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  • Technorati: graph / links

    Are the BNP and EDL softening towards Muslims?


    by Sunny on 18th December, 2009 at 8:49 AM    

    Both the English Defence League and the BNP claim they are not racist. But they do spend a lot of time attacking and demonising Muslims, which they say is not racist because Muslims do not technically constitute a ‘race’. But is that stance now also softening?

    I forgot to point this out last week but a group called the Muslim Debate Initiative last week held a debate in London with reps from the BNP, EDL, SIOE, Christian People’s Alliance, Humanists and some Anglican nut. Anyway, after making his predictable remarks about how Britain is bending over backwards to appease Muslims when there are so many extremists running about, the BNP organiser Jeffrey Marshall did a big u-turn.

    Halfway through his speech he said he would like to reiterate what Nick Griffin said during Question Time, which is that they wanted a ‘truce’ with Muslims, and had several issues they could make common cause on. He said both the BNP and British Muslims opposed the UK’s foreign wars and invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq. He said both were very socially conservative and opposed homosexuality. And they agreed on bringing back the death penalty. The audience didn’t know what to say. But in fact I do remember Nick Griffin making the same points during BBC QT. What’s going on? Perhaps the BNP think it makes more electoral sense to focus on local issues than demonising Muslims. Either way, most curious.

    On top of that, there were one or two rumours last weekend that the EDL (who didn’t attend the above-mentioned debate) were willing to make common cause with Muslims in Harrow and isolate the Stop Islamisation of Europe nutjobs. This doesn’t seem to have materialised.

    But its not clear that all the top people at EDL are against all Muslims, unlike SIOE. The latter, incidentally, completely boycotted the Muslim Debate mentioned above - apparently Stephen Gash doesn’t like debate, only shouting from far.


         
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    Filed in: British Identity, Islamists, Race politics, Religion






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    1. Rumbold — on 18th December, 2009 at 2:02 AM  

      I suspect the BNP's strategy is more of an example of divide and rule. Confuse people by claiming common ground with Muslims over certain things, then slam them in other senses. It makes it more difficult for the BNP to be easily labelled by its opponents.

      Their language is very telling as well. A 'truce'? They see themselves at war with Muslims.

    2. Sofia — on 18th December, 2009 at 2:56 AM  

      smoke and mirrors

    3. Boyo — on 18th December, 2009 at 3:06 AM  

      “He said both were very socially conservative and opposed homosexuality. And they agreed on bringing back the death penalty. The audience didn’t know what to say.”

      Ah, so there's hope!

      This is a weird post. Are you suggesting it is time for the “progressive” left to make common cause with the BNP in the name of…. er…. at any rate it's the logical next step. You can all band together against the forces of… er… I mean, racism is relative. Is it worse than amputation or totalitarianism? It's all part of the wonderful multi-culti mix that some used to call fascism.

      It will be like Northern Ireland where the extremists embody the debate. Crush those lickspittle moderates!

    4. bananabrain — on 18th December, 2009 at 3:32 AM  

      this is a tactical move. the bnp (and edl and sioe) have been trying to enlist the support of the jewish community against muslims and have been, in no uncertain terms, rebuffed. there is no way we're going to fall for that - if we're going to build bridges with anyone, it should be the muslim communities. this is just positioning for electoral strategy - there are 2m muslims in the uk and only 0.3m jews, you do the maths. it is the same electoral calculus that drives left-wingers like livingstone and galloway to be seen “sticking it to the jooz” in order to pick up the vote from the islamic peanut gallery and of course our dear friends over on the loony left. in fact, the bnp are right - islamists (as opposed to muslims) share more of their policies than they do with the hard left - although the lefties are of course sticking their fingers in their ears and insisting that this is all really post-colonial anti-imperialist discourse and there's no such thing as a backward, obscurantist, beard-sucking fundamentalist nutbar.

      b'shalom

      bananabrain

    5. Jai — on 18th December, 2009 at 3:48 AM  

      http://www.spittoon.org/archives/4200

      Re: The SIOE demo outside the mosque in Harrow on Sunday 13 December:

      “Sunday also saw a much welcome boost to interfaith relations with Christian, Jewish, Sikh, Hindu and non-faith leaders pledging support to the mosque. One journalist at the mosque on Sunday joked that he thought he’d turned up at the local synagogue given the numbers of Rabbis present. Some Jews, in particular, feel a wary sense of the risk that darker chapters of Europe’s history might be repeated. This provided a powerful response to the SIOE who had come waving Israeli flags in order to provoke a response.”

    6. leon — on 18th December, 2009 at 5:14 AM  

      I like BB's post above, adding to it I'd say a Jewish Muslim Alliance could have profound electoral affects.

    7. bananabrain — on 18th December, 2009 at 6:03 AM  

      indeed it could…..dream on! or, perhaps it's something worth discussing further?

      b'shalom

      bananabrain

    8. Tom Griffin — on 18th December, 2009 at 7:02 AM  

      The EDL were certainly in Harrow. There was a small group with their 'youth organiser' Joel Titus which actually managed to turn up on time, unlike Gash and the SIOE crew.

      Given the involvement of people like Paul Ray and Alan Lake, I think the roots of the EDL are pretty firmly in the counterjihad movement. But they are playing on English Democrats-style right-wing English nationalism, and there might be a glimmer of an agenda there that is not really compatible in the long run.

    9. Shamit — on 18th December, 2009 at 7:42 AM  

      The Jewish Muslim alliance? For electoral purposes.

      I don't think many Jews or Muslims are anyway going to vote for BNP. And with regard to Electoral Politics - I personally know people from both communities and I don't think they put their religious community hat when it comes to electoral politics.

      There was a time when Labour used to get almost all the votes from the entire Asian community in this country but those days are long gone. Similarly, I think it would be rather disingenuous to think that all Muslims and Jews are going to vote the same way.
      And may I say I welcome that they don't - And I think even Respect is going to have a significant backlash this time around at least in the west midlands.

      By the way, I equate Respect with BNP - they are very similar.

    10. Fojee_Punjabi — on 18th December, 2009 at 8:17 AM  

      It took you this long to realise you were being an intellectual snob and to actually start listening to the grass roots concerns of non-Muslims and moderate Muslims in this country about the spread of a dangerous Islamist ideology across Britain?

      How do you make a living, Sunny, considering you're shit at what you do?

      Pray tell…

    11. Dalbir — on 18th December, 2009 at 8:36 AM  

      If this is true, it is funny. I would love to see the faces of those 'apnay' who like to hover around the arse of BNP/EDL types as potential bedmates against Islam.

      Ha ha!

    12. leon — on 18th December, 2009 at 9:51 AM  

      Heh yeah you're right it is a bit pie in the sky in a sense but you know there are strands of Jewish and Muslim communities that can and do work with each other. Some kind of joint project, I'd suspect something anti - racist, might be a good initial motivator.

      I actually think these communities have a lot to gain from forming closer relations, it's an exciting idea that faces real challenges to get moving but there's something to it.

      More discussion for sure, it would heighten the likelihood of something being generated…

    13. MaidMarian — on 18th December, 2009 at 12:01 PM  

      It is because the BNP are not looking to win votes - they are looking to win hearts and minds (to use what is surely the worst phrase of this decade).

      The BNP can do populism like none other, largely because they are unburdened with the need to actually win any elections. Of course they have positions in common with an Islamic stance. Religious identity is not the be-all-and-end-all in politics today, however much some may want it to be.

      The BNP use the same, successful it has to be said, technique they have used with all other identity groups. Pick on a small number of common issues, preferably ones that can be used to paint a picture of oppositionalism to a, 'dominant, arrogant[insert adjective] elite.' Make them high-profile issues so that the keyboard warriors do their stuff and downplay any shades of grey or lack of coherent narrative,

      It then becomes common currency that, 'although I'd never vote for them they do have a point….' There is no reason that this BNP model can not be applied to Muslims - in fact I would have thought that they would be an excellent target given their obsession with identity.

      That there can be common causes between the BNP and Muslims should come as a surprise to no one. That there is surprise is indicative of how deep the inability of some to look beyond identity issues is.

      Of course - the moment we come to a tough choice or flashpoint issue that cuts across identity the whole alliance implodes but none of it matters. The BNP have got the, 'right all along,' seed planted.

      There is a difference between politics and government - neither the BNP or radical islamists will be troubled by the reality of government. They can just grind the political axe to their heart's content and dumb politics down with them.

      I have long believed that they way to combat the BNP and radical Islam is a dumbing up. That people were lost for words at the thought of BNP/Islamic common cause shows how far away from that we are.

    14. David T — on 18th December, 2009 at 1:31 PM  

      The BNP and the EDL are very different things.

      The EDL are basically a loose coalition of idiots. There is some very low level BNP involvement, but as we know, the BNP has decided that its members are banned from EDL membership, on the basis that it is either a Jewish, and MI5 or a Communist plot. There have also been lunatics like Paul Ray involved, although I think he isn't any more. The bulk of the EDL, however, are football hooligans, with not much of a clue. They beat up the famous Sieg Heillers who turned up on their largest demonstration. Some certainly turned up at Harrow to demonstrate against the HCM - others were sending messages around saying that they wouldn't demonstrate because they'd called up HCM and were told that they didn't have a Sharia Court, and had therefore decided that they were not against them. At one stage, some EDL people were even talking about joining the counter demonstration, although I don't think they actually did.

      You'll remember that one of the EDL people turned up at the Muslim Dawa/Debate Initiative event, and claimed that they had “10,000 members”. By that, I think they meant that they had been at a football match at which there were 9,999 other other spectators.

      So, in short, they're half wits. They do try to distinguish between 'extremist' and 'moderate' Muslims, but frankly, as their guide is likely to be the Sun, they aren't particularly well equipped to make that distinction.

      By contrast, the BNP is an ideological party. Its ideology is not anti-Muslim. I know this is a shocking thing to say, but it really isn't. The BNP is a Nazi party. That is, it believes that the world can be explained in terms of 'race'. What matters to them is not what people believe, but their genetic code. That is why they have a constitution which excludes anybody but the 'Norse, Irish, Scots, English and Welsh Folk Communities”. They have only very very recently had a problem with Muslims, per se. In fact, at the last election, they had a white Muslim convert as a candidate!

      The reason that the BNP has settled on Muslim bashing as an electoral strategy is because (a) most Muslims are (as Sunny would say) “brown people” and (b) it is more socially acceptable - sadly - to be an anti-Muslim bigot than a racist. So, anti-Muslim bigotry is an alibi for the BNP's racism.

      The BNP hates Jews and people with more than a certain amount of melanin in their skins. They are race separatists. They want to deport Jews and brown people. Therefore, they will happily support Israel, because they'd like to deport Jews to Israel. Similarly, they will cheerfully call for the Taliban to be taken off the terror list - as Andrew Glans, MEP did this week - because they'd like to deport all asians to South Asia.

      http://lancasteruaf.blogspot.com/2009/12/bnp-me...

      There was a great deal of criticism of my co-blogger, Edmund Standing, when he pointed out that the BNP was a Nazi party, first and foremost, whose primary preoccupation was not religion but 'race'.

      But Edmund perceived the true nature of the BNP better than most.

    15. Stephen Gash — on 18th December, 2009 at 5:00 PM  

      Sunny quote: “But its not clear that all the top people at EDL are against all Muslims, unlike SIOE. The latter, incidentally, completely boycotted the Muslim Debate mentioned above – apparently Stephen Gash doesn’t like debate, only shouting from far.”

      A complete travesty of the truth as most things criticising me are. I accepted the original MDI invitation with, originally, 4 panellists. Then the MDI changed it to include a BNP panellist and another Muslim panellist. I accepted, provided I was permitted to speak first. Then they changed it again behind my back and advertised it differently in typical taqiyya fashion.

      Alan Craig pulled out at this stage, because of the changes, only to return when conditions returned to something like they had been originally. I decided not to as my trust had been broken.

      I will debate on open platform about SIOE's stance provided things are not altered from the agreed arrangements.

      I would not waste my time “debating” with Harrow mosque's leaders because the debate needs to be broader and does not, in fact, have to include SIOE. We are willing to leave it to people like Wafa Sultan, Ali Sina, Walid Shoebat and other experts.

      However, Asim Siddqui in the Guardian accuses us of wanting to “grandstand” because we refused to talk to Harrow mosque's leaders. All of my ripostes to Siddiqui were censored by the Guardian. So much for “Comment is Free”.

