Given the toxicity of the PREVENT label, the Muslim minority is all too familiar with its problems. Its name results in an anxiety which now simply cannot be dismissed. As the highly problematic report “The Missing Muslims” published by Citizens UK recognised, the “Prevent Strategy on Muslim communities came up in most of the hearings across the country”. To deal with this breakdown, there is now a reversion to a “community-based” approach to tackling extremism and terrorism.
The “community response to terrorism” approach seeks to mask the issue that “buy-in” and trust of the community is absent and therefore the policy is not being co-opted by the community. The solution therefore operates on the assumption that PREVENT, or more accurately, a pre-criminal intervention is not necessarily the problem, and where there are problems, these are simply implementation detail which can be rectified. This is further supplemented by a co-existing effort to produce a response developed by the community in the hope that PREVENT would be rendered obsolete. Both however, posit the community and its exploitation central to the promulgation of pre-crime interventionism.
In this piece, I intend to outline a brief history of this resurgent “community-driven response” trend and highlight some of the organisations that seem to be pursuing this course of action.
See also: Lies, Spin and Distortion: Archive of Articles on Andrew Gilligan’s Anti-Muslim Journalism
One of the achievements anti-Muslim “journalist” Andrew Gilligan will be able to frame in his house will be “Greatest Proliferator of Lies”. When it comes to turning up the heat and smearing members of the Muslim minority, perhaps at the behest of neoconservatives, Gilligan is the go-to man for desperate “connections”, half-baked claims and in some cases, utter lies.
Earlier this year, I wrote a blog piece on the neoconservative campaign to undermine the fight against the draconian, widely lambasted PREVENT counter-extremism policy. Gilligan’s article was exposed for having number of number outlandish claims. One of the cases which was being circulated in the media to demonstrate the impact of PREVENT was the “eco-terrorisme” case. Gilligan claimed that the mother of child who had been referred via PREVENT, Ifhat Smith, was linked to campaign group Prevent Watch, and the Ennadha, which Gilligan explained was the Tunisian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood.
A couple of years ago, I noted that the substantive content in the campaign of attacks against Shaykh Haytham al-Haddad designed to smear him as “extremist” were in fact normative Islamic beliefs which cut across the theological spectrum. Shaykh al-Haddad was the proxy for the attack on Islam.
Since then, David Cameron himself has interfered with religion, attacking Islamic beliefs and practices, promoting deformists as the face of Islam, all the while employing doublespeak and urging the Muslim minority to shun the “conspiracy theories” that Islam is under attack. Looking from the colonialist, Eurocentric lens, all manner of denigration has been hurled at Islam, as “mutual tolerance” and “respect” is simultaneously preached to the Muslim community.
When I wrote barely over a week ago that the impact of the resistance to the PREVENT Strategy by the Muslim communities of Newham and Waltham Forest will “reverberate across the UK and into the faces of neocons”, I did not expect the ripple effect to materialise so soon.
Joining Newham Muslim religious leaders and Waltham Forest Council of Mosques in their rejection of discriminatory PREVENT Strategy and defying the desperate, pitiful attempts of neocons to spin opposition to PREVENT as being “silent on terrorism”, are a plethora of major Muslim organisations and individuals in the north of UK.
Earlier in the month I exposed how government plans to regulate supplementary schools (with the context of these proposals emphatically set as madrassas) were a cover to push the PREVENT social engineering programme into the private religious sphere, amounting to undue state interference of religion.
from user @mrjammyjamjar1
Journalism is meant to convey an impartial view of the world. Whilst the spirit of this ideal is laudable, the application is increasingly rarely seen.
Nazi-Style Propaganda from the Time
Skimming across news reports on social media briefly, my eyes caustically jarred upon a Times article defamatorily titled “Koran encourages rape”.
Can a newspaper fall so low? Could it be that a paper will front page grand lies demonising a minority? We are talking about Muslims here, and the nihilist paper which pedals lies only to have them retracted later knows the value of the initial impact of its propaganda – and frankly dangerous propaganda at that.