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Home > Secteur-English > General > Poverty isn’t responsible for Islamic terrorism. TOM HARRIS

Poverty isn’t responsible for Islamic terrorism. TOM HARRIS

In a short film recorded for the BBC earlier this year, journalist Allan Hennessy tried to explain why some British-born Muslims resort to terrorism. He quoted the 19th century abolitionist and former slave Frederick Douglass :
“Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class of society is made to feel society is an organised conspiracy to degrade, oppress, and rob, neither persons nor property will be safe.”
Hennessy, a Muslim who grew up on the same estate as the British-born terrorist Mohammed Emwazi, added : “Douglass may have been a 19th century abolitionist but he could have been writing about this very 21st century council estate.”
No, he couldn’t.
But to emphasise just how similar were the plights of 21st century British Muslims and black slaves in pre-Civil War America, Hennessy added : “I’m sick and tired of people giving me funny looks on the Circle Line when I’m just out to have a drink with my friends.”
His argument is summed up in his final words to camera : “British politicians need to wise up to the reality of life for Muslims in the UK or we can expect to see many more ‘new’ Jihadi Johns.”
Hennessy is certainly not a terrorist sympathiser of any description, and he was presumably as happy as the rest of the country to hear the news that hate preacher and central casting James Bond villain Anjem Choudary has at long last been incarcerated.
Yet Choudary, who for so long encouraged his followers to blame the British state for everything bad that ever happened to them, who advocates the hateful ideology of Islamism as a solution to the “oppression” of British Muslims, would probably agree with Hennessy’s analysis.
Because, of course, the analysis is not only wrong – it is dangerous in its stupidity.
The majority mainstream Muslim community rightly shuns Choudary and his two-bob demagoguery. But neither it nor wider society can afford the appalling consequences of colluding in the grievance culture that sustains him.
Choudary’s success, such as it was, lay in persuading other Muslims to shun mainstream Islam and to embrace Islamism, that loathsome political iteration of Islam that advocates a worldwide “caliphate” under sharia law. His message relied heavily on the need to depict his co-religionists as victims ; victims of racism, of poverty, of educational and economic discrimination. Never mind that other, non-Muslim, citizens face exactly the same challenges without resorting to murdering off-duty soldiers or detonating bombs on underground trains.

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