While this article was triggered by a defamatory piece by the Quilliam Foundation, I decided to tackle the issue holistically, by not only discussing the fatal flaws in the article itself, but also the problems with the organization itself, and more importantly, the fundamentally flawed attempt by the UK government to impose their own stooges as leaders for the Muslim community.

PDF Version of article is available for download here: Refutation of Quilliam's “Alert” on Islam Channel (PDF)

Introduction

A few days ago I was reading a rather inflammatory piece: a piece that was billed as an “alert” (packing “urgency”) about issues that were no more urgent than my need to redo the paint in my kitchen. It was a piece that combined innuendo, hot-button words, labels, guilt-by-association, and extreme fear-mongering. In its tone, it resembled writing that would typically be more comfortable appearing on LGF, jihadwatch,  frontpagemagazine or Harry's Place (in UK).

Unfortunately, this wasn't Robert Spencer frothing. Rather, the organization issuing the “alert” was the “Quilliam Foundation” (QF) [alternative pronunciation "kwahyt laym foundation"], which formed last year, and billed as a “counter-extremism think-tank”.  The alert was called “Quilliam Alert: Islam Channel and the promotion of extremism“. For those of our readers who are not aware, the QF is two-man show composed of two 'ex-radicals', and funded by the UK government on British taxpayers money for a cool 1 million British pounds.

“Ex-Extremist” Cottage Industry

The QF is just one more episode in the tortuous saga of  the “ex-Muslim-extremist-gold-rush”. While the world economy is souring, and large multinational corporations are declaring bankruptcy, the cottage-industry of “ex-Muslims” or “ex-Muslim-terrorists” or “ex-Muslim-extremists” is still alive and kicking, and always adding to the millionaire-pool. From Walid Shoebet and Kamal Saleem in the States, to Maajid Nawaz and Ed Hussain in the UK, it is basically the same set-up. Here's how the “ex-extremist-who-wants-to-be-a-millionaire” reality show works:

Make up a story (fiction is okay too) of how badazz 'fill-in-the-blanks' you were in your past life, and how you have completely turned your life around now, how you now see the errors of your old malevolent ways, your desire to show penitence for the damage that you had caused, and now wish to usher in an era of global peace and reform by targeting the very radicals that you were once a part of and are so familiar with, and who, if they had their way, would annihilate life on earth as we know it.

There are plenty of adjectives to choose from to fill in the blank above: radical, terrorist, extremist, jihadist, fundamentalist, etc., and you get bonus points for adding key-words such as PLO, Hamas, Hezbollah, Ikhwaan, Hizb ul-Tahrir, Wahhabi, Jamate Islami, or Deobandi.

It is pitiful that governments are so paranoid about this threat they are willing to give QF a million pounds of tax-payer's money, despite the fact that the only credentials they have is the claim that they are 'ex-extremists'. Such a tactic speaks volumes of the level of intelligence of those agencies that call themselves 'intelligence agencies'.

For those who do decide to follow up on this 'get-rich-quick' scheme of selling their religion for a paltry price, something really amazing always seems to have happened to them that inspired them to come around to a version of 'moderate' Islam (in one case, Kamal Saleem's amazing story of “As a 7-year old, I carried another boy off the war-zone on my back, and he saved my life by taking bullets for me! Forrest Gump anyone?).

This version of 'moderate-Islam' that they seem to discover is, rather strangely,  always anti-mainstream-Islam, highly pro-government, usually pro-war and many times, downright pro-Israel. In fact, if one didn't know any better, a less-discerning reader might actually confuse some such 'ex-extremists' with neoconservatives.

Sprinkle a little of “my life is in danger because other badazz Muslims want to get me”, (ala Irshad Manji's bravery) and you have the perfect prototype to shop around.

To monetize at maximum levels, get a book deal (any publisher would love to sell a million books to other bigots in order to reconfirm their bigotry), set up an interview on FOX, Hannity, Melanie Phillips, etc., or in the case of QF, go straight to the Home Minister.

Add all of these ingredients together, forget about possible repercussions in the Hereafter, and 'voila', you have yourself one might sweet deal to live the rest of your (worldly) life with.

Organic Representation vs. Forced Representation

And so we continue down the same path, regurgitating the counterproductive policies of the media and the government. As I wrote in this piece, the media, and by extension, the government, cannot credibly plug in a representative for Muslims who is actually not an “organic” representative of Muslims. Those who claim to champion democracy  should take a moment to actually study the phenomenon: you can't create a Muslim spokesman for Muslims and impose him on the community, you need to let the community choose who they really view as being a model representative of themselves.

A cursory review of the blog-world, and of private and public conversations in Muslim circles, drives the point home: no matter how much the media stuff the wallets or egos of these “created representatives”, they will continue to be loved and listened to only by those who chose them, viz., the media and government. Muslims seem to develop even more mistrust for such people. You cannot rub this love off to the Muslim masses, as leadership and love is developed by Imams and religious scholars by their (a) bonafide training in Islamic knowledge, (b) continuous service to the Muslim community, and (c) garnering the respect of the public on account of their own merit, not on the shoulders of a willing media or government grant.  As I stated in the linked piece:

When you pick and choose those figures, especially the ones despised and sidelined by the vast majority of Muslims, then the message you are sending to Muslims is:

  1. You (the media) will decide who represents us.
  2. You (the media) feels that Muslims cannot decide for ourselves who we want to represent us.
  3. You (the media) are creating “Uncle Toms” to represent the opinion that You (the media) want people to hear: the opinion that suits your fancy.

Lest anyone misunderstand what I am saying, no one is discouraging Muslim leadership from participating in specific government programs, with some basic conditions. It is one thing for the government to cooperate with established INDEPENDENT Muslim leaders in the community, in order to unite against a common threat of radicalism; it is quite another to recruit marginal figures with suspect backgrounds to toe the government line in every issue, and impose them upon the Muslim community as their representatives. You can represent only those who want you to represent them; you can't force representation. One would have thought that a “democratic” nation would understand that.

In fact, the result of “forced representation” is usually the opposite. As in the example of Quilliam, the founders not only failed to gain any foothold in the British Muslim community (not in ANY mainstream quarter), but in fact are more despised than ever before. With this in mind, how do you expect these lap-poodles to make any impact on “extremism” or to influence any Muslim in “leaving extremism”?  You might have as well chosen Nick Griffin of the BNP to head the Foundation… at least you'd be honest about your intentions!

Cross-Links: The Fake Hype

A hallmark of marginal entities and neocon networks is that they use a web of friendly or surrogate websites to spread their message, in order to give the appearance that the article or the viewpoint is more popular “organically” than it really is. This is extremely popular with right-wing websites such as jihadwatch, whose article is picked up by multitudes of surrogates who echo the same message.

Thus, in our case, the QF piece was picked up on “Pickled Politics” by “Faisal Gazi” under the pseudonym “Sid”. Faisal originally plagiarized the article without any references, was called out by a sharp commentator, Ravi, and went on to bungle his excuses. Eventually, he blurted out the real reason for trying to stifle the Quilliam reference,

I posted this in my own name and intentionally left Quilliam off the post to see if we could have a discussion on Islam Channel without it degenerating into another round of  “But Quilliam does not represent British Muslims” horse****.

Pay attention, UK Home Office, this is how much credibility Quilliam has: that even Quilliam's cronies are afraid to be associated with it!

The “Quilliam Alert”

Getting back to our piece, the Quilliam Foundation contends that the highly-popular “Islam Channel” promotes extremism. The alert claims that Islam Channel is giving too much time to “Islamists”, “wahhabi graduates of Saudi universities”, and for added emphasis, the Hizb Tahrir, not forgetting to mention the organization's goal of world domination, in which women and minorities are stripped off their rights.

The first question then: What is an “Islamist”? Or a 'Wahhabi' for that matter? Here's your homework, Quilliam minions: please go through this article on the uses of the term “Wahhabism”, and then use the money given to you to actually think through this and give us a coherent definition.

The second question: If, as you claim, you are championing the rights of freedom and democracy, why deprive groups of their right to promote what they believe are legitimate causes, as long as they are doing so via democratic means? After all, each group only wishes to champion its causes, and in a democracy all ideas are given the fair and free chance to be heard, and people should be free to make up their minds. We, for one, are not calling for the banning of the BNP or other blatantly racist organizations. Nor does any sensible person argue that Christians who lobby to ban abortions should be themselves banned from the country, even though they are attempting to impose their own 'shariah' (holy law) on the country. Once again, as long as the means are legitimate, any group should be allowed to function in a free environment.

The third question: you of all people, ex-Hizb Tahrir members, should be the last people on earth to throw around red-herrings and employ scare-tactics that you know to be lies. So what if a person belongs to Jamat Islami? You know all too well, coming from your 'radical' background (as one of the biggest critics of JI for being 'too soft') that they are not 'radical extremists', but rather pacifist quietists. The 'guilt-by-association' of graduating from Madinah University is so nefarious, coming from 'Muslims', that it speaks more about your intentions and character than anything else. And for the record, none of the actual terrorists for any of the infamous attacks around the world had anything to do with Madinah!

Our Response:

Azad Ali

Let's start with the nonsense spewed about Azad Ali. Perhaps for many of our readers this will be the first time they have heard of Azad Ali; however, knowledge of Azad's background is not necessary, since the piece itself provides enough holes.

What is it that makes Azad an extremist? Apparently, he was suspended from his job for writing blogs which have been interpreted as condoning terrorist attacks. Note the weasel word interpreted. Who interpreted? On what authority was the interpretation made? Did anyone ask Azad about his agreement with the interpretation?

Based on a vague premise of a vague interpretation, the Quilliam alert goes on to assume that “despite his extreme views”, he was elected to the council of Liberty, a human rights pressure group. Okay. So, we can assume that the Liberty group didn't know anything about Azad's  “dangerous” background, but trust Quilliam- they must have some inside knowledge that the rest of the world is not privy to.

As if Quilliam didn't enough problems with credibility, they made sure what was left of it was crushed to smithereens. For their source on the Azad Ali's extremism, Quilliam editors provide us with a link to the Evening Standard, which is, you guessed it, an English tabloid! Not that the Quilliam piece is any better than tabloid journalism (sans the racy pictures), but let's humor them by reviewing the Evening Standard's premise for setting Azad up as an extremist:

He [Azad Ali] describes non-Muslims as “sinners” and says Muslims should “hate [non-Muslims'] disbelieving actions.

