The furore created by US presidential candidate, the populist and conservative Republican Donald Trump, who stated that Muslim immigration to America should be stopped, needs to be seen in a wider context.
It has come hot on the heels of a refugee crisis as millions try and flee war torn Syria, caught between an embattled despot Assad and the largely jihadi forces such as ISIS, al-Nusra and Army of Islam who oppose him.
Then we have the massacre in Paris which ISIS claimed responsibility for. This latest massacre of infidels in the name of Islam has led to a surge in support for the neo-fascist Front National. Similarly Trump’s surge in support has been spurred on by the jihadi shooting in California. But what lies behind all this? How did it just appear out of nowhere? Actually the converse is true. It was incubated and hatched in the west like a virus.
With ‘Friends’ Like These
In reaction to the massacre by ISIS, both Britain and France have now stressed the need for air strikes against ISIS. Not only did they hesitate to launch a full scale attack on the Islamist rebels trying to oust Bashar al-Assad from power, but they along with America even funded these jihadi groups as useful pawns against Syria’s Ba’athist dictatorship.
Having fought a jihad on its own soil in Chechnya, Russia was under no such illusions. Putin, along with his Chechen strongman and ally Ramzan Kadyrov, offered full support to Assad against terrorists such as ISIS. Meanwhile ISIS has long continued to enjoy funding and support from Turkey, Qatar and above all Saudi Arabia.
On 30 September 2015 Samuel Osborne in The Independent revealed that one Saudi cable reportedly read:
“The delegation is honoured to send to the ministry the enclosed memorandum, which the delegation has received from the permanent mission of the United Kingdom asking it for the support and backing of the candidacy of their country to the membership of the human rights council (HRC) for the period 2014-2016, in the elections that will take place in 2013 in the city of New York.
The ministry might find it an opportunity to exchange support with the United Kingdom, where the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia would support the candidacy of the United Kingdom to the membership of the council for the period 2014-2015 in exchange for the support of the United Kingdom to the candidacy of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”
Saudi has long placed itself as a western ally. In turn such paragons of democracy such as America and Britain are strangely silent on the horrific human rights abuses in that country. While ISIS posts videos online of beheadings, Saudi Arabia has had them carried out in public since before the time the al-Saud clan pushed out the Hashemites as guardians of the two holiest cities of Islam in 1924, and that too with British military assistance.
Obama followed the standard western colonialist narrative when he lectured India on how badly women were treated, how minorities were discriminated against.
Then immediately kow-towed to the unwritten rule of not annoying America’s Saudi masters by mentioning the degraded status which women suffer in that country, the oppression of Shia, lack of basic freedoms, punishing of even thought crime, and enslavement of Third World guest workers in what has to be one of the most exploitative and racist labour systems in the world since apartheid.
America has constantly portrayed Saudi as a force for moderate Islam and a bulwark against extremism.
This is despite the fact that Saudi and ISIS share the same Wahhabi/Salafist ideology which Riyadh has been promoting with billions from its oil revenue, in India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Bosnia, Britain, France, America and other countries. What ISIS does through genocide, rape and slavery, Saudi has been doing by stealth via business dealings, charitable foundations, and educational programmes.
Trump broke with convention on 12 December 2015. Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal called on Trump to withdraw from the race following his demand that Muslims to be banned from entering the US.
In response the prince was told he was “dopey” and would not control America through “daddy’s money”. Yet back on 31 August 2014, Owen Jones wrote “To really combat terror, end support for Saudi Arabia” in the Guardian:
Although Saudi Arabia has given $100m (£60m) to the UN anti-terror programme and the country’s grand mufti has denounced Isis as “enemy number one”, radical Salafists across the Middle East receive ideological and material backing from within the kingdom.
According to Clinton’s leaked memo, Saudi donors constituted “the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide”.
A few days later, General Jonathan Shaw, who retired as Assistant Chief of the Defence Staff in 2012, told The Telegraph that Qatar and Saudi Arabia were primarily responsible for the rise of the extremist Islam that inspires ISIS.
