Two dead after Mo artist wins top prize

Two dead after Mo artist wins top prize

Shortly after the winning entry (above) in a Mohammed cartoon contest was announced in Texas yesterday, two gunmen were shot dead after opening fire at a security officer guarding the event.

According to this report, police said the suspects were killed outside the Curtis Culwell Centre in Garland, north of Dallas, which was hosting an art show of drawings of the Prophet.


The winner of the contest was artist Bosh Fawstin,  above left. He was pictured being presented with a cheque for $12,500 by Dutch politician Geert Wilders and Pamela Geller shortly before the attack.

The event was billed as a “free speech event” by its sponsor, the American Freedom Defence Initiative, which has been criticised by opponents for being anti-Islam.

Geert Wilders, the far-right populist Dutch politician who had been invited as a guest speaker, had just finished giving a talk to the 150 or so people gathered when the shots were fired at around 7 pm local time.

The two heavily armed suspects drove up to the front of the building in a car as the event was coming to an end, and began shooting at a security officer, the city said in a message posted online.

Johnny Roby, from Oklahoma, was attending the conference said he was outside the building when he heard around about 20 shots that appeared to be coming from the direction of a car passing by. He then heard a pause followeed by two more shots.

The security officer, identified as 57-year-old Bruce Joiner, was injured after being shot in the leg during the firefight. He was taken to hospital for treatment and released after several hours.

Wilders said:

I am shocked. I just spoke for half an hour about the cartoons, Islam and freedom of speech and I had just left the premises.

Police said they had not immediately determined the identity of the two gunmen or whether they were linked to critics of the event
Just before the shooting, a Twitter account using the name “Sharia is Light” posted about an impending attack on Texas, tweeting:

May Allah accept us as mujahideen [holy warriors]

The contest drew about 350 entries depicting the “prophet”.

In January, 12 people were killed by gunmen in an attack against the Paris office of the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, which had lampooned Islam and other religions and used depictions of Mohammed.

Pamela Geller, president of the American Freedom Defence Initiative (AFDI), said that she planned the Sunday event to make a stand for free speech in response to the outcries and violence over drawings of Mo.

Geller, who has declared herself a supporter of the English Defence League and has been banned from entering the UK, said the shooting showed how “needed our event really was” and called it a “war on free speech”. She wrote on her website:

What are we going to do? Are we going to surrender to these monsters?. The war is here.

She added that she was already planning several more events.

AFDI is known for mounting a campaign against the building of an Islamic centre blocks from the World Trade Centre site and for buying advertising space in cities across the US criticising Islam.
The event was allowed to go ahead despite criticism from residents and local Muslims, who expressed concern it was a risk to public safety.

The group spent $10,000 on 40 additional security officers.

Hat tip: Leo Igwe and BarrieJohn

38 responses to “Two dead after Mo artist wins top prize”

  1. Brian Jordan says:

    I heard about this on the BBC World Service during the night. There was precious little detail about the shooting but there was an interview with the local police chief. The gist of the interview being the question: why did the police allow these people to have their meeting and put the people of Texas at risk? I don’t recall freedom of expression being so much as mentioned.

  2. barriejohn says:

    The Mohammedans are so predictable; they play right into the hands of people like Geller. There’s no doubt that she was being provocative, as usual, but why not just shrug your shoulders and say: “So what?”. No, they have to take the bait. Totally stupid!

  3. Newspaniard says:

    It’s lucky this competition wasn’t held in the UK. Ed (“I’m one of the people”) would have had the organizers up for “islamophobia*”.

    *Islamophobia – an expression used by islamofascist terrorists to silence their critics.

  4. TrickyDicky says:

    @ Brian Jordan

    ” I don’t recall freedom of expression being so much as mentioned”

    Only applies to bible thumping Christian fundamentalists.

  5. L.Long says:

    Although the facts are scare it looks like the religion of pieces was trying to spread more pieces around….again. This dudes pray more than 5 times a day!! When would they have time for violence?

