"Feeding Hate": Islamic Separatism in Britain
Ul-Haq, 41, is also the leader for new generation of "home-grown" British Islamists who loathe Western values, support armed Jihad and preach contempt for Christians, Jews and Hindus. Ul-Haq, who preaches in mosques throughout Britain, outlaws television and music, and says football is a "cancer that has infected our youth." He is appalled by young women who want to get educated and go to university. He regularly praises the work of the Taliban and their attacks against British troops in Afghanistan. His sermons are broadcast to thousands of listeners on Radio Ramadhan Leicester in Urdu, Gujarati, Punjabi, Bengali, Somali, Arabic and English.
Leicester, one of the most rapidly Islamizing cities in England, has elected its first-ever Muslim mayor.
Abdul Razak Osman, an Indian-origin Muslim who was born in Kenya and who immigrated to Britain in 1971, was sworn into office during an elaborate investiture ceremony at the Leicester City Hall on May 18.
Osman's election reflects the growing influence of Muslims on local politics in Leicester. At his swearing-in ceremony, Osman declared: "I'm proud to be the first Muslim councillor to hold the position. We've had Christian, Hindu, and Sikh and now I'm able to bring the Islamic faith to the office, which is a great honor."
Leicester, an industrial city some 70 minutes north of London, is often promoted as Britain's quintessential multicultural success story. Immigrants currently make up nearly one-half the city's total population of 280,000, and Leicester is on the fast-track to become the first non-white majority city in British history. Many of the immigrants are of South Asian origin; and Leicester -- once known as a center for manufacturing shoes and textiles -- is now known for its many Hindu, Sikh and Muslim places of worship.
But a sharp rise in Muslim immigration in recent years is upsetting the city's ethnic balance, and is casting doubt upon the city's multicultural future.
After Christians and Hindus, Muslims are the third-largest faith group in Leicester. The city's Muslim population is estimated to be between 11% and 14% (or somewhere between 30,000 and 40,000 Muslims), which is well above the percentage (4.6) of Muslims in Britain as a whole.
The Muslim population in Leicester is made up mainly of Indians, Pakistanis and Bangladeshis, as well as Turks, Somalis, Kenyans and Ugandans. According to the Ummah Forum, "you'd really like Leicester if you want to be around a large population of Muslims."
Muslim immigration has led to the proliferation of mosques in Leicester, which now has more than 200 mosques and madrassas [Islamic religious schools] and hundreds of informal Islamic prayer rooms located in basements, garages and warehouses.
Leicester is also home to several mega-mosques. The Leicester Central Mosque complex has a capacity for nearly 3,000 worshippers. It also has a school, a community hall, a residence hall for imams, a mortuary and a guest house. The huge Masjid Umar mosque has four towering minarets and a grand dome that displays Arabic calligraphy from the Koran.
The most influential Muslim in Leicester is Shaykh Abu Yusuf Riyadh-ul-Haq, a hardline Muslim cleric who runs the Al Kawthar Academy, a well-known Islamic school in the city. Ul-Haq, 41, is also the leader of a new generation of "home-grown" British Islamists who loathe Western values, support armed Jihad and preach contempt for Christians, Jews and Hindus.
Ul-Haq, who preaches in mosques across Britain, outlaws television and music, and says football is "a cancer that has infected our youth." He is appalled by young women who want to get educated and go to university. He regularly praises the work of the Taliban and their attacks against British troops in Afghanistan.
In a typical sermon, entitled "Imitating the Disbelievers," ul-Haq warns British Muslims of the danger of being corrupted by the "evil influence" of Western culture. He also heaps scorn on Muslims who say they are "proud to be British," and argues that friendship with a Christian or a Jew makes "a mockery of Allah's religion."
In another sermon called "Jewish Fundamentalism," Ul-Haq says: "They're all the same. The Jews don't have to be in Israel to be like this. It doesn't matter whether they're in New York, Houston, St Louis, London, Birmingham, Bradford and Manchester. They're all the same. They've monopolized everything: the Holocaust, God, money, interest, usury, the world economy, the media, political institutions […] they monopolized tyranny and oppression as well. And injustice."
Ul-Haq's sermons are broadcast to thousands of listeners on Radio Ramadhan Leicester in Urdu, Gujarati, Punjabi, Bengali, Somali, Arabic and English.
According to American diplomatic cables that were obtained and published by the website Wikileaks, Leicester is home to the most conservative Islamic population anywhere in Europe.
A leaked diplomatic cable recounts the October 2007 visit to Leicester by Farah Pandith, the U.S. State Department's Senior Advisor for Muslim Engagement. The stated purpose of the visit was for the U.S. government to find ways to help Britain "update and improve" its approach to stopping "home-grown" Islamic extremists. The document says Pandith found the lack of integration of the Muslim community in Leicester to be "striking."
Among other observations, the cable states that Pandith was shocked to find "girls as young as four years old were completely covered." The document continues: "At a local book store, texts… seemed designed to segregate Muslims from their wider community, urging women to cover themselves and remain in their homes, playing up the differences between Islam and other religions, seeking to isolate Muslims from community, and feeding hate of Jews to the young."
The cable also recounts a discussion Pandith had with religious and community leaders at an Ahmadiyya (an Asian Islamic sect) mosque: "Yaqub Khan, General Secretary of a local organization called the Pakistan Association, insisted that he had to teach young people in Urdu. When Pandith challenged him as to why he would use Urdu with children who were growing up with English as their first language, Khan insisted that there were no good books on the Koran in English."
