PM to urge Muslims and ISPs: stop giving credence to extremist ideology

David Cameron will say everyone has ‘personal responsibility to stand out against’ ideology that lures young people to fight in Syria


Speaking at the Globsec conference in Slovakia, David Cameron will say: ‘Too often we hear the argument that radicalisation is the fault of someone else.’    David Cameron is to warn that the growing threat posed by Islamic State can only be defeated if Muslim communities and internet service providers stop giving any credence to an Islamic extremist ideology that claims the west is evil, democracy wrong and women inferior.

Insisting everyone has a personal responsibility to stand out against such values, and not to blame state institutions for failing to do enough, Cameron will on Friday make a call for communities to do more to prevent young Muslims right across Europe starting on a path that ends with them being lured to fight in Syria.

Speaking at the Globsec conference in Slovakia, he will say: “Too often we hear the argument that radicalisation is the fault of someone else. That blame game is wrong – and it is dangerous. By accepting the finger-pointing – whether it’s at agencies or authorities – we are ignoring the fact that the radicalisation starts with the individual.”

He was speaking in a week in which one Briton, Talha Asmal, has blown himself up as a suicide bomber in Iraq and three sisters have left their homes in Bradford to take their families to Syria.

The prime minister had been prompted to make his call for greater responsibility after being impressed by the remarks of Manzoor Moghal, chairman of the Muslim Forum.

Moghal had said there was a “climate of division” in some British towns, adding that foreign policy, Islamophobia and online propaganda were being used as “scapegoats”. He added: “The eagerness to pass the buck is not just wrongheaded and hypocritical, it also allows extremism to flourish. Instead of endlessly pointing the finger at others, Muslim communities should face up to their own responsibilities.”

Cameron will express his personal surprise and distress at the numbers travelling to Syria, although stopping short of introducing new measures. Instead he will try to pinpoint a clear chain of causation that leads someone to lose a sense of identity and then become fully radicalised.

The prime minister will say there are Muslims who buy into aspects of the critique of the west but who don’t go so far as to advocate violence. By accepting some of these prejudices and telling fellow Muslims to accept aspects of this world view, the extremist Islamic narrative is given weight, he will say.

“This paves the way for young people to turn simmering prejudice into murderous intent. To go from listening to firebrand preachers online to boarding a plane to Istanbul and travelling onward to join the jihadis.”

As a result, Cameron intends to warn that “a troubled boy who is angry at the world or a girl looking for an identity, for something to believe in and there’s something that is quietly condoned online or perhaps even in parts of your local community then it’s less of a leap to go from a British teenager to an Isil [Isis] fighter or an Isil wife than it would be for someone who hasn’t been exposed to these things.”

The prime minister will express his surprise at the background of some of these terrorists.

He will say: “These are young people, boys and girls, leaving often loving, well-to-do homes, good schools and bright prospects travelling thousands of miles from home to strap explosives to their chests and blow themselves up and kill innocent people, to live in a place where marriage is legal at nine and where women’s role is to serve the jihadists, to be part of a so-called state whose fanatics are plotting and encouraging acts of despicable terrorism in the countries from which they have come.”

“It is an Islamist extremist ideology one that says the west is bad and democracy is wrong that women are inferior and homosexuality is evil. It says religious doctrine trumps the rule of law and caliphate trumps nation state and it justifies violence in asserting itself and achieving its aims. The question is: how do people arrive at this worldview?”


The Guardian

F. Achouri

Sociologue spécialiste de l’islam contemporain.

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