The rise of Islamophobia and what needs to be done

 In International, Middle East

The concept Islamophobia was introduced in 1991 by the Runnymede Trust Report. It is an unfounded hatred towards Muslims and Islam as a religion. The report has found that, in the West, Islam is regarded as, inferior, violent, aggressive, primitive, and sexist, supports terrorism and hostile towards Western values and beliefs.

The drive to Islamophobia is mostly sparked by the West’s Imperialism and the portrayal of Muslims in the media which legitimatised the phobia because of the 9/11 terrorists attack. Since the 9/11 terrorists’ attacks have increased exponentially across Europe, Middle East, West Africa and North Africa. The Paris and San Bernandino attacks gave the t West a leg to lean on in defence for Islam hatred. However Islamophobia did not start recently. It has been in existence since the 1940s when Israel evaded Palestine and claim it as their territory.

Apartheid Israel has undermined the rights of the Palestines for decades without any Western intervention. Millions of Palestines women and children have been massacred by the military Israel. The reason why the West has not intervene in the Middle East crisis is because of the oil deposit which West capitalists have access to. The Middle East is a strategic location for the capitalists in their quest to build and maintain their empires. Middle East has 80% of the world’s crude oil reserves and supplies 65% of the world’s oil. If the Palestine could get control of the oil reserves they could generate 3.4 billion dollars in additional revenue.

Capitalism heavily depends on racism to prosper and sustain itself. It uses the divide and conquer doctrine. It divides the section of the working class to continue its existence. The exploitation of extremists as scapegoat for capitalists has so far worked in the favour capitalism. However, the terrorist extremists should be condemned as criminality and it does not favour any working class struggle except terrorists groups such as ISIS and Bokom Haram.

Terrorism is an act of small group pushing their agenda disguising as the fight for many.

Terrorists possesses no fundamental working class struggle principles. It serves only as tool for certain individuals to hype their profiles and enriched themselves. It has found that terrorists group have sole control of certain natural resources and have billions of US dollars in off shore accounts. This can be not regarded as the struggle for working class economic emancipation.

A thorough distinguishing should be made between Islam and terrorists groups. Unfortunately, Islam has been painted with the same paint with terrorism by the likes of the right wing political figures such as Donald Trump. In the United States, Donald Trump has banned Muslims entering the US and they’re also required to register with the government.

But one might ask, why Donald Trump racist utterances and beliefs have found large audiences that concur resonate widely with his Islamophobia stance.

The answer lies with the international capitalism being in crisis. Capitalism is outdated. It has been rebooted so many times by neo classical economists, politicians and philosophers but yet nothing has worked. In fact, it has exacerbated the situation.

The bourgeoisies are continuing amassing huge wealth while the working class is worsening. Racism is rife in every corner of the globe. Those who are in the receiving end are mostly working class. Moreover, capitalism crisis makes it easy for the working class especially in the West to blame Muslims for the all the troubles. Muslims like any other working class minority in the West, they’ve been blamed for crime, low wages, poverty, suicide bombings and other social and economic illnesses.

The bombing of Syria, Yemen, Afghanistan and Iraq has further created problems but mostly they have given terrorists groups a platform to legitimise their cause so they can recruit members of the working class who are looking for alternative to the brutal caapitalism system. Furthermore, extremists are manipulating Islam and the vulnerability of the working class looking for answers to their suffering. They regard Jihad (holy war) as retaliation tool to Islamophobia.

Those who oppose Islam claim that terrorism is an act by Islamists. According to Robert Pape , a political scientist from the US, suicide bombing from 1980 to 2001 shows that there is little connection between suicide terrorism and Islamic fundamentalism. Islam has replaced Russia as the number 1 enemy to the West Imperialists after the Cold War. It was “Communists are coming” and now its “Muslims are coming”. Because of the harsh and hatred environment that Muslims are finding themselves in, they are forced to fit in, in the society to avoid harassment and hatred. Islam is being criticised as backward ideology that has failed to adapt to modern society.

The answer to capitalism, Islamophobia (racism) and Terror lies with mass movements that includes, students, socialists and community organisations. Mostly importantly, the mass workers action is the way to transform society and fight against injustice that religious group like Islam are facing. The dismantling of capitalism will stop terrorism consequently Islamophobia.

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  • Kgotso

    Very informative and it makes sense which is still relevant to the current affairs.

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