Touting Muslimophobic terrorism as a ‘reaction to jihad’ is as dehumanising as it is counterproductive

Touting Muslimophobic terrorism as a ‘reaction to jihad’ is as dehumanising as it is counterproductive

By Kunwar Khuldune Shahid Unfortunately, the aftermath of every major terror attack provides a platform for self-serving, narrow-minded, often bigoted, voices to forward their own agendas at a time when all the attention should be on the victims. Following jihadist attacks, those with the unflinching belief that all global ills are a corollary of the West’s imperialism would waste no time in pointing fingers towards western foreign policy for an act rooted in a genocidal ideology. Similarly, following the recent terror attack in Christchurch those rigidly earmarking radical Islam as having…

British authorities are not equipped to deal with jihadis returning from ISIS

British authorities are not equipped to deal with jihadis returning from ISIS

By Khadija Khan   In 2004 the British government secured the release of Jamal Udeen al-Harith from Guantanamo Bay, after strenuous diplomacy with the Americans who had captured him in Pakistan, where he was believed to be an al-Qaeda operative. Al-Harith carried out a suicide bombing in Iraq in 2017 after joining ISIS. He was born Ronald Fiddler and raised in Manchester, UK, and was reportedly radicalised in the local mosque. Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair’s Labour government reportedly lobbied “intensely” for his release from Guantanamo Bay and he was given £1…

Shamima Begum was a minor when she travelled to Syria but she must face the consequences of her actions

Shamima Begum was a minor when she travelled to Syria but she must face the consequences of her actions

By Tehmina Kazi   Of all the reprehensible things said by jihadi bride Shamima Begum in her notorious Times interview, what sticks out the most is her callous indifference to seeing “severed heads in bins” in ISIS territory, “because they were enemies of Islam.” In a follow-up interview with Sky News, she admitted that she knew of this aspect of ISIS’ practice even before she left for Syria in 2015 as a 15-year-old, alongside her school friends Amira Abase and Kadiza Sultana.  In her own words on beheading, “from what…

Shamima Begum, the ‘Jihadi Bride’ and the moral dilemma we face

Shamima Begum, the ‘Jihadi Bride’ and the moral dilemma we face

By Saima Baig There are an estimated 400 British nationals (there could be more), who left for Syria to join the Islamic State caliphate. Some have died, some are in refugee camps and there is no information about the rest. Here is the dilemma. What do we do when some of them want to come back to the UK? The Islamic State are some of the most barbaric psychopaths to exist on this planet, who have committed extremely heinous crimes since they launched their “caliphate” in 2014. All those who…

“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…