September 7th, 2010
09:41 PM ET

What would you ask the imam behind the Islamic center near ground zero?

CNN has secured an exclusive interview with Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf , the man behind the proposed Islamic center near New York's ground zero. We want you to help generate the questions we ask.

The live interview happens Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET on a special edition of "Larry King Live."

Before his editorial in the New York Times was published online Tuesday night, Rauf had said virtually nothing to the news media since the controversy over his project erupted this summer - even after President Obama himself weighed in. The imam has been out of the country for the last month or so.

Now that he's finally talking, what would you ask him?

Let us know by uploading a video question via CNN iReport. At least one of the questions we receive will make it into the interview. [Note: We are only looking for VIDEO questions; feel free to comment below as always, but any questions entered in the comments section will NOT be used on air.]

Here are a couple of questions that I hope get asked:

Leaders of the proposed Islamic center in Lower Manhattan say the project is intended to improve relations between Muslims and the rest of the country. So far though, it has had the opposite effect. Has the project already failed in that regard?

You've been touring the Middle East on behalf of the State Department these last few weeks... What did you tell those Muslims abroad who say that opposition to your proposed Islamic Center is proof that the United States is at war with Islam?

OK, your turn.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: 'Ground zero mosque' • Houses of worship • Interfaith issues • iReport • Islam • Leaders • Mosque • Muslim

soundoff (602 Responses)
  1. John

    Is it that you do not understand the message you will send by building a mosque at that location or is it that you want to send that message?

    In either event you will confirm the feelings that Americans have about Islam : Its about gender apartheid, intolerence and violence and that Moslems have little intent on integrating themselves into American culture.

    My guess is that Muslems will now play the role of a minority that is being unfairly treated. If you proceed with building the mosque at this site, you will be helping Amerecans better understand the principals of Islam: gender apartheid, intolerence and violence.

    September 7, 2010 at 10:45 pm |
  2. Gary

    I never believed people would be so arrogant and stupid. really people? I look at these comments and I think people really need to get an education. I know what everyone might think but I do not follow the islamic religion. Remember people a cycle of hatred can only be stopped by forgiveness ....

    September 7, 2010 at 10:32 pm |
    • Muslim Skeptic

      The IMAM is building the $100,000,000 Islamic Center 2 blocks from Ground Zero and, not only that, he is eagerly pursuing regardless of the MAJORITY who oppose the location. This includes many Muslims who can't beleive this. The IMAM 's most expensive Mosque won't have as much of an impact in the Muslim world outside of America at ANY OTHER SITE my friend. There is no LOGICAL reason. So before you start bashing your own kind, go read a few versus in the evil Quran, and think about your comments. I'm sure your illlogical judgment will change when after the next terrorist attack. These are not friendly and peaceful people as a whole. Look at the IMAM. 70% of all Americans don't want the Super Mosque built there and any other religion would use common sense and just MOVE. Why stir up the pot?

      September 7, 2010 at 10:50 pm |
  3. CitizenJP

    I would ask some basic questions. How can Islam command respect as a world religion if it promotes violence in the name of the Allah? Considering the image of Islam around the world, you would think Islamic leaders would collectively demonstrate to the world that Islam is a religion of peace and no violence whether in the name of God or otherwise has no place in it. I am a Hindu (one of the most tolerant religions of the world) and respect many aspects of Islam except violence. I have nothing against the people but this question should be answered before Islam can command world respect.

    September 7, 2010 at 10:31 pm |
  4. Ahmadjs

    With all do respect, why do you feel the need to build the Islamic center there?

    September 7, 2010 at 10:18 pm |
    • Ahmadjs

      Sorry I meant to write "Due".

      September 7, 2010 at 10:21 pm |
    • Muslim Skeptic

      There can be only "ONE" reason and this is to antagonize and provoke those who consider the land around Ground Zero as Sacred to those who lost their lives on 9/11 . It's classless. It's tasteless and worse of all it's driving a wedge between Muslims and Americans. There is no reason to drive this wedge. Move it. We don't care but there is no worse place than right next to the place that a faction of Muslims brought down.

      September 7, 2010 at 10:26 pm |
    • MS

      Muslims died in 9/11 too.
      Muslims are killed by Al-qaiadah every day in Iraq or Pakistan
      Muslims are victims of 9/11 not responsible for it.
      If a smal number of priests were involved in child molestation it does not mean all priests share the responsibility or catholic faith is responsible.

      September 8, 2010 at 8:32 am |
  5. institute

    I'd like to ask the Imam this question:
    You ask for tolerance from others. But would your religion tolerate gay people? Would your religion tolerate woman who seek divorce? Would your religion tolerate woman who want independence in choice for love and sexual freedom? Would your religion tolerate consensual adults having sex? If you are not willing to tolerate other people's own freedoms, why do you expect world to tolerate you?

