Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Anjem Choudary

Telegraph, Radical Muslims given Channel 4 slot, 29 Nov 2010: "A radical Muslim who led the banned group al-Muhajiroun is to be handed his own programme on Channel 4 amid claims that Islamists have been allowed to monopolise the broadcaster's coverage."

Poppy protest

Merissa Richards, Voice Online :: Is this masked muslim man a well known London boxer?, 29 Nov 2010 "BOXER Anthony Small has refused to deny claims that he was among a group of Muslims who caused public outrage by setting fire to a wreath of poppies on Remembrance Day."

Monday, 29 November 2010

Perspectives: teaching Islamic Studies in higher education - issue 1

Perspectives: teaching Islamic Studies in higher education - issue 1 "This is the first issue of the Islamic Studies Network’s biannual magazine, 'Perspectives'. It is a forum for those involved in teaching Islamic Studies and related subjects in higher education to share practice and resources."

Friday, 26 November 2010

Omar Bakri Muhammad

Daily Star (Lebanon), Omar Bakri released on LL5 million bail, 25 Nov 2010 "During the retrial attended by Sahly, Bakri categorically denied charges of belonging to Al-Qaeda, Fatah al-Islam group or any other fundamentalist or Salafi organization, according to the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media. Bakri denied reports claiming that he was a spiritual guide of a fundamentalist group."

Opinion piece on education

Ed West, Telegraph blogs, Don't blame Muslim schools for Britain's social problems, 23 Nov 2010 (+ usual informed range of comments) "Compare these schools to some of Britain’s highly brilliant Muslim schools, such as Blackburn’s Tauheedul Islam Girls High School, an astonishing success story that takes girls from some of the poorest wards in the country and gets them to outperform the most privileged.

"The reason for their success is probably that, unlike many local secular comprehensives, they are not highly expensive and inefficient child-minding services for instructing delinquent adolescents about equality and diversity, but traditional educational establishments with an old-fashioned monotheistic ethos that value the three Rs. In other words, what used to be called “British values”."

"Girl arrested for allegedly burning Qur'an"

Guardian, Girl arrested for allegedly burning Qur'an, 25 Nov 2010 "A 15-year-old girl has been arrested in the West Midlands on suspicion of inciting religious hatred after allegedly burning an English-language version of the Qur'an – and then posting video footage of the act on Facebook."

'The Taliban troop with an east London cab driver in its ranks'

Ghaith Abdul-Ahad, Guardian, The Taliban troop with an east London cab driver in its ranks, 24 Nov 2010 "Ghaith Abdul-Ahad in Afghanistan meets a growing community of part-time expat jihadists." Part 1 of Ghaith Abdul-Ahad's excellent series.

Also see Ghaith Abdul-Ahad, Guardian, Five days inside a Taliban jail, 25 Nov 2010

"Special report: Guardian reporter Ghaith Abdul-Ahad was with a group of Taliban last month when US and Afghan forces attacked. In the second of a three-part series, he tells how, after the assault, he ended up being imprisoned by the fighters he had come to interview."

Thursday, 25 November 2010

Announcement: 'Islamophobia and Anti-Muslim Hate Crimes: UK Case Studies"

A new report is being launched by the European Muslim Research Centre and Exeter University:

Islamophobia and Anti-Muslim Hate Crimes: UK Case Studies.

"This is part of a 10 year Europe-wide research programme, headed by Dr Robert Lambert and Dr Jonathan Githens-Mazer.

"The main launch is this Saturday, 27 Nov, at the London Muslim Centre from 11am-1pm. Professor John Esposito, Dr Chris Allen, Peter Oborne, amongst others will be speaking too. Further details:
EMRC Report Launch: Islamophobia and Anti- Muslim Hate Crimes

"There will be launches in other cities also, including Birmingham on 28 November at 1:30pm and Glasgow on 10 December at 6:30pm. Details below:

"Birmingham: http://www.thecordobafoundation.com/attach/BHAM_EMRC_A5.pdf

"Glasgow: http://www.thecordobafoundation.com/attach/GLASGOW_EMRC_A5.pdf"

CordobaSeminar on Contextualising Islamophobia Today by Dr Chris Allen his new book launch: Islamophobia, 29 November 2010, 6:15pm, North London Central Mosque, Finsbury Park. Details:

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Control order plea

Telegraph, Control order plea to stop son joining al-Qaeda - 24 Nov 2010 "Awais Arshad, whose brother Umar, absconded from a control order, said police should have acted more quickly to stop him leaving the country."

