Jews, Muslims together against violence


This 25 March 2014 video is about Jews and Muslims demonstrating together against Geert Wilders‘ xenophobic PVV party in Amsterdam.

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

Jews and Muslims marching together against aggression

Today, 15:50

About 200 people this afternoon are walking from the synagogue on the Jonas Daniel Meijer Square in Amsterdam to the Weesperzijde mosque. The organizers of the solidarity walk oppose aggression against places of worship and are against anti-Semitism and Islamophobia.

Other religious and non-religious parties also have rallied behind the initiative.

In the rally Jews, Muslims and other Amsterdam people participate. Both at the mosque and at the synagogue speeches will be held and flowers will be laid.

Hundreds of Norwegian Muslims form human shield to protect Jewish Synagogue in Oslo: here.

Islamophobic violence in the USA


This video from the USA says about itself:

Muslims discover dead pig at entrance to mosque by ICNA Houston – ABC News

5 December 2012

HOUSTON (KTRK) — A disturbing discovery was made outside of a Houston area mosque and now Islamic community leaders are calling it a hate crime. A dead pig was left in front of the mosque Tuesday in Cypress.

Ilyas Choudry says worshippers at the Islamic Outreach Center in Cypress found a mutilated dead pig Tuesday night near the doorstep of their five-month-old mosque.

“They were totally surprised to see this,” he said.

Leaders at the mosque say the dead pig was placed there sometime after worshipers left following afternoon prayer and arrived back for evening prayer. Muslims don’t eat pork and regard the pigs as an unclean animal. Some in the Muslim community are questioning if this was a gesture of hate.

“I think it borders on being a hate crime at least from our prospective, because we’ve seen these before and generally when people put pigs or have dead animals, it’s really something hateful,” said Mustafaa Carroll with the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

The Islamic Outreach Center says it has not had any problems with neighbors before.

By Tom Carter in the USA:

Mounting violence against Muslims in America

19 February 2015

A series of attacks on Muslims in the US have occurred in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo shootings in France and executions carried out by the Islamic State (ISIS) in Syria. These events have been seized on by governments around the world, including the Obama administration, to promote anti-Islamic sentiment so as to justify expanded military interventions in the Middle East and stepped up domestic repression.

On February 10, three Muslim-American students—Deah Shaddy Barakat, 23, his wife Yusor Mohammad Abu-Salha, 21, and her sister Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha, 19—were found shot in the head, execution-style, in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. The two young women were wearing traditional hijabs when they were killed.

The man who turned himself in to authorities in connection with the murders had previously brandished guns at the victims and threatened them. Before the shooting, Yusor Abu-Salha told her father, “Daddy, I think he hates us for who we are and how we look.”

On February 12, an Arab-American man was brutally attacked by two white men at a Kroger supermarket in Dearborn, Michigan. The attackers also taunted his daughter, who wears a hijab, making references to ISIS and Muslims. The attackers called the man and his daughter “r–head” and said, “Go back to your country.”

This video from Texas in the USA says about itself:

Quba Islamic Institute On Fire Southeast Houston, US

15 February 2015

An Islamic Center in Houston southeast side has been damaged by fire. Investigators are trying to determine whether the fire was arson.

No injuries have been reported in the blaze that erupted before morning prayers on Friday in a storage area of the Quba Islamic Institute mosque and school. Officials at the institute said investigators told them the fire was intentionally set. Muslim worshipers have described the incident as particularly troubling after the Chapel Hill attack that left three Muslim students dead. The Council on American-Islamic Relations is calling on state and federal authorities to investigate the fire as a possible hate crime.

The Tom Carter article continues:

On February 13, the Quba Islamic Institute in southeast Houston, Texas was the target of an arson attack that destroyed a substantial portion of the building and caused an estimated $100,000 in damage. On February 17, police in Austin, Texas arrested a man for threatening to bomb an Islamic center as well as a Middle Eastern restaurant.

Last month, a “Texas Muslim Capitol Day” event (the declared purpose of which was to “engage American Muslims in the political process”) was attacked and disrupted by anti-Muslim thugs. Another attack was organized on “Muslim Day” in Oklahoma City. The attacking group’s Facebook page screamed, “Get Islam Out of America.”

The rate of hate crimes against Muslims in the United States stands at five times what it was before September 2001. A recent poll found that out of all religions, Americans harbor the most negative feelings towards Muslims.

The American political and media establishment bears a significant portion of the responsibility for these trends.

A recent report by the Center for American Progress entitled “Fear, Inc. 2.0, The Islamophobia Network’s Efforts to Manufacture Hate in America” exposes a veritable “Islamophobia industry” operating on the periphery of the American state. Tens of millions of dollars have been spent over the past decade to promote anti-Muslim bigotry through a shady network of politicians, journalists, foundations, “activists” and “experts.”

This Islamophobia network enjoys close ties with police departments and the intelligence agencies. Anti-Muslim bigotry, the report indicates, can often be found “masquerading as law-enforcement counterterrorism training.” The training materials and “experts,” according to the report, encourage police and intelligence agents to see “a terrorist plot in every mosque.”

