Aug. 12, 2015
- The long-term consequences of allowing Choudary to be free constitute a terrible mistake: the main impact of Choudary on the wider public has been colossally to exacerbate suspicions of Muslims as a whole.
- Broadcasters have for years introduced him as a “sheikh” or a “cleric,” without often casting doubt on his qualifications to such titles, or noting the comparative paucity of his following.
- It is perfectly possible that Anjem Choudary will slip between the UK’s terrorism laws once again. Or perhaps now it is he that has slipped up, and the most visible chink in the UK’s counter-extremism policy has finally resolved itself.
If there was a single flaw in the British Prime Minister’s recent speech on countering extremism in the UK, it might be encapsulated in the name “Anjem Choudary.” His speech went into terrific detail on the significance of tacking radicalism through the education system, the Charity Commission, the broadcasting license authority and numerous other means. But it failed the Choudary test.
That test is: What do you do about a British-born man who is qualified to work but appears never to have done so, and who instead spends his time taking his “dole” money and using it to fund a lifestyle devoted solely to preaching against the state?