Category Archives: politics

Mazen Asbahi: The Blog Rundown

by Special Correspondent Fatemeh Fakhraie

You may or may not have heard that Obama’s volunteer national coordinator for Arab American and Muslim American affairs has resigned after ten days on the job because of a campaign in the media that alleged he had ties to Muslim fundamentalists, led by The Wall Street Journal. Here are some great perspectives on it from Arab and Muslim bloggers:

altmuslim discusses how WSJ’s shoddy journalism smeared Asbahi:

The Journal went out of its way to discredit this politically active volunteer-citizen by putting his name and picture front and center of its online edition (the second page of its print edition), laying bare portions of Asbahi’s resume, and questioning his affiliations as un-patriotic and terroristic. Journal readers must have been comforted to know that the Journal showed all the subtlety of a lynch mob in taking to task one of the most sensitive, peaceful and politically moderate members of the Muslim American community.

The kicker? The Wall Street Journal did so by quoting Washington insiders, who were so powerful and brave that they were given a veil of secrecy. Sure, don’t hesitate to scrutinize every blemish on the professional record of Asbahi, and blow up his picture large enough to show whether a hair is misplaced on his head. But for the people who brought this to light, let’s leave them nameless and faceless to lurk in the shadows, lest some other radically moderate Muslim get some crazy fundamentalist aspiration of actually participating in this democracy of ours.

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