      If the MDI want to have another debate and invite me, I would consider it provided arrangements are in writing and not altered afterwards, as they were for the 10th December.

      By the way, for Sunny to accuse anybody else of “shouting” is risible, considering how he and his colleagues shouted me down in Piccadilly Circus in November.

    16. MiriamBinder — on 18th December, 2009 at 9:45 PM  

      Expediency will make for strange bedfellows …

    17. MiriamBinder — on 19th December, 2009 at 2:25 AM  

      I have just reread Stephen Gash' post. Is it just me or does it read like a very convoluted way of throwing your rattle out t'pram?

      “I will debate blah blah provided things(?) are not altered from the agreed arrangments” Things? Oh you mean the order of debate? Surely a debate will alter and change according to what is being said? Or did you assume you would be given a platform ” … I accepted provided I was permitted to speak first.” to give your lecture and then you could withdraw from the debate by only partaking if the mood swung you …

    18. MaidMarian — on 19th December, 2009 at 2:28 AM  

      David T - I agree with some of that, but one important point.

      'The reason that the BNP has settled on Muslim bashing as an electoral strategy.' Sure, it is an electoral strategy, but it is more than that. The BNP do look to win elections, but the MAIN aim is to make their ideas common currency. It is more than an election strategy.

      As you correctly say, they identify different hate groups as they go along and can use that figure (muslim or not) to promote their ideas. Muslims just have a higer profile because of the greater level of media attention, rightly or wrongly.

    19. David T — on 19th December, 2009 at 2:45 AM  

      Absolutely

      The important point is that the BNP is an ideological party. What worries them is race. Just as “class” is the prism through which everything makes sense for a communist, “race” fulfils a similar function for racist parties.

      There's a great tendency on the Left to think that racist parties are 'really' about something else - i.e. pushing “bourgeois interests” etc. But the BNP are absolutely 100% sincere in their racism. When they talk about race, there's no hidden agenda.That is genuinely how they think the world works.

      What is interesting about the BNP's shift to anti-Muslim bigotry, is that it shows the BNP's weakness. Their hardcore talk about race quite openly, but their public rhetoric has been - very recently - focussed on proxies for race. That is because they know that talking about race turns off the largely non-racist voters - people with black colleagues and friends! - they need to win over. That's what this speech was all about:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=04QolIvfQEw

      That they can get away with anti-Muslim bigotry is a disgrace - but it is important to realise that they're only doing it because they can play on fears about Muslims more easily - because, as you say, of the high profile of these issues.

      But at the core of absolutely everything that the BNP believes, is the concept of race, not culture or religion. It is what makes them tick.

      That is why the BNP could happily have a candidate who was a white convert to Islam. And indeed, how Nick Griffin could go begging for money from Qaddafi!

      http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/content/news_syndicat...

    20. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 3:46 AM  

      My explanation is merely a brief description of events made on a blog comments thread - as any fool would understand.

      Once again - I WAS INVITED to debate and the format was clearly laid out. This included a 15 minute presentation. Then things were changed without me being informed. As I said, Alan Craig also withdrew and it was he who informed me of the changes. This was admitted on the phone by the organiser.

      Alan Craig then chose to return to the debate. I decided not to. That is not throwing anything out of the pram, or demanding a platform.

      Comments here state that the BNP is changing its clothes to suit the ballot box (which I actually agree with) yet it seems perfectly OK, to the same commentators, for Muslims to change the conditions of an agreement to suit themselves whenever they like.

      The conditions of the debate may be altered, but it is plain justice to inform the participants about the changes beforehand. Unless of course you are a Muslim then the better-than-you hubris laced with taqiyya comes into play and Muslim organisers may do as they please.

      To be accused of “throwing your rattle out t'pram” is a sick joke when one considers the reaction of Muslims to the Danish cartoons and The Satanic Verses.

    21. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 3:59 AM  

      Wrong again. The BNP is just a bunch of vote-whores. They jumped on the anti-Islam bandwagon merely to gain votes.

      The BNP is the British turd in the English potpourri.

      What Sunny and most other commentators here had better start realising is that there are many people who detest the BNP as much as they detest Islam.

      When Sunny was shouting me down in Piccadilly Circus he accused SIOE of pushing Muslims to extremism, while at the same time accusing me of moaning about how anti-Islamists are pushed towards the BNP because of the “left” always accusing them of being BNP.

      The point is, the BNP will wither on the vine with open debate. Jihadism might do the same, although I believe it will only be delayed. However, all debate is shut down which is why the streets are the only recourse left for dissent. Now the EU is closing that down.

      It is always socialists, communists and Muslims who want to shut people up.

    22. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 4:03 AM  

      “That they can get away with anti-Muslim bigotry is a disgrace “
      Why?

    23. halima — on 19th December, 2009 at 4:15 AM  

      “The conditions of the debate may be altered, but it is plain justice to inform the participants about the changes beforehand. Unless of course you are a Muslim then the better-than-you hubris laced with taqiyya comes into play and Muslim organisers may do as they please.”

      Ah, here we go again, treating Musllims as though they/ we are a breed apart. Why hide your xenophobia behind concerns for Europe, what are you afraid of ? Being called a racist?

    24. David T — on 19th December, 2009 at 4:24 AM  

      Gash is, I suspect, not a racist.

      Rather he is a conspiracy theorist about Muslims - in which all Muslims are either part of the conspiracy or (less likely) are dupes.

      He believes that anybody who identifies as a Muslim, and - for example - supports liberal democracy, is lying.

      I know this, because this is what he told me.

    25. MiriamBinder — on 19th December, 2009 at 4:50 AM  

      @ Stephen Gash … Of course, how very silly of me. I disagree with you and therefore must be a fool, a Muslim or possibly both. Grow up Stephen and stop behaving like a Prima Donna … you'd be a lot more impressive!

    26. Sunny H — on 19th December, 2009 at 7:09 AM  

      It is always socialists, communists and Muslims who want to shut people up.

      You sound like some of our other nutjob commenters here Stephen Gash.

      Gash is, I suspect, not a racist.

      Mmmm… yeah like people who generalise about Jews are not racist? Come off it David.

    27. David T — on 19th December, 2009 at 7:14 AM  

      I think Gash focuses on ideology, not genetics. But he can tell you himself.

      They are different forms of bigotry: that's all.

    28. Jai — on 19th December, 2009 at 7:20 AM  

      Stephen Gash,

      1. Do you believe that the late Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan was an “Islamist”, as per the following statement attributed to the SIOE ?

      We do not believe in moderate Muslims. We believe there are Muslims and those who want to leave Islam. Some Muslims are more active than others, but all Muslims want sharia law and Islam to rule the world. Moderate Muslims are those who watch non-Muslims being killed, but still say Allah u Akbar when the killing is happening…..Therefore, we obviously oppose Islamists because Islamists are merely Muslims, and Muslims are Islamists.

      2. Do you personally believe that the Taj Mahal is a converted Hindu temple, as per your previous statement :

      Hindus tell me the Taj Mahal is in fact a Hindu temple that was converted into a mausoleum.

      (Source: http://www.pickledpolitics.com/archives/6595#co... )

      …..and my subsequent response, from the same thread :

      There are over 800 million Hindus in the world, the vast majority of them in India itself. Based on spurious alleged evidence which actually has no credibility amongst respected mainstream Indian academics, a very tiny fraction of them believe what you have stated. Perhaps you are unaware that the rest of the global Hindu population does not, and within India, the type of Hindus you are referring to are ridiculed as a laughing stock and a lunatic fringe group by the majority of that country's Hindu population.

      3. Are you claiming that you are more knowledgeable about Islam and Muslims in relation to the Indian subcontinent than the British historian William Dalrymple, and are you accusing him of lying in the various books and articles he writes about the subject ?

      4. Are you claiming that you are more knowledgeable about Islam and Muslims in relation to the Indian subcontinent than the 17th century Sikh leaders Guru Hargobind and Guru Gobind Singh were, considering that they lived during an era when the Mughal Empire was at the height of its power, in a part of the world which still has a greater concentration of Muslims than anywhere else, and where Muslims had already resided in large numbers for nearly 700 years at the time ?

      5. Do you believe that your assertion “all Muslims are Islamists” (and/or deliberately or inadvertently involved in practising “taqiyya” and “kitman”) as per the definition quoted in question 1 also applies to the Pakistani Sufi singer Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, ex-CNN anchor Riz Khan, current CNN anchor and Newsweek editor Fareed Zakaria, and the Indian Muslims Shahrukh Khan, Naseeruddin Shah, Javed Akhtar, Shabana Azmi, AR Rahman, Saif Ali Khan, his father the Nawab of Pataudi, Aamir Khan, and Salman Khan ?

    29. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 9:15 AM  

      We say what we mean and we mean what we say. It is Muslims who treat everybody else as a breed apart. Our concerns are for Europe because we see what Muslims do to minority groups when they hold power in other countries. I couldn't care less if people call me a racist because by the same token so are Maryam Namazie, Wafa Sultan and Walid Shoebat.

      The days are gone when people cower before an accusation of racism - because people like you have bandied it about willy nilly for so long, it has now lost its meaning. An accusation of racism is the death-rattle of a lost argument.

    30. MiriamBinder — on 19th December, 2009 at 9:22 AM  

      Some Muslims, not all Muslims, some people, not all people … Wild generalisations is what loses arguments just as wild accusations do.

      And is that the royal 'We' you are using?

    31. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 9:29 AM  

      People who support “liberal democracy” are the first to hurl abuse in my experience. These “liberal democrats” are the very ones who shut down debate. “Liberal democrats” promise referenda then withhold them when the result promises to be the opposite to what “liberal democrats” want. So yes, they are in the main liars.

      I don't trust Muslims and don't hide the fact. When looking across the world, what is there to trust about them? We can go round in circles if you like, but suppressing the news about Muslim persecution of non-Muslims in Islamic countries does not hide the fact that they are brutal when gaining control. Ask the Copts and Pakistani Christians, the Buddhists in Thailand, Christians in Indonesia etc etc etc.

      Why should non-Muslims believe Muslims about their “moderacy” when they did nothing to stop the “radicalisation” of Walthamstow mosque (just one example of the half of mosques radicalised in England)? They had 25 long years to do it.

      A couple of demonstrations outside a mosque in response to the constant terrorist-plotting coming out of mosques is a tiny price to pay when one considers how 17 Christians were killed by Muslims when the Pope read out a Byzantine text about Mohammed.

      Walthamstow mosque and the rest should have been closed down and no new mosques built.

      I've said it before, but I will say it again; taqiyya and kitman are insurmountable problems for Muslims to solve because they invented them, not me or any other non-Muslim.

    32. Jookymundo — on 19th December, 2009 at 9:31 AM  

      A lot of the Muslims I know agree with many of the BNP's policies, on homosexuality, capital punishment, foreign policy. Maybe it would be a good idea for the BNP to stop targeting muslims, and maybe the should have a look at the real problem, The Jews.

      also gameboy

      ╔═══╗
      ║▪██ ║
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      ║╬ ▫▫ ║
      ╚═══╝

    33. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 9:41 AM  

      Name me one communist regime that has not oppressed its people.

      Name me one Islamic regime that does not oppress its people. Without oil Islamic culture would not have advanced at all. Oh wait! They haven't advanced anyway.

      You know what I say about Muslims because I've told you to your face. Race is not an issue because Muslims comprise many races and kill non-Muslims of all races.

      I regard Islam just in the same way I regard Nazism. In fact it is the original Nazi philosophy, but even worse. I don't want Islam to advance in Europe, in fact I want to reel it back.

      Islam does not exist in a vacuum, it needs its protagonists, just as any regime does. Muslims have made sure Copts are persecuted in Egypt and have put Erdogan in power in Turkey. It was not “Islam”.

      The BMSD is pathetic with its “free speech will rule the world” banners. It should have stormed the mosques decades ago to stop what was going on there and is still going on. They didn't so it is quite reasonable to assume they didn't want to stop it.

    34. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 9:44 AM  

      Diddums. Even the owner of this blog calls me a nutjob. However, I guess you're right, I should not descend to his level.

      I'm no Prima Donna, but I fail to see why I should not be indignant about lies written about me.

    35. MiriamBinder — on 19th December, 2009 at 9:52 AM  

      Well, we are getting somewhere … now all you need to do is stop talking in generalised terms and maybe a discussion can take place.

