Terry Jones Unapologetic After Libyan Violence, Calls Muhammad "Mentally Ill"

Hours after four American diplomats died in an attack sparked by an anti-Islamic video he has promoted, Florida pastor Terry Jones was in no mood to apologize. 

In an interview with New Times inside his Gainesville-area church this morning, Jones railed against Obama and Islam, even calling Muhummad "mentally ill."

Jones greeted us at his Gainesville compound -- which still has an effigy of Obama hanging out front, yet is located in a bizarrely residential neighborhood across from some tennis courts -- clad in a Harley T-shirt and jean shorts. A large handgun hung in a holster on his hip.

If Jones felt any strong emotions about the death last night of U.S. ambassador Chris Stevens, who was killed in Benghazi, Libya along with three other diplomats in an attack on the consulate, he didn't show it during the interview.

Instead, he criticized Obama and kept beating his usual drum of anti-Islam messages. Around the same time extremists were attacking the consulate, Jones and his followers were putting Muhammad on "trial" in his church last night.

"We found that Muhammad was mentally ill," Jones says. "His mental condition did, of course, influence his writing of the Koran."

Midway through the interview, Jones' aide told him that Obama might send Marines to Libya after the violence.

(Unlike the deadly riots in Afghanistan last year that were a direct result of Jones' threat to burn Korans, last night's attacks were more tangentially related to the pastor. The video that sparked the latest violence was sent around Egypt in an email about Jones "trial" of Muhammad last night.)

That news unleashed an attack on the president, whom Jones only refers to as "Hussein Obama.

"The guy's just a disaster. He's barely a lawyer, he didn't win any big cases," Jones says. "He's a good talker and a good liar. Let's be honest here. He won the presidential campaign only because he is black."

Jones soon ended our talk. After all, with the horrific violence in Libya and Egypt, he had a long day of media interviews ahead.
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