  6. Lurker111 says:

    _THAT_ was the winning entry? How many entries did they have? 5? Sorry, but that drawing just doesn’t seem to me to display all that much talent. Granted, I can’t draw as well as that, but the depiction seems to attempt realism but then fails when it comes to the hands. Or am I missing something?

  7. Graham Martin-Royle says:

    This, to me, is a fundamental freedom of speech issue. I don’t like Geller or Wilders but I support their right to say what they do. This is no different to Charlie Hebdo, while you may not like what they do, there is no right to close them down or to kill them.

  8. Broga says:

    Crazy! Some pencil or brush strokes which could be of anyone or no-one and there is bloodshed. How do the Muslims know this is their prophet? How many people will these madmen try to kill if these competitions spread throughout the world.

  9. Trevor Blake says:

    I am a published author and regular commenter at The Freethinker. I did not win, but I have an entry in this drawing contest. When I checked last night the gallery of all entries was offline. Perhaps too much traffic, perhaps for other reasons.

    Lan astaslem – I will not submit. There is no Allah, Mohammed was not a wise or good man, and Islam is the greatest preventable evil in the world today. I draw their prophet, I eat pig meat and pet dogs, I drink wine and sing songs. But I don’t throw homosexuals off rooftops, rape children or cut off people’s heads. I guess that makes me an islamophobe.

  10. Stuart H. says:

    I’d have thought there’s a fairly simple answer to this ‘Islamophobia’ question.
    A phobia is an irrational belief, so if you want to accuse or prosecute someone of Islamophobia, let’s see your proof that the fear is an irrational one, otherwise don’t waste court time.
    So, a fear of blokes with beards or turbans, or women wearing binbags? Maybe not so rational. Might even want to get some professional help if it stops you going about your everyday life.
    Gay, living in the Middle East and in fear of being thrown off a building? Western cartoonist post Charlie Hebdo worried about links between violence and religious belief?
    Pretty rational.

  11. Laura Roberts says:

    From what I’ve observed, the proper translation of the word “mujahideen” should be “fuckwit with miniscule penis” (I realize that “holy warrior” means about the same thing, but let’s be precise here). I joined a couple of the online Draw Muhammed Day events in years past, but the aforementioned fuckwits didn’t erupt into apoplectic rage, so I gave up on it.

  12. carlynot says:

    Really, hateful wicked witch pam geller and two retard suicide killers. All the extra security was there to protect pam. You cannot hold this kind of event without expecting a violent response. Shows what kind of person she is. Protect myself and if anyone else gets killed it’s great for her organization.

  13. David Anderson says:

    Trevor Blake; “I eat pig meat and pet dogs…”

    I know what you meant but I had to laugh.

  14. L.Long says:

    “hateful wicked witch pam geller” Really??
    And how many people did she kill with a 9mm????
    I do not care how much hate speech she has she can’t come close to Pat Robertson, or any imam, and as long as she isn’t shooting people she can’t even come close to a lot of isLameic dimwits.

  15. carlynot says:

    Pat Robertson and imans do not kill people with 9mm’s either. They just spew their hatred and get other dummies to carry out their violent suggestions. Just like Pam.

  16. RussellW says:

    I noticed that Wilders and Geller were described by some media sources as ‘far right’ (like the Nazis, perhaps?) so naturally it was all their fault, not the Muslim psychopaths who attacked the contest.

    There will be the usual sophistry, equivocation, and assumption of the dhimmi position by the chatterati, as in the case of the Charlie Hedbo tragedy.

  17. Michael Glass says:

    Despite the “blame the victim” comments, and despite the fact that the provocateurs are provocative, the murderous response of the fanatics still gets the message through about the danger of militant Islamism. Just as it did with Charlie Hebdo, the genocide of the Yazidis, the murder of a nun when the previous Pope said something that some Muslims found offensive, when planes went into buildings in 2001, when trains were bombed in London and Madrid, when tourists were bombed in Bali, when Nigerian schoolgirls were abducted and on and on and on and on and on.

    No wonder that Saudi Arabia and Egypt are worried about the rise of atheism in their society, no wonder that moderate Muslim leaders are speaking out against violence! I see this as evidence that fanaticism is losing, and the more that jihadists thrash about, the faster that they and their beliefs are rejected.

