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. leilani, louisville, ky.

    is he joking? bombing mecca? destroying innocence for the sake of power. disgusting. not every muslim studies terrorism. i was raised as one & know that we are suppose to practice peace. the word islam literally translates into "peace." stop blaming an entire group of people because of a small selfish bunch. i don't even believe these terrorists are true muslims, just some kind of twisted cult.

    hello ww2 all over again. great job, mr. tancredo. i know i won't be voting for you.

    August 4, 2007 01:55 am at 1:55 am |
  2. Mike, bkfld, Cal

    To Truly Frightened Muslim in CT:

    As a moderate Muslim, I am curious how you critique our government and blame this administration, yet have no suggestions as to how you and your moderate friends can control your end of the problem. I am tired of the comment 'why do they hate us' You, my friend, should wonder why you have lost control of your countries and your religion. I rarely see moderate Muslims protesting in the street when innocent people are be-headed, tortured or executed. As an American, who has traveled extensively throughout the world, I see why America is disliked: We are proud, free and we do not tolerate oppression of any kind. It is easy for you, sir, to blame this Country for your shortcomings and to blame this administration. I find it ironic that you condemn what Tancredo said, yet you tolerate what the leaders in Iran and Syria say about Israel. It is always easy to criticize your failures on others. Take care of business at home, sir, before you pass judgement on this country.

    August 4, 2007 01:56 am at 1:56 am |
  3. aamir, london, uk

    I can't believe someone who says things like this got elected to office.

    August 4, 2007 02:03 am at 2:03 am |
  4. Karman Khan

    Al qaeda would just LOVE for someone ranting fundamentalist like Tom Tancredo to actually make such an attack on Mecca and Madina happen. Every single male/female even those who have personally been victims of Al Qaeda in the Muslim world would embrace the Al Qaeda ideology that there the Amercia is at war with Islam and with their non-existent capability to hit back.. ANY means of revenge would be justified.
    So Mr. Smart-a** Tancredo would not have deterred a terroist attack but spawned a million attacks. Let hope ppl like him only get elected to positions within the mental asylums where he belongs

    August 4, 2007 02:04 am at 2:04 am |
  5. kag, Miami, FL

    If something like that were to happen, then quite literally, it would mean the end of the world...the end of life on earth as we know it.

    August 4, 2007 02:06 am at 2:06 am |
  6. Roy, Grand Rapids, MI

    Finally someone who's not worried about all this Politcally correct baloney. He's got my vote!

    August 4, 2007 02:13 am at 2:13 am |
  7. Elaine Suhre

    Just what we need, an escalation of what the Jihadists conceive of as a Holy War. I hope Mr. Tancredo's statement about bombing Mecca and Medina are not a sign of his inablility to compartmentalize and priortize just which group of people are threats to us. If I were Islamic, I would be highly insulted. Bombing the Islamic holy sites would be like the US bombing the Vatican because Pius XII possibly had a shadowy connection to Hilter.

    August 4, 2007 02:16 am at 2:16 am |
  8. Faiza Mokhtar, Los Angeles, CA

    Yes, Tancredo b/c that's what going to make everything go away and have less terrorist *eye roll* Is he an idiot? Wait, he is. He is totally warped and sadly there are people out there who actually would agree with his assessment and that's just disgusting.

    Apparently he missed that day in school about religious tolerance.

    August 4, 2007 02:29 am at 2:29 am |
  9. Timothy, Singapore, Singapore

    No-one has gone more cuckoo in the GOP field as Rep. Tancredo.

    It also shows how bad the GOP presidential field candidates are. If such a ignorant nut can even run and suggest such a move, what more can be said?

    August 4, 2007 02:38 am at 2:38 am |
  10. Jina, Jacksonville, Florida

    It's words like that that cause the bees nest to lash out at the poker! C'mon! I wouldn't touch Mecca FOR ANYTHING! It took one political/religious satire to make those of the Muslim faith extremely upset WORLD WIDE. Now he suggests blowing up their religious spot to keep an attack from occurring? By doing that he's ASKING for the attack! Tancredo should be forced to issue an apology for such horrible, distasteful remarks. I'm pretty sure he has already infuriated American Muslims.

    August 4, 2007 02:43 am at 2:43 am |
  11. Adam, Washington, DC

    Hooray! With that moronic statement, "presidential hopeful" Tom Tancredo becomes "presedential hopeless" Tom Tancredo. It usually takes those Republican candidates at least a dozen moronic statements to destroy their political careers... he should get some sort of prize for doing it with just one.

