Welcome to Quadrant Online | Login/ Register Cart (0) $0 View Cart
Menu
August 15th 2016 print

David Martin Jones

The Illiberal Left and Political Islam

How did the marriage of political Islam and the Left come to be? Look first to the West’s progressive media, academics and agenda-driven elites -- the standard coterie of cultural engineers who oppose free speech, spurn history's lessons and defame all who disagree

no democracy“Literature always anticipates life,” Oscar Wilde opined in his essay “The Decay of Lying”; “It does not copy it but moulds it to its purpose.” Recent developments in British politics seem to confirm Oscar’s aphorism. In 2015, Michel Houellebecq published his political fiction Submission, anticipating the democratic rise to power in Europe of the Muslim Brotherhood. Widely dismissed as “Islamophobic”, his dystopian novel, set in France in 2022, identifies how Europe’s political elites abandoned the Enlightenment project, alienated the masses and created the conditions for the emergence of a new extremist politics on both the Left and the Right.

The novel’s protagonist, François, an alienated Sorbonne professor, observes that mainstream political parties had created “a chasm between the people and those who claimed to speak for them, the politicians and journalists”. The latter, “who had lived and prospered under a given social system”, could not “imagine the point of view of those who feel it offers them nothing, and who can contemplate its destruction without any particular dismay”. In this context, the political system “might suddenly explode”.

In France the explosion takes the form of a run-off in the second round of voting for the French Presidency, between Marine Le Pen of the right-wing National Front and the recently emerged Muslim Brotherhood Party’s representative, the charismatic, but fictional, Ben Abbes. To avoid a far-Right victory, both mainstream socialist and conservative parties, eliminated in the first round of the French election process, give their support to Ben Abbes, who becomes the first democratically elected Muslim President of the Republic.

From the outset, the new President distances himself from jihadi fanaticism. Instead, Abbes, a disciple of Machiavelli as well as Mohammed, sees Europe “ripe for absorption into the Dar al Islam”. Subsequently, the Republic runs along sharia-approved but moderate Islamic lines. The University of Paris becomes an Islamic university, polygamy is approved and generous family payments allow women to give up work. Unemployment falls, education is privatised and Islamised through charitable donations, and small business is encouraged. The old elites convert to the faith and France rediscovers the joys of patriarchy and a sense of political purpose.

Although France now has a small Democratic Muslim Party, the least convincing aspect of Houellebecq’s fiction concerns the Muslim Brotherhood Party’s rapid rise to power. It is here that political life, taking its cue from art, has intervened, and not in France, but in the UK, where the electoral system has proved far more accommodating to the rise of a non-violent form of political Islam. Transposing Houellebecq to London and fiction into political reality, recent local elections saw Labour Party candidate Sadiq Khan succeed Boris Johnson as the first elected Muslim Mayor of London. Predictably the British, American and Australian media applauded the result as a victory for tolerance and multiculturalism. Nikki Gemmell, writing in the Australian, positively contrasted London’s election, emblematic of the city’s dynamic “open, and embracing energy”, with Australia’s parochial and “paranoid defensiveness”. In the media’s enthusiastic embrace of Khan, no commentator paused to reflect whether the result in fact demonstrates a new and significant stage in the slow-motion Islamisation of the British political process.

“Life copies art,” Wilde argued, and Sadiq Khan, like Ben Abbes, is charismatic, opportunistic, politically astute and media-friendly. He easily saw off his Conservative opponent Zac Goldsmith’s attempt to brand him as an Islamist fellow traveller. The son of a Pakistani bus driver, Khan studied law at North London University, and joined a left-leaning legal practice. He rapidly rose through the Labour ranks from the London Assembly, to MP for Tooting in 2005, and a Minister of State for Transport in Gordon Brown’s government. From 2010, a close ally of former Labour leader Ed Miliband, he served as opposition Shadow Chancellor. Ostensibly a left-leaning democrat who formally dissociates himself from Islamist ideology, he has nevertheless been a close associate to the former left-wing Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, and retains links to the pro-Palestinian tendency on the Labour Left that, under Jeremy Corbyn, has captured the party leadership.

