Tag Archives: muslims

Islamophobe of the Week: Luton Nursery School

There are so many random acts of Islamophobia these days that it’s impossible to keep track.

This week we have an unidentified employee (or unidentified employees) at an unidentified nursery school in Luton who called the mother of a pupil in for questioning after her toddler son drew a picture of his father with a knife chopping a cucumber. You read right. A cucumber.

The staff in question apparently misheard the boy when he said cucumber, thinking he meant to say “cooker bomb” instead, and suggested the child may need to be admitted into a de-radicalisation programme.


Cucumber Continue reading

FLOW CHART: How to Respond to a Terrorist Attack

By Zahra Hankir and ND*

There are so many terrorist (or kind-of-terrorist-) attacks out there these days, that it’s hard to keep track.

While we understand terrorism is certainly no laughing matter, we thought we’d put together a flow chart  to help you figure out how to respond to such attacks during these dark times.

Are you a Facebook user? A moderate Muslim? A western media organisation? Vladimir Putin? Or even David Cameron?

Florence of Arabia has got you covered.

(Click on the image to enlarge).


* ND is a London-based ultimate frisbee player, flow-chart expert and journalist. She’s also a White Westerner. 

This Palestinian Woman Wants to Empower Refugees in Lebanon With a Food-truck

Mariam alShaar is no ordinary woman.

She’s Palestinian. She’s a refugee. She’s gentle, yet she’s fierce and passionate. She comes across as being reserved, but she’s known in Lebanon’s Borj el-Barajneh as one of the refugee camp’s most powerful and influential women.

Perhaps most telling: Although Mariam doesn’t call herself a cook, she leads a team of chefs. She’s even launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund a food-truck, which she hopes will bring employment to tens of women in Borj el-Barajneh.

Indeed. Mariam is all kinds of extraordinary.

(Side-note: Mariam is also on Susan Sarandon’s radar. And I’ve loved Susan since Thelma and Louise, through to Arbitrage). Continue reading

On Airport Security-Check Etiquette and Chic Arab Radicals: From Heathrow to JFK

At Heathrow; about to board a flight to JFK. Stopped by security last second — literally moments before getting on to the plane — and asked to step aside.

Told that ‘I’ve been ‘selected‘ by the government of the United States of America to go through a detailed security check’ by a British gentleman who’s speaking in what can only be described as an upbeat voice coupled with a posh accent.

Feels like I’ve won a prize or something. Continue reading

Study: Things Muslim Kids Are More or Less Likely to Do

Look at this adorable cheap mean selfish little Muslim kid

Some readers of Forbes, the Independent and other publications are  getting a real kick out of a study that has found that religion makes children aged 5 to 12 selfish and stingy, when compared to atheist kids.

Islamophobes must be thrilled!

(I have no doubt Richard Dawkins is ecstatic, too, but I really don’t want to check his Twitter account, because I’m Muslim and that would be against my religion).

Enough about me, though. Continue reading

Are You Muslim? Find Out How Offensive You Are to Islamophobes With This Guide

How offensive are you to Islamophobes? Click on image to enlarge.

By Zahra Hankir and Natasha Doff

Are you a British Muslim? Disturbed by the two viral videos* in which Islamophobes on London buses hurl vile insults at Muslim passengers (including a pregnant woman and a disabled Turkish pensioner)?

Want to do something about it?

The above flow-chart-test will categorise you as “Basically British,” a “Moderate Muslim,” or an “Extremist Muslim.” The results will help you figure out how offensive you are to Islamophobes everywhere.**

Aspire to be Basically British (particularly if you’re an immigrant with an exotic accent), and you could guarantee yourself an Islamophobia-free*** existence.. Continue reading

Kuffiyeh on the Floor: Art or Accident?

Saturday evening, Frieze Art Fair, London.

Lots of obscenely beautiful, hipster-chic people. Expensive artwork that I probably wouldn’t buy even if I could afford it (The cliché around Frieze Art Fair is glitz,” the Independent reports).

It’s fun to look at, though. Not to mention the event presents the perfect opportunity to do some serious people-watching.

I wander around aimlessly before inadvertently, clumsily dropping my kuffiyeh (scarf) on the floor. No one in my immediate vision appears to have seen this occur.

Continue reading

Soufflés and Shariah: Why the Great British Bake Off Winner is the World’s Worst ‘Moderate’ Muslim

Screen Shot 2015-10-14 at 20.58.35

DISCLAIMER: This piece comes in response to a series of articles that have obsessed over the fact that Nadiya is actually British AND Muslim — made obvious as ! she wears the HIJAB.

Many of these pieces, in which she’s hailed as a hero or labelled undeserving (due to her “ethnic background”), are linked throughout the blog post. Ideally, everyone would just leave this wonderful woman alone.

Unless it’s to praise her for her baking, her eyebrows and her brilliant facial expressions, with no reference to her being Muslim, of course.. Continue reading

Flat Whites and Fatwas: Moderate British Muslims Take on ISIS at Starbucks

Starbucks. East London. Tuesday evening. Killing time. Decide to find a quiet spot to catch up on ISIS-related news of the day. The dimly lit lower-ground floor is  packed save a corner table that’s adjacent to a group of bearded (not hipster-bearded, if you get what I mean) professionals. At least eight. They’re partaking in an intense discussion.

I overhear the words Muslim, Gaza and Guantanamo. Without thinking twice, I head to the vacant spot.

I realize I’m uncomfortably close to their table. They notice me for a split second before returning to their discussion. To leave now would be suspect, I figure. So I take my jacket off and make myself comfortable.

Continue reading

A Syrian Refugee Love Story: `You Can’t be a Che Guevara and a Mother’

* With thanks to the Council for Arab-British Understanding for inviting me to their screening of the film at Parliament

Film: A Syrian Love Story
Director: Sean McAllister
Showing at London cinemas including Curzon Bloomsbury

A Syrian Love Story is devastating in more ways than one. It tells the tale of a disintegrating marriage in brutally honest terms, against the backdrop of war. It illustrates the psychological effects of that dissolution, and the conflict in Syria, on the couple’s vulnerable children. It raises questions about gender and gender roles without offering conclusions. And it delivers a poignant examination of post-traumatic stress disorder, anger and addiction.

But mostly, A Syrian Love Story is a timely and timeless portrait of just one of millions of refugee families and how war can unrelentingly tear countries and people apart.

Views on the refugee crisis currently afflicting Europe and beyond will either be reinforced or challenged by this 80-minute documentary, adding to its relevance and intensity.

(Minor spoilers ahead.) Continue reading