The Islamophobia Industry and the Christchurch Terror Attack: A Call to Dismantle Hate

The Islamophobia industry is big business.



 

The shootings carried out by right wing White extremists in Christchurch are part of a global network of racist terror that are often legitimized, sponsored, and reproduced by the structures of the state.

The manifesto crafted by one of the White terrorists who carried out the terror makes reference to the U.S. President Donald Trump and draws on the hate propaganda that is a key element of U.S. public relations.

Islamophobia, the fear of the Muslim, is strategically manufactured through various forms of messages of hatred, legitimized and reproduced by the media, and manipulated by parties toward political gains.

The globalization of the Islamophobia industry

The Islamophobia industry is big business. The New Zealand shootings depict the wide reach of the industry and its global appeal.

From the transnational corporations feeding the “war on terror” to the digital media industries that profit from selling the hatred of Muslims to think tanks that are set up to cultivate strategically the fear of the Muslim, Islamophobia generates ratings, advertising dollars, and new markets for products of hatred.

Although projected as the work of the fringe right, the power of Islamophobia lies in seeding the hatred for Islam as a mainstream phenomenon, as a part and parcel of everyday civil discourse.

Digital platforms such as Swarajya Mag in India, and Centers such as the Center for Security Policy in the U.S. are established with the sole purpose of making mainstream the hatred for Islam through the circulation of the image of the Muslim invader that is antithetical to the ideas of civilization.

Propaganda narratives from U.S. to India

The narrative of the “civilization in threat” is strategically disseminated across spaces to seed and amplify Islamophobia. The manifesto circulated by the White supremacist terrorist in New Zealand is essentially anchored in the rhetoric of “White genocide.”

In the U.S., groups such as ACT for America led by Brigette Gabriel organize communities at the grassroots around the hatred for Islam, manufacturing the threat of the Muslim “other.” Setting up false narratives such as the “threat of Sharia law,” with over 750,000 members across the U.S., the organization positions itself as a national security organization, drawing up accounts of unwed Muslim migrant and refugee men who threaten White civilizational purity. Brigette Gabriel draws out links between the influx of Muslim refugees and the threat of rape, manufacturing the basis for the threat of “White genocide.”

In the White terrorist manifesto in New Zealand, the propaganda of “White genocide” is set up by comparing the fertility rates of White Europeans with fertility rates of communities of colour.

The global seduction of the narrative of Islamic rape culture is well evident in India in the Hindutva propaganda machinery.

The “love jihaad” narrative similarly manufactures a false account of Islamic rape culture, positioning Muslims as threatening the purity of Hindu culture. The narrative of Hindu genocide becomes the basis for manufacturing and circulating the threat of the Islamic invader, then being mobilized by the Hindutva forces in India to carry out systematic acts of violence.

The Zionist propaganda machinery produces the image and narrative of the Muslim other to silence any critique of its settler colonialism, occupation and apartheid policies toward Palestinians. A large proportion of the funding of the Islamophobia industry comes from Zionist organizations.

Islamophobic responses in India

The Islamophobia that is rampant in India prompts a cross-section of Hindutva forces to celebrate the attacks on the mosques in Christchurch.

For these Hindutva forces, the attack on the mosques is the appropriate and necessary response to the manufactured thread of Islamic terror.

Heuristically driven and devoid of evidence, these jubilations of the attack on the Muslims entirely miss out that the manifesto called for removing all coloured people (including Indians of all faiths) from what the terrorist articulation framed as White lands (of course ignoring the claims to land in New Zealand held by indigenous Maori). People of colour bear the burden of racisms that generate from White supremacy; Muslims bear this burden as attacks on their ethnicity as well amplified by the demonization of their faith.

The celebration of violence by Hindutva terror, although somewhat different in its framing and targeting of the other from the White supremacist terror, is a replica of White supremacist terror in its strategic deployment of violence to target Muslim minorities. Since 2015, at least 44 Muslims have been killed in India by cow vigilantes, driven by the narrative of civilizational threat.

For a global civilizational response

That terror has no place in civilized societies is the message that ought to form the basis for global response. In her bold and powerful speech following the terrorist attack, the Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern issued this clarion call for zero tolerance of hatred by stating that the haters have no place in New Zealand society.

Across the globe, the fabrics of civilized secular societies are threatened by the politics of hate and fear mongering, legitimized through political parties and electoral processes. These political parties that operate on the circulation of hate need to be targeted strategically and their machineries of hate dismantled.

The global machine of Islamophobia ought to be dismantled by a civilizational narrative of love, understanding and dialogue, with the fundamental commitment to fostering spaces for diverse voices, peoples, worldviews and faith traditions.

