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  1. #1
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    Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam (OP)


    Salaam

    Event: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Recent events from the Middle East have placed the Muslim community in Britain in the public eye once more with their every word and action coming under microscopic scrutiny by the media and politicians. This is only the latest chapter in an ideological attack that has been ongoing for significantly longer.

    Whereas the attacks on Islamic concepts of war, political governance and the unity of Muslim lands are nothing new, they have now increased on an unprecedented scale in the wake of the rise of ISIS and its declaration of a Caliphate. The matter is not about supporting or opposing the version of a Caliphate as demonstrated by ISIS but rather the criminalisation of Islamic political thought and ideology. The concepts of jihad, shariah and khilafah are not the exclusive possession of ISIS but core Islamic doctrines subscribed to by almost one third's of the world's population. It is telling that the government's treatment of ISIS is similar to its treatment of Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood, Hizb-ut Tahrir, and the Taliban, despite the enormous differences of belief and methodology between the groups.

    The Islamophobic nature of the criminalisation of those who believe in fighting in Syria against Assad is underlined by the lack of concern for British Jews who fight in the Israeli Occupation Forces, particularly at times where they are engaged in war crimes and other atrocities, such as the recent attack on Gaza.

    On the flips side, Muslims who wish to aid their brothers and sisters through the provision of humanitarian aid via aid convoys are having their homes raided, being harassed by the security services and are effectively being accused of engaging in terrorism. Charities are having their bank accounts closed without explanation and are coming under investigation by the Charity Commission simply for being involved in crisis zones like Gaza and Syria. Witch-hunts such as the Trojan Horse hoax and the mass hysteria over issues of the niqab, halal food and conservative Muslim values demonstrate that the criminalisation is spreading beyond Middle Eastern politics. Individuals and organisations within the Muslim community who have been speaking out against these policies are now under attack. They have had their organisation, business and bank accounts arbitrarily closed. Even their children's bank accounts have been closed. They are maligned in the media as terrorist sympathisers, extremists and jihadists. Some have even been imprisoned.

    The common element across all these cases is that those targeted cared for the oppressed and for those who are suffering. They have been criminalised because they cared.

    Join CAGE at this series of events around the country to unite the Muslim communities against this criminalisation of our faith, our beliefs, our mosques and organisations, and our leaders. The following regional events will take place with the large conference taking place on 20 September at the Waterlily in London.

    Sunday 14 September - 6pm

    Pakistani Community Centre, Park Hall, London Road, Reading RG1 2PA

    Jamal Harwood
    Dr Adnan Siddiqui
    Dr Uthman Lateef
    Anas al-Tikriti
    Taji Mustafa
    Wednesday 17 September - 7pm
    East Pearl Banqueting Centre, Longsight, Manchester
    Ibrahim Hewitt
    Abdullah Andalusi
    Jahangir Mohammed

    Friday 19 September - 6.30pm

    Muslim Student House (the Daar), Moseley, Birmingham

    Dr Uthman Lateef
    Ismail Adam Patel
    Abdullah Andalusi
    Dr Abdul Wahid
    Fahad Ansari

    http://www.cageuk.org/event/it-crime-care

  2. #481
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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

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    Salaam

    Another update



    And lets not forget.







    I think China would beat the UAE but point made.
    Last edited by Junon; 10-04-2019 at 07:58 PM.

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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Tariq Ramadan has been released.

    Blurb

    Tariq Ramadan is recognised by many as the most prominent Islamic studies academic in the Western world.

    But at the height of the #MeToo movement in 2017, Ramadan was forced to take leave from his post as Oxford University's Professor of Contemporary Islamic Studies over sexual assault allegations.

    He denied the accusations, but as the cases against him increased, he was eventually detained by French authorities in February, 2018.


    Last edited by Junon; 10-05-2019 at 01:36 PM.

  5. #483
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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Another update.





    Jewish school wins legal challenge against Ofsted

    King David High School Manchester was downgraded over equality issues but inspection service admits its report on the school was wrong


    King David High School Manchester has won a legal challenge which quashes Ofsted’s decision to downgrade the school from outstanding to inadequate over equality issues in June.

    Inspectors were unhappy at the separation of girls and boys in the Yavneh streams of the school - catering for more religious students - and the reduced amount of time being given to some secular subjects in Yavneh compared with the main campus.

    But the school turned to the courts to overturn the shock verdict, arguing the inspection service had got the law wrong.

    Ofsted said on Friday, “We have taken the very unusual step of giving consent to the quashing of the most recent inspection report on King David’s High School in Manchester, which was published in June 2019.

    "We have agreed with the school that, given the school’s particular arrangements, it was not open to us to conclude that there was unlawful direct discrimination on grounds of either sex or religion and belief, when comparing a pupil in either of the single-sex streams with a pupil in the main stream.

    “Quashing the report will allow us to re-inspect the school at an appropriate time, looking again at how it manages the separation of pupils by sex and assessing the education it provides against our new inspection framework.”

    The school's outstanding status has now been reinstated pending a fresh inpsection.

    Ofsted has been ordered to pay the school’s reasonable costs, a spokesman for King David said.

    https://www.thejc.com/education/educ...K8uor1oH_v9kFA
    Last edited by Junon; 10-07-2019 at 12:51 PM.

  6. #484
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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Another update











    More blacklisting.



    Blurb

    Chris Morris is the writer-director behind countless comedy hits including Four Lions, The Day Today and Brass Eye. His new film 'The Day Shall Come' follows an idealistic preacher targeted by the FBI in their fight against extremism.






    The end goal as always.


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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Another update.



    The Extremism Commission wants Muslims to be seen, but not heard


    The Islamic Human Rights Commission responds to a report by the Commission for Countering Extremism which accused many Muslim organisations of “hateful extremism.” The IHRC says the Commission’s vision of the Muslim community is one that shows little or no opposition to state policies.

    The second tranche of reports from the Commission for Countering Extremism (CCE) landed yesterday. Like its previous set of documents, these articles show only that the CCE’s mission is to delegitimise political debate that opposes the incumbent government’s domestic and foreign policies.

    Aside from attacks on Muslim civil society (almost all major civil society or advocacy groups are named), the “hard Left” (once more), the far-right, and some Sikh groups all fall foul of the CCE’s wrath.

    Whilst all attempts to tackle religious and racial hatred are welcome, the CCE’s musings do not encompass the full gamut of the issue. Discussion of the far-right is meagre, work on attacks by Zionist groups and the coalition between some of these and the far-right entirely missing.

    Rather, the CCE demonises the legitimate activities and political speech of particularly Muslims but also the Left – in particular any speech or activity that calls out structural racism and Islamophobia, or advocates for social justice whether in the UK or abroad.

    The paucity of argument in these articles is augmented by what is essentially verbose name-calling. If a group has disagreed with a policy or called out individual acts or systemic injustices, they are labelled as “extremist” by the CCE who even go so far as to devise that anti-imperialism is an anti-Semitic enterprise.

