Sunday, July 24, 2005

Questions for the mufti. Marc poses them, and what we have to remember is to listen to what the Islamic scholars say (especially the ones whom we have allowed to stay in this country), and how their debate goes, rather than simply to their mouthpieces. These mouthpieces are constructed specifically for our consumption, not to tell us the truth about the intentions and views of the Umma.

I was interested to hear what Hani al-siba had to say to Al Jazeera (and keep in mind that this man is London-based):

“The term civilian does not exist in Islamic religious law. There is no such term as civilians in the western sense. People are either of Dar al Harb [literally, house of hostility, meaning any non-Islamic government] or not.”
(embolding mine)

Imagine then the debate between the mouthpieces and the scholars. One says that killing civilians is wrong; the other that there is no such thing as a civilian.

Compare it for a moment to British social discourse along ideological lines: Margaret Thatcher telling socialists that there is no such thing as society. The difference is that while common sense tells us that there is such a thing as a society, just as common sense dictates that we have a heart and consider there is such a thing as a civilian (the very elderly and young babies, at minimum), the Imam or scholar of Islam has chapter and verse from a book without which the mouthpiece would have no religion to apologise for at all.

Anyway, the headline issue was that the Egyptian British based Islamic scholar said that the London bombings were a great victory, but that's not really the full reality of what he said- what he said was something more reasonable:

' “If Al-Qaeda indeed carried out this act, it is a great victory for it. It rubbed the noses of the world’s eight most powerful countries in the mud. The victory is a blow to the economy.” '

This is undeniable, if al Qaeda were a group which one could describe as aiming for victories rather than tragedies. To me there is no such thing as an Al Qaeda victory- only a tragedy for humanity. But I think we should quote them accurately.

But finally I want to refer back to Enoch Powell, just as our Government is intent on erecting legislation in the context of religion-centred speech (I find it hard to summarise this hydra). Powell said, speaking when the original race-relations legislation was in the course of being enacted:

'a one-way privilege is to be established by Act of Parliament: a law, which cannot, and is not intended, to operate to protect them or redress their grievances, is to be enacted to give the stranger, the disgruntled and the agent provocateur the power to pillory them for their private actions.'

The 'them' he referred to was the non-immigrant, traditional white christian community of Britain. It's difficult not to believe that the current legislation is one more step down the road to allowing the furtherance of the jihadis aims. Who, do you think, will use the new legisation with greater skill and aggression- the jihadis or the Anglican church?

Meanwhile we have this from the BBC, as Marc notes.

To understand the nature of the ideological tussle, this is a helpful article.

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