Oh my god. What blasphemy! How can non-Muslims be sinners, when in fact only Muslims are sinners?! Hate disbelieving actions? What extremism! In fact, we should love believing in the trinity, we should love drinking and eating pork! If we don't do so, we could become the next extremists!

Yasir Qadhi

Next in line on the extremists on IslamChannel is the “wahhabi graduate” of the University of Madinah, our own Yasir Qadhi. Ah yes, the buzz-word of 'Wahhabi' again; anyone who doesn't agree with your version of Islam is simply a 'Wahhabi'. According to any standard piece of writing in the modern media, a 'Wahhabi' is a Muslim who believe homosexuality is a sin, or that Shariah law is the law of God, or who shun 'mainstream' sexual practices and live with conservative family values. Muslims: get over it. The abstract theological differences that differentiate some classical groups of Islam have no relevance in this media and government onslaught: any Muslim who is somewhat faithful to Islamic values is labeled a 'Wahhabist'. The term has become totally meaningless.

But what did poor Qadhi say? According to Quilliam, Qadhi denied the Holocaust and also denounced Shiasm. Blasphemy of blasphemies!

First of all, EVEN if Qadhi did both, since when do such matters equate to terrorism ? In this day and age, it is okay for politicians to say that Mecca should be nuked, for mainstream Christian theologians to say that Islam is a religion of Satan, or famous  media personalities to claim that Muslims are inherently evil and violent- all blatant Islamophobia – yet when a person questions a historical account or theological understanding, he becomes an extremist?

The first charge (of alleged Holocaust-denial) actually shoots QF in the foot. Sh. Yasir wrote a very clear and honest explanation of that charge, part of which is (see this post on MM),

I was a young, budding, twenty-something undergraduate at Madinah when I gave that talk, during my very first cross-Atlantic da'wah trip (I must have done over thirty by now). Its been almost a decade since that one-time mistake; I admit it was an error and an incorrect 'fact' was propagated. But even in that talk, I did not deny the actual occurrence of the Holocaust, or express any support or admiration for Hitler, or claim that all Jews were worthy of being despised or hated.

Just to clarify: I firmly believe that the Holocaust was one of the worst crimes against humanity that the 20th century has witnessed. Such a crime did not happen overnight, either. Rather, the systematic dehumanization of the Jews in the public eye of the Germans was a necessary precursor to this event. (As a side, all of this is food for thought, especially in the times that we live in, where some elements are trying to dehumanize all Muslims as well.)

But what clearly exposes the evil of QF is that the website they obtained this accusation from (a rabidly right-wing pro-Zionist website) clearly linked to this letter by Sh. Yasir as well, and proceeded to refute it (primarily by implying it was disingenuous). In other words, QF is well-aware of this explanation and retraction, and yet they continue to persist in spreading this. If this does not show the true intentions of QF, I don't know what else will.

On the subject of Shias, I personally do find it oddly intriguing that it is considered permissible for some Shias (not all) to defame and degrade some of the historical figures that Sunnis venerate (such as Umar, Abu Bakr, Aisha rd), but it is not okay for Sunnis to defend these figures and call the Shias out for what they are saying. But I don't want to go down the Sunni-Shiite tangent now.

Taking a cue from QF, another British commentator, Mehdi Hassan, penned an article against the unfair portrayal of IslamChannel (perhaps because he himself has been a guest on it), but then went on to unfairly attack Yasir Qadhi in what can be considered a confused and confusing message.

But herein lies the problem: a Sunni, by definition, will very strongly (and, at times, emotionally) disagree with Shia doctrine, and a Shia will do the same with Sunni doctrine. Such disagreements cannot be taken as a sign of  'extremism',  but rather of simple affiliation. One can be committed to one's faith tradition and disagree with another (sometimes passionately), but as long as one does incite violence against another group, it should not be called extremism. What do we say of those Catholics who claim that salvation only lies within their Church and Protestants are doomed to Hell; or of Protestants who consider Catholic prayers to saints tantamount to idolatry; or of both Protestant and Catholics who consider Mormons to be evil heretics misguided by Satan himself? Are they all closet extremists guilty of becoming potential terrorists?

Once again, though, Sh. Yasir, in a comment on the anti-Semitism clarification article, explained that clip in more detail (please see entire comment, the following are excerpts of it):

The link that you allude to is from my Kitab al-Tawhid series, which is even earlier than the Surah Yusuf one. It is definitely the 'old' me, much more fiery and zealous in my tone… while I would not speak about Shiites in such a manner anymore…as a Sunni theologian, I cannot retract from my claim that the belief that the Qur'an is corrupted is kufr…Hence, cooperation can and should occur with Shiites, on different levels, as it should occur with all groups claiming to be Muslim…

Note that this [i.e., Shias are wrong] is a theological and moral claim; it carries no legal implications whatsoever in the current context of our lives. If anyone believes this, that is their choice, and we will all return to God who shall judge between us. Also, in light of the physical violence taking place between Sunnis and Shiites all over the world, I must state that I do not in any way, shape, fashion or form condone, much less encourage, this violence, and never have. Sunnis and Shias should dialogue and debate, but nothing is gained by resorting to violence against one another. While I find certain theological beliefs repugnant, my criticism remains on a purely moral and theological level.

Lastly, please note that I have never said that all Shiites are non-Muslims. I have never believed that and still do not

Another interesting side-bar: Quilliam's Majid Nawaz stated in an answer to an audience question by Yasir Qadhi:

AUDIENCE (M)-YASIR QADHI
Well, this leads me to another issue. You seem to have no problem with someone quoting  John Locke, or somebody quoting Tocqueville, or any other political philosopher, but the day that a Muslim stands up and quotes what he believes to be the word of God and the word of the messenger of God, you seem to have a problem with that. I find that double standards.

MAAJID NAWAZ
Of course not, of course not. May I remind you that I began this discussion saying Besmi Allah Al Rahman Al Rahim and quoting from the Qur'an, and what I'm saying is, that's not the problem. Muslims engaging in politics is not a problem. You are not from an Islamist organisation, I know you, and you're not from an Islamist background, so of course when you engage in politics, you engage in politics as an ethical, a religious person, and you follow the standards that are set up in your country. This comes back to the question I've asked the other panel: in the West, what are the tangible aims that you would grant to political Islamists that distinguish them from normal Muslims who engage in politics?”

But wait, hold on a sec, aren't you just releasing an 'alert' stating the exact opposite? So, what is it, Majid Nawaz? Is Yasir Qadhi an “Islamist” or he isn't one? This is what we say to a clear-cut winner here in America: scorecard baby!

Inayat Bunglawala

The Quilliam hit-job then goes on to the attack against Inayat Bunglawala, a representative of the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB)-a grass-root organization that actually has a large following among Muslims.

Bunglawala's “extremist” crimes? The government broke off relations with MCB, because its general-secretary signed a statement on the Israel-Palestine issue. As this iengage article notes, “what responsibility Inayat bears for the signature of a declaration by another. Any liberal would contend that individuals be held responsible for their own actions and not the actions of others”.

This is of course typical of guilt-by-association techniques that are hallmark of the neocons. More damning for poor Bunglawala (according to QF) is that he complained to BBC about its use of “extremist” labels. By that account, Victoria Brittain must also be a Muslim extremist since she makes exactly the same case (forget that she is not even a Muslim).

Global Peace & Unity Conference

Finally, the slanderous piece by Quilliam goes on to attack the Global Peace & Unity Conference, an annual event attracting nearly 30,000 people, as having “featured anti-Semitic speakers, Holocaust deniers and supporters of terrorist violence and gender apartheid – as a well as a range of hardline Wahhabi speakers – while moderate, tolerant Muslim voices have been sidelined.”

I think the truth of the matter is that this is just sour grapes since the charlatans Ed Hussain and Majid Nawaz were/are not invited to this event. These two probably believe that they represent all that is moderate and tolerant. Thus, simple logic: no Ed/Majid, no moderates!

On the same post by Faisal Gazi that I mentioned earlier, a certain Imran Khan (not “the” Imran Khan) joins other commentators in literally ripping Faisal apart, and he makes this useful comment that effectively kills the Quilliam slant on GPU (note Faisal never answers any direct queries or refutations against his claims, but just goes in circles-another hallmark of someone who doesn't have substantive arguments). This is the summary of the comment:

  • Out of 35 speakers in the conference line-up, 19 are Muslims and 16 are non-Muslims
  • Of the 19 Muslims there is a wide range of creeds and people ranging from Sheikh Yusuf Estes to Yusuf Islam. Now Yusuf Islam is hardly the typical Wahhabi!
  • We then have Jermain Jackson, Lord Sheikh, Shahid Malik, Zareen Roohi Ahmed, Salma Yaqoob, Sadiq Khan, Imran Khan. None of these can be said to be Wahabi.
  • Amongst the non-Muslims we have Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev Riah Abu El-assal (Bishop in Jerusalem), Tony McNulty, Jack Straw, Simon Hughes, Nick Clegg, Sir Ian Blair, William Rammell, Steven McLaughlin, Dominic Grieve, Ramesh Kallidai, Tony Benn, John Rees, Stephen Timms, William Rodriquez (Survivor of 9/11), Rabbi Yisroel Dovid Weiss (Netuei Karta).
  • In addition there are Nasheeds which are more sufi/brailwee oriented than Wahabi. There is arts and exhibits etc.

External Refutations:

In the refutation mentioned earlier at iengage, the author systematically tears apart the QF piece as well:

It is tedious to have to respond to QF's nonsense, mostly because nonsense is all they seem to be in the business of producing. But, it is necessary to shine a light on the shallowness of their strategy if only for it to be well understood that their nonsense, whatever the volume of output, simply won't wash.

The QF's logic is to be marveled at. It appears to want to support Muslims who would thrive in a 'secular, democratic and liberal country', though its methods clearly pit it closer to authoritarianism and thought control, the very antithesis of the 'democratic and  liberal' ideals they keep telling us that they espouse.

This is similar to what Thabet mentioned here:

This is why I regard the Quilliam Foundation (or is it just Quilliam?) with disdain: they attack Osama Saeed (who I have also disagreed with in the past) over his support for 'extremists', yet they defend a warmongering idiot like Michael Gove on their FAQ page.

In fact, this is why I regard a number of Muslim liberals* with disdain: their silence on racism, empire and war, if not outright complicity with it.

