by Chauncey Tinker – 17 Feb 2019
Image By Unknown, via article "The 'futurist' aesthetics of ISIS" distributed under CC-4.0 - http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/20004214.2017.1271528, CC BY 4.0, Link
You know how it feels when you just go abroad on holiday in a war zone only to find yourself a member of a terrorist group. Such an easy mistake to make ...
The way the mainstream media have been this week publishing sob stories and pleas for Islamic State recruit Shamima Begum to be allowed to come back to the UK has been truly sickening. For example the BBC published this “breaking news” story on the front page of their website:
Shamima Begum: Family of pregnant IS teen plead for return
The Express published this:
British Jihadi Bride’s family speaks out: We know why you don’t want her back
“But when I saw my first severed head in a bin it didn’t faze me at all. It was from a captured fighter seized on the battlefield, an enemy of Islam. I thought only of what he would have done to a Muslim woman if he had the chance.”
The family do not understand her decision to go there according to the article:
Rehman said that although they do not understand her decision to travel to Syria, the family hope she will return home and be “re-educated”.
Another article at the Express about the father of another of the girls (Amira Abase) that had gone to Syria with Shamima:
Dad of runaway Jihadi bride who ‘blamed everyone else’ caught at banned terror group rally
Quote re. the father who:
has been unmasked as an apparent radical who marched at an Islamist rally alongside hate preacher Anjem Choudary and Lee Rigby killer Michael Adebolajo.
The Times seemed to think that mercy was in order, at least going by these articles:
Family of Isis bride Shamima Begum make plea for mercy
In this article at the Times Philip Collins wrote that she DESERVES to come home:
Jihadi bride Shamima Begum deserves to come home
Does the Times deserve to lose its readership, I wondered?
I’ve been clear that the BBC deserves to lose its broadcasting licence and licence fee funding for some time of course. They tried but they couldn’t even find much sympathy for this jihadi bride even in the area where she grew up:
Does Bethnal Green want IS teenager to return?
The BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire hosted a debate including former Met Police Chief Superintendent Dal Babu (a Muslim):
Muslim Dal Babu compared the fate of Begum with that of “15 year old girls who were groomed”. Does that comparison seem fair to you? Is it fair to the girls who were raped I mean, to compare them to an Islamic State recruit? You might have thought that a former Met Police Chief Superintendent might possess a moral compass, but apparently not.
Incidentally Dal Babu wrote this article at the Guardian last year:
Boris Johnson’s burqa comments fuel violent crime against Muslim women
According to the above article he:
set up the National Association of Muslim Police
I don’t know what you feel about this readers but I don’t really think this man should ever have been promoted to the rank of Met Police Chief Superintendent, considering his opinions. He has also frequently criticized the “Prevent” strategy which I have also criticized often, however his complaint about the strategy comes from a very different direction of course:
Anti-terror scheme toxic, says Muslim ex-police chief: Former chief superintendent believes many members of the religion think new scheme will be used to spy on them
He has blasted the ‘virtually all white’ counter-terrorism command in place
Anyway getting back to the subject at hand. Nikita Malik (from the Henry Jackson Society) didn’t agree with Dal Babu:
Another Muslim, a former prosecutor, also called for her to be allowed back on the same BBC show:
Another case in an article this week from the Telegraph:
‘We were going on holiday but ended up in Syria’- British family detained for Isil links pleads for return to Britain
Safiya Zaynab, 51, mother of daughters Shabina Aslam, 29, and Alireza Sabar, 17, from Didsbury said they missed their freedom and wanted to be allowed back home.
Apparently Ms Aslam claimed they just went on holiday and found themselves in Syria.
The Daily Mail published this:
I’m proof jihadi brides DO deserve a second chance! Middlesex bank clerk’s daughter fled to Syria with her ISIS husband where she was raped and escaped while pregnant – but is now happily married in suburbia
In 2017 the Irish media was awash with sympathetic and heartwarming stories about the release from an Egyptian prison (after a 4 year stretch) of an Irishman called Ibrahim Halawa (hat tip to Daughter of Marwan for the info.):
‘The family that never gave up’: How Ibrahim Halawa’s sisters kept his case alive
In the comments section there are many commenters questioning details of the story, one links to this blog article (at the site of academic Dr. Mark Humphrys who occasionally writes for the Sunday Times) which claims that Halawa is in fact “Muslim Brotherhood royalty”:
The Halawa case
There is video footage described as Ibrahim Halawa actually speaking at the rally.
See also this analysis from The Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Watch:
Son Of Irish Muslim Brotherhood Leader Released From Egyptian Prison- Ibrahim Halawa Denies Being Part Of The Muslim Brotherhood
The above article claims that Halawa’s father served:
… as the Secretary-General of the European Council for Fatwa and Research (ECFR), a theological body headed by Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi whose membership consists almost entirely of Global Muslim Brotherhood leaders.
Sajid Javid said he doesn’t want to allow Shamima Begum to come back:
Sajid Javid vows to BLOCK return of ‘hate-filled’ Britons who join ISIS
Security Minister Ben Wallace MP insisted British lives would not be put at risk attempting to rescue her:
Brit ISIS schoolgirl Shamima Begum WON’T be rescued by UK from Syria
“That’s going to be a difficult balance for us to deal with. I can’t comment on this particular case, but it’s very clear, we as a government have been incredibly clear, as have the police, that if you go and fight or support these types of organisations, there are consequences for that.”
“If you come back here, you should expect to be investigated and you should potentially expect to be charged with terrorist offences or other offences. We’ve made that clear from the start.”
It may not be legally possible to stop her coming back according to the head of MI6. From the Telegraph:
Isil bride Shamima Begum legal right to return to UK – and Isil threat is ‘definitely not done’, MI6 head says
If she does manage to get back to the UK she probably won’t have much to worry about, judging by the way another jihadi bride has already been allowed out this week after serving less than 3 years in prison:
First British woman jailed for joining ISIS now FREE less than three years later
Of course we can also absolutely expect that the UK taxpayer will be forced to pay for her astronomical legal costs if she is allowed back, as happened for example in this case, reported this week by the Daily Mail:
Jailed Al-Qaeda chief who ‘had links to 7/7 London bombers’ gets £800,000 in legal aid to appeal his conviction
Of course this story is top headline at the BBC website (this evening Sunday 17th):
IS teenage bride Shamima Begum gives birth to boy
I can’t be sure whether this is an orchestrated plan to make the British people very angry or not, but I can’t blame anybody for thinking a giant conspiracy of that nature is afoot (perhaps with even more sinister objectives). It seems pretty clear that a majority of British people think she should not be allowed back, and many hope she is killed in a drone strike.
An article from Raffaello Pantucci, Director of International Security Studies, RUSI at the Telegraph:
Don’t underestimate the role of female jihadis like Shamina Begum
Our contributor Jon MC had this article published at Islam Watch (2016):
The Peaceful and “terrorist” Muslim groups
Amira Abase, Shamima Begum and Kadiza Sultana
What do you think? Please leave a comment below.