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January 28, 2009
The Muslim News welcomes foreign policy link with radicalism
The Muslim News has welcomed comments made by Security and Counter-terrorism Minister Lord West, directly linking Britain’s foreign policy with radicalism.
“We have always argued that foreign policy is the primary reason for radicalisation but our views have never been listened to by the government,” The Muslim News Editor Ahmed J Versi said.
But Versi also said that the Security Minister’s admission was deflected by trying to hold the previous Government as being responsible for not acknowledging the link.
“Lord West is only blaming Tony Blair but the current Government too is saying that foreign policy is not the main issue.”
Ministers, the Editor said, were “focusing more on mosques, imams, madrasahs, and Islam” which they claim are the primary problem. “It is POLITICS and not religion that the government has to focus on especially on some of the excesses of foreign policy.”
The Muslim News also pointed out that most surveys have also vindicated its argument that it is foreign policy issues behind radicalism.
“We believe it is also the way anti-terror legislation is being implemented has often been counter-productive by making young Muslims irate as they feel they are being targeted because of their religion.”
In a speech to architects and engineers at a seminar on the adaptation of new buildings to the terror threat on Tuesday, Lord West said: "We never used to accept that our foreign policy ever had any effect on terrorism."
"They [the Blair administration] were very unwilling to have any debate about how our foreign policy impacted on radicalization,” he said.
The Security Minister also admitted that the Government efforts to counter terrorism have been set back by Israel's latest attack in Gaza in which more than 1,300 Palestinians were killed. "There is no doubt that when you see these pictures coming back (from Gaza), that in the mind of people making hate, there is a linkage between the US, Israel and the UK,” he said.
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