Tag Archives: Prevent

CAGE Report – ‘We Are Completely Independent’

Assalaamu Alaykum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuhu,

Facebook has a feature where it will show you your ‘memories’ that is posts from the same date in previous years which can be very interesting to look at in a…

‘yes that was a really important issue / message’ 
or
‘what? did I really say / share that? (cringe)’ kinda way.

This post’s graphics and highly detailed report from CAGE definitely falls into the former and not the later. The CAGE Report ‘WE ARE COMPLETELY INDEPENDENT’ (available to download here from CAGE) which some may remember from last year is still extremely relevant today with the so many Imams and leaders in the UK Muslim community trying to give the highly damaging and anti-Islamic Prevent agenda a new lease of life on behalf of the government.

Allahu Alim whether they are doing so because they or their organizations are being funded by Prevent or other government initiatives, or whether it is because  they share in the governments beliefs, or whether they are doing so out of fear of being targeted next.

I highly recommend you all read the full report if you have not already or else feel free to distribute the link and pics for others to look at as ending this toxic Prevent agenda is a duty upon us all as is forbidding any munkar in society.

Those among the Children of Israel who disbelieved were cursed by the tongue of Dawood (David) and ‘Eesa (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary). That was because they disobeyed (Allaah and the Messengers) and were ever transgressing beyond bounds.

They used not to forbid one another from Al-Munkar (wrong, evildoing, sins, polytheism, disbelief) which they committed. Vile indeed was what they used to do.
Quran translation, Surah al-Ma’idah, 5:78-79

The report details how the government has been covertly funding Muslim organizations in the UK in an attempt to subvert the message these organizations give out to the masses of the Muslims.

To make it look like these supposedly impartial community leaders and organizations have come to the conclusion by themselves that they need to help force a change of values upon the Muslims in the UK into something more akin to those held by the disbelieving masses under their attempts to promote ‘British Values.’

If the problem is  that extremists promote a distorted version of Islam then why the need to promote British Values and not Islamic ones?

CAGE have produced a high quality academic report showing the links between the Government, media companies, grassroots organizations, all working together secretly on promoting the government’s Prevent agenda.

This blurring of lines between government on the one hand and community / grass roots organizations on the other is dangerous and counter productive strategy which will only make the problems with those with extremist ideas get worse.

It can only decrease trust in all Muslim organizations in our community and further force misguided individuals who may fall into sympathy for Terrorism away from those who should be helping them, not helping themselves to extra government funding in exchange for following a particular line.

As Muslims we need to not only hold the government to account, and demand an end to Prevent and other anti-Muslim policies, but also hold our community leaders including our Imams to account as well.

5Pillars – CAGE Declines Invitation To Conference Organised By Prevent-Funded Group

CAGE’s Asim Qureishi

 

Taken from the 5Pillars news website – http://5pillarsuk.com/2017/01/04/cage-declines-invitation-to-conference-organised-by-prevent-funded-group/

Asim Qureshi, of the advocacy group CAGE, writes an open letter to Imams Online declining an invitation to appear at an upcoming conference organised by the group which was recently exposed as having received Prevent funding.

The Imams Online Digital Summit in partnership with Google will take place at Google HQ in London on the 11th January 2017.

Speakers include Shaykh Imtiyaz Damiel of the Abu Hanifah Foundation, Mufti Abdur Rahman Mangera of the Rayyan Institute, journalist Remona Aly, Dr Bilal Hassam of British Muslim TV, Imam Qari Muhammad Asim of Leeds Makkah Mosque, Nick Pickles of Twitter UK, Karim Palant of Facebook, Naomi Gummer of Google UK, Shaukat Warraich of Faith Associates, Dr Shiraz Maher, Matt Collins, Director – Prevent Delivery Unit, Akeela Ahmed, Advisor Cross Government Working Group on Anti-Muslim Hatred, Professor Tahir Abbas, Senior Research Fellow – RUSI, Imam Adam Kelwick and Ustadha Khola Hasan.

The following is an abridged version of a letter to one of the organisers that Asim Qureshi published on his Facebook page:

Dear brother Adam Kelwick,

Assalaamualaykum

Jazakallahkhayr for your invitation to join you at the Imams Online Digital Summit at the Google HQ in London. I appreciate you trying to engage with those who take a principled stance, conceptually and practically, against Prevent. My colleague Moazzam Begg met you in the past and mentioned how supportive you were of our work – barakallahfeek…

It is important to acknowledge from the beginning, that CAGE is unwilling to lend support to policies that harm the civil liberties or human rights of a single individual – not matter how distasteful the person may be. This is how rights work: they are either for all, or for none.

Our principled stance against Prevent is not simply situated in our current critique of its ‘science’ and modalities – but rather it comes from learning about the joint experiences of our forebears. When we speak to colleagues who fought for black civil rights in America, they warn us that Prevent/CVE sounds exactly like the US government’s COINTELPRO programme (please read Arun Kundnani’s book ‘The Muslims are Coming’). Our colleagues in South Africa are constantly making their own links between Prevent/CVE and Apartheid – they say that everything that we are seeing in the UK was done to them. The list of historical violations goes on. We find ourselves standing up for a cause that many stood up for previously, and like them, we do not take the excessive castigation of the state or the media as a sign that we are losing the argument – rather it is a sign of their weakness that they only ever rely on ad hominem attacks, rather than engaging directly with the concerns we raise.

imams-online-digital-conference

Dear brother Adam – please understand that the issue with Prevent is not just about a few bad cases here and there, it is about the entire structure from its epistemology to its implementation. Experts from around the world (all of whom are involved in social justice movements with no links to the security industry) tell us that Prevent is wrong in its science. As someone with a legal background myself, the notion that you can have a statutory superstructure that is implemented to operate in a pre-crime space by making public sector workers and the charity sector into the eyes and ears of the state is beyond wrong. You know full well how this becomes a mandate for everyday bigotry to manifest itself on a nationwide level. The government tells us that in 2015, 4000 referrals were made to Channel, 2000 of whom were Muslim – an indicator for them that the policy is evenhanded. Let us be real: that is 2000 out of 3 million Muslims, as opposed to 2000 out of 57 million non-Muslims. A simple calculation will tell us that it means a Muslim is 20 times more likely to be referred to Channel for deradicalisation than a non-Muslim. The degree of policy, legislation and securitisation is completely disproportionate to the threat.

