A large crowd skipped a lovely Saturday afternoon to gather at Borders book
store at Pentagon Centre in Arlington, Virginia for a discussion of Enver
Masud's new book--The War on Islam.
About 50 persons, of diverse faiths, races and backgrounds,
heard Mr. Masud describe The War on Islam as being ultimately about greed
and the media. "Greed," said Masud, "is often the root cause of war, and biased
media reporting serves to drum up support for war."
Masud gave as an example the Gulf War which was fought both to control Middle
East oil, and to justify bloated defense budgets which could have been slashed
following the collapse of the USSR. A current example is the scramble for
Caspian Sea oil.
Masud gave several examples of media bias. For example, the July 1, 2000
Washington Post editoriaI "Iran's Human Rights Disorder" contains at least three
In this editorial the Post talks of Iran's "sweeping disregard for
international norms" while it is the U.S. which arguably is the biggest violator
of those norms. It mentions the "trial of 13 Jews in Shiraz on charges of spying
for Israel" without mentioning that there are Muslims also being tried on these
charges. It describes Iran as a country "where anyone can be hauled into court
any time on who knows what grounds..." Masud said there are about 20 Arabs
and/or Muslims incarcerated in the U.S. under similar conditions--so called
"secret evidence" laws.
Masud ended the discussion with a quote from Dorothy Gilliam--a Washington
Post columnist on sabbatical in Africa--"Newsrooms that do not reflect America's
diversity do their readers an injustice. They fail to tell the stories of its
citizens, they give readers a distorted image of themselves and they grossly
twist the reality of minority groups."
During the book signing that followed the discussion, Marwan, a young Arab
said, "this is just the kind of book I've been looking for." Others asked why
Muslim organizations weren't out promoting this book to media and others.
The War on Islam has been reviewed in Impact International--
published in England, and in Dalit Voice--published in India. It is
available from Astrolabe Pictures, AET Book Club, Barnes and Noble, Borders,
Halalco, and Sound Vision. Check The Wisdom Fund web site for links, and
[Enver Masud is an engineering management consultant, author of "The War on
Islam," and founder of The Wisdom Fund--www.twf.org.]
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