Hamas-affiliated CAIR Council on American and Islamic Relations, has been keeping tabs on so-called “Islamophobia” throughout the country for decades. But in the last few months, it’s maintained an extra-close eye on Jon Ritzheimer, the local former US Marine and face of the anti-Islam crusade in Arizona.
Phoenix New Times “We’ve been monitoring him since the biker rally,” says Liban Yousuf, CAIR Arizona Civil Rights Director – referring the May 29 demonstration outside of the Phoenix Islamic Cultural Center that brought hundreds of anti-Muslim protesters to the streets to defame Islam – “but in the recent videos [he’s posted on social media], he’s really ramped up the violent rhetoric.”
It’s made many Muslims in Arizona feel unsafe and threatened, Yousuf adds. “All that screaming, yelling…we periodically send updates to the Phoenix Police Department and the FBI to let them know about [the things he says or does].”
The PPD declined to comment on the subject, deferring instead to the FBI. Special Agent Anthony Farinacci from the Phoenix FBI office tells New Times that on principle, “the F.B.I. does not comment on on-going investigations,” and therefore cannot “confirm nor deny the existence of any ongoing investigation.”
Ritzheimer has posted at least seven inflammatory videos of himself ranting about the “evils of Islam” and the “hateful teachings of the Quran,” since the May rally. Earlier this week, we wrote about what we thought was Ritzheimer’s latest video — in it, he films himself driving and ranting about how Islam was to blame for the most recent shooting incident that left five people dead in Chattanooga, Tennessee. (The video currently has 856,271 views, 30,947 shares on Facebook, and dozens of comments from readers showing their support for Ritzheimre’s statements.)
But after we published the story, we learned that Ritzheimer had in fact posted another video the previous day called “the real reason for the Chattanooga shootings!” In this video, Ritzheimer strays from his usual filming-while-driving video, and instead takes the camera out to the desert so he can film himself shooting a Quran with an automatic weapon and then later a handgun.
“Oh, Oh! Hi! People, I think I found the motive,” he says, pointing to the Quran. “I think I found the motive for what killed my five brothers out in Chattanooga.”
He then proceeds to place the Quran against a shrub and fire at it with an automatic weapon and then a handgun.
After putting down the weapons, Ritzheimer again turns to the camera. “Islam needs to be categorized the same way as communism, okay. It is an ideology. It is more than just a religion. This shit runs governments, countries, so if you want to be in that country that has it – go there. We don’t want it here.”