Socialist Worker: Real and vicious Islamophobia

THE TERRIBLE recent violence in France has, predictably, triggered an eruption of Islamophobia across the West, and especially in France itself. So I was very glad that chose to publish a series of statements in response to the events (“Don’t let this horror be used to stoke bigotry”).

However, the article by Dave Kellaway, a member of Socialist Resistance in Britain, is politically misleading and, in my view, did not deserve to appear in SW.

Kellaway writes: “Already on Facebook and elsewhere, some left-wing people are using similar arguments to the ones we heard around the time of the publication of Salman Rushdie’s Satanic Verses–i.e., that the magazine sort of had it coming to it for its virulent secularism and its supposed Islamophobia.”

Of course, a person can expect to find just about anything they wish to on social media if they look hard enough. But I haven’t seen a single instance of any leftist attempting to rationalize last week’s violence in France on social media.

To be frank, it is hard to interpret Kellaway’s accusation as anything other than a sort of vague slander aimed at those who’ve refused to ignore the very real and viciously bigoted treatment of Islam that regularly appeared in Charlie Hebdo in recent years…