February 16, 2009
I am looking forward to viewing the BBC Panorama programme this evening in which details of a new Government counter terrorism strategy will be revealed.
The alleged aim of this new strategy will be to challenge Muslims who teach that Islam is incompatible with Western democracy and as Home Office Minister Vernon Coaker has already said to discontinue ‘to fund groups where we have evidence of them encouraging discrimination, undermining democracy and being ambiguous towards terrorism.’
All very well and well intentioned but if the Government hasn’t worked out 8 years after 9/11 and 18 months after 7/7 as well as numerous other atrocities who it should be funding and relying on for advice and assistance and who it should be avoiding, we have to ask and wonder what it has worked out?
I’ve often felt that there isn’t a cohesive Government strategy to deal with radicalisation of Muslims in the UK, and there are too many gimmicks and headline grabbing policies and proposals such as the 90 day detention and this last week to believe that anything the Government will do will prove effective. The relationships the Labour Government has built with the Muslim community is too narrow and focused primarily on maintaining the Muslim vote especially after the Iraq war rather than dealing with the concerns of Muslims and what it expects from them as fully signed up members of British Society. The embarrassing political sluttiness that Jack Straw and his cronies displayed at the last election in trying to get the Muslims to vote for Labour in Blackburn at all costs which I saw at the last general election was simply pathetic and those Muslims who danced to this tune were an embarrassment to their community.
I really do hope that an incoming Conservative Government gets to grips with the increased radicalisation in certain sections of the Muslim community and comes up with policies that are effective and sustained in the long term and not geared as this Government seems to be towards securing votes instead of dealing with the problem.
February 13, 2009
I have written a platform piece on the controversy surrounding Geert Wilders for Conservative Home which you can read here
February 11, 2009
The UK Government has decided that it will respond to potential terrorists with an ad on Pakistan TV with the following key aims:
‘to ensure Pakistanis realise the west is not “anti-Islamic”, that British society is not “anti-Islam”, to demonstrate the extent to which Muslims are integrated into British society and to stimulate and facilitate “constructive debate” on the compatibility of liberal and Muslim values.
It is recruiting prominent British Muslims to say that there is no contradiction in being a Muslim and British. Al Qaeda and his allies will be quaking in their boots as the Government spends £400,000 broadcasting these adverts.
These daft schemes come about when the Government listens to people with self interest in becoming ‘leaders’ in the Muslim communities in the UK. Do Pakistanis not know that there are millions of Muslims living in the UK and in the West who have all rights to practice their religion and that British society is not anti-Islam – do we need to spend £400,000 for that message?
A would be terrorist is not going to do a u-turn after he has watched these adverts. It is an ideology that terrorists follow which allows the killing of citizens of any country they believe is not governed by Islamic Law according to them regardless of how many Muslims reside there. They are not concerned with a country being anti-Islam – their goal is to govern every country based on their interpretation of Islam.
All the Government needs to do is look at why the terrorists have carried out bombings in Pakistan to realise this instead of playing silly beggars with gimmicks on issues such as terrorism. Why are Pakistani nationals carrying out bombings in Pakistan, a country founded on Islam and killing innocent Muslims? If the Government works this out, it won’t end up wasting resources on daft schemes designed to massage egos instead of dealing with terrorists.
February 10, 2009
‘The economy is going to define our politics in Britain in the next year, the next five years, the next 10 and even the next 15 years. These are seismic events that are going to change the political landscape.
I think that this is a financial crisis more extreme and more serious than that of the 1930s and we all remember how the politics of that era were shaped by the economy.
We now are seeing the realities of globalisation, though at a speed, pace and ferocity which none of us have seen before. The reality is that this is becoming the most serious global recession for, I’m sure, over 100 years as it will turn out.’
Put Labour in power for 12 years and you end up with the worst recession in 100 years!
February 6, 2009
First the Germans and now the French. There seems to be a queue of politician’s abroad wanting to attack Gordon Brown’s economic policies. No doubt we’ll see Downing Street twist this story to try and explain that this wasn’t aimed at Brown and he is still regarded everywhere as the saviour of the world economy!
February 5, 2009
Interest rates have been reduced to 1% by the Bank of England to try and kick start the economic recovery, or at the very least to slow the negative growth that the UK economy is experiencing. Previous cuts haven’t had the desired effect and it doesn’t look like this reduction will be any different.
This is further bad news for savers especially those who are elderly and rely heavily on their savings to survive and also counter productive for Banks who are seeking more deposits.
February 5, 2009
I’m finding it very difficult to believe that the US would threaten to stop sharing intelligence with the UK if details of Binyam Mohamed having allegedly been tortured are made public. The Foreign Secretary must clarify whether he informed the Judges in the Binyam Mohamed case that they should refrain from disclosing any facts relating to the alleged torture, and if true who from the US government communicated this threat to him.
Any form of torture should be unreservedly condemned. We cannot have any moral authority and lecture others on convictions obtained after torture has been used let alone indefinite detention without trial based on evidence obtained under torture. If what has been alleged is true, the Foreign Secretary should firmly stand up to the Americans and dismiss any interference in the administration of justice in the UK courts. He should remind them of what President Obama said in his inauguration speech:
As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals. Our founding fathers faced with perils that we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man, a charter expanded by the blood of generations.Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience’s sake.’
Anyone from the UK involved in any torture should be prosecuted and brought to justice as should those in the US. After all, if members of the armed forces are held to account for irresponsible and abusive conduct, members of the intelligence services should not be allowed to do as they please under the pretext of gathering intelligence in the war on terror.