Faizel Patel, Radio Islam News - 2013-09-17
US authorities probing the shooting spree at Washington's Navy Yard, which left 13 people dead and eight injured, have said that a lone gunman, 34 year old Aaron Alexis of Texas carried out the killings.
Authorities said military contractor Alexis, launched the attack on Monday inside a building at the US Navy complex, spraying gunfire on office workers in the cafeteria and in the hallway at the heavily secured installation.
However what is disconcerting and with no surprise, a few minutes after the shooting occurred, American analysts rushed to blame Muslims for a possible terrorist attack, turning to the usual cliché for Muslims worldwide; guilty till proven innocent.
Already some reports are linking the Washington Navy Yard shooting to Muslims.
CNN reporter Barbara Starr said in a report on Monday, September 16, linking the attacks to Muslims, “We are only a few days past the 9/11 attacks here in Washington D.C.,”
“If there are two shooters, Wolf, if that problems to be correct, it is going to be the most significant fact,” Starr reported.
“It is going to mean that two people conspired to carry out this attack, that they talked about it ahead of time, that they planned it ahead of time. Even if it was just a short period ahead of time, that they had a plan to do this,” she added
Meanwhile DebkaFILE website accused Al-Qaeda of performing the shooting, linking the attack to the recent videotape by Ayman Zawahiri calling for ‘lone wolf attack’ inside the United States.”
Alex Jones’ Info Wars said the same, except they add the caveat that they are uncertain whether the “shooters at the Navy Yard in Washington are in fact Muslims acting under the direction of al-Qaeda or inspired by the video produced by Ayman al-Zawahri.”
Even Reuters made a connection between the Fort Hood shooting and Muslim terrorists, pointing out how the Fort Hood shooter Major Nidal Hasan was sentenced to death for murdering 13 people in 2009.
The shooting at the Washington Navy Yard came a week after voters recalled two Colorado legislators who supported tougher gun measures, illustrating the strong political headwinds faced by lawmakers seeking to respond to the violence.
US President Barack Obama, for one, has been powerless to get legislation passed despite a string of mass shootings during his presidency.
Users on social media rushed to express concerns about media stigmatization of Muslims.
“Have they blamed a Muslim for this US Navy shooting yet??!!,” asked a twitter user named Jamil Amirat wrote.
“The Washington Navy Yard shooter will remain a shooter unless he is identified as a Muslim, whereupon he becomes a terrorist,” ironic user Tony Mitchell added.
Another user, Sara Jane Fair, expressed anger over the media rush to blame Muslims for the shooting.
“Watching some ignorant tweets about the Navy Yard shooting. Stop assuming all violence comes from Muslim people. #ridiculous,” she wrote on her Twitter account.
On the other hand, Muslims crossed their fingers, praying that the attacker does not turn out to be a Muslim.
“Shooting in DC in Navy Yard makes you cringe, and after that, all you hope is that it's not a Muslim,” Anum Zahid wrote.
“Please, for the love of God, don't let these Navy gunmen be Middle Eastern or Muslim,” a user, using the name @afsheeniscool added.
The US is home to from 7-8 million Muslims. A Gallup poll found that the majority of Americans Muslims are loyal to their country and optimistic about their future in the United States. - Agencies