Pepublicans must take on poeple like Bobby Jindal who spread Islamophobia and anti-Muslim rhetoric. Photo: Win McNamee / AFP
Pepublicans must take on poeple like Bobby Jindal who spread Islamophobia and anti-Muslim rhetoric. Photo: Win McNamee / AFP

The Republicans must end this Muslim-baiting



A few weeks ago, Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal delivered a speech to the Henry Jackson Society in London focusing on the dangers posed by “radical Islam” to the world’s “freedom- loving people”. It was little more than a mix of sloganeering and jingoism. Mr Jindal is no simple-minded demagogue like Sarah Palin or Michele Bachmann. As a former Rhodes Scholar and a White House aspirant, one supposes that he thought through his remarks.

And yet, he ended up raising questions about Islam and Muslims in general. For example, after noting that he had no interest in defaming any religion, he disingenuously asked: “How many Muslims in this world agree with these radicals? ... I hope it’s a small minority. But it is clear that far too many do.” He later added: “A so-called religion that allows for and endorses killing those who oppose it is not a religion at all, it is a terrorist movement ... Let’s be honest, Islam has a problem.”

The subtext was inflammatory too. He warned against “non-assimilationist Muslims” moving to the West where they have taken advantage of the “wide berth” that democracy provides and established “their own nation within a nation”. These are “no-go zones”, he said.

But he was wrong, just like Ms Palin and Ms Bachmann who said the same sort of things. Polling by Zogby Analytics shows that extremist violence has scant support across the Arab world. Most Muslim religious institutions have condemned the violent groups that use religion to justify their actions, as have the many Arab and Muslim states that have declared war on ISIL and other forms of extremism.

Further, the charge that there are “no-go zones” in western democracies has been debunked. When a so-called terrorism expert made that claim on Fox News about Birmingham, England, British prime minister David Cameron said he was “clearly a complete idiot”. The channel apologised three times.

But not Mr Jindal. He has repeated his “no-go zones” remark several times, even suggesting that America needs to be careful the same doesn’t happen to it, complete with the “imposition of Sharia”. What concerns me is not just that he is dead wrong but that his Republican Party intends to double down on this theme in the forthcoming election campaign.

In 2008, Ms Palin, the party's vice-presidential candidate, suggested that Barack Obama might be a Muslim and a whispering campaign took hold and tried to make much of the Democratic nominee's middle name, Hussein. That didn't work, nor did the party's 2010 opposition to the effort to build a Muslim community centre in lower Manhattan, not far from the site of the September 11, 2001 attacks. Several of the party's Congressional candidates ran ads suggesting that it would facilitate a Muslim takeover of America. But 15 of those 17 candidates lost.

In 2012, the Republicans tried Muslim-baiting again but that effort died an early death.

But that’s not all. Despite the fact that no Muslim in the US has ever even suggested imposing Sharia, Republican law makers in more than two-dozen states have attempted to pass anti-Sharia law legislation. And in every one, the efforts have failed.

With this sorry history, one would think that a Rhodes Scholar such as Mr Jindal might drop the issue. But no, he has brought it back to the fore. Why? The simplest answer is that, despite its wrongheadedness, the issue remains red meat for the Republican faithful. Our polls show that there is a deep partisan divide on matters involving Islam and Muslims. Strong majorities of self-identified Republicans have unfavourable views of Muslims.

There is also a demographic divide. Younger voters, educated women and racial minorities are on one side. These voters tend to have a more tolerant and open view of the world and are more accepting of Muslims and other minority groups. But older white voters and those calling themselves “born again Christians” are far less tolerant. On this issue, self-identified “independents” largely support a more tolerant view of Muslims. The result is that while the Muslim-baiting tactic might work with the Republican Party faithful, it’s a proven loser with the broader electorate.

While I have little concern that this Jindal nonsense will win out, the damage that it continues to do to our public discourse and the hurt that it creates for Muslims in America remain a concern. America will not be the one nation it claims to be until the Republicans stop acting like Europe’s fringe far-right groups.

Considering that a substantial minority of Republicans actually believe that president Obama is Muslim, he can’t be the one to challenge them on this issue. Muslim-baiting will not end until a Republican leader steps forward and takes on the likes of Jindal, Palin, Bachmann. When that happens, we will be back on the road to sanity.

James Zogby is the president of the Arab American Institute

On Twitter: @aaiusa

What is 'Soft Power'?

