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2012: A Year of Islamophobia in Review

Islamophobia2012

by Garibaldi

Before writing about the “year in review,” it’s important to note that the clock on Islamophobia didn’t begin on January 1, 2012. There are many who have just recently become familiar with Islamophobia, i.e. the irrational fear of Islam and Muslims and hence they may not be familiar with the context of the contemporary malaise we find ourselves in.

While the roots of Euro-American anti-Muslim rage can be traced to an older trans-historical phenomenon of constructing identity through multiple processes of otherization, for our purposes the past few years are enough to provide a beneficial contextual layout. 2010 was dubbed the “Year of Islamophobia” for its unprecedented rise in anti-Muslim hate, most explosively witnessed in the ginned up Cordoba Mosque/Park51 (aka “Ground Zero” Mosque) controversy as well as the increased circulation of irrational conspiracies regarding Islam and the Muslim presence in the so-called “West.” The breakthrough was that the Right would try to transform Islam into political football–just another concept to be used to stoke fears and the “culture wars,”

In the United States we saw the convergence and solidifying of a network of Islamophobes across the nation who joined arms with their brethren across the Atlantic ocean. We were also treated to the Republican party’s instrumentalization and usage of Islam for purposes of fear-mongering during the the run-up to the 2010 elections; add to this mosque controversies, hate crimes, anti-Muslim rallies and your run of the mill nuke Mecca suggestion and you had 2010.

2011 was a year that saw a continuation of the efforts of Islamophobes who sought to garner national attention any way they could. The Peter King McCarthyist hearings on the threat of Radical Islam amongst Muslim Americans was an effort to create undue suspicion of Muslim Americans while at the same time feeding the culture wars of “Shariah hysteria,” “War on Terror,” and “creeping Islamization.” Major victories included the revelations of the funders and backers of the Islamophobia Movement in the seminal Fear, Inc. report, as well as the AP’s uncovering of the NYPD’s dubious spying program on Muslim Americans. Sadly, the tragedy of Utoya and Oslo punctuated the deadly and horrific consequences of the hateful trans-Atlantic Islamophobia Movement, overshadowing efforts against the industry of hate.

2012

The Afghanistan war trudged along as did the drone war which was amplified and contributed to the Greater Islamophobia. Killing innocent, faceless, nameless and uncounted civilians in the pursuit of AlQaeda and the Taliban in undeclared wars in Yemen, Pakistan and Somalia. In the process our civil liberties have been eroded through the NDAA, US citizens may be killed and held in indefinite detention by our Noble Peace Prize winning Constitutional lawyer President, who is now serving as judge, jury and and executioner. On this the mainstream Right and Left seem to be in agreement: We are supposed to trust him dontchyaknow!? Of course, don’t expect any blowback! Eviscerating innocent civilian Muslims from the skies and other covert-ops have always had positive results in the past.

Oh, and the MEK, you know the first group that our State Department ever designated a “foreign terrorist organization,” you know the one we were funding and from whom prominent politicians were receiving money (i.e. material support) and training and sending to assassinate Iranian nuclear scientists, well, it’s like magic–they aren’t terrorists anymore!

Spencer Ackerman of Wired.com, a website that ironically has investments in drone technology revealed that Anti-Islam courses were being taught in the US military including the idea that we are “at war with Islam.”

Globally, Anti-Muslim violence flared up in the predominantly Buddhist nations of Sri Lanka and Myanmar where Islamophobia has led to scenes reminiscent of the genocide perpetrated against Bosnian Muslims during the mid-1990′s. Thousands of Rohingyas have been killed and hundreds of thousands displaced; the conflict itself does not seem to be abating. Europe has seen tremendous levels of Islamophobia against Muslims in the form of organized attacks on mosques, vandalisms, legislation against veiling, controversies over halal products and of course political parties all over the continent that hold anti-Islam/Muslim policies as cornerstones of their agendas.

Domestically, the Islamic bogeyman, the “Green menace” was still alive and well. Rep.Peter King continued his anti-Muslim hearings. The Republican presidential primary debates were like watching the Islamophobic movie Obsession on an endless loop as the GOP hopefuls tried to out-crazy one another to the top post. Sen.Dick Durbin aptly described the Republican primaries, “Now, listen to these Republican candidates for president. They’re at war with Islam.”