In India, dismantling the hate apparatuses of the RSS and BJP are the urgent calls of the hour. In civilized societies such as in New Zealand and Singapore, diaspora groups that operate on the circulation of hate have no place. Identifying, categorizing and dismantling such groups is as important as it is to opening up calls for dialogue.

Hate, White supremacist hate and Hindu hate need to be stopped before they consume the discursive spheres of civilized societies.

Mohan J Dutta is Dean’s Chair Professor of Communication at Massey University, University of New Zealand. He is the Director of the Center for Culture-Centered Approach to Research and Evaluation (CARE), developing culturally-centered, community-based projects of social change, advocacy, and activism that articulate health as a human right.

Article Source: www.thecitizen.in

Image source: https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/world/2019/03/16/jacinda-ardern-christchurch/

CARE Public Talk by Prof. Shiv Ganesh from University of Texas at Austin

Prof. Shiv Ganesh, from University of Texas at Austin , will be presenting a talk at CARE: Center for Culture-Centered Approach to Research and Evaluation on –
Potentials and pitfalls of Microinterventions as an engaged ethnographic method

Monday 11,March 2019
12 noon – 1 pm
GLB1.14, Geography building, Manawatu Campus

Vided Linked to Auckland : AT4 & Wellington: 5C17

Mediasite live stream : https://webcast.massey.ac.nz/Mediasite/Play/4a2ab793db7d448eb2f327272542a2ad1d

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CAREMassey/videos/542751926233393/ 

Abstract:

Microinterventions—situated, small-scale, issue-based action in the context of long term ethnographic engagement—have considerable potential to enrich the quality of ethnographic research, and they can constitute an ethically responsive form of community-based research. Conversely, they can play into broader and vastly problematic narratives of researchers as imperial saviors, alienate communities from outsiders, and result in the continuing marginalization of already vulnerable groups. In this conversation, I discuss how one might consider the ethical imperative of engaging in microinterventions against the pitfalls of doing so, in the context of an ongoing field work project amongst Jenu Koruba tribal communities in Bandipur district and its environs in Southern India.

CARE Activist-In-Residence in News: Stuff -‘Activist Tāme Iti to take up residence at Massey’

Activist Tāme Iti to take up residence at Massey

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Well-known Māori activist Tāme Iti will be Massey University’s next activist in residence.

He will be on the Palmerston North campus from March 18 to 22 as the activist in residence, a programme where an activist shares ideas with academic staff.

The purpose of the programme is to generate knowledge and an activist brings in different experiences.

The theme of Iti’s residency is “decolonising ourselves – indigenising the university”.  He will hold a public talk, workshop, and release a paper. All events are open to the public.

Iti will be hosted by the Centre for Culture-Centred Approach to Research and Evaluation, which is a research centre within the school of communication, journalism and marketing, and the Massey business school.

Professor Mohan Dutta, director of the centre and dean’s chair of communication, said Iti’s residency would empower the voices of the marginalised.

“Tāme’s knowledge and expertise provide key theoretical anchors for us to critically engage and interrogate colonisation and racism, and the structural conditions that reproduce inequality,” Dutta said.

He said this semester the centre was exploring inequality in health and wellbeing.

“Tāme’s name came up because of his work in communication opportunities and opportunities of voicing particular claims and how those will translate into inequality in outcomes, and in health and well being.”

As part of the theme, Tāme Iti said it was important to “know your enemy – hongi hongia te whewheia”.

“The enemy out there, and the enemy internally – in ourselves,” he said.

The centre hosts a different activist in residence each month.

Activist and former Green Party MP Sue Bradford was the first activist in residence in October.

Bradford worked with Dutta on a paper about the partnership between academics and activists in struggles of the oppressed.

Dutta brought the centre with him to Massey from the National University of Singapore. He is a leading scholar for health communication and is a researcher of indigenous rights and activism.

READ MORE: Sue Bradford takes up residence as Massey University’s activist

Source:  Stuff Limited

Article & Image Source: https://www.stuff.co.nz/manawatu-standard/news/111056676/activist-tme-iti-to-take-up-residence-at-massey

 

Maori Television -“iti-become-Masseys-Activist-Residence”

iti-become-Masseys-activist-residence

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The CARE center (Culture-Centered Approach to Research and Evaluation) situated in the School of Communication at Massey’s Palmerston North campus hosts a different activist in-residence every month.  From 18–22 March, Tūhoe elder and Māori activist, Tame Iti, will take up the role.

‘Decolonising Ourselves – Indigenising the University’ is the theme for Iti’s placement which will include workshops, a public talk and the release of a white paper.

Professor Mohan Dutta, Director of CARE says what Iti has to offer through his placement will assist in “empowering the voices of the marginalised as anchors to social transformation”.

