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Cameron excoriated over his ‘it’s nothing to do with Islam’ lie over the Kenyan terror attack

A GROUP of Islamist terrorists armed with guns and grenades head into a shopping mall in Kenya. They separate out the Muslims from the non-Muslims, let the former go free and massacre the latter.

And what does British Prime Minister, David Cameron, say?

These appalling terrorist attacks that take place where the perpetrators claim they do it in the name of a religion – they don’t.  They do it in the name of terror, violence and extremism and their warped view of the world. They don’t represent Islam or Muslims in Britain or anywhere else in the world.

Civilians who had been hiding inside during the gun battles manage to flee from the Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya on Saturday, September 21. Photo Jonathan Kalan/AP

Civilians who had been hiding inside during the gun battles manage to flee from the Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya on Saturday, September 21. Photo
Jonathan Kalan/AP

Douglas Murray, writing in the Spectator, commented:

I don’t think any sensible person would argue that the perpetrators represent all Muslims. But it seems strange to say that a separation of people — and massacre of them — based solely on their religious identity can be said to have nothing to do with religion.

He added:

I can see why politicians like David Cameron want to make sure that nobody blames Muslims as a whole for attacks like this. But telling the lie that such attacks have nothing whatsoever to do with Islam does no good at all. It lets the extremists off the hook and infuriates everybody else who end up wondering why the Prime Minister cannot see what everybody else can see.

Also in the Spectator, Melanie McDonagh asked:

Do you know the name of Muhammed’s mother? No, me neither. I can manage the names of two of his wives and his Christian concubine, plus his daughter, but not his mother. The matter was, however, of more than academic interest when gunmen took over the Westgate shopping centre in Nairobi. According to witnesses, members of the public were lined up and then gunned down if they failed to name the mother of the founder of Islam or recite verses from the Koran. Those lucky enough to be able to speak Arabic — possibly passages from the Koran — were let go. The rest were fair game.

Now, whatever else you can say about these individuals, I think we can agree, can’t we, that religion looms quite large in their world view? I mean, if knowledge of the Koran or Muhammed’s immediate family is a reason for them to shoot people or not, then I think we can assume that the Islamic faith is, rightly or wrongly, a factor in what they’re doing.

Referring to Cameron’s words “They do it in the name of terror, violence and extremism and their warped view of the world”, McDonagh said:

But that’s precisely what these men didn’t do. They didn’t declare that their motivation was terror, violence or unspecified extremism. What they did mention, besides references to mujahedeen and kaffirs, if the Twitter messages allegedly from them are authentic, is the presence of Kenyan soldiers in Somalia.

‘The attack at Westgate mall,’ went one of them, ‘is just a very tiny fraction of what Muslims in Somalia experience at the hands of Kenyan invaders.’ So, it may well be that they are Somali patriots resentful at the presence of African Union troops in their country, but this is not to exclude religion from the picture, since they themselves go out of their way to make a point of it.

And while it is undoubtedly true that their actions were, are, abhorrent to the great majority of Muslims in Britain and elsewhere — certainly all the ones I know — it’s really not the case, is it, that they don’t represent Islam or Muslims anywhere in the world. They represent, to their own satisfaction, a strand of Islam which is very unwelcome to many moderate Muslims but which does have a basis in the religion and their understanding of it.

She concluded:

If the Prime Minister had merely observed that the actions of the Kenyan jihadists are abhorrent to the great majority of Muslims and certainly the great majority of British Muslims, no one would have disagreed. Indeed, we can take it as read, I think, that his remarks were motivated by an honourable wish to disassociate moderate Muslims from the actions of men whose actions revolt them, and to discourage those who might wish to take out their indignation about the Kenyan atrocities on some unfortunate newsagent in Hackney.

But to say that al Shabaab and its representatives in the Westgate shopping mall don’t represent Muslims or Islam anywhere in the world is simply untrue and if we try to deal with jihadis on the basis that they are unspecified extremists rather than people with a very pronounced religious ideology, it’s not really adding to our understanding of what has happened or our ability to prevent something similar happening here.

