Journal

  • Black Hebrew Israelites Turn to Antisemitic Terrorism - “Black Hebrew Israelite” is a term that is applied to a range of groups, whose origins lie in the great late 19th century flourishing of new religious movements which include the Nation of Islam. Just as the Nation of Islam is defined by its heterodox take on Islam, the Black Hebrew Israelites syncretise aspects of
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  • Bosnia, Kosovo, Syria: Western Inaction and Radicalisation - Since the 7/7 terrorist attacks in London, it has been commonplace to hear it argued that the “root cause” of terrorism is Western foreign policy: and specifically, the interventions in Afghanistan and Iraq. Radicalisation is not monocausal. Ideological, personal and psychological factors all have a role to play in the process. But if we are
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  • UK Terror Attack: Rehabilitating extremists is hard, but it can be done! - This week’s terrorist attack in London by Usman Khan shows yet again why the international community must remain more vigilant than ever against extremism. Khan himself was previously convicted and sentenced to 16 years for plotting to blow up the London Stock exchange and was deeply inspired by the American ideologue, Anwar Al Awlaki.  Furthermore,
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  • How Britain Failed To Stop Usman Khan - We now know that the London Bridge terrorist, Usman Khan, was “a student and personal friend” of the Al Muhajiroun leader, Anjem Choudary. Following his conviction for terrorist offences, he served six years in prison. As Hannah Stuart, Head of Research at the Commission for Countering Extremism, noted in 2017, a high percentage of British
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  • The Numbers Game - When the genie is out of the bottle, it’s not easy to put it back When I was growing up in the North of England in the 1970s, we were told of a mythical number of British Jews, a number which would always be there. It was 410,000. There had always been 410,000 and there
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  • The Alt-Right is Resurgent. Trump Doesn’t Seem to Care - It has been more than a week since the conservative student organization Turning Point USA’s unintentionally ephemeral event, in which Donald Trump Junior was supposed to speak on his newly released book, banally titled Triggered: How the Left Thrives on Hate and Wants to Silence Us. The fact that he was de-platformed by far-right activists
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  • The Perils of Mainstreaming Islamism: Sahar Al-Faifi and Plaid Cymru - In our paper for the Commission for Countering Extremism,  Mainstreaming Islamism: Islamist institutions and civil society organisations, published last month, we considered the energy that Islamist organisations devote to forming links with mainstream institutions, and the risks that those bodies run when they create such relationships. One of the focuses of our paper was the
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  • Money over Morality: The NBA’s Shameful Capitulation to Tyranny - From elementary to high school, whenever I would practice on the basketball hoop in front of my house, I’d imagine myself as then Phoenix Suns’ star point guard Steve Nash.  A recipient of back-to-back Most Valuable Player awards, feared sharpshooter, passing wizard, and all-around basketball masterclass, Nash is widely considered to be one of the
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  • Mainstreaming Islamism: Islamist Institutions and Civil Society Organisations - This paper has been commissioned and published by the Commission for Countering Extremism. You may read it in full, here. Throughout the 1990s and into the first decades of this century, a speaking circuit consisting of a series of preachers with a deep attachment to islamist political and religious theory toured a number of British
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  • Analysis and Comments on a Friday Sermon (Khutba) at Didsbury Mosque, Manchester, c. December 2016 - With the Name of God, All-Merciful, Most Merciful We, Usama Hasan and Salah al-Ansari, have between us, over 50 years’ experience of serving as imams in Egypt and England, since we both began as imams in our teens. This includes over 45 years’ experience of delivering Friday sermons, an important and influential religious duty since
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  • Islamic Modernism: An illusion or reality? - “Our women are now seen as serving no useful purpose to mankind other than having children; they are considered simply as serving for pleasure, like musical instruments or jewels. But they constitute half and perhaps more than half of our species…..Women are not inferior to men in their intellectual and physical capacities. In the ancient
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  • The Beijing Horse - Why Chinese Investment in Djibouti Matters to the United States (with special thanks to Charles L. Hall “I fear the Danaans, even those bearing gifts.” ~ Virgil, The Aeneid United States AFRICOM commander United States Marine Corps General Thomas D. Waldhauser told the U.S. Senate Committee on Armed Services on 7 February, 2019 that “Africa
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  • “You’re gonna go back to the gas chambers!” - I’m no stranger to antisemitism. Like pretty much every other Jew who has grown up in a non Jewish environment, I’ve heard my fair share of insults and accusations. Many of the antisemites I have dealt with have attempted to hide their prejudice behind the guise of “anti-Zionism”, but there was nothing hidden about the
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  • Ashura, Karbala and the Crisis of Islam-State Relationships - With the Name of God, All-Merciful, Most Merciful Summary On Ashura day, 10th Muharram of the 61st Islamic year corresponding to 10th October 680 CE, Husain, grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, was killed at Karbala in Iraq by forces loyal to Yazid bin Muawiya, who had been appointed Caliph or political
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  • As We Remember 9/11, The Triple Threat is on the Rise - The eighteenth anniversary of the  9/11 attacks in America is a good time to take stock of how far Americans and humanity as a whole have come from that horrific incident that killed almost 3,000 innocent people in the United States.  During this interval, the threat of transnational terrorism and violent extremism from groups like
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  • The Art of Solidarity - Climate change is rapidly becoming a primary reason for forced migration, be it indirectly, as a result of conflict over resources, or directly, as a result of an unlivable environment. On the receiving end of these refugee flows, artists and activists have the power to help alleviate the social exclusion experienced by refugees in Europe.