    “Hateful extremism”

    What is clear is that the CCE’s claims to counter, or wish to counter, “hateful extremism” that opposes liberal norms is simply a fig-leaf for attacking the very basis of democratic space and participation.

    As with all racist endeavours, there is no logic to the arguments presented. The few mentions of the IHRC that appear in “Mainstream Islamism in Britain: Educating for the ‘Islamic Revival’,” are a case in point.

    First, there are the outright misrepresentations regarding our stance on UK blasphemy laws, to the claim our staff were heavily involved in writing the APPG on British Muslims’ report on Islamophobia.

    Then there are the snide remarks that despite being consulted by the Home Office on many occasions, we are deeply critical of the Home Office. This latter situation should in normal times be evidence of maturity of both the Home Office and the IHRC, and a sign of dynamic political space.

    Likewise, our stated aim to seek a better world for all is interpreted as problematic because it would require the change of the system (an admission by the CCE rather than IHRC).

    Instead, not only is this bizarre “critique” presented at a policy level with little or no embarrassment, it further delegitimises critical voices whether Muslim or not.

    On the back of this it becomes possible for news-media to contact organisations with a litany of equally poorly made claims and arguments. In the run-up to the launch of these articles, a reporter from The Times contacted the IHRC to ask whether two of its members – known to have been married for over twenty years – were really married, and if not, why were they registered as living at the same address!

    This is ludicrous at any time and date but particularly at a moment when the UK Prime Minister lives not with his wife but his girlfriend at 10 Downing Street!

    It is clear that the CCE and its advocates want Muslims to be seen but not heard (and preferably not seen either), with all those also critical of prevailing political norms, regimes and injustices to follow suit. This is authoritarianism with little guise.

    Insofar as this government wishes to actually tackle the undoubted divisions sewn across society by inter alia, a racist counter-terrorism regime, Brexit and austerity, it should consider with immediate effect the disbanding of the utterly disreputable CCE.

    In the meantime, IHRC’s annual Islamophobia conference this year looks at Islamophobia and Shrinking Civil Society Space. We encourage those concerned with the ever decreasing spaces within which to have political conversations in the UK and beyond, to attend and take part in the conversations.

    https://5pillarsuk.com/2019/10/08/th...but-not-heard/
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  9. #486
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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    The 'neutrality' of secularism on display.







    You have to give the French leadership credit, they are honest about their intentions.

    Edit - You cant be neutral when it comes to defending your faith.

    Last edited by Junon; 10-10-2019 at 05:12 PM.

  10. #487
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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Another update.



    Laying The ‘Islamist’ Bogeyman To Rest

    When I was contacted by the quite wordy “European Centre for Counterterrorism and Intelligence Studies, Germany & Netherlands” (E.C.C.I.) a few weeks ago, I was curious why an allegedly ‘European’ research center would use a logo in Arabic with a red-headed falcon on top—a symbol widely used in the Persian Gulf. At a closer look the ‘E.C.C.I’ had linkages to another research centre that had recently popped up in Europe, the ‘European Eye on Radicalisation’ (EER)—an outlet funded by Ali Rashid Al Nuaimi, a former Emirati intelligence officer, CEO of the Abu Dhabi-based Hedaya Forum and close confidant of UAE strongman Mohammad bin Zayed Al Nahyan (MbZ). Publications by both the ‘E.C.C.I.’ and the ‘EER’ follow the Emirati narrative, which takes a zero-tolerance approach to Islamism.

    For Abu Dhabi, the demonization of Islamism is based on a deeply-rooted fear within the centre of power around MbZ—a fear of civil societal activism legitimized not by secular power but religious belief. Since the Arab Spring, UAE officials have been on the forefront of using their narrative of ‘anti-Islamism’ and ‘counter-terrorism’ as a means to clamp down on civil-society at home and across the region. To facilitate this effort, they have partnered with dubious allies in the West: right-wing groups that make a living out of Islamist fear mongering.

    These groups rely on promoting bizarre and dangerous Islamophobic conspiracy theories, like the Eurabia myth and the Red-Green alliance, to suggest that Muslims are taking over the U.S. and Europe. The same extremist echo chambers have been responsible for spreading the idea that President Obama was secretly a Muslim Manchurian candidate, that Hillary Clinton adviser Huma Abedin was a covert Muslim Brotherhood plant in the State Department, and that the UK has been overtaken by shari’a-governed ‘no-go zones’. There has been a curious overlap, too, between the lines used by the foremost Islamophobic ideologues promoting these conspiracy theories and the official messaging of the UAE government as it insinuates itself into shaping the domestic security policy of European states.

    The UAE’s disinformation network, headed by spin doctors at the Harbour Group and Camstoll in the U.S., has worked with bloggers and conspiracy theorists to feed these narratives into the Republican and conservative mainstream over the past eight years. Under the pretext of ‘countering extremism’, Emirati money has financed anti-Islamist and anti-Qatar events at the neo-conservative Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (FDD) and the Hudson Institute, the right-wing Middle East Forum, as well as the Counter Extremism Project, a sister organization of the neo-conservative pressure group United Against Nuclear Iran.

    In the UK, the UAE’s lobbyists continue to poison public discourse by feeding right-wing journalists with a track record of spreading Islamophobic conspiracy theories. In France, the right-wing Front National just recently received campaign aid worth €8 million from a suspicious source in Abu Dhabi.

    Successive U.S. administrations and British governments have seen through this ruse and recognised the dangers of such weaponized narratives.

    Today’s proponents of the ‘Islamist menace’ are recycling very old bigotries. Their arguments are staggeringly reminiscent of those found in a 1913 essay entitled “The Pan-Islamist Menace”, which was published in the North American Review, then one of America’s most prestigious literary journals. The author, Arthur Bullard, draws on orientalist writing in colonialist Britain, painting a dark picture of a pan-Islamist conspiracy. Reading Bullard’s breathless fear mongering on ‘the militant rebirth of Mohammedanism’, secret fraternal orders of pan-Islamists who threatened European colonial hegemony in North Africa, and ‘holy war’, two things stand out today. Firstly, his conspiracism and racial slurs then had to be proffered under the pseudonym Albert Edwards. Today, Islamophobia is so often rewarded in polite society that his casual racism would be celebrated as contrarian and Bullard would find himself showered with op-ed commissions, prime-time interviews and blockbuster book deals. On both sides of the Atlantic, he would find fellow travellers in the New Atheist movement, with all of the attendant media puff. Secondly, arguments about ‘Islamism’ have always been rooted in a racism and irrational fear that conceives of the Muslim world as a flat surface to be treated as a threat—this hasn’t changed.

