Leo Hohmann's Muslim Freakouts
Muslim politicians, a church sold to a mosque, Muslims in general -- the WorldNetDaily reporter fearmongers about them all.
By Terry Krepel
While the headline called Christian an "murderous Muslim-hater" and the article itself noted that the incident began "when he began verbally assaulting a woman wearing a Muslim head covering, known as a hijab" using "what would be characterized as hate speech or bias language," the article curiously failed to quote any of that alleged language, instead playing up Christian's "felonious neo-Nazi" past.
One witness said that "He was saying that Muslims should die. That they've been killing Christians for years."Christian was also reported as shouting "Die Muslims" at a rally in April. On Facebook, Christian wrote that "If we're removing statues because of the Civil War, we should be removing mosques because of 9/11."
Christian's rhetoric isn't really all that more extreme that the Islamophobia WND has been peddling -- much of that in the person of reporter Leo Hohmann.
Hohmann has written an entire anti-Muslim book maliciously portraying Muslim refugees escaping war and poverty to come to the U.S. as engaging in "civilization jihad." Hohmann has endeavored to portray all Muslims as potential terrorists and has told lies about a measles outbreak in a Somali-American community in Minnesota, falsely blaming it on the Quran instead of their fellow anti-vaxxers who spread their conspiracy theories among the community.
It seems Christian was acting on the Muslim hatred Hohmann and WND have been expressing, both implicitly and explicitly, and put those hints into action. Indeed, the Muslim freakout has been a staple of Hohmann's reporting.
Hohmann: Muslims "really don't value what we value"
In a May 13 article, WND public-relations guy Paul Bremmer gave Hohmann free rein to fully express his hatred -- under the unsubtle headline "America's death coming by a thousand visas" -- as related on an obscure radio show, complete with shadowy illustration of apparently armed people who may or may not actually be Muslims:
Islam makes its presence in America felt in many ways. Sometimes it happens through violence. Far more often it happens when Muslim immigrants arrive and plant their own institutions and customs on American soil. And some Muslims come with the specific purpose of spreading Islam.
Hohmann doesn't mention that there are more than 300,000 Protestant churches in America alone, and thousands more Catholic parishes, so those 3,200 mosques are a drop in the bucket by comparison.
Also, Hohmann does make it clear he hates all of Islam, not just the radical parts, what with his ranting about how to "preserve America’s Christian culture." He later complains: "We have to expect to be called names. ... We can’t be afraid of name-calling. They will call you these vicious names because that’s really all they have. They don’t want to debate the facts." This from a guy who has demonstrated he doesn't want to debate the facts about Islam.
And we don't call Hohmann names; we accurately describe what he is.
Church becomes mosque, Hohmann freaks out
Hohmann is aghast in a May 15 WND article:
A former church has been taken over and converted to a mosque in a rural North Carolina county, and a group of Christian pastors took part in the conversion ceremony in an effort to “show mutual respect” for their Muslim neighbors.
Hohmann's claim that the church was "taken over" by the mosque implies implies an involuntary and possibly forceful action; in fact, as Hohmann finally gets around to conceding in the 17th paragraph of his article, "The mosque purchased the former church building on four acres for $230,000."
Unusual for Hohmann, he actually interviewed the person he's attacking, in this case Rev. Jim Melnyk, an Episcopal minister who took part in the interfaith conversion ceremony. Apparently the interview involved no small amount of Hohmann lecturing Melnyk about the evils of Islam, as this article snippet suggests:
Melnyk said Christianity and Islam “share common origins and scriptures” and that he felt it was the right thing to do to participate in the mosque opening as a show of respect for Islam, a fellow monotheistic faith.
Hohmann also called on a fellow Muslim-hater who ranted that Melnyk "should be severely reprimanded by his bishop, if not defrocked and excommunicated for deceiving his flock and denying Christ in such a blatant manner." Of course, Hohmann didn't give Melnyk a chance to respond to that personal attack.