The intentional whipping up of anti-Muslim bigotry has intensified internationally in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo attacks last month. As the World Socialist Web Site has explained, the campaign to vilify Muslims serves definite political ends.

Anti-Muslim hysteria provides a justification for imperialist mayhem abroad as well as a wedge with which to attack democratic rights at home. Policies can be pursued in the climate of such hysteria that would otherwise be unthinkable. And, as with all such campaigns against racial and religious minorities throughout the twentieth century, murderous and fascistic elements are mobilized that, in a crisis, can be unleashed against the working class as a whole.

In cultivating the conditions for an intensification of anti-Muslim violence within the United States, a particularly reprehensible role has been played by the racist, homicidal film American Sniper. The film features an elite US soldier heroically slaughtering Iraqi “savages” for God and country.

Chris Kyle, the real-life sniper behind Clint Eastwood’s pro-war propaganda film, boasted of killing more than 300 people. (He was apparently also a pathological liar who bragged about having shot and killed dozens of “looters” in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and to have participated in other events that are unlikely ever to have happened).

During a military investigation of allegations that Kyle killed an unarmed civilian in Iraq, Kyle said, “I don’t shoot people with Korans. I’d like to, but I don’t.”

In the current toxic social climate, and in the absence of any progressive outlet for social discontent, American Sniper has met with a certain and disturbing response. “American sniper makes me wanna go shoot some f—ing Arabs,” wrote one individual on Twitter. “Nice to see a movie where the Arabs are portrayed for who they really are,” wrote another, “vermin scum intent on destroying us.”

Another individual wrote, “Great f—ing movie and now I really want to kill some f—ing r–heads.” And another: “American sniper made me appreciate soldiers 100x more and hate Muslins (sic) 1000000x more.”

The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee described a “drastic increase” in hate speech on social media following the film’s release. It is not difficult to see how these kinds of responses can translate into real violence.

A revealing episode was provided by the “National Prayer Breakfast” on February 5. Bowing to pressure from the right, Obama utilized the occasion (a reactionary spectacle under any circumstances) to denounce “ISIL, a brutal, vicious death cult that, in the name of religion, carries out unspeakable acts of barbarism, terrorizing religious minorities like the Yezidis, subjecting women to rape as a weapon of war, and claiming the mantle of religious authority for such actions.” Obama also mentioned the Crusades and the Inquisition as examples of “terrible deeds” committed in the name of religion.

Obama’s appearance fueled an ongoing campaign by the Republican right denouncing the White House for not going far enough in vilifying Muslims. Obama was criticized on the grounds that his invocation of the Crusades and the Inquisition “throws Christians under the bus.”

“The words ‘radical Islamic terrorism’ do not come out of the president’s mouth,” declared Republican Senator Ted Cruz. “The word ‘jihad’ does not come out of the president’s mouth. And that is dangerous.”

“The president’s comments… at the prayer breakfast are the most offensive I’ve ever heard a president make in my lifetime,” former Virginia Governor Jim Gilmore told reporters. “He has offended every believing Christian in the United States. This goes further to the point that Mr. Obama does not believe in America or the values we all share.”

The engines of anti-Muslim agitation in the United States do not include only the usual suspects: the Republican Party, the military, AM talk radio, police, the intelligence agencies, Fox News, the Murdoch press, religious zealots, billionaire reactionaries, the Tea Party and so forth.

Instead, anti-Muslim prejudice has been lent a certain respectable gloss by so-called “liberal” and “left” sections of the political establishment. These layers either endorse the vilification of Muslims, acquiesce to it, or make hand-wringing scholarly inquiries into whether or not Islam is “inherently violent.”

“The rash of horrific attacks in the name of Islam,” read a front-page article in the New York Times on January 9, “is spurring an anguished debate among Muslims here in the heart of the Islamic world about why their religion appears cited so often as a cause for violence and bloodshed.” The article then weighs arguments—for and against—the proposition that Islam is “inherently more violent than Judaism or Christianity.”

No significant section of the political establishment in any of the imperialist countries has shown itself capable of taking a principled stand in opposition to the promotion of anti-Muslim sentiment. That task falls to the socialist movement, which stands for the international unity of the working class, defends its democratic achievements, and rejects all attempts to whip up national, ethnic or religious bigotry.

The author also recommends:

New York City police, CIA in massive spying operation among Muslims
[26 August 2011]

Murdered United States Muslims commemorated in Amsterdam


Commemoration for murdered Muslims in Amsterdam

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

Vigil on Dam square because of murder of three young Muslims in the USA

Today, 21:15

Three young Muslims killed in the USA this week have been commemorated on the Dam in Amsterdam. Around 19:00 between 100 and 200 people gathered. They carried posters with photographs of the three victims. They also had banners with texts like: stop the smear campaign against Muslims.

The participants of the memorial are angry about the lack of attention in the Dutch media for the murders. They are amazed that the 46-year-old man who shot and killed the Muslims is not called a terrorist.

