Does this mean we scooped Time Magazine?
As your intrepid DU blog never ceases to repeat, the fabled American backlash against Muslims is a worthy of Stephen King, or at least the Climate Research Center's Phil Jones.
Time writer Bobby Ghosh is now reporting on how Dearborn's Muslim advocates were stood up by the the post-Ft. Hood backlash that never showed up.
Mohamed Mardini, imam at the American Muslim Center on Outer Drive, had to admit to Ghosh “that there have been no reports of heinous attacks on Muslims anywhere in the U.S. ‘Our worst nightmare has not come true,’ he says.” (“Postcard from Dearborn”).
Ghosh still gives credence to explanations that this forestalled nightmare was thanks only to a frenzied response by local Muslim leaders, in coordination with CAIR and ISNA, to “condemn the massacre with no reservations, and offer support for the victims and their families.”
In view of the fact that in the hours and days after the massacre, every Army spokesman, politician, media commentator, expert, and local weatherman on television was condemning the massacre and offering support to the victims, it’s seems a stretch to say the only thing that pacified Dearborn’s mobs of pitchfork-wielding Islamophobes were rumors that local CAIR wasn’t saying the exact opposite.
There's a far more plausible theory that gets no credit. There are no mobs of pitchfork-wielding Islamophobes. And never were.
Nor is it accurate to say that Muslim leaders condemned Hasan’s actions “with no reservations.” Imam Elahi had plenty of reservations. Among them, he tried to lay off Hasan’s jihadist explosion as explainable by “Nidal's Palestinian background . . .[and] Israeli crimes in the occupied territories,” or as “side effects of these wars begun by a previous administration.” (i.e., the Bush-made-him-do-it reservation). CAIR’s Ibrahim Hooper said that to call what Hasan did “an act of terror is to jump to conclusions, to rush to judgment.”
And while all this alleged inveighing was going on against “those who try to hijack . . . distort, tarnish and darken” Islam, the local Muslim community had a parallel frenzy throwing together the Imam Luqman Abdullah Martyr’s Appreciation Day in honor of the area’s own violent, self-proclaimed “Soldier of Allah.” Abdullah is the violent radical mosque leader killed mid-felony in an FBI shootout. Although Abdullah’s plans for jihadist murders never got past the promises, promises stage, his stated goals were at least as bloody as Hasan’s were. And Abdullah’s jihadist principles even featured a preference for military targets.
Ghosh never explores whether or not there were any moderate local imams who inveighed against Abdullah as a faith-tarnishing hijacker. Maybe that's because the community’s official spokesmen already granted Abdullah holy martyr status weeks ago. Ghosh repeats instead local Muslim explanations that “the killing of a controversial Detroit imam during an FBI raid of his mosque [sic] last month,” is only proof that local law enforcement is not on their side.
Not on their side? Ghosh managed to overlook credible reports that local imams have to buy special lip balm-removing toilet paper to use after monthly BRIDGE meetings.
In spite of Ghosh’s thematic references to the Muslim community’s “palpable sense of unease,” and Muslim fears of how Hasan's attack increased “what they say is widespread hostility toward their community,” he shows no curiosity at all for whether or not those fears ever had any basis in any actual, documented backlash. This most recent backlash no-show is all the more hard to explain, as many are calling the Ft. Hood attack the worst domestic terrorist act since 9/11-- and yet the imams “worst nightmare” still has not come true—again. Just like it didn’t come true after 9/11.
Fear not. This will not be the end of regular forecasts of the coming backlash. In Dearborn we're used to the idea that just because there's no smoke, doesn't mean there's no fire.