Donald Trump, and Islamophobia in Britain

This video from the USA says about itself:

Trump Wants Mandatory Badges On Muslim Americans

19 November 2015

If you had held out any hope that Donald Trump had some line that he wouldn’t cross in demonizing Muslims, prepare to disappointed. He keeps doing his best to raise the bar of madness and fascism. Cenk Uygur and John Iadarola (Think Tank), hosts of the The Young Turks, break it down. …

“Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has been spouting increasingly fascist ideas for months, but in an interview published today by Yahoo he crossed what must be some kind of rubicon toward actual Nazism and not just the implication of it. When asked by Yahoo whether he’d track Muslims in the US by “registering [them] in a database or giving them a form of special identification that noted their religion,” Trump didn’t rule those obviously insane ideas out. “We’re going to have to — we’re going to have to look at a lot of things very closely,” Trump told Yahoo. “We’re going to have to look at the mosques. We’re going to have to look very, very carefully.””*

Read more here.

California mosque firebombed amid record spike in anti-Muslim violence: here.

The political crisis triggered by the continued status of billionaire demagogue Donald Trump as the leading candidate for the Republican presidential nomination took a new turn Friday with reports that top Republican leaders had met in Washington to discuss the possibility that the primary campaign could extend right up until and even into the Republican National Convention: here.

AS CRUZ RISES, SO DO HIS RIVALS’ ATTACKS Trump called him a “maniac”, Rubio labeled him an “isolationist”, and Ben Carson said he spent all his time at “cocktail parties.” And here’s who made the main GOP debate stage for tomorrow night. [Marina Fang, HuffPost]

CRAZY 2016 GOP SCENARIOS THAT JUST MAY COME TRUE From a brokered convention to floor fights and the specter of Mitt Romney, all the potential 2016 nomination outcomes. [Howard Fineman, Jason Linkins and Lauren Weber, HuffPost]

This video from the USA says about itself:

Trump Spokesperson: So What. They’re Muslim.

9 December 2015

A spokesperson for the Donald Trump campaign recently defended the candidate’s position on banning Muslim immigrants. Poorly. Cenk Uygur and John Iadarola, hosts of the The Young Turks, break it down.

“While defending Donald Trump‘s proposed ban on Muslims visiting the United States during a debate with CNN’s S.E. Cupp, Trump spokeswoman Katrina Pierson dismissed Cupp’s assertion that a ban on all Muslims goes too far.

Pierson told CNN that Trump‘s plan is “nothing new” because U.S. law already prevents individuals from nations hostile to the U.S. from entering the country. Cupp disagreed.

“There really is something new to the idea of banning an entire religious group from entering the country,” Cupp said in response. “Peddling this unconservative, un-American, unconstitutional garbage has got to stop.””

Read more here.

By Rabbil Sikdar in Britain:

Trump’s a distraction from our home-grown racism

Saturday 12th December 2015

Repressive Tory strategies like Prevent target innocent Muslims, who are assumed to be Isis-supporting fanatics, writes RABBIL SIKDAR

THE clown with the stupid hair is dangerous. For a while now it’s been easy to dismiss Donald Trump as a fool of little political intelligence and social awareness. Click on the Huffington Post videos and see him describing starting out with a loan of million dollars as not being much. His racism towards Mexicans was shocking but to be expected.

Racism is deeply embedded in US history.

But the comments regarding Muslims are something else. From ID cards to banning Muslims from entering the US, this is the tone and language of bygone fascists.

A draconian fury has occupied the formerly liberal space in the US, values cherishing individual liberty shredded ever increasingly in paranoia over Islamic extremism.

What makes Donald Trump’s comments worse are the cheers that followed it. He has supporters. Anyone who doubted that should see how he leads the polls convincingly. Even as most of us on the left eagerly anticipate the clash between the left-wing Bernie Sanders and the centrist Hillary Clinton in the Democratic race, it’s the political fiasco of the Republican debate that should worry us all.

Imagine Donald Trump being the president of the US. How awful ordinary US Muslims must feel now. This is a country where the right wing is so vicious and ruthlessly driven that they can make our own rightwingers appear reasoned and moderate.

That of course is the danger — that focusing on Trump shifts what is extreme to what is moderate. In Britain, everyday media scrutiny, police discrimination, awful Westminster rhetoric and a growing tide of anti-Muslim bigotry have fed the sense of an onslaught against Muslims.