Hate crimes didn’t depreciate but remained high according to the SPLC even by the notoriously understated counts of the FBI. It was revealed that Joshua Scaggs stabbed a “Muslim looking man” to “save his country.” Muslims were targeted in New York in a wave of firebombings by a man who wanted to kill “as many Muslims and Arabs as possible.” Arsons, vandalisms and attacks on Mosques and Muslims (or Muslim looking people) were regular features of 2012 LoonViolence. Randolph Linn admitted that he set fire to a Toledo, Ohio Mosque because of what he learned about Muslims “from Fox News.” Shariah hysteria was still being aggressively pushed in the legislatures of some states though in general it saw a retreat.

Robert Spencer refused to debate Danios, finding one excuse after another and another and another. Instead Spencer and Geller continued to use the name of the slain Jessica Mokdad for a conference on the so-called threat of US based “Islamic honor killings,” against the wishes of Mokdad’s bereaved family. At a CPAC panel hosted by AFDI/SIOA, Geller and Spencer’s pal James Lafferty expressed how “proud” he was that most attacks against mosques occur in the South. Geller and Spencer got media attention out of their hate ads comparing Muslims and Arabs to Savages though the attention was overwhelmingly negative.

Eric Allen Bell (aka. Eric Edborg) transformed from documenting hate against the Murfreesboro Mosque to actively participating in it, becoming in the process a pliant and subservient JihadWatch Zombie who regularly engages in the new found hobby of calling for the nuking of Mecca. He eventually decided to take, as he put it, a “sabbatical from my jihad against jihad,” after he, Spencer and Jamie Glazov essentially got roasted in a 3 on 1 debate against a Muslim apologist by the name of Nadir Ahmad.

Brigitte Gabriel spent part of 2012 comparing Muslims to Hitler. The Daily Show skewered the buffoonish Joe “Nuke ‘em” Kafuman who has been relegated to the extremities of irrelevance. Andrew Breitbart kicked the bucket but his “Big” blogs are still going strong.

The Strange phenomenon of well known Muslims being detained at the airport on suspicion of terrorism, such as Shahrukh Khan, Imran Khan and Mohammed “Mo” Farah by oblivious border guards continued. Kevin Forts, a US admirer of the terrorist Anders Breivik penned a letter to his hero who is now serving time in an IKEA furnished Norwegian retreat prison after being declared sane.

Anti-Loons

2012 was also a year in which Islamophobic politicians lost big, most humorously Allen West was kicked to the curb by Floridians. Also losing were Adam Hasner, Joe Walsh, Charles Fuqua and Chip Cravaack, and while Barack Obama’s re-election is not going to change much in the long term it did stave off the possibility of a Mitt Romney presidency that would include the likes of “Rudy Giuliani, John Bolton, Walid Phares and others who are intimately tied with the Islamophobia movement.”

There were many manifestations of hope against hate as well as efforts for peace and reconciliation between communities. The year saw the story of a “synagogue in a mosque,” Sikhs rallying en masse against the EDL in Leicester, an Imam and a Pastor who used to lead opposing militias joining forces to teach and achieve peace in Nigeria, Pakistan’s deputy attorney general traveling to the Amritsar Golden Temple to clean the shoes of worshippers, Israelis sending Iranians messages of love and calling on their leaders not to go to war, the #MyJihad campaign to reclaim the concept of “Jihad” from Muslim and anti-Muslim extremists alike, CriticalDragon spoke to us about his journey out of Islamophobic darkness and Coughli616 won the internets.

What if they were Muslim?

2012 was also a year that saw many instances of “what if they were Muslim?” A series that we created to point out the obvious fact that all the crimes that are uniquely attributed to “Islam and Muslims” are in fact also carried out by members of other faiths–sometimes uniquely.

Some quick samples: GOP lawmaker calls for bringing back public hangings for abortion providers, Rick Santorum expressed his disgust at the separation of Church and state believing that the Church should have a roll in the operation of government, witch-hunts, forced conversionsterrorism, iconoclasm and calling on Gays to be killed off–all from members of non-Muslim religious traditions.

Important Articles You May Have Missed But Shouldn’t Have

-Muhammad is the 99%

-A Lavish Feast: Hatemongers, Hypocrites and the Hate Du Jour

-Why Do they Hate Us? They Don’t

-TheReligionOfPeace.com: Working to Streamline the American Empire’s War on Terror

-Loon Victory: Muslim Doctor Ousted for FGM Thought Crime

-History’s First Jihad: Was it Justified?

