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The Effects of Terror

On Tuesday 10 February 2015, Sydney Police arrested two Muslim men. They had received information that they planned to carry out a random murder that day. On raiding the men’s home the police found a hunting knife, a DAESH flag and a self-made video describing their motivations the BBC reports. The men were apparently previously unknown to security agencies.

Deah Shaddy Barakat, Yusor Mohammad, Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha Twitter

Deah Shaddy Barakat, Yusor Mohammad, Razan Mohammad Ahu-Salha (Source: Twitter)

The same day, an atheist, Stephen Hicks (46), killed three Muslims in Chapel Hill, North Carolina reports CNN. Deah Shaddy Barakat (23), his wife Yusor Mohammad (21), and her sister Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha (19) were all shot in the head at close range. Hicks handed himself into police afterwards. The murders seem to be the result of an ongoing parking dispute. However, as Hicks was outspoken about anti-theism and atheism on-line, many are speculating there is a hate element to the horrific murders of three people who by all accounts were outstanding young Americans.

So who was Hicks? Catherine Shoichet of CNN reports that Hicks attended a local community college where he was described as an exemplary student who was friendly and helpful towards both teachers and fellow students and had no negative issues on his record. He was studying to be a paralegal and was due to graduate in May. As well as the comments opposed to Islam on his Facebook page, there are also some condemning Christians as hypocrites when they opposed the building of a mosque near ground-zero. His posts also show he was a supporter of same-sex marriage and other equality issues. His wife states he believed everyone was equal.

Hicks, Craig StephenHe does though appear to have been constantly angry about the fact that other people frequently parked in his condo’s reserved parking space, leaving him with nowhere to put his own car. A neighbour described him as having “equal opportunity anger”. A meeting of residents had been held in the past because some felt threatened by the way he reacted to his parking space so often being used by others, although no-one seems to have acknowledged that they shouldn’t have been parking there. (Which is not, of course, an excuse for murder.) On the day in question, it appears Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha had parked in Hicks’s parking space while visiting her sister and brother-in-law, and during an altercation about the matter, Hicks snapped.

Whether the fact that his victims were religious contributed to what Hicks did, is something I feel I’m not in a position to judge. A spokesperson for the families said Hicks had threatened the students in the past, and that the family believed hate was a motivation. However, according to Saeed Ahmed of CNN, Hick’s wife said, “The incidents had nothing to do with religion or the victims’ faith.”

We have to wait for the police to complete their investigations in both these cases, then for the evidence to be tested in court, before we can reach an informed decision. But it may be that in Chapel Hill we have reached an unfortunate tipping point.

For a several years now we have been seeing a series of random attacks carried out by extremist fundamental Muslims, like the one above the Sydney police thwarted. This has resulted in an increased critical analysis of Islam in the West, and it has been found wanting. Some use that to make assumptions about all Muslims, and as a result individual Muslims have suffered abuse, bigotry and bullying. It is possible that the horror of Chapel Hill is where we see that prejudice crossed the line to self-justified retaliatory murder.

DAESH Flag Explanation 1For several months now, DAESH has been using an extremely cynical terrorist tactic that tries to divide the entity they are fighting against themselves via fear. Fear works, and DAESH are very good at instilling it. Their tactics are designed to provoke an over-reaction both in political leaders and the community at large. President Obama and other world leaders have understood this and largely resisted the temptations DAESH sends their way, but many others fail to recognize the tactic. Their analysis of the situation is simplistic and they seem unable to analyse what the consequences of such actions as America going in with overwhelming military force would be, despite the evidence from multiple campaigns in just the last fifty years. In the United States many politicians are calling for a much greater level of military action than is currently happening, and they are supported in that demand by many Americans. In an increasing trend, 60% of them now consider US ground troops are required to defeat DAESH as reported by a Fox News poll carried out last week. In the same poll 68% of Americans said they didn’t think Obama was tough enough on DAESH and 73% considered he didn’t have a clear strategy for defeating them.

This is how the terrorist tactic I mentioned above works: DAESH attracts tiny numbers of supporters to their cause and encourages them to commit random acts of terror around the world. (Al Qaeda, using the same strategy, has been calling for supporters to carry out lone-wolf attacks since 1999.) In addition they commit acts of unbelievably horrific violence which they broadcast openly. This motivates a natural tendency for the general population to view all Muslims with suspicion, despite never having had any hint of extremist tendencies in their own communities, and the numbers of people affected being quite low statistically.

