An editorial in today’s New York Times says “The attacks of Sept. 11 were not a religious event. They were mass murder.”
Catholic League president Bill Donohue replies as follows:
The New York Times is half right: the attacks of 9/11 were mass murder, but to say they were not a religious event is delusional. What were they? Celebrations of separation of church and state?
The FBI possesses a letter written by the ringleader of 9/11, Mohamed Atta, telling his fellow terrorists what to do on that fateful day. Here is what he instructed them to do the night before the attacks:
“When you board the P or place you foot, before your enter [the plane] recite the prayers and remember: It is a raid for the sake of Allah. Recite the prayer. As you take the seat, recite the prayer. Mention Allah a lot.”
“When you strike, shout Allah is great because this shout strikes terror in the hearts of the infidels.”
“Seconds before the target, your last words should be there is no God but Allah. Muhammed is his messenger.”
Atta’s words are not ambiguous: the attack on the United States was done in the name of Islam. Islam is a religion. Ergo, the 9/11 mass murders were a religious event.