Imagine the outcry that would ensue if a group that received public money promoted a book by, say, Tommy Robinson. But no one will care about this. To express concern would be “Islamophobic.”
“Activist who praised Isis killer Jihadi John has book promoted by National Lottery-funded group,” by Felix Pope, The JC, November 18, 2021:
A campaigner who praised Hezbollah and Isis killer Jihadi John has had his book promoted by a group that received more than £500,000 in public money, angering MPs.
Influential think-tank Policy Exchange revealed that a “radical reading group” supported by a group that recieved National Lottery and British Council was to hold the discussion on I Refuse to Condemn, which was edited by Asim Qureshi, who has history of controversial statements.
At a 2006 rally held by the UK branch of Hizb ut-Tahrir, an Islamist group that aims to unite all Muslims under one caliphate, Mr Qureshi said: “When we see Hezbollah defeating the armies of Israel we know what the solution is and where the victory lies.”
Mr Qureshi is research director of Cage, an advocacy group condemned as “apologists for terror” after he described Isis beheader Mohammed Emwazi in 2015 as “extremely kind, gentle and soft-spoken”.
In a BBC interview with Andrew Neil, also in 2015, Mr Qureshi repeatedly refused to condemn the statement by an Islamist scholar that Jews are descended from pigs, merely repeating that he was not a theologian.
The “reading group” is supported by Our Shared Cultural Heritage, a group coordinated by Manchester University sociologist Dr Sadia Habib, and the pressure group Decolonise UoM (University of Manchester).
Earlier this year, the anti-colonial collective called on the University of Manchester to divest from Tel Aviv University in order to oppose “racist violence”.
An open letter pushed by Decolonise UoM and signed by Dr Habib described the Israeli university as “an institution deeply implicated in racial violence and suffering”.
Conservative MP Nusrat Ghani criticised the National Lottery for funding OSCH, saying that it could bring the organisation into disrepute.
He said: “The Heritage Fund should not be associating with Cage. Nor should the British Council. Ministers need to be aware that these types of cases corrode public faith in our institutions.”
Labour MP Khalid Mahmood added: “The public deserves much better than this. The British Council exists to promote cultural understanding between peoples and a positive view of Muslims to showcase the best of Britain.
“Asim Qureshi and Cage have consistently shown themselves to be some of the worst.
“What is an organisation with a royal charter doing in such company?”…