Next Monday Parliament’s Communities and Local Government Committee will hold a hearing about government policy on extremism.
Preventing Violent Extremism
Oral evidence session
Prevent is a cross-cutting policy that is led across Government by the Office of Security and Counter Terrorism (OSCT) which is part of the Home Office. Its aim is “to stop radicalisation, reduce support for terrorism and violent extremism and discourage people from becoming terrorists.” In this inquiry the Committee will be considering the effectiveness of the ‘Prevent’ programme to date, and its likely effectiveness in the future, with particular reference to whether the Prevent programme is the right way of addressing the problem of violent extremism in communities, and whether the Government’s strategy for dealing with communities has been effective, and appropriately targeted. The Committee will also consider whether the programme has reached those it aimed to target, how the programme has been received by communities and whether the Government has been speaking to the right people when formulating the ‘Prevent’ programme.
The first oral evidence session for this inquiry will take place as follows:
Monday 30 November 2009
* New Local Government Network
* Muslim Council of Britain
* An Nisa Society
* Islamic Human Rights Commission
* Forward Thinking
* Ulfah Arts
The session will take place in Room 8, Palace of Westminster.
Why is the self-styled Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC) on the list? It is a Khomeinist group that campaigns for Islamists in legal trouble, including convicted terrorists, such as Omar Abdel Rahman, the “blind sheikh”.
He was the spiritual leader of the bombers of the World Trade Center in 1993. According to terrorism investigator Evan Kohlmann, in his sermons he derided Americans as “descendants of apes and pigs who have been feeding from the dining tables of the Zionists, Communists, and colonialists” and called on Muslims to attack the West: “cut the transportation of their countries, tear it apart, destroy their economy, burn their companies, eliminate their interests, sink their ships, shoot down their planes, kill them on the sea, air, or land”.
He was convicted of seditious conspiracy in 1995 and sentenced to life in prison. So what does the IHRC do, to this day? It calls (pdf) for his release and asks Muslims to pray for him.
What about Abu Hamza? When he was convicted, IHRC chairman Massoud Shadjareh was not best pleased:
This is creating an environment that can only further alienate the Muslim community
The IHRC is certainly “alienated”. It refuses to deal with the police, who – shock! horror! – have turned to Israel for insight on dealing with suicide bombers. One policeman even dared to be rude about Hitler fan Yusuf al Qaradawi! The cheek.
At the end of four years [of meetings with the Met Police] when we finally cut our ties, I came out thinking of the police as insincere (to put it politely), hypocritical, having double standards.
They sent people to Israel, initially they denied that they had sent officers to Israel to find out how to deal with suicide bombers, when I asked them would you have done the same thing and sent, after the Brixton riots, people to South Africa under the apartheid regime – would you have sent people there to find out how to deal with black people? They didn’t have an answer to that.
When brother Moazzam Begg was coming back we asked them the question brother Moazzam Begg and the others should be released on just compassionate grounds if nothing else.. they said oh no they have to be questioned, we said there is president for this – Saudi nurses were held back, you didn’t question them you reunited them with their families on compassionate grounds, at least for humanity, for basic human rights just let them go to their families first. We said to them you are under the influence of the politicians from America and they no we’re not how dare you question our professionalism. And we find out within the last nine months that actually they were, they had to do it, they were told by their masters in America that they had to do it, and that they had lied to us!
I asked the question do you have a shoot to kill policy when they sent people over to Israel, they said no, initially they denied [sending people to Israel] and then they said they didn’t have a shoot to kill policy over a number of years and then it was finally, tragically, proven that they did have.
When Shaikh Qardawi was insulted by John Stevens – he was sent a letter, I walked out of the meeting saying how dare you insult someone who is senior within the Muslim world and calling him a terrorist with out actually trying him in any way, shape or form.
Massoud Shadjareh of the Islamic Human Rights Commission, said: “This is another example of certain freedoms being available to one community over others. It is no wonder Muslims the world over are becoming alienated from these so-called universal rights.”
Naturally you won’t find the IHRC running sustained campaigns for Iranian dissidents and protesters. Perhaps they should bomb some Americans to get the IHRC’s support.
The IHRC also organises the annual Al Quds Day “from the river to the sea”, “we are all Hezbollah”, “with blood, with guns, we will free Palestine” London marches for the annihilation of Israel.
Here is Massoud Shadjareh offering an ode to Khomeini at the Al Quds Day demonstration in 2008.
Here is the IHRC’s latest guest in the UK, radical South African Islamist Achmad Cassiem, speaking up for “resistance” murderers at a London “antiwar” demonstration. The man behind him draped in a Hezbollah flag is Mr Shadjareh.
Or try Taji Mustafa of Hizb ut Tahrir at this year’s Al Quds Day, calling for jihad and an Islamist military uprising in Egypt, Jordan and Syria, whose armies should invade Israel.
The “Islamic Human Rights Commission” testifying at a hearing on violent extremism is about as ridiculous as the BNP providing evidence to a committee on racism, or a mafia don advising legislators on how to tackle organised crime.
Nice one, Parliament.