Imagine that in the US, where the bigots carry guns and the language is even more extreme. It’s terrifying. I cannot even go a day on the Tube without fearfully trying to understand the looks I’m getting, conscious of how passengers seek to find any other seat in a crowded carriage rather than sit next to a brown man who occasionally has messy stubble. It’s reached a point where I don’t bother sitting anymore, resigned to accepting that these passengers regard me as the alien on the train.

But what is blood-boiling is how the likes of Trump have allowed us to easily ignore the rhetoric of our own Islamophobes. You don’t have to say something racist to be a racist. Ignoring or denying the existence of racism or supporting ideas that discriminate against a particular community is an act of racism. That’s how it works in Britain.

Trump has allowed us to forget that David Cameron and Boris Johnson are pioneers of some shockingly sinister and draconian Islamophobic policies, even as they seek to present themselves as moderate liberals by rounding on Trump.

Take the Prevent strategy which actively censors the views of the Muslim community, marginalising youths by stifling their political expression under the fear of being branded extremists.

It combs the Muslim community, taking crumbs as a feast of proof of radicalisation within the community. It bans speakers while championing free speech as a stick to hit the supposedly illiberal Muslims with, while politicians past and present repeatedly warn about deep-rooted sympathies for Islamic State (Isis) within the British Muslim community.

Then you have inflammatory media headlines that generate fear and mistrust towards Muslims, whether it’s the Sun’s infamous “one in five” rubbish or the daily flow of hatemongering spouted by the Daily Mail.

Either way, they might not have stupid hair (except for Johnson) or talk in a way that evokes chilling comparisons to Adolf Hitler like Trump does, but let no-one forget that the Tories are a party responsible for pushing Islamophobia onto society for the past five years, backed by an army of journalists more than happy to help them.

This video from the USA says about itself:

9 December 2015

In response to Donald Trump’s call to ban Muslim immigration into the US, several countries are now talking about banning him. A group of opposition legislators in Israel signed a petition to keep him out. Cenk Uygur and John Iadarola, hosts of the The Young Turks, break it down. Tell us what you think in the comment section below.

“Israeli politicians and more than 250,000 Britons urged their governments on Wednesday to bar Donald Trump from their countries after the Republican presidential front-runner said Muslims should be denied entry into the United States.

The calls were part of a growing global backlash against Trump’s proposal that cut across nationalities and religions, and began to hit the real estate mogul’s brand in the Middle East.

Although Israeli politicians demanded Trump be blocked from a planned visit, a Dec. 28 meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was still on.

Shortly afterwards, Trump himself postponed his Benjamin Netanyahu meeting to ‘after my election as United States president’.

In addition to the online petition calling for a ban on Trump from the United Kingdom, a Scottish university revoked his honorary degree.”*

Read more here.

A for-profit prison that makes money keeping undocumented immigrants behind bars has a longstanding relationship with Marco Rubio and has already given big to his super PAC. The GEO Group—a shady, for-profit prison company—has invested more heavily in Marco Rubio for years and his presidential campaign is no exception: here.

By Sabby Dhalu in Britain:

British Muslims living in fear

Saturday 12th December 2015

SABBY DHALU explores the wave of Islamophobic discrimination and terror unleashed across the Western world since the Paris massacre

IF THERE were any doubts that racism and Islamophobia follow Isis terrorist attacks, then the month since the Paris attacks should dispel them.

There is still a humanitarian crisis unfolding in Europe. Refugees are still drowning while escaping war, persecution, poverty, economic instability and climate change.

EU countries are still refusing to welcome a fair proportion of refugees, meaning thousands are stuck in squalid conditions without proper shelter, sanitation, warmth and food.

Bar the coverage of the Syrian man who lost his wife and seven children this week, the crisis has been somewhat eclipsed by Islamophobia and racism in the aftermath of the attacks.

This week Donald Trump called for a “complete shutdown” of US borders to Muslims. A day earlier the far-right National Front (FN) won the first round of France’s regional elections, taking 28 per cent of the vote and topping the polls in six of the country’s 13 mainland regions, with more than 6 million votes nationwide.

However the real danger of both Trump and FN president Marine Le Pen is that they shift the terms of political debate further to the right. Trump and Le Pen make George W Bush and Nicolas Sarkozy look moderate, when the reality is quite different.

Examining the context in which Le Pen and Trump have emerged is crucial.

Since the January attacks on Charlie Hebdo, a kosher shop and other locations, politics has managed to find its way on to the school dinner menu in France. A debate emerged about scrapping a substitute for pork.

