Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Sadiq Khan: A fool or a traitor?

Sadiq Khan, Minister for Community Cohesion travels to a city where only one religious group are "permitted" to enter - Mecca.

Before I go further, how Saudi Arabia is run internally is really, ultimately, the business of the Saudi people as long as it does not affect the UK or its citizens. If it wants to bar everyone but Muslims from Mecca, then that is their decision and they have responsibility for that. If the authorities want to oppress women, then they must be answerable to the eventual outcome of that oppression for, mark my words, it will not endure. If they wish to follow and promote their brand of Sunni Islam that is almost certainly intolerant of other branches, again, they must ultimately be responsible. They must also take the consequences of their actions in terms of how people regard them and speak about them.

As a Libertarian, though I reject religious control in government, social and business affairs, have contempt for the ban on everyone but Muslims going to Mecca, contempt for their treatment of Women which has turned practical advice in a dangerous environment into absolutism backed by swift and harsh enforcement, I am not a Saudi National and so I have no "rights" to control or alter that Nation, its culture, its religious practices just as Saudis and other foreign nationals have no say, no rights to control or alter my country or my behaviour. They have no rights to demand anyone support or respect their ways, either.

Sadiq Khan - cohesion, remember - is going to one of the most divisive places on Earth. Gender, religion, race, lineage. It is all there in Saudi Arabia. Writ large. He should be going to see how NOT to do things, but he is going to learn and it appears he is going there to IMPORT some of their techniques:

Speaking following the meeting, he said: "The work the (Saudi) ministry of Islamic affairs has done with mosques and imams in Saudi Arabia was revealing.

"It is interesting how the ministry team is devolving responsibility for regulation and supervision for over 70,000 mosques and ensuring that imams have a high standard of training and practice.

"We discussed how the ministry and its scholars can work with British scholars in potentially exciting ways."

Well, the US redeveloped downtown Hiroshima in "exiting ways" but I am not sure I want to have anything to do with that.

The Saudi brand of Islam has many problems for a Libertarian, not least its intent to dominate, coerce and to oppress. It is not pluralistic in the slightest. Our "Minister for Cohesion" wants to learn from THAT? Do you really think that only issues of administration or logistics will be learnt or have an influence? Is anyone THAT naive?

Sadiq Khan is opening the gates.

Man is either a traitor or a fool. Those who sent him or permitted is travelling are bigger fools and bigger traitors.