There’s no plot, says Anthony Browne: Islam really does want to conquer the world. That’s because Muslims, unlike many Christians, actually believe they are right, and that their religion is the path to salvation for all
A year ago I had lunch with an eminent figure who asked if I thought she was mad. ‘No,’ I said politely, while thinking, ‘Yup.’ She had said she thought there was a secret plot by Muslims to take over the West. I have never been into conspiracy theories, and this one was definitely of the little-green-men variety. It is the sort of thing BNP thugs claim to justify their racial hatred.
Obviously, we all know about Osama bin Laden’s ambitions. And we are all aware of the loons of al-Muhajiroun waving placards saying ‘Islam is the future of Britain’. But these are all on the extremist fringe, representative of no one but themselves. Surely no one in Islam takes this sort of thing seriously? I started surfing the Islamic media.
Take Dr Al-Qaradawi, the controversial Egyptian imam who was recently fawned over by the Mayor of London even though he promotes the execution of homosexuals, the right of men to indulge in domestic violence, and the murder of innocent Jews. During the brouhaha it went unnoticed that he also wants to conquer Europe. Don’t take my word for it, just listen to him on his popular al-Jazeera TV show, Sharia and Life.
‘Islam will return to Europe. The conquest need not necessarily be by the sword. Perhaps we will conquer these lands without armies. We want an army of preachers and teachers who will present Islam in all languages and in all dialects,’ he broadcast in 1999, according to the Middle East Media Research Institute, which translates his programmes. On another programme he declared, ‘Europe will see that it suffers from a materialist culture, and it will seek a way out, it will seek a lifeboat.