Sir, Your coverage of the story on the speech of Prime Minister, David Cameron, in Birmingham, was very good, the front page story, editorial and the two interviews of the Labour candidates for leadership of the party.
You gave a different perspective compared to the other media which were so pro-Government. They did not critically look at the speech and its impact on the Muslim community which you did.
How right is Yaha Birt to have analysed the speech on the Prevent counter terrorism on its impact on education, especially of children. The example of a young Muslim boy wearing ‘Free Palestine’ shows Muslims are not allowed freedom of expression under the new terror laws. If it was a Jewish boy wearing pro-Israel badge, nothing would have happened to him or her.
As Birt says some 800,000 Muslim students will be affected by the draconian Prevent strategy. It just shows that the Conservative Government’s policy is to target each and every Muslim in this country. The strategy is not just to target those who the security forces suspect of terrorism.
Such kind of surveillance and targeting of one community in the UK is worse than in dictatorships across the Muslim world.
Sir, It seems our Prime Minister has his head in the sand. He doesn’t know the Muslim community at all. It is so surprising that he is so ignorant of one section of the British community. He is supposed to know all communities as a Prime Minister.
As you so eloquently argued in the editorial in the August 28 issue of The Muslim News, Muslims in this country are integrated as any other community. Most surveys done in this country has shown that Muslims feel more British than non-Muslims, and that they have confidence in British institutions more than non-Muslims.
Not only the Conservative Government, but the Coalition Government and the Labour Government – all refuse to accept that one of the main reasons for radicalisation is our foreign policy. You have given examples from former MI5 heads etc to back up your arguments.
You have also shown that it is a very tiny minority of Muslims – less than 1% – who are involved in terrorism. Yet Cameron has enacted laws targeting the whole of the Muslim community as if all Muslims are involved in terrorism.
Our Government has to wake up and deal with the issue rationally and not emotionally or pander to tabloids.