    36. Fojee_Punjabi — on 19th December, 2009 at 9:53 AM  

      Well, Genius, if you had read up on your history or even been aware of current affairs you'd know that Jews are not a homogeneous bunch and that, in fact, there are divisions within the Jewish community about affairs as diverse as the state of the wider economy, climate change and even the existence of Israel itself.

      Take your hateful bile elsewhere- this is a place of progressive discussion.

      You c*nt.

    37. Jookymundo — on 19th December, 2009 at 10:01 AM  

      “Jews are not a homogeneous bunch and that, in fact, there are divisions within the Jewish community”

      agreed, and they are all bad

    38. Fojee_Punjabi — on 19th December, 2009 at 10:04 AM  

      One “communist” regime that does not oppress it's people might actually be the Sikhs. In essence our belief system takes communism to what the West might consider an extreme- we hold open kitchens and don't discriminate against anyone with caste, creed, race, gender or religion baring no bar to admission.

      Malaysia, though not exactly perfect, might serve as an example of a well run Islamic state though not overtly Islamist.

      By comparing Islam to Nazism you're showing your ignorance, pal because Sikhs, Hindus and Muslims had co-existed for centuries without much hindrance on the Indian sub-continent until- guess who- yes, the British, turned up to steal our lands.

      Still want to continue this debate now, Sunshine? ;)

    39. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 10:04 AM  

      1. I just believe the evidence of what is happeining now, not engaging in some pseudointellectual argument about the merits of Islam or certain Muslims.

      2. I'm not especially bothered either way, but looking at how Muslims dump their religious buildings on top of other religions' places of worship, it would not surprise me at all that the Taj Mahal had been misappropriated by Muslims.

      3. No. This is why I have been calling for experts like Wafa Sultan, Walid Shoebat etc. to bring the debate to England. However, they are under threat of death from Muslims, which is no surprise at all - is it?

      4. No. However, I am prepared for Hindus and Sikhs who have sent me information about what Islam has meant to the Indian subcontinent to take the helm on this one.

      5. Yes. To say a person is a Muslim but not an Islamist is an oxymoron as it is an explicit command to Muslims to make Islam dominant, by whatever means.

      People keep trying to bring Jews into the debate, but there is one fundamental difference between Judaism and Islam. The former is an exclusive club that is not too easy to join. This is why there are only 15 million Jews in the world.

      Islam is a martial proselytising doctrine expanded at the point of a sword and maintained by the sword. It is a horrible bullying philosophy.

      We in SIOE say what every truthful Muslim cleric says, yet we are condemned because we say it in an accusing way.

      Frankly, I don't care about these pseudointellectual exercises about Islam and Muslims. You would be better employed asking Harrow mosque leaders what they think about the treatment of Christians in Pakistan and Indonesia. Expect a bit of taqiyya and kitman though.

    40. David T — on 19th December, 2009 at 10:05 AM  

      Mr Gash

      Sunny thinks that you are a racist, while I maintain that you are an anti-Muslim bigot and “Islamophobe” in the true sense of the word: i.e. that you believe Islam to be a monolithic bloc, which is threatening in all its various forms.

      To clarify this issue, could you answer the following questions:

      1. Do you equally suspect “white” and “brown” Muslims?

      2. Are you hostile to any “brown” non-Muslims?

      3. Would you be hostile to a “brown” Muslim who had renounced his or her faith?

    41. BenSix — on 19th December, 2009 at 10:06 AM  

      Stephen Gash

      I couldn't care less if people call me a racist because by the same token so are Maryam Namazie, Wafa Sultan and Walid Shoebat.

      Wafa Sultan, for those who aren't aware, advocates the nuking of Islamic countries.

      [source]

      I thought you claimed to be opposing extremism, Stephen? Or is it only when it comes from Muslims?

      Ben

    42. MiriamBinder — on 19th December, 2009 at 10:38 AM  

      If Stephen Gash indeed opposes extremism as Ben suggests then he is being rather extremist about it. One of the first things one notices about extremists is how they have a tendency to tar with a very broad brush everything and everyone associated, however remotely, with whatever it is they oppose.

    43. Dalbir — on 19th December, 2009 at 11:08 AM  

      Islam is a martial proselytising doctrine expanded at the point of a sword and maintained by the sword. It is a horrible bullying philosophy.

      Sounds remarkably similar to recent Anglo-Saxon imperialism to me Gash?

      However, I am prepared for Hindus and Sikhs who have sent me information about what Islam has meant to the Indian subcontinent to take the helm on this one.

      The biggest fuck up was your own people turning up. Local Muslims seemed pretty much integrated in the period preceding that. At least in the Panjab region. It was your own people's ideology about proportional representation and other bollocks that messed things up. You talk of taqiya, but this is exactly the same as 'whiteman speaking with forked tongue' to all of the natives of lands they invaded. The same way white man ideas screwed the Panjab region, their 'vision' and interferencein Afghanistan and Iraq are also likely to come to a similar conclusion.

      I find the debate between the WASP and Islamo imperialist amazing. It's like watching two identical twins separated at birth talking to each other after a long separation. What is strangest is that each side has been doing the exact evil they are accusing the other of.

    44. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 11:51 AM  

      I'm not an Anglo-Saxon and don't believe in the Anglo-Saxons being the founders of England any more than I do the Celts being the “native ” people of these islands.

      I am on record, in writing, that I consider people may consider themselves to be English if it is in their hearts and minds. It is the British Government that denies people this right.

      You seem to think that I am an imperialist. I'm not. I am a Little Englander of the old school who considers imperialism the wrong thing to do.

      Again, what is past is past, I live in the present. Your assertion that the problems between Hindus and Muslims in India is due to the WASPS (now there's an insulting acronym) is fallacious, but also irrelevent.

      Your premise appears to be two wrongs make a right. India was independent before I was born and many non-Muslims have been subjected to Islamic rule post-British imperialism, such as the Biafrans, Assyrians and Papuans. Maybe these Muslim colonialists should clear out of the lands they occupy. That would be more pertenent to the discussion than you carping back to Scottish, Welsh and Irish colonisation.

    45. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 11:55 AM  

      Muslims tar themselves with their own behaviourial brush. They don't need my help.

    46. Fojee_Punjabi — on 19th December, 2009 at 11:56 AM  

      You're telling us it's fallacious even when we've just told you our forefathers lived side by side next to Muslims for hundreds of years until the British arrived?

      Are you reading what you are posting, Sir?

      What seems to be occurring here is that fascists of all stripes are clashing and you should simply bog off because you're creating trouble for the rest of us who are more tolerant and actually don't discriminate against one another based on factors like race or religion.

    47. saifuddin — on 19th December, 2009 at 11:56 AM  

      Hi everyone,

      I was part of the team that helped the organisers bring this event about. And what Stephen Gash says is a pathetic excuse.

      I found out about the real story from MDI directly. Stephen Gash, according to Alan Craig, was already under pressure from his group (i.e. the second person of his two-man band), to quit the event. Alan Craig withdrew from the event for one reason: He was concerned he would be associated with the BNP.

      This was due to the MDI advertising, which made it prominently known that the BNP would be attending. Alan Craig's response was “I can understand why you (the MDI) would want to feature the BNP prominently on your advertising, but I do not want to be associated with them”. After this, Alan Craig contacted Stephen Gash and told him that he was withdrawing, shortly thereafter, Stephen Gash found the excuse to withdraw. Apparently his conversation with Alan Craig revealed he 'had been told by others to withdraw for the event'.

      In controversial panel debates, the invited guest list changes all the time - it is to be expected. Thus, Stephen Gash's excuse is worthless. No conditions of the event were changed - just the guests (who changed themselves). The MDI is NOT responsible to other guests, if other guests turn up, or others want to join. This was not part of the agreement Stephen, stop lying.

      In fact, MDI bent over backwards to offer Stephen all the concessions he wanted in order to bring him onto the panel. One of Stephen's conditions was 'If Alan Craig returns to the panel', but when Alan Craig returned (with MDI's assurances he would not be conflated with the BNP) Stephen Gash still refused, and according to the MDI organiser, his excuse was “I'm going to focus on inviting as many people as possible to my demonstration, and not the debate event now” - really, that must have taken you a long time to persuade all 15 of them to turn up (EDL excluded of course).

      I suggest people here visit this site for more info on Stephen Gash's excuses and lies to do with the MDI event and his demo: http://bloggingtheology.wordpress.com/2009/12/1...

    48. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 12:02 PM  

      Ghandi said he would have nuked the British, but that doesn't seem to prevent statues being erected in his honour in England and him being treated as a demi-god.

      UAF advocates violence, but garners support from MPs and trade unions who therefore oppose extremism in words only. SIOE opposes Islam and we, like Recep Erdogan and most Muslim clerics in Islamic countries, don't accept the notion of extreme and moderate Islam.

      We also agree with most Muslim clerics when they say Western democracy and Islam are mutually exclusive.

      We say time and again, we oppose communism and Nazism, but I'll say it again, just for you. We oppose communism and Nazism.

    49. Dalbir — on 19th December, 2009 at 12:05 PM  

      I was talking specifically about the Sikh experience with local Muslims prior to the introduction of negative white ideas in the region.

      My main point is that WASPs have a tendency to needlessly disturb hornet's nests and then act surprised at the swarming that subsequently takes place.

    50. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 12:10 PM  

      1. Yes
      2. Yes if they are Nazis or commies (their record in modern times is as bad as Muslims). Pol Pot was a tad objectionable.
      3. No, except Maryam Namazie who keeps calling me a racist like a windup doll.

      I find it particularly objectionable that Maryam Namazie feels free to call somebody flying the English flag in England a racist, while flying the Iranian flag herself in England.

      Those days are rapidly coming to an end.

    51. saifuddin — on 19th December, 2009 at 12:17 PM  

      Hi everyone,

      I was part of the team that helped the organisers with the MDI Debate event on the 10th December. And what Stephen Gash says is a pathetic excuse.

      I found out about the real story from MDI directly. Stephen Gash, according to Alan Craig, was already under pressure from his group (i.e. the second person of his two-man band), to quit the event. Alan Craig withdrew from the event for one reason: He was concerned he would be associated with the BNP.

      This was due to the MDI advertising, which made it prominently known that the BNP would be attending. Alan Craig's response was “I can understand why you (the MDI) would want to feature the BNP prominently on your advertising, but I do not want to be associated with them”. After this, Alan Craig contacted Stephen Gash and told him that he was withdrawing, shortly thereafter, Stephen Gash found the excuse to withdraw. Apparently his conversation with Alan Craig revealed he 'had been told by others to withdraw from the event'.

      In controversial panel debates, the invited guest list changes all the time - it is to be expected. Thus, Stephen Gash's excuse is worthless. No conditions of the event were changed - just the guests (who changed themselves). The MDI is NOT responsible to other guests, if other guests leave, or others want to join. This was not part of the agreement Stephen, stop lying.

      In fact, MDI bent over backwards to offer Stephen all the concessions he wanted in order to bring him onto the panel. MDI allowed Stephen to speak first, it changed it's advertising to play down the attendance of the BNP, and one of Stephen's conditions was 'If Alan Craig returns to the panel', but when Alan Craig returned (with MDI's assurances he would not be conflated with the BNP) Stephen Gash still refused, and according to the MDI organiser, his excuse was “I'm going to focus on inviting as many people as possible to my demonstration, and not the debate event now” - really, that must have taken you a long time to persuade all 15 of them to turn up (EDL excluded of course).

      I suggest people here visit this site for more info on Stephen Gash's excuses and lies to do with the MDI event and his demo: http://bloggingtheology.wordpress.com/2009/12/1…

      The event ended up being fair, balanced (actually people said it was unbalanced, due to their being only ONE Muslim on the panel!) and no one was conflated with the BNP. For all Stephen's pathetic excuses, the event was a success with even the BNP praising MDI for it. I think we can all see Stephen Gash's excuses for withdrawing for what they really are.

    52. douglas clark — on 19th December, 2009 at 12:19 PM  

      Steven,

      Welcome back, we've missed you.

      How did your revisit to Harrow go? From a distant mileage, you look a bit like Jesus and the disciples. Twelve, was it?

      This seems to be an order of magnitude lower than your previous support at Harrow.

      You put an, err, good face on it don't you? It's a shame you are a completely bankrupt organisation….otherwise:

      I couldn't quite understand David T or Sunny Hundal giving you the time of day. As it is, I think I would be more likely to win a popularity poll. Only your twelve fans agree with you.

      OK, I would never win a popularity poll. That was a joke.