Soft power was first mentioned in 1990 by former US Defence Secretary Joseph Nye. 
He believed that there were alternative ways of cultivating support from other countries, instead of achieving goals using military strength. 
Soft power is, at its root, the ability to convince other states to do what you want without force. 
This is traditionally achieved by proving that you share morals and values.

Day 5, Abu Dhabi Test: At a glance

Moment of the day When Dilruwan Perera dismissed Yasir Shah to end Pakistan’s limp resistance, the Sri Lankans charged around the field with the fevered delirium of a side not used to winning. Trouble was, they had not. The delivery was deemed a no ball. Sri Lanka had a nervy wait, but it was merely a stay of execution for the beleaguered hosts.

Stat of the day – 5 Pakistan have lost all 10 wickets on the fifth day of a Test five times since the start of 2016. It is an alarming departure for a side who had apparently erased regular collapses from their resume. “The only thing I can say, it’s not a mitigating excuse at all, but that’s a young batting line up, obviously trying to find their way,” said Mickey Arthur, Pakistan’s coach.

The verdict Test matches in the UAE are known for speeding up on the last two days, but this was extreme. The first two innings of this Test took 11 sessions to complete. The remaining two were done in less than four. The nature of Pakistan’s capitulation at the end showed just how difficult the transition is going to be in the post Misbah-ul-Haq era.

Points classification after Stage 4

1. Arnaud Demare (France / FDJ) 124

2. Marcel Kittel (Germany / Quick-Step) 81

3. Michael Matthews (Australia / Sunweb) 66

4. Andre Greipel (Germany / Lotto) 63

5. Alexander Kristoff (Norway / Katusha) 43

Tailors and retailers miss out on back-to-school rush

Tailors and retailers across the city said it was an ominous start to what is usually a busy season for sales.
With many parents opting to continue home learning for their children, the usual rush to buy school uniforms was muted this year.
“So far we have taken about 70 to 80 orders for items like shirts and trousers,” said Vikram Attrai, manager at Stallion Bespoke Tailors in Dubai.
“Last year in the same period we had about 200 orders and lots of demand.
“We custom fit uniform pieces and use materials such as cotton, wool and cashmere.
“Depending on size, a white shirt with logo is priced at about Dh100 to Dh150 and shorts, trousers, skirts and dresses cost between Dh150 to Dh250 a piece.”

A spokesman for Threads, a uniform shop based in Times Square Centre Dubai, said customer footfall had slowed down dramatically over the past few months.

“Now parents have the option to keep children doing online learning they don’t need uniforms so it has quietened down.”

Company profile

Company name: Fasset
Started: 2019
Founders: Mohammad Raafi Hossain, Daniel Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech
Initial investment: $2.45 million
Current number of staff: 86
Investment stage: Pre-series B
Investors: Investcorp, Liberty City Ventures, Fatima Gobi Ventures, Primal Capital, Wealthwell Ventures, FHS Capital, VN2 Capital, local family offices

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Engine: Long-range dual motor with 400V battery
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0-100km/h: 4.7sec
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The specs

Engine: 6.5-litre V12 and three electric motors
Power: 1,015hp
Torque: 1,500Nm (estimate)
Transmission: Eight-speed dual-clutch auto
On sale: Early 2024
Price: From Dh2 million (estimate)

Profile of RentSher

Started: October 2015 in India, November 2016 in UAE

Founders: Harsh Dhand; Vaibhav and Purvashi Doshi

Based: Bangalore, India and Dubai, UAE

Sector: Online rental marketplace

Size: 40 employees

Investment: $2 million

Herc's Adventures

Developer: Big Ape Productions
Publisher: LucasArts
Console: PlayStation 1 & 5, Sega Saturn
Rating: 4/5

RESULTS

6.30pm: Al Maktoum Challenge Round-1 Group 1 (PA) Dh119,373 (Dirt) 1,600m
Winner: Brraq, Adrie de Vries (jockey), Jean-Claude Pecout (trainer)

7.05pm: Handicap (TB) Dh102,500 (D) 1,200m
Winner: Taamol, Connor Beasley, Ali Rashid Al Raihe.

7.40pm: Handicap (TB) Dh105,000 (Turf) 1,800m
Winner: Eqtiraan, Connor Beasley, Ali Rashid Al Raihe.

