“We play straight into the hands of those who seek to divide us, of extremists and terrorists around the world, when we imply that it is not possible to hold Western values and to be a Muslim.”
Has anyone actually done that? Trump’s immigration moratorium is meant to prevent jihadis from entering the country among peaceful Muslims. That’s all. It doesn’t carry any implication that it is not possible to hold Western values and to be a Muslim: Khan is constructing a straw man.
And in any case, it is certainly possible to hold Western values and to be a Muslim. What is not possible is to hold certain Western values, such as the freedom of speech, the equality of rights of women, the freedom of conscience, etc., and to hold simultaneously to Islamic law as it has been traditionally formulated. But Muslims who do not accept, or who ignore, the elements of Sharia that conflict with Western secular society can certainly hold Western values.
“It only makes it harder to build integrated and cohesive communities and it makes it easier for terrorists to radicalise our young people, making us less safe, whether in the USA, France or Britain, because it’s dividing rather than uniting and because it builds walls to keep us apart rather than bridges to bring us together.”
So apparently Sadiq Khan would have us believe that Muslims who hold Western values grow so enraged when they hear Trump supposedly implying that Muslims can’t hold Western values that they cast off those Western values and join jihad groups. So we must insist that Muslims can hold Western values, because if we don’t, they won’t hold those values. Their acceptance of Western values, in Sadiq Khan’s view, is predicated on our behavior, and contains a threat: we must affirm that Muslims can hold Western values, or else.
Khan’s analysis is as absurd as it is ominous.
“Sadiq Khan blasts Donald Trump for ‘playing into hands’ of Isil during US trip,” Telegraph, September 16, 2016:
Sadiq Khan has said Donald Trump is “playing into the hands of Daesh” after appearing to back Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign during his five-day tour of North America.
During his 45-minute speech before the Chicago Council on Global Affairs on Thursday, Mr Khan attacked anti-Muslim views and policies and argued that what is needed is to build “bridges rather than walls” – a reference to Mr Trump’s proposal to build a wall along the US-Mexico border.
“We play straight into the hands of those who seek to divide us, of extremists and terrorists around the world, when we imply that it is not possible to hold Western values and to be a Muslim,” Mr Khan said.
Mr Khan did not mention Donald Trump by name but attacked the positions the New York developer has staked on Muslim immigration into the United States.
” It only makes it harder to build integrated and cohesive communities and it makes it easier for terrorists to radicalise our young people, making us less safe, whether in the USA, France or Britain, because it’s dividing rather than uniting and because it builds walls to keep us apart rather than bridges to bring us together,” said the Mayor.
Immediately after taking office in May, Mr Khan was involved in a spat with Mr Trump over his call for a temporary ban on Muslims entering the US, deriding the plan as “ignorant.”
Mr Khan also criticised the burkini ban that is being enforced in some French beaches saying that it’s a “ridiculous situation of politicians and courts telling women what they can and can’t wear on the beach.”
Mr Khan said that it’s not for him to “get involved in a presidential election in another country,” however, he described himself as “a big fan” of Mrs Clinton and said that he hoped she would win the presidential election in November.
“She’s arguably the most experienced candidate to run to be the president,” Mr Khan told reporters following the speech to more than 250 academics, diplomats and business people.
“As the father of two daughters, I think the message it sends when the most powerful politician in the world is a woman is phenomenal, and hope she wins,” said Mr Khan, who as London’s first Muslim mayor is arguably one the most influential member of his faith in western Europe.
Earlier on Thursday, the London mayor addressed a global progress summit in Montreal with Justin Trudeau, the Canadian prime minister.
In Montreal, he criticised Mr Trump in even stronger terms:
“Donald Trump said that Muslims from around the world – I’m paraphrasing – would not be welcome into the United States of America.
“Not only does that show a lack of understanding and awareness of the great country that is the USA and its history and legacy, it’s also inadvertently playing into the hands of Daesh and so-called Isis because it implies it’s not possible to be a Western liberal and mainstream Muslim.
“I think it’s important that the USA maintains her role as a beacon for tolerance, respect and diversity.
“I think it’s important for those of us who are foreigners to stay out of the US elections. I hope the best candidate wins and I hope she does win with a stomping majority.”
Mr Khan said he would be open to meeting Mr Trump during his trip, along with any other presidential candidate.
During the summit Mr Khan stressed the importance of integrating ethnic minority communities, telling the audience that “the days of laissez-faire” integration were gone.
“The messages of hate being transmitted into people’s bedrooms means that people like Justin, the prime minister of Canada, and people like me, the mayor, have a responsibility,” he said.
Mr Khan also said he believed the UK should follow Canada’s lead and do more to help Syrian refugees….