  18. […] Photo credit: Top, ABC News; bottom, Bosh Fawstin via The Freethinker. […]

  19. Denny Law says:

    With all the absolutely awesome scenery, historical events, advances of the human condition through evolution it’s puzzling that, by itself, the lure of a promised afterlife has billions of people devoutly believing in bull shit.

  20. Great Satan says:

    The most striking thing about this is the responce of the mass media, which has immediately gone into a quisling “blame free speech” mode rather than condemn islamic thugs.

  21. Broga says:

    Great Satan : The opinion of UK politicians including our “I do religion” David Cameron is that you can be free to say what you like as long as you don’t say anything they don’t like. A particularly ripe example of this is Eric Pickles an enthusiast for council meetings wasting their time in praying to his non existent God.

  22. Trevor Blake says:

    David Anderson: HA! You are correct, I wrote without clarity. Pet dogs are not eaten by me but I do pet dogs.

  23. David Cowland says:

    There are rules a society creates, then there are rules that some groups (usually religious groups) create for themselves. These rules include not eating pork, no blood transfusions, male and female circumcision, no tatoos, no images of their founder, no images of their prophet, no alcohol, ritualised canibalism, and many hundreds of other rules. Why would anyone outside the group abide by the rules they have created for themselves? Would a muslim or a jew eat pork because they do not want to offend a guest? Would a JW accept a blood transfusion beacause they are in a secular hospital? Why would I comply with the rules of any religion, and why would they expect me to?

  24. Cali Ron says:

    Pointless violence. Pamela Geller’s action got someone injured and could have gotten innocent people killed all for a publicity stunt to garner support for her pointless crusade that has no possibility of ever achieving it’s goal. I support her right to do it and shed no tears for the shooters, but question why she did it and whether it actually serves her own goal. I support the end of the hatred and violence that is islam (as well as christianity). Unfortunately, she suffers from the same religious fed hatred as the one’s she targets (AFDI claims to support religious liberty, by which they mean christian liberty), her actions will not farther the goal of ending islam and perhaps even serve as a recruitment stimulus for radical muslims. She’s just another religious zealot, just like the one’s she hates. OK, she hasn’t actually killed anyone directly ….yet. This one leaves me conflicted because I dislike her almost as much as I dislike islam and I support free speech, even when it’s a thinly veiled contrivance like this. Freedom is complicated and messy!

  25. barriejohn says:

    Cali Ron: My thoughts precisely!

  26. Marky Mark says:

    They will catch the people who were the shooters, cameras at most every intersection now.
    Should they not be prosecuted for the state being at risk of insulting Islam?

    And more people will die over cartoons and paintings…these people are goofy!
    The ones who should be held responsible are the preachers of such insane stories and should be held accountable for stirring up the pot. Including people like Pat Roberson. These people need to be educated that all their religious stories are mostly reprints of Egyptian fables and gods some 5000 years before them.

    Trevor…I looked at your drawings. One of these nut jobs are going to shoot you, you do know this don’t you?

  27. Marky Mark says:

    here is Pam Geller trying to explain herself to the nut-job christians @ fox-news;

    I agree with Geller

  28. Marky Mark says:

    Here are the shooters;

    “He was identified as Elton Simpson, 30, of Phoenix, according to a U.S. law enforcement official. Law enforcement officials said Monday afternoon that the second shooter in the Texas attack was Nadir Soofi, 34, Simpson’s roommate.”

  29. Cali Ron says:

    Thank You barriejohn.

