“Islam needs Islamophobia right now”

I share this piece about the recent mob murder of journalism student Mashal Khan at a university in Pakistan. There’ve been many other reports on this over the past few days. How far are we from seeing such actions at Western universities, one has to wonder. I also share this to help the growing coming-out of ex-Muslims and the publicising of their views. It is well past time that this constituency gets the airtime it deserves.

If this triggers a debate amongst readers, all the better. For the next two weeks, though, I shall be too snowed under to contribute myself, and will call in only to moderate.

Update: 25 April 2017

This debate amongst Muslims, out in the open, is long overdue. Here is a contribution from Ambreen Zaidi. Will the Islamic apologists try to rubbish this, too?


  1. Saad says

    Muslims in Pakistan (and other Muslim societies) need Islamophobia*.

    Muslims in the UK, America, Canada, etc do not need Islamophobia.

    You really need to work on not treating the two societies as if they’re the same. I would think an ex-Muslim would have a clear grasp on such a basic concept.

    * Well, it wouldn’t be Islamophobia at all then.That would be like saying “racism against white people” in America. Islamophobia requires Muslims being a marginalized minority in a particular society.

    • says

      Muslims in Pakistan (and other Muslim societies) need Islamophobia

      The OP title (quoting someone else) is actually “Islam needs Islamophobia right now.” You really need to work on not treating the two concepts as if they’re the same.

      That would be like saying “racism against white people” in America.

      Let’s talk about racism against white people some time. It’s a discussion that’s long overdue.

      Islamophobia requires Muslims being a marginalized minority in a particular society.

      I wasn’t aware that the definition “Islamophobia” had this qualification built in. Your logic also makes it hard to see how Apartheid could have been racism, since that would’ve required blacks to have been a marginalised minority in South Africa.

      BTW. I’m repeating your words “You really need to work on” by way of showing how gratuitous such a remark is. If we’re going to have a serious discussion (and these are serious topics), let’s not start this way, for we’ll quickly degenerate into a waste of everybody’s time.

  2. polishsalami says

    It seems the argument put forth by Saad is that because Muslims are a minority in “Western” nations, the default assumption is that they automatically belong to a “persecuted” class. Those who make this claim never seem to provide any evidence for this. Anyone?

  3. nathanaelnerode says

    Ambreen Zaidi sums it up very well. It is not that Islam is evil — it is that Wahabbism is evil.

    What we actually need is not a vague and confused hostlility to “Islam”, but a fundamental hostility to fundamentalism, a hostility to evangelism in all religions, and an “eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man,” as Thomas Jefferson swore — hostility to any attempt to control people’s beliefs.

    If you claim your holy book is literally true you should be mocked, treated as a crazy person, and possibly arrested.

    If your religion simply means you observe certain feasts and rituals, and you don’t want to force anyone else to, then that’s OK. Many of the most ancient religions work this way, period, as do many of the newest post-1960s religions. (I’ve concluded that the true essence of religion is a community held together by a set of shared rituals. Period. If someone tries to attach mind-controlling belief requirements to that, as in most versions of Christianity and Islam, I think that’s abusive and evil.)

    Since you’re British, you might not realize that the Christian fundamentalists in the US are almost indistinguishable from the Muslim fundamentalists in Saudi Arabia and the two groups actually *routinely actively cooperate* despite each claiming in public that the other group are heathens and heretics. I think this gives an insight into their basic nature: they’re motivated by anti-humanism, misogyny, and elitism, and religion is a convenient excuse so that they can justify their evil behaviors to themselves.

    Wahabbism is very well funded due to Saudi Arabia’s oil money, but there are equally evil fundamentalist groups who claim other religious names: Opus Dei (Catholic), Dominion Theology (Protestant), and a Hindu movement which I don’t actually know the name of (I’m sorry to say).

    The reason I care about this stuff is that it’s vitally important to know your enemy, as Sun Tzu says. Confusing Wahabbism with Islam is a rookie mistake which leads to tactical errors.

    Furthermore, the tactic of “You’re not doing the religion *right*” is not one which is limited to right-wingers — as Ambreen Zaidi points out, Wahabbism has actually been condemned as a Satanic cult by major and highly respected Muslim institutions. And it is a powerful tactic which should be used. Unfortunately, right now it’s being overwhelmed by the flood of Saudi oil money, but take that away and this tactic will start being very effective.

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