Jones also mentions funding to ISIS from western allies Kuwait and Qatar. Money is more important than human rights, or even fighting terrorism.
That holds true for Trump as well. On 8 December, Jim Boulden of CNN revealed that Trump was building two golf courses in Dubai, as well as substantial investments in Indonesia, Azerbaijan and Turkey.
Regarding the Middle East as a critical avenue for growth, the Trump Organization signed numerous deals in recent years to put the Trump brand on upscale golf courses and residences in Dubai, hotel properties in Turkey, and home furnishings, accessories and décor sold in stores across the region.
Turkey has long been involved in suppressing the Kurds, the one group who are actively pro-western and fighting Islamic State.
On 2 December 2015, RT news reported ( ) Lord Ashdown denouncing the close ties between the British Conservative Party and the Gulf state as “worrying”:
Left-wing or right-wing, the ideological stance towards battling jihad is subsumed under the bottom line which Trump has epitomised. The tycoon’s stark warnings that Britain is struggling to contain radical Muslims is a party line that has been standard among right-wing demagogues that get regular VIP treatment on Fox News.
The welfare state and an amorphous socialism is blamed for literally breeding radical Islam. Yet this conveniently ignores how Saudi has used the free market to fund its stealth brainwashing in America’s prisons and inner cities using the mechanisms of a surrogate welfare state, crony capitalism that marries state control with the illusions of being a successful business. Yet it works because nobody dares criticise the Saudi support for radical jihad groups such as ISIS. Apart from as it happens other Muslims.
Jihad Year Zero
ISIS has been compared the Khmer Rouge with its use of revolutionary violence in a bid to create utopia. Unlike Pol Pot however, ISIS have technological savviness and a fanatical belief in a reward in the hereafter, so heaven can wait and need not be create don earth: even while hell is. If Saudis and ISIS clash it is not over ideology, but who will dominate this puritanical intolerant strand of Islam.
From the 1973 Oil Crisis, the Saudi-based Muslim World League opened offices in every region inhabited by Muslims, and the Saudi ministry of religion printed and distributed Wahhabi translations of the Quran, Wahhabi doctrinal texts and the writings of modern thinkers whom the Saudis found congenial, such as Sayyids Abul-A’la Maududi and Qutb, to Muslim communities throughout the world.
Riyadh funded the building of Saudi-style mosques with Wahhabi preachers and established madrasas that provided free education for the poor. At the same time, young men from the poorer Muslim countries, such as Egypt and Pakistan, who had felt compelled to find work in the Gulf to support their families, associated their relative affluence with Wahhabism and brought this faith back home with them, living in new neighbourhoods with Saudi mosques and shopping malls that segregated the sexes.
The Saudis demanded religious conformity, which meant the rejection of all other forms of Islam as well as other faiths would reach as deeply into Bradford, England, and Buffalo, New York, as into Pakistan, Jordan or Syria. Islam’s traditional pluralism was undermined.
ISIS came out of this toxic mix, but was only in the latest of a series in Salafist reincarnations. Western democracies turned a blind eye to their own citizens going to fight jihad in Kashmir against the ‘Hindu occupiers’. In the case of the Afghan mujahadeen they actively funded it.
Dr Taj Hargey is the South African-born director of the Muslim Educational Centre of Oxford, a group of “forward thinking” Muslims, who founded the initiative Open Mosque to welcome all genders, religions and sexual orientations in Wynberg, a Cape Town suburb. He is also is imam of the Oxford Islamic Congregation.
On 23 November 2010, he wrote “Why does Britain turn a blind eye to these medieval zealots peddling lessons in hate?” in the Daily Mail:
Precisely because Wahhabism originated in the brutal backyard of Saudi Arabia, it should have no place in modern democratic Britain.
Our culture has gone to considerable lengths to promote equality for women, gay people, ethnic minorities and diverse faiths.
