Books and Documents

Islam and the Media

Cyber- Jihad and Espionage
Irfan Husain

Perhaps the biggest backlash has come from giant American software firms like Google, Facebook and Yahoo. Complicit in the NSA spying programme due to secret court orders, they now find that confidence in their ability to protect their users from NSA’s prying eyes has been severely shaken….


Saudi Arabia: Controlling the Media Scene
Abdulrahman al-Rashed

The head of Saudi Arabia’s Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice (or the religious police) wanted to convey a simple message that society needs authority to deal with chaos. Without authority, he said, people would not even be able to protect their behinds. This controversial statement kept people busy for a week with more than a million funny comments. In the past, the head of the religious police was not obliged to be so descriptive in his statements and nobody would have been able to view the response to such an out-of-context statement.....


Twitter Down: What Is Worrying Is What Might Come Next
Mustafa Akyol

All conversations implied a scandalous truth about the government --- such as manipulation of the media, interference in the judicial process, or mere corruption. Hence Erdoğan defined this effort as a “coup attempt” by the “parallel state” that has allegedly been created within the police force and the judiciary by the religious followers of the Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen. ……

Islam on the Internet
Syed Manzoor Alam, New Age Islam

Prophet Muhammad said “Let the one who believes in Allah and the Last Day either say good or remain silent”. What does it mean? At the time of the Prophet and even a few decades after his demise nobody would come and start bad-mouthing and spread ill news. Nobody would say “Oh that person was killed, and she was raped and they were looted” etc amongst the common people. So, by visiting these websites and engaging with people whose goal is to deface Islam, we are only giving them reinforcement and in turn their behavioural response increases. These websites are not only spreading what is bad but they are also spreading Kufr. There is a difference between Shirk and Kufr....

Western Media Waging Psychological War in Syria
Catherine Shakdam

With William Hague – UK  First Secretary of State - already comparing the siege of Homs with the Srebrenica massacre of 1995, when over 8,000 Muslims men and children - all boys - were massacred in Bosnia by the Army of Republika Srpska (VRS) under the command of General Ratko Mladić, it is easy to understand the role media have played in perpetuating Western nations’ narrative of war in Syria, whereby the Syrian government of President Bashar al-Assad has been systematically made to appear ever more Barbaric in its alleged atrocities and human rights violations, as to directly endow the West with a moral duty of intervention……


Mottahedeh noted that the conference was intended to further thought about Islam in a digital age where the lines between traditional and new are becoming increasingly blurred. “We tend to think of ways in which information flows, and it’s usually secular, profane, worldly,” she said. “When we think of religion, we think of it as auratic, ritualistic, traditional, community, values.”…


Egypt's War on Journalism
Marwan Bishara

In a leaked video aired by Al Jazeera, the general in charge, Abdul-Fattah el-Sisi, took a keen interest in journalism. “It takes a long time before you’re able to affect and control the media,” he said. “We are working on this and we are achieving more positive results, but we have yet to achieve what we want.” But what dictatorship wants to wait? ...


Pakistan's YouTube Ban: Proof That the Constitution is non Est
Yasser Latif Hamdani

The Pakistani legal system is held hostage by the religious right in this country, which is incapable of thinking rationally. Consequently, even the most progressive judge is hard pressed to uphold the sacred fundamental rights promised to Pakistanis under the constitution…

Why Do Pakistani Columnists Make Up History?
C M Naim

Education in this country was first destroyed by the ‘White Angrez,’ and now the same is being done by the ‘Black Angrez.’” Never mind that, by that logic, Pakistan began in 1947 with a population that was only 15 per cent literate, and then in eight years that number more than quadrupled — thanks, no doubt, to bureaucrats like Mr Jan — before nefarious English lovers started the decline....

Burn Notice
Nadeem F. Paracha

Burn Notice
Nadeem F. Paracha

Malala’s book, I am Malala, is openly available in book stores in the Sindh and the Punjab provinces, even though initially some private schools decided not to make it a part of their libraries, fearing violence from the extremists. In the KP however, the book has been treated like a live grenade by the province’s government. Though there are hardly any good book stores left in cities like Peshawar, the KP government is hell-bent on keeping the book out....


