August 4th, 2007
02:08 PM ET
4 years ago

Tancredo: Threaten to bomb Muslim holy sites in retaliation

Republican presidential hopeful Tom Tancredo

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Colorado Rep. Tom Tancredo's campaign stood by his assertion that bombing holy Muslim sites would serve as a good "deterrent" to prevent Islamic fundamentalists from attacking the United States, his spokeswoman said Friday.

"This shows that we mean business," said Bay Buchanan, a senior Tancredo adviser. "There's no more effective deterrent than that. But he is open-minded and willing to embrace other options. This is just a means to deter them from attacking us."

On Tuesday, Tancredo warned a group of Iowans that another terrorist attack would "cause a worldwide economic collapse." IowaPolitics.com recorded his comments.

"If it is up to me, we are going to explain that an attack on this homeland of that nature would be followed by an attack on the holy sites in Mecca and Medina," Tancredo said. "That is the only thing I can think of that might deter somebody from doing what they would otherwise do. If I am wrong, fine, tell me, and I would be happy to do something else. But you had better find a deterrent, or you will find an attack."

Tom Casey, a deputy spokesman for the State Department, told CNN's Elise Labott that the congressman’s comments were "reprehensible" and "absolutely crazy." Tancredo was widely criticized in 2005 for making a similar suggestion.

–CNN Associate Producer Lauren Kornreich


Filed under: Tom Tancredo
soundoff (1,648 Responses)
  1. Cory, Hammond, LA

    Wow this guy just doesn't realize the kind of hatred that attacking a muslim holy site would bring upon our people. The reason that muslim extremists hate America in the first place is our lack of respect for their religion and customs. Bombing their MOST holy site would spawn more terrorism than we can currently imagine.

    August 3, 2007 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  2. Joe Raymath, Chicago, IL

    Hooray for President Tancredo. He speaks the only language the terrorist understand. He is THE Man and has my vote.

    Joe in Chicago

    August 3, 2007 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  3. Neelie Chicago, IL

    Finally, someone has the right idea! It's about time...

    August 3, 2007 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  4. Karl Shipps, New Carrollton, MD

    Not content with battling Latin America, Mr. Tancredo now proposes to take on the entire Muslim world. I'm sure his suggestion would really enhance security at the Vatican and Westminster Abbey. This man is dangerous.

    August 3, 2007 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  5. Mike Phoenix, AZ

    SO it is okay for them to attack us and other innocent civilians due to our religious beliefs (since we do not believe in Allah we are the infidels), but we can not retaliate in kind. This kind of attitude will just keep us vunerable to attack. Don't you all get it that they know they can just plink away at us since they know most of us do not have the guts to fight back. Maybe if we bomd the crap out of them like they have bombed the crap out of us, this would be over. You can not fight a politically correct war and expect to win.

    August 3, 2007 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm |
  6. Michael Oglesby

    Terrorist states have no qualms about hitting our "holy sites" in New York, and Washington, D.C. If they wish to speak the language of violence: Lets send them a big shout out in terminology that they will understand.

    August 3, 2007 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  7. Mark, Seattle, WA

    The funny thing about this blog is how everone is completely overreacting. First of all the legitimate threat to a reveared holy site could be a great deterant. He never said "lets just bomb them first" he said we should bomb those sites if attacked. its a threat people. There are very few things in this world that are important to these radical muslims these cities being one of them... Essentially we would be using the destruction of those precious cities as bargaining chips. He is dead on right. About time someone has the balls to stand up and say what needs to be said

    August 3, 2007 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  8. Mark, Seattle, WA

    Also, I believe that the majority of muslims are peaceful BUT where are the peaceful muslims acting against the radical muslims. Its rare that they speak out. Condoning radicalism is just as bad as being radical.

    August 3, 2007 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm |
  9. Adam, Armstrong IA

    What an idiot, does he want the entire Muslim community to backlash at the United States?

    August 3, 2007 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  10. Mark, Seattle, WA

    The funny thing about this blog is how everone is completely overreacting. First of all the legitimate threat to a reveared holy site could be a great deterant. He never said "lets just bomb them first" he said we should bomb those sites if attacked. its a threat people. There are very few things in this world that are important to these radical muslims these cities being one of them... Essentially we would be using the destruction of those precious cities as bargaining chips. He is dead on right. About time someone has the guts to stand up and say what needs to be said

    August 3, 2007 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  11. Mark, Seatle, WA

    Muslims; we will bomb Mecca and Medina if you don’t get your radicals under control.