    September 7, 2010 at 10:17 pm |
  6. Razor

    Wake up America! There is only one way to have a true and real relationship with God.... Romans 3:23 says "for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus" Islam is a false religion.. If Jesus himself says that there is no way to the Father except through him...then how does the Imam even justify Islam as a legit way to God? He is leading his people away from the true God of the Bible down a path of ultimate destruction...this isn't bigotry...its the word of God...its time to wake up!

    September 7, 2010 at 10:00 pm |
    • Dawn

      Not everyone in America seeks a relationship with god or believes in a god and Christianity is a borrowed religion worshiping the sun. Watch Zeitgeist, will ya? 😉

      September 7, 2010 at 10:04 pm |
  7. John

    What I would ask. First, where did you manage to find enough guts to even think about this? Second, what on earth possessed you to stay in this cesspit of bigotry called the United States?

    September 7, 2010 at 10:00 pm |
  8. InsertPictureofMohammadHere

    How can you choose to refuse denouncing Hamas as a terrorist organization? Do you not realize that it's the habit of looking the other way that results in most distrust? Embracing or being apathetic to extremism makes you just as culpable.

    September 7, 2010 at 9:58 pm |
  9. Dawn

    This is all just smoke and mirrors diverting your attentions from, what should be, real American concerns. Everyone is consumed and divided by this issue while no one is solving our real problems.

    The only person I hear working towards any solutions is our President, yet this issue is calling him into question, too.

    Republicans have no better solutions (or solutions they're actually willing to act upon) than does the current administration.

    You are being blinded by the silliness of an intangible fear, like during the Cold War.

    America used to make things, now all we make is war. Let's start by changing THAT first.

    September 7, 2010 at 9:57 pm |
  10. Lila King

    Hi there – I'm Lila from CNN. I see loads of good questions in this thread. Just want to remind you all that if you'd like them to be part of the interview, you should put them on video and post over on CNN iReport. We'll be selecting some of the best questions there to include in the interview tomorrow night. It'd be a shame to miss some of these. http://on.cnn.com/dg4hl3

    September 7, 2010 at 9:48 pm |
  11. alvi

    I am completely against 9/11 hijackers and i don’t consider them muslims because u cannot commit suicide in islam no matter what. U will never be forgiven for this by Allah it is clearly said no matter what those who do suicide attacks say. Secondly i would like to ask my fellow americans that if they have come to know that the war on iraq was never legitimate than what have they done to condemn the deaths of more than 30,000 iraqi civilians as a result. Is mr bush or mr cheney who’s owns haliburton(oil company) tried for war crimes. And what about the u.s soldiers who died in the war?. Why is it that only we remember sept 11 deaths and only feel for them? What about the other innocent people and u.s. soldiers who died as a result of the fake weopons of mass destruction war?

    September 7, 2010 at 9:36 pm |
    • M&M

      It was an Iraqi Muslim who gave America false information that caused them to go to war in the first place. He should go to jail for this crime. The blood of all the fallen solders and every single Iraqi person who died is on his head. He will pay dearly some day.

      September 7, 2010 at 9:46 pm |
    • Anand

      Hey Alvi you said "Why is it that only we remember sept 11 deaths and only feel for them?"
      Ok You mean to say people should overcome 9/11 event.
      Than my opinion
      Why don't you forget Muharram (Battle of Karbala) its almost ONE THOUSAND THREE HUNDRED EIGHTY years old.
      Can you do that NO.
      So stop pretending that you are sensetive to 9/11, because you are NOT.

      September 7, 2010 at 9:55 pm |
    • alvi

      mr anand i don't think i ever implied that people should forget 9/11 victims but my question simply was in context that why at one place loss of innocent life holds more importance in people's eyes while way more innocent lives were lost as a consequence of another wrong reason such as WMD. why one wrong reason of loss of innocent lives have more value than the other which probably destroyed way more lives than sept 11 event. why is it tha people who waged war are sitting comfartably in their luxary homes and not condemend at the same scale. i hope i answered ur concern

      September 7, 2010 at 10:13 pm |
    • Anand

      Dear Alvi, It may not so much mean to you and I don't know about others but for me it means more than every thing. On September 11, 2001 10.40 am when south tower falls I was literally cry. No one died from my family but I felt like everyone died was my family member including muslims(except 19) but from next day I was not crying but I felt anger till today. I was not posting any comment but now I feel this can help. And same I want to ask Imam saheb why you rubbing salt on wounds.

      September 7, 2010 at 11:13 pm |
    • Born in the USA

      Hi Anand- All of us were in utter shock on Sept. 11, 2001- NOT JUST YOU. When I mean "all of us" that includes American Muslims. Islam condones the killing of any human being. The Quran says, "...that he who slayeth any one (man), without (that being for) murder, or for mischief in the land, (It shall be ) as though he hath slain mankind as a whole, and he who saveth it ( a human life) shall be as though he hath saved mankind as a whole." Those extremists who caused the destruction of the WTC and killing of innocent lives should not be linked to the religion of Islam. Anyone who does is uneducated and ignorant. No religion will say its okay to kill- especially not Islam. Those fanatics who take God's name in vain and commit acts of violence against people feel like the only way to justify any wrong doing is to link it to religion and their cause will be justified. AND THAT IS WRONG!!!! It's so sad, but that's exactly what these extremists want. They want to place a wedge between us Americans, regardless of our faith (Christian, Jew, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu, etc). We need to show that we all stand by each other. Those of you who don't know much about Islam, because I can certainly tell by the responses posted here, go to an interfaith session. Remember Christians, Jews, and Muslims believe in the same God. Muslims also believe in Moses and Jesus. Judaism, Christianity and Islam are Abrahamic faiths. Remember, being an American is not based on religion or ethnic background.