    Islamism remains a contested catch-all concept, describing ideology, political movements, and forms of government that borrow Islamic references but are essentially presented as separate from Islam. Its orientalist use in 19th century colonial Britain or France did not explicitly differentiate between Islam and Islamism, like it would use Christianity and Christianism interchangeably. It was only after 1979 that the concept experienced a revival that would link Islamism to ‘extremism’ and ‘violence’ in a supposedly conspirative effort by Muslims to create a pan-Islamist entity to rule the world—a narrative very similar to the anti-Semitic canard of a Jewish world conspiracy.

    Those who hawk the idea of ‘Islamism’ as a rubric for understanding political divisions are taking us all for a ride. They place the Islamic State (IS or ISIS) on the same political spectrum as groups like the Sahwa tribal movement or the Popular Mobilisation Forces in Iraq, who sacrificed everything in order to halt the march of the head-chopping fanatics. They want to claim that the multipolar, non-unitary Muslim Brotherhood, which won a majority in Egypt’s only free and fair elections in 2012, is of a piece with al-Qaeda. Bullard’s bogeyman was the Sanusiyya, a North African Sufi order resisting colonial oppression, which he professed was a ‘great secret order’ engaged in ‘idiotic mysticism’ and ‘war against the infidel’. For today’s Arab tyrants and their Islamophobic allies in Europe and the U.S., those who take inspiration from their faith occupy the same position, simultaneously derided and treated as a threat.

    The UAE’s offensive to win Western hearts and minds against the many shades of grey in Islamism is an attempt to create a bogeyman that resonates with an audience merely waiting for a Muslim majority country like the Emirates to support their biases. The narrative is a façade, behind which the authoritarian counterrevolutionaries in the Arab world hide to legitimize repression, justify military interventions and make journalists and activists disappear. In the face of a potential Arab Spring 2.0 currently unfolding, the dichotomous narrative of ‘authoritarian stability’ versus ‘Islamist anarchy’ fails to account for growing grey area of liberal civil-society in the Arab world—one that is resilient enough not to view Islamism as a fundamental threat to building a more pluralist political future.

    https://lobelog.com/laying-the-islam...eyman-to-rest/

    Seculars again demonstrating how 'neutral' they are.



    Last edited by Junon; 10-17-2019 at 10:30 AM.

  11. #488
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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Another update.



    Concurrently.



    So if you're a Muslim politician you have to be pro LGBT and pro Israel otherwise you'll get targeted by top politicians and the media.

    If you're a Muslim activist you'll get labelled an extremist if you fail to denounce aspects of Islamic law or if you criticise counter terror policies or Western foreign policy.

    If you run a Muslim charity you will be targeted by the Charity Commission in ways non Muslim charities are not. Held to a different yardstick

    If you are big on social media subtle and not so subtle pressure will be applied behind the scenes to take your platforms away.

    Muslims who want to serve their communities by setting up youth centres etc have to agree to implement Islamophobic counter terror policies as a condition of getting government funding

    Even banks will shut down the personal and business accounts of Muslim activists and organisations without giving them a reason. But we all know the reason.

    I could go on but in short, Muslims who aspire to a role in public life are faced with the ultimatum of having to abandon their religious and political values or face demonisation and ostracism.

    The only acceptable Muslims for the British establishment are the likes of Sadiq Khan or Sajid Javid who are willing to sacrifice or even completely abandon Islamic values.

    This ostracism of Muslims will only lead to further division, resentment and hatred in our society. There are over 3 million Muslims in the UK and they're not going anywhere. They will simply retreat into their own bubble if this continues.

    Much better to simply accept that people have different values and beliefs and as long as they are not inciting hatred or violence towards a particular group, they should be allowed to hold those beliefs privately and publicly.

    https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1...928437760.html
    Last edited by Junon; 10-25-2019 at 09:12 AM.

  12. #489
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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    The subversion campaign continues, now they are targeting the Prophet (pbuh) all in the name of 'British values'.



    A hyperbolic response, but understandable.

    More hasrh responses.





    The Orientalist mindset, the labels may change but the wine stays the same. Still even by British standards this is quite shocking.
    Last edited by Junon; 11-05-2019 at 03:19 PM.

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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    How times change!



    Last edited by Junon; 11-24-2019 at 11:32 PM.

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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Not new but this is shocking to see.

    Blurb

    A man has been charged with assault after shocking CCTV captures a random attack on a heavily pregnant woman in Sydney’s west.



    Muslim woman who was attacked in a Sydney cafe says she won’t “sit in silence”


    A Muslim woman who was viciously attacked by a man in a Sydney cafe has said that she has been verbally abused before.

    Rana Elasmar, who is 38 weeks pregnant, was brutally attacked by Stipe Lozina in a cafe in Parramatta.

    She was out dining with friends on Wednesday when the perpetrator started punching and kicking her.

    Lozina shouted Islamophobic abuse at the women who were all wearing the hijab.

    Ms Elasmar posted the following statement on her Facebook in response to the attack:

    “First and foremost I would like to start by thanking all the people who came to see me, those who have offered kind words and comfort through messages and calls, as well as those who have messaged their support through various Facebook posts. I want to sincerely thank each and every one of you, it truly means a lot.

    “I have always been a very private person and don’t normally take to social media to post or comment on anything, however, I felt like this time, it was important to address a few issues and raise awareness.

    “I was born and raised in Sydney, Australia. I am a Muslim. I have experienced occurrences of verbal abuse and hate from other Australians in the past but I have never thought that physical abuse of this nature could happen to me. For me, the verbal abuse was already too much and I know the Islamic community feels the same. It is NOT ok.

    “How somebody feels like they have the right to abuse another human being baffles me. It shows a lack of humanity. It shows weakness. It shows that you do not possess basic human empathy and kindness and those are the kinds of people who do not deserve to be part of our Australian community.

    “This man verbalised his hatred of Muslims prior to hitting me. He decided that he was going to take it in his power to act upon his hatred and he neither knows me, nor my religion. I do not want this attack to happen to anyone ever again. I want to see a world where people defend one another against cowardly acts like this and band together to protect the victims. We cannot allow behaviour like this to become the norm and sit silent.

    “I thank the people who stepped in that night in my defence. And to my friends who did not hesitate to step in for me, you are more like sisters to me and I am so grateful for what you both did. You have allowed me to step away from this and go home to my family.

    “The overwhelming support I have received is a reflection that this was a story that many can relate to. We are mothers, wives, daughters… and we deserve to feel safe wherever we go. We deserve a night out to unwind without being fearful of an attack like this happening again. I fear for the world our children will grow up in, if this issue is not addressed.

    “I call all Australians, Muslim or non-Muslims, of all faiths and cultures to come together, as you have already done for me, and voice your solidarity in protecting innocent people from any future racial/religious attacks.

    “I hope the justice system lives up to its name. And I also hope a proactive approach is taken against any potential future offenders.

