Speaking at Henry Jackson Society Event: Is Amnesty International Losing the Plot?

henryJacksonSocietyTearingapartDemocracyAmnesty

It has to be an epic form of hypocrisy. Amnesty International, after shamelessly being bludgeoned into publically distancing themselves from CAGE, now have their name on the Henry Jackson Society website. Abbas Faiz, senior research at Amnesty International South Asia is a listed speaker alongside neocon Haras Rafiq of Quilliam Foundation, and HJS’s very own Rupert Sutton at an upcoming event.

Gita Sahgal was paraded in the papers as the person who challenged Amnesty’s association with CAGE. Sahgal’s attack on Moazzam Begg was rooted in her bigotry toward Islam and Muslim in particular. The essence of her attack was ideological; Begg, she argued, subscribed to “a set of ideologies” which supported discrimination and violence. These were all responded at that time and are covered in my blog in detail.

It did not matter that CAGE advocated due process and rule of law. Neither did it matter that it campaigned against detention without trial and torture. Amnesty suffered amnesia regarding these aims when it decided to distance itself. What mattered was reputation under the façade of a defence of human rights. It sent an unequivocal message: a Muslim cannot campaign within the human rights paradigm, even if his calls support the causes of this very paradigm.

What acutely demonstrates the utmost bigotry of the faux liberals is the ear-drum-bursting silence on the “association” between HJS and Amnesty. As I argued early last year, human rights is often a stick used to beat the Muslim minority with. Islam is singled out and indeed, this is even “rationalised” by the likes of Sahgal and co.

Continue reading

The Henry Jackson Society and the Neoconservative “Trojan Horse”

henryJacksonSocietyTearingapartDemocracy

Imagine if a group of people with an ideology which completely tears apart principles of human rights, democracy and rule of law and which had an ideologically driven hatred of a minority were advising and influencing government policy, how would the public and hyperbolic media react? If the group were Muslims, the media and politicians would be crucifying the Muslim minority multiple times a day for several months and then building policies implementing a “fix” for those pesky Muslims. The bigoted “counter-jihad” movement would be out in their hate-filled troves talking about how the “Trojan Horse” Muslims have “taken over” Britain. In fact we saw what would happen when such allegations were made in the education sphere. Michael Gove went berserk.

Cue the Henry Jackson Society, a strongly neoconservative outfit which has been involved in two critically important areas which have maximally impacted the Muslim minority – homeland and international security. Neoconservatism is the “mode of thinking” which has resulted in the rule of law and human rights being continually eroded in Britain. It philosophically postulates one language and thinking for the people and one for themselves which they abide by. For those who think Cameron et al’s rhetoric of “British values”, democracy, human rights and rule of law is sincere, one merely has to look at the PREVENT strategy, Counter-Terror Bill and their rubric around the Human Rights Act to see the aforementioned values being shredded to pieces. Neoconservatism is about duality at every level. Hence even in the context of foreign policy, neocon Britain thoroughly enjoys lecturing Russians about adhering to their international obligations but becomes asphyxiated when it comes to critiquing the Zionist state about its observance of obligations. The love of liberalism is an emotional façade for the people which the neocons can abuse to attain power. The reality of how neocons regard liberalism is as stated by Irving Kristol, the “godfather” of neoconservatism,

Continue reading

Tony Blair: The Neoconservative Threat to the World (3) – Declaring War on Islam

TonyBlairAttackIslam

This is the third piece in the series exploring the neocon “mode of thinking” based upon Tony Blair’s essay. The first piece can be accessed here. The second piece is available here.

“Spectrums”

What becomes evident is that, though other factors exist for violence, for Blair, they are trivial compared to the threat of Islamism. Be it extremism of other faiths now, or Christian barbarity of the past. “We are dealing with the present” we are told. And in the present, we have the Boko Haram and ISIS.

Blair writes that they are fanatic, and “thus it is hard to envisage compromise with such people. They have no reasonable demands upon which we can negotiate.” Therefore there is no alternative except to fight such people:

“At a certain point, once they know superior and determined force is being used against them, some of them at least may be prepared to change.”

In other words, take a leaf out of Israel’s book and bomb the people into compliance. Ironically, a month after Blair writing his neocon manual for World War III, ISIS have been negotiating with States and releasing prisoners whilst the Boko Haram have negotiated a truce.

