Sun's 'Muslim poll' faces growing criticism

The Guardian World news: Islam - 24 November, 2015 - 09:56

Record number of complaints over story alleging one in five British Muslims had ‘sympathy for jihadis’ as it emerges YouGov refused to carry out poll

The Sun is facing a backlash against its front-page report of an opinion poll purporting to show that one in five British Muslims had “sympathy for jihadis”, with more than 1,200 complaints made to the press regulator.

Readers and Muslim organisations accused the paper of misrepresenting the results of the poll, conducted by Survation, which showed that 5% of respondents agreed with the statement “I have a lot of sympathy with young Muslims who leave the UK to join fighters in Syria” and that 14.5% said they had “some sympathy”. Critics argued that the use of the term “sympathy” was ambiguous and that it was not clear who was meant by “fighters in Syria”.

Related: Pollsters for Sun's jihadi sympathy story called list of 'Muslim names'

Related: Why the Sun’s ‘jihadi’ poll is dubious – and its headline dangerous | Miqdaad Versi

Surely the Sun, with its recent past, would do well to demonstrate some humanity in these difficult times

Related: #1in5Muslims: Twitter mocks Sun front page with 'facts' about Muslims

#1in5Muslims are lucky enough not to have a red squiggly line under their name in Microsoft Word

#1in5Muslims use 'Inshallah' to politely avoid committing to any plan. (And it works.) "Wanna get coffee sometime?" "Sure, yeah, inshallah."

#1in5Muslims have forcefully converted their cat to islam

#1in5muslims look like Zayn Malik, according to their mums.

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#1in5Muslims: Twitter mocks Sun front page with 'facts' about Muslims

The Guardian World news: Islam - 24 November, 2015 - 09:48

The internet has hit back after the Sun claimed one in five Muslims has ‘sympathy for jihadis’

After the Sun published a front page claiming one in five British Muslims had “sympathy for jihadis”, the tabloid has been hit with criticism about its polling methods and a record number of Ipso complaints.

Twitter users, however, took a different tack. Using the hashtag #1in5Muslims, some much-needed humour was added as people tweeted their own made up and humorous facts about Muslims. They ranged from slice of life humour:

#1in5Muslims use 'Inshallah' to politely avoid committing to any plan. (And it works.) "Wanna get coffee sometime?" "Sure, yeah, inshallah."

#1in5Muslims are lucky enough not to have a red squiggly line under their name in Microsoft Word

#1in5Muslims have accidentally munched on a packet of gelatine haribos

#1in5muslims look like Zayn Malik, according to their mums.

#1in5Muslims think Netflix and chill means Netflix and chill.

#1in5Muslims force religion onto pets

#1in5Muslims force their pets to wear modest Islamic clothing

#1in5Muslims think Batman is performing the Maghreb (evening) prayer.

#1in5muslims think Ross and Rachel were on a break

#1in5Muslims are French... if they score. Otherwise, they're Arab.

#1in5Muslims are victims of baseless Islamophobic rants of narcissistic racists who show inherent bigotry

We are trying to get #1in5Muslims trending to rip into the sun... Let's see how far we get! @AssedBaig @dats @aishagani @miqdaad

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Iran picks new battle against Islamic State with state-commissioned film

The Guardian World news: Islam - 24 November, 2015 - 07:00

Songs of My Homeland is part love story, part propaganda to convince Arabs that Iran is a bulwark against the west and Isis

At a dusty compound in Robat Karim, a town just outside Tehran, a thickly-bearded commander in military fatigues gives a rousing speech in Arabic to a group of armed young men ready for martyrdom. The black flag of the Islamic State (Isis) flutters in the background.

Suddenly, from among a crowd of onlookers, a man yells in Farsi: “Cut! If you say it right once, it’s a wrap. If not, we’ll be re-doing this a hundred times!”