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  • Concentration Camps do still exist. But not in Texas - In June, Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez made headlines by referring to the migrant detention centers on the US-Mexico border as “concentration camps.” She added that “never again” has to mean something, and that the Trump administration was falling short of this ideal. Her comments, which she recently doubled-down on, insinuating that these camps are comparable to
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  • The future of the Popular Mobilisation Units in Iraq - The role of the Popular Mobilisation Units (PMU) remains a huge part of debate in Iraq. With the territorial war against ISIS now over, with the group now resorting to guerrilla tactics as an underground movement; questions are now raised about the PMU’s continued existence. Following the collapse of the Iraqi army that led to
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  • Klepto-Queens and Far Right Infighting - Earlier this year, the writer Sohrab Ahmari published a piece on the website of the religious-conservative magazine First Things explicitly attacking the worldview of another member of that tribe, David French. The subject in hand was the future of the American right. Can it be reconciled both to Donald Trump and to God? Ahmari’s piece
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  • Book Review: “Muslim Modernism – A Case For A Naya [New] Pakistan” by Nadeem Farooq Paracha - I recommend this concise and readable book, “Muslim Modernism – A Case for a Naya (New) Pakistan” by the leading Karachi-based Pakistani journalist, Nadeem Farooq Paracha, for those interested in the field, as it highlights key issues for debate. Paracha’s main points are that the Islam/state relationship was understood by different Pakistani political leaders, roughly
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  • The Yezidi Genocide, five years on - Saturday 3rd August marked the fifth anniversary of the Yezidi genocide that, according to the estimate of the United Nations, resulted in the murder of 5000 innocent people by ISIS terrorists. Thousands of women were enslaved and 3000 still remain missing. The genocide inflicted on the Yezidis is not the only one in in the
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  • El Paso’s Attack is White Homegrown Violent Extremism - A 21 year old white male suspect, Patrick Crusius, has been arrested in connection with Saturday’s attack in El Paso, Texas at a shopping center, in which multiple casualties and at least 20 fatalities have taken place. This incident illustrates the steady concern that we all face in the battle against the rising tide of
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  • Korean Muslims are Quietly Thriving - Itaewon, the district of Seoul most popular with international expats and tourists, feels more like South Boston than South Korea. Enough pizza shops and fast food joints line the main street to rival most American city districts. And just outside, curbside vendors compete with each other to sell their fake Supreme t-shirts, knock-off NBA jerseys,
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  • Confronting Extremism Together: The Home Secretary’s Speech - The Home Secretary’s speech, Confronting Extremism Together constitutes a welcome broadside against extremism of all varieties. It recognises the multiple contemporary challenges to the fundamental precepts which define not only the United Kingdom, but pluralist liberal democracies generally. It also presents a series of high level principles and broad policy proposals which ought to guide
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  • What a film can teach us about war with Iran - In 2015, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), or the Iran Deal, was signed. That same year, the Israeli-Iranian film, Atomic Falafel, directed by Dror Shaul was released. The JCPOA was signed by Iran and the P5 + 1 (China, Russia, US, UK, France + European Union), and stipulated that Iran would limit its
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  • When mainstream leaders stand up against extremism the community is stronger (Part 1) - The well-known minor reality TV contestant turned rightwing agitator, Katie Hopkins, is following a well-worn path in her quest to become an international celebrity on the Islam-bashing circuit.  In turning to the Jewish community for support, she presumably imagines that fear of Muslims will be her greatest ally. The other indispensable plank of the strategy
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  • Why a literature festival upset extremists - This is a cross post from The Groundswell Project. Follow them at @GroundswellPro3 One huge threat to extremists’ existence is the coming together of people who promote unity and challenge hate. I know this because I was an ex member of Hizbut Tahrir (HuT, the liberation party) over a decade ago and some of my
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  • The Problem of a Single Muslim Narrative - The famed Nigerian novelist, Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche, delivered an insightful TED talk in 2009: “The Danger of Single Story.” In summary, she articulates the manner in which humans, our stories and lived realities are composed of many layers and overlapping stories which shape both us as individuals and the communities in which we reside. However,
