Parliamentarians duped over Islamophobia part 1

I have long thought that Islamophobia is a word in search of a thing, merely a thought-paralysing device to discourage people from criticising or even investigating Islam. That being so this is an apt definition:

     “Islamophobia is the state of knowing more than one should about Islam”.

The word should have died of embarrassment long ago, but it hasn’t. In fact it has gone from strength to strength and now the great and good of the land have taken the trouble to produce a new substantive definition:

     “Islamophobia is rooted in racism and is a type of racism that targets expressions of
      Muslimness or perceived Muslimness.”

It appeared in the All Party Parliamentary Group on British Muslims (APPG) Nov 2018 report
Islamophobia Defined.

One important question not addressed in it is why does Islam need its own special word when Hinduism and Sikhism do not?

Since the major populations in Britain of adherents of the three faiths originate from the same region (India/Pakistan) would it not be reasonable to ask whether the undoubted ill feeling which exists towards Islam and Muslims, but not towards Hinduism and Hindus or Sikhism and Sikhs, has something to do with Islam and Muslims?

Another question is if Islamophobia really exists and deserves examining then why not its obvious counterpart Kafirphobia?

Considering the many hateful sentiments about non-Muslims expressed by Mohammed himself in the Koran, and how seriously devout Muslims take his example, perhaps it might have been worth considering the possibility that prejudice is far from a one way street. For one example, in 2012 Lord Nazir Ahmed, a member of the APPG himself, blamed a Jewish conspiracy for a driving conviction in Britain. For another, here is the account of the racism encountered in the Muslim community of Glasgow by a half Scottish half Pakistani girl, and the racism she did not encounter after she left and lived among indigenous Glaswegians.

The really shocking thing about the report though is that after publication it soon became clear that it had been heavily influenced, even largely taken over, by Islamist activists and their allies seeking always to put Muslims in the position of victims of a hostile British society. As we shall see, the parliamentarians of the APPG were either duped or complicit in the process.

But to start at the beginning:

The APPG introduce themselves (p4)

     “The Group was established to highlight the aspirations and challenges facing British
      Muslims; to celebrate the contributions of Muslim communities to Britain and to
      investigate prejudice, discrimination and hatred against Muslims in the UK.”

So they declare their position at the outset. The existence of prejudice and hatred against Muslims is accepted uncritically with no thought given to the possibility of prejudice and hatred on the part of Muslims against non-Muslims. Some people are of the opinion that the former is largely a response to the latter.

Executive Summary (p9)

The group reassure us that:

     “…the aim of establishing a working definition of Islamophobia has neither been
      motivated by, nor is intended to curtail, free speech or criticism of Islam as a religion.
      Evidence read and heard by the group clearly delineated between the desirability of
      criticism, debate and free discussion of Islam as a religion – by Muslims and
      non-Muslim participants in the inquiry – and the victimisation of Muslims through the
      targeting of expressions of Muslimness to deny or impair their fundamental freedoms
      and human rights.”

Here we run straight into a major problem with the APPG’s definition, the concept of Muslimness. The problem of defining one abstraction, Islamophobia, is solved by referring it to another, novel, abstraction. But Muslimness is defined nowhere in the report, only supposed examples of it are given such as skin colour, clothing, dietary rules and the “radical otherness of so-called Muslim practices” including FGM, forced marriage, veiling, electoral fraud, the imposition of shariah law and child sexual exploitation (p46).

This is a sorry list which does nothing to clarify matters. Where are the main objections to Islam, its supremacism and jihad? Clearly a new consultation process and report will be necessary sometime in the future to define Muslimness.

Even if we accept a common-sense idea of Muslimness, like those we use for Englishness or Jewishness – adequate for everyday but not for legal or educational purposes – there is still the massive problem of Islamic duality. Islam comes in two distinct forms, the Islam of Mecca and the Islam of Medina, shown graphically here.