-“The Journal for the Study of Antisemitism” Has An Islamophobia Problem

-Honor Killing and Even More Proof You REALLY Shouldn’t Trust Robert Spencer’s “Scholarship”

-Pamela Geller of AtlasShrugs: Bus Ads Inspired by Ayn Rand’s Racist Views of Arabs and Muslims

-Warrior Monks: The Untold Story of Buddhist Violence (I)

-David Yerushalmi: Pamela Geller’s Anti-Democracy Lawyer & “SION” Senior Member Exposed: The Facts

Conclusion

In conclusion, I must point out that this review article is far from comprehensive–I just barely scratched the surface of Islamophobia in 2012. The jailing of the EDL leadership, the floundering of the BFP, the proliferation of the “Innocence of Muslims” movie and so much more would require at least seven more paragraphs in themselves.

Finally, I would be remiss if I didn’t give a special shout out to Loonwatchers, who have been patient throughout this past year and stuck with us despite technical mishaps and a new comment system. It really is all of you who make this site special and worth posting articles and continuing documenting, exposing and repelling the anti-Muslim bigots.

Your tips, advice and debates are an important contribution to the fight against those who are ardent to create division and civilizational/cultural conflict. We promise in 2013 to also come through on some of the planned changes to make the site more navigable and for easy access to some of our lengthy series and rebuttals.

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  • Kirook

    No! You fool! Don’t mention the ultimate weapon online! The counter-jihadist spies who inhabit the site will find out and alert the authorities!

    You have failed me for the last time.

  • http://twitter.com/CriticalDragon1 CriticalDragon1177

    You’re Welcome

  • Sam Seed

    Thanks CD, I’ll check it out.

  • http://twitter.com/CriticalDragon1 CriticalDragon1177

    Fuller basically argues that the conflict between East and West has little to do with Islam, and that in fact it predates Islam, and even without Islam, things might not be that different as far as that conflict is concerned. He thoroughly debunks the claim that Islam is more likely than any other religion to lead to violence.

    Its an excellent book. In case you had forgotten, I recommend it in my interview with Loon Watch. You should read it.

    A World Without Islam
    http://www.amazon.com/World-Without-Islam-Graham-Fuller/dp/B009WJBDG0/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1357582944&sr=8-1&keywords=A+World+Without+Islam

  • Sam Seed

    I just want to ask you my friend, ‘A World Without Islam’: In what context does it view Islam?

  • Garibaldi

    I do like Esposito’s work and have read many of his books but not the one you mention and while I’m not a fan of the CIA I’ll be sure to put that book on my list to read, I believe other commenters here have also recommended it.

  • Sodium

    Garibaldi wrote the following hopeful statement:

    “There were many manifistations of hope against hate as well as efforts for peace and reconcilliation between communities.”

    My comments:

    ==============

    Indeed,there is hope for a change. Such a hope has already been manifisted by two fine books already in circulation in the United States:

    The first book is:
    ====================
    “What Everyone Needs To Know About Islam”
    By
    John L. Esposito,Professor at Georgetown University in Washington DC area.

    The second book is:
    ===================
    “A World Without Islam”
    By
    Graham Fuller,a former Vice Chairman of the National Intelligence Council of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA),who lived in the Islamic World for many many years.

    I must admit that the first time my eyes saw the title of the second book,”A World Without Islam”, I thought that the content of the book must be full of Anti-Islam bias. After reading the book I have discovered how how wrong my first thoughts were. It is way way too far from that.
    Happy Reading.

    Both books are must-read for those who

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  • Tanveer Khan

    Thought so. Do you have any idea around when it will come?

  • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

    Not yet.

  • Tanveer Khan

    Has there been a Warrior Monks II yet? I tried searching but couldnt find it…

  • http://twitter.com/CriticalDragon1 CriticalDragon1177

    You’re welcome. Keep up the good work, as well.

  • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

    Wow…but of course the ship on any hope for sanity from her and her ilk floated away a long time ago.

  • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

    I hope for the same Critical and you’ve done a lot! More than you could imagine. Thanks for the faith in us.

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  • Leftwing_Muslim_Alliance

    You could not give me the white house …… the heating bills , tax and paying for all those staff .Plus doing the cleaning keeping the front white .
    Mind you, nice garden with bees :-)
    Maybe us brits should burn it down again ( WARNING that was a joke ! )
    Sir David

  • http://twitter.com/CriticalDragon1 CriticalDragon1177

    Pamella has also made a fool of herself again.

