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 Apr 2021

Today in Islamophobia: Islamophobic rhetoric by an Oklahoma GOP Chairman threatens the “safety and stability of the state’s Muslim minority”,as China continues to deny testimony by survivors and exiles describing the treatment of Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang, and in India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government continues to crack down on protests against his party’s Hindu nationalist agenda. Our recommended read of the day is by Rozina Ali on the story of Shahawar Matin Siraj and the FBI informant who goaded him into what ultimately landed him behind bars. This and more below:

United States

15 Apr 2021

The ‘Herald Square Bomber’ Who Wasn’t

Shahawar Matin Siraj first met the older man late in the summer of 2003. He would see him at the mosque in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, sobbing loudly during prayers and hovering near the imam. But when the man entered the bookstore nearby, where Siraj worked, he was warm and easygoing. He said his name was Osama Eldawoody, and the two men struck up an unlikely friendship. Siraj, at 21, had a hulking build and a tendency to ramble when he spoke. He usually lingered around the store with friends from the neighborhood, talking about Islam and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. He had difficulty grasping new ideas and would need them explained multiple times, but in front of his friends, he pretended to know more than he did. Eldawoody was the son of an Egyptian religious scholar and said he studied nuclear engineering. He was knowledgeable about the world and had a flair about him, gesticulating excitedly as he spoke. To Siraj’s delight, Eldawoody took an interest in him, encouraging him to pursue his interest in computers. Never before had someone this sophisticated, an adult more than twice his age, taken him so seriously. Over the months, Siraj found himself pouring his heart out to Eldawoody, about his financial woes and about Mano, the woman in Pakistan he had met online; he hoped to marry her soon. He was distraught when Eldawoody confided that he was suffering from a liver disease and worried that it was potentially fatal. Siraj promised to care for Eldawoody’s daughter if anything happened to him and began telling him, in his broken English, “I am like your son.” Slowly, their conversations took on a darker edge. Eldawoody complained to Siraj that the F.B.I. was harassing him, maybe because he was a Muslim who knew about nuclear engineering. They discussed the Abu Ghraib prison scandal and online images of Muslims being tortured and killed in the wars overseas. When Siraj saw a picture of a girl who was raped, he broke down and cried. Eldawoody seemed to share his friend’s anger. Something had to be done, something that would get the world to pay attention. They agreed that an attack that would hurt the United States economically would help save Muslim lives. On Aug. 21, the three men visited Herald Square and made drawings that Eldawoody kept. But Siraj was starting to have doubts: The station was a busy one and never empty. What if a child got hurt? What if someone died because of him? Siraj liked to talk tough, but this was different. Eldawoody appeared to be serious. Siraj begged God for forgiveness for what he had almost become entangled in. He considered going to the police, but when there was a scuffle at the bookstore with an aggressive customer earlier that year, the New York Police Department charged him with misdemeanor assault, and that case was still open. He was a Muslim man with an asylum case pending in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks. He tried to reassure himself. Eldawoody had insisted that he was essential to the plot, and because Siraj had refused to place the bomb, didn’t that really mean the plan was dead? They hadn’t even finalized a date for an attack. Four days after the car ride, Siraj got a call from the Police Department, asking him to come to a station in Bay Ridge to discuss his misdemeanor charge. He set off from the bookstore around 3 p.m., when, without warning, he was surrounded by three unmarked cars. A gun was pointed at his head, and his hands were cuffed. An hour later, he was sitting in an office in Lower Manhattan, panicking. He asked to call his mom but was not allowed to. A six-foot table separated him and an N.Y.P.D. officer, an N.Y.P.D. intelligence detective, an F.B.I. agent and two federal prosecutors. Siraj learned that he was under arrest on suspicion of conspiring to blow up the Herald Square subway station. His friend, Eldawoody, was an informant. read the complete article

Our recommended read for the day
17 Apr 2021

Laith Hammoudi sacrificed his safety for democracy. Biden’s refugee decision renews hope

