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. Nayyar Ahmad, Dodge City, KS

    For all of those who claim that Islam is a vile and intolerant religion, which promotes hate, I present a verse from the Holy Quran:

    "Surely those who believed, and the Jews, and the Sabians, and the Christians – whoso believes in Allah and the Last Day and does good deeds, on them shall come no fear, nor shall they grieve." (5:70)

    Who then, after reading this verse, promotes hate? We Muslims or those who want to wipe Islam off of the earth?

    August 3, 2007 11:21 pm at 11:21 pm |
  2. Truely frightened muslim, hartford, CT

    To begin with- I am a muslim and a moderate. This is my comment:

    If the republican party keeps governing the US (i.e. another president of the kind of Mr. Bush) nobody knows what will happen to the world. Look at this other crazy maniac who is running for republican party nomination for president, and what he said again (threatening to destroy the holiest sites of muslims- of course he won't but this is just talk for local consumption meant to further accentuate hatred against muslims in an already emotionally combustible environment where everyone already discriminates against muslims everywhere). I am not sure what moderate muslim people like myself will understand or feel when they read such idiocies full of hatred and intolerance (i am not even speaking about the stupid, mentally-retarded, and criminal muslim extremists who are the cause of the insecurity in our respective coutries and who are waiting for a stupid comment from a high level official to further escalate their stupid, idiot, and criminal actions against peaceful societies- as if the world needs another religious crisis- truely foolish indeed).
    Still layer-americans ask the question: why do they hate us? i lived enough to see that muslims don't hate americans; i personally don't hate americans (and i actually love america and american people because i had a chance to live in the US and know the american people that i consider my brothers and sisters), but it appears that America have a stupid kind of political breed that is truely going way out in labeling every muslim as a 'terrorist' until the prove of the contrary. I am totally disgusted. How can a politician have this whole idea of bombing innocent worshipers as a way to retaliate against 'ennemy combattant', knowing that the worshippers at the holy sites have nothing to do with politics? What he said is absolutely dangerous- a real bombing of the muslim sites will ignite a world war, and believe me America and the world will gain nothing from it except pain and casulties (is this the world that republican party is preparing us to live in?). Why this hatred? i just simply can't imagine someone thinking this way at this level of representation (i thought this kind of politicians existed only in 3rd world countries, but i think they are everywhere).

    Please as Americans, save the world this kind of political crappies and new neonazis, and choose well when you vote for the next president (please vote for someone who will bring peace to the world, not war). This is probably the crappiest and most mentally retarded politician that your country had presented in years. I hope he does not win the nomination of republican party- i feel for CO people who have such kind of racist representative- a true pity indeed.

    August 3, 2007 11:24 pm at 11:24 pm |
  3. Valdemar De Lima, Bronx, New York

    I think that he's very stupid and not capable of being a good president.

    August 3, 2007 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  4. Anonymous

    is he asking for 50 more 9/11's?

    August 3, 2007 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm |
  5. Harry, Fairfax VA

    hahaha, I'm not sure who is the bigger idiot. Tom Tancredo or Toy Pearson, a DC judge who sued a dry cleaner for $65 million. What's wrong with America?

    August 3, 2007 11:32 pm at 11:32 pm |
  6. Karen, Charleston South Carolina

    Being stupid is not a trait exclusive to the GOP. Based on his comments regarding Pakistan earlier in the week, Obama might just want to have the first bi-partisan ticket with Tancredo as his running mate. The Dumb and Dumber campaign.

    August 3, 2007 11:35 pm at 11:35 pm |
  7. Paul Brugger, South Jordan, Utah

    Right On!!!!

    August 3, 2007 11:37 pm at 11:37 pm |
  8. Jason, Bellevue WA

    It is a good thing that morons like this won't be elected into office. No doubt it will be a democrat taking office in '08. This guy is a disgrace to our country; it is ignorant and arrogant remarks like his that make us such a hate-target around the world. America is all about freedom of religion and protection of human rights. For a senator to say such things is really shocking. I just hope that his views are not shared by any other of our country's leaders.

    August 3, 2007 11:37 pm at 11:37 pm |
  9. anonymous

    I think he was meaning to come across as figurative versus literal..... Of course liberals can not distinguish this. He should issue an apology for insulting the non radical non militant Muslim community.
    Seriously, he was most likely wanting the American people to think what can we do to make these radicals think twice? I bet he issues apology or politically hes done.

    August 3, 2007 11:37 pm at 11:37 pm |
  10. Anonymous

    I can assure you that he has committed a political suicide by making these comments. In his desperation to win sympathies and votes of the american public, he has gone an extra mile to plant the seeds of hatred and anger. His strategy is going to backfire against him.

    August 3, 2007 11:41 pm at 11:41 pm |
  11. Lu S. from Las Vegas NV

    This is my man and was long before he made these comments. They just enforce my respect for the guy. GO TANCREDO! AND PUT DUNCAN HUNTER ON THE TICKET AS VP! YOU GUYS WOULD BE UNTOUCHABLE.