DAESH wants this to happen. They want to create such divisions in our society. They want to drive a wedge between Muslims and non-Muslims. They want the Muslims in our society to suffer, to be at the sharp end of suspicion, prejudice, hatred, bigotry and even violence. Because when that happens, more and more Muslims will be driven to isolate themselves from society at large. More will be vulnerable to imans that preach hate instead of love. Some will then develop sympathy or understanding for DAESH, and some will join them. The process keeps feeding on itself. As our society implodes from within, as we turn against each other, more Muslims will feel that the world would be a better place if DAESH was in charge. Thus DAESH gains strength.

Williams, Juan Source USI.org

Juan Williams (Source: USI.edu)

One of the better known cases of the actions of a tiny number influencing the thoughts and behaviour of otherwise intelligent, rational, liberals is Juan Williams. In October 2010 he lost his job at NPR (National Public Radio, USA) after making the following comment on The O’Reilly Factor:

“Look, Bill, I’m not a bigot. You know the kind of books I’ve written about the civil rights movement in this country. But when I get on the plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they are identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried. I get nervous.”

In many ways, Williams, whom I respect greatly, was expressing what many others thought, and it’s little wonder many do feel that way if they were any part of what happened in America on 9/11. Terror, unfortunately works.

DAESH are playing the long game. Their ultimate aim is to create the worldwide caliphate under sharia they believe Allah wants, and they don’t care how long it takes or how many of them die in the process.  They don’t care that most of the suffering and death happens to fellow Muslims – the cause is more important. They believe they are dying for Allah, and will be welcomed to Paradise, where they can watch the progress of the campaign they started. They have a purpose, a purpose so important they will do anything to achieve it.

Deanna Othman wrote a piece following the tragedy in Chapel Hill in the Chicago Tribune entitled ‘Will Muslims Ever Be Part and Parcel of America’. Othman is a Muslim-American, and writes about what it feels like to do everything right – to be an American and still not to feel fully accepted. Deah Shaddy Barakat,  Yusor Mohammad, and Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha did everything right, she says, only to be murdered, for what Othman assumes was their religion. She has already made that judgment, and right or wrong, it is an indictment on our society that her life experiences have been such that she has come to that decision seemingly without hesitation, and it worries me.

There is another part of her story that concerns me too. She also wrote:

I believe in divine justice, and to me, it is no accident that the three victims of this heinous crime were not just ordinary Americans — they were extraordinary. They excelled academically, were active socially and gave to humanity. There is divine wisdom in having their uplifting stories told, and it is devastating that it took their murders to compel network news to broadcast such inspirational stories of Muslim-Americans.

The belief that there was divine purpose at work here to bring Muslims and non-Muslims together fails the logic test. Surely an omnipotent god could bring people together and stop the suffering without having to kill three people with such promising futures, and destroy the lives of several others?

It is only by holding onto and promoting our own values of secular humanism that the haters will be defeated. The inclusive, pluralistic society most of us want is actually a fairly new phenomenon, and we have to hold onto it. We cannot let hate divide us. We must not judge books by their covers, but by what’s written on their pages. Smile, hold the door open for strangers, and just be generally friendly. Treat others with respect, dignity and kindness – it’s actually an easy habit to get into, and it does make a difference. Most people are good, and will show it given the chance.

Nelson Mandela love vs hate

58 Responses to “The Effects of Terror”

  1. paxton marshall says:

    Well said Heather! The irony is that in personal interactions there is seldom any tension between Muslims in the US and other Americans. I often see Muslims working, studying and interacting with all sorts of other people in a friendly manner. It’s as you say, fear begets fear and fear can easily become hatred. The press and politicians bear a great responsibility for whipping up fear and hatred for others. In the US they are more often inciting fear of blacks and Hispanics than Muslims. There is a strong evangelical Christian contingent in the US military, and they tend to be particularly anti Muslim. And the Israel lobby is powerful and, of course, anti Islam. Religion is certainly a factor in stirring up hatred, but again, in a pluralist society like America, most people get along fine with people of other religions. It is people, religious or atheist, stirring up dislike of other people and their culture, that are the problem. That’s why I think it is so harmful to see atheists joining with the right wing haters in denouncing hijab, Muhammad, the Quran and everything Muslim. They are inflaming the situation, and should be denounced just as much as we denounce religious people hating on other religions.

