us demonize and deny full rights to American citizens based solely on their religion. The mere suggestion that a person is a Muslim can make him a target for hatred and violence in this country today. The oft-repeated lie that Presidential candidate Barack Obama is a Muslim is enough to send some people into paroxyms of hatred, fear and anger.

This is what the low-life racist, sectarian Republicans are counting on, in their last desperate attempt to claw their way back into power. That choice of tactics alone should forever disqualify them. It dishonors our fallen warriors, like Kareem Khan, and all those of other faiths who died believing that their sacrifice would lead to freedom for Muslims in Iraq and all over the Middle East. Every life we lose over there is lost for Iraqi Freedom, or so we are told. We must not sacrifice our own freedom in the process. Today, in this crisis, in this election, we are all Muslim, in honor of Kareem Khan. God bless Muslim America.

And shame on McCain and Palin for attacking our troops.

THE NEW YORK TIMES
"More on the Soldier Kareem R. Khan"
' On “Meet the Press” today, Colin L. Powell concluded his endorsement of Sen. Barack Obama by referring to the death of a Muslim soldier, Kareem Rashad Sultan Khan of Manahawkin, N.J., who was killed in Iraq on Aug. 6, 2007, and whose remains were buried in Arlington. He and three other soldiers, including a corporal from Washington Heights, were killed in Baquba after a bomb detonated while they were checking abandoned houses for explosives. They served in the Stryker Brigade combat team of the Army’s 2nd Infantry Division, based in Ft. Lewis, Washington. '

FIND A GRAVE.COM
"Corp Kareem Rashad Sultan Khan"
Sounds like a terrorist to me.
' The family used to send two large bags of Starbursts in his care packages, because Kareem would pick out all the orange ones and leave the rest for his Army buddies. He was also a big fan of Disneyworld, as was the entire family. The family would take at least one trip to Disneyworld every year, and the living room and dining room of the family's split-level home is filled with souvenirs from those trips, like a wall hanging of Cinderella, figurines of Mickey Mouse and Disney-themed snow globes. Kareem was so crazy about Disneyworld that when he had a two-day leave following his graduation from Fort Benning, Ga., he had a backpack full of clothes stashed in the bush, so the family could immediately drive to Florida. '

HUDSON VALLEY TIMES-HERALD RECORD
"Local Muslim soldier killed in bombing"
Army 2nd Lt. Mohsin Naqvi, 26,
' Nazar stared at nothing in the middle of the room late Wednesday night. The news was five hours old. "He always wanted to lead his people," Nazar said. "He wanted to sacrifice for his country." His country was the United States, no matter how many drill sergeants pronounced his Arabic name and asked: "Are you sure you're in the right army?" No matter how many times commanding officers wanted to chat about loyalties. "We're a Muslim family, OK?" his sister, Tasneem, said. She wants people to know her brother was an American patriot and a Muslim, and those two things don't conflict. It burns her to even feel compelled to say this. But she says news media have skewed the image of Muslims since Sept. 11, 2001. "I think he's proven himself," she said. "He has proven he is not the type of Muslim the media says we are." Mohsin graduated from Newburgh Free Academy. He planned to join the Army right then, but Nazar persuaded him to go to college first. He had finished about two years of schooling by the time of the Sept. 11 attacks. He enlisted four days later. Mohsin was part of the invasion of Iraq as an Army reservist. When he came home in 2003, he finished his bachelor's and earned a master's in computer science from the Rochester Institute of Technology. Then he re-enlisted for active duty. Tasneem says her brother knew some would be suspicious of his religion and Pakistani heritage, but he was determined to serve anyway. He planned to make a career in the Army. He spoke Urdu and was rising fast through the ranks, working as an interpreter in Afghanistan. He told Tasneem: "The only way I'm going to leave the Army is if I retire or if they make me, which I won't let them." '

ALBANY TIMES-UNION
"Mourners remember Muslim soldier who died in Afghanistan "
' Mohsin Naqvi, a Muslim who joined the Army after the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks and then died in an Afghanistan roadside bombing last week, was mourned by more than 100 people at a Central Avenue mosque today. Male mourners left the prayer room at the al-Fatima Islamic Center about 20 minutes before the start of the 1 p.m. ceremony so that the female members of the mosque could pay respects to Naqvi, who was 26 years old. The men gathered in the hall and bowed their heads in silence as wailing could be heard through the closed doors of the prayer room. Some of the women chanted Naqvi's first name. Naqvi joined the Army shortly after the terror attacks and hoped to bridge the divide between America and the Muslim world, friends and relatives say "Our message is we have chosen this country. We are going to live here. We are going to die here. We are going to contribute in every respect," said Haider Khwaja, the mosque's vice president. "He has sacrificed his life for the country." '


