Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Muslim Ban.. Populism and Hypocrisy! | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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A protestor holds up a sign that reads “I Love My Muslim Neighbors” during a demonstration against the new ban on immigration issued by President Donald Trump at Logan International Airport on Saturday in Boston, Massachusetts. – Scott Eisen, Getty Images/AFP

No sooner than U.S. President Donald Trump announced the Muslim Ban order and chaos was everywhere with legal actions and international criticism. The ban of citizens of seven Muslim countries from entering the U.S is technically a suspension since it is temporary.

The truth is that you can’t defend the president’s decision, but this is not the issue here.

What should concern us as Muslims, Arabs, journalists, and politicians is the fact that Trump’s decision to ban citizens of certain Muslim countries from entering the UززS, including Iran, Iraq and Yemen, is an indication to the failure of those states.

Iran named the U.S. Satan and declared hatred towards it for years. Tehran is now saying that it will treat Washington the same and ban its citizens from entering Iran, so why did then Iran seek enmity with the U.S? And why do its supporters in Lebanon, Yemen, Iraq and Syria raise the slogan “Death to America” and are angered by the ban?

Why are the followers of the radical Islam in the region, who promoted hate against the U.S for decades, are now enraged by Trump’s order?

Isn’t Trump’s ban an indication that our region had failed to become attractive, especially that they rush to enter the United States?

The new president’s decision is surely populist, but he recanted his campaign pledges and is now resorting to a temporary order that only includes seven countries. This shows the chaotic and not racist state of the coming U.S. foreign policy.

How will Trump fight ISIS in Iraq while he bans all Iraqi citizens from entering his country? How does he plan to end ISIS’ presence in Syria and impose safe zone when he is equalizing between the victim and the aggressor?

This is not the issue. Our concern is what is being said in our region and the west, especially from those who claim are human rights supporters and concerned with fighting racism.

The matter in question here is about those who claim they are human rights advocates and against racism in the media, the west and precisely those from Iraq or other Islamic countries and some of the Shiite sect. Those who wonder why seven countries have been banned, while other countries whose citizens were involved in the September 11 attacks, were not banned.

Are they defending principles? Declaring their rejection for racism? Or do they simply hate Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and UAE? This means they are just like Trump, whom they describe as racist and bigoted. This is not right.

Did they forget that Saudi Arabia and Egypt suffered from terrorism just like the U.S. did?

It is evident that Trump’s order unveiled the gravity of populism, but it also revealed the atrocious claims of resistance and rights activists, especially of Iranians who declared once that U.S is the Satan.