  2. paxton marshall says:

    Heather, I suppose you have seen the recent post of our favorite commenter on the Chapel Hill murders. Nicely said. Except why does he need to know the real motive for the murders (the guy was obviously mentally ill, and probably doesn’t know his real motives himself) to recognize that when public figures highlight minority groups as dangers to our society, some will take it as a call to action. Here’s a quote from a post in April 2014:

    “the “Islamophobia” canard is a form of reverse racism. Muslims with hurt feelings are catered to more often simply because they look different from Westerners, and come from a different culture. It smacks of racism, so the argument goes, to criticize the “cultural” practices of such people. That’s why we have the conflation between the reprehensible tenets of Islam itself and the “Islamophobia” canard implying dislike of Muslims as people. I will confess to disliking any Muslim who fervently believes in sharia law, the suppression of women, the murder of apostates, and so on, but not those Muslims who don’t adhere to those doctrines, but disliking them for their views, not as humans.”

    How can anyone who lives in the United Sates claim that Muslims are given preferential treatment here because they are foreign and look different? That’s not the US I live in. But more disturbing, the commenter may think he can split hairs with his talk of hating the sin, but loving the sinner, but these distinctions are lost on disturbed haters. They hear, and people on Fox news repeat: “These Muslims have reprehensible views. They want to impose Sharia law on us. Their religion is a danger to us and we are right to dislike them if they identify with this religion in any way, such as wearing their disgusting outfits.”

  3. paxton marshall says:

    Sorry, I meant to include a further quote from the same post that exemplifies my point: “And I must admit that I, too, recoil when I see a woman shrouded in a burqa, which, to me, instantiates the endemic misogyny of Islam. But we have to fight against this xenophobia and remember that the target is religious beliefs themselves: the beliefs of what happens to be the world’s most odious and dangerous faith.” Yes, the commenter says we have to fight against xenophobia (a word the Chapel Hill murderer probably doesn’t even know) but refers to the “endemic misogyny of Islam”, and calls it not only odious but dangerous. These are claims that stir up hatred in what is already a dangerously overheated atmosphere. I think this kind of talk is irresponsible. Do you agree?

    • Hi Paxton. I too liked what he wrote today, and I don’t see what he wrote in the past the same way you do – I don’t have a problem with it. If you check out, for example, the Pew Research Center study ‘The World’s Muslims: Religion Politics and Society’: http://www.pewforum.org/2013/04/30/the-worlds-muslims-religion-politics-society-overview/ it shows that misogyny is indeed endemic in Islam, although not so much in the West. I don’t like seeing a woman in a burqa either, although I wouldn’t judge her personally without knowing the circumstances of her life.

      As to knowing Hick’s motivations, I think people want reasons for such seemingly senseless killings. I’m not sure that he was mentally ill – I think it’s more likely he has a problem controlling his anger, which I’m not sure is actual mental illness. Of course, we can’t know yet, and we shouldn’t be speculating with any decisiveness – I probably should just delete this paragraph!

      I think the root cause is the Second Amendment (or more specifically, the ruling of SCOTUS on it in 2006) – everyone has a bloody gun. If this situation arose in NZ or Australia or Great Britain etc, no-one would be dead because Hicks wouldn’t have had a gun he could pull out when he lost his rag.

      I don’t believe we can limit our speech because someone suffering from a mental illness might be influenced wrongly by something we say. That’s not to say we don’t have to be responsible about what we say publicly. Freedom of speech is too important to place any limits on it. Also, I believe the more of it we have, the more people will learn the right way to deal with it too. Many aren’t used to free speech, many countries don’t have it, and many think they have a right not to be offended.

      The incitement in the media you talk about is important. One of the things that struck me about Ferguson was that despite the fact that although the cop actually did nothing wrong in this case, there was an immediate assumption he had. This tells me there is a problem in the area with the way people of colour are treated by the police. That particular police force clearly needs to work on its community relations. The situation would not have erupted the way it did if the police had a reputation for fairness in their dealings with people.

      I’m thinking about adding an update to the article – a new Gallup poll has come out today: apparently 84% of Americans see DAESH as a critical threat, but only 44% think the same about the Russia/Ukraine conflict. That is due to both the media and the success of DAESH in instilling fear. The Russia/Ukraine situation actually is far more dangerous, but most people don’t even understand why. I’ve had a second article about this (I wrote one a few months ago) started for a couple of weeks, and I really need to finish it.

