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3. Not mentioned

Citation
Article title: 
3. Not mentioned
Publishers: 
Year: 
1997
Week: 
26
Article number: 
3
Date of source: 
01-07-1997
Author: 
Muhammad ‘Imarah
Stereotyped pictures of Arabs in the American mass media
Text
Article summary: 

Dr. Mohammed Emara, a well-known

Islamist writer, comments in el-Shaab, generally

considered the mouth-piece of the Muslim Brotherhood, about

an article in Al-Ahram, describing the

stereotyped pictures of Arabs in the American mass media. Emara

writes that the Western media cannot be

changed through providing correct information about the values of the Arabs

and Islam, but suggests instead

a show of strength.

Article full text: 

[Editor: There are, without doubt, examples of the very

negative ways Arabs are

sometimes described in the American media, but Emara generalizes to such an extent that it

seems that most,

if no2t all media, are guilty of that. That creates the picture of ’the great Satan’ and

a strong anti-

American sentiment. It is also not certain that all accusations are correct. I do not know of a quote

of

Kissinger who supposedly said not to believe any Arab.]
In Ahram newspaper of March 23, 1997, I

read an article entitled, "The picture of ugly Arabs in the American mass media" in which the writer Reda

Helal

gave some examples of the horrible stereotyped pictures that deform Arab and their image in the

American

media.
In the movies Arabs are terrorists and sexual pests. In the press Arabs are bearded

fat people with

crooked noses and gaps between their teeth. They sit on the ground, with women and girls in

front of

them.
In "Hiram Western Dictionary" Arabs are head cutters, swindlers, cheats, dealers,

hangers and

vagabonds. In the Oxford Dictionary for Children, Arabs are cheating traders or men wearing

old clothes, letting

their wives walk behind them, wearing black clothes and carrying heavy loads on their

heads. In television

serials, Arabs are bad people living in tents, and they are more Nazi than the Nazis

themselves. They own women,

camels, and oil fields. They hate the highly-educated and are preparing a

new Holocaust for the Jews.
The

picture is no better in the writings of academic professors. For

Professor Harold Bloom, the prophet of Islam is

a man who deserves no place in history, shown on a horse,

holding his sword among a military detachment. For Alias

Canity, a Nobel Prize laureate, Islam is a bloody

religion with hundreds of millions of terrorists. Meanwhile,

dear Kissinger says, "You should never

believe any Arab".
President Nixon made a statement in which he said

that many Americans had begun to

consider all Muslims bloody, irrational and uncivilized enemies, strong evidence

of the false and horrible

picture that dominates the minds of Americans.
If these facts tarnish our image in

Western culture,

then the important question is how to reform this picture and change these concepts. Some people

think that

the way to improve our image in Western culture and media is through public relations, by changing our

present values and religion to fit with Western systems and interests. But I do not think so.
We must

remember the most beautiful pictures in the Western culture are those of Salah El-Din El Ayubi, of our

soldiers who

attacked the Bar Lev line and that of the stone-throwing children [Salah el-Din fought the

Crusaders with great

success, the Bar Lev line was the Israeli defence line in the Sinai which was taken by

the Egyptians in the October

war of 1973, the stone-throwing children are a reference to the Palestinian

youth throwing stones at Israeli

soldiers in the West Bank and Gaza] Search in the Western media and

compare the picture of the Vietnam hero Giab

to that of the Shah of Iran. Which of them is respectable and

which is contemptible?

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