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Swedish asylum policy fuels support for far-right nationalist party

The Guardian World news: Islam - 24 November, 2015 - 05:00

The Sweden Democrats’ anti-migrant stance is proving popular among those who oppose the entry of 190,000 refugees into the country this year

Growing frustration in Sweden with an asylum policy that will allow up to 190,000 refugees into the country this year is driving Europe’s self-declared “humanitarian superpower” into the arms of radical nationalism.

The Sweden Democrats (SD), a nationalist party that emerged from the neo-Nazi movement and has been shunned by Sweden’s mainstream parties because of its far-right immigration policies, is now the country’s third-largest party with 49 representatives in parliament.

Related: Sweden calls on army to help manage refugee crisis

Related: From Somalia to Sweden: the refugee forced to live apart from his wife and child | Ben Rawlence

Related: How the Nordic far-right has stolen the left’s ground on welfare

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Malcolm Turnbull calls for unity not 'machismo' in face of terrorism threat

The Guardian World news: Islam - 24 November, 2015 - 03:59

Prime minister reinforces plea for community unity and rules out augmenting Australia’s military role in Middle East in national security statement to parliament

Malcolm Turnbull has ruled out dramatically ramping up Australia’s military role in the Middle East and reinforced his plea for community unity at home in a security speech aimed at reassuring people about efforts to prevent terrorism.

The prime minister said the government was working to keep people safe and revealed he had asked law enforcement agencies to test their responses to a mass-casualty attack because there was little room for negotiation.

Related: Scott Morrison warns against 'hot-headed' response to Syrian crisis

Related: Tony Abbott’s campaign to make Turnbull look weak on terrorism is a losing battle | Lenore Taylor

Related: Three out of four Australians expect a large terrorist attack, poll shows

Related: National security: Abbott would revoke citizenship as part of extremism fight

Related: Five things Australia's grand mufti may or may not have said about the Paris attacks

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Victorian premier: ‘You’re not a protester, you’re just a bigot’ – video

The Guardian World news: Islam - 24 November, 2015 - 03:42

The Victorian premier, Daniel Andrews, speaks on Tuesday about the Reclaim Australia protests which took place in Melbourne on Sunday. Andrews says the events included ‘very ugly scenes’ and were not in accordance with the values ‘held dear’ by Victoria, which is a ‘respectful, inclusive, multicultural’ state. The protests, over the proposed construction of a mosque and Islamic school in the area, ended in the arrest of seven people after clashes between attendants and anti-racism groups

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No, Isis are not 'punishing' us because we don't love each other enough | Yassir Morsi

The Guardian World news: Islam - 24 November, 2015 - 02:30

Appeals to universal fraternity and tolerance, such as those made by Waleed Aly, have more to do with public performances of ethics than resisting terrorism

The Muslim world is a battleground for Europe’s own domestic conflicts. We need only recognise how the two dominant stereotypes of the Muslim are the ideal “others” of each side’s politics: for rightwingers, the stress on the relentless terrorist; for leftwingers, its victim, the pure and grateful refugee.

Related: The Project's Waleed Aly hits out at Isis over Paris attacks in viral video

Isil’s strategy is to split the world into two camps, it’s that black and white ... They want countries like ours to reject their Muslims and vilify them ... So if you’re a member of parliament, or a has-been member of parliament preaching hate at a time when what we actually need is more love, you’re helping [Isis].

Related: Together, we can conquer Isis’s savage world view | Deeyah Khan

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Victorian premier asks Reclaim Australia activists 'Why cover your face?'

The Guardian World news: Islam - 24 November, 2015 - 01:09

Daniel Andrews says ‘ugly scenes’ at Melbourne anti-Islam rallies are not in accord with Victoria’s strength as a diverse and multicultural society

Victoria’s premier thinks Reclaim Australia activists should say why they wore masks in violent protests.

Violence marred rival anti-Islam and pro-diversity protests in Melbourne on Sunday, with some of the Reclaim Australia protesters wearing masks and sunglasses.