Leicester is also notorious for having the fourth-highest rate of unemployment in Britain. Moreover, the city has very high rates of illiteracy, and ranks as one of the worst five municipalities in England for education.
A recent survey, entitled "Muslims in Leicester," says that Muslims in the city are especially prone to underachievement and unemployment. The report says the inner city Spinney Hills neighborhood, which has the highest percentage of Muslims in Leicester, is also the ward with the lowest rate of full-time employment, the highest rate of unemployment, the highest level of economic inactivity, the highest percentage of "no qualifications" for work and the highest level of social housing.
Muslims are now demanding political power within the Leicester city council, as well as the freedom to wear their religious dress at work and to have halal food in the city hospitals. They are also seeking their own faith-based schools.
One such school, the Leicester Islamic Academy -- where female students wear the full-length dress and head-covering and the boys wear black robes and skullcaps -- has been accused by the British government of promoting Islamic separatism. Another state-run Islamic school in Leicester, the Madani High School, has run afoul of government regulators for reneging on its promise that 10% of its pupils would be non-Muslim.
The British government has tried -- unsuccessfully -- to reverse the tide of Islamic separatism in Leicester. In June 2008, for example, the city hosted the first in a series of road shows designed to tackle the problem of honor-based violence. Leicester has been plagued by forced marriages, kidnappings, physical and mental abuse of women, and other honor-based crimes against those who have not, according to family and local community members, conformed to religious or cultural expectations.
Trevor Phillips, the former head of the Commission for Racial Equality, has warned that Britain is "sleepwalking to segregation." In a speech in Manchester, he said: "Segregation is now so extreme in some schools that there is not much farther it can go. It does not help to prepare children in these schools for the real world." Phillips also described cities like Leicester as "literal black holes into which nobody goes without fear and trepidation and from which nobody ever escapes undamaged."
Alluding to the transformation of cities like Leicester, Michael Nazir-Ali, a former bishop of the Church of England, has lamented that Islamic extremists have turned parts of Britain into no-go areas for non-Muslims. Lashing out at the spread of religious separatism and the damage caused by the doctrine of multiculturalism, Nazir-Ali has also warned against the acceptance of Islamic Sharia law in Britain, and has criticized amplified calls to prayer from mosques, which he says are imposing an Islamic character on many British towns and cities.
Leicester's motto is Semper Eadem: "Always the Same." But Osman's promotion to city mayor implies that life in Leicester is fast changing.
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|This is what I think of Islam [22 words]||Michael||Apr 22, 2013 08:12|
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by Burak Bekdil
In Turkey however, the protests were not peaceful. They included smashing a sculpture than was neither Jewish nor Israeli.
It was the usual "We-Muslims-can-kill each other-but-Jews-cannot" hysteria.
If Turkish crowds were protesting against Israel in a political dispute, why Koranic slogans? Why were they protesting in Arabic rather than their native language? Do Turks chant German slogans to protest nuclear energy?
by Burak Bekdil
So in the EU-candidate Turkey, a pianist should be punished for his re-tweets, but a pop-singer should be congratulated for her first-class racist hate-speech. This is contagious.
No reporter present at Mr. Ihsanoglu's campaign launch speech thought about asking him if his commitment to the "Palestinian cause" included any affirmation of the Hamas Charter, in particular a section that says, "…The stones and trees will say, 'O Muslims, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.'"
Turkey is also the country where a few years earlier, a group of school teachers (yes, school teachers!) gathered in a demonstration to commemorate Hitler.
by Debalina Ghoshal
Despite Chapter VII of the UN Charter and UNSC Resolutions, it seems that North Korea will continue developing its missiles -- and eventually weaponize them with nuclear warheads.
"North Korea's ballistic and nuclear threat is very much a near-term threat. ... Steady progression in their program is not harmless." — Victor Cha, Centre for Strategic and International Studies.
On March 26, 2014, North Korea reportedly test-fired medium-range ballistic Rodong missiles -- capable of reaching Japan and U.S. military bases in the Asia-Pacific region.
Since February, South Korean officials claim that North Korea has confirmed at least 90 test-firings, among which ten were ballistic missiles.
by Khaled Abu Toameh
It is important to note that these cease-fire demands are not part of Hamas's or Islamic Jihad's overall strategy, namely to have Israel wiped off the face of the earth.
Many foreign journalists who came to cover the war in the Gaza trip were under the false impression that it was all about improving living conditions for the Palestinians by opening border crossings and building an airport and seaport. These journalists really believed that once the demands of Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad are accepted, this would pave the way for peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians.
To understand the true intention of Hamas and its allies, it is sufficient to follow the statements made by their leaders after the cease-fire announcement this week. To his credit, Ismail Haniyeh, Hamas's leader, has never concealed Hamas's desire to destroy Israel.
Hamas and its allies see the war in the Gaza Strip as part of there strategy to destroy Israel. What Hamas and its allies are actually saying is, "Give us open borders and an airport and seaport so we can use them to prepare for the next war against Israel."
by Burak Bekdil
A front-page headline was particularly revealing: They (Israel) bombed a mosque in Gaza! Including the exclamation mark!
A quick internet search, if you typed "mosque bombing Shiite-Sunni," would give you 782,000 results on July 16.
Why did we not hear one single Turkish voice protest the death of 300,000 Muslims in Darfur?
Hamas's Charter is must-read fun.