The most dramatic perceived challenge to social order in Australia has been the advent of “home grown” or “home brewed” terrorism. The national government has been working on a strategy since the 2005 London and Bali Bombings, which appeared to show that  Australians were targets,  and that the attacks could be carried out domestically by native-born jihadists. Various plots were revealed and people charged, though the vast majority of Australia’s Muslims are not supportive of terror and see Australia as a refuge from violence. This does not mean they support the government, especially over the engagements in Iraq and Afghanistan, and its support for Israel. Nevertheless they live in a ongoing state of media siege, with a sense of endless surveillance and interrogation of their legitimacy to see themselves as Australian. Muslim media practitioners and scholars such as Dr Nasya Bahfen have canvassed the impact of the current situation on muslim communities, concluding ultimately that the way forward must lie in the training and employment of Muslim journalists.

This edition of the high rating current affairs program Today Tonight is a rare example of a program revisiting its earlier stereotyping of Muslims, admitting its mistakes (or allowing an earlier typically Australian interviewee to admit he was wrong) , and trying to present a more balanced discussion (including using me to critique the former Immigration Minister who had called for the break up of Muslim enclaves and condemned their refusal to assimilate).

There are few national English language outlets for Muslims, as most young Muslims use the Internet (especially the ever-popular Muslim Village ) and get their news from Al Jazeera, or Al Arabiya, or the second national broadcaster SBS. Most older Muslims use their language of origin press or radio or TV (satellite or cable).

Read MuslimVillage News here.

In the press the Murdoch media tend to be the most belligerent in relation to Muslim integration into Australian society. Here we see The Australian’s foreign editor, Greg Sheridan, developing a theme around home grown terror and the danger of engaging with young Muslim:

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