Theresa May wants to talk about extremism? Let’s start with our ties with the Saudis


Source: The Guardian

By Moni Mohsin, who is a Pakistani writer based in London. Her debut novel The End of Innocence is out now in paperback and a collection of her satirical columns.

While western leaders have castigated Muslims for not doing more to rein in radicals, they have been cosying up to the propagators of jihad

Two years ago, while researching a book on migration, I visited West Java. One day, while driving through the uplands of Subang, I saw, among the acres of tea and coffee plantations, a huge white edifice. At first I thought it was a mosque: it had a big dome and minarets. But as we drew nearer, I realised it was a cluster of several buildings. When I quizzed my driver, he said that it was indeed a mosque and the buildings attached to it comprised a boarding school. Before I could ask what such an obviously expensive complex was doing in a rural backwater, he added that it was a Saudi-funded establishment. It was one of many, he said, that had cropped up all over West Java in recent years. Did he know anyone who attended that school? He was not local to the area but, he said, near his own village, a similar Saudi-funded school had appeared a while back. Impressed by its spacious grounds and imposing building, he had moved his 10-year-old son there, but within a few weeks he had hastily returned him to his ramshackle old village school. His son had begun, he reported, to express some alarming ideas about “true Islam” and berate his Muslim parents for their easygoing ways.


1 reply

  1. Extremism and terrorism and sexual grooming will on the increase as long as Muslim children keep on attending state schools with non-Muslim teachers. Muslim children need state funded Muslim schools with Muslim teachers as role models during their developmental period.

    French terrorists were the product of the French education system. They were well versed in French and not in Arabic. They find themselves cut off from their cultural heritage and are unable to enjoy the beauty of their literature and poetry.

    None of the British Muslims convicted following the riots in Bradford and Oldham in 2001 or any of those linked to the London bombings had been to Islamic schools. An American Think Tank studied the educational back ground of 300 Jihadists; none of them were educated in Pakistani Madrasas. They were all Western educated by non-Muslim teachers. Bilingual Muslim children need bilingual Muslim teachers as role models. A Cambridge University study found that single-sex classes could make a big difference for boys. They perform better in single-sex classes. The research is promising because male students in the study saw noticeable gains in the grades. The study confirms the Islamic notion that academic achievement is better in single-sex classes.

    None of 7/7 bombers and British Muslim youths who are in Syria and Iraq are the product of Muslim schools. They are the product of British schooling which is the home of institutional racism with chicken racist native teachers. It is absurd to believe that Muslim schools, Imams and Masajid teach Muslim children anti-Semitic, homophobic and anti-western views. It is dangerously deceptive and misleading to address text books and discuss them out of their historical, cultural and linguistic context. It is not wrong to teach children that Jews are committing the same cruelty in Palestine what German did to them before or during Second World War. It is not wrong to teach children that anti-social behaviour, drinking, drugs, homosexuality, sex before marriage, teenage pregnancies and abortions are western values and Islam is against all such sins. This does not mean that Muslim schools teach children to hate westerners, Jews and homosexuals.

    “I am sick of people telling me I and my children have to conform to these elusive British Values without specifying what they are.” You don’t have to research very far if you really want to know. Equal rights for gays and women. Freedom of religion, and freedom to leave any religion. No blasphemy laws. Tolerance of and respect for other major faiths. Rights to a fair trial, and to appeal. No cruel and unusual punishments. Pretty much unrestricted freedom of speech. One law for all, determined by civil courts and not religious courts.

    A Home Office spokesperson has said “it is important that children are taught fundamental British values,” pray tell me what are these British values? We, just like pretty much every other parent around the world, are bringing up our children to be loving, kind, empathetic, generous, curious, brave, confident, compassionate, honest and everything else you would expect from a decent human being. Are these different from British Values? I am sick of people telling me I and my children have to conform to these elusive British Values without specifying what they are.

    The Government has stated that “Nursery staff and child-minders are given duty to report toddlers they risk of becoming terrorists under new Home Office measures.” So basically if a child-minder thinks your toddler is showing concerning behavioural traits they have to report them, as if being a toddler isn’t hard enough already.

    I feel these rules from the Home office will only serve to create tension, suspicion and a lack of tolerance between people. Really, is the government so naive in social science that they really feel these ideas work? No, they are not. They know exactly what they are doing. They are creating a climate of fear for no more reason than control.

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