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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20 May 2019

Today in Islamophobia: Tories investigate at least 100 cases of alleged Islamophobia within party ranks, and the UK government refuses to adopt a formal definition of the term. In India, the end of voting is marred by violence and anti- Muslim vitriol; in Australia, the conservative party looks on course for a ‘miracle victory’ as anti- Muslim candidate Fraser Anning loses his seat. Our recommended read for today is by Pragya Tiwari titled “How My Hometown became the the epicenter of India’s Religious Politics”. This, and more, below:


20 May 2019

Opinion | How My Hometown Became the Epicenter of India’s Religious Politics | Recommended Read

In the late 1980s, the Bharatiya Janata Party, then a minor Hindu nationalist party, ran a campaign to build a grand temple for Ram in Ayodhya, contending that a temple to Ram had existed on the disputed site until it was razed in the 16th century and replaced by Babri Masjid, a mosque built by India’s first Mogul emperor. On Dec. 6, 1992, a mob mobilized by the B.J.P. and its affiliates demolished the Babri mosque. India tore itself apart in subsequent religious violence; hundreds were killed. read the complete article

Our recommended read of the day
20 May 2019

Opinion | They peddle myths and call it history

The election of Narendra Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party, or the B.J.P., in 2014 led to renewed efforts to rewrite Indian history so as to legitimize Hindu nationalist ideology. These efforts had begun when the B.J.P. first governed India between 1999 and 2004. Under Mr. Modi’s government and various state governments run by his party, the attempts to change history have taken many more forms, such as deleting chapters or passages from public school textbooks that contradicted their ideology, while adding their own make-believe versions of the past. read the complete article

20 May 2019

The Most Toxic Candidate In The World's Biggest Election Is A Holy Woman Who Wants To Start A Religious War With Muslims

By the age of 18, Pragya Singh Thakur had renounced her material possessions and become a holy woman. At 38, she was arrested for allegedly supplying a golden motorcycle used to ferry bombs that detonated in Muslim neighborhoods, killing seven people. By the age of 47, after eight years in prison, she received bail on health grounds after undergoing a double mastectomy. After being bailed out, with terror charges still hanging over her head, Thakur kept a low profile — but that all changed last month when, at the age of 49, she joined the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and was put forward as a candidate to represent a city of 1.8 million people in India’s lower house of Parliament, the Lok Sabha. read the complete article


20 May 2019

Australia election: Ruling conservatives on course for 'miracle' victory while anti-Muslim senator loses seat

Australia's Liberal-led conservative government was headed for a remarkable victory at the national election early on Sunday. The final result may not be known for some time, but the outcome of many individual races — including the defeat of a right-wing senator who was famously egged by a teen over anti-Muslim comments — was clear. read the complete article

United Kingdom

20 May 2019

Leak reveals Tory party 'looking at 100 cases of alleged Islamophobia'

Earlier this week, it emerged that the Equality and Human Rights Commission had written to the Conservative party after receiving complaints – and the Tory government has also been criticised for refusing to adopt the working definition of Islamophobia proposed by the all-party parliamentary group on British Muslims, which has been widely accepted elsewhere. According to ITV News, more than 100 accusations of Islamophobia and other forms of racism made against people claiming to be Conservative party members are set out in a leaked dossier. read the complete article

20 May 2019

Government ‘in denial’ about widespread anti-Muslim racism, says equalities campaigner

There is an ‘orchestrated attempt’ to undermine efforts at tackling anti-Muslim racism, and the government is burying its head in the sand, according to a race equalities campaigner. Omar Khan, who is director of the Runnymede Trust, the UK’s leading independent race equality think tank, made the comments after the government rejected the proposed definition of Islamophobia. read the complete article

20 May 2019

Opinion | Islamophobia definition is no threat to free speech

There is substantial evidence that Muslims are being prevented from enjoying their freedoms and participating more fully in political, economic, social, cultural and other fields of public life, and face increasing bigotry in public spaces and online. It is clear from those who are resisting a definition of Islamophobia for public policy purposes that Islamophobia is poorly understood (Definition of Islamophobia is rejected by government, 16 May). Rather than being viewed as harm being experienced by Muslims in their daily lives, it is perceived as an attack on free speech or the ability to criticise a set of beliefs. read the complete article


20 May 2019

Who Will Speak for the Tatars?

In the five years since Russia forcibly annexed Crimea, wresting the lucrative ports away from Ukraine, life for the 250,000 Tatar Muslims of Crimea has disintegrated. Tatar Muslims have been denied work, their language, their newspapers, and their very way of life in a bid to push them off the peninsula. This isn’t the first time the Tatar minority has experienced persecution. Crimean Tatars are a Turkic Muslim people whose language, culture, and history have faced forcible erasure for centuries. Under Russian rule today, accused of extremism, they face obliteration. read the complete article

United States

20 May 2019

Mourning Nabra Hassanen: The Uncommon Aftermath Of A Muslim Teen’s Death

Nabra Hassanen was murdered during a particularly holy time for Muslims. She died during the last 10 days of Ramadan in 2017. Her death shocked Muslim communities around the country. The timing of it, the brutal manner of her death, the young victim; it all made for an unforgettable loss. Mo Black, a friend of the Hassanen family, lives at the Cedar Ridge Apartment complex in Reston, Virginia. Another friend, Omer Gorashi, meets Black there. Nabra’s parents still live in the complex, as do many Muslim immigrants who go to the ADAMS Center Mosque, where Nabra spent her last hours. It’s the kind of place where people really know their neighbors, and talk to each other from one balcony to the next. read the complete article

20 May 2019

Anti-Muslim groups funded by local charities, report finds

American charities steered $125 million to groups that spread anti-Muslim hate and propaganda during the three-year period ending in 2016, according to a report by a Muslim advocacy group. These charities included at least 30 foundations in New Jersey and a dozen in Westchester County, New York. More than 800 entities ranging from major national foundations like Fidelity Charitable and Schwab Charitable to small, little-known family foundations gave grants to organizations that push anti-Muslim rhetoric and legislation. read the complete article

20 May 2019

Opinion | How do we teach 9/11 to those who don't remember it?

This fall, students coming straight from high school will have been born after the attacks. “Never forget,” for them, is a wholesale abstraction. It calls for a generation to memorialize that which they cannot recall. I would like to think about the pedagogical currency of 9/11, an event that is, in fact, steeped in a deep forgetfulness. I teach classes on Islamophobia, race and global politics. These classes inevitably end up in close consideration of the events of September 11, 2001. Teaching about one of the flashpoints in U.S. Islamophobia to a room full of students who don’t actually remember it is a bit like teaching a fish it’s wet. The lasting impacts on U.S. racism of 9/11 are so entrenched, so taken-for-granted, that many of our students wear them like a second skin. read the complete article

Today in Islamophobia, 20 May 2019 Edition


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