Thu, 24/07/2014 - 8:00pm
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Terrorist Plot Foiled: Old Lessons Unlearnt

Usman Khan, Mohammed Shahjahan and Nazam Hussain

You've probably seen in the news fairly recently of nine Muslims being sentenced for plotting to commit acts of terrorism at the London Stock Exchange. For the majority of people, there won't be much to say about this story, but we sure are aware of the unspoken feelings associated with it.

For the English Defence League, they will use this only to justify their terrorising of Muslims & Islamophobia, but they are not alone by far.

For the government, they will use this case to justify the need for the current terrorism laws & perhaps even more. Whilst the PREVENT strategy focuses on creating laws that allow the abuses of human rights, underpinned by Babar Ahmad & Moazzam Begg's cases, the government only succeeds in marginalising the Muslim community even more and then goes on to blame the Muslims community for doing so. To the government and PREVENT, radicalisation of Muslims takes a perspective that of being too much into Islam and becoming "too religious". Even if as an individual or organisation who never advocated terrorism, like Tablighi Jamaat, you could still be on the terrorism shortlist.

MPACUK have always said, that the best way to prevent terrorism is to stop supporting terrorist regimes (e.g. Israel) but also to implement programs of how Muslims can make changes though a peaceful methods such engaging into UK politics. However, the government's failure to do this and seemingly makes deliberate measures to marginalise the Muslim community. This shows how much they really care and how a passive non-political Muslim is preferred.

The Muslim leadership is not without blame however. Ordinary Muslims will feel a bit uneasy. Fear of Islamophobic institutions and elements in the UK furthering their narrative and even growing from stories likes this. We have always said that mosques have a vital role in teaching in teaching and leading on issues that affect Muslims. This does involve showing their community how they can make a difference through peaceful means in the UK. Without this, our communities will not see the much needed middle ground between absolute passivity and violent measures. As a result, we find more Muslims easily exemplifying the behaviour of the over-ritualised, pacified, "moderate," and sometimes apologist Muslim.

The same Muslims complain amongst themselves of the EDL and other Islamophobes. The same Muslims do nothing in confronting the Muslims that have either sold them out or favour pettier issues of visas and mosque extensions, over the demonisation and persecution of Muslims. As a result, Muslims have little power to tackle the political narratives of Islamophobia and Zionism and so things can only get worse. There will be some that will get so frustrated to the point of committing acts of terrorism. What alternative were they given by their religious leaders who seem more out of touch with the world than ever?

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The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly; it is dearness only that gives everything its value. I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress and grow brave by reflection. 'Tis the business of little minds to shrink; but he whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves his conduct, will pursue his principles unto death

— Thomas Paine