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  • Condemning anti-semitic attacks

    by Sunny
    15th January, 2009 at 3:54 pm    

    More than 20 prominent British Muslims have signed a joint letter denouncing recent anti-Semitic attacks in Britain and calling on Muslims to help prevent attacks on Jews on the UK. The letter is being circulated widely and sent to all British mosques.

    The letter comes as Jewish organisations in the UK and throughout Europe report a significant rise in anti-Semitic attacks on Jewish individuals, Jewish-owned property and synagogues in recent weeks.

    The letter’s signatories include internationally renowned imams, writers, academics and community activists. The signatories also include members of all major Islamic groupings including Sunnis, Shias, Deobandis, Barelwis, Salafis and Sufis.


    In the Name of God, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful

    16th January, 2009

    Dear Fellow Muslims,

    We are deeply saddened to hear about anti-Semitic assaults on British Jews, and a recent arson attack on a London synagogue. Although the perpetrators are yet unknown, we unreservedly condemn attacks on innocent British citizens and the desecration of all places of worship.
    The ongoing killing of Palestinian civilians in Gaza by Israeli forces has angered us all. However, this does not, and cannot, justify attacks on our fellow citizens of Jewish faith and background here in Britain.

    Most Muslims are completely against such behaviour. However, we call on all Muslims to continue to remain vigilant against attempts to bring our own faith and community into disrepute. British Jews should not be held responsible for the actions of the Israeli government.

    Yours in Islam and peace,

    Shaikh Abdal-Hakim Murad, Cambridge
    Shaikh Mawlana Shahid Raza, Leicester/London
    Shaikh Sayyid-Mohammed Musawi, London
    Shaikh Ali Qadiri, Barking
    Shaikh Mufti Barkatulla, London
    Shaikh Dr Musharraf Hussain MBE, Nottingham
    Shaikh Dr Usama Hasan, London
    Shaikh Bilal Abdullah, London
    Shaikh Aftab Ahmad Malik, Bristol
    Shaikh Irfan Chishti MBE, Rochdale

    Dr Tahir Abbas, Birmingham
    Navid Akhtar, London
    Parvin Ali OBE, Leicester
    Kamran Fazil, Birmingham
    Rokhsana Fiaz, London
    Ed Husain, London
    Azeem Ibrahim, Glasgow
    Maajid Nawaz, London
    Dr Zahoor Qureshi, London
    Usman Raja, Berkshire
    Yasmin Sheikh MBE, London
    Zeshan Zafar, London


    No signature from the MCB, MAB and those lot eh? I wonder why?

                  Post to del.icio.us

    Filed in: Religion

    36 Comments below   |  

    Reactions: Twitter, blogs
    1. British Muslims Condemn Anti-Semitism « Engage - the anti-racist campaign against antisemitism

      [...] Muslims Condemn Anti-Semitism January 15, 2009 — David Hirsh Sunny on Pickled Politics reproduces the letter and adds a few comments.  Also on HP. Posted in [...]

    1. bananabrain — on 15th January, 2009 at 4:49 pm  

      i recognise a number of those names from the interfaith mafia, but i hope the shaykhs concerned are as authoritative as can be. i also note what you said about the MCB and MAB, i think that says it all. how about MPAC?

      however, this is welcome news and i will check that it is covered appropriately in the jewish press.

      the personal consequences have now been felt - my son’s school has had to hire an extra all-day security guard and to pay for this my “security contribution” has, like that of all the parents, gone up from £100 per term to £150 per term. that’s a 50% increase for those of you who aren’t good at maths. and that, per parent, is the price of private security because the police can’t provide taxpayers with adequate protection, apparently.

      and if anyone says “well you should have thought about that before you invaded gaza”, that only goes to show how we can say what we like and distance and condemn to the lefties’ hearts content, but when it comes down to it all jews are hostages for israel in the eyes of those who hate us. are you beginning to see why “anti-zionism not anti-semitism” rings so hollow?



    2. platinum786 — on 15th January, 2009 at 5:17 pm  

      I’ll sign it too… there you go 21 people, someone pin this and throw it at the usual suspects whenever they whine.

      As for your schools kids fees, if you chose not to segregate yourself from the rest of society it would not be an issue, who’s fault is it you send him to a jewish school?

      Secondly, why should we apologise for the actions of individuals? If someone burnt that school down to the ground, it’s not my fault and not my problem. I hope they’d get caught and dealt with to the full extent of the law, but why should i apologies for the actions of an individual or be apologetic for them?