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  • Mufti Abdullah Patel on the Tory Leadership Debate - The Conservative candidates debate last night was a predictably dreary affair: reminiscent of a Freshers’ Week event at the Oxford Union Society. At the end of the hour’s viewing pretty much every prejudice that the population of this country might hold about politicians in general would have been amply reinforced. There has been some comment
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  • Sudan, journalism, democratic values - A number of people on social media started complaining this week that there was no reporting on the current conflict in Sudan. The accusation is untrue, and yet it is widely perpetuated across social media platforms. To disprove the claim, one has but to type “Sudan” into the search bar in Google. Almost every mainstream
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  • We Need to Be Honest About the Problems in the Muslim Community - In the west, we mostly live in representative democracies. Our vote ultimately decides the direction which our country takes. The electorate must be sufficiently informed to make a decision as to whom they might want to represent them. This is why openness and honesty in public discussion and debate are imperative. Nothing should be taboo
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  • The Prison States - The twentieth century has passed and the world has changed. The great evil of the period can perhaps be assumed to have mutated and changed, too. That era’s gravest sin and greatest threat, totalitarianism, seems less evident today, and its equivalents are assumed to have updated their methods. When fearing for the future, journalists and
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  • ISIS seek a rebirth in Iraq and attempt to capitalise on political and ethnic disputes in Kirkuk - A series of explosions in Iraq’s disputed city of Kirkuk led to a reported five people dead and eighteen people wounded on Thursday night as the head of the city’s security operations blamed the attack on ISIS. The instability in Kirkuk, which stems from constitutional and political disputes between the Federal Government in Baghdad and
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  • The ChristChurch Call will do more harm than good - Last week, governments and leading tech companies got together to produce a collective response to the horrific ChristChurch terrorist attack. The agreement they came up with, dubbed the “ChristChurch Call”, lays out the steps they will take to better prevent the spread of violent extremist and terrorist content online of the kind that motivated the
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  • As mainstream political parties continue to fail centrists must fill the power vacuum - The UK continues to be polarised by the many issues that it faces. Brexit, anti-Muslim bigotry and antisemitism dominate political discourse in this country, particularly within the Conservative Party and the Labour Party. The country’s two traditional parties have moved away from big tent politics and have retreated to their respective corners, flying the flag
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  • Burning of Haskallic literature in Brooklyn, NY - The author of the text that is to be burnt was written by Naphtali Hirz Wessely: an 18th century Maskil. He was fully committed to traditional observance and belief, but advocated for widening the Jewish curriculum to include secular studies. His views were essentially no different to those expressed by Rav Hirsch, who is accepted
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  • Why not to boycott Israel over Eurovision - The beginning of May is always a busy and emotional time in Israel. First comes Holocaust Memorial Day between the 1st and 2nd, and then on the 8th, Remembrance Day, when Jews commemorate the fallen soldiers in Israel’s history. The week long mourning ends with a huge celebration: Independence Day on the 9th. This year,
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  • We are not “in the gutter” with the far right – but those who spread fear and hatred cannot be allowed to go unchallenged - On Saturday, Glyn Secker – one of the luminaries of the astroturfing organisation “Jewish Voice for Labour” – accused the UK Jewish community of allying with the far Right. Claims of this sort provide good examples of the “two-campism” of the type that has become synonymous with Corbynism. That perspective pits the “community of the
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  • On the Saatchi Gallery Exhibition - HRH The Prince of Wales once observed that the Western world needs to re-learn a “sense of the sacred” from Muslims. Indeed, much of the history of art cannot be understood without a sense of the significant of both the holy and the profane. Our common culture is built upon these categories, and the distinctions
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  • A Question of Tone - Over a decade ago, I spent some time cataloguing the various hate preachers and dubious meetings taking place at the East London Mosque and the activities of the associated Jamaat-e-Islami aligned Islamic Forum Europe. A number of my pieces considered the conduct of a particular IFE activist, who was given to making especially inflammatory statements.