8.15pm: UAE 1000 Guineas Trial (TB) Dh183,650 (D) 1,400m
Winner: Soft Whisper, Pat Cosgrave, Saeed bin Suroor.

9.50pm: Handicap (TB) Dh105,000 (D) 1,600m
Winner: Hypothetical, Mickael Barzalona, Salem bin Ghadayer.

9.25pm: Handicap (TB) Dh95,000 (T) 1,000m
Winner: Etisalat, Sando Paiva, Ali Rashid Al Raihe

Results

Stage three:

1. Stefan Bissegger (SUI) EF Education-EasyPost, in 9-43

2. Filippo Ganna (ITA) Ineos Grenadiers, at 7s

3. Tom Dumoulin (NED) Jumbo-Visma, at 14s

4. Tadej Pogacar (SLO) UAE-Team Emirates, at 18s

5. Joao Almeida (POR) UAE-Team Emirates, at 22s

6. Mikkel Bjerg (DEN) UAE-Team Emirates, at 24s

General Classification:

1. Stefan Bissegger (SUI) EF Education-EasyPost, in 9-13-02

2. Filippo Ganna (ITA) Ineos Grenadiers, at 7s

3. Jasper Philipsen (BEL) Alpecin Fenix, at 12s

4. Tom Dumoulin (NED) Jumbo-Visma, at 14s

5. Tadej Pogacar (SLO) UAE-Team Emirates, at 18s

6. Joao Almeida (POR) UAE-Team Emirates, at 22s

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Our legal consultant

Name: Dr Hassan Mohsen Elhais

Position: legal consultant with Al Rowaad Advocates and Legal Consultants.

Company Profile

Company name: Namara
Started: June 2022
Founder: Mohammed Alnamara
Based: Dubai
Sector: Microfinance
Current number of staff: 16
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Family offices

Apple Mac through the years

1984 - Apple unveiled the Macintosh on January 24
1985 - Steve Jobs departed from Apple and established NeXT
1986 - Apple introduced the Macintosh Plus, featuring enhanced memory
1987 - Apple launched the Macintosh II, equipped with colour capabilities
1989 - The widely acclaimed Macintosh SE/30 made its debut
1994 - Apple presented the Power Macintosh
1996 - The Macintosh System Software OS underwent a rebranding as Mac OS
2001 - Apple introduced Mac OS X, marrying Unix stability with a user-friendly interface
2006 - Apple adopted Intel processors in MacBook Pro laptops
2008 - Apple introduced the MacBook Air, a lightweight laptop
2012 - Apple launched the MacBook Pro with a retina display
2016 - The Mac operating system underwent rebranding as macOS
2020 - Apple introduced the M1 chip for Macs, combining high performance and energy efficiency
2022 - The M2 chip was announced
2023 -The M3 line-up of chip was announced to improve performance and add new capabilities for Mac.

Tightening the screw on rogue recruiters

The UAE overhauled the procedure to recruit housemaids and domestic workers with a law in 2017 to protect low-income labour from being exploited.

 Only recruitment companies authorised by the government are permitted as part of Tadbeer, a network of labour ministry-regulated centres.

A contract must be drawn up for domestic workers, the wages and job offer clearly stating the nature of work.

The contract stating the wages, work entailed and accommodation must be sent to the employee in their home country before they depart for the UAE.

The contract will be signed by the employer and employee when the domestic worker arrives in the UAE.

Only recruitment agencies registered with the ministry can undertake recruitment and employment applications for domestic workers.

Penalties for illegal recruitment in the UAE include fines of up to Dh100,000 and imprisonment

But agents not authorised by the government sidestep the law by illegally getting women into the country on visit visas.

Neil Thomson – THE BIO

Family: I am happily married to my wife Liz and we have two children together.

Favourite music: Rock music. I started at a young age due to my father’s influence. He played in an Indian rock band The Flintstones who were once asked by Apple Records to fly over to England to perform there.

Favourite book: I constantly find myself reading The Bible.

Favourite film: The Greatest Showman.

Favourite holiday destination: I love visiting Melbourne as I have family there and it’s a wonderful place. New York at Christmas is also magical.

Favourite food: I went to boarding school so I like any cuisine really.

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Engine: 1.5-litre turbo

Power: 181hp

Torque: 230Nm

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Dengue fever symptoms

High fever (40°C/104°F)
Severe headache
Pain behind the eyes
Muscle and joint pains
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Vomiting
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