In Mecca Mohammed, while not exactly friendly to non-Muslims, left the violent retribution for unbelief up to Allah. In Medina he became a political and military figure who took matters into his own hands and imposed Allah’s will on his neighbours by warfare. Both were expressions of Muslimness in their time and both find their supporters today. Most people couldn’t care less what Muslims eat or wear but do care about jihad which they see on their streets every few weeks in some new atrocity or other. So, can the APPG tell us, is jihad an expression of Muslimness or not? To do that they would need to go deeply into the theology of Islam and even then would not be able to agree, echoing the arguments raging within and without Islam around the globe.

Chapter 2 Arriving At A Working Definition (p23)

Chapter 2 takes us through the evolving definitions of Islamophobia from the famous 1997 version of the Runnymede Trust through to the APPG one.

Before we visit some of them I have to ask, do MP’s use terms like “intersectional” or “essentialist tropes” or “othering” or “Orientalism” which are scattered throughout the heart of the report, chapters 2 and 3? No they do not. These terms are almost exclusively used by postmodernist whatever-studies zealots and professional Islamophobia hunters such as Dr Chris Allen of Leicester University’s Center for Hate Studies.

This made me wonder, did the APPG members actually write those chapters or did they outsource them to someone “more suitable”? That is how they read both in the language used and the contributors chosen. We will see later how my suspicions were confirmed.

Here is a selection, from the report, of past definitions, starting with the Runnymede Trust one from their Islamophobia: A Challenge for Us All (1997):

     ”…a useful shorthand way of referring to dread or hatred of Islam – and, therefore, to fear
      or dislike all or most Muslims.”

A fairly modest start, confining itself just to Islam and Muslims.

The Council of Europe report, Islamophobia and its consequences on Young People (2005) added racism, discrimination and human rights to the mix:

     ”…the fear of or prejudiced viewpoint towards Islam, Muslims and matters pertaining to
      them…[taking] the shape of daily forms of racism and discrimination or more violent
      forms, Islamophobia is a violation of human rights.”

The UN Special Rapporteur on Contemporary Forms of Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance (2007) added baseless hostility, unequal treatment, victimhood and exclusion:

     ”…a baseless hostility and fear vis-à-vis Islam, and as a result, a fear of, and aversion
      towards, all Muslims or the majority of them. [Islamophobia] also refers to the practical
      consequences of this hostility in terms of discrimination, prejudices, and unequal
      treatment of which Muslims (individuals and communities) are victims and their exclusion
      from major political and social spheres”.

The 2008 report from the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation’s Observatory on Islamophobia went with most of the above plus intolerance and stereotyping:

     ”…an irrational or very powerful fear or dislike of Islam and the feeling as if the Muslims
      are under siege and attack. Islamophobia however goes much beyond this and
      incorporates racial hatred, intolerance, prejudice, discrimination and stereotyping. The
      phenomenon of Islamophobia in its essence is a religion-based resentment.”

The writer of Chapter 2 commented:

      “This definition introduces the intersectional nature of Islamophobia by incorporating
      ‘racial hatred’ as a defining feature of anti-Muslim hostility.”

From our point of view it is worth noting that in 1990 the OIC produced the Cairo Declaration which effectively reduces Human Rights to Sharia Rights (see Article 24, “All the rights and freedoms stipulated in this Declaration are subject to the Islamic Shari’ah”). It is well known that Sharia epitomises intolerance, prejudice, discrimination and religion-based resentment…but only of non-Muslims so that’s ok.

In 2017 The Runnymede Trust revisited the issue with their “Islamophobia: Still A Challenge for Us All” report and baldly stated:

     “Islamophobia is anti-Muslim racism.”

And, to remind ourselves, in 2018 the APPG added the novel term Muslimness:

     “Islamophobia is rooted in racism and is a type of racism that targets expressions of
      Muslimness or perceived Muslimness.”

How has something about Islam and Muslims morphed into something about racism and Muslimness? Why does this definition make no mention of either Islam or fear of any kind, let alone the irrational kind, that the word “phobia” usually refers to?