In the context of post-Blairite Labour’s embrace of anti-Zionism and its appeasement of jihadi-inspired violence in Europe and the Middle East, Khan’s political emergence is particularly noteworthy. In 2004, he chaired the Muslim Council of Britain’s legal affairs committee that defended the visit of Muslim Salafist scholar Dr Yusuf Al-Qaradawi to London. Al-Qaradawi wrote The Lawful and Prohibited in Islam, which justified wife-beating and condoned “martyrdom operations” against Israeli civilians. In Khan’s eyes, however, Al-Qaradawi was not an “extremist”. Two years later, Khan was one of the signatories of a letter to the Guardian that blamed terrorist incidents, such as the July 2005 attacks in London, on British foreign policy, particularly Britain’s support for Israel.

In his politically adroit campaign for the mayoralty, Khan distanced himself from Ken Livingstone and the Labour Left’s anti-Zionist and pro-Palestine tendency, emphasising in his manifesto his London roots and his commitment to “tackle the spread of extremism”. His apparent tolerance of Israel, however, is of recent vintage. Rather than question Khan’s political chameleonism, a compliant media instead dismissed any attempt to draw attention to his former Islamist associations as “Islamophobic”.

Sadiq Khan, in fact, represents the acceptable face of a wider and little-noticed Islamification of progressive politics in the UK. The number of Muslim MPs sitting in parliament almost doubled between 2012 and 2015 from eight to thirteen. Local council elections in May returned 277 Muslim councillors, 6.5 per cent of the total, overwhelmingly representing Labour wards. The rise of Muslim Labour coincides with a dramatic rise in the Muslim population, which doubled between 2001 and 2011. According to the Pew Center, the Muslim population of the UK was almost 3 million or 4.8 per cent of the overall population in 2015.

This increase also coincided with Tony Blair’s New Labour strategy to re-engineer and diversify the composition of the UK population after 1997. Andrew Neather, a former Blair adviser, proudly observed that Labour presided over a policy of mass migration to make the country “truly multicultural” and “rub the Right’s noses in diversity”. The policy succeeded perhaps too well and not in a way that New Labour foresaw.

The dramatic rise in the Muslim population between 2001 and 2009 overlapped with the emergence after 2003 of an anti-Zionist, anti-US and anti-capitalist tendency on the Left of the Labour Party. Correlation is not necessarily cause, yet while Sadiq Khan is notably emollient in his multicultural message, others in the post-Blairite Labour Party are not. They include Naz Shah, the Labour MP for Bradford West, who thinks Israel should “relocate” to the United States. Here again political reality imitates Houellebecq’s fiction. Under the influence of Respect Party Leader, and former Bradford West MP George Galloway, support for Palestine has become central to the politics of this northern mill town, home to 215,000 Muslims or 25 per cent of the town’s population. Naz Shah’s views on Israel are relatively moderate compared to those of her former mentor, Galloway, whom she fell out with and defeated in the 2015 general election, or Galloway’s ally on the militant Left, Ken Livingstone.

Ironically, the Blair government’s attempt to modernise and diversify British democracy by altering the Representation of the People Act (2000) and permitting postal ballots on demand, enabled Islamists and their fellow travellers on the Left to manipulate the Muslim vote. In 2014 the Electoral Commissioner, Richard Mawrey QC, found that the misuse of the postal ballot had facilitated electoral corruption in the UK’s second city, Birmingham, on a scale that would “disgrace a banana republic”. Mawrey subsequently found former Labour leader of the East London borough of Tower Hamlets, Luffur Rahman, guilty of electoral fraud on “an industrial scale”. Rahman had links to the fundamentalist Islamic Forum for Europe. Galloway and Livingstone, predictably, labelled Mawrey’s findings “racist”.

How, we might wonder, did this curious political amalgamation between political Islam and the multicultural anti-capitalist Left evolve, and why have the mainstream media, the political class and academe condoned or ignored the Islamic tendency in UK politics?