It’s been a long time since Laith Hammoudi felt safe in his Baghdad neighborhood. He risked his life for over a decade as an Arabic interpreter employed by American and British media companies, including six years with McClatchy, aiding coverage of the Iraq War. Helping western nations is considered treasonous in a kleptocracy governed by corrupt politicians and ruthless militias that wage sectarian violence. Yet Hammoudi’s sacrifices for our democracy remain unacknowledged over nine years since he first applied for a U.S. visa through a resettlement program. His sponsor, Sacramento Bee Capitol Bureau Chief Adam Ashton, worked with Hammoudi in Iraq. Twice over the last five years he was told to prepare for Hammoudi’s arrival. But Hammoudi remains one of 1.1 million asylum-seekers caught in a backlog choked by bureaucracy, partisan refugee restrictions and deep pandemic cutbacks. read the complete article

16 Apr 2021

Restoring the ‘Soul of the Nation’ Means Taking in Refugees

Biden returned to a battle for the soul of this nation as a campaign theme in 2020—successfully, as it turned out. Which raises the mystery of why President Biden is quietly maintaining one of the Trump era’s most discriminatory policies and a key element of Trump advisers’ broader agenda of making America white again: the throttling of refugee admissions. In 2020, only about 12,000 refugees were admitted to the United States—a steep decline from 2016, the last year of the Obama administration, when about 85,000 were admitted. This year, despite having vowed to reverse Trump’s discriminatory immigration policies, the Biden administration is on track to admit even fewer refugees, having allowed in only about 2,000 so far, according to a report from the International Rescue Committee. The Trump-era restrictions, the report notes, “have amounted to a de facto ban on many Muslim refugees. These policies, in the sordid tradition of the Muslim and Africa Ban, have undeniably discriminatory impacts along lines of nationality and religion.” America’s military misadventures over the past few decades have shown the folly of attempting to remake the world through force. But one morally righteous and uncomplicated action that the United States can take to help those suffering under repressive governments, violent extremists, or climate catastrophes is allowing them to live here and contribute to American society, as generations of refugees have done before them. In some cases, these refugees are fleeing circumstances created or exacerbated by American foreign policy, and admitting them is the least the United States can do. Restoring “the soul of the nation” cannot mean simply unseating Trump. It also has to mean reversing the policies his administration put in place in an attempt to codify into law his racial and sectarian conception of American citizenship. If Biden cannot do that, then he has restored little more than Democratic control of the presidency. And should he fail to rescind these policies simply because he fears criticism of those who enabled Trump’s cruelty to begin with, it will be nothing short of cowardice. read the complete article

17 Apr 2021

US Senators introduce bill to probe whether Myanmar attacks on Rohingya constituted genocide

A group of 10 US senators led by Ed Markey (D-MA) introduced legislation Wednesday that would require Secretary of State Antony Blinken to investigate Myanmar’s military attacks on the Rohingya minority and decide whether they constitute genocide. Since 2017, more than 750,000 Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh hoping to escape the military’s systemic killing of their people, says the legislation. The bill points to the documented history of the attacks, which have been investigated by the UN, the Department of State and the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar (IIFFMM). In 2018, the IIFFMM stated that they “ha[d] reasonable grounds to conclude 5 that the evidence that infers genocidal intent on the part of the State, identified in its last report, has strengthened that there is a serious risk that genocidal actions may occur or recur.” The alleged genocide is even more worrisome in light of the military coup currently ongoing in Myanmar and “further underscores the importance of the United States speaking out forcefully against human rights violations when they occur.” The legislation urges Blinken to complete his assessment of the situation within 90 days and includes a detailed description of the situation as well as recommendations on what steps the US government should take in response to the human rights violations currently ongoing in Myanmar. read the complete article

