PDA

View Full Version : Anti-muslim Racism


Brita
07-07-2009, 10:58 AM
Egypt in uproar after pregnant Muslim slain in German courtroom

Woman stabbed by neighbour, husband shot as he tries to defend her

Thousands of Egyptian mourners marched behind the coffin of a woman who is being called the "martyr of the head scarf" on Monday — a pregnant Muslim woman who was stabbed to death in a German courtroom as her young son watched.

Many in Marwa al-Sherbini's homeland of Egypt were outraged by the attack and saw the low-key response in Germany as an example of racism and anti-Muslim sentiment.

Al-Sherbini's husband was critically wounded in the July 1 attack in Dresden when he tried to intervene; he was stabbed by the attacker and accidentally shot by court security.

"There is no god but God and the Germans are the enemies of God," chanted the mourners in the 32-year-old woman's hometown of Alexandria, where her body was buried after being flown back from Germany.

"We will avenge her killing," her brother Tarek el-Sherbini told The Associated Press by telephone from the mosque where prayers were being recited in front of his sister's coffin. "In the West, they don't recognize us. There is racism."

Al-Sherbini, who was about four months pregnant and wore the Islamic head scarf, was involved in a court case against a neighbour who had called her a terrorist. She was set to testify against him when he stabbed her 18 times inside the courtroom in front of her three-year-old son.

Husband mistaken for attacker
Her husband, who was in Germany on a research fellowship, came to her aid and was also stabbed by the neighbour as well as shot in the leg by a security guard who initially mistook him for the attacker, German prosecutors said. He is now in critical condition in a German hospital, according to al-Sherbini's brother.

"The guards thought that as long as he wasn't blond, he must be the attacker, so they shot him," al-Sherbini told an Egyptian television station.

The attacker, who has been identified only as 28-year-old Alex W., remains in detention and prosecutors have opened an investigation on suspicion of murder.

Christian Avenarius, the prosecutor in Dresden where the incident took place, described the killer as driven by a deep hatred of Muslims. "It was very clearly a xenophobic attack of a fanatical lone wolf."

He added that the attacker was a Russian of German descent who had immigrated to Germany in 2003 and had expressed his contempt for Muslims at the start of the trial.

'Incomprehensibly meagre' coverage criticized
At its regular news conference on Monday, German government spokesman Thomas Steg said if the attack was racist, the government "naturally condemns this in the strongest terms."

The killing has dominated Egyptian media for days, while it has received comparatively little coverage in German and Western media.

A German Muslim group criticized government officials and the media for not paying enough attention to the crime.

"The incident in Dresden had anti-Islamic motives. So far, the reactions from politicians and media have been incomprehensibly meagre," Aiman Mazyek, the general secretary of the Central Council of Muslims, told Berlin's Tagesspiegel daily.

How can he stab her 18 times in a court room with security officials? The husband was there to defend her- where were the others? This reader's comment further down provides a little more detail as well:

I have to complain about the way CBC reports this. There is not need to mention what angry mourners are saying in frustration with the whole incident. CBC needs to try to focus on the incident not the reaction. A Highly educated person gets killed in courtroom and German police does nothing while she is being stabbed for 18 times. When her husband tries to defend her and he himself gets stabbed too, the German police shoot him not the murder.

Allow me to fill some more details that CBC have "missed" and opted to mention "There is no god but God and the Germans are the enemies of God," and talk about revenge the relatives of the victims are talking about.

The story dates back to over a year ago where a conflict happened between the victim and the criminal in a park over child play area usage. The criminal started shouting racial comments toward the victim and eventually pulled her hijab off. German citizens, and not the victim, in the park filed a complain about him in the police. He was fined 750 Euros. He appealed the decision and the court asked the victim to show up in court and that is when this incident happened.

How terrible. We hear all the time about Muslim women being mistreated and abused. Well, how about hearing of a muslim community that has rallied with grief around the death of a Muslim woman, and a husband who risked his life trying to defend hers?

Although I am not sure what "highly educated" in the reader's comments has to do with anything ...

Gilshalos Sedai
07-07-2009, 11:15 AM
Just a little class warfare, Brits, that's all.