    August 3, 2007 11:52 pm at 11:52 pm |
  12. Jerry, Mesquite, TX

    Mr. Tancredo is the only politician I've heard who has the guts to state such a necessary proposition. It's not reprehensible or crazy. The "kill everyone in the name of Allah" Muslims are the crazies. It is unlikely that anything else will deter the radical Muslim agenda to hit the west with a nuclear attack. I think the rest of the politicians aren't taking the Muslim threat seriously enough. It takes radical methods to deal with radical, brainwashed murderers.

    August 3, 2007 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm |
  13. D.B. NYC

    Um, not all Muslims are terrorists, but moves like this one, and even him saying them creates more terrorists. What a moron.

    Posted By Lindsey, IA : August 3, 2007 1:24 pm

    This is good. No they are not all muslims anymore than you and I and 300 million other Americans are not personally responsible for the strife in the middle east. Will that fact stop them from trying to kill us and our families? Stop thinking about this like you're dealing with an enemy that is playing by the same rules that we try to. That's why we have this problem.

    August 3, 2007 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  14. Joe, Buffalo, NY

    I agree with him completely. In the aftermath of another attack on our soil, I would fully support such a retaliation.

    August 4, 2007 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  15. The Mighty Greedo, St Paul, MN

    If I didn't see that this article came from, I'd have assumed it was from The Onion.

    August 4, 2007 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  16. Todd, Tempe, AZ

    This moron is our own home grown version of Osama Bin Laden. A home grown terrorist we should all be ashamed of. His statement is equivelent to Osama Bin Laden theatening to blow up Vatican City if United States were to attack Iran. Really, somebody tell me whats the difference?

    August 4, 2007 12:08 am at 12:08 am |
  17. Jimmy, Prattville, AL

    I'll say this much, if a terrorist attack on the grand scale of 9/11 took place in the U.S. again, it might not accomplish anything to bomb Mecca, but I'd agree that it sure would feel good.

    August 4, 2007 12:08 am at 12:08 am |
  18. AB

    Bombing Mecca and Medina, sure that would sure as a deterrent – then would just hit back at more US targets and it would serve as a strong defensive for more muslims to wage Jihad on US soil.

    August 4, 2007 12:13 am at 12:13 am |
  19. Tony, Traverse City Michigan

    That is the most rediculous thing I have ever heard. This man has said enough asinine comments to make an attack justified.

    August 4, 2007 12:15 am at 12:15 am |
  20. Todd, Mesa, AZ

    This moron is our own version of Osama Bin Laden; a home grown terrorist all peace loving American should be ashamed of.

    August 4, 2007 12:19 am at 12:19 am |
  21. Dave Park, New Brunswick, NJ

    This is just a horridly bad idea on so many levels.

    Forget about the fact that the majority of Muslims in the world are actually quite peaceful and that such an act would anger the community, or the fact that those listed sites are in one of the few Middle Eastern countries allied with the US.

    Such an idea wouldn't even prevent terrorist attacks from occuring. If anything, they'd lead to increased violence in retaliation.

    And even then, such an act wouldn't even harm fundamentalist Islamic groups. These are organizations not run by religion, but by greed, power, and ambition. Very much similar to ultra-Christian groups in the US, these so-called religious fanatics gain power through the ignorance of the lower class in order to drive their own agendas. Destroying symbols of their beliefs will not phase the actual groups; rather, it will fuel even more violence.

    This is a simple case of our policy-makers not knowing what is going on both around the world and within the country. Why can't we get someone at least with a few sane ideas in there?

    August 4, 2007 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  22. Montreal Canada

    Dear Americans,

    Why do you elect such stupid people to office? Remember, its YOU, the American people of America who voted for George W. Bush.

    It’s YOU, the people of Colorado who voted for Tancredo. YOU, Americans put these mental cases into positions of authority, so stop complaining. It’s YOUR fault! Congratulations for being the laughing stock of the world.

    Just an intelligent thought from an intelligent Canadian. Peace

    August 4, 2007 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  23. Anonymous

    Not to say this guy isn't an idiot but we had better figure out what our response will be when WMD equipped terrorists kill 80 thousand or more Americans in one attack and destroy our economy. I hope we don't lock up a couple hundred yahoos at Guantanamo and call it even.

    August 4, 2007 12:30 am at 12:30 am |
  24. Bechara, Houston, Texas

    What is remarkable about this is not Tom Tancredo's comments, but the comments of all the Do-Gooders posted here who are so bleeding sympathetic to the entire muslim world.

    You try being a Christian in Iraq right now, or most middle eastern countries and you will know what it means to get the rough end of the pineapple, and there will be no bleeding Do-Gooders over there to cry about your loss of rights, freedom and life.

    The Islamic agenda needs to be shut down, by all means including deterrance.

    August 4, 2007 12:31 am at 12:31 am |
  25. Sal, LA CA

    Well, after the WTC and Pentagon were attacked, the US really backed off from the Middle East – withdrawing completely from the area and permanently shelving any plans of attacking Iraq and confronting Iran.

    That is what happened, right?

    But seriously, this guy is a tool – completely manipulated by his infantile emotions and unable to think more than fifteen minutes into the future.

    August 4, 2007 12:33 am at 12:33 am |
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