    53. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 12:24 PM  

      Malyasia? Don't make me puke. Have you ever tried finding out about Malaysia? I've worked with non-Muslim Malaysians in the past and it is accepted that non-native Malaysians are 4th on the pecking order for jobs to native-Malaysian Muslims, then Muslims, then native Malaysians in that “example of a well run Islamic state though not overtly Islamist”.
      Native-Malaysians are all but compelled to be Muslims.
      When Hindus demonstrated in their thousands in Kualar Lumpur against religious persecution, they were brutally oppressed. It never made mainstream news in the UK, nor indeed the EU.
      This is the problem, the pro-Muslim bias of the Western media, but most disgustingly the BBC. People in Europe are deliberately kept in ignorance of Muslim persecution.
      However, the Board of Trade makes supermarkets state where in Israel goods are produced before display on the shelves.

      When the truth about Muslims is broadcast and a gloves-off debate about Islam is held, will be the time SIOE considers disbanding.

    54. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 12:28 PM  

      First you call me a Prima Donna, then you patronise me while expressing a desire for a discussion.

    55. David T — on 19th December, 2009 at 12:45 PM  

      Thank you Stephen

      I think in (2) I haven't made myself clear. What I am asking is whether you would find (for example) a “brown” (say) social democrat or christian democrat objectionable, per se?

      I don't think Maryam does fly the Iranian flag, but perhaps I'm wrong.

    56. David T — on 19th December, 2009 at 12:56 PM  

      The event ended up being fair, balanced (actually people said it was unbalanced, due to their being only ONE Muslim on the panel!

      That person was me!

      I thought that the event was very entertaining, and I enjoyed it greatly. I only really agreed with Andrew Copson, but thought the English Democrat fellow had some interesting points to make about the difference between 'Scottishness' and 'Englishness'. Alan Craig was also a humane and engaging speaker, although I disagree with his politics.

      I didn't think that Andalusi was particularly good. It was funny when he confused Martin Luther with Martin Luther King! He seems like a nice fellow, but by god, he has an absolutely awful set of political ideas.

      The reason that I made the point I did about the balance of the meeting was this. I do not know any Muslims at all who think that what the world really needs is the creation of an Islamic state, governed by the full implementation of Sharia. Of course, there are many who do: particularly if they have got themselves involved with the Muslim Brotherhood, Jamaat-e-Islami, Al Muhajiroun or Hizb ut Tahrir. There are many more who would like to do things like settle family or business disputes according to 'Sharia': but that's a very long way from wanting to create a theocracy. I'd oppose any and all of this, up to the extent that it offends against equality, democracy or basic human rights standards, and I've devoted much of my time over the past 6 or so years to that particular struggle.

      What I thought was a pity about the debate is that the ONLY 'Muslim viewpoint' was that of Al Andalusi's, which is similar but not identical to that of Hizb ut Tahrir.

      Essentially, the debate appeared structurally to be pitting a single 'Muslim view' against a variety of (in most cases) pretty marginal 'Non Muslim views'. So, were you a Muslim, you were effectively being asked:

      “Will you side with your brothers and sisters, 'The Muslims': or will you go over to 'The Non Muslims'”

      I thought that that might well have been the point of the debate - to create a Muslim v Non Muslim dichotomy. In reality, however, there are huge debates - even between Islamist groups - and much much broader ones between Muslims who fight hard fr freedom and democracy, and Muslims who oppose it.

    57. MiriamBinder — on 19th December, 2009 at 2:13 PM  

      Patronise? Maybe it did come across as such. If so, my apologies … I don't mind discussions and debates. I intensely dislike generalisations as there really is not discussion possible if everything is viewed in terms of light and dark, good and evil, black and white. It is the shades of grey that are worth discussing …

    58. BenSix — on 19th December, 2009 at 3:36 PM  

      So, your answer to the fact that Wafa Sultan, who you laud as an “expert“, advocates the nuking of Islamic countries is a) Ghandi said it too, b) the UAF are violent and c) you oppose Communism and Nazism.

      Well, I haven't mentioned Ghandi, I haven't defended the UAF and I haven't questioned your opposition to either ideology.

      Still…

      UAF advocates violence, but garners support from MPs and trade unions who therefore oppose extremism in words only.

      Sultan advocates massive indiscriminate violence, and garners support from you. Do you, then, “oppose extremism in words only“?

    59. David T — on 19th December, 2009 at 3:49 PM  

      Here is something I wonder about, occasionally.

      We have no difficulty in recognising Stephen Gash's world view as being objectionable, right? Because it is premised on the idea that all true Muslims are bent on creating a theocratic state, governed by laws which impose gender and religious apartheid, and which would execute religious dissenters and gays. Right?

      Indeed, when Stephen Gash and 14 of his friends, two of whom came from the other side of Europe to join him, over 1000 people (including me!) turned up to jeer at him. That's how easily we identified this line as a form of vicious bigotry. Correct?

      Then, I went to the Muslim Debate/Dawa Initiative event, where the only Muslim debater was a convert who proceeded to explain that all true Muslims wanted an Islamic State, which applied Islamic Law strictly to its citizens. That was genuinely Abdullah Al Andalusi's line. He was arguing AGAINST the premise that Muslims wanted to “Islamise” Europe, and his best argument was that this was only what Muslims wanted to do in the 'Muslim World”!

      In other words, he was setting out, precisely, the same line that Stephen Gash has been running here today. And we've all turned out to boo him!! Because we think it is objectionable to say that all Muslims want to destroy democracy and liberty, because we know that this is a lie about of friends, comrades, colleagues.

      How many people do you think heckled or shouted at Abdullah Al Andalusi when he said that all true Muslims wanted an Islamic State, and it was their religious duty to work for one?

      One. One person broke in. From UAF. To shout “There's a Fascist on the Stage!”

      He was talking about the noncey looking bloke from the BNP, who was busy telling Muslims that they should support the BNP because they wanted to end the Afghan war.

      So, why do people shrug and shake their heads when they hear an Al Andalusi, but turn out in their thousands to boo a Gash?

    60. David T — on 19th December, 2009 at 4:04 PM  

      My flatmate at university once expressed the view, in all seriousness, that the next war would be fought in the sewers of London.

      I often think of that as one of the maddest things I've ever heard anybody suggest. However, turning the Middle East to glass trumps it.

    61. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 4:07 PM  

      Hindus and Sikhs have told me it is fallacious. Are you calling them liars?

    62. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 4:09 PM  

      You mean WASPS like the Irish and Scots?

    63. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 4:28 PM  

      Firstly, my version is the correct version and it is your excuses that are pathetic and you who is lying. Nobody tells me what to do and nobody told me not to go. People queried my safety, but I fully intended to go anyway and informed the Met Police I was going. I am not easily intimidated.

      Abdulla told me the advertising had been changed “without him knowing” and he had changed it back.

      I said I would not do it. Alan Craig has no right to speak on my behalf, but we discussed previous MDI events he'd attended and I had no qualms about going.

      Alan left a message on my answerphone saying he was now satisfied with the arrangements, but I decided not to change my mind because I was frankly disgusted at the underhand way the MDI handled it.

      If I don't want to do something I say so from the beginning. I was perfectly happy, even when the BNP was invited to talk and said I would participate with the one proviso I would speak first. The MDI said this was OK, but then went ahead with their underhand machinations.

      I haven't lied about this because there is no reason to lie. If the MDI had not farted about then I would have done it.

      saifuddin - is that your real name? If not you had best change your handle to safehidden if you intend to bady around accusations of lying. I said to Abdulla that I would consider doing a future event provided the invitation was in writing and I was sent copies of the advertising.

      Having been called a liar by an expert in taqiyya, I may reconsider this offer.

    64. douglas clark — on 19th December, 2009 at 4:56 PM  

      Eh!

      You mean WASPS like the Irish and Scots?

      Do you think, firstly that we are WASP, or that we agree with you?

      There may be fools that see themselves that way, they are your idiots, but they are not typically how we see ourselves.

      I have said this before, and you can piss off, if you say you are Scottish, you are…

    65. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 5:08 PM  

      I can't make head nor tail of your post. I am not Scottish. My jibe was that WASP is specifically aimed at the English, yet the Scots and Irish are equally culpable for British colonistaion - that was all.

      And BTW, you can piss off too.

    66. douglas clark — on 19th December, 2009 at 5:09 PM  

      Oh for fucks sake:

      Firstly, my version is the correct version and it is your excuses that are pathetic and you who is lying. Nobody tells me what to do and nobody told me not to go. People queried my safety, but I fully intended to go anyway and informed the Met Police I was going. I am not easily intimidated.

      Firstly, you version is not the correct version. It is your idiocy that is pathetic and it is you that is a liar. You have not been threatened.

      You make a complete idiot of yourself if you think you have a case for complaining.

      You are a fucking tit.

    67. douglas clark — on 19th December, 2009 at 5:29 PM  

      Steven Gash,

      Can I say what I want to say? I think you are some fucked up human being.

      I can't make head nor tail of your post. I am not Scottish. My jibe was that WASP is specifically aimed at the English, yet the Scots and Irish are equally culpable for British colonistaion - that was all.

      And BTW, you can piss off too.

      Yup.

      I am saying that lots of English people, and Welsh people and Scottish people and Northern Irish people think you are a piece of shit.

      I think, for instance that people I am very fond of, like Sunny, like Sonia, like Don, like Rumbold who I disagree with on the detail but never the substance. And I have no idea why you should think I should think any the less of them. These are marvelous people.

      Whether they are white or black,

      They are people I respect, and there are lots of others,

      You are an exceptionalist. I, on the other hand quite like people…

    68. douglas clark — on 19th December, 2009 at 6:19 PM  

      Jai, for instance, who can take your ridiculous, pathetic nationalism to pieces.

      I do not accept your idiocy. I do not accept your right to expect agreement from whiteish people such as me to your nonsense. My experiences of Muslims is nothing like your stupid ideas of taqiyya, in fact, most of the Muslims I know wouldn't have a clue what it means.

      Which is your idiocy, you assume I am ignorant, you assume that taqiyya really exists. I am saying that it only exists in your brain, that it does not exist in reality. Most Muslims I have discussed this with, a small sample admittedly, didn't even know what the word meant.

      I would like to know whether that is typical or unique. I expect it is the former, but what the heck do I know?

    69. douglas clark — on 19th December, 2009 at 6:26 PM  

      Well, latter, obviously.

    70. douglas clark — on 19th December, 2009 at 7:34 PM  

      And Steven Gash,

      Can I ask you why you keep posting here?

      Generally speaking this place is about friendship, about crossing religious and nationalistic borders. Admittedly, you may have felt more at home recently, for the good reason the idea of allowing contrary views has become acceptable.

      But that does not mean they have to be tolerated. I, perhaps, more than most, miss the views of people that can't be bothered arguing with a bully such as you good self.

      I will not bow down to your idiocy, but a lot of folk seem to have become suddenly silent. I assume you see that as a victory for your propoganda. I see it as a victory for your harassment.

      I would be interested if you were willing to place this comment on your own web site. For I do not recognise the idiots that you represent. And I would quite enjoy challenging them….

    71. MiriamBinder — on 19th December, 2009 at 8:57 PM  

      You have a very valid point re the reaction to Abdullah Al Andalusi opposed to the reaction to Stephen Gash.

    72. saifuddin — on 19th December, 2009 at 9:13 PM  

      “How many people do you think heckled or shouted at Abdullah Al Andalusi when he said that all true Muslims wanted an Islamic State, and it was their religious duty to work for one?” David T

      Don't you find it odd, that no Muslim took Abdullah to task for my claims?? Wasn't it interesting that the only person who took Abdullah to task, was a non-Muslim ultra-liberal blogger from 'Harry's place'?

      This apparent oddity can best be explained, in light of the recent poll conducted by the University of Maryland (I have linked to a pro-liberal article, so you cannot say there is an 'Islamist' bias:

      http://97.74.65.51/readArticle.aspx?ARTID=26344

      The wide majority of Muslims (2/3 in fact) desire to see one Caliphate, unifying the Muslim lands, ruling with Shariah. Abdullah was merely expressing the common majority desire of the Muslim community - a desire so often suppressed by the Liberal media unfortunately. Sure you may know many Muslims who don't want Sharia - but I would suggest, that those Muslims are the exception to the rule - one's who commonly hang around liberal circles, and thus, are encountered mostly by persons such as yourself.

