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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26 Aug 2019

Today in IslamophobiaTwo Rohingya refugees are shot dead by Bangladesh police during a gun fight, an op-ed by Mehdi Hasan argues it’s time to prosecute Suu Kyi for genocide. Narendra Modi is awarded UAE top award even as Kashmir remains under blockade. Our recommended read of the day is by Maung Zarni titled “Inaction on China and India’s crimes embolden Myanmar”. This, and more, below:


26 Aug 2019

Opinion | Inaction on China and India's crimes emboldens Myanmar | Recommended Read

The so-called "international community" continues to fail to protect the rights of the Rohingya and provide them with safety and dignified living conditions. Those who remain in Myanmar continue to be confined to camps and face effectively an apartheid regime which refuses to grant them their rights as citizens. Those in refugee camps in Bangladesh and elsewhere still live in horrendous conditions and continue to face the threat of forced repatriation. The international community has also failed to take the necessary measures to punish and isolate the Myanmar regime for its atrocities. Except for a few travel bans and limited sanctions, there has been no serious action against those in power in Naypyidaw. Increasingly, one of the main causes of this lack of action has been the rise of anti-Muslim sentiment across the world. read the complete article

Our recommended read of the day
26 Aug 2019

India's Narendra Modi gets top UAE honour amid Kashmir crisis

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has received the United Arab Emirates's (UAE) highest civilian honour, a move that has sparked outrage among rights activists over his government's clampdown on the Muslim-majority Kashmir region administered by New Delhi. Modi was awarded the Order of Zayed medal by the UAE's crown prince, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, known by his initials MBZ, during a visit to the capital Abu Dhabi on Saturday, reinforcing ties between the two countries. read the complete article

26 Aug 2019

India's actions in Kashmir and the muted response from Arab Gulf states

The Indian government’s actions have subjected New Delhi to strong condemnation from human rights groups, such as Amnesty International (AI), which called on the UN Security to intervene in defence of the people of Kashmir. Hameeda Nayeem, a professor at Kashmir University, said: Indian officials “are actually hiding a dark Hindu fantasy of destroying Kashmiri Muslims, and reducing them to a minuscule minority so that they can always rule them and they will be enslaved. Thus far, Turkey’s government and some clerical figures in Iran have condemned India’s actions, but the Arab world’s leaders are not coming to Pakistan’s defence. Among the Persian Gulf’s Arabian sheikdoms—where India has extremely deep historical, economic, and socio-cultural links—Islamabad has not received support. To the contrary, some Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member-states have essentially taken ‘pro-India’ stances on this escalating crisis in Kashmir. read the complete article


26 Aug 2019

Opinion | Two Years On, Life Is Still On Hold For Rohingya Refugees

“All we want is for our rights to be protected, equal to other people,” Mohamed, a 27-year-old Rohingya man, told me as we sat in a crowded shelter in Kutupalong Camp in southeast Bangladesh. Kutupalong is the world’s largest refugee camp, home to more than 600,000 Rohingya who fled ethnic cleansing in Myanmar’s Rakhine State in August 2017. Mohamed has lived in refugee camps for his entire life. Let’s be clear: Mohamed cannot return to Myanmar any time soon. The situation in Rakhine State has not improved, and there has been no accountability for the appalling human rights violations which erupted in August 2017. More than 100,000 Rohingya are forced to live in squalid internally displaced persons camps. They are not recognized as citizens of Myanmar and have very few rights in the country. Mohamed told me that the Rohingya “all dream of going back” but said that that unless major changes happen in Myanmar, “we would just be chased away again.” Other refugees I spoke to echoed this sentiment. read the complete article

26 Aug 2019

'Genocide Day': Thousands of Rohingya rally in Bangladesh camps

Almost 200,000 Rohingya participated in a peaceful gathering, which was attended by UN officials, at the Kutupalong camp in Bangladesh's Cox's Bazar on Sunday, police officer Zakir Hassan told AFP news agency. Children, hijab-wearing women, and men wearing long lungis shouted: "God is great, long live Rohingya" as they marched in the heart of the world's largest refugee camp to commemorate what they described as "Genocide Day". Some carried placards and banners, reading "Never again! Rohingya genocide remembrance day" and "Restore our citizenship". On August 25, 2017, nearly 740,000 Muslim-majority Rohingya fled Rakhine State for Bangladesh - joining 200,000 already there - after Myanmar's armed forces launched a brutal crackdown following attacks on security posts. Sunday's rally came days after a second failed attempt to repatriate the refugees, which saw not a single Rohingya turn up to return across the border. read the complete article

