PHILADELPHIA ― The father of a Muslim American war hero who brought the Democratic National Convention to its feet on Thursday night with his impassioned rebuke of Donald Trump and his anti-Muslim rhetoric has a message for supporters of the GOP nominee concerned by the recent uptick of terror attacks around the world: the way to defeat terrorism is by uniting America, not dividing it.
“Today the global menace is terrorism. What is the solution? If military is the solution, military would have already done it. Military is not the only solution,” Khizr Khan told The Huffington Post in an interview on Friday. “To really eradicate terrorism is to join hands, not build walls and exclude each other. That is not a solution. That is adding fuel to the fire.”
Pakistan-born Khan, 65, appeared on stage at Wells Fargo Arena, the site of the Democratic convention, with his wife, Ghazala, at his side. He spoke of the heroism of his son, Army Capt. Humayun S.M. Khan, who was killed in action in Iraq in 2004 by an advancing vehicle loaded with hundreds of pounds of explosives. The 27-year-old soldier, who was born in the UAE, ordered his unit to halt while he walked toward the vehicle, saving the lives of his fellow soldiers from the ensuing explosion.
“If it was up to Donald Trump, he never would have been in America,” he said.