Radical Islam was Brexit’s elephant in the room – My column in the Toronto Sun

“The fear of being labelled racist may silence many for now. But in the future there will be an ultra right-wing backlash in which innocent Muslims may well suffer. I remember the fallout when former British foreign secretary Jack Straw in 2006 asked one of his constituents to remove her burka while speaking to him. He was accused of “thinly veiled racism” and his fate gave the elites one of many cues to tiptoe around such issues.”

Masthead

Tarek Fatah
The Toronto Sun

The beauty of an uprising like the Brexit vote is that it makes the political and media elites who govern our lives look like fools.

Brexit was no Haitian, Cuban or French Revolution, nor was it the Great Indian “Mutiny” of 1857. But it did demonstrate the power of the working class over elites, who showed they were cut off from reality.

The three main political parties of Britain endorsed the UK remaining in the European Union. They were backed by big business. Two hundred of Great Britain’s top business leaders called on the public to vote to stay in the EU.

Meanwhile, labour leaders representing 52 of the country’s largest trade unions, threw their lot in with the elites.

Leading up to the June 23 vote, virtually every pollster and pundit predicted the UK would vote to “remain” within the EU. Thus the “leave” victory was a shock for the political and media elites.

Appeals by 23 British Nobel Prize winners and 300 academics fell on deaf ears as the UK’s previously side-lined working class voted to raise the “Gates of Vienna” and stop their country from being swamped by refugees, camped on the other side of the English Channel in France.

The so-called, riff-raff that the leftist Labour Party had taken for granted as it appeased ethnic voters, came out to exercise their rights and took the elites by surprise.

The veteran leftist, author and filmmaker Tariq Ali labelled the EU as “Cuckoo Land”, saying Britain was better off without it. The Latin American TV network TeleSur quoted Ali branding the recent EU refugee deal with Turkey as “squalid”.

In the once-thriving mining town of Barnsley, where 70% of the population voted to leave the European Union, one middle-aged man summed it up as he spoke to Britain’s ITV network: “It’s to stop the Muslims from coming into this country. Simple as that.”

Few others dared to be so explicit. But neither before nor after the Brexit vote has the political and media elite dared to discuss the elephant in the room – radical Islam.

The fear of being labelled racist may silence many for now. But in the future there will be an ultra right-wing backlash in which innocent Muslims may well suffer.

I remember the fallout when former British foreign secretary Jack Straw in 2006 asked one of his constituents to remove her burka while speaking to him. He was accused of “thinly veiled racism” and his fate gave the elites one of many cues to tiptoe around such issues.

But trust ordinary Britons to be appalled at how their country was being reshaped to accommodate medieval values, not imported by Muslim immigrants, but entrenched in the values their British-born children were being taught at school.

The UK is not alone. From India to Myanmar; France to the Central African Republic, ordinary people are angry at Islamism.

As as a result, innocent Muslims suffer while their radical leaders gloat at this “proof” of their predictions that the ‘“kuffar”, non-Muslims, are enemies of Islam.

If Muslim leaders do not acknowledge the flaunting of radical Islam on the streets and in the workplaces of Europe’s cities, then Brexit is just the beginning.

Is blocking off streets in Paris and Delhi for Friday prayers the best way for Muslims to display our faith? It’s time to take stock, but is anyone listening?

street-prayers

7 comments for “Radical Islam was Brexit’s elephant in the room – My column in the Toronto Sun

  1. Savitri
    June 29, 2016 at 7:52 PM

    When there is a backlash, all Asians will suffer, including Hindus.

  2. Robin singh gill
    June 30, 2016 at 1:46 AM

    Sure they will listen someday!

  3. Richard Barr
    July 1, 2016 at 6:27 PM

    Britain has always been xenophobic and racist, but like an iceberg, the worst of it was below the surface. The current issues have less to do with Muslims and even radicals than with the sheer number of immigrants. And the blame for the flood should be directed at Vladimir Putin. Russia’s support for Assad was the direct and foreseeable cause of a stampede of refugees. The result is the weakening of Europe generally and the break up of the EU. Russia benefits because chaos in Western Europe takes attention away from his machinations and outright invasions of former Soviet republics and will leave Germany and the rest vulnerable to winter fuel blackmail this fall. He will have European sanctions lifted before the end of the year.

    • Mahmud the Idol Breaker
      August 6, 2016 at 2:08 PM

      @Rachard Barr… Sir, you speak complete and utter non-sense about Syria.
      Syria was destabilized by US/UK backed jihadists. Assad was simply reacting to mostly foreign jihadists (like ISIS) working in collusion with the Muslim Brotherhood. Just listen to the US state department announcement for 5 minutes and it’s obvious they are more interested in removing Assad than fighting ISIS. When the US was the sole country “bombing” (supplying) ISIS, it only ever got stronger and conquered more territory. It’s only since Putin’s intervention that ISIS and the other Wahabbi terrorists have been on the run.
      The Syrian conflict is partly to blame for the flood of refugees (and terrorists), but the fault for this lies with USA/UK and NOT with the Russians, who are the only force together with Assad who are fighting the jihadists.
      Taking one more example, see Libya.
      However bad Gaddafi was (he was bad), the Libyans lived in a middle income country where healthcare and education were free. Once again USA/UK teamed up with jihadists and removed Gaddaffi in the name of “getting rid of a brutal dictator” and “spreading democracy”.
      What exactly has been the end result?
      Libya no longer has a functioning government. It is now a playground for various jihadists groups, and it’s civilian infrastructure has been destroyed.
      No more free schooling for Libyan kids now!
      We have basically handed over an entire country to ISIS and various other jihadists.
      Please note also that the Libyan army’s arsenal almost entirely ended up in the hands of ISIS.
      Syria is the third country after Iraq and Libya that have been destroyed with no thought as to what would happen after. The end result has been the flood of refugees (including terrorists) to Europe.
      To blame Vladimir Putin and Russia for this and not USA/UK foreign policy in the Middle-east is not just incorrect, but downright dishonest.

  4. El Cid
    July 6, 2016 at 1:44 PM

    Tarek said: “The fear of being labelled racist may silence many for now. But in the future there will be an ultra right-wing backlash in which innocent Muslims may well suffer.”

    In Europe this is probably true–a tradition in fact. In the US and Canada, always just a fringe. In any case, the emphasis appears to be on the wrong thing. American and Canadian Muslims aren’t victims, they’re winners. They live in peace and security. In a free society, one learns to have a thicker skin when it comes to criticism, and to reflect on what is true and what is exaggerated.

    The problem is that there are no demonstrations of “Asians” (to use the British term) against ISIS and against the clear, ideology that they espouse successfully to win over our youth willing to join the Jihad in the name of God. The demonstrations are reserved for things like criticizing Israel. Or, against “Islamaphobia”. You can’t get 100 Muslims to demonstrate against ISIS atrocities, say in Syria or Iraq. Or, to denounce a rabid Imam. Or, to stand up for the Christian communities being slaughtered.

    And, so what? We non-Muslims aren’t demonstrating against these things either.

    If we don’t stand up for Western culture and values, then we are ultimately doomed.

    Eid Mubarak.

  5. jim
    July 12, 2016 at 5:31 PM

    right on

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    July 31, 2016 at 3:31 PM

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