Oh comrades come rally

I know it’s old news that Seumas Milne is a buffoon – but all the same…

These are good times to be in the “moderate Muslim” business. If you press the right buttons on integration and “radicalisation” and hold your tongue on western foreign policy, there are rich pickings to be had…Latest in the ring is the “counter-extremism thinktank”, the Quilliam Foundation…The foundation – named after a 19th century British Muslim – is the creature of Husain and a couple of other one-time members of the radical, non-violent Islamist group Hizb ut-Tahrir. All three are straight out of the cold war defectors’ mould described in Saturday’s Guardian by the playwright David Edgar, trading heavily on their former associations and travelling rapidly in a conservative direction.

What is ‘western foreign policy’ when it’s at home? Does ‘the west’ have a unified and unanimous foreign policy? I don’t think so. Perhaps it’s just – western foreign policy, i.e. wicked because it’s western; wicked geographically and as it were ethnically. It belongs to ‘the west’ or to (as one might say) members of the western community, who are of course by definition enemies and oppressors of ‘the east’ (which is also called ‘the south,’ which confuses things slightly). In short, it’s a rhetorical phrase which is literal nonsense.

More interesting is Milne’s fond view of Hizb ut-Tahrir – the ‘radical, non-violent Islamist group.’ Radical is an ambiguous word, if only because people on the left usually use it to mean left-radical. But the real weasel word is ‘non-violent.’ Milne’s insinuation seems to be that Hizb ut-Tahrir doesn’t advocate terrorist violence as a means, therefore it is non-violent period. But that’s crap. You have only to read Hizb on itself to see that. What Hizb ut-Tahrir wants is a global society that is violent in the most up close way possible – a global society that coerces everyone in the smallest details of life by forcing them to obey stupid oppressive rules from the 7th century. If that’s non-violent, what would violent be like?

Hizb-ut-Tahrir is a political party whose ideology is Islam. Its objective is to resume the Islamic way of life by establishing an Islamic State that executes the systems of Islam and carries its call to the world. Hizb-ut-Tahrir has prepared a party culture that includes a host of Islamic rules about life’s matters…As for the resumption of the Islamic way of life, the reality of all the Islamic lands is currently a Kufr household, for Islam is no longer implemented over them; thus Hizb-ut-Tahrir adopted the transformation of this household into a household of Islam. With regard to determining whether a household is Islamic or not, this is not dependant on whether its inhabitants are Muslims or not, but rather in what is implemented in terms of rules and in whether the security of the household is in the hands of the Muslims, not the Kuffar…Hizb-ut-Tahrir is not a spiritual bloc, nor is it a moralistic or a scientific bloc, but rather a political bloc that works towards the management of the Ummah’s affairs as a whole according to Islam.

And so on and so on. Milne is an idiot if he genuinely thinks that is ‘non-violent.’ It seems to be common knowledge that Milne is indeed an idiot (useful or otherwise) – and he does a brilliant job of demonstrating that by equating people who ‘defect’ from Hizb-ut-Tahrir with cold war defectors and also by calling their direction ‘conservative.’ What the fuck does he think Hizb is – liberal? Progressive? Left? Can he seriously think that a party that wants everyone to live under a regime in which Islam dictates every single aspect of their lives, and calls everyone who doesn’t want that ‘Kuffar,’ not conservative? Can he seriously think that fleeing from that nightmare vision is to travel ‘in a conservative direction’?

In particular, they want to put Islamism – an extremely broad political trend that stretches from the Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development party to al-Qaida – beyond the political pale.

And Milne thinks that’s a bad thing. And he thinks (apparently) he’s a left-winger. It beggars belief.

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