FIND A GRAVE.COM
"Humayun S. M. Khan"
' He was born in the United Arab Emirates, and moved to Silver Spring, Maryland, at age 2. He graduated from Kennedy High School in 1996 and the University of Virginia in 2000. He lived in Bristow, Virginia, and was an ordnance officer with the Germany-based 201st Forward Support Battalion, 1st Infantry Division. He died in a suicide car bombing at the main gates of his base. His unit was charged with the day-to-day security and maintenance of the camp. When an orange-colored taxi drove toward them, he ordered his soldiers to "hit the dirt." He walked toward the car, motioning for it to stop. A makeshift bomb inside it exploded, killing him and two Iraqi civilians in addition to the two suicide bombers. Ten soldiers and six Iraqi citizens were also wounded. During his three months in Iraq, he helped put Iraqi civilians to work for $5 an hour patrolling the streets of Baquba under the U.S. Army. The program, dubbed the United States-Iraq Sponsorship Program, was intended to help combat high unemployment and provide the local population with security and peace. He was posthumously awarded a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart. '

NBC NEWS
"Local Soldier Dies In Iraq"
' The family says Khan was originally scheduled to be home by now, but his stay in Iraq was extended by the military's stop loss program. He last spoke with his mother on May 10, Mother's Day. "I told him, 'Be safe, please be safe for me.' He said, 'Mother, I am safe. I just have a responsibility for my soldiers,'" said Gazala Khan, Humayun's mother. Born in the United Arab Emirates, Khan grew up in Silver Spring, Md., and graduated from Kennedy High School in 1996. His family says he joined the ROTC to pay for law school. His youngest brother describes Khan as a gregarious man who loved basketball. Being both American and Muslim, his family says Humayun was well liked in Iraq, where he was seen as a bridge between two cultures at war. '

BBC
"Serving America's 'Muslim army' "
' Jamal Baadani is a gunnery sergeant currently stationed at Quantico Marine Corp Base in Washington DC. He served in Yemen for Operation Enduring Freedom, and won three awards for his services. He is also the founder of Apaam, the Association of Patriotic Arab-Americans in the Military - prompted by the backlash of racism he and his family were subjected to after the 11 September attacks on New York and Washington in 2001. "I was out with a couple of my marines, and a woman came up to say 'I want to thank you for serving our country, especially at this time.' Then she asked me where I was from. When I said, 'Egypt', she had this look on her face and she said, 'you're a terrorist.' And that was in a Marine Corp uniform." '

APAAM.ORG
"ASSOCIATION OF PATRIOTIC ARAB AMERICANS IN MILITARY "
' We wanted to share with you the heroic life story of Michael A. Monsoor, Petty Officer, US Navy Seal. Michael lost his life in 2006 as part of combat operations. His heroic action earned him the Congressional Medal of Honor Posthumously. SEAL Team Three was sent to Ramadi, Iraq in 2006 and assigned to train and mentor Iraqi army troops. As a communicator and machine-gunner on patrols, Monsoor carried 100 pounds of gear in temperatures often exceeding 100 degrees. He took a lead position to protect the platoon from frontal assault. The team was involved in frequent engagements with insurgent fighters. Over the first five months of the deployment, the team reportedly killed 84 insurgents.[2] During an engagement on May 9, 2006, Monsoor ran into a street while under continuous insurgent gunfire to rescue an injured comrade. Monsoor was awarded the Silver Star for this action.[2][4] He was also awarded the Bronze Star for his service in Iraq.[5] Death in action: On September 29, 2006, the platoon engaged four insurgents in a firefight, killing one and injuring another. Anticipating further attacks, Monsoor and three SEAL snipers and three Iraqi soldiers took up a rooftop position. Civilians aiding the insurgents blocked off the streets, and a nearby mosque broadcast a message for people to fight against the Americans and the Iraqi soldiers. Monsoor was protecting his SEAL comrades, two of whom were 15 feet away. His position made him the only SEAL on the rooftop with quick access to an escape route.[2][6] A grenade was thrown onto the rooftop by an insurgent in the street below. The grenade hit Monsoor in the chest and fell onto the floor. Immediately, Monsoor fell onto and covered the grenade with his body, saving the lives of his three comrades. Monsoor was critically wounded and, although evacuated immediately, died 30 minutes later. Two SEALs next to him were injured by the blast but lived '

THE AMERICAN MUSLIM.ORG
"Muslims & Arabs in the U.S. Military - article collection "
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2 Comments:

Blogger Mysoon said...

Here's another fallen Muslim-American for you. His name was Ayman Taha, he was a Sudanese American who he passed away at the end of 2005. I created a blog in his memory: http://aymantaha.blogspot.com/

It's very sad that a lot of people in the U.S. seem to equate being a Muslim with being a terrorist when Muslims died on 9-11, and continue to make the ultimate sacrifice in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Thank you Colin Powell for reminding Americans that there's nothing wrong with being a Muslim in America.

6:57 AM, October 24, 2008  
Blogger Cosa Nostradamus said...

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Sorry for your loss. We all appreciate your loved one's service. I hope the family are OK.

Remember, most people are not evil, stupid, ignorant or foolish. Just the minority Republicans. And soon they'll be gone. Then maybe we can return to sanity in our foreign policy, and decency in our domestic affairs.

Salaam, shalom, peace.
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12:56 AM, October 25, 2008  

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