Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Link Parade: A Parade of Links (in the form of a Parade made of Links)
1) A fifth of European Union will be Muslim by 2050
According an investigation by the Telegraph, "rising levels of immigration from Muslim countries and low birth rates among Europe's indigenous population mean that, by 2050, the figure will be 20 per cent." ... Yes, they said "indigenous population" with no irony. And they refer to the population growth among European Muslims, whom they admit are not radicalized, as a "demographic time bomb." So, the simple fact of their existence makes European Muslims a threat. FYI: This is the same rhetoric employed by Israelis to justify marginalizing/slaughtering its indigenous (see what I did there?) Arab population.
tags: Politics is Culture, Representation, Europe, Fear Mongering, Conservative Nutjob, Islamophobia
2) “Jihadis”*, Skinheads and Film Representation
Shafiqah Hudson, of the great blog Possumstew has written a fascinating post comparing movie portrayals of Arab and Muslim insurgents (i.e. "terrorists") with altogether more sympathetic portrayals of White Supremacist skinheads. One of her more disturbing discoveries? There are fan sites dedicated to the "hotness" of skinhead characters like Edward Norton's "Derek Vinyard" of 1998's American History X. She notes that even mainstream movie reviews of this film and others like Romper Stomper, which featured a young Russel Crow, make mention of the muscular sexuality of the skinhead characters while their Arab equivalents (ironically often played by South Asian or Israeli actors) are always portrayed as ugly and crazy.
tags: Representation, Culture is Politics, Orientalism, Islamophobia
3) Female, Muslim and Mutant: Muslim Women in Comic books
This excellent series, originally written by friend-of-the-blog Jehanzeb Dar of Muslim Reverie for Muslimah Media Watch, has been edited into three parts and published at Altmuslimah.com. Given the growing influence of comic books on mainstream pop culture as evidenced by the growth of ComicCon International into a venue for movies and TV as much (if not more) than for comic books themselves. So this well-written series is more timely than ever: Even if you read it the first time around it is worth revisiting.
tags: Representation, Culture is Politics, Islamophobia
4) US Blackwater's boss accused of Crusader beliefs
According to a report in al-Arabiya, Erik Prince, the CEO of Blackwater, the private army/security company (now known as XE) contracted by the Bush administration to support the US military in Iraq, "used aliases referring to the crusading Knights of the Templar, a notorious Christian military order known for its militant activities in Muslim lands during the Crusades in 1099 and declined in the 1100s." Quoting a report from The Nation, wherein former employees claim,"that their boss Erik D. Prince 'views himself as a Christian crusader tasked with eliminating Muslims and the Islamic faith from the globe' this article argues in light of mounting evidence that Prince is a religious and political extremist (why does that sound so familiar?) who was on the US payroll in Iraq.
tags: Politics is Culture, Conservative Nutjob, Islamophobia
5) Christian Arabs Like the Pope Want Peace with Justice
Daoud Kuttub, an award-winning Palestinian journalist who lives in Jerusalem and Amman writes about the position of Arab Christians on the occasion of the Pope's recent visit to Jordan and Palestine in the spring. He writes, "While the world looks at the Arab-Israeli conflict from an Arab-Israeli point of view, or a Jewish-Islamic one, the role and contribution of Arab Christians cannot and need not be ignored. Unlike followers of the Jewish and Muslim faiths, Christians have no religious attachment to physical locations... (However, Christian Arabs) believe that a lasting resolution to the Arab-Israeli conflict must both address the national aspirations of the Palestinians (of which they are part) and provide for the spiritual needs of the faithful, including Christians. In this regard, Palestinian Christians are perhaps angriest with a radical but effective group of Christians who try to give Biblical support and legitimacy for the Israeli aggression against Palestinians. An entire industry that has been well endowed has cropped up in the West, attempting to hijack the Christian theological debate in favour of what is now referred to as Christian Zionism." While it is a few months old, this essay is an excellent summary of Arab Christian objections to the use of their faith to justify colonial aggression against Muslims and the offense--both theological and political--represented by Christian Zionism.
tags: Politics is Culture, Palestine/Israel, Zionism
Discuss amongst yourselves.