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The Nuclear Card

The Hamas Smear: How Islamophobes Use Six Degrees of Separation to Smear Muslims

Posted on 03 August 2013 by Danios


Even President Obama is not safe from the Hamas smear

Lauren Green’s interview of Reza Aslan backfired on Fox News.  Green’s obvious bias generated sympathy for Aslan.  Many Americans were horrified at her blatant display of Islamophobia.  Yet, Lauren Green’s statements were actually very mild compared to the anti-Muslim smears that Reza Aslan and other prominent Muslims are routinely subjected to–which few Americans speak out against.

Perhaps the crudest attack–used almost invariably against a Muslim who reaches any form of prominence whatsoever–is the Hamas smear.  Its ubiquity is such that we ought to name a law after it.  We’ve all heard of Godwin’s Law:

As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches 1.

The Hamas smear deserves its own law.  For vanity’s sake, let’s call it Danios’s Law.  And, it goes something like this:

As a Muslim person becomes more prominent, the probability of anti-Muslim bigots linking that Muslim to Hamas* approaches 1.

*Or some other extremist group

It may not sound as elegant as Godwin’s Law, but it’s equally true.

How commonly the Hamas smear is used against Muslims became painfully obvious when I read Salon essayist Wajahat Ali’s guest article he wrote for LoonWatch.  Ali masterfully used comedy to make impotent the very ugly “stealth jihadist” accusations levied against Muslims.  Then, I realized that Muslims in general tend to have a running joke about this, since the Hamas smear is so prevalent against them.  They have re-appropriated the smear, much as black Americans have re-appropriated the n-word.  That’s how common (and hurtful) the bigoted slur has become.

Front Page Magazine and other right-wing media outlets tied Wajahat Ali to Hamas by pointing out that Ali was a member of the Muslim Student Association (MSA) during college.  This, even though his joining the MSA during college is as intuitive as a black, Mexican, or Jewish person joining the black student union, the Mexican-American Student Association, or the Jewish Student Union respectively.

Islamophobes often use the MSA or CAIR, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, to play a connect-the-dots game back to Hamas.  CAIR is the largest and most respected American Muslim civil rights organization.  Once again using dubious connections, CAIR is connected to the Muslim Brotherhood, and in turn, to Hamas.  With both the MSA (the largest American Muslim college organization) and CAIR (the largest American Muslim civil rights organization) connected to the Muslim Brotherhood and from there to Hamas, it is only a matter of connecting an American Muslim to the MSA or CAIR in order to link that individual to Hamas itself.

Sooner or later, any prominent Muslim is bound to be smeared in this way and linked to Hamas or some other radical organization.  Even Rima Fakih, the Arab-American beauty pageant contestant who won Miss USA, was not safe from the smear.  She stood accused of being tied to Hezbollah.  The Hezbollah smear is a modified version of the Hamas smear, often employed against Shi’ite Muslims.  (Hamas is a Sunni organization, whereas Hezbollah is a Shi’ite one.)  In other words, being a bikini-clad beauty pageant winner is not enough to insulate oneself from being called a radical “Islamist.”

After the now notorious Fox News interview, the Daily Caller published an article claiming that Reza Aslan has “ties to extreme Islamists” and “is a supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood.”  Elsewhere Aslan was called a “Khomeinist” and tied to the Iranian regime (yet another Shi’ite-centric version of the Hamas smear).  These six degrees of separation sort of accusations are far more pernicious than anything Lauren Green said to Reza Aslan.  They reek of McCarthyism, with “Islamism” being substituted for communism.

The list of American Muslims libeled with the Hamas smear is endless.  But, what’s interesting is that not even non-Muslims are safe from this smear.  President Barack Obama, who has a Muslim-ish enough sounding name, has been tied to both the Muslim Brotherhood and, in turn, Hamas.

I write for, arguably the internet’s most popular Islamophobia watchdog website.  And, lo and behold, it did not take long for the Hamas smear to come along my way.  The Islamophobes don’t even know my faith but they are certain that I am an “Islamist” and Hamas supporter.  Whether a Muslim or simply a “Muslim sympathizer”, one can automatically be linked to Hamas using the Islamophobic approach.

Eric Allen Bell, a former diarist for The Daily Kos (he was banned by the unanimous consensus of the Daily Kos community for being an unrestrained bigot), accused LoonWatch of being tied to Hamas.  Bell’s “connecting-the-dots” mentality and “math” prove how loosely the Hamas smear is used; Bell opined:

Loonwatch works with CAIR by broadcasting CAIR’s point of view. They are very consistent on this. Loonwatch is never in disagreement with CAIR. CAIR thanks Loonwatch in their “Hate Report”.

