Madinat al-Muslimeen Islamic Message Board
|U.K. Paper Says Western Media Ignorant About Muslims|
|08/15/01 at 09:27:44|
U.K. Paper Says Western Media Ignorant About Muslims
LONDON, August 14 (IslamOnline & News Agencies) - Ignorance and prejudice
sour the West's view of Islam, said an editorial in the U.K. newspaper, the
Daily Telegraph Tuesday.
John Casey, a writer at the Telegraph, said that biased reporting in Western
media has become an indisputable norm and that Islam is viewed as an
"A former secretary general of NATO, Willy Claes, claimed that, after the
fall of communism, Islam is our new world enemy. Anyone who writes
sympathetically about Islam in the press is likely to get a letter or two
informing him of the worldwide Muslim conspiracy," said Casey in his
He explained that there is a Western Islamophobia, with liberals and
feminists denouncing the position of women in the Muslim world, and that
Muslim communities are misunderstood for being male chauvinistic, and even
Palestinian Information Minister Yasser Abed Rabbo recently accused the BBC
Corporation, one of the U.K.'s most prominent media gurus, of "hypocrisy".
This came after its Assignments Editor, Malcolm Downing, circulated a memo
asking reporters not describe Israeli crimes against Palestinians as
Instead, the reporters were told to use Israel's own euphemism for the
murders calling them "targeted killings" and to save the word
"assassinations" for high-profile political assassinations, citing Israeli
Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin's murder as an example.
BBC's bias against Muslims in general, and Arabs in particular, has been
evident in terms it uses to refer to Palestinians, calling them "militants",
and referring to Palestinian political parties as "Islamic militant groups".
"It is quite acceptable - almost de rigueur - to express vehement
anti-Muslim sentiments in polite society without being accused of racism.
Indeed, to disagree with these sentiments is to invite suspicion," said
Casey in his article.
It is for these reasons, added Casey, that Muslims warmly greet any attempt
by a Westerner to better understand their religion.
In his article, Casey pointed out the close relations between Islam,
Christianity and Judaism, saying, "The Kaaba in Mecca is reputed to have
been built by Abraham; Abraham's non-sacrifice of his son inspires one of
the great Muslim feasts; and Jesus is received as prophet and Messiah."
He also explained that at its most culturally glorious period - around the
10th Century, Islamic advances in mathematics, astronomy, medicine and
philosophy were vastly superior to anything going on in Europe.
"In Muslim countries, Jews and Christians were recognized as genuine, if
imperfect, believers - an attitude reciprocated by Christianity only very
"The capture of Jerusalem by the Crusaders - in which 70,000 Muslims were
slaughtered and the Jews burnt alive in their synagogue - contrasts with the
re-taking of the city by Salahudin, when religious freedom was proclaimed
for all 'peoples of the Book'," said Casey.
When talking about Islam, Casey urged the media to be free of the miasma of
prejudice. Only then will they be able to discuss "the fact that current
religious revival in Muslim countries has not been accompanied by any
equivalent intellectual or cultural renaissance" or that "modern textual
scholarship in studying the Qu'ran has begun actually to go backwards in
some of the great centers of Muslim learning," he explained.
Concluding his article, Casey urged U.K. Muslims not to become what he
called "too English", and to keep a sense of their worldwide community, its
astonishing history and its current intractable problems. "The cost of
becoming comfortably 'normal' might be to become less interesting," he said.
Individual posts do not necessarily reflect the views of Jannah.org, Islam, or all Muslims. All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective owners. Comments are owned by the poster and may not be used without consent of the author.The rest © Jannah.Org