Hohmann also did his own ranting in the midst of his freakout over the church-turned-mosque:
Turning over a former church to be made into a mosque is, historically and theologically, seen by Muslims as proof that their religion is superior to Christianity and, in fact, as part of their destiny as adherents of Islam, Furnish said.
Remember, Hohmann is fearmongering about immigration of Muslims to the U.S. as "civilization jihad."
Hohmann's Muslim politician freakout
ConWebWatch has already noted how Hohmann freaked out about a Muslim woman winning a state legislative seat in Minnesota. That hasn't stopped.
An April 2 article warned that "The Democratic Party may have found its next Barack Obama" in Abdul el-Sayed, a 32-year-old physician who recently launched his campaign for governor of Michigan, ominously adding: "If he wins he would be America’s first Muslim governor." Hohmann went on to grumble about el-Sayed's accomplishments:
He speaks articulately, without an accent, inserts humor into his speeches at seemingly just the right moments, and he has the full backing of America’s powerful Muslim Brotherhood-linked network of Islamic organizations.
So Hohmann is upset that al-Sayed "speaks articulately, without an accent"? Shades of what conservatives liked to mock Joe Biden for saying about Barack Obama.
And because Hohmann is having trouble thinking of things to criticize al-Sayed about -- he simply can't knock the fact that el-Sayed is a fully assimilated second-generation immigrant -- he has to play the Muslim card and mention the dark specter of a purported link to the Muslim Brotherhood (a link he does not substantiate, by the way).
He also has to rely on a fellow anti-Muslim activist in Michigan, Dick Manasseri, who helps him toss out unsubstantiated attacks on el-Sayed: "Any Republican would be afraid to confront him on his Muslim Brotherhood connections or his views on Shariah. ... He is a devout Shariah-compliant guy, and I would predict that he will be endorsed by the Catholic Church, which is very powerful in Michigan."
And, of course, all this proclaiming el-Sayed to be the next Obama indirectly perpetuates another right-wing conspiracy theory: that Obama is a secret Muslim. Nice dog whistle there, Leo.
On April 23, Hohmann went into freakout mode about Jetpac, a political action committee whose "sole purpose is to organize and train Muslims for elected offices at the local, state and national levels," and its founder, Nadeem Mazen. It's an unusually straight article until Hohmann asserts: "This is exactly how the Muslim Brotherhood envisioned the takeover of America, through non-violent civilizational jihad, experts on the shadowy network tell WND."
Hohmann didn't mention that Jetpac operates like pretty much every other PAC in America by working to get their preferred candidates elected. But never mind that -- it's time for Hohmann to start quoting the Muslim-haters:
But the narrative provided by Mazen is mostly propaganda meant for the untrained non-Muslim ear, dutifully passed on as “news” by politically correct media outlets, says Clare Lopez, vice president of research and analysis for the Center for Security Policy and author of “Star Spangled Shariah: The Rise of America’s First Muslim Brotherhood Party.”
Omar is the Minnesota legislator who was a previous freakout target of Hohmann, who added: "Omar made headlines Thursday when she was one of only two lawmakers to vote against a bill in the Minnesota State House that would allow life insurance companies to deny death benefits to the families of dead terrorists." Hohmann linked to an April 20 article he wrote about Omar's vote, in which he relies on his his usual retinue of Muslim-haters and couldn't be bothered to contact Omar for an explanation.
But Omar later stated on Facebook her reason for voting against the bill was a rushed process and a poorly written bill -- in other words, much less sinister than what Hohmann was trying to intimate in his biased writing.
Similarly, Hohmann couldn't be bothered to contact Mazen for a response to WND's attacks on him.
Hohmann's Idaho obsession
Hohmann has long obsessed over a case in Idaho in which "three refugee boys" assaulted a 5-year-old girl in an Idaho town.
In an April 5 article, Hohmann huffed that "In the same week that three refugee boys pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a 5-year-old girl in Twin Falls, Idaho, the mayor and council floated the idea of passing a resolution declaring Twin Falls a “welcoming city” for illegals and refugees.
