Last week this blog covered the boohooing of Middle East Monitor (MEMO) about London Gaza demo rioters being sent down.
MEMO has had another bawling session. This time the piece was written by British Islamists’ favourite ex-policeman, Robert Lambert, the former head of the Met’s Muslim Contact Unit, and Jonathan Githens-Mazer of the University of Exeter.
Naturally they believe dealing firmly with rioters is bad policy:
Stiff prison sentences being handed down to Muslim protesters who took part in London demonstrations during Israel’s military operation in Gaza last year contribute to an atmosphere that is having an adverse impact on the Government’s strategy to bring alienated young Muslims into the political mainstream.
Instead of encouraging young and angry Muslims to deal with their legitimate political grievances through democratic protest concerns about harsh sentencing, unfair trials and overzealous public order policing are having a negative impact amongst Muslim political activists.
Dealing with “legitimate grievances” on High Street Kensington, London
Yes, let hooligans run riot. That’s sensible public policy. Just as the government should have continued to deal with Daud Abdullah after he signed the Istanbul declaration:
We drew attention to this problem when we highlighted the negative impact of former CLG secretary Hazel Blear’s policy of demonising mainstream Muslim activists such as Daud Abdullah of the Muslim Council of Britain in the aftermath of Israel’s military operation in Gaza.
He only attended an assembly of extremists in Istanbul where “speaker after speaker called for jihad against Israel in support of Hamas” (BBC) and signed a document calling for attacks on the Royal Navy, among other European forces, if it were deployed on a Gaza arms interdiction mission. Silly old Blears, demonising such a wonderful “mainstream” man.
As for the Tories, oh my, they back (gasp) the Quilliam Foundation and are so bad that they should be bracketed with the “pro-Israel” BNP and the EDL:
Not content with opposing the building of a local mosque, shadow cabinet colleague, Michael Gove, an advisor to the anti-Islamist Quilliam Foundation, endorses constant vilification of mainstream Muslim activist organisers and supporters of the Gaza demonstrations as both subversive and sectarian. Exactly the same sentiment is expressed by the British National Party and the English Defence League who seek to counter Muslim led pro-Palestinian demonstrations with their own pro-Israeli ones.
Who should get a hearing? Why, the Khomeinist thugs and racists of the self-styled Islamic Human Rights Commission and other angry people:
Whereas there has been extensive reporting on demonstrators’ perceptions of inadequacies of public order policing in relation to G20 and related protests both in and outside London there has been negligible coverage of the concerns raised in a report by the Islamic Human Rights Commission that presents Muslim demonstrators’ perspectives.
Exactly as Lord Scarman concluded after the Brixton riots, it remains crucial that government and police engage closely with their sternest critics in minority communities after serious public disorder if they are to establish the kind of trust that is necessary to build effective partnerships that will improve social cohesion and public safety. That means sitting round the table with angry community activists and working out solutions.
It does not even matter if the angry brigades have no case:
At present there is a widespread perception that Muslim demonstrators are not being treated fairly by police and courts. Whether or not that perception proves to be well grounded it should be the basis for urgent discussions between groups who organised the Gaza demonstrations, police and government.
Lambert resigned from the Met in 2007. These days his perch is the European Muslim Research Centre (EMRC) at the University of Exeter.
This note appears in its latest report (pdf):
We also wish to thank the trustees of Islam Expo and the Cordoba Foundation who have provided the funding to launch the European Muslim Research Centre (EMRC) and enabled us to carry out the research for this report.
IslamExpo is the ill-fated venture of Mohamed Ali Harrath, a convicted terrorist, an antisemite, and CEO of Islam Channel. Hazel Blears and other ministers boycotted the IslamExpo conference in 2008. Blears took this line at the time:
I was clear that because of the views of some of the organisers, and because of the nature of some of the exhibitors, this was an event that no Minister should attend. Organisers like Anas Altikriti, who believes in boycotting Holocaust Memorial Day. Or speakers like Azzam Tamimi, who has sought to justify suicide bombing. Or exhibitors like the Government of Iran.
No IslamExpo was held in 2009.
However, IslamExpo is still an operating limited company. Its directors include fugitive Hamas commander and Istanbul declaration signatory Mohammed Sawalha, who attended a terrorist bash in Beirut just a month ago; Hamas supporter Ismail Patel of Friends of al Aqsa, a group entirely dedicated to Israel hatred; and Anas al-Tikriti.
Until November 2009 Azzam “Kaboom” Tamimi, who is currently under investigation by the police for hate speech at SOAS, was also an IslamExpo director.
The Cordoba Foundation is Tikriti’s own vehicle – he is the sole director of the company. Cordoba has backed extremists and nutters such as Cageprisoners and the creepy Christisons. Tikriti has also called the murder of coalition troops in Iraq “legitimate“.
There’s more. On the advisory board of the University of Exeter’s EMRC you will find Muhammad Abdul Bari, head of the MCB and chairman of the East London Mosque, host to one hate preacher after another for years on end. The mosque’s imam, Abdul Qayyum, is another signatory of the Istanbul declaration and a Hamas supporter.
You will also find Bashir Nafi on the board. In the 1990s he was a senior operative of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist group. He was deported from the United States in 1996 for visa fraud. In 2003, the US indicted him (pdf) in absentia for racketeering in the US on behalf of Islamic Jihad. The UK refused to extradite him.
University larks, Islamic Jihad style: a rally at Hebron University
In 2004 Nafi signed another Islamist declaration (pdf) alongside leading Hamas and Muslim Brotherhood figures. It termed British soldiers fighting in Iraq, among others, nothing less than “filth” to be “cleansed” by the “honourable resistance”:
Call upon our Arab and Islamic people alongside all religious authorities and the forces of liberation everywhere to resist the occupation and its savage crimes in Iraq and Palestine; this by offering all our moral and material support to the honourable resistance, its prisoners and their families; to be patient, strong and steadfast until Allah is victorious and the land of Islam cleansed from the filth of occupation. This, with the grace of Allah, is very soon to come.
What are Lambert and MEMO complaining about? Britain is a place where the Muslim Brotherhood can buy ex-coppers and academic legitimacy. Do they really expect the rest of us to put up with rioting as well?