How do we solve a problem like Anjem Choudary and Islamic Emergency Defence?

How do we solve a problem like Anjem Choudary and Islamic Emergency Defence?

by Sheila Musaji

Here on TAM we have tracked and written about the execrable efforts of Muslim lunatic fringe hate preacher Anjem Choudary for years.  In fact, we regularly speak up about such groups — just type lunatic fringe into the TAM search engine and many articles about individuals and groups will come up. 

In the article Britain should ban Geller & Spencer, and deport Al-Arefe & Al-Habib I wrote about my full support for deporting individuals like Mohammad Al-Arefe and Yasser Al-Habib as well as the many objections to their presence in Britain from members of the British Muslim community.

Preachers of hate should not be allowed into Britain (or America), and those that are already there and who are not citizens should be deported.  The problem is that individuals like Anjem Choudary are not naturalized, but citizens by birth.  In such cases, neither British or American law allows for any action other than arresting them if they break the law.

The Sun reports Islamic Emergency Defence mob (IED) threat to Britain as fanatic Anjem Choudary recruits vigilante squads.  According to that article Choudary “is urging his followers to sign up as recruits to the newly-launched Islamic Emergency Defence — which vows to create a network of “task forces” to redress wrongs and mete out instant justice.”  They also report that representatives of the British Muslim community are speaking out in condemnation of this new organization and its’ plans.  Julie Siddiqi of the Islamic Society of Britain called it “inflammatory”.  Sadiq Khan said: “What is hoped to be achieved by this except offence and tension?”  Labour MP Rushanara Ali said: “When groups encourage people to take the law into their own hands it needs to be stopped.”

The website for this group attempts to make their group sound reasonable, but fails.  It does not list any members, officers, no one.  It is anonymous.  And, so far, the only one promoting the group is Anjem Choudary.

Jessica Elgot also reports on the Huffington Post UK Anjem Choudary Support For New UK Muslim Protection Squad ‘Islamic Emergency Defence’.  She includes a number of tweets from Muslims concerned about this group and Choudary’s support.

The Commentator reports that:

...  But for those of us keen to give IED (awful choice of acronym, by the way) the benefit of the doubt, and see where the organisation went with its goals, the pretence of goodwill and decency soon dissolved, with the organisation tweeting out intolerant and offensive things, as well as 'instructions' on 'how to deal with egotistic police'. 

The organisation claims "vigilantism" is a legitimate method by which "Muslims can legally defend themselves" and stated yesterday, "We invite all non-Muslims to embrace Islam and save themselves from the hell-fire". 

This is the kind of anti-non-Muslim bigotry that we have become accustomed to from the likes of Choudary's followers, and it comes as no surprise to me that it took only three days for the organisation's mask of tackling 'Islamophobia' to slip.

IED seems unkeen to answer who is actually behind the organisation, and when asked it replies, "this organisation is run by a network of Muslims across the UK". But they won't identify themselves, and when I call their telephone number listed on their website, it repeatedly just rings out until it disconnects. 

The twitter page identified as IED Official contains a lot of posts that are of concern. 

These people are living in Britain, and they are Muslims, therefore they are obligated to be good citizens and to abide by the laws of the country in which they live.  They need to report situations to the legal authorities, not take the law into their own hands.  As Muslims they have an obligation to the society in which they live, and to the Muslim community which they claim to represent.  Creating an organization with the acronym IED and exacerbating tensions between communities is an insult to the wider community and to the Muslim community.  Such an organization only adds fuel to the fire of anti-Muslim hate mongers.

The Fiqh Council of North America fatwa On Being Faithful Muslims and Loyal Americans applies equally to Muslim citizens of Britain. 

The mainstream Muslim community has very few options for countering such individuals and organizations within the law - however, we can continue to denounce them.

Originally published 6/27/2013