I understand that you have concerns with Prevent, and I very much appreciate you expressing them publicly. I think the two points you made in your Facebook post are well made and need to be teased out further. However, going back to who we as communities choose to work with, it does remain surprising that you would still choose to associate with the event at Google.

Google is not some evil entity set out to systematically harm Muslims and Islam, but when we consider who it works with on the issue of CVE, its perspective becomes all too transparent for communities. They are not simply a neutral venue devoid of politics, but rather have thrown in their lot with a specific narrative of counter-terrorism – one rooted in the epistemology of Prevent/CVE. The issue of whether the event is funded by Prevent becomes meaningless, as in this case if it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck…

Google Ideas, recently re-named “Jigsaw”, and the Google Next Foundation have partnered in the past with the Quilliam Foundation (in particular Maajid Nawaz), and supported their work to formulate their own CVE programme known as “Against Violent Extremism” (AVE). AVE is managed by the Institute for Strategic Dialogue (ISD). Aside from ISD’s worrying links to prominent US neo-conservatives linked to what the Center for American Progress calls the “Islamophobia Network”, senior members of ISD who specifically work on Prevent/CVE issues have come from the Quilliam Foundation (Erin Saltman and Rashad Ali). In the case of Rashad Ali, he has worked for the Henry Jackson Society in the past. The programmes that they have worked on together enunciate Prevent-speak completely, and so they are not neutral voices in this field, but rather regurgitate that there is a significant threat, a narrative that is fear-based and hearkens to a security state.

This is not about non-engagement with the government. CAGE has engaged in multiple forums with them on many occasions, and will continue to seek to do so. This is about how we engage with the politics of those with whom we would not normally partner, such as neo-conservative think tanks. It is worrying that with everything social justice movements have been through, some Muslims still feel it is appropriate to do so. It is perhaps more disconcerting that Ulama would choose to work with such organisations and programmes once neo-conservative links and connections have surfaced.

From what you have mentioned in your post on FaceBook, I think it is genuinely incredible that you are looking to challenge media misrepresentations of Muslims, but make little mention of how this is often led by government narratives on ‘extremism’ such as David Cameron’s Munich speech promoting “muscular liberalism” as a panacea to problems within Muslim communities…

The Imams Online event ultimately does not provide a neutral platform for debate and discussion. A number of those who are involved have some link to Prevent/CVE, or the national security structure of the UK. For that reason, I will refuse your invitation to attend. The people in the room are for the most part not policy makers, they are individuals and organisations who are playing a role in furthering the notion of pre-crime prevention within the parameters of a discredited framework, a position that we find to be wholly unconscionable.

adam-kelwick
Adam Kelwick,

When Imams Online was launched, a number of scholars reached out to me concerned at the response to a question by Shaykh Hamza Yusuf. When asked about the sources of funding for the organisation, he mentioned – and this is paraphrased – that government funding should not mean that there are issues with the project. It is important to acknowledge that this is a problem – whether it is Faith Associates or Imams Online – as communities seeking to engage with those speaking in their name, need to know that, as a matter of perception and fact, there are no conflicts of interest. Shaykh Hamza’s unwise words at the recent RIS conference are indicative of how when our scholars speak on matters from a perspective that does not take into account victim/survivor communities, the damage can be great.

Dialogue is not an issue for us at CAGE – we know it is necessary – especially when speaking to our own community. We would welcome sitting with you to discuss what meaningful conference might look like, but cannot engage where the terms of reference are based on the structural and epistemic violence of the state. Hence why the IO conference is not one where simply asking a question or challenging from the floor will produce any real dialogue.

I urge us, as a community, to listen to the voices of the disenfranchised. To seek the betterment of our situation, we need to think about the rights of all, and put into place structures within our own communities that help to engender trust. We cannot do this while the shadow of government funding and its false epistemology hangs in the air.

I appreciate the time you have taken to read this.

Jazakallamullahkhayr, wasalaamualaykum

Asim

Coolnessofhind – SCHOOL USES PREVENT TO THREATEN MUSLIM PARENT WHO REQUESTED PUPIL REMOVAL FROM CHRISTMAS ASSEMBLY

Christmas, it seems is another issue which annually crops up to force the “Muslim Question”, whilst curiously obviating the uncomfortable issue of religious rights to hold, and by implication exclude particular beliefs and practices. Of course, this discriminatory focus on Muslims (the Jewish minority, for instance, are comparatively absent from this discourse) has consequences. Over a week ago, it was reported that a Muslim woman in Australia was subjected to a brutal verbal and physical attack after she replied “happy holidays” to the attacker’s “merry Christmas”. Incidentally, I doubt Louise Casey would regarding uttering “merry Christmas” as a sign of vulnerability to “extremism” and consequently, “violent extremism”.

There are milder but still manifestly detrimental consequences here in Britain too.  Last year, Police Commander Mak Chishty moronically stated that children who regarded Christmas as religiously prohibited were subscribing to an “Islamist” view.  They were therefore not “moderate”. As I highlighted at that time, this absurd notion was discriminatory as other religious groups, such as orthodox Jews and Jehovah’s Witnesses, whom regard Christmas as deriving from pagan customs, held similar views, but were not tarnished with the rhetoric of securitisation.  It seems however, that this dangerously irresponsible statement is seeing some manifestation in the education context.

My sources have heard from parents that teachers have been overly keen to get Muslim children involved in Christmas celebrations.  Until recently, however, I have not been able to obtain any hard evidence to corroborate this anecdotal evidence.  My sources have now forwarded startling information in the form of a letter which disturbingly issues a PREVENT-based threat to a Muslim parent for effectively requesting that his child be removed from the school Christmas assembly.  The assembly entails singing the Christmas carol called a “Silent Night”, a poem written by the priest Joseph Mohr in 1816. Part of the poem includes the following:

Silent night, holy night
Son of God, love’s pure light
Radiant beams from Thy holy face
With the
 dawn of redeeming grace
Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth
Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth

My sources in London state that the distraught father, who does not speak English as his first language, simply stated that he did not want his child to join in with Silent Night, as it is for Christians. This however, has been interpreted “intolerance” and therefore contrary to “British values”.