Three related factors account for this development and its deleterious implications for secular liberal democracy. First, the transnational Left, in the UK and elsewhere, experienced what Nick Cohen identified as a “dark liberation” after 2003. From this post-Iraq perspective, the United States and its allies function as the neo-liberal, imperial enemy, whilst Israel plays a special role as its demonic accomplice. Imbued with theories of Zionist world conspiracy, notes Cohen, “dark liberation” excuses even the most “brutal theocratic-fascist regime, as long as they oppose the United States and the capitalist status quo”. The post-Iraq utopian Left, comprising transnational networks of NGOs, sympathetic academics, radical pacifists, indigenous peoples and environmental activists, seeks to overthrow the neo-liberal empire. Those committed to this anti-capitalist worldview now lead hundreds of activist groups and NGOs, conduct seminars and receive support from Western governments and eleemosynary institutions, enjoy various despots as their cheerleaders, are woven into the workings of the UN and the EU, and subscribe to a coherent though by no means uniform ideology. Crucially, this ideology redescribes the recourse to jihad, not as a violent attempt to impose Islamist values, but as a form of emancipatory “resistance”, perpetrated by a small, alienated Muslim minority.

A further consequence of this world-purifying utopianism thus considers home-grown terrorists as the victims of an oppressive capitalist social order. Whether it’s Michael Adeybolajo and Michael Adobelawaye murdering Lee Rigby in Woolwich in May 2013 or the Kouachi brothers and Ahmedy Coulibaly attacking the offices of Charlie Hebdo in Paris in January 2015, the transnational Left considers home-grown jihadis the inevitable product of a fractured society. Whether it’s the Parisian radical feminist and film-maker Rokhaya Diallo, or Jeremy Corbyn adviser and former Guardian columnist Seamus Milne, it’s liberal secular democracy and Western foreign policy, not the Koran, that creates Islamic State and jihadism in the West.

Advancing this zombie-Left worldview, therefore, requires the active compliance of the West’s progressive media to reinforce this perverse interpretation of secular free-market democracy. Its distinctive rhetoric favours speech acts that limit debate, conceal and prevent thought, and label pejoratively those who identify the totalitarianism implicit in Islamism’s political religion. “By naming things wrongly,” Albert Camus observed, “we add to the misfortunes of the world.” The BBC’s current editorial guidelines, which counsel journalists to describe terrorists as “militants” and always refer to the “so-called Islamic State”, are perhaps the most obvious examples of this developing political language.

More troubling still is the acceptance into common usage of the pejorative noun “Islamophobia”. Shiite propagandists first coined the term in the wake of the Ayatollah Khomeini’s 1979 revolution in Iran. Later, in London, those campaigning against Salman Rushdie’s novel The Satanic Verses realised they had more to gain by transforming their status from assassins implementing the Ayatollah’s fatwa to victims of Islamophobia. In the 1990s, the Runnymede Trust and the Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC), a London-based, UN-recognised NGO, promoted the term’s use. The IHRC’s founder, Massoud Shadjareh, hands out annual awards for Islamophobe of the year. (The 2015 ceremony, held less than two months after the Paris attack, awarded the international prize to Charlie Hebdo.) To those who cry “Islamophobia!” any criticism of Islamic fanaticism, or, as we have seen, the legitimate investigation of the former political associations of a figure like Sadiq Khan, is a form of racism against Muslims. It elides racist attacks on mosques or Muslims with liberal criticism of sharia law, the treatment of women or religious violence. “Islamophobia” operates as a semantic signifier deterring all criticism of Islam and foreclosing debate.

It also features as a key term in the double-think of prominent Muslim public intellectuals like Tariq Ramadan, grandson of the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood and holder of the Saudi-endowed Sheikh Hanafi bin Khalifa al Khari chair in Contemporary Islamic Studies at Oxford. Ramadan and his fellow travellers, such as the Trotskyite owner of the French journal Mediapart, Edwy Plenel, present European Muslims as misunderstood and marginalised, and Islamism as a form of resistance to Islamophobic colonialism and racism. As the French feminist Caroline Fourest observes, “If words are weapons this is one designed to hurt secularists while feigning to target racists.”

In the evolving political accommodation of political Islam, the Anglosphere media’s Olympian pursuit of balance and cultural sensitivity has proved seminal. In the wake of the massacre of Charlie Hebdo journalists, Sky News, the BBC, CNN, NBC and ABC refused to show the satirical journal’s cartoons, thus taking balance and “responsibility” to absurd lengths.

More worrying still, it is often only the apologists for fundamentalism that are permitted a voice in the “ethically responsible” UK press. Somewhat predictably, the Guardian refused to publish a piece it commissioned from Michael Goldfarb that exposed the equivocation and distortion in Islamist political rhetoric of the Ramadan variety.

