These photos are being sent to me live by a friend who is attending the event on Capitol Hill. She reports that there were a small number of protestors in a line further behind, but they seem to have bailed out due to the rain.
Also, extreme Islamophobe and conspiracy wingnut Pamela Geller of Atlas Shrugs claims there are 5,000 muslims in attendance, but my source report that the number was more in the 2000 range. In either case, the number was far smaller than the Tea Parties. We will get better estimates from Capitol Hill police later. FactCheck.org provides a nice rebuttal to the crazies’ (like Gellar) claims.
UPDATE: I am hearing that the event has concluded, and overall was quite peaceful and calm. Just muslims, praying quietly on the lawn. The protestors did get some shouting in before they left, and were met with chants of “Allah Akhbar” in return. The crowd was very diverse and well-behaved, roughly about 40% women.
UPDATE 2: Am hearing some details of the khutbah by Imam Abdel Malik – he opened with a theme of unity, as in we are all one American nation, how we are all one human race. He discussed the importance of voting and being active, about Obama, and then emphasized that muslims are part of society too. No transcript or video yet but I will update or make a new post if and when I obtain it.
Incidentally, there has been superb coverage and discussion of the Jummah on the Hill event at Talk Islam. Absolutely the best coverage anywhere, especially about the efforts to coordinate a counter-protest by a whole rabble of small Christian advocacy groups with predictable names like “Operation Save the Capitol” and “Operation Save America” and “Stop Islamization of America” etc. etc.