Using ‘Generic’ Illustrations in News Stories Dishonours the Dead and Distorts the Truth
Robert Fisk

But for years now, a far more insidious practice has crept into the world of both newspaper and television journalism: ‘generic’ pictures of war which do not actually show what the reader or viewer believes he or she is looking at. The pictures are real enough.  They haven’t been doctored or ‘touched up’. But they do not historically belong in the context in which they appear….


Hate Speech Online a Growing Problem
Sam Caldwell

“Anonymity, physical distance, and the openness of online society make the expression of hate more prevalent online than in face to face interactions in society.” However, such expressions continue to manifest in physical form….

Suspended Animation
Amina Jilani

As was once written a long time ago in our press, a press, which for reasons various has always, even in its heydays of freedom, been subjected to certain censorship flowing from the Constitution and the law and to self-censorship due to threats emanating from militant political parties, religious fanaticism and intolerance, a lack of a sense of humour, or, as now, downright terrorism: “One good thing about censorship is that there is usually some way of getting round it. This is not always true about self-censorship.”....


Jihadi Print Media in Pakistan: An Overview based on a Research Paper
Muhammad Amir Rana

Getting inspiration from this role of the media, different militant groups launched their own media products during the war, which not only helped them attract financial and human resources but also propagated their ideologies and promoted their concept of jihad. They did not trust the privately-owned mainstream print media or the government-run radio and television and preferred established their own media to create a community of firm believers.1 Religious publications were not a new phenomenon in Pakistan. Despite their sectarian and political affiliations, the sphere of these publications was wide -- spanning intellectual debates, religious reforms, dialogue with other faiths, and socio-political issues -- and their readership very limited. It mainly consisted of religious scholars, intellectuals, journalists, writers and students of the relevant subject. But the new media was very narrow in its vision and its target audience was more general. It not only damaged the image of ‘serious religious publications’ but also dealt a fatal blow to the professional ethics of Urdu mainstream media. This new form of media has now taken root and is a parallel media industry in Pakistan. Their publishers claim that if allowed free competition, they can capture the mainstream media market overnight.2


A Part-Time Jihadist
Burak Bekdil

We did not call your Prime Minister a jihadist. It was his party fans, and the dictionaries did not give us many choices in translating the word into English (I wish Thesauruses gave us the options “humanist” or “environmentalist” for “mücahit,” but it did not). We have no objection to how Mr. Erdoğan’s loyalists call him. It’s their choice…


Workers and ‘New Media’
Farooq Sulehria

Paradoxically, when the ‘tax on knowledge’ was repealed, the radical press did not flourish; instead it dissolved. On the one hand, it was ‘commercialisation’ of the popular press that entailed sensationalism (to maximise sales). It was also during this period that beats such as crime and sports found their place in the press. These are neutral topics....


The 'Brutal Arab' and the 'Muslim Terrorist' in the Israeli Media
Rana Awaisi

Based on the results of monitoring the mainstream Israeli media (secular and religious), conducted over two years, this article addresses the most prominent cases of racial incitement against Arabs and Muslims, justified by biblical texts and fake historical facts. Every day, the Israeli public is exposed to ideas in the media which influence their perceptions of Arabs and Muslims and solidify existing negative views….

Aunty Vigilante
Nadeem F. Paracha

Aunty Vigilante
Nadeem F. Paracha

But these days, moralistic vigilantism has not only become a televised affair, it is being conducted by men and women who may find transvestites, dating couples and tipsy cops repulsive, but are likely to spend their free time frequenting cinemas, boogying at weddings and shopping at trendy malls....


Selling Religion: Television Show Hosts Often Use Religion To Boost Viewership Of Their Shows
Gulmina Bilal Ahmad

Recently, a telecom company introduced a mechanism that keeps track of your good deeds through Twitter. I wonder if they are looking towards acquiring an outsourced contract from ‘upstairs’...


Right-wing Pakistani trolls on social media have developed a remarkable lingo: ‘Liberal fascist! No, fake liberal! Actually fake liberal fascist! No, genuine liberal fascist!
Nadeem F. Paracha
He gets agitated a bit: ‘Come home early and do what? Watch RAW agents on TV? Stop acting like killer mafia MQM and corrupt PPP, Mom. And where is that liberal fascist?’ Mom is perplexed: ‘Who?’ ‘Dad, Mom, Dad. Where is he?’ ‘He’s watching TV. A re-run of Seinfeld, I think ...’ ‘Liberal fascist! No, fake liberal! Actually fake liberal fascist! No, genuine liberal fascist thus fake liberal ...!

