When a young Somali man disappeared from the Twin Cities and committed a suicide bombing in his home country — and when several of his fellow Muslims from the same mosque disappeared as well — the local Somali community wanted answers. They wanted to get those answers from the FBI, but as they soon discovered, another force didn’t want those answers at all. The Somalis took to the streets yesterday in opposition to the kibbitzers:
Relatives, friends and neighbors of a Minneapolis teen killed in Somalia pressed their argument Thursday that a Muslim civil rights group is hampering a federal investigation into the disappearances of dozens of Twin Cities Somali men.
At a protest outside the Brian Coyle Community Center in Minneapolis’ Cedar-Riverside neighborhood, Abdirizak Bihi, the uncle of Burhan Hassan, who relatives say was killed last week in Mogadishu by a terrorist group, accused the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) Minnesota chapter of discouraging local Somalis from cooperating with the FBI.
“We don’t want anyone to come into our community and tell us to shut up,” Bihi said. “Law enforcement will not be able to do anything without information from the community.”
About 50 people attended the rally, waving signs and hollering, “CAIR out! Doublespeak out!”
Have CAIR officials interfered with an FBI investigation and tampered with witnesses? Both would be federal crimes, as would obstruction of justice. Any coordinated effort to do any of the three would add conspiracy charges. The FBI should take note of the protest and find out why their investigation may not be going as smoothly as they hoped.
Besides, why is CAIR so interested in shutting up Muslims who want to cooperate to find their sons before they might commit suicide as well? An organization that wanted to serve American Muslims should be more interested in finding the missing young men than in silencing their families. Unless, of course, CAIR has a completely different agenda.
Even without the speculation, clearly CAIR has angered the community it purports to represent.
Update: Just to make clear, the suicide bomber and the disappearances were long before the murder of Burkhan Hassan, whose death in Mogadishu just got confirmed. Hassan disappeared at the same time as the others from the Abubakar Mosque, last November.