I am one of those who strongly believe that world conflicts today, or any other day for that matter, are inherently political and have nothing to do with religion — any religion. Those conflicts mistakenly attributed to religion are caused by the struggle for power and wealth.
Nevertheless, there are too many politicians who find it convenient to exploit and abuse religion as part of their agenda to dominate a political conflict; it becomes an easy tool to gain mass public support, to dehumanize the "enemy" and, more importantly, to ultimately avoid resolving the conflict at all.
Take Islam, for example. Muslims today are victimized everywhere, because the rich and powerful in the West want to control one of the world’s most important natural resources – oil. It just so happens that predominantly Muslim states are sitting on most of it. Those same Muslim states also occupy strategically vital geopolitical locations, as most the world’s commercial air and sea channels pass through or over them. Additionally, with a collective population of some 1.5 billion, the Muslim world also represents a huge market – both actual and potential — for Western goods.
It’s no wonder that Islam is hated by the rich and powerful in the West who do not have control over the vast natural and commercial resources that belong to Muslim countries. That hatred – fuelled by greed – becomes the principal motivation for sustaining the current political propaganda war.
Those who hate Islam and Muslims thus link every political conflict to Islam. This, they believe, will advance their political agenda and block any rational analysis that might otherwise lead to conflict resolution. Therefore, if a conflict is related to Islam, then what’s the use of trying to discuss it? If Islam is the root cause of that conflict, then the victimization of Muslims, all Muslims, can be easily justified.
In their zeal to smear a major world religion that embraces 1.5 billion adherents, these haters of Islam in Canada also display other troubling characteristics. Here is the top ten:
1. They are anti-immigrant:
Because most Muslim countries are still developing, both politically and technologically, and because the standard of living has increased in countries like China and India – once a major source of Western immigration — Muslim countries are now the main origin of immigrants to countries like Canada. Those who hate Islam advocate that Canada does not need more immigrants.
2. They are anti-native/aboriginal:
Because Muslims in many parts of the world struggle for self-determination, the anti-Islam crowd is also against giving indigenous Canadian First Nations people their rights.
3. They are anti-multiculturalism:
Because multiculturalism promotes increased tolerance and understanding, which would benefit Canadian Muslims, they are eager to eliminate any government policies supportive of multiculturalism, the sooner the better.
4. They are anti-civil liberties:
They are regressive when it comes to civil liberties and work hard to curtail the extension of, and awareness of, freedom of speech and freedom of conscience to the "Other" elements (i.e. visible and other minorities) in our society.
5. They are anti-democracy:
At the national level, they promote an extreme right wing agenda which is geared to dismissing social justice values; at the international level, they bash the UN and its reform efforts to make it a more democratic international organization.
6. They support American exploitation of Latin America:
They believe that the U.S. has the right to dominate the world and to use any means to that end — blackmailing, intimidation, exploitation, and military might.
7. They are pro-Israel, regardless of the cost:
Some Palestinians are Christians and all are opposed to the Israeli occupation. Some use armed resistance to end the occupation. But most of the hatred expressed by pro-Israel groups in the West is reserved for Islam. They are against the democratically elected governments in Palestine and Lebanon. They support Israeli aggression and the daily killing of Palestinian civilians. They never criticize Israel, but seem to act wholly on feelings of collective Western guilt over the historical mistreatment of European Jews; therefore they feel Israel "can do no wrong."
8. They are pro-war:
Islam-haters are also hawks, believing that war is the best option – anywhere, anytime — especially when it comes to invading countries like Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, and Lebanon. They support George W. Bush’s lies about the American war on Iraq. They believe military might alone can solve the world’s problems.
9. They call every self-hating Muslim "moderate":
The amount of printer’s ink and broadcast air time used to promote self-hating Western Muslims is staggering. Their superficial and trivializing views are given overwhelming prominence in the Western media.
10. They try hard to silence their critics:
Islam-haters routinely use smear tactics and label their critics as leftists, radicals, fundamentalists, extremists, anti-Semites, etc.