Arab Swag

A blog all about Arab Culture
|Ask| |Submit| |Articles| |Links|

thatguywiththecatpuppet said: I very much liked your post about the difference between ISIS and Islamic State. At first I was very confused (and as others, thought you were very uninformed as to what the acronym stood for), but as I thought about it, your point became clearer. I would just like to recommend making your point clearer in the future, because you can't expect everyone to understand... rather, we should try to make the point clear and educate others who may not understand. Thank you for your post!

Absolutely. I apologize for the confusion. I’m well aware of who ISIS is, this blog has been dedicated to exploring Arab culture and politics as a whole, so I had a very calculated reason for posting what I did.

However, I am humbled by your ask, I appreciate it :)

Anonymous said: Pro-Lifers in the US are also a Christian extremist group, but that's never what they are called. Even the Tea Party could be called fundamentalist Christians, but nope -- we stick to "Tea Party" with them.





Stop calling ISIS the Islamic State.

You guys will go upon lengths and jump hoops to deny that the KKK are a Christian influenced group but won’t blink to say Muslim and terrorist in the same sentence.

The language you use matters. 


There’s something called “linguistic domination” that we studied in my sociology class about deviance. People in power (ruling elite/govt/etc) use specific words to connote a certain meaning and evoke a certain feeling. “Terrorist” as opposed to “freedom fighter” or “traitor” instead of “dissident”.

Obviously ISIS is not Islamic at all, but if we think about how the media and government brands Muslims as “terrorists” and white people who shoot up schools as “mentally ill”, you get my point. People react very differently to these two words. To the former with fear and anger, and the latter with sympathy.

Linguistic domination, people.


For every person that didn’t understand my post or tried pseudo-academically fact checking me, this was the point I was making. Excellent reblog. 

Anonymous said: Where did ISIS come from? They came into the spotlight only recently but have been doing severe damage. Is it consisting of people coming from Europe, South Am, etc?

ISIS is an acronym for the “Islamic state of Iraq and Syria”, a militia group that separated from Al Qaeda and had riled up Sunni militias disgruntled with the Maliki Government and also acts spillage of separatist groups acting as a playing menace in the Syrian Civil war. 

The reason I ask people to not call them the Islamic state is not because that goes against their acronym but in an Islamaphobic world, using words like Islamic state, Jihad or other highly politicized terms can vilify Muslims and Islam as a whole because of the acts of politically charged militias and can further feed the racism and xenophobia currently surrounding Muslims. 

igaleexo said: plus ISIS actually forces people to be conscious of who are most severely impacted by that organization. specifically syria and iraq where they're primarily active. to call them "the islamic state" allows others to use islamophobic rhetoric to deflect from whose really threatened by their activities and center themselves as victims in order to use the suffering being inflicted on civilians to advance their own interests.


nuclearjaeger said: I completely agree, and several authorities have come forward to say that the "Islamic State" is not representative of Islamic peoples or their practices. I'm confused on one front though- did ISIS officially change their name to IS, or was this a name given by western powers to purposely obscure terrorism and Islam?

I’m not saying that these people aren’t Muslims or that they don’t use Islamic sources to come about with justifications of these very violent acts that mar the beautiful tradition of Islam. Anyone can pervert or manipulate any piece of work or source for their own agendas. I’m not denying that these people are not Muslims or that they are not part of the global Muslim fabric. That’s not the point of my post. 

However, that’s where I’m getting at, people shouldn’t see Muslims as a monolith or immediately see Islamic structures and systems as inherently evil because they have been misrepresented by these militias.

All I’m asking is for people to see Muslims with the same humanity and objective decency that we give everybody else. Words like Jihad, Islam, Shariah, Islamic state, or other terms shouldn’t be dirty or trigger terms in their own right, they have been utilized heavily to develop structures of entire civilizations and continue to influence the largest bodies of medicine, politics, and human development as a whole. 

To answer your question, ISIS is a rough translation of their full name in Arabic but media outlets like to use the word Islamic state to redefine that very word into something evil, like they have with Jihad, Shariah, or Islam as a whole. 

We can’t keep seeing Muslims as one group, that’s doing us a lot of harm in itself. 

visirion said: Isn't "Islamic State" what they call themselves though? In doing so, hey're making a mockery of all the Muslim blood they spilled, but I don't think referring to them as Islamic State is inherently islamophobic? IS is probably a good compromise, although I think ISIS is what the media labeled them and what's ultimately going to stick anyways.

