Sunday, October 19, 2008

Kareem Rashad Sultan Khan

To the left is a photo of Elsheba Khan at the grave of her son Kareem. This is the photo (from the New Yorker) that Colin Powell described on Meet the Press this morning that so moved him. Andrew Sullivan posted some of what Colin Powell had to say about this but I'll post the longer transcript of Powell's remarks on this photo. He said:

"I'm also troubled by, not what Senator McCain's says, but what members of the Party say, and it is permitted to be said. Such things as 'well, you know that Mr. Obama is a Muslim.' Well the correct answer is he is not a Muslim. He's a Christian. He's always been a Christian. But the really right answer is, 'What if he is?' Is there something wrong with being a Muslim in this country? The answer is no, that's not America. Is there something wrong with some seven-year-old Muslim-American kid believing he or she could be president? Yet I have heard senior members of my own party drop the suggestion that he is a Muslim and might be associated with terrorists.
This is not the way we should be doing it in America. I feel strongly about this particular point because of a picture I saw in a magazine. It was a photo essay about troops who are serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. And one picture at the tail end of this photo essay was of a mother in Arlington Cemetary. And she had her head on the headstone of her son's grave. And as the picture focused in, you could see the writing on the headstone. And it gave his awards, Purple Heart, Bronze Star, showed that he died in Iraq. It gave his date of birth, date of death. He was 20 years old. And then at the very top of the headstone, it didn't have a Christian Cross, it didn't have a Star of David. It had a Crescent and a Star of the Islamic faith. And his name was Kareem Rashad Sultan Khan. And he was an American. He was born in New Jersey. He was 14 years old at the time of 9/11 and he waited until he could go serve his country and he gave his life."

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