The Trojan Hoax fiasco had a number of parties involved to pull it off. Some were merely pawns in the “Great Game”, whilst others were the ones moving the chess pieces. The sledgehammer which the neocon, anti-Islam Michael Gove smashed onto the Muslim minority of Birmingham was casted some years ago by the infamous and much discredited Quilliam Foundation. In a leaked 2010 memo addressed to Charles Farr of the OSCT, and signed off by Ed Husain and Maajid Nawaz, Quilliam outlined its plan in “dealing” with the terror threat. The contents despite it being made public, has been remarkable in its implementation and achieving the resultant targeted discrimination the Muslim minority now faces.
In the context of the education of the sphere,
“With the appointment of Michael Gove MP, who has previously spoken out on topics related to the Prevent agenda and has shown a good understanding of the issues relating to it, to the position of Secretary of State for Education, it looks as though Prevent at DfE will continue to develop and focus on the vital counter-ideological work necessary to prevent terrorism.”
Of course, in November 2009, this “good understanding” presumably referred to an embarrassing series of blunders, when Gove helped David Cameron set up a question to the Prime Minister on “Islamic extremism”, making false claims regarding funding and inspection of Islamic schools.
Quilliam’s praise of Gove having a “good understanding” of the Prevent agenda and it’s prophesy that he would continue to develop the agenda worked wonders in securing their funding courtesy of the now neocon compromised DfE. In 2011, the Home Office had refused Quilliam’s funding, and Gove’s DfE contributed £120,000 to the “think-tank” in May 2011. Gove simply rescued his groomed neoconservatism-diffusers. He was, after all, a listed advisor to Quilliam in 2008.
Quilliam on Education
The 2009 memo advocated the following pertinent points as “areas for improvement”:
- Guidance to schools on how the “Islamist ideology may manifest itself in non-violent ways”, therefore enabling them to monitor thoughts of teachers and students,
- Countering “ideology” with the stressing of secular, democratic and liberal forms of government,
- Ensure staff and governors are not abusing their positions to “act as recruiters to Islamism, Wahhabism or other forms of extremism”.
DfE was recommended by Quilliam to draft a “statement of values” which would enshrine the schools’ commitment to equality, whilst all schools “must teach about British traditions of secularism”.
The above are the necessary ingredients for what stewed in 2014. Rashad Zaman Ali, known for embedding himself in the Muslim community to extract intelligence as well as being a spin-doctor for neocons, is a founder of Quilliam and maintains close ties with it. He was present at Park View Academy as an Arabic teacher in 2013. He soon left, not completing the academic year, and thereafter Rashad’s friend, Andrew Gilligan, began his unsubstantiated, distorted and inaccurate Trojan Hoax churnalism in the Telegraph. The “Wahhabi” reference in the memo is interesting. Gove’s brown lackey Khalid Mahmood played off sectarian differences and blamed all the ills on “Wahabis”, ignoring the fact that some of the teachers being implicated were from a Sufi background. Furthermore, it is well-known that Rashad has a sectarianist, vitriolic hatred for Salafis.
The evidence base garnered (anecdotal, uncorroborated, interpreted and spun by Gilligan himself) was made to fit the 2009 Quilliam suggestions.
The focus of the attack on Birmingham schools turned acutely ideological with “extremism” being the label to be applied, just as the memo advised. The “ideological” element included censuring the holding of political viewpoints like doubting government narratives, opposing Israel, and maintaining adherence to mainstream Islam, in a private sphere. At this point in time, Quilliam’s suggestion of stressing democracy and “liberal forms of government” mutated into what we now understand to be “British values”. Gove announced on the 9th of June 2014, having the Trojan Hoax as the ideal pretext, that,
“We already require independent schools, academies and free schools to respect British values. Now we will consult on strengthening this standard further, so that all schools actively promote British values.”
Ofsted, he added, would become the political police through which his widely criticised “British values” would be enforced.
Continued Quilliam Involvement
As I have already alluded to in a previous article, Quilliam later seems to have acted as a conduit for Ofsted in judging “extremism”. My sources state Quilliam’s Ishtiaq Husain was with the inspectors and influencing the outcomes at the height of the Trojan Hoax unravelling. He had come to Golden Hillock School and questioned the governors as early as April 2014.
Parents in Birmingham are also reporting that in December 2014, Rashad was seen accompanying the Ofsted inspectors at Birmingham’s Al-Hijrah school (here and here) as a consultant. It is also being alleged that Rashad was involved in the second wave of Trojan Hoax discrimination in schools situated in Tower Hamlets (see here and here).
More recently, sources in London are bringing attention to the fact that Maajid Nawaz had been invited to speak with children at a school, although I have not been able to confirm the precise topic being discussed or the school this has happened at.
Business for Quilliam and Rashad’s counter-extremism organisation CENTRI must have been booming thanks to the Trojan Hoax fiasco. Whilst deformist coffers fill-up, up to a hundred, mainly Muslim teachers are being suspended on the basis of their personally held mainstream Islamic beliefs or political views and may even be banned from their careers.
On a broader point, the issue of Muslim representation and engagement has been cast aside by the neocon government with a focus of coercive assimilation of Muslims into presumed, monolithic “British values” which simply do not uniformly exist. With this, deformists like Maajid Nawaz, Usama Hasan, Abu Muntasir and others from ISB and Inspire, have taken the mantle of discerning the “good” Muslims from the “bad”, sounding the death knell of genuine community engagement and “pluralism” in the most acute of ironies.
With genuine inquiry into the causes of radicalisation being jettisoned to pursue monetary and Stasi-esque neoconservative aims, it is the Muslim minority which is being minced in the meat grinder that is created by the incestuous relationship between deranged neocon officials and their pet think-tanks.