      I for one agree with Abdullah, and I don't know any Muslims outside the BMSD that would say otherwise.

      “What I thought was a pity about the debate is that the ONLY 'Muslim viewpoint' was that of Al Andalusi's” David T

      The point you are missing David, is not whether Abdullah represents all views, or whether it was practical or not to have all Muslim views represented on the panel (if MDI did this, it would have to invite al-muhajiroun too!). The point at hand was that the Islamophobes had to HEAR a voice arguing against the allegation that Muslims desire Shariah in the UK - FROM SOMEONE WHO ACTUALLY BELIEVES IN THE SHARIAH. There's no point a Muslim Liberal saying it, the Islamophobes would merely discount him/her. Besides, Andrew Copson represented the Liberal perspective, so why have a Muslim Liberal who is only going to say the same thing as Andrew?

      Finally, I hear that MDI plan to have organise some debates between Muslims Liberals/Secularists and Orthodox mainstream Muslims next year - so be on the look out for that event. Should be interesting :)

    73. halima — on 19th December, 2009 at 9:49 PM  

      David T, with due respect in the 1930s it was a conspiracy against Jewish people, and anyone who supports liberal democracy was lying.

    74. halima — on 19th December, 2009 at 9:57 PM  

      “An accusation of racism is the death-rattle of a lost argument.”

      “I couldn't care less if people call me a racist `'

      Well to racists it's a lost argument for sure, in Britain as a whole it hasn't lost potency. Most people in Britain think its a vile hateful ideology . Whether you like it or not remember Britain is already Christian, Muslim, Sikh, Hindu, Jewish, you name it, and there's nothing you can do in the world to change this history. Keep on trying.

    75. David T — on 20th December, 2009 at 12:20 AM  

      OK, so can we take a step back.

      I have spent about six years arguing against the positions exemplified by the likes of SIOE and Al Andalusi. I have done so, never by reference to a unified group called 'The Muslims” and always by reference to specific parties: Jamaat-e-Islami, Hamas/Muslim Brotherhood. Hizb ut Tahrir, Al Muhajiroun, and free range individuals who express views that are substantially influenced by the politics of these or other similar parties.

      As a consequence of arguing against these specific political parties, I have been attacked pretty viciously on a series of forums, run in the main by people who are supporters of the politics of these political parties. It really hasn't been easy. Were it not for very loyal and steadfast comrades, including the Spittoon, I think I'd have given up.

      Now, if you read saifuddin's post, you'll see that there is a problem. There are a number of political activists in this country who share, absolutely, Stephen Gash's perspective on Muslims. In this country, polls show, saifuddin's and Al Andalusi's views are still marginal. HOWEVER they are prominent in groups like the British Muslim Initiative, the Muslim Council of Britain, the East London Mosque/London Muslim Centre, Cage Prisoners, and so on. All these groups are regarded as mainstream, representative, and appropriate allies for liberals and progressives.

      saifuddin links to Front Page magazine and and article by Andrew Bostom. Bostom shares, in a slightly more moderate form, the SIOE essentialising view of Muslims. He quotes a study which states that 62% of Muslims want to see a global caliphate which imposes Sharia 'strictly'.

      So, let's think about the lessons of that:

      1. I haven't looked at that study. Why don't some of you do that. Is it correct? Does it worry you? What will you do about it?

      2. How do you feel about the fact that both Bostom/SIOE and saifuddin (who is part of the Muslim Debate/Dawa Initiative) share the same views as to that political system that Muslims ought to want?

      3. How are you going to stop that politics spreading in the United Kingdom? At the moment, it is very much a minority view. However, the groups I've mentioned above are working MUCH harder the SIOE and are far more effective in recruiting than the anti-Muslim bigots. What will you do, for example, when you see liberal groups joining up with pro-Caliphate groups?

      4. How practically do you give support to those Muslims who also want to resist anti-democratic, anti-human rights, anti-equality politics?

      Douglas - you've put a huge amount of effort on this thread and outside, laying into Stephen Gash, slagging of Wafa Sultan. And good, well done. I think it is vital to stand up to sectarians and extremists on all sides.

      HOWEVER there really is a much bigger problem that Stephen Gash at the 14 people he managed to get out to a demonstration. Stephen Gash is a bloke with a website. By contrast, the groups I've mentioned have offices, staff, budgets, institutions. To give you a recent example, the pro-Caliphate Cordoba Institute recently had Ed Milliband on their platform. Daud Abdullah, who co-signed the Istanbul Declaration calling for attacks on the our Navy, if it enforced the Gaza ceasefire, spoke at the same conference as another Government minister last week, organised by his group. The MCB co-organises marches with the TUC.

      These are just a handful of examples.

      The people at the Spittoon and British Muslims for Secular Democracy are struggling hard against a political movement that is HUGELY more dangerous than Stephen Gash and his handful of oddballs.

      If you're motivated to rail against SIOE and the EDL, please please think about what you will do to stop those Islamist groups which do, in fact, share the precise politics that Gash imputes to all Muslims?

    76. Fojee_Punjabi — on 20th December, 2009 at 4:41 AM  

      No I'm just saying they're misguided and choose to blame Muslims as a whole for problems that were created by the British and exacerbated by Hindu and Sikh leaders at the time who were caught up in a fight or flight limbo.

      Don't try to put words into my mouth because you cannot argue with me properly- that's just cheap.

      Much like the tripe you come out with, actually.

    77. Fojee_Punjabi — on 20th December, 2009 at 4:49 AM  

      It's called positive discrimination, actually.

      And I'll have you know that many Han Chinese and Indian immigrants in Malaysia actually oppress the Malays by refusing them rights in their own country.

      No one is compelled to be Muslim- they do so of their own choice.

      You're just straw-manning, Pumpkin- change the record already.

      And if you really think non-native Malays are that oppressed then please go to Malaysia and see for yourself just how much money the Chinese and Indians make and how ingrained they are into Malaysia's culture.

      I think you'd learn something about integration, pal.

    78. Jai — on 20th December, 2009 at 4:54 AM  

      So, we have the following responses from Stephen Gash, on behalf of the SIOE, in writing and on the record :

      1. Q: Do you believe that the late Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan was an “Islamist”,….

      A:

      I just believe the evidence of what is happeining now, not engaging in some pseudointellectual argument about the merits of Islam or certain Muslims.

      Avoided answering the direct question.

      2. Q: Do you personally believe that the Taj Mahal is a converted Hindu temple……:

      A:

      I'm not especially bothered either way, but looking at how Muslims dump their religious buildings on top of other religions' places of worship, it would not surprise me at all that the Taj Mahal had been misappropriated by Muslims.

      Avoided providing a direct answer of “Yes” or “No”, but made the insinuation based on pure speculation and a non sequitur despite the lack of evidence supporting his previous statement about the Taj Mahal and the fact that this is a completely discredited theory.

      3. Q: Are you claiming that you are more knowledgeable about Islam and Muslims in relation to the Indian subcontinent than the British historian William Dalrymple, and are you accusing him of lying in the various books and articles he writes about the subject ?

      A:

      No. This is why I have been calling for experts like Wafa Sultan, Walid Shoebat etc. to bring the debate to England. However, they are under threat of death from Muslims, which is no surprise at all - is it?

      Contradicted his previous justifications for disregarding the mass of historical information written by William Dalrymple which had previously been provided, followed by an attempt to divert the conversation to an irrelevant tangential subject.

      4. Q: Are you claiming that you are more knowledgeable about Islam and Muslims in relation to the Indian subcontinent than the 17th century Sikh leaders Guru Hargobind and Guru Gobind Singh were, considering that they lived during an era when the Mughal Empire was at the height of its power, in a part of the world which still has a greater concentration of Muslims than anywhere else, and where Muslims had already resided in large numbers for nearly 700 years at the time ?

      A:

      No. However, I am prepared for Hindus and Sikhs who have sent me information about what Islam has meant to the Indian subcontinent to take the helm on this one.

      The primary source of reference in relation to Sikhs should be the writings, lives, actions and messages of the Sikh Gurus themselves, from Guru Nanak to Guru Gobind Singh inclusive. Some associated information has already been provided on this website, re: Guru Gobind Singh http://www.pickledpolitics.com/archives/6688 and Guru Hargobind http://www.pickledpolitics.com/archives/6771 .

      The information provided in those articles can be fully verified with the primary Sikh authorities at the Akal Takht in Amritsar, India.

      5. Q: Do you believe that your assertion “all Muslims are Islamists” (and/or deliberately or inadvertently involved in practising “taqiyya” and “kitman”) as per the definition quoted in question 1 also applies to the Pakistani Sufi singer Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, ex-CNN anchor Riz Khan, current CNN anchor and Newsweek editor Fareed Zakaria, and the Indian Muslims Shahrukh Khan, Naseeruddin Shah, Javed Akhtar, Shabana Azmi, AR Rahman, Saif Ali Khan, his father the Nawab of Pataudi, Aamir Khan, and Salman Khan ?

      A:

      Yes. To say a person is a Muslim but not an Islamist is an oxymoron as it is an explicit command to Muslims to make Islam dominant, by whatever means.

      Therefore, according to Stephen Gash of the SIOE, the following individuals are all “Islamists aiming to make Islam dominant, by whatever means”, deliberately or inadvertently engaged in practising “taqiyya” and “kitman”, and accurately described by the following: “Some Muslims are more active than others, but all Muslims want sharia law and Islam to rule the world. Moderate Muslims are those who watch non-Muslims being killed, but still say Allah u Akbar when the killing is happening…..Therefore, we obviously oppose Islamists because Islamists are merely Muslims, and Muslims are Islamists” :

      The Pakistani Sufi singer Rahat Fateh Ali Khan;
      ex-CNN anchor Riz Khan;
      current CNN anchor and Newsweek editor Fareed Zakaria;
      the Indian Muslim (and Oscar-winning) music director AR Rahman;
      the Bollywood superstars Shahrukh Khan, Naseeruddin Shah, Shabana Azmi, Aamir Khan, Salman Khan, Saif Ali Khan, and no doubt the veteran actor Yusuf Khan (screen name: “Dilip Kumar”), along with Saif Ali Khan’s father the Nawab of Pataudi.

      I wonder if Stephen Gash has a good defence lawyer.

      And the rest of his post after the points above is irrelevant.

    79. Stephen Gash — on 20th December, 2009 at 5:31 AM  

      I said I refuse to enter a pseudointellectual argument about individuals and Islam.

      A more important question is why have self-styled moderate Muslims done nothing to stop the “radicalisation” over at least half the mosques in England, notably Walthamstow, Finsbury Park, Regent's Park and Green Lane in Birmingham?

      Another important question is why do Muslims persecute Copts in Egypt in the manner of Nazis, with no mention of it in the British media?

      I fail to see why I should answer your worthless philosophical questions while Islam and its filfthy sharia are marching relentlessly into Europe.

      The biggest problem in the world is Muslims and their sycophantic Western politicians and media. Muslims are a bigger problem than climate change.

    80. Jai — on 20th December, 2009 at 6:01 AM  

      Stephen Gash,

      If you are going to make claims such as “all Muslims are Islamists, aiming to make Islam dominant by whatever means, are engaged in taqiyya and kitman, want Sharia law and Islam to rule the world, and say Allah u Akbar when non-Muslims are killed”, then you should expect to be challenged about that assertion in relation to both historical and contemporary Muslims and their respective interpretations of Islam, since you've made that allegation about all Muslims en masse.

      I'm not interested in engaging in tangential discussions about Egypt, Indonesia, Malaysia and so on. The majority of Muslims in Britain have roots in the Indian subcontinent, that part of the world has more Muslims than anywhere else, and they have been there in large numbers for approximately a thousand years, especially in the north.

      However, as I said, you should probably consider contacting a defence lawyer, considering the allegations you have now made about a series of extremely famous and successful South Asian Muslim celebrities, in writing and on a globally-accessible website.

    81. Stephen Gash — on 20th December, 2009 at 6:03 AM  

      Oddballs?

      We are less oddball than the BBC producers, directors, editors and journalists who studiously refuse to report on Muslim atrocities across the world, but choose to focus on Israel.

      We are less oddball than the academics who ban Israeli academics from English universities, but are more than happy to work with Egyptian, Indonesian, Pakistani and other Muslim academics.

      We are less oddball than the Board of Trade that made supermarkets distinguish Israeli products from those from “occupied territories”, but do not extend the same policy to Papua New Guinea or Biafra, for example.

