Wednesday, 8 June 2011
The article on ConservativeHome about the new Prevent review shows the extraordinary resistance of the civil service to even the minor step forward of recognising that not all Muslims who refuse to endorse terrorism are good guys.

There was a marked difference on this key subject between officials in the Home Office and the independent overseer of the Review, Lord Carlile of Berriew, a prominent Liberal Democrat silk (further evidence of how this debate cuts across party lines). The argument centred on whether extremism should be included within the remit of the Prevent Review.

The mandarins wanted the glossary to confine itself to terrorism, and specifically to Al Qaeda terrorism. However, Carlile contended that after Munich, it had to include the extremist ideology and world view that leads some people to become terrorists. Cameron backed Carlile. And Carlile also insisted that support for attacks on British troops be included as part of the definition of extremism. Again, this was opposed by officials; once more, Cameron sided with Carlile.

It is a sure sign of how badly the old Prevent had gone wrong that a Conservative Prime Minister had to exert himself in order to get the permanent bureaucracy to accept that support for attacks on UK forces is extremist!


Who are these mandarins? Muslims or non-Muslims. I would like to know. The civil service has a track record of displaying bizarre friendliness towards non-violent jihadists.

...Martin Bright's collection of leaked Foreign Office and Cabinet Office documents When Progressives Treat With Reactionaries (Policy Exchange, 2006) shows very clearly that the Bangladeshi Islamist Delwar Hossein Sayeedi was allowed to into Britain to preach his divisive message as a supposed bulwark against Al Qaeda. Because of his 'credibility' in accessing' angry young Muslims. The same was true of Yusuf al Qaradawi. An examination of the case of the Indian Islamist Zakir Naik – excluded by Theresa May last year -- demonstrates that senior Home Office mandarins viewed Naik as a positive force. One senior Home Office official even wanted to show Naik classified material to prove to him that Osama Bin Laden ordered 9/11!


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