Miqdaad Versi: the culture war

Writing in The Guardian, ‘Choudary’s imprisonment is also a reminder of the shoddy state of counter-extremism in Britain. For years successive governments have struggled to define what extremism was and who they were trying to confront. Hasty and ill-thought-through measures have alienated the very Muslims who kicked out extremists such as Choudary from their mosques. But now he has been locked up without any new legislation being required (albeit in a secret trial with the evidence not shared with the wider public). Why was this not done’ . . . My belief, shared by many Muslims, is that the counter-extremism fight has become a casualty of an ongoing culture war pursued by ideologues with the ear of the government, bent on denying public space to Muslims who organise themselves. It is one that wrongly paints the life and practice of many Muslims as “conveyor belts” to violence, with the assumption that the more conservative you are, the more prone you are to extremism’. click here