Monday, 22 November 2010

Counter-terrorism regionial head on 'militancy'

Stefano Ambrogi, Reuters, Far right marches "drive muslims to militancy", 19 Oct 2010

"Demonstrations by far right groups like the English Defence League (EDL) act like recruiting sergeants for Islamic militants across Britain, the head of a regional counter terrorism unit said on Friday."

BBC Panorama: 'British Schools, Islamic Rules'

BBC News, Saudi school lessons in UK concern government, 22 Nov 2010

"The government says it will not tolerate anti-Semitic and homophobic lessons being taught to Muslim children in the UK.

"BBC Panorama found that more than 40 Saudi Students' Schools and Clubs are teaching the official Saudi national curriculum to about 5,000 pupils."

Panorama: British Schools, Islamic Rules, BBC One, Monday, 22 November at 2030GMT also to be on iPlayer after broadcast

Friday, 19 November 2010


Martin Bright, Jewish Chronicle, Searchlight takes on the Islamic extremists, 18 Nov 2010: "The anti-fascist publication Searchlight, which was behind the "Hope Not Hate" campaign to stop the British National Party in east London, is to expand its operations to oppose the Islamophobic English Defence League and Islamic extremism itself."

Politics and Religion Journal

Politics and Religion Journal has a new issue, which contains a couple of articles of interest to readers of this blog:

Chris Allen, 'Fear And Loathing: The Political Discourse In Relation To Muslims And Islam In The British Contemporary Setting'

Laura Toms, 'Blasphemy And The Negotiation Of Religious Pluralism In Britain'

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

East End meeting cancelled

East London Advertiser, Controversial East End meeting called off, 16 Nov 2010: "The International Islamic Revival Conference was due to be held at Collingwood Hall in Collingwood Street, Bethnal Green.

"Advertised speakers included Sheikh Omar Bakri Muhammad who has just been arrested in Lebanon after being found guilty in his absence by a court there of incitement to murder, possession of arms and explosives and theft."

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

'Fees hike will restrict access' - op. ed.

Nabil Ahmed, Times Higher Education, Fees hike will restrict access, 14 Nov 2010 "A toxic part of the problem is the proposal to charge a market rate of interest on student debts – up to 3 per cent plus inflation. Debts will inflate year on year, and again those who will suffer most are the students from poorer backgrounds. It will particularly affect Muslim students as they have a religious aversion to interest – Islam teaches that market rates of interest are a fundamentally unethical way of dealing with debt."

Monday, 15 November 2010

Omar Bakri Muhammad

Jerusalem Post, Analysis: Al-Qaida ideologue’s arrest blow to ME jihadis, 15 Nov 2010: "The arrest on Sunday of al-Qaida ideologue Omar Bakri Muhammad by Lebanese security forces in Tripoli is a blow to the al-Qaida network in the Middle East."

New and Noted: Tariq Modood, 'Still Not Easy Being British'

Still Not Easy Being British: struggles for a multicultural citizenship

Recently published, by Trentham Books: Tariq Modood, Still Not Easy Being British: struggles for a multicultural citizenship "The late 1980s and early 1990s saw dramatic shifts in race relations in Britain. It was the time of the fracturing of a political ‘black’ identity; of ethnic minority assertions to be British and about remaking what it is to be British; of the manifestation of the social mobility of Indians and, above all, the emergence of Muslim identity politics in the Rushdie Affair. These issues were the subject of Tariq Modood’s Not Easy Being British. One of the first books to note these developments and analyse their implications, Not Easy became an underground classic.

"In this new collection, Modood returns to some of these topics, considering especially the growth of Muslim political assertiveness and the reactions to it in the context of rethinking multiculturalism and Britishness. Modood’s reflections and bold interventions in controversies - which characterise his work and have made him a renowned intellectual commentator on Muslim politics and multiculturalism - could not be more relevant to our fraught and fearful times."

I haven't seen this one yet, which came out in September, but I'm familiar with Modood's 'Not Easy Being British'.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

"We Are A Muslim, Please" - new book

Reuters, Book Talk: UK Muslim author seeks roots of militancy, 11 Nov 2010"The prominence of Britain's Muslim minority in the nation's debate about security and social cohesion provides the backdrop to journalist Zaiba Malik's memoir of growing up a British Muslim of Pakistani descent."

