Here’s the latest from CagePrisoners, Moazzam Begg group that campaigns for Salafi jihadi prisoners.
The article contains is a mocked-up photograph, showing the bloody corpse of Barack Obama, accompanied by text describing the future assassination of the President of the United States.
The article was posted by Fahad Ansari, a solicitor who previously worked with the so-called Islamic Human Rights Commission, and who is now at CagePrisoners. Ansari is the man who described Anwar Al Awlaki, the man tipped to be Bin Laden’s replacement, as “inspirational“. Ansari previously wrote an article for CagePrisoners, in which he said of the death of a Libyan Al Qaeda member: “His death however may serve as the fertilizer that serves to revive the spirit of jihad in the Muslims of Britain.” Read some of Ansari’s other views. It is very clear that he is a hardcore supporter of Salafi jihadi politics.
Let’s take a step back here.
Can you imagine what the reaction would be if a group with links to the political Right were to cheer the imagined lynching of Obama?That would basically be the end of the outfit. It would put that group firmly outside the boundaries of the political mainstream. Investigative reporters would be sent to doorstep the disgusting man. The police might well arrest and question him.
That logic does not apply to CagePrisoners.
Indeed, when it came to the crunch, and knowing full well that Moazzam Begg was a veteran jihadist and a supporter of Awlaki, Amnesty sacked the courageous veteran feminist campaigner, Gita Sahgal. Amnesty’s acting General Secretary Claudio Cordone then endorsed Begg’s conception of “defensive jihad“: by which he means the right of the Taliban to impose a totalitarian, human rights abusing, Islamist state on terrified Afghanis. Later, under pressure, he tried to weasel out of his words. Finally, Amnesty fully embraced CagePrisoners as a partner, most recently joining forces with it to make a joint submission to the British Government’s Detainee Inquiry.
CagePrisoners is still welcome in civic buildings throughout the United Kingdom. On 11 June, for example, they’re holding a fundraising dinner at Cardiff City Hall.
And who funds CagePrisoners? Why, it is the Quaker charity, the Joseph Rowntree Trust, whose funding runs until November:
Laughably, its purpose is “to support Moazzam Begg’s work in educating, advocating and inspiring people about the possibilities of reconciliation between the values of the West and Islam”. After the furore over Awlaki, The Telegraph questioned the continued funding of Begg’s outfit. This was their response:
Last night Stephen Pittman, Secretary of the Joseph Rowntree Trust, defended his charity’s funding of the group. He said: “I’ve recently spoken to Cageprisoners and I have had a commitment that they are completely opposed to any form of the use of terrorism aimed at civilians.
“They are completely committed to the upholding of human rights standards … [and] have distanced themselves from this man [al-Awlaki].
“Cageprisoners has now stated that it is not supportive of anything al-Awlaki is saying relating to the use of violence.
“We have got a Muslim community in Britain which feels highly alienated and the people who in our view are able to build bridges and make links to those young Muslims are people like Moazzam Begg and Cageprisoners.”
Just makes you weep, doesn’t it?