Aug 29 2014
Seasoned pros at playing the ‘victim’ card, Muslims in America are taking the concept of ‘chutzpah’ to a whole new level by demanding that the U.S. government give them special protection during their pilgrimage to the Hajj in Mecca in Saudi Arabia.
Think Progress (h/t Larry A) A group of American Muslims sent a letter to the U.S. State Department on Tuesday, imploring the government to provide protection against militants and other threats that could endanger them during their religious pilgrimage to Mecca in October.
The letter, signed by 28 different Muslim groups, asked Secretary of State John Kerry to take measures to safeguard Americans participating in this year’s hajj, an annual ritual required of all followers of Islam who have the ability and means to make the journey to Mecca.
“We urge you to take immediate action to protect American citizens who travel overseas to perform one of the five mandatory acts of their faith and ensure that Saudi Arabia addresses this urgent security matter in preparation for the upcoming Hajj pilgrimage,” the letter read.
Signers cited several reasons for sending the letter, but rooted their concern in a 2013 incident when a group of American Muslims were brutally attacked as they took part in the hajj. While staying at a camp outside of Mecca, a band of Lebanese-Australians reportedly confronted the U.S. citizens, which included three women featured in the reality TV show All-American Muslim.
The attackers shouted insults at the Michigan natives, decrying them for being Shia Muslims before strangling one man until his face turned blue and telling the women that they would “rape them all” if they didn’t leave. saudi-arabia-american-muslims-visiting-holy-city-of-mecca-for-the-hajj-get-threatened-and-attacked-by-muslims
“The right to freely practice one’s faith without fear of harassment, intimidation, or violence is a constitutional guarantee, as well as an international human rights norm,” the letter read.
“Every American citizen traveling or living abroad should have full assurance that the U.S. government will come vigorously to his or her defense if they are unjustly detained, attacked, or harassed by local authorities,” the letter read. “These protections, including but not limited to meaningful access to full consular services, must be afforded to all American citizens visiting Saudi Arabia to perform the Hajj.”