17 Apr 2021

The New Face of Trumpism in Texas

In 2015, in the Dallas suburb of Irving, the fates of two very different Texans collided. One was 14-year-old Ahmed Mohamed, a precocious kid in a NASA T-shirt who had built a clock out of spare parts and brought it to school in a pencil case. His English teacher decided it might be a bomb, and the school called the police, who arrested Mohamed for bringing in a “hoax bomb.” Because Mohamed’s family was part of Irving’s large Muslim minority, many liberals saw this as a baseless case of Islamophobia. The other Texan was Irving Mayor Beth Van Duyne, a blond 44-year-old with Disney-princess bone structure. She defended Mohamed’s arrest on Facebook, then went on The Glenn Beck Program to repeat the “hoax bomb” lie and complain that the child hadn’t given police enough information. “We’ve heard more from the media than the child ever released to the police when we were asking him questions,” she said calmly. In the end, Mohamed was never charged, and he and his family moved to Qatar. As for Van Duyne: This past November, she was elected to the United States Congress. Van Duyne’s victory suggests that her 2015 strategy of stoking fears of foreigners didn’t make her unelectable in a diverse, growing suburb—and may have even aided her. Trump may be gone, but Trumpism is very much alive. A few years into her tenure, Van Duyne started to look beyond typical mayoral matters, such as cutting taxes by half a penny, and to the culture wars. Some Texas politicians were already flirting with Islamophobia: Republican Representative Louie Gohmert claimed in 2013 that “radical Islamists” were being “trained to act like Hispanic[s]” so they could sneak across the border. Trump had already spent years implying that President Obama was Muslim, and won widespread press coverage for it. “At that time, trashing on Muslims was very politically popular,” Gears told me. One local Facebook group, in particular, tended to attract posters who were both pro–Van Duyne and anti-Islamic, Selk told me. “It was just wall-to-wall racism,” he said. Several members of the Facebook group “absolutely feared and hated Muslims.” Though Van Duyne did not participate in the racist conversations, she did pop up occasionally to check in with constituents. And the tenor of the discussion meant Islamophobia became a “good issue” for her, Selk said. In 2015, Van Duyne seized on a claim, promoted by the conservative site Breitbart News, suggesting that a Muslim court in Irving was operating under Sharia law. She swiftly posted a condemnation of the idea on Facebook. “Recently, there have been rumors suggesting that the City of Irving has somehow condoned, approved or enacted the implementation of a Sharia Law Court in our City,” she wrote. “Let me be clear, neither the City of Irving, our elected officials or city staff have anything to do with the decision of the mosque that has been identified as starting a Sharia Court.” The “Sharia Law Court” was in fact a mediation panel for resolving disputes among Muslims in Dallas. These types of mediators exist for Christians and Jews too, and the area’s Islamic community said its panel complied with American laws. The fact-checking site Politifact rated “false” the claim that Muslims “attempted to establish the first Islamic Sharia court inside the United States in the town of Irving, Texas.” Nevertheless, Van Duyne went on Glenn Beck’s show to denounce the panel. Afterward, Van Duyne pushed the Irving city council to pass a resolution endorsing a Texas House bill that would bar “foreign” laws from superseding American laws. The measure was widely known as an “anti-Sharia” bill, and it thrilled the state’s far-right Republicans. read the complete article

16 Apr 2021

John Bennett as state GOP chairman threatens progress for Oklahoma Muslims

John Bennett’s Islamophobic rhetoric and behavior are notorious. He called the Muslim civil rights organization CAIR (where I previously worked as an intern) a terrorist group. He conducted an interim legislative study to investigate the threat of “radical Islam,” and he looked an imam in the eye and reportedly told him that he was going to demolish his mosque. Perhaps most egregiously, in 2017, his assistant handed two high school students a questionnaire that asked, “Do you beat your wife?” along with other questions based on dangerous misconceptions about Muslims. In his eight years as a state representative, John Bennett sent a clear message to Muslims in Oklahoma: Not only were we not welcome, but we were a threat. This kind of Islamophobic rhetoric takes an undeniable human toll on Muslim communities. As a kid, I remember an older couple suspiciously following my hijab-wearing mother in TJ Maxx. While I was in middle school, one of the two other Muslim boys in my entire class was called a terrorist at recess. In 2019, a Muslim woman was not allowed into the Tulsa County sheriff building unless she removed her hijab, and in 2016 a gun range in Oktaha posted a sign saying it was a “Muslim-free” establishment. These events aren’t just isolated incidents; they are the consequence of anti-Muslim rhetoric that has been spewed for years. Islamophobic rhetoric has also inspired discriminatory policies and even violence. For the past four years, a ban on immigrants from Muslim-majority countries separated countless families. Politicians and pundits on news programs have floated ideas about the surveillance of mosques. There has been an unsettling rise in domestic terrorism, including violence against Muslims and the destruction of mosques. All of this occurs when misinformation disseminates in online forums, through the media, and even at the dinner table. read the complete article

16 Apr 2021

Senators Urge Biden To Shut Down Guantánamo, Calling It A 'Symbol Of Lawlessness'