34 Responses to “Cameron excoriated over his ‘it’s nothing to do with Islam’ lie over the Kenyan terror attack”

  1. the Woggler says:

    Terror, violence and extremism is what they do. They do those things in the name of religion. Cameron clearly needs the Muslim vote.

  2. the Woggler says:

    Terror, violence and extremism is what they do. They do those things in the name of religion. Cameron clearly needs the Muslim vote.

  3. David Anderson says:

    Don’t worry, omar yousef will be along shortly to tell us they are not Islamists.

  4. T says:

    Interesting to hear the hysteria on bbc r4 tonight about the shocking news that 25% of British young people don’t trust muslims. Why is that even newsworthy?Not all muslims are violent but they stick together like glue, do not integrate, call me a kaffir, shriek with indignation at the merest perception of an insult, demand hysterically that I do as they say and above all do not declare in public that they condemn violence etc. What am I or any other rational decent citizen going to do other than treat muslims with deep suspicion caution and frankly contempt. I suspect the degree of distrust of muslims is far higher than 25%. Now I am not racist but I do claim my right to have negative feelings toward people who consider murder, mayhem and destruction as a justifiable way of promoting the expansion of their deeply distasteful, hateful, intolerant and stupid belief system. Time for muslims, if they really want respect, to muster up all their hysterical energy and condemn from every minaret, mosque, street corner and publication utter and complete condemnation of global jihadism and Muslim fundamentalism. Otherwise I and millions of DECENT people will treat muslims with fully justifiable contempt and distrust. It’s up to muslims not me.

  5. Angela_K says:

    And the 9/11 Twin Towers and 7/7 London bombings were nothing to do with Islam either were they Mr Cameron? What a cowardly prat.

    I note there have been complaints about our BBC calling the Kenyan murderers “Islamist militants” and not Muslim or Islamic terrorists.

  6. T says:

    Here’s a solution for Mr. Cameron and his successors. Outlaw faith schools and make it compulsory for children to go to secular state schools. Irrational religious belief starts with indoctrination of children. Keep the kids away from the dangerous influences of imams, priests, religious scholars and all other pious hate mongers.

  7. barriejohn says:

    T: There’s been bad news recently for the supporters of faith schools.

    http://www.secularism.org.uk/news/2013/09/opinion-poll-shows-big-opposition-to-faith-schools

  8. barriejohn says:

    The Daily Mail has been going bananas over this story over the past few days:

    http://www.secularism.org.uk/news/2013/09/more-revelations-about-the-derby-muslim-free-school

  9. Barry Duke says:

    No, no NO, T. We need MORE Muslim schools:

    This from The London School of Islamics:

    … Muslim pupils should be educated in Muslim schools because the current system is marginalising them. Teaching Muslim children in a Muslim school would remove the “problem of them being exposed” to values that conflict with Islamic faith. Muslim pupils are disadvantaged and marginalised in the city’s state schools because the cultural heritage of the curriculum is “European and Christian”.

    “Muslim schools provide an education in accordance with the Muslim beliefs and values, such as providing single-sex schooling after puberty. They are thus a response to the danger of absorption into the dominant culture.

    “The number of Muslim children is on the increase in Bradford state and church schools. There are lot of schools where Muslim children are in majority. In my opinion, all such schools may be opted out as Muslim Academies for proper education … I think to be fair the Arabic and Persian contributions to the world in medicine, mathematics and other sciences plus their involvement in world affairs should be taught.

    The demand for state funded Muslim schools is in accordance with the law of the land. Muslims are not asking for any favour. I set up the first Muslim school in London in 1981 and now there are 188 Muslim schools and only 12 are state funded.

    “I would like to see each and every Muslim child in a state funded Muslim schools and I hope one day my dream would come true. There is no place for a non-Muslim child or a teacher in a Muslim school. Bilingual Muslim children need bilingual Muslim teachers as role models during their developmental period. There are few schools for Hindu and Sikh communities. Now even Black community is thinking of setting up their own state funded schools for their own children with black teachers.

    “You better teach your children in your own schools and let migrant communities teach their children according to their needs and demands.British Establishment and society should concentrate on the evils of their own society and stop trying to change the way of life of Muslims. Muslim community does not want to integrate with the British society, indulging in incivility, anti-social behaviour, drug and knife culture, binge drinking, teenage pregnancies and abortion.