I, too, want to know how this guy a) had a knife in a courtroom. What, Germans don't do metal detectors? B) How he managed 18 stabs before being restrained. C) What the idiot guard was thinking?

GonzoTheGreat
07-07-2009, 12:00 PM
I don't really know much about German court rooms, but it is entirely possible that the security guards were not in that room when this started.
If they had to be warned, run to the room, then run into it and asses the situation very rapidly, then mistaking who was the attacker would have been a lot easier, and this would also explain the slowness of the reaction.

Gilshalos Sedai
07-07-2009, 12:07 PM
Wait... the cops/security/bailiffs are NOT in the room watching potentially dangerous criminals/plaintiffs?


Amazing this hasn't happened more often!

GonzoTheGreat
07-07-2009, 12:18 PM
As can be read in this article (http://www.welt.de/vermischtes/article4037645/Zeugin-nach-Streit-um-Schaukel-im-Gericht-getoetet.html), some of the police men that overpowered the attacker were in the building because they had to testify in another case.
Thomas Schmidt saß zur Tatzeit in einem benachbarten Gerichtssaal. Der 43-Jährige beobachtete als Zuschauer einen anderen Prozess. „Wir alle haben plötzlich ganz komische Schreie gehört“, berichtet er nun mit belegter Stimme.

Dann sei ein Polizist in den Saal gestürzt und habe seinen Kollegen um Hilfe gebeten, der dort als Zeuge aussagen sollte. „Schnell, deine Waffe, es gibt eine Schlägerei“, habe er gerufen. Schmidt sagt, kurz darauf habe man einen Schuss gehört. Als er am Mittag endlich wie benommen aus dem Gericht geht, sieht er vor Saal 0.10 eine Blutlache. Kriminaltechniker sichern da bereits den Tatort und beginnen Spuren aufzunehmen.

This article (http://www.handelsblatt.com/journal/nachrichten/dresden-angeklagter-ersticht-zeugin;2412512) explains that because it was just a minimum security of someone appealing a fine, there were no real security measures at all:
Die Sprecherin des Landgerichts, Bettina Garmann, sagte, das Geschehen sei für alle noch unfassbar. Niemand habe damit rechnen können, dass es zu einer solchen Tat kommen könnte. „Es gab keinerlei Anzeichen für einen solchen Gewaltausbruch.“ Sie verwies darauf, dass der Mann nicht aus der Haft vorgeführt worden sei. Deswegen seien zum Tatzeitpunkt auch keine Sicherheitskräfte im Saal gewesen. Es habe auch keine Kontrollen gegeben. Im Dresdner Landgericht gibt es Sicherheitskontrollen nur im Einzelfall. Sie werden angeordnet, wenn es Hinweise auf mögliche Gefährdungen gibt.In that court, security measures are only taken if they are specifically ordered for one particular case, not just because all citizens are assumed to be violent criminals.

Gilshalos Sedai
07-07-2009, 12:21 PM
Since it's in German, I'll take your word for it.

There is at least one Bailiff in every courtroom here, IIRC. In Houston, we use Sherriffs.

GonzoTheGreat
07-07-2009, 12:22 PM
Wait... the cops/security/bailiffs are NOT in the room watching potentially dangerous criminals/plaintiffs?With potentially dangerous suspects, yes. When an ordinary citizen is getting fined, no.
Amazing this hasn't happened more often!It does happen more often, but (so far) not regularly enough to turn Germany into a police state. But the articles I cited do have links to other cases.

Davian93
07-07-2009, 12:25 PM
It does happen more often, but (so far) not regularly enough to turn Germany into a police state. But the articles I cited do have links to other cases.

They apparently already tried the whole police state thing...it didn't work out too well for them in the end.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/3a/Reichstag_after_the_allied_bombing_of_Berlin.jpg

Gilshalos Sedai
07-07-2009, 12:29 PM
I'd hardly call the US a police state, Gonzo. But thanks for that bit of hyperbole.

GonzoTheGreat
07-07-2009, 12:35 PM
Gil, they may be a bit more sensitive to the signs of it in Germany. Davian already pointed to one experience in that direction, the Germans tried a light version of it when combating RAF terrorism, which didn't work either, and quite a lot of Germans (including the current Chancellor) have lived under the (neo-)Stalinist version of it.

