Progress. Up to this point Blair has been certain that Islam had no problems at all, but that there was just this pesky Tiny Minority of Extremists that had hijacked the religion. Now for him to be asking if “Islam” — not “radical Islam” or “hijacked Islam” — can come to terms with the modern world is momentous. “Prime minister says Britain needs debate about Islam,” from Associated Press, with thanks to the Constantinopolitan Irredentist:
LONDON Prime Minister Tony Blair said Tuesday that Britain needed a debate about the position of Muslims, but that the faith also needed to decide how it comes to terms with modernity.
At his monthly news conference, Blair said he supported a local school authority’s decision to bar a Muslim woman from working as a teacher while wearing a veil.
He said, however, that should be just one issue in a broader debate about “the relationship between our society and how the Muslim community integrates with our society.”
“There’s a second issues which is about Islam itself, and how Islam comes to terms with and is comfortable with the modern world,” Blair said.
Similar debates, he said, were happening around Europe and in the Muslim world.