Muslim prayers welcome at Pentagon chapel

Less than 100 feet from where a hijacked airplane slammed into the Pentagon, Muslim military personnel bring prayer rugs on weekday afternoons for group worship.

On Fridays, a local imam conducts a service in the Pentagon Memorial Chapel built after the September 11, 2001, terror attacks by al Qaeda that killed 184 people at the U.S. military headquarters.

The chapel, with stained-glass windows, burgundy carpeting and a wooden altar, provides a place of prayer and religious observance for anyone regardless of faith or culture.

Its welcoming calm and nondenominational culture are in stark contrast to the emotional debate over plans to build an Islamic cultural center and mosque two blocks from ground zero in New York City, where planes flown by al Qaeda hijackers destroyed the World Trade Center, killing more than 2,700 people…

“I’ve never had a question about it” in four-plus years at the Pentagon, Army spokesman George Wright said…

“We’re very tolerant here of one another and our faith,” he said. “We don’t keep track of who comes in.”

Of course, what’s “normal” in the political life of the United States of America doesn’t have as much to do with tolerance or freedom – as it does with power and control.

7 thoughts on “Muslim prayers welcome at Pentagon chapel

  1. jonolan says:

    That’s the most pathetic comparison of two things I’ve heard in a long time. Congratulations.

    There’s no similarity between a room with no religious paraphernalia except what celebrants bring to services and open to any all forms of worship, and a Muslim Cultural Center housing a mosque or Muslim-only prayer space.

    There’s also little similarity between a military target and Ground Zero, at least not at Americans’ emotional level.

    • god says:

      It really is hard to defend your politics of ignorance – isn’t it?

      With politics so divorced from the Constitution, you really have nothing to defend except bigotry.

        • god says:

          I keep forgetting juvenile humor qualifies your commentary.

          The funny part is atheists having to defend freedom of religion – for to defend less than the whole population as members of a constitutional nation is to defend no one.

          Most of the world learned that lesson during the Holocaust. Those who didn’t – or refuse to – are committed to repeating as much of that savagery as they can get away with.

          • moss says:

            I agree.

            Most folks are ignorant of the course of the struggle against racism in the United States. The laws that served as underpinning to racist practices for a century after the end of slavery.

            The Marines removed racist regulations from the Corps – on their own – long before the rest of the American military; but, even the military as a whole beat most Bible Belt-states to the 20th Century.

          • jonolan says:

            Actually, idiot, I agree that these Muslims have the legal right to build their Cultural Center / Mosque wherever they wish (within the limits of zoning laws and such). I just don’t think that they’re right or wise to fully exercise those rights this time.

            My comment was on the ridiculous comparison between generic ceremonial space and a purpose-built single sect installation and on the comparison between the Pentagon and Ground Zero.

          • moss says:

            Right. You managed to come up with a ridiculous comparison. But, then, there’s never been a great deal of ability to differentiate between important and relevant issues – and absurd copouts – from either beancounters or conservatives.

            Little or no sense of history when dealing with their childish hurt feelings.

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