by Sheila Musaji
On Friday, there was a tragic incident in Hollywood, California. A man began shooting people randomly near the corner of Hollywood and Vine, and injured two men, one critically, before he was finally shot and killed by police.
Pamela Geller had an article online right away titled HOLLYWOOD JIHAD: SHOOTOUT, GUNMAN CALMLY TARGETED DRIVERS AND PEOPLE WHILE SHOUTING ALLAHU AKBAR! She said in her lede “What is most disturbing about this story, apart from the obvious horror, is that not one news account reported what one witness said the shooter was screaming: “allahu akbar.” Not one news account. The media is the enemy.”
The initial local news video about the incident did include one witness saying that the shooter shouted “Allahu Akbar!” but at this point no other witness has confirmed that. Whether or not that one witness was accurate about what he thought he heard, no one yet knows, and none of the cell phone videos of the incident as it happened at this point confirm this allegatioin. Other witnesses said that they heard the shooter shout “Is this the end?” and “kill me” and “I’m gonna die” during the rampage. Witnesses also identified the shooter variously as “white” and as “hispanic”.
Of course, as soon as Geller posted her story, the Islamophobic echo chamber reposted her story with their own sensational headlines. Geller’s partner Robert Spencer posted his own article referring to Geller. Sheikh Yermami called it “Hollywood Jihad”, Bare Naked Islam called it “Sudden Jihad Syndrome”. Debbie Schlussel called it a “terrorist attack”. Free Republic re-posted, Creeping Sharia re-posted. Even the Grant County Tea Party site re-posted Geller’s article. Gateway Pundit said“Once again the media hid the truth from the American public.” The Muslims are Terrorists site posted the headline Muslim goes on shooting spree in Hollywood! Shouts allah akbar, media omits that detail to protect jihadists! with the lede “Thankfully one less muslim is wandering the streets tonight!”
More often than not, Geller is the first to churn out some anti-Muslim meme, and then her willing accomplices echo her message and pass it on. It takes on a life of its own. Geller is one of the key players and in our Who’s Who of Islamophobes and it is almost impossible to keep up with her rantings and update our backgrounder on her as fast as she can churn out her hateful messages.
On Saturday the identity of the shooter was released by the authorities. According to KTLA News“The Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office has identified the man police shot and killed Friday after he opened fire on unsuspecting cars in the middle of a busy Hollywood intersection. The 26-year-old man was Tyler Brehm. Few details about the man are available but a Facebook page belonging to a man bearing the same name reveals that man ended a relationship four days ago. It has not yet been confirmed that the Tyler Brehm depicted on the Facebook page is the same Tyler Brehm involved in Friday’s shooting, but the Facebook page indicated its owner lives in Hollywood and was originally from Carlisle, Penn. The Baltimore Sun reports that Brehm’s ex-girlfriend, Alicia Alligood, told KTLA 5 she and Brehm dated for four years before breaking up this month. The end of their relationship may have acted as a trigger that led to Friday’s fatal events, she said in a phone interview with KTLA 5’s David Begnaud. … She said Brehm was “really stressed out lately.” He met a woman he thought was a pharmaceutical saleswoman, who had given him some kind of pills, Alliegood said. He began taking the pills, which was alarming because he never took drugs before. One of Brehm’s neighbors described him as unstable.
The actual story as far as what anyone knows to date is that a young man named Tyler Brehm went on a shooting spree. Witness reports are varied. The police are investigating. Little is known about the shooter beyond his name, the fact that he is from Pennsylvania, is unemployed, and recently broke up with his girlfriend. He may have been emotionally distressed. He may have been taking drugs. The Hollywood Reporter has the most recent information and an interview with one of the victims..
Outside of law enforcement, only Pamela Geller and her echo chamber “know” more than this. Publishing such baseless speculation is irresponsible, and only proves that the only motivation is pure hatred.
This sort of behavior on the part of Geller and her cohorts in the Islamophobia echo chamber is not new, and we even have a collection of some of Geller’s previous false claims here and of the attempts by Geller and friends to cover up evidence of their false claims here. Here is just one example of this pattern of jumping to false conclusions
In July of 2011, Pamela Geller published a post titled Vehicular Jihad in Arizona which was Geller’s take on a simple story about a terrible car accident in Arizona in which the driver of a vehicle crashed into 3 parked vehicles in a parking lot and was killed. The man was a physician named Ajaz Rahaman. As soon as the man’s name was released, Geller posted her article. This was before there were any autopsy findings released, before police investigations were completed – before anyone knew what happened. The name of this man sounded as if he might be a Muslim. However the name Walid Shoebat might also be identified as a Muslim name. That’s all the proof Geller needed to call this “vehicular jihad”. I published an article giving the facts titled “Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer Discover Muslim Vehicular Jihad Plot” and within a day Geller pulled the original article from her site but that the article still exists on google cache. Why did they try to cover this up. Because the doctor simply had a heart attack and died at the wheel which is why the car crashed.
