Riots in Turkey about ‘government policy’.
What could that mean? Are they about austerity, or immigrants being discriminated against, or police brutality?
No…even the BBC has to admit:
Correspondents say the issue has helped highlight unhappiness among young people towards the government and ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party over what they see as creeping Islamisation.
Are these protestors ‘islamophobic’? Maybe they’re ‘perverting atheism’…they’re not real secularists!
Will the BBC be issuing dramatic warnings of an anti-Muslim backlash sweeping across the Turkey?
Was there one in this country, you know that one the BBC so fervently reported when ‘Faith Matters’ quickly cobbled together a list of ‘islamophobic attacks’?
Perhaps that was all a bit of a myth, a bit of propaganda helpfully spread by the BBC:
‘When you look a little closer at the figures, it turns out that over 100 of the incidents were little more than ‘general abuse’ aimed at Muslims on the internet, and sometimes on the street. A further 47 consisted of ‘threats of violence’, although how seriously the threats were taken is unclear. And at the more concerning end, there have been 35 ‘minor’ assaults ‘including eggs being thrown’. So far, no one has actually been harmed.
On closer inspection, even the 10 ‘assaults’ on mosques look a little overblown. Seven of the ‘assaults’ consisted of no more than vandalism and a few broken windows, plus a deposit of bacon outside a mosque in Cardiff. There were three attempts at arson, but these were thwarted, and, once again, no one was hurt. Nasty incidents, no doubt, but statistically they are insignificant as indicators of some rise in anti-Muslim feeling.
The exaggeration of the reality of so-called Islamophobia should not be a surprise. Back in 2005, after the 7 July London bombings, countless reports and commentaries warned of an anti-Muslim backlash. After all, this was only to be expected given the racist proclivities of many members of the Sun/Daily Mail-reading classes. Yet when the Crown Prosecution Service published prosecution statistics for 2005-2006, a different picture emerged. There were 43 cases of religiously aggravated crime, 18 of them against Muslims (or ‘perceived’ Muslims), and this actually marked a decline from 23 anti-Muslim crimes in 2004-2005 – the year, that is, prior to the London bombings. As the then Director of Public Prosecutions said at the time: ‘The fears of a large rise in offences appear to be unfounded.’