Published by Seth Oldmixon on August 9, 2018

Assam: Illegal Immigration and Communal Conspiracy Theories

A controversial “citizen’s registry” compiled in the northeast Indian state of Assam has created a stir in South Asia over concerns that Muslims are being targeted for deportation. Critics compare the move to the ethnic cleansing in Myanmar that has left 800,000 Rohingya Muslims living in refugee camps. Indian officials reject this claim, arguing that…

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Published by Seth Oldmixon on July 9, 2018

Jamaat-e-Islami Terror Camps in Bangladesh? New Book May Offer Fresh Insights

Jamaat-e-Islami, an Islamist group that seeks to transform the world into its imagining of a global Islamist theocracy, is best known for its attempts to exploit democractic norms to advance its agenda. The group, often compared to the Muslim Brotherhood, fields candidates in elections, raises funds through charity fronts, and openly supports international jihad alongside…

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Published by Seth Oldmixon on May 4, 2018

How Secularism Protects Religion and Culture

In a recent interview with the Economist, Pakistani politician Imran Khan expressed his support for women, like his wife, who choose to wear a veil that fully covers their face. “The amount of clothes a person wants to wear – how much they want to wear or how little they want to wear – is a…

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Published by Seth Oldmixon on February 8, 2018

Echoes of Pakistani Extremism Ring Out In Indian Politics

In her indispensable book, Purifying the Land of the Pure, Farahnaz Ispahani details the tragic history of Pakistan’s descent “into internal violence as the search for Islamic purity set Muslims against non-Muslims, Sunnis against Shiites and Ahmadis, and various Sunni sects against one another.” Today, echoes of this tragedy can be heard ringing out in…

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Published by Seth Oldmixon on November 20, 2017

India: By Threatening Muslim Voters, BJP Leader Threatens Election Legitimacy

The outgoing Chairperson of the nagar palika (local municipality) in Nawabganj, Uttar Pradaesh declared that Muslim constituents would “face difficulties” if they don’t vote for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), a right-wing political party closely aligned with Hindu nationalist groups. During a political rally, BJP leader Ranjeet Kumar Srivastava told the audience that “this is the…

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Published by Seth Oldmixon on October 30, 2017

Shiv Sena’s Extremist Rhetoric Makes India Less Secure

At a recent gathering in Indore, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat floated a slightly softer version of the group’s typically hardline Hindu nationalism by suggesting that, in his view, “Hindu” does not necessarily refer to those who subscribe to a specific religion, but “all those who are the sons of ‘Bharat Mata‘ (Mother…

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Published by Seth Oldmixon on August 9, 2017

Political Normalization of Extremism Poses New Threats In South Asia

In 2005, a popular Hindu nationalist was denied entry to the United States under a section of US law that makes any foreign government official who “was responsible for or directly carried out, at any time, particularly severe violations of religious freedom” ineligible for a visa to the United States. Nine years later, that Hindu…

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Published by Seth Oldmixon on November 2, 2016

South Asian Journalists Spread Religious Hatred On Social Media

When we think of religious hatred on social media, we often think of anonymous trolls accounts or extremist ideologues. In South Asia, though, there have been a number of recent incidents in which mainstream journalists have expressed extreme hatred against religious minorities. Jagrati Shukla, a self-described “nationalist” and assistant producer for India’s Zee News recently…

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Published by Seth Oldmixon on March 10, 2016

Bangladesh: Escaping the Shadow of Pakistan

Continue reading at ForeignPolicy.com Photo credit: MUNIR UZ ZAMAN/AFP/Getty Images

Published by Seth Oldmixon on February 5, 2016

India’s Blasphemy Laws

The terrifying effects of Pakistan’s draconian blasphemy laws are well documented. Mere allegations have resulted in mob violence that has destroyed Hindu temples, Christian churches, and taken the lives of the accused. Even fundamentalist Muslims have found themselves entangled in the dangerous and subjective web blasphemy allegations. With this situation playing out so close to…

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