The recent television kerfuffle involving "Real Time" host Bill Maher and guest Sam
Harris over whether Muslims are bad people because their religion is, in the words of
Harris, "the mother lode of bad ideas," is symbolic of the new American Islamophobia.
Muslim-bashing has become a popular sport several times over the last decade and a half,
most notably in the months after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks; after the
election of Barack Obama; over the proposal for the so-called Ground Zero mosque; and
now with the rise of Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. But this time, it's not just
members of the extreme right, such as Rep. Michele Bachmann and presidential wannabe
Herman Cain, equating Islam with terrorism. . . .
["This is a memo that describes how we're going to take out seven countries in five
years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing
off, Iran."--Wesley Clark, "Seven
Countries in Five Years," Democracy Now, March 2, 2007]
[Iran (1980, 1987-1988), Libya (1981, 1986, 1989, 2011), Lebanon (1983), Kuwait (1991),
Iraq (1991-2011, 2014-), Somalia (1992-1993, 2007-), Bosnia (1995), Saudi Arabia (1991,
1996), Afghanistan (1998, 2001-), Sudan (1998), Kosovo (1999), Yemen (2000, 2002-),
Pakistan (2004-) and now Syria.--Glenn Greenwald, "How many Muslim countries has the U.S. bombed or occupied
since 1980?," firstlook.org, November 6, 2014]
[When Republican Ben Carson declared Muslims unfit to be president, he crossed a line
that historians say no major White House hopeful has breached since the 1940s - openly
expressing prejudice.--Michael Finnegan, "Ben Carson's open bias against Muslims a sign of coarse times,"
rawstory.com, September 30, 2015]