English/International

Fitna the movie

‘I Muslima’, a personal response to ‘Fitna’ – Radio Netherlands Worldwide – English

I Muslima is the first documentary by 24-year-old social studies student Stefan Franz from Tilburg. His girlfriend Anita Paoniasari, raised in a strict Islamic community in the Indonesian city of Bandung does not recognise the image of Islam painted by politician Geert Wilders in his film Fitna. She has been living in the Netherlands for seven years, and says she has become Westernized, but is angered and saddened by the violent Islam portrayed by the Dutch MP, despite the critical questions she is asking herself about her religion.

For Stefan Franz, this was sufficient reason to travel to Indonesia with his girlfriend and record the reactions of people there on video. Anita Paoniasari talked to people in the street and to old friends. Conversations with imams also invariably turned to Geert Wilders, Fitna and Islam. At the time, fanatical believers were holding a demonstration against the film in the capital Jakarta.

nrc.nl – International – Wilders plans Fitna, the sequel

Wilders told De Telegraaf newspaper on Thursday he plans to bring out Fitna II in 2010, and that the film will show the impact of mass migration from Muslim countries on Western society.

“It will not be a copy of Fitna. This is the next phase,” Wilders told the newspaper.

See also the reactions at: Klein Verzet, Snouck Hurgronje, Das islamische Portal Milli Gorus, PoliGazette, Creeping Sharia, Allerachterste Rij, KUMonline, De Dagelijkse Standaard, Paul Vermast, Brekend nieuws en nonnieuws, Nieuw Nieuws, All About Geert Wilders and Glop.

Daily life
News | Egypt launches anti-face veil campaign in govt

Egypt’s Ministry of Religious Endowments has launched a campaign against wearing the full face veil known as a niqab in government jobs claiming it is not an obligation for Muslims.

The latest crackdown on the niqab follows a prohibition against nurses wearing the full face veil in hospitals.

FRA – European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights

The European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) today releases results of the first ever EU-wide survey on immigrant and ethnic minority groups’ experiences of discrimination and racist crime. The survey reveals that discrimination, harassment and racially motivated violence are far more widespread than recorded in official statistics. The results suggest a sense of resignation among ethnic minorities and immigrants who appear to lack confidence in mechanisms to protect victims. The FRA calls on EU governments to improve the situation, by promoting the reporting and recording of discrimination and racist crime, fully applying anti-discrimination laws, and better informing vulnerable minorities about their rights.

UK is Best Country for Euro-Muslims – Middle East Times

Practicing Islam in the United Kingdom has become as easy – if not easier – than in many majority-Muslim states, according to a leading British Muslim cleric. But concerns have been raised over rumors that the British government is preparing anti-terror legislation (known as Contest 2) that would classify British Muslims as extremists if they have refused to condemn the killing of British soldiers in conflict or have described homosexuality as a sin.

Supporting jihad in any form, including in the Palestinian territories, or promoting the institution of Sharia law or the establishment of a Caliphate (an Islamic state transcending national borders) would also legally fall within the parameters of extremism.

Even so, many British Muslims believe that leading a truly pious Islamic life is facilitated by the benefits of living in a liberal democratic society such as the United Kingdom.

One of the people featuring in this article is Abdur Raheem Green. I had the pleasure of speaking to him once very shortly about a case I was working on. You can visit his website here.

Bible versus Qur’an: equally violent? – Radio Netherlands Worldwide – English

Bible versus Qur’an: equally violent?
Canadian Muslim debater Shabir Ally speaks in Rotterdam

by Michel Hoebink

Canadian Muslim preacher Shabir Ally is in the Netherlands for a series of lectures and debates. His opponent in the first debate was Dutch Jewish-Christian preacher Ben Kok, who was last seen in January waving an Israeli flag in the midst of a crowd of demonstrators against the Israeli raid on Gaza.

Research

Bellum » Special Guest: Jihadica’s Thomas Hegghammer

Today we are pleased to host Thomas Hegghammer, contributor to Jihadica. The Norwegian-born scholar is a fellow at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and a senior research fellow at the Norwegian Defence Research Establishment. He joins us to share his thoughts on the study of radical Islam and its relation to Saudi Arabia and Afpak.

The Peninsula On-line: Qatar’s leading English Daily

Study finds magazines stereotyping Muslim women

DOHA: A study conducted by Saadia Izzeldin Malik of Qatar University on images of Muslim women in two popular US magazines — Time and Newsweek — found that in 44 articles in the two news magazines from 1950 to 1998, women in Muslim countries in Africa were depicted within the themes of veil/Islam, female circumcision, and famine.

