More ignorant nonsense from Paul Goodman

Paul Goodman 2It’s still only July, but already Islamophobes are gearing up for their annual witch-hunt of the Global Peace and Unity Event in October, whose partners include the Islam Channel and the Muslim lifestyle magazine Emel.

Former Tory MP Paul Goodman is scaremongering over the supposed “extremists” who will be speaking at the event. One such extremist is “Dr Abu [sic] Rahman Al-Sudais”. The reference is to the imam at the Grand Mosque in Mecca, who has of course visited the UK on a number of occasions and in his speeches has always urged moderation and integration on his Muslim audiences (see for example here, here and here). But Goodman evidently knows so little about Dr Al-Sudais that he can’t even get his name right.

This is par for the course with Goodman. Last week he declared his support for Khalid Mahmood’s disgraceful attack on the North London Central Mosque in Finsbury Park, which was itself based upon a jaw-droppingly ignorant report by the US radio station NPR claiming that the “Christmas Day bomber” Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab had attended a lecture by Anwar al-Awlaki at the mosque “in the fall of 2006 or 2007”. Al-Alawi was in fact arrested in Yemen in August 2006 and was held in prison there until December the following year – so, as the NLCM has pointed out, he could hardly have paid a visit to Finsbury Park during that period. But why should Goodman bother himself with minor details like this? His method is to mindlessly repeat slanders against representative Muslim individuals and institutions without making the slightest effort to check his sources.