Gen. David Petraeus, the U.S. commander in Afghanistan, says the stunt by the Dove World Outreach Center puts U.S. troops at risk of backlash by Islamic extremists.
The Dove World Outreach Center, a Gainsville, Florida church led by pastor Terry Jones, plans a one-day mass burning of Islam’s holy book this Saturday as a marking of the Sept. 11 attacks. The plan sparked protests internationally (including outside a Kabul mosque) and led Petraeus to issue a short response Tuesday urging the plan be called off.
“It could endanger troops and it could endanger the overall effort in Afghanistan,” Petraeus said.
At least initially, Jones said his church would go ahead with the event.
“We are weighing the thing we are about to do, what it possibly could cause, what is our actual message, what we are trying to get across. How important is that now,” Jones said on CNN. (via the Christian Science Monitor)