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1. Some thoughts on who to listen to in the aftermath of the Christchurch mosque shootings, which was the worst peacetime massacre in New Zealand since 1943.…
2. Back in January when I covered Rahaf Mohammed’s dramatic few days barricaded in a hotel room in Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport trying to get asylum in Australia or another Western country, ……
3. … one of the things I did in the course of my research was watch a number of the media appearances that @ConfessionsExMu—Yasmine Mohammed (no relation) made.
4. Yasmine was part of a network of ex-Muslims in Canada and globally who were assisting Rahaf with emotional & logistical support.
5. She was one of three Canadians who eventually set up Rahaf’s official GoFundMe campaign once it was known she was going to Canada, that easily exceeded the 10K goal in less than 24 hours.
6. I was also tracking media interviews and social media posts made by a white Australian feminist (who I’m not going to name in this thread), who said she wanted to help Rahaf.
7. Her company had set up a GoFundMe 3 days after the news broke & ignored people pointing out that Rahaf's friend (via her account) had asked people not to donate to crowdfunding campaigns because she didn’t have one at the time.
8. The Australian woman also staged a topless protest at the Saudi embassy in Sydney with her friends.

I thought about writing about my observations at the time but decided against it because I was uncertain what was going on with the Australian woman.
9. One of the sharp differences between Yasmine & the other woman’s media appearances is that Yasmine used every interview to talk in specific terms about the plight of other Saudi & Middle Eastern girls/women like Rahaf and the grave danger they face.

10. When asked to talk about her own very dramatic story as a Canadian woman who was forced into a marriage with a man who turned out to be an Al-Qaeda operative Yasmine would quickly bring the interview back to Rahaf, et al & was persistent in centering their stories.
11. By contrast, the Australian woman’s interviews were full of feminist and human rights buzzwords. She spoke in generalities, I assume because she wasn’t educated enough on Rahaf’s situation and the situation of many other women in the Middle East, to discuss the specifics.
12. When interviewers asked the Australian woman to talk about her own work she eagerly promoted her topless protest & “social enterprise” company. In social media posts she centered herself and praised herself for the amazing work she felt she was doing to help Rahaf.
13. Last night I spent 2+ hours watching a livestream from New Zealand’s Newshub of their Sunday evening broadcasts. I watched press conferences with NZ officials, interviews with survivors, footage from various vigils and memorials, and more.
14. This is Farid Ahmed.

He survived the shooting at the first mosque to be attacked—Al Noor Mosque in Riccarton (suburb of Christchurch).

His wife, Husna, did not.…
15. Farid told Newshub that after getting other women and children to safety, Husna was murdered as she returned to get him. Farid uses a wheelchair to get around and could not escape on his own.
16. Farid has already forgiven the shooter. It’s what Husna would have wanted.

"I love him to be honest. I think probably he went through some trauma in his life, probably he was not loved... I don't hate him at all, I don't hate him at all, not at all."
17. Farid, on his wife, Husna:

"She was probably more open than me; she could reach anyone, she was magnetic.”
18. Farid told Newshub he wanted people to think about this:

"If someone does bad to you, do good in return.”

The reporter paraphrased Farid’s message as:

"If someone does bad to you, make sure you do good to them.”
19. I cannot stress how much you need to watch this interview. If you really can’t spare 3 minutes then just watch from 2:00.…
20. After watching Farid, watch this video of a “Muslim Palestinian” student activist at NYU berating Chelsea Clinton for having the audacity to attend their 3/15/19 vigil for the Christchurch victims.
21. I ordinarily advocate against sharing viral clickbait but this has become an international story because of the “link” to Christchurch & because Chelsea is the daughter of former President Bill Clinton & former presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton.…
22. I usually prefer to link original sources, but in the process of researching this thread I discovered that the account where I first saw the video that I thought was the originator appears to be a parody/troll account, so I’m sharing someone else’s tweet.
23. No one appears to have archived the original tweet, which has been deleted. I have located screenshots but can’t be sure if they are real so I’m not going to share any of them. The last archives of what seem to be the real student’s account are from February.
24. But you can check out the Twitter feed of the Palestinian NYU student who berated Chelsea……

…and read the op-ed written by her and the friend who filmed the video.

**Please don’t harass her.**
25. Direct link for Buzzfeed op-ed:…
Archive of article:
26. I used word counters to analyze the text of the op-ed. I excluded the headline and lede which I’m guessing were written by an editor. Note that Christchurch is mentioned once in headline & once in lede.
27. Out of an 808 word op-ed, one of the most frequently used words was “we”—30 times.