The letter, signed by the head teacher, states that,

“I am writing to you to express my disappointment about the tone of your conversations a number of staff (sic), where I believe you expressed views that do not match the vision and values of the school. As you know we are by law required to uphold out statutory duty to promote British values…”

After citing Department for Education guidance which is irrelevant to the specific case of withdrawing children from religious assemblies, the head teacher highlights the “British value” of “mutual tolerance and respect”.  Noting that assemblies of different faiths are also conducted, the letter continues,

“I believe your comments, which you have now made on more than one occasion in front of others, about Christmas celebrations being for ‘people like us’, by which I believe you to mean teachers and others of a different faith than yours does not show what the statutory guidance terms as:

“An acceptance that other people having different faiths or beliefs to oneself (or having none) should be accepted and tolerated.

The head teacher then iterates various celebrations of different faiths and then states that there is an expectation that “all children… take part in these events whatever the religion they practise out of school in the same way I expect all staff to.”

The head teacher follows this with the threat:

“It is one thing to disagree but quite another to make assumptions about others. This type of behaviour shows, what appears to be, such blatant intolerance of other people’s belief that should this happen again I will have no other alternative but to refer the matter to the authorities. 

Attention for further information is drawn to the “PREVENT Strategy”.

My sources state that the “expressed views” which the head teacher is taking an issue with includes the removal of the child from the Christmas assembly. This is corroborated by the head teachers “expectation” that all children partake in “these events”.

The father feels he is unable to have his child removed.

Parents have a right, enshrined in School Standards and Frameworks Act 1998, section 71, to withdraw their children from religious education lessons as well as acts of collective worship at all schools. Furthermore, parents are not obligated to give a reason why.  This is not exactly controversial. There are Jewish schools where Christmas is banned, and even wrapping of Hanukah presents in paper which represents the Christmas tradition is prohibited. Last year parents at a school in Devon protested over the school taking their children to the mosque, based on their negative perceptions of Islam. Whilst their reasons are questionable, having their children removed is completely in concert with their rights as parents. Would the head teacher threaten these Jewish and Christian parents with a PREVENT referral for exemplifying “blatant intolerance”?  Acceptance and tolerance of different faiths does not mean having beliefs of different religions forced down children. How many orthodox Jewish parents are willing to let their children sing a poem declaring the Prophet Jesus, peace be upon him, as the Son of God? On the contrary, this is a violation of parental rights and coerced indoctrination.

And coercion is a quality intrinsic to PREVENT, which demands mental configuration to the state-defined beliefs.  The broken and blunt predictive toolthat is PREVENT is being used as a weapon of intimidation to bully parents into compliance by seemingly zealous head teachers.

It is yet another demonstration of just how deeply problematic the PREVENT Duty is.


Note: I have, for the moment, deliberately withheld information on the school and the head teacher.  This may change provided consent is obtained from the source.

Analysing Anti-Muslim Neocon Caroline Cox’s Discriminatory Religious Marriages Amendment

Assalaamu Alaykum,

For those who have not come across it yet, the CoolnessofHind blog offers excellent analysis on the UK governments destructive and counter-productive anti-extremism Prevent Agenda and the host of characters supporting it and is well worth following.

Here CoolnessofHind shows what seems like a small change in the law, which may have been missed by Muslim organisations could actually lead to the criminalization of most Muslim marriages here in the UK.

May Allah reward the brother / sister behind CoolnessofHind and all those involved in taking on the usually thankless, dirty business of combating the Islamophobia of the Government, political parties, the media and wider British establishment, ameen.

Assalaamu Alaykum,

Gingerbeardman

CoolnessofHind

carolinecoxmarriageamendment

The atmosphere of political Islamophobia, anti-Muslim hatred and media stigmatization of Muslims and Islam, is something that has become normalised today. Interference with Islam, its beliefs and practices has reached such heights that one wonders whether the vaunted secular distinction of the public and private sphere actually exists. It increasingly represents an arbitrary distinction which moves with the prejudices and hatred of those in power of an increasingly penetrative state.

We now have non-Muslim judges that have become Mujtahid Imams,[1] formulating fatwas on the basis of a single reading of the Qur’an, Sayyid Qutb’s Milestones and a dossier compiled by a half-baked “expert” concerning which beliefs are regarded as “extreme”.  The courts have, in other words, regulated the beliefs of Muslims without expressly doing so through the notoriously nebulous “extremism” discourse.

The regulatory colonialism continues into the final bastion of Islam in a post-colonial, legally fictitious world of nation states: the…

View original post 2,529 more words

CoolnessofHind – PREVENT AND THREAT OF REMOVING MUSLIM CHILDREN

childpreventtakenintocare

https://coolnessofhind.wordpress.com/2016/10/19/prevent-and-threat-of-removing-muslim-children/

It has been my attempt to relate the human cost of the PREVENT counter-extremism programme on this blog.  Whether it is teachers going through the humiliation and stress of being called “extremists” only to be exonerated two years later, or whether it is children suffering effective psychological child abuse upon coming into contact with the PREVENT referral apparatus. The theoretical analysis and argumentation can sanitise the real cost of such decrepit neoconservative policies like PREVENT.

Two years ago, it was suggested by CAGE’s Asim Qureshi that there was a possibility that children would be taken from their parents under PREVENT.  Those PREVENT-milking state-collaborators in the persecution of the Muslim minority were rolled out repeatedly to discredit CAGE using specifically this claim to highlight that CAGE was “fearmongering” and spreading “myths”.  Exactly who is linked to propaganda departments within the Home Office, and who is regurgitating their black propaganda “messaging” is known well-known.  The reality is that the Muslim minority had already anticipated the child-snatching policy. Boris Johnson was foreshadowing the removal of children from “radical” parents as early as March 2014.  The claims by PREVENT-supporters that children will not be taken away through the implementation of PREVENT has proven to be as vacuous and deceptive as their state-prostituted and ventriloquized minds.