      We are less oddball than the the BMSD (that is British Muslims for Secular Democracy) who allowed the “radicalisation” of mosques in England for decades.

      We are less oddball than the UAF and British politicians who denounce the BNP and stalk off rather than share an election platform with the BNP, but suggest the British Government talks to Hamas and Hezbollah who both slaughter their opposition and are overtly Nazi parties.

      We are less oddball than the politicians who denounce the BNP yet say we should talk to the head-chopping, nose-chopping, hand-chopping, acid-throwing Taliban.

      We are less oddball than Harrow councillors who claim Harrow is a cohesive, multi-cultural borough when Muslims go around knocking on doors to find out where Jews live.

    82. Stephen Gash — on 20th December, 2009 at 6:11 AM  

      So they are misguided and you are correct. OK.

      I couldn't care less, frankly, because I care about what is going on now. History has its place, but as we never seem to learn from it, I prefer to get on with stopping Islamic rule right here and now.

    83. Fojee_Punjabi — on 20th December, 2009 at 6:13 AM  

      What Islamic rule?!?!?!?

      You're delusional if you think that Muslims in this country bow to anyone or anything but the Qur'an.

      Stop playing politics with religion just because you're a selfish idiot!

    84. Stephen Gash — on 20th December, 2009 at 6:18 AM  

      As it was was non-Muslim and non-ehtnic Malays who informed me about it and sent me information about Islamic (ie Muslim) persecution I feel informed enough to write about it.

      So, positive discrimination is OK for the majority population, provded they are Muslims. Thanks for telling us.

      If you think that nobody is compelled to be a Muslim in Malaysia then you are wilfully ignorant. There are plenty of online soucres reporting how Malays may not legally leave Islam and how sharia is being introduced for all.

      Pal.

    85. Stephen Gash — on 20th December, 2009 at 6:27 AM  

      I openly state racism is a vile philosophy, but conflating race with a squalid theocratic despotic doctrine like Islam is puerile. Just as your post that also conflated race with religion is puerile.

      The accusation of racism has so often been used innappropriately, just as you have done, that people are becoming complacent about it, which doesn't bode well.

    86. Stephen Gash — on 20th December, 2009 at 6:29 AM  

      Quote: “I for one agree with Abdullah, and I don't know any Muslims outside the BMSD that would say otherwise.”

      And the BMSD are merely expressing taqiyya, as we both know. You know all about taqiyya as everybody else knows.

    87. Stephen Gash — on 20th December, 2009 at 6:35 AM  

      I didn't say I had been threatened you twat. I am not complaining I am merely stating the facts when lies have been written about me.

    88. Stephen Gash — on 20th December, 2009 at 6:42 AM  

      Again, I have no idea what the fuck you are on about, so I will desist from replying. Whatever made you think I ventured an opinion about what you think about Sunny, Sonia etc is beyond me, but please don't bother trying to explain.

    89. Stephen Gash — on 20th December, 2009 at 7:01 AM  

      I wouldn't bother posting here, but it may have escaped your attention that the article Sunny wrote mentions me by name.

      You speak of bullying. Well I consider force-feeding non-Muslim schoolchildren halal slaughtered meat to be bullying. I consider stopping people swimming at certain times, or for that matter stopping anything, because Muslims “might be offended” to be bullying.

      I consider shouting people down with “racist”, “xenophobe”, “bigot” merely because they object to things happening to be bullying. That government ministers resort to this kind of bullying is disgraceful.

      I consider your insulting posts to be bullying. I consider that you believing people should write what they like about me and I should not reply, to be bullying. Perhaps you should consider a job in the Guardian.

      Anyway you are one prize prick, so I'll not bother with you anymore. I try to avoid personal insults, but as you are so obviously a bullying arsewipe, I'll make an exception in your case (as you accuse me of being an exceptionalist).

      However, I will not post on this forum again, unless me or SIOE is mentioned in the future. In that case I reserve the right to respond. So have a word with Sunny about it.

    90. Fojee_Punjabi — on 20th December, 2009 at 7:14 AM  

      You're clutching at straws now.

      Do you still not get it?

      Those people suffer at the hands of the small minority of Malays who can't see the benefits that immigrants bring.

      RING ANY BELLS?!

    91. BenSix — on 20th December, 2009 at 7:25 AM  

      Stephen Gash

      And the BMSD are merely expressing taqiyya, as we both know.

      And why's this? Well, apparently because they didn't “storm the mosques decades ago“. Now, I opposed the Iraq war, but I didn't storm the Houses of Parliament. According to you, then, I must have supported it.

      Well, that's pretty illogical: you can hold an opinion without acting on it. It almost seems like, having convinced yourself that all Muslims are evil bastards, you're clumsily desperate to prove the point. Still, as Jai said, you'd better get yourself a defence lawyer before baselessly accusing people of lying.

      Here, to pick another example, you claimed that “BBC producers, directors, editors and journalists…studiously refuse to report on Muslim atrocities across the world“. Well, if you mean “atrocities carried out by Muslims” you're dead wrong…

      http://www.google.co.uk/#hl=en&source=hp&q=bbc+...
      http://www.google.co.uk/#hl=en&q=bbc+saudi+arab...
      http://www.google.co.uk/#hl=en&q=bbc+taliban+ac...
      http://www.google.co.uk/#hl=en&q=bbc+pakistan+a...

      I agree with David, by the way, that there are weightier issues to address, but most of our time - thanks to poorly spread knowledge, effort, energy or inspiration - is disproportionately spent. With all the reams he's written on far left grouplets he could hardly disagree.

      Ben

    92. Stephen Gash — on 20th December, 2009 at 9:21 AM  

      I wasn't going to respond anymore, but this is total bollocks. Intelligent people call it taqiyya.

      Sharia law is being introduced at governmental level in Malaysia. Hindu protests were put down by police (and the army I believe) as ordered by the Malaysian Government. This is official policy.

      Likewise, the persecution of the Copts is on government orders. The police openly persecute Copts.

      Both of these countries have some semblence of democracy and Muslims elected the said governments into power, just as with the Islamist Erdogan in Turkey.

      This done not represent a “tiny minority”.

      Anyway, history shows that dictatorships take hold when only 5% of the population is willing to take up arms in insurrection, or as an invading force.

      Well it's not going to happen here.

    93. Stephen Gash — on 20th December, 2009 at 9:46 AM  

      Your reply is pathetic. When was the last time you saw anything about the persecution of Copts in Egypt on the mainstream BBC news? Contrast that with Israel.

      When a third of a million pigs were barbarically slaughtered in Egypt to starve out the Copts the only appearance made in the BBC news was a tiny item on its website. Contrast that with the grubbing up of a few olive groves in Israel reported for days on the mainstream news.

      http://www.google.co.uk/search?hl=en&q=bbc+copt...

      The only time the ongoing Muslim terrorism in the Philippines has been mentioned in the news was when a few journalists were killed.

      Likewise Thailand where 3,600 non-Muslims have been murdered by Muslims over the last 5 years. Suppressed in the British media news.

      Regarding the Iraq war, 2 million reportedly took to the streets of London opposing the Iraq war, hundreds of thousands being Muslims claiming it was a “war against Islam”.

      None came out on London's streets after the London bombings saying “not in Islam's name”.

      If Al-Qaeda and the Taliban profess such perverse forms of Islam, why aren't Muslim countries in Iraq and Afghanistan fighting these organisations for the sake of Islam? Don't mention Pakistan which is fighting the organisation it spawned, the Taliban, while simultaneously harbouring Al-Qaeda.

      The indisputable fact is, only mosques are being used for training terrorists, not synagogues, temples or churches.

      Only the Koran is being used as an instruction manual for terrorism, not the Old and New Testaments, nor Hindu religious books.

      Muslims have failed to do anything about it, so they are to blame. Consequently, no more mosques should be built, no more concessions to Muslims should be made and immigration from Muslim countries should cease immediately.

      I would add to that, no more reporting on Gaza and the West Bank should be made and the Western media should focus on Islamic terrorism against non-Muslims across the world.

    94. David T — on 20th December, 2009 at 9:51 AM  

      Stephen

      This is such crap.

      Muslims in this country are LEADING the fight against antisemitism.

      1. Quilliam found Green Lanes Mosque hosting vicious racists and sectarian bigots.

      2. BMSD (or BDSM as a mate keeps calling them) put together a coalition including anti-racist campaigners of various religious and non-religious perspectives (including the prominent Sheikh, Usama Hasan, and Andrew Copson from the British Humanist Association) to oppose their racism in very clear terms:

      3. UCU invited a South African speaker, who had been condemned by the South African Human Rights commission for hate speech against Jews. The meeting was chaired by Tom Hickey, supposedly Left wing. Raheem Kassam spoke out against it. A Muslim. And a Tory, apparently!

      4. I opposed women only swimming, mid day, at my swimming pool - instituted for Haredi, not Muslim women. I also spoke out against 'Male Muslim Only” swimming, and Faisal of The Spittoon planned to turn up at the swimming pool with his daughter to challenge it.

      When you defame Muslims in the manner that you do, you are calling my friends and comrades liars.

      BenSix:

      I agree with David, by the way, that there are weightier issues to address, but most of our time - thanks to poorly spread knowledge, effort, energy or inspiration - is disproportionately spent. With all the reams he's written on far left grouplets he could hardly disagree.

      Far left grouplets disproportionately direct this debate.

      For example, United Against Fascism organised the picket of the Muslim Dawa/Debate Initiative meeting because there was a BNP-er on the platform. They organised a demonstration of a thousand against Gash's band of misfits.

      Would they ever organise a demonstration against a Jamaat/Hizb/Ikwaan/Al Muhaj meeting, that (a) believe pretty much the same things that the BNP do and (b) most certainly do believe in the political values that Gash ascribes to all British Muslims.

      No they wouldn't.

      Because they're run by the SWP and Socialist Action.

      We don't have a structure for organising against the Jamaat/Ikwaan/Hizb groups.

      People don't even know how to argue against them. Sunny, to his credit takes on Green Lanes Mosque. The comments on that thread are in single figures!. Nobody on this thread has told “saifuddin” to bugger off.

      It is very easy to have a go at Gash, and his 14 friends. But there are entire institutions that are controlled by Jamaat/Ikwaan/Hizb groups.

      Only groups like BMSD and Quilliam are actively campaigning against them.

    95. David T — on 20th December, 2009 at 10:13 AM  

      The same far Left groups which lead the fight against Gash and his handful of friends, will also happily:

      - put on joint events with Jamaat/Ikwaan groups; and

      - attack as racists, anybody who points out the impropriety of doing so.

      Remember - these groups share SIOE's view of Muslim politics - but just from opposing sides.

    96. BenSix — on 20th December, 2009 at 10:59 AM  

      So, Stephen Gash, you've now changed your position from “BBC producers, directors, editors and journalists…studiously refuse to report on Muslim atrocities” - which, as I showed, was nonsense - to 'BBC producers, directors, editors and journalists…studiously refuse to report on THESE Muslim atrocities'. However, you're still wrong…

      When a third of a million pigs were barbarically slaughtered in Egypt to starve out the Copts the only appearance made in the BBC news was a tiny item on its website.

      I'll see your “only appearance” and raise you…

      http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/80...
      http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/8185844.stm
      http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/8024946.stm

      O'course, the Beeb does put out too little on many stories, and, I agree, a disproportionate amount of its output goes onto Israel/Palestine. The idea that they focus on Izzy/Pal at the expense of “Muslim atrocities“, however, exists only in your mind.

      If Al-Qaeda and the Taliban profess such perverse forms of Islam, why aren't Muslim countries in Iraq and Afghanistan fighting these organisations for the sake of Islam?

      Countries in Iraq and Afghanistan?

      Regarding the Iraq war, 2 million reportedly took to the streets of London opposing the Iraq war, hundreds of thousands being Muslims claiming it was a “war against Islam”.

      None came out on London's streets after the London bombings saying “not in Islam's name”.

      That's because the anti-war marchers had a specific complaint, aimed at a specific entity. What would be the point of your hypothetical 8th July trudge? Many Muslims condemned the bombings.

      The indisputable fact is, only mosques are being used for training terrorists, not synagogues, temples or churches.

      Only the Koran is being used as an instruction manual for terrorism, not the Old and New Testaments, nor Hindu religious books.

      Well, the Bible's still used to justify war (see, for example, Falwell and Hagee), oppression (Ssempa and Museveni) and so on. Islam, however, I agree, is used to justify violence and tyranny on a wider scale than other religions. That it's distinct, however, isn't dreadfully important - how distinct it is, the extent to which it inspires violence, is important.

