Trojan Horse, Non Violent Extremism And Schools

Watching the above segment on Newsnight, Maajid Nawaz again found another person who was unwilling to condemn the application of sharia such as stoning an adulterer to death. Ibrahim Hewitt is an educationalist, whose private school Al-Aqasa in Leicester offers, from age 7, gender segregated education. It promises:

“a broad and balanced holistic curriculum that integrates Islamic perspectives throughout all academic subject areas, with a focus on the Qur’an and character development.”

In the video above Hewitt refuses to condemn stoning or amputation saying when it comes to sharia it is not “black and white.” He promises that such punishments are not advocated in schools. His perspective on Islam matters given the school he has founded and runs. Thankfully he wrote a book “What does Islam Say?” to enlighten us.

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From MailOnline:

In it he advocates the killing of adulterers by stoning. The book says: ‘Any act that destabilises marriage will also destabilise society. Hence the Islamic punishments for such acts are severe… Married men and women found guilty of adultery are to be stoned to death.’

The book also advocates 100 lashes for fornication and sodomy with both men and women, and condemns homosexuality as a ‘grave sin’.
Mr Hewitt says in the book: ‘Islam, like most other major faiths of the world, categorically forbids homosexual practices (sexual relations between two men or between two women), regarding them as a great sin. In a society under Islamic law, such would be severely punished.’

He then compares homosexuals to paedophiles or those who commit incest. The book says: ‘If people have such desires [homosexuality], they should keep them to themselves, and control their desires to avoid forbidden practices.

‘The advice would be the same as, say, to someone who had sexual desires for minors or for close family: that having the desires does not legitimise realising them.’

The book also argues that men and women are not equal, and men have a right to assume leadership over women. ‘Islam recognises the leadership of men over women, but it does not recognise the domination of one over the other.’

He adds: ‘If a woman is unable to satisfy the sexual or other needs of her husband he may consider taking another wife, rather than the common Western practice of secretly taking a mistress.’

Hopefully then his book cannot be found in the school library. At least one would hope such a person did not own a school to educate children. But he does, charging parents fees of up to nearly £2,000 a year and receiving about a million pounds in government grants. Rest assured for the money your children’s spiritual needs are being met. Dancing and music are not allowed to protect them.

As Maajid mentions that sort of mood music of extremism is what the suicide bombers are dancing to – and it is murder on the dance floor in far off theatres of war and terrorism across the world.

The reason we are even having this discussion thrust into public discourse is because of the Trojan Horse letter suggesting there were ways for Islamists to control schools. Whilst most see the letter as a forgery, or at least not part of an organised conspiracy to infiltrate schools, the government is investigating. A leaked copy of some of the individual school reports today suggests the following:

In the Golden Hillock report, Ofsted said: “Too little is done to keep students safe from the risks associated with extremist views.”

Inspectors concluded leaders and governors were “not doing enough to mitigate against cultural isolation” and this “could leave students vulnerable to the risk of marginalisation from wider British society and the associated risks which could include radicalisation.”

These concerns about schools in Birmingham being targeted will soon be reported officially by the government’s education watchdog OFSTED, though it is thought that six of the schools will be put under special measures by the above leak. Before all this there have been attempts to rubbish the forthcoming reports. For example Assed Baig:

There is extremism is schools, I agree and accept this. Extremism exists in schools were [sic] parents pay tens of thousands a year to have their boys segregated from girls. Where an ideology of superiority is taught, where young rich boys are taught that it is their God given right to rule over the commoners. Where a skewed version of history is taught, colonialism was a good thing and the empire brought good to the world and civilized the savages. In these schools boys are forced to learn Latin, not Arabic. But we won’t see or hear politicians talking of that kind of extremism or segregation, we won’t see journalists peering through windows there, because it is not Muslims involved. Extremism of the rich is applauded, not questioned.

It is like the media reports of the Bullingdon Club, the criticisms of Nadine Dorries Conservative MP of the Conservative Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer as “arrogant posh boys” with “no passion to want to understand the lives of others” never happened. The deflection just does not work because the media has noticed and criticised the inner Cabinet’s narrow privileged background, and labour have built a campaign strategy around this for the 2015 General Election. We know Nigel Farage of UKIP went to Eton [exclusive public schooling too] – the media screamed the negativity of this as a man claiming to challenge the establishment. What has this to do with the concerns of the standard of education children were receiving in these schools?

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Photo above: Quote from Michael Gove’s book Celsius 7/7

Mehdi Hasan has also before OFSTED reports tried to undermine what conclusions may be reached by suggesting the education secretary Michael Gove’s “black and white” approach will encourage extremism:

Thus, the activities, habits and practises of British Muslims – from dress codes to dietary requirements, from Sunday schools to seating arrangements at university – continue to be viewed almost exclusively through the lens of security and counter-extremism. This Gove-backed approach, Blunt reminded listeners of the Today programme, is both “impractical and counter-productive” because it encourages a dangerous, black-and-white view of the world and further alienates those young British Muslims who feel disillusioned or demonised.

“You would find that people who are in the shades of grey are then driven into being black because they are invited to choose between black and white.”

Yes, by this logic, ensuring that children are taught music and dance might well push them to become suicide bombers in the future to rebel against the decadence of a former colonial power that made them jig as kids. In class, an exploration of capital punishment as going against human rights might force them to protect the importance of marriage by insisting on the stoning of adulterers. Because what Hasan is saying is you are provoking disillusioned demonised young Muslims to the edge of reason to defend their faith. Never mind that the schools currently are doing this if the leak is correct.

We are not going to tackle extremism or people being attracted to Islamism by burying our heads in the sand or believe that we should let sleeping non violent extremists lie undisturbed in case they become violently militant. Neither is this going to be helped by treating every Muslim as a security threat or less equal as a citizen. I was delighted that TellMAMA (a charity that looks at anti-Muslim hatred) recently advocated ending religious segregation in the British education system as a means to reduce fear and hatred and also to promote a cohesive society.

It is the ultimate way by which a school like Al-Aqasa when stating (my emphasis) “The national curriculum is, with minor adjustments, taught at Al-Aqsa within an Islamic framework and perspective” no longer need cause concern about a kids education as all children from different religious, social and economic backgrounds can learn, play, and dance together.

Without any religious agenda being foisted on them by anyone at school.

Article written by John Sargeant on Homo economicus’ Weblog

Follow @JPSargeant78

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5 Comments

Filed under British Politics, British Society, Religion, secular

5 responses to “Trojan Horse, Non Violent Extremism And Schools

  1. A few typos corrected – somehow missed typing Mawaz instead of Nawaz. Correction that Nigel Farage leader of UKIP did not go to Eton. He went to the exclusive public (which means private in UK) school Dulwich College which currently has day fees per term of nearly £6,000

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