What did you learn at Rockwood Academy Today, Dear Little Boy of Mine?

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What did you learn in school today,
Dear little boy of mine?
I learned our government must be strong.
It’s always right and never wrong.
Our leaders are the finest men.
And we elect them again and again.
That’s what I learned in school today.
That’s what I learned in school.

What did you learn in school today,
Dear little boy of mine?
I learned that war is not so bad.
I learned of the great ones we have had.
We fought in Germany and in France.
And some day I might get my chance.
That’s what I learned in school today.
That’s what I learned in school.

~ A satirical protest song by Tom Paxton, 1963


Part 1 of the Rockwood Academy Series: Rockwood Academy is run by Trojan Horse Beneficiaries and Endorsed by “Extremists”


In this article, we will examine what is being done to the children at Rockwood Academy, Birmingham, and the implications of the initiatives pupils are being subjected to by the school.

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Neocons, the Christian Alliance and Exploitation of Religion

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The urge to deform Islam into something representing theological play dough has surfaced through many high profile voices.  Of course, there is the usual cavalry represented by thoughtless think-tanks, and their string pullers that are the neocons.  However, the rise of ISIS has provided sufficient pretext to bully and intimidate Muslims collectively into accepting the need to deform orthodox Islam after thoroughly maligning the faith through the association of crime.

David Cameron himself has, after the ceremonial alarm bells of “extremism”, officially posited “reforming voices” as the face of Islam, undermining the “secularism” of the state in the process and directly interfering with the private sphere of religion.

As this goes on, neocons are also busy re-architecting the national identity of Britain in opposition to this “other” faith.  Cameron and co have been loudly dog-whistling Christians. Entering into 2016, we saw Nicky Morgan saying that schools must teach that Britain is “Christian country”.

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Was Saving Bosnian Muslims the Primary Objective for Neocons?

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What started out as a response to a comment on my article turned into a fully-fledged piece for my blog.  An edited cross-post of one my heavily referenced articles on neoconservatives and their fascistic impact on society published on another site tendered the following colourful comment from an upset neocon apologist:

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Clearly, the individual was upset by the reality expressed in the article, which resulted in personal attacks, smears, followed by two subsequent post scripts. Normally I do not respond to comments, mainly due to want for time, but also because they rarely tackle the content of the articles. Here, however, something caught my attention, which I have been meaning to write about for some time.

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PM’s Birmingham Speech, One-Nation Programme and the Fascist Neoconservative Threat to Britain

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David Cameron in his speech said that in order to defeat extremism, the extreme ideology which underpins it must be confronted head on. I will confront an ideology which is already in power in Britain, and perpetuates fascism and violence in the name of values it does not believe in.

Looking back over the past decade, we witness the damage wrought by neconservatism in the US; the War on Terror which bequeathed us endless violence in Iraq and Afghanistan, civilian causalities amounting to genocide, torture, and the steady attrition of civil liberties thanks to legislation like the unconstitutional PATRIOT Act, which paved the way for unchecked power and increased surveillance. Muslim communities became the target of counter-subversion strategies and, what Professor Arun Kundnani calls, “COUNTELPRO 2.0” tactics:

“…the extensive surveillance of Muslim-American populations; the deployment of informants; the use of agents provocateurs; the widening use of material support legislation to criminalize charitable or expressive activities; and the use of community engagement to gather intelligence and effect ideological self-policing of communities. Significantly, such practices have been encouraged, organized, and legitimized by the radicalization models that law enforcement agencies adopted in the first decade of the twenty-first century.”[1]

Over a period of time, certainly in the US, the neocons have become almost taboo for the crimes they perpetrated, and the destruction they brought to civil liberties. As one American writer notes, “Neoconservative dreams of creating a hard-edged, neo-imperial American hegemony over the world died in the rubble of Iraq and Afghanistan.” Obama’s recent diplomatic agreement with Iran has further pained the neoconservatives, who have been consistently calling for a war against Iran.[2]

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The Neoconservatism in Michael Gove and Celsius 7/7 (4) – Terraforming Britain into a “Closed Society”

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In this series, we will delve deeper into the views held by our new Justice Secretary, Michael Gove as articulated in his book, Celsius 7/7, with additional commentary explaining the neoconservativism underpinning the statements where appropriate, and the impact it has thus far had on the good Britons of this country.

Click here to read Part 1.

Click here to read Part 2.

Click here to read Part 3.


Why Such an Offensive Foreign Policy?

