Published: 10:00 GMT Daylight Time - Wednesday 12 October 2011
Iraqi Christian convert attacked in US over Holocaust poem
Country/Region: United States
An Iraqi convert from Islam to Christianity was violently attacked in America over a poem he wrote about the Jewish Holocaust.
The Star of David was carved into
Alaa Alsaegh’s back
Alaa Alsaegh was targeted in St Louis, Missouri, because of his Arabic poem, “Tears at the Heart of the Holocaust”, which expresses pain over the loss of six million Jews at the hands of the Nazis.
The attackers carved the Star of David on Alsaegh’s back with a knife while laughing as they recited his poem.
They had trapped the Iraqi immigrant using two cars as he was driving along in St Louis. One cut across and struck his car, forcing him to stop, while the other blocked his vehicle from behind.
Two attackers then got out of the cars, opened Alsaegh’s door and pointed a gun at him. They pushed his upper body down against the steering wheel, stabbed him and pulled off his shirt before carving the Jewish symbol on his back.
Alsaegh, who survived the ordeal, said that the assailants may have been Somali Muslims; they told him not to publish any more poems.
The FBI has opened an investigation into the incident, but no arrests have yet been made.