US newspaper apologises after publishing fear-mongering anti-Muslim 'Dooms Day' advertisement

US newspaper apologises after publishing fear-mongering anti-Muslim 'Dooms Day' advertisement
A doomsday ad published by The Tennessean claimed “Islam” would cause a nuclear explosion in Nashville in July, drawing backlash which prompted a public apology.
2 min read
22 June, 2020
The Tennessean newspaper in Nashville is investigating an ad it published on Sunday which claimed "Islam is going to detonate a nuclear device" in the state.

The full-page ad includes photos of the US President Donald Trump as well as Pope Francis and burning American flags, urging readers to visit a website.

According to the New York Times, the ad was credited to the group, Ministry of Future for America, which claims its mission to be the spreading of the "final warning" from the Bible.

According to the NYT, the ad discussed Russian President Vladimir Putin, the Democratic Party and 9/11, claiming Trump's presidency was part of a greater prophecy that would bring about civil war.

In the paper's news coverage of its own ad, Michael A. Anastasi, The Tennessean vice president called the ad "horrific" and said it "should have never been published."

"Clearly there was a breakdown in the normal processes, which call for careful scrutiny of our advertising content," Anastasi was quoted as saying.

Jeff Pippenger – who identified himself as the speaker of the Ministry of Future for America to the NYT – said the newspaper owed the religious group a refund.

Read also: Swedish teachers protest municipality Muslim veil ban

"I stand by all the content in the ad and the content in the website," Pippenger told NYT. "It seems to me the criticism is more aimed at the editorial staff at the newspaper, and the criticism about my religious convictions is simply what happens when you let your religious convictions out into the public arena." 

In a tweet, Cassandra Stephenson, a business reporter for The Tennessean said the ad was "unacceptable".

"This is sickening and unacceptable. As a reporter, I have no say in advertising, but I will join my colleagues in seeking answers for how and why this was approved," Stephenson said.

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