“ISIS aren’t in England”

“ISIS aren’t in England”

By Amina Lone   My heart goes out to the families of the people killed by evil madmen. I am angry, despairing and hopeful. My English resolve keep calm and carry on kicks in. But we must do something. It’s deeds not words time. My frustrations lies in our inability to be wise, balanced or mature. Some politicians, individuals and the media, whipped into a mass of hysteria, have hijacked the debate around extremism, counter- terrorism and security. The pendulum swings from ‘Lets put everyone back on boats and send…

Manchester Attacks: Spare us your crocodile tears, anti-Prevent lobby

Manchester Attacks: Spare us your crocodile tears, anti-Prevent lobby

By Shamim Begum I am a Muslim and, shock horror, I support Prevent, the government’s counter-terrorist strategy. I do so because I have seen the reality of Islamist extremism in my local community for years, despite the denial by so many other Muslims. When I was at university, I remember meeting Muslim women who were calling for the establishment of a caliphate while ranting on about how evil Britain is. The attack in Manchester was devastating. But last week as I shed tears for the victims, my anger was growing, in particular against what is widely…

Terror in Manchester

Terror in Manchester

By Iram Ramzan   A terrorist attack in my own city is the last thing I expected to wake up to on Tuesday morning. There were several messages on my phone from concerned friends and acquaintances urging me to contact them as soon as I could. I wondered what had happened, until I went online to read the news. At least 22 people were killed and 59 injured after a terrorist attack at the Manchester Arena on the evening of Monday, May 22. Thousands of gig-goers were packed into the…

Extremism-o-phobia is a crocodile that feeds upon extremism

Extremism-o-phobia is a crocodile that feeds upon extremism

By Mo Dawah   Since my last interruption in the debate on things the world has erupted into more and more violence and hatred against those who question why we must define terrorism as motivated by hate or whether it is actually violence at all. For when we focus on the violence perpetrated by perpetrators of violence it makes us lose empathy for them. And as we know, a lack of empathy for those who we force into killing us is the major cause of them killing us. We will…

Blasphemy-o-phobia is the Leading Scourge of our Time

Blasphemy-o-phobia is the Leading Scourge of our Time

By Mo Dawah   As the premier spokesman for self-appointed community leaders in the media, and one of the leading campaigners for religious freedom in Britain — where religious freedom is defined in its classical sense as freedom to obey and do as I say —  I am very passionate about the issue of how to enrich society by making it scared. Recently, the BBC Asian Network asked, ‘What is the right punishment for blasphemy’? This is a very important question, and the response to it unleashed a tsunami of…

The Prevent Strategy: Fact vs Fiction

The Prevent Strategy: Fact vs Fiction

  Why is the Prevent strategy deemed controversial? Prevent is one of the four Ps that make up the UK government’s post 9/11 counter-terrorism strategy, known as Contest: Prepare for attacks, Protect the public, Pursue the attackers and Prevent their radicalisation in the first place. Much has been said about the strategy and not a week goes by without an article in the news and it is difficult to separate the facts from fiction. Critics claim it stifles free speech or disproportionately targets Muslims, which has led to some calls…

No CAGE, it’s precisely because Hope Not Hate challenge hate that you were included in their report

No CAGE, it’s precisely because Hope Not Hate challenge hate that you were included in their report

 By Sara Khan This is a cross-post There’s no question we live in an era of fake news, propaganda and so-called “alternative facts.”  But the reality is, is that some organisations have spent the last few years turning this into a fine art before these terms were even fashionable.  Take CAGE for example. To put it mildly, they were rather upset that the highly reputable and long standing anti-extremism group, Hope Not Hate (HnH) (who have done excellent work exposing the networks and influence of Al-Muhajiroon,) highlighted the activism and statements…

An ex-Muslim’s brief recount of working with the Khatm-e-Nubuwwat

An ex-Muslim’s brief recount of working with the Khatm-e-Nubuwwat

By Zee Jay   August 2009. I finally touched down to the country that was regarded as providing opportunities for many. Here I was, ready to embark on exploring uncharted waters and break new mould. It was my desire to meet and interact with people and observe the British way of life. What I wasn’t expecting was to get drawn back into the web of Islam after already having left a strain of it when I left the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. This was at the time I was still…

My issues with the Muslim Council of Britain’s alternative to the Prevent strategy

My issues with the Muslim Council of Britain’s alternative to the Prevent strategy

By Iram Ramzan   Critics of the Government’s counter-terrorism Prevent strategy often claim that it disproportionately targets and focuses on Muslims, despite the fact that it actually works on countering the far-right too. So what does the Muslim Council of Britain decide to do? It has decided to set up its own programme to target, er, Muslims. In a direct challenge to the government’s ‘controversial’ Prevent scheme, the MCB plans to start the Muslim-run counter-radicalisation scheme next year. The MCB said in a statement: In reflecting the wishes of a cross-section…

We must have a frank discussion on rising sectarianism in the UK

We must have a frank discussion on rising sectarianism in the UK

By Haydar Zaki and Iram Ramzan   Usually when a Muslim person is discriminated against by a non Muslim, it becomes a huge news story. And rightly so, as we must challenge any discriminative actions. But what do we do when Muslims are discriminated against, and persecuted, by fellow Muslims? If the former is ‘Islamophobic’ then what do we call the latter? Nearly a thousand British Muslims recently signed a petition to ban the Shia procession of Ashura in Luton. This procession, to commemorate the death of the prophet Muhammad’s grandson Imam Hussein,…