    Pamela Geller: Obama Is Naziest Nazi Who Ever Nazied, Totally Gonna Kill All The Jews
    http://wonkette.com/495393/pamela-geller-obama-is-naziest-nazi-who-ever-nazied-totally-gonna-kill-all-the-jews

  • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

    I actually saw the Wenzel Strategies thingy when they were first pushing it. It was so outrageous that after looking into it a little I just dismissed it, glad RightWingWatch took it on.

  • http://twitter.com/CriticalDragon1 CriticalDragon1177

    I’m really hoping we see a substantial decrease in Islamophobia in the next ten years, and if that happens, I think we we’ll be able to say, that people like you had something to do with it. I’m hoping to do my part as well, but I don’t think I’ll be able to do as much as you are in that regard.

  • JD

    Farah: Curtail Muslim Immigration

    http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/farah-curtail-muslim-immigration
    WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah has been touting a WND/Wenzel Strategies poll purporting to find that many Muslim-Americans want the imposition of Sharia law, contradicting other studies which found extremely low support for radical views among Muslims in the U.S. Should the results of a Wenzel Strategies survey be trusted?

    The polling firm gave Todd Akin the lead in his Senate race (he lost by 16%), claimed Mitt Romney and Republican Senate candidates would win in Ohio and Virginia (they lost) and promoted birther conspiracies. The firm even alleged that polls showing President Obama ahead were skewed to favor Obama
    (they weren’t) because they employ biased college students and
    intentionally ignore Tea Partiers. After the election, the firm’s head
    said Obama only won because his supporters are dumb.

    But while speaking to fellow anti-Muslim activist Erik Stackelbeck of the Christian Broadcasting Network, Farah said that the poll proves that the U.S. should rethink allowing Muslim immigration, to which Stakelbeck agreed:

    Farah: I think it’s time for us to really think about
    our immigration laws because if we want to preserve our Judeo-Christian
    institutions in this country, our culture, our laws, our Constitution,
    do we really want to have an open borders policy for Muslims who just
    don’t see it that way? They have a completely different worldview.

    ————————–

    Beware: Human-Hating Liberals and Islamic Extremists Seek to Build Shariommunism

    http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/beware-human-hating-liberals-and-islamic-extremists-seek-build-shariommunism

    The claim that progressives and radical Islamists are secretly working together would be considered laughable if it didn’t inspire violent terrorists like Norway’s Anders Breivik and emerge as a frequent talking point among right-wing activists. Christian Broadcasting Network’s sports reporter/terrorism “expert” Erick Stakelbeck hosted Jamie Glazov of the David Horowitz Freedom Center to explain the purported alliance.

    According to Glazov, both liberals and Islamic extremists “share the
    agenda to destroy freedom, capitalism, democracy, American and Israel”
    in order to establish Sharia law and communism! Liberalism and Islamism, he claims, both have “a hatred for humans for who and what they are.”

    “I haven’t been this scared since I was watching eleven years old
    watching the Exorcist,” Glazov said, “we have our first political
    prisoner in the United States.” He was referring to the producer of an
    anti-Islam film who was put back in prison for violating his probation agreement following a bank fraud conviction.

    Later, Glazov explained that Islamic-aligned leftists “are in the
    White House” and “infiltrating the State Department” to advance their
    goal of “destroying this country.”

    ( Personal side note this is a secret
    are also building a Death star in space
    with the help of Liberals Islamic Extremists communist hilal
    turkey eating stealth Sharia compliant space aliens where we will
    fire a weapon to destroy the world MuHAAAAAA MUHAAAAAAAAAAAA by the way shhhhhh its a secret dont tell anyone and tell them to hurry or once of these anti muslim nuts will figure it our like the allways do)

  • mindy1

    May this be the year islamophobes look like the fools they are

  • B. H. Sotero

    “…our Noble Peace Prize winning Constitutional lawyer President” you forgot Pam Gellers astute observation that I’m also the love child of Malcom X!

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  • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

    Thanks Ilisha. Couldn’t agree more about our visitors.

  • http://www.loonwatch.com/ Ilisha

    Great summary, Garibaldi. Thank you.

    I’m so proud of our community, and the awesome visitors we attract. Thanks again Loonwatchers, for your support throughout the year.

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