Police say Rizek Musheisen, a 21-year-old Clifton, NJ, man, threw lit firecrackers outside a synagogue in Passaic, NJ, last Saturday night, yelled “Allahu Akbar” (God is great), then fled in a car, NorthJersey.com reported.
A witness told police that a 2012 black Nissan with tinted windows had stopped in front of the synagogue, and Musheisen came out, lit some firecrackers and yelled his praise to the god of Muslims, got back in his car and drove off.
Musheisen is charged with bias intimidation, possession of fireworks, harassment and criminal mischief, according to Detective Andy White. He was in the city’s lockup Sunday morning before bail was set.
Two officers arrived at Ahavas Israel Synagogue at 181 Van Houten Ave. around 8 PM Saturday, responding to a complaint about a suspicious incident.
The synagogue was open at the time, according to the report.
The two cops found the car in a nearby Quick Chek parking lot, and discovered a bag with firecrackers in the trunk.
Musheisen was also in the car, together with three men from Passaic, Jersey City and Linden, NJ.
This was very convenient.
According to NorthJersey.com, the three men were not charged in connection with the crime, because police believe Musheisen acted alone.
The officers and Detective Sgt. Roy Bordamonte are investigating the incident, White said. Authorities don’t believe anyone was injured.
The use of firecrackers is banned in many Muslim countries. In January, 2012, the department of fatwas at the Deoband, India, issued a fatwa decreeing that “Not only is bursting crackers improper, their business is also illegal in the eyes of Islam.”
Mufti Arif Quasmi said that “It is not only a waste of money but also waste of time.”. He added, “Wealth is a gift from God to mankind and it should not be wasted on things which in no way contribute to the development of the people or the world.
The fatwa concluded with the declaration that “The holy Quran says that squanderers are the brother of Satan.”
There have been several other condemnations of the use of firecrackers by Muslim authorities.
So, in a sense, to yell “Allahu Akbar” while throwing a lit firecracker is like ordering pork in a kosher deli—they don’t go together.
Local police are trying to figure out whether this was an isolated incident, directly related to Musheisen’s spiritual deficiencies, or part of a trend. They caution residents to remain vigilant.
Which is always a good thing.