FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 11, 2004
AMV denounces Congressman Peter King’s statement
(Feb. 11, 2004) – The American Muslim Voice today denounced the statement of Republican Congressman, Peter T. King, who claimed that that the vast majority of American Muslim community leaders are "an enemy living amongst us" and that American Muslims do not cooperate in the war on terror.
Congressman King made these remarks on Sean Hannity's nationally-syndicated radio program while promoting his new novel "Veil of Tears" on February 9.
The AMV statement reads:
Congressman King’s malicious statement is far from truth as the American Muslim leaders were among the first to condemn jointly and individually the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The American Muslim Political Coordination Council (AMPCC), an umbrella organization grouping major American Muslim organizations, issued a statement within hours of the 9/11 tragedy which said: "American Muslims utterly condemn what are apparently vicious and cowardly acts of terrorism against innocent civilians. We join with all Americans in calling for the swift apprehension and punishment of the perpetrators. No political cause could ever be assisted by such immoral acts.”
It is regretted that an elected official, who serves on the Select Committee on Homeland Security and the International Relations Committee, is defaming the American Muslim community just to promote his book.
The AMV Executive Director, Samina Faheem Sundas, added: “Under current atmosphere we need to bridge the gap between all communities and stand by each other. I am truly saddened by our scholars and elected officials inflammatory remarks which does not do any good. It does not make any body feel secure, it creates a culture of helplessness and anxiety in our country and spreads hatred towards Arabs and Muslims.”
Veil of Tears
While promoting his new novel "Veil of Tears," King complained that "no (American) Muslims are cooperating" with law enforcement officials to combat terrorism. He added: "I would say, you could say that 80-85 percent of mosques in this country are controlled by Islamic fundamentalists. Those who are in control. The average Muslim, no, they are loyal, but they don't work, they don't come forward and cooperate with police."
King's novel, which he described as "half truth and half fiction," deals with future terrorist attacks by "Muslim extremists" in Nassau County, N.Y. During his segment on Hannity's program, King was particularly critical of an unnamed mosque in Westbury, N.Y., which he accused of failing to
adequately condemn terrorism.
When questioned by Hannity whether he was really claiming that 85 percent of mosques in America are "ruled by the extremists," King said: "Yes. And I can get you the documentation on that from experts in the field. Talk to a Steve Emerson, talk to a (Daniel) Pipes, talk to any of those. They will tell you. It's a real issue. I'll stand by that number of 85 percent. This is an enemy living amongst us."
It may be pointed out that Steven Emerson and Daniel Pipes are regarded by many Muslims as America's leading Islamophobes. Pipes has claimed that up to 15 percent of all Muslims are "potential killers" and that the enfranchisement of American Muslims presents "true dangers" to the United States.