Within these themes there are different metaphors used to depict the images of Muslim women from North Africa and Muslim women from sub-Saharan Africa.

Photos, especially during the times of famine, portrayed African women as predominantly helpless and needy mothers, said Malik, presenting her study at the conference on ‘East and West — Women in Media’s Eye’ at the Education City yesterday.

Living Islam in Europe: Muslim Traditions in European Contexts : Euro-Islam: News and Analysis on Islam in Europe and the United States

The collaborative research project on “Muslims in Europe and Their Societies of Origin in Asia and Africa” invites contributions to a conference to be held from 7 to 9 May 2009 at the Centre for Modern Oriental Studies, Berlin, Germany.

Turkish sociologist begins broad analysis of Islam in Europe

Turkish sociologist begins broad analysis of Islam in Europe
Professor Nilüfer Göle
With TL 3.5 million in support from the European Commission, France-based Turkish sociologist Dr. Nilüfer Göle is beginning the most comprehensive study to date on Islam in Europe.

Göle is known for a number of research projects and books on the subject of Islam and Europe, with her most recent book, “Interpenetrations: Europe and Islam,” translated into Turkish last month. Speaking with the Anatolia news agency, Göle, in Turkey for the Europe-Islam Synthesis Project, said her latest venture was important in representing a broad, unified effort as opposed to a plethora of cooperative projects. Among the subjects she will probe as part of the project is the connection between the religion of Islam and the European public space. Islam is a concept that exists both inside and outside Europe, which gives rise to a number of anachronisms when the topic is raised in European circles, she said. For this reason, her work will attempt not just to “read” Muslims in Europe, but also to “read” the interactions between Europeans and Muslims.

Op-Ed Columnist – Islam, Virgins and Grapes – NYTimes.com

“The Islamic reformation started as early as the 19th century,” notes Dr. Abu Zayd, and, of course, it has even earlier roots as well. One important school of Koranic scholarship, Mutazilism, held 1,000 years ago that the Koran need not be interpreted literally, and even today Iranian scholars are surprisingly open to critical scholarship and interpretations.

If the Islamic world is going to enjoy a revival, if fundamentalists are to be tamed, if women are to be employed more productively, then moderate interpretations of the Koran will have to gain ascendancy. There are signs of that, including a brand of “feminist Islam” that cites verses and traditions suggesting that the Prophet Muhammad favored women’s rights.

» Persians and Others: Iran’s minority politics Middle East Strategy at Harvard

From Philip Carl Salzman

There is a natural tendency to reify countries and think of them as unitary entities, often indicated by calling countries “nations” and presuming a homogeneity and uniformity among the population. But this reification and assumption of homogeneity are almost always inaccurate and misleading. In the case of Iran, it would be a great error to think of the population as being homogeneous, for the people of Iran are in fact quite diverse. There are ethnic, linguistic, organizational, and religious differences among Iranians.

Arab Reform Bulletin – Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

Pressures on Hamas in Reconciliation Talks

Khaled Hroub April, 2009

Since winning the Palestinian elections in January 2006, Hamas has faced escalating pressures. It has been evolving into an organization whose activities are primarily political mixed with resistance, whereas in the past its activities were primarily resistance combined with political. Among the most important questions it confronts is how to formulate a political vision acceptable to others (i.e. the West) that does not relinquish the basic principles that distinguish the movement, principally resistance and refusing to recognize Israel. This is the central challenge Hamas has faced repeatedly: when it won the elections, when it first proposed a unity government with other Palestinian factions, when the Quartet imposed its conditions, in its dialogue with Fatah and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, and in all of its contacts with international parties. And it is the same challenge that will determine the success or failure of the intra-Palestinian talks in Cairo, due to resume shortly.

antropologi.info – anthropology in the news blog – Mahmood Mamdani: “Western concern for Darfur = Neocolonialism”

Mahmood Mamdani: “Western concern for Darfur = Neocolonialism”

300 000 people have been killed and 2.5 million been made refugees in the war in Darfur. In his new book, anthropologist Mahmood Mamdani describes the Save Darfur campaign as representing a refracted version of the moral logic of the “War on Terror” with the Arabs in both cases branded as evil, Alex de Waal writes in The Monthly Review.

Blogosphere

Some hope for Omar Khadr « another anthro blog

After being tortured and held in captivity for years, I’m hoping Omar Khadr will be set free on his return to Canada.

