The Muslim minority of Britain has issued a statement concerning a raid of a Muslim community centre in Prague. The Czech media has reported that the Muslim minority of Prague, in their very own places of worship were subjected to degrading treatment by the police and the place of worship was disrespected. The worshippers were attending the Friday sermon before armed police burst into the Muslim community centre of Prague, and with guns pointing at the worshippers, ordered them to lie face down on the ground. The police detained individuals including Indonesian diplomats.
The thuggish armed police searched for a book which was claimed to be “extremist” material and in doing so copies of the Qur’an were disrespected. The pretext of all this was a book on Islamic monotheism.
Czech Republic was previously being influenced by American neoconservatism and the Christian right. In 2010 Roman Joch, the director of neoconservative think-tank Civic Institute, was selected as a policy advisor by the then Prime Minister Nečas, for issues concerning human rights and foreign relations. The impact of this was both domestic and foreign in nature.
“if Western civilization threatened extinction as a result of the political and intellectual impotence of the left, conservatives would … had no other option but to reject democracy … In other words, to establish a right-wing authoritarianism.”
Commenting on the Foreign Minister’s speech, which reads like something produced by the Henry Jackson Society, hosted by the Civic Institute, he stated,
“…he identified radical Islam as a fundamental threat to European liberalism and democracy. His remarks, which are reproduced below, were remarkable for their bluntness. Rather than defend Islam as a religion of peace, Vondra observed that the outcome of the struggle between moderate and extreme interpretations is far from determined. He further suggested that the European tendency to accommodate or try to rationalize the complaints of Islamists has contributed to the latter’s recent inroads in Europe.”
Under the waffle of “radical Islam”, much like the UK neocon politicians, the freedom to hold a belief, or an alternate world view no longer applies to Muslims. The Foreign Minister, whilst lauding the “original set of Judeo-Christian values” perpetuated the Islam versus West hypothesis of the most extreme kind. His speech reads worse than Huntingtons’s Clash of Civilisations, with the root threat being Islam and the Qur’an. Even the “moderates” are not spared in his delusional, neocon analysis.
In another article, this time turning his deceptive neocon eye over the Boston marathon bombings, he stated that “(nearly) all terrorists are Muslims” and that Islamic authorities had a duty to respond. Ignoring the fact that statistically there have been more deaths in the West from right-wing extremism than “Islamist” violence (Kundnani 2014), his position exactly replicates the argument often hurled by UK neocons: Islam is the problem, they have to deal with it and it has absolutely nothing to do with Western foreign policy. How many times has the Catholic Church apologised for, or “dealt with”, the terrorist acts of the IRA or the “modern-day crusader” Anders Breivik for that matter?
To the PM
The current Prime Minister is said to be centre-left and Joch is no longer a policy advisor. However, Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka is urged to remove any remnants of the dangerous neoconservative ideology and the draconian legislation and policies it may have forced in. The raid in the Prague Muslim community centres seems reminiscent of the raids conducted by the British authorities, which have used the law and force as tools to silence dissent and has damaged community relations. Let not ignorance of the religion of Islam, and the hyperbolic distortion of the neocons who have a belligerent policy outlook, blind the upright and reasonable people from what such acts are: an oppression of the Muslim minority and an affront to community cohesion.