Conclusion:

In conclusion, I'd like to leave the readers with the following takeaways:

  1. Quilliam Foundation does not represent the interests of British Muslims. It is not only because of their lack of financial independence, but because of a complete lack of credibility, qualifications and community support.
  2. The statements in the QF “alert” are slanderous, and clearly run afoul of any honest attempt at gathering facts about the people and organizations attacked in the alert. Rather than alerting others to the reality of potential extremists, more than anything it alerts us to the reality of Quilliam Foundation.
  3. The statements in the alert contradict other statements made by the same people at Quilliam (e.g. Maajid Nawaz on Yasir Qadhi), as well as intentionally ignoring newer statements made by those attacked, in which they clarify these accusations. This once again raises questions of credibility and draws a large cloud over Quilliam's intentions and purpose.
  4. The piece is akin to tabloid journalism, and the link to a tabloid reinforces this point.
  5. The piece is meant to sensationalize and create fear. It is similar to hit-jobs by Spencer at Jihad Watch, Melanie Phillips, and other similar actors. Because there was no real research involved, this should not have emanated from a “think-tank”, which is being funded by tax-payer pounds for research and analysis.
  6. It is clear that the Quilliam founders know very well that their “targets” in the alert are not calling Muslims to violence. The “targets” may have different views on morality, on theology, etc, but there is no evidence whatsoever that they ever condoned violence. So what exactly is Quilliam's agenda?
  7. We were unable to locate a single example of productive output from Quilliam that was actually accepted by the Muslim community (even a significant minority), and which led to tangible benefit for the community or even for the UK government.

Take Action

I call upon the readers (especially British readers!) to write to the Home Office, demanding that funding based on taxpayers' support be stopped to Quilliam, for all the reasons mentioned in this article and in the linked articles. The Quilliam Foundation is only leading to the creation of more hostility between Muslims, and creating an unnecessary and sensationalist climate of fear and hatred between Muslims and the UK government. Furthermore, it has had negligible and undocumented impact on extremism.

Be succinct and polite. You can point them to this post for evidences. The Home Office contact can be found here:

Telephone: 020 7035 4848, Email: public.enquiries@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk

If you write to them or call them, please post a comment here to encourage others.

Other Resources:

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89 Responses

  1. Indigo Jo Blogs

    Amad debunks Quilliam hit job…

    Amad at Muslim Matters has posted a refutation of a “hit job” article issued by the so-called Quilliam Foundation against a number of Muslim figures and organisations including Inayat Bunglawala, Yasir al-Qadhi and the Global Peace and Unity event, a…

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  2. munir

    salaam alaikum
    I have had a few run ins with “Sid” at Pickled Politics. He is really a rather nasty character who talks about Islam and Muslims from the standpoint “I am a Muslim” (though he once referred to himself as “techinically an apostate” and is highly secular) ; but he has a visceral hatred of religious Muslims and people who try and defend Muslims which he hides behind a hatred of “Islamists”. If you dare correct his errors about islam or contradict him he ignores your comments and instead launches into slanderous attacks on you (he accused me of supporting the rape and genocide of Bengali Muslims audhobillah), accusing you of things you never says or he simply lies or distorts your words,

    Im use to talking with religious people so its genuinely shocking to debate with people who just want to win an argument and dont care what immoral means they use to do it.

    Other than that its not a bad site. There is a Sikh guy Sunny Hundial who is very fair minded and defends Muslims against Islamophobia.

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  3. Yasir Qadhi

    What irritates me the most is that it appears to me that these people (certain politicians, certain media outlets, ‘QF’ and their ilk) are not really desiring peaceful co-existence, but rather intentionally stirring fear and provoking hatred. In other words, they are doing exactly what they accuse others of doing. The only reason they would want to do this (in my mind) is for personal fame. As with the Shadow Home Secretary Dominic Grieve, who publicly accused me of being a Holocaust-denier, had he truly wished for good, he would have approached me directly during the conference, instead of taking from a clearly racist and Islamophobic website, and then using me and others to bash the entire GPU as being extremist (despite the fact that they reached out to him and many other politicians and Muslim voices).

    My alleged ‘Holocaust-denial’ has already been explained in another article on this site; not only is that accusation simply untrue, I have admitted making a mistake and quoting erroneous facts.

    As for my ‘anti-Shiite’ stances, I identify with Sunni Islam, and by definition I will disagree with Shiite doctrine. The two groups do differ about many doctrines, including that of taqiyya and status of the Companions (including Aisha). There is no doubt in my mind that in that clip, I too fell into the sin of ‘sensationalism’ myself, and the tone and style of delivery reflects that of an over-zealous 21-year old (go figure!) So, of that, yes, I am guilty as charged. But the difference is that I have moved on from that style and rhetoric, unlike those who are far older and more experienced than I, yet continue to persist in such scare-tactics. And I do find it amusing that they seem to care so much about certain groups allegedly stirring up hatred of others, yet once again, by doing what they are doing, they fall prey to the exact same charge, and actually do bring about a climate of fear and hatred towards large segments of Muslims.

    In any case, it is Allah who writes acceptance for people on Earth, and I pray that all sincere du’aat who are subjugated to such attempts at humiliation are rewarded in this world and the next.

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  4. moi

    excellent peice and one that was badly needed to expose org’s like quilliam. i heard mr maajid nawaz on doha debates and was shocked at the stuff he was saying and no muslim stood up to box him up… i immediatly wrote him an email asking him to explain to me that on what grounds did he establish the fact that islam was not a political idealogy… ofcourse he never answered.

    its very important we all get together and block the way of ppl like maajid nawaz who are doing great harm to islam. our biggest enemies are not the non muslims and the usa govt or jews but ppl like maajid nawaz.. but alas we pray that Allah give him guidance as Allah gives guidance to anyone he wishes.

    if you read up on the whole Qadiani practice in the indian sub continent you realize how close quilliam is to it… the british asked the mr. qadiani to just say he was a false prophet and stop jihad and thats it…. new org;s like these funded by the west are also essentially doing the same.. telling ppl to pray and do everything that is in islam but jihad! because you see jihad is the one thing that terrifies the life out of non muslims…

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  5. Entertained & Enlightened!

    My name says it all, Jazakallakhair bro(s).

    I cannot WAIT for Quilliam’s response *rubs hands with glee*

    Although Im sure it won’t be a response, more of a nervous shoving to the side topped off with many a blustery word. Its all in the name of exposing their hollow centres inshaAllah!

    Write to the Home Office my good tax-paying people!
    Peace

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  6. Andrew Purcell

    I met Yasir Qadhi through his older brother when he was going to school in Houston. A long, long time ago. To use a not entirely polite term, I thought he was a “bearded uncle” long before he had a beard.

    Yes, I know what he looks like without a beard.

    He seemed to be more interested in forms and appearances than in describing why Islam could make any contributions to the late Twentieth Century (it has been some time since I saw him last), and from what I know of his career he hasn’t changed all that much.

    In fact I recently came across a podcast where he explained for two hours why a beard makes a man a better Muslim and why a longer beard makes a man a better Muslim than a shorter beard.

    While I am willing to laugh at him and argue with him, I will not stand by as he is being maligned by people who care nothing for any truth that does not fit an agenda. Anyone who tries to link him to any cause or people promoting violence, especially violence in the name of God, is demonstrating a general lack of honesty and integrity.

    Yasir, if you read this, tell your brother he changes e-mail addresses too often and too quickly for an old guy like me to keep up.

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  7. Sameer

    salaam aleikum,

    Your write up is good, but it missed a few points:

    1. the “I-was-an-extremist/jihadi-and-am-now-in-bed-with-neo-cons” was/is strictly a British Govt. production and show at the moment, the U.S. neo-cons are rehabilitating Arab nationalists for this cause (hoping that since only 10% of Americans have a passport and have ever traveled outside the U.S. they are simply too ignorant to l bother to ask detailed questions about the motivations of former supporters of “terror” now militant neo-con cheerleaders — Nonie Darwish, Wafa Sultan, etc.).

    2. You can tell the motives of the munafiqs engaged in this enterprise, by looking over the following episode. Google the name:
    Hassan Butt

    watch this video:

    and look over these articles:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2009/feb/09/uksecurity-july7

    http://uk.reuters.com/article/featuredCrisis/idUKL9420556

    He confessed he had also stabbed himself in the arm to make it appear as if he had been attacked by extremists for speaking out against violence!

    this part of his court testimony is VERY interesting:

    Cross-examined by Andrew Edis QC, prosecuting, Butt was asked: “So, you were a professional liar then?
    Butt replied: “I would make money, yes.”
    Edis continued: “If the money’s right you’ll say absolutely anything?”
    “Absolutely anything, yes,” Butt said, “If I wasn’t going to cash up on it, someone else was going to cash up on it.

    “that someone else who was going to cash in on it..” = Quilliam .

    and read his entire case history. He fabricated being a “jihadi” and was a part of a group called al-Muhajiroun (which many many people in British govt. circles and media claim is a British intelligence “honey trap” to attract wannabe jihadis):

    http://www.national-anthems.net/forum/article/misc.immigration.australia+nz/210808

    3. The people at Quilliam, also unfortunately have received support from some either extremely ignorant/ naive or social climbing members at CAIR.
    This is Arsalan Iftikhar, a CAIR “national legal director” who spoke in support of the launch of Quilliam and fully agrees 100% that Quilliam is correct to attack “extremism” (not realizing that CAIR itself falls under Quilliam’s definition??):

    http://www.quilliamfoundation.org/component/content/article/51-video/158

    speaking alongside and fully in support of Ed Husain at the Doha Debates here

    We can start by FIRST demanding answers from those who claim to speak/act on behalf of Muslims by putting down the community and taking govt. funds to work against the interests of BOTH Muslims in the UK and in the US.

    regards,

    Sameer

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    • Amad

      A couple of points on Sameer’s comment: Arsalan Iftikhar no longer works for CAIR. Secondly, did he speak on behalf of CAIR or on an individual basis? The last thing we want to do is to use guilt-by-association and do exactly what we despise from Quilliam and neocons.

      Finally, I don’t know what Arsalan had in mind when the organization was first launched, but people make mistakes based on what they see at the moment. It would be interesting to know what Arsalan believes about these charlatans now. I’d like to give him at least that benefit of doubt.

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  8. Amad

    I’ll act on my own advice. My feedback to the Home Office (using form on the website):

    I write to you with regards to the funding provided with UK residents’ tax-payer funds to Quilliam Foundation.

    I am greatly concerned by the Home Office’s funding of an organization that is run by individuals with no other qualifications than their claims to extremism in their past lives.

    In the time since their inception, Quilliam has done no good for either the Muslim community or the UK government in its stated objective of reducing extremism that is associated with violence.

