The relationship between non-radical Muslims and those of us interested in eradicating radical Islam is imperative in our joint effort to defeat terrorism — something two thugs in the United Kingdom apparently didn’t understand based on their recent attack of an Essex mosque.
Two men reportedly attempted to vandalize and set fire to the Al Falah Braintree Islamic Center in Braintree early Sunday morning, which was captured on nearby surveillance cameras, according to Express U.K.
The thugs, who have not yet been identified, allegedly tried to break into the Muslim house of worship by kicking the doors and trying to break windows before ultimately deciding to set garbage on fire and throw it on the building’s roof.
Senior officials at the mosque believed the suspects had been drinking before the incident, based on their behavior in the video footage and the fact that the incident apparently occurred shortly after several local pubs’ closing time.
Sikander Sleemy, the center’s secretary, explained that nearby bars had just closed around the time the men approached the mosque, and they were walking as if they were not sober.
“They passed by and stumbled across to the mosque, or realized it was a mosque, and have had a bit of fun and tried to set fire to the mosque,” he said, according to the U.K. Daily Mail.
The men, who wore hoods, could be seen in the video pointing at the building before one of them threw a brick at a window before trying to set it ablaze with burning garbage.
Watch the video here:
Fortunately, the mosque did not burn down and the damage was minimal, thanks to a taxi driver who happened to be passing by at the time and put the fire out before it could spread, according to the The U.K. Sun.
Police have been investigating the incident as a hate crime, with Braintree Chief Inspector Craig Carrington calling the incident “concerning but rare.”
“We are investigating the offense and are working with our partners to reassure the community at this time,” he noted.
James Cleverly, a conservative Member of Parliament for the Braintree community, called the attack “mindless” and “completely unacceptable.”
“The actions of a couple of thugs in no way reflects the welcoming nature of Braintree,” he explained.
The peaceful Muslims who worship at this mosque did not deserve for their house of worship to be attacked, and it certainly does not send a good message about how non-Muslims view or value them.
The truth is that we all must work together — whether we’re Muslim, Christian, Jewish, another faith or no religious affiliation at all — to combat the radical forces that have conspired against anyone who doesn’t believe as they do.
Acts like this against non-radical Muslims should be heavily condemned by those of us in other religious communities. Similarly, these moderate Muslims should make it undeniably clear that they stand with us against the terror and brutality of radical Islam.
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