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Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Herzl's 100th yarzheit on July 3

Undated file photo of the founder of Zionism and Israel,
Theodor Herzl. Plans to name a Vienna square after Herzl
drew protests from the Arab League, which urged city
officials to reconsider for the sake of continued good relations
with the Arab world. (AP Photo/PID/Zionistisches Archiv)

Full story from the AP.
The Vienna mission of the 22-nation Arab League sent a letter to [Mayor Michael] Haeupl expressing its "regret" at the decision to honor a man whose name "represents a sad memory for Arabs and Muslims."

The letter, which was dated April 29, also suggested the plan could lead to terrorism.

Carna Amina Baghajati, a spokeswoman for Vienna's 120,000-strong Islamic community, also criticized the plan. She suggested a square be named instead for Mohammad Asad, the Austrian-born Jew who changed his name from Leopold Weiss, converted to Islam and went on to become an honored 19th century Muslim scholar.