CAGE has cited several cases in which ERG22+ – the discredited mumbo jumbo theory underpinning PREVENT – has been employed by judges:

“Through the CTS Act 2015 and PREVENT programmes, the government has sought to intervene in the homes of families where there is a risk of ‘radicalisation’, often forcing removal of children from the home.”

Forcing Compliance: “They are going to make my life difficult”

Two days ago, at a seminar hosted by CAGE’s Asim Qureshi and Professor David Miller on the report “The Science Behind PREVENT”, a distraught Muslim mother of  a baby and four-year-old child was reduced to tears as she described her ordeal at the hands of PREVENT.  In her moving account, she stated that her house was raided by counter-terrorism police the day she had given birth to her child, and despite the father being taken away, the social services came and questioned her, threatening her with the removal of her children on the basis that she could not safeguard them.  Demonstrating the sinister side of PREVENT, she further states that PREVENT was used to threaten and intimidate her, consequently impacting her family and friends:

“PREVENT has said to me that if I don’t work with them, they are going to make my life difficult. They gave me a warning, they called me on Eid day, and gave me that warning… They’ve been constantly on my back… I am scared to even say that I am bringing my children up as a Muslim… Everyone is scared my friends are scared, they said they want to support me but they are scared to support me, because they fear their children may get taken away.”

Based on her account, it seems PREVENT officers are using psychological tactics reminiscent of the German Stasi’s Zersetzung strategy to mentally destabilise individuals into compliance. The climate of fear and intimidation perpetuated by PREVENT is reaching levels of insanity. It is being used as a weapon against Muslims to force compliance. Family courts have even gone to the extent of forcing teenagers to watch television as a prescriptive antidote to “radicalisation”.

EDL? “Neither here nor there”

So far many of the cases concerning the issue of radicalisation and children involve Muslims. There is, however, precedent for judges taking a completely different line of thinking in the context of non-Muslim, white, far-right-linked parents.

In February 2015, it was reported that the council was trying to prevent a father from bringing up his own toddler due to him being an activist with the EDL, which social workers called “barbaric”, that he was immoral, drank too much, smoked cannabis, and had numerous criminal convictions. One social worker argued, “The distorted thinking of those within the EDL is barbaric and their actions inappropriate… therefore the mentality of those involved has to be brought into question”. In other words, he possessed possibly an “extremist” mentality due to his association with a fascist and often violent organisation, or, at the very least demonstrated “vulnerability to radicalisation”.  The social workers further argued that the child should be brought up in an “environment that supports difference, equality and independence”. The judge rejected the arguments stating that courts and social workers were not “moral guardians” and that the parent’s membership with the EDL was “neither here nor there”. The “top” family court judge further warned:

‘We must guard against the risk of social engineering.’

The EDL, which is regarded as perpetuating far-right ideology, is not a risk to the child’s well-being.  In the context of Muslims, the judge’s arguments are defenestrated and social engineering, to the point where mothers are threatened with the removal of their children to force compliance with PREVENT, teenagers are being forced to watch television”, and individuals are subjected to CHANNEL deradicalisation mentors whom teach them the “right” Islam along with truncated Western history, is adopted as a policy wholesale. Discriminatory social engineering, at least in reference to the Muslim minority has become institutionalised thanks to PREVENT. The whole project has echoes of the Nazi Germanization of thousands of kidnapped Jewish children to “cleanse” them of their Jewish heritage. The difference, aside from the war context, is that a bogus ideological counter-extremism premise has been created by neoconservatives to justify the “kidnapping” by the state.

Concluding Remarks

PREVENT is damaging, a point which is increasingly being recognised across the Atlantic.  The US-based “Open Society Justice Initiative”, after examining seventeen PREVENT/CHANNEL referral cases, concluded today that the policy “suffers from multiple, mutually reinforcing structural flaws, the foreseeable consequence of which is a serious risk of human rights violations.” The structural flaws included, “the targeting of ‘pre-criminality’, ‘non-violent extremism’, and opposition to ‘British values’.” The author of report, Amrit Singh, in a separate piece further lambasted PREVENT for “creating a climate of fear”.

These are not exactly new findings. The Muslim minority has known this through experience for a long time.  The distressed mother worried about her children being snatched from her represents the precipice of the various forms of fear PREVENT is manifesting. My question is, how many more mothers and fathers will need to have their children removed from them in a totalitarian fashion before the Muslim community takes an uncompromising, non-negotiable stance against PREVENT?

Coolnessofhind – The Dark Shoddy “Science” Behind PREVENT

Originally blogged by CoolnessofHind on 30th September, 2016 – https://coolnessofhind.wordpress.com/2016/09/30/the-dark-shoddy-science-behind-prevent/

the-science-of-pre-crime

In July of this year, I posted a blog asking the question in relation to the revelation that PREVENT was underpinned by a theory (Extremist Risk Guidance – ERG22+) formulated by British psychiatrists, What would these US psychologists make of Britain’s PREVENT Strategy? The American professors bluntly stated that the Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) agenda was “at best misguided, and at worst, vicious.”

The Pseudo-Science of PREVENT

CAGE’s devastating expose – The Science of Pre-Crime: The ‘Secret’ radicalisation study underpinning Prevent’– proves that Britain’s CVE – PREVENT – really is indeed, misguided, resulting in decisions which are vicious. The report exposes a 2010 study authored by two psychologists who are linked to the national security industry, Monica Lloyd and Christopher Dean, and used to formulate the pre-crime intervention model ERG22+.  Shockingly the authors themselves admitted that the research was lacking. Below are key quotes taken from the study:

“The current lack of demonstrated reliability and validity remains the main limitation of the ERG at this time. It remains essentially a qualitative tool that requires a level of professional judgment and experience to be effectively used.”

