Outside of Egypt, support for the overthrow of the Mubarak regime was universal across every political affiliation and stripe. For once Muslims and Islamists, the left and the right cheered on the activists in Maidan Tahrir in downtown Cairo. But last year, we saw no support coming from the far-left and total ambivalence from Muslims and Islamists for the pro-democratic Green Movement as it was being brutally suppressed by the Islamic Regime of Iran.
But then Iran is an Islamic regime which bases its foriegn policy on anti-western doctrine and anti-semitism. These are all factors that the ‘far-left/Islamic-right’ nexus can get behind.
To prove the point: Have you ever heard of a terrorist attack perpetrated by Muslims to protest the way the Iranian regime imprisons, rapes and kills thousands of working class Muslims - which was then subsequently defended by the liberal-left on the west’s “misguided” foreign policy? No, it’s very unlikely that you will.
Just days after Jalal Ibn Saeed, aka Mister “A good death is a slow one”, was allowed to preach his lecture on death at the University of Birmingham, the peace-loving moderates at the University Islamic Society are hosting Abdul Raheem Green on Saturday 12 February.
Abdul Raheem Green is the hate preacher famous for telling his audience that in the event one’s wife should be strayed from the holy path, feel free to beat her into submission, with the caveat, that the beating should be “very light”. I don’t quite know what a very light beating consists of though Green does tells his audience that your beatings shouldn’t leave a mark on your wife.
However wrong Cameron may be on issues ranging from cuts to foreign policy, he can hardly be blamed for associating Birmingham Central Mosque with absurd conspiracy theories. In 2009 the BBC’s Conspiracy Files programme found Mosque Chairman Dr Mohammed Naseem distributing 200 copies of the DVD 7/7 Ripple Effect around the mosque, which propagates the view that Israel was behind the London bombings.
In a nutshell. On the position of “state multiculturalism” they are conjoined opposites who both betray liberal principles when they assert Islam, and the people who “adhere” (and I use that term in its loosest sense) to Islam, conform to a homogeneous and immutable religious identity, when it comes to the issues of diversity of beliefs and equality of rights.
Kenan Malik draws their similarities in a nicely observed piece on the shared values of the anti-Multiculturalism camp and the pro-Multiculturalism camp, the Murrays and the Bunglawalas of the world, and how they are both wrong:
Hassam Badrawi, the secretary general of the ruling National Democratic Party (NDP), told the BBC and Channel 4 News on that he expected Mubarak to hand over his powers to Omar Suleiman, the vice-president.
“I think the right thing to do now is to take the action that would satisfy … protesters,” Badrawi told BBC television in a live interview.
Ahmed Shafiq, the country’s prime minister, also told the BBC that the president may step down on Thursday evening, and that the situation would be “clarified soon”. He told the Reuters news agency, however, that Mubarak remained in control, and that “everything is still in the hands of the president”.
However, Anas el-Fekky, Egypt’s information minister, denied all reports of Mubarak resigning.
One of the negative outcomes of the post 7/7 debate on Islamist inspired extremism and terrorism is the fact that some journalists believe that just because someone is a Muslim he/she will inevitably be an expert on Islamist extremism. At first we were subjected to former corner shop owner turned Labour peer, Lord Nazir Ahmed, making bizarre and incomprehensible statements. Then we had to endure the buffoonery of Shahid Malik and Khalid Mehmood, both complete and utter imbeciles who only got elected due to the clan/tribal politics within the Pakistani communities in which they stood. And recently, we have been treated to more stupidity from another clueless and unelected Peer, Sayeedi Warsi.
All of the above mentioned individuals are more reminiscent of characters from ‘Carry On up the Khyber’ rather than serious commenter’s on socio-political issues. Whilst their comments should be viewed as entertainment rather than political analysis, the silliness doesn’t stop there. We now have spokespersons from the Ramadhan Foundation making complete fools of themselves.
Bob Lambert came out fighting with a desperate piece in defence of his disastrous thesis, which is unconvincing from the start:
As a result of Cameron’s new policy, several Muslims who al-Qaida strategists regard as serious and credible opponents in the battle for young hearts and minds will be hampered in their important counter-terrorism work. Fortunately, Cameron’s decision to deny effective Muslim community initiatives legitimacy and funding will not entirely halt effective grassroots work against al-Qaida influence but it will reduce its scale and impact. It will also make life difficult for local partnerships where Muslim community groups are branded extremist and subversive by the government. As a consequence, trust and mutual respect between police and Muslim community projects will be replaced by relationships of control and distrust, or no relationships at all – both outcomes serving al-Qaida better than counter-terrorism.
In the near-blanket media coverage of the Egyptian uprising, another compelling story of people power overcoming Islamic totalitarianism is unfolding in North Africa though it scarcely gets a mention and relatively no news coverage whatsoever. But Southern Sudan is now a new nation in its own right after it separated from the Islamist North Sudanese republic via a referendum of secession, in which nearly 99% from the south voted for independence! Here is a report from Morri Francis:
On Monday, I joined hundreds of people packed into the John Garang Memorial Centre, armed with small “South Sudan” flags. A big TV screen connected us to the Southern Sudan Referendum Commission in Khartoum.
Finally – the announcement that all of southern Sudan has been waiting to hear – the results of our vote on our future, whether or not to become a separate nation.