Sunday, March 05, 2006
While the mainstream media obsesses over who will win or wear what at the Oscars, they ignore an ever-important story developing on the campus of UNC. On Friday, a 22-year-old recent UNC graduate, Mohammed Reza Taheri-azar drove a rented Jeep Cherokee across campus walkways on a deliberate rampage injuring six people. After being arrested, the Iranian born graduate explained his actions as an attempt to, "avenge the deaths or murders of Muslims around the world."
Currently, investigators believe that he was acting alone, though further details have not been forthcoming. While he is being held on $5.5 million bond and the FBI is said to be probing the incident, it is not clear whether he will be charged under any anti-terrorism statutes.
The Daily Tar Heel has the most up-to-date and detailed information including information suggesting that this individual had a prior arrest and conviction for reckless driving and resisting arrest.
Numerous questions remain about this case and it is unclear whether the authorities will provide disclosure, nonetheless there are multiple issues to consider:
1) Mohammed had a prior conviction - how was he able to rent a vehicle and what was his citizen status (not disclosed from various reports)? Should he have been deported earlier?
2) Why is the UNC Muslim Student Association backing away and are they being honest? The UNC-MSA has released a press release condemning the "hit and run incident" and seem to deny any association with this student.
3) Where has this "student" been studying his Islamic beliefs and what has he been learning? Has he been spending time at the Islamic Center of Raleigh? The ICR's Imam, Mohammed Baianonie has stated the following on his website: "There are so many opportunities that Allah has given us in this country that I wish I could do more for the community," said Imam Baianonie. "In the United States we have freedoms that we do not have anywhere else in the world. I am a person who likes freedom and that is why I am here. We need to use this freedom in the best way, however. We need to plant our roots in the ground and especially focus on Islamic education." More concerning is this remark, "So, while most Americans will claim that George Washington and Martin Luther King were the great men of our time, most members of the IAR believe differently. " But the Imam reserves his greatest wrath for those who insult Muhammed, "As for the people who want to hurt the Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.) by their mockery we warn them of what Allah (S.W.T.) says in what can be translated as, "Verily, those who annoy Allah and His Messenger (Muhammad) Allah has cursed them in this world and in the Hereafter. And has prepared for them a humiliating torment." [Surat Al-Ahzab, (verse 57)]"
4) Why have his roomates been silent and who is this Muslim landlord, Ahmad Dard of Cary, N.C. Is there any connection to the Islamic Center of Cary?