Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

The Culture of Hatred | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Despite the criminal attacks that took place in London, despite the presence of millions of Arabs and Muslims there, and despite a large number of activists and mosques, Britain has arrested only two people related to the bombings. Had only half of the damages and deaths that occurred in London occurred in any Arab state, thousands would have been arrested discreetly with government statements announcing only a handful of arrests.

While we deplore the mistaken murder of an innocent civilian, one cannot help but think of the circumstance had this innocent young man been an Arab or Muslim. Extremist propaganda would have been rife, accusing Britain of illegitimately killing innocent Muslims. Such groups have been surprised at the rational British reaction towards the events, with Tony Blair further emphasizing that Islam and terrorism are independent of each other and the leaders of Britain analyzing the event in a sensible approach. Asides from this, the police have only arrested two people.

In the United States, the congressman for the state of Colorado made outrageous and disrespectable comments saying, &#34If America was to be subjected to terrorist attacks by Muslim fundamentalist, then we could take out their holy sites.&#34 When the radio show host asked him, &#34Do you mean the Kaaba?&#34 He replied saying, &#34Sure&#34.

This American congressman is now experiencing an enmity campaign against him from politicians and media figures alike in the United States. The White House and the American state department have clearly denounced his statements. The American press accused him of racism and hatred, and the reaction from within American society was much stronger than that of any Islamic country.

On the other hand, we hear of hatred and racist statements made by prominent figures of the Arab world against other nations and cultures, yet nobody is prepared to confront boldly such messages. Provocative thoughts and ideology have been spread by Yusuf Al-Qaradawy for example, who issued a religious ruling that states that Iraqi civilians are to be killed if they show any cooperation with occupying forces. He confidently spreads these messages via the satellite channels, mosques, and the Arab press.

We all remember when Abu Hamza Al-Masri who lives in Britain and has British nationality was asked why he lives in London considering his denunciation that it is an atheist country. He answered that, &#34Britain is like a toilet, we just do what we must and leave!&#34

How can such an ideology live peacefully in this world? I do not believe it can.