Here's why what many people are sharing on Facebook is not just totally false—it's utterly ridiculous!
Two similar stories are making their way across social media that further illustrate the gullibility of the American public, and the willingness of certain Internet media outlets to prey on the public's gross ignorance every bit as much as the mainstream media does. Like many slanted, partisan-themed articles put out by both the left and right-wing "alternative" media, these articles couldn't be more dishonest, or further from the truth.
The "news" websites sharing this story are made up entirely of birdcage liner-type media outlets that includes Freedom Daily, ZootFeed.com, 100PercentFedUp.com, Daily Headlines, The Gateway Pundit, Freedom's Final Stand and a slew of similar sites.
Depending on whose version of the story you read, the narrative is that a group Muslims saw a Christmas tree in a shopping mall and became so angry that they began to "attack" or "destroy" it, which is supposedly supported by two different videos of two separate events. Depending on whose version of the articles you read, the narrative specifically claimed or implied is that both events took place in the United States or Sweden, or less frequently, in some other European country.
The fact that none of these "journalists" bothered to include any information as to both when and where this happened, and failed to provide any proof whatsoever of who was actually involved, what they were actually doing, and why they were actually doing it, should have been a red flag to their readers that these sites are either doing a really sloppy job in compiling their articles — or that they're willfully deceiving them.
In addition to the fact that the people in both videos video were not vandalizing the Christmas trees, which will be proven later in this article, had these "journalists" been interested in telling the truth, or had they given due diligence in researching the subjects they report on, they’d have discovered that neither of these events even took place in the United States, Sweden or in any other Western country—but in two shopping malls located in Egypt and Iraq.
Here's the first video. Pay close attention and make note of what you see in this footage:
It can be confirmed that what's in this video never took place in any Western country by just comparing the background of the video to the photo at the top of this article. But for further clarification, take a look at the images captured from the first video to images from the Mall of Arabia in Cairo, Egypt in a side-by-side comparison:
Although the two images are taken from slightly different vantage points within the same corridor of the mall, they both share the same distinctive features:
- The exact same lighting and distinctive triangular ceiling pattern.
- The exact same features between the upper wall and the ceiling.
- The identical appearance of the storefront entrances to Zara's Department Store, including the identical logos above the entryways.
- The same white, light grey and dark grey striped pattern in the walls behind the glass storefront displays.
- The same pinkish and grey patterned marble or granite flooring.
Now also pay close attention to the second video:
It can also be proven that the events in the second video above never took place in any Western country if you compare the background in the video to the other photo closer to the beginning of this article. But a comparison of the images captured from the second video compared with photos of the Family Mall in Dohuk, Iraq make it definitive.
Despite these images also being blurry and taken from an even different, and very limited, vantage point, it's still easy to discern a few undeniable similarities between the image above and the second image below:
- The same rounded shape to the space, indicating that it's located in the rotunda of the mall, pictured in the photo from near the beginning of this article.
- The same long, thin diagonally placed lighting in the ceilings of each floor.
- The same evenly spaced, circular shaped lighting, and the continuous lighting running along the facing between each level.
- The identical facing between each level.
- The same white, rounded support pillars between each level
- The identical white, black, pinkish and beige-colored marble or granite patterned circular flooring design.
If there are any further objections based on the authenticity of these photos, just visit the official website of Mall of Arabia in Cairo, and take a virtual 360-degree tour of this exact mall corridor, or scroll through the feed of their official Twitter site where you'll find many photos from inside the mall. And for many photos of Dohuk, Iraq's Family Mall, visit their official Twitter account and scroll through their feed to see many photos from below the rotunda area.
The second major issue that makes the false narrative being pushed in relation to both of these videos even more bogus and ridiculous, is that the people in them were not "offended" or "angry," or trying to "destroy" either of the trees in these videos—quite the contrary. They were actually CELEBRATING Christmas!
What's likely to SHOCK and DUMBFOUND many sharing these false articles, and what illustrates how horribly ignorant they are, is the fact that—MUSLIMS CELEBRATE CHRISTMAS TOO! After all, Jesus is one of the most important prophets in the Qur'an, being quoted much more often than even Muhammad. So why should it come as a surprise that some Muslims might celebrate the holiday, albeit in different ways?