This gleeful rush on the part of the Islamophobes to connect any violence to Muslims is also a pattern, as happened with the Virginia Tech shootings. Pamela Geller, the Queen of the Islamophobes promoted the non-existent Muslim connection in the Virginia Tech massacre, in an article Ismail Ax and the Prophet Moe with the lede “Release the damn transcripts. Enough with the cover up. Don’t the dead and America, a country at war, deserve to know was is really happening? As I wrote here previously, we know Ismail Ax was written in red (color of blood) on his arm, we know he signed his suicide note Ismail Ax and sent an overnight package to NBC from A Ishmail, he made sure he had no other ID on his person after he martyred himself so you can be sure he wanted to be remembered as Ismail Ax. This is in and of itself very telling. Shaving his head and from what I can see in his pictures and martyr video- his body (that’s what they do – remember the 9/11 hijackers?) , must have added to law enforcement’s suspicions, which is why it so damning that they would say so early on that horrible day that “it was not tied to terrorism.” And, she comments The tie-in is carefully explained at Prophet of Doom here. It’s lengthy – read it. I’ve excerpted here. “Every aspect of Cho’s rage, every nuance of his twisted and inverted morality, was lifted from the pages of Islam.” Geller never did post an apology or a correction.
The only effect that all of this propaganda has is to stir up the readers of these sites into a frenzy of anti-Muslim hatred. And, it works.
Here are a few of the readers comments on this Hollywood shooting incident from Gateway Pundit –The “sudden” jihad syndrome began months or years ago with the satanic infestation of this man’s soul by islam. – Unless you want US cities to look like Kandahar…the Muslim cancer in the US must be dealt with swiftely and forcefully. Allowing these morons to bring their terror onto our soil should not be tolerated. Here are a few comments from Geller’s site – Muslims don’t need a motive..they are born as murderous scum! – This is just the beginning. This will most likely be the false prophet of Rev 13. Watch out, it will be coming to your town sooner than you think. Resist now or forever hold your peace. Here are a few comments from Creeping Sharia – Now we are seeing these MUSLIM THUGS going after any AMERICAN here in the U S A yelling ALLAHU AKBAR so why not retaliate with ALLAUH AKBAR with there MOSQUES OF HATE and NEUTRALIZE THEM AND THERE IMAM’S!!!! Lock AND LOAD. – Who do we have to blame for the growth, and infiltration of these terrorist? I would prefer to classify them as Muslim dirt bags. .The filth and actions connected with this group are beyond human comprehension. God help us to destroy the filth that is invading our country.Lord expose the plan behind the intent and people involved in the overall desire to introduce this religion. What would America have to gain by acceptance of these people? We must determine who, why. and what. – Joke what God has a name like Allah. You insult God with that handle.Your god has made a pact with the devil to destroy those he fears the most.Christians and Jews are the friends of GOD . Your so called Allah is a prophet that is dead and burning in hell with the rest of his Muslim buddies.Thank God that many Muslims are being visited by the Son of God Jesus in dreams and visions, and are bending their knees, and being set free. Protect them Lord, and allow them protection from the crazies.
And, here is an email that I received from one of these folks who takes this sort of hateful anti-Muslim propaganda as “real journalism”: We dont want your kind here..we dont need your radical opinions..we want you out of our beautiful country and back to your camels and women beating and hostile islamic bullshit..you arent part of the human race as far as we’re concerned..you belong on another planet where you can blow shit up…LEAVE!!!! I hope and pray that all you radical assholes are buried in hell…you are not welcome or wanted in U.S. soil, unless its 6 feet under..go back and wash your fucking camels and beat your women..die motherfuckers, die!!!!
This is the effect the sort of hate spewed by the Islamophobia echo chamber has on the “minds” of their readers. I have by the way saved this email along with lots of others provoked by previous Islamophobic rants.
There is a reason that the ADL has stated that Brigitte Gabriel’s Act for America, Pamela Geller & Robert Spencer’s Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA), David Yerushalmi’s Society of Americans for National Existence (SANE) are “groups that promote an extreme anti-Muslim agenda”. There is a reason that The Southern Poverty Law Center has designated SIOA as a hate group, and that they published Jihad Against Islam and The Anti-Muslim Inner Circle by Robert Steinback in their Summer 2011 Intelligence Report. There is a reason that Geller and Spencer are featured prominently in the Center for American Progress “Fear Inc.” report on the Islamophobia network in America. There is a reason that Geller is featured in the People for the American Way Right Wing Playbook on Anti-Muslim Extremism. There is a reason that Geller is featured in the NYCLU report Religious Freedom Under Attack: The Rise of Anti-Mosque Activities in New York State. There is a reason that Geller is featured in the Political Research Associates report Manufacturing the Muslim menace: Private firms, public servants, and the threat to rights and security. There is a reason that Geller is featured in just about every legitimate report on Islamophobia and anti-Muslim hatred.
And, no matter what the actual facts turn out to be, it won’t make any difference for most of these folks who so desperately need someone to look down on. After all, they and only they know the “truth”. I would hope to see some of these folks stop for a moment and really think about what sort of effect their words have on others, and perhaps reconsider or even feel some shame. But, I don’t think I’ll hold my breath.