August 4th, 2007
02:08 PM ET
10 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." 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. Ahmed, B'ham, Alabama

    He should attack Mecca by all means if he thinks it is going to solve the problem, but he should first allow the pilgrims and civilians from there to relocate. BTW, Muslims can't protect Mecca, if God wills it to be destroyed. So Tom, bring it on....

    August 3, 2007 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  2. David, Sacramento, California

    The problem is any practice of any religion which runs counter to the foundation of that religion itself which is peace, brotherhood, etc. should be condemned by that religion’s religious world population and its leaders and regard its perverted practice as illegal. Those who perpetrate such acts should be regarded as outcasts and if needed be ex-communicated. The Muslim world is not doing this and that is why terrorists do anything they want in the name of Muslim religion. Bombarding Muslim holy places is not going to uproot terrorists and but would only flame hatred in the larger peaceful Muslim population.

    August 3, 2007 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  3. Harry - Rotterdam, NY

    This guy is a moron, lets put it this way, "what happens to a hornets nest when you smack it? You get the hornets mad, right? What does this guy think is going to happen if we (the USA) strick their religious sites. And he is a presidential hopeful?, look we already voted in a 'C' average president why are we going to listen to a 'D' average representative. If this Homeland Security thing is legit then there isn't much to worry about, these people are going to attack us no matter what, or die trying. I really think that the mentality of our government will change when the venue changes.

    August 3, 2007 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  4. Skip Bailey, Muscle Shoals, Ala.

    Force is the only thing these muslim extremists understand. I support this threat.

    It may or may not be effective, but the certainty is that we cannot allow them to think there would be no consequences.

    August 3, 2007 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  5. Tom, Davenport, Iowa

    What a moron! It's no wonder everyone hates the U.S.

    August 3, 2007 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  6. Jameleh, Houston Tx

    Thanks Tacredo for making an idiot out of yourself and realizing that you really DIDNT want a political position because now for the rest of your age you are going to never live down the day you opened your mouth and said the dumbest thing that would pop out of your head:)

    P.S. Now everyone will have the pleasure of saying, "Tom who?"

    August 3, 2007 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  7. Suhail, Atlanta, GA

    I don't know what's worse... his ignorant suggustion or his ignorant supporters...

    An eye for an eye makes the world go blind... all you supporters of such ideas forget that there are over 1 BILLION MUSLIMS... what would you do if you pissed off over 1 Billion people... not including all the non-muslims who support muslims... include all the non-muslims who support Islam you're talking about a couple billion people now...

    These type of comments are unacceptable just like people who make comments against those of the Jewish faith... attacking people simply because of their faith will cause more problems

    August 3, 2007 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  8. Vinny Marlton NJ


    August 3, 2007 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  9. Allan Toh, Honolulu, Hawaii

    Sure Mr. Tancredodo Bird, and after we nuke Mecca and Medina, the terrorists will put up a white flag and cuddle up to us and whisper sweet-nothings in our ears and we'll live together happily ever after.
    Japan was (and is) a country when we nuked them, and they surrendered as a country. You think the terrorists will all come together as a group and meet us in Yalta or on USS Ronald Reagan to sign the surrender documents, maybe?
    Get real, idiot. You just painted a scenario for Armegeddon, you dolt.
    It's true what they say about Americans: Anybody can run for President, to wit, Dubya and now Tancredodo Bird.

    August 3, 2007 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  10. Jim, Tononto, Ontario

    It sounds like a good option to consider for deterance.

    If Muslims wish to bring terrorism to us, then the threat of terrorism back to them in a way that is meaningful to them, makes perfect sense.


    August 3, 2007 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  11. Karina Smith. 8701 Soloman, Houston, Texas

    Well, everyone seems to enjoy critizing the man. I am not fan, but he does go on to say :

    "...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.”

    I won't vote for him, but like he says, if he is wrong, (which I think so), give him a better alternative. I for one can't think of one, but hey, I'm not a politician.


    August 3, 2007 08:09 pm at 8:09 pm |
  12. steven ransom amsterdam, the netherlands

    Whty is he "absolutely crazy," and his remarks "reprehensible." He is on the mark.

    August 3, 2007 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  13. McEmtol Fat, Lagos Nigeria

    What is terrorism? if this statement was made by a muslim, we will all cry foul... and start hunting such for terror...Tom or whatver he is called is a terrorist by that statement and must be treated as such. This is a treasonable offence...Mind you I am a christian, a devout one.

