I finally managed to watch the BBC’s little bit of pro-Muslim propaganda, ‘Muslims Like Us’, which was a programme targeted at non-Muslims and intended to alter their perceptions of Muslims. We are supposed to learn that there is no stereotypical Muslim, no one ‘Islam’ and if we only get to know Muslims we will learn to love them and their foibles. A huge lie of course…there is only one Islam, Muslims may not follow its teachings…but then they shouldn’t really be considered Muslim. The absolute central tenet of the religion is one faith, one god, one mosque…hence the raised single finger so many Muslims raise….such as when one killed the Russian ambassador in Turkey.
This is the essence of the programme…
‘This is about a battle for the soul of Islam…what makes a good Muslim’
The problem with that is that it doesn’t genuinely ask, never mind answer, the question…‘What is Islam?’. What we got was a lot of shouting and not much enlightenment. In the programme it is fascinating to see that the ‘liberal’ Muslims [of the ten there are two genuinely ‘liberal’ Muslims and one of those is gay and knows pretty much nothing about the religion] don’t want to hear the fundamentals of the religion and in fact they deny what they hear is true despite coming from the Koran and Hadith. Which is interesting as we are told how sacred the Koran is and yet….not so much…the true word of God is dismissed as lies….at one point the Islamic professions by one Muslim were denounced as ‘crazy…his ideas are extremely dangerous…not Islamic’…and yet they were the true Islam.
They all identify as Muslim and yet many did not want the rules and strictures associated with a true following of the religion.
The one genuine Liberal, Naila, was essentially non-practising and her words were very telling….
‘I would be considered a bad Muslim…but a good human being’
She went on to say [I paraphrase]…
‘The Muslim God is a very punishing God…all about guilt and shame…designed for mass control and humiliation…it conditions people’
What’s not to like?
There was a lot of controversy over one supposed ‘extremist’, Abdul Haqq, being on the programme and yet all he did was practise and preach the fundamentals of Islam taken from the Koran and Hadith which is the whole point of the religion….so you have to ask if he is ‘extremist’ is Islam also extreme in itself? Haqq was genial if obsessed and literal about Islam but make no mistake he wanted to go to Syria to join ISIS…but again if you know what Islam commands he follows that command…to defend Islam when it is under attack…and he has been told enough times that that is the case…the BBC itself tells him so. Haqq unfortunately wasn’t as much fun as say Andjem Choudary would have been because Haqq knew the lines but lacked the real conviction to continue in the face of criticism. He was like a pup learning to bark. In one confrontation we saw complete confusion and self-doubt flicker across his face as a Shia angrily walked away from an argument with him….of course that could all have been in the edit….10 days of filming and we get only two hours of film…a lot of very controversial stuff was missed out…as revealed in personal videos made by some participants after the show ended.
People like Haqq are dangerous, they may draw in a few recruits and eventually go on to do terrible things in Syria given the chance despite being genial in person but he was an obvious ‘danger’, less obvious and all the more insidious was the real danger that came from someone the critics of the show didn’t pick up on…Nabil.
Nabil had an enormous chip on his shoulder…he was black and Muslim and blamed the world for all his ills. He wore a ‘Black Lives Matter’ T-shirt but he also wore a hoodie with the logo of the extremist Islamist group Cage on it…
With an ever expanding War on Terror, fuelled by a climate of hostility towards our communities, now is the #TimeForCourage. …
The Telegraph reports…
All the evidence shows that Cage is a pro-terrorist group, not a human rights group as Oborne appears to think. Its history of support for terrorists should have closed the argument on them some time ago. We can only suppose that Peter Oborne’s advocacy of the group is based on an ignorance of the relevant facts.