New global media platforms like Facebook, YouTube, Google and Twitter reinforce the anti-secular relativism of the Guardian model, blocking videos mocking terrorists, whilst messages calling for the murder of apostates or beating up Islamophobes on social networks are rarely withdrawn.

The liberal dread of being labelled Islamophobic, a penchant for tolerating the intolerant, combined with the fear of provoking violence, has effectively silenced intelligent debate about the rise of political Islam in Europe and its impact on secular democratic politics. Over the past decade, not only the media but also the art world has opted for collusion and self-censorship.

The combination of Islamophobia, balance and the omnipresent threat of violence means that it has become impossible to organise a conference or even a debate on political Islam and freedom of expression on a British or Australian campus. The preoccupation with “safe spaces” on Western campuses, along with the fact that the Gulf States endow chairs in Islamic Studies at Oxford, Princeton and Griffith University in Australia further inhibits discussion. Of 198 member states of the UN, ninety-four have blasphemy laws and the Organisation of Islamic Co-operation regularly pushes for the UN Human Rights Council to recognise the defamation of religion.

The rising price of political freedom, it seems, is too high for many Western governments to pay. The long war for cultural freedom which began in 1989 is in serious danger of being lost. As Karl Popper observed of an earlier totalitarian threat to the open society, “If we are not prepared to defend a tolerant society against the onslaught of the intolerant, then the tolerant will be destroyed, and tolerance with them.” We should therefore claim “in the name of tolerance, the right not to tolerate the intolerant”. Unfortunately, this argument does not gets much air-time, let alone political support.

The UK media and the national student union now consider any mention of inconvenient facts about vote rigging in Asian, primarily Muslim communities, or the imposition of sharia law in some UK communities, as “Islamophobic”. Thus the Guardian, the BBC and academe ignore or condone the profound change in the character and conduct of UK politics that the resistible rise of Sadiq Khan and Naz Shah intimates.

“Life imitates art, far more than art imitates life,” Oscar concluded his essay on lying. Yet the slow-motion collision of mainstream Islam with the multicultural transnational Left has led to a Ben Abbes-style transformation of liberal democratic London into a progressively illiberal, Islamophile Londonistan that exceeds even Houellebecq’s fervid imagination.

Associate Professor David Martin Jones is Reader in Political Science at the University of Queensland. His latest books are Sacred Violence: Political Religion in a Secular Age (2014, with M.L.R. Smith) and The Political Impossibility of Modern Counterinsurgency: Strategic Problems, Puzzles, and Paradoxes (2015, also with M.L.R. Smith). He reviewed Michel Houellebecq’s novel Submission in the March issue.

 

Comments [22]

  1. [email protected] says:

    Thank for the article, it is spot on. I can only add, as I have said here many times before that many leftists, especially those in the media and academia will support any sort of totalitarianism over freedom/free markets. It doesn’t matter to many leftists if the totalitarianism is secular – as seen in the various varieties of socialism such as communism or Nazism or more recently environmentalism – or theological totalitarianism, best exemplified by Islam. Many secular leftists have this sadomasochistic suicidal delusion that they will be able to ‘use’ Islam to destroy what is left of the freedoms in the western world so that they will be able to establish their mythical secular socialist Nirvana.

    • Ian MacDougall says:

      “… or more recently environmentalism…”
      Why not add motherhood to the list of the obnoxious and odious as well? After all, it is only a short step away from Mother Nature.

      • Bill Martin says:

        Butt out Ian, for goodness’ sake, don’t muddy the water with your pet obsession, this is deadly serious, genuinely and literally.

        • Ian MacDougall says:

          Bill, your request is noted. But I have bought the right to comment here, the same as you or anyone else. When I see a loose card being slipped into the deck while it is being shuffled, I think that drawing the attention of everyone else round the table is the right way to go. So sorry. Request denied.

      • ianl says:

        http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-04-26/global-snapshot-shows-how-humans-are-greening-the-earth/7346382

        There you are, MacDougall. Empirical evidence (satellite imaging) from the ABC showing a real impact from slightly increased atmospheric CO2 levels – an increased rate of photosynthesis. Greenies being greened, as it were …

        Now the AGW advocates have a problem. How may they mis-represent photosynthesis as pollution ?

        We can only stay breathlessly tuned.

        • Ian MacDougall says:

          Now the AGW advocates have a problem. How may they mis-represent photosynthesis as pollution ?

