Harrowing events used to broadcast anti-Muslim messages in New Jersey

A truck displaying billboards prowled around New Jersey mosques with anti-Muslim messages

A truck displaying billboards with anti-Muslim messages along with images from the 2008 Mumbai attack drove around at least four Islamic centers in New Jersey on November 26, the 14th anniversary of the terrorist attack in India.

The truck drove in circles through the parking lot of a Piscataway mosque and around other places of worship for Muslims in Edison, North Brunswick and in the Fords section of Woodbridge, according to the New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), an Islamic advocacy group.

The truck was seen Nov. 26, at each location broadcasting the same graphic photos and video from the 2008 Islamic terror attacks in Mumbai.

The four Islamic centers that were targeted are the Muslim Center of Middlesex County in Piscataway, Masjid al-Wali in Edison, New Brunswick Islamic Center in North Brunswick, and the Muslim Community of New Jersey Masjid in Fords.

A police report has been filed and law enforcement agencies, including the FBI and the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office, are investigating.

“We’ve confirmed that four Islamic centers were visited by this truck displaying hateful, anti-Muslim messages on November 26,” said CAIR-NJ spokesperson Dina Sayedahmed. “Though we are still awaiting official police findings, it is clear that these incidents are deliberate and well-coordinated.”

“The perpetrator designed several anti-Muslim posters, rented a truck with an electronic billboard to display them, and then drove to at least four Islamic Centers in New Jersey, displaying these vile and anti-Muslim messages both at the (mosques) as well as on the road,” said Sayedahmed.

A series of terrorist attacks that took place in November 2008, when 10 members of Lashkar-e-Taiba, an Islamist terrorist organization from Pakistan, carried out 12 coordinated shooting and bombing attacks lasting four days across Mumbai.

The attacks, which drew widespread global condemnation, began on Wednesday, November 26 and lasted until Saturday, November 29, 2008.

Hotel Mumbai, a 2018 action thriller film inspired by the attacks, featured Dev Patel, Armie Hammer, Nazanin Boniadi, Anupam Kher, Tilda Cobham-Hervey, Jason Isaacs, Suhail Nayyar, Nagesh Bhosle, and Natasha Liu Bordizzo portraying victims visiting or working at the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel in India.

A total of 175 people died, including nine attackers, and more than 300 were wounded. Among the dead were six Americans and two dozen citizens of at least 15 other nations.

Lashkar-e-Taiba is designated as a terrorist organization by Pakistan, India, the United States, the United Kingdom, the European Union, Russia, Australia, and the United Nations.

On Sunday, December 11, 2022 at 3pm, the New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ) and leaders of the four Islamic centers that were targeted will participate in an interfaith solidarity rally at the Muslim Center of Middlesex County (MCMC).

Community leaders and FBI will share insight on the impact of these incidents on the Muslim community and provide updates from law enforcement.

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