    “I thank Allah (swt) – As salaam, Al aleem, Alhakim.”

    https://5pillarsuk.com/2019/11/23/mu...it-in-silence/

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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Another update


  17. #493
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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    British election have come and gone. A major defeat for Labour. Heres some commentary on the whole business.

    Blurb

    It's that time of year again, not the festive season. It's election time!

    In this episode of UNCAGED we go into the nitty gritty of party politics, can we except meaningful change from it, and if so how can we hold to account those who enshrined laws and embarked on wars that target Muslims.




    Heh.

    Last edited by Junon; 12-22-2019 at 02:22 AM.

  18. #494
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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Like to share.


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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Like to share.

    Blurb

    Join us this week on our Unscripted Podcast #38 with Dr Rob Faure Walker & Dr Tarek Younis

    They speak about counter-terrorism and structural racism, the problems of 'radicalisation' and 'extremism', surveillance technology, safeguarding, and much more.




    And even more craziness.



    Blurb

    Convicted terrorists will face lie-detector tests under a raft of measures drawn up in the wake of the most recent London Bridge attack to toughen up the monitoring of offenders in the community. Under the latest plans, serious terrorists would face a lie detector test as part of licence restrictions on their release from prison.

    Those who refused would be prevented from leaving jail and anyone refusing a test after release could be returned to jail.


    Last edited by Junon; 01-27-2020 at 11:15 AM.

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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Another update. Now that Christianity has been defeated, its replacement has arrived.

    Islamic school sues Ofsted after being failed over 25 yr old leaflet promoting Khilafa

    A Birmingham Islamic school has mounted a legal challenge against education watchdog Ofsted after it was failed following the discovery in the library of a 25-year-old leaflet about an Islamic conference promoting Khilafa.

    Ofsted rated Birchfield Independent Girls’ School in Aston as “inadequate” after inspectors found the leaflet about the 1994 conference which was organised by Islamic political group Hizb ut-Tahrir.

    The school had been predicted to get a rating of “good” until the discovery during the second day of the inspection.

    Khilafa (Islamic state) is a normative concept in mainstream Islam but has been fiercely attacked by the government and mainstream media.

    Birchfield said it had been a victim of Ofsted’s “draconian and inconsistent inspection practices” against faith-based independent schools.

    In a statement, the school said: “We are deeply disappointed with the judgements in our recent Ofsted report. They in no way reflect the paramount importance that we place on safeguarding, nor the evidence base collected by inspectors. Our pupils are safe, well cared for and our school has robust systems in place to safeguard our pupils.

    “The leaflet identified has no place in our teachings, curriculum or ethos. We work hard to promote fundamental British values and the rule of law at our school. Our pupils are well equipped to combat radicalisation and inspectors were able to verify this as part of the inspection process.

    “Our library has been vetted to ensure all materials are appropriate and in line with fundamental British values. Any newly added material is vetted before it is included in the library and senior staff and the librarian on a regular basis make checks.

    “Additionally, pupils’ access to the library is always supervised and the room is under lock and key when not used. The room was given to the inspectors as a base during the inspection period. Subsequently we were unable to carry out our regular due diligence on the days of the inspection and the leaflet highlighted was found on day 2 of the inspection.

    “Sadly, we are not the only faith based independent school to fall victim to Ofsted’s draconian and inconsistent inspection practices. It remains a growing and dissatisfactory issue which must be addressed. It is simply unacceptable for Ofsted to undermine all of the hard work put in by staff and pupils when coming to wholly inaccurate judgements of schools. We continue to challenge the decision making which led to our inspection judgements and await Ofsted’s legal response.”

    “Seriously inflammatory leaflet”

    Following the inspection in November inspectors rated the quality of education as “good” but said the leadership and management were “inadequate.” It added that the school does not meet independent school standards.

    Inspectors said: “A seriously inflammatory leaflet that encourages radicalisation was found on the bookshelf in the school library during the inspection. Leaders have not made sure that pupils are protected from this type of material. This means that pupils are not safe. None of the school leaders could explain how the leaflet got there.”

    Regarding the leaflet, Ofsted said: “It states, for example: ‘Today we find that the sons and daughters of Islam are under continuous attack by the forces of non-Islam’. It promotes the Khaleefah which is defined as: ‘The total rulership of Muslims over the world.’

    However, the inspection team also found that these sentiments did not reflect the views of pupils and that they are encouraged to accept differences and to value diversity.

    “Pupils are happy in this school,” Ofsted said. “Pupils and staff work well together and there is a good level of mutual respect. Despite the unacceptable literature found, pupils are taught to accept everyone, whoever they are…

    “Every pupil does her best. The teachers help all the pupils to make progress. The broad curriculum is often delivered in fun and interesting ways. This promotes pupils’ learning. They do well as a result. Pupils behave well because that is what staff expect. Any bullying incidents are dealt with quickly and effectively…

    “Leaders have improved the delivery of the curriculum since the previous inspection. Consequently, the school is now providing a good quality of education.”

    A spokesperson for Ofsted said: “Our inspection handbook makes it clear that a setting will be rated inadequate if it is considered that safeguarding is ineffective.”

    https://5pillarsuk.com/2020/01/31/is...oting-khilafa/
    Last edited by Junon; 01-31-2020 at 08:35 PM.

  22. #497
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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Another update.



    The drastic realignment of international alliances leaves vulnerable Muslims with few powerful friends.

    US President Donald Trump’s unveiled peace plan, a promise to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in an even-handed manner, not only inflicts further humiliation and suffering on the Palestinian people but also grants Israel’s politically powerful settler movement its every desire in its promise to “finish off the Palestinian cause.”

    Instead of putting in place parameters or a road map to end one of the world’s most intractable conflicts, it sanctifies Israeli war crimes and violations of international law, while also resurrecting a system of grand apartheid not seen in a country with claims to democracy since South Africa in the 1980s.

    It’s no wonder the Palestinians have angrily rejected Trump’s plan, especially given they were excluded from the drafting of the proposal in the first place. It should surprise no one that the so-called “Deal of the Century” has been dismissed as “worthless,” “one-sided” and even “criminal” by large swathes of the international community – but it’s the reaction from a significant portion of the Muslim world that has raised eyebrows.

    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan expressed a strong rebuke, calling the US president’s proposal “a plan to ignore the rights of the Palestinians and legitimise Israel’s occupation,” adding that “Jerusalem is sacred to Muslims” and it can “never be accepted.”
    On the other hand, the response from Arab gulf countries has ranged from cautious support to enthusiastic participation.

    Egypt urged the Palestinians to “carefully study the proposal.” The United Arab Emirates said it “offers an important starting point for a return to negotiations within a US-led international framework.”

    Qatar expressed appreciation for “Trump’s endeavours,” while Saudi Arabia has essentially operated as Trump’s public relations liaison officer in the region at all unveiled stages of the “Deal of the Century.”