Which would be Islamophobic, and also anti-Jewish, and anti-vegan/vegetarian.

Following the recent Paris attacks in November, the right have won. Attacks on one community usually lead to attacks on others.

In the US since the November Paris attacks, notices saying: “No Muslims” have appeared in shop windows. This is in a country where you are more likely to be a victim of a racist white supremacist attacks than attacks by those that call themselves Muslims.

Only two weeks ago white supremacists shot Black Lives Matter protestors in Minneapolis, although there has been little coverage of this in mainstream international media compared to the San Bernardino shootings.

Trump and Le Pen did not emerge out of a vacuum — they emerged out of a deeply racist narrative. This racist narrative must be challenged.

In Britain the Sun infamously splashed on “One in Five Brit Muslims’ sympathy for jihadis,” misleading readers.

Even Survation, who conducted the poll for the Sun, distanced themselves from the Sun’s inaccurate headline. The Daily Mail published a cartoon similar to anti-semitic nazi propaganda, comparing Muslims and refugees to rats.

Such media coverage and Trump’s statement are dangerous because they influence public opinion and drive a wedge into society.

Precisely this type of coverage is leading to a rise in racist and anti-Muslim hate crime. Even before the Paris attacks, anti-Muslim hate crime was increasing.

In the aftermath of the Paris attacks, anti-Muslim hate crime increased by 300 per cent. There was an attempted arson attack on Finsbury Park Mosque. The rain prevented the fire-bomb from igniting. An attempted fire-bombing of a mosque is an attempted terrorist attack, but these attacks are rarely described as such.

Using racism to blame, distract and divide society in times of economic hardship is the oldest trick in the book.

Racism we see today against Muslims, refugees and eastern European EU migrants, is exactly the same as that faced by Jewish, Irish, African, Caribbean, Indian, Pakistani and Bangladeshi communities.

As we stand up to austerity, it is crucial that the labour movement and the centre left and broad left also stand up to this racist and Islamophobic scourge.

Racism, Islamophobia and hatred is not only a problem in itself — it also undermines and divides the movement against austerity.

Stand up to Racism has called a national demonstration marking UN Anti-Racism Day in London on Saturday March 19 2016. For more details see

Sabby Dhalu is Unite Against Fascism joint secretary and Stand up to Racism organiser.

Two pigs’ heads left outside Muslim school in UK. Police are investigating it as a hate crime: here.

Pig’s head tied to Muslim school gate sparks police hate crime probe: here.

Latvia plans to introduce ban on Islamic clothes covering face — minister: here.

22 thoughts on “Donald Trump, and Islamophobia in Britain

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  5. Wednesday 16th December 2015

    posted by Morning Star in Britain

    FREE speech and proper debate at British universities must not be stifled by controversial government counter terrorism measures, University of Westminster vice-chancellor Geoff Petts said yesterday.

    Prof Petts warned that the Prevent strategy, which has led to universities that have hosted hate preachers being publicly identified, must not be allowed to stifle debate on campus.

    He argued that free speech can be an effective tool in countering radicalisation.

    The university received unwanted attention when it was revealed earlier this year that the Islamic State terrorist Mohammed Emwazi, glamourised in the mass media as Jihadi John had studied there.

    Speaking in the House of Commons at a discussion of the Prevent duty at universities, Professor Petts said: “In many cases, it is precisely by promoting free speech that an individual’s rights are protected.

    “We take the issue of radicalisation and violent extremism very seriously. We are fully engaged with the government’s Prevent agenda and have been since its inception.

    “Our aim is to keep debate open and on campus, rather than driving it underground.”


  6. Tuesday 15th December 2015

    posted by Morning Star in World

    POLICE in the US city of Hawthorne, California, confirmed yesterday that two incidents of vandals spray-painting graffiti on mosques were being considered hate crimes.

    The perpetrators also left a device that looked like a hand grenade in the drive near one of the mosques, but it turned out to be a plastic replica.

    The word “Jesus” was sprayed in white paint on the fence of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community Baitus-Salaam Mosque.

    “Jesus is the way” was spray-painted in front of the Islamic centre of Hawthorne.

    “This type of behaviour is born out of ignorance and fear and we as members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community … we respond with peaceful dialogue,” said chapter president Ahsan M Khan.

    “It’s through peaceful dialogue that we can hopefully see less of this type of hate crime.”

    A mosque in Palm Springs was damaged on Friday in a fire that authorities said was started intentionally.


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