Blacks in North Africa and Middle East Often Face Virulent Racism from Arabs

Arabs are the most noble people in lineage, the most prominent, and the best in deeds.We were the first to respond to the call of the Prophet. We are Allah’s helpers and the viziers of His Messenger. We fight people until they believe in Allah. He who believes in Allah and His Messenger has protected his life and possessions from us. As for one who disbelieves, we will fight him forever in Allah’s Cause. Killing him is a small matter to us.

Ali Ibn Abi Talib, said: Verily the Prophet said: God divided the earth in two halves and placed (me) in the better of the two, then He divided the half in three parts, and I was in the best of them, then He chose the Arabs from among the people, then He chose the Quraysh from among the Arabs, then He chose the children of ‘Abd al-Muttalib from among the Banu Hashim, then he chose me from among the children of ‘Abd al-Muttalib, and from them he chose me.[1]

Ibn Sa’d, Vol. 1, p. 12
Narrated Anas bin Malik: Allah’s Apostle said, “You should listen to and obey, your ruler even if he was an Ethiopian (black) slave whose head looks like a raisin.

Narrated Anas: The Prophet said, “Listen and obey (your chief) even if an Ethiopian whose head is like a raisin were made your chief.”

Narrated Anas bin Malik: The Prophet said to Abu-Dhar, “Listen and obey (your chief) even if he is an Ethiopian with a head like a raisin.”

Jabir (Allah be pleased with him) reported: There came a slave and pledg- ed allegiance to Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) on migration; he (the Holy Prophet) did not know that he was a slave. Then there came his master and demanded him back, whereupon Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) said: Sell him to me. And he bought him for two black slaves, and he did not afterwards take allegiance from anyone until he had asked him whether he was a slave (or a free man)

Ibn Khaldun (1332–1406) was, among other things, an Islamic jurist, Islamic lawyer, Islamic scholar, Islamic theologian, and hafiz

“Therefore, the Negro nation are, as a rule, submissive to slavery, because [Negroes] have little [that is essentially] human and have attributes that are quite similar to those of dumb animals, as we have stated.”[3]

Ibn Khaldun, Muqaddimah, 14th century

“beyond [known peoples of black West Africa] to the south there is no civilization in the proper sense. There are only humans who are closer to dumb animals than to rational beings. They live in thickets and caves, and eat herbs and unprepared grain. They frequently eat each other. They cannot be considered human beings.”[3]
Ibn Khaldun, Muqaddimah

The black troops and slaves of the Meccans cried out and the Muslims replied, ‘Allah destroy your sight, you impious rascals.’

Ishaq:374

Al Jahiz (781–869), was a famous Muslim scholar

“Like the crow among mankind are the Zanj [African Blacks] for they are the worst of men and the most vicious of creatures in character and temperament.”[3]

Jahiz, Kitab al-Hayawan, vol. 2
“We know that the Zanj (blacks) are the least intelligent and the least discerning of mankind, and the least capable of understanding the consequences of actions.”[3]

Jahiz, Kitab al-Bukhala (The Book of Misers)
“They [the Shu`ubiyya] maintain that eloquence is prized by all people at all times – even the Zanj, despite their dimness, their boundless stupidity, their obtuseness, their crude perceptions and their evil dispositions, make long speeches.”[3]

Jahiz, Al-Bayan wa`l-tabyin, vol. 3
As the West continues to train its focus on racism leveled at blacks by white people in the U.S. and recently in Europe and Israel, attention has increasingly been directed at the mistreatment of blacks by Arabs in Northern Africa and the Middle East.For years, observers interested in probing a little more deeply in Iraqi society than the typical Western news stations found that the sizable black population in Iraq endures a form of virulent racism that African Americans haven’t seen in more than 50 years. Blacks there say they are regularly called “slave” and followed by groups of kids yelling epithets.

The Canadian academic Salim Mansur has claimed, “Blacks are viewed by Arabs as racially inferior, and Arab violence against blacks has a long, turbulent record.”

A piece broadcast on a radio station in the Netherlands took a deep look at the racism experienced by sub-Saharans Africans in Morocco, where they are viewed with such suspicion by the local Arabs that an Arab shopkeeper even warned the European reporter to stay away from the Africans because “they might eat you.”

The Africans are forced to live in a camp deep in the woods because they are unable to find jobs to make money—and when they do find work, they believe they are paid poorly because they are black. They are also frequently victimized by criminals who know the Africans can’t report it to authorities because they would face deportation.

