- NYT columnist Paul Krugman was widely lambasted on Twitter after suggesting that 9/11 did not lead to a “mass outbreak” of anti-Muslim sentiments or violence.
- There was a spike in anti-Muslim hate crimes after 9/11 and the US invaded two majority Muslim countries, launching a global war on terror that’s killed hundreds of thousands of people.
- In short, Krugman’s tweets were ahistorical.
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New York Times columnist Paul Krugman was excoriated online after a series of tweets in which he suggested that the 9/11 terror attacks did not lead to a “mass outbreak” of Islamophobia or violence.
“Overall, Americans took 9/11 pretty calmly. Notably, there wasn’t a mass outbreak of anti-Muslim sentiment and violence, which could all too easily have happened. And while GW Bush was a terrible president, to his credit he tried to calm prejudice, not feed it,” Krugman tweeted on Friday, the 19th anniversary of the attacks.
Twitter users quickly pointed out that Krugman’s views on 9/11 were ahistorical, ripping into the New York Times columnist.
Paul Krugman has zero relationship to the truth when he enters full-on propaganda mode, which is very often. pic.twitter.com/MgPqvxIYvN
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) September 11, 2020
I grew up Muslim and Arab in a rural conservative Midwest town, and frankly, Paul Krugman has no idea what he’s talking about. https://t.co/0XqzHKgN7Y
— Shaker Samman (@ShakerSamman) September 11, 2020
you know that saying “never forget?”
looks like Paul Krugman forgot. https://t.co/LpYIQrZgLt
— Siraj Hashmi (@SirajAHashmi) September 11, 2020
Do you have Muslim, Arab, or Sikh friends? There were huge debates over racial profiling in the aftermath of that.
Hell, even I was pulled over for 'random screenings" more in the aftermath of 9/11.
My last name is Arabic.
— Karen Attiah (@KarenAttiah) September 11, 2020
— Megha Mohan (@meghamohan) September 11, 2020
The attacks ushered in a wave of anti-Muslim sentiments, fostering a spike in anti-Muslim hate crimes. And 15 years after 9/11, Americans elected a president who called for banning all Muslims from the US.
The US also invaded Afghanistan within a month of the attacks, launching the longest war in US history (and it’s not over yet). The US then invaded Iraq in 2003 (US troops are also still there), which was ultimately disastrous and helped foster the rise of ISIS.
The US has conducted counterterrorism operations in 80 countries,according to Brown University’s Costs of War project, and America’s “global war on terror” has displaced at least 37 million people and killed over 800,000. The federal price tag for the so-called war on terror stands at $US6.4 trillion, and though Osama bin Laden and Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi are both dead, neither al Qaeda nor ISIS have been totally defeated.
People were tortured by the US government after 9/11, and held indefinitely without being charged with a crime at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba. The US government also engaged in the mass surveillance of its own citizens.
In short, Krugman’s take on the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks does not hold up (at all).