          No. We ‘AGW advocates’ do not have any problem, but you do: of ignorance exposed and on open display, along with at least a willingness to take this discussion of political Islam well off-topic.
          The atmospheric CO2 concentration has been known as the major limiting factor on plant growth for at least the last 50 years. That was shown in the work of plant physiologists working with a variety of species in controllable environments such as are provided by the CSIRO Phytotron in Canberra: where ONE variable is varied, while the rest are held constant. So greening due to increased CO2 concentration is no surprise to me.
          But as that linked article of yours makes clear, increasing CO2 as a plant food is inseparable from increasing is as a heat-trapping gas, and from increasing it as an oceanic pH decreaser, or acidifier. So in this uncontrolled experiment being run in this phytotron we call Planet Earth, there are at least those three variables NOT being held constant. That sort of mucks up the ‘experiment’.
          We do not have an Earth twin sister planet to play around with experimentally.
          BUT we do have Venus: about the same mass as the Earth, but with all its stock of carbon in its atmosphere as CO2, which makes up around 97% of its huge atmosphere. As I recall, it has a pressure at the planet’s surface equal to that in the Pacific Ocean at a depth of about 1 km, and the surface temperature is above the melting point of lead. That makes Venus hotter at its surface than is Mercury: closest planet to the Sun.
          Climatologists have drawn the attention of politicians to this phenomenon: with some positive results, I am pleased to say.
          Now, ‘ianl’ or whatever your real name is, I suggest you return to the topic at hand.

      • [email protected] says:

        Ian, I normally would ignore your response as it is a little infantile and purely meant to provoke, but as I have ten grandchildren, most of them girls, and as the last Dark ages were the result of attempted Islamic expansion I felt obligated to reply, civilsation as we know it is at risk.
        1. To me, only a dedicated would be totalitarian leftist/Islamist would ever view, or even suggest that motherhood could be seen as being ‘obnoxious and odious’. Planet earth would be a wonderful place if it wasn’t for those dreadful human beings, wouldn’t it Ian?
        2. When the CO2 induced catastrophic AGW hoax eventually, but inevitably dies, mainly due to the fact observed that science has never, is not now, and never will agree with bogus computer models, [hopefully it will be before the next ice-age] what excuse will those of you who want so desperately to ‘control’ humanity use? Will it be Allah/Gods will or something equally totalitarian next? The left has used many reasons/excuses in its quest to rationalise its desire to control the wealth producing sectors of humanity, but you are slowly running out of even remotely reasonable excuses. The ‘historical destiny’ used by Marxists is only rivaled in stupidity and being lethal by Islam. Neither have any more validity than the ‘divine right’ of kings from previous eras.

    • dcburgos says:

      Quite agree.

      One thing that people may or may not know is that the socialist revolutionary program is predicated on the rise of a vanguard Cadre – that provides the leadership of the working class… and all the oppressed, including the lumpen proletariat and including those – like Muslims – that are deemed to be oppressed. You see, the theory is that you can bring those groups under the leadership of the aforementioned vanguard – they assume that their vision of utopia will prevail over all other misguided ideologies which include all forms of religion – and that once empowered – the revolutionary party can thus lead the revolution and finally install the dictatorship of the party (on behalf of all the formerly oppressed of course).
      This type of thinking was once almost exclusively held by the Trostkytes – but clearly it now permeates most of the left – whether revolutionary or not… and in particular whilst not being aware of it.

      Of course, being based on this view of history, the program is necessarily anti-western, anti-capitalist and most definitely anti-democratic. For the Islamists it is a case of opportunity being presented on a platter – an opportunity to further the Islamist program of world subjugation to their ideology. Make no mistake, we are at critical crossroads for humanity… we have been here before – but back then you did not have a fifth column – and a very powerful one – to deal with.

  2. bullockornis says:

    I think we should embrace the term ‘islamophobic’. Confess to it. Own it. Be it. I am quite Islamophobic, without a doubt.

    I think ‘they’ have no fear of confessing to a phobia for all things non-islam. In fact it is required of them, is it not?

    It is abhorrent to see women and female children swathed in black with bowed heads, hair hidden, shuffling through the crowds.