Brita
07-07-2009, 12:41 PM
Well, that does explain things a little more clearly. Thanks Gonzo.

Sinistrum
07-07-2009, 02:15 PM
Hmmmmm, which is more bigoted: A. One random nutter white dude who did something terrible or B. an entire country who is blowing up over this, generally hyperventilating, and indicting not just a single country or race but all of western civilization over the actions of one random nutter white dude.

Its gotten to the point anymore in the media where people are so butthurt over race that they can't just recognize an asshole for an asshole.

Davian93
07-07-2009, 04:19 PM
Hmmmmm, which is more bigoted: A. One random nutter white dude who did something terrible or B. an entire country who is blowing up over this, generally hyperventilating, and indicting not just a single country or race but all of western civilization over the actions of one random nutter white dude.

Its gotten to the point anymore in the media where people are so butthurt over race that they can't just recognize an asshole for an asshole.

F#(*(#ing Honkey...

Crispin's Crispian
07-07-2009, 04:43 PM
F#(*(#ing Honkey...
I'm trying to figure out what word that's supposed to be, Dav. Seems like you have a few too many (non-)letters.

As to Sinistrum's point, have there been other instances of institutional discrimination against muslims that might have preceded this uproar? I might be naive, but generally the populace doesn't get upset over one solitary incident.

Sinistrum
07-07-2009, 04:53 PM
Yeah I guess it must be institutionalized bigotry against Muslims that the dude who committed the murder was on trial for violating Germany's anti-hate speech laws for his conduct against Muslims.

At this point, all it takes is for a single Western to sneeze in the wrong direction for a lot of Muslims to get pissed off at all of us. I also think its pretty funny how these same people don't seem to get this riled up whenever a Muslim decides to off someone in the European public eye that is critical of them. Guess that street only works one way, ie its only bigoted and therefore worthy of indicting an entire group of countries and cultures when someone with a lighter skin color and a religion that doesn't require you to pray toward Mecca does something like this.

Davian93
07-07-2009, 05:24 PM
Imagine if you did something as crazy as making a drawing of Muhammad...I mean, the streets will burn if that happened.

Crispin's Crispian
07-07-2009, 05:59 PM
Yeah I guess it must be institutionalized bigotry against Muslims that the dude who committed the murder was on trial for violating Germany's anti-hate speech laws for his conduct against Muslims.

That's why I asked for other examples.


At this point, all it takes is for a single Western to sneeze in the wrong direction for a lot of Muslims to get pissed off at all of us. I also think its pretty funny how these same people don't seem to get this riled up whenever a Muslim decides to off someone in the European public eye that is critical of them. Guess that street only works one way, ie its only bigoted and therefore worthy of indicting an entire group of countries and cultures when someone with a lighter skin color and a religion that doesn't require you to pray toward Mecca does something like this.
And yet Muslims keep emigrating into Europe. I guess it can't be that bad.

Sinistrum
07-07-2009, 06:13 PM
And yet Muslims keep emigrating into Europe. I guess it can't be that bad

Of course its not. They get to do whatever they want over there without serious repercussion in most instances. That's what tolerance and cultural diversity is all about. People who are not white, male, or christian getting to do whatever they want regardless of the consequences.

Furthermore, if there is some kind of institutionalized bigotry against Muslims in Europe, then why do they keep moving there? If its so bad as to warrant these kind of hystrionics in response to a single murder, you'd think they just wouldn't come.

JSUCamel
07-07-2009, 06:23 PM
The simple answer is that a vocal minority is wildly against the West, while the majority don't care all that much. The former incite the riots and jihad, the latter move to Europe.