    It should be noted that Qatar did call for a Palestinian state "within the 1967 borders, including East Jerusalem," which none of the other states even bothered to mention.

    Ambassadors from Bahrain, Oman and the UAE were in attendance at the White House when Trump announced the plan, effectively rubber-stamping a proposal and event that lacked Palestinian participation.

    If the past two years have revealed a stunning realignment of the international system, it’s the willingness of Gulf Arab states, and other Muslim countries, to tacitly and implicitly support the world’s worst violators of human rights against Muslim minorities, including China’s persecution of Muslims in China, India’s repressive measures in Kashmir and treatment of Muslims within India, and inaction on the Rohingya genocide, a people who have been essentially abandoned while attempts are being made to repatriate them back to Myanmar.

    We must not overlook the fact that the Saudi-led coalition is responsible for much of the misery in Yemen, often described as the “world’s largest humanitarian crisis,” and the UAE and Egypt back the warlord Haftar, who leads some of the most extreme and violent militias in Africa.

    In cautiously or tacitly supporting Trump’s plan to subject the Palestinian people to further cruelty at the hands of their occupier, while, at the same time, whitewashing the respective human rights crimes of China and India, the governments of Saudi Arabia, UAE, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, Oman, Iraq, and Syria have become co-signatories to some of the worst acts committed by powerful nation-states against a targeted religious faith since the Holocaust.

    Last year, when a coalition of 22 — mostly Western democracies, including the United States — co-signed a letter calling on Beijing to end its human rights violations against 13 million Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang, dozens of mostly Middle Eastern, Muslim and African nations countered with a co-signed letter of their own. The letter repeated China's official stance expressing support for the Asian superpower’s “counterterrorism measures” and praise for its “vocational training” camps.

    Excluding Qatar, which has since withdrawn its signature, the governments of these countries have calculated that the value of Chinese investment and trade is of far more value than the lives of 13 million Uyghur Muslims.
    This calculus also drives their muted response to India’s abrogation of Article 370 of its constitution, and the nearly six-month military lockdown and communications blackout that has followed.

    In fact, the UAE has praised India’s repressive measures in the Muslim majority territory, claiming New Delhi’s abrogation of Article 370 will “improve social justice and security… and further stability and peace,” while Saudi Arabia has toed a similar line in minimising Kashmiri suffering to that of a benign “internal issue.”

    “This muted response is underwritten by more than $100 billion in annual trade with India that makes it one of the Arabian Peninsula’s most prized economic partners,” observes the Associated Press.
    Official foreign trade statistics reveal Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries count among India’s largest trading partners in terms of goods exported and imported in 2019, with Indian investments in the UAE surpassing $55 billion, while Saudi Arabia is India’s second-biggest oil supplier.

    “As a growing market for Arab oil and gas, as a source of highly trained and competent personnel, and as a friendly country with a powerful military and a strong interest in geopolitical stability, India is a valuable neighbour in a dangerous part of the world,” observes The Wall Street Journal.

    Despite their claims to being the “guardians of Islam” and “protector of Muslims,” Arab monarchies have demonstrated they care only for two things: countering Iran at every turn, and growing trade ties with the powerhouse economies committing human rights violations against Muslims.

    It matters not how many Muslim men, women, and children are caged, tortured, gassed and killed along the way. Morality runs a distant second to the further enrichment of their thrones, evidently.

    https://www.trtworld.com/opinion/how...m-causes-33347

  23. #498
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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Another update.

    Streatham attack: split personality or just ignorance?

    Sudesh Amman has been named by police as the man who carried out the knife attack in Streatham, London. Amman said he wanted to be from the “martyrs”.

    In May 2018, Amman was arrested by armed officers who suspected he was planning an attack. In November that year, he pleaded guilty and was convicted for terrorist literature.

    Amman reportedly sent videos of beheadings and asked his ‘girlfriend’ to “take a knife [to]…attack the tourists (crusaders).”[1] This is not too unusual for someone who believed that the Islamic State (IS) was “here to stay” (which it wasn’t) and considering the modus operandi of previous IS attackers in London. Perhaps the media got it wrong: practicing Muslims don’t – or shouldn’t – have girlfriends. Odd but not impossible. Amman had also asked if he could have a knife delivered to his girlfriend’s address.

    Three of the manuals Amman was convicted of owning were about knife fighting, including one entitled Bloody Brazilian Knife Fightin’ Techniques. Amman was fascinated by blades and their capabilities.

    It is reported, before his arrest in 2018, that Amman preferred the use of knives over bombs and pondered as to whether he could actually hold his ground if challenged by police. One of his stated wishes was to become a “shuhada”. It’s unlikely that this use of the plural for martyr in Arabic meant he had a multiple personality disorder, and more likely that he did not know the word in its singular form, “shaheed”. Again, ignorance of religion is not uncommon among such people.

    Either way, Amman’s actions on Streatham High Road will not be remembered with courage or bravery when measured against the very beliefs he claims to have professed.

    Amman was released from prison on 23rd January but was under “active police surveillance” at the time of the attack. Armed officers had literally been following him when he entered a shop on the main road and started his stabbing spree, after which he left and stabbed another woman.

    An eye-witness said he “heard a woman,[2] who was with a baby in a pushchair and two young boys, scream and saw her being stabbed. A man then walked past carrying a knife the size of his forearm.” Seeking death while trying to murder a mother with her baby is not martyrdom; it is amongst the ultimate acts of cowardice.

    Within minutes, armed officers were on the scene and Amman lay dead in the street.

    Like his forebears who carried out knife attacks on London Bridge in 2017 and 2019, Amman also wore a fake suicide vest. Like them, he wanted to die at the hands of the police and achieve his “martyrdom”. Like them, his actions will stand in sharp contrast to the bravest and noblest companions of the Messenger of Allāh.

    It is related in the Seerah of Ibn Hisham that at the battle of Uhud, the Messenger of Allāh (sall Allāhu ʿalayhi wa sallam) exhorted the Muslim army to fight by offering his sword to the most worthy companion by asking, “who will take this sword and give it its right?”

    Great warrior-disciples like Umar ibn al-Khattab, ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib and Al-Zubair ibn al-’Awwam – who had received glad tidings of Paradise for their sacrifices for Islam – hoped they would be chosen to wield the blessed blade. But it was the less well known Samak ibn Kharsha (Abu Dujana) who was entrusted with the honour of fighting with the Prophet’s sword,[3] after promising to use it to strike the enemy “until it bent.”

    Al-Zubair said that he observed Abu Dujana during the battle and saw that every soldier that stood before him fell to the powerful strokes of his sword. Then, in the thick of the battle, Abu Dujana encountered a woman who was inciting her army to kill Muslims and mutilate their bodies. She was an avowed enemy of Islam who had lost her father and brother at the earlier Battle of Badr.