Christchurch is mentioned just ONCE in the op-ed.
New Zealand is mentioned once.
Victims get mentioned twice.
Survivors get zero mentions.
28. Frequently used words/phrases in the op-ed:

10 anti muslim
7 (ilan) omar
7 clinton
6 muslim bigotry
6 chelsea clinton
5 white supremacy
5 hatred
5 palestinian/s
4 israel/i
4 solidarity
3 anti semitism
29. Other words and phrases that do NOT appear in the op-ed besides “survivors”.

Al Noor Mosque
Linwood Islamic Centre
ANY of the victims names
31. Although the Palestinian student invokes Christchurch, she doesn’t seem to be representing the feelings of Christchurch survivors and victims at all.

32. It seems doubtful that she has any idea what Kiwi Muslim daily life is like.…
33. What about the Muslims who were glad for Chelsea’s presence? And what would the Christchurch survivors would have wanted?
34. I have followed far too many mass tragedies in the US—usually mass shootings, but sometimes terrorist attacks.
35. Mass tragedies always bring out the opportunists which is so disheartening but they also bring out the best in so many people.

Photo credit: @StaunchA
Vigil at Franklin Square in Hobart, Tasmania, Australia

36. NZ news coverage is filled with Kiwis of all races and ethnicities, many of them white—which is entirely unsurprising given New Zealand’s demographics—attending vigils around the country.

Victims are being centered there.
37. Christchurch’s population is 84% European diaspora.

Middle Eastern/Latin American/African diaspora people are just 1% of the population. I can find numbers for Christchurch’s Muslim or South Asian populations.…
38. New Zealand’s population is:

74% European…

1.8% Muslims…
39. The tragedy is bringing together disparate groups including a largely Māori and Polynesian gang, Black Power, who performed a haka outside the Al Noor Mosque on Sunday.…

Video of haka:…
40. The haka is a ceremonial Māori dance that was often performed before battle, but also at funerals and other important events. These days it has been adopted by sports teams—mostly football (soccer) and rugby teams.

“The spokesman of the gang, who declined to be named, said that all New Zealanders were "whanau" (family) regardless of race or beliefs.

"We, Maori, refugees, and Europeans. We are all Kiwis (New Zealanders)," he said.”…
42. Source for quote in previous tweet:…
43. As far as I’ve seen, no one is telling white Kiwis they are not welcome at vigils or interfaith services or any of the many community events that are being organized in the aftermath of their worst massacre in 76 years.
44. Meanwhile, in America, some activists are centering themselves and American political feuds and speaking in buzzwords and generalities about “Islamophobia” and “white supremacy”.
45. I was talking to a non-American about something else the other day and she commented “Not everything is about America”. No kidding.
46. I don’t believe that the rhetoric coming out of some people in the US is the message Christchurch survivors want to share, so going forward…
47. … I'm going to make an effort not to share tweets/news about people who are centering themselves & spreading a message of division while claiming that we need to focus on the Christchurch victims/survivors. I invite you to join me in not playing their game.
48. I think that anger is understandable and can play a useful role when channelled properly, but so much of the anger I observe from American activists across the political spectrum (can’t really speak to activists in other countries) seems self-serving and unproductive.
49. If you’re American and interested in the state of affairs in the US that activists have been warning about since before President Trump’s election with respect to a supposed rise in hate incidents, then by all means, pay attention to American activists.
50. But if you’re looking for information about Christchurch and what Christchurch survivors want, go straight to the source. Listen to the Kiwis. Don’t go through activists in another country who are filtering the news through their intersectional Americocentric lens.
51. We can have a conversation about anti-Muslim attacks in the US but let’s not pretend that yelling at Chelsea Clinton honors survivors of the Christchurch shootings.
52. Correction:

Typically when I make errors I delete my tweets and issue a correction but in this case I made the error in the first tweet so there’s no way to fix it without retweeting the entire thread.

53. NZ media are characterizing the Christchurch shootings as the worst mass killing in peacetime.

It is also correct that this is the worst mass killing in NZ since 1943 per Wikipedia.…
54. What is NOT correct is my characterization of this being the "worst peacetime massacre in New Zealand since 1943”.
55. My error was due to me misreading the 1943 massacre as being a “prison riot”, even though Wikipedia says "Featherston prisoner of war camp riot".

The 1943 deaths took place during WWII at a Japanese POW camp. 49 Japanese and 1 Kiwi were killed.…
56. The last peacetime massacre in New Zealand was in Aramoana in November 1990. 14 people including the shooter, were killed.…

I should have either left out the word “peacetime” or cited 1990 instead of 1943. I apologize for the error.
57. I’ve realized tonight while doing more research and watching Newshub that I need to make some additional corrections & clarifications to this thread. I was hoping to get them done tonight but it’s too late and I need to sleep. I will try to get them done on Mon eve (EST).
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