Apparently the same way Iraq, dogs, pig statues, underwear ads, and free speech in general tend to “radicalize” Muslims. “Israeli killing of Palestinians radicalises UK Muslims,” from the Pakistan Daily, February 1:
Britain’s security and counter-terrorism minister acknowledges link between foreign policy, security threats.
Britain’s security and counter-terrorism minister, Lord Alan West, warned Tuesday that the conflict in Gaza has set back the government’s attempts to tackle radicalism in Muslim communities here.
“There is no doubt that when you see these pictures coming back, that in the mind of people making hate, there is a linkage between the US, Israel and the UK. Without a doubt it will have set us back,” he said.
West also dismissed the refusal by former prime minister Tony Blair to acknowledge the link between foreign policy and security threats.
“We never used to accept that our foreign policy ever had any effect on terrorism. Well, that was clearly bollocks,” he said, according to widespread and concurring reports.
“They [the Blair administration] were very unwilling to have any debate about how our foreign policy impacted on radicalisation.”
West, a former navy chief brought into government by Prime Minister Gordon Brown, said this view had changed since the new premier took over in June 2007.
Addressing architects in a seminar on ensuring buildings are resilient to terrorism, he said: “The business in Gaza has not helped us at all in our counter-radicalism strategy.
“We have key people in the Muslim community who we are in dialogue with, and they are quick to let us know there is an issue that is causing us a worry.
“They said it [the conflict] was coming over very badly.
“It fits in with the al-Qaeda message, so we have to be very quick to respond to that and we have been quick to make sure that for Friday prayers, it is clear what our position is.”
The Israeli brutal assault on Palestinian civilians in Gaza is likely to encourage “the radicalisation” of some Muslims, noted George Galloway, Britain’s Respect Party MP, during his radio show at the very early days of the military offensive.
Similarly, leading British Muslims had warned Prime Minister Gordon Brown in a letter that anger over the Israeli campaign in Gaza has reached “acute levels” and was empowering extremists.
“The Israeli government’s use of disproportionate force … has revived extremist groups and empowered their message of violence and perennial conflict.”
British government ministers had also expressed concern that Israel’s killing of Palestinian women and children in Gaza could radicalise Muslims in Britain.
This view is also shared by Jonathan Evans, MI5 director-general, who told newspapers that Israel’s military assault on Gaza would likely see “extremists try to radicalise individuals for their own purposes.”