      Thanks for your comments. I found them interesting as always.

      • AU says:

        Why don’t you like seeing a woman in a burkha? What if she decided she wanted to wear it out of her own free-will … are you saying she could not be intelligent enough and independent enough to make her own decision to wear it? What gives you the right to judge her?

        I often wear my baseball cap back to front, and some of my friends have a “problem” with it! That is one thing I have just never understood – why people get upset about the way someone else is dressed.

        • Not liking seeing a woman in a burqa is part of my cultural make-up, and has never changed the way I’ve dealt with any woman wearing one. It’s just that from my point of view, I find it hard to imagine a woman wearing one by choice, so I always wonder if it is a choice. However, as most of the women I know who wear burqas are doctors, they’re obviously intelligent, and I know enough about them to know they’re wearing them by choice too, it’s actually a prejudice on my part. So I’m not judging, I’m acknowledging that it’s a mindset I have to be careful of. If you have time to read the article I did about World Hijab Day, you’ll see I try hard not to judge.

          On a better note, we’ve got our first wicket, although Aussie is batting pretty impressively. 34/1 2.5 overs.

  4. Diane G. says:

    Stirring post, Heather!

    Paxton, how do you address the appalling beliefs of an ideology without pointing them out and condemning them repeatedly? You know that the author you quote above does the exact same thing for Christianity and Judaism.

    • I agree Diane. In fact things won’t improve unless we point them out. All ideas have to be open to criticism.

      And, as you say, that author does criticize all religions. Plus Deepak 🙂

    • paxton marshall says:

      Diane, during the European “settlement” of the Americas, the conquerers justified war and brutality by citing the depraved manners of the Natives. Such intellectual giants as Hobbes, Grotius, and Locke wrote justifications for appropriating the land of the natives. No doubt there were many legitimate criticisms of Native American cultural practices, as there are of Islamic practices. But I contend that those public figures who demeaned and demonized the natives were complicit in the great evil the Europeans visited on the new world peoples.

      I have given numerous examples in a comment to Heather’s previous post, https://www.heatherhastie.com/calling-it-like-it-is-islamic-terrorism/ demonstrating that Islam is not a unique danger in the world. I contend that Islam-bashing by public intellectuals in the current political atmosphere is to enable those who seek to use the fearsome military power of the west against Muslims. Our protagonist has exhibited his willingness to do this in his support for Israeli slaughter of Palestinians. And no, he does not exhibit the same animosity to Judaism or even Christianity that he does towards Islam.

      As a long time atheist it saddens me to see such a promising continuation of the enlightenment tradition as the new atheists seemed to offer, descend into political partisanship and even imperialistic thinking. “Take up the White Man’s burden” and force our enlightenment on those who subscribe to the odious religion of Islam. In my opinion the scientist has ventured out of his depth and abandoned his principles of objectivity and rationality.

      • Hi Paxton. I think you’ve gone a bit far in your last paragraph, and especially the last sentence. His next book will prove whether or not he has adequately educated himself in the work of theologians, and I suspect he has. He calls out issues where he sees them, and I’ve never noticed him back away from criticizing any particular religion.

        There are plenty of examples where Christianity has been used to justify some pretty odious things by the other people you criticize too. Sam Harris, for example, has never denied that. In fact he details quite a few of them in End of Faith. Richard Dawkins too has written at length about some of the many appalling things done in the name of Christianity, including in The God Delusion.

        I’ve outlined my position on the Israel situation before i.e. it’s basically the same as that of Sam Harris, which he outlines at length here: http://www.samharris.org/blog/item/why-dont-i-criticize-israel

        Islam is not the danger, Islamic extremism is, and to me you’re exhibiting what people like Maajid Nawaz warn will happen when we don’t name Islamic extremism as a problem: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jdhp9jtDXJ8&feature=youtu.be

        • paxton marshall says:

          Thanks for replying Heather. I appreciate the opportunity to discuss these matters with you and your readers. I was a frequent commenter on the WIET webpage until I angered the owner and he disinvited me. I also participate in a facebook religion discussion group. I’ve read the God Delusion, The End of Faith along with other atheist classics and thrilled to the devastating arguments they made against religion and its privileges. And I agree that they have skewered Christianity as well as Islam.

