popsAmerica’s fascination with imagined or manufactured enemies seems to be as prevalent today as it was during the McCarthy era.

Back then it was a zealous administration searching for Communists under every bed. Today, thirteen years after 9/11, the Obama government is as paranoid as ever in inculcating fear about a perceived enemy, except that Communists have been replaced by Muslims.

Islamophobia is the dominant game in town and as in Hollywood movies, the archetypal Sheriff has his finger on the trigger, ready to kill without any due process or accountability.

In a shocking new revelation reported by the New York Times, Muslim immigrants arrested for minor offences such as parking tickets are being coerced to spy on their faith community.

Reports that squad of detectives known as “Citywide Debriefing Team” are combing city jails for Muslims have sent shock waves to human rights groups.

To get a sense of the absurdity of this disgusting practise by law enforcement agents, consider the following type of questions posed to Muslims in jail for petty offences:

Which mosques do they attend?

Whether they celebrate Muslim holidays, their prayer habits and whether they have gone on Haj?

Once a pattern is established, these detainees are recruited as informers by being forced to spy on Mosques, Muslim organisations and businesses.

American security agencies responsible for such immoral and disgusting conduct may argue that they resort to these questionable tactics to prevent potential terrorism. Facts however do not support this.

The reality is that America is caught as a victim of its own false propaganda that thrives on Islamophobia, which itself has turned into a lucrative multi billion rand industry.

Not only is it funded by leading foundations, the industry comprises of so-called security think tanks, many if not all of them are right-leaning and linked to Israel.

Its informed by a narrative which perceives Islam to pose an existential threat to Western civilization and to its colonial outpost Israel.

It explains why groups engaged in defence of their rights such as Hamas and Hizbullah are classified as terrorist organisations by Israel and America. It further explains the continued incarceration of people at facilities like Guantanamo Bay. Held against their will without charge or due process, prisoners at Gitmo are in effect victims of Islamophobia.

Similar accounts of persecution of Muslims exist in many European regions. A recent reminder of how vindictive Islamophobia can be in Britain, look no further than the imprisonment of a former Gitmo detainee Moazzem Begg.

While the Obama administration is keen to project itself as distinct from previous Republican governments, its track record in pursuit of a discredited “War on Terror” is no better.

The current pervasive intrusion in the private lives of Muslim individuals via spying is indefensible.  President Obama cannot claim impartiality, nor can he continue lying when his law enforcement agencies are busy blackmailing and coercing vulnerable Muslims to prey rather than pray.

Iqbal Jassat

Executive Member

Media Review Network

Johannesburg SA

Twitter @ijassat

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Iqbal Jassat

Iqbal Jassat is an acclaimed writer, analyst and commentator and one of the founder members of MRN. His analysis is featured regularly in mainstream and alternate media outlets around the world.