Yellow Peril by Tze Ming Mok

The End of Tolerance

Fork-tongued terrorism has hit New Zealand. A malignant, brylcreemed force is scaring the living daylights out of Kaitaia retirees. Though they're not sure whether a real Muslim has ever been seen in Kaitaia, they sure are terrified of them now.

The alternative headline for this front-page Herald story, I'm reliably informed, was 'Peters is a Dick'.

We were on the receiving end of similar bullshit in 1996, but this, this is out of the ballpark.

[T]he moderate and militant, fit hand and glove. Underneath it all the agenda is to promote fundamentalist Islam - indeed these groups are like the mythical Hydra, a serpent underbelly with multiple heads, capable of striking at any time and in any direction.

His speech was actually entitled The End of Tolerance. "Saves you from having to think of a title yourself," said Keith.

There are a lot of things to say: the claim that mainstream Islam has a secret, inseparable agenda to promote fundamentalism is a lie that would be absurd were it not so vicious; and the imagery of the many-headed Hydra is much like the grotesque 19th century imagery of the Octopus used to represent the Yellow Peril (the original one) - inhuman, malignant images that imagined something coordinated, aggressive, massive and threatening, out of a reality of diverse, small groups trying to fit in to society. Fit in, infiltrate, whatever.

But as previously mentioned, Winston Peters gives me brain haemorrhages, which interferes with rapid, logical response. So I'll let terrifying two-faced Tayyaba Khan take over from here. Tayyaba spoke at the warm fuzzy hydra-headed Christian-swindling interfaith rally last Sunday (where, actually, I was terrified by one thing - the wispy-haired Christian guitar-playing singer whose repeated sets and needly voice seemed to actually summon the rain. Where's a muezzin when you need one?)

Tayyaba has just written an open letter to the Herald, and to Peters:

Today Winston Peters outrightly attacked the Muslim community and furthermore disrespected the religion of Islam without any understanding of either. [...]

I think Winston Peters' lack of knowledge on issues is the reason behind his political failure. Maybe he needs to wake up and realise we - the Muslim community - also sympathised with [those killed] during 9/11, in Bali, in Spain and in London. Such acts are inexcusable, and such motives pure evil. However Winston have you, obviously identifying yourself with the European "balanced" experience, sympathised with the millions dying in countries like Iraq, Iran, Palestine, or Afghanistan? Or are those dying in the Middle East not deserving of your sympathy?

Freedom of speech is an integral and core tenet of any successful society. Hence you have been able to express your views of us. For those who come from countries that don't promote freedom of speech I sure hope my letter comes as a surprise. For those who do not listen to others points of view, compromise, or are open to challenges I hope my letter and my challenge to you today Winston stirs up the views of your political party and its agendas.

Since we are a community of 'two-faced' individuals whose moderate faces are visible but the fundamental hidden, I urge you and your party to work on understanding issues for Muslim migrants. They say you can't eat the cone until you taste the ice-cream, Winston surely there is no exception to this rule for you. We have opened our doors, through initiatives such as the National Islam Awareness Week [8-14 August] , we have been the first in line to condemn the evil acts taking place around the world, and we have publicly addressed that we will not accept any form of terrorism in Aotearoa. So I ask you Winston how much more compromise do you need, where have we failed to listen to your points of views, and how are we not taking up your challenges of integrating into the general society?

Your comments are based on poor facts and very poor representation. I can understand it must have been a long time since you have been in the university scene, but surely you know that promoting terror within a university or any such institute cannot go un-noticed. Maybe you need to update yourself more with what the Muslim community does do, to know how integrated we are in the general society. This could furthermore help you understand that our loyalty lies to a country us Muslim migrants now call home. That the spirit of "NZ First" exists in us too!

Lastly dear Winston you stated, "Immigration....We are not opposed to it. But we are working for an immigration policy that preserves New Zealand as a free and tolerant country." Sounds like Bush's confused comments when he doesn't know why he is doing what he is doing. I hope you take up my challenge Winston.

Tayyaba Khan
Promotions and Communications Advisor for AUT Muslim Students Association
Founder and Executive Member of Auckland Muslim Girls Association