    It is abhorrent to hear the muezzin (generally an electronic amplified loudspeaker these days)call the Adhan. Completely abhorrent. The sound of Anglican church bells is a far more pleasant sound, far more traditional and betokens a creed with far less hatred, animosity and sheer irrationality.

    It is abhorrent to see people following the same creed as Wahhabist extremists, Jihadists, madmen, terrorists et al and failing to loudly condemn them and their creed and dissociate themselves from it and construct programmes to help us find and eliminate such threats. They have their cake and eat it too. Demand all the rights of belonging whilst flying under a flag that states clearly they don’t belong and whilst calmly viewing their compatriots running wild, committing mayhem and bloody murder. Very abhorrent.

    Why not be islamophobic? Being phobic is a perfectly normal and common reaction to people, places, events, situations, ideas that we don’t like. We can have phobias against football crowds, football hooligans, against drunken revellers, against bullies, against shirkers, liars, cheats, whiners, politicians, novelists, weight lifters, joggers, food faddists… anyone and anything…

    What more reasonable to be phobic about than a group of people that own a creed which dedicates them to the downfall of the State, which gives rise to an army of murderers, which manifests as rapist mobs all over England and Europe, which has vigilante patrols barring the passage of lawful Englishmen in the streets of their own country in the name of sharia?

    I would say if you are not islamophobic you are a fool.

    Take the most common objection of the islamophile or, as we should say, the daeshlover, for that’s what ultimately they are, which is that ‘most muslims are not like that’.

    How asinine is that for an argument. How lame. How pathetic. How deeply illogical. How it is immediate in its twisting and turning and running away from sense.

    Islamophobic is not muslimophobic. They are two different things.

    Islamophobic is a phobia of the creed, the doctrine and those that support it, swear by it, have their actions dictated by it and seek to justify their actions by it.

    Yes, most muslims are not ‘like that’ – simply because, as with christians, most muslims are not true, devoted, muslims any more than most christians are true, devoted christians.

    Most people are religious in name only. That’s true of muslims, of course. Or even especially considering most of them throughout the world don’t have the education to be able to take a rational deep interest in their religion.

    So let those that are not deep fundamental adherents to their religion renounce the problematic parts of it.

    Give clear declaration that they cannot see those parts in a fundamental way, that they consider this and that to be historical interest only and incapable of translation into the modern world, and so on.

    This would be tantamount to writing a new, modern, hadith and producing a new reformed Islam. So be it.

    But those that will not do that or any part of it are willy-nilly doing the other and pronouncing devotion to the historic letter of the creed and all its historic fundamental primitive meaning.

    For such as those islamophobia becomes muslim phobia, they identify so strongly with it.

    For the majority who make it clear they do not see things that way islamophobia remains islamophobia and it does not touch them, for they are not of islam.

    As daesh, for instance, would be happy to make clear to them prior to sawing their heads off.

    Yes. Proclaim islamophobia. It has of necessity nothing to do with muslimophobia while muslims are predominantly merely loose adherents to their religion. And for any right thinking person it is surely a must – how can you possibly escape it?

    And as regards the law of the land it seems to me the letter of the islamic law is such that the whole creed is treasonable. I am quite sure that no secular organisation would be permitted to flourish with such a creed. Certainly not any such organisation which had representatives all across the world engaged in bloody murder.

    You know all it really takes is to speak of reformed islam as though it already exists. Words are things. Speak the word and you conjure the thing up. Say you are phobic of islam but not of the reformed church of islam and suddenly that reformed church exists in the minds of people.

    Where, then, are its creeds? Where its Koran? Where its Hadith? Well, we can put that together, too. By word of mouth only. Speak the words put into your mouth by your local friendly muslim who claims to be ‘not like that’.
    Ask him, for instance, ‘What about Koran 2:191 “Kill them wherever you find them…” ?’ and let him reply something like, we might imagine, ” Ah, that’s old time stuff, not to be taken literally today.”

    Enough. So there’s the first line of the new Hadith of the reformed Islam and you can quote it: Koran 2:191 is not to be taken literally, it is merely historical stuff of no relevance today..

    And then you can say to that muslim to whom you’re talking “Isn’t that right?” and doubtless they’ll eagerly say ‘Yes, yes.’ as though they knew that all along. As perhaps they did.

    And it grows into a concrete, formalised truth. The reformed Islam, complete with Hadith that reforms it.

