The strange thing about Islamic suicide bombers is that, for all their talk of how much they hate the West, they always seem to resemble the western underclass. This is not a coincidence, since both are often products of the welfare state and the idleness it encourages, perfect conditions for the building of resentment, extremism and reactive machismo.
And Taimour Abdulwahab al-Abdaly, the Iraqi-born, Swedish-raised and British-radicalised Stockholm bomber, who left three sweet and innocent children in order to murder innocent civilians (which he failed to do as it turned out), is nothing more than a deadbeat dad.
The attack there has increased the sense of urgency over here: what house price inflation was to the Noughties, Islamic terrorism may be to whatever this decade is called – Britain’s major export to our neighbours.
And now security minister Baroness Neville-Jones has said that the £60m Prevent programme aimed at Islamic extremism should be targeted at individuals in danger of radicalisation, instead of being used to fund community groups.
Prevent, as you may or may not know, was set up to prevent radicalisation, which it did by writing an open cheque to lots of Muslim groups. The result, according to the Policy Exchange think-tank, was that taxpayers were “underwriting the very Islamist ideology which spawns an illiberal, intolerant and anti-western world view”. It added: “Political and theological extremists, acting with the authority conferred by official recognition, are indoctrinating young people with an ideology of hostility to western values.”
As I wrote in one of my first ever blog posts, there was an industry created in order to throw money at Muslim areas which, coincidentally, happened to have deserted Labour for the Liberal Democrats after the Iraq war. In Luton the taxpayer funded seven Muslim centres under a Home Office project called “Preventing Violent Extremism”, while the council has handed out £200,000, and another £400,000 has been set aside to capture the “hearts and minds” of young Muslims.
It didn’t seem to work with al-Abdaly.
Prevent was an unmitigated disaster, but it was the culmination of 30 years of state-funded multiculturalism, a tragedy captured brilliantly in Kenan Malik’s From Fatwa to Jihad. As he wrote: “For what the pattern of mosque building in Bradford reveals is that it was not the piety of first-generation Muslims that led to the Islamisation of the town. It was, rather, the power, influence and money that accrued to religious leaders in the 1980s as a result of Bradford City Council’s multicultural policies. Multiculturalism helped paint Bradford Muslim green.”
Rather than simply winding up Prevent, the Government then changed course, instead putting money into kosher (so to speak) Muslim organisations that did not oppose western democracy.
But according to the Communities and Local Government select committee report earlier this year, this has only led to increasing paranoia among some Muslims, who felt they were being spied on. It concluded: “There is a sense that Government has sought to engineer a ‘moderate’ form of Islam, promoting and funding only those groups which conform to this model. We do not think it is the job of Government to intervene in theological matters…”
Indeed. When it comes to Islamism government is almost always a problem, not a solution. Government helped to create Islamism through its policy of multiculturalism, which not only led to increased segregation but also led to a sense of grievance (as taxpayer’s money always does). Its continual interference only makes things worse – the best thing the state can do to combat this problem is to leave the Muslim community alone.