While international media lament and draw broad conclusions from the events in Toulouse, an event that happened in southern California is proving to be less of a ‘lesson’. Here, an Iraqi-born woman, living in the US since the 1990s, was found murdered in her home. A note calling her a ‘terrorist’ was found near her body. Her husband, ironically enough, had worked for the US Army as a consultant on Iraqi life.
The particulars of the hatred behind the murders in the US and in France may differ. The root beneath them does not: hatred based on misinformation, fed and groomed by others who thrive on it.
El Cajon police ask public’s help to solve Iraqi woman’s beating death
Shaima Alawadi, 32, may have been the victim of a hate crime, police say. According to relatives, a note found near her body said ‘go back to your own country’ and called her a terrorist.
Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times
Reporting from San Diego—
El Cajon police are asking for the public’s help in its investigation into the fatal beating of an Iraqi immigrant and have not ruled out the possibility that Shaima Alawadi was the victim of a hate crime.
“We’re investigating all aspects of this crime,” Lt. Mark Coit said Sunday. “The minute you rule out a possible motive, you start to get tunnel vision. As of now, we have not ruled out any of the motives for why people kill people.”
Near the body of the 32-year-old Alawadi, police found what has been described as a threatening note. Police have declined to release the text, but relatives and friends say the handwritten note warned Alawadi to “go back to your own country” and labeled her a terrorist.
The family told police they had received a similarly threatening note several days earlier but considered it a prank by teenagers.
Alawadi was found unconscious Wednesday morning in the dining room of the family’s home by her 17-year-old daughter. She was taken to a hospital, where she was diagnosed as brain-dead. Her family decided on Saturday to discontinue life support.
Asharq Alawsat runs an Associated Press story on the California murder.