    August 3, 2007 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  12. Joe Edward, Red Bank, NJ

    Tom Tancredo is thinking outside the box. Maybe this is the guy we need to make the religious fascists understand that America is not to be messed with. A little bit of reverse psychology to make people think about the consequences of their actions. I like it. I like Tom.

    August 3, 2007 10:13 pm at 10:13 pm |
  13. Byron Boone, Chicago, Il.

    Bravo. Finally someone with a spine who is not afraid that his comments might offend someone. If that is what it takes to deter these fanatics so be it.

    August 3, 2007 10:14 pm at 10:14 pm |
  14. Bill Johnson, Waldorf, MD

    I would actually be concerned about this policy if it was espoused by someone with a snowball's chance in hell of becoming President.

    Even if bombing Muslim holy sites wasn't a violation of the law of armed conflict, it would be a singularly moronic idea.

    The average eighth grader should be able to figure out that such a policy would overwhelmingly shift Middle Eastern sentiment against the U.S. for decades to come.

    August 3, 2007 10:15 pm at 10:15 pm |
  15. Eduardo, Los Angeles, California

    Regardless, one must give him credit for exercising his First Amendment right without fear of the repercussion it would bring him by being labeled a racist, bigot, politically incorrect, etc., etc., etc.

    August 3, 2007 10:15 pm at 10:15 pm |
  16. AC, New York, NY

    Just great! The Republicans have a crazy person trying to run for President. I think the Republicans should ask Tancredo to leave their party as quickly as possible.

    August 3, 2007 10:15 pm at 10:15 pm |
  17. Pixie, Murfreesboro, TN

    Um, let me just add that this guy and any one who supports an action like this is just bug.****.crazy.

    That is all.

    August 3, 2007 10:15 pm at 10:15 pm |
  18. Dave B, Norwood, PA

    Bomb them all, eye for and eye, no more of this petty crap. You strike the US first, we'll strike back in ten-fold. Unleash the gates of hell on all the middle east as far as I'm concerned.

    August 3, 2007 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  19. tom,pompton,nj

    I had same thinking 6 years ago with a nuclear bomb when a million of them are there

    August 3, 2007 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  20. john smith

    And when you're done bombing Mecca and Medina, then what? They will have plenty of targets to retaliate against. A better idea would be to boycott buying Oil from them. That'd shut 'em up real quick.

    August 3, 2007 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  21. Mad as hell.

    It's no wonder how Bush came into office...you people are 100% unapologetic for being uneducated and ignorant. You wave it like a flag. After reading the vast majority of these posts, I have little faith in Americans doing anything worthwhile in the world. Will you idiots please realize that foreign relations is different than football? Conservatives...yeah right. Using fossil fuels like they're unlimited and disposing of human life in war like they don't matter. Hypocrasy...blatent, classical, american hypocrasy.

    August 3, 2007 10:19 pm at 10:19 pm |
  22. John Durston,Scottsdale, AZ

    Mr. Tancredo's suggestion is a step in the right direction but too laid back.
    It means wait 'til we are hit-No –hit them first with Iran the first target
    Why are we so so patient with terrorist
    nations?

    August 3, 2007 10:19 pm at 10:19 pm |
  23. John L.A. Ca.

    Great idea Tom! Can't think of any other way to deter our enemies...right..just the quality we need in our next president...when in doubt bomb! Of course, then no matter what Muslim country who attacks us or tries to your plan will make ALL the Muslim followers hate us for bombing mecca, right, Tom? Hey, not to worry Tom, you didn't say it but I'm sure your bombs will be Atomic bombs...or, better yet hydrogen bombs as they do much more damage. A few of those big thermo nuclear suckers and every last mangy Muslim man, women, child, fetus or transexual will be history....just a clump of ashes. God bless you Tom,you really do mean business...you'd make a great president!

    Good luck!

    P.S. Are Rove and Cheny advising your campaign?

    August 3, 2007 10:19 pm at 10:19 pm |
  24. Brian Frederick, Rockville, MD

    I think this option is only a consideration if we truly believe in the premise that the religion of Islam is the enemy. That premise is what must be questioned and tested first, not the options that spring from it, should it be determined that it is true.

    August 3, 2007 10:20 pm at 10:20 pm |
  25. Jack, Naperville,IL

    I absolutely agree with Tom Tancredo's remark. Muslims do not understand any other language. Infact this is what Mohammed would suggest

    August 3, 2007 10:20 pm at 10:20 pm |
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