Phil Woolas needs to go

Does this man have no sense at all? I quote Dave Hill:

Is it not astonishing that Phil Woolas MP - a government minister responsible for good race relations! - should announce to the world that the Dewsbury school teacher Aishah Azmi should be sacked for wanting to wearing a veil in front of her pupils at a time when an industrial tribunal is still hearing her case?

Alan Johnson seems to think so, by the way: he refused to make any comment when asked about it on Five Live midday news, saying it is for the tribunal to decide. And even as I type, Ruth Kelly has distanced herself from Woolas on the World At One. Yet some their colleagues seem to be in as much of a frenzy about the issue as Woolas.

Last night, Tessa Jowell joined the fray, advancing the most simplistic of feminist arguments to denounced the veil as the enemy of women’s liberation - this from a woman who once told a female mutual acquaintance that she’d never bothered with feminism because she’d been getting on with more important things.

I realise that New Labour is having serious popularity problems but if they think is the best way to get votes…. then well, they might as well recruit Michael Howard to lead them. They’ve gone completely barmy.

17 / October / 2006  Party politics, Religious politics 
  • 1. TomTom  |  October 17th, 2006 at 6:10 pm

    Mrs Azmi of Black Shroud at Headfield C oF E School is the daughter of the Head of

    Institute of Islamic Education, Dewsbury

    LEA: Kirklees
    Telephone Number: 01924 485712
    Fax Number: 01924 455762
    Address: South Street
    Savile Town
    West Yorkshire
    Post Code: WF12 9NG

    The Institute of Islamic Education (Jaamia Talimul Islam) is a well-established darul uloom (Islamic seminary) situated close to the centre of Dewsbury, West Yorkshire. The purpose-built Institute is in the grounds of, and closely connected to the Markazi mosque. It provides full-time education for boys between the ages of 12 and 16 years in Islamic studies. These are taught in the mornings and known as the `madrasah’, and some National Curriculum subjects are taught in the afternoon, called the `school’. The aim of the Institute is to train Imams and, or ustaads (Islamic studies teachers) and scholars in order to benefit the communities to which they return. Most students stay on after the age of 16 years to complete the alim (Islamic Studies) course and the hifz course (memorisation of the Qur’an), graduating after seven to nine years. Some graduates return to teach at the Institute, while others work in the community as Imams. Many students also work in the wider public service. Well known and respected amongst many Muslims, the Institute was founded in 1982 `…to provide a healthy Islamic environment where the study of Qur’aan and hadeeth (sayings of the Prophet Mohammad) can be taught alongside secular studies…’. Furthermore qualities of `…piety, compassion and responsibility…’ are strongly promoted in pupils.

    Curriculum provision is good in the madrasah and unsatisfactory overall in the afternoon school. The Institute largely achieves its aim to provide a curriculum which includes both `the study of Qur’an and hadeeth’ (the beliefs and practice of Islam as exemplified in the life of the Prophet Muhammad) and `classical Islamic texts’, together with `secular subjects’. Pupils’ education is organised into two parts. A range of Islamic studies, the madrasah curriculum taught in the mornings from Monday to Saturday, includes logic, history, theology, Islamic law and ethics. Qur’an recitation, memorisation and commentary, Arabic grammar and vocabulary and hadeeth (traditions of the Prophet Mohammad) memorisation and commentary are also studied. In the afternoons, from Monday to Friday, the school curriculum consists of English, mathematics, science, information communication technology (ICT), physical education (PE) and citizenship. Pupils are taught Urdu as this is the principal language of instruction in the madrasah curriculum. Pupils can take General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) examinations in all of these subjects except citizenship, which is only taught in Key Stage 3. However, not all pupils are entered for all GCSE subjects offered by the Institute.

    Dewsbury Local Newspaper

    Anger over terror plot allegation
    MUSLIMS have reacted angrily to national newspaper reports linking Dewsbury to the latest alleged terror plot.
    An article in the Sunday Telegraph said several of those arrested in connection with an apparent plot to blow up planes en route from Britain to America had studied an Islamic movement called Tablighi Jamaat – the British headquarters of which are in Savile Town.

    The group is run from the 3,000-capacity Markazi Mosque, in South Street, which is also the organisation’s European base.

    But Shabbir Daji, a secretary and trustee of the Tablighi Jamaat movement and spokesman for the mosque, said the organisation had no links with Islamic extremism. He said: “We are an organisation that offers information to Muslims on how to reform themselves.

    “We are not a political organisation and we do not let any brothers speak about politics in the mosque. We do not create those sorts of people. We condemn them totally. If we think anyone has an agenda outside our own, we immediately throw them out. We have nothing to hide. We feel very bad and very angry we are being linked to what is going on. People are putting out information that is untrue.”

    The article also mentioned how July 7 suicide bomber Mohammed Siddique Khan, who lived in Thornhill Lees for the six months prior to the attack since moving from Leeds, is thought to have worshipped at the mosque.

    Khan was said to have been the ringleader of the London attacks and killed six people when he detonated a bomb on the underground near Edgware Road.

    Dewsbury South councillor Imtiaz Ameen (Con) said he found it frustrating Dewsbury, Savile Town and mosques such as the Markazi Mosque were repeatedly linked with terrorism.

    He said: “It’s an easy target because it is the centre of this movement. But as far as it propagates any violence it is absurd. It shows a lack of understanding of what actually goes on there.

    “I’ve lived in Savile Town all my life and most of my friends go there, many of them professional people.

    “If somebody says these chaps used to go to a mosque, well they went to Asda, Sainsbury’s and the hospital too. Does that mean supermarkets and hospitals are breeding grounds for terrorists? It’s a false analogy. It shows a lack of understanding of the issue.

    “Every Muslim goes to a mosque but just because it’s a Muslim who ends up doing something crazy, and he’s been to a particular mosque it becomes a breeding ground for terrorism.

    “These things don’t happen in a mosque, these people are recruited often in colleges, universities and on the internet, it’s not done openly in a mosque and in other areas.

    “We had mosques 30 years ago.
    29 August 2006

  • 2. leon  |  October 18th, 2006 at 11:24 am

    Is it barmy thought? Bear in mind that the Black and Minority Ethnic electorate in this country is tiny compared to the majority. Also there is serious disaffection within the white working class.

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