Glad Tidings

Its been ages since I've had the luck to witness an Islamic event of consequence.

Then like buses, two come along in a row. Thankyou Allah.

It is quite tricky to create the space where proceedings aren't framed by hegemonic agendas and where the conversation is indeed internal (on our terms) and inclusive.

The reasons why such events are rare seem to include:

The action of gatekeepers, who control the access of the UK Muslims to Scholars and are more than a little insecure about the sustainability of their intermediariness. Endowed with the advantage of simply being around before such gatekeepers are perhaps best bypassed with nuronic nerves, social technique and Ummahtic mojo. In successfully puling of a bypass manoeuvre, the believer's can taste the fruit and recognise its flavour.

Because sometimes you forget.

Another reason why this space is rare is the action of government, who coopt meanings, figures and narratives with a clumsy kind of arrogance and capital.


Dam Tibet

News story on Chinese hydro electric plans for Tsang Po (China) - Brahmaputra (India) - Jamuna (Bangladesh)

This is setting up a gruesome hegemon hegemon on ganj interation.

The Deshi wonders what the impacts could be. How would flow from upstream be affected over the seasons? Would there be any benefits from reduced sediment transport (like less erosion)? What about the people displaced by construction? and the fish...


Awami Manipulation of Bethnal Green and Bro

The seat of Bethnal Green and Bro interests me more than most others. Never lived there, but it feels close to home.

That 5000 new voters appeared on the election roll before the election is being investigated, might just have been an effective voter drive ey? On top of this, or behind it, the foreign Minister of Bangladesh, Dipu Moni implored her party's youth wing, the Jubo League (including 40 year olds!) to ensure that Labour won at any cost. In Bangladesh we sigh at the shady foreign interests behind each of our elections. This slight reversal causes smiling.

There was no despatches programme on the matter at all. And I thought Gilligan and co actually cared about the Labour Party in East London.

As so many of the candidates were brown, the white working classes were nowhere as worked up by the events than the deshis. Respect and lib dems probably split the non-labour deshis vote. However, a simple vote addition still wouldn't put them in the lead. Ajmal Masroor (L-D) won more votes than Abjol Miah (R). Greens didn't do so well, and Tower Hamlets is due an elected Mayor soon.

Its a pity Respect hasn't unfolded like a row of blossoming cherry trees, its not a surprise either. But there's a Bangladeshi-heritaged female MP in the 'mother of all parliaments' you know.

Long Live The Ganj!

UK Security Minister chats to (UK) Muslims through Islam Channel

There's a very strange youtube video, featuring the new Tory Minister for Security being interviewed by a very posh sounding chap, in what seem like her offices, for the Islam Channel.

The choice of channel is remarkable. The station suffered constant vilification during the previous regime. Journalists and politicians used to play Boycott Tennis and RadicaLinkage weaving at their Global Peace and Unity events. Not that I personally cared. Better without them I say. For this reason, I wonder how Islam channel came to carry the Minister's message? Who asked who? Did the channel have other options? What did viewers make of it? How much of it was true?

To get more of a flavour, listen to how she addresses israeli security policy platforms. Complicating isnt it? check out the 'Britain can learn from Israel' headline on the googlewhack and the building resilient communities vision.

With her Islam Channel statement the minister intended to create a new relationship between her work and UK Muslims and exert more than a bit of power. Its been a while since someone of her capability was in government addressing 'Securitising Muslim' issues, anyone remember Hazel Blears? Apparently current policies and their operations are going to be reviewed, and the security function of government community engagement will be separated from other ones. I wonder what that means...

The word 'operations' came up quite a bit, an artefact of the minister's previous roles in the diplomatic and intelligence communities, as well as the hi-tech military industrial complex.
Another baroness, Baroness Warsi came up in the context of a tick box, she's Muslim and she's female you know.

Sorry that should have been the other way around. Feminism first, then Matronisation.

This particular minister has probably come across quite a lot of 'privileged information', so should we trust her expertise? Whenever I've prodded pseudo powerful people about these matters, they always play the 'If you had read what I had read' argument. She certainly wields a great deal of symbolic capital in the establishment. But what about amongst us?

On the face of it there is some cause for optimism. Policies and operationalisation of policy are to be reviewed. Stop and search, pre-trial detentions etc and wait for it .... PREVENT.

PREVENT is interesting, depressing, revealing and inshAllah the worst is over. It is sad to see how cheaply folks will run for the money and be diverted from addressing the Ummahtic. Folks who should know better keep falling into an imposed guilt for some reason, for not aspiring towards liberal secular triumphalism. Scholars keep getting parachuted in on the advice of gatekeepers and meddled with. Lovely brothers and sisters keep going on foreign office jollies to legitimise military occupations. Organisations are created and nurtured for the specific purpose of policing the Ummah here and stifling its enhancement, cutting its relations and suffocating its politics. Its effective name is CO-OPT, filed under Intellectual Corruption along with NGOisation and Developmentia.

To prevent and subvert PREVENT/PVE and RAND type incursions from deforming Islam, rather Muslim subjectivity, again and again we might need...

A Potent Social Potion.
One part Tablighi Jamat - uncooptable
One part Suffragette - Forward
One part A-Team - Active
One part Royal Society - Learned, with Mastery