Digital Jihad
Razeshta Sethna

Digital Jihad
Razeshta Sethna

Senior Al Qaeda leaders have referred to varied media activity to promote their strategic narrative. With the Afghan war, regional and local militant organisations provided fighters for Afghan Taliban groups and Al Qaeda units, offering training and media collaboration.....


Dr. Pervez Hoodbhoy: In Pursuit Of Ratings, Duniya TV Is Pandering To the Extremist Right Wing
Dr. Pervez Hoodbhoy

The next morning, when the program had been loaded on to the internet, I was astonished to note that the audio level from my end had been turned down so low that my voice was inaudible. However AA was hurling abuses against me and these were coming through loud and clear. I also noted that AA and OMJ would occasionally appear full-screen whereas I was shown as a tiny image even when speaking. This was clear manipulation and bias at the technical level……


As is the case when using special codes or symbols to communicate, participants seeking confidentiality avoid using words that get flagged by intelligence agency monitoring networks — such as those of al-Qaeda, Islamic Jihad, ISIS, al-Zawhri, bin Laden or al-Zarqawi — by substituting them with prearranged code words.....


Media: Not So Independent
Farooq Sulehria

The media’s ideological role is further demystified when viewed through its political economy. The media’s political economy helps us determine who owns and controls it. While ownership is easy to establish, it is an understanding of the ‘control’ that helps demystify the myth of ‘independent media’. ‘Independent media’, unlike state-run and ‘alternative’ outlets, depends on advertisers….


More than the absence of any effective law enforcement actions, the silence of the crony intellectuals of the ruling Awami League, although predictable, is pathetic and painful; they seem to have conveniently overlooked such a blatant violation of the constitutional rights to the freedom of speech and expression, of thought and conscience. Yet, these are the people who wax eloquent when talking on television talks-shows, seminars and symposia, and writing in the print media, about these ideals….