    August 3, 2007 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  14. Hazel McCullough

    Poor Tom, maybe the people of his state should put him somewhere where he will be safe from himself.

    August 3, 2007 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  15. wow new york

    wow if this moron is elected prez i dont think just the muslims should revolt and kill us americans to you know the founding fathers warned us of this and cnn should censor this moron cause he will cause not muslimsradicals but countries against us also us cictens need to tell the wtold that these morons doesnot repersent us at all anyway ww3 will happen if this moron is elceted and the engliment era and revultion again should happen

    August 3, 2007 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  16. Mike, HI

    John in Minneapolis:

    "Obviously, by attacking our way of life for no other reason than it being different from their ways and beliefs, they care nothing at all about anyone but themselves."

    No other reason? Jesus Christ people, wake up.

    August 3, 2007 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  17. Justin, Sherman Oaks, CA

    Tancredo must be out of his mind. Saying we should bomb Islamic holy sites as a deterrent to Terrorist. What dose he imagine will be the responce of the million of Muslims that are good people like you and me. Did he not notice we are at war with Al Queda, not Islam. If you don't know the difference you have no business in public office. How can people not understand that. This has to be the most ignorant statement made by anyone about the US terrorism problem. If he wants to be a Jesus warrior, why dosen't he start with all preists raping children and then covering it up.

    August 3, 2007 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  18. Ali, Waterloo, ON

    How's Dip. 101 for his education?

    oh, diplomacy i meant.

    sounds like he's all prepared for another round of crusades.

    August 3, 2007 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  19. Ali Radi -memphis, TN

    i think this tancredo is a stupid idiot!! i dont see how he even got elected to such an important and respected legislative body!maybe he is trying to get some publicity for his surely losing cause to be elected as President.such hateful comments can only widen the gap between cultures and the worst part is some misinformed person might take it as an official position of the Government.this idiot has to be reprimended by the Congress!!
    ps: is there anyway you can please forward this comment to him

    August 3, 2007 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  20. Scorpion, Santa Ana, CA

    This idea of bombing the holy site Mecca sounds like the dead-end road and don't guess me wrong but in term of deterrent policy it is the best message to our opponents when we mean business; I couldn't agree with Congressman Tancredo, however, I do believe the road we are on as far as fighting terrorism is still wide open of options available in term of foreign diplomatic policy, immigration policy, internationational financing policy, etc... Who would want to harbor terrorists unless the sovereign country itself is involving in terrorism.

    August 3, 2007 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  21. Henry Tufo Revere .Ma.

    Senator Tancredo,should have made the suggestion that worked for General patton. What Patton did was to bury muslums with pig entrails,that gets their attention.

    August 3, 2007 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  22. Mike, San Diego, CA

    What a nutjob. I hope he has a good golf course at his country club, 'cause that's all he'll be doing after the Election next November.

    August 3, 2007 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  23. Robert W., Los Angeles, CA

    Even though I haven't attended church in years, I am still a Christian and I have to say that Tancredo's statement is absolutely the most disgusting statement any candidate has ever made. Bombing a Holy Site will only incite religious zeal and create fanatics and more martyrs. Holy Sites of all religions need to be respected and protected, not bombed in retaliation. Go back to your swamp and evolve a little more, Mr. Tancredo.

    August 3, 2007 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  24. Steve, Rochester Hills, Michigan

    Bingo!! This guy has it right. We are in a holy war and the other side recognizes no boundaries. You don't have to weild a sword to die by one. Hoyner for President!

    August 3, 2007 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  25. James Flaherty, Guilford, CT 06437

    I don't know much about Sen. Tancredo's politics, but the idiot's at our state department are the one's who are “reprehensible” and “absolutely crazy.”

    The Senator is absolutely correct. The Islamic world need's to be warned, if there is another major attack on the USA, then the holy sites will be completely obliterated.

    If Islamic people in the USA are attacked, our police track them down and we prosecute them. We as a society prosecute them.

    It is incumbent and about time that the entire Muslim world is told, " it's your responsibility to get your extremists under control! You are the people who can do the intelligence gathering in the area's where non-Islamic can not go. The moderates need to take responsibility for the extremists and discipline them!

    August 3, 2007 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
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