““The ERG is work in progress…”

“There remain important questions to be explored, most notably around reliability and validity,”

The study is fraught with further problems, some of which I have summarised and listed below:

  • Data is based discriminatorily on twenty Muslim prisoners convicted of terrorism.
  • Not all those convicted of terror-related offences are violent offenders.
  • The study ignores possibility of response bias (the extent to which prisoners provided answers that they felt the authorities wanted to hear)
  • The authors admit excluding political context as a specific factor
  • The authors, coming from a forensic perspective, leads them to “pathologise and look for explanations at the individual level” which results in applying a “very static and de-contextualised understanding as to why individuals become involved in political violence.”
  • The limited scope of the study which is problematic for specialists to implement is now being extrapolated to children in schools and patients in hospitals.
  • The limited scope of the study has been stretched to “all forms of extremism”

The Dangerous Implications of ERG

Highlighting the manifest danger of PREVENT, Professor Arun Kundnani wrote,

“With hundreds of thousands of public sector workers in Britain now required to absorb the government’s Extremist Risk Guidance and apply it in their work, the dangers of this research have never been greater.”

Also worth noting is that ERG is also being used in child law cases and determining the wardship of children. Remarking on the secretive, untested nature of ERG, Professor Adam Geary is quoted in the foreword of the report as stating,

“The limits of the ERG research used to create state duties raises profound questions about transparency and accountability… Seemingly, a line of recent case law suggests that individuals and families are being brought before secret courts on the basis of definitions derived from classified research, and thus raises immediate concerns in relation to our justice system.”

The clear implication of the above is that shoddy pre-crime science is potentially resulting in miscarriages of justice, with children being removed from families on the basis that their parents pose an “extremism” threat.

The Comical Home Office Spin and the Non-Academic Study!

The thoroughly surgical report has been reviewed by eighteen professors and academics, has forewords penned by noted professors, and is backed by a joint-statement by over 150 professors and academics including Marc Sageman and Noam Chomsky.  In other words, it carries considerable PREVENT-crushing weight.

In the face of this, there is only so much spin the Home Office and RICU – its propaganda department – can issue before it begins to look rather ridiculous.  If the Home Office statement is anything to go by, it seems this farcical state was unavoidable.

The Home Office responded by stating,

“The guidance that is used was based on a peer-reviewed study, carried out to meticulous academic guidelines and published in two publicly available academic journals.”

However, in the very same report, the Guardian sought the views from one of the study’s authors, Monica Lloyd.  According to Lloyd, the original study was “not an academic piece of work” but instead was an internal report by practitioners that was “done to the highest standard it could be done”.

Lloyd’s statement not only directly contradicts the Home Office, which claims that the guidance is based on an academic, peer-reviewed study, but it also reinforces the baselessness of PREVENT by clearly saying that the “study” is in fact an “internal report” which is not academic at all!

There is simply no coming back from this.  Some PREVENT-pushers have sought to deflect the report’s piercing findings through peripheral points which upon closer inspection, are hokum, (one individual on social media claimed the study was not secretive – directly contradicting the author’s claims directly quoted in the report). However, such efforts are simply embarrassing, reflecting the derelict state of the fatally wounded PREVENT Strategy.

Pertinently, such questions are also irrelevant. As the report incisively notes, “what is relevant now is for the government to answer difficult questions on how it came to institute a policy of assessing pre-criminal behaviour in 2011 using the ERG, when in 2015 the authors of that study were hesitant of its wider efficacy.”

The level of urgency for answers is accentuated given the disastrous consequences of PREVENT. From child psychological abuse in schools, to securitisation of purportedly confidential charities like the NSPCC; from the normalisation of political Islamophobia to the pecuniary and reputational losses suffered by Muslim teachers due to their privately held religious beliefs; from the castigation of political views on Palestine and shaping Muslim discourse and beliefs, to restriction of political participation of teenage Muslims who have already come into contact with PREVENT. PREVENT has and continues to leave a trail of neocon closed society destruction in its wake.

End PREVENT

When fake, ventriloquised “experts” like Sara Khan are paraded for days on disparate news channels regurgitating lines most likely authored for her by the Home Office in defence of PREVENT, it is a damning indictment of mainstream media that the report and its findings have not been reported in all major outlets (the “impartial” BBC, the Times, the Telegraph have not reported on it at the time of writing). However, this is not a stumbling block in the efforts to resist and ultimately remove PREVENT.  The movement against PREVENT has always been a grassroots, civil society-led one. It must continue to remain so, with or without the support of propaganda outlets.

PREVENT is an unjust strategy which has shredded the rule of law. Those Muslims – including Muslim organisations which claim to represent Muslims in Britain – whom support PREVENT or its reincarnation, must now accept that there is no more room for excuses.  Support of such failed, groundless strategies is support for the discrimination and persecution of the Muslim minority, intended or otherwise.

Civil servants and employees of public institutions and schools should reject the implementation of PREVENT on peaceful civil disobedience grounds until the law placing the PREVENT duty on statutory footing is abolished and the Strategy of stigmatisation is completely scrapped. This may seem like a drastic step, however, it is a necessary one, for relationships which hold society together are being torn apart through the atmosphere of suspicion fostered by PREVENT.  Such damage will take years if not decades to heal.

Now is the time to say no to the British neo-Stasi state. Now is the time to end PREVENT.

CoolnessofHind

thescienceofprecrimeprevent

In July of this year, I posted a blog asking the question in relation to the revelation that PREVENT was underpinned by a theory (Extremist Risk Guidance – ERG22+) formulated by British psychiatrists, What would these US psychologists make of Britain’s PREVENT Strategy? The American professors bluntly stated that the Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) agenda was “at best misguided, and at worst, vicious.”

The Pseudo-Science of PREVENT

CAGE’s devastating expose – The Science of Pre-Crime: The ‘Secret’ radicalisation study underpinning Prevent’– proves that Britain’s CVE – PREVENT – really is indeed, misguided, resulting in decisions which are vicious. The report exposes a 2010 study authored by two psychologists who are linked to the national security industry, Monica Lloyd and Christopher Dean, and used to formulate the pre-crime intervention model ERG22+.  Shockingly the authors themselves admitted that the research was lacking. Below are key quotes taken from the study:

“The…

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HHUGS – YASMIN’S STORY

HHUGs are the only charity helping families suffering under the un-just anti-terror laws in the UK and need all of our support.

