This article is part of the Media Monitoring Highlights of January, a monthly overview of the most significant results of our monitoring of traditional and new media in Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, and the United Kingdom.
Date of publication: 7 January 2019
Media Outlet: Politicalite, populist far-right news website.
Author: Anne Marie Waters, founder and leader of the far-right party “For Britain” and founder and director of Sharia Watch UK
Headline: “ANNE MARIE WATERS: After Terror Attacks, The State Is Protecting Islam’s Reputation”
Description of the anti-Muslim content: In this article, Anne Marie Waters claims that Islam is inherently violent because that is what the Quran prescribes. However, she continues, there is no public debate around Islam’s teaching because “such discussion would reveal the truth about Islam’s teachings”. According to her, the British state defends Islam because it wants to let “masses from the Middle East and Africa” to come and settle in the UK. “For every cruelty or atrocity associated with Islam, whether it be the grooming gangs, child marriage, FGM, or jihadi violence, the priority of the establishment is always to protect the religion”. Anne Marie Waters also claims that Sharia law will “be accommodated in all areas of life” and that Europe will be radically transformed. The well-known anti-Islam activist Anne Marie Waters founded the political party “For Britain” after leadership bid for the Eurosceptic UKIP party failed.
Myth debunked: It is deceitful and false to claim that “the priority of the establishment is always to protect the [Islamic] religion”. Facts show that Muslims in Britain are repeatedly stigmatised and attacked, not only by “ordinary people”, but also by government officials or “the establishment”. To name a few: Boris Johnson, Former British foreign secretary, compared full-face veiled women to letterboxes; Britain’s Home Secretary Sajid Javid uses the term “no-go areas”, an expression imbued with anti-Muslim sentiments; the then-Communities Secretary Eric Pickles sent a letter, endorsed by Cameron, asking Muslim leaders to “explain and demonstrate how faith in Islam can be part of British identity”. Furthermore, there is no such thing as “truth” when it comes to the Quran and Islamic teaching. Islam is a religion, with the Quran as its central text and, as such, is subject to different interpretations that vary across time and space. As with all the major religions, there is not one single understanding and application of the holy book that all the believers who identify with that religion follow in the exact same way. Some Islamic terrorists justify their violent acts through their interpretation of the Quran, but this is also in conformity with their objectives and world view, and it is different from those of the overwhelming majority of Muslims across the world. Claiming that, compared with the major religions, Islam is inherently violent because of the words contained in the Quran is a fallacy. A comparative text analysis of the Old and New Testaments and the Quran has shown that the Christian texts, especially the Old Testament, contains more references to killing and destruction. However, when Christian terrorists, such as Anders Behring Breivik (who had the Bible in his manifesto), kill people, no one blames the Old Testament and claims that Christianity is inherently violent.
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