Abu Qatada’s beliefs are a “perversion of Islam” because they encourage violence. Where is the standard, correct form of Islam that discourages violence? Well, no one actually has ever seen it, but they firmly believe, as firmly as Linus ever believed in the Great Pumpkin, that it exists.
“‘His beliefs are a perversion of Islam,'” by Anil Dawar for The Guardian, June 18 (thanks to the Constantinopolitan Irredentist):
The radical cleric Abu Qatada has variously been described as a “truly dangerous individual” and a “key UK figure” in al-Qaida-related activity by those in anti-terrorist circles who have studied his work and words.
Qatada, who was released from prison last night on strict bail conditions including a 22-hour curfew, became one of the UK’s most wanted men in December 2001, when he went on the run on the eve of government moves to introduce new anti-terror laws allowing suspects to be detained without charge or trial.
The 45-year-old father of five arrived in the UK in September 1993 on a forged United Arab Emirates passport. He was allowed to stay in June 1994 after claiming asylum for himself and his family.
Qatada, also known as Omar Mahmoud Mohammed Othman, was said to have met with an MI5 officer and offered to cooperate to help prevent Islamist terrorism in the UK.
But videos of his sermons were unearthed in a Hamburg flat used by some of those responsible for the September 11 attacks on the US.
He is also believed to have been asked for religious advice by the would-be shoe bomber, Richard Reid, and Zacarias Moussaoui, who pleaded guilty in a US court to training for a “broader conspiracy” than 9/11 to use aircraft as weapons….
In December 2005, while still in prison, the preacher made a video appeal to the kidnappers of British peace activist Norman Kember in Iraq.
The cleric has always denied being Osama bin Laden’s righthand man in Europe or spiritual ambassador to the continent. However, in a television interview in November 2001, he said that although he had never met the al-Qaida leader, he would have been “proud” to.
The essential argument within one of Abu Qatada’s books, Islamic Movements and Contemporary Alliances, is that there should be no affiliation between Muslim and non-Muslim countries.
Despite his denials of being al-Qaida’s European coordinator, investigators have linked Qatada to terrorist cells in Spain, France, Italy and Belgium.
Spanish judge Baltasar Garzon — famous for his attempts to extradite General Pinochet — claimed money raised in Spain was sent to Qatada so he could send it on to Mohamed al-Maqdasi, a Jordanian imprisoned for planning bomb attacks in his own country.
Justice Collins, chairman of the special immigration appeal tribunal that heard an appeal against Qatada’s detention in March 2004, said he was at the centre of terrorist activity in Britain associated with al-Qaida.
“He is a truly dangerous individual,” Collins said. “We have no doubt that his beliefs are extreme and are indeed a perversion of Islam for the purposes of encouraging violence against non-Muslims and Muslims who are, or have been, supportive of Americans.”
The former home secretary David Blunkett once described him as the most significant extremist preacher in the UK.
In 1999, Qatada reportedly made a speech advocating the killing of Jews and the attacking of Americans in which he also stated there was no difference between English people, Jews and Americans….
Good thing he’s free!