July 2006 Seattle Jewish Center Shooting - Motivation


Prosecutor Norm Maleng said, "Make no mistake, this is a hate crime," and that, "there is no evidence the shooting itself was an act of terrorism". This statement has been used to describe Haq's actions as a hate crime rather than terrorism (see also definition of terrorism).

Others have taken a different view. Cinnamon Stillwell, the Northern California Representative for conservative organization Campus Watch, wrote:

News of the shooting rampage at Seattle's Jewish Federation building last month involved the usual avoidance of the term "terrorism." Instead, the attack was labeled a hate crime and the perpetrator, Naveed Afzal Haq, just another in a long line of lone gunmen with a history of mental instability. As Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels put it, "This was a purposeful, hateful act, as far as we know by an individual acting on his own." While this may be true, trying to separate Haq's actions from the larger context of the war on terrorism is tunnel vision at its worst. It is not just hate that motivates such acts, but ideology. One needn't be a bona fide member of an Islamic terrorist group to share their outlook.

Writing in Seattle alternative weekly The Stranger, Josh Feit and Brendan Kiley viewed the matter entirely differently:

While Haq's violence exploded inside a political context — the Jewish Federation, Israel's war in Lebanon — his motivations were those of a frustrated man, who, according to Renner, didn't fit in anywhere and felt persecuted and embarrassed by his parents' Pakistani background. Haq is not a jihadi, nor a radical Islamist; his anti-Semitic rhetoric seems more like a veneer of politics on a man disturbed by feelings of inadequacy and rejection.

Read more about this topic:  July 2006 Seattle Jewish Center Shooting

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