Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) during a hearing on Friday said that he believes that Islam as a whole is a threat to the United States, labeling it as a religion that will “motivate people to murder children.” During a hearing he chaired on “Islamist Extremism in Chechnya: A Threat to the U.S. Homeland?” Rohrabacher continually referred to the 2004 Beslan hostage situation in which Chechen extremists took control of a school in Russia resulting in the death of more than 180 children as an example of the threat that Islam poses. At one point, the California Republican sought to clarify that he wasn’t opposed to any religious group gaining power within a region only Islam. “What we need to worry about is if it happens to be a religion that convinces people that part of their faith is to go off and murder other people’s children,” he said, referring to Islam broadly. Later in the hearing, Rohrabacher was more clear: Islamophobia has seen a resurgence in the aftermath of the Boston attacks, with Fox News leading the charge in promoting a new wave of fear towards Muslims. Rohrabacher is no stranger himself to controversy surrounding Islam. In 2012, he accused President Obama of “pandering to radical Islamic forces” in the aftermath of the Benghazi attack.
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