    Rather, Quilliam has been on witch-hunts against individuals and organizations that seem to be driven by personal agendas and lack of proper research, than any tangible benefit with regards to its stated objective.

    This witch-hunt has led to Quilliam being more despised than ever before by the Muslim community, and if the intention was to have Muslims help with a “Muslim problem” (for argument’s sake), then this is a totally failed experiment.

    I urge you to read this detailed post that has been written to refute Quilliam’s latest tax-payer funded “alert”, which relies on tabloids and on old information to slander other individuals, who I hope will sue Quilliam for it.

    Please see this link:
    http://www.tr.im/koh8

    I urge the Home Office to investigate the claims presented in the article, and to immediately cease funding to this Foundation.

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  9. Leila

    Amad do you live in the UK? Who are you to speak for the Muslim community in the UK, I for one do not despise QF. I do not agree with them in this instance, but i am supportive of their other work such as their stance on Anwar Al Awlaki, i dont see any other Muslim organisation standing up to extremist preachers.

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    • Amad

      Leila, no I don’t live in the UK, but we do have staff members who do and reviewed the article.

      Secondly, I am not speaking for the Muslim community, just expressing my opinion on what seems quite widespread (all you have to do is to look around on the web on this topic). Even the pickledpolitics guy didn’t want to mention Quilliam in his support to the slander. Isn’t that quite an eye-opening episode?

      Thirdly, Yasir Qadhi is our Shaykh and one of MM’s founder, and by all means, we will defend him against slander.

      Fourthly, this has nothing to do with Al-Awlaki, the alert didn’t mention him, neither did Islam Channel put him on. So, please keep this red herring out of the topic.

      And finally, the subject of the slander included other Muslim brothers and Islamic organizations. That is sufficient for any Muslim to get involved, even if the Muslim were living in Timbuktu!

      It’s my turn to question you: Why don’t you tell us how the facts I have mentioned here, and the claim of slander by Quilliam, are wrong? Let’s argue about the issues.

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  10. iMuslim

    As a UK-based MM staffer, I am happy for Amad to have written this piece. He has the skills for such analysis that I lack (I stick to Biology and the odd, dodgy marriage article…). If my name was at the top of this piece it would not improve it, other than to make others a little happier that a ‘Brit Muslim’ was the author.

    I also plan to write to the Home Office, insha’Allah. Jazakallah khair for the information – this article has been a long time coming.

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    • Amad

      But I must say, iMuslim, you are carrying all of Britain (for MM) on your able shoulders quite well mashallah!

      And this is an opportunity to ask any British readers who like to blog/write and want to write for MM, to send us a sample at info at muslimmatters dot/org.. we are always looking for new blood, esp. the Brit kind :)

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      • Amad

        I have another suggestion. Let’s also write to the Doha Debates, that is intended to highlight free speech, about Quilliam’s attempt at stifling free speech and their slander of others who have participated at Doha (like Yasir). The Doha Debates folks need to strike anyone associated with QF off their list of CREDIBLE speakers.

        Here’s the email to Doha Debates:thedohadebates@qf.org.qa

        If anyone can provide a succinct template to write there, we can press on this end too.

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  11. Ibn AbuAisha

    @ Yasir Qadhi
    …and I pray that all sincere du’aat who are subjugated to such attempts at humiliation are rewarded in this world and the next.

    Ameen Ya Shaykhana and May Allah grant you, your family and all the families of Du’aat firmness and patience.

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  12. Leila

    I am not disputing the facts that you have mentioned, but your feedback to the Home Office as a spokesperson for the Muslim community in the UK. There is a significant minority within the Muslim community who support QF and what it stands for, we do not despise them or feel that they have done “no good”.

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    • Amad

      I am sorry Leila, but I am not sure how urging people to write to the Home Minister implies that I am representing them.
      It’s actually quite simple. Read the material. If you agree with it, write to the Minister.

      By the way, if you do not dispute the facts that I have mentioned, how could you support such shady characters who malign other Muslims? What if you were slandered yourself?

      A Muslim is just, even when his/her personal views and emotions tug in a different direction. So, I urge you and everyone else who supports Quilliam to be also just. Weigh the issues and facts, and support those who deserve to be supported.

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  13. umar

    Although im not a fan of quilliam foundation i find it rich that the piece tries to create an image of wahabism has being a myth but is ready to throw brelvi tags at the nausheed stars.

    I find the advise that S Yasir Qadhi gave Majid interesting. What i would like to add is does the same S Yasir Qadhi believe that one of the greatest modern day sunni scholers Shaykh Alawi is a mushrik. This kind of extremism is what divides the muslim community.

    I have the quotes to prove it as well.

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    • Amad

      Umar,
      One suggestion: pls read the post carefully. The mention of brelwi is not by me, but by a commentator that I quoted who was trying to dispute the assertion of GPU being “Wahhabi”.

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  14. Ahsan J.

    @ umar

    And I’m sure both he and you believe that Hindus worship idols and commit shirk. Does that make the both of you extremists?

    The government does not and should not care about specific theological opinions. The question is not whether Sh. Yasir views a particular individual as being rightly guided or not, the question is: does he allow that individual, within the Western context, to practice his religion as he sees fit?

    If the answer to that is yes, then this is exactly what is required by the law, and nothing further can be demanded of citizens. We really do not care about who you think is rightly guided or not, that’s your choice and your freedom and you cannot be labeled an extremist for it.

    If someone (in this case, Quilliam) were to call you an extremist for disagreeing with another group, then to get really philosophical, the accuser himself is just as extremist, as he has accused another person (the accused – in this case Sh. Yasir) of being an extremist because of a disagreement of ideas!!!

    I think, umar, that you have missed the point entirely.

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  15. Abdullah Badr

    So, let me see if I understand this correctly.

    Majid and Ed preached radical beliefs and were actual extremists (as they admitted themsleves). They recant from their views, and all of a sudden they are heroes. Their past views cannot be held against them.

    Yasir, while not preaching violence, held some harsh views. He recanted from his views, before the release of this ‘Alert’ by the Quilliam Foundation. But, in his case, he is an extremist, as are all those who invite him (GPU, Islam Channel, etc.).

    I’m sorry, I just can’t seem to follow QF’s logic here.

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    • Amad

      Abdullah: thanks for summarizing my essay into one paragraph :)

      I’m sorry, I just can’t seem to follow QF’s logic here.

      Perhaps because there is no logic?

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  16. IAJ

    @Leila,

    QF is roundly dismissed by Muslims in the UK as a gang of government sycophants and attention-seeking, money-hungry sensationalists. Who knows, it may carry a smidgeon of credibility amongst pretentious Alibhai-Brown type secularists who still fancy themselves as Muslim, but your average joe (or ‘Mo’) can see right through them and their anti-Islam agenda. Whether that’s their constant scare-mongering and whipping up of hysteria, pandering to neo-cons like “Mad Mel” Phillips, or their baseless demonisation of Muslim speakers or ‘traditional Islam’.

    I hope the government realises in this time of economic downturn that one area where tax payers’ money -can- be saved is by slashing funds to Ed ‘n’ Maj’s little exercise in vanity.

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  17. AsimG

    Wow this was a lot to read :)

    As for Shaykh Yasir, is there really any surprise?
    After the attack on Imam Siraj Wahhaj last year, nothing really phases me.

    But don’t worry Shaykh, you’ll be in Chicago soon insha’Allah eating Usmania and answering my questions about McDonald’s fries at McDonald’s University :)

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  18. umar

    Bro Ahsan i think you have clearly missed the point on this one. What i was trying to say which i did say but ill have to repeat again is that i didnt endorse what quilliam was trying to say. I just thought it was rich of S Yasir Qadhi to give Majid Nawaz advise backstage at the doha debate whilst he himself divide muslims by throwing the mushrik labels at some of the most knowledgable scholers that have graced this earth. I didnt say that makes S Yasir Qadhi a extemist in the govt eyes so he should get a alert. Thats what the quillaim ppl are doing because they dont like his other comments.

    The attack by quilliam on the issue they are going on about is somet i didnt agree with but as he S Yair Qadhi was giving advise to his fellow muslim brother Majid Nawaz behind stage at the Doha debate about doing things for the right reasons etc etc. I just find it rich coming from someone who throws the mushrik label at people he disagrees with. This is the real issue we are dealing with which is muslim disunity and that is only going to change when the extremes on both sides learn the simple issue of difference of opinions and have that with adab.

    yeah just like the wahabi term is a myth so is the brelvi term and so is the sufi term lol

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  19. Ahmadi

    Leila and others who believe that the QF have some credibility, should note that the reasons why Muslims do not respect or find the QF credible is because:

    1. They lie, they have lied so many times and have been exploited for almost every lie they have spoken or written.

    2. They slander, accuse and malign individuals with factually incorrect data, histories and hearsay.

    3. They have continuously been exposed as lacking in the most basic practices of Islam, any history in working with the Muslim communities (since leaving HT), gathered any followers, being learned in any of the Islamic sciences or secualr studies that qualifies them to dictate or lead the Muslims.

    4. Almost every press release, talk or article they have written has attacked the Muslim community as a whole, they have brought upon the British Muslims the hate, wrath and vile disgust of the wider non-Muslims public. To date, there is not one recorded achievement that has changed or made the situation of Muslims better.

    5. They have aligned themselves with individuals who have been openly anti-Islamic or Islamophobic. This means they are ‘guilty-by-association’ no? Which Muslim organisation would align themselves with those who hate Islam in itself?

    6. Majority of those they put down as ‘advisors’ openly and privately removed themselves from any association – simply because QF made them up (yes another big lie) and now they have very little ‘Muslim’ advisor’s left.

    For a God-fearing Muslim to even consider the very idea that QF are legitimate is overlooking the above brief points. Their actions do not conform to that of ‘Muslims’ or resemble that which the Prophet taught us. Some say their stance is tantamount to Kufr, others say they are murtadyin, but I reserve my judgement and leave that to Allah.

    We pray that Allah guides them to do good and not to the bidding of anyone else. That they do not make the growing divide between Muslims and non-Muslims any larger than it is now.

    Here is a site for regular updates: http://traditionalislamism.wordpress.com/

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  20. faisal

    The writer of the article has come out with this:


    Faisal originally plagiarized the article without any references, was called out by a sharp commentator, Ravi, and went on to bungle his excuses. Eventually, he blurted out the real reason for trying to stifle the Quilliam reference,

    You then link to a quote as an example.

    Sid at 1:49PM (#7)

    Sorry, forgot to add the Quilliam Foundation citation in my rush to make it to lunch with Ed Husain.