    Just as he raised his sword to strike her, Abu Dujana held back his hand and said, “I respect the Prophet’s sword too much to use it against a woman.” The woman was Hind bint ‘Utbah, the wife of Abu Sufyan who was leading the Quraish army against the Muslims. At the end of the battle, Hind personally mutilated the Prophet’s beloved uncle, Hamza ibn ‘Abdul Muttalib, after having him killed in battle.

    There have been several cases around the world where people claiming to act in the name of Islam have attacked defenceless women. Perhaps they do not know the story of Abu Dujana and Hind, or perhaps they do not care. Either way, such people need to be reminded and challenged whenever possible. Thus, we do not tell these stories to appease a government that has perpetuated wars and laws on terror for years but because it is an Islamic obligation to present guidance for our youth. We must show them that Islam holds the solutions for the very societies that often shun them.

    In the meantime, we must resist the government’s attempts to pass more laws and measures that span a cycle of two failed decades of anti-terror laws. We must ask politicians and lawmakers fundamental questions about why, despite these laws and wars, police chiefs say we are less safe than ever and why we face growing threats of politically motivated violence. They must tell us exactly how many laws related to violent plots, laws such as Prevent or Schedule 7, have been instrumental in Britain. They must explain why the multi-billion pound anti-terror industry cannot solve the problem, whether its a Conservative or Labour government.

    Nonsensical and inaccurate polygraph tests and wholesale collective punishment of those convicted for non-violent terrorism offences – such as writing poetry, publishing books, downloading documents, or failure to provide a password for your phone at an airport despite not being under arrest – can only escalate the problem. That should have been the lesson learned from four decades of counter-productive terrorism legislation in Northern Ireland.

    Knife attacks plague Britain’s cities almost on a daily basis. As a result, there is a national conversation about dismantling the causes of knife crime. That conversation needs to continue and grow in a sober and level-headed way even when the knife crime relates to terrorism.

    https://www.islam21c.com/politics/st...ust-ignorance/

  24. #499
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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    A long but very interesting article like to share.



    Qatar and the CILE — The Absurdity of Islamic Reform

    Qatar has escaped a great deal of scrutiny owing to its small size and relatively shrewd diplomacy on the international stage effectively creating a soft image for itself as one of the more acceptable manifestations of Gulf monarchical rule. It has done so effectively through numerous strategies — whether through commerce or hosting cultural expositions. What has received little attention comparatively is Qatar’s finesse in using religious soft power in an effective manner to the extent it has now become a hot destination for a new generation of would-be reformers.

    We live in such an age, that an oil-rich Gulf monarchy can establish an Islamic think tank and host ‘Islamic feminists’ lecturing about ‘Quranic hermeneutics’ whilst perhaps down the street, a Qatari or ex-pat family could be grossly exploiting a disenfranchised economic migrant from the subcontinent — be that a maid or a driver; such is the ‘absurdity of Islamic reform’ — it has delusions of grandeur about ‘reforming the Muslim mind’ and creates castles in the sky whilst ignoring the very pressing social concerns in its immediate context that do not require intellectual sophistry to unravel but simply the courage of political will, integrity, and character. Things that cannot be taught in academic graduate seminars where career progression and aiming for tenure are far more pressing priorities.

    I want to focus more on the Qatari sponsored think tank — the CILE and how it is starting to lure Anglophone Muslim activist-academics into its corridors allowing quite an expansive platform to talk about a variety of high powered intellectual issues whilst effectively neutering them politically and socially to the extent that their words have absolutely no impact locally on a whole host of very pressing and concerning ethical transgressions. This is the genius of co-opting the ‘Islamic reform’ discourse.

    Said was right

    To start off with, a personal reflection about the formidable Edward Said. He delivered a particularly prescient set of passages that I have always held dear because of the simplicity and power of its undeniable truth:

    “Nothing disfigures the intellectual’s public performance as much as trimming, careful silence, patriotic bluster, and retrospective and self-dramatizing apostasy’’[i]
    Such words ring so true about self-professed ‘reformist’ academics who have tenure to look after, book deals to pursue, think tank engagements to gather whilst putting on the dramatic spectacle of ‘intellectual bravery’ and ‘speaking from within the tradition’ and other such self-congratulatory euphemisms.
    The second gets more to the heart of the matter:

    “There is something fundamentally unsettling about intellectuals who have neither offices to protect, nor territory to consolidate and guard; self-irony is therefore more frequent than pomposity directness more than heming and hawing. But there is no dodging the inescapable reality that such representations by intellectuals will neither make them friends in high places nor win them official honors. It is a lonely condition, yet, but it is always a better one than a gregarious tolerance for the way things are.”[ii]

    What Said eloquently states is the very real danger of establishment power co-opting seemingly high minded intellectual pursuits under its own hegemonic canopy. Allowing, intellectuals, academics, and artists wide scope and range but provided that the absolute authority and legitimacy of its rule remains unquestioned. It is perhaps why we live in an age that a ruler as vicious as MBS is perfectly comfortable with the prospect of Nikki Minaj twerking in downtown Riyadh but at the same time petrified by an organisation that wishes to establish some form of Islamic democratic constitutional rule, or even more mildly an Islamic polity that works away from absolute monarchy to a constitutional one. Freedom is not some uniform absolute, there are types and degrees of it — some of which can sit quite comfortably within an autocratic system. [iii]

    Islamic Reform As A Security Policy

    It is now an open secret that ‘Islamic Reform’ has been subsumed under the more sinister tent of Western foreign policy discussion about controlling opposition to its strategic aims both abroad in terms of planting regimes amenable to its interest but also more recently as a way of subjugating the Muslim presence within the Anglosphere. The hermeneutical projects of Islamic Reform often aim towards an apologetic reconciliation with the prevailing liberal norms of contemporary Euro-American societies.

    The infamous RAND report that needs no citation here explicitly identifies those who are boisterous in their aims of reforming the ‘Muslim mind’ as allies of Western power and interest. The manipulation of religious soft power is not only the preserve of Muslim despots but a weapon of choice for the powers that be in Washington and Europe. Saba Mahmood explicitly highlights this problematic relationship in her seminal paper:

    “In analysing the programs and strategies of State Department planners, I have suggested that they have located a powerful partner in secular liberal Muslim reformers who agree with them in their diagnosis that the central problem haunting Muslim societies lies in their inability to achieve critical distance between the divine text and the world, and a concomitant overvaluation of received authority. Their hermeneutical project is aimed at creating the conditions for the emergence of a normative religious subject who understands religion — its scriptures and its ritual forms — as a congeries of symbols to be flexibly interpreted in a manner consonant with the imperatives of secular liberal political rule.”[iv]

    What is fascinating in such a scheme is that very rigorous commitment to particular secular and liberal understandings of God, approach to scripture and religious ethics are prioritised above and beyond democratisation. Democratised MENA societies would pose inevitably a threat to American foreign policy interest and invariably democratised MENA societies would put forward sophisticated indigenously grounded paradigms of ethical reasoning and enquiry that would perhaps be in tension with Anglo or Francophone liberalism[v]. However, secular and liberal commitment in terms of being open to the monoculture of American Hollywood, hosting prestigious cultural and sporting events can live comfortably with autocratic rule that otherwise perpetuates tremendous violence in suppressing challenges to its legitimacy.
    A more detailed examination of the themes highlighted in Mahmood’s paper and how the proposed secularisation of the Muslim mind by hijacking and refashioning religious sentiment to achieve specific security and foreign policy aims can be found in this fantastic three-piece installment[vi]. For now, let us pay specific attention to Qatar.

