Blimey. Martin Bright graciously concedes that there may yet be hope for the Muslim Council of Britain.
True, as you might anticipate, Bright attacks Madeleine Bunting’s article in yesterday’s Guardian for capitulating to Islamofascism – “treating international Islamist groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood and Jamaat-i-Islami as if they are the primitive products of third world victims of colonialism rather than sophisticated totalitarian movements”, as he puts it. Bright also declares himself “delighted” at the thought that his anti-MCB propaganda may have resulted in the government cold shouldering the most representative Muslim organisation in Britain and transferring its support to an utterly fraudulent outfit like the Sufi Muslim Council (yes, well done there, Martin).
But, credit where it’s due, Bright does believe that, as far as the MCB is concerned, “the process of reform is beginning”. Which does represent a rather more liberal stance than the one adopted by the rabid anti-Islamist bigot Dave T over at Harry’s Place. Admittedly, that isn’t difficult.
Postscript: David T is not happy about being characterised as a “rabid anti-Islamist bigot”, which he describes as “a rather strange turn of phrase”. Well, how else would you characterise someone who has described Inayat Bunglawala of the Muslim Council of Britain as “a piece of scum” and Osama Saeed of the Muslim Association of Britain as a fascist? The recent juvenile abuse of Salma Yaqoob is one of the milder examples of the obsessive and ceaseless attacks on politically engaged Muslims by Harry’s Place.
Scroll down through the comments and you’ll find Martin Bright asserting that “Islamophobia is a daft term”. Odd, then, that Bright told a FOSIS conference in August 2005 that he had no problem describing himself as an Islamophobe “because there is a lot in Islam to be fearful of”. Bright also wants to know “why calling the Sufi Muslim Council a ‘fraudulent outfit’ doesn’t count as Islamophobia. Or don’t Sufis count as Muslims?” They certainly do, but they never elected Haras Rafiq and Azhar Ali as their representatives. Even the government has evidently reached the conclusion that the SMC is a waste of space and has now shifted its patronage to Khurshid Ahmed’s British Muslim Forum.