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Flying imam alert

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By Michelle Malkin  •  November 27, 2006 07:55 AM

***update: here’s the AP dispatch of the event this morning…***

shahin.jpg
Imam Omar Shahin: Milking it

The saga of the flying imams continues. It ain’t over ’til the grievance-mongers sing.

One of the Muslim clerics who was questioned and detained in Minnesota on a US Airways flight after passengers reported suspicious behavior is staging a protest here in Washington this morning (hat tip: LGF):

On Monday, November 27th, 8:15 AM, at the US Airways ticket counter located in the Reagan National Airport, Imam Omar Shahin, one of the six Imams removed from US Airways flight 300, will join Imam Mahdi Bray, executive director of the MAS Freedom Foundation, Rabbi Arthur Waskow of the Shalom Center of Philadelphia, Rev Graylan Hagler of the United Church of Christ, Hillary Shelton, director of the NAACP-Washington National Office, and other interfaith members for a press statement, public prayer, and flight departure on US Airways.

The “pray-in” is in response to US Airways’ removal of Imam Omar Shahin and five other Imams traveling from a religious leader’s conference in Minnesota. Three of the Imams were observed praying prior to departure. Subsequent to boarding the plane, the six were removed from the flight, handcuffed, and detained in the airport for questioning for over five hours. Upon release, US Airways and other airlines refused to allow them to purchase tickets for other scheduled flights to Phoenix.

“The detention of these religious leaders, and the refusal of the airline to allow them travel, is a gross example of blatant Islamophobia and the violation of the civil rights of Muslim passengers”, said Imam Mahdi Bray, executive director of the Muslim American Society Freedom Foundation.

“The last time I checked, public prayer was still protected by the U.S. Constitution, which guarantees freedom of religion and speech. It’s a shame that as an African-American and a Muslim I have the double whammy of having to worry about driving while Black and flying while Muslim. We charge the airline with not only discrimination, but with an action that is insulting and demeaning to these Muslim religious leaders, and to all people of faith.”

The MAS Freedom Foundation, and many in the interfaith and civil rights community, feel strongly that in addition to religious discrimination, the issue involving the six Imams is also a religious freedom issue. We have forwarded the case to several prominent civil and constitutional rights attorneys and legal scholars.

Watch the MSM coverage of this publicity stunt carefully.

Will they mention Shahin’s admitted ties to Osama bin Laden and denial of the 9/11 al Qaeda plot?

Or his connection to a Hamas-linked terror charity front?

Will they mention Mahdi Bray’s terror-sympathizing statements and stances?

Or the Muslim American Society’s radical embrace of sharia and faux pose as the “moderate” front for the Muslim Brotherhood? (My debate on Laura Ingraham’s radio show with one of the double-talking MAS spokesmen here.)

Or will they mindlessly play along with the grievance-mongers, lazily echoing the cries of “Islamophobia” and joining in self-flagellation?

The suspense is killing me.

Update: No surprises.

Imams, ministers and a rabbi staged a “pray-in” demonstration Monday at Reagan Washington National Airport and demanded an apology from US Airways for barring six Muslims from a Minneapolis to Phoenix flight last week.

The religious leaders called for an end to racial profiling, saying it was unacceptable in America.

“These things are troubling to us,” said Mahdi Bray, executive director of the Muslim American Society Freedom Foundation. “Driving while black, flying while Muslim, traveling with a Torah or getting with Jesus.”

Imam Omar Shahin, one of the six detained last Monday at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, said they hadn’t done anything suspicious.

The imams, who were returning from a religious conference, had prayed on their prayer rugs in the airport before the flight. After they boarded the flight, a passenger, who was alarmed by their activity, passed a note to a flight attendant. The men were taken off the airplane, handcuffed and questioned.

“It was the worst moment in my life,” Shahin said.

***

Meanwhile, back in Minneapolis, Scott Johnson notes “the ‘makings of a bomb’ found in an Avis rental car at the airport. Don’t worry, be happy…”

***
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