An (incomplete) chronicle of Islamophobia after Paris



The terrible attacks in Paris on Nov. 13 (alongside similarly terrible, yet less reported attacks in Beirut), perpetrated by radical Islamist terrorists belonging to Isis have led to a climate of hostility and fear for Muslim minorities across the Western world.


The French National Observatory of Islamophobia counted 32 anti-Muslim incidents in the week following the attacks, a spike from the usual 4 to 5 reports per week. Another group, the Collective against Islamophobia in France (CCIF), reported 29 incidents during the same time.

A news report details cases [emphasis added]:

„For example, a man punched a young veiled woman in Marseille on Wednesday and slashed her clothes with a box cutter, calling her a terrorist, in an incident that was widely publicised.

But another veiled woman who was rammed by a shopping cart and kicked by an assailant inside a grocery store in a suburb of Lyon the same day did not make the national news, he said.

One day after the Paris attacks, six protesters broke off from an anti-migrant rally in Pontivy, a town in Brittany in northwestern France, to beat up a passing young man of North African origin, he said.“


According to a report by The Independent, the week after the attacks saw 115 Islamophobic incidents, a 300% rise. 

Today (Nov. 23), the tabloid The Sun ran a sensationalist headline claiming that 1 in 5 British Muslims had sympathy for young Muslims leaving to join Isis in Syria. The newspaper has been slammed for misrepresenting the results of a poll in its headline.


A mosque in the region of Ontario was targeted by arsonists, leaving an estimated damage of $80,000

BBC reports:

„In Canada, a man is in police custody after releasing a video threatening to kill Muslims in Quebec. Wearing a mask of face paint, he said he would kill „one Arab per week“.


The debate about Islam and Syrian refugees has taken a turn for the worse in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks, with the two front-runners in the Republican presidential race leading the wave of anti-Muslim sentiment. Donald Trump demanded a database for all Muslims in the US, and special ID badges for Muslim believers. He later blamed the press for allegedly ‚misrepresenting‘ his statements. And Ben Carson compared Syrian refugees to ‚rabid dogs‘. Yes, he did.

And Muslim-Americans say they are experiencing the worst surge of attacks since 9/11. In Irving ,Texas, armed protesters gathered around an Islamic centre. And that’s not an isolated case.

According to a RT report:

 „Such incidents in the US include at least three instances in which Arabic speakers or suspicious passengers, some of Middle Eastern descent,“ were thrown off commercial flights in the US; assaults, including on a pregnant woman in San Diego, a man attending a movie in Manhattan, an Uber driver in North Carolina, and a woman on the campus of San Diego State University; threats of violence to Muslims in general; campus harassment in Connecticut; and a targeted shooting at a Florida residence.“

BBC cites additional incidents:

  • „In Connecticut, authorities are looking into reports of gunshots fired at a mosque just hours after the Paris attacks.
  • „killed Paris“ found etched on an Egyptian student’s dormitory door at University of Connecticut
  • Eiffel Tower spray-painted on the wall of the Omaha Islamic Center in Nebraska
  • one man threatened on social media to „shoot up a mosque“ in Texas
  • faeces and torn Quran pages found outside another Texas mosque
  • Two mosques in Florida received threatening phone calls“


And all of that, I’m afraid to say, is most likely only the tip of the iceberg. Often enough, the victims of racist/Islamophobic harassment are too intimidated to go public, meaning a huge number of incidents remains unreported. But the publicized cases alone represent a shocking degree of anti-Muslim hate. In this difficult time, it is vitally important we stand together with our Muslim brothers, and condemn radicalism and intolerance in all its forms








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