A series of blogs analysing the recent Channel 4 documentary titled, “What British Muslims Really Think”
Part 1: An Orchestrated Attack on Islam
Part 2: Brief Profile of Trevor Phillips
We now turn our attention to the Channel 4 documentary.
There has been much discussion on the survey from the perspective of methodological issues, with some commentators even edging on the patronising as the insinuation is made that “conservative views” are the preserve of “deprived areas” that house “Pakistani or Bangladeshi” people.
More troubling criticisms relate to the loaded question fallacies inherent in the survey, the applicability of questions to the control group, and the subsequent spin which Trevor Phillips applies. These aspects will be will be touched upon through this piece.
Accompanying the neocon propaganda documentary was a piece authored by Trevor Phillips himself in the Daily Mail. Both were a master class in spin constituted of a number of red herrings. These will be deconstructed to reveal a concerted effort to excommunicate the Muslim minority from society, rendering them the alien upon which neoconservative policies can be predicated.
There was more than a tinge of déjà vu with the Prime Minister’s speech in Slovakia. Cameron’s infamous Munich speech was notable in that, at a time when the EDL were spewing their alcohol-slurred and cognitively impaired hatred of all things Muslim in the city of Luton, Cameron spoke of “core British values”, and the threat of “Islamist extremism”. If anything, Cameron’s words were taken as credence by the EDL.
Cameron’s latest comments, which now swaps “Islamist” for “Islamic”, come against the backdrop of a terrorist attack committed against black Church-goers by a young white supremacist in the US who wanted to start a civil war. The timing of the two incidents could not have been more coincidental. I will refer back to this later on in my piece.
Click on the image to enlarge
With the rise of the far-right/Christianist extremists in the UK which is spreading throughout Europe, and the rhetoric of groups the EDL and Britain First becoming ever-more violent, it is important to understand the sources of such extremism and the pathway to neocon-inspired terrorism. Importing American neoconservative to Britain, neoconservative writers like Douglas Murray, Michael Gove, William Shawcross, Melanie Phillips and Andrew Gilligan, through their ideologically-driven narratives, have supported and shared their insidious and bigoted narratives with the likes of Robert Spencer and Pamella Geller.
Extremists like Spencer and Geller have gone onto inspire terrorists like Anders Breivik.
The above infogram gives a summary of the conveyor belt to right-wing/Christianist Terrorism, supported and inspired by neoconservatism. Perhaps the government can use it to create a dedicated “PREVENT” programme to counter explicitly far-right “Christianist” extremism and formulate a “Channel” deradicalisation programme for individuals who support a neocon-inspired narrative. A women’s network to target white mothers of potential radical far-right extremists can be established to spot “signs of radicalisation”, whilst school teachers can be trained to identify conservative Christian values which may not sit with “British values”. A list of neocons/far-right Christianist extremists who espouse illiberal, bigoted views can be placed on an “extremist list” and a taskforce set up to identify hate-preachers like Douglas Murray, Michael Gove, William Shawcross and Britain First’s Paul Golding. They can be subjected to a Terror and Extremist Behaviour Order, allowing civil authorities to take action against people seeking to spread their neocon/far-right/Christianist message of hate, in a similar way to existing Anti-Social Behaviour Orders.
The saddening and tragic death of a Muslim woman, 31 year old Nahid Almanea in Colchester, Essex, who was beaten and then stabbed 16 times to death “allegedly” as a result of her Islamic attire, raises some serious questions and highlights the massive discrimination the Muslim minority faces. The Saudi authorities as well as all other Arab countries from which Muslim students travel to the UK to study and contribute millions to the British economy as a result, should be warned about the threat the Muslim minority faces in Britain.
Were this a murder by a suspected Muslim of a non-Muslim white-woman, the entirety of the media spectrum would have given 24 hour coverage of the terrible act. Muslim names with speculation of “Islamism” and “extremism” possibly influencing the suspects would have been “alleged”. Discussions and debates would have ensued treating allegations as facts and “broader” debates would have been triggered within 48 hours of the death culminating into a boiling pot of questions surrounding integration, and the “Muslim problem”. The right-wing Daily Fail digesting media would have been raving and ranting in the comments attacking Islam, Muslims and dragging completely disconnected topics like Iran and Saudi Arabia into it, as if their governments represent the bastions of model Islamic governance.
In this case of the murder of the Muslim woman, we saw minimal coverage on news broadcasts, next to no discussions on far-right/neocon extremism which could have influenced the perpetrator of this potential terrorist attack, and definitely no discussions around inclusiveness of white supremacists who have vitriolic hatred for anything brown and covered or brown and bearded. Instead we saw incredibly reserved, highly circumspect comments in articles such as the Daily Fail:
“they should find out the facts first”
“surely this is speculation…”
Anti-Islam Pastor James McConnell
“An accursed race, a race utterly alienated from God, a generation forsooth which has not directed its heart and has not entrusted its spirit to God…” -Pope Urban II’s call for the crusades, France, Clermont, November 1095
There is one thing I respect Pastor James McConnell for, and that is that, like Pope Urban II, he is honest about his position on Islam and Muslims. Not a wolf in sheep’s clothing like the neocons who, in their attacks on the fundamentals of Islam, employ brown-faced, pseudo-intellectuals and “experts” to play linguistic gymnastics with Islam and concoct terms like “Islamism” in order to prevent allegations of intolerance against Islam. As though Islam is play dough as opposed to a religion of a people approaching 2 billion in number.
To recap, the Pastor stated that,
“Islam is heathen, Islam is satanic, Islam is a doctrine spawned in hell,”
“Enoch Powell was a prophet, he called it that blood would flow on the streets and it has happened”
Ian Forman and Anders Breivik – Inspired by the Same Root Ideology
The PREVENT policy and Channel programme have discriminatorily targeted the Muslim minority. This is something that even ACPO Channel statistics acknowledge.
With recent sensationalist, hyperbolic bluster from the neocons in the government and the media which has obsessively targeted the “evil” of “Islamist” extremism, there is a consistent and conspicuous reduction in noise when it comes to acts of terrorism conducted by white-supremacist individuals and groups with a Christian understanding.
Even when it comes to targeting women to “PREVENT” extremism, there is a recognition of discriminatory treatment against the Muslim minority but a refusal to target “white, working class women” in order to prevent right-wing terrorism:
“Who do we target not to build resilience to far-right extremism? Do we now start approaching white, working class women and saying we need to build their resilience (and their family’s) to becoming racists? Clearly not because this would be as insulting as that was. And while we may have previously been accused of breaching the human rights of UK Muslim communities in our discrimination of them on the grounds of religion, a protected characteristic, I do not suggest perpetuating this mistake with other groups in the interests of consistency.”
The recognition by Detective Inspector Khizra Dhindsa that indeed the government’ policy may have violated human rights, and is insulting, shows that at the international level there is an acknowledgement of Muslim minority rights discrimination. However, more pertinently for this discussion, it is worth highlighting the second-class citizenship of the Muslims. It is fine to violate the human rights of the Muslim minority, not quite so when it comes to white, non-Muslim mothers of prospective neo-nazi, far-right terrorists. Of course, the Inspector’s statement would carry more weight had it resulted in the canning of the highly discriminatory PREVENT policy, however this has not been the case and in fact the police have again targeted Muslim women in their campaign which ultimately results in the supporting of Bashar al-Assad’s regime and its human rights violation.