26 Aug 2019

Rohingya refugees shot dead by Bangladesh police during gunfight

Rights activists who asked not to be named said they believe the two Rohingya men were killed by police in what appeared to be a staged encounter. It happened two days after a second failed attempt to repatriate the refugees. Not a single Rohingya returned to cross the border to Rakhine state. read the complete article


26 Aug 2019

'Hindus Want Jhatka Meat': McDonald's Faces Flak for Serving Halal Meat

After a Twitter user asked McDonald's India whether their restaurants are Halal certified, the company said it does serve Halal meat to its customers. The response irked many users who blasted the fast food major for serving Halal meat to a nation where 80 per cent people are non-Muslims. "Dear @McDonalds, per your response, should I understand that your products are not meant for non-Muslims in India? Do let me know," tweeted another. In a similar incident, Zomato faced flak after it said that food doesn't have any religion while responding to a customer declining to accept an order delivered by a Muslim delivery agent. "Thanks for the info what about jhatka meat which we Hindus eat either start serving or we ain't gonna come to ur outlets ever," posted an angry user to McDonald's India. read the complete article

United States

26 Aug 2019

Most U.S. Muslims are patriots. Asking them to choose between faith and nation has a pernicious consequence

Implicit in Trump’s comments, and in much of the criticism of Tlaib and Omar, is that they are not fully “American.” This is a problematic implication for two reasons. First, surveys show that, in fact, Muslim Americans are highly patriotic and mirror non-Muslims socioeconomically. Second, new research shows that even implicitly framing Muslim and American identities as separate may reduce Muslim Americans’ willingness to engage in politics. National surveys of Muslim Americans conducted by the Pew Research Center in 2007 and 2011 asked respondents whether they identify first as “American,” “Muslim” or “both.” In both years, about 27 percent of Muslims said “American” and 18 percent said “both.” The largest minority, about 48 percent, identified primarily as “Muslim.” In its 2017 survey, Pew asked a different question: how much “pride” Muslims feel in being American. Here, Muslim Americans were no different from Americans as a whole. Nearly all Muslims (92 percent) “completely” or “mostly” agreed that they are “proud to be an American,” compared to 91 percent of the general public. In fact, a larger fraction of Muslims said “completely” agree (66 percent vs. 60 percent among all Americans). Despite insinuations that Muslims living in the United States aren’t “American” enough, Muslim Americans express a strong commitment to this country. read the complete article

26 Aug 2019

Opinion | Why Democratic Presidential Candidates Need to Listen to American Muslims

For Muslim Americans, the election of Donald Trump was more than just an unprecedented expression of hate and fascism in our country. It was a threat to our very existence. I founded MPower Change to build power in the Muslim-American community and combat Islamophobia. Protests against Trump’s Muslim ban and hateful rhetoric made national headlines. We worked with other Muslim advocacy organizations to make a huge impact in local communities and encourage Muslims to become involved in the political process. Those efforts paid off—in 2018, Muslim turnout spiked by 25 percent nationwide, with Muslims voting in record numbers. We elected two Muslim women to Congress—Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar—for the first time in history. In the face of unspeakable hate, the Muslim community chose to point America toward the hope of a greater future. And we won. read the complete article

26 Aug 2019

Trump court pick denounced feminists, gay-rights groups and diversity efforts in 1990s, 2000s editorials

Steven Menashi, a Stanford-trained lawyer who clerked for Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, wrote dozens of editorials and blog posts in the late 1990s and early 2000s for a number of college and professional publications decrying "leftist multiculturalism" and "PC orthodoxy." He attacked academic multiculturalism as "thoroughly bankrupt" and, in 2002, defended then-Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi amid a worldwide controversy over comments asserting the superiority of Western civilization over Islamic culture -- for which Berlusconi himself ultimately apologized. The writings offer a window into Menashi's worldview, particularly on social issues, and are reflective of the broader conservative movement of the late 1990s and early 2000s. If confirmed by the Senate, Menashi would receive a lifetime appointment on the 2nd US Circuit Court of Appeals, which covers New York, Connecticut and Vermont. read the complete article

Today in Islamophobia, 26 Aug 2019 Edition


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