America prides itself on religious freedom, the Constitution’s First Amendment stating:
shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or
prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of
speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to
assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."
fact, those rights are selectively enforced, and consistently denied at
the whim of administrations, Congress and courts, including equal
respect for all religions – more than ever post-9/11 under Bush and
Obama, agents of privilege, not Constitutionally protected freedoms. A
sad testimony to a rhetorical, not real democracy, Muslim Americans
especially victimized, vilified, and persecuted for their faith,
ethnicity, prominence, activism, and charity – innocent men and women
bogusly called terrorists, used for political advantage.
than any other ethnic/religious group, Western discourse especially
wrongs and unfairly portrays Muslim/Arabs stereotypically as culturally
inferior, dirty, lecherous, untrustworthy, religiously fanatical, and
In his book, "Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People,"
Jack Shaheen explained how they’ve been defamed and used as fair game
throughout decades of cinematic history (from silent films to recent
ones) to foster prejudicial attitudes, and reinforce notions of Western
values, high-mindedness, and moral superiority.
Worse still are slanderous media commentaries about dangerous
gun-toting terrorists, vital for authorities to arrest and imprison,
never mind the rule of law, right or wrong, or whether those accused
are guilty or innocent. It’s no surprise when new suspects are named,
media reports automatically convicting them in the court of public
opinion, poisoning it by stereotypical characterizations and baseless
charges, invariably against Muslims, and by implication their faith.
wonder politicians and extremist Christian fundamentalist ministers
rage over Muslim "terrorists" and a proposed New York Islamic cultural
center two blocks from Ground Zero, threatening a public 9/11 Koran
burning in protest – cancelled, then suspended, now re-cancelled, so
stay tuned, the outrageous media frenzy may encourage it ahead, as well
as attacks around the country against mosques, perhaps with Muslims
inside praying, authorities turning a blind eye about people they
despise, pretending, like Obama, they care.
On 9/11/2010, he
disingenuously said America’s not "at war with Islam," while he wages
it against at least six Muslim countries – Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan,
Somalia Yemen, and Palestine by supplying Israel with annual billions
in aid and the latest weapons and technology. He also threatens or
intimidates other countries, including Iran, Lebanon, Syria, North
Korea, Venezuela and Cuba, even though none of them pose a regional or
In addition, Special Forces death squads (like
Task Force 373), extrajudicially murder or capture suspected Taliban
and Al Qaeda figures, many hundreds or perhaps thousands on a so-called
Jpel (joint prioritized effects) list.
Further, drones and ground
forces kill civilian men, women and children daily, falsely called
"terrorists" or "insurgents," and Special Forces and CIA operatives
operate lawlessly in 75 or more countries, warring covertly against
anyone opposing US interests.
It’s America’s secret war, mostly
against Muslims, including US citizens abroad, denied due process or
judicial fairness. Just a bullet, bomb or slit throat, Obama’s summary
judgment, defiling the rule of law – counter-insurgency madness to cow
people into submission, advancing permanent war and endless violence,
breeding resentment and hatred throughout the Muslim world.
9/11, AP said, for the second straight day, thousands of Afghans in
Kabul responded to anti-Muslim hatred, specifically the announced Koran
burning. Despite cancelling it, the damage was done, crowds burning
tires and shouting "Long live Islam, death to America." Earlier in the
week, they heard fiery speeches from parliament members, provincial
council deputies, and Islamic clerics, criticizing Washington and
demanding foreign troops withdraw. Some also threw rocks at a passing
US military convoy.