The feed for these groups are the “spectrum”. And herein lies Blair’s blatant imperialistic design. “Islamism” he defines as a “politicisation of religion to an intense and all-encompassing degree”. It is an ideology and a theology derived from Salafist thinking, he claims. It isn’t. An analysis of contemporary Islamic political movements (most of which are reactions formed in the colonialist/Nation State paradigm) is beyond the scope of this piece however, suffice to say, an outright rejection of an Islamic political and military ascendancy denies 1300 years of Islamic history in which Islam ruled through the Caliphate. The existence and the preference for a khilafa within the Islamic paradigm is a position adopted by all four mainstream schools of Islamic jurisprudence.

Continue reading

Tony Blair: The Neoconservative Threat to the World (2) – Concealing “Force and Fraud”

This is the second piece in the series exploring the neocon “mode of thinking” based upon Tony Blair’s essay which outlines dangerous policies and provides for a blueprint for perpetual war. The first part can be accessed here.

Deflecting Foreign Policy

For Blair, the elephant in the room, Western foreign policy, has little to do with the violence in Iraq. The previously peacefully coexisting Sunnis and Shia, are now, post-Iraq war, at each other’s throats. Perhaps the incident of 19th September 2005 can shed some light on this. On this day two undercover British SAS operatives, dressed in traditional Arab garb who were planning to set off bombs in the main square in Basra coinciding with a religious event, were caught in the act, imprisoned and then broken out of the police station by the British army.

The leading thinker and linguist, Noam Chomsky, writes,

“By now, Shiites and Sunnis are the bitterest enemies, thanks to the sledgehammer wielded by Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney… and others like them who understand nothing beyond violence and terror and have helped to create conflicts that are now tearing the region to shreds.”

Continue reading

Human Rights and Justice: Understanding the Neoconservative Threat

humanrightsactneocon

In my previous article, I highlighted how Moazzam Begg and his ordeal signalled the death knell of the counter terrorism and counter extremism agenda.  His presence, words and actions were and still are a thorn in the side of the neocon government’s intentions.

Que Alan Henning’s death. However saddening and condemnable it is, from a government point of view, frankly it’s the best thing that can happen for the neocons to continue the onwards march of the war on human rights, and continuation of the foreign policy agenda.  It is a means of accelerating the recuperation from the damage dealt by the release of Moazzam Begg.

Neoconservatism – a “Mode of thinking”

Murray has supported American policies like done attacks and waterboarding

Douglas Murray – supported American policies like drone attacks and waterboarding

Neoconservative policies are driving much of British politics today, but aside from a light mention of what neocons really stand for on this blog, the understanding of the intricate play of neoconservatism with the politics and the people requires a deeper analysis of the writings of the neocons and the sources from which they derive. I have already mentioned Douglas Murray, a man who does exert an influence over the current direction of UK’s frankly absurd policies. Murray in his book cites Leo Strauss,[1] and academics like Shadia Drury have described their thoughts as “Machiavellian”, abusing democracy to achieve their own ends.  For many, this serves little meaning in terms of everyday life.  In order to fully understand the implication of the neoconservative mind-set, one needs to delve further into the neocon “mode of thinking”.

The Henry Jackson Society, which is a key influence on UK domestic and foreign security policy, proudly imports (and exports) the American neoconservative “persuasion”.[2]  The focus on America is why Douglas Murray has passionately spoken in defence of American policies, for instance defending the use of US drone attacks and shockingly, even torture in the form of water-boarding. It is also why William Shawcross has defended Guantanamo Bay and the Iraq war and why Michael Gove pursued his “ideological” military-esque foray into the Muslim minority vis-à-vis Trojan Hoax, and why now the ground has been prepped for the neocons in Government to pull the plug on the Human Rights Act, to the disdain of various rights groups such as Liberty and Amnesty.

The “fathers of neoconservatism” are Irving Kristol and Leo Strauss. I will focus on Irving Kristol and other contemporary “leading lights” like David Brooks as it was Kristol  who brought out the writings of Strauss and wrote in defence and promotion of neocon “persuasions” (as opposed to principles) whilst contemporary neocon thinkers have built upon what has been written.

Neocons and the Acquisition of Power

The aim of the neocons is to firstly get into power, and once in power, stay there. They fundamentally do not believe in liberal “principles” as they do conservative ones.  This notion allows for the easy dispelling of other principles, such as the rule of law. As Kristol explains, there are moments when it is “wrong to do the right thing”,

“There are occasions where circumstances trump principles. Statesmanship consists not in being loyal to one’s avowed principles (that’s easy), but in recognizing the occasions one’s principles are being trumpeted by circumstances…”[3]

Continue reading