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  • I am worried not by Chowdhury’s antisemitic comments – but by his divisive politics - There’s a petition going around requesting for Omar Chowdhury to resign from his post as BME Network Chair in the Bristol Student Union, following the antisemitic comments he made to me on Facebook last year. I want to offer my perspective on the matter. Omar has apologised to me and to the Jewish studentship in Bristol and
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  • Naik Nicked - Indian hate preacher, Zakir Naik has been charged with money laundering by Indian prosecutors in Mumbai on Thursday. They claim that he has acquired $28 million worth of criminal assets, a charge which he denies.  The prosecution’s case is that he acquired funds from dubious sources in order to buy property in India and to
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  • Left wing smears feed right-wing extremism - The practice of hijacking a salient, emotional issue for political purposes has been a staple in American politics for years. U.S. Senator Joseph McCarthy used fear in relation to the real threat of Communism to smear his various political adversaries as traitors. Presidential First Lady and future Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton referred to inner-city gang
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  • Why is media-basher Jeremy Corbyn speaking on a panel defending journalists like Lyra McKee? - These are the times that try men’s patience. Sample the following from an email sent by the National Union of Journalists to their members about an upcoming event: “Lyra McKee was murdered doing her job, London-based BBC Persian Service journalists are targeted by the Iranian authorities and Turkey has become the world’s biggest jailer of
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  • Terrorism is Thriving on Bin Laden’s Death Anniversary - Today marks 8 years since the death of Usama Bin Laden, the notorious and infamous leader of al-Qa’ida. Though the organization has suffered setbacks and has been degraded, its brand and influence continue to offer influence and carry a message even after its founder’s death. Even now, the group has been seeking to reconstitute itself,
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  • On Sri Lanka and the Far-Right - After an act of evil, silence and solemnity are rarely enough. Even commemoration of the victims, and calls for social stability and solidity frequently come up short. As attractive, if not more, are demands for action, in extreme cases vengeance, and attacks on those seen to be reacting wrongly or perversely to the tragedy newly
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  • Next in Q Podcast Episode 12 – Andrew Copson: A Cock & Bull Story -  Tune in to a new episode of Quilliam’s ‘Next in Q’ podcast with your host Quilliam International’s Director of Policy, David Toube, discusses the tricky question of the interface between private religious conservatism and secularism with Andrew Copson of Humanists UK. Religiously mandated slaughter methods and circumcision are two such crux points. Listen on
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  • Kingston University and Suicide Bombers - In 2003, Asif Hanif – Britain’s first jihadist suicide bomber – murdered three people at Mike’s Bar in Tel Aviv. He had attended Kingston University. This week, a second alumnus of Kingston University, Abdul Lathief Jameel Mohamed, committed a horrifyingly bloody massacre in Sri Lanka. A significant number of takfiri jihadist terrorists have passed through
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  • Sri Lanka attack shows how we must view Islamist terrorism - The mass murder of Sri Lankan Christians this past Easter Sunday has shaken the world. There are still many questions that remain, but here is what we know now: Beginning at 8:45 AM Easter morning, bombs were detonated at three major Churches throughout Sri Lanka, four more went off at luxury hotels, and another at
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  • Notre Dame and Crank Politics - Incommensurable: “ Not able to be judged by the same standards; having no common standard of measurement”. This is the nature of those comparisons between Grenfell, colonialism, climate change and the destruction of Notre Dame. Incommensurable. It does not mean that they are any less important: but there is no common denominator. It is facile
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  • Next in Q Podcast Episode 11 – Andrew Copson: In a Secular Motion -  Tune in to a new episode of Quilliam’s ‘Next in Q’ podcast with your host Quilliam International’s Director of Policy, David Toube, speaks to Andrew Copson of Humanists UK about the meaning of Humanism, and how religious communities can benefit from a secular society. “If secularism is going to work as a political settlement
