By Gaurav Arya
4 November, 2017
Wahhabi Islam has made inroads into British society.
The London cabbie is an institution. He loves a good conversation, knows London like the back of his hand and is remarkably candid about how he sees the world.
I was invited to the United Kingdom for a series of lectures and appearances. I gave a speech at Oxford, duly acknowledging that for academic disasters like me, a lecture invitation was the only way to enter the hallowed gates of that institution.
I spoke at the UK Parliament. It was an absolute honour. To be able to state my country’s point of view in the halls of the “mother of all parliaments” is not something one forgets in a hurry.
It was the debate at King’s College, London that confirmed my worst fears. London has a very dark underbelly, a city beneath a city. The people who live in The Queen’s London ignore signs of the other city. Let’s call the other city The Caliph’s London.
The vast majority of Muslims in the United Kingdom are exactly like most Germans were, during World War II—decent, honest and hard-working, but with one fatal flaw. They turn their faces away from what the lunatic fringe is doing to non-Muslims. London is facing radicalisation at levels unheard of. It’s not just stories of teens going off to Syria to fight alongside the Islamic State, but also how attitudes are changing—attitudes towards other religions, women, the difference between right and wrong and the willingness to enforce Sharia, by preaching when needed, and by violence when necessary.
Much of this madness is fuelled by white guilt and the average white man’s deep desire to be politically correct. Yes, the British unleashed horrors on most of the known world. They championed racism, segregation, colonialism and slavery, they ruled with an iron fist. The English have this ability to laugh and if the joke is good, they will even laugh at themselves. They openly accept and repent for mistakes made in the past. Mostly, they bend over backwards, hoping that accommodation and turning a blind eye will make things all right. It will not, not in a thousand years.
You cannot atone for one sin by turning a blind eye to the other. Two sins don’t make one virtue.
Wahhabi Islam, the ideology of the Islamic State, has made inroads into British society. This ideology brooks no argument. It is built upon the bedrock of a very literalist interpretation of Islam. To give you an idea, Ahmadis are a minority amongst Muslims. In many countries, they are considered Wajib-ul-Qatl, or “worthy of being killed”. While Pakistan’s Constitution does not say so, it displays all the neon light that should scare to death any right thinking person. Officially, Pakistan does not recognise Ahmadis as Muslims. In Pakistan, which is more than 94% Muslim, apparently being a Muslim is a big deal. Ahmadis are not allowed to call their place of worship a mosque. They may not marry into a Muslim family. And they are regularly marked for death. Shias and other minorities meet a similar fate, very often. Look up the statistics that Pakistan has published on the Internet. If that doesn’t frighten you, nothing will. Many Muslim countries treat their minorities similarly.
In Islamic doctrine, politics and religion are meant to co-exist.
As an Indian, I can say that we too face many problems in India. Communal violence is not unheard of. Only difference is that what happens in India remains in India. You will find negligible evidence of Indian Muslims indulging in acts of terror anywhere in the world. Indians are almost always the top-performing immigrants wherever they go. Their focus is on education, jobs, saving money and the odd credit card scam. Indians do not send their shortcomings to foreign shores.
Two countries are born 24 hours apart and seem to inhabit different planets. A cursory look will tell you that this has everything to do with democracy. India has had uninterrupted democracy for 70 years. Democracy gives you confidence. It makes the nation’s citizens secure, and less believing of conspiracy theories.
The Organization of Islamic Cooperation is a group of 57 Islamic nations, with a combined population of 1.6 billion people. Less than 10% of these 57 nations are functioning democracies. The member list is an honour role of religious extremism and terrorism. Some luminaries are Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan and Syria.
When immigrants come from such countries, they carry the culture of their nations, which is very closely intertwined with their religion. That is the reason why mixing with the local population is a challenge. If you reach the shores of England, and your closely held socio-religious belief is that drinking will get you to hell and women who wear skirts are of questionable moral character, you are very unlikely to integrate.
Both the United States and United Kingdom have expeditionary armies. They are likely to be involved in conflicts in several continents, at any given point in time. The Muslim world is a hotspot of strife. When Angela Merkel lets in refugees in their thousands into Germany, she also lets in an odd wolf with the sheep. This wolf, a few months and a few dead bodies later, is called a “lone-wolf” by the local press. These lone-wolf attackers are taking revenge in Europe for what the host’s forces did thousands of miles away.
In Islamic doctrine, politics and religion are meant to co-exist. They do not operate in vacuum. Hence, it becomes difficult for Islamic countries to be secular, for the basis of secularism is “separation of church and state”.
White British London cabbies, that species hurtling towards extinction, know their London. They speak in whispers about no-go zones, where a non-Muslim may enter only at his peril. They speak about areas, specific streets, where except for the weather, it is impossible to recognise the place as London.
The Islamic State plan is simple. It starts with a narrative of victimhood, which is meant to arouse guilt. Plugging into state sponsored largesse follows. As their population grows, enter the politician. The British politician knows his voters well. In this, he is almost Indian. He turns a blind eye. Any protest is termed xenophobic and racist. Once you call a white man a racist, you can walk over him. You own him.
From the mosques and madrasas, venom is spewed against other faiths. Little children are taught the meaning of jihad (holy war) and kafir (unbeliever). This is done under the pretext of propagating “our culture”. Casual racism is encouraged.
I saw the worst of this at Kings College, where during a debate, a sitting member of the House of Lords abused people of other religion, specifically Hindus. He called them fundamentalists and drinkers of cow urine. Not only was the Lord ill-informed, he was violently peddling the same narrative that the Islamic State peddles. He came across as the worst kind of rabble-rouser. It was this person who offered a £10 million bounty for the “capture of Bush and Obama”. When he was threatening the then present and past US Presidents, he was a life peer, a member of the House of Lords.
In another incident in which this Lord was guilty of a serious road accident, he blamed the Jews. Just like that. No data. No facts. No witness. No story. Just one sentence…the Jews are guilty of having brought immense pressure on the English judges to punish him.
History will remember Lord Tebbit as a divisive figure, who chose to judge patriotism by the kind of cheering he witnessed at a game of cricket. Lord Tebbit was wrong. But I fear that as years go by, and London becomes colder and greyer, some people will start to discuss and analyse what he meant. A few may even find wisdom in his words.
The answer to this vexing problem lies with the voiceless majority of decent and law-abiding Muslims of United Kingdom, who must come forth and condemn this plague, unequivocally. They must distance themselves from those who seek to poison the social fabric of England.
The United Kingdom is a secular democracy. It taught the world the rule of law. It has little place for a Caliph in London.
Major Gaurav Arya (Retd) is a former officer with the Indian Army.