Muslims should scare journalists like the Jewish community do
I have sent a complaint off to the Telegraph about Andrew Gilligan’s recent article. Other Muslims should do this too. Don’t allow inertia to suppress your actions.
In a piece on the 18th of July, Andrew Gilligan labelled a Muslim activist with a history of condemning terrorism as ‘ one of Britain’s most notorious Islamic extremists’.
Of course it was all untrue and propped up by disingenuous quoting and an appeal to binary thinking such as appealing to Abdullah Al-Andalusi’s description of ISIS as “no different to Western armies”. The fact that Al-Andalusi condemns both ISIS and Western armies is lost on Gilligan…it is possible to equate both ISIS and Western armies without siding with either. Gilligan is not stupid he knows all this, rather he banks on the stupidity of his readers and the inability of Muslims to organise and lobby like the Jewish community in the West.
I guarantee you, Andrew Gilligan would not have dared to present such a dishonest smear job on a Jewish activist. The opprobrium of the Jewish lobby would come down on him like a ton of bricks in next to no time.
So silent are we that the likes of Andrew Gilligan unfairly attack Muslims regularly, as Mehdi Hasan pointed out:
Gilligan is a journalist who makes lots of money from “outing” as many British Muslims as he can as “Islamists” or “extremists”, often on deeply dubious grounds, and with the aid of selective quotation
What does that say about Muslims and what does it say about folk such as Gilligan who feels he can (without much in the way of impunity) smear Muslim activists?
Yep, people do think we are sitting ducks. The only reason why we are perceived this way is due to our unwillingness to put aside theological, personal and cultural differences in order to act as a block. I guarantee you the likes of Gilligan would think twice before smearing a Muslim if that was the case.
And don’t fall into the trap of perceived insignificance, just because somebody is smearing Muslims on a national/international stage it does not mean your little Facebook page, blog, website or YouTube channel cannot make any difference. The internet is an equaliser. It may act as a fly in the face of the media monster and better still 100s of Muslims doing the same thing would certainly have a similar affect that the Jewish community have on the media – no journalist wants 100s of flies in his/her face.
The Telegraph’s complaints page:
Here’s my complaint I sent to The Telegraph
I would like to express great concern at a clear breach of your paper’s desire for accuracy and integrity.
Mr Andrew Gilligan in the piece has clearly been demonstrated to have embarked on disingenuous quote-mining. Quite how he labels Mr Abdullah Al Andalusi as ‘one of Britain’s most notorious Islamic extremists’ when Mr Andalusi has consistently denounced terrorism is beyond me.
However, what may dismay you more than Mr Gilligan’s sensationalist labeling without any supporting evidence is Mr Gilligan’s disingenuous quoting. He somehow managed to misuse an anti-ISIS article by Mr Andalusi for the purposes of smearing Mr Andalusi as a supporter of ISIS!
Please do look into these two responses to Mr Gilligan’s article to further your investigation.
1. Chairman of Atheist Ireland, Michael Nugent, runs through Mr Gilligan’s betrayal of journalistic integrity:
2. Mr Andalusi himself offers a responses which sheds further light on Mr Gilligan’s lack of journalistic scruples:
I would urge you to fully investigate this as Mr Gilligan’s article is misleading to say the least.
Another question does arise here, would Mr Gilligan have abandoned honesty in an attempt to smear a Jewish public speaker or is this simply Mr Gilligan feeling standards of consistency and honesty are not so important when attacking Muslim activists in this current climate of Islamophobia.