Today in Islamophobia

A daily list of headlines about Islamophobia
compiled by the Bridge Initiative

Each day, the Bridge Initiative aims to bring you the news you need to know about Islamophobia. This resource will be updated every weekday at approximately 11:00 AM EST.

Today in Islamophobia Newsletter

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19 Aug 2019

Today in Islamophobia: As Kashmir reels from its annexation, India’s ruling BJP plans detention camps for migrants. An op-ed looks at Stephen Miller’s rise to power, another asks if Boris Johnson has a plan to combat the rise of Islamophobia in the U.K. Our recommended read of the day is by Kapil Komireddi titled “The Kashmir crisis isn’t about territory. It’s about a Hindu victory over Islam.” This, and more, below:


19 Aug 2019

Opinion | The Kashmir crisis isn’t about territory. It’s about a Hindu victory over Islam | Recommended Read

Modi’s sudden takeover in Kashmir is the fulfillment of a long ideological yearning to make a predominantly Muslim population surrender to his vision of a homogeneous Hindu nation. It is also a way of conveying to the rest of India — a union of dizzyingly diverse states — that no one is exempt from the Hindu-power paradise he wants to build on the subcontinent. Kashmir is both a warning and a template: Any state that deviates from this vision can be brought under Delhi’s thumb in the name of “unity.” Those who believe that such a day will never come — that India’s democratic institutions and minority protections will assert themselves — also never thought that someone like Modi would one day lead the country. Modi once seemed destined to disappear into history as a fanatical curio. As the newly appointed chief minister of Gujarat, he presided over the worst communal bloodletting in India’s recent history in 2002, when 1,000 Muslims, by a conservative estimate, were slaughtered by sword-wielding Hindus in his state over several weeks. Some accused Modi of abetting the mobs; others said he turned a blind eye to them. The carnage made Modi a pariah: Liberal Indians likened him to Hitler, the United States denied him a visa, and Britain and the European Union boycotted him. read the complete article

Our recommended read of the day
19 Aug 2019

‘News From Here Doesn’t Go Out’: Kashmir Simmers Under Lockdown

Amid the anxiety, the Kashmir valley is under an official lockdown: The Indian government, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has suspended all communication channels, including the postal service. The streets are manned by paramilitary forces. Violence has been mostly restricted to dozens of stone-throwing incidents, though many protesters have been injured by pellets fired by security personnel. Kashmiris are anxious and enraged by the situation—and the communication blackout that has left them cut off from the rest of the world for the past 14 days. read the complete article

19 Aug 2019

Opinion | Modi has stoked Kashmir’s anger and stained all India’s democracy

Mr. Modi is playing a dangerous game. His sunny vows of transparency aside, the stripping of Kashmir’s autonomy was done in darkness and in the most coercive way possible. As The Post’s Niha Masih reported from Srinagar, streets are no longer crowded with civilians but awash with India’s armed soldiers, and “instead of traffic jams at intersections, there are spools of concertina wire. People remain inside their homes with no telephone, Internet or cable TV service. No one has seen or heard from local political leaders, hundreds of whom are in detention. Of the more than 200 newspapers in the region, only five are publishing physical copies. Their websites are stuck at Aug. 5.” read the complete article

19 Aug 2019

New Delhi’s Demographic Designs in Kashmir

It seems clear that revoking Article 35A will change the nature of Kashmir. For now, it is Muslim majority—according to Indian census data from 2011, 68 percent of Jammu and Kashmir’s 12.5 million people were Muslims. With the local government no longer able to bar outsiders from land ownership, New Delhi could presumably encourage the migration of Hindus to the region in the same way China has supported the growth of Han Chinese populations in Tibet. The strategy of changing the ethnic mix of the population (combined with building large-scale infrastructure) has hardly led to its intended result of enforcing Tibet’s integration and generating loyalty. It may have given Beijing the opportunity to exercise greater surveillance and control, as reported by Freedom House, but among Tibetans, it has led to deeper alienation and resentment. More than 150 Tibetans have set themselves on fire since 2011 to protest the Chinese rule. read the complete article