      Secondly, before you bang on about why the same does not apply to you, the Nazi’s who form Israel and the IDF and their policy makers represent a state. If you are part of that state, you sanction their actions and you should condemn them.

      I hope you and your family are safe, as safe as all the families in Gaza are. Or should I say as safe as all the families in Gaza deserve to be.

    3. marvin — on 15th January, 2009 at 5:19 pm  

      Amazing really, that in this day an age, and in the UK, Jewish schools have to have special security to protect their pupils. Jewish children worldwide being “legitimate targets”, people are scared.

      There fears of a terror attack at a Jewish school in Ilford recently, can’t find out much about it, but police have arrested somebody…

      One year seven pupil wrote: “I was shaking so much trying to find my sister, but couldn’t find her.

      If I were Jewish platinum786 I certainly wouldn’t send my kid to an inner city school as they would be an obvious target at times like this.

      Nazis who formed the Jewish state eh platinum786? Classy.

    4. bananabrain — on 15th January, 2009 at 5:40 pm  


      your response is actually to accuse me of segregation? if you had said that to my face i think i would have actually thumped you. you think that my son should be a TARGET because i’ve sent him to a faith school? perhaps you think that having synagogues is segregation, or are we not allowed to pray by ourselves now? i have had enough of this. you are an idiot, a bigot and in the final analysis an anti-semite. and that’s not something i say lightly or with any relief.

      our children aren’t even safe from attack in regular schools:



      bananabrain - or should that be “cockroach”?

    5. Leon — on 15th January, 2009 at 5:40 pm  

      I’ve deleted his racist shit.

    6. Boyo — on 15th January, 2009 at 6:15 pm  

      It’s telling that some prominent Muslims have noted the rise in anti-semitic activity that largely seems to have escaped the notice of the mainstream media.

      I wonder, and its only that, whether the subtext is - what do the Jews expect if “they” go bombing Gaza etc? - whereas anti-Muslim activity tends to be more widely reported and roundly condemned? And indeed whether there is a reluctance to report it because of its associations with Islam, and therefore Muslims? And so, twisted into these knots, our courageous media decides its not really worth the bother…

    7. Steve M — on 15th January, 2009 at 6:55 pm  

      You’re beneath contempt. Why should anyone be bothered to respond to you with what is bleeding obvious to everyone else? This leaves aside the obvious question of wtf does this have to do with anti-Semitic attacks in the UK?

    8. Jai — on 15th January, 2009 at 7:00 pm  

      None of you bothered to disprove my points regarding the similarities of the military operations of the Nazi’s and the IDF.

      If the IDF begins rounding up Palestinians en masse and begins executing them in secluded places or, more pertinently, starts transporting them in trains to specially-constructed buildings for mass industrial slaughter, then I think comments about “similarities with the military operations of the Nazis” would be more relevant.

      There are certainly some significant failures in the tactics being used on the ground by the IDF, considering the number of civilian casualties & fatalities involved, but none of this was unique to the Nazis or indeed to the methods deployed by any number of military/political groups around the world, both in the present-day and historically.

      I wonder why repeated comparisons to Nazis specifically are being made, unless (as I’ve suggested before) it’s a rhetorical tactic deployed to go for the jugular and attempt to hit the recipient where it hurts the most.

      In which case, it would be similar to deliberately making repeated references to “Crusaders” (for example) every time any Muslim group does anything.

      Not good. There are better ways to make your point, regardless of how justified you believe yourself to be. And especially if you know that you are not, if you’re completely honest with yourself.

    9. Don — on 15th January, 2009 at 7:17 pm  


      Try to understand. Once the mask has been pulled off to reveal the anti-semitic bigot beneath, trying to re-attach it just makes you look more of pillock than we had already concluded.

    10. SE — on 15th January, 2009 at 7:19 pm  

      I doubt this is true unless it’s been reported by the media, unless you don’t know Boyo the media is Pro-Israel as demonstrated by this bit of reporting:


      And how do i know you’re not part of Melanie Phillips pro-Israel brigade, and that you haven’t made a comment about wiping out all Muslims and that you might be a BNP member?

    11. Refresh — on 15th January, 2009 at 7:19 pm  

      Platinum - This does not look good.

    12. Ravi Naik — on 15th January, 2009 at 7:32 pm  

      Talking about anti-semites…

    13. billericaydicky — on 15th January, 2009 at 8:41 pm  

      There have been a lot of only locally reported attacks in East London which range from “kill the Jews” grafiti on walls around Brick Lane to actual smashing of windows and petrol bombs. This last happened at Tesco Metro and a Starbucks opposite Altab Ali park on the Whitechapel Rd.

