“Facilitators” are “actively involved in facilitating,” and the blinkered dhimmis who are entrusted with protecting Britain are alarmed. So they’re appealing to help from Muslim communities that are already helping them, for despite that existing help, they’re “desperate.” But this is destined to be an unsuccessful plea, for neither they nor the Muslim communities to which they are appealing have any interest in getting to the root cause of why young Muslims are traveling from Britain to Syria: because they see doing so as a way to fulfill Qur’anic imperatives about waging jihad against unbelievers. British authorities are as determined to pretend that such imperatives do not exist as all too many in British Muslim communities are to conceal their existence from non-Muslims.
“Yard’s plea to Muslims: Help stop children turning to terror,” by Martin Bentham for the London Evening Standard, January 23 (thanks to Henrik):
Scotland Yard’s counter-terrorism chief today appealed to Muslims across the country to help stem the flow of young Britons heading for the fighting in Syria.
Commander Richard Walton warned that a “shocking” number of children are being lured into terrorism.
He said officers were already receiving increasing support from Islamic organisations and families in their struggle to combat radicalisation. But police were “desperate” to obtain further help to prevent vulnerable teenagers and other young Britons becoming involved in the Syrian war.
They’re already receiving support from Islamic organizations and families, but they’re “desperate” to obtain further help. That doesn’t give the impression that the help they’ve been getting has been all that effective.
It was “almost inevitable” that some Britons fighting in Syria would seek to carry out attacks here on their return, he added, and the conflict had “all the ingredients for making terrorists”.
Commander Walton was speaking in his first interview since becoming chief of Scotland Yard’s SO15 counter-terrorism unit three years ago. His comments follow a warning from MI5 Director-General Andrew Parker about the danger posed by returning British fighters, and reports from the Syrian border that al-Qaeda militants are training Westerners to carry out bombings and suicide attacks in their home nations.
Commander Walton said some of those going to Syria were known “baddies” whose violent intent had already brought attention from police. But he was deeply concerned about the way other younger Britons were being encouraged to take part in the conflict by “facilitators” and “charismatic individuals” fomenting jihad from the UK.
“We’ve had a number of teenagers both from London and nationally who’ve been attempting to go to Syria,” he said. “That’s boys and girls unfortunately. It’s not just the odd one. It’s shocking they’re such young people.
“They are tending to be two types. There are those engaged in violent extremism who we know about and we’re not surprised are going to fight jihad in Syria. Then there are those who are not known to us through extremism, who tend to be younger, and who clearly are being enticed out to fight the jihad. It’s the second category that we are most concerned about.”
Watch for “moderate” Muslim groups in Britain to protest against his use of the word jihad in connection with warfare.
Commander Walton said the involvement of females was a disturbing new development: “This is not simply a problem for British male Muslims, it’s also an issue for some of our British Muslim women as well. We have made arrests of teenage girls going to Syria.
“We don’t want to alarm the Muslim community that their girls are all going out to fight — they are very small numbers, but nevertheless we can’t deny that it is an issue and a concern.” He said wives and girlfriends here could also be “complicit” if they remained silent about men going to fight.
The Met is trying to divert would-be combatants away from radicalisation through the government’s Channel programme, and other initiatives.
But Commander Walton appealed for further assistance from British Muslims to “safeguard their children”, as he praised the backing that police had already received. “It’s important to say we have had the support of the Muslim community in this. We are very grateful for that,” he said.
“We’ve had a number of families come to us who are concerned about their young people going out and we work with them. These are families that know we are going to arrest, prosecute, but they still talk to us. My plea is that they are encouraged to still do so.
“There’s a number of ways we can tackle this issue, but unless British Muslim families come to us and work with us we can’t. The earlier a Muslim family can come to us, the easier it will be to prevent radicalisation occurring. At that point we can work with education, schools and local authorities and support families. It’s too late once their youngster is flying back from Syria.”
Commander Walton said most radicalisation was driven by extremist preachers operating away from mosques, and by “awful” internet sites. Youths were then exploited by “facilitators” and “financiers” sending fighters to Syria: “There are charismatic individuals who are often eloquent and are spokespeople for organisations in this country who are radicalising. If you add the internet access on top of that we have the formula for radicalisation.
“Our continuing fear is British Muslims[going to] terrorist training camps and then returning to the UK to undertake attacks. Terrorists are made, not born, and Syria has all the ingredients for making terrorists.”
If they weren’t already terrorists, they wouldn’t be there.
Asked whether individuals tasked with carrying out terror missions here had already been identified, he said he was unable to comment.
But he warned that police were expecting attacks: “All our experience around Afghanistan is that if British Muslims get trained in camps they become a very real threat because the al-Qaeda narrative extends to Western attack. It’s almost inevitable.” Commander Walton said those going to Syria to fight should be “under no illusion” that they could escape arrest on their return: “If you travel to fight jihad, British law says that you are a terrorist.”
Those who organised missions also faced prosecution: “We have facilitators actively involved in facilitating individuals to go out and fight in Syria. They are supporting terrorism. We will go after them. We have operations running, operations against facilitators.”
He said police backed the introduction of new powers proposed by a counter-extremism taskforce that David Cameron established last year following the murder of soldier Lee Rigby in Woolwich.
They include extremism disruption orders, which would use civil law to impose restrictions on radicalisers, and powers to bar venues from hosting events involving extremist speakers.
Other proposals include making it a crime for three or more members of a banned extremist group to reform under a new name; and a new disperal [sic] power giving police greater ability to halt intimidatory protests, such as demonstrations in east London against shops selling alcohol….