On 22 August 2014, former radical jihadi Ed Hussain wrote on the New York Times,
Most Sunni Muslims around the world, approximately 90 percent of the Muslim population, are not Salafis. Salafism is seen as too rigid, too literalist, too detached from mainstream Islam. While Shiite and other denominations account for 10 percent of the total, Salafi adherents and other fundamentalists represent 3 percent of the world’s Muslims.
Let us remember how ISIS has destroyed Sufi shrines and targeted Shias, fellow Muslims in other words. In this they are only faithfully copying the pattern set by the puritanical and intolerant creed set forth by the west’s Saudis, who are supposed to be fighting terrorism.
On January 16, 2015, fighters from armed Islamist groups stormed the Nabhaniya Sufi School in Aleppo, the largest city in Syria. Including fighters from several factions – Jabhat al-Nusra (the Nusra Front), al-Jabha al-Shamiyya (the Levant Front), Ahrar al-Sham and others – the group of attackers destroyed the tomb of Sheikh Mohammed Nabhan, the school’s founder.
The men proceeded to desecrate the graves of Nabhan’s wife, brother and son. Sheikh Muhammad Jrabeh’s tomb in Aleppo was flattened by opposition groups in Aleppo in June 2011, and the tomb of Rih — a prominent Sufi sheikh — was later demolished in Azaz.
In 2012, Shiekh Muhammad Adib Hassoun’s tomb was damaged by regime shelling. Attacks on sites and shrines affiliated with the Sufi strand of Islam are part of the broader campaign by groups like Jabhat al-Nusra and Islamic State to erase Syrian cultural and historical heritage that doesn’t mesh with their literalist interpretation of religion.
Incubated by the West
Instead the Saudis have been allowed to create hardcore jihadi cells from alienated youth within western democracies such as America, France and Britain.
Trump’s assertion that stopping Muslim immigration is only rational and sensible because Franklin D Roosevelt interned Japanese-Americans as a security risk after the attack on Pearl Harbour holds little weight.
The radicalisation of such youth began with a generation born and brought up not in Syria, but in the western democracies. It was a result of billions in petrodollars poured in by Saudi to fend mosques, madrasas and schools to enforce its Wahhabi ideals.
But because Saudi is a western ally with rich pickings for businessmen such as Trump, George Bush and within David Cameron’s own party, there has always been reluctance to face the elephant in the china shop.
While the right fears any criticism of Saudi support for ISIS and jihad will jeopardise its already tottering free market, the left is hardly any better.
To the readers of the Guardian and Independent, radical Islam is caused by racism, alienation and prejudice alone, the hangover of western colonialist superiority transplanted onto minority communities.
This of course does not explain why there are so few terrorist attacks by adherents of Taosim, Jainism, or the Quakers, or why the left middle-class Guardian readership seem obsessed with warning the world about the perils of bringing the Hindu Taliban to Britain due to supposed ‘extremism’ of India’s prime minister Narendra Modi, when ironically his visit coincided with the massacre of innocent people in Paris by jihadi terrorists.
Former radical Maajid Nawaaz who set up the Quilliam Foundation to counter extremist Islam castigated these Leftists useful idiots in “The British Left’s Hypocritical Embrace of Islamism” on 8 August 2015 in The Daily Beast:
The great irony is that, unlike many of today’s champagne socialists and shisha-jihadists my entire life has been a prototype of their archetypal aggrieved Muslim. Unlike the Guardian’s private school, Oxbridge-educated journalist David Shariatmadari, I am a state school-educated Muslim and racial minority. I have been stabbed at by neo-Nazis, falsely arrested at gunpoint by Essex police, expelled from college, divorced, estranged from my child, and tortured in Egyptian prison, and mandatorily profiled.
