RAP Sheet

GOP’s Anti-Muslim Sentiment is a Long Way from the Tone Of George W. Bush in 2001

posted on November 24, 2015

International Business Times‘ Ismat Sarah Mangla writes on the rise of anti-Muslim rhetoric within the GOP—a marked shift from the tone of President George W. Bush in the wake of 9/11. She writes that “Bush would repeatedly distinguish the war on terror from a war on all Muslims … and that Muslim Americans were loyal citizens who contributed to society, including by serving in the U.S. armed forces.” By contrast, she notes, “Leading candidates Donald Trump, Ben Carson and Ted Cruz have been fanning the flames of anti-Muslim sentiment throughout the primary season.” For the article, Mangla also interviews Marie Griffith, editor of Religion & Politics and director of the John C. Danforth Center on Religion and Politics at Washington University in St. Louis.

Read at International Business Times

The Opportunist

posted on November 23, 2015

In The New Yorker, Evan Osnos writes on Marco Rubio’s political flexibility as he pursues the Republican presidential nomination. In the primaries, Rubio has taken positions to satisfy conservative evangelicals who comprise the majority of the Republican base, but he also wants to appeal to a larger bloc of voters as the national race approaches. “Rubio’s inclusiveness can invite caricature,” Osnos writes. “He considers himself a Catholic, but he attends two churches—an evangelical Protestant service on Saturdays and a Roman Catholic Mass on Sundays.”

Read at The New Yorker

Donald Trump Calls for Surveillance of “Certain Mosques” and a Syrian Refugee Database

posted on November 23, 2015

The New York Times’ Maggie Haberman reports that Republican Presidential hopeful Donald Trump has called for surveillance of certain mosques and the creation of a registry of Syrians in the United States. At a rally at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex in Alabama, Trump accused Muslims of celebrating the attack on the World Trade Center in 2001 while claiming that all Syrian refugees must return to the Middle East. Trump said, “I watched when the World Trade Center came tumbling down. And I watched in Jersey City, New Jersey, where thousands and thousands of people were cheering as that building was coming down. Thousands of people were cheering. So something’s going on. We’ve got to find out what it is.”

Read at The New York Times

Vatican to Try Five, Including Reporters, Over Leaks Scandal

posted on November 23, 2015

Gavin Jones of Reuters reports, “The Vatican on Saturday ordered five people, including two Italian journalists, to stand trial for leaking and publishing secret documents.” The trial stems from the publication of two books that depict Pope Francis as battling corruption in an effort to reform the Vatican, using information that should not have been accessible. Gianluigi Nuzzi, author of one of the books, said, “If they think they can silence me they are following the wrong path, because after me other reporters will tell the facts and the information will not stop.”

Read at Reuters

19 Killed in Terrorist Attack on a Mali Hotel Came from around the World

posted on November 23, 2015

Gregg Zoroya of USA Today reports that citizens from at least six different countries, including the United States, were killed after terrorists attacked a luxury hotel in Mali. The attack appears to target the peace negotiations that are ongoing between the national government and separatists who have been fighting for control of parts of the country. “Mali will not shut down because of this attack … Terrorism will not win,” said Mali President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita.

Read at USA Today

Religious Liberties Under Strain for Muslims in France

posted on November 23, 2015

Emily Badger of The Washington Post reports that Muslims have been under growing scrutiny as the French government expands police powers after the Paris terrorist attacks. The surveillance of mosques has increased dramatically while public officials have blamed them for the radicalization of young Muslims. “In France, do like the French. That means that you need to conform to a lifestyle shaped by centuries of Christianity,” said conservative French legislator Marion Maréchal-Le Pen. “France isn’t a land of Islam.”

Read at The Washington Post

The Democrats’ ISIS Dilemma

posted on November 19, 2015

At The Atlantic, David A. Graham writes on the foreign policy weaknesses of Democratic presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton as each prepares a speech to discuss terrorism. While Sanders strongly prefers to discuss economic issues over foreign policy, Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state failed to yield any significant improvements in relations with the Middle East. “On Thursday, both Sanders and Clinton will take a shot at articulating that positive vision for what to do—without, presumably, deploying ground troops,” writes Graham. “But it’s a good bet that both would rather be talking about something else.”

Read at The Atlantic

Speaker Ryan: Syrian Refugee Bill Does Not Have a “Religious Test”

posted on November 19, 2015

Cristina Marcos and Mike Lillis of The Hill report, “Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) on Wednesday pushed back against arguments that a House bill hitting the floor this week to enhance security screenings for Syrian refugees will filter people based on religion.” After the recent terrorist attacks on Paris, Republican legislators have been pushing to curtail immigration from the Middle East, with Senator Ted Cruz proposing that Muslim Syrian refugees should be banned altogether from entering the country. Ryan said of the bill, “I also want to point out that we will not have a religious test. Only a security test.”


Read at The Hill

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