19 Aug 2019

India Plans Big Detention Camps for Migrants. Muslims Are Afraid

More than four million people in India, mostly Muslims, are at risk of being declared foreign migrants as the government pushes a hard-line Hindu nationalist agenda that has challenged the country’s pluralist traditions and aims to redefine what it means to be Indian. State authorities are rapidly expanding foreigner tribunals and planning to build huge new detention camps. Hundreds of people have been arrested on suspicion of being a foreign migrant — including a Muslim veteran of the Indian Army. Local activists and lawyers say the pain of being left off a preliminary list of citizens and the prospect of being thrown into jail have driven dozens to suicide. read the complete article

United States

19 Aug 2019

Tlaib suggests boycotting Maher show after he calls anti-Israel boycott movement 'bulls--- purity test'

Tlaib, who was denied entry to Israel last week over her support of the movement, said that she was "tired of folks discrediting a form of speech that is centered on equality and freedom." “This is exactly how they tried to discredit & stop the boycott to stand up against the apartheid in S. Africa,” Tlaib added. “It didn't work then and it won't now.” Maher on Friday voiced strong criticism of the BDS movement on HBO's "Real Time," calling it a "a bullshit purity test by people who want to appear woke but actually slept through history class." "It’s predicated on this notion, I think — it’s very shallow thinking — that the Jews in Israel, mostly white, and the Palestinians are browner, so they must be innocent and correct, and the Jews must be wrong. As if the occupation came right out of the blue, that this completely peaceful people found themselves occupied," he said. read the complete article

19 Aug 2019

How Stephen Miller Seized the Moment to Battle Immigration

Stephen Miller was 22 and looking for work in Washington. He lacked government experience but had media appearances on talk radio and Fox News and a history of pushing causes like “Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week.” A first-term congresswoman from Minnesota offered him a job interview and discovered they were reading the same book: a polemic warning that Muslim immigration could mean “the end of the world as we know it.” By the end of the interview, Representative Michele Bachmann had a new press secretary. And a dozen years later, Mr. Miller, now a senior adviser to President Trump, is presiding over one of the most fervent attacks on immigration in American history. Rising fears of terrorism after the Sept. 11 attacks brought new calls to keep immigrants out. Declining need for industrial labor left fewer businesses clamoring to bring them in. A surge of migrants across the South stoked a backlash in the party’s geographic base. Conservative media, once divided, turned against immigration, and immigration-reduction groups that had operated on the margins grew in numbers and sophistication. Abandoning calls for minority outreach, the Republican Party chose instead to energize its conservative white base — heeding strategists who said the immigrant vote was not just a lost cause but an existential threat. read the complete article

19 Aug 2019

For years, reporters questioned the terror persecution of Hamid Hayat. Now he's been freed

After spending14 years in prison on charges that he attended a terrorist training camp in Pakistan, Hamid Hayat was freed on August 9 following a California judge’s decision to overturn the conviction. From the start, Hayat’s case had been controversial. The government’s star witness, Naseem Khan, was a fast-food worker earning $7 per hour before the FBI enlisted him as an informant and paid him nearly $230,000 over three years. Khan came to the FBI’s attention about a month after the September 11 terrorist attacks by claiming to have information about a visit to the United States by Ayman al-Zawahiri, Osama bin Laden’s deputy in Al Qaeda. Although agents determined that Khan’s information about al-Zawahiri was bogus, the FBI, in a post-9/11 rush to build a network of thousands of informants in U.S. Muslim communities, recruited him into the ranks anyway. By the time Hayat went to trial in 2006, federal prosecutors downplayed Khan’s credibility questions, calling his al-Zawahiri report a case of “mistaken identity.” read the complete article

United Kingdom

19 Aug 2019

The UK has an Islamophobia problem. Muslims want to know what Boris Johnson is going to do about it

Niqabs and burqas were at the center of a controversy that involved the UK's new Prime Minister Boris Johnson last year when he likened Muslim women who wear veils to "letter boxes" and "bank robbers" in his column for the Daily Telegraph newspaper. When Johnson made that comparison, he had been trying to defend a woman's right to wear a veil, but his choice of language sparked widespread anger and condemnation, and led many across politics and public life to question Johnson's character and accuse him of worsening anti-Muslim sentiment. In July, he was confronted with renewed accusations of Islamophobia after a 2007 essay was unearthed in which he claimed Islam left Muslim countries "centuries behind" the Western world. Johnson is now running a country where life for Muslims has become more hostile in recent years. read the complete article

Today in Islamophobia, 19 Aug 2019 Edition


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