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  • The Sudan Coup: Women, Youth and an Opportunity for the World - Thursday’s announcement that President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, the 75-year-old African leader was ousted from power after a 30 year tight fisted rule in power was refreshing news for the citizens of Sudan, Washington policymakers and international practitioners. Al-Bashir orchestrated the killing of hundreds of thousands of people from Darfur. He turned his country into a
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  • Next in Q Podcast Episode 10 – Tania Joya: Jihad with a Seaside Riad -  Tune in to a new episode of Quilliam’s ‘Next in Q’ podcast with your host Quilliam International’s US Executive Director, Dr Muhammad Fraser-Rahim who continues his conversation with Tania Joya, former Islamist and ISIS bride. When ISIS declared a Caliphate, Tania’s (former) husband moved her and the children to the Middle East, and eventually
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  • Next in Q Episode 9: Tania Joya – Jihaders Wives -  Tune in to a new episode of Quilliam’s ‘Next in Q’ podcast with your host Quilliam International’s US Executive Director, Dr Muhammad Fraser-Rahim in conversation with Tania Joya, former Islamist discussing growing up in East London, immersed in its Islamist subculture. When ISIS declared a Caliphate, why travelling to join it seemed the natural
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  • Next in Q Episode 8: Sara Khan – Radically Candid -  Tune in to a new episode of Quilliam’s ‘Next in Q’ podcast with your host Quilliam International’s Director of Policy, David Toube, as he continues his conversation with Sara Khan, Lead Commissioner for Countering Extremism, in this second part, about the challenges of her role in tackling extremism. “Extremists, when they do come into
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  • My Autobiography: A Talk at the Liberal Jewish Synagogue, London – 20th of March 2019 - Tonight’s theme is “transitioning to one’s authentic self”. I am not sure what an “authentic self” is and I definitely haven’t found mine yet. But I can tell you about my transition: a transition from chassidic yeshiva boy, to secular university student. My name is Izzy Posen. I am a second year physics and philosophy
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  • 16 years on, the Iraq War was still the right choice - The 20th March marked the 16th anniversary of Iraq’s liberation from Saddam’s genocidal dictatorship. Yes, I call it liberation because Saddam was the Middle Eastern equivalent to Adolf Hitler. His Arab Socialist Baath Party waged wars against countries over territories that he considered part of a greater Iraq, namely Kuwait and Iran. Furthermore, his treatment
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  • Lessons from domestically rehabilitating a former extremist in the US - Earlier this month I traveled to Copenhagen, Denmark engaging with government, academia, media and civil society organizations to shed light on several robust approaches to combat extremism from a range of initiatives at a domestic and global level. Denmark is not alone as many other states, including the UK, Saudi Arabia and Singapore have all
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  • Next in Q Episode 7: Sara Khan - Tune in to a new episode of Quilliam’s ‘Next in Q’ podcast with your host Quilliam International’s Director of Policy, David Toube in conversation with Sara Khan, Lead Commissioner for Countering Extremism. Sara shares her experiences of extremism that led her to take on this important role.   Listen on Apple Podcast here. Support our
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  • With the war on ISIS coming to an end, the West must support the Kurds - Since February 9th of this year, the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) began operations in the final enclave of ISIS in eastern Syria. The Battle of Baghuz Fawqani has taken longer than expected due to ISIS holding hundreds of prisoners, most of which are civilians that are being effectively used as human shields. With an
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  • Great Replacement Conspiricising - Amongst the scrawling on the weapon and magazines of the Christchurch shooter, was the slogan “14 Words”. His manifesto stated those fourteen words: “We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children”. These words, also abbreviated 14 or 14/88, were coined by alt-right terrorist David Lane. They are used frequently
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  • New Zealand shootings: Muslims are fearful and hurting but we must not give in to hate - This article by Maajid Nawaz was originally posted in The Times on 16th March 2019. Yesterday’s attack announces the lowest point for Muslim communities in the West since the Bosnia genocide. This is now the single biggest terror attack in Australasia, equal in number of victims to the Orlando nightclub shooting in 2016. It will
