Preachers of Hate: Arab News launches series to expose hate-mongers from all religions

Clockwise, from top-left: American-Israeli rabbi Meir Kahane, Saudi cleric Safar Al-Hawali, US pastor Terry Jones, Egyptian preacher Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, Australian white supremacist terrorist Brenton Tarrant, and Yemeni militia leader Abdul Malik Al-Houthi.
Updated 02 April 2019

Preachers of Hate: Arab News launches series to expose hate-mongers from all religions

  • Daesh may be defeated, but the bigoted ideas that fueled their extremism live on
  • Campaign could not be more timely, with a rise in anti-Muslim hate crimes since Christchurch attacks

RIYADH: Dozens of Daesh militants emerged from tunnels to surrender to Kurdish-led forces in eastern Syria on Sunday, a day after their “caliphate” was declared defeated.

Men filed out of the battered Daesh encampment in the riverside village of Baghouz near the Iraqi border to board pickup trucks. “They are fighters who came out of tunnels and surrendered today,” Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) spokesman Jiaker Amed said. “Some others could still be hiding inside.”

World leaders hail Saturday’s capture of the last shred of land controlled by Daesh in Syria, but the top foreign affairs official for the semi-autonomous Kurdish region warned that Daesh captives still posed a threat.

“There are thousands of fighters, children and women and from 54 countries, not including Iraqis and Syrians, who are a serious burden and danger for us and for the international community,” Abdel Karim Omar said. “Numbers increased massively during the last 20 days of the Baghouz operation.”

 While the terrorists have a suffered a defeat, the pernicious ideologies that drive them, and the hate speech that fuels those ideologies, live on. For that reason Arab News today launches Preachers of Hate — a weekly series, published in print and online, in which we profile, contextualize and analyze extremist preachers from all religions, backgrounds and nationalities.

 

In the coming weeks, our subjects will include the Saudi cleric Safar Al-Hawali, the Egyptian preacher Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, the American-Israeli rabbi Meir Kahane, the Yemeni militia leader Abdul Malik Al-Houthi, and the US pastor Terry Jones, among others.

 

The series begins today with an investigation into the background of Brenton Tarrant, the Australian white supremacist who shot dead 50 people in a terrorist attack 10 days ago on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Tarrant is not just a terrorist, but is himself a Preacher of Hate, author of a ranting manifesto that attempts to justify his behavior. How did a shy, quiet boy from rural New South Wales turn into a hate-filled gunman intent on killing Muslims? The answers may surprise you.

Our series could not be more timely — anti-Muslim hate crimes in the UK have soared by almost 600 percent since the Christchurch attack, it was revealed on Sunday.

The charity Tell MAMA (Measuring Anti-Muslim Attacks), which records and measures anti-Muslim incidents, said almost all of the increase comprised “language, symbols or actions linked to the Christchurch attacks.”

“Cases included people making gestures of pointing a pistol at Muslim women and comments about British Muslims and an association with actions taken by the terrorist in New Zealand,” the charity said.

“The spike shows a troubling rise after Muslims were murdered in New Zealand,” said Iman Atta, director of Tell MAMA. “Figures have risen over 590 percent since New Zealand in comparison to the week just before the attack. 


Indian police kill rape-murder suspects, sparking celebrations

Updated 17 min 16 sec ago

Indian police kill rape-murder suspects, sparking celebrations

  • The men, who had been in custody for a week over the latest rape case to shock India, were shot during a re-enactment of the crime
  • Television images showed the shoeless bodies of the suspects still lying in an open field on Friday afternoon, with guns in the hands of two

SHADNAGAR, India: Indian police on Friday shot dead four gang-rape and murder suspects, prompting celebrations but also accusations that they were extrajudicial executions.
The men, who had been in custody for a week over the latest rape case to shock India, were shot in the early hours during a re-enactment of the crime organized by police in Shadnagar, outside the southern city of Hyderabad.
“The police brought the accused to the crime spot as part of the investigation. The accused then started attacking the police with stones and sticks and then snatched the weapons and started firing,” police commissioner V.C. Sajjanar said.
“The police warned them and asked them to surrender but they continued to fire. Then we opened fire and they were killed in the encounter,” he told reporters at the scene, adding that the men had confessed to the crime during interrogation.
Television images showed the shoeless bodies of the suspects still lying in an open field on Friday afternoon, with guns in the hands of two of them.
The four men were accused of gang-raping and murdering a 27-year-old veterinary doctor before setting fire to her body underneath an isolated bridge late on November 27.
Like in the infamous 2012 rape and murder of a woman on a Delhi bus, the case sparked demonstrations and calls for swift and tough justice.
Shortly after their arrest hundreds of protesters also tried to storm the police station where they were held.
At one demonstration in Delhi, some women wielded swords while one lawmaker called for the men to be “lynched” and another for rapists to be castrated.
Police are often accused of using extrajudicial killings to bypass the legal process to cover-up botched investigations or to pacify public anger.
A huge backlog of cases in the slow Indian criminal justice means that many rape victims wait years for justice.
Several hundred people flocked to the scene of the men’s deaths on Friday, setting off firecrackers to celebrate and showering police with flower petals and hoisting them on their shoulders.
“I am happy the four accused have been killed in an encounter. This incident will set an example. I thank the police and media for their support,” the victim’s sister told a local television station.
Women distributed sweets and tied Hindu ritual threads on the wrists of policemen to thank them.
Further celebrations were held elsewhere in the country, including in the western state of Gujarat.
Many social media users, including politicians, celebrities and athletes hailed the Telangana state police.
“Great work #hyderabadpolice ..we salute u,” top women’s badminton player Saina Nehwal tweeted, while fellow badminton star P.V. Sindhu wrote that “Justice has been served!“
Cricketer HarbHajjan Singh congratulated police and the state government for “showing this is how it is done(.) no one should dare doing something like this again in future.”
And Rajyavardhan Rathore, a former minister and current MP from Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s party wrote on Twitter: “Let all know this is the country where good will always prevail over evil.”
But lawyer and activist Vrinda Grover told AFP the killings were “absolutely unacceptable.”
“Instead of investigation and prosecution the state is committing murders to distract the public and avoid accountability,” she said.
India’s former federal minister for women and child development, Maneka Gandhi termed the incident “dangerous.”
“They would have anyway got hanging for their heinous crime, but you can’t just pick up guns and kill people because you want to. Because law is tardy, you can’t kill people,” Gandhi told reporters.
“To appease public rage over state failures against sexual assault, Indian authorities commit another violation,” tweeted Meenakshi Ganguly from Human Rights Watch.
Amnesty International India said the “alleged extrajudicial execution” raised disturbing questions and called for an independent investigation.
“In a modern and rights-respecting society, using extrajudicial executions to offer justice to victims of rape is not only unconstitutional but circumvents the Indian legal system and sets a grossly wrong precedent,” it said in a statement.
Police said a postmortem was completed Friday of the four suspects’ bodies, PTI reported.
The state high court directed that a video of the procedure be delivered to a principal district judge and that the bodies be preserved until Monday evening, the newswire said.