I’d ask you all in this special month of Dhul Hijjah, in the first ten days if you can all help them in this great deed of helping families like sister Yasmin’s and this request for support was sent out by a sister who is known and trustworthy and is the keyworker in this case.

“This hhugs beneficiary had her children taken by social services. Hhugs provides her with emotional and practical help as well as organising Eid parties for families like her to enjoy. I am her key worker and she herself has been trying to help me get some donations on my page! Please donate because these families really need our continued support.”

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Umm-Abdillah

Text UMAB90 £10 to 70070

PayPal: Shookzy@yahoo.com

PRIME MINISTER SLANDERS POPULAR LONDON IMAM

cameron ghani

On Wednesday, British Prime Minister David Cameron sunk to a new low even for the British Parliament of openly lying and slandering Sheikh Suliman Ghani, saying he was an IS supporter.

The defamatory statement was made during Prime Minister’s Question Time after an MP raised the question of some politicians “sharing a platform with extremists” in regards to the London Mayoral elections where the Labour Candidate Sadiq Khan looks likely to win.

Sheikh Suliman Ghani has always made very clear his opposition to IS / ISIS / ISIL / Daesh and to use Parliamentary privilege in this way, as a member of Parliament cannot be taken to court for what is said there, is a scandalous abuse of political powers even by the low moral standards of British democracy.

The London imam and popular speaker has now challenged Prime Minister David Cameron to repeat his defamatory comments outside the chamber and so open himself up to be legally challenged.

In response to the Prime Minister’s slanderous accusations, Sheikh Suliman Ghani told the Muslim online news site 5Pillars: “I challenge him to repeat those absurd and flagrantly flawed assertions about myself outside the chamber. As those allegations are baseless and an utter lie and if he does so I will sue.”

“In actual fact I have never and will never support IS/Daesh, in fact I have consistently like all mainstream Islamic scholars not only spoken out but condemned IS/Daesh for the monstrosity that they are.”

Suliman Ghani has often been slandered as some form of extremist by the right wing media and online community for his open and brave support for the campaigns against the discriminatory and much discredited anti-extremism policies of the UK government known as Prevent.

This however runs a new low and will allow these rabid voices in the media to instead quote the Prime Minister’s statement, so protecting themselves from the laws against libel in the UK.

It should be noted that in no way could it be said the Sheikh shares all the same views with Sadiq Khan, a secularist, left of centre politician who supports Israel, questions the hijab and has other kufr views, but that they both spoke out and sometimes shared platforms against the governments Prevent Agenda of profiling and discriminating against Muslims in the UK.

PREVENT-SUPPORTING FIYAZ MUGHAL AND POLITICAL OPPORTUNISM

Source: PREVENT-Supporting Fiyaz Mughal and Political Opportunism

FiyazMughalTellMAMAFaithMatters

On the 8th of March, Fiyaz Mughal’s Faith Matters submitted written evidence to the Home Affairs Committee’s countering extremism inquiry. Written in an interestingly critical style, it certainly hit all the high notes from the perspective of the Muslim community.

For instance, it drew attention to the current Counter Extremism Strategy as having disproportionately focussed on the Muslim community “leading to claims that it renders Muslims a ‘suspect community’.” It highlights the problem of Home Office holding disproportionate power in defining “extremism” and that the definition should be the “product of scholarly debate”. Even the label “Islamism” comes in for criticism, noting it leads to McCarythism and alienation of partners that can “support the fight against violent extremism”.

A superficial reading certainly makes for a promising one.

But then we recall that this is a submission by Faith Matters, whose head is Fiyaz Mughal. If anything, this submission only further exposes his hypocrisy, political opportunism and the complete discrediting of his pet project Tell MAMA.

The Enemy of my Enemy

The submission notes that,

“A recent report on the Muslim Brotherhood operating in the UK identifies a number of organisations and their potential to be included as ‘non-violent extremists’. According to an article published in the RUSI Journal, such attempts to use ‘Islamism’ as an ideology that leads to terrorism reintroduces a ‘McCarthyism of the past’.”

This is all well and good except Mughal himself has perpetuated these very problems when it has suited him. In fact, Mughal last year joined ranks with notorious, discredited spin-doctor, the PREVENT-mouthpieceanti-Muslimjournalist, Andrew Gilligan, after a failed PCC complaint against him. With the article targeting Sayeeda Warsi, naming Muddassar Ahmed an “extremist”, and smearing Iftikhar Awan for having “links with the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood”, Fiyaz actively contributed to the formation of the “counter-entryism” element of the counter-extremism strategy. In Gilligan’s article, Mughal stated,

“I was deeply concerned about the kinds of groups some of the members had connections with, and some of the groups they were recommending be brought into government… It seemed to me to be a form of entryism, by people with no track record in delivering projects.”

This article was subsequently referenced by the Quilliam Foundation in their report on counter-extremism as an example of entryism, in the process demonstrating how Mughal and Quilliam reinforce each other’s narratives.

Internal Conflicts?

In a further twist, Tell MAMA’s co-chair is the pro-Israeli Richard Benson. This is significant because the Muslim Brotherhood report that the submission makes note of, identified the Muslim Council of Britain as one of the organisations shaped by the Brotherhood. In 2009, the Community Security Trust in its joint submission to the PREVENT inquiry focussed on “Islamists”, and explicitly went onto state:

“In the immediate aftermath of the London bombings, the Government sought to work through Muslim umbrella groups, such as the Muslim Council of Britain and the Muslim Association of Britain, which are led byradical Islamists.”

In other words, the current co-chair of Tell MAMA was pursuing the very strategy which Faith Matters highlights as leading to McCarythism, denouncing Muslim organisations as being “radical Islamists”.

Mughal later in the year even turned to neocon-co-opted Nick Cohen to produce a puff piece attacking – you guessed it – “Islamists”.

