Minister of Education Ed Balls:
I really stuck it into my mouth this time!
It’s called hypocrisy and double standards, one set of rules for them (Muslims) and one set for everybody else. The need to resist this highly destructive, politically correct thinking, couldn’t be greater, there needs to be equal treatment for everyone under the law, with no exceptions. If the situation being addressed in this article was indeed one of, lets say the BNP running schools receiving state monies, there would be a public outcry and a demand for heads to roll.
But the dizzy dhimmified thinking UK government, Hizb ut Tahrir, the highly racist, Islamic supremacist movement, everything is peachy fine and it’s business as usual. Stop the nonsense. Canadian, Mark Steyn, took note of an incident the Tundra Tabloids covered some years ago, concerning a Swedish mosque selling anti-Semitic tapes:
“The Swedish Chancellor of Justice shuts down the investigation into the Grand Mosque of Stockholm for selling tapes urging believers to kill “the brothers of pigs and apes” (ie, Jews) because that’s simply “the everyday climate in the rhetoric”.
Those in the Swedish justice system are as accomodating as the Labour government in the UK, and it has to stop. It’s racist and bigoted to hold some people to a lesser standard than we hold ourselves to, just because they are from a different background. Such thinking is highly racist, no matter what the good intentions behind that thinking may be. KGS
A trustee of one of the schools which Ed Balls is defending has written in a Hizb ut Tahrir journal condemning the “corrupt western concepts of materialism and freedom,” observes Andrew Gilligan.
We connoisseurs of Ed Balls, a small but happy band, know from experience that the moment he gets that complacent little smile playing round his lips is the time to set the video; the moment when Her Majesty’s Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families is once more about to walk, unknowingly, into an open manhole.
Mr Balls has been having good sport with the Tories this week. On Newsnight on Wednesday, the little smile was in full operation as he expressed mock sympathy with their communities spokesman, Paul Goodman, for having to defend the “factual errors” and “irresponsible politics” of his leader, David Cameron, in the row over Islamic schools.
The Tories should have “checked their facts”, he chided. Ofsted, he told Radio 4, “have satisfied themselves that there were not problems in these schools”. The whole episode “casts real doubt on David Cameron’s judgment”, he said, sorrowfully.
Cameron had said that two schools run by members or activists of a thoroughly nasty extremist organisation, Hizb ut Tahrir, had been paid £113,000 of public money. The allegation came from a story of mine in the Telegraph four weeks ago.
The central charge is perfectly true, thoroughly documented – and a scandal. But Cameron made some mistakes in the detail, sending the Westminster media chasing down one of their classic “process issue” cul-de-sacs (whether the schools were registered, and which particular part of the Whitehall cake this slice of cash had come from) and allowing Balls to launch his attack on Cameron. He clearly thought he’d scored a bullseye: one-nil to the forces of Gordon.
But it turns out to be Ed Balls, just as much as Cameron, who’s been playing politics and failing to check the facts. The issue is not the situation with the schools now. It’s the situation at the time the public money was paid. It turns out that the schools’ chief Hizb ut Tahrir trustee, Yusra Hamilton, only resigned last month, in response to my story, long after the Government grant came in.
The headteacher of one of the schools, Farah Ahmed, who remains a trustee to this day, refuses to deny that she was a Hizb member and has written in a Hizb journal condemning the “corrupt western concepts of materialism and freedom.”
And Ofsted – far from “satisfying themselves that there were no problems” – actually condemned one of the two schools as “inadequate,” questioned the suitability of the staff, and said that it could do more “to promote cultural tolerance and harmony.” That was in November 2007.
By May 2008, according to a follow-up report, the school had been magically transformed, and was now “good”. That second report, however, was written by an inspector with, at the very least, personal connections to Islamic groups.
I fear Mr Balls’s heavy reliance on these Ofsted reports to defend the schools is about to make him look pretty silly. Ofsted is also, of course, the body that rated children’s services in Haringey “good” – in the same year that the borough was comprehensively failing Baby P.
But there’s a broader point. If taxpayer-funded schools were run by supporters of the BNP, there would be an outcry. Hizb ut Tahrir is an Islamic version of the BNP: not actually violent, but openly anti-Semitic, racist, and an enemy of liberal society.