News Corp bites back after Uhlmann's spray on Liberal leadership | The Weekly Beast

The Guardian World news: Islam - 24 August, 2018 - 00:34

Sharri Markson calls Uhlmann’s attack ‘disgusting and outrageous’. Plus: questions over ABC series on convicted baby killer Keli Lane

When Nine’s chief political correspondent, Chris Uhlmann, said News Corp and 2GB’s Alan Jones and Ray Hadley were “bullies” and “players” who were “waging a war” on Malcolm Turnbull, prominent media players agreed with him, including ABC 7.30’s Laura Tingle and the Conversation’s Michelle Grattan.

Must watch, brave and correct

.@CUhlmann and @SharriMarkson go head to head on how Australian media impacts politics. #9Today

Related: NSW to review sexual consent laws after searing Four Corners testimony

Related: ABC cuts begin to bite in the depleted newsrooms of Sydney | Weekly Beast

No Alan, pretty sure you can’t use that expression.

Margin Call: Rupert Murdoch and John Howard were received like rock stars at the 75th anniversary of the @TheIPA last night

Related: Radio Birdman: brutally honest doco cements legacy of volatile Sydney punk band

Remember when Guy Pearce hosted Countdown with @kylieminogue & @JDonOfficial? Share your favourite ABC memories with us using #ABCyours

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Mosque where terrorist taught stripped of responsibilities for children

The Guardian World news: Islam - 23 August, 2018 - 13:54

Charity watchdog installs manager at London mosque where Umar Haque worked

The trustees at an east London mosque that employed a dangerous extremist who attempted to build an army of child jihadists have been stripped of safeguarding responsibilities by the charity watchdog.

The Charity Commission has installed a specially appointed interim manager at the Ripple Road mosque to take over procedures for the protection of children, as the regulator investigates its links to the convicted terrorist Umar Haque.

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Woman jailed in Indonesia for complaining that call to prayer is too loud

The Guardian World news: Islam - 23 August, 2018 - 04:27

Islamic groups criticise blasphemy sentence imposed on ethnic Chinese Buddhist who asked mosque to turn it down

Indonesia’s largest Islamic bodies have denounced the jailing of a Buddhist woman in Sumatra, after she complained about the volume of the adzan, or call to prayer, from her local mosque.

The Medan district court sentenced Meiliana, a 44-year-old ethnic Chinese Buddhist, to 18 months in jail after she reportedly asked the mosque to turn it down.

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China 'ejects' US journalist known for reporting on Xinjiang repression

The Guardian World news: Islam - 22 August, 2018 - 17:30

Foreign correspondents condemn decision to deny visa to Megha Rajagopalan

China has “effectively ejected” an American journalist from the country, a journalists’ association has said, after she won a reputation for hard-hitting reporting on the country’s troubled western Xinjiang region.

Megha Rajagopalan, a correspondent for BuzzFeed, wrote on Twitter that she would be moving on to another beat after the foreign ministry in Beijing “declined to issue a new visa”.

Related: Beijing blasts 'anti-China forces' for claim of million Uighurs in prison camps

Related: ‘We’re a people destroyed’: why Uighur Muslims across China are living in fear

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Mehreen Faruqi warns against 'normalisation' of racism in first Senate speech

The Guardian World news: Islam - 21 August, 2018 - 08:52

Greens senator says condemnation of racism by major parties means nothing as long as they politicise race

Australia’s first female Muslim senator has used her maiden speech to warn of the dangerous “normalisation” of racism by media and politicians, linking it directly to the more blatant discrimination by the likes of Fraser Anning.

Greens senator Mehreen Faruqi on Tuesday condemned the use of “dog-whistling and race-baiting as an electoral tactic”, revealing she had been the subject of thousands of racist and sexist messages and letters during her time in New South Wales’ upper house.

Related: Mehreen Faruqi to become first female Muslim senator amid Fraser Anning outrage

Welcome to @MehreenFaruqi who is set to take over the education portfolio for @Greens. And thanks to @sarahinthesen8 for her work in the role!

