Book Launch & Discussion: The Muslims are Coming: Islamophobia, Extremism, and the Domestic War on Terror by Arun Kundnani

Thu, April 10, 2014 7:00 pm at Alwan for the Arts

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The Muslims are Coming: Islamophobia, Extremism, and the Domestic War on Terror
by Arun Kundnani

The first comprehensive critique of the War on Terror’s new front – the specter of domestic terrorists.

Free and open to the public
(Suggested contribution $5)

Following the killing of Osama bin Laden, polls showed that the public was more anxious about terrorism after his death than before. The new front in the War on Terror became the “homegrown enemy,” domestic terrorists who are the focus of sprawling counterterrorism structures of policing and surveillance in the United States and across Europe. Undercover officers and informants have spied on 30 mosques in New York alone. Surveillance has grown explosively—at least 100,000 Muslims in America have been secretly investigated in recent years—and in incredible detail—counter-terrorism agents have a file on every Moroccan taxi driver in New York City. British police compiled a secret suspect list of more than 8,000 al-Qaeda “sympathizers”, and included almost 300 children 15 and under on its list of suspected extremists, while MI5 doubled in size in just five years.

Based on several years of research and reportage from Texas and New York to Yorkshire, and written in engrossing, precise prose, this is the first comprehensive critique of counter-radicalization strategies. The new policy and policing campaigns have been backed by an anti-extremism industry of newly minted experts, and by examining the ideas of even liberal commentators like Martin Amis, Paul Berman, and Timothy Garton Ash, the book also looks at the way these debates have been transformed by the embrace of a narrowly configured and ill-conceived anti-extremism.

Arun Kundnani writes about race, Islamophobia, political violence, and surveillance. His forthcoming book The Muslims are Coming! Islamophobia, extremism, and the domestic War on Terror will be published by Verso Books in March 2014. Born and bred in London, he moved to New York in 2010 on a fellowship with the Open Society Foundations and now lives in Harlem. He is the author of The End of Tolerance: racism in 21st century Britain, which was selected as a New Statesman book of the year in 2007. A former editor of the journal Race & Class, he was educated at Cambridge University, holds a PhD from London Metropolitan University, and teaches at New York University.

“An important and moving investigation of the costs of the ‘war on terror’ for those who have been its targets, including the thousands of innocent Muslims who have been infiltrated, entrapped, and surveilled in the search for the radicalized terrorist among us. Kundnani gives eloquent voice to the communities that have been regulated, watched, and silenced by the national security state.”
- David Cole, author of Enemy Aliens: Double Standards and Constitutional Freedoms in the War on Terrorism

“This timely and urgent analysis carefully examines the ideologies and law enforcement strategies that undergird the domestic War on Terror. What Kundnani finds is disturbing: sweeping, specious radicalization theory and racialized assumptions about the nature of Islam drive domestic counterterrorism practices. This has had devastating consequences for the rights and liberties of Muslims and the state of constitutional protections in the US and UK.”
- Jeanne Theoharis, author of The Rebellious Life of Mrs. Rosa Parks

“An incisive, scholarly, bold, and convincing critique of the never-ending ‘War on Terror,’ whose roots extend far beyond the tragedy of 9/11. An important work.”
- Wajahat Ali, cohost of Al Jazeera America’s The Stream and author of The Domestic Crusaders

“Indispensable and powerful … Essential reading for government officials engaged in designing our counterterrorism policies, as well as readers trying to make sense of them.”
- Faiza Patel, Co-director of the Liberty and National Security Program, Brennan Center, NYU School of Law

“A must-read guide to the second decade of war waged on the home front.”
- John Feffer, author of Crusade 2.0: The West’s Resurgent War on Islam

Last updated: 2014-01-06 16:48:51

The Muslims Are Coming: Islamophobia, Extremism, and the Domestic War on Terror by Arun Kundani
The Muslims Are Coming: Islamophobia, Extremism, and the Domestic War on Terror by Arun Kundani

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