OP-ED

Newsflash: Terrorism and the Media!

With the recent surge in terrorist acts since 9/11, the West has persistently blamed the attacks on Muslims well before any evidence emerged.  These accusations regularly lack any substantial evidence and rely solely on the brute force of anti-Islam arrogance to reinforce their claims.  In reality, only a handful of terrorist attacks from 2009 within the EU were actually religiously motivated. Rather, the vast majority of terrorist attacks are fueled by separatism or Ethno-nationalism.  A major incident that shook the world was on Friday, 14th of November of last year, where civilians in Paris became victims to a brutal terrorist attack in a series of assaults covering restaurants and entertainment venues.  There are many motivations for the public’s reaction to this tragedy and there must be justified reasoning to successfully investigate why these attacks happened and ultimately how they can be prevented in the future.

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The moment the attacks occurred, despite there being no evidence, many major media outlets immediately began to demonize Muslims and refugees from Syria. More bluntly, when evidence began to suggest that extremists were responsible for the attacks and ISIS eventually claimed the responsibility, these outlets strongly implied that Islam was to blame. When Islamic and Muslim groups are labeled as aggressors, far right leaders in Europe quickly use terrorist actions as an excuse to limit entry to migrants and support war on terrorist groups. This greatly benefits organizations such as ISIS and al-Qaeda as the rejection of migrants and refugees means a higher probability in recruiting new members that are frustrated and restricted from entering Europe.

The far left also makes grave mistakes when pointing to the so-called “Wahabism” and sometimes mentioning Saudi Arabia! The fact of the matter is that the Saudis are enemy number one of ISIS which is fully backed by Iran which in turn never suffered from any attacks what so ever and neither did the Russians.  They even go so far as accusing Saudi Arabia of being the reason behind the Yemen conflict when in reality it is fighting the Houthi rebels and their  Alqueda allies who are also backed by the Iranian regime.

ISIS has stated that it wishes to make the ‘gray zone’ extinct, which is essentially the western acceptance of Muslims. The initial plans were set in motion during the September 11th attacks. This ideology was shared by President George W Bush who stated that “Either you are with us or you are the terrorists”. By creating essentially a ‘black and white’ divide between abiding by the U.S. and its allies or rejecting their practices and fighting for an Islamic cause. Al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden at the time naturally had a distaste for U.S. values, especially in wake of their shaky involvement in Israel.  In current affairs, France’s extreme right wing national front party is likely to surge in popularity. The party which originates from Neo-Nazi roots is led by Marine Le Pen whom as actively spoken out negatively against Muslim occupants in France. Her party is currently the second most popular in France and if further aggregation is made with the western world and terrorism, she stands to have a realistic chance at leading the country.

Untitled-300x108There are hundreds of terrorist attacks across Europe each year; however, the only ones that immediately fill the news headlines tend to be the ones carried out by Muslims. Minutes after the Paris attacks, powerful heads of states across the world, Barack Obama, David Cameron and Vladimir Putin were quick to send their condolences and support to the people of Paris. However the day before the attacks in Paris, 43 people were killed and 230 were wounded in Beirut within a heavily populated Shia Muslim community as a result of ISIS activity. Not a single G8 world leader commented on the attack, and even worse the U.S. media labeled the victims of the attacks as ‘Hezbollah human shields’ and blamed them for their own deaths solely on geographical location and coincidence.  It begs to question if French lives matter more than others and have left many people skeptical about how the mainstream media portrays an obvious bias towards Muslim victims.

terrorist-attacks-1042968_1920-300x157Last year France was victim to the Charlie Hebdo attacks, which caused a surge of Islamophobia across western states.  The focus of the attack was not primarily due to an offensive cartoon, but rather a response towards the U.S.-led war on Iraq which radicalized the shooters.  Another ignored fact was that the terrorists were from Algeria, a country that has been bitterly deprived after falling victim to a barbarous French occupation.  In just six days after the attacks, there were over sixty incidents of Islamophobia attacks and threats in France.  Once again during this time, another horrific tragedy was completely glossed over: the slaughtering of over 2000 Nigerians by Boko Haram. The African victims didn’t get a minutes silence, their flag plastered on monuments or a public march, only the victims of Islamic extremism did.

The west often portrays the victim when it comes to terrorist attacks; however, the exact opposite is true. Many people consider that the United States is directly responsible for the violence and destruction in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and Yemen and is the root cause for millions of refugees fleeing the violence. The illegal U.S. led intervention in Iraq led to the deaths of at least one million people and destabilized the entire region. It is often considered that the catalyst for the creation of ISIS stemmed from the U.S.

Russia’s involvement in the war against ISIS has also been seen as very unusual. When Putin announced that his country will directly intervene in Syria in order to fight ISIS, most of his attacks were aimed at the moderates of the country.  They are currently working with the Assad regime in Syria and are supporting the dictator there through intelligence and communications as well as direct bombing runs on defenseless civilians.  The Syrian government is strangely ignoring ISIS and Putin’s support towards this regime has helped it continue its vicious crimes against humanity which also provides a suitable environment for radicalization to flourish.

In the wake of the Paris attacks, it is important for us to question the leaders of the world as to why they have been ignoring these issues for so long.  Some would even suggest that this latest attack in Paris was a response from Russia to affect the elections in France in which they luckily failed due to immense love and dignity the French people possess.  Was it a coincidence that when France decided to send their famous warship “Hebdo” to where the Russian Warships were parked near Syria that they got this attack?

ISIS has become a puppet in some ways as a result of their very peculiar actions.  The mainstream media says ISIS are Sunni Muslims who hate Shia but most of their victims are also Sunni Muslims.  Why haven’t they attacked Iran next door since Iran is a Shia country?  These are just some of the questions that we as human beings must ask ourselves as well as our leaders in order to avoid being sucked in a major world war that many people may not survive.

The time to rebuild and repair diplomatic relations is more apparent than ever and the western world needs to accept responsibility for its actions and work alongside people regardless of faith to ensure peace and stability for all.

Finally, ask your self this,  Who benefits the most from hatred and violence and WAR.

 

References / Sources :

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2015/11/14/muslims-strongly-condemn-paris-attacks/75772102/

 

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-34738177   France to deploy largest warship in mission against IS  /5 November 2015/  Before Paris Attack

 

http://www.forbes.com/sites/melikkaylan/2015/11/05/the-russian-metrojet-passenger-plane-bombed-over-egypts-sinai-was-it-isis/

 

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