Related: I won't stand by while toxic, personal racism poisons our public debate | Mehreen Faruqi

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Pollsters for Sun's jihadi sympathy story called list of 'Muslim names'

The Guardian World news: Islam - 23 November, 2015 - 20:26

Polling firm Survation used controversial methodology to keep survey affordable as paper’s usual pollster refused job

A poll purporting to show that one in five British Muslims had “sympathy for jihadis” was constructed by calling people with “Muslim surnames” in an effort to complete an affordable survey of opinion in the week after the Paris terror attacks.

Survation – the polling company used by the Sun – said it had picked out likely respondents using the help of an academic expert on naming, a method that rival polling companies said did not necessarily amount to a representative sample of the British Muslim population.

Related: Does the Sun's claim about UK Muslims' sympathy for jihadis stack up?

Related: Why the Sun’s ‘jihadi’ poll is dubious – and its headline dangerous | Miqdaad Versi

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Cooking the Books for Israel: How The NY Times Plays a Numbers Game

Jodi Rudoren today in The New York Times puts up a numbers barrier to hide the reality of Palestinian casualties in the latest spate of violence in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories. The aim, as usual, is to maintain the claim of Israeli victimhood and to obscure the criminal brutality of the occupation.

In a story about four who died yesterday in alleged attacks in the region, Rudoren writes that more than 90 Palestinians have been killed since Oct. 1, “about half while attacking or trying to attack Israelis and the rest during demonstrations where they clashed with Israeli soldiers.”

We are to believe from this statement that only violent activists have died at the hands of Israeli forces, but in fact, several Palestinians have been killed in circumstances that were anything but “clashes”—at checkpoints, for instance, when trigger happy troops shot and killed unarmed victims. One of the dead was a 73-year-old grandmother on her way to lunch with her sister.

To omit these cases is to ignore the findings of human rights groups that have charged Israel with committing extrajudicial executions in recent weeks, and Rudoren’s statement, in the face of their evidence, is an effort to distort the facts.

The misrepresentations do not end there, however. Rudoren goes on to say, “At the same time, 17 Israeli Jews have been killed and dozens wounded in 70 stabbings, 10 shootings and 10 vehicular attacks.”

Note what is missing here: the number of Palestinians that have been wounded and the attacks against them in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza. Her aim is to minimize the huge discrepancy in casualty counts by omitting the number of Palestinians wounded by Israeli forces and settlers.

Ninety compared to 70 sounds like something approaching parity, but Rudoren has deliberately omitted the logical comparison—the number of injuries. This, according to United Nations data, was 133 Israelis and 9,171 Palestinians injured as of Nov. 16.

We should ask Rudoren and Times editors why this information is missing here, in a context that cries out for full disclosure.

Beyond the full casualty count, the Times could also inform readers of other statistics that illuminate the reality of Palestinian-Israeli relations:

  • A weekly average of 150 Israeli military search and arrest operations in the West Bank last year.
  • 211 reported incidents of settler violence against Palestinians this year as of Nov. 16. (Actual incidents are daily occurrences throughout the West Bank.)
  • 50 Israeli military incursions into Gaza from Jan. 1 to Nov. 16, 2015.
  • 481 demolitions of Palestinian-owned structures as of Nov. 16 this year. (This includes homes, animal shelters, cisterns, wells and public buildings such as schools.)
  • 601 Palestinians displaced due to demolitions in 2015.
  • 6,700 Palestinian political prisoners currently held by Israel.
  • 320 Palestinian child prisoners currently in Israeli prisons.

The information for the numbers above comes from the UN Office of Coordination for Humanitarian Affairs and from Addameer, a Palestinian prisoners’ rights organization. The Times, however, ignores their reports and prefers to rely on official Israeli entities. Thus, the numbers Rudoren cites for attacks and casualties are taken from the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which has an obvious interest in political spin.

Israel has the first and last word in the Times. The United Nations, Palestinian monitoring groups and human rights organizations are silenced while Israeli official claims are taken as fact. The word “alleged,” for instance, never appears in Rudoren’s piece today. The UN report, however, uses the term frequently, distinguishing between the claims of security forces and verified information.