In fact, they often even celebrate Christmas side-by-side, and often in churches, so who says that the people in either video are necessarily all Muslims anyway? So many people seem to forget, though most Middle Eastern countries are primarily Muslim, that these countries are made up of many ethnic groups. There are many different religions mixed together as well, which includes not just Christians, Muslims and Jews, but other religious groups, like Zoroastrianists, Yazidis and Mandeans.
As a result, there 's not just one, but many combinations of possibilities as to the identities of the crowd members, since this video lacks any interviews or any instance of those people self-identifying. It's very likely that some of the males climbing the Christmas from the video from Egypt are Coptic Christians, while it's equally as likely that some of the males in the second video from Iraqi Kurdistan could be Kurdish Christians, since these two groups make up the majority of Christians in both regions.
Regardless of their identities, none of them are disrespecting Christmas or trying to destroy the Christmas trees in either of these videos. The event shown in both videos are actually both typical customs observed in both Europe and the Middle East amongst both Muslims and Christians alike called "Christmas tree plundering" or "shaking the Christmas tree". This event marks the end of the Holiday season, wherein Christmas trees are stripped of their ornaments, namely things like candy canes, apples and crackers, and they're given to the children. The custom originated in Sweden, but has spread to the Middle East. Remember earlier in this article how it's been claimed so often that Muslims have vandalized Christmas trees in Sweden? Do you think maybe that might be why?
Other wrapped gifts hung on the tree or placed under it are given away as well, as can be seen in the photo below of a similar tree set up at another mall in Cairo, Egypt. And again, if there's any doubt about the authenticity of this photo, click here to see it hosted on the official Twitter account of the City Centre Maadi Mall in Cairo.
Whether you're aware of such a custom, there are other OBVIOUS reasons to be skeptical of what's being claimed about the happenings in these videos. Why do you see the Christmas lighting fall down in the first video, and then see one man place it back on the tree if they're set on vandalizing it? Why do you see a female wearing a hijab, the Islamic headdress, while holding a Santa Claus hat if she's so offended by Christmas?
Why do you see people wearing Santa Claus hats milling around with females who're wearing hijabs, yet there are no apparent arguments, much less fights breaking out? Why do you hear nobody angrily yelling "Allah hu akbar?" Why do you not see any physical altercations breaking out anywhere else amongst the crowds? Why would artificial Christmas trees be constructed in a way that allows them to be climbed, and to support the weight of several full grown men, instead of being made of flimsy materials like all other artificial Christmas trees?
But instead of putting any critical thinking into what they're watching in the videos, or reading in these articles, most people swallowed this obviously false narrative hook-line-and-sinker. And neither do they admit to their folly when it's pointed out to them. This is simply another example of videos like this being intentionally misinterpreted, then shared en masse by stupid Americans who're desperate to justify their mostly unfounded prejudices, or to justify their political beliefs, as well as to justify who they voted for. You'll see this by reading their really ironic—and extremely comical—reactions, like the ones you see below:
It's interesting that the people sharing things like this are usually "Christians" with some very strong, yet rather false perceptions about politics, Islam, and Middle Eastern society. As surveys have proven, they know basically nothing about Islam, and know way less than even atheists their own purported faith. It seems their only religion is Statism, of which some of the main tenets include worshipping colored cloth, being scared to death of Muslims, and repeating nonsense about subjects they know nearly nothing about on Facebook.
The truth is that there's plenty of sectarian violence in the Middle East, but more often than not, most groups manage to live in relative peace. And ironically, what little violence happens is usually stirred up by the ignorance of Western Christians, who share videos they've put zero critical thinking into.
Then they dramatically compound the violence by using these rumors to politically advocate for further meddling into the region. And often, it's their own soldiers who don't just concoct false stories, but who whip up ethnic and religiously based violence with false flags, as they've been caught doing more than once.
Yet, despite their demonstrably profound ignorance these people will try to convince some of us to vote for their favorite political candidates. Consider that these same people, who base their worldview on this kind of ridiculous misinformation, not only think they're informed, but are going to the polls to vote on how your life is to be run! What a much more peaceful place the world would likely be if people could learn to live without government. But, that would require people getting truly educated and thinking for themselves—not voting for rulers based very often on total falsehoods.
(Editorial note: I earlier reported that the first video occurred in Dohuk, Iraq. A reader afterwards informed me that the event took place in Cairo, Egypt. I corrected this on Nov. 16, 2016. Since this information brought to light much more information that proved my contention, I have since added this information and rewrote portions of this article as well.)