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Imam Rauf Predicts Violence In Muslim World If He Does Not Get His Way

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Posted on September 10 2010 1:29 pm

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Imam Faisal Abdul Rauf, the self-professed bridge builder “devoted to peacemaking,” is now claiming that the Muslim world will erupt in violence if he withdraws his plan for the Muslim community center and mosque he intends to build right near Ground Zero.

Rauf told Soledad O’Brien on CNN’s “Larry King Live” that:

If we move that location, the story will be that the radicals have taken over the discourse. The headlines in the Muslim world will be that Islam is under attack.

Rauf went on to say that the violent reaction in the Muslim world could be worse than it was to the Danish cartoons depicting Prophet Muhammad in a negative light.

O’BRIEN: But the controversy itself–
RAUF: So the Cordoba house —
O’BRIEN: –though, right, isn’t that causing to some degree an instability and a risk, a risk of safety? I mean, there’s an address now that has become the flash point for a lot of anger. Isn’t that a risk to Muslims and Americans?
RAUF: There is a certain anger here, no doubt. But if you don’t do this right, anger will explode in the Muslim world. If this is not handled correctly, this crisis could become much bigger than the Danish cartoon crisis, which resulted in attacks on Danish embassies in various parts of the Muslim world. And we have a much larger footprint in the Muslim world. If we don’t handle this crisis correctly, it could become something which could really become very, very, very dangerous indeed.

Instead of trying to calm down the Muslim world, whatever the ultimate fate of his prized project turns out to be, the bridge builder warns us that we better do things his way or there will be security risks for the United States and Americans abroad.

O’BRIEN: What’s the risk? When you say “national security,” what’s the risk?
RAUF: As I mentioned, because if we move, that means the radicals have shaped the discourse. The radicals will shape the discourse on both sides. And those of us who are moderates on both sides — you see Soledad, the battle front is not between Muslims and non-Muslims. The real battle front is between moderates on all sides of all the faith traditions and the radicals on all sides. The radicals actually feed off each other. And in some kind of existential way, need each other. And the more that the radicals are able to control the discourse on one side, it strengthens the radicals on the other side and vice versa. We have to turn this around.

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