“Tame’s knowledge and expertise provide key theoretical anchors for us to critically engage and interrogate colonisation and racism and the structural conditions that reproduce inequality,” says Dutta.

Iti says that it is important to “Know your enemy – hongi hongia te whewheia”.

“The enemy out there, and the enemy internally – in ourselves,” says Iti.

For more information including dates/times and venues please refer to the CARE website

All the events are open to the public and the public talk will be live streamed on Facebook.

 

CARE’s Activist-In-Residence: Tāme Iti on Radio WaateaNews

Iti shares vision as activist in residence with WaateaNews.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tūhoe provocateur Tame Iti is to give his views on how to decolonise yourself to students and the public at Massey University’s CARE center, also known as the Culture-Centered Approach to Research and Evaluation.

The centre at the university’s Palmerston North campus hosts a different activist in residence every month for talks and workshops.

Director Mohan Dutta says his knowledge and experience provide a way for students to critically engage and interrogate colonisation and racism and the structural conditions that reproduce inequality,

Mr Iti will draw on the whakatauki hongi hongiā te whewheiā, know your enemy, and ask whether the enemy is in ourselves.

He says everyone is colonised.

“But the way we are indigenised where we are today is really important. There needs to be some recognition and respect to tangata whenua. We are not trying to ditch that culture. We are saying here we are so how can we work together as a collective, the people living in this country, Pākehā are not the only other people who are here these days, the whole world is here now,” Mr Iti says.

Tame Iti will give a public talk at Massey University at noon on March 20.

Source: https://www.waateanews.com/waateanews?story_id=MjEyNDQ

CARE Activist In Residence – Tāme Iti

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We at CARE are honoured that Tāme Iti will be CARE’s Activist-in-Residence from the 18th to the 22nd of March 2019.

Tāme’s upcoming visit comes just weeks after the United Nations Human Rights Council (2019) report reminded us of the following:

  • “The impacts of colonisation continued to be felt, through entrenched structural racism and poorer outcomes for Māori” (p. 2)
  • “Māori life expectancy was lower and unemployment rates were higher” (p. 3)
  • “inequalities within the system and mental health outcomes, especially for Māori” (p. 4)
  • “Māori were disproportionately represented at every stage of the criminal justice system, as both offenders and victims” (p. 4)

Tāme Iti is an actiivist-of-activists, bringing his art and activism together in decolonizing structures. His activism as performance offers many openings for imagining the role of communication in social cange.

Accordingly, this calls for a decolonising project to critically engage and interrogate the structural conditions that reproduce racism and poorer outcomes for Māori.  Tāme Iti’s Activist Residency will interrupt the dominant discursive positioning and practices of Pākehā hegemony and will situate the university as a site of resistance to enable new ways in which we understand and conceptualise structural racism.  We welcome Tāme Iti as our Activist-in-Residence.  “Tēnā koe e te Rangatira.  Nau mai, haere mai!” [Trans: “Greetings leader/chief. Welcome!”

RSVP to events : https://masseybusiness.asia.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_8ofiQk2Yow6EDBj

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CAREMassey/

Click on the url link for more related articles on Tāme Iti

 

CARE Academic Freedom Study 

CARE Academic Freedom Study 

CARE invites academics to participate in its ongoing study of academic freedom.

Would you like to share your experience with academic freedom at your institution?

In an ongoing study on “Faculty perceptions of academic freedom globally,” CARE is collecting narratives and experiences of faculty across the globe with academic freedom, seeking to identify the challenges to academic freedom as well as the potential solutions to it. The resulting report will form the basis of advocacy work carried out by CARE. 

Please Note: The interview will be recorded and will take between 60 and 90 minutes, conducted over Skype. Your responses will be anonymized. The recording will be destroyed after the transcription of the interview.

RSVP your details below for the CARE Academic Freedom Study to register your interest and to receive further communication regarding the study.

RSVP Link: CARE Academic Freedom Study

CARE Activist In Residence WhitePaperLaunch by Sangeetha Thanapal & Mohan Dutta

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CARE Activist In Residence White Paper Launch:

Topic: Decolonising Racism: Imagining Anti-Racist futures by Mohan Dutta & Sangeetha Thanapal

1st March 2019 from 12.00- 100

GLB3.01 Geography Building

Manawatu campus Massey University

CARE Activist in Residence Public Talk – Sangeetha Thanapal Live Stream

CARE: Center for Culture-Centered Approach to Research and Evaluation Activist In Residence will be live !

Click on the Facebook Live Stream of the #CAREActivistInResidence: Public Talk by Sangeetha Thanapal at #MasseyUniversity below

Link: https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More information on : https://www.facebook.com/events/266087930953323/  

The Calls For War!

