News / USA

Sikh Temple Gunman Linked to White Supremacist Groups

This undated photo provided by the FBI on Aug. 6, 2012 shows Wade Michael Page, a suspect in the Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012 Sikh temple shootings in Oak Creek, Wis.
This undated photo provided by the FBI on Aug. 6, 2012 shows Wade Michael Page, a suspect in the Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012 Sikh temple shootings in Oak Creek, Wis.
VOA News
U.S. authorities say they are investigating possible ties between the gunman who killed six worshippers at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin and white supremacist groups.

Officials Monday identified the shooter, who was killed by police, as 40-year-old Wade Michael Page. They say he served in the U.S. Army for about six years in the 1990s before being discharged for misconduct.

The Sikh Religion

  • Monotheistic, founded in the 15th century in South Asia
  • Fifth-largest organized religion in the world, with as many as 30 million followers
  • There are more than 500,000 Sikhs in the United States
  • Observant Sikhs do not cut their hair
  • The current prime minister of India, Manmohan Singh, is a Sikh
  • Sikhs wear turbans and grow beards, and are often mistaken for Muslims in the West
  • Sikhs have been a target of anti-Muslim violence in the United States since the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks
A U.S. group that monitors extremists (the Southern Poverty Law Center) says Page was a member of a white supremacist band called End Apathy.

Authorities say they are looking into his links to supremacist groups, and say the shooting is being investigated as an act of domestic terrorism. They say they do not believe anyone else was involved in the attack, which took place Sunday morning near the city of Milwaukee.

Sikhs, who wear turbans and beards, have been mistaken in the United States for Muslims and sometimes targeted for hate crimes, including a Sikh who was killed in the state of Arizona four days after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

President Barack Obama said "soul searching" is needed about how to reduce violence in America. He said Americans would "recoil" in shock if it turned out the shooter was motivated by ethnic hatred.

The president ordered flags at federal buildings to be flown at half-staff through Friday.

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, himself a Sikh, said he was shocked and saddened by the assault, calling it a "dastardly attack."  India is home to a majority of the world's Sikhs.

"It is a very sad occasion, senseless killings of people who gathered together in a religious congregation," he said. "That it has happened in very tragic circumstances is something which makes me enormously sad. I hope the American authorities would investigate who were behind this dastardly attack on innocent devotees and that they will ensure that such costly events do not take place."

Authorities say the gunman killed the six worshippers - five men and one woman ranging in age from 39 to 84 - before he was shot dead by police.

Investigators said three others were hospitalized in critical condition with severe gunshot wounds, including a policeman who was shot eight or nine times before a second policeman killed Page.

Sikhism is a monotheistic religion founded more than 500 years ago in the Punjab district of what is now India and Pakistan.  

Authorities say the worldwide population of Sikhs is 20 million, with 400,000 to 1 million Sikhs in the U.S.  

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

Video Secret Service Chief Under Fire for White House Security Breach

Julia Pierson faces tough questions from lawmakers after recent intrusion at White House, says: 'It is clear that our security plan was not executed properly' More

Frustrated, Liberian Students Want Ebola Fight Role

Thousands have volunteered to go to counties, rural villages to talk to people in their language about deadly virus More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Trilobite
August 06, 2012 9:48 PM
The contrived and cliche exaggerated zoom photo of the psycho-killer isn't exaggerated enough to unnerve my fellow Americans and I. I'm sure you are working hard on this to achieve this goal however.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihadi
X
Mahi Ramakrishnan
September 30, 2014 2:16 PM
Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid