The Dayton Daily News has been walking back their coverage of the so-called mosque incident this weekend. The initial article on Saturday was "Chemical irritant empties Islamic Society of Greater Dayton's mosque":
Then on Sunday the story was "Islamic Society baffled by incident at worship service":
Then yesterday they walked all the way back, "Police: No evidence of hate crime at local mosque":
But if you follow any of those three links, they take you to the exact same article -- the last one. The previous two stories have been scrubbed from the website.
Flaming the fires of kafirphobia. I'm hoping to have a copy of the incident report tomorrow. Will forward details.
What is the Dayton Daily News trying to hide?
For posterity's sake, and in an attempt to keep whoever is doing this from getting away with whitewashing the record, here are the texts of both spurious stories:
Chemical irritant empties Islamic Society of Greater Dayton's mosque By Kyle Nagel Staff Writer Saturday, September 27, 2008
DAYTON — Baboucarr Njie was preparing for his prayer session Friday night, Sept. 26, when he heard children in the Islamic Society of Greater Dayton coughing. Soon, Njie himself was overcome with fits of coughing and, like the rest of those in the building, headed for the doors.
"I would stay outside for a minute, then go back in, there were a lot of kids," Njie said. "My throat is still itchy, I need to get some milk."
Njie was one of several affected when a suspected chemical irritant was sprayed into the mosque at 26 Josie St., bringing Dayton police, fire and hazardous material personnel to the building at 9:48 p.m.
Someone "sprayed an irritant into the mosque," Dayton fire District Chief Vince Wiley said, noting that fire investigators believe it was a hand-held spray can.
According to fire dispatch communications, a child reported seeing two men with a white can spraying something into a window. That child was brought to the supervising firefighter at the scene.
Wiley would not discuss that report, but said the investigation has been turned over to police. Police were not commenting.
The 300 or so inside were celebrating the last 10 days of Ramadan with dinner and a prayer session, but the prayer session was interrupted so those suffering from tearing, coughing and shortness of breath could receive treatment.
Wiley said an adult and juvenile were taken to area hospitals and others had their eyes or faces washed on the scene. He did not know how many people were treated at the scene.
Ismail Gula, ISGD secretary, said people were praying during the weekly service when some in the audience began to cough and experience breathing troubles, then left the building. Once outside, several of them called 911, Gula said.
Tarek Sabagh, a member of the ISGD board, wasn't present when the incident occurred.
He said his daughter called and told him to stay away because of the possibility of remaining fumes. Sabagh arrived shortly after and watched from the mosque's steps as members were allowed back inside about 11 p.m. to collect belongings.
"It's very disturbing," Sabagh said. "Something like this has never happened before."
Sabagh said members moved to a Beavercreek school to finish their prayer session as police continued to investigate.
"I don't know if people will have the feeling of trust to come back tomorrow or next week or next month," Sabagh said. "I don't know how people will feel."
Ramadan is the ninth month of the Muslim calendar. During the month, Muslims fast (do not eat) from sunrise to sunset. In the evening and in the morning before the sun comes up, they eat small meals. During this month, they take extra time for family, inner reflection, and spiritual growth.
Contact this reporter at (937) 225-7389 or knagel@DaytonDailyNews.com.
Islamic Society baffled by incident at worship service By Doug Page Staff Writer Sunday, September 28, 2008
DAYTON — The Muslim community gathered Sunday, Sept. 28, 48 hours after an unknown irritant disrupted worship at the Islamic Society of Greater Dayton.
"We were in the midst of the Fifth Prayer when people started coughing," said Ismail Gula, the society's secretary.
Gula said the building was evacuated and the service to break the daily fast of Ramadan continued at a nearby facility.
He said he had no idea what might have caused the incident. "It might be anything," he said.
Gula said he had received many calls of support from Christians and Jews over the weekend.
When Dayton fire and emergency personnel arrived at 26 Josie St. on Friday night, they noticed an odor. HAZMAT workers checked the structure for pepper spray and other irritants, but found nothing.
Police said they were continuing their investigation.
Also on Sunday, members of several Dayton religious groups were scheduled to view and discuss a DVD about Islamic radicalism mailed to some area homes and circulated with newspapers here and around the country.
"Obsession: Radical Islam's War Against the West," was a paid advertising insert in the Dayton Daily News, Springfield News-Sun, Hamilton JournalNews and Middletown Journal, all owned by Cox Ohio Publishing, on Monday, Sept. 22. It appeared in more than 70 other newspapers nationwide.
The Rev. Gary Percesepe, executive director of Greater Dayton Christian Connections, characterized the DVD as "fanning the flames of fear and prejudice against Muslims, with the potential to inspire hate crimes."
Contact this reporter at (937) 225-2290 or dpage@DaytonDailyNews.com.