In short, Times reporting on Palestine and Israel is a disgrace. Numbers are deliberately manipulated, relevant facts are censored, and the result is dishonest journalism, in spite of the newspaper’s lofty claims of providing “the complete, unvarnished truth” and “impartial” reporting. The numbers simply prove them wrong.

Barbara Erickson

Filed under: New York Times israeli Bias Tagged: Israel, Media Bias, New York Times, occupation, Palestine, United Nations, West Bank

Yanis Varoufakis says closing borders to Muslim refugees only fuels terrorism

The Guardian World news: Islam - 23 November, 2015 - 19:30

Former Greek minister tells Australia’s Q&A program Paris terrorist attacks and Europe’s refugee influx are symptoms of the same problem

Europe must not close its borders to refugees in the wake of the Paris terrorist attacks, Greece’s former finance minister Yanis Varoufakis has cautioned, saying rising intolerance towards Muslim refugees would only fuel further violence.

Speaking on the Q&A program on Australia’s ABC, Varoufakis said he was proud of the Greek people’s response to the refugee crisis, despite the country being gripped by economic crises.

Related: Yanis Varoufakis: Australia is a ‘plaything’ of world economic forces it cannot control

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For those with Muslim-sounding names, air travel has an extra indignity: bigotry | Ali Gharib

The Guardian World news: Islam - 23 November, 2015 - 18:33

Flying is already uncomfortable and inconvenient, but boarding while Muslim brings extra risks with it

There are already more than enough indignities associated with flying for all Americans, from ever-lessening leg room to creeping fees. But apparently, those indignities aren’t enough for American Muslims to bear. Maybe Southwest Airlines ought to add another letter to their seat-assignment-free group alphabetical boarding scheme: M, for boarding while Muslim.

Related: Southwest Airlines criticized after incidents involving Middle Eastern passengers

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Hate Crimes and Mother Tongues

Muslimah Media Watch - 23 November, 2015 - 18:03
This post was written by Guest contributor Seema Shafei (@seemashafei). I’ll never forget the time a classmate turned to me and said that we couldn’t elect Obama because his middle name was Hussein. You never know, she told me. He could be just like Saddam. If a name could elicit this much fear, a language [Read More...]

Why the Sun’s ‘jihadi’ poll is dubious – and its headline dangerous | Miqdaad Versi

The Guardian World news: Islam - 23 November, 2015 - 15:35
A survey on British Muslim sympathies doesn’t stand up to scrutiny, yet it has been aggressively reported by the Sun just when hate crimes are soaring

“1 in 5 Brit Muslims’ sympathy for jihadis” was the irresponsible, dangerous and grossly misleading front-page headline of Monday’s edition of the Sun – a tabloid whose circulation is the highest among the national press in the UK. This front page was published on the day we heard that hate crime against Muslims has soared by 300% since the horrific attacks in Paris, according to figures from a report to the government’s working group on anti-Muslim hatred.

Many Muslims across the country are not only sick and tired of scaremongering from our newspapers, but are also worried that such outrageous reporting will further inflame tensions across the country. Either the Sun is being dangerously irresponsible in order to sell papers, or it is intentionally playing dumb. Because any expert will warn of the fallacy of making such misleading inferences from this type of poll.

Related: 'There is a massive paranoia': UK Muslims on life after Paris

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Dissertation creating help to complimentary your mind and body

Islamicate - 23 November, 2015 - 15:33
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Islamicate - 23 November, 2015 - 14:29
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Does the Sun's claim about UK Muslims' sympathy for jihadis stack up?

The Guardian World news: Islam - 23 November, 2015 - 14:23

A look at the polling data behind the tabloid’s headline calls into question how the newspaper interpreted the figures

The Sun has splashed with the headline: “One in five Brit Muslims’ sympathy for jihadis”, but does the claim stack up?

A look at the polling data behind Monday’s headline calls into question how the newspaper has interpreted the figures.

Monday's Sun front page: 1 in 5 Brit Muslims' sympathy for jihadis #tomorrowspaperstoday #bbcpapers

Related: Why the Sun’s ‘jihadi’ poll is dubious – and its headline dangerous | Miqdaad Versi

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