    The point is of course and I hope I don’t insult anyone’s intelligence by spelling it out, that this reformed Islam does exist, right now, it does, it truly does. Unless all those Muslims who claim to be ‘not like that’ (i.e. not fundamentalist jihadists etc ) are lying. Which I don’t believe they are.

    No. They are not. They are telling the truth. They live by a creed that interprets things very differently to the way those old time wahhabists and modern daesh do.

    Only that fact is not promulgated and that creed is not formalised, not written down.

    We have to write it down for them. By drawing it out from them and repeating it back to them.

    And a good place to start the conversation is “I am Islamophic, but not ReformedIslamophobic and never Muslimophobic.”

    Of course, we must never, ever tell them anything. Only ask. ‘How is this verse to be understood?’
    And ask ” I have heard that Koran 9:5 is totally unreal, speaking a language from centuries ago and not at all to be taken seriously today, is that right?” and so on.

    The trouble is, of course, it is the leaden weight of the half hearted believer that allows this monolith to trundle on, wreaking harm and infiltrating everywhere to detrimental effect. Carried like a virus by the innocent half hearted believer it lays waiting for the extremist to call upon it to validate his extremes.

    Which they are always ready to do. And it begins in such small subtle ways. As we’ve seen in Europe and U.K. Well, not so subtle sometimes. And manifests in such insane ferocity in other places.

    Those poor half hearted believers who are ‘not like that’ are going to have to take a closer interest in their creed and participate in the construction of a healthier interpretation and manifestation.

    I reckon.

    • Ian MacDougall says:

      ‘Islamophobia’ is a trap word for those who choose to use it. It was coined IMHO to conflate opposition to Islam with opposition and hostility to Muslims. It means ‘irrational fear and hostility towards Islam and/or Muslims’. Hostility to one means automatic hostility to the other.
      Muslims are people who have had the misfortune to be born and raised within the world’s worst religion. Recent poll data suggests that around 25% of western Muslims privately support and cheer on the Islamists, which means that the other 75% don’t. But given the number seeking refuge in the West from Islam’s perpetual civil violence and war, that still amounts to one helluva lot of people in the West, and a potential Fifth Column, and makes a powerful case for stopping all Muslim immigration.
      I prefer the term ‘anti-Islamism’, which can be taken to mean hostility to Islam and/or Islamism. I don’t mind if there is a bit of confusion, as I am both anyway.

      • Jed says:

        It is indeed a trap word but the answer to this problem is to translate the word into English by naming it “Submissionphobia”.

        Islam means submission and I have fear of being forced to submit to the dictated garbage from a mentally deranged 7th century warlord and pedophile.

        I have Submissionphobia.

    • Warty says:

      Good one bullockornis.
      Instead of that utterly ridiculous hashtag doing the rounds in the USA #Illwalkwithyou, following the shooting yesterday, of the imam and a follower in New York, we could promote #showIslamtheDoor hashtag.

      • [email protected] says:

        The hashtag/meme – ‘#I’ll walk/ride with you’ will only mean something when one of the female/’feminist’ socialist journalists who use that hashtag so sanctimoniously in an effort to try to shut down any discussion of Islam, actually rides/walks with some young terrified infant Muslim girl on her trip to undergo female genital mutilation or is on her way to an arranged ‘marriage’.

    • Warty says:

      If I can qualify a couple of otherwise worthy points you make. A good many muslims have their understanding of Islam and the Qur’an served up to them by their Imams, so whether or not they ‘have the education to be able to take a rational deep interest in their religion’ doesn’t matter that much: their views are those of their Imams.
      Secondly, those who might ‘renounce the problematic parts of it’ (the Qur’an and the hadith) are guilty of blasphemy and the sentence is death. So, yes we have every right to be Islamophobic, but the ‘moderate’ Muslim is in fact an unknown quantity, quite simply because it is unIslamic to speak up and draw attention to oneself, unless one is authorised to do so. By the way, it was a total crock the MSM’s defence of Mrs Khan for not speaking in public: Trump was entirely right in saying she was not allowed to speak: his only mistake was in not producing the relevant Qur’anic quotes showing that a woman’s testimony in only worth half that of a man’s.