          What I want to question is the premise that all of you seem to share, that Islamist extremism is the greatest danger to the world. This premise, I believe has led some of the new atheist to criticize Islam with an urgency and animosity that is not there in their criticism of Christianity.

          But what is the basis for this fear of Islamic extremism? Primarily the terrorist attacks against the west, yes? Here we have to be careful to distinguish the different groups that have launched terrorist attacks. Hezbollah is Shia, al Qaeda is Sunni. But what are the total number of casualties from these attacks? The 9/11 attacks that killed about 3,000 dwarfed all the rest, but if we double that number let’s say 6,000 have been killed over the past 20 years.

          Now in those 20 years, how many Muslims have been killed by westerners? I don’t have the answer at hand, but if you add the Gulf war, the Afghanistan war ( and we could even include the Russian occupation of Afghanistan and war in Chechnya, as west against Muslim ), and especially the Iraq war, we must arrive at several to many times more in direct kills, and many, many more in injured, displaced, and slow deaths. Even since the war, how many have been killed by our drones. Then we have to add in the couple thousand Palestinians the Israelis killed last summer, and a like number a few years before. Libya, which we bombed and is now in chaos. Oh, and the poison gas we helped Saddam develop to use on the Iranians. Shouldn’t we count that? And then the suffering and deaths that occurred because of our Iraq embargo and no-fly restrictions after the gulf war. We’ve gone to their countries and killed how many, 10, 20, 100 times as many of them as they have killed of us. Plus we have destroyed the homes and livelihoods of millions. The Israeli bombardment of Gaza left much of it a ruin. Much of Baghdad destroyed. Nothing like that in the west.

          So who is the greatest danger to world peace? You may say, yes, but we did all that damage only in response to their attacks on us. But we started messing with them long before they started messing with us. After WWI Britain and France set themselves up to rule the whole area. They brutally crushed independence movements, especially the Brits in Iraq. They had their eye on the oil already. In 1953 the US CIA overthrew the democratically elected Prime Minister of Iran, Mossedegh. And we were recently complicit in overthrowing the democratically-elected government of Egypt.

          You may say, yes but they do it in the name of religion and we don’t. But is this true? Why do we continually terrorize the middle eastern Muslims? Oil? Partially, yes. Israel? Partially yes. But much of it is a pervasive attitude of self-righteous superiority, much like that the Europeans developed in their encounters with native peoples. And here, in my opinion is where the new atheists run off the tracks. Rather than maintaining a strictly neutral criticism of all beliefs that lack evidence to support them. They have joined a moral vendetta against a particular religion. There is a smug moral superiority in their tone that say “our emerging secular civilization, which we atheists are creating” is good; your archaic theocratic civilization is bad. I hope the examples I have given you are sufficient to convince you that WE, the rich powerful west, are the greater danger, not the Muslim extremists.

          • I agree there is an attitude of cultural superiority in the West, and people tend to dismiss, or not be aware of the deaths that have occurred because of Western incursions into the East. However, at the moment, I do consider Islam worse than the other major religions. As a woman, and as an atheist, there is no non-Western country I could live my life in. I wear what I want, I go where I want, I eat what I want, and I can say what I want. As a single woman, I couldn’t do that in any country with Sharia, and several that don’t because of religion, usually Islam. There are sects of Judaism and Christianity that wouldn’t like how I live, but the fact of a secular government means they can live their way and I can live mine.

            On places like Twitter, I criticize all religions equally, and if a religious fundamentalist comes across what I say, they can get pretty nasty. However, those in the US, for example, will generally accept I have a right to my opinion, and I acknowledge they have a right to theirs. Only the most liberal of Muslims take the same position.

            The case of the League of Islamic Nations at the UN is a prime example. They want to make any criticism of Islam forbidden, and have been trying for years, even getting several resolutions passed. They think Islam should be a special case. Thankfully countries like the United States have stood up for freedom of speech, and the resolutions haven’t ever got through the final stage.

            Most Christians now recognize that the Bible is translated and has mistakes. You aren’t even allowed to suggest that the Qur’an has mistakes – it’s the one perfect, inviolable book in the world apparently. There are, of course, Muslims who recognize the need for reform, and many of them have been killed for it. They literally risk their lives by speaking out, just like atheists and agnostics did during the Inquisition.

