On Sunday night, a man who police identified as Mahad Abdiaziz Abdirahman, 20, of Minneapolis, stabbed two men at the Mall of America near Bloomington, Minnesota, after they tried to stop him from stealing clothes inside a dressing room at Macy’s at about 6:45 p.m. However, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune failed to mention his name or other identifying attributes in its report on the crime. The paper referred to him only as ‘the suspect.'”
A search on the Star-Tribune website for Mahad Abdirahman revealed that the name was not listed. “Mahad” means “one who preaches and invites people to Islam.” “Abdiaziz” means “the slave of Allah the master,” and Abdirahman is a common Somali Muslim last name which means “the slave of Allah who is the gracious.”
This is the second case of a stabbing committed by a Somali at a Minnesota mall in just over a year. The first case was a clear act of jihad that was committed on Sept. 17, 2016 at the Macy’s store at the Crossroads Center Mall in St. Cloud. It was there that Dahir Adan injured 10 people iafter asking his randomly selected victims if they were Muslim.
Bloomington Police Chief Jeff Potts said in a news conference that “the suspect went in and tried to take some property and, when confronted, he produced a knife and stabbed one man. Some family members assisted the victim and a second man sustained another knife wound.” Despite a subsequent heavy police presence at the mall, there was no announcement whether the latest stabbing incident was an instance of Muslim terrorism.
According to Bloomington police, “The initial investigation has revealed that one of the victims returned to the dressing room after trying on clothing and found the suspect attempting to steal his personal property.” The release continued, “A confrontation ensued and the suspect pulled a knife and stabbed the victim. The second victim, who is related to the first, heard the confrontation and intervened and in doing so was also stabbed. The suspect received minor injuries from the victims while they disarmed him… Mahad Abdiaziz Abdirahaman, 20 years old from Minneapolis, is being held on 2 counts of 1st Degree Assault.” It was the companions of the two wounded men who subdued Abdirahman, inflicting what police said were minor injuries.
Currently, Minnesota is home to the largest population of Somali refugees in the United States. They currently number about 100,000. Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton (D) has frequently defended Somali refugees and has told residents of the state that if they are not comfortable about refugees they “should find another state.”
The two men who were stabbed at the Mall of America were taken to Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis with non-life-threatening injuries, according to Bloomington Police Chief Jeff Potts .
After actor James Woods posted at his Twitter account a 45-second video showing hundreds of Muslims at Nickelodeon Universe, the indoor amusement park in the center of the Mall of America, comment was rife on social media. His tweet received more than 11,000 likes and more than 8,100 retweets as of noon on Tuesday.
Nickelodeon Universe is a popular destination for Minnesota families, including Somalis. The latter are especially visible during Eid Al Adha, the biggest religious holiday in the Muslim world that completes the month of Ramadan.
A Twitter user identified as Shauna Ana accused Woods of perpetuating racism with his tweet.
This is @RealJamesWoods perpetuating racism, ignorance, hatred, and fear at the #MallofAmerica. https://t.co/2QPo2viRq5
Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat and the editor of Spero News.