    “A Muslim is a citizen of this tiny global village. He/she does not want to become notoriously monolingual Brit. He/she is well versed in standard English, Arabic, Urdu and other community languages so that they do not find themselves cut off from their cultural heritage and are able to enjoy the beauty of their literature and poetry.”

    – Iftikhar Ahmad
    http://www.londonschoolofislamics.org.uk/DiscView.asp?mid=50010&forum_id=1&

  10. the Woggler says:

    Time was I’d have disagreed with you, T. No more. If children need to be taught about religion, they should be taught all it’s failings, it’s irrationality, and it’s errors. Public money should not be spent indoctrinating children.

  11. charlie says:

    Barry,
    Regards the comments you quoted from that Islamic clown; why in hell do these “Muslims” live in the UK if they have no desire/intent to “conform” to the UK way of life?
    If I were to move to some other country, I’d do my very best to try and live as a citizen of that country, including sending any kids I may have to secular schools. If these “Muslims” are so set against becoming good citizens of the UK, they ought to get the hell out of the UK and let you good folks live peacefully without them and their vile crap.
    Thanks for giving us a look at a “leading” Muslim and his views on life for his “flock” in the UK.

  12. Broga says:

    Cameron’s comments betray the memory of the people who were murdered and shame him. This man seems to have no principles where his lust to pander to religion, however vile, is concerned. These cowardly comments can do nothing but attract contempt.

  13. Broga says:

    I see Justin Welby has been praying for the gunmen. I would make a few points on this:

    a. His God is omniscient and omnipotent so his God knew what was going to happen, decided that it should happen and did nothing to stop it.

    b. JW might attract more respect if he exposed, and criticised, the religious faith that underpinned these murders. Or would that transgress his oecumenicalism.

    c. When a bunch of murderers asks for an esoteric, and utterly boring and pointless piece of religious knowledge, and guns down those who cannot answer JW might at least acknowledge that the inspiration is faith. They are murdering Christians, not Muslims.

    d. Praying when you are not personally involved i.e.not related to th victim, is a cheap, and is my view tawdry, attempt at holiness. It really doesn’t have the effect intended.

  14. T says:

    Clasped hands and muttered platitudes are no substitute for actually doing something constructive. In truth praying is an insult to the subject. What stupidity to think that such mumblings are actually ackowledged and executed. Primitive.

  15. T says:

    Mr Cameron will soon have plenty of time on his hands to reflect upon his stupid cowardice. Maybe Mr Clegg will have the courage to expose his atheism. If he does he will get my vote this time regardless of his political views.

  16. rikjows says:

    stupid stupid cameron

  17. jay says:

    If this is NOT religious violence, I would ask Mr Cameron “what WOULD a religious attack look like? “

  18. AgentCormac says:

    When will any of our elected public servants ever actually have the balls to call religion what it truly is: divisive, corrupt, power-hungry and based entirely upon fantasy?

  19. barriejohn says:

    The Kenyan authorities are crowing about their “success” here, but in actual fact they have failed spectacularly. The terrorists have achieved all that they planned and more, including worldwide publicity, with many of them apparently escaping disguised as innocent bystanders. As soon as a terrorist outrage begins we have lost the battle; they have to be stopped before they begin their operations, and that won’t be achieved with automatic weapons and grenades but by the use of intelligence. We in the developed world are miles ahead of the developing world in this respect, though that’s no guarantee that such an outrage can’t happen here, as we have seen in the past.

  20. Matt+Westwood says:

    Right, I’m going down the local mosque with a slice of bacon. Anyone I find within who cannot give a fully correct answer to the question “What is the indefinite integral of x square with respect to x?” will be slapped round the face with it.

  21. RussellW says:

    “They don’t represent Islam or Muslims in Britain or anywhere else in the world.”

    This is one of those very rare cases in which the voters should hope that their PM is lying, because if he really believes what he said, it’s all over. The magic pixie dust of religion and the confusion of “race”

    @ the Woggler,

    “Terror, violence and extremism is what they do. They do those things in the name of religion. Cameron clearly needs the Muslim vote.”

