Cartoonist placed on terror hit list

By DOV PREMINGER
July 12, 2010 21:17

Threat responds to 'Draw Muhammad Day.'

1 minute read.



students protesting "everybody draw mohammed day"

pakistan protest 311. (photo credit:ap)

"Everybody Draw Muhammad Day" cartoonist Molly Norris was placed on an execution hit list by Muslim cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, reported the New York Daily News Monday.

The Yemeni-American cleric Awlaki was said to have inspired the Fort Hood, Texas massacre and an attempted car bomb in Times Square. Awlaki is a 39-year-old US citizen born in New Mexico.

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Norris was called a "prime target" whose "proper abode is hellfire," according to the New York Daily News.

The FBI warned Norris that they consider Awlaki's threat "very serious."

Awlaki condemned Norris in an English al-Qaida magazine called Inspire, in which he also targeted eight other cartoonists for their "blasphemous caricatures" of the prophet Muhammad, said the New York Daily News.

"The medicine prescribed by the Messenger of Allah is the execution of those involved," wrote Awlaki.

May 20 was declared by Norris as "Everybody Draw Muhammad Day" in defiance of terrorist threats against cartoonists depicting the prophet Muhammad. Norris has since retreated from the concept, saying "I regret that I made my cartoon the way I made it."

According to the New York Daily News, the FBI's assistant special agent in charge of counter terrorism in Seattle, David Gomez, said that "we understand the absolute seriousness of a threat from an Al Qaeda-inspired magazine and are attempting to do everything in our power to assist the individuals on that list to effectively protect themselves and change their behavior to make themselves less of a target."

Norris's neighbor told the New York Daily News yesterday there was increased police presence on their street.

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