    Sid at 5:57PM (#33)

    I posted this in my own name and intentionally left Quilliam off the post

    But what you have carefully chosen not to link to this particular comment of mine:

    The question is, if I wanted to plagiarise Quilliam, why would I do it on a blog I know they read?

    And you have already explained the phenomenon of support that Quilliam receives:

    A hallmark of marginal entities and neocon networks is that they use a web of friendly or surrogate websites to spread their message, in order to give the appearance that the article or the viewpoint is more popular “organically” than it really is. This is extremely popular with right-wing websites such as jihadwatch, whose article is picked up by multitudes of surrogates who echo the same message.

    So my question, which I put to you again is, since I know that the QF regard Pickled Politics as one of the “web of friendly or surrogate websites to spread their message” as you like to describe it, is:

    Do you regard Muslims from your own web of “friendly or surrogate websites” who re-use the material from the “Muslim Matters” website *with your consent*, to be plagiarists too?

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  21. Ataa-ur Rahamaan

    Salaam’Alaykum – I wrote a real long comment, I added it, and now it gone.. :-(

    LOL – can’t be bothered to write it again – it’s “nearly” 1am in the UK. So I’ll write the cliff notes:

    1) Brother Amad, never met you big guy, but I luv ya’, may Allah reward you for standing up for Shaykh Yasir for what was unbalanced criticism

    2) In the light of standing up for unbalanced criticism, perhaps it may be prudent to suggest that, the article “would” carry more “weight” if there were less cynical quotation marks, and insinuations, it seems there is a lot of anger (venom even) in the writing.

    To be fair that web link to “QF exposed”, is blatantly slanderous and pics are faked man. So let not two wrongs make a right. I would love to see a mature balanced discussion about these issues, and these validated before posted.

    3) With all love and respect brother Amad, do you think it appropriate to “advise” British Muslims on the issues in the UK, I tend to agree with sister Leila in this regard, the UK is a very different place to US. The hotch-potch of politically radical weird and dangerous strands are scary, and someone be it this group or that has to do something, and I am glad there are people doing things. BTW this isn’t the only gov funded group, so are nearly all the groups in the UK. MCB to RMW – which doesnt mean isnt good.

    4) Having said that I agree with your sentiments – there are parameters of balanced-ness that QF should follow. But to be just, “stooges” was a bit harsh, if you have ever met the directors (I have – before I get “hated on”, I profess no great love for the brothers) but one cannot doubt their sincerity.

    5) Perhaps a revisiting of Shaykh abu Aaliyahs essays on the issue would be prudent, for MashaaAllah his balanced approach was quite refreshing.

    6) Just to let you know I’ve stopped watching Islam Channel, apart from a few scholars like shaykh Yasir (hafidhullah) who are few and far between, there is even less scholars form the UK (who can speak English well), other than that one sees political programmes, when the presenters are speaking to peoples of other faith backgrounds and political orientaiotns have looked a bit comical in their lack of rationality. Also one of the last times I watched it a person who wasn’t representing a certain political “strand” of radical Islamic expression – but was obviously from that inclination (identifiable through his rhetoric), made takfir of a Muslim personality on air (quite unjustly) – but to be fair, that was a while ago, and InshaaAllah things have changed since then.

    7) I am sure I wrote some other stuff, but sleep deprivation beckons me my pillow. Finally I would love to hear the opinions of Sister iMuslim/Dr. Mehjabin :) and the advice + opinions of Shaykh Abu Aaliyah

    8) Q = How many Muslims does it take to change a light bulb
    A = Don’t know – they are still bickering (bang bang)

    9) I may sound like a hippy, but dudes and dudettes, I love you guys, May Allah unite our hearts

    Was-salaam

    PS: Not referring to this post necessarily, I would prefer a respectful, mature and objective discussions on issues than the adhominum attacks, one sees all too readily on the blogosphere these days.

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    • Amad

      Ataa-ur-Rahman: good comment. I took off the link to the site. As for style, my dear brother, this is a blog, which usually equals opinion, not news. So, pls excuse my tempo… I kind of write with spirit and energy, so perhaps that is where some of the edge comes from.

      As for the UK issue, to be honest, it is irrelevant in this case, imho. 95% of my post was related to the issues, not to advice. And whatever I mentioned as
      “advice” is pretty general to Muslims in the West.

      Faisal, I don’t know why you would choose to plagiarize, you would know that better. But you did tell us why you would choose to leave the reference to Quilliam off. As for cross-links, I remind you to reread the section on organic vs. artificial support. I should add that we do have a lot to learn from neocon hype-strategies. I should also clarify that my reference to Pickled politics post was specifically to your post, because it seems the website represents a mixture of views and does not appear to be a QF sock-puppet.

      Now that we have this out of the way, why don’t you focus on discussing the meat of this post, the facts and issues? Or are you going to skirt around them as you did in the comments on your post, as brought to your attention several times? What defense do you have to cross-post the QF hit-job?

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  22. IAJ

    @Ataa-ur Rahamaan,

    I’m interested to know why you would consider the QF lot as brothers in Islam.

    It is Ed, Maj et. al who we constantly see attacking Shari’a, referring to it as backwards, barbaric, unpalatable and so on.

    Forget about their other unflattering exploits, this alone amounts to clear cut disbelief. And that’s not simply my own verdict but that of Sh. Suhaib and others. Doesn’t matter how many Salams, Hamdulillahs, and Masha Allahs they punctuate their conversations with if they are attacking Islam or denying its tenets.

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  23. salahudin

    >There is a significant minority within the Muslim community who support QF and what it stands for, we do not despise them or feel that they >have done “no good”.

    Q: Does this “minority” have any standing, weight, or credibility with Muslims in the UK?

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  24. ABU UBAIDA

    BR. yasir qadhi
    isnt IT from tawhid that you love what ALLAH LOVES AND HATE WHAT HE HATES

    HATE THE KUFFARS AND MUSHRIKINS FROM YOUR HEART ISN IT THIS FROM TAWHED?.

    aRENT SHIAS INVOLVED IN ACTS MAJOR SHIRK AND SUFIS AND THEREFORE YOU MUST STAW AWAY FROM MUSHRIKINS SINCE ALLAH AND HIS MESSENGER HATES IT.

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  25. tahir

    i agree with IAJ on his point, but things now are so complicated that you just dont want to label anyone. we constantly hear at our madrasah that one must not label ppl with kufr and shirk fatwas, yet we hear so many ppl openly saying things against islam and yet only because they started with Bismillah and ended with a dua we cant say they are wrong.

    its a situation of your hands being tied at the back… i totally agree that a layman cannot judge these ppl and deem them kafir etc. but i call on the ppl who have knowledge to study these ppl in detail and aks them questions and put their true faces in front of the ummah so we know ok, this man is not to be relied on and that non muslims know that this man is not giving an opinion as a muslim…

    in pakistan lots of ppl are saying, dont say anything to so and so because he says his namaz, yet this very man says that keeping the trousers above ankles is age old and was only for the ppl of arabia 1400 years ago. what do you say to ppl like these?

    troubled times indeed… i personally think the true muslims whose faith is intact has become weak, he is scared to say anything because he thinks he will be attacked ..

    i dont know.. please enlighten me here.

    wasalam

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  26. Nahyan

    jazakallahukhair Amad for this excellent article

    living in Toronto, Canada i had never heard of QF (alhamdulillah, their fitn hasnt spread here)
    continue with your efforts and May Allah reward all those involved with this.

    Ameen to all the dua.
    Nahyan

    ps. @Amad the link in your email to the people doesnt lead anywhere…

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  27. Ataa-ur Rahamaan

    SalaamAlaykum.

    You are perhaps right – I am not too au fait your literary pinache. I am a biologist hence I tend to write in a boring way lol.

    BTW: I appreciate this is a blog and not a news roll, and I am sure you will agree with me, that Justice (and Mercy – c.f. Ibn Qayyim) should pervade everything Muslims do – beit news casting or a blogg :)

    Other than that perhaps someone could advise QF against the callousness of the direction they are pursuing

    Also brother Tahir, if the only issue is with the person about trousars above the ankles, I believe it to be a difference of opinion, perhaps laxity in this issue, would be more beneficial – but agree with what your saying.

    Was-Salaam

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  28. Abu Ninja

    I have to give props to akh Amad for his piece on the Quilliam Foundation.

    Whenever I read a comment or statement made by the two cronies Maj & Ed.. I try hard to give them the benefit of the doubt and try really hard to try and understand where they are coming from.

    Alas no matter how hard I try to think of a legitimate justification from an Islamic view point for the statements made by Maj & Ed.. one cant help but think the of the word ‘Munafiq.’

    Allah knows best.

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  29. Ahmad

    Br Attaur Rahman please retract point 3 of your summary, the Muslim Council of Britain has only ever tendered for project specific monies and in its 12 year existance the Council has probably recieved no more than £500k which was spent on community specific programmes, not on slander and mischief. Furthermore they have an open and transparent accounting system which holds all project audit trails and appraisals.

    You see unlike most Mulsim community outfits, the Council is one forum that is genuinely representative and democratic. Made up of over 500 Masjids, charities, institutions and schools, it holds an AGM once a year, this years is being held on the 6th of June in Birmingham, brothers and sisters are welcome to register and attend. Every two years the affiliates elect the Central Working Committe, the Councils governing body from which its Secretary General and Office Bearers are then chosen. The Council’s strength lies in the commitment, public service and sincerity of the grassroot organisations that make-up its affiliate base, I myself belong to one such affiliate organisation, so I would request you to be judicial and fair in comment about the MCB in the future, as you are now privy to its structure and governance. For more details please view http://www.mcb.org.uk

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  30. Phil

    I was always ambivalent about QF because i didn’t particularly like HT (methodology wise) and i found that their criticism (the people from HT that i know) was rather savage. And of course there is an obvious reason for this to be the case…..

    But, i see now that it was justified.

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  31. Community Dossier on QF

    BRIEF INFORMATION ABOUT THE QUILLIAM FOUNDATION – AIMS, BELIEFS AND THEIR CRIMINALISTION OF THE BRITISH MUSLIM COMMUNITY

    The critical government minister said that the foundation was receiving so much public money because it was perceived to be toeing the government line. “Ed and Quilliam have very little support in the mainstream Muslim community,” the minister said. “They have much more enemies than friends. But he’s loved by some ministers, which is why his organisation is having so much money thrown at it. And the Government knows that if you want a Muslim to say pro-government things, then Quilliam is the answer.” [The Times, 20 January 2009]

    The QF is effectively a creation of certain elements of the British Establishment to corrupt, intimidate and divert the Muslim community into rejecting Islam and remaining silent on British foreign policy atrocities. Their funding is from diverse sources, mainly government money but they have also been supported by right wing neo-con groups in America as well as Zionist financiers in the UK.

