This week’s Spectator magazine hosts an article by the right-wing agitator Rod Liddle calling for more Islamophobia within the Tory party.
This extraordinary call for even more anti-Muslim bigotry in the Tory ranks comes against a backdrop of Theresa May deliberately stonewalling Muslim people’s demands for an inquiry into the shocking scale and frequency of Islamophobic abuse within the Tory ranks.
There’s no denying that the Tory party is riddled with anti-Muslim bigots, from the rank and file all the way up to the top of the party.
One of the most bizarre things about Rod Liddle’s Spectator article is that it starts off with one of his trademark transphobic rants, which is still going on as the article hits the paywall fadeout!
But if you do get beyond the paywall you find that Liddle is re-using the simplistic extreme-right trick of conflating criticism of the Islamic religion with bigotry and hatred towards Muslim people.
He tries to imply that the loony liberal left are somehow censoring people from criticising Islam by accusing those who criticise the religion of being Islamophobes.
It’s an utterly misleading argument, but unfortunately right-wing idiots buy into it.
It only takes the briefest glimpse at reality to see that the majority of people criticising the vile homophobic, misogynistic, democracy-crushing, head-chopping, terrorism-promoting, tyrannical Saudi war criminals are lefties.
Meanwhile Theresa May and the Tories continually suck up to the vile Islamist Saudi tyrants in order to hawk them even more British weapons, and right-wingers like Liddle and his chums at the Spectator turn a blind eye to this absolute depravity.
In fact, the very same Boris Johnson who the extreme-right hate mob are lauding for sticking the boot into Muslim women this week is the very person who outlined the Tory government’s position that Britain will continue selling weapons to the Saudi tyrants to commit their war crimes with because if we don’t cash in on their war crimes, someone else might!
Then if you look at the countries that are banning arms sales to Saudi Arabia and openly criticising them for their grotesque human rights record, it’s the kind of socially liberal governments that Liddle and the Spectaror mob regularly spit their hate at (Canada, Norway &Germany).
If you look at the UK politicians who do the most to oppose arms sales to Saudi Arabia while they’re committing war crimes in Yemen, it’s lefties like Emily Thornbury, Caroline Lucas, and Jeremy Corbyn (all hate figures for Rod and his mates in the Spectator mob).
If you look at people who are actually leading the fight against grotesque practises like female genital mutilation, forced under-age marriage, and rampant misogyny, again it’s usually leftie liberals and western Muslim women doing the heavy lifting, while hard-right idiots like Liddle carp from the sidelines and use these issues as ammunition to call for even more bigotry and hatred towards Muslim people in general.
Let’s get it absolutely straight. It’s absolutely possible to utterly condemn vile Islamist regimes like Saudi Arabia, and to oppose barbaric practises that are still commonplace in the Muslim world (like FGM and forced marriage) without spitting bigoted Islamophobic vitriol at all Muslims in general.
In fact there’s nothing Islamophobic about criticising the Islamic religion at all (especially if you’re doing it from an atheist/agnostic stance that includes criticism of other religions too).
But if you’re using cheap and nasty appeals to “our Judeo-Christian history” to deliberately conflate criticism of Islam with spewing bigotry and hatred at Muslim people (as Liddle does in his article), you’re blatantly being an utterly disingenuous shit.
We all know that had a left-leaning magazine or blog posted an article that openly called for “more anti-Jewish bigotry in the Labour ranks” and created a ridiculously deceptive argument that the freedom to criticise Israel somehow justifies this call for more anti-Semitic abuse, there would have been an absolute tidal wave of condemnation, but somehow Liddle continually gets away with this kind of extreme-right trolling.
What’s even more telling is that the BBC’s heavyweight political presenter Andrew Neil is the chair of Spectator magazine which published this disgracefully deceptive article calling for more anti-Muslim bigotry in politics.
So next time you see Andrew Neil, or any other BBC journalist, spewing faux outrage about the Labour anti-Semitism row, just remember that Neil is perfectly happy to turn a blind eye to outright calls for more anti-Muslim bigotry in the Tory ranks, and that the BBC are quite happy to have Neil continue to be the heavyweight front man for their supposedly impartial political coverage.
Boris Johnson’s comments ridiculing women who wear the veil were a blatant ploy to rile up the extreme-right by throwing them the red meat of Muslims to hate, and the free speech issue to gnash their teeth over.
It’s no coincidence whatever that Johnson has decided to whip up the extreme-right like this, having just had a secretive meeting with the alt right “kingmaker” Steve Bannon who was the one who unified the Swastika-waving “Jews will not replace us” crowd and the Donald Trump Presidential campaign.
Picking minority groups to bash rather than talking about policy issues has been a classic extreme-right tactic ever since Hitler and the Nazis, and just look how it’s already worked a treat for the hard-right Brextremists:
Look how they successfully pinned the blame for the devastating consequences of their own hard-right austerity agenda onto immigrants and the EU in order to con people into voting for their ‘make it up as we go along’ Brexit shambles.
Public pressure has eventually convinced the Tory leadership to drop their usual “ignore it until it goes away” stance in favour of a supposedly independent inquiry into Johnson’s conduct.
But this inquiry is disastrous for multiple reasons. The main one is that it feeds into the victimhood narratives that the extreme-right rely so heavily upon to spread their divisive bile.
Boris was clearly hoping his comments would generate pushback so that he can pose as the poor innocent victim who is being silenced, so it’s played right into his hands.
Another reason such a limited inquiry is a disastrous idea is that it’s a lose-lose outcome for Muslims. If Boris is cleared then it sends out a signal to every single bigot in Britain that ridiculing Muslim women and demanding they be denied access to public services is now approved and acceptable behaviour. Boris gets off scot free, Muslims take the hit
If Boris is sanctioned for his comments, then he’s sure to be anointed with martyrdom sainthood by the extreme right, with Muslim people bearing the brunt of the criticism for the fact he’s been sanctioned. Boris gets a huge popularity boost with the extreme-right mob, Muslims take the hit
What the Tory party really needed to do is call the wide-ranging inquiry into anti-Muslim bigotry in the Tory ranks that the Muslim Council of Britain and several senior Tories have been demanding for months.
Instead they’ve cobbled together this rigged Boris wins – Muslims lose farce.
If you’re under any doubt whatever about whether Boris Johnson’s comment were a ploy to garner support from the extreme-right ultranationalist blue-kip demographic, just take a look at what’s been going on in the Tommy Robinson hate chamber since Johnson made his remarks.
These are just a tiny sample illustrating the wave of extreme-right Boris adoration and anti-Muslim commentary he’s managed to whip up.