  3. Bill Martin says:

    This is one of those extremely rare articles warning of the almost inevitable victory of Islam in western countries by democratic means. Those sophisticated, astute Muslim leaders mentioned in this article must be over the moon (the crescent moon?) delighting in the abject stupidity of western leadership facilitating the surreptitious takeover of their countries by Islam while they are agonising over how to combat Islamic violence. The latter, real and deadly as it is, is successfully diverting attention from the former, which is far more likely to succeed in subduing us.

    • Ian MacDougall says:

      Bill:
      Agreed. Except that democracy is anathema in Islam, and understandably. Freedom of thought and of speech means that the Believers are inevitably confronted with facts difficult to reconcile with Islam’s basics. Hence the obsessive clerical control of education and public discourse in the Islamic world.
      Hence also Ataturk’s reforms aimed at modernising Turkey: he realised that in order to create a modern, competitive economy, free exchange of ideas and information were necessary. The clerical stranglehold had to be broken.

      • Bill Martin says:

        Islam will utilise the democratic processes, together with other enlightened features of western civilisation, in order to attain power. Then they will discard it without delay. As it happens, Hitler also came to power by democratic means, so did Erdogan of Turkey. The latter has reportedly remarked that democracy was a useful vehicle to get to your goal, once there, you just get off it. Lenin also said something along the lines that we, the Bolsheviks, had to win only one election. As it turned out, they didn’t even do that, they took the shortcut of violent revolution.

  4. ArthurB says:

    Until the recent past, a nation which wanted to conquer its neighbours used to build up its army and then invade. The Arabs used this method 1400 years ago to impose Islam on the Middle East, north Africa and the Iberian peninsula.

    The Bolsheviks, Lenin in particular, deduced that subversion was a better technique, hence the formation of the Comintern to infiltrate the nations of the West, setting up front organisations which recruited the alienated intellectuals and useful idiots. There are some excellent books on the subject, one of the best is Stephen Koch’s Double Lives: Stalin, Willi Munzenberg and the Seduction of the Intellectuals.

    The Soviet Union eventually imploded, but after a decade or so of peace, the West is again under threat, this time from Islam. It is no coincidence that over the past few decades there has been a massive influx of Muslims into the nations of the West, creating ideal conditions for the infiltration of terrorists, who can cause disruption totally out of proportion to their numbers.

    During the Cold War there was at least resistance to Communism, in Australia Santamaria and his supporters managed to reverse the Communist takeover of our trade unions. The problem today is that most Australian intellectuals refuse to believe that Islam is a threat. Feminists who became incandescent with rage over Tony Abbott’s alleged misogyny don’t seem to be concerned about the status of women under Islam. The ABC routinely ridicules anyone who expresses concern about Islam.

    I fear that matters may come to a crisis in Europe in the not too distant future. The governments of Germany and the Scandinavian nations appear to be facilitating the Islamic invasion, and if the indigenous inhabitants start resisting, there could well be a civil war.

  5. Jody says:

    I’ve always regarded the middle east as more or less backwards. Images on our TV as recently as a decade ago of people being ferried around tree-less townscapes on donkeys are still fresh in my mind. There are educated people in those countries and Syria once used to be a place where the educated in society could prosper. Indeed, Assad was himself educated in the UK. But education for some only hardens the attitudes of those who don’t have it, consequently they revert to atavism and tribalism – ergo Islam – as the only place where some form of pride can be expressed. Tanveer Ahmed has written about this. Middle eastern muslims have seldom or ever espoused or understood democracy and this is but one of the worrying aspects of the wholesale migration to democratic countries. They leave their understanding of the relationship between themselves and their prophet to mostly uneducated and bigoted ‘clerics’ who seem to have reincarnated from the middle ages.

    If I may make a tangential comment. Lack of freedom of speech has meant that these discussion about muslim immigration have been held between people of like minds and kept well outside the public arena. Apparently, Mark Kenny at the SMH has described one very public Senator as a “free speech fundamentalist”. When I heard that I thought, “oh, that must be similar to being a fresh air fundamentalist”.

    So, this is the state of the nation now.

  6. en passant says:

    I would not worry too much about Ian and the ‘loose cards inserted into the pack’ as someone shuffled his deck a long time ago. He is a problem only if he and any fellow fanatics ever get into power, say and Minister for Science or Minister for the Environment after all are we not told by the American demagogue himself that we need not fear the murderous cultists, but it is climate change that is the real threat?