For weeks, I’ve been arguing the point that the republican President Donald Trump and his GOP sycophants in the White House and the US Congress along with their right wing media pundits on FOX TV and elsewhere, who form an echo chamber, cannot continue to fan the flames of anger, prejudice, fear of immigrants, like Muslims and refugees of brown color, in the hearts of the president’s base pf voters and the FOX TV audience, without also inflaming their anger towards other minority members. This antipathy comes in the form of sexism, racism, anti-LGBTQ rights, Islamophobia, Antisemitism. It is not by accident that hate crimes which should be called ”acts of terrorism,’ have increased against all minority communities, across the board since President Trump has been ensconced in the White House, in January 2017. ‘
These GOP traffickers of hate as they push their anti-immigration beliefs and rhetoric are also exporting this currency to other countries, as in the current case in Christchurch, New Zealand where right wing extremists committed mass murders at 2 mosques and where one shared on-line, his anti-immigration manifesto where he even mentioned President Trump.
The suspected gunman who was charged with killing 49 people at a New Zealand mosque on Friday (3/15/2019) was a white nationalist, bent on killing Muslims. But in many respects, he’s not very different from the jihadists who have been guilty of similar mass shootings on behalf of violent Islamist groups.
Those who enable President Trump as he dabbles in this veiled hate mongering, are choosing to be complicit in contributing to the increase of hate crimes/ acts of terrorism towards all minority communities, across the board. All those GOP lawmakers who chose to remain silent when President Trump acted to give the cover of false equivalency to neo- Nazis groups, reputed to be both racist and anti-Semitic, to those who opposed them, as in the August 2017 ‘Unite the Right’ rally held in Charlottesville, VA.; when he described peoples of the Muslim faith and peoples of color as being from ‘Sh*thole countries; as he pushed and justified his plans to bar all Muslims from stepping on US soil, they are partly responsible when these folks act out, as in committing a mass murder.
It’s time that Democrats Party presidential candidates start asking the question, as to why does he resist calling right wing extremists who commit mass murder, terrorists? After all, outside of the 9/11 jihadists’ attacks against US, about 70% of mass murders have been committed by right wing extremists.
Here’s the rest of the story..
My favorite conservative columnist, Max Boot has added his two cents to this debate.
Om March 15, 2019, Max Boot of the Washington Post penned the following op-ed piece, “Not all terrorism is treated equally”
“New Zealand is a small, faraway country, and the victims of the shooting rampage in Christchurch were no doubt Muslims, rather than Jews. But I felt the same sickening feeling as I read news of the massacre in the mosques as I did in October reading the news about the synagogue shooting in Pittsburgh.”
“All acts of terrorism — all killings of the innocent — are an abomination, and one that is made all the worse when the victims are chosen for their skin color, ethnicity, sexuality or religious beliefs. In other words, when these are hate crimes rooted in pathologies shared by many others, rather than random emanations of a diseased mind. Such attacks are designed to perpetuate the most dangerous forms of hatred known to mankind: the same kind of religious hatred that produced the Thirty Years’ War, the same kind of racial hatred that produced the Holocaust, the same kind of ethnic hatred that produced the Srebrenica massacre.”
“Yet we do not treat all hate crimes equally. For decades, we have been understandably focused on attacks by Muslim extremists. I say understandably because 9/11 was the worst terrorist attack ever, and it was only a prelude of the horrors to come. Think of all those car bombs driven by Sunni terrorists in Iraq into crowds of Shiites. Or by Pashtun terrorists in Afghanistan into crowds of Hazaras. Or think of the Islamic State’s attempted genocide against the Yazidis. Many terrible atrocities have been perpetrated in the name of Islam in recent decades — and they have occurred not only in Kabul or Baghdad but also in Paris and Orlando.”
But a focus on Islamist violence should not distract us from the growing threat of right-wing violence. While 9/11 is the deadliest terrorist attack in U.S. history, the second-worst was Timothy McVeigh’s 1995 bombing of the Oklahoma City federal building, which killed 168 people. The Anti-Defamation League reports that in the US, “right-wing extremists collectively have been responsible for more than 70 percent of the 427 extremist-related killings over the past 10 years, far outnumbering those committed by left-wing extremists or domestic Islamist extremists.” The toll of right-wing terrorism could have been even greater if the FBI had not apprehended last month the heavily armed Coast Guard lieutenant Christopher Hasson before he was allegedly ready to strike against liberal politicians and media personalities. Yet the administration has slashed programs designed to combat this menace.”
When we confront Islamist violence, we rightly focus not only on the perpetrators but also on their networks — on what drove them to kill. Many recent attackers in the West have been “lone wolfs” who have been radicalized from afar by the Islamic State or al-Qaeda. Others have been recruited by extremists in Muslim communities. We need to apply the same methodology to right-wing terrorists and root out the ideology that inspires them.
The alleged Christchurch shooter’s loathsome manifesto is called “The Great Replacement,” a common trope of white supremacists. He complained of “mass immigration” and “higher fertility rates of the immigrants” leading to “the complete racial and cultural replacement of the European people.” As specific motivations for the attack, he cited the death of a little girl in Sweden in a 2017 Islamic State-inspired truck attack, the defeat of Marine Le Pen in the 2017 French election and the presence in France of “invaders,” meaning Muslim immigrants. Among his incoherent list of objectives, he expressed a desire to spark “a civil war that will eventually balkanize the US along political, cultural and, most importantly, racial lines.”
Does this sound familiar? It should. Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) has spoken of his own fears of the “great replacement.” Stephen K. Bannon, President Trump’s former counselor, has voiced admiration for a racist French novel called “The Camp of the Saints” that imagines France being overrun by nonwhite newcomers. Trump himself has expressed support for Le Pen; said “Islam hates us”; praised white supremacists as “very fine people”; and warned of an “invasion” of undocumented immigrants.
Link to entire op-ed piece: washingtonpost.com/Not all terrorism is treated equally