    @Marky Mark:
    Watched the video and I have to say the Rosa Parks comparison is ludicrous. Rosa was a victim of institutionalized racism and chose to stand up for her right to be treated the same as the white people. Pam Geller isn’t a victim and she isn’t fighting for equal rights. The fact that she had her contest proves she already has those rights and is exercising them. How has islam victimized her? Some may admire her for her anti islam stand, but she’s fighting to deny people the right to follow a religion, which is a personal freedom that I support in spite of my hatred of religion. Charlie Hebdo did what it always does, use cartoons to point out the social injustice, hypocrisy, lies, etc. of islam as well as other targets. She is just provoking muslims, which she has a right to do, but to what end? She is essentially poking the hornets nests to piss off the hornets, but will it help eradicate or modify the behavior of radical muslims? I dislike islam and christianity, but a lot of my friends and family are christian (and a couple are muslim) and I don’t dislike them. I consider them victims of indoctrination as I do a lot of muslims. Deluded people, but that alone doesn’t make them evil. Radical muslims and radical christians are another matter, of course.

    I believe that mankind needs to reach out to the average moderate muslim, christian, hindu, etc. and try to change them through education and deprogramming. That will weaken the religion and expose the radicals, making them easier to defeat. Then again maybe I’m just a dreamer, imagining a world with no religion.

  30. John the Drunkard says:

    Yes, Pamela Geller is an annoying crackpot. This gives me the opportunity to stand for free speech without suspicion of partiality.

    As unpleasant as Geller can be, she chose a location for the event where a PRO MASSACRE ‘stand with the prophet’ rally was held immediately after the Charlie Hebdo murders.

    And for all the American gun crazies: will all the extra security and elaborate military weapons, it was a patrolman who drew is side-arm and took out the two body-armored and ‘assault weapon’ equipped jihadis.

  31. Newspaniard says:

    Pam Geller, another hero of mine. Far too many people think that being silent about islamofascism is the right way to go, equates to total appeasement of these savages who wish to impose their will (laws) against the rest of us. Competitions like this one test the temperature of the anti-infidel movement and the reaction gives us a warning that all is not well with the infidel-haters. A similar competition (say) draw the Pope day would probably be ignored. Pam Geller is spot on with her provocations just to keep the threats and censorship in the public eye. The press, generally, are moral cowards and Pam showed Fox up for the dhimmies they are. Personal insults against Pam Geller says more about the insulter than about her.

  32. Cali Ron says:

    I have never advocated keeping silent on islam or any other religion, nor did I insult her personally. I advocated education and deprogramming, neither of which can be done silently or can be equated with appeasement. Test the temperature? It’s hot and everybody knew that before her stunt. As for “all is not well with the infidel-haters” I’d say the articles here and in the media everywhere seem to suggest that things are going depressingly well for radical islam. I agree that the press are cowards (Fox is a joke for a news source, but I’m not sure what a dhimmie is) and the issues need to be kept in the public eye. I question whether her tactics actually do any good towards her stated goals. If her goals were to strike back at islam so some people can go rah, rah, fist pump hurray for our side, then she succeeded, but here stated goal was to ban islam in America and I fail to see how this will help achieve that goal. She’s a “bit” player who was ignored by organized radical islam and only a couple of amateur wanna be terrorists took the bait so a “bit” result and “bit ” impact .

    I think a draw the pope contest could actually be provocative and amusing, but I doubt any catholics would try to shoot anyone over it.

  33. John says:

    Geller is in the pay of the zionists and was banned from coming into the UK last year by the Home Secretary (Mrs May) when Geller announced her intention of attending and addressing an EDL rally.
    The EDL are right wing racists who have ties with the zionists.
    The saying “You know someone by the company they keep”applies here.
    This event was truly and uniquely American, involving bunches of gun nuts, including the two losers who got themselves killed (though I thought early news reports mentioned another participant?).
    Geller is involved in racial and religious hatred against Islam.
    As a rationalist secularist humanist I support no religion or religionists.
    I note the local Muslim community decided just to ignore this event.
    The guys who travelled from Arizona to Texas to attack the event were a couple of idiots, just like the two brothers who attacked Charlie Hebdo.
    Free speech is one thing; provocative speech another.
    This event was designed by Geller & Co. to provoke Muslim opinion.
    No doubt, she is basking in the attendant publicity right now.
    She has earned her pay this month – and two people have died for her.

  34. John says:

    No doubt Geller will find a great welcome here from the Christian Soldiers of UKIP – if she is ever allowed to enter the UK.