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  • New Zealand Massacre: White Nationalist Iconography and Ideology - The manifesto and the gun decorations displayed by Brenton Tarrant, the man arrested for the horrifying massacre of scores of worshippers at two New Zealand mosques, are steeped in the iconography of the neo Nazi far Right. This is a deliberate choice: the purpose of the attack is to spread these ideas. Many readers will
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  • The Parkfield protestors are nothing but bigots disguised as victims: We must not be fooled - This month, it was reported that over 600 Muslim students had been withdrawn from Parkfield Community School in Birmingham over claims that they were being brainwashed by a ‘gay agenda’. Yesterday, in a move that demonstrates the institutional strength of British democracy, Ofsted said in a report that there was no evidence the curriculum overly focused on LGBT issues
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  • Iranian and Russian Influence Wars in the US: Targeting African Americans - Iran and Russia continue to face internal challenges in light of sanctions imposed by the international community, in the case of Iran, in response to ongoing nuclear issues, and support of terrorist organizations including Hezbollah and, in relation to Russia, incursions into the territory of neighbouring states. We are familiar with Russia’s influence operations in
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  • On Islamists and Salafists - With religion having been largely relegated to the private sphere due in no small part to the secularising effect of the processes which culminated in the formation of the modern nation-state, this current state of affairs has given rise to concerns surrounding the assertive religious identities of many Muslim communities within the West. Chief among
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  • Why should anyone take Yosef Mizrachi seriously? - The impending visit of Yosef Mizrachi, the widely condemned extremist preacher, to the UK, has already run into trouble with the speedy cancellation of two public appearances after widespread protests. There is a view often expressed about Mizrachi, particularly by the religiously knowledgeable, that he is, essentially a joke. Not a funny one, considering the
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  • What now for Algeria? - Tens of thousands of Algerians are protesting the decision of their ailing President, Abdelaziz Bouteflika to run for a fifth term. The 82-year old announced his candidacy for the April 2019 elections by letter last month despite having suffered a stroke in 2013, being in a wheelchair and potentially unable to speak. His last public
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  • “If Only” - “If only we could have a transformative socialist Labour Government, but without the antisemitism.” “If only we could be part of the Corbyn movement; and if only we could persuade that movement to oppose antisemitism.” But I don’t want to be part of the Corbyn movement. If by magic the Corbyn movement wasn’t antisemitic, it
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  • Next in Q Episode 6: Macer Gifford – The Return of Raqqa - Tune in to a new episode of Quilliam’s ‘Next in Q’ podcast with your host Quilliam International’s Director of Policy, David Toube as he continues his conversation with Macer Gifford, Human rights activist & anti-ISIS campaigner. He fought in Raqqa with the MFS (Syriac Military Council) and served for 3 years in the YPG.  
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  • British authorities are not equipped to deal with jihadis returning from ISIS - This is a cross-post by Khadija Khan from Sedaa In 2004 the British government secured the release of Jamal Udeen al-Harith from Guantanamo Bay, after strenuous diplomacy with the Americans who had captured him in Pakistan, where he was believed to be an al-Qaeda operative. Al-Harith carried out a suicide bombing in Iraq in 2017 after joining
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  • The Extremism of Clowns and Fools - The man described by the Jewish News as the “Rabbi of Hate”, Yosef Mizrachi, has been planning a visit to the UK. No doubt he hoped that the universal condemnation that he attracted from everyone from Chief Rabbi Mirvis to the National Autistic Society in 2016 has died down enough to allow him to sidle
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  • Next in Q Episode 5: Macer Gifford – The Call of the Kurds -  Tune in to a new episode of Quilliam’s ‘Next in Q’ podcast with your host Quilliam International’s Director of Policy, David Toube in conversation with Macer Gifford, Human rights activist & anti-ISIS campaigner. He fought in Raqqa with the MFS (Syriac Military Council) and served for 3 years in the YPG. “All of a