    Qatari Soft Power

    Al Jazeera is a true Qatari export, a success story for its elites in managing to create a true beacon of soft power that has no real equal in the region. Since 1996, it has offered MENA audiences a fairly unique platform to advance “critique” and hold a relatively open discussion. Al Jazeera operated like a world-class outfit particularly so in its English language offerings, attracting considerable talent. The Qatari policy is a simple yet effective one — ‘’criticise whoever you like except us’’. Indeed, no topic apart from the conduct and record of the Qatari elite is left untouched. The CILE enterprise in many ways is a way of emulating the Al Jazeera model but more specifically in the realm of Islamic discourse.

    In effect, Qatar has adapted the “Dubai model” — instead of aiming to be solely a commercial hub that will determine the economic future of the region, the Qataris under the cloak of seeming benevolence wish to be the ‘intellectual hub’ of the region. A hub where it can directly control and dictate the types of ideas, debates, and discussions that will invariably shape the future of the region. Having a platoon of artists, scholars, and intellectuals working in your court is a sure way of ensuring the longevity of your rule and in an age where media, culture, and entertainment are becoming the ultimate markers of a liberal sensibility, foreign observers perhaps may be more forgiving about your abysmal human rights record if you can hold a debate about feminist hermeneutics.

    What it is key, however, is that the Qatari elites have insulated the impact of these intellectual endeavours from the gritty day to day business of ruling. There seems to be no impact outside of garnering international press of holding such fora locally. This also very handily ties in with American designs for the region. If pesky Muslims can ‘learn’ to completely historicise and dis-enchant their religious experience, reducing all its metaphysical commitments to mere historical accident and even perhaps approaching the Qu’ran as merely another book rather than as God’s Word through insidious theorising then perhaps Islamic sentiment can be on the side of Uncle Sam rather than forever being recruited against it. At the same time, any such accusations can be offset by also giving the same platform to more traditionally minded authorities — such is the pragmatic calculation by Qatar’s elites in avoiding any potential blowback.

    Qatar’s security policy is shrewd. It focuses on branding, soft power, image and optics of liberal democracy but without sacrificing any of its more draconian measures. It is more tasteful, to say the least, to construct a museum of Islamic art than to invite a second-rate American pop star to dance half-naked in your capital. It also plays very well with Muslim audiences, especially in the Anglosphere who look at the Emiratis and now the Saudis with horror as all manner of vice and vulgarity are incorporated into their societies. In comparison, the Qataris are seen as more sober, perhaps even enlightened in trying to cultivate a more refined sensibility. The end result, however, is the same — the vestiges of power no matter what type of circus you choose to host remain untouched.

    The CILE

    The CILE[vii] is the brainchild and the culmination of Tariq Ramadan’s own ambitious agenda for radical reform[viii]. It is beyond the scope of this piece to examine Professor Ramadan’s work, but March has a particularly brilliant paper on the topic[ix]. The organisation does not have any apparent financial independence or even bureaucratic autonomy being solely accountable for both to the Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies. It is perhaps no accident that Ramadan’s methodology found an audience amongst the Qatari elite who having patronised Sh. Yusuf al Qaradawi for many years now needed a replacement for the aging scholar. Ramadan’s methodology consciously positions itself as a development and going beyond Sh. Qaradawi’s legal methodology particularly in the context of the ‘Maqasid Al-Sharia’ debate which does have political implications[x]. It would have made perfect sense at the time for the Qataris to court someone with the pedigree of Tariq Ramadan and to shape him as a successor for carrying forward Qatar’s mission of religious soft power supremacy.[xi] Ramadan in the past has not been averse to working with state-sanctioned outfits, as seen in his stint with Press TV[xii] which seldom if ever touched upon the brutal crackdown of dissidence — for example, the jailing of Islamic scholars, intellectuals and journalists in the Khomeinist dystopia[xiii].

    One will be struck by the quite broad and impressive range of topics discussed at the CILE but at the same time stunned at how a forum that can attract international scholars of high standing and repute devotes such little if any space or time to discussing thorny domestic issues.

    Activist-Academics At Qatar’s Service

    To illustrate the absurdity of the Islamic Reform discourse we can look at the example of Dr. Ziba Mir Hosseini, an influential academic working within the Islamic feminist hermeneutic project. There is a video[xiv] of her preaching about the dangers of patriarchy but sadly the irony is lost on her that she is doing so on the CILE’s platform. She also spends little if any time in the midst of her profound observations about the means to ‘properly’ interpret the Qur’an on the quite evident and clear abuses of vulnerable expatriate women from across the world working in Qatar as maids who often have very little recourse to secure their rights[xv].

    Al Azaami is all too keen to lecture about Islamic ethics[xvi] using the CILE’s platform but has never had any words of wisdom on the situation of political dissidents who are imprisoned under Qatari rule[xvii]. Perhaps they are not worthy enough in his political calculus. There is no mention during his lofty exposition on being ethical in a neo-liberal age about Qatar’s own shocking economic inequalities[xviii].

    To be sure there is a range of academics and intellectuals who have opted to use the platform of the CILE to share their work. There cannot be a blanket rule or interpretation of what the participation of all these scholars means in terms of their ethical priorities but in the case of the ‘activist-academics’ who have ambitions for Islamic reform, wishing to challenge ‘orthodoxy’ and to be paragons of justice they have set themselves up against very lofty standards indeed. The ones with a reform agenda see themselves as speaking from a place of enlightenment, of sober reason, cautioning against atavistic attitudes. It only seems right then that those like Hosseini and Al Azaami who have uncritically used the CILE platform be held to account.

    Qatari Motivation

    The CILE, however, is a clever operation — it seeks to portray itself as a broad church encompassing a broad selection of viewpoints and projects — some are lay Muslims with academic expertise in other fields others are more traditionally trained. At times it does indeed allow isolated discussion about migrants’ rights but always in a controlled environment with little political impact or follow through. Thus debate, discussion, and discourse are merely a spectacle without any real bite or power to make it into policy and an agenda for reform.