    Their most prominent backers are the neo-conservative Michael Gove and neo-con Douglas Murray of the Centre for Social (in)cohesion. Both are well known to be vigorously anti-Islam/ Muslim and pro-Zionist. QF also visits and calls upon Muslims to co-operate with pro-Zionist think tanks such as the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and the American Jewish Institute.

    QF are mainly used to whitewash the government foreign policy for any blame for the events of 7/7 and other isolated events that have taken place such as the attempts on 21/7 or the Glasgow bombings. In addition to this it is also intended that the QF and similar organizations stem the growth of Islamic feelings and understanding amongst the Muslim community in the UK, through a mix of bribing and intimidation in order to push their Government sponsored version of Islam.

    This “Western” Islam is in effect an Islam where the Muslim no longer believes that Islam has any real relevance today. The average Muslim should also think no further than his local borders and should not be concerned about events to Muslims anywhere else in the world. As such -they propagate against Muslim unity and shared sentiments. They blame these ideas for causing the few terror acts seen in the UK, rather than laying the blame firmly at the door of foreign policy which is known to be the case by the Muslim community and is also the position of the vast majority of neutral minded academics and analysts.

    They are part of the attempt to tie Islamic ideals to “terrorism”, and as such they are part of the push of the latest “Preventing Extremism” policy of the government (having dropped the “Violent” from the title) which seeks to demonize and criminalize Muslims for believing in Islam as a deen. In conclusion, they can be seen as one of the manifestations of the RAND reports recommendations to encourage “local” versions of Islam that are subservient to Western Government interests that can then be sent to influence other Muslims in the Greater Middle East.

    This grouping of stooges spent over a decade peddling the rhetoric of hate and division, while many principled moderates in the community challenged their isolationist message at the time. It is therefore bewildering to observe their hypocrisy, double-standards and duplicity when they now audaciously label those same moderate groups who fought against them, in their days of extremeism, with terms such as ‘Islamist’. Equity would argue that they should first be investigated and brought to book for their years of ‘extremism’. The truth to any observant, sincere and relatively knowledgeable Muslim is obvious, this agenda-ridden group has been formed to erode many of the core ideals, values and beliefs of Islam and its obstinate, dictatorial and deceitful figureheads are just as extreme today as they were 10 years ago. Except today they are singing from the ‘politically correct’ hymn sheet, with a £1million purse.

    POLITICAL STANCE

    Here are a selection of the stances they have taken:

    1. Grievances are not the causes of terrorism, Islamic beliefs are. And to talk about Grievances as being a cause for terrorism is to play into the “extremists” hands and therefore should be avoided “The grievance argument also gives Islamists the chance to cloud their political agenda in public and use it as something to hide behind when they feel the heat. Therefore, to suggest that grievances cause radicalization plays into Islamist hands and allows them to present a more acceptable version of their position in public discourse”- [Ghaffar Hussain, Guardian, 17/10/2008]

    2. Equating Islamic governance and politics with terrorism, and deliberately blurring the lines in this respect to blacken the call for Islam “In the Islamist camp, there are political Islamists, who wish to establish Islamism through the electoral process, revolutionary Islamists, who want to instigate military coups but do not target non-combatants, and jihadists, who are militant Islamists that use terrorism and target noncombatants. The danger lies in assuming that jihadists and terrorism are the only threats. The Quilliam Foundation believes that ideology is the real threat”- [Majad Nawaz, Policy Watch 16/7/2008]

    3. Excusing IDF killing of hundreds of women and children in Palestine in the events of January 2009 as unintentional (whereas heavy blame is apportioned to a Hamas spokesman in the face of these atrocious and deliberate actions) “Israel does not have an active policy of deliberately capturing children to murder them, or even deliberately murdering civilians for that matter.”- [Majed Nawaz, Guardian, 07/01/09]

    4. Excusing British Government policy on Israel during the same conflict “What I did not expect to hear were threats of “another 7/7, 8/8, 9/9 and more, with blame falling squarely on government policy, not on anyone else”. How dare anyone issue veiled threats to hold the foreign policies of my country hostage to the whims of terrorists?” So obviously the government policy on funding the Israeli military is not blameworthy according to this member of the QF.

    5. Equating mainstream Muslim TV Channels (Islam Channel) and exhibitions (Islam Expo) with Fascism and the BNP These people are “Muslim versions of the BNP”, and “are every bit as fascist as any far-Right party” – [Ed Husain Evening Standard 7/7/2008]

    6. Wearing ethnic clothes is a source of alienation In their document “pulling together” of April 2008 they advised that the government should “Encourage students and imams to wear clothes that ensure belonging to mainstream society, and not Pakistani ethnic are designed for a different climate”

    7. Rejecting cultural history and Islamic ideals while embracing British Heritage is something to be praised, whereas other beliefs lead to terrorism “Normal Muslims, those not influenced by Islamists, are increasingly more comfortable in rejecting notions of a single Caliphate, ruling by one interpretation of Shari’ah law, and accepting their indisputable British heritage”

    8. The call for a “Western” Islam (in which the Muslim would leave any connection to their lands of origin or to the Muslim causes around the world that every Muslim should be concerned with) Ed Husain in his aptly titled “British Subjects, not God’s” article, September 2009, Prospect Magazine

    ISLAMIC STANCES

    They are not content with merely stating that they disagree with Islamic rulings and the Islamic beliefs, but instead contend that Islam is completely open to unorthodox methods of interpretation resulting in many heretical beliefs

    They are not happy to simply state that as Muslims we should live within the law in the West, which in any case the Muslim community has been doing for generations now, but rather they are pushing that Islam itself should be changed to fit the Western Government narratives. This is why they are trying to infiltrate mosques in order to affect Islamic teachings and curriculum.

    Their claims include -

    1. Islamic ruling as revealed in the Qur’an is barbaric, medieval and inhumane if applied today “We can relieve ourselves of ancient and outmoded punishments, such as ‘flogging’ and ’stoning’ as not being consistent with the actualizing of the Maqasid”- [Ed Husein – Today show - 28/11/07]
    “….and therefore Muslims should go far as to say that other modes of reaching the noble aims of the Shari’ah, in other words protection of life, property, reason, religion and so on, if we can attain those aims by other means, i.e. imprisonment and so on, then why we do we need to go down that barbaric, inhumane and outdated mode of stoning and flogging people“- [Rashad Ali in his article “Addressing Islamist Grumblings”]
    2. Islamic ruling on inheritance and witnesses are unjust today “….I don’t want [my daughter’s] generation to suffer the indignities of scripturally justified attitudes of domestic violence, or her testimony to be worth half that of a Muslim man in court, or her legal inheritance in a Muslim country to be one-third of a man’s.”- [Ed Husein in his article “The Gender Agenda” 23/10/07]

    3. The idea that the Rule is for Allah is actually alien to Islam “Islamism is an ideology that believes sovereignty belongs to God, that legislation belongs to God…Those notions are alien to Islam” “notions such as sovereignty belongs to God, or notions such as this state is Islamic and this state is not Islamic, are notions that are alien to Islam” – [Majid Nawaz in his talk on the city circle forum entitled “In and out of Islamism”]
    There are several other examples of their opinions and those of their close advisors which are too many to list, but amongst them are their views on hijab not necessarily being obligatory, that certain alcoholic drinks are permitted, that the proscription of homosexuality is “medievalist” and so on.

    STANCE ON MISINFORMATION

    This Foundation is characterized by insincerity and deceit. It deceives the British public by telling them what the government wants them to hear to secure funding on the one hand. On the other it deceives every Muslim they come across to try to gain legitimacy to maintain that funding from the government. The prime reason for this document is to let you know what their real stance is since it may be that they try to hide this or tell you otherwise. All the information contained in this document is easily found in the public sphere now that you have been alerted to it.

    Amongst their other deceptions and lies:

    1. Misleading a group of Ulama as to their intentions and aims of this foundation. A number of ulama initially agreed to back the foundation until it was revealed to them what the true position of these people was. Once it was made clear to them they all withdrew – except for one Usama Hasan. It should be noted that Usama Hasan also now believes that we maybe descendants of an ape, that the hijab is not obligatory, that Islam is completely secular, but has recently declared his detatchment from the Quilliam Foundation.

    2. Claiming numerous scholars to have “inspired” them Even though their stances are rejected by even the most moderate scholars in the Middle East. To be clear – the only people who endorse the QF are either misled into doing so or are equally deviated.

    3. Misrepresenting their activities. In order to impress their funders they regularly exaggerate, lie, and scaremonger with the Muslim community being the main victims in their escapades to earn more illicit money.

    4. Distorting classical Islamic Texts. They also have a tendency to fabricate and twist Islamic sources in order to give themselves an “Islamic” and “academic” face.

    A Fully Documented Short List of Excesses Against the Community- References Available on Request

    -Ed Hussain declared his detestation of young Muslim girls wearing the headscarve, he favours general, open free-mixing and promotes the accommodation of homosexuality in Islam. (Disclaimer: This statement is not intended to discriminate against respected fellow citizens who lead such lifestyles, it just states the theological perspective as edicted also in orthodox Christianity)

    - Ed Hussain agreed with the abominable invasion and death by causation of nearly one million Muslims in Iraq. Along with this he has continually attempted to deconstruct the concept of the Islamic Ummah as ingrained in the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of the Prophet (pbuh)

    - Ed Hussain typically objected to the building of the House of Allah (swt) aka the Mega Mosque project in East London

    -Ed drives the debate on the misnomer and alarmist term ‘Islamist’, exactly when one becomes an Islamist nobody know. He has recently advocated the CONTEST 2 draft government proposals for revising the term ‘extremist’, to include those who believe in the Sharia, believe homosexuality to be a sin, believe in any type of physical defence of the person in Muslim lands or believe in the concept of a just & equitable form of Islamic governance.

    -Directors openly indulge in immoral nocturnal behaviours (fisq) whilst preaching about Islam. Pictures of one director in night clubs cuddling up to ex-girlfriends early last year, not long before his sudden U-turn have been in circulation for some time.

    -They have attacked and vilified respected thinkers and scholars from our Islamic history.

    -Ed does not believe in Islamophobia and believes this is an Islamist concoction to fool the public.