What we have here is definition inflation, and it is possible because the word has no real meaning beyond what the definer wishes it to mean. The stripes on a tiger are limited by reality. The stripes on a unicorn are limited only by the imagination of the believer in unicorns. One thing we can be sure of is that this is not the end of the story. No doubt some Hate Studies scholar or Islamist activist will be tacking something new and unpleasant onto it within a year or two. How about fascism? No one likes fascism do they? Be my guest. I don’t even ask for a credit.

Here is one last point about the definition. Islamophobia “is a type of racism”. That’s a bit vague isn’t it? What type of racism do they mean? In fact they are talking about cultural racism. It crops up throughout the report like essentialist tropes but I suspect the APPG are a bit coy about presenting such an obvious oxymoron to the general public. They might start wondering whether the Emperor is fully clothed.

In the wonderful world of postmodernism, where words can mean whatever you want them to mean, the term makes perfect sense. Most ordinary people think racism has to involve race but that is just because they are too thick to appreciate the higher understanding. Here you go…all explained on p41:

     ”Race is not about phenotype, race exists first and foremost in the eyes of the racist.
      Race is a group that is defined by the person that makes a generalisation.”

That is why thinking poorly of scholars of Islamophobia is racist.

Chapter 3 Our Findings (p27)

I will refrain from going into the contents of chapter 3 in detail. It is there in the link above for those with a taste for the intellectual equivalent of bog snorkelling. Suffice it to say that it consists of wall to wall grievance-airing by Muslim activist groups and their academic supporters. The only counterview comes in the form of a quote by Douglas Murray, an example of what not to think, to the effect that “the fear of Islam is not irrational but in fact, ‘supremely rational’, because Islam can be both violent and extremist”.

At this point I asked myself, who set the agenda here, who selected the contributors and actually wrote the report, in particular chapters 2 and 3? Checking the Acknowledgements section I found that the group gave thanks to the secretariat with particular mention of Dr Antonio Perra. Who he? This article shows him to be one of those hard left academics who hate everything about Britain, a clear Britophobe in fact.

Not only that but he was until recently a member of MEND, a group described by the Henry Jackson Society as Islamists posing as civil Libertarians. He is just the kind of person who adds fuel to my Islamophobic fantasy of an alliance between the Left and Islam designed to undermine Western civilisation.

Andrew Gilligan adds details both about Dr Perra and about a particular member of the secretariat:

     “One of the APPG’s secretariat, Muhbeen Hussain, is from Rotherham, where in 2015 he
      organised the local Muslim community to boycott the police for their ‘Islamophobic’
      behaviour after the child-sex grooming scandal.”

At this point I thought it no longer necessary to engage with the report on its own terms. It is clearly discredited by its associations. We now know who set the agenda but who put Perra and Hussain in place? Could it have been Baroness Warsi who has always got along fine with MEND? Just asking.

The APPG group have clearly been duped at best by a determined and underhand attempt to portray British Muslims as eternal victims of their host country, thereby driving a wedge between the two. That is an Islamist goal and the APPG have aided it with their nonsensical new definition of Islamophobia.

26 thoughts on “Parliamentarians duped over Islamophobia part 1

  1. tamimisledus

    On a more general islam issue, there is no evidence that mohammad actually existed. Historical evidence cannot show that Medina events came before Mecca events. This timeline was created by muslims, and like all the muslims stories was created to give a particular slant to the truth of islam and the alleged “prophesy” of mohammad.
    As I said earlier, I can give more substance to the interpretation above, if you want to follow this up.

    1. ECAW's blog Post author

      Do you mean Jay Smith’s fascinating video or Robert Spencer’s book about whether Mohammed existed, or something else?

      Muslims believe in the timeline to be found in the Hadiths and the Sira but whether early Muslims created the timeline or remembered it (or misremembered it) is clouded in mystery. Personally I find ibn Ishaq’s timeline clear, and useful since it reflects the orthodox Islamic account. Whether he was faithfully recording what he heard or made it all up I don’t know or feel it necessary to know (I have come across the claim by Islamic apologists, wishing to paint Mo in a good light, that ibn Ishaq included lies coming from those evil Jooooz).