Related: Outgoing Lee Rhiannon urges Greens to resist 'careerism and bullying'

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Curtis Cheng's son calls for end to political 'scapegoating' of Muslims

The Guardian World news: Islam - 19 August, 2018 - 22:52

Son of murdered police accountant says the actions of individuals ‘cannot be attributed to an entire group of people’

The son of murdered New South Wale police accountant Curtis Cheng has called for an end to political “scapegoating” of Muslims in Australia following last week’s speech by senator Fraser Anning calling for a ban on Muslim immigration.

Alpha Cheng’s father was shot in cold blood by a 15-year-old Muslim boy, Farhard Jabar, outside the NSW police headquarters in Parramatta in 2015. Two others were jailed for planning the attack and supplying the weapon.

Related: Fraser Anning and Bob Katter's anti-Muslim cry is about comfort, not survival | Yassir Morsi

Related: White supremacy was the mainstay of Australian federation. Little has changed | Paul Daley

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Muslimander TV: Are Asian lads lost, or is Mehreen Baig?

Indigo Jo Blogs - 19 August, 2018 - 18:28

A picture of Mehreen Baig, a young South Asian woman wearing a black top with a jacket of uncertain colour over it, walking along a fence, with a low sun to the side.Lost Boys? What’s Going Wrong for Asian Men (BBC iPlayer, available in UK only until about 12th September)

Last Sunday there was an hour-long programme on BBC2 purported to be about the problems facing young British Asian men in the UK. It was presented by one Mehreen Baig, a former teacher who previously took part in BBC2’s two-part documentary Muslims Like Us and has been a presenter on the BBC’s Sunday Morning Live. Despite good reviews in the secular press, a number of my Muslim friends were deeply dissatisfied with the programme: Suhaiymah Manzoor-Khan in a review on Al-Jazeera called it “a lazy reproduction of racist, culturally essentialist stereotypes approved by an ‘insider’” while Ahmed Hankir offers a perspective from an actual British Asian Muslim man. To their credit, the Daily Telegraph also published a critical review from a Muslim, Hussein Kesvani, which is paywalled but the headline summarises it: ‘Young Asian men’ are facing the same problem as other men: a crisis of masculinity. I recommend reading all these reviews.

My immediate response was similar to Kesvani’s: the first part of the programme focussed on an ethnic community which has suffered a similar fate to many white communities in the same part of the country, namely seeing the industries their men worked in (for generations, in the case of the mostly white coal mining and steel working communities, and came here to work in, in this case) destroyed since the 1980s because of a combination of globalisation and politically-motivated privatisation and industry rundown. The problems in some of those places are similar to those in the northern Asian communities — men who were brought up expecting to go into a particular job and are now at a loose end, often living in towns and villages which lack any other industry or meaningful work opportunities. Not every section of the Pakistani or even Mirpuri community in the UK has this sort of challenge, any more than all white men, so it is an unrepresentative group to base a documentary about “Asian men” on. Boys falling behind girls in academic achievement is a found in some of these other parts of society as well where boys were traditionally brought up expecting to go straight into manual work.

Baig compares two very particular sub-sections of the British Asian community, the other being Ugandan Asians which she generalises as being of Gujarati origin, when in fact there is an actual Gujarati community in the UK which is made up of both Muslims and Hindus. East African Asians (who are not all Ugandan) are a mixture of Muslims, Hindus, Zoroastrians and offshoot sects from Islam such as Isma’ilis (the Damjis, the family Yasmin Alibhai-Brown comes from, are Isma’ilis). She presents the Ugandans as being somewhat less reverent than the Bradford Mirpuris, showing them drinking beer and a male comic dressing as a woman to make fun of Asian women. The implication is clearly that Ugandans are better integrated because they are less religious than Mirpuri Muslims, but there are other factors. Many of them were merchants in Africa who maintained contacts with each other when they moved here; Mirpuris were farmers who moved to the UK to work in textile mills, and this lack of entrepreneurial background and acumen may explain why so many are attracted to the multi-level marketing (MLM) ‘businesses’ Baig shows them involved in and does not make any attempt to investigate — they are, in fact, a scam with much in common with Ponzi or pyramid schemes, as they rely on attracting new participants rather than selling products or services, and any such scheme will collapse when there is nobody new to attract. There must, in other words, be many more losers than winners.

