Ad dubbing Jihad 'savage' to appear in NYC transit system

Ad dubbing Jihad 'savage' to appear in NYC transit system

New York City : NY : USA | Sep 21, 2012 at 1:06 AM PDT
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As violent anti-U.S. protests go on across the Muslim world in reaction to a controversial U.S.- made video insulting the Prophet Muhammad, Americans will shortly come across one more violence-provocative description of Islam: an ad in New York City’s transit system that calls for supporting Israel in its war against Muslim Jihad.

"In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man. Support Israel. Defeat Jihad," the advertisement reads, according to CNN.

The controversial ad will reportedly appear at 10 designated places in NYC’s subway next week regardless of the city officials’ efforts to stop the campaign. New York's Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) at first discarded the ad, but the decision was reversed in August when a court decreed that the ad is protected speech under the First Amendment.

The ads are reportedly put out by the American Freedom Defense Initiative. According to Pamela Gellar, the founding director of the initiative, the campaign is aimed at condemning violence and attacks carried out by radical Muslims.

"The point is any war on civilians is savagery. The rockets going into Israel by Gaza is savagery, blowing up buses is savagery, targeting a bus of Jewish mothers and children, savagery, Daniel Pearl, 9/11, 7/7, 3/11, are all savagery," she said referring to terror attacks in the U.S., Britain and Spain, according to ABC News. "I'm just restating the obvious."

The American Freedom Defense Initiative has also acquired advertisement spaces for the same objective in Washington, but the city’s transit authority said it had put off the ad’s assignment due to fears for public security in the wake of present world events. A parallel choice was not available to New York’s transportation authority because of the court order, according to the bureau.

Although the advertisement is expected to launch next week, but the MTA could forbid all non-commercial advertisements from the subway system in order to shun contentious issue-based ads in the future.

The American Freedom Defense Initiative is primarily an undertaking by Gellar and author Robert Spencer, who also manages a website called Jihad Watch. The group was declared as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. According to Gellar, their Facebook page has more than 30,000 likes. In addition, Gellar has claimed to have a large number of donors and followers.

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NYC subway
Ad dubbing Jihad 'savage' to appear in NYC transit system (Image: Reuters)
Kamran Ahmed is based in Seattle, Washington, United States of America, and is an Anchor on Allvoices.
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