CHARLOTTE, NC: In an article for the London-based Al-Sharq Al-Awsat daily newspaper Saudi journalist Mishal Al-Sudairy posed an interesting question. He asked
“why fundamentalist Arabs and Muslims accuse Western countries of racism even though they are home to millions of Arabs and Muslims who enjoy full human rights and even hold high-level positions such as government minister and mayor”?
It’s a valid question that many Westerners have been asking for years, in particular since 9/11/01.
Al-Sudairy’s premise is reinforced by the massive influx of refugees from the Middle East and Africa that have created major immigration problems in several European nations in recent years. Quoting the late Iraqi author Dr. Ali Al-Wardi, Al-Sudairy pointed out the hypocrisy of Arabic thinking:
- Simply stated, “they want their cake and to eat it, too.”
Excerpts from Al-Sudairy’s story, which were posted by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), showed that while he agreed that the West had been guilty of committing serious crimes and being involved in wars in the past, he also believes that Western countries have mended their ways and now “lead humanity on the road to progress, democracy, and human rights.”
“The West, whether we like it or not, continues to lead the course of humanity toward progress, after discarding the constraints of superstition, from the Renaissance to this day,” writes Al-Sudairy.
Al-Sudairy stated that he was compelled to express his views after overhearing comments by a fundamentalist Muslim who was bemoaning his anger at “colonialist” Western countries.
Using the same tired mantra of victimization, the irate Muslim opined, “(T)hey are scheming against the Arab and Muslim countries with the aim of preventing them from advancing.”
“I was surprised (by his sentiment),” writes Al-Sudairy, “and wondered how he could accuse (Britain) of racism while millions of Arabs and Muslims live there lawfully, it has thousands of mosques, and numerous women in hijab and even niqab are out in its streets – and the English allow them to do this.”
Muslim infiltration of Western politics
By way of rebuttal, Al-Sudairy countered his Islamic opponent by citing examples of the progress Muslims have made in Western societies in a relatively brief period, especially in the aftermath of 9/11.
Al-Sudairy reminded readers that the current British prime minister, Boris Johnson is of Muslim-Turkish descent. Johnson’s paternal great-grandfather was Circassian–Turkish journalist Ali Kema] who was a secular Muslim
In fact, the complete list of current and former British officials is impressive:
British Chancellor of the Exchequer, Sajid Javid, who is of Pakistani-Islamic origin, was a minister of various ministries in Britain, including the Home Office. London Mayor, Sadiq Khan, is a Muslim, as are the Lord Mayor of Birmingham, Mohammed Azim, Blackburn Council Leader, Mohammed Khan, former Sheffield lord mayor, Magid Magid, former Oxford lord mayor, Mohammed Altaf-Khan, Luton Mayor, Naseem Ayub, Rochdale Mayor, Mohammed Zaman, and the former London Borough of Waltham Forest mayor Saima Mahmud is a Muslim woman.
Mishal Al-Sudairy’s perspectives are like spitting in the ocean in today’s antagonistic, polarized world where conflict is preferable to rational, honest discussion. Still, his ideas represent progress, no matter how small, in seeking a reasonable dialogue that can be produced between such powerfully diverse ideologies.
One thing is certain, given the West’s overall lack of understanding of the mindset of Islamic perspectives, it will take the rational thinking of Muslims like Mishal Al-Sudairy before there can be any significant change in Christian/Islamic relations.
About the Author:
Bob Taylor is a veteran writer who has traveled throughout the world. Taylor is an award-winning television producer/reporter/anchor before focusing on writing about international events, people and cultures around the globe.
Taylor is the founder of The Magellan Travel Club (www.MagellanTravelClub.com)
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