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  • Dear Rashaad Shabab, Good and timely article and find your following concluding sentence axiomatic: "If we can address the spiritual vacuum and sense of disenfranchisement ...
    ( By muhammad yunus )
  • جناب سید محمداشرف کچھوچھوی صاحب ! میں آپ سے پوری طرح اتفاق کرتا ہوں کہ داعش اور موجودہ دور کی دیگر مسلم دہشت گرد تنظیمیں ...
    ( By Muhammad Yunus )
  • ISIS upholds, one day, they would conquer the world so as to ensure all the nations to practise Sharia law. The following is the extract from ...
    ( By zumamusa )
  • ISIS upholds that the entire world has to practice Sharia law and that is why they conquer one nation upon another. The following is the extract ...
    ( By zumamusa )
  • To Gulam Rasool Dhelvi. Along with Refuting Extrimist Ideology can please tell your Muslim brother to stop Giving Azan on Speaker, there are so many Mordern ...
    ( By Aayina )
  • ISIS upholds Sharia law and demands the world to follow it. The following is the extract from the website,
    ( By zumamusa )
  • Dear Muhammad Yunus saheb, Your well-spirited, strongly worded and greatly considered refuatations of the extremist theology, particularly the crooked arguments of Daesh and Taliban mullahs, ...
    ( By Ghulam Rasool Dehlvi )
  • ISIS supports Sharia law to be ruled over the world in each country and that is why the battle begins. The following is the extract from ...
    ( By zumamusa )
  • ISIS's ambition is to conquer the world since it wants all nations to adopt Sharia law to be countries' law. The following is the extract from ...
    ( By zumamusa )
  • Refer to the website. Allah has been treated to be moon god. Quran supports that Allah is the creator of the heaven and earth instead of moon ...
    ( By zumamusa )
  • ISIS insists to conquer the world since they demand all countries to practise Sharia law instead of democracy. The following are the extracts from the website, ...
    ( By zumamusa )
  • ISIS' ambition is to conquer the world so as to enable Sharia law to be practised among all countries. The following is the extract of Sharia ...
    ( By zumamusa )
  • ISIS intends to conquer this world since they insist all countries to practise Sharia law instead of democracy. The following is a list of Sharia law ...
    ( By zumamusa )
    ( By Amy )
  • What is this, all the laws...any laws...all man made...tax payer dollars going into all these laws, while some don't pay any taxes at all. What ...
    ( By Amy )
  • Or perhaps, I can get you to take a look...well, Google it...all the people buying bunkers, while those same people are creating all the wars. ...
    ( By Amy )
  • ISIS condemns democracy since they demand to conquer the whole world, that one day, the entire world could practise Sharia law. The following is the extract ...
    ( By zumamusa )
  • Anything that bans takfirism and coerciveness should be gladly espoused.'
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Timely article! Many of our imams need to be retrained. The sermons should be free from hate and violence and should emphasize inclusiveness, love and ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • This seems to be a battle of texts. ISIS has its texts and interpretations, and the Grand Mufti of Australia and scholars like the writer ...
    ( By C M Naim )
  • Mr Naseem Ahmed Would you like someone from Muhmood family drawn in similar fashion as M F Hussain drawn for Hindus to provoke them. You Muslim always Provoked ...
    ( By Aayina )
  • All Facebook savvy Muslim youth can simply put the caption of the following fatwa by an internationally acclaimed scholar of Islam Dr. John Andrew Morrow ...
    ( By muhammad yunus )
  • It is reassuring to read that a Sufi belonging to a Sufi fraternity thinks that "Christians among them (Paris victims of terror attack) are martyrs ...
    ( By muhammad yunus )
  • Janab Ghulam Rasool Dehlvi Sahab, 'dil se jo baat nikalti hai asar rakhti hai, par nahi taqate parvas magar rakhti hai,
    ( By muhammad yunus )
  • Jazakallah there should b more work on it. Also, copulation is prohibited during mestrual cycle that proves islam didn't consider women inferior but plays a ...
    ( By Ghulam Rasool Dehlvi )
  • Janab Muhammad Ashraf Kachuchwi, I fully agree with you that ISIS and other Muslim terror outfits of this era are profaning God and the ...
    ( By muhammad yunus )
  • ISIS' ambition is to conquer the whole world to ensure all countries practise all the Sharia law instead of democracy. The following is the extract to ...
    ( By zumamusa )
  • Sandip Roy should either know or explain what made M.F.Husain Leave India ? He will know it was Intolerance.'
    ( By Naseem Ahmed )
  • This Article is eye opener that How God Of Islam used the securely or mix society like India and once the popultion or followers grow ...
    ( By Aayina )
  • Tis a bit more complicated. I will just say this in short. America is an ally of Saudi Arabia. Russia is an ...
    ( By Amy )
  • That was true , Islam was weaker during early phase according to maulana Modidi Saheb. One should look into post conquest Meccan period and the ...
    ( By Aj )
  • India should learn the modern concept of secularism. Secularism is defined was separation of state & religion; equal rights & opportunities for all irrespective of ...
    ( By Hasan Abbas )
  • We can see true face of Islam here easily
    ( By Amit )
  • ہمیں ا س سوال پر بھی غور کرنا ہوگا کہ آخر داعش جیسی تنظیموں کی پشت پناہی آخر کون کررہاہے ؟ اسکے پاس اسلحہ اور ...
    ( By Ghulam Rasool Dehlvi )
  • There is a pressing need to give a widespread / global publicity to the following fatwa by Dr. John. Andrew Morrow (Imam Ilyas Islam), a ...
    ( By muhammad yunus )
  • Muslim and Islam are blamed wrongly indeed. But Muslim are seen going berserk at the publication of any material insulting their Prophet and have blasphemy ...
    ( By muhammad yunus )
  • superb article by Roshan. hope Muslims read this and read this article again and again. A Muslim acquaintance after reading this superb article
    ( By chintu )
  • Couldn't agree more. The problem lies with Islamic scholars instead of abrogating those controversial verses instead they are spinning it , as it should be ...
    ( By Aj )
  • We have this article and we also have Roy Abbas's article on the same page of NAI. There is some truth in both of them. ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Mauls a Sahib, Do you believe Sharia Law
    ( By Aj )