Connecting all of these dots is deeply, deeply concerning. Here is the math: Out of the Muslim Brotherhood come a number of terrorist organizations including Al Queda and Hamas. Out of Hamas comes C.A.I.R. and Loonwatch becomes a mirror for anything that C.A.I.R. wants to convey to Americans about how harmless Islam is.

All the evidence Eric Allen Bell needs is that “LoonWatch is never in disagreement with CAIR”, ergo LoonWatch must be working with CAIR.  Does it take a mathematician to figure out the flaw in his “math” and the logical fallacy here?

Alright, so LoonWatch is linked to CAIR because we are, according to him, “never in disagreement”–and because CAIR supposedly thanks us in their “Hate Report” (I wonder why an American Muslim civil rights group would thank a website that monitors Islamophobia?).  Ergo, LoonWatch = CAIR.  Since Hamas = CAIR, therefore LoonWatch = Hamas.  Oh yeah, let’s throw in Al-Qaeda into the mix as well.  You see, it’s so plain to see, LoonWatch = CAIR = Hamas = Al-Qaeda.

Searching “LoonWatch” on YouTube reveals a video entitled “Loonwatch and Hamas”, created by a regular commentator on JihadWatch.  The video is a painful ten minutes long, with a rambling “connect-the-dots” approach to smear me.  What’s interesting is that the Islamophobic narrator mentions that I specifically condemned and denounced Hamas (which is what right-wingers always demand of Muslims and their sympathizers: “Do you, sir, condemn Hamas?”), but then goes on to explain why my condemnation and denouncement of Hamas aren’t genuine.

Hamas and LoonWatch Video:


So, what’s his argument to make this claim?  The narrator intones: “A look at the numerous LoonWatch pages that come up from the term ‘Hamas’, we see that Danios and Hamas are quite compatible politically.”  Really?  I’m a strong supporter of pluralistic, secular, liberal democracy, whereas Hamas supports an ultra-conservative Islamic “Sharia state.”  How’s that for compatibility?

The narrator then points to an article I wrote about Debbie Schlussel.  In that article, I criticized Schlussel for insulting the victims of the Oslo terrorist attack in which seventy-seven innocent people were killed by a far-right wing extremist.  Schlussel called the child victims of this heinous attack “bitches.”  Interestingly, in the article I also pointed out that Schlussel linked the victims to Hamas, calling them “HAMASniks.”  (Here again we see the Hamas smear in action, this time against murdered children.)

I passingly mention the Freedom Flotilla in the article, because Debbie Schlussel accused the child victims of having sympathized with it.  (The Freedom Flotilla had attempted to provide humanitarian aid to the starving people of Gaza.)  There is the narrator’s hook!  He says that we should “place the Flotilla at the center of our discussion.”

The connect-the-dots is about to begin.  It’s confusing, but it goes something like this:

Danios writes an article where the Freedom Flotilla is mentioned –> The Freedom Flotilla was organized by the Turkish NGO IHH and the Free Gaza movement –> the Free Gaza Movement is made up of forty different groups and individuals –> Huwaida Arraf (an Arab-American Christian by the way) is one of these people –>  Arraf is the co-founder of the International Solidarity Movement –> The International Solidarity Movement’s website linked to the Free Marwan Barghouti campaign –>  Huwaida Arraf is dedicated to her beliefs so much so that she would die for them –> Martyrdom is a hallmark of Hamas, therefore –> Huwaida Arraf = Hamas.  Therefore, as you can clearly see, Danios = Hamas.  Don’t you see?

The rest of the video goes on to find more threads between the Freedom Flotilla movement and Hamas, then linking all of that somehow to me.  (I have nothing to do with the Freedom Flotilla, by the way.)

Oh yes, and we are told that our website also links to the “Hamas apologist Glenn Greenwald.”  (Yet another “Muslim sympathizer” tarnished with the Hamas smear.)

The Hamas smear is an empty and meaningless line of attack, devoid of any intellectual substance.  Unfortunately, however, it is all too often an effective means of tarnishing a person’s character.  The only silver lining is that the Hamas smear is used so often and so flippantly by the Islamophobes that they might actually just wear it out.

Danios was the Brass Crescent Award Honorary Mention for Best Writer in 2010 and the Brass Crescent Award Winner for Best Writer in 2011.

Did you like this article?  If so, make sure to contribute to LoonWatch’s IndieGoGo campaign and we’ll send you Danios’s upcoming book.

