The cowardice of our elites is emboldening Islamism

Lindsay Hoyle’s capitulation to extremists marked a dark day for British democracy.

Tom Slater

Tom Slater

Topics Politics UK

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Why can’t they just say it? There’s been exhaustive coverage of the threat posed to MPs in recent days, after House of Commons speaker Lindsay Hoyle ripped up parliamentary convention to allow a Labour amendment on Gaza to be debated on the Scottish National Party’s ‘opposition day’. Yesterday, Hoyle rebuffed accusations he had done so after being lent on by the Labour Party, his party, which would have been badly bruised if Labourites had broken ranks and backed the SNP’s own, more ostentatiously anti-Israel, motion. He did so, he said, because of credible threats made to MPs and on the house itself. The logic was that allowing Labour MPs to endorse their party’s own fudgy ceasefire position, rather than just abstain on the SNP’s motion, would have spared them yet more death threats. ‘I never, ever want to go through a situation where I pick up a phone to find a friend, whatever side, has been murdered by terrorists. I also don’t want an attack on this house’, Hoyle said. But at no point did he, or most of the media write-ups, name where that threat is so obviously coming from. Namely, Islamist extremists.

The desperation to avoid the I-word has been palpable in recent days. There’s been vague talk of the threats directed at MPs because of Gaza. And even vaguer talk about the ‘toxic’ climate in which our elected representatives now operate. There’s been a marked attempt to generalise the assault on British democracy at this particular, grim juncture. Even though we all know who and what they’re talking about. I’m not a mind reader. But I dare say when Hoyle spoke darkly yesterday of the potential for a violent extremist, incensed by Israel and Palestine, to show up to SW1 and cause carnage, he probably wasn’t thinking of a vegan Corbynista, a member of the Queers for Palestine crew, or any of the other leftish cohorts within Britain’s Israelophobic protest movement. He was probably thinking about an extremist like the one who murdered David Amess MP for supporting airstrikes against the Islamic State, or the one who stabbed PC Keith Palmer to death outside parliament in 2017, or the one who stabbed Labour MP Stephen Timms at his constituency surgery in 2010. You know, an Islamist.

But he couldn’t say it. I’m reminded of a particularly cutting remark Morrissey made in the wake of the Manchester Arena bombing in 2017, in which 22 people, many of them kids, were murdered by Islamist bomber Salman Abedi: ‘Manchester mayor Andy Burnham says the attack is the work of an “extremist”. An extreme what? An extreme rabbit?’ Meanwhile, those who refuse to engage in this charade are shouted down. Witness the latest rage against Suella Braverman, over her article in today’s Telegraph arguing that ‘Islamists are bullying Britain into submission’. For this, she has been accused by one Labour MP of pushing ‘Islamophobic tropes’ – even though Braverman doesn’t use the words ‘Islam’ or ‘Muslim’ in the article once. If anyone is conflating Muslims with Islamists here it is the woke set, who seem to think railing against a barbaric, fascistic ideology, whose primary victim the world over is Muslim people themselves, makes you anti-Muslim.

If you do not think Islamist extremists are riding high at the moment you aren’t paying attention. Ever since 7 October, when Hamas fighters ploughed into Israel and murdered, butchered and raped their way through a music festival and several kibbutzim, we’ve seen open celebration of that pogrom on our streets. We’ve seen Islamist groups openly calling for jihad against Israel. On those ‘peace’ marches, Islamist radicals can be heard chanting Arabic war slogans about the murder of Jews in the 7th century. Even some of the supposedly respectable groups behind those weekly carnivals of anti-Semitism have alarmingly close links to Hamas – which, again, is an anti-Semitic, Islamist death cult whose founding charter fantasises about the mass murder of Jews bringing about Judgement Day. You know, the group that started this awful war in Gaza, all because its footsoldiers seized their opportunity to act out their genocidal fetish on the Jews of southern Israel.

To put it gently, vicious, Jew-hating Islamists are over-represented in the ‘pro-Palestine’ movement. Of course they are. Apocalyptic anti-Semitism and murderous Israelophobia are foundation stones of modern Islamist extremism. Osama bin Laden’s ‘Letter to America’, his 2002 manifesto / justification for 9/11, replete with anti-Semitic conspiracy theories, portrayed America’s support for Israel as its original sin. Islamist terrorist attacks have routinely targeted Jewish schools, bat mitzvahs, kosher supermarkets. And yet there is rampant denialism about even the presence of Islamists among the ranks of the anti-Israel – sorry, ‘pro-Palestine’ – movement. That is not to say every marcher is an Islamist. Of course not. That much is obvious from the pronounced ‘LGBTQIA+’ contingent, who would last about five minutes in Hamas-run Gaza. But it is there.

There is a similar wilful naivety about the threat posed to MPs in parliament. The Corbynistas are desperately trying to make it all about them. As per. Zarah Sultana MP says the ‘debate about public engagement with MPs’ is an attempt to ‘demonise the Palestine solidarity movement, portraying it as inherently violent and extreme’. Now, many MPs can be guilty of presenting any agitation against them as terroristic. Witness the meltdown a few years ago over a few right-wing blokes jeering at Remoaner MPs outside parliament. And witness the meltdown from one MSP this week over a small group of retirees barging their way into an office of Labour MSPs in Glasgow and holding up placards about ‘genocide’. This debate must not become a pretext to clamp down on protest. But a few idiots wailing about politicians having ‘blood on their hands’ over Gaza is clearly not what we are talking about here.

What we’re talking about is the Islamist movement that has slain one MP; stabbed another; launched a car-and-knife attack on Westminster; hatched several, mercifully foiled, attacks on our politicians; and, most recently, that has forced Mike Freer MP to resign following years of death threats. We’re talking about the Islamist movement that, from the 7/7 bombing in 2005 to the murder of David Amess in 2021, has killed 94 people in Britain. (While the woke constantly downplay Islamist terrorism and talk up the threat of the far right, right-wing terror attacks have claimed just three lives over that period.)

There’s another fundamental difference between recent panics over protest and this week’s shameful surrender to Islamist extremism. When anti-Brexit MPs claimed they were being hounded by their constituents, who were just understandably furious that their democratic vote was being trashed, Westminster didn’t give in. Far from it. Remainer MPs ditched democratic norms and rewrote parliamentary procedures in an attempt to thwart Leave voters and wrest back control from Boris Johnson’s pro-Brexit government. They talked proudly of defending democracy from the ‘mob’, even though they were actually a mob destroying democracy. By contrast, with Hoyle’s shameful giving in to Islamist threats and intimidation this week, we saw Westminster ditching democratic norms and rewriting parliamentary procedures in a craven act of capitulation.

This is where Suella Braverman’s latest offending Telegraph article gets it absolutely wrong. She says ‘the Islamists, the extremists and the anti-Semites are in charge now’, as if our rulers have been overthrown by some unstoppable force. In truth, those scumbags are a tiny fringe most British Muslims want nothing to do with, let alone a formidable faction within society as a whole. Extremists and terrorists of any stripe only really succeed when they force our leaders, our norms, our behaviour, to change out of fear. And yet, such is the self-loathing and cowardice of our elites, of a ruling class that is more afraid of being called racist than it is of receiving death threats, that they have just limply, shame-facedly given up. Indeed, they can’t even name the threat that is menacing them. And us. Islamist extremism is emboldened by liberal cowardice. Time to find some courage.

Tom Slater is editor of spiked. Follow him on Twitter: @Tom_Slater_

Picture by: YouTube.

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Topics Politics UK


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