The hate campaigns of Pamela Geller, her collaborator Robert Spencer, and her lawyer, David Yerushalmi, have inspired violence and hysteria in the USA and around the world. Pamela Geller & Robert Spencer co-founded Stop Islamization of America (SIOA) and the Freedom Defense Initiative (FDI). Both organizations are designated as hate groups by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Consider the following success stories of Islamophobia
- 77 People murdered in Norway
- More than 100 mosques attacked in the USA
- 83 anti Muslim bills presented in 32 states
Europe’s Worst Terrorist attack Inspired by Spencer and Geller
On July 22, 2011, a far-right terrorist, Anders Breivik, launched two attacks that killed 77 Norwegians, many teenagers, on charges of being 'soft on Islam'. The first was a car bomb explosion in the capital Oslo that killed eight people and injured 209. It was planted in front of the Prime Minister’s office and other government buildings.
The second took place a few hours later at a summer camp for youth organized by an affiliate of the Labor Party on the island of Utøya. Breivik opened fire on innocent young people, killing 69 and injuring 110.
He hated Muslims and admired Geller.
In his confession/manifesto, which he had posted online before the massacre, Breivik had praised Geller’s blog Atlas Shrugs and thoroughly cited her writings in his manifesto declaring Islam the enemy and stating that the purpose of the attack was to save Norway and Western Europe from a Muslim takeover.
While Geller was initially angry for being blamed, she later justified Breivik’s killings of the young people saying:
- The Labor Party youth camp was, part of an anti-Israel “indoctrination training center.”
- The victims would have grown up to become
- “future leaders of the party responsible for flooding Norway with Muslims
- who refuse to assimilate,
- who commit … violent gang rapes, with impunity, and
- who live on the dole.”
- She also noted the appearance of some of the attendees of the camp as being “mixed race” or “Middle Eastern”.
Interestingly, right after the of the mass killings broke, Geller immediately pounced, announcing that Muslims were behind it. She later discovered they were not, and, in fact, a white, blonde, extremist, inspired by her and Spencer’s writings, had committed this henious crime.
Individuals cited in Breivik’s manifesto include: Center for Security Policy‘s President, Frank Gaffney; “counterjihad” bloggers Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer; Investigative Project on Terrorism’s Director, Steven Emerson, Middle East Forum President, Daniel Pipes, and controversial historian Bat Ye’or.
Just like Geller, Breivik is extremely anti-Muslim and pro-Israel.
Over 100 anti-mosque attacks in the United States
ACLU has documented more than 100 mosque attacks across country. A majority of these attacks occurred after the so called “Ground Zero mosque” hate campaign led by Pamela Geller.
The “Ground Zero mosque” controversy, led by Geller (the public face of the campaign), along with Spencer and other cohorts, was instrumental in inciting attacks on mosques across the country.
Park 51, the actual name of the project, was not on Ground Zero, nor was it to be a mosque. It was a planned 13-story Islamic community center in Lower Manhattan. It was inspired by a Rabbi and modeled after a Jewish community center. The majority of the center was to be set aside for the general public for the promotion of interfaith dialog.
Geller was the public face of this campaign, even directing a documentary against the misnamed project with Spencer, Geert Wilders, among others.
By 2012, American dislike for mosques had become well-documented. The Pew Research Center for Religion and Public Life found that fear of Islam and terrorism does play a role in opposition to the building of mosques across the U.S.
David Yerushalmi: Legislating hate
More than 100 anti-Muslim bills have been presented in 32 states across the country mostly based on the draft written and promoted by David Yerushalmi, a lawyer of Pamela Geller.
While Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer are the public faces of Islamophobia in America today, David Yerushalmi commands a quiet but powerful presence in legislating hate.
Yerushalmi is a Hasidic Jewish lawyer and founder of the Society of Americans for National Existence, an anti-Muslim group based in Arizona. According to the New York Times, Yerushalmi founded the organization in 2006 as a non-profit outfit for his campaign against Sharia law. "On the group's Web site, he proposed a law that would make observing Islamic law, which he likened to sedition, a felony punishable by 20 years in prison."
In the 1990s, Yerushalmi was the Counsel and Senior Policy Research Director for the Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies, an Israeli free-market think tank with offices in Jerusalem and Washington, D.C.
Yerushalmi is also a lawyer for Geller and Spencer’s group, the American Freedom and Defense Initiative.
His drive against Sharia is curious, given his own adherence to religious Jewish law, so much so that he has expressed disdain for Jews who are far less observant. He once wrote, "One must admit readily that the radical liberal Jew is a fact of the West and a destructive one. Indeed, Jews in the main have turned their backs on the belief in G-d and His commandments as a book of laws for a particular and chosen people. … Most Israelis are raging Leftists, and this includes the so-called nationalists who found a home in the 'right-wing' Likud political bloc or one of the other smaller and more marginal right wing parties."
Yerushalmi was part of the witch hunt in 2007 against Debbie Almontaser, the founding principal of Khalil Gibran International Academy, a dual-language Arabic school in Brooklyn. As part of the Stop the Madrassa Coalition, his anti-Arab and anti-Muslim campaign painted Almontaser as a Muslim radical and a “9/11 denier” whose school would secretly indoctrinate students to hate America and Israel and support sharia law.
Yerushalmi has been instrumental in bringing forward bills that criminalize the practice of Islam in any capacity, labeling every type of Islamic practice of the faith as “Shariah”, a buzzword he has used to punish Muslims by restricting their freedom of religion.
For example, in March 2011, right-wing lawmakers in Tennessee introduced SB 1028. This was a bill based on draft legislation produced by Yerushalmi. According to one report, SB 1028 would make "material support" for Islamic law punishable by 15 years in prison. It would also define traditional Islamic law as anti-constitutional, as well as allow Tennessee’s attorney general to freeze the assets of groups that support Sharia.
Yerushalmi viciously attacks his critics, like the Tennessean newspaper, which criticized SB 1028, saying the publication was lying, and that he left-progressives join hands with the Muslim Brotherhood Sharia advocates and all shed crocodile tears wishing for the demise of good law, good sense, and this nation's national existence."
A legislation similar to this bill has been passed in Oklahoma and several other states. Behind them has been the hand of Yerushalmi, helping to draft legislation that denies American Muslims their right to freedom of religion, as he exercises this same right as an American who follows Hasidic Judaism.