A picture of Mehreen Baig and two Asian men looking at a view of Bradford through a fence.Suhaiymah Manzoor-Khan calls Mehreen Baig a native informant; her stance puts her firmly in the “Muslimander” tendency I mentioned in a post about the Boris Johnson affair — the type that ‘justifies’ the nonsense they talk about Muslims or Islam by saying “I’m a Muslim, and …”. She is relying on outsiders taking her word because she is “one of” the people she is peddling broad-brush stereotypes of. Her Twitter feed in the days after the programme aired illustrates this: it was full of retweets of positive reviews and well-wishing from various media friends and thank-yous from her. She was not interested in engaging with Muslim critics of her work, and in fact she blocked some of them including Suhaiymah. This was not a very representative picture of British Asians or the problems they face, and it did not even begin to consider racism or media and public hostility focussed on terrorism, which has been a given in discussion of “the Asian problem” since at least the 2001 riots: the problem is always Asian failure to integrate, brides from the village back home, sons treated like princes and girls like domestic skivvies, Asian-majority schools; it’s never racism, the fact that discrimination in the job market is rife, that some of the schools are just no good, not that they’re majority Asian.

The programme also had an irritatingly Dooleyesque quality: too much of it was focussed on Baig’s own reactions to what she saw, many of them banal — she once noted, for example, that the young people she met were fond of looking at the view, which showed only Bradford; it is actually quite a striking view and the city is set in a lot of the kind of natural beauty that people travel from all over the country to Yorkshire to see. A good documentary maker lets the subject matter do the talking rather than stamping their face and opinions all over it. I don’t think Asian Bradford boys are any more lost than any other group of boys from low-income backgrounds in England, and particularly the north of England, but they are certainly more stigmatised and this programme did not even begin to explore that.

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In the Cape Town enclave that survived apartheid, the new enemy is gentrification

The Guardian World news: Islam - 19 August, 2018 - 07:59
Picturesque Bo-Kaap was for decades the home of Muslim residents. Now, as some cash in on soaring house prices, others want to hold on to their history

Sunday morning in Cape Town. Two days of rain have washed the dust from the air. Table Mountain is etched against a clear blue southern winter sky. Seagulls wheel on an ocean breeze. In the Bo-Kaap neighbourhood of the city, the famous painted houses shine postcard perfect. Children play on cobbled streets. Men in prayer caps watch, deep in conversation, prayer beads clicking.

Yet the apparent calm is misleading. In recent weeks angry young men have burned tyres in the streets of Bo-Kaap. There have been marches and demonstrations. The immediate spark for the anger? Plans to build hotels, luxury apartments and shops. The deeper cause? Fear that gentrification will destroy the community.

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Labour suspends ex-MP over remarks on antisemitism row

The Guardian World news: Islam - 18 August, 2018 - 21:00

Scot Jim Sheridan accused Jewish community of colluding with ‘Blairite plotters’

Labour has suspended a former MP who accused the Jewish community of colluding with “Blairite plotters” to damage the party, as a poll for the Observer found that more than a third of voters believe that the party is prejudiced against British Jews.

Jim Sheridan, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North until 2015, was suspended after apparently writing in a Facebook post that has since been removed: “For all my adult life I have had the utmost respect and empathy for the Jewish community and their historic suffering. No longer, due to what they and their Blairite plotters are doing to my party and the long-suffering people of Britain who need a radical Labour government.”

Related: It’s time for Jeremy Corbyn to take on his critics with a major speech. Here’s what he should say | Gary Younge

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Muslim women call for more equality in running UK mosques

The Guardian World news: Islam - 18 August, 2018 - 13:00
Activists challenge lack of prayer spaces and exclusion from management roles

Muslim women in Scotland are campaigning to be given more equal facilities for praying and to be involved in running mosques.

