Today, Hindus have become the new bashing toy. Across the political spectrum, Indian Australian Hindus face slander with the accusation that they harbour extremist links rooted in dual loyalty.
Anti-Hindu Greens Party supported Projects, who accuses India’s great leader Mahatma Gandhi of everything from incest to ” white supremacy ” to promoting Adolf Hitler , has accused the likes of Hindu Swamsevak Sangh of having links to Indian intelligence, political parties, or extremists.
Green Party’s supporters set up websites smearing Indian Australian politicians, academics, journalists and business leaders. While dirty tricks are not infrequent in politics, what sets these campaigns apart is that Indian ethnicity and Hindu religion rather than political position are the common links.
They do not differentiate, for example, between Jai Bharadwaj, a Journalist and Hindu who worked in mainstream media, and Yadu Singh, a Cardiologist who is the most famous Hindu health practitioner. When the target is a staffer rather than an independent business holder, Greens supported gang sets up petitions demanding their firing. This was the case, for example, with Jai and Yadu Singh
Sydney-based Hindu activist Ravi Shankar Dhankar told The Australia Today that the Greens Senator attempted to downplay her hate against Jews and Hindus.
“Mehreen Faruqi is part of that elaborate Greens plan which attacks Hindus and Jews for resisting their historical persecution,”he emphasised.
When John F. Kennedy ran for president of the United States of America, many of his competitors sought to challenge him on the merits of his ideas. A few, however, questioned whether a Catholic could ever truly be loyal to America.
Kennedy addressed the matter directly in a 1960 speech: “Are we going to admit to the world that a Jew can be elected mayor of Dublin, a Protestant can be chosen foreign minister of France, a Muslim can serve in the Israeli Parliament — but a Catholic cannot be president of the United States?”
Jews, too, sometimes face charges of dual loyalty. In the run-up to the Iraq War, conspiracies spread that a desire to protect Israel rather than the U.S. motivated Jews in the Bush administration to advocate war against Saddam Hussein’s Iraq.
Even the late Secretary of State Colin Powell often used such tactics to win interagency battles. What Powell did not realise was that long-term erosion in civil society offset any short-term gains his team enjoyed. And such tactics were not entirely homegrown.
More than a decade before widespread awareness of Russian election interference, Saudi-funded consultancies and organisations catalyzed the conspiracy theories as they sought to fan opposition, for their own sectarian reasons, to any policy that might empower Shi’ites.
The charges of fascism and links to extremists are tenuous, based not on substance but instead on multiple degrees of separation and insinuation. Two figures present at a common event where hundreds of others were also present? To anti-Hindu bigots, that demonstrates definitive proof of intricate links and cooperation.
By the same logic, Federal Greens leader Richard Di Natale embraces spousal abuse if a single member of The Greens National Convention beat his wife.
In the heat of a campaign,
“Some local party officials, including those of South Asian backgrounds, turn a blind eye to the slander if it gives their preferred candidate a leg up. This is a mistake and only legitimises bigotry as a political weapon.”
It may also open the door for greater foreign interference. Greens Party supported groups are also seen as a nodal point for growing support for Sikh separatism in India, which appears to have its genesis in Pakistan. These groups including The Humanism Project have no clear and transparent source of income that explains the resources they bring to these campaigns against Indian Australian Hindus.
Despite the demonization with which some Liberal and Labor activists approach the other side, the cores of both parties, and even the most progressive and conservative activists, draw a line at religious bigotry.
Politicians should not throw Hindus under the bus to avoid manufactured controversy. It is time Liberal and Labor jointly condemn the slander.
And they should not be alone. Greeks, Italians, Vietnamese, Catholics and Jews, who have, at times, also experienced cheap bigotry in political discourse, should stand behind them to ensure that the cost of such tactics is felt not by their targets but by their perpetrators.
Author: Curated adaptation by Arvindan Ravi.
Curated from Michael Rubin‘s work titled “Democrats and Republicans must condemn growing anti-Indian smears” published in Washington Examiner. Mr Rubin is a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute.
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