Protesters in front of western Kabul’s Milad
ul-Nabi mosque raised and flags with slogans calling for Obama’s death,
also a cardboard effigy of Dove World Outreach Center’s pastor Terry
Jones. All religious holy books are sacred, demanding the respect they
deserve. Burning or desecrating them is morally wrong and profoundly
In 2005, Afghan riots killed 15 and injured dozens
following stories about Guantanamo interrogators placing Korans in
washrooms and flushing one down a toilet. Imagine the outrage in
America if Muslims did it to Bibles or other Judeo-Christian scripture.
that backdrop, Obama’s 9/11 address at the Pentagon (symbolic of
America’s war agenda) was an exercise in demagoguery and lies saying:
will not sacrifice the liberties we cherish or hunker down behind walls
of suspicion and mistrust….The highest honor we can pay those we lost,
indeed our greatest weapon in this ongoing war, is to do what our
adversaries fear the most. To stay true to who we are, as Americans; to
renew our sense of common purpose; to say that we define the character
of our country, and we will not let the acts of some small band of
murderers who slaughter the innocent and cower in caves distort who we
- in 20
months as president, Obama continued what Bush began, stripping civil
liberties, defiling human rights, waging imperial wars, increasing
homeland repression, and targeting dissent and democratic freedoms;
- at home and abroad, he’s fostered hate, loathing, and mistrust throughout the entire Muslim world;
"those (9/11 victims) we lost" were by our hands, not "crazed Arabs"
from an Afghanistan cave directing their American operatives;
"true to who we are? our sense of common purpose? the character of our
country?" In fact, a cavernous divide separates most Americans from our
criminal ruling cabal. Obama is its titular head allied with corporate
predators, exploiting human resources and strip mining the world for
profits, allied with out-of-control militarists, destroying it for
power and privilege;
- "some small band of murderers who
slaughter the innocent?" America’s marauding armies wage ruthless wars
on planet earth, slaughtering millions on every continent;
- "distort who we are?" The above account explains it, unmasking Obama’s demagoguery.
"We champion the rights of every American (to) worship as one chooses,"
Obama omitted the New York cultural center or announced Koran burning,
now cancelled, showing his contempt for Islam, his words
notwithstanding, disingenuous rhetoric like everything he says, what
everyone needs to know, what too few understand, still thinking he’s
different. He’s not, and in many respects he’s worse than his
Justifying America’s imperial wars and homeland
repression requires enemies, Muslims the target of choice, vilified for
their faith, "terrorists" or "Islamofascists" because we say so. It’s
reminiscent of the false late 1990s accusations against Nation of Islam
National Representative Louis Farrakhan, saying he called the Pope "the
anti-Christ" and Judaism a "gutter religion."
rebutted the assertions, what Washington can’t do about Islam, calling
it a "religion of war," when, in fact, it promotes love, not hate;
peace, not violence; good over evil; charity, not exploitation; and a
just and fair society for people of all faiths.
Judeo-Christian "war on terror" disdains these beliefs, vilifying
people for their faith, slaughtering and torturing them abroad,
conducting a modern day Inquisition at home, a lawless holy crusade,
based on lies, deceit, and managed news. Regular state propaganda over
the airwaves preaches hate for global conquest, masquerading as
democracy, the kind Washington won’t tolerate anywhere, including at
A Final Comment
one-sided Israeli support underscores its disdain for Islam. Obama
accentuated it by telling Netanyahu that "The bond between the United
States and Israel is unbreakable," assuring him of America’s "deep,
abiding interest in Israel’s security," a message Palestinians and
world Muslims know means no interest in theirs.
Worse still, he
endorsed Cast Lead and Gaza’s siege, mercilessly and illegally
suffocating 1.5 million people posing no threat whatever. Hamas is
targeted for its independence, not militancy, what he and Western media
The latest round of peace talks continue, as bogus
as others, on and off for the past 35 years, resolving nothing but
empowering Israel at the expense of Occupied Palestinians. The only
possible outcome this time is like before – total failure or
unconditional capitulation, nothing in between, because Washington and
Israel won’t tolerate a just, equitable agreement.
rejects Hamas as Palestine’s legitimate government as well its right to
self-defense. Under occupation, it’s essential against a nuclear-armed
marauder, a rogue state, a military powerhouse aggressor believing
violence is the only language Arabs understand. No wonder growing
millions globally see Israel for what it is – a regional and world
menace complicit with its Washington paymaster/partner.
* Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at email@example.com. Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com
and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the
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