    Yes, and what they always have done since the 7th century–and they’ve never been any different, Moslems have been relatively “peaceful” since the 18th century because of overwhelming Western power.

    @charlie,

    “why in hell do these “Muslims” live in the UK if they have no desire/intent to “conform” to the UK way of life?”

    I’ve asked Moslems here in Australia the same question, the answer is rather disturbing, there was no attempt to conceal the agenda. They left their Islamic homelands because the regimes there are not “truly Islamic”, so they intend to build an Islamic society, here, first as an enclave, then the entire country. They’re essentially totalitarian missionaries under the camouflage of multiculturalism.

  22. Peter K (Newark UK) says:

    I don’t like Cameron and I generally support your secularist agenda, but please try to resist flailing at straw men. Cameron, notwithstanding your quote marks, did not say “it’s nothing to do with Islam” (or as Douglas Murray put it: “the lie that such attacks have nothing whatsoever to do with Islam”).

    But let me for my own part say that the Nairobi episode had nothing to do with my own understanding of what Islam is. And it has nothing to do with what many millions of muslims understand by Islam.

  23. Matt+Westwood says:

    The only reason why Islam has not taken over the entire world is because Muslims can’t stop squabbling amongst themselves. So despite their grandiose aims of world domination, they contain within them the seeds of their own destruction.

  24. barriejohn says:

    Matt: The one ray of light on the horizon. Events in Algeria might have been scripted by the Life of Brian team, and would be funny if they were not so tragic:

    Reports of battles between the AIS and GIA increased (resulting in an estimated 60 deaths in March 1995 alone), and the GIA reiterated its death threats against FIS and AIS leaders, claiming to be the “sole prosecutor of jihad” and angered by their negotiation attempts. On 11 July, they assassinated a co-founder of FIS, Abdelbaki Sahraoui, in Paris (although some question the authenticity of their statement claiming credit for this.)

    During the 1995 election, the GIA threatened to kill anyone who voted (using the slogan “one vote, one bullet”). Soon afterwards, the GIA was shaken by internal dissension: shortly after the election, its leadership killed the FIS leaders who had joined the GIA – Mohammed Saïd, Abderrezak Redjam, and their supporters, accusing them of attempting a takeover. Other Islamists suggested that they had objected to the GIA’s indiscriminate violence. This purge accelerated the disintegration of the GIA, leading to suspicion of Zitouni’s leadership: Mustapha Kartali, Ali Benhadjar, and Hassan Hattab’s factions all refused to recognize Zitouni’s leadership starting around late 1995, although they would not formally break away until somewhat later. The GIA killed the AIS leader for central Algeria, Azzedine Baa, in December, and in January pledged to fight the AIS as an enemy; particularly in the west, full-scale battles between them became common.

    In July 1996, GIA leader Djamel Zitouni was killed by one of the breakaway factions – Ali Benhadjar’s Medea brigade, later to become the AIS-aligned Islamic League for Da’wa and Jihad – and was succeeded by Antar Zouabri. Djamel Zitouni had earned notoriety for such acts as the killing of the seven Monks of Tibhirine in March, but his successor would prove to be far bloodier. Under the leadership of Antar Zouabri, its longest serving “emir” (1996–2002), the GIA became a “takfiri” group, considering Algerian society to be in violation of Islamic precepts, therefore justifying the killing of members of that society as a form of purification of heretical elements.

    Like some of his predecessors, Zouabri was himself killed in a gun battle with security forces, in February 2002. The group’s leadership next passed on to Rachid Abou Tourab, who was allegedly killed by close aides in July 2004. Next, Boulenouar Oukil was designated leader of the group. On 7 April, the GIA was reported to have killed 14 civilians at a fake road block. On 29 April, Oukil was arrested.[8] Nourredine Boudiafi iwas the last known “emir” of the GIA. He was arrested sometime in November 2004 and the Algerian government announced his arrest in early January 2005.[9]

    In Algeria, however, the group’s repeated massacres of civilians had drained popular support (although rumors persist that security forces were involved in some of the massacres, or even controlled the group). Meanwhile, a 1999 amnesty law that was officially rejected by the GIA was accepted by many rank-and-file Islamist fighters; an estimated 85 percent surrendered their arms and returned to civilian life.