      Muslims have failed to do anything about it, so they are to blame.

      To blame for what?

      Consequently, no more mosques should be built, no more concessions to Muslims should be made and immigration from Muslim countries should cease immediately.

      So, all that should come into being because Muslims are “to blame” for something that you've yet to reveal?

      I would add to that, no more reporting on Gaza and the West Bank should be made and the Western media should focus on Islamic terrorism against non-Muslims across the world.

      So, under General Gash, the media would be barred from reporting on Israel/Palestine, and focus entirely on “Islamic terrorism against non-Muslims“. That's a bit…samey, isn't it?

    97. Andrew — on 20th December, 2009 at 7:20 PM  

      I think SIOE has made its position clear on its blog. Is there anything left to say to them?

      “A question to the British Muslims for Secular Democracy (BMSD), United Against Fascism (UAF) and the English Defence League (EDL): Are these moderate or extremist Muslims taking over the streets of Paris?

      There are NO moderate Muslims. They all want to take over, one way or another.”

      http://sioe.wordpress.com/2009/12/19/are-these-...

    98. Jai — on 21st December, 2009 at 2:57 AM  

      BenSix,

      Still, as Jai said, you'd better get yourself a defence lawyer before baselessly accusing people of lying.

      As a result of his statements on this thread, in writing, as a representative of SIOE, and specifically referring to a dozen individuals by name, Stephen Gash has now rendered himself liable to potentially facing multimillion dollar lawsuits for libel and defamation as a result of international prosecutions initiated by millionaire Asian Muslim celebrities living in the United States, India and Pakistan who can easily afford the best lawyers in the world.

      Furthermore, I think the fact that he has openly accused people like Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, Riz Khan, Fareed Zakaria, AR Rahman, the Nawab of Pataudi and seven of Bollywood's biggest superstars of being “Islamists aiming to make Islam dominant, by whatever means, deliberately or inadvertently engaged in practising “taqiyya” and “kitman”, who want sharia law and Islam to rule the world, and say Allah u Akbar when watching non-Muslims being killed” tells you everything you need to know about his mentality and credibility.

      As Andrew stated, there is nothing more that is left to be said.

    99. Stephen Gash — on 21st December, 2009 at 3:19 AM  

      LOL! Multimillion dollar lawsuits? LOL!

      Please bring it on.

    100. David T — on 21st December, 2009 at 3:29 AM  

      Can I just make a brief interjection to repeat my point.

      Stephen Gash is a sideshow. He is - despite his protestations - an oddball, with 14 supporters.

      There are, however, political parties operating in the United Kingdom, with institutions which are staffed and properly organised and funded, which do indeed practice precisely the politics that Stephen Gash attributes to all Muslims.

      At the moment, these groups have marginal support, but - like the BNP - they are growing, and putting down roots. They are - again contrary to Gash - being opposed by a coalition which includes and is often led by Muslims.

      They're the real problem. They control a number of prominent institutions. They can put on events which are attended by senior politicians and even judges. That indicates, to me, that they are winning.

      Instead of wasting your time with a man who, to be frank, I think is a nutter - why not put your efforts into disrupting a genuine clerical-fascist network? Given that the groups we're talking about have a track record of oppressing and killing, primarily, Muslims, this really is the best way you can defend Muslims.

    101. MiriamBinder — on 21st December, 2009 at 3:30 AM  

      You'd absolutely love it. It would actually give you the illusion of credibility …

    102. BenSix — on 21st December, 2009 at 6:10 AM  

      David

      You are, of course, utterly right, and with that I bow from the thread.

    103. Pobeda — on 21st December, 2009 at 6:23 AM  

      Oh, dear! Gash is SUCH a silly.

      Muslims are really super people, as everyone knows!

      Look!

      http://www.amren.com/mtnews/archives/2009/06/wi...

      See what I mean?

    104. David T — on 21st December, 2009 at 7:29 AM  

      The BNP is the bigger concern, because it has a party and a structure, and now not only councillors but MEPs.

      Its long term position is precisely what you'd expect from a racist party:

      i.e.

      - Jews out of the UK into Israel.

      - Asians to South Asia

      That's why Andrew Glans MEP wants troops out of Afghanistan and the Taliban taken off the terror list:

      http://lancasteruaf.blogspot.com/2009/12/bnp-me...

      As far as he is concerned, non-whites (irrespective of their religion) should not be in the UK at all. Support for “troops out” and the Taliban is part of that. Ditto the supposed BNP “support” for Israel.

      This is because the BNP is an ideologically racist party. Gash, by contrast, is most certainly NOT a racist, but IS an anti-Muslim bigot.

    105. Stephen Gash — on 21st December, 2009 at 11:53 AM  

      Definition of a bigot: “An obsessive and intolerant adherent to a particular doctrine or creed”. A perfect description of a Muslim.

      “Bigot” is as misused as “racist” and “fascist” by people like the UAF.

      The laughable thing is, “Islamophobia” was coined as a description because racism could not be logically applied to the multi-racial group, Muslims. However, the loony left have still attempted to conflate the two, so that being an Islamophobe (which I proudly am) necessitates one being a racist in their mad eyes. However, Muslims are the first to call me a racist because they consider it works in quelling opposition to Islam and its filfthy sharia. It obviously doesn't work.

      I don't care about your Muslim mates. It is too little too late. Out of interest, how long has the BMSD been going as an organisation? When did it start exactly?

    106. Don — on 21st December, 2009 at 12:43 PM  

      'Obsessive' is a judgement call, but you might want to think about it, Stephen.

      As for 'intolerant '? Well, starting with the assumption that anyone who disagrees with you, or who has a different perspective, is automatically a liar does leave you open to that charge.

      What on earth do you think you are achieving just repeating the same abuse at people who are actively trying to improve matters?

    107. KB Player — on 21st December, 2009 at 1:20 PM  

      What David said. Even Lee John Barnes has more variety than Gash, who has only one tune in his repertoire. All Muslims are evil, and if any Muslim doesn't seem that bad, it's because he or she is only pretending. Leave him to foam alone.

    108. MiriamBinder — on 21st December, 2009 at 1:50 PM  

      You disapprove of racist, bigot and fascist … How about polariser? Your very stance of uncompromising 'All Muslims' of necessity causes polarisation and effectively stymies all debate …

      Oh and before you get on your soap-box … the same holds for anyone who is as incapable of seeing variables … regardless of which side of the political/philosophical spectrum they claim to be from. It is polarisation that causes more problems then any cultural variables do.

    109. David T — on 21st December, 2009 at 2:01 PM  

      Clearly you believe the precise opposite of this - but most Muslims are not organised into confessional political blocs in the United Kingdom. Most Muslims spend their time doing things like (a) working (b) looking after their families (c) playing with Nintendo WIIs (d) etc, rather than (a) scheming (b) plotting and (c) organising themselves into pro- or anti-Islamist campaign groups.

      Groups aligned with Hamas/Muslim Brotherhood are largely confined to a handful of Middle Eastern refugees from Tunisia, Palestine, Kuwait, etc. There is a much larger bloc that is aligned with Jamaat-e-Islami. Al Muhajiroun/Hizb ut Tahrir recruits generally from mentally unstable people, and was really given a push by a bloke who used to be cadre in the SWP, but is now crippled with multiple sclerosis.

      Most of this political activity in the UK started in the mid 1990s, although you can trace its roots in this country back to the late 1980s.

      By contrast, Muslims opposed to this sort of politics have been conscious of it about as long as you and I have: i.e. since 2001. There is one exception, of course: Iranians. Anti-Islamist Iranian groups have been going since about 1979, but is largely confined to expats. There's pretty much no solidarity with them, but solidarity movements stretching beyond Iranians are starting up now.

      None of this makes sense to you, because (a) you're an idiot and (b) you're too lazy to find it out for yourself.

      But now you know. It will make no difference to you, however, because you are a bigot.

    110. David T — on 21st December, 2009 at 3:13 PM  

      I confess, I have something of a Panglossian nature. Perhaps I have no basis for my naturally sunny and optimistic outlook on people.

      But I believe that nobody is beyond redemption. I know many people who have suddenly, in a moment of clarity, realised that the pernicious nonsense that they've believed and circulated to others is just rot. I think about people I know well, who left Hizb ut Tahrir, for example.

      I very much hope that you will have a Damascene moment, perhaps when reading this thread back to yourself.

      Perhaps you'll think:

      “Hang on a moment, I don't know the first thing about Islam, Muslims or Islamist politics. There are other people out there who have a much more commanding understanding of the scene. Not for them, the totalising vision of a great mass of Islam, undifferentiated and uniformly malign and threatening. Instead of reading conspiracy sites on the internet, they seem to have taken the trouble really to get to grips with the geography of the British Islamist scene, and have formed alliances and worked overtime to challenge the spread of a vicious ideology by a handful of very energetic organisations and individuals. I think I need to think it through again!”

      You've been wasting your time. You need to completely change the focus of your work, and devote the rest of your life to organising a non sectarian football competition, or promoting scouting, or doing anything other than ranting in a car park by a Mosque, in the company of a bloke from Bulgaria and some football fans while people like this laugh at you:

      http://www.thejc.com/files/imagecache/body_land...

    111. douglas clark — on 21st December, 2009 at 5:01 PM  

      David T,

      Interesting couple of comments.

      Steven Gash is being given an importance by all of us that he and his group do not merit. SOIE is marginal, even on the right. It is clear to me at least that Steven has views that only a few people can be bothered to support. There are probably more people who believe, even now, that crop circles are aliens artifacts than agree with him.

      It is also pretty noticeable that Steven is unable to discuss things with his titular opponents. It is all very reminiscent of Northern Ireland during the 'Troubles'.

      If you assume your opponent acts exclusively with bad faith, then your only option is to try to convince the middle ground that there are only two sides to the arguement, yours and theirs. And that they must choose one.

      Which is really not true.

      This concentration on extremists, at the expense of more moderate views, certainly sells newspapers, certainly fills 24 hour news cycles, certainly makes Steven Gash and the half dozen Muslims against our troops seem more important than they actually are.

      Or, perhaps, the tail end of that last sentence - more important than they actually are - is wrong? For, I think, people who are iconoclasts have it best in this world. They make money, the media loves them and they polarise society.

      What's not to love about the business model?

    112. David T — on 22nd December, 2009 at 12:07 AM  

      Stephen Gash's views are similar to those that are popular in parts of the US mainstream Right.

      The other thing that worries me is this. Gash's schtick is to claim that he's the only guy speaking out about the perils of jihadism etc.. He then peddles a conspiracy theory, in which all British Muslims are either dupes or, more likely, lying about being active participants in a grand jihad against this country.

      This is all completely nonsense. There are a small number of very active and very vocal groups which are connected to specific South Asian or Middle Eastern political parties which make the running in this country.

      However, if Gash's extremism scares people off from addressing the activities of these parties, or if indifference means that you don't also take the problem of these groups seriously, the Gash becomes the only voice in the debate.

      Gash and groups like IFE, BMI, HuT and the rest.

      That really would be a depressing - and sectarianised - outcome.

    113. Reza — on 22nd December, 2009 at 3:58 AM  

      Stephen Gash’s uncompromising and essentialist views are the opposite side of the coin to our liberal establishments denial and appeasement.

      Claiming that all Muslims are active participants in a grand jihad against this country is as baseless as proclaiming that the Vast Majority of British Muslims are ‘moderate’.

      The unfortunate truth about the Islamic establishment in this country is that it is anything but ‘moderate’. Mosques, organisations and educational institutions are funded by groups in countries where Islam is anything but ‘moderate’. Where religious freedom doesn’t exist. Where hatred and distrust of non-Muslims, and particularly Jews is culturally acceptable.

      Our liberal establishment hold up organisations such as Quilliam and BMSD as being ‘representative’ of “The Vast Majority of Moderate Muslims”. The reality however is that they are not. As Inayat Bunglawala has stated, these organisations have virtually no credibility within Mosques nor among “The Vast Majority of British Muslims” ‘moderate’ or ‘extreme’, whatever those terms may mean.

      And here we have the crux of the issue. In Britain, we don’t know what a ‘moderate’ Muslim is.

      A ‘white’ Guardianistas would imagine a liberal like themselves, tolerant of homosexuals, non-sexist, probably dressing as they do in fair-trade cotton, hemp and non-leather sandals.