The submission further makes a positive mention of STREET, and specifically, its funding being cut. STREET, founded by Abdul Haqq Baker was an outreach project assisting and guiding converts and Muslim gang members. Of relevance is the fact that it was the subject of Gilligan smears in 2012. The article drew on the neoconchoice Muslim Haras Rafiq, the failed businessman who is currently the managing director of Quilliam. And a friend of Mughal.

Gilligan again targeted Baker two years later in the context of Salafi “radicals” being used in the Channel deradlicalisation scheme.

No Different to Quilliam/HJS

This confusing submission however, is a smokescreen. It seems, behind closed doors, and in the right circles, Mughal is a PREVENT-supporter.

On the 3rd of March – five days before the submission – an event on Tackling Extremism in the UK was held by Westminster Briefing. Mughal was quite emphatically singing a different tune:

‘Prevent’ is becoming more problematic especially in the Muslim Community – they consider it intrusive in their daily lives – particularly with the new Govt. duty to report. I disagree – the environment is more complex, but I do think Prevent as a brand has become damaged.

In other words, for all intents and purposes, Mughal does back PREVENT, and does not regard it intrusive, nor discriminatory. These problems are merely “perceptions” and “myths” that the Muslim community seem to have. Note here that this is precisely the same spin adopted by both the Quilliam Foundation and the Henry Jackson Society.

His issue is that PREVENT as a “brand” is “damaged” and suggests another medium to trick the Muslim community into buying into the discredited Countering Violent Extremism discourse:

“Interfaith dialogues can get people around the table… People are more relaxed in interfaith groups – they can discuss stuff that normally they wouldn’t.”

The deceptive strategies to effect CVE agendas never cease to amaze.

Concluding Remarks

With Tell MAMA aimed at the “soft-end” of counter-extremism, and his Faith Matters interfaith organisation operating further up the scale, his interfaith proposition makes for a lucrative opportunity.

The pertinent question remains however: how can someone who secretly buys into PREVENT – a strategy that has been slammed by hundreds of academics for demonizing Muslims – and colludes with neocons and anti-Muslim journalists, be involved in tackling Islamophobia?

Faith Matters, Tell MAMA and Fiyaz Mughal thoroughly devoid of credibility, are in no position, having collaborated with those who have tried unsuccessfully to marginalise mainstream organisations, and secretly advocated CVE policies, to pontificate from the side-lines at the expense of the Muslim minority.

The above discussion is important because increasingly, Mughal and Tell MAMA have moved into the role of controlling the discussion among Muslims. This function, as we shall see in the next piece, involves protecting those central to the enabling of political Islamophobia, and smearing genuine Muslim figures.

MOTHER OF ‘COOKER BOMB’ 4 YEAR OLD ‘EXTREMIST’ IN HER OWN WORDS

Original article from Muslim Mamas Facebook page, where the sister shared her initial concerns, sought help and was put in touch with some of the people who aided her in her difficulties.

I must admit, when this first story first came to light I assumed at first it was some sort of parady, a joke over how ridiculous Channel and Prevent activities had become but it was sadly entirely serious.

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Assalamu’alaikum,

Some of you may have heard about the four year old boy, whose nursery wanted to send him to a deradicalisation programme for mispronouncing ‘cucumber’. Well, that was my son. I’ve been a member of Muslim Mamas for a while now and wanted to share my story with you all.

“He told us it was a cooker bomb”

One afternoon back in January 2016, when I dropped my little boy to nursery, the nursery manager and deputy manager called me into a side room and presented me with a document, together with some drawings that my son had drawn. I recognised the drawing straight away, as it was a recent one. It was of a man with a knife. My son had told me it was ‘daddy cutting a cucumber’ so I told the school managers this straight away. They were unconvinced.

“Well, that’s not what he said to us. He told us it was a cooker bomb,” the nursery manager replied.

I was blindsided by this. My son has never talked about bombs at home. I was so confused and upset. At that point, I didn’t immediately associate his pronunciation of cucumber as “cukkabum” with a “cooker bomb”. I’d never even heard of such a thing.

cucumber-bomb-640x384

The school then showed me two other scribbles by my son. They said he talked about “pulling a string in Africa.” I explained that my neighbour’s cat used to visit our home frequently and my children often played with the cat by pulling a string. Sadly, the poor cat got run over and, not wanting upset them by telling them that he had died, I told the kids that the cat had gone to Africa to be with his family.

“Prove yourself innocent”

Again, the nursery manager dismissed my explanation and told me that they were referring me to Channel. I had no idea what Channel was, but assumed it was social services. I asked the manager if this was the case and she told me that yes, they did work together and that they would help me raise my children in the ‘right’ way. By this time I was in tears and pleaded with her not to refer me. But her reply did little to console me.

“Your kids might not be taken off you. You can prove yourself innocent,” she said.

I was distraught! I continued to plead with her. She asked me what he was watching on television and I told her that he liked his superheroes, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Power Rangers, but I would put a stop to this immediately if it would help (and I actually did go home and do this!). I even banned their Disney movies, as the nursery manager described one of my son’s drawings as that of a train blowing up. Incidentally, this is the opening scene in Toy Story 3.

Nothing was going to help me that day. She told me I’d already been referred and I had to “sign the referral form”, which I declined to do. I couldn’t – it just felt wrong to sign a document I did not agree with. My son, according to the nursery’s own description is a very ‘gentle’ child. I couldn’t accept the things that they were now suggesting about him.

I left the meeting and went home. My husband was away, so I telephoned him and explained the situation. He told me not to worry and reminded me that our boy always says “cukkabum” when he means “cucumber,” so obviously they’d misheard him. It then became clear to me what had happened.

“Cucumber, not cooker bomb”

I called the nursery manager immediately, with a renewed sense of hope and told her about his mispronunciation of the word “cucumber”. My son was still at the nursery and I told her to go and show him a cucumber so that it all becomes clear. However, the nursery manager was not willing to discuss things any further and told me that my son had already been “referred” and it was out of her hands. She then asked me again about signing the document and I once again refused. She informed me that she would “have to put down a reason”.

