Home Feature News ‘Nervousness and concern are excessive:’ US Palestinians, Muslims concern a return to post-9/11 Islamophobia | CNN

‘Nervousness and concern are excessive:’ US Palestinians, Muslims concern a return to post-9/11 Islamophobia | CNN

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‘Nervousness and concern are excessive:’ US Palestinians, Muslims concern a return to post-9/11 Islamophobia | CNN

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CNN
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Because the Israel-Hamas Warfare rages and the disaster in Gaza deepens, Taher Herzallah stated he has exchanged frantic messages on social media along with his relations who’re trapped in Gaza.

Their description of the state of affairs is grim. He stated they’ve instructed him they haven’t any meals, electrical energy, water or gas.

“Once I spoke to them … they have been principally saying, ‘We predict that is it, we won’t survive this one,’” he stated. “You may solely think about what that seems like for Palestinian Individuals who’re getting these tales from their households proper now.”

Herzallah stated his issues for his household hundreds of miles away have additionally been compounded by a rising concern for the protection of his spouse and youngsters right here within the US, as studies of assaults towards individuals perceived to be Muslim or Palestinian floor throughout the nation.

On Monday, household and religion leaders held a funeral for Wadea Al Fayoume, a 6-year-old Palestinian-American boy who was stabbed to dying in his Chicago-area condominium Saturday in what the police say is an Islamophobic hate crime. Exterior of Al Fayoume’s funeral on the Mosque Basis in Bridgeview, Illinois, grief was tinged with anger.

Ahmed Rehab, govt director of the Council on American Islamic Relations Chicago chapter, stated he views the assault towards Al Fayoume and his mom, who continues to be hospitalized in critical situation, as an assault on all Muslims.

“It’s our worst nightmare come true. It’s one thing we tried to warn towards, creating an environment of dehumanization that places our group in danger, creates sitting geese,” he stated.

“When this particular person stated, ‘You Muslims should die,’ this was a message to not the boy and the mom. This was to all of us. We have been all stabbed that day.”

Leaders from Muslim, Arab, and Palestinian American teams instructed CNN within the days since Hamas’ shock assault they’ve seen a rise in assaults reported towards their communities, together with vandalism, bullying in school and within the office, and threatening cellphone calls.

Linda Sarsour, a civil rights activist who’s Palestinian-American, instructed CNN she has household within the West Financial institution, however she is much more fearful about her group’s security within the US.

“One of many issues that’s at all times the saddest for me is when individuals begin giving one another recommendation about not going out alone,” Sarsour stated, including individuals in her group are telling one another to be on alert and conscious of their environment.

“Individuals are mourning, persons are scared … We’re experiencing a whole lot of anguish, a whole lot of concern, and a scarcity of security.”

In New York Metropolis, police have requested for the general public’s help in finding a suspect who punched a 19-year-old bus passenger who was sporting a turban and a masks. The NYPD stated it’s investigating the assault as a doable hate crime after witnesses stated the person tried to take away the passenger’s turban.

And in Dearborn, Michigan – a metropolis whose inhabitants is estimated to be about 42% Arab, based on the US Census Bureau – police arrested a person after he made on-line threats of violence towards Palestinian American residents.

“Palestinian Individuals and Muslim Individuals really feel like they’re experiencing the extent of hate and Islamophobia that existed after 9/11 and through the Iraq battle – some say it’s even worse,” Aber Kawas, a member of the US Marketing campaign for Palestinian Rights, instructed CNN.

Abed Ayoub, director of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, stated the views of Palestinian and Muslim communities in locations like the USA have been largely absent from the protection of the Israel-Hamas battle and that has allowed a rising environment of bigotry and Islamophobia to go unchecked.

“There isn’t a recognition of our existence. That’s what’s permitting this to bubble,” he stated. “And that’s what allowed a 6-year-old Palestinian boy to get stabbed to dying in his own residence.”

Ayoub stated Arab and Palestinian communities are various and nuanced. However, he stated, giving platforms to narratives that insinuate anybody who helps Palestine additionally helps Hamas and the violent assaults on Israel is problematic.

“Labeling everybody as Hamas simply to justify the assaults is harmful and we’re seeing that play out,” he stated of the bombings in Gaza.

Final weekend, as Israel continued to bombard Gaza in response to the October 7 Hamas assault, activists staged pro-Palestine rallies in New York Metropolis’s Instances Sq. and in cities throughout the nation.

Many Muslim or Arab leaders say they really feel compelled to talk out towards the local weather of Islamophobia to stem additional violence.

“The CAIR NJ workplace has not obtained this many requires assist because the Muslim ban in 2017,” Selaedin Maksut, govt director of the Council on American Islamic Relations of New Jersey, stated at a information convention Monday. “Nervousness and concern are excessive.”

Sarsour stated a unified message from US officers would assist deal with Islamophobia at house.

“You want management from each events to stand up and say it’s not acceptable for us right here in the USA to be partaking or permitting for any sort of anti-Muslim, anti-Palestinian, anti-Arab sentiment,” Sarsour. “We stand united.”

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