      1. tamimisledus

        I have not seen that video, though I have I have read Spencer’s book.
        I suggest that you also read the equally convincing This calls into question the entire history of the birth of islam.
        If after both of those, you can provide convincing evidence (independent of self-serving muslim stories) then let me have it.
        If you put aside muslim claims for the “birth” of islam and the existence of mohammad (and of course of _allah_) , there is a much more satisfying explanation of how the koran and the various “histories” of islam came into being.
        Note that after taking evidence from the above, I have come to a different conclusion from them about the birth of islam and its nature.

        1. ECAW's blog Post author

          What is this more satisfying explanation?

          I should make it clear that although I regard these theories as interesting I don’t think it necessary to believe that he existed or not. The important issue for me is that orthodox Muslims believe the traditonal accounts. If they can be persuaded of Mohammed’s non-existence so much the better.

          By the way, I have read Townsend’s book “Questioning Islam” which I thought was excellent. I sometimes use it as a source when arguing the toss with Muslims or Islamic apologists.

          1. tamimisledus

            re. Questioning islam”, Townsend is good all round, but you really should read the Mecca history if you give any credibilty at all to the standard muslim explanations for the birth of islam. Spencer on mohammed as well if you haven’t read it.

          2. tamimisledus

            “Theories” about the early history of islam are much more than interesting. Mine especially is crucial.
            I am not expecting muslims (as a rule) to be persuaded that there is no basis for their beliefs. I had an online “convo” with an ex-muslim who had rejected basic islamic beliefs, but nevertheless insisted that mohammed existed on what I perceived to be purely circumstantial thinking. After all, are muslims going to give up belief in a doctrine which gives them a specially privileged place in the universe.
            But if non-muslims can be persuaded that the whole foundation of islam is built on sand, with the express purpose of providing muslims with an excuse to impose sharia (whereby muslims are supreme), then non-muslims will have not give special consideration to muslims and their demands, etc.

          3. tamimisledus

            Just as a by-the-by, I am trying to get to grips with a book by a muslim which claims (if I read it correctly) that we have an ethical duty not to say or do anything which upsets a muslim. Of course muslims, who have the irrefutable explanation for the universe, have no such duty to a non-muslim.
            I feel sure that it is the kind of thinking that informs the APPG definition of islamophobia.

  2. tamimisledus

    It is no good those who object to islam and the APPG definition saying that “islam is not a race”, “a phobia is an irrational fear …, etc.
    Those supporting the definition care nothing for such niceties.
    We must show that the APPG definition just does not hold water and/or that its use is wrong and misguided.
    Easier said than done, I know, but humanity is lost if we don’t succeed.

    1. ECAW's blog Post author

      Agreed. Those who respond to the charge of Islamophobia with “Islam is not a race” are missing the target because the APPG have falsely linked it to racism by means of the bogus concept of “cultural racism”. We need to be up with the game by becoming aware of the “type of racism” which they have used to turbocharge “Islamophobia” ie cultural racism:

  3. tamimisledus

    Even though the actual term only came into being at the end of 20th century, the concept has been around since the creation of islam.
    The term is being used as way of demonising anyone who objects to islam in any way. The demonisation of non-muslims is spread throughout the koran. The current introduction of “racism” into the mix has just ramped up the demonisation.

    1. ECAW's blog Post author

      I can’t agree with you that Islamophobia has been around since the creation of Islam. Islamophobia is the “cry” part of the “crybully” approach adopted by Muslims today but in Mo’s early days in Medina I can see only the “bully” part in evidence.

      Even in his early days in Mecca He didn’t try to make out that those nasty Meccans were acting out of a misplaced fear of Muslims and Islam but were actual enemies of Allah who could expect retribution.

      I suggest, though, that Allah was clearly suffering from something like “Kafirphobia”, being driven to a fury by those who refused to believe in him. We only have to look at the lurid descriptions in the Koran of what he intended to do to them once he got his hands on them. That’s why I think it could be said that Islamophobia is a response to Kafirphobia and that we should try to popularise the term:

      1. tamimisledus

        To be more accurate, I am saying that muslims have used concepts such as islamophobia (although there may have been no exact equivalent) to demonise non-muslims which they used as support for conquering them and exploiting them.

