MEDIA FAIL: Abject Ignorance About Tsarnaev’s Black Muslim Flag

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In a show of abject ignorance,  many reporters covering the Boston Marathon bombing trial described a simple Muslim flag as a “Jihadi flag,” a statement that shows few reporters covering this case know much about Islam or care to inform their readers.

The flag, known as the Black Standard or the Shahada flag, contains the testimony of the Islamic creed, declaring belief in the oneness of God and the acceptance of Mohammed as God’s prophet. To be Muslim, one must accept the Shahada.

shahada

Admittedly, the flag has been co-opted by Muslim radicals and terrorists since the 1990s, but anyone who flies it or displays it is not necessarily—or even mostly—a Jihadi. Many Muslims have denounced the use of the flag by radicals.

As a comparison, the cross was adopted by the Ku Klux Klan during its second reiteration in 1915. Cross burning still occurs to this day and the lighting of these cross are accompanied by Christian prayer and hymns.

WhoWhatWhy bets that none of these reporters would consider someone with a cross on their wall a KKK racist, and would simply report it as a religious icon.

UPDATE:

TsarnaevFlag
After first Tweeting that accused Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was posed in front of a “Jihadi” flag, many in Boston’s media have since contacted experts who explained that the flag merely quoted the Shahada – or “the testimony” and first Tenet of Islam (There is no god but God, Mohammed is the messenger of God.)
But they’re still getting the fundamentals wrong.
In a late story, Boston Herald reporter Laurel Sweet assumed Tsarnaev is merely pointing up to the flag. He’s actually using one upward-pointing index finger to give a symbol of the Tawhid, which reflects the “oneness of Allah.”
The article goes onto say that an expert is on deck to testify about the flag, but one can’t miss the meaning of the prosecution in using this particular image: ISIS has also co-opted this symbol in an attempt to affirm their ideology that demands the destruction of the Western world. Most Muslims merely use the symbol as reflecting their belief that Allah is the one God.

Look for the media to also turn this gesture into one of purely “Jihadi” symbolism without first researching the backstory of its meaning in moderate Islam.

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4 responses to “MEDIA FAIL: Abject Ignorance About Tsarnaev’s Black Muslim Flag”

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  2. Dr Imhotep AlBasiel says:

    Remember not all white Christians killed all the Indians and enslave all the blacks – most Muslims are good and are not terrorists. What a mind game – it should be simple logic!

  3. jane24 says:

    Thanks, Lara, (and wiseowl too), for making this attempt to set the record straight! Would be nice to think that some members of the msm would do some research before purveying disinformation but guess this is too much to expect! Prosecution/government taking advantage of the ignorance of some in order to further their propaganda and Islamophobic rhetoric?

  4. disqus_a2SRiKaB1i says:

    Muslims of all countries, hang these cloths which simply contain verses of the Koran, sometime in very ornate golden embroidery, sometimes they are beautifully framed. In Islamic countries there has always been great emphasis on beautiful calligraphy because no icons are allowed (to avoid worship of false prophets).
    This “flag” if you wish to call it contains the Shehada, a verse of the Koran, in Arabic calligraphy. It means a Muslim lives in that home essentially. Just as you would expect a crucifix or a statue of Mary or a saint in the home of a Christian and a Mezuzah on the entry door of a Jewish person or one of the Hindu Gods in a Hindu home.
    Religious belief or lack of is supposed to be protected in this country but with Islam, the ignorance prejudice and intolerance is astounding and anything goes and main stream media seems to be beating the band.