    August 4, 2007 02:53 am at 2:53 am |
  12. jason- gilbert, AZ

    I guarantee you that terrorist orgs. to include al qaeda would love nothing more than for us to do such a thing. recruitment would be off the charts for them.

    August 4, 2007 02:53 am at 2:53 am |
  13. Bill, New Providence, NJ

    Wow this guy is a complete and utter moron. He is no better than the terrorists themselves. Mecca and Medina hold no threat to the United States. Just because a few crazy people want to distort a religion is no reason to bomb their most holy and sacred site. If anything that would probably make them more angry and more likely to attack us. I hope the voters do the right thing and put this idiot out on the street where he belongs because he has no business in politics making stupid threats like that.

    August 4, 2007 02:56 am at 2:56 am |
  14. Tancredo_is_a_nutcase

    How did this bigot found a place in US Gov?

    So, if they kill US citizens, we kill CITIZENS of ALL the country in the world because MECCA and MEDINA are the most diverse place on the planet!

    This guy is sick and should be voted into a mental hospital!

    August 4, 2007 03:02 am at 3:02 am |
  15. Q, California

    I heard a song a while ago and it said, you can bomb the world into pieces but you can not bomb it into peace.

    There are nut jobs like Tom Tancredo out there and in my opinion there is no diference between them and any other crazy person such as Osama who would like to use violence to solve a problem.

    There are a billion muslims in the world and statements such as these hurt all of them just because a dumb congress man can not seem to understand the difference that not every muslim is named Osama and not every muslim believes what he believes.

    Get your head out of your rear end Mr. Tancredo and if you really want to prevent problems in future then find solutions that do not involve labeling every muslim as a terrorist.

    August 4, 2007 03:27 am at 3:27 am |
  16. Paul I, Beaverton, Oregon

    Most people are taking his comments out of context. I agree with him, we should retaliate against the terrorists, but not by bombing Saudi Arabia,and Waziristan, Pakistan instead, where Osama and his deputy are hiding.

    August 4, 2007 03:30 am at 3:30 am |
  17. Robert Jenkins San Diego,CA

    Crazy? Heck, he's the only guy making sense on this topic! Great idea Tom, sorry that you don't have a chance to ever be President, though. I've thought for years Mecca should be bombed to dust. Many people think this, but few have the guts to speak it.

    August 4, 2007 03:37 am at 3:37 am |
  18. John Cullen, San Diego,CA

    Well, he's a republican. What do you expect? The party of Tush, the most worthless fool in modern history. This guy is one of Tush's understudies.

    August 4, 2007 03:45 am at 3:45 am |
  19. Anonymous

    Stupid idiot.

    Pretentious racism at its finest.

    August 4, 2007 03:57 am at 3:57 am |
  20. Andria, Pennsylvania

    How complete uninformed and insensitive to reality are our government representatives? Who can possibly reason that killing innocent people and inciting hatred around the world will bring an END to war? Our we the victims or the monster in this battle against 'evil'?

    August 4, 2007 04:20 am at 4:20 am |
  21. Shareen, Sweden did this idiot make where he is today???

    Two...WHAT??? ARE YOU NUTS???

    August 4, 2007 04:22 am at 4:22 am |
  22. The Chief

    This is eqivalent to a Muslim country like Iran dropping a bomb on the Vatican. Forget the extremists of the world... do you think any moderately religious Christian would put up with an insult to their faith and just sit back and not defend themselves? So why would any Muslim react differently. I wish this guy had the IQ to realize that this is an excellent way to convert more moderates into extremists.

    August 4, 2007 04:31 am at 4:31 am |
  23. Terry Mooney

    God, this country needs a man like this, it is too bad we'll never get one.

    August 4, 2007 04:32 am at 4:32 am |
  24. Singapore

    what is this??...i he trying to fight against the terrorist or against religion?....this idea must be stopped..this decision would worsen the situation of terrorist........what on earth is he thinking to do???? this is absolutely crazy and stupid...

    August 4, 2007 04:35 am at 4:35 am |
  25. Ken Fredericton NB Canada

    Finally somebody with a little sense! Whether the bleeding hearts of the world believe it or not this is the way we have to start thinking. Sad but true......

    August 4, 2007 04:52 am at 4:52 am |
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