      There have been a series of attacks including stabbings of white people without any attempt to rob which is driving an already hard hit restaurant market to the verge of bankruptcy. The problem is the East London Mosque and Islamic centre which is run by Islamic Forum Europe, a cleaned up Al Mujirarun, funded by Saudi money and a hotbed of Wahabism.

      All in all not good and it’s no good blaming the Israelis, it’s just good old fashioned Jew hating rearing its head again.

    14. Sid — on 15th January, 2009 at 8:57 pm  

      Not a moment too soon. At last, some encouraging news.

    15. blah — on 15th January, 2009 at 10:18 pm  


      “There have been a series of attacks including stabbings of white people without any attempt to rob which is driving an already hard hit restaurant market to the verge of bankruptcy. The problem is the East London Mosque and Islamic centre which is run by Islamic Forum Europe, a cleaned up Al Mujirarun, funded by Saudi money and a hotbed of Wahabism.”

      The problem is you are a bigoted idiot who believes that mosques control the actions of every Muslim and are instigating people to attack Jews.

    16. blah — on 15th January, 2009 at 10:27 pm  

      “If the IDF begins rounding up Palestinians en masse and begins executing them in secluded places or, more pertinently, starts transporting them in trains to specially-constructed buildings for mass industrial slaughter, then I think comments about “similarities with the military operations of the Nazis” would be more relevant.”

      An Israeli academic one said that the Israelis have convinced themselves that as long as they do everything to the Palestinians short of putting them in gas chambers they can never be like the Nazis.

      This is the line adopted by Israel and its apologists like Jai (who is motivated more by anti-Muslim animis)

      Well collective punishment seems pretty close

      “I wonder why repeated comparisons to Nazis specifically are being made, unless (as I’ve suggested before) it’s a rhetorical tactic deployed to go for the jugular and attempt to hit the recipient where it hurts the most.”

      Perhaps you have read this letter in the Guardian:

      “We the undersigned are all of Jewish origin. When we see the dead and bloodied bodies of young children, the cutting off of water, electricity and food, we are reminded of the siege of the Warsaw Ghetto. When Dov Weisglass, an adviser to the Israeli prime minister, Ehud Olmert, talked of putting Gazans “on a diet” and the deputy defence minister, Matan Vilnai, talked about the Palestinians experiencing “a bigger shoah” (holocaust), this reminds us of Governor General Hans Frank in Nazi-occupied Poland, who spoke of “death by hunger”.

      Ben Birnberg, Prof Haim Bresheeth, Deborah Fink, Bella Freud, Tony Greenstein, Abe Hayeem, Prof Adah Kay, Yehudit Keshet, Dr Les Levidow, Prof Yosefa Loshitzky, Prof Moshe Machover, Miriam Margolyes, Prof Jonathan Rosenhead, Seymour Alexander, Ben Birnberg, Martin Birnstingl, Prof. Haim Bresheeth, Ruth Clark, Judith Cravitz, Mike Cushman, Angela Dale, Merav Devere, Greg Dropkin, Angela Eden, Sarah Ferner, Alf Filer, Mark Findlay, Sylvia Finzi, Bella Freud, Tessa van Gelderen, Claire Glasman, Ruth Hall, Adrian Hart, Alain Hertzmann, Abe Hayeem, Rosamene Hayeem, Anna Hellmann, Selma James, Riva Joffe, Yael Kahn, Michael Kalmanovitz, Ros Kane, Prof. Adah Kay, Yehudit Keshet, Mark Krantz, Bernice Laschinger, Pam Laurance, Dr Les Levidow, Prof. Yosefa Loshitzky, Prof. Moshe Machover, Beryl Maizels, Miriam Margolyes, Helen Marks, Martine Miel, Diana Neslen, O Neumann, Susan Pashkoff, Hon. Juliet Peston, Renate Prince, Roland Rance, Sheila Robin, Ossi Ron, Manfred Ropschitz, John Rose, Prof. Jonathan Rosenhead, Leon Rosselson, Michael Sackin, Ian Saville, Amanda Sebestyen, Sam Semoff, Prof. Ludi Simpson, Viv Stein, Inbar Tamari, Ruth Tenne, Norman Traub, Eve Turner, Tirza Waisel, Karl Walinets, Renee Walinets, Stanley Walinets, Philip Ward, Naomi Wimborne-Idrissi, Ruth Williams, Jay Woolrich, Ben Young, Myk Zeitlin, Androulla Zucker, John Zucker


      Heres Gerald Kaufmann
      LONDON - A veteran British Jewish lawmaker compared the Israeli offensive in Gaza Thursday to the Nazis who forced his family to flee from Poland.

