Garden City Somalis, Seeking a Dream Life, Encounter a Nightmare

Oct 27, 2016

The interior of a makeshift mosque in Garden City, Kan., that three white members of a militia are accused of planning to bomb.
Credit Adam Shrimplin / Reuters

The New York Times has published a full feature on the Somalis living in Garden City, Kansas, who were the focus of a white nationalist bomb plot earlier this month.

The Times noted that towns like Garden City are attractive to immigrants. Pay at many of the cattle yards and packing plants starts at $16 an hour and little English is needed to perform the work there. Many of the Somalis and Burmese, Mexicans and Sudanese who settle here see this as their shot at the American Dream.

But now some of these Somalis are being confronted with the fact that they were the targets of a murder plot, simply because they are Muslim.

“I don’t know why these people hate,” said Abdulkadir Mohamed. Mohamed is 68, and a community leader in Garden City. “We are not terrorists,” he added. “We come here for a better life.”

In the wake of Donald Trump’s anti-Muslim rhetoric, researchers say the number of anti-Muslim crimes in the United States is soaring.