Calling the U.S. military prison in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, a "symbol of lawlessness and human rights abuses," two dozen U.S. senators are urging President Biden to shut it down quickly and find new homes for the 40 men remaining there. Many of the detainees have been confined at Guantánamo for nearly two decades without being tried or charged, and some have been cleared for release but are still being held. In a letter sent to Biden on Friday and reviewed by NPR, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Dick Durbin and 23 of his Democratic-voting colleagues outlined immediate steps they believe the administration should take to close the secretive, deteriorating island detention facility. The senators said in the letter that Guantánamo "has damaged America's reputation, fueled anti-Muslim bigotry, and weakened the United States' ability to counter terrorism and fight for human rights and the rule of law around the world." As a result, they wrote, "it is past time" to shutter the prison, which opened in 2002, and "end indefinite detention." read the complete article

18 Apr 2021

SZA says she was scared to wear hijab after 9/11

The singer SZA has spoken out about the Islamophobia she experienced as a child and how she stopped wearing a hijab covering after September 11 because she was “so scared” of the reaction it would provoke. The singer, who grew up in a Muslim household in a predominantly white community in New Jersey, was speaking to the Muslim Girl website’s Snapchat series about her experiences. “I stopped covering after 9/11 because I was so scared,” she said. “This was like elementary school, middle school. I regret so much – like being afraid or caring what people said about me.” The singer, whose real name is Solána Rowe, said that she started wearing the hijab again in high school but she felt judged by the community for not being devout enough. “They were like, ‘What is this? You don’t live your life properly. You’re not really Muslim. Shut up.’ I always let somebody dictate how I was,” she said. At the same time Rowe said that non-Muslims projected the idea on to her that she was “oppressed” due to her head covering. “I couldn’t believe Islamophobia randomly deciding I’m oppressed because I’m covering my hair.” She also revealed that her family were victims of crimes due to their faith. “Someone threw a brick at my dad’s mosque,” she told the broadcast. read the complete article


16 Apr 2021

What did 20 years of western intervention in Afghanistan achieve? Ruination

Twenty years ago the United States decided to relieve its 9/11 agony not just by blasting Osama bin Laden’s base in the Afghan mountains, but by toppling the entire Afghan regime. This was despite young Taliban moderates declaring Bin Laden an “unwelcome guest” and the regime demanding he leave. The US then decided not just to blast Kabul but invited Nato to launder its action as a matter of global security. Britain had no dog in this fight and only joined because Tony Blair liked George W Bush. Most Americans at the time wanted to get out, and concentrate on nation-building in Iraq. It was the British who were eager to stay. Blair even sent a minister, Clare Short, to eliminate the poppy crop. Whatever she did, it increased production from six provinces to 28, and raised poppy revenue to a record $2.3bn (£1.7bn). Since then, most of Nato has retreated, hoping against hope that diplomacy would rescue the Kabul government and the west from abject humiliation. Three US presidents have pledged various forms of “surge and depart”, but lacked the political nerve to go through with them. Even Joe Biden has extended a May deadline to September. Each has done just enough to keep the puppet regime in Kabul safe without returning to full-scale imperial rule. America’s 2,300 troops and their air support will now leave, as will Britain’s 750 (as one senior UK defence source told the Guardian: “If they [the US] go, we’ll all have to go,”). For the US, the cost has been high: 2,216 dead and more than $2tn spent. Billions in “aid” are said to have left Afghanistan, much of it to the Dubai property market. The cost to Afghan civilians has been appalling, put at between 50,000 and 100,000 deaths over the two decades, all in retaliation for “hosting” the 9/11 attackers. Is that what we call western values? read the complete article

17 Apr 2021

The Muslim Problem: Deconstructing Western stereotypes about Muslims to end the toxic relationship with Islam