      Gerald Kaufman, a member of the Jewish Labour movement linked to Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s ruling party, also called for an arms embargo against Israel.

      “My grandmother was ill in bed when the Nazis came to her home town . . . a German soldier shot her dead in her bed,” Kaufman said during a parliamentary debate on the 20-day-old war which has left over 1,000 dead.

      “My grandmother did not die to provide cover for Israeli soldiers murdering Palestinian grandmothers in Gaza.

      “The present Israeli government ruthlessly and cynically exploit the continuing guilt from gentiles over the slaughter of Jews in the Holocaust as justification for their murder of Palestinians.”

      Israel’s claim that many of the Palestinian victims were militants “was the reply of the Nazi,” he said, adding: “I suppose the Jews fighting for their lives in the Warsaw ghetto could have been dismissed as militants.”

      People are compared to Nazis all the time Jai. Israel supporters indeed refers to its opponenst as such.

    17. Boyo — on 15th January, 2009 at 10:42 pm  

      Yes BD, it’s almost like the 70s and 80s never happened: whatever happened to Rock Against Racism eh?! Instead we have the obscenity of a far-left allied to a misogynous, racist and homophobic creed because, presumably, brown people are less deserving of equality than whites.

      Unlike Sunny, I was never a fan of Hillary but I saw her in a new light the other day, when she said of the suppression of women: “It’s not culture. It’s not custom. It’s criminal.”

      Go Hills!

      But I digress: expect more, and worse. It ain’t going to get better: the right is on the ascendant, abetted by the left. Jews will be targeted and die on our streets and nothing will be done. The police are hamstrung by witless and befuddled policy makers frankly afraid of power, and the consequences of exercising it. The only saving grace is that this isn’t a popular movement, it’s not going to gain a majority. Instead expect the drip-drip of violence, alienation, incomprehension and communalism - the very climate extremists love - and not just the Brotherhood.

    18. blah — on 15th January, 2009 at 10:55 pm  

      As an aside where is the source for this letter?

      A few points

      - Its sentiments are noble but given that Abdul Hakim Murad is the first name on it it is shockingly badly written

      (you can read how well he writes here

      -It doesnt include the traditional greetings of salaams

      - Aftab Ahmed Malik is a fine writer and activist in the Muslim community; he isnt a Sheikh

    19. Jai — on 15th January, 2009 at 11:23 pm  


      (who is motivated more by anti-Muslim animis)

      Ah, you know me so well ;)

      Perhaps your own anti-Jewish animis is rearing its head on this occasion, if you want to play that particular game.

      People are compared to Nazis all the time Jai.

      Considering certain individuals here have a track history of repeatedly making racist antisemitic remarks, I believe my original point stands.

      But thanks for the lecture anyway.

    20. Sunny — on 15th January, 2009 at 11:27 pm  

      For those interested, I got this in an email today. I think it may have been embargoed until tomorrow.

      Anyway, a necessary effort. Too bad many of the usual suspects are not on it.

    21. septicisle — on 15th January, 2009 at 11:27 pm  

      Boyo - you are talking absolute rubbish. A few smashed Starbucks windows does not suddenly turn into the lives of Jews being lost. A few years back someone had sprayed up “KILL ASYLUM SEEKERS” right next to where I worked - I didn’t suddenly imagine that any where I was were suddenly actually going to be killed.

    22. douglas clark — on 16th January, 2009 at 12:40 am  

      Boyo @ 18,

      You’d like this thread:


      Nothing like a bit of hysteria, is there?

      And “the right is in the ascendant, abetted by the left”. Bloody hell, if that’s the case:

      “We’re all doomed Captain Mainwaring, doomed, I tell you!”

      Please try to calm down.

    23. W Dean — on 16th January, 2009 at 1:01 am  

      According to the 2001 Census, 267,000 people classified themselves as being Jewish. In 1995, the Board of Deputies put the figure at 285,000.

      According to the Community Security Trust,
      there were 455 anti-semitic in 2005, then 594 in 2006 and 547 in 2007.

      That’s less than 0.001% a year.

      Now, those numbers don’t really seem to indicate the dawn of the fourth reich do they?

    24. Steve M — on 16th January, 2009 at 1:19 am  

      No they don’t, so far. Britain has been a great country for many immigrant people, including Jews. Long may this continue but there’s never a place for complacency.