That is if our Prime Minister will get of his ass and stand up for a teenager being locked up and tortured.

I would smile now, witnessing a judge shame Stephen Harper so publicly and so badly – but Khadr is still in jail, and his government continues to sit on its ass.

BosNewsLife – Christian News Agency » Blog Archive » NEWS ALERT: Saudi Arabia Releases Christian Blogger

RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA (BosNewsLife)– Saudi Arabia has released Christian blogger Hamoud Saleh Al-Amri who was jailed after openly writing on the Internet about his conversion from Islam to Christianity, rights investigators confirmed Thursday, April 16.

Dutch
Moslims: ‘Gescheiden kamers in ziekenhuizen’ – Binnenland – Algemeen – bndestem

BREDA/BERGEN OP ZOOM – Moslimorganisaties in Breda hebben bij het Amphia Ziekenhuis aangedrongen mannen en vrouwen weer op aparte kamers te verplegen. “Veel moslimvrouwen vinden het uit religieuze overtuiging niet prettig een halfnaakte man in het bed naast hen te hebben”, zegt Driss Siraji, die namens de Migrantenraad en de Arrahmanmoskee met het ziekenhuis sprak.

Onderzoek naar mogelijke Haagse islaminternaten – Trouw

De gemeente Den Haag stelt een onderzoek in naar de mogelijke aanwezigheid van islamitische internaten in de stad.

Volgens VVD’er Else van Dijk-Staats zouden er minstens drie internaten zijn die bijvoorbeeld contacten hebben met de beweging van de islamitische prediker Fethullah Gülen. Jongeren zouden in de internaten worden ,,geïsoleerd en geïndoctrineerd”.

De dubbele tong van hoofddoekhaters | Kennislink

Radicale anti-religieuze standpunten, in de mix met subtiele vooroordelen en een vleugje etnocentrisme. Dat blijkt het recept voor hoofddoekhaat. Emancipatie en vrouwenrechten komen er niet aan te pas.

Zie ook oorspronkelijke artikel: Islamic Veil and Subtle Prejudice

The wearing of the Islamic veil by Muslim women has become a source of tensions in Western European countries. In order to investigate majority members’ attitudes towards the veil, the present two studies (Ns = 166 and 147), carried out in Belgium, integrated three lines of research that have focused on (a) the role of subtle prejudice/racism on the host society’s attitudes towards immigrants, (b) the role of values on acculturation, and (c) the role of eligious attitudes on prejudice. Results revealed the effects of subtle prejudice/racism, values (self-enhancement values and security versus universalism), and religious attitudes (literal anti-religious thinking versus spirituality), in predicting greater levels of anti-veil attitudes beyond the effects of other related variables such as age and political conservatism. The studies also suggest the importance of including religious attitudes as part of the intergrouprelations factors that predict attitudes towards immigrants, at least with regard to specific components of intercultural relations.

Deportatie Marokkaanse broers is onbehoorlijk – Trouw

inden we dat tweedegeneratie-migranten Nederlanders zijn of zien we hen liever als mensen die in ons land wonen, maar waar we naar eigen goeddunken weer afscheid van kunnen nemen. Juristen hebben er al op gewezen dat uitzetting is gebaseerd op oneigenlijke argumentatie die strijdig is met de geest van de Vreemdelingenwet.

De vraag wat er met deze jongeren zal gebeuren als zij in Marokko aankomen, wordt door de initiatiefnemers niet gesteld. Toch is het belangrijk hierbij stil te staan, want het hek is natuurlijk van de dam wanneer deze broers als eersten worden gedeporteerd. Ik gebruik hier bewust het woord ’gedeporteerd’, want dit is de terminologie is die men hiervoor in de Verenigde Staten hanteert. Daar bestaan inmiddels goed gedocumenteerde voorbeelden van groepen mensen die werden teruggestuurd naar hun geboorteland. Het is hen slecht vergaan.

Moslimbarbie komt met extra hoofddoek en bidkleedje – DAG

In Marokko is Fulla al langer bekend én populair. Rond islamitische feestdagen waarop kinderen cadeaus krijgen, zoals Asjoera, liggen de schappen en de markten vol met haar. Fulla wordt geproduceerd door het bedrijf NewBoy in Dubai, dat op zijn site trots vermeldt dat de pop in de Arabische wereld een van best verkopende speelgoedartikelen is. Volgens Le Soir zijn er 2,5 miljoen exemplaren van verkocht.