Islamophobia has been a political tool of convenience that has been used at least since 1492 CE and is still in use by Western powers. For the past 200 years it has also been adopted by Zionists. (There have been Zionists for "200 years"? Who knew? I thought the movement got started in the late 19th Century with Theodore Herzl's conclusions sparked by the Dreyfus affair. Silly moi.)
Both groups willingly accepted it as part of their historical makeup and have continued to use it up to the present moment as a means of advancing their respective agendas of domination, occupation, exploitation, torture and killing of Muslims, including the genocide of their language, religion and culture as well. (Talk about projecting Islam's agenda onto others--as if there's no "jihad is the way; sharia is the goal," the line behind Islam's conquest, domination and subjugation of infidels since its git-go.)Okay, enough of that. One can read only so much of that type of thing before one's brain seizes up. You'll have read the rest of Elmo's Cockamamie History of Dar al Harb on your own.
Dehumanizing “the Other” -- the opposite, the enemy, the foil to mainstream society -- was, and still is, an integral part of the West’s aggressive crusading campaign aimed at conquering foreign lands and oppressing both peoples and nations. (To see how "dehumanizing 'the Other'" worked, consult Andrew Bostom's The Legacy of Islamic Anti-Semitism: http://www.amazon.com/Legacy-Islamic-Antisemitism-Sacred-History/dp/1591025540)
Columbus did much to cultivate a negative, even threatening, image of non-white and non-Christian “others” by describing aboriginals of the New World (the Americas) as cannibals, which was apparently enough to justify unlimited genocide against them. Between 1494 and 1504, three million South Americans died as a result of Spanish “pacification” campaigns. (What does that have to do with Islam? How many "aboriginals" have been killed by jihadis during their genocidal campaigns?)
North American natives fared as badly as their cousins of the southern continent, being portrayed as abductors of women, child-killers and collectors of scalps. As the period saying went, “the only good Indian is a dead Indian,” although Indians who assisted whites were grudgingly accepted as useful.
In his 1826 novel “The Last of the Mohicans,” James Fenimore Cooper (1789-1851) portrayed American natives as barbaric and blood-thirsty: “The flow of blood might be likened to the outbreaking of a torrent,” he wrote, “and as the natives became heated and maddened by the sight, many among them kneeled to the earth, and drank freely, exultingly, hellishly, of the crimson tide.”
In 1896 Theodore Roosevelt wrote scathingly that, “The settler and the pioneer have at bottom had justice on their side; this great continent could not have been kept as a game preserve for squalid savages.”
These and other historical precedents illustrate how convenient and effective it was to paint powerless groups as being inherently evil. (Luckily, the OIC, in cahoots with the UN, is endeavoring to redress the wrongs via its "Indiginous Rights" initiative: http://www.un.org/esa/socdev/unpfii/en/history.html)
Such views made it easier to publicly justify any number of invasions, occupations and genocides. Racial stereotypes thus became vital to the colonialist world view. (But not to the Islamist one?)
Twinning evil with Islam was a significant aspect of medieval Europe’s form of Islamophobia.
Islam was seen (falsely) as an outright negation of Christianity; Muhammad the Prophet was dismissed as an impostor, an evil sensualist and even the Antichrist.
Because Islam was seen as the main force behind African and Asian resistance to Europe’s domination, the entire Muslim world was stereotyped as being Anti-Europe. (Whereas it's really quite pro-Europe--or, pro-Eurabia, to be more precise: http://www.amazon.com/Eurabia-Euro-Arab-Axis-Bat-YeOr/dp/083864077X )
Post-Crusader Europe never really emerged from its “Holy Wars” against Islam and Muslims; this period shaped the motivation of all imperialists from Napoleon until the present...
Update: The antidote to Elmo's inventions--real history by a real historian (i.e. Robert Wistrich from his latest book, A Lethal Obsession):
The millenarian jihad advocated by the Bin Ladenists (and other radical Islamists) that promotes a universal Islamic empire as its ultimate goal is by no means a marginal item existing only on the extremist fringe of Islam. There are millions of Muslims who share these utopian dreams. There is a whole army of clerics, scholars, intellectuals, and journalists who support the fundamentalist credo and disseminate anti-Semitic hate speech. Those who believe in "apocalyse now" are especially likely to support the eradication of Judaism (as a mortal enemy of the one true faith) and the idea of Jews asa the servants of Satan. In contrast to the transformation of Catholic attitudes toward Jewry during the past forty years or the changes in Protestant Christian millenial theology, which have moved in a far more philo-Semitic and philo-Zionist direction than ever before, the movement on the Islamist side has been exactly the reverse. Muslim monotheist triumphalism is unabashedly imperialist--eagerly determined to reestablish the humiliated, inferior status of premodern Islamic Jews and Christians as dhimmis, or protected people, subject to Muslim control. Each lost war with Israel since the naqba (catastrophe) of 1948 has further reinforced the obsession with restoring the honor, superior status, and lost glories of the Arab world. The frustration engendered by repeated defeats at the hands of the despised dhimmi nation of Israel has turned to uncontrollable rage at the Jews, America, the West, and "secular" Arab rulers. The Jews, in particular, are perceived as Satan's agents in a cosmic drama, in which the world is (to paraphrase Shakespeare's Hamlet) radically "out of joint." This disorder can be put right only by a general slaughter of Jews, Christians, and "pagan" nonbelievers. Such a grim scenario cannot be disguised by platitudinous mantras about Islam as a "religion of peace"--propogated by the champions of political correctness in the West.I guess Wistrich must be one of those "Zionist Islamophobes" Elmo is warning us about.