The subhead for Hohmann's article states, "WND, Breitbart vindicated in case that brought accusations of fake news." In fact, WND did publish fake news about the case when it first broke. Apparently, the fact that the boys pleaded guilty to charges in the case equals "vindication" for Hohmann's Muslim-bashing.
In a further attempt to exploit the case, Hohmann includes the name and picture of the 5-year-old victim. How cynical and irresponsible.
On April 11, Hohmann was ready to milk the case again, complaining:
One week after three refugee boys from Sudan and Iraq pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a 5-year-old girl in Twin Falls, Idaho, the city council has voted unanimously to lay out the welcome mat for more refugees.
Hohmann also accused one supporter of refugees, Mark Crandall, as having "provided the council with false statistics in his letter about the number of refugees being sent to the U.S. in fiscal 2017," but he only one he cited was that "the Trump administration recently announced it will allow 62,500 refugees entry into the U.S. this year, not 50,000 as Crandall stated." Not exactly a smoking gun there. Hohmann also uncritically quoted one anti-refugee activist viciously smearing refugee supporters, who are linked with the local Mormon church: "Isn’t that what communists do, use the children? The propaganda machines work best if you start with children."
Isn't that about the same amount of time Hohmann has been spending trying to desperately smear all Muslim refugees -- and, really, all Muslims period -- as sexual predators just like the youths were arrested in this case, as well as downplaying the inaccurate reporting he and his employer produced about it?
Hohmann once again includes a picture of the victim but curious omits her name despite having revealed it the week before. Both articles include pleas to "Donate to the family’s GoFundMe account to help with mounting medical and legal expenses," which is simply more evidence Hohmann has no interest in reporting on this case in a fair and balanced manner.
Still upset all Muslims aren't presumed to be terrorists
Hohmann used a Feb. 7 WND article to not only endorse President Trump's bogus claim that the media underreports incidents of terrorism, he spun it to better fit his Islamophobic presumption that a person with a Muslim name who commits a crime should be presumed a terrorist before any police investigation of the crime has taken place:
But as many terrorism experts told WND, it’s not the amount of coverage given to a specific event that counts but rather the type of coverage.
Actually, Spencer is not a "terrorism expert" -- like most of the "terrorism experts" Hohmann and WND love to quote, they're actually anti-Muslim activists.
In fact, at the time Hohmann wrote his article, Islamic extremism has not been officially established as a motive in Barry's attack. While Barry had been on a watchlist for expressing extreme views, officials didn't use the words "terrorism" or "terrorist" following the attack.
One notorious example of this is the Orlando massacre, Spencer said.
Spencer is spreading disinformation of his own when he calls media reports raising questions about Orlando shooter Omar Mateen's sexuality "disinformation." The media simply reported what people were talking about. While investigators did say shortly after the shooting they found no substantiation that Mateen was secretly gay, the investigation was continuing, and even Mateen's ex-wife raised questions about his sexuality.
Hohmann went on to quote his WND buddy in Muslim-hating, Philip Haney, issuing a strange attack on the BBC's credibility:
“Let’s say that in terms of scope of coverage the BBC is actually correct that they were ahead of the others,” Haney told WND. “Even with the broader scope of coverage the BBC, as deficient as it is, it’s still better than the American journalistic coverage. During my time on the inside with DHS, it seemed like the Daily Mail, another British news outlet, would always come out with information within minutes if not hours, well ahead of American media, so why do we have to look into foreign media sources to find pieces of the story that you won’t find here?”
That would be the same Daily Mail that Wikipedia had just banned from citations for being too unreliable. But then, facts aren't WND's main concern when reporting on Muslims; spreading hatred of them is.
Hohmann concluded his article with the Trump White House's list of terrorist attacks it falsely claimed were underreported; weirdly, Hohmann edited the list to remove the targets and names of attackers that were on the original list. Hohmann provided no explanation for the omissions.