Muslim Twitter Reacts to NY Times Article on "Jihad Rehab"

Muslim Twitter Reacts to NY Times Article on "Jihad Rehab"

A recent New York Times article is rehashing a yearslong debate over a controversial documentary and whether it deserves a wider release than it has received so far.

Meg Smaker’s “Jihad Rehab” premeired at the prestegious Sundance Film Festival in Februrary 2022. Supporters of the film say it offers an important look at how former detainees released from Guantanamo Bay re-enter the world. 

From the start, however, a number of critics, including prominent Arab and Muslim filmmakers, criticizied the film for its “Islamophobia and American propoganda” and claimed it exploited and endangered the main subjects of the documentary.

The New York Times’ Sept. 2022 article, entitled “Sundance Liked Her Documentary on Terrorism, Until Muslim Critics Didn’t,” sparked an influx of letters to the editor.   According to one letter-writer, “The fight, then, against ‘Jihad Rehab’ is not another example of America’s culture wars. It is an attempt to fight against xenophobic and racist media representations, the injustice of unlawful detention, and the continued victimization and dehumanization of those trapped within it.”

Many online, especially on Twitter, were also critical of the Times’ coverage of the debate. Below is a sampling of what people are saying both about their reporting and the documentary itself.

An article from this summer’s Guardian provides more insight.

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