    The Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat (GSPC) splinter faction appears to have eclipsed the GIA since approximately 1998 and is currently assessed by the CIA to be the most effective armed group remaining inside Algeria. Both the GIA and GSPC leadership continue to proclaim their rejection of President Bouteflika’s amnesty, but in contrast to the GIA, the GSPC has stated that it avoids attacks on civilians.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Group_Islamic_Algerian

  25. Great+Satan says:

    So this is all that years of an expensive education at Eton can serve up is it Mr C.A. Moron ? – how about looking after the interests of the British people for a change as opposed to the dictats of your swindling and tax dodging banking/financial services chums ? maybe if you’re cronies had’nt wound down the UK manufacturing base we would’nt be so reliant on sharia finance & the Wahabis…
    I’ve had enough of this Etonian charm(lessnes), so here’s some plain speaking from Michael Savage, the US DJ who is banned from entering the UK whilst at the same time you allow in and pay welfare (jizya) to islamist hate preachers ; http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=784_1379897406

  26. barriejohn says:

    I’m not sure what to make of Michael Savage; is his ranting just an act, I wonder? I certainly don’t agree with much of what he says (eg on homosexuality, welfare, liberalism). I’m not too happy about climbing into bed (metaphorically, of course) with the loopy Melanie McDonagh either, who also, while castigating Muslims, sees absolutely nothing wrong with irrational Christian beliefs. However, I have to confess that I found myself agreeing with most of what Melanie Phillips said the other day (gulp!).

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2421455/MELANIE-PHILLIPS-No-human-right-hide-justice-veil.html

    PS This was La Phillips’s last Mail column, evidently, which will disappoint those of us who found her rabid rantings hilariously funny at times.

  27. Philip Smeeton says:

    There is only one solution, to political leaders that constantly make excuses for Islam, and that is to vote them out of office.

  28. barriejohn says:

    From the THE site today:

    http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/comment/opinion/rushdie-fatwa-25-years-on-fear-casts-long-shadow/2007653.article?

    The impact of The Satanic Verses is best understood through the contemporary social and cultural concern with the avoidance of “offence”. Writer and broadcaster Kenan Malik, author of From Fatwa to Jihad: The Rushdie Affair And Its Legacy (2010), gives this account of the cultural shift: “The critics of…Rushdie lost the battle but they have largely won the war. They never managed to prevent the publication of The Satanic Verses. But the claim at the heart of the anti-Rushdie campaign – that it is morally wrong to offend deeply held cultural or religious sensibilities – has become incorporated into mainstream liberal thinking. From publishing to academia, from broadcasting to theatre, there is a great reluctance to give offence. In effect we have internalised the fatwa.”

  29. Broga says:

    Here is a bit of uplifting news. I heard Tom Butler, bishop, rambling on this morning and he said the “Christian Family” are supporting each other regarding the massacre. So there we are.

  30. remigius says:

    Right, I’m going down the local mosque with a slice of bacon. Anyone I find within who cannot give a fully correct answer to the question “What is the indefinite integral of x square with respect to x?” will be slapped round the face with it.

    Matt, no!

    DO NOT WASTE GOOD BACON!

    Is the answer 2?

    Or maybe something with pi in it, but squared a bit?

  31. Matt+Westwood says:

    If I tell you what the answer is, they’ll all know it and so they won’t get the bacon-slap!

    Oh very well:

    http://www.proofwiki.org/wiki/ProofWiki:Jokes#Educational_Standards

  32. remigius says:

    Ah, so the answer is what I knew it was, that pi thingy, and whatever, plus a constant!

    Bingo. I win!

  33. RB says:

    I’m not sure how I feel about this. Yes, obviously Cameron’s comments were disingenuous, but as Prime Minister you have to be damn careful what you say.

    Like him or not, he’s the elected leader of parliament and as such, carries influence domestically and abroad. His comments have repercussions – and I mean real repercussions, not a cussing from an internet message board.

    What happened in Kenya was horrible but, on this occasion certainly, Cameron is not deserving of the flack he’s attracted.