Been meaning for a while to round up the Harry’s Place post in which David T pokes holes in the government strategy to forge alliances with those supporters of jihad they perceived to be moderate. He himself provides a good review of his main arguments.
I could have done with more information (I think it’s dotted round Harry’s Place) on how Islamists have exploited their improved influence. I could also do with a fleshed-out comparison between Britain and the Egyptian authorities dealing with their Muslim Brotherhood factions. I also need Islamism defined again for his purposes – does it simply mean Muslims who seek to implement Islamic law whether by violent or democratic means?
I accept David T’s main point that you may have to form alliances for information, but the wages for that information should not be a platform to influence young people in political Islam. There are plenty of warning signs that no good can come of Sharia. We need a single secular law which allows everybody to live according to their own consciences, not a divinely-ordained law interpreted by clerics.
Imagine if a small sect of British Christians who wanted to outlaw homosexuality and abortion, legally relegate women and non-Christians as perpetual minors, and install their own representatives as a permanent judiciary, developed a militant subgroup which connected to other members of the sect internationally. The police may indeed decide it was for the best to cultivate relationships with the remaining non-militants – but to fund them to promulgate their values would be a betrayal – I don’t think this is too strong a word – of civil rights for women, gay people, and non-Christians. The question is, is this a good analogy? I think David T makes a good case that it is.