Gove leads us to believe that democracy is the best “solvent yet devised for Islamism”, or rather, Islamic self-determination. Hence the benevolent West should bestow this loving gift through bombs and arms primarily in the resource rich Middle East.  This fantasy justification has been rebutted by history itself, be it through the hypocritical stance taken on the death sentence of the first democratically elected President of Egypt, or the outgrowth of the ever belligerent ISIS from the ruins of neocon foreign policy.  The argument that democracy means a safer world is untrue; the US “democracy” has been overthrowing other democracies for decades.

No, the real reason is alluded to through shrewd wording.  Gove writes that the importance of the spread of democracy is firstly “a matter of simple, prudent statecraft.”[1] While Gove goes on to extol the hypothetical virtues of a “proper” democratic Iran, a trackback is needed and these words carefully analysed.

“Prudence” and “statecraft” have very particular meanings amongst neoconservatives. And as the citation of Allan Bloom and reference to Kristol and Kagan’s “moral clarity” in the book shows, Gove is not unfamiliar with American neoconservative works.

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Terrorist Toddlers: PREVENT, Neoconservativism, and the Impending British Neo-Stasi State

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Quite a furore has been stirred by proposals which check for “extremism” in toddlers (yes, read that sentence again – it is absolutely ridiculous). According to the new PREVENT-on-steroids Strategy, teaching staff must have training which gives them knowledge and confidence to identify children as young as three, at risk of being drawn into terrorism and challenge “extremist ideas”. They must also know where and how to refer children to the Channel panel for “deradicalisation”. Though Home Office likes to placate the people with the spin that they do not expect “unnecessary intrusion into family life”, a proper examination of the reveals otherwise.  As Asim Qureshi of CAGE notes,

“the CTS Bill is presented as a consent based system where those… under 18… [must obtain] consent of their parents. However, the devil is in the detail, and where the consent is not gained, then the panels established to review each individual case of risk, will be able to consider models within the health and social services. In other words, the threat of having your children taken away, should you not provide consent, will be used as a form of coercion, so the very idea of a consent based approach will be completely neutralised.”

I have already written extensively about the fundamental problems of the PREVENT strategy (see links in this blog). Over the past decade, the Muslim minority have been the test bed for the impending statutory roll-out of PREVENT.  Much injustice has be done.  Lives have been disrupted, families harassed, and an entire community has been made to feel targeted and circumspect.  If there is any doubt that these measures are primarily aimed at the Muslim minority, then one needs to simply peruse the daily reports in neocon papers about “extremist” Muslims. Even in the those reports discussing this absurd proposal targeting toddlers, quotes of examples of children at risk of radicalisation from the Home Office are in the context of Muslims only (see the Telegraph and the Independent coverage as examples).  The references to “far-right terrorism” are tokenistic at best.

Establishing a multi-agency public surveillance programme conducted by the public, the PREVENT Strategy is simply put, a refined Stasi strategy. This near replication of authoritarian and fascist regimes is not incidental.

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Analysing the Impact of the Counter-Terror Bill

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If one were to draw a comparison between the freedoms which were being slaughtered in the pen of Parliament vis-à-vis counter terror legislation, and the response from the people and the media to this, a serious indifference would be perceived.  There has been more outrage about the restrictions on the type of porn being produced in the UK than the restriction of civil liberties due to the proposed bill. All three major political parties are in effect in agreement for the need to go ahead with such a legislation.  The debate is not whether the Bill is grossly disproportionate to threat at hand, or whether established, unshakeable principles such as rule of law and non-derogable rights are being systematically stripped to be replaced with meekly fettered “powers” which build on the already abused “powers”. No. The debate is whether the “measures” are “strong” enough, and why the restrictions on the right of freedom of conscious and belief, a jus cogens norm of international law, are not more intrusive.

In this piece, the principles and human rights which are being, not eroded, but decimated due to the Bill will be highlighted.  In terms of the provisions which place the controversial PREVENT strategy on statutory footing, I have elucidated on the impact this has had thus far on the Muslim minority in the following articles:

PREVENT and the Abuse of Women

PREVENT and the Public Surveillance State

PREVENT and the underlying erroneous “conveyor-belt theory”

PREVENT and the discussion of “extremism” and discrimination

The only additional point is that when children are assessed for signs of “radicalisation”, parents or guardians will not be allowed to be present during the assessment before the Channel panel. In other words, legal safeguards in the form of solicitors or appropriate adults do not exist to protect the child from misuse of powers, or more likely, a misapplication of what constitutes “extremism” and “radicalisation”.

The underlying motivation for the Bill points to the raising of the terrorist threat level[1] and Syrian conflict.

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