The attack, production of crisis, and elections

 

The attack on Central Reserve Police Force personnel in Kashmir’s Pulwama on February 14 has turned up the volume on the jingoistic media channels.

Jingoism sells. The images of violence sell in a concerted call for more violence.

The shouting matches on the split Television screens are perfectly orchestrated to call for war, with suited anchors frothing up at the sounds of war. As if to match up the tenor of the emotions at the site of the attack, the decked-up newsrooms buzz with the calls for attack. From the plush studio settings, mediatized images of the broken vehicles and streets littered with debris are organized into a propaganda campaign.

For the middle class digital sphere, the immediate calls to war from the comforts of the living room offer succour to middle class sensibilities of national security.

This is the mechanics of propaganda.

From Operation Iraqi Freedom to the surgical strike, images and sounds feed the war machinery.

In turn, the war machinery manufactures the images and sounds, pumping up adrenaline, drawing even more viewers in to the 24X7 cycles, driving the ratings up in an ever-accelerating pace.

Wars are powerful tools of propaganda. They feed on insecurity, the threat of the “other” materialized through images, talk, and sound, and the gory materiality of violence.

Manufacturing a war organizes entire collectives of citizens as nationalists, projecting on the national imaginary the threat to the nation, brought together with media images of terrorists that need to be targeted through attacks. This threat to the nation is circulated across media screens, capturing the emotions of citizens as war mongers, rallying behind the political elites and only to be satisfied with more gore.

Crises form the bedrock of authoritarian techniques of producing sites of control and managing them to keep power intact. When under threat of losing power, authoritarian regimes create a wide range of strategies to keep power intact. The spectacle of a terror event is the perfect crisis that calls for strong response, propping up the authoritarian strongman as the legitimate and necessary ruler.

Such a response is often produced amid suspended reason. Revenge must be sought, that’s all, and the authoritarian regime is well suited to extract revenge. That the middle classes that quickly demand such revenge never step into the violence of the war zones is part of the mechanics of war. That it is often the poor, enlisted into the police and military to escape poverty, who must place their bodies amid violence, is part of the mechanics of war.

Moreover, the production of war and the circulation of geostrategic threats work well as communicative strategies for generating public support for authoritarian power. Wars often supply the perfect recipe for authoritarian regimes that hold on to power through appeals to emotion. Catalysing the citizen around the nation and national interests works well to distract from questions of economy, inequality, unemployment, and difficulties of everyday life.

The recent attack in Kashmir seemed to have offered the perfect backdrop for the mobilizing of patriotism. Noted Modi, issuing a warning to Pakistan that India will not be divided: “If they (Pakistan) think that the kinds of things they are doing, the conspiracies that they are concocting — that they will be successful in creating instability in India, then they should abandon that dream. They will never be able to do it.”

As television stations capitalize on the ratings-generating stories of the attack, the nation is once again organized around the enemy, with the call to protect national security. Heuristics of the enemy unify national sentiments, captured in smart techniques of producing the other.

Amid crisis, critical questions are suspended. The audience is configured into a homogeneous mass of collective hysteria.

Wars are also the backdrop for attacking the opposition in an election cycle. Building up to the elections, digitally circulating images quickly pick up stories that equate the opposition with the “other” of the nation. The ruling political party becomes the nation, and the nation the party.

Any critique of the jingoism is dangerously painted as anti-national, with large consequences. Any opposition to the regime is painted as the enemy of the nation. Facebook posts, YouTube videos, Tweets, and WhatsApp messages quickly circulate these

Consider for instance the photo of Rahul Gandhi, photoshopped with the Pulwama suicide bomber. The post,“भारतीय फौज पर हमला करने बाला नीकला राहुल गांधी का खास। क्या इस हमले के पीछे कांग्रेस का हाथ तो नहीं (The man who attacked the Indian army was close to Rahul Gandhi. Is the Congress behind the attack? -translated)”, made on the Facebook group Once Again MODIRAJ 2019, includes photoshopped images of Rahul Gandhi to suggest that the involvement of the Congress in the attack.

Consider similarly cropped videos of Priyanka Gandhi allegedly laughing after the terror attacks.

These images and stories work strategically to paint an increasingly strong opposition as the enemy. The war is a powerful political machinery, one that will quickly organize national politics around its agenda.

Amid these heightened calls to war, consider the critical questions that call for further reflection and deliberation. What are the places of dialogue amid this violence? What role does violence play in mitigating violence? Situate the police-military deaths in war alongside the deaths of civilians and protesting people in Kashmir. Most importantly, consider the question of sovereignty of the Kashmiri people that forms the backdrop of this violence.

by Mohan Dutta

Source: https://www.thecitizen.in/ind ex.php/en/NewsDetail/index/4/16300/The-Calls-For-War