      September 8, 2010 at 8:53 am |
  12. Think about it

    There have been many extremist in American for years, Mormans, Amish, Quakers etc. Lets now forget the Waco Massacre. America'a entire history has been disrespectful to some race so why are Americans so special?

    September 7, 2010 at 9:31 pm |
    • M&M

      America is not a nation of one religion. So when you speak like this you sound foolish.

      September 7, 2010 at 9:38 pm |
    • Muslim Skeptic

      Because it's OUR country and no other religion is more of a threat than Islam to the American way of life.

      September 7, 2010 at 9:44 pm |
  13. keeping it real

    Forget about the constitution (if you can open your mind for a second). Look at Sudan. Look at Somalia. These are just two examples of places where this group gets a strong hold in a country and persecutes with violence against people who do not believe what they believe. Its their way or the highway. America can not allow just anyone into this country any longer. Especially when far too many of this group are evil, violent people. They have taken over many countries with their voilent ways. They want America too! Why else would they build this thing where they want to build it? Convert as many people as they can and and stake claim to our country. Then your constitution will not exist at all. You'll live the way they tell you to live. No, maybe not in our life time but our children and grand children's. This is not a far fetched scenario. We need to stop coddling everyone who wants to come here.

    September 7, 2010 at 9:30 pm |
  14. Ali

    ALL o you dummies that are rambling bigotry about Islam have no life at all. This is how it goes, a self-proclaimed fat BoB holding a beer and a donut talking sh%t about some thing they have no clue about..Humans are so naive that they need to find a purpose in life by fighting over imaginary gods, no wonder why the world is coming to an end, Is b/c of this ignorance than prevents progress and education for tomarrow. We are still hung up on some religion and history bull$#!% that there is no room for science. Kids are being taught about some raggady a$$ old FU$% from 1800 like thomas jefferson while they lagging behind in physics and math. what a shame.

    September 7, 2010 at 9:30 pm |
    • Muslim Skeptic

      I've read parts of your Quran. It's absolutely "shocking" some of the stuff you guys beleive in. It's so shocking that the US Constitution prevents you guys from practicing your religion like your Islam brothers in the middle east. Whether it's beating your wifes or marrying pre-pubescent girls – it ain't right bro.

      September 7, 2010 at 9:40 pm |
    • Anand

      Hey Ali You think you are the smart one than why don't you go to your country and invent like Boeing, Microsoft, iPhone and than tell us you can stand side by us. We are fine here and our kids are ready to compete with whole world.

      September 7, 2010 at 9:45 pm |
  15. havannas

    Muslims seem to be there own worst enemy. If you think Muslims have problems now, just wait!!!–Time to check out just maybe and move closer to Mecca.

    September 7, 2010 at 9:29 pm |
  16. M&M

    See what the Canadian Muslims are saying: "http://muslimcanadiancongress.org/"

    September 7, 2010 at 9:29 pm |
  17. KatieB

    Religion is a loaded gun, you put it into the wrong persons hands, something terrible is bound to happen...that is to say..there is no BAD religion, only BAD people.....why wont people read and get their facts first.....

    September 7, 2010 at 9:28 pm |
  18. Marty

    If Islam is truly a peaceful religion, why does is produce so many extremist?

    Why haven't more Muslims spoken out about how disrespectful it is to build a Mosque near Ground Zero?

    September 7, 2010 at 9:27 pm |
    • JS

      Last time I checked – the person who killed 6 million innocent Jews was not a Muslim and the nation that dropped atom bombs on innocent civilians was not a Muslim nation .

      September 7, 2010 at 9:55 pm |
  19. M&M

    I don't trust this guy. He reminds me of the guy who told the U.S. that Iraq had weapons of mass distruction and for that we lost thousands of lives and displaced the people of Iraq and messed up their country. He had an agenda that only America could so foolishly carry out for him. I just think that this guy wanting to build this Islamic center is of the same nature. He has his own agenda and will use the U.S. to fulfill his agenda and that of the Muslims around the world. I don't trust him! Never will!

    September 7, 2010 at 9:25 pm |
  20. Think about it

    America is a very violent country, more than others. Our schools are not even safe anymore. We have the Death Penality. So how are we different than them?
    Sadam Husein – a Muslim and they hung him for his crimes, I guess we should have let him live. Protest in the street for him.

    Muslims should march to show they are better thatn than Christians.

    September 7, 2010 at 9:23 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.