    The Qataris beyond fostering domestic fora are also keen on spreading influence in Islamic studies departments in the Anglosphere in the creation of positions and generous grants with little or no transparency that should give pause for concern[xix]. In this regard, this is a problem that extends beyond Qatar but also includes the Emirates and Saudi Arabia. The co-option of academia for political ends is now part of the rulebook for aspiring Gulf elite looking to garner international legitimacy and kudos. The Qataris have simply played the game better than its competitors by fashioning itself as a centre for high-Islamic culture and also ‘reform’ whilst sweeping its own ugly transgressions under the carpet.

    It also harkens back to Said’s initial point about the dangers of being recruited by forces larger than any intellectual or academic if one is not vigilant about maintaining their independence. Qatar’s evident sympathies for a revival of Islamic intellectual culture and funding it so lavishly are not based in a genuine worldview or vision of how the world should be ordered but rather should be seen as an exercise in “convenience, pragmatism, and sheer opportunism”[xx]

    Conclusion

    The ‘Islamic Reform’ gambit has always been a curious one — it seeks to speak in great detail about very technical almost dormant issues in medieval Islamic legal philosophy or Quranic interpretation that most Muslims are unaware of whilst ignoring very real concrete problems that many Muslims across the world whether that be in the MENA region, the subcontinent or the Anglosphere face. They will speak about “patriarchal hermeneutics” of the ulema till they are blue in the face but ignore far more pressing practicalities and their discourse never moves beyond the abstract into real concrete policy.

    A corollary to this which has been not been explored but worthy of future consideration is how American universities open campuses across the Gulf and yet apart from taking snide pseudo-intellectual aim at traditional Muslim sensibilities, there is little work being done on local problems. This is merely a continuation of the establishment of American universities in Cairo or Beirut — the secularisation of the Muslim mind within Dar-al-Islam.

    At the same time, blissful innocence is never a viable option. Monarchical and praetorian regimes exist, especially in Muslim lands — they cannot be wished away. The question and this is a very difficult one is how the integrity and relative independence of Sunnism be preserved in an age where nation-states are anxious to control religious discourse. This is an incredibly difficult dilemma and there are no easy answers.

    https://medium.com/@ibn.maghreb01/qa...m-dc3d55a5ac4e

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  26. #500
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    Re: Syria, Gaza and the Criminalisation of Islam

    Salaam

    Another update.





    Survey on Prevent attempts to prop up failing policy by manufacturing Muslim “support”

    In a desperate attempt to claw back lost ground, the Crest Advisory, a think tank tied to the government, police and the Islamophobia industry, has today published “research” whitewashing the Prevent policy. The think tank has also, in the past, conducted work towards improving the delivery and PR of Prevent.

    The claims made in the report, which include that Muslims by and large support Prevent, fly in the face of statements by the United Nations, former and current members of the Metropolitan police, politicians, teachers and an ever growing number of concerned families and campaigners that have repeated over the years that Prevent is toxic.

    Cerie Bullivant, spokesperson for CAGE, said:

    “Since recent stories have exposed the level of deception and underhandedness of Prevent to more groups in society than ever before, this research tries to turn back the tide and project the absurd impression that Muslims – who make up ground zero for the programme – actually support it.”

    “The survey relied upon a presentation of Prevent that is not true to life. It ignored over a decade of case studies, research, leaks and testimonies that attest to the fact that the bland and technical language of government about Prevent does not align with the reality of it.”

    “The study has been funded by a secret trust. The leadership of Crest has vested interests in the security industry. As a result, it is unsurprising that the group has sought to whitewash the Islamophobic Prevent policy.”

    https://www.cage.ngo/survey-on-preve...muslim-support

    Related.

    Muslim school kids “taught to spy on each other”

    5Pillars has been told that two schools in the UK have been trying to train Muslim pupils to effectively spy on each other.

    Prevent Watch, which monitors the government’s controversial counter-extremism programme, told 5Pillars that the schools, one in Birmingham and one in Slough, have been training, or attempting to train, their pupils in the Prevent strategy.
    All schools are required to deliver the Prevent duty and “have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism.” However, it has been assumed until now that teachers are responsible for delivering Prevent and this is the first time that we have heard of pupils themselves being trained to deliver the strategy.

    5Pillars spoke to a 17 year old pupil at Joseph Chamberlain Sixth Form College in Birmingham, which has an overwhelming majority Muslim intake. The student told us that around a month ago his whole year group had been trained to look out for the “signs of radicalisation and extremism” among his peers.

    The student said: “It was an online training course with a quiz at end. If this person is acting like this what should you do etc? But my parents were not informed about this and neither was I. The teacher just said we had to do it, we couldn’t opt out and we weren’t allowed to leave the room until it was completed.

    “It felt weird, it was just thrust on us and it wasn’t necessary. The others didn’t want to do it and thought it was just another boring form time activity. They didn’t realise that it was related to Prevent because they didn’t realise the nature of the policy. But I felt uncomfortable because I do know that Prevent is a racist policy.”

    5Pillars also spoke to the pupil’s father and another relative who both expressed concern that they were not notified by the school until after the training had taken place.

    “I was disgusted to be honest,” said one relative. “You are putting the seeds of suspicions and doubt of your fellow brother and sisters which is antithetical to Islam. It’s effectively getting the pupils to spy on each other.”

    Another school in Slough also attempted to enlist pupils to train in Prevent, according to Prevent Watch, but did not actually deliver the training after teachers were challenged by pupils.

    A spokesperson at PreventWatch told 5Pillars: “We at Prevent Watch have supported over 500 cases where the majority are children being referred, but this is the first time we have seen children being asked to train in Prevent. This is a dangerous precedent that has no grounding in legislation. We urge more parents to come forward and challenge teachers and schools in this behaviour.”

    Afzar Shafi, from advocacy group CAGE which recently released a report offering an alternative to Prevent, told us that this development is very concerning. He said: “This is breeding a culture of suspicion, mistrust and fear in a school environment where an atmosphere of care is needed.”

    5Pillars contacted both the Home Office (which is responsible for Prevent) and Joseph Chamberlain College for comment but neither replied to our enquiries.

    However, Prevent coordinator William Baldet told us on Twitter that schools training to implement Prevent “would be unlikely” so he would need to see the resources. But he added that it is “not unusual for secondary schools to teach about different harms, knife crimes, gangs, violence, terrorism, drugs etc. and our responses to them. Schools have autonomy on how they do that.”

    The Prevent strategy is viewed with huge suspicion among the Muslim community and has been denounced by several Muslim organisations, as well as non-Muslim human rights groups, activists and politicians. Critics say it disproportionately targets Muslims and has had a chilling effect on freedom of speech.

    Labour leadership candidate Rebecca Long-Bailey has even pledged to make it Labour policy to scrap it if she becomes leader.

    On the other hand, the government insists it is about safeguarding, preventing people from being drawn in terrorism and keeping the country safe.

    https://5pillarsuk.com/2020/02/27/mu...on-each-other/


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