“Arabs hate black people. And that is not from today. It is in their blood,” Aboubakr, a young man from Senegal who is hoping eventually to cross over into Europe, told the reporter for RNW (Radio Netherlands Worldwide). “Friends of mine were attacked with a knife. Bandits target us because they know we cannot go to the police, even if we are robbed and hurt. Having no papers, we will be caught instead. Blacks have no rights here.”

Aboubakr is also insulted that Moroccans “cannot believe many of us are Muslims too.” According to him, people are surprised when they see him kneeling for prayer. “They don’t think a black can be Muslim.”

Many Africans know that Arab states have not responded to atrocities in places like Darfur and Sudan because the people getting slaughtered are black Africans.

Black African guest workers in places like Egypt, Algeria and Libya have spoken about being publicly ridiculed and physically assaulted by Arabs. Egyptian writer Mona Eltahawy has written about watching a Sudanese girl being assaulted and tormented on the Cairo Metro, concluding, “We are racist people in Egypt and we are in deep denial.” She says the Arab world has ignored the suffering of Darfur because the victims are black. “We only pay attention when America and Israel behave badly.”

Because Europe has become more aggressive about patrolling ts borders specifically to keep the Africans in North Africa from slipping in, more migrants are stuck in places like Morocco, where they are forced to live in ghettos like the tent camp they created in the woods.

“Years ago, people had to get used to their presence, but now the relations are okay,”  a shopkeeper in a mountain village near the forest told Radio Netherlands. When a tall, black man walked into the shop and purchased rice, yoghurt and other food, the shopkeeper said, “The authorities advise me not to sell to them, but I sell to anyone. We’re all the same.”

Ironically, even as the Arab countries continue to mistreat the black Africans, they also find themselves on the receiving end of racist treatment. The United Arab Emirates national soccer team just got an apology from the Asian Football Confederation for referring to them as “sand monkeys”—on the AFC website!

The “AFC apologizes for an editorial mistake in which the UAE National Team was inadvertently referred to by an inaccurate nickname on the AFC’s official website,” the organization said in a statement.

It said the comment was due to an “error, which was mainly because of referral to a popular web-based encyclopaedia” and that it “was corrected immediately after it was noticed.” The AFC said it was sorry for “any hurt this might have caused to the UAE Football Association and UAE football fans.”

The day before, the UAE federation secretary-general Yusuf Abdullah said in a statement, “We express our strong resentment over the use of this bad description by the AFC website.”

“What happened is unacceptable and shows disrespect to others. It is proof of racist attitudes that are starting to surface,” he said, demanding “a quick official apology.”

The UAE football team is usually referred to as “Al-Abyad”, or the whites, based on the color of their strip. But a report on the AFC website about a “friendly” (match) between the UAE and Uzbekistan on Friday described the team of the desert Gulf state as “sand monkeys.”

 

Tanzania arrests after Dar es Salaam churches attacks

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Police in Tanzania have arrested 126 people after last week’s attacks on churches in the main city, Dar es Salaam, a police commander has said.

Angry Muslims vandalised and torched five churches after a Christian boy reportedly urinated on a Koran.

President Jakaya Kikwete said the violence was unacceptable, even if the incident angered Muslims.

Tanzania’s long history of religious tolerance should not be threatened, he said.

The BBC’s Aboubakar Famau in Dar es Salaam says a discussion between the 14-year-old Christian boy and his Muslim friend apparently got out of hand, leading to the attacks on Friday.

‘Justice will prevail’

The Christian boy was reportedly told by his Muslim friend that he would turn into a snake if he urinated on a Koran, our correspondent says.

The Christian boy then asked for a Koran and, according to reports, urinated on it to test his friend’s claim, our correspondent adds.

A Dar es Salaam police commander, Suleiman Kova, told the BBC that 126 people had been arrested over the subsequent attacks.

“We are making every effort to arrest everyone responsible… We want justice to prevail,” he said.

Muslim cleric Sheikh Alhadi Musa, who is the chairman of the local Interfaith Committee, condemned the attack on the churches.

He said the Koran had been defiled by one person and it was wrong to assume that it was the stand of all Christians.

Plans were under way to promote dialogue between followers of the two faiths, he said.

“Youth are said to have been largely involved in the violence, so I have sent some youth to talk to their colleagues,” Sheikh Musa added.

Mr Kikwete, who visited the churches on Saturday, appealed for calm, Tanzania’s Guardian newspaper reports.

He said Christians should not launch retaliatory attacks as this would lead to more conflict.