Douglas Murray

The great conundrum for the Islamophobia lobby

The great conundrum for the Islamophobia lobby
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It is a shame that ‘subversion’ of the state is no longer a crime in Britain.  One result of it not being so is that people have become blind to the idea that it is even going on.

The other day I wrote about the ‘academics’ who had signed a letter to the Guardian insisting that Britain should not have a counter-terrorism policy, a view which is increasingly echoed at the top of the Labour party.  Interestingly enough, since pointing out that the letter’s signatories included people who are not only not academics, but extremists, I have learnt a most interesting thing.  A signatory informs me that letter was not just signed by that friend of ‘Jihadi John’, Asim Qureshi, but was in fact organised by him.  That is right, the man who believed the head-hacker of Isis was a ‘beautiful’ person actually wrote to the signatories of that letter inviting them to sign it.

One wonders what the families of the men Asim’s friend tortured and beheaded think about him trying to direct UK counter-terrorism policy?  Or of the Guardian newspaper being either duped or complicit in giving such a man an uncritical control of their pages?  And did the signatories of that letter – low-grade occupants of low-grade posts though most of them are – sign such a letter knowing that it came from such a source?  During the Second World War or the Cold War, if a Nazi or Communist activist was openly trying to subvert the state a view would have been taken about their activities.  Perhaps such a view will one day be possible again.

In the meantime, the pro-beheading lobby is assisted by a number of other useful idiots helping to grease their progress.  For instance earlier this week a group from the Council of Europe which calls itself the ‘European Commission against Racism and Intolerance’ (ECRI) has slammed Britain for an alleged upsurge of ‘anti-foreigner sentiment’ and tied this to Brexit.  In particular the group highlights a rise in that mythical beast ‘Islamophobia’.  According to the group’s chair (one Christian Ahlund), ‘It is no coincidence that racist violence is on the rise in the UK at the same time as we see worrying examples of intolerance and hate speech in the newspapers, online and even among politicians.’

Mr Ahlund’s group appear uninterested in the fact that the real, serious attacks on Muslims in Britain are in fact carried out by other Muslims.  It was not a British newspaper editor or politician who murdered a Muslim shopkeeper in Glasgow before Easter this year.  Nor was it any columnist who slaughtered an Imam in Rochdale in February.  These real, actual crimes were committed by other Muslims who thought the Muslims they killed were not the right sort of Muslim. But this attempt to blame the papers for an alleged upsurge in ‘Islamophobia’ points to a fascinating conundrum for dim-witted groups like the ECRI.

Because when, say, a gang of Muslim terrorists massacre 130 people in a night in Paris it is likely to make the newspapers.  And though ECRI might wish that two jihadists slitting the throat of a Catholic priest while he says mass near Rouen should receive no coverage, it is the job of newspapers to report such news.  Likewise, when a suicide bomber detonated, earlier this year, just beside the headquarters of the European Commission in Brussels I suppose the newspapers could be ordered not to report it.  But it would be a very strange world in which the news of regular Islamist terror attacks was not reported.  Though I suppose it would mean that there was more room for the papers to run pieces like the Guardian’s, endlessly giving oxygen to the people who support terror, while failing to report the terror itself.  How Jihadi John’s friends must laugh.

Written byDouglas Murray

Douglas Murray is Associate Editor of The Spectator. His most recent book The Madness of Crowds: Gender, Race and Identity is out now.

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