Category Archives:
US Politics

If American universities ignore attacks on Muslim students, who will defend them?

Alex Shams on
University of Chicago SJP's divestment launch last Spring

Alex Shams writes, “The failure of the University of Chicago – and other universities like it – to vocally defend the rights of its students to free speech, political activism, and to live in an environment free of racial and religious hatred is particularly disconcerting given the wave of Islamophobia that has overtaken the country in the last year, particularly in light of Donald Trump’s electoral victory.”

Why ‘give him a chance’ is not an option

Alice Rothchild on
Real estate developer Donald Trump, left, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, right, during a meeting at Trump Tower on Sunday

Listen up. Racist nationalism feeding on fear and economic discontent directed by an obviously-corrupted leadership with a creative approach to truth is really dangerous. This is not the time to be patient or to normalize the fact of the Trump presidency.

Trump aide blows off Zionist gala, and Dershowitz warns that politicizing Israel means ‘we could lose’

Philip Weiss on
Demonstrators outside Zionist Organization of America, Nov. 20. Photo by Shima @amiyarz

The Israel lobby seems to losing power before our eyes. Trump aide Steve Bannon blew off the Zionist Organization of America despite its patron Sheldon Adelson giving $25 million to the Trump campaign; and Alan Dershowitz warned that if Jewish supporters of Israel divide and allow an American election to become a referendum on Israel, “we could lose.”

‘We have to channel fear into organizing’: Muslim-Americans prepare for Trump’s ‘Muslim registry’

Roqayah Chamseddine on
Muslim-Americans rally against Islamaphobia during a demonstration in New York City in 2015. (Photo: Getty)

Details have been unclear on Donald Trump’s ever-shifting call for a discriminatory ‘Muslim registry’ in the United States. Some proposals target Muslim-Americans, others focus on Muslim immigrants entering the United States. Nevertheless, the prospects are certainly terrifying, regardless of what Muslim community will be at the mercy of the state’s surveillance apparatus. Sana Saeed, a journalist based in San Francisco, tells Mondoweiss that the fear she is seeing in her community “is real and devastating.”

Jewish Americans must take sides on Trump

Michael Marder on
Stephen Bannon, the executive chairman of far-right news and opinion site Breitbart. (Photo: DANNY MOLOSHOK/INVISION/AP)

Jewish Americans passed a big test by voting overwhelmingly against Trump. But a major question is yet to be answered: Will Trump’s aggressively Zionist agenda sway their opinion during his administration?

I’m not worried about anti-Semitism

Philip Weiss on
Isaac Babel

Phil Weiss says that Jewish status is changing with the Trump election, but comparisons to the Holocaust are overblown and self-involved: “I can’t diminish that reaction, but no one with any influence is talking about a registry for Jewish names, as they are for Muslims. Or restrictions on Jewish emigration, as they do for Muslims. Or talking about the problems in the Jewish religion– as the new national security adviser and top strategist Bannon do. We misread history if we think that is coming to the US. Other dangers are much closer.”

Why was the Clinton campaign obsessed with fighting BDS?

Philip Weiss on
Image of an apartheid wall posted by the Princeton Committee on Palestine, which was being scrutinized by the Clinton campaign as it put together a letter against BDS.

The day after the election Wikileaks published an email from Stu Eizenstat, an ambassador to the Jewish community, to Clinton’s foreign policy wunderkind Jake Sullivan scrutinizing activism in favor of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) at Princeton. Why did top figures in the Clinton campaign spend energy looking into how the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement was engaging this “sleepy campus?” Because it was trying to please donors in 2015, rather than wrestling with progressive causes.

Donald Trump picks anti-Muslim intel officer to be national security adviser

Alex Kane on
A tweet from newly-appointed National Security Advisor Michael Flynn.

