Who had Parents magazine on their bingo card as running one of the most one-sided stories on the Israel-Hamas war? The magazine of child-raising tips, online-only since 2022, has grown-up to be a home of ignorant rants like a smear against Moms for Liberty, “How 'Klanned Karenhood' Is Infiltrating Schools.”
Contributor Syeda Khaula Saad didn’t try to disguise her slant in “How To Talk to Kids About Islamophobia.” The sub-head served as a sample of Hamas-denial: “As attacks on Palestine intensify, anti-Muslim rhetoric and violence have increased worldwide. Here's some guidance on how to explain Islamophobia to children.” It’s a clumsy piece of pro-Palestinian, anti-Israeli propaganda under the guise of one of those sensitive “how to talk to your children” pieces.
Saad led with dubious statistics from one of the most notorious Islamic pressure groups, the Hamas-linked CAIR.
The recent news cycle covering the conflict between Israel and Palestine has spiked Islamophobic sentiments within the US The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the “largest grassroots Islamic civil liberties organization” in the country, has reported an appalling 245% increase in reported anti-Muslim instances since then. In fact the rampant increase in Islamophobic incidents, including the highly-publicized stabbing of 6-year-old Palestinian-American Wadea Al Fayoume, resulted in President Joe Biden announcing the first US National Strategy to Counter Islamophobia on November 1, 2023.
Saad offensively downplayed Hamas into a “militant group” that merely “took hostages,” mentioning the Palestinian terrorist group exactly once, while providing a bogus potted history of the region that put all the blame on Israel and the “Nakba” of 1948, ignoring the five-nation Arab invasion that started the 75-year-old conflict, which began the day Israel declaring independence on May 14, 1948.
After the Palestinian militant group Hamas attacked Israel and took hostages, Israel responded by launching airstrikes in Gaza, resulting in mass civilian casualties, including more than 4,000 children since early October. These events are the continuation of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that has been ongoing for more than 75 years, marking decades of violence and bloodshed since the 1948 “Nakba,” or mass displacement of more than 700,000 Palestinians from their homes to create Israel. Understanding the history of this conflict and these particular anti-Palestinian prejudices is critical to understanding the current spike in Islamophobic rhetoric and attacks.
Saad skipped right over the terrorist attacks of 2001 to get to the true victims: Muslims in America. Not even comedian Amy Schumer was spared in her ridiculously thin and tiny roundup of Islamophobia from celebrities.
After the 9/11 attacks in 2001, Islamophobia around the U.S. increased at an alarming rate. Even 20 years later, Muslims in America face instances of anti-Muslim violence every day. But it isn’t just the post-9/11 world that spurs these discriminatory feelings. Former President Donald J. Trump’s entire 2016 election campaign heavily invoked anti-Muslim sentiments.
Since October 7, plenty of anti-Muslim hate and propaganda has been spread not only by mainstream media but by celebrities as well. Stranger Things star Noah Schnapp liked an Islamophobic video mocking Muslims and pushing dangerous anti-Muslim stereotypes. Amy Schumer posted a satirical comic where a pro-Palestine protest goer is holding up a sign that reads “Stab Jews for Allah.” In these instances, like many others, stereotypes of Muslims being terrorists and barbarians are perpetuated.
Hamas is a terrorist group, of course, something Saad refused to admit.
The author found a real radical, Farida Mallah of Teaching While Muslim, who told the readers of (yes, again) Parents magazine not to trust the media or the government.
“They have a responsibility to do the research before they read or address propaganda perpetuated by the media and the government,” Mallah says of non-Muslim parents. “And they need to build bridges with our Muslim community members in order for them to understand how [Islamophobia] directly affects us.”