I haven't seen this one yet, so will have to add it to my list. It's published by Random House, and details are here


Richard Garner, The Independent, Muslim school helps out secular neighbour, 11 Nov 2010 "It is the first time that a Muslim school has been asked to perform a rescue act on a non-faith state school, but the experiment is already paying dividends."

Armistice Day

Tariq Tahir, Metro, Armistice Day: Muslims contribution 'must not be forgotten', 10 Nov 2010: "We need to remind not only the Muslim community but also the general public that the Muslim contribution to the defence of this nation runs deep,’ said secretary general Farooq Murad of the Muslim Council of Britain."

Also see MCB, Remembering the Brave [links to PDF report]

Poppy-burning demo

Daily Mail, Remembrance Day: Poppy-burning Muslim protesters mar Armistice Day, 11 Nov 2010: "The protest, in Exhibition Road, near Hyde Park, involved about 50 people while about another 50 counter-demonstrators had to be kept apart from the group by a line of police."

Extensive coverage/photos.

Islam Channel Censored

FoxNews.com, Britain's Islam Channel Censored After Condoning Marital Rape, Violence Toward Women, 9 Nov 2010 "The U.K.'s T.V. watchdog, Ofcom, ruled the Islam Channel breached the broadcasting code in five different programs between May 2008 and October 2009."

Also see Daily Mail, Britain's Islam Channel rapped for advocating marital rape and calling women prostitutes, 9 Nov 2010 "A discussion programme in April 2009 on sexual relations within marriage was found to have breached guidelines, as was a programme in October 2009 in which it was said women who wore perfume outside the home could be declared 'a prostitute'."

Tower Hamlets

Dave Hill, Guardian, Britain's first Muslim executive mayor vows to 'reach out to every community', 11 Nov 2010 "Lutfur Rahman, the former Labour leader of Tower Hamlets council who won the borough's mayoral election as an independent, remains out of favour with many former party colleagues."

Universities in the UK op-ed

Nabil Ahmed – President of the Federation of Student Islamic Societies (FOSIS), MuslimMatters.org, Universities in the UK: Muslims Need Not Apply, 11 Nov 2010 "With over 100,000 Muslim students in the UK now in higher education one would imagine that the future of Muslims in the UK, academically at least, would be extremely positive. Over the years the numbers of Muslim students attending university has rapidly progressed from a time when it was simply international students to a point now where the majority of Muslim students are British born and emerging as leaders of our communities. The importance of British Muslims who are able and willing to go to University cannot be understated."

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Internet matchmaking

Jawd Mohamed, alarabiya.net, UK Muslims prefer internet matchmaking, 10 Nov 2010 "A considerable portion of Muslim men and women in Britain resort to a popular matchmaking website to look for spouses amid debates over the validity of internet marriages"


The Register, Counter-terror review to consider net jihadis, 9 Nov 2010 "The government has today launched a review of its controversial "Prevent" counter-terrorism strategy, which includes measures to tackle extremist material online."

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Abu Hamza al-Masri

VOA, Radical British Imam Wins Citizenship Appeal, 5 Nov 2010 "A controversial Islamic cleric in Britain has won an appeal against the government's attempt to strip him of his British passport. The decision creates further obstacles for U.S. authorities who want to extradite the cleric on terrorist charges. "

Thursday, 4 November 2010

“Multiculturalism in a Globalised Society: European Muslims, Identity and Citizenship” : Euro-Islam: News and Analysis on Islam in Europe and North America

Euro-Islam, Call for Papers: “Multiculturalism in a Globalised Society: European Muslims, Identity and Citizenship” : deadlines for papers have passed, but the conference looks interesting.

Roshonara Choudhry

The Guardian, Roshonara Choudhry: I wanted to die … I wanted to be a martyr, 4 Nov 2010 transcript, with an indication of the role of al-Awlaki's sermons on Choudhry's stabbing of Stephen Timms. The transcript also refers to RevolutionMuslim.

"She began listening to his sermons in November 2009, and finished the last in the first week of May, days before she carried out the attack. "I downloaded the full set of Anwar al-Awlaki's lectures," Choudhry told police, saying that she listened to more than 100 hours of them."

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Net 'radicalization'

Telegraph, Stephen Timms stabbing: how internet sermons turned quiet student into fanatic, 2 Nov 2010 "But what makes Choudhry’s crime all the more disturbing is her transformation over a period of just six months from a moderate Muslim enjoying her English degree studies into a fully-fledged al-Qaeda operative, as a result of simply sitting in front of her computer and listening to the sermons of Anwar al-Awlaki, readily available on YouTube."