On the night of 24 May 2020, the beginning of last week, as Muslims celebrated Eid-ul-Fitr, a Mosque in Indianapolis was the target of a drive by shooting. Due to the Coronavirus lockdown, only Mosque leaders were present in the Mosque so luckily no one was hurt.
A red sports car can be seen on the Mosque’s CCTV firing the shots and then escaping the scene. Bullets shot through windows and walls hit Quran shelves inside, narrowly missing the Holy Book. The Imam said that when they heard the gunshots, they believed a gunman may have entered the building so began taking cover.
The name of the mosque is Masjid e Noor which is the same name of the Mosque targeted by the terrorist gunman in Christchurch, New Zealand. In the New Zealand terrorist attack, which targeted Masjid al Noor, a gunman opened fire on men, women and children as they prayed killing 51.
I’m horrified by the recent shooting that appeared to target Masjid-E-Noor Mosque in Indianapolis on Eid — one of the holiest days in Islam. I urge local authorities to thoroughly investigate this act of violence. We won’t tolerate bigotry in our community or anywhere else.Indiana Congressman André Carson
Indiana State Representative Gregory Porter expressed his deep sadness and said “The violence perpetrated against worshippers at Masjid-E-Noor on one of the holiest days in the Muslim calendar was senseless and despicable.”
The news has been reported in local news and a few blogs. IndyNews, Religion News, 93.1FM, Indiana’s wyfi and Indiana’s WishTV are the only news outlets to have reported on the news. WishTV interviewed the Imam and Mosque leaders and lead with a full video report.
National and international media were completely silent. When a man brandishing a knife in London was apprehended and found to have Islamic terrorism links, it made national and international headlines.
Similarly in 2015 when a mentally ill Muslim man with a bread knife attacked people in Leyton tube station, it made the national UK news and some international news. After being branded by the media as a terrorist attack, it was later found the motive was mental illness.
We saw hesitation from the media to call the 2011 Norway terrorist attack as a “terrorist attack” and even now the Norway (non-Muslim) terrorist often is reported as a “gunman” despite being charged with terror offences. Similarly there was hesitation to call the perpetrator of the Finsbury Park Mosque attack, in Ramadan, as a “terrorist attack” in 2017. We saw that even with Christchurch, international media hesitated, despite New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Arden calling it a terrorist attack, media still hesitated before some finally gave way. Even today it is referred to as a shooting, despite being a terrorist attack.
The question must be asked, why are attacks perpetrated by Muslims given more media coverage than attacks perpetrated against Muslims. Why is there a hesitation to call non-Muslim terrorists as “terrorists” and why is the perception built up in the media that Muslims have a monopoly on terrorism. This is despite recent reports showing that the USA is now more at risk of white supremacist and homegrown terrorism compared to Jihadi terrorism.