Frenzy
07-08-2009, 01:11 AM
my knowledge of history isn't the best, especially post-WWII European history. But iirc, Germany brought in a large population of immigrants from the middle-east and west Asia to rebuild. They had special work visas, which either had a set time limit or had some other sort of limitations assigned to it. The workers were looked down upon by the native population.

i distinctly remember reading an article about a Pakistani enclave in Germany, and how it had ossified into a staunchly conservative form of their home culture, up to and including honor killings of their own children. Second & third generation children who adopted western ways were shunned, sent back home to an arranged marriage, or even killed by their own parents. The article went on to point out that the pakistani ghetto/enclave had it's own markets, it's own stores, and nobody spoke German. One woman was quoted that they had everything they needed: money, jobs, their own culture. They had no use for the Germans, and looked down upon them and their culture. That quote struck me not only for it's irony, but it's prophetic nature.

i think France is grappling with similar issues of large immigrant populations who rigorously hold onto their interpretations of 'the home land,' and violently reject their new country's culture and deny that their own home countries are also changing.

Nazbaque
07-08-2009, 03:28 AM
I guess that's human nature for you. Forget the bad stuff and remember the good stuff. Result: "Things were better when I was young/in the old country/etc" You just don't assume that things change unless you see it happen.

About one and half years ago I moved back to the part of my homecity where I was born after living 14 years in other parts of it. A lot of changes. Made me realize that change happens everywhere, not just where you happen to look.

But relating more closely to this topic: It's human nature to assume other people are bad because they are different, because that means the bad people are not like you or more precisely you are not like the bad people and thus can't be one.

GonzoTheGreat
07-08-2009, 03:46 AM
Hmmmmm, which is more bigoted: A. One random nutter white dude who did something terrible or B. an entire country who is blowing up over this, generally hyperventilating, and indicting not just a single country or race but all of western civilization over the actions of one random nutter white dude.I think that at least part of this is just general frustration of those people which is coming out. I suspect that quite a lot of those people would be at least as happy to protest against their own government, but whenever they try that, they're clubbed down brutally. So they have a lot of stored up anger. When an opportunity presents itself where they can let that go, it does come out.
Combine that with a government which knows this very well and controls the newspapers and other media, and you have a situation where occasional explosions aimed at "innocent" (ie. non-government) targets become a standard feature.

It is quite possible that the articles to which those Egyptians reacted left out a couple of details:
-Such as the fact that this was done by one lonely loony.
-Such as the fact that in Germany, ordinary courts do not need protection from the citizens, because those citizens trust their justice system to be fair and just.
-Such as the fact that in the original incident, a couple of Germans came to the aid of the Muslim woman, and they were the ones that took the step of getting the police involved.
-Such as the fact that a German man insulting and attacking a Muslim woman was indeed prosecuted and lead to a conviction, while in Egypt it is not at all certain the same would occur if a Muslim man did that to a Coptic (Christian) woman.

It is leaving out facts like that which can give a very different impression of what had happened. And without knowing which facts those outraged Egyptians did and did not have, it is difficult to understand how reasonable they were.

As an analogous example, I would remind you of the outrage there was in the West (in the USA too) about the Palestinians who were celebrating when the Twin Towers came down. The detail left out there was that they weren't celebrating that attack, they had just been asked to stage an anti-American happening (ordinary entertainment for them), and complied with that request.

So, it would seem that humans are humans everywhere, no matter which Jewish heresy they happen to believe in. And I suspect that even the non-Jewish religions do not provide any improvement on this, and it might even be that absence of religion won't make humans any less vulnerable to drawing conclusions from too few facts.

Nazbaque
07-08-2009, 04:48 AM
Oh yeah, I forgot that bit of human nature: we hate being ignorant even more than being wrong so we tend to make great big guesses that can have tragic consequences. Thanks Gonzo.

GonzoTheGreat
07-08-2009, 05:31 AM
I think that in this case, the ignorance could be deliberate. I think that quite a lot of the regimes in the Middle East are cultivating anti-Western sentiments, to prevent the people there from trying to adopt Western values like democracy, equality before the law, freedom for all and so forth.

Ishara
07-08-2009, 07:22 AM
Yeah, I have to say that the racism against Muslims in Paris was endemic. Pretty awful stuff.

And yes, if the media in Egypt (for example) left out the fat that the event was precipitated by the perpatrator being in court to pay a fne for assaulting the woman in the first place, and that guards are not often necessary in courts, you can see how the assumption was made that it was institutionalized racism and not a whackadoodle isolated incident.

Brita
07-08-2009, 08:08 AM
Ya, the guards not being in court was a big one for me. Knowing that changed my whole perception of the incident. Stupid media.