Politicians, tabloid news, and the silver screen continue to bombard us with depictions of Muslims as being 'unwilling to integrate,' 'violent,' 'extremist,' 'sexist' and 'homophobic.' These harmful narratives have been constructed and imposed on Muslims by European powers since the era of the Crusades. Examining this discourse is Manchester-based lawyer Tawseef Khan, who has penned a manifesto of sorts called The Muslim Problem. In The Muslim Problem, Khan deconstructs Western stereotypes about Muslims while also shining a lens on contemporary issues existing within the Muslim community. It is Khan's attempt to facilitate honest conversations across communities about the harmful and long-lasting effects of Islamophobia, as well as the effects of puritanical religious dogma within the Muslim community which sometimes behaves in an exclusive rather than inclusive manner. Khan says these are the two defining forces which throughout his life he has pushed up against. "Islamophobia really boils down to three or four stereotypes: that we don't and can't integrate, that we are violent, sexist, homophobic and transphobic, and that Muslim men are a problem," Khan tells The New Arab. "These are the kinds of narratives that have existed from the very beginning of Christian-Muslims interactions, so I wanted to make that connection between medieval and contemporary Islamophobia, and show how easy it is to dismantle it. read the complete article


16 Apr 2021

Why Has China Targeted Minorities in Xinjiang?

In a special episode on the crisis in Xinjiang region of China, the staff writer Raffi Khatchadourian investigates Xi Jinping’s government’s severe repression of Muslim minorities, principally Uyghurs and Kazhaks. Accounts from a camp survivor and a woman who fled detainment show how, even outside the camps, life in the province of Xinjiang became a prison. The crisis meets the United Nations’ definition of genocide, and the U.S. State Department has also made that determination. With the 2022 Winter Olympics coming up in Beijing, what can the world do about Xinjiang? read the complete article

16 Apr 2021

Decades of service to China’s government didn’t save my Uyghur dad from prison

In 2017, my family’s nightmare began: Over four decades, my father, Mamat Abdullah, had served China in many posts, including in the 1990s as the mayor of Korla, the second-largest city in the Xinjiang region. He helped open up trade with other parts of China for Korla’s agricultural products, including its famous pears. His last government position was as chief of the regional forestry bureau. He was held in high esteem in Urumqi, the regional capital — my home before I immigrated to the United States. He was a member of the Chinese Communist Party. He had no involvement with Uyghur separatists, always followed the law, and wanted Uyghurs and Han to coexist peacefully. He traveled to the United States on several occasions, often for work and also to visit me, my brother and our families. My parents planned to visit again in 2017 and got initial approval from the Chinese government. But right before they were supposed to travel, my father, who is now in his mid-70s, was suddenly taken away by Chinese authorities, without explanation. I got the news at 3 a.m. in Manassas, Va. When I reached my mother a few hours later on WeChat, she put her wrists together to show me the sign for handcuffs. “Your father,” she wept, “your father.” He had joined the growing number of Uyghurs, estimated at more than 1 million, held in prisons and concentration camps for no reason other than being Uyghur. The darkest time of my life had begun, and I still don’t know if or when it will end. China has never liked the fact that Uyghurs, a more than 10 million-strong ethnic group that practices Islam and speaks a language derived from Turkish, are different from the Han majority, which makes up more than 90 percent of China’s population. It was rare for Uyghurs of my father’s generation to complete their studies outside Xinjiang, but he studied at Northwest Minzu University in Lanzhou. Over the years, he accrued positions of authority because of his intelligence, education and leadership; he was seen as a bridge between his Uyghur community, the Han Chinese constantly moving to our region, and the local government. He was a bureaucrat, yes, but also someone people could come to with their problems. He was loyal to Uyghur people and culture but also dutiful in his role in the government, doing his best to help it function. When I left Urumqi in 2007, I never would have believed that one day he would be arrested by the same government — and eventually accused of separatism and abuse of power. read the complete article

16 Apr 2021

From cover-up to propaganda blitz: China's attempts to control the narrative on Xinjiang

China's Foreign Ministry this month issued the most forceful defense of its policies in Xinjiang to date, calling allegations of "genocide" in the region the "lie of the century." The statement -- made in response to ongoing calls for a possible boycott of the 2022 Beijing Olympics -- represents the culmination of a long evolution of China's official narrative regarding its treatment of Uyghurs. This evolving strategy, from outright denial to hardened public defense, is closely tied to the Chinese government's own increased sense of confidence on the world stage, and its willingness to confront its critics in the West head on, be it over Xinjiang, the South China Sea or Hong Kong, a CNN analysis shows. In recent months, Xinjiang has become something of a patriotic litmus test, in which those wishing to do business with China must pick a side -- either stand with Beijing in implicit defense of its policies, or face the consequences. The propaganda campaign has also reached a fever pitch, with state media reporters dispatched to Xinjiang to supposedly "prove" there is no oppression there, a "La La Land"-inspired musical released to make Beijing's case, while critics overseas have faced sanctions and harassment. While China has always maintained a sophisticated propaganda apparatus at home, its recent campaign over Xinjiang, particularly disinformation and harassment of critics overseas, is more in keeping with similar efforts by Russia, including deploying "whataboutism" in claiming any US denouncements are tainted by the legacy of slavery and genocide on the American continent. read the complete article

