Pastor Backs Off Cancellation of Quran Burning

Condemns Muslim Leader as 'Liar,' Says Burning Is Just 'Suspended'

The relatively anonymous Rev. Terry Jones thrust himself into the public spotlight again today after the Pentagon called him to warn him to cancel his planned his 9/11 Quran burning party in Florida.

Shortly after Jones met with a central Florida imam, Mohammad Musri, and announced that he was canceling the burning. He also claimed Musri had promised him that the Islamic Community Center planned in Lower Manhattan would be moved.

But Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, who is actually planning this mosque, says the bizarre trade is news to him, and that no such agreement had ever been made. Musri later said that while he intended to go with Jones to New York to discuss the issue with Rauf, no deal had been made.

Which sparked another condemnation by Jones, who insisted that Musri was a “liar” and demanded that Imam Rauf “back up one of his own men” and relent. He added that the burning was no longer canceled but was “suspended” and could be restarted.

It is unclear whether Rauf and Musri have any affiliation apart from both being Muslims of some sort, and Rauf insists he has never spoken to either. Another bizarre element of the whole story is that Rev. Jones had never previously tied his Quran burning party to the so-called Ground Zero Mosque, but rather insisted the whole event was because the Quran itself was “evil.”

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.