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  • Outrage Culture and the Severity of Hate Crime Hoaxes - Most everyone can agree on the gravity of hate crimes. To hear that a hate crime has taken place in your neighborhood elicits a palpably stronger emotional reaction than other forms of unlawful acts. Indeed, we created this special category of crime because of the general understanding that when a criminal act is committed based on
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  • Cults, Grooming and Culpability - I find the idea that Shemima Begum was groomed both intriguing and problematic. I have consistently said that IS behaves like a cult. Indeed, it conforms in many ways with a range of indicators that it operates in a cult-like manner. Powerful and exclusive dedication/devotion to an explicit person or creed. Their use of “thought-reform”
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  • Shamima Begum: Victim or Villain? - I think the Handmaid’s Tale is a perfect analogy that could help us understand where to place the ISIS bride Shamima Begum in the scales of sympathy or condemnation. Was she June? The kidnapped female victim who’s sole purpose, along with many others like her, is to be repeatedly raped for the purpose of being
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  • Shamima Begum was a minor when she travelled to Syria but she must face the consequences of her actions - This is a cross post from SEDAA by Tehmina Kazi Of all the reprehensible things said by jihadi bride Shamima Begum in her notorious Times interview, what sticks out the most is her callous indifference to seeing “severed heads in bins” in ISIS territory, “because they were enemies of Islam.” In a follow-up interview with
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  • Ilhan Omar, Cultural Politics and the Regressive Left - This is not an article about bashing Representative Ilhan Omar. Nor is it about her tweet that the U.S. government support of Israel is “all about the Benjamins.” Let’s be clear: her remarks were flat out wrong and there is no need to caveat or to equivocate about the significance of what she said. However,
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  • What to do about Shamima Begum - A shorter version of this article originally appeared in the Mail on Sunday. Aimen Dean is, arguably, the greatest British hero since World War II. Originally from Saudi Arabia, he went to fight jihad in Bosnia at the tender age of fifteen. Within a few years, he had become a fully-fledged member of Al Qaeda,
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  • The Salman Rushdie Fatwa: My Radicalisation - Thirty years ago, I was a young law student at Southampton University. I was in my second year of study and was beginning to be ‘radicalised’, as it were. University was my first experience of politics. Student politics is an odd beast. Most people – normal people, that is – don’t really spend their time
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  • Why the Muslim World Must Stand Up For Xinjiang’s Uighurs - China’s Xinjiang province is home to approximately 8 million ethnically Muslim Uighurs, making up just under half of the 19 million strong population. August 2018 saw the publication of a UN report stating that roughly 1 million Uighurs are being held in ‘counter-extremism centres’ in the region. The human rights abuses occurring here are well
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  • Next In Q: Video Podcast – People of the Book: An Interfaith Dialogue - Dr Usama Hasan has co-written a fascinating trialogue which explores the role of scripture in illuminating the lives of Jews, Christians and Muslims. The resultant work, People of the Book: An Interfaith Dialogue about How Jews, Christians and Muslims Understand Their Sacred Scriptures, can be purchased at Amazon (US and UK). To mark the launch of
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  • How should we oppose extremism? - The term “Extremism” has always been somewhat vacuous. Its use is so widespread, and its deployment by some so dubious, that it often seems it has no serious substance at all. But while there are far too many instances in which ignorant or politically motivated individuals degrade the term’s integrity, there also have always been
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  • From the Prophet to the King - An Islamic Friday sermon on the universal equality of humanity: delivered on and marking Martin Luther King Jr. Day PART 1 of the sermon All Praise belongs to God, Lord of the Worlds. Blessings and Peace be upon the Messengers of God.  As tens of millions of people around our world marked Martin Luther King
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  • Hamas and Salafi Jihadi Groups - What has been the nature of relations between Hamas and Salafi jihadi groups? The question is worth examining because Hamas is sometimes equated with the latter ideologically while on other occasions a strict dichotomy of enmity and opposition is painted between Hamas and the Salafi jihadi groups. In fact, some nuances emerge depending on location.
