Saturday, July 14, 2007

Against Islamophobia

A selection from a conference sponsored by the Stop The War Coalition late last year. Featuring Salma Yaqoob , Yvonne Ridley and Moazzem Beg.

Click here to listen

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See also Stop The War Muslim Network

Islamophobia has increased dramatically, encouraging racist violence and media stereotypes. The right wing press have sought to demonise Islam and whip up fear of ‘mad mullah’ bogeymen like Abu Hamza.

This has been helped by a racist agenda from the government with the ‘clash of civilisations’ rhetoric accelerating after the 7/7 bombings. While the governments’ own reports blamed the war for increased terrorism, Blair and John Reid blamed Muslim parents and community leaders.

Since then we have seen a race to the bottom in which high profile politicians and political commentators fall over themselves trying to outdo each other in attacking us. As well as the increased attacks on Muslims in this country the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq are continuing and the threat to Iran is ever present.

Muslims need to find new ways to organise themselves effectively.

This is one of the reasons why we need to build on the idea of having a Stop the War Muslim activist network. A space where we can share ideas, hold an open debate and organise to build on the successes we have already had through the anti-war movement. A network that can enable us to help build the anti-war movement within the Muslim community and that enables Muslims to better build the wider movement.

This is not about working in isolation from non-Muslims but organising so that we are better able to unite ourselves and unite with non-Muslims alike. It is this unity that will make us stronger and more effective campaigners against oppression.

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