Nabil came across initially as reasonable and friendly but immediately supported Haqq and his view on things. Nabil’s true character slowly surfaced as he bullied and shut down other people in the house and his grievances were aired. He was as much an ‘Islamist’ as Haqq though he wouldn’t be heading to Syria any time soon and the problem is that he doesn’t wrap his extremism up in the teachings of the dusty old Koran but in the language of grievance which is far more ‘accessible’ and likely to win ‘recruits’ and he initially had a lot of respect and was listened to until he wrecked it all by his bullying. He is married to a Pakistani girl which has raised problems, him being of Nigerian extraction…apparently the Nation of Islam isn’t quite so colour-blind as we are lead to believe…..his wife’s family calling him a monkey etc.
Nabil wasn’t the only one to defy the BBC’s preferred narrative as several of the house mates let slip an ever stricter adherence to Islamic ‘values’….such as not going out to have fun…music is haram. A visit to a war memorial was definitely off the agenda for several of them and one, Humaira, stated that ‘British values for me are colonialism, institutional racism and theft, and genocide.’
Humaira related a tale of Islamophobia in which she was threatened with kidnap, rape and being forced to have the kidnapper’s babies…is that true? We had no context for the claim but she did manage to force out a tear or two….having seen her ‘act’ in the rest of the show you kind of doubt those tears as she comes across as pretty hard-faced and extreme.
The BBC did naturally thread such claims of Islamophobia and racism throughout the programme though it did allow in a few comments about Asian racism towards Blacks….but generally it’s Whitey.
One dodgy moment came after a night on the tiles and the Syrian housemate, Barra, slipped away and suddenly met up with an EDL member who immediately stated he was such. Hmmm…what acting school did the BBC recruit him from? Not saying the BBC faked that but they did didn’t they? What are the chances…with the cameras being there too?
The BBC’s choice of housemates is another piece of ‘clever’ manipulation….just how representative were these housemates? Barra was essentially white with blue eyes and blonde hair despite being Syrian, we had the gay one, or was that two?, then a non-practising Muslim westernised woman, an apparently westernised woman who was in love with Haqq and I reckon would slip on the Burka if he asked, an old, white convert who professed to be moderate but was really quite fundamental, a black convert, Haqq, who was there to be the bad boy against whom all others would unite, a radical female that dressed alternately as sexily as she could or in a shroud and who professed herself a moderate but was anything but, and another Black Muslim who may be a convert or not having originated in Nigeria but who was definitely a believer.
I imagine whoever recruited this lot thought they were onto a winner as they looked initially to be ‘moderate’, Haqq aside. Haqq of course was meant to be the pantomime villain who would show the world that the rest of the Muslim community didn’t respect nor believe in his version of Islam, they are the ‘good’ Muslims…..trouble is you can see that just wasn’t true….They may have objected to ISIS’s excesses but as time went on it gradually became more and more apparent that most of them were ‘Muslim’ and quietly followed the rules despite seeming to rail against them when stated by Haqq.
Far from turning people’s perceptions about Islam and Muslims on their heads this programme just reinforces them. The oft heard cry in the house was ‘What more can we do to integrate?’…that of course is the question because it isn’t really about going to work or partying, it’s about what’s in their heads…how they perceive Britain and non-Muslims, what they want Britain to be and do they want to Islamise Britain? When you listen to many of them in the house you don’t hold out much hope. The BBC brought in 4 non-Muslims to learn about Islam and Muslims…..naturally, despite all they heard and saw, they all to a man said how wonderful it all was and if only we could get to know each other what a wonderful place the world would be. Very polite. Just not true. Just the usual BBC happy ending tacked onto the end of a programme that demonstrated the exact opposite, that getting to know each other ends in fights as you realise the other person is a bit of an evil bastard. Paradoxically the BBC spends a great deal of time trying to prevent you knowing what Muslims really think and what Islam really means because it knows the happy clappy schmutter it propagates is nonsense. I’m thinking the BBC must now think this programme was a bit of a mistake as being all too revealing.
This is an after show video by Nabil, the ‘CAGE’ fanboy…he tells of racism towards him in the house…he should look on the brighter side of slavery and Nigeria deserved to be colonised because it didn’t put up much of a fight and that Africans built nothing…it was Indians and Whites who brought civilisation to Africa. Makes you wonder what else was said that would have been of real interest and genuinely instructive about what Muslims really think.