06 octobre 2006

 

Jack Straw's veil comments threaten to inflame racism


Socialist Worker 6 Oct 2006

The racist onslaught on Muslims hit new and appalling levels this week.

Politicians from all the major parties have declared open season for all who want to blame Muslims for the problems in Britain and to blame the victims of racism for the racism in society.

It seems as though Labour ministers want to break down the unity ordinary people forged in the anti-war movement bit by bit, and wont be happy until they prove the problem lies not with their atrocities but with Muslims.

Tory leader David Cameron used his main speech to the Conservative conference to make a call to “ban Muslim ghettos”, as the Daily Mail put it.

Then former foreign secretary Jack Straw said he had begun asking Muslim women to take it off when they come to see him in his constituency surgery in Blackburn.

Straw added that the full veil was "such a visible statement of separation and of difference" that it was "bound to make better, positive relations between the two communities more difficult". In fact his disgraceful comments threaten to produce the deep ethnic divisions he says he opposes.

This is not simply some academic discussion. Hate filled words lead to hate filled actions. In Windsor Muslims have faced racial attacks for three nights running this week.

Last weekend in Preston a 16-year-old Asian was stabbed in the arm as disturbances involving 200 people flared following attacks on cars parked at a mosque.

In July Shezan Umarji, 20, was killed on the Callon Estate, one and a half miles away from where the present attack took place.

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