On March 22, 2017 52-year-old Briton Khalid Masood deliberately drove a car into pedestrians along the south side of Westminster Bridge and Bridge Street—near the British Parliament—injuring more than 50 people, three of them fatally.
After the car crashed into a perimeter fence, Masood abandoned it and ran into New Palace Yard where he fatally stabbed an unarmed police officer. He was subsequently shot and killed by another police officer.
The attack lasted barely a minute, but it once again raised the idea in people around the world—and in our own White House—of Muslim terrorists attacking decent honest, non-Muslim folks, even though police now say that while Masood had an interest in jihad, they have found no motive, no evidence of radicalization or any link with any known terrorist group.
Still, many said Muslims are terrorists ...
There was another man close by Parliament that day; he owns three restaurants in the area and as the attack and the aftermath spread, he was ordered to shutter his businesses and evacuate.
Instead, he decided to keep Troia, his cafe just yards from Westminster Bridge, open so police officers had a place to eat and keep warm.
“I went to one of the officers and said 'I can shut all the businesses, but I want you guys and all the emergency staff to use this place for food, drinks, and for warmth for free'.”
“All these great people need our support. Some of them tried to give us money—one said, 'I'm a police officer, you have to take my money.' We said, 'We're not going to take any money from you.”
Dogus kept the restaurant open until 11:30PM “until the last officer was fed”. He estimates he fed between 300 and 500 emergency workers from the police, London Ambulance Service, and London Fire Brigade.
“We wanted to play our role in terms of supporting the emergency crew. This was happening right at our doorstep. If you walk two seconds on my doorstep I would be on the bridge. I use the bridge to take my kids to school, not on that day, but I live next to the area, I work next to the area.”
Think about Ibrahim Dogus the next time you, or anyone near you, says Muslims are terrorists.
And think about this, too ...
After the attack, a group of women, many of them Muslim women, gathered at the scene and linked arms as a show of solidarity with its victims.
Wearing blue as a symbol of hope, the women stood on the bridge where pedestrians were mown down by terrorist—not Muslim terrorist, just terrorist—Khalid Masood.
In an event, organized by Women's March On London, they formed a human chain by holding hands for five minutes as Big Ben chimed at 4PM.
Fariha Khan, joined by fellow Ahmadiyya Muslims, said she wanted to condemn the attack and stand up to the face of terrorism:
"The feeling of what happened here on Wednesday was really strong."
"When an attack happens in London, it is an attack on me. It is an attack on all of us. Islam totally condemns violence of any sort. This is abhorrent to us."
"As a visible Muslim I think it was important to show solidarity with the principles that we all hold dear, the principles of plurality, diversity and so on."
Again, remember, after this horrific attack, it was a Muslim man who stood up to help, and a group of Muslim women, who chose to stand in solidarity against terrorism, in the days after the attack.
Muslims are not terrorists.
Terrorists are terrorists.