I felt really pressured but I’d spoken to my husband and my sister and they both advised me against signing something I am not comfortable with. So I held my ground and I told her firmly I wasn’t going to sign it as I didn’t agree with it. I hung up at the point and felt really worried about how I was going to find someone who could help me. I felt bullied and was ready to ask the police for help. I didn’t realise then what I realise now: this is state supported bullying.

I frantically called people who might be able to help me. I knew the school was wrong. Had I not been a Muslim Asian, I wouldn’t be in this position. I even messaged Tell Mama and was ignored.

Teachers now legally obliged to report concerns around terrorism

In Luton, where we live, you’d think it was easy to find help but there is no local organisation to help our community in situations like this. It’s actually more like the opposite. People don’t want to get involved, even though they know it’s wrong. They’re scared of the repercussions.

Eventually, I was put in touch with Rehana Faisal, who is a local Muslim community activist. She came round to see me and I went through everything with her. She asked me if I knew what Channel was. I told her I didn’t. It was Rehana who told me that Channel was a de-radicalisation programme and that teachers are now legally obliged to report concerns around terrorism. Apparently, this is called the “PREVENT duty”. I was horrified. She called a local solicitor, Attiq Malik of Liberty Law Solicitors, for some advice and the two of us then went to the nursery together for another meeting.

Rehana talked the nursery manager through what had happened and tried to encourage her to apply some common sense and recognise that the referral was misguided. The nursery manager again stated that the referral was a done deal. Rehana asked the manager if there was something else that had triggered this referral because it seemed ridiculous that they had taken such drastic action over a child’s mispronunciation. Did they have any other concerns about the parents? You see, I wasn’t new at this nursery. I had a seven year relationship with them. Thus far, it had always been a positive one. In November 2015, there was a parent-teacher evening and I was told not to bother coming in because my son was so lovely and gentle.

Questioning children appropriately

The manager told Rehana there was nothing else of concern apart from this one picture, to which my son couldn’t mispronounced “cucumber”. To be clear, my son never said the word “bomb”. This whole incident was never about what my child said or drew. It was about their perception of what he said. My son did not say the word bomb, they did. And they repeated it to him in their questioning. As Rehana pointed out to them, had the staff member he was speaking to questioned him appropriately, without leading questions, they would have realised what he was actually saying. In fact, he, according to their own records told them that a ‘cukkabum’ was something you cut!

“Did Jimmy Saville look like a paedophile?”

At this point in our meeting, the nursery manager repeatedly asserted her position that the referral toChannel had already been made. I was really upset at this point and was crying. I asked her, “Do I look like a terrorist to you?!”

The manager, looking directly at me replied, “Well, did Jimmy Saville look like a paedophile?”

I was shocked. Rehana witnessed this exchange and couldn’t believe how unprofessional the nursery manager was. Rehana informed the manager that we had sought legal advice before attending the meeting and if the nursery chose to pursue this, then so would we. We would go to the press if necessary. We then walked out of the meeting.

That evening, Rehana and Attiq came to see me show their support. Attiq then introduced me to someone from an organisation called PREVENTwatch and discussed what could be done next. They helped me draft a very detailed letter, which I gave to the nursery. They also told me to unblock the kiddy channels and assured me it was normal for kids to be into Power Rangers and the like!

The nursery manager on numerous occasions tried to speak to me alone over the next few days but I just didn’t trust her or anyone at the nursery anymore. Speaking to them was the last thing I wanted to do after being treated this way.

Backtracking

Soon after, I was given a letter by the nursery manager that said they had never made a referral but that everything they had said to me was according to government guidelines. This was a blatant lie. I know this because they had, possibly accidentally, given me a document which clearly states that my four year old has been referred. They had clearly backtracked and I strongly believe this was because they realised, I now had support and backing.

The last few weeks have been a steep learning curve for me. I didn’t know much about Channel or Prevent but I do now. Channel is supposed to be a ‘consensual’ programme but my son’s nursery tried to bully me into it. That’s not right. The whole policy isn’t right. It is not only flawed, it is also deeply discriminatory.

Don’t Take It Lying Down

I decided to talk about what happened to me in the hope that it will help others who find themselves in such a position. I want people to know that they must not put up with it. I originally spoke to the BBC Asian network and the story was then picked up by other news outlets. After that I was on the morning program on BBC 3 Counties Radio and Inspire fm. I also gave an interview to Luton on Sunday and the Guardian and was on ITV news Anglia.

I hope that this helps people to understand how flawed PREVENT is. It is a policy which is supposed to be making us safer, but it is hardly doing that. I felt scared, intimidated and discriminated against. It cannot carry on. I hope by speaking up myself, I will encourage others to also speak up.

My son is still at this nursery. Some of you might think that it’s a strange decision to leave him there. To say I feel awkward is an understatement. Everyday, I drop my son off to people that I no longer trust. However, my son loves nursery, his friends and his keyworker, who wasn’t present in any of the meetings that the nursery managers had with me. I’m not sure who flagged my son as a ‘radical’. His keyworker is so lovely and always has pleasant things to say to me. I’ve decided I don’t want to disrupt my sons life due to the incompetence of some prejudiced staff members.

Teachers as Spies

While I’m upset at the way the teachers in my son’s school dealt with this matter, I feel sympathy for the teachers who have been forced to act as “security services” in schools. They are given 1-2 hours training and are expected to spot the very complex signs of “radicalisation”. Unfortunately, too many of these “signs” focus on the Muslim Community.

So that’s my story. I’m still struggling to come to terms with what has happened but I want to keep talking about it, and I pray that this helps others.  I never dreamed I could be treated this way, in my own country, as a British Muslim.

If any of you find yourself in this position – GET HELP. PREVENTwatch is a national organisation who can help. If you are in Luton, you can look up Rehana Faisal and Attiq Malik. Speak to them.

As a community, we all need to speak up. Our “community leaders” and elected representatives need to speak up. Let our teachers teach rather than behave like the police or like spies!

I want to end by expressing gratitude for the help and support I’ve received from family and friends, through this horrid ordeal! As for the nursery, I am yet to receive an apology from them.