18 Apr 2021

China’s third phase of genocide denial: Attacking those who speak the truth

We know this thanks to Radio Free Asia reporter Gulchehra Hoja and her colleagues, to a few dogged academics and to dozens of survivors and exiles who have bravely given testimony. At a news conference this month, the Chinese Foreign Ministry attacked many of those witnesses as liars, criminals, terrorists and persons of “bad morality,” as RFA reported. One of those named as a terrorist was Hoja, 48, who agreed to speak with me Friday. While we were talking, she learned that the regime has listed her father, Abduqeyum Hoja, as a terrorist as well. “He is 80 years old!” she exclaimed. “A retired archaeologist. What kind of terrorist?” On a trip to Europe, she was able to roam the Internet unfettered for the first time. She heard uncensored news on the congressionally sponsored Radio Free Asia. She came to believe that, to practice honest journalism, she would have to leave China. In October 2001 she landed at Dulles International Airport, and the next day she went to work for RFA. Almost immediately the authorities forced her father to retire and confiscated his passport. Hoja has not been allowed to see her parents since, and in recent years, she could rarely talk with them. China has constructed the world’s most technologically advanced, stifling surveillance state in western China. All calls and movements are monitored. When Hoja became one of the first people to testify in Congress about the crimes against humanity underway in her homeland, her mother and 23 other relatives were incarcerated. Her brother, younger by a year and a half, was sentenced to three years. All communication with family ceased. So it came as both a shock and a relief when Chinese officials produced a video of her mother and brother earlier this month. “We are living pretty well,” her mother says. “We enjoy freedom of religion and belief,” her brother says, and then goes on to criticize his sister’s “wrong” beliefs. Hoja surmised that her brother has only recently been released, because his hair is still so short. Neither her brother nor her mother is speaking naturally, she said. “To see your parent in a propaganda video, it’s a horrible thing,” she said. “But still, compared to my colleagues, I am the luckiest one, because I know they are alive.” read the complete article


16 Apr 2021

India's Hindu Nationalist Project Relies on Brutal Repression

The Indian state under Prime Minister Narendra Modi is meting out vicious repression against dissenters to his right-wing Hindu nationalist vision. Yet that constant need to crack down on protests also reveals something: his far-right project is undeniably brittle. In case there’s any doubt that the current BJP government is the rightful heir of Golwalkar’s ideology, one can turn to Modi’s speech before Parliament in early February, where he coined the term “andolanjivi” to describe those who can’t live without protests and, in a chilling turn of phrase, compared all andolanjivis to parasites (“parjivis“), thus suggesting the need for extermination. Such language is a particularly disturbing expression of the paternalistic state argument — made in India, the United States, and elsewhere — that protests against the state must be the work of outside agitators. After all, how could its true citizens turn so boldly against it? Such rhetoric then justifies doing whatever it takes to remove from the body politic that which threatens to infect it. This is not just rhetoric; the BJP government has actively targeted those it considers andolanjivis. For a casual follower of the news in India today, it is difficult to keep pace with the seemingly endless arrests of farmers, labor leaders, professors, students, lawyers, civil rights defenders, and journalists. Further, many of those targeted are stuck in legal limbo, imprisoned for years under draconian laws, trapped in bail hearing after bail hearing. Thus, those arrested in the massive ongoing farmers’ protests share headline space with those arrested in last year’s round of state repression, which targeted those opposing discriminatory citizenship laws, and with a previous round of repression in the wake of anti-caste protests. All these rounds of repression follow a disturbingly similar pattern: an episode of violence, which is actively provoked or tacitly encouraged by Hindu nationalists, becomes a pretext for waves of arrests against those considered “anti-national” — “internal enemies” in the language of Golwalkar, or parasites in the words of his heir. read the complete article

Today in Islamophobia, 19 Apr 2021 Edition


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