Every dictator or militia has used religious or patriotic names to call themselves. Even Hitler was part of the “National Socialist German Workers’ Party” but everyone knew them as Nazi’s. 

Socialists are not marred because of Hitler, nor did he necessarily fulfill what people consider Socialism to begin with.

ISIS can call themselves what they want, but the entire Muslim population of the world shouldn’t have to be constantly mentioned in the same breath. Media outlets make a very big point to include Islamic or Muslim or Shariah or other coined terms with different meanings to Muslims to vilify them as a whole with these groups. 

When you think KKK or WestBoro Church or any of the thousands of Christian influenced Militias in this country we don’t hear the word “Christianity” or Christians being vilified in the same sentence.

Why isn’t this sensitivity lent to Muslims as well? Westboro is a Baptist Church, but unless you researched that you will never know that. No Baptist out there is apologizing that they are not Baptist. 

That’s my point. They could just call them ISIS, but everyone makes a point to say “Islamic state” as if the Islamic state in itself is a bad thing and not the actions of these men. 

Stop calling ISIS the Islamic State.

You guys will go upon lengths and jump hoops to deny that the KKK are a Christian influenced group but won’t blink to say Muslim and terrorist in the same sentence.

The language you use matters. 

I value good conversation more than anything, good conversation means you are surrounded by the right people.

Being surrounded by the right people means you have made excellent choices in your life. It means you yourself can see yourself reflected by friends that not only share the same values as you but are legends of their own craft, it makes you proud that you are on the same league with such people. 

Being surrounded by such positive influences in your life makes your safety net, your support system and your lifestyle much more enjoyable and fulfilling.

Choose your friends very wisely. 

What the actual fuck? In what universe does this lady feel that she can impose her cultural rules onto people? Some children are prodigies and commit to an adult mode at a very young age, this is not only admirable but it really shows the depth of this child’s intelligence, if he wants to skip the “let’s play in the playground” phase in his life on his own terms let him be. This has nothing to do with him being Muslim or by any chance being Kenyan, people don’t need your help or your missionaries. 

But why is it that every White lady takes out her pretentious “I’m committed to everyone’s happiness” lens? You don’t give a fuck about this country or where this country is, and your Christian missionaries are a representation of your hegemony itself. You wouldn’t know where to start to make sure this child has joy in his heart, seeing your Christian missionary ancestors and your Christian kingdoms and whatever the fuck lineage you’re from essentially pulverized these very countries into Oblivion. Their economic and social lives are ruined centuries later because of your very ancestors, we don’t need more missionaries to murk the water further. 

Make sure you don’t make those kids you’re posing with on your Facebook pictures not feel like they owe you their lives once they grow up and realize how horrific of a person you are.

(via dion-thesocialist)

Anonymous said: Hello brother, I love your blog which I have been following for quite some time now. I love how with just a simple few clicks I can come here and learn more about my religion and my culture. I live such a stressful life between work, family, marriage and school, that when I do have these rare and precious moments to myself, it helps alleviate some of my stress. So thank you. May Allah bless you with the best naseeb in this life and more importantly the next one insha Allah.

Salam! This is such a heartwarming message I can’t begin to thank you for staying on here and enjoying this blog but also supporting and using it as a stress reliever. 

I too had developed this blog to be a space for me to write about my culture and to be able to explore it with others. Knowing you appreciate it as much as I do really is amazing. 

May Allah SWT alleviate your worries ya rab. 

Anonymous said: It saddens me that you do not post anything anymore because I really enjoy reading through your blog and it is my only escape to see the true beauty of the Arabian culture. I hope you come back soon.

Thank you very much. I’m sorry I’m not as active anymore but I promise I still post occasionally and will continue doing so. Peace and blessings to you. 


Old Sana’a - Yemen (von Rod Waddington)


Old Sana’a - Yemen (von Rod Waddington)

(via eddine-belmahdi)


For many Muslim Americans, 9/11 was a double punch of tragedy and bigotry

The actions of 19 Islamic extremists on 9/11 left an indelible mark on America. Today, millions pause to commemorate the attacks’ 13th anniversary, to honor the victims and to remember that all life is special and sacred. But there’s an untold story amid the many speeches and moments of silence — one filled with a different kind of pain, grief and strong sense of loss. 

Those stories are now being told on social media

(via america-wakiewakie)

free counters Arab Swag followers