    -They regularly abuse and defame the names of upstanding British Muslim community organizations and leaders, who have dutifully served their respective Muslim and non-Muslim communities for decades, a recent example being Dr Daud Abdullah who Ed called a fanatic.

    -Ed Hussain committed takfir (to judge somebody to be a kafir) when he said about the Egyptian cleric Yusuf Qardawi, call them jihadist or Islamist but don’t call them Muslim…

    -He deliberately wrote a disproportionate and scathingly harsh article against the Islam Expo and GPU events, comparing the Expo to a BNP rally!

    -They have been mutually and incessantly supportive of right-wing neo-con think tanks such as Policy exchange and with the likes of Michael Gove and Melanie Phillips.

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    • Amad

      Re: Community dossier on QF– is there a reference where this material is coming from? A link? We would prefer to have that, then to have the entire thing copied and pasted.

      Also, yes, please lets stay away from any sufi-salafi polemics. I think, in general, MOST organizations following various methologies are united in their stance against QF. So, let’s unite in the good, as Allah has told us in the Quran (help each other in taqwa and al-birr).

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  32. umar

    Bro Ubaida what is the point throwing lables of mushriks to sufis. Lets try and steep clear of the sufi–wahabi debate. We know what takfiri background you are from so go on your own forums and spend time dissing other muslims just beacuse they dont follow your version of islam.

    Back to the topic being discussed. Q Foundation are not popular amongst most islamic organisations regardless of what sect or group they belong to. What i find interesting is why do people like Usama Hasan support them. S Usama Hasan is a decent brother and i would be curious to know what he is thinking.

    Personally i didnt go to the GPU or watch Islam Channel as much as i used to. My reasons are that they dont have a balanced spectrum of scholers on either platforms. The day they do and the day i stop hearing from some scholers that nearly every city in England is filled with muslims who are commiting kuffar then i probably will start wathching it properly again

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  33. IAJ

    @Umar

    Usama Hasan supports them because he has recently publicly embraced secularism, supports evolution and attacks the Muslim belief that Allah created Sayyidina Adam from mud (and also claims that humans are descended from apes), promoted that atrocious ‘marriage contract’ which attempted to revise and negate some traditional Islamic rulings relating to marriage. What we have today is a secularist evolutionist who is trying to ‘revise’ established aspects of Islam like Nikah or Hijab. The Usama Hasan we remember fondly is long gone.

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  34. ubaida

    umar harsh words but no daliil, ill give you excus because you are ignorant

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  35. Indigo Jo Blogs

    Muslims, Islam Channel and QF: who represents who?…

    The Quilliam Foundation recently put out a so-called “alert” which drew attention to the “undesirable” elements which, they claim, account for “many of its speakers”. Those they name include Azad Ali of Islamic Forum, Yasir Qadhi of al-Maghrib, I…

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  36. DrM

    Asalamu Aliakum,

    An excellent piece, Amad. Whats happening in Britain is the repeat of the failed pro-regressive Muslim fiasco in the U.S. post 9/11. The Brits have a long history of creating fitna and deception. All the neocon sock puppets can say what they want, none of us are buying their nonsense.
    Apologists for western extremism and outright terrorism(including “israel”) will never represent Islam or Muslim in any capacity. 99% of “Ex-Muslims” are frauds, no ifs, ands, or buts about it. The proper term would “never were Muslim” e.g. Wafa Sultan, Maryam Namazie, Nonie Darvish etc to name few. The munafiqs sell themselves for so little.
    I’ll be writing a post soon on this topic inshallah.

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  37. Ahmad

    Dear Br Amad, most if not all of these QF statements, interviews and comments have been made in the public domain over the last 18 months, I have cited and sourced the majority. Sorry for pasting, I had no external link as this is an ammended version, though the original can be accessed at http://www.traditionalislamism.wordpress.com Alhamdulilah I am glad to see that brothers with much prose such as yourself have joined this effort against these hatemongers, but please remember that there are activists and community workers who have been contesting and refuting these stooges from the off-set hence all their excesses have been documented.

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  38. Shahid Ahmad

    Pickled Politics even defends the Ahmadiyya. I wrote a couple of comments trying to set them straight (sid used to comment on my suspectpaki blog and I found him at times obnoxious and ignorant, at other times decent. I got the feeling he is a nationalist and quite secular)

    After I’d posted my comments, they closed down the thread. I then engaged in correspondence with them and Sunny was unreasonable, hostile and like so many, completely missed the point. I’ve avoided their blog since.

    I’m also concerned that it won’t be long before the British establishment starts to big up the Ahmadiyya, which as we know, is utterly heretical and rejected as non-Muslim by all mainstream scholars of all persuasions. (Thanks once again to MuslimMatters for linking to thecult.info, our site for Muslims to get some awareness on the Ahmadiyya cult)

    Here’s a link to the Pickled Politics thread I mentioned – look to the end for my comments:
    http://www.pickledpolitics.com/archives/1911

    Wassalaam,

    Shahid

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  39. Shahid Ahmad

    Great to see DrM here, salaamu `alaykum bro!

    It’s worth mentioning that the Ahmadiyya are also a bunch of Western-backed stooges who support all kinds of imperial folly from day 1, including having a base in occupied Palestine (Kababeer) and inviting Shimon Peres as a guest-of-honour to their faux-iftaar! Wallah, even the non-Muslim Oxford students did better than that!

    Here’s their leader, shaking the hands of another hater of Islam: http://suspectpaki.com/2008/10/25/mirza-masroor-shakes-nazir-alis-hand/

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    • Amad

      salam Shahid, thanks for stopping by. Again, pls keep up your good work against the Ahmadiyya cult, may Allah expose them and guide them to Islam from their kufr.

      Ahmad, thanks for the link. That is some great work you guys are doing. There are always people of truth working against the fitnah-mongers. Pls keep this up. Also, we really need to ramp up on the campaign to write to the Home Office, esp. the folks based in Britain. Any ideas on that?

      Abdullah, thanks for the link to Yusuf Smith’s article. As usual, he has done justice to this subject, and give us more ammo against QF, may Allah bless him.

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  40. Ameera Khan

    Urgh, these idiots visited my university too (Dow University of Health Sciences in Karachi, Pakistan) through a “local” NGO “Bagrad”, based in a small town in Pakistan. I was planning to visit that seminar, “Youth Action for Peacebuilding on Campuses” but their low-quality fliers really put me off. I’m glad for that because if these idiots are crticising people like Yasir Qadhi and putting forward all sorts of manic and deranged ideas, I’d have wasted 90 minutes for nothing! However, this does bring us to the very serious point of how these people are infiltrating mainstream Pakistani universities with their twisted ideologies… or atleast setting the foundation for it.

    Here’s the proof of Quilliam being behind the recent seminars, from their own website:

    http://www.quilliamfoundation.org/index.php/component/content/article/497

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  41. Sameer

    Four other observations/suggestions:

    1. If you read the account of the fake former “extremist” Hassan Butt which was posted above, you should also realize that this guy was heavily heavily promoted by pro-Iraq war and neo-con blogs (Jihadwatch, Daniel Pipes, Little Green Footballs, etc.). Most are now trying to hide and cover this fact and are trying to delete their promotion of it from their sites. I would suggest if someone has any screen capturing technology programs that you make sure to save this.

    2. the CBS news program 60 Minutes, picked up the story from the right wing blogs, and had also interviewed this “former” extremist now neo-con puppet here:

    this leads me to the next point:

    3. “Ed” Hussain recently re-issued his British Foreign Office written book the Islamist, new chapters and an introduction include praise for having met AIPAC, the American Enterprise Institute, Daniel Pipes, etc.. The book was published THIS PAST TUESDAY (5/5/09):

    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0143115987/monstersandcr-20

    4. My proposal, is that in addition to writing/emailing the British govt. to cut the funding for neo-con sock puppets at Quilliam, we write and
    DEMAND media outlets that jumped on board the British govt. funded initiative of former extremists now neo-con cheerleaders to publicize and show the OTHER side of this story. Specifically:

    a. that 60 Minutes does a FOLLOW UP on Hassan Butt and asks questions of British govt. officials of how his celebrity was/is similar to Quilliam and if this is really going to help improve race relations in the UK and with the Muslim Wold.

    b. CNN and Christian Amanpour who did a suck up job to Ed Hussain and Quilliam and did not ask any tough questions nor challenge his claims nor who funds Quilliam.

    c. consider writing op-eds in other blogs — Huffington Post, etc. showing how hand-picking a bunch of talking uncle toms to say and do what the British govt. wants is a FAILED policy no different than the neo-cons hand picking Ahmad Chalabi and Kenan Makiya to make the case that ALL Iraqis supported the U.S. invasion. This is a lie perpetrated NOT only on and against Muslims but also against the NON-Muslim citizens and public in both the U.S./UK.

    If the media in both the U.S. and UK desire to preserve ANY credibility they have a RIGHT and DUTY to report on DIFFERENT SIDES of this story so viewers KNOW that the story that ED/Quilliam are being paid 1 Million Pounds by the British govt. to tell is NOT the truth any more than what the Iraqi National Congress was being paid $68 million dollars by the neo-cons was.

    salaam aleikum,
    Sam

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    • Amad

      Good points Sam.

      Can you provide the email addresses for the media channels you mentioned?

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  42. umar

    Bro Ubaida thats rich coming from you as you didnt provide an inch of daleel. Im not interested in a sufi/wahabi debate as its not healthy for the cause of muslim unity which is paramount. Il make an excuse for you as you’re an ignorant soul just like we all are.

    I would like some proof on some of the claims that are being made about S Usama Hasan. Isnt he the part time imam of a famous masjid in London. I find it hard to believe that he has some of those beliefs.

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  43. Gohar

    QF wrote about how YQ accused certain people of over-indulging in taqiya, yet neo-cons (including those whom QF probably wine and dine with) also regularly accuse ordinary muslims of taqiya.

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  44. Gohar

    This thread has a lot of good stuff. What we also need is a central database where all this stuff on different people is kept, including their inter-relationships, so that we can respond easily, and even prepare ahead. SInce neo-cons are trans-atlantic, so should out database. Easier said than done though.

    I think the way to expose a dodgy referee isn’t to try and argue about the rights and wrong of each decision, but rather to have examples of how the other side also did the same thing and yet did not get punished.

