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Parking Space Terrorism
International

Parking Space Terrorism

The murder of three American Muslims at a University of North Carolina condominium on February 10 was no ordinary murder, nor is the criminal who killed them an ordinary thug. The context of the killings, the murder itself and the media and official responses to the horrific event is a testimony to everything that went wrong since the United States unleashed its long-drawn-out “war on terror”, with its undeclared, but sometimes declared enemy, namely Islam and Muslims, Ramzy Baroud, founder of PalestineChronicle.com wrote for CounterPunch.
Horrific as it was, the killing of a husband and wife, Deah Shaddy Barakat, Yusor Abu-Salha and her sister, Razan Abu-Salha, by homegrown terrorist, Craig Stephen Hicks, is the kind of violence that can only fit into a greater media and official narrative, which designates millions of innocent Muslims, in the US or across the world as enemies or potential terrorists.
Countless television hours and endless space in numerous media has been dedicated to vilify and demonize Muslims throughout recent years. Muslims’ attempts to distance themselves from every militant group, ideology and tendency have done them no good. A Muslim is a terrorism suspect until proven innocent, especially if a bearded, brown man, or a headscarf-clad woman. The end result of that dehumanization has been racism, racial profiling, extra-judicial killings and war. The episode of dehumanization is long, complex and protracted; also, quite clever, for it involves billion-dollar media outfits and Hollywood itself, which already has an awful track record regarding negative and stereotypical representation of Muslims. The outcome is a whole industry that is predicated on double standards and half-truths.

  Military Intervention
The ongoing enthusiasm for more military interventions means that supposed “moral awakening” inspired by the advent of President Barack Obama rarely registered in the collective psyche of the nation. The cheerleaders for war might change political camps, ideology or even religious philosophy, but ultimately, they are the same breed of people: a mostly white, male dominated tribe of well-funded politicians and media pundits, with an unquenchable thirst for “intervention”.
Hicks, the terrorist who killed the three young Muslims, subscribes to a school of thought known as New Atheism, what religious scholars refer to as the school of “anti-theism”. It is, in part, another hate-filled platform, and despite its supposed disdain for all religions, their malicious energy mostly targets Muslims.
Such ignorant breed pays no heed to any relevant political context, and instead, foolishly blames a whole religion for what is essentially a political conflict. Did they ever pause to wonder if it might be possible that invading countries, killing, raping, pillaging and destroying mosques and churcheshave something to do with why many Muslims hate US foreign policy and tend to use violence in response?

  Alibi for War
Hating Muslims is not your everyday racism and prejudice. It is a readily available fodder for the ongoing war and future war in Muslim countries. It is the required amount of dehumanization needed to wage war. This is why Islam and Muslims are equated with terrorism, and why terrorism is used almost exclusively to describe violent acts committed or allegedly committed by Muslims. The same champions of this invalid logic are those who constantly push the line: “All Muslims are not terrorists, but all terrorists are Muslims.”
But Hicks, who walked into the flat of three students in Chapel Hill, NC and shot them, execution style, was not a Muslim. He comes from Christian heritage. He is not black or brown, but white. His name is not Ahmed, but Craig.
Neither the police nor the media would describe his crime as a hate crime, let alone terrorism, although his terrorism is unique in a way. His type resides on the top of the food chain in terms of race, gender and other criteria. Yet, somehow he is politically frustrated. Go figure.
He is not a member of a radicalized generation born into oppression, foreign invasion, poverty and other untold humiliation. If that was the case, one can, at least to a degree fathom the hate, deconstruct the anger, or even rationalize that violence is a natural outcome of a certain reality. Hicks is the gun touting unreasonably and immeasurably angry, white American.
So Hicks, we are told, killed the students “execution style” because of a dispute over parking spaces. The same way that Chris Kyle – “The American Sniper” – made 164 confirmed “kills” in Iraq, targeting “savages” because that’s what national heroes do. This selectively insane logic will persist however, because there are millions of unrepentant politicians, extremist media pundits and well-armed people who refuse to see the recklessness of their “logic”.
It is time for Muslims to demand that Obama issue more than a statement, but call the US government and hate-filled media to account. These outrageous double standards must end, before more innocent lives are taken.

 

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