Sun April 30, 2017
Advertisement
Can't connect right now! retry

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!

Editorial

February 17, 2017

Share

Advertisement

Islamophobia

Islamophobia

It is no secret that the best recruitment strategy militant groups like the Islamic State have is to convince Muslims that the West is waging a war on them and they are unwelcome in those countries. The type of lone-wolf attacks carried out in cities like Paris and San Bernardino rely not on a central organisations but alienated individuals who have sought out IS propaganda online as a reaction to the oppression they suffer in the West. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres recognised the role Islamophobia plays in fueling terrorism during a visit to Saudi Arabia last week, particularly pointing out the rise in anti-immigrant sentiment in the West. There has been a lot of anguished commentary about how the rise of the xenophobic right-wing, culminating in the election of Donald Trump as US president, is exactly what IS wants since it proves they are right in claiming the West has no place for Muslims. But the likes of Trump, Marie le Pen in France, Viktor Orban in Hungary and Nigel Farage in Britain are only a symptom of a deeper disease. Islamophobia is rampant in the West. From the Hollywood portrayal of Muslims only as terrorists to the never-ending Western aggression in the Middle East, there was a reason why militant outfits like Al-Qaeda managed to attract so many people.

As the US and Europe become more insular out of fear of Muslims, and turn their backs on the millions of Iraqi and Syrian refugees created by their own wars in these countries, radicalisation will only gain strength. The lesson the West has learned from the rise of the IS is not that it should rethink the policies that contributed to its creation but that it should turn its back on all Muslims. Trump’s Muslim ban, Britain’s vote for Brexit, Australia’s confinement of refugees to an island and the resurgence of neo-fascism across Europe is manna for militant groups and a very dangerous development for all other Muslims. That at least the UN chief has recognised this is a start. A conversation about Islamophobia, where the West listens to the voices of Muslims it has treated so badly, needs to begin and it needs to be heard not just in the corridors of power but by all those who have fallen for demagoguery against Muslims and allowed their irrational fear to cloud their judgement.

 

Advertisement

Comments

Advertisement

Topstory

Opinion

Newspost

Editorial

National

World

Sports

Business

Karachi

Lahore

Islamabad

Peshawar

Advertisement