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  45. Salahudin

    salaam aleikum,

    2 more things of note:

    1. this is from the weekly British Economist (available in most U.S. newstands):

    The Gaza crisis also triggered a round of name-calling within the world of British Islam that has laid bare a rapid diminution of the middle ground on which emollient types hope to stand. Senior Muslims at the Quilliam Foundation, a “counter-terrorism think-tank” which has received nearly £1m in funding from the home and foreign offices, issued in January a denunciation of Israeli actions that was mocked as faint-hearted by more radical Muslims, while voices on the political right questioned whether the government’s “investment” in this body was paying off.

    source: Economist, 2/26/09 “Britian and Its Muslims, How the Govt. Lost the Plot”

    2. I do fully agree with the sentiments expressed above that much of the information needs to be collated (another article?) revised, and an information packet sent out to both the media and masjids/Islamic groups in the U.S. to warn them of the govt. funded groups seeking to secularize Islam while pleasing their masters and awliya in London and Washington.

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  46. Salahudin

    I have finals for the next week or so, so i can’t at least until the end of May.

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    • Amad

      Thanks for that Abdullah
      Surely interesting. Though, it is hardly a retraction. It would be wiser and more upright of them to retract the entire slanderous alert, because this isn’t just about Shaykh Yasir.

      w/s

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  47. Garbage in garbage out

    Garbage in garbage out, no use in wasting your breath with theses clowns.

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  48. Sameer

    salaam aleikum,

    just as Hassan Butt (see above) stabbed himself to try and get media publicity to get a book/movie deal as an “anti-extremist” it seems that the QF director, Majid Nawaz, is not above manufacturing alleged attacks to try and garner media publicity (as well as con British govt. authorities into giving more taxpayer funds for QF).

    statement by Tayyib Muqeeem

    They are also now alleging that they changed the press release attacking Yasir due to a threat of legal action from MuslimMatters!

    May Allah (swt) protect the honor and dignity of Muslims from the kuffar and their agents.

    Sam

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  49. Salahudin

    salaam aleikum,

    I don’t see any reason to re-invent the wheel and collate all the links as they are already well done on:

    a. the wikipedia page here.

    b. traditionalislamism blog here, and their refutations packet here, which i believe is an ongoing definitive history of the cataloging of events, deviations, and refutations of all things Quilliam.

    c. facebook site here

    What i would say, is that since Quilliam is an unknown among Muslims in North America, those three along with the PDF article you have written above, should be THE points of reference for any unknowing Muslim from Canada or the U.S. who might stumble across this and be duped into thinking these guys care about Muslims or Islam.

    salaam aleikum,
    Salahudin

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      • zaki zaim

        “…No Matter How Much They Beautify it with Speech”

        Imaam al-Awzaa’ee [d. 157H] said: “Adhere to the narrations of the Salaf, even if the people were to abandon you. And Beware of the opinions of people, no matter how much they beautify it with speech”

        It has indeed been a phenomenon for centuries, where a person or a group or a society who claimed adherence to Islam, would introduce concepts and ideas that challenged the established aspects of Islamic teachings. Under the guise of intellectual discourse or until recently, under the banner of ‘freedom of speech and expression’, many Muslims have paved the way for non-Muslims to show boldness in their attempts to disparage Islam as a faith and its noble values.
        Muslim organisations in North America and Europe have primarily led this trend in seeking to negotiate the teachings of Islam. Under an obscure Islamic jurisprudent principle of maqaasid, they work relentlessly to bludgeon the established norms of Islam and its textual integrity; a principle that has no consensus amongst the classical or contemporary scholars of Islam.

        Many of them are financed and funded by non-Muslim governmental bodies who want to re-interpret and re-define what Islam is and what its purpose should be in the ‘Western’ context. They strip Islam of its foundations in matters relating to jihad and the place of politics; ignoring the fact that politics is an inherent part of Islam and a natural outcome in places where Muslims are a majority.

        These same secular liberals begin to bring into shape an alien form of religion based upon alien concepts and remote verdicts to appease their paymasters. One such organisation is called the Quilliam Foundation. This so-called anti-extremist think thank was established in 2008, directed by two Muslims who were happy to sell their religion and faith for a miserable worldly gain. They gained their 30 pieces of silver, but have left open a door to fisq and nifaq and kufr.

        Allaah (SWT) says in the Noble Qur’an: “They wish that you should compromise (in religion out of courtesy) with them, so they (too) would compromise with you.” (Surah Al Qalam: 9)

        Are we as Muslims to negotiate or compromise our Deen for the sake of appeasing the non-Muslims? Even in Muslim societies of the past and present, non-Muslims were never asked to re-evaluate their religion within the context of the Khalifate. There was no cry for multi-culturalism or pluralism to suit their geographical, political and social surroundings.

        These promoters of fisq and nifaq and kufr opine with logic and beautify their writings and speeches with appealing methods; yet they are far removed from the beliefs and methodologies of the early Muslims. They will reject ayaat of the Qur’an and the Hadeeth of the Messenger (SAW) simply because they do not accept them to be applicable when working to provide Muslims with a distinct Western identity and moving away from values and models that establish Islamic norms.

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  50. Jay

    QF may not be sincere in what they’re doing — I don’t know — but using this as an opportunity to misinform the public about who a Wahhabi is and how Wahhabism is viewed by the vast majority of Muslims is disingenuous.

    Wahhabism refers to a movement that mainly follows the teachings of Muhammad ibn Abdal-Wahhab who was refuted by traditional Sunni scholars. His own brother (Sulayman) who was a scholar is among those who refuted him. Wahhabis think Sufism is a reprehensible innovation when it is well known that ilm ul-tasawwuf has been accepted by the vast majority of Muslims as a legitimate Islamic science. This is only one example of how Wahhabis differ from the the vast majority of Muslims.

    To pretend that Wahhabism does not mean anything is deceptive, to say the least. It has never been accepted by scholars from the four authentic schools of jurisprudence (Hanafi, Shafi’i, Maliki, and Hanbali).

    Please tell the truth about yourselves as you oppose those you deem untruthful. Thanks.

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    • Ahmad AlFarsi

      It has never been accepted by scholars from the four authentic schools of jurisprudence (Hanafi, Shafi’i, Maliki, and Hanbali).

      Funny, Muhammad ibn AbdilWahhaab himself was a Hanbali. Most contemporary Hanbali scholars (as well as those of the previous century) would fall under your label of Wahhabi.

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      • Ahmad AlFarsi

        umm… nearly all the scholars that supported him at his time were “Hanbali scholars that supported Muhammad ibn AbdilWahhaab” (rahmatullaah alayh). And there were many… you are only looking at those who were against him.

        Also, it is interesting how you are defining a “real” Hanbali scholar. I suppose that, according to you, a “real” Hanbali is any Hanbali against “Wahhabis,” and a “fake” Hanbali is any Hanbali that supported AbdalWahhaab. hmm… interesting circular logic…

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  51. zaki

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/4056964/Who-First-Used-The-Term-Wahhabi

    Makes or an interesting reading. I would encourage all Muslims not to fall for the divisive traps laid down by the enemies of Islam, where they define what is and what is not a sect. “Wahabi’ism” is synonymous with Ahlul Hadeeth or the da’wah Salafiyyah which we hear so much of today. By far they are the staunchest and cloest of people to the Sunnah and methodology of the early Muslim generations and those who followed them in truth and righteousness.

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  52. imran

    Modern day Sufism has myriad of strands and it is hard to deficer those who attempt to uphold the zahid values of the salaf or the consequent deviants that came long longer with their brand of tasawwuf and other heresies like pantheism and fana etc. The latter category belongs in separate cult/religion bracket.

    I have come across sufis who have no regard for the Sunnah (some who have no regard for the Qur’an), they care very less for what is saheeh and what is da’eef; rather they claim to have a hotline to Allah (so to speak) and therefore no need to be bound by the limits of shari’ah when it comes to having correct beliefs and practises.

    I do not even have to list the number of sites that disprove this category of sufism. Ibn Jawzi’s Talbis Iblis would be a good place to start.

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  53. Ahmed Hassan

    Assalamu Alaykum,

    I am really dismayed by these useless arguments between those who call themselves Sufis and those who call themselves Wahabis or followers of Sh Mohammad Ibn Abdul Wahab. Why all this? Why waste your time? What would you answer yam al qiyama when you are asked ‘how did you spend this time?’

    I am from Africa, black Africa, and in Africa Islam and Tariqa are interchangeable, because Islam reached us through the Tariqas. But we do not have this hate I see here for the muslims who consider Sh. Mohamad Ibn AbdulWahab their Imam. None what so ever. I have never heard a Shaykh mention him in a bad or good way. The first time I heard the word ‘Wahabi’ was when I left my country. There is a big mosque in my country built by Saudi Arabia. Every Ramadan A Saudi Shaykh comes from Riyadh and gives lectures there. I have never heard anyone complaining about him although almost all the worshipers are followers of Tariqa.

    Any fair muslim will know that Sufism enriched Islam either by spreading Islam to all corners of the world or by their poetry and litreture. Many of the Ulama of Islam were Sufis and the vast majority of the Ulama of Persia were Sufis, which unfortunately we lost. I sometimes say to myslef ‘if Iran remained Sunni maybe we would have had many Ghazalis’. The loss of Iran to Shiism is a great loss.

    On the other hand, when I lived in Riyadh I never felt that I was not in a 100% Sunni country. In fact, I learnt a lot and Iam grateful and alhamdulilah that I spent time there.

    Please stop this.

    Wassalam,
    Ahmed

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  54. Abdullah

    Looks like the Quilliam Foundation has decided to pursue this further!

    UK’s Muslim TV: Wives must not refuse sex with spouse

    http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-23818856-uks-muslim-tv-wives-must-not-refuse-sex-with-spouse.do

    Newsnight Spoiler: Islam Channel Islamic Propagandists Shock Horror!!

    http://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2010/03/newsnight_spoil.html

    Islam Channel: Lawfare Thugs

    http://hurryupharry.org/2010/03/24/islam-channel-lawfare-thugs/

    Is The Islam Channel Being Defamed?

    http://www.standpointmag.co.uk/node/2881

    For those who don’t know, Harry’s Place is pro-Zionist and Standpoint is Neocon.

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    • Amad

      They are a bunch of losers, begging for attention. What I don’t understand is how the government continues to fund an organization that has almost ZERO influence on the constituency (Muslims) that the organization is supposed to affect! Serious stupidity! I hope and pray that Islam Channel sues these charlatan, wins and gets a transfer of the government funds (through libel) to the Channel. Wouldn’t it be perfect (ironic) justice if Islam Channel ends up being funded by the government in this weird sort of way!!!

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  55. Felix (Italy)

    After reading your article and the letters, I have decided to send a financial contribution to Quilliam. I have been well acquainted with their work for a long time.

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