President-elect Donald Trump’s transition team announced today that Senator Jeff Sessions, a right-wing hardliner on immigration, will be his attorney general, and that Michael Flynn, the anti-Muslim former head of the Defense Intelligence Agency, will be his national security adviser. The moves signal that Trump is rewarding those who remained loyal to him during his tumultuous presidential campaign–and that he has no intention of backing down from his hardline positions on Muslims and immigrants.

Donald Trump is ready to bring Islamophobia into the White House

Alex Kane on
Pamela Geller

Anti-Semitism and Islamophobia–alongside a healthy dose of right-wing Zionism–go hand in hand among adherents of the Internet-savvy white nationalist movement that has supported Trump’s rise to power. The choice to bring Steve Bannon into the Oval Office, potentially alongside other anti-Muslim ideologues that have clustered around Trump, portends a dark future for the Muslim American community.

Trump is fostering breakup of US Jewish consensus in favor of Israel

Philip Weiss on
Morton Klein of the Zionist Organization of America

Trump’s combination of rightwing extremism and love for Israel will cause American Jews to come out against the Israeli government and its policies, observers say, thereby accelerating the divide between liberal American Jews and the Jewish state, which is practicing apartheid.

AIPAC removes two-state solution talking point from its website

Ben Norton on
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the 2015 AIPAC policy conference.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was re-elected on the promise that Palestinians would never have their own independent state, and now even the most powerful pro-Israel organization in the U.S. appears to be changing its rhetoric on the two-state solution. The American Israel Public Affairs Committee, or AIPAC, scrubbed a reference to the two-state solution from talking points on its website.

Epic battle looms over accused anti-Semite entering White House, and ‘NYT’ graywashes the moment

(((James North))) on
Steve Bannon

The rightwing Israel supporters have redefined anti-Semitism to be criticism of Israel. Now an accused anti-Semite, Steve Bannon, is set to enter the White House as a Trump adviser and many Israel supporters have nothing to say, and the New York Times downplays the appointment, because Trump has said that he is pro-Israel. The Israel lobby is swallowing its own medicine.

Challenging anti-Semitism and the Trump presidency

Max Ajl on
Donald Trump at the Republican Jewish Coalition, iconic photograph by Mark Peterson

President-elect Donald Trump’s selection of Stephen Bannon to be his chief strategist has brought to the surface the antisemitic undercurrent of Trump’s reactionary populism. How we go about explaining the phenomenon goes some way towards guiding us as to how to mobilize against it. Max Ajl says it’s essential to understand that “Trumpism” is the product of a US social and political order that was neither reformable nor defensible, and it offers an opportunity to join a more inclusive movement – “one big enough for all of us, except for those who insist that others pay the price for their safety.”

How Muslim Americans are responding to Trump’s victory

Sabith Khan on
Imam Zaid Shakir

According to a recent survey, Muslims are the least politically engaged religious group in the U.S. (among Jews and Christians and themselves), though the level of political engagement is likely to change after this election. As Imam Zaid Shakir in Austin, TX says, “We are in the battle of ideas – not a physical battle – but one of fighting racism and discrimination. This is our battle.”

DNC chair tweets from Islamophobic gathering in Florida

Philip Weiss on
Donna Brazile and James O'Keefe chat at Islamophobic conference in Florida

Over the weekend Interim Democratic boss Donna Brazile, attended a conference organized by the David Horowitz’s Islamophobic think tank Freedom Center. It featured rightwing intolerants, Mike Huckabee, Steve Bannon, Robert Spencer and Caroline Glick, the Israeli who denies the Nakba and the existence of Palestinian refugees. Brazile may think that she can hold the party together with Islamophobic elements, but the party is moving on. Sen. Chuck Schumer has endorsed Rep. Keith Ellison, a Muslim, to fill the position Brazile holds in a nod to the party’s left wing.

Day One in Trump’s America

Adam Horowitz on
(Screenshot: Twitter)

A collection of tweets that show the immediate surge in racist attacks on Muslims and people of color in the U.S. since Donald Trump was elected president.