    25. Imran Khan — on 16th January, 2009 at 1:24 am  

      It would be interesting to know if the MCB and MAB were asked to sign this letter and their response.

      Good move though to get this letter going. Its only a start and more is needed from both sides.

      Encouraging though.

    26. Refresh — on 16th January, 2009 at 1:38 am  

      Blah, you are completely wrong about Jai.

      Good to see the link to Gerald Kaufman. Thanks. He has been showing great concern about Israel for many years.

      He has always been good with his words - on Israel:

      ‘ “….They are not simply war criminals, they are fools,” he added.’

    27. douglas clark — on 16th January, 2009 at 1:43 am  

      W Dean @ 25,

      I make it circa 0.2%, not the 0.001% you claim. Still small but not quite as trivial, perhaps? You might have forgotten that, to calculate a percentage you must multiply by a 100 over 1.

      And rounding down from 0.0017 to 0.001 just compounds the error.


    28. Refresh — on 16th January, 2009 at 1:50 am  

      Good to see the letter, and lets hope it gathers support and momentum as more people see it.

      Excellent direct action highlighted by Leon on this thread shows Gaza and the Palestinians will not be forgotten:

      ‘LA Jews shut down Israeli consulate’


    29. douglas clark — on 16th January, 2009 at 2:08 am  


      Just out of curiosity, what is the status of a Sheikh? Are they all the same, even? Is he a religious expert, or something? Or has he some other reason to be respected? Wikipedia is just confusing on the subject.

      Does it actually matter?

    30. septicisle — on 16th January, 2009 at 2:11 am  

      douglas - Thanks for linking to that. You see that throughout other protesters and stewards tried to stop the minority of morons from attacking the police and throwing things at them - in circumstances like that even I’d encourage the police to make arrests just so that it gets rid of them and stops giving everyone a bad name, as indeed someone shouts out.

      They do indeed love hysteria on Harry’s Place - conflating Starbucks’ smashed windows with images from Kristallnacht, Godwin’s law similarly reduced to smithereens. Anything to deflect from the destruction that goes far beyond smashed windows in Gaza.

    31. douglas clark — on 16th January, 2009 at 2:46 am  


      Cheers. I’ve watched that video twice, and I’d agree, the Police would have been entitled to pull a couple of folk out of the crowd. But they didn’t. Two arrests at a demo means you aren’t trying hard enough!

      Isn’t the whole point of any demonstration to put over a strongly held point of view?

      It is strange how a wee video can cause the denizens, nay, fierce warriors, of Harrys’ Place to quail quite literally over their keyboards. They probably died grasping their own personally signed copies of Londonistan.

      300 it is not.

    32. Boyo — on 16th January, 2009 at 7:30 am  

      Scepticisle/ Douglas - actually, I was going to add: we’re all doomed! Doomed i tell ye!

      But i didn’t because i was forecasting murder, so it seemed a little tasteless. However, you will note I explicitly do not predict a “clerical fascist” takeover any time soon. In the morning light I don’t see any need to back-peddle: we can’t see it, because we’re in it. Had someone predicted 7/7 they would have been similarly rebutted. The truth is - we’re already there.

      There is no reason we should buck the historical trend: mix cultural antipathy, an economic downturn and limited “living space” and you generate conflict, with the Jews usually feeling it first. Even if you take Gaza out of the equation, Jews were four times more likely to be attacked than Muslims. If this were a computer-generated model we would be moving from amber in to red.

    33. Jai — on 16th January, 2009 at 10:58 am  

      Blah, you are completely wrong about Jai.

      Thanks Refresh.

      For a moment there I thought someone had blown my cover as a member of the global Crusader-Zionist-Hindu-Sikh-Jain-Buddhist-Wicca-Scientologist-Jedi alliance.

    34. Refresh — on 16th January, 2009 at 11:12 am  


      No thanks needed.

      ‘Crusader-Zionist-Hindu-Sikh-Jain-Buddhist-Wicca-Scientologist-Jedi alliance.’

      That’s an alliance some people dream about.

    35. W Dean — on 17th January, 2009 at 3:57 am  

      @ douglas clark

      Oops, I forgot to multiple by a hundred.

      0.2% although bigger than 0.001% is still NOT indicative of the dawn of the Fourth Reich.

      Certainly not enough to justify the number of “Joos aren’t safe walking the streets in rabidly anti-semetic Britain” that seem to keep croping up in the meedja.

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