WALTHAM — After vandals wreaked havoc on the Muslim Student Association suite last week, Imam Talal Eid, Brandeis University's Muslim chaplain, said the theft of his Quran "is what keeps me upset."
"I use it for my sermon, and it had my notes in it - it's the work of two years," said Eid, his voice shaking slightly, yesterday.
"The notes cannot be replaced, so I have to start all over again," said Eid, founder of the Islamic Institute of Boston (www.iiboston.net).
Eid is asking whoever has his Quran to "please return it."
Last Friday, just four weeks after $80,000 worth of renovations were completed, the Muslim Student Association's suite was vandalized, Eid said...
Vandalism getting national attention
Ibrahim Hooper, communications director for the Council of American-Islamic Relations, said CAIR, the country's largest Islamic civil liberties group, is monitoring the case.
He said the council is relying on Talal Eid's judgment about whether the vandalism is a hate crime, and noted the theft of his Quran "adds evidence to a possible bias motive, but you never know."
"Unfortunately, we've had a spate of mosque vandalisms around the country recently, and often, there's not some graffiti that says, 'Death to Islam,' so in initial investigations, you can never label it categorically as a hate crime," Hooper said. (More)