Writing in this week’s Spectator Rod Liddle rallies to the defence of poor Harry Cummins – “the British Council employee who dared to speak the truth about Islamic ideology”, as the standfirst to Liddle’s article puts it.
Apparently Cummins has been bombarding journalists with an email demanding the right of reply to the Guardian, of a character that leads Liddle to describe him as a paid-up member of the “green ink brigade”.
This, you may recall, was the Harry Cummins who contributed a series of articles to the Telegraph back in 2004 bearing titles such as “Muslims are a threat to our way of life“, and who assured his readers that “Christians are the original inhabitants and rightful owners of almost every Muslim land, and behave with a humility quite unlike the menacing behaviour we have come to expect from the Muslims who have forced themselves on Christendom, a bullying ingratitude that culminates in a terrorist threat to their unconsulted host”.
In response to a critic who accused him of underestimating the diversity of Islam and pointed out that extremists were a minority within the faith, Cummins opined that “all Muslims, like all dogs, share certain characteristics”. Understandably, Cummins denounced the proposal to introduce a law against incitement to religious hatred, which he said had been adopted “at the behest of Muslim foreigners who have forced themselves on us”, and he defended the right to express “a virulent hatred of Muslims”.
Liddle, however, is indignant that Cummins’ employers at the British Council sacked him on the basis that he had made “ignorant” and “hateful” comments about Muslims. According to Liddle, notwithstanding the eccentricity of his emails, Cummins “was certainly not a racist, whatever else he was. He made it clear that his beef was with the ideology, not the people”!
On the other hand we are obliged to Liddle for the revelation that “the more barking mad the letter I receive, the more likely it is that they fervently agree with whatever it is I’ve written”. Well, that would figure, wouldn’t it?