This is a cross-post from the Gatestone Institute
From his office at the University of Bath, David Miller, an academic and writer, researches organizations and activists that he believes, in his words, work to “distort public debate and undermine democracy.”
The results of this research, done with the help of his students and assembled into detailed profiles of the shadowy figures behind this lobbying, are published across a number of websites run by Miller, including PowerBase and SpinWatch.
Counter-terrorism groups, “neocons” and various political organizations are all accused of belonging to a “covert propaganda operation” for various Jewish organizations. Even Tony Blair, Miller argues, is in league with a sinister “international network” of Israeli settlers and American “Islamophobes.”
As one blogger notes, any of Miller’s “fellow academics” who do not present strong convictions against Israel, are “smeared… as neocons.”
Shiraz Maher, a counter-terrorism expert, has written: “Despite the ‘close to ten thousand’ entries on SpinProfiles [another Miller project] you will find nothing on [Islamist pressure] groups. … The problem is with SpinProfile’s apparent obsession with ‘Jewish power’ or, if you will, ‘the Jewish lobby’.”
At a recent conference organized by Miller, American academic Deepa Kumar denounced Muslims working to combat extremism and terrorism within their communities as “native informants.” And as the journalist Nick Cohen observed: “For the religious [Islamic] right and the political and academic left, a liberal Muslim is their trussed-up version of the enemy, the alien, the ‘other’.”
Another David Miller site, Neocon Europe (now defunct), published the works of Kevin MacDonald, a prominent white supremacist who claims that Jews control the media and politicians to “transform the country to serve their interests.” In a list entitled, “characteristics of Jewish intellectual movements,” MacDonald has claimed that Jews “form a cohesive, mutually reinforcing core” that has “access to prestigious and mainstream media sources, partly as a result of Jewish influence on the media.”
Other conspiracy theories promoted on Miller’s websites include those of Miller’s colleague, Idrees Ahmed, who claims that the Darfur crisis has been prolonged by a powerful Jewish lobby.
In 2009, David Miller provided accommodation for Joel Kovel, an anti-Jewish American academic who has written that, “The Holocaust has been repressed from history and converted into moral capital to cover and justify whatever the Jewish people would do in the way of domination themselves, whether this be the pell-mell immersion in American bourgeois life or the policies of Israel.”
David Miller and his network also work with Muslim Brotherhood operatives. In 2009, Miller secured taxpayer funding to run a project examining British Islam in collaboration with Osama Saeed, a Muslim Brotherhood activist. Saeed was previously the spokesperson for the Muslim Association of Britain, the main organization for the Muslim Brotherhood in Britain. In 2005, Saeed called for the re-establishment of the Islamic caliphate; and in 2006, Saeed expressed praise for the late Al Qaeda leader Anwar Al-Awlaki.
Miller’s protégés include Hilary Aked, a blogger with a strong interest in British Jewish groups. Aked apparently believes that a hidden Jewish network is responsible for the “Islamophobia industry,” and that there is a distinct “overlap between Islamophobia and Zionism.” She also describes moderate Muslims as “native informants.”
Aked is published at the online publication, Electronic Intifada, where she writes about “pro-Israel” infiltration of the media, and that pro-Israel conferences are part of a secretive “transnational Islamophobia industry.”
Electronic Intifada is a prominent pro-Hamas publication, whose founder, Ali Abunimah, has described Palestinian leaders who talk with Israel as “collaborators,” and claims that, “supporting Zionism is not atonement for the Holocaust, but its continuation in spirit.”
Aked has also frequently written for Al Araby Al Jadeed, a Qatari-funded media group that is accused by Egyptian newspapers of being a Muslim Brotherhood front group. Al Araby‘s editor-in-chief, Wael Qandil, is described by the Arab newspaper Al Arabiya as a prominent supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood.
To fund his obsession with the “propaganda” ostensibly spread by Jews and anti-Islamist Muslims, Miller has received grants from the Economic and Social Research Council, a body funded by the British government. In 2012, Miller received £400,000 ($614,000 USD) from the Council.
Miller’s projects have also received funding from a number of Islamist groups tied to the Muslim Brotherhood and the terror group, Hamas, including:
- £2000 from Interpal, a British charity closely linked to Hamas. Interpal’s leaders regularly attend Hamas rallies and ceremonies in the Gaza strip. Interpal trustee Essam Yusuf even participated in a song that praised Hamas’s terrorist activities and its “martyrs.” Another Interpal trustee, Ibrahim Hewitt, has written of a “so-called Holocaust,” and claims: “The Jews cannot be entrusted with the sanctity and security of this Holy Land.”
- £10,000 from Friends of Al Aqsa, an organization founded by Ismail Patel, who told a crowd in 2009 that, “Hamas is no terrorist organization. The reason they hate Hamas is because they refuse to be subjugated, occupied by the Israeli state, and we salute Hamas for standing up to Israel.”
- A total of £15,000 from the Cordoba Foundation, a lobbying group led by senior Muslim Brotherhood official, Anas Al-Tikriti. Prime Minister David Cameron has described the Cordoba Foundation as a “political front for the Muslim Brotherhood.”
- £5000 from Middle East Monitor, a Muslim Brotherhood online publication. Its editor, Daud Abdullah, was a signatory to the Istanbul Declaration, a document that called for attacks on British troops and Jewish communities.In 2011, Middle East Monitor brought the Hamas activist Raed Saleh to speak in Britain. Saleh has claimed (falsely) that 4000 Jews skipped work at the World Trade Center on 9/11 and that those who killed the “Martyr, Sheikh Osama Bin Laden” had “sold their consciences to Satan.” David Miller is, in fact, a vocal supporter of Raed Saleh, and spoke in defence of Saleh at a court deportation hearing.
Friends of Al Aqsa has published writings of prominent anti-Semites, including the Palestinian journalist Khalid Amayreh, whose submission claimed that Jews control America, and that the Iraq war “was conceived in and planned by Israel through the mostly Jewish neocons in Washington.”
It seems as if in the minds of David Miller, Kevin MacDonald and Hilary Aked, a mysterious Jewish cabal is responsible for all the world’s ills. Jewish money is supposedly the nexus between “Islamophobia,” Western colonialism, terrorism and violent foreign policy.
That such views find a platform in academia — and funding from governments — is seriously troubling.
Anti-Jewish tropes have been the foundation of conspiracy theories for centuries. The ideas of Miller, MacDonald and Aked are not new, but they remain racist, xenophobic and false.
Gene adds: Harry’s Place is honored to have its own page at Powerbase– which they haven’t bothered to update since 2009. If I were one of Miller’s funders, I’d be wondering if I was getting my money’s worth.