  • Nizar Qalb

    The Russians have the worse history in the last 300 years for not only killing Muslims and invading Muslims lands, but for straight up genocide and ethnic cleansing of Muslims.

  • Sam Seed


  • Tanveer Khan

    …….right. So your avatar is of Bruce Lee not Yuen Siu-tien also known as Yuan Xiaotian also known as Simon Yuen also known as Sam Seed also known as Ol’ Dirty?

  • CriticalDragon1177

    Which might explain why for the most part, they seem to be ignoring it. I was curious to see if any Islamophobes were complaining about it, so I typed Burka Avenger into google to see if any Loon sites were complaining about it, and almost the only places that were talking about it were mainstream news sites and blogs.

  • eslaporte


  • eslaporte

    Tell me, then, how is “socialism” like Soviet communism, if you think you know so much to make this judgement. Where was there public pensions in the Soviet Union. Where was there social safety nets for Russians in the USSR?

    I don’t know about Russian history, culture and politics – please read first my Master’s paper and then try to come back and make that accusation. Has a good dose of Russian history and politics – and a national identity section.

    Socialism takes on many forms and is not “Soviet communism,” which was unique to the Russian experience. Socialism in Western countries would not look anything like Soviet Russia!

    Calling me stupid? Gee- name calling? Get some debate skills first!

  • Sam Seed

    Oh…but it is my avatar I speak of.

  • Nizar Qalb

    The Islamophobes are stuck in two very obvious potential positions for this:

    1. they can condemn it as a form of Islamic indoctrination…
    2. Claim that those supporting such views aren’t “real” Muslims or “don’t know there own religion”

    These people could never admit that like any culture there are multiple strains and philosophies competing in Islamic society that are not mutually exclusive but rather part of a broad spectrum of differing ideals within Islamic society.

    add a picture of Muslims praying in unison (mind control obviously) or chanting Allahu Akbar at a funeral (how dare they) and all is good in their world again…

  • Tanveer Khan

    What has Bruce Lee got to do with this? I am well and truly kefuzzled now….. T_T

  • Sam Seed

    Yes, it is none other than Bruce Lee, and as our distinguished guide (JSB) has already revealed Sam Seed (whom I tried to keep obscure) and only those endowed with Wisdom (age) would be able to relate to him. Thanks JSB!(LOL)

  • Fox-News

    And those who are quick to use the “Hamas” or “Hezbollah” argument would be the supporters of Zionist colonization and expansion. The reason they use that is to quickly get those supporters of Israel to side with them, and use the being of pro Zionism or anti Zionism as the key to distinguish “extremists”.

  • Tanveer Khan

    Ah, its (slightly) clearer now. xD

  • Just_Stopping_By

    Ahh, grasshopper, you have much to learn.

    Here we reveal Sam Seed: The Drunken Master, though he fought like a god, was but a human being (yuman bean).

    Now, you may proceed in your studies … if you can snatch the pebble.

  • Tanveer Khan

    Another thing I wasnt told about? T_T First the power struggle and now this. What is The Legend Senor Sam? Aren’t you also in the Empire? Oh and what’s a yuman bean xD

  • Mehdi

    I did meet Jackie Chan in a small city in the Moroccan desert, he went for a walk during a film shooting and was surprised that he almost caused a riot as people recognized him and all wanted to salute him.
    I think that experience probably prevented him from being a loon :-)

  • Sam Seed

    LOL! It seems you are far too young to know The Legend. I am just a humble, struggling/straggling Yuman Bean.
    Aah the Empire indeed, I have always dreamed that one day the Empire would come back and free us from this tyranny that is the modern age.

  • Pingback: » The Hamas Smear: How Islamophobes Use Six Degrees of …

  • CriticalDragon1177

    If You’re interested, Since there’s an English Language trailer they’re probably going to show it in America and other English speaking countries in addition to Pakistan. I have no idea what channels will carry it through.

  • Tanveer Khan

    I consider every name call a victory in the struggle for world domination for the glory of the Empire Senor Sam. No matter how many times the truth about me is uncovered, it will never go mainstream. Where would we be without brainwashing? ;)

  • mindy1

    OMG just saw a clip on that-she’s a teacher who fights those opposing education :D

  • Sam Seed

    Consider it a badge of honour, since it may well have come from a bigot or ‘phobe. You’re a ‘Struggler’ :-)

  • Sam Seed

    Ok I give up.

  • CriticalDragon1177

    Yes the evil “Islamist Zionist” Huma Abedin

  • CriticalDragon1177


  • Tanveer Khan

    That….is so awesome. I could even watch without having to repeatedly glance at my parents to work out what they’re feeling!

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