Scottish Mosques For All was set up to highlight the importance of including women in decision-making. More than a quarter of mosques in the UK have no facilities for women and, in the remainder, access is often restricted and the space they are given inadequate.

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Hajj 'nap pods' being introduced for pilgrims to Saudi Arabia

The Guardian World news: Islam - 18 August, 2018 - 06:06

The sleep stations – based on Japan’s famous capsule hotels – will offer clean sheets and air-conditioning

Saudi Arabia plans to introduce sleep pods, reminiscent of Japan’s famed capsule hotels, in the western city of Mina in the coming days, as an estimated two million Muslims gather for the six-day hajj, one of the five pillars of Islam.

Related: Saudi Arabia to open border with Qatar to let pilgrims attend hajj

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Muslim couple denied Swiss citizenship over handshake refusal

The Guardian World news: Islam - 18 August, 2018 - 01:47

Couple also ‘showed great difficulty in answering questions asked by people of the opposite sex’

The Swiss city of Lausanne has blocked a Muslim couple’s bid to become Swiss nationals over their refusal to shake hands with members of the opposite sex.

The municipality said it refused to grant the couple’s citizenship application over their lack of respect for gender equality, Lausanne mayor Gregoire Junod said.

Related: Swiss ruling overturns Muslim pupils' handshake exemption

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Why did I just lose 25 followers?

Indigo Jo Blogs - 17 August, 2018 - 13:41

A male linnet, a small brown bird with a patch of red on its breast, sitting on a twig.The other day I logged onto an unfollower tracker and discovered that I’d lost 19 followers, which is rather unusual (I often lose a few over the average week, often suspended accounts — which are not named — or people who had followed me expecting me to follow back, then unfollowed when I did not, and sometimes people who had unfollowed because of a disagreement or blocked me). I checked who the unfollowers were and many of them were names I recognised from years ago: two in particular belonged to one person who has used various accounts and blogs over the years to blog particular aspects of her experience of spinal cord injury; others were just people who had fallen off Twitter and not bothered to close their accounts. I posted to both Twitter and Facebook asking why this had all happened and got a reply to the effect that people had just found better things to do with their lives than tweet or had pruned their social circle to get rid of the dead wood. But judging by which accounts these were, this could not have been the case.

A lot of people lost a large number of followers at the same time and a lot of people are asking why — some obviously think they annoyed someone or that a whole bunch of people have decided they don’t want them in their lives anymore. No. Twitter, for some reason, removed a whole bunch of moribund accounts from your followers list but for some reason did not just suspend them, which is what you might expect them to do. They really need to inform their users when they do something like this, as it may coincide with an argument, relationship break-up or some other event and some people have mental health problems that make them sensitive to these sorts of things. A lot of people think it’s ‘sad’ to use an unfollower tracker but in this case knowing who unfollowed me and being able to tell others is quite useful.

(And this would be a good place to announce that I am trying to get off Twitter and migrate to the open-source social media platform Mastodon. This is because, apart from the well-documented problems of Twitter suspending people for no real reason while allowing Nazis to prosper unchecked, they have also decided to cripple third-party Twitter clients such as Tweetbot and Tweetings which offered a straightforward chronological timeline rather than Twitter’s ‘curated’ one with numerous interpolations. I can be found as and you can join any Mastodon server and follow me. My Twitter account is, however, going to remain active for the foreseeable future.)

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Manchester police investigate arena bomber's links to imam

The Guardian World news: Islam - 16 August, 2018 - 19:45

Salman Abedi attended mosque where sermon was given about mujahideen

Police in Manchester are investigating claims that an imam at a British mosque attended by the arena bomber delivered a sermon advocating armed jihad six months before the attack.

Greater Manchester police (GMP) said they had been passed footage from the BBC purporting to show an imam at Didsbury mosque praising mujahideen fighting abroad – a term commonly used for Islamist guerrilla fighters.

Related: Police chief rebukes BBC over Manchester bombing documentary

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