Would Mona Eltahawy, who writes for the WaPo and International Herald Tribune (UK), be equally outraged if the mass-murderer killed wasn’t a fellow Muslim? I can almost guarantee the answer would be no.
(Guardian) — I could hear the cheers as I got out of the taxi, two blocks away. I could hear them from right in front of Park 51, the site of a planned Islamic community centre and mosque that met ferocious opposition last year for being too close to the “hallowed ground” of Ground Zero. It was minutes after President Obama’s announcement that Osama bin Laden had been killed, and I was heeding a friend’s suggestion that we — both Muslims — take candles and stand in vigil where the World Trade Centre stood before Bin Laden’s footsoldiers took it down.
So it was a shock to find hundreds of others had turned that hallowed ground into the scene of a home crowd celebrating an away victory they hadn’t attended, the roots of which they were probably not there to experience or were too young to remember.
There was always something sickening about tourists taking pictures of themselves posing in front of that big gaping hole called Ground Zero. “Me at site of mass slaughter, NYC” as holiday photo caption is wrong in every language, surely. It didn’t take 10 minutes for the frat party atmosphere to sicken me. Olympic-style chants of “USA! USA!” I could just about take as a freshly minted American, as of Friday. But “Fuck Osama! Ole ole ole!” crushed any ambition of dignity for the thousands killed, many of whom had jumped hundreds of storeys to their deaths, their bodies shattered to pieces close to where we stood. . . .
The scene at Ground Zero was like a parody of Team America, the film created by the South Park team to parody Bush’s America gone wild on nationalism. Now that we’ve parodied the parody, can the frat boys go home and can we return to the revolutions of the Middle East and north Africa that symbolically killed Bin Laden months ago?