Foreign Money Mosque; Arabs to Help Pay (Cordoba House near Ground Zero)

Cordoba Initiative leader Imam Rauf had stated that the $4.85 million to purchase the Burlington Coat Factory came “from the community,” as if to indicate local money. Apparently, raising $100 million plus to build a 15-story mosque at Ground Zero just two blocks north of the World Trade Center requires he reach out a bit further, as a report this morning in the New York Post explains:

Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf has insisted the project he’s spearheading is meant to build bridges between Muslims and other religions, but so far he has not been able to cite any specific sources of funding.

But in an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat, Rauf told the newspaper that funding would come from Muslims in the United States and from overseas.

“Imam Abdul Rauf … told Asharq Al-Awsat that the Islamic center will be financed through contributions from Muslims in the US, as well as by donations from Arab and Islamic countries,” the newspaper reported.

Rauf did not return a call for comment.

In interviews with US media, Rauf has insisted funds would be raised here.

“We hope to raise it from a combination of gifts from the local Muslim community and perhaps from some combination of bonds or something like that,” Rauf told WABC Radio’s Aaron Klein last week.

Foreign funding raises red flags for Debra Burlingame, a member of 9/11 Families for a Safe & Strong America, which is organizing to block the project that she says is really aimed at converting people to Islam.

“The money is very important,” said Burlingame, whose brother was a pilot aboard the hijacked jetliner that struck the Pentagon. “They can’t do what they do — I’m talking about Islamists — without the money coming from somewhere.”

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