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Islam Phobia in US:

'More than half Americans fear rise of Muslim extremism'

Friday, November 20, 2009 12:20:12 PM, ummidcom & Agencies

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New York: How Islam Phobia is deliberately given rise to in United States can once again be gauged from a survey taken after the shooting at the Fort Hood Army base in Texas earlier this month. If the findings of the survey conducted by Pew Research Centre are to be believed, they show that more than half of Americans fear the rise of Islamic extremism.

Major Nidal Malik Hassan, an army psychiatrist, allegedly mowed down 12 fellow soldiers and a civilian when he fired on his comrades to protest his upcoming posting to the war zone in Afghanistan in
the worst-ever shooting at any US army base


The shooting by the Muslim soldier occurred at the backdrop of the rising suicide cases among the US soldiers posted in Afghanistan and dissent against the ongoing US war in the Asian subcontinent and the Middle East.


There are estimated to be more than five million Muslims in the US. According to the survey by the independent Pew Research Center done after the November 5 shooting, 52 percent Americans think that Islamic extremism is rising in the US.


In a similar survey by the center in 2007, only 46 Americans had expressed their concern over Muslim extremism in the country. The survey says 49 percent Americans today feel very concerned about 'Islamic extremism' as against 48 percent in 2007.


According to the Pew Research Center, the public followed the reports on the army base shooting closely as well as the ongoing investigation. People’s reaction varied with their political affiliation. Compared to 65 percent Republicans, only 44 percent Democrats said that they are concerned about the rising extremism.


There are only 36 percent young Americans who said Islamic extremism was rising, as against 60-65 percent old people.


At the same time, the survey is totally silent on the reported reasons behind the shootout and the opinions suggesting that linking the incident with religion could be counter productive.


Immediately after the shootout at the US army base, community leaders while condemning the attack had warned against linking the incident with Islam. Instead, they had said, the real reasons behind the incident should be investigated into.


The survey done on phone was conducted between November 12 and November 15 and involved 1,003 Americans.


Interestingly, doubts are also raised over such surveys that are normally conducted after such incidents.


"How opinions of a thousand Americans can be treated as the popular belief of entire United States?", asks Shahryar Akhter, an expert on United States while speaking to










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