Islamophobia 2018

Islamophobia 2018

Islamophobia and Silencing Criticism of Israel

The 2018 Islamophobia Conferences co-organised by IHRC and SACC were held on 8 (London) and 15 (Edinburgh) December on the theme Islamophobia and Silencing Criticism of Israel. Find links to the videos, reports and other material for both conferences here. 

Misleading allegations of anti-semitism are being used to suppress criticism of Israel. This tactic has been institutionalised through the adoption of the IHRA definition of anti-semitism by the UK and Scottish governments. At the same time, real and deadly anti-semitism is being promoted by far-right movements alongside Islamophobia.

Educational resources on Israel-Palestine for Scottish schools have been removed following pressure on the Scottish government by pro-Israel lobbyists.

Around the world, responses to political struggle in Israel-Palestine continue to be tainted by Islamophobia. Palestinian resistance to colonialism is too often seen as fundamentally extremist and regressive. Israel’s use of force to impose colonial policies is too often seen as, at worst, flawed conduct by a liberal democracy.

Given the racist nature of Zionism, this marriage between the far-right and Zionist activists was inevitable. Pro-Israel advocates see an overlap between their hatred of the Arabs whom they wish to displace in Palestine with the far-right’s hatred of Muslims. It is why you see EDL members attend pro-Israel events to deny the right of Palestinian self-determination and why you can see Zionist Federation placards flown at events where far-right racists shout “Allah is a Peado” and “Muslims rape our children”.

London Speakers included: Ramon Grosfoguel, Les Levidow, Hilary Aked, Houria Bouteldja.

Edinburgh Speakers included: Sofiah MacLeod (Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign), Omar Afzal (Muslim Council of Scotland), Sarah Glynn (Scottish Jews Against Zionism), Arzu Merali (Islamic Human Rights Commission), Sai Englert (researcher, SOAS), Mohammed Dean (Friends of Al Aqsa – Edinburgh), David Jamieson (CommonSpace journalist) and Wael Shawish (Scottish Palestinian Society, formerly the Association of Palestinian Communities in Scotland).