            I don’t have a problem with most Muslims, but I do have a problem with Islam. And that’s not the same as “hate the sin not the sinner” because Christians used that to condemn LGBT people, which is something they cannot change. Religion is a belief, so is not in the same category.

  5. Conn Suits says:

    Heather that was an excellent post. I particularly liked the ending about how it’s easy to get in the habit of being pleasant and respectful towards everybody.

    Now, regretfully I feel I must remark upon some of Mr. Marshall’s comments on this site. Saying that Hicks is mentally ill in that glib throwaway way is really disturbing. This is exactly how the myth that mentally ill equals = violent gets perpetuated. That so many otherwise thoughtful people are willing to believe these various killers are mentally ill without them having been diagnosed demonstrates the negative view our society has of mentally ill people. That they are bad. So if someone does something bad of course they belong to that category. Like I say it’s disturbing. This is an outright piece of prejudice. There are certain bigotries that left-wing people focus on. And then there’s the ones that they completely ignore.

    I was also pretty astounded to see Mr. Marshall’s tossing off “the Israel lobby”. Not only is this just the same old Jew hating fairytale about Jews magically controlling the world but Mr. Marshall adds that the “Israel lobby” is “anti-Islam”. In a comment nominally about how we shouldn’t judge people by their religion! What is the point of all the thoughtful words in your post if this kind of blatant judging people as a group and bigoted mythology go uncommented on? You realize he thinks you agree with him about the evil Jews stirring up hostility toward Muslims, right?

    • Hi. Thanks for your comments. Although I didn’t say anything about Paxton’s comments on the “Israel Lobby”, he knows jolly well I don’t agree with him as we’ve discussed it before on other posts. However, you’re right – I should have said something. His comment was also a deliberate jab at another person I’ve stopped him naming.

      I also worry about the widespread myth that there’s a correlation between mental illness and violence. There’s not much understanding about mental illness, and neither the media nor the entertainment industry help matters with the way they portray it.

      Hopefully attitudes will continue to become more tolerant. Young people nowadays seem to me to be a better bunch on average than we were.

      • Conn Suits says:

        Thank you Heather. I’m glad to see this. I keep meeting up, online, with new style “left-wing” Jew haters. So relieved you are not one of them! (Seriously, one of the people I used to joke about the crack mayor with on Twitter turned out to be a Holocaust denier.) I left that comment what turned out to be shortly before the Copenhagen café in synagogue attacks. And I’m leaving this comment shortly after them. A Jewish person was murdered because of anti-Jewish bigotry in between. It’s going to keep going like this. I think it’s time for all the people who critique and opose Jihadism and it’s apologists, and propaganda to acknowledge, yep constantly, that Jews are a special target of Jihadism.

    • paxton marshall says:

      Conn, I had no intention of vilifying the mentally ill by suggesting that was the case with Hicks. I’m not a psychiatrist and was not speaking in a clinical manner. But what would you call someone who kills three people over a parking spot? In any case I do not think that statement implied that all mentally ill people are violent, and I certainly do not subscribe to that belief.

      I note that you did not take offense at my calling evangelical Christians ant-Muslim, although it is certainly an over generalization. I perhaps should have specified AIPAC instead of speaking generally about the “Israeli lobby”. I am a member of J-street a Jewish lobby that seeks peace and justice for both Israelis and Palestinians. But don’t you think that equating my calling AIPAC anti-Islam to “just the same old Jew hating fairytale about Jews magically controlling the world” is a bit of an overreaction? AIPAC does not represent all Jews and I said nothing to imply Jews are evil. Please read my comment again.

      • Conn Suits says:

        Yeah but Paxton, as you acknowledge in the first part of this comment you didn’t bloody well say AIPAC! You said “the Israel lobby”. And that’s what I was responding to. And now you make this comment accusing me of “overreacting”. You didn’t say the Israel lobby was “anti-Islam”. You said it was stirring up hostility against Muslims! Are you this disorganized or is this dishonesty? I called your claim that something called the “Israel lobby” which is well known as code language for The Jews, meaning a disliked ethnic group, was promoting hostility toward workaday Muslims “just the same old Jew hating fairytale about Jews magically controlling the world”. It was apt. You’ve now made a second comment claiming to have said something different than you did in the comment I responded to. Anybody who wants to can read your comment that I was responding to. I can only wonder what I will find if I examine what this “J