Muslim Commentator Hilariously Explains Euro 2016 Riots To Arabs

by
Amna Shoaib
Mocking the violent clash between English and Russian soccer fans, Hayder al-Khoei made an important point about Western media reporting of similar events in the Middle East.

Hayder al-Khoei

While Marseille resembled a battlefield this weekend, an Iraqi commentator decided to explain the complex chaos engulfing Europe.

Hayder al-Khoei, research director at England’s Centre for Academic Shi’a Studies, imagined how the clash would have been reported if it had taken place in Iraq or Syria, and was witnessed through the eyes of a Western  "pundit on Middle East."

Uefa champions

For those unaware, Saturday saw the UEFA Champions League being consumed by the most senseless, terrifying, and spiteful violence.

Russian and English soccer hooligans had been cooped up in the same place for far too long in the French port city and soon a brutal face-off ensued. 

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Uefa Riots

The Russian battalions, armed with their weapon of choice; gigantic metal rods, chased English fans across rows of seats in the stadium.

Although many hysterical Englishmen ran frantically for dear life, some decided to fight back.

 

 

This scene may have been comedic, were it not depressing at a colossal stage.

A 51-year-old England supporter was left battling for his life after he was ambushed with knives and rods. Beer bottles were thrown at harmless pedestrians, shops were set ablaze, while men blinded with rage yelled ominously.

 

 

Watching the clashes unfold in London, al-Khoei decided to narrate the events to an Arab audience, mocking Western media commentary of similar events in the Middle East.

Uefa Championship Riots

The first step was generalizations:

It's always wise to put the onus of condemning the act of a few on a large diverse community.

Hayder al-Khoei

How could al-Khoei pass on the opportunity to link the UEFA clashes with 13th century wars when Western experts always find ways to trace modern conflicts in the Muslim world to the Shia-Sunni rivalry?

Hayder al-Khoei

Hayder al-Khoei

It is advised to consider the "broader" ramifications of such conflicts.

Hayder al-Khoei

Explaining European cultural gestures of enmity is vital.

Hayder al-Khoei

Hayder al-Khoei

Uefa Riots

Earlier this month, al-Khoei had criticized the Western media's ignorant coverage of Iraq, while writing for CNN: 

“It is not surprising that much of the regional media portray the events in Fallujah as part of a broader sectarian war, especially when this serves the political agendas of governments that control these outlets. However, Western media coverage should be much more nuanced and sophisticated and not play into ISIS’ hands who desperately want to make this a black-and-white sectarian war.”

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UEFA has opened disciplinary proceedings against the Russia Football Union following the riots in Marseille.

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