US President Barack Obama has condemned the murder of the three Muslim students in the state of North Carolina. He called the murder cruel and atrocious. “Nobody in the US should be the target for what they are, how they look, or what religion they profess”, Obama said in a statement.

Last Wednesday, the two women of 19 and 23 years old and a 21-year-old man were shot dead in an apartment at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Chapel Hill shooting suspect Craig Hicks had at least a dozen guns at his home, police say: here.

Hundreds in Qatar protest North Carolina ‘terrorist act': here.

The killing of three Muslim-American college students in Chapel Hill, North Carolina has sparked an outpouring of anger and sympathy across the US and around the world, as police continue to investigate whether religious or ethnic hatred was a motive in the shootings. A crowd of more than 5,000 people gathered in Raleigh, North Carolina on Thursday for the funerals of the three youths: here.

Chapel Hill victim’s sister: American Sniper ‘dehumanizes’ Muslims: here.

Texas, USA: Fire destroys Islamic centre building in Houston in suspected arson attack and hate crime: here.

Islamophobia and murder in the USA


This video from the USA is called 3 Members Of Muslim Family Murdered In Chapel Hill, Sparking #MuslimLivesMatter Campaign.

From daily The Independent in Britain:

Chapel Hill shooting: American Sniper ‘behind rise in Islamophobia in US’, says leading Arab advocate

Deaths in North Carolina have seen resurgence in #MuslimLivesMatter campaign

Adam Withnall

Thursday 12 February 2015

One of the leading advocates for Arab-Americans has hit out at the lack of coverage received by the killing of three young Muslims in North Carolina, describing it as symptomatic of an American Sniper-inspired rise in Islamophobia.

Abed Ayoub, the legal director of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), said the film industry, US government and right-wing political commentators all had a role to play in the recent surge in anti-Arab and anti-Muslim sentiment.

Chapel Hill, North Carolina, where these three students were murdered, is also where prominent fundamentalist Christian Islamophobic ideologist Robert Spencer is from. Spencer studied Christian theology; not Islam, where he nevertheless claims to be in expert in. The British Conservative government banned Spencer from entering the United Kingdom for his hatemongering. Spencer was one of the sources of inspiration for Norwegian Islamophobic mass murderer and self-styled ‘conservative Christian’ Anders Behring Breivik.

On Tuesday night, Deah Barakat, 23, his wife Yusor Mohammad Abu-Salha, 21, and her sister Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha, 19, were shot dead in their home in Chapel Hill near the University of North Carolina (UDC). A 46-year-old man who handed himself in shortly after the attack, Craig Stephen Hicks, has been charged with three counts of murder.

When asked if the reaction would have been different if the victims had not been Muslims, Mr Ayoub told The Independent: “Absolutely 100 per cent this would have been covered differently if the roles were reversed.

“This country needs to realise that acts of terrorism are not confined to a single religion or ethnicity,” he said. “This [Islamophobia] is something that needs to stop and we would like the media to pay more attention and cover this more to show the impact of hate crime and hate speech.”

Speaking about the rise of anti-Arab sentiment in the US since the controversy surrounding the Ground Zero mosque

not a mosque; and not visible from Ground Zero

in 2010, Mr Ayoub called the release of American Sniper “the turning point”.

“It may not be directly linked to the film, but the overall way that Islamophobia and anti-Arab sentiment are moving in this country is portrayed in the words of those who watched American Sniper.

“The film gave us a look into how these individuals were feeling and for the first time we were getting raw, real messages – and they were frightening.”

The ADC was founded in 1980 by the first US Senator of Arab origin, James Abourezk, and is the largest organisation representing the civil rights of Arab-Americans in the US.

And Mr Ayoub called on President Barack Obama to offer his condolences to the families involved, and said the government’s policy of only inviting Muslims to its Combatting Violent Extremism forums as an example of where it “needs to change”.

Read more: Three young Muslims gunned down in North Carolina

Suspect condemned all religions in anti-theistic Facebook posts

How news of the shootings spread around the world

“There are key individuals who could tone down the Islamophobic rhetoric,” he said. “You have people on the extreme right that just push that Islam is an evil religion and Muslims and Arabs are these evil people.

“They could take action and tone that down a little bit – you are entitled to your opinion but don’t attack the community and don’t paint us with a broad brush,” Mr Ayoub said.

The killings have prompted a resurgence in the use of the #MuslimLivesMatter social media campaign – and that’s a phrase that was used by the mayor of Chapel Hill in the aftermath of the shooting.

Mayor Mark Kleinschmidt said: “I share strong feelings of outrage and shock with my fellow citizens and University students – as well as concerned people everywhere. We do not know whether anti-Muslim bias played a role in this crime, but I do recognize the fear that members of our community may feel. Chapel Hill is a place for everyone, a place where Muslim lives matter.”

FBI OPENS INVESTIGATION INTO CHAPEL HILL DEATHS AS THOUSANDS MOURN “Thousands of mourners attended the funeral prayers on Thursday for three young Muslims killed in North Carolina, and the father of two of the victims urged U.S. authorities to probe whether religious hatred was a motive for the murders.” Prayer vigils for the three have taken place across the country. [Reuters]