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  • It is not just Brexit that feeds the UK’s far right - This article originally appeared on CNN The deep social and political divisions exposed by the UK’s Brexit vote present both an opportunity for the British far right — as well as being a challenge to it. Indeed, only this week, Neil Basu the head of London’s Metropolitan Police’s counterterrorism operations, said that Brexit had the “potential
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  • The UK’s Struggles with Far Right Extremism - Earlier this month I wrote about how terrorism from the far right has grown in the United States. My research indicated to me with alarming clarity that this phenomenon does not stop on American shores – the UK is also facing a galvanised extreme right. On December 6th 2018,  the North East Counter Terrorism Unit
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  • Response to Home Affairs Committee call for evidence - We publish below Quilliam’s response to the Home Affairs Committee call for evidence, which asks in particular for our views on impact of official adoption of a definition of Islamophobia, in the context of the report by the All Party Parliamentary Group on British Muslims calling for the adoption of an official working definition of Islamophobia. We
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  • The Far Right’s Roots in Europe - In recent weeks I have addressed the rise of the extreme right in both the United States and the United Kingdom. In both countries, we are witnessing the proliferation of right-wing organisations that are committed to visiting terror on innocent civilians. To name a few, these groups include the Rise Against Movement, the Atomwaffen Division,
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  • Over-Moralization of Immigration Is Bad for All Parties - Immigration is shaping up to be the defining issue of this decade. After the refugee crisis following the Arab Spring uprisings in the early 2010s, native resentment of generous immigration policies in the West are now front-and-center in our discourse. Research and polls suggest that this sentiment is the single largest contributor to the populist
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  • Dialogue Over Division – Lord Ashdown and Maajid Nawaz - To mark the passing of Lord Ashdown, we are posting a short video that Lord Ashdown and Maajid Nawaz made for the Liberal Democrats a few years ago, with a timeless message. Lord Ashdown: The politics of the Devil’s songs is easy, anybody could do that. Anybody could make a political appeal that is to
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  • History will damn us for our apathy towards migrants - In the garden of the Righteous Among Nations in Jerusalem, a memorial to the gentiles who helped Jews during the Holocaust, the smell of pine fills the air and the sun dapples the white stone plaques, engraved with thousands of names. One of those Righteous, Gustav Schrӧder, the captain of the ship St Louis, ferried
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  • الإسلام ومستقبل التسامح: حوار بين سام هارس وماجد نواز - هذا الكتيب الصغير الحجم نسبيا يشتمل على حوار ماتع عن الإسلام واشكالية التجديد والإصلاح والتحديات السياسية والإجتماعية المعاصرة لقراءه النصوص الدينية . أعتقد أن من أهم ما يميز الكتاب أنه حوار سهل وبسيط مع العمق الشديد فى معالجة المسائل المهمة والحساسة والتى تثار من حين لآخر فى الأديان جميعا والإسلام بصفة خاصة مثل مسألة العلاقة
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  • Haredi communities need a vision for a sustainable future - In a recent piece in the JC, Jonathan Boyd, the director of Jewish Policy Research, argues that haredi (ultra-orthodox) Jewish communities are growing compared to other parts of the community. He also argues that a wider engagement with society is critical. I agree. But not unlike the Melanie Phillips piece that he mentions, Boyd is
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  • Dying Democracy? Defending Our Freedom in the Face of Corrosive Hatred - This is the text of an address by Dr Charlotte Knobloch at the delivered at the joint symposium between Cumberland Lodge and CCJ: Democracy in Crisis? Moral and Spiritual Resistance Democracy in Crisis? Moral and Spiritual Resistance Ladies and Gentlemen, Thank you very much for your invitation, and for the opportunity to speak to you today.
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  • The Hopkins Trajectory - If Britain’s media culture can be thought of, in abstract, as Victor Frankenstein, Katie Hopkins thinks of herself as its monster. She is proud of the phrase but likely not of some of its implications. Hopkins wanted absolution from blame, painting herself almost as a Newtonian reaction. This is unsustainable. But she is a little
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  • The Depressing Saga of the Holocaust Exhibition in Golders Green - The story of those non-Jews – including Muslims – who put their lives on the line during the Holocaust to save their Jewish friends and neighbours is one of the few luminous points in one of the darkest periods of human history. Ironically, although not unexpectedly, an attempt to retell that story has handed an
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  • America is Failing to Recognise the Threat of Far-Right Terrorism - On August 6th 2001, then-President Bush received the day’s Presidential Daily Brief (PDB), a top-secret document integrating latest intelligence from the CIA, NSA, FBI, and other members of the US intelligence community. Titled ‘Bin Laden Determined to Attack US’, this PDB now lives in infamy, with reports stating President Bush responded to the CIA officer
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  • Beheading, Decapitation and Mutilation - The world awoke to yet another heinous crime, similar in its monstrosity to the burning alive of the Jordanian pilot Mu’az al-Kasasbah and the public beheadings of the American journalist James Foley and the British charity worker Alan Henning. Images and videos of completely severed and partially severed heads of the two Scandinavian tourists in
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  • Implications of the U.S. Government New Africa Strategy - The Trump administration has put the United Nations, and China on notice in a new Africa strategy unveiled by John Bolton, the National Security Adviser. The new strategy is a significant shift for the U.S. and counters growing Chinese and Russian influence in Africa, according to reports. The new strategy seeks to counter Chinese investments
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