The UK, an Extremist’s Utopia

  • Middle East Policy

    Middle East Policy has been one of the world’s most cited publications on the region since its inception in 1982, and our Breaking Analysis series makes high-quality, diverse analysis available to a broader audience.

Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor

Guest Commentary

As shocking as this may sound, the evidence is piling-up that Britain is under the sway of Islamist organisations to the detriment of its friends in the Middle East. Until 2010, it played host to Al-Muhajiroon, which has now morphed under several different names. Its former leader, the radical cleric Anjem Choudary, was free to recruit jihadists for the so-called Islamic State until very recently, when he was arrested and for some unknown reason permitted bail. It’s no random happenstance that 2,000 British Muslims have joined the Islamic State’s ranks, including the man dubbed “Jihadi John” seen on a series of videos decapitating Americans and Britons.

Moreover, seven state-run schools in Bradford have been exposed as implementing extremist curricula, including gender segregation and calls for female students to be covered except for their hands and feet. And at least six schools in London’s Tower Hamlets, where black Islamic State flags have been seen fluttering, are currently being investigated for disseminating hard line radical views among pupils.

It’s well known that the Muslim Brotherhood — branded terrorist by Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates — was permitted to open its nerve centre above a kebab shop in north London, where they are endeavouring to regroup now that the welcome sign has been removed from the doors of Egypt and Qatar.

Clearly, the Brotherhood feels right at home in Great Britain, where they can cynically manipulate its time-honoured laws at will and disseminate misleading propaganda to the world. The Brotherhood and associated cover organisations know how to play the system and milk this open, tolerant and politically-correct society to their benefit.  While it’s true that Number Ten launched an enquiry into the Brotherhood’s activities, its findings have yet to be officially announced; perhaps due to the fact that the Muslim Brotherhood threatened that were they to be designated terrorist, attacks on Britain would ensue.

Two Muslim organisations — The Muslim Association of Great Britain and The Cordoba Foundation (both fronts for the Brotherhood) — whose names appeared on the UAE’s recently published terrorist list have announced they plan to take legal action against the Emirates “for tarnishing their reputation.”

A week ago, I would have laughed off those threats as idle rants. But the British legal system, one that I’ve respected all my adult life for being the fairest on the planet — and still do — is governed by the letter of the law and is not influenced by political considerations. The proof, according to one of the Muslim Brotherhood’s UK-based propaganda rags, The Middle East Eye (exposed by the UAE daily, The National), a British High Court has given the police the go-ahead to investigate Egyptian cabinet members for international crimes and torture while they are still in office in response to a petition lodged by the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party. Can this really be the case, when President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi has been invited to London for a state visit and was recently feted by the presidents of Italy, France, not to mention Pope Francis?

If so, this alleged High Court ruling, made under the little-used principle of Universal Jurisdiction, will be viewed by the Brotherhood as empowering and will be seen by Egypt’s Arab allies as not only a grave insult but also as setting a precedent that can negatively affect other countries fighting to preserve their soil against infection by radical ideologies.

When it is an indisputable fact that the UK’s judicial system is independent, what is preventing disgruntled Iraqis and Afghans from suing Tony Blair and his cabinet for their role in bombing, torturing and conspiring with the United States to illegally render terrorist suspects to Guantanamo? Blair isn’t under investigation. He’s been inundated with high positions, awards and advisory roles on company boards.

Furthermore, members of the murderous Syrian regime are free to travel around the world without a care. Why isn’t Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan being brought to justice for slaughtering Kurds and hosting Islamic State fighters?

David Cameron was upset that the failed Muslim Brotherhood president was sent packing from day one. He’s since been calling upon the Egyptian government to reconcile with this terror group that murders security forces, burns churches and plants bombs on train tracks and coats bridges with oil to create car accidents. He even sought to punish Cairo for its anti-Brotherhood stance by suspending certain export licenses.

My message to Mr. Cameron is this: “You must stop appeasing extremists, especially when your friends in the Middle East and the Gulf are battling the Islamic State, Al Qaeda, Ansar Beit-al-Maqdis and Muslim Brotherhood traitors who have allegiance to no country. Furthermore, you have no right to interfere in the affairs of Egypt, an Arab country in turmoil, endeavouring to set its house in order. You are wrong to play host to terrorists working to crush a sovereign state integral to our Arab nation. You should respect the will of the Egyptian people and their elected leadership struggling to bring order out of chaos.”

The same goes for a certain section of the UK’s media that’s falsely claimed that the results of last year’s presidential elections were faked when a poll published in September showed that el-Sisi enjoys an approval rating of 82 percent. Indeed, The Middle East Eye article claims that Mohamed Morsi is the “only democratically-elected Egyptian president” although President el-Sisi received millions more votes than the criminal on trial for colluding with foreign governments and conspiring with Hamas and Hezbollah to get himself and his cohorts out of jail. Why do the British government and a section of the UK media insist on disrespecting the will of the majority preferring to champion a small violently extremist minority?

As an Emirati and a proud Arab, who considers the UK as my second home, I cannot possibly condone the current political climate in Britain that undermines its Arab friends while nurturing a terrorist-breeding swamp that is a danger to this region — and, if and when the tide turns the other way in Number Ten, will boomerang against the British people themselves.

  • Middle East Policy

    Middle East Policy has been one of the world’s most cited publications on the region since its inception in 1982, and our Breaking Analysis series makes high-quality, diverse analysis available to a broader audience.

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