      However, many Muslims consider themselves to be ‘moderate’ by virtue of the fact that they obey British law, and don’t support a Jihad that involves blowing up British people on British soil. Not supporting HuT and Islam4UK means ‘moderate’.

      The fact that they might believe that in an ‘ideal’ world Sharia law should reign supreme and that technically homosexuals and converts should be killed, that women are inferior to men, doesn’t stop them believing themselves to be ‘moderate’.

      And our environment of non-judgemental moral relativism means that we do not challenge the views of “The Vast Majority of Moderate Muslims”.

      We essentialise them, just as Stephen gash does.

    114. MiriamBinder — on 22nd December, 2009 at 5:19 AM  

      You are as polarising in your way as Stephen Gash is in his Reza. Anyone who does not agree with you is a moral relativist, in denial or any other label you care to throw at them.

      It isn't the views of people who are just getting on with their lives that need to be challenged. It is the views of polarisers that seem unable to accept that there are more sides to a discussion then the perch they have elected to preen their feathers and sharpen their beak on.

    115. David T — on 22nd December, 2009 at 6:02 AM  

      Reza

      I think you're overstating the issue, somewhat.

      There are a number of institutions which are aligned specifically with particular political parties. For example, the ELM is Jamaat-e-Islami. The Finsbury Park Mosque is Hamas/Muslim Brotherhood. Then there are mosques which are funded by, most commonly, the Saudis: but are not aligned with any particular political party. A few have Imams who are progressive, but most do not.

      However, you assume that a Muslim background means that you're aligned with that politics. It doesn't. Even attending a mosque controlled by, say, Jamaat-e-Islami doesn't mean that you buy into its politics.

      Harrow Central Mosque, for example, has links with Jamaat-e-Islami and Hamas/Muslim Brotherhood groups. However that tells you something important about the people who run HCM, and not the worshippers at that institution.

      Then there's the issue of Mosque attendance - although Muslims are a somewhat more devout than some other confessional groups, most people just don't bother to go.

      The key problem here is of institutions, networks and structures. Islamist parties and their front organisations have been very good on this front. Anti-Islamist groups, including those which are led by Muslims, have been inefficient. In part, this has been because religious people tend to be more dynamic and motivated by their faith than secularists. But there are two other important factors too. First, people don't understand the politics and are frightened of being called racists. Secondly, groups like SIOE don't understand the politics and ARE bigots - and who wants to join forces with them?

    116. bananabrain — on 22nd December, 2009 at 6:40 AM  

      david t:

      if i were the sort of paranoid conspiracy theorist that you commonly find over at mpac, i might well suggest that the logical concomitant of these comments:

      The other thing that worries me is this. Gash's schtick is to claim that he's the only guy speaking out about the perils of jihadism etc.. He then peddles a conspiracy theory, in which all British Muslims are either dupes or, more likely, lying about being active participants in a grand jihad against this country.

      would be to make the accusation that gash himself is actually a “false flag” operation run by the south asian/middle eastern islamists mentioned above - basically putting someone in play whose anti-muslim paranoia and hatred were so laughably over-the-top that they would be bound to provide even more well-meaning but misguided protection for these aforementioned parties under the label of combating islamophobia!

      of course, i say nothing of the sort, we all know who the only group who are organised and sinister enough to do this sort of false-flagging, don't we, mpac? yes, it's your friendly neighbourhood zionist conspiracy!!!

      b'shalom

      bananabrain

    117. David T — on 22nd December, 2009 at 7:40 AM  

      Ha, but I think you have a point!

      Mr Stephen Gash - or should I say ستيفن المهبل - is it true?

      Are you in fact part of a FALSE FLAG OPERATION?

    118. KB Player — on 22nd December, 2009 at 12:40 PM  

      Gash reminds me of a McCarthyist or one of the barmier sorts of Republican who thinks the mildest kind of social legislation eg on health care is the thin end of the wedge/tottering down the slippery slope towards Stalinist style communism.

      The same kind of mindset exists on the crazy left who regard the wettest Tories as basically fascists in disguise.

    119. David T — on 22nd December, 2009 at 3:37 PM  

      OK, if anybody is still reading this thread, here's something you could try.

      Have a read of this post:

      http://www.hurryupharry.org/2009/12/22/a-radica...

      Events like these are regular occurrences at the East London Mosque: which is Jamaat-e-Islami aligned.

      Recall when you read this article, that the ELM has received nearly £1m in 'Prevent' funding. That it has been visited by Ken Livingstone, Prince Charles, the Lord Chief Justice, and Boris Johnson.

      Now, compare the sorts of things that people are saying at public meetings - well presented, professionally advertised public meetings - with Stephen Gash, ranting in a car park with his 14 mates.

      1000 people - me included - turned up to demonstrate against Stephen Gash and SIOE. The demonstration was organised by the SWP's Unite Against Fascism - whose partners in RESPECT were substantially based at the East London Mosque. You can therefore readily understand that UAF is most unlikely to organise a demonstration against this particular event.

      But if you would attend a demonstration against Stephen Gash, why wouldn't you demonstrate against this event, and the other similar ones that take place at the ELM?

      This same event, last year, was addressed by the Al Qaeda preacher, Anwar Al Awlaki. The man who inspired the jihadist, Major Hasan, to murder his army buddies.

      Seriously: how does this sort of event compare with Stephen Gash and his 14 mates? Which is more serious?

      What is going wrong here?

      Any ideas for putting it right?

    120. douglas clark — on 23rd December, 2009 at 4:00 AM  

      David T,

      At first blush, neither the ELM nor the SWP are honest brokers. It seems pretty odd that our government should provide funding to the ELM if the activities are typical of the preaching that goes on there. However, on a more personal note, I feel completely betrayed by the SWP who hijacked the anti War protest for political ends that I doubt more than a few people who marched on these days subscribed to.

      Mark Thomas summed up my feelings about that a long time ago:

      http://www.newstatesman.com/200305190007

      The fly in the ointment is the surrender of the organisation of protest to extremists.

      What is required, on the left, is not the rainbow coalition of communists and islamists, but something based around common values. To that extent I welcome the emergence of groups like BMSD with whom a realistic middle way could be created, although sensible and politicised muslims seem short on the ground. You probably know most of them personally.

      The other issue, and I think it is real, is that the vast majority of all communities are really not protest orientated. I'd suggest that it is far more appealing to most people to go about their lives without feeling that they must take to the streets to make a difference. Perhaps, and I know this is weak, the only way forward is to argue through existing media and challenge extremism where we find it. One suggestion that seems to have some merit, is that newspapers in particular seem desperate for copy. A credible mouthpiece for the broad left that played the rebuttal game would probably get at least as many cites in the mainstream media as the likes of the Taxpayers Alliance, IFA and Policy Exchange. And probably a lot more than extremist islamist or communist mouthpieces.

      I am not suggesting that that is the only way forward, but it does seem one step up from you and I arguing in a vacuum - clearly not on this thread though.

    121. David T — on 23rd December, 2009 at 4:06 AM  

      Douglas

      The question was rhetorical and your answer is the same as mine.

      I think we've wasted years, with people who have very little between them arguing viciously about small differences. I am desperate to put that fighting to bed: because I think the situation is so desperate.

      Can I start by apologising to you for all the times I've had a go at you?

    122. douglas clark — on 23rd December, 2009 at 5:14 AM  

      David T,

      And in a similar spirit, please don't take any of my more extreme rants seriously either.

      It is important that we - and I don't mean you and I - I mean everyone that subscribes to these general principles tries to move this agenda forward.

    123. David T — on 23rd December, 2009 at 5:16 AM  

      *david t dangles mistletoe over douglas clark's head and puckers up expectantly*

    124. saifuddin — on 25th December, 2009 at 7:08 PM  

      The 'Islamification of Britain' debate, hosted by Muslims, and attended by BNP, seems to be causing rifts even within the BNP - perhaps that shows some Hardliner BNP members turning on the Moderates? Here's the quote (with link to BNP London site):

      “I'm with Grant. Here's another BNP vote you just lost (and after I show this page to a few friends, I can guarantee they won't be voting BNP either). I was actually going to volunteer to go door-to-door canvassing for Nick Griffin.

      In sucking up to the muslims, you've shown you're no better than them. You don't represent the British values of tolerance and respect for the individual.”

      http://www.londonpatriot.org/2009/12/18/mr-jeff...

    125. saifuddin — on 25th December, 2009 at 7:21 PM  

      Hi David T,

      A few days ago, you wrote this:

      “In this country, polls show, saifuddin's and Al Andalusi's views are still marginal.”

      Firstly, there is no study done that suggests this.

      Secondly, the only study I think you might be talking about, is the one where Muslims were asked “Do you want to see shariah IN THE UK?”, of which 65% said “NO” (to which I would also concur), but it does not mean that we don't want Shariah for the Muslim world.

      Thirdly, even if we were to assume that when UK Muslims answered 'they would not want to see shariah in the UK', they also meant EVERYWHERE else - another poll shows 40% of Muslims (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1510866/...) in the UK actually WANT to see Sharia implemented here (albeit for Muslims only) - hardly a marginal group, no?

      Lastly, Stephen Gash's views are wrong, not only because he assumes the Muslim community is homogeneous (e.g. the fringe group BMSD are just lying about their secular beliefs), but also because he believes that there is a concerted effort by Muslims to 'takeover' Britain and establish Shariah on everyone. Just because Stephen Gash (correctly) understands Islam to mandate the shariah, does not mean that Muslims such as myself are 'sharing Gash's viewpoints towards Muslims', that is just generalising what is, in fact, a highly nuanced discourse occurring between Muslims, Liberals and Fascist-Ultra-Liberals (e.g. SIOE).

    126. MiriamBinder — on 26th December, 2009 at 2:14 AM  

      Polls are rather dangerous things if too much is read into them. Especially as they only ever take a sample of representatives from whichever 'group' has been identified. The methodology employed can also direct the answers. It is therefore necessary to not only read the findings but also the methodology employed to get the findings and … what is certainly important, the size of the representative sample questioned.

    127. David T — on 26th December, 2009 at 2:29 AM  

      saifuddin

      Put it this way.

      If over 50% of British people were in favour of suppressing Muslim religious practices, liberals would still oppose them.

    128. MiriamBinder — on 26th December, 2009 at 2:40 AM  

      Liberals or not; it is pure self interest that would suggest one opposes any attempt to suppress any practises that are in the private sphere. Start accepting the suppression of practises whether it is because you do not understand or you do not personally approve of them and who knows what may be suppressed next.

    129. David T — on 26th December, 2009 at 2:48 AM  

      Liberalism is, I think, the logical extension of that Golden Rule: which is common to many religions.

      Liberals are also pragmatists: which leads us to oppose systems of government which a likely to prove disasterous.

    130. saifuddin — on 26th December, 2009 at 8:35 AM  

      David T said:

      “If over 50% of British people were in favour of suppressing Muslim religious practices, liberals would still oppose them.”

      Firstly David, I appreciate that but my point was, that you cannot simply just say that belief in the Shariah is marginal amongst Muslims. That was merely what I was trying to show.

      Secondly, perhaps a side issue, but how do you reconcile not appeasing the majority with Democracy? (i.e. the classic Liberalism vs Democracy dichotomy).

    131. billbaker — on 27th December, 2009 at 10:31 AM  

      So if you find the British so obtrusive in trying to 'steal your land' as you put it, why are there so many of you settling in England. You quote historical issues that have nothing to do with current issues and shoot yourself in the foot by doing so. Seems you are more racist than those you oppose

    132. Jeffrey Marshall — on 4th January, 2010 at 8:09 AM  

      “OK, if anybody is still reading this thread, here’s something you could try.

      Have a read of this post:

      http://www.hurryupharry.org/2009/12/22/a-radica...

      Events like these are regular occurrences at the East London Mosque: which is Jamaat-e-Islami aligned.

      What is going wrong here?

      Any ideas for putting it right?”

      The majority of events that take place at the London Muslim Centre are actually quite inoffensive.

      A more usual location for the sort of extremism mentioned in Habibi’s article is not ‘Jamaat-e-Islami-aligned’ East London Mosque but Oxford House, a venue a mile or so away run by, er, Tower Hamlets Council.

      Here is an account of a typical regular meeting there.

      http://thevoiceofreason-ann.blogspot.com/2009/03/al-walaa-wal-baraa-in-bethnal-green.html

      Any ideas for putting it right? Er - get in touch with the council?



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