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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08 Oct 2020

Today in Islamophobia: 39 countries, including Turkey, Germany, the U.S and the U.K, denounce China’s abuses of Uighur Muslims in Xinjiang. A new Human Rights Watch report looks at the condition of internally displaced Rohingya within Rakhine state in Myanmar, finding squalid conditions rife with abuse. Our recommended read today is on Afghanistan by Emran Feroz, analyzing why the U.S occupation of the country was always doomed to fail. This, and more, below:


08 Oct 2020

Empire of Graveyards | Recommended Read

A war begun to oust the Taliban is ending with a whimper almost two decades later, with those same Taliban poised for some sort of power-sharing agreement with Kabul. After decades of war and heartbreak and broken promises and shattered lives, so little seems to have changed in Afghanistan. I’ve spent my life trying to figure out why. It all started on Sept. 12, 2001, the day after the World Trade Center was destroyed. My elementary school teacher in Austria asked me about the terrorists who attacked New York City, a place I’d never been. “Do you know why they did that?” she asked. I had no answer. I was 9 at the time. People made fun of me, saying al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was my uncle. Friends at school cheered the upcoming war. “They will bomb your people,” they said. (They weren’t wrong.) read the complete article

Our recommended read of the day
08 Oct 2020

39 countries denounce China's abuses of Uighur Muslim in Xinjiang

Some 39 countries including Turkey, Germany, the U.S. and the U.K. urged Chinese authorities to respect the rights of over 1 million Uighur Muslims who are being kept in Chinese concentration camps, prompting an angry response from authorities in Beijing. “We are gravely concerned about the human rights situation in Xinjiang and the recent developments in Hong Kong,” Germany’s U.N. Ambassador Christoph Heusgen said. The declaration, signed mainly by European countries, stated that violations of religious freedom, forced labor and involuntary sterilization are the main key indicators of criminal activity by Chinese officials. "There are severe restrictions on freedom of religion or belief and the freedoms of movement, association and expression as well as on Uighur culture," Heusgen said. "Widespread surveillance disproportionately continues to target Uighurs and other minorities, and more reports are emerging of forced labor and forced birth control, including sterilization."  read the complete article


08 Oct 2020

The Weaponization of Laïcité

Not a day goes by in France without a new case concerning the treatment of French Muslims. As a recent example, in September 2020, Imane Boun, a young student who runs the popular “Recettes Echelon 7” Instagram account, was targeted by a Le Figaro journalist who tweeted “September 11” in response to one of her videos, apparently a reference to her Islamic faith and hijab. As a result, Boun had to deactivate her Twitter account in the wake of multiple threats. This attempt to connect the hijab to the tragic events of 9/11, and the lack of accountability for the ensuing harm to ordinary Muslims, reveals the extent to which anti-Muslim sentiment in France is normalized. read the complete article

08 Oct 2020

An unpopular Macron invokes the anti-Muslim playbook

Macron's speech followed the same steps as any other anti-Muslim speech by a European policymaker. To prove a point about the French Republic being under attack, he invoked boogeyman stories of Muslims asking for special treatment, threatening others and imposing their beliefs, and turned them into a national challenge. Just like the burqa was manipulated into a national threat, despite domestic intelligence stating that only 364 women in France actually wore it. read the complete article


08 Oct 2020

Rohingya living in ‘open prison’ in Myanmar: Human Rights Watch

Approximately 130,000 Rohingya Muslims who remain in refugee camps in Myanmar’s conflict-torn Rakhine state live under “squalid and abusive” conditions, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said on Thursday urging that their “arbitrary and indefinite” detention be ended immediately. HRW said the mass detention of the mostly Muslim Rohingya in camps was like an “open prison”. Of the more than 250,000 Rohingya left in Myanmar, at least 100,000 have been living in refugee camps having been displaced during an earlier wave of violence in 2012. read the complete article

08 Oct 2020

Myanmar releases voter app criticised for Rohingya label, despite E.U objection

Myanmar’s election commission has released a smartphone app criticised over its use of a derogatory label for Rohingya Muslims despite entreaties by its European Union funders to remove controversial data. The mVoter2020 app, aimed at improving voter awareness, labels at least two candidates from the Rohingya ethnic group as “Bengali”, a term that implies they are immigrants from Bangladesh and is rejected by many Rohingya. read the complete article

United States

08 Oct 2020

Stephen Miller, explained

A senior adviser to President Donald Trump, the 35-year-old Miller has emerged as the leading far-right ideologue in this administration — outlasting his only real competitor, Steve Bannon. By all accounts, Miller is the driving force behind Trump’s most extreme anti-immigration measures — from the separation of migrant families at the border to Trump’s infamous “Muslim ban.” Now he’s in the news for an entirely different reason: On Tuesday, he was the latest top Trump aide to test positive for coronavirus. read the complete article

08 Oct 2020

GOP Senator Marsha Blackburn Hits Back at Netflix on ‘Three-Body Problem’ Series, Takes Aim at Disney

Republican Sen. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee on Wednesday slammed Netflix for defending its decision to greenlight a high-profile adaptation of the Chinese sci-fi writer Liu Cixin’s “Three-Body Problem” novels despite his “execrable views” on China’s treatment of its mostly Muslim Uyghur population. Netflix replied to Blackburn’s initial letter with a statement that twice expressed that it did not agree with Liu’s comments and three times repeated that “Mr. Liu is the author of the books, not the creator of this series.” The full statement from Netflix can be read here. The full letter from Blackburn and her GOP colleagues can be read here. China, where authorities ban online platforms not subject to their censorship regime, is one of just four places globally where Netflix does not operate, with the others being North Korea, Syria and Crimea. read the complete article

United Kingdom

08 Oct 2020

The Tories aren't ashamed of their Islamophobia. They're proud of it

On the list of concerns about the party in government – after a year in which a pandemic stripped bare its incompetence and dishonesty – prejudice towards Muslims is nowhere near the top. Even in stable times, attempting to get some attention, some media scrutiny, some outrage about the scourge of Islamophobia in the Conservative party was to be stonewalled by indifference at best, hostility at worst. read the complete article

Today in Islamophobia, 08 Oct 2020 Edition


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