I’ve had my DNA forcibly taken at Heathrow Airport under Schedule 7 Laws, which deprive terror suspects of the right to silence at UK ports of entry and exit, among much else. I’ve been blacklisted from other countries. I am every grievance regressive leftists traditionally harp on. Yet their first-world bourgeois brains seem to malfunction because I refuse to spew theocratic hate, or fit their little “angry Muslim” box. Yet they talk to me about privilege, and non-fat lattes?
What the Right supports through ‘free’ market business dealings, the Left uses outdated anti-colonial rhetoric to stifle free debate on the issue. Within this vice grip, a whole generation of alienated youth of all backgrounds, shut out, detached and ignored by the chattering classes seek an alternative identity. These rebels need a cause. Through the internet and on the street, ISIS and similar outfits have a ready made audience receptive to their message.
Guardian of Hate
Nawaaz’s aforementioned lambasting of the Guardian and how this propaganda sheet acts as apologist for radical Islam is only the tip of the iceberg.
In the 1930s it was the Daily Mail which acted as an apologist for fascism and Nazism, blaming Jews for wanting war with Germany and infesting Britain with their alien habits.
Now that mantle has been taken up by the Left, which it must be remembered was not as heroically resistance to fascism as Marxist mythology would like to propagate.
When the Daily Mail’s Lord Rothermere defended Oswald Mosely and Hitler, that noxious ideology also appealed to many socialists and ‘progressives’ who had in fact pioneered eugenics as a means of improving the overall racial hygiene of the human race.
This included the right of superior cultures and races to rule over the savage subhuman breeds, as defended by Karl Marx in his writings on India which saw British rule as logical and rational, and whose view on the subject was barely distinguishable from that of Hitler.
So it was that with the visit of the democratically elected leader of the world’s largest democracy to Britain.
Narendra Modi was castigated in the pages of the Guardian as leading Hindu extremism and Hindu Taliban. Of course they were far from alone in this.
Betraying its roots in combating neo-Nazi skinhead racial violence in the 1970s and 1980s, the Awaaz Network went so far as to portray the sacred Aum symbol mutate into the Nazi swastika. Again this follows the same left-wing racist and neo-imperialist narrative.
For example, when you search Dadri lynching, you would find Washington Post, New York Times, a dedicated Wikipedia page and every Indian media organisation from
The Indian Express to Times of India, having scores of stories to show about how intolerant Hindus in intolerant India lynched a poor Muslim for daring to eat beef.
Yet the killing of Hindu flower-seller Prashant Poojary in Moodbidri on 9 October 2015 by a Muslim lynch mob has had negligible or no coverage. It does not fit into their accepted narrative and its roots from a time when progressives saw genocide, sterilisation and gas chambers as responsible social policy.
Now that special treatment is reserved for new enemies that do not fit into their accepted paradigm.
Hence with a straight face the Guardian can argue of the threat from the non-existent Hindu Taliban and Hindu equivalent of ISIS, when innocent people in Paris are being massacred by the real deal live on mobile phone footage.
When it comes to Hindus, left-wing and right-wing coalesce into the same suffocating vice grip even while the reality is very different from the champagne socialist and caviar munching free market spheres in which these forces of prejudice operate.
This is not surprising. Either by ignoring the funding of ISIS by western-backed Gulf states, or by acting as apologists for the disaffected western youth who join the jihadi outfits, right and left-wing media and politicians ignore the inconvenient truth, and instead focus their venom on the non-existent Hindu Taliban.
For this reason western media constantly ignores the Saudi and Pakistan-backed jihad against India, such as the Mumbai attacks which were replayed in Paris.
The latter was universally condemned. But in the case of Mumbai, India was lectured on how it was alienating minorities and now allowing Kashmir to have independence.
Again classic western narrative, whether left wing or right-wing, which follows Marx, Churchill and Hitler in deeming Hinduism as a savage people with savage beliefs that need to be civilised or else deemed worthy of extermination: even while their so called allies in Saudi Arabia and Pakistan fund the very jihadi forces of Salafist Islam which not just preach, but actively and routinely carry out horrific acts of violence against innocent people in Paris, London and San Bernardino.
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