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Razing of the Mosques

Reader comment on item: Britain's Encounter with Islamic Law
in response to reader comment: Let's face Islam head on!

Submitted by Ann Farmer (United Kingdom), Feb 18, 2008 at 18:00

Nick's recommendations re. the Sharia furore are indeed drastic. To raze all British mosques and expel all imams would not only be unjust but counterproductive. Christians all over the world are living in fear from extremists and their plight would be immeasurably worsened.

What we need to do is to support moderate Muslims who are under pressure from extremists to take over their mosques. The extremists would certainly not care if mosques were closed and imams expelled; this is exactly the sort of discord they seek - between Muslim and Muslim, between Muslim and Jew, and between Muslim and Christian.

The problem in Britain is our governing classes, which includes the BBC. They cave in to the most aggressive; hence Home Secretary Jacqui Smith, who some weeks ago momentarily forgot she was Home Secretary and admitted that she would feel afraid to walk the streets at night, has ruled out the use of the word 'terrorist' and confusedly declared that extremism is anti-Islamic. Presumably she meant that terrorism is against the spirit of Islam, but how anyone - in particular those responsible for running the security services - can deny that the extremists she is guarding us from are Islamic is depressing but hardly surprising.

With such people in charge, and with the BBC singing from the same hymn sheet, seeking to play down the source of World War Four, merely encourages those extremists and helps draw in moderates because they only ever hear one side of the argument, and consequently perceive them selves as victims of unwarranted anti-Muslim prejudice. According to opinion polls, a worryingly high percentage of British Muslims sympathise with the aims of terrorists, although not with their methods.

But I suspect that this is not such a different picture from that of our governing classes. Why else are they so craven when it comes to defining the present threat? It is true that we cannot sit back and expect the Sharia furore to do the work for us; sadly, after it dies down, it will be probably be heads back under the sand and business as usual. I personally made that mistake after 9/11 because I could not believe that anyone could possible ignore such a demonstration of evil. But it was not long before the conspiracy theorists were starting up, and some people were soon blaming the victims.

It It is up to ordinary people to argue the case for democracy and peace; we also need to take firm action against terrorism, but not so as to undermine the principles of democracy or alienate support from reasonable people. Neither should we seek that support by grovelling to those who will not hesitate to take whatever measures of appeasement we offer and then kill us.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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