  4. tamimisledus

    Lots of good points here, though I am not sure that they will be enough to change the simple minds who have been taken in or even adopted the APPG definition.
    See below for some additional input.
    I have not covered my points in great depth in case you are too busy on other things, or just not interested. Come back if you want to follow up these points. Constructive criticism always welcome. [I am not a muslim!]

  5. @BostonStrongTrump

    I agree that Islamophobia isn’t a real thing, when in fact it should be called “Islamo-Reality” I Phobia is the fear of an unreal or imagined thing. Claustrophobia is the fear of tight spaces. That is legitimate , ebven though strange. Islamophobia doesn’t qualify as an unjustifiable fear as THey Due in fact “cut Off People’s Heads. Burn People Alive, Rape Women almost daily, and on and on) That my friends isn’t a Phobia, but in fact the reality of what a huge percentage of Muslims belive. The so-called Moderates are just as bad, because they won’t stand up against it, and in my opinion it’s because deep in their Perverted Spirits, wnat the world to be dominated by Islam no matter how many peoplel they have to (Actually Want To) Kill.
    You can read what I ma writing to fight back against The Islamic Invasion Of The World at:

    1. ECAW's blog Post author

      Unfortunately a security warning comes up when attempting to access your site. I know that may just be part of the tech world’s dirty tricks campaign against counterjihad sites but for now I will err on the side of caution.

  6. mike mouse

    Islam is a totalitarian fascist dictatorship masquerading as a religion – islam is a scam – there is no allah. Muslims are brainwashed morons – promised undeliverable fantasies by a non existent allah – in a book of lies supposedly written by a 7th century paedophile. Muslim men are promised 72 virgins when they die carrying out a jihad for a non existent allah. Muslim women are controlled by sharia law and the imam in the mosque is in charge of their lives – bearing children for a non existent allah. Insane religious maniacs. Close all mosques ban sharia law and islam deport all imams and remigrate all muslims as the UK is not an islamic country.

  7. iamcurmudgeon

    Excellent points. Muslims, or anyone else, who like to portray themselves as victims (i.e. phobia suffix) but are really ravenous wolves are mostly just looking for a soft spot to plunge the dagger in.

  8. louis walsh

    No one is being duped. Never make the mistake of thinking that we are dealing with fools. I watch a lot of YouTube videos on matters such as this and these highly influential people keep telling their viewers / followers that the left don’t understand or that SJW’s are stupid while ignoring the fact that they are clever enough to be on the winning side. People are not stupid , they understand – or at least the understand enough. By the way , if you were to summarize some of this content in a YouTube video it would bring a lot of people to your excellent blog.

    1. ECAW's blog Post author

      Thanks but I think a film career is not for me!

      It’s always a puzzle, what is cock up and what is enemy action, for me at least. I am pretty sure that a lot of people I debate with, even some Muslims, are genuine but I know I’m in a minority there. Do Anna Soubry and Theresa May really want the worst for their country? I find it easier to believe they are deluded.

  9. iamcurmudgeon

    Attaching the suffix “phobia” to any word—Islam—or part of a word—homo—should be like waving a red flag with the inscription, “I am trying to shut your opinion down.” Even if I wasn’t suspicious about something before, the moment I see “phobia” attached, I become suspicious.

      1. iamcurmudgeon

        Since I personally have no phobias, in the literal meaning—irrational, paralyzing fear of something not inherently dangerous—but treated real phobias in my career, you could definitely consider me phobophobic. Now we’ll have to add that word to the popular lexicon.

  10. Philip Smeeton

    There is no such thing as islamophobia. Fearing Islam is rational and sensible. Islam and the behaviour of Muslims is terrifying. Hating Islam is not racism, the ideology of Islam is evil, discriminating and murderous. Islam has to be hated and anyone that believes in it deserves to be despised.


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