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Editorial_ Tax Dollars to Build Mosques - Washington Times

Editorial_ Tax Dollars to Build Mosques - Washington Times

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Published by Mark Tutone
Our tax money at work.
Our tax money at work.

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Published by: Mark Tutone on Aug 12, 2010
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08/11/2010

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EditorialsCommentaryLettersWater CoolerDeckerKuhnerNugentMastioBlankley
EDITORIAL: Tax dollars to build mosques
U.S. underwrites fundraising tour for Islamic shrine at Ground Zero
ByTHE WASHINGTON TIMES-The Washington Times7:46 p.m., Tuesday, August 10, 2010TheState Department
(/topics/department-of-state/)
is sendingImam Feisal Abdul Rauf 
(/topics/feisal-abdul-rauf/)
-the mastermind of the Ground Zero Mosque - on a trip through the Middle East to foster "greaterunderstanding" about Islam and Muslim communities in theUnited States
(/topics/united-states-of-america/)
.However, important questions are being raised about whether this is simply a taxpayer-funded fundraising jauntto underwrite his reviled project, which is moving ahead in Lower Manhattan.Mr. Rauf 
(/topics/feisal-abdul-rauf/)
is scheduled to go toSaudi Arabia
(/topics/saudi-arabia/)
, Dubai, Abu Dhabi,Bahrain
(/topics/bahrain/)
andQatar
(/topics/qatar/)
, the usual stops for Gulf-based fundraising. TheStateDepartment
(/topics/department-of-state/)
defends the five-country tour saying thatMr. Rauf 
(/topics/feisal-abdul-rauf/)
is "a distinguished Muslim cleric," but surely the government could find another such figure in theUnitedStates
(/topics/united-states-of-america/)
who is not seeking millions of dollars to fund a construction project thathas so strongly divided America.By funding the trip so soon afterNew York City's Landmarks Preservation Commission
(/topics/new-york-citys-landmarks-preservation-commission/)
gave the go-ahead to demolish the building on the proposed mosque site, theState Department
(/topics/department-of-state/)
is creating the appearance that theU.S. government
(/topics/us-government/)
is facilitating the construction of this shameful structure. It givesMr. Rauf 
(/topics/feisal-abdul-rauf/)
not only access but imprimatur to gather up foreign cash. And becauseMr. Rauf 
(/topics/feisal-abdul-rauf/)
has refused to reveal how he plans to finance his costly venture, the American public is left with the impressionit will be a wholly foreign enterprise. This contradicts the argument that a mosque is needed in that part of NewYork City to provide services for a burgeoning Muslim population. If so many people need the mosque sobadly, presumably they could figure out a way to pay for it themselves.Americans also may be surprised to learn that theUnited States
(/topics/united-states-of-america/)
has been anactive participant in mosque construction projects overseas. In April, U.S. Ambassador to TanzaniaAlfonso E.
EDITORIAL: Tax dollars to build mosques - Washington Timeshttp://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/aug/10/tax-dollars...1 of 28/11/10 4:30 PM

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