Back in 2009, the Telegraph printed Boris Johnson’s comments on the occasion of his visit to the East London Mosque (hardly a moderate establishment, more on that in a second):
‘That’s why I urge people, particularly during Ramadan, to find out more about Islam, increase your understanding and learning, even fast for a day with your Muslim neighbour and break your fast at the local mosque. I would be very surprised if you didn’t find that you share more in common than you thought.
”Muslims are at the heart of every aspect of society. Their contribution is something that all Londoners benefit from. Muslim police officers, doctors, scientists and teachers are an essential part of the fabric of London.
The Telegraph article:
Looking back at some of the previous speakers at the mosque, these apparently include Delwar Hossain Sayeedi who has been convicted of war crimes including genocide and rape in Bangladesh. He was a member of the Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami but is now serving a life sentence in prison for those crimes. This group wants Sharia law in Bangladesh and wants to outlaw “un-Islamic” practices. Another speaker apparently was Saud Al-Shuraim, one of the Imams of the Grand Masjid in Makkah, who specializes in interpreting the Sharia. So, Boris wasn’t making his incredibly ill-judged comments at just any mosque, this mosque is a hotbed of extremism and any sane country would have shut it down a long time ago.
From The Times 2006 (just 3 years before Boris’s visit), this article is well worth reading in full, it says despite many issues the Home Office allowed Sayeedi into the country:
The Home Office and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office considered excluding Delwar Hossain Sayeedi, an MP in Bangladesh who preaches violent hatred against the West and is accused of war crimes, last year. But despite a series of e-mail exchanges in September, his visa was never revoked and the Home Office issued no exclusion order.
So, this is the sort of person Boris thinks we have more in common with than we thought.
Boris has also made repeated calls (going back at least as far as 2008 but most recently in April this year) for the granting of an amnesty for illegal immigrants (with varying conditions), a call that has been sensibly rejected by the Conservative party HQ (CCHQ). As they pointed out, amnesties will simply lead to more amnesties. They will also encourage more immigrants to come – remember that there are literally millions now waiting in Africa and the Middle East to do just that (many of them are Muslims), and the UK is a favourite destination. From Conservative Home:
Boris wrote a book about Winston Churchill, an act that was designed to create a false impression – namely that Boris himself is a Churchillian figure when in fact he is anything but. Churchill went against the tide of opinion at the time, desperately trying to warn the British public about the looming threat of Nazi Germany. Can you imagine Churchill flying over to Nazi Germany and warmly shaking Adolf Hitler by the hand, as others did at the time?
Boris is a very clever, cunning, shallow, and superficial career politician. He is a cunning selfish fox dressed up as a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Boris believes in nobody and nothing but Boris Johnson, even backing the Leave campaign was a last minute decision for Boris – he had to decide which side was most likely to win before he could make his 11th hour decision to back Brexit.
He has cleverly managed to delude a lot of people into thinking that he is opposed to the Islamification of our country when he most certainly is not. His recent comment about the burka caused an uproar but many people missed the fact that he wasn’t calling for a ban on the garment, in fact he was actually arguing against such a ban (though that’s another debate, my point here is about the impression he created). He also made a comment about Theresa May’s handling of Brexit in which he used the phrase “suicide vest”, this was very deliberately intended to amplify the impression that he is opposed to Islam, when in fact the comment was not even about Islam.
I am not going to dwell on the fact that Boris is a quarter Turkish (on the paternal side), people who have migrated (or who are genuine refugees) from Islamic countries sometimes become the bravest and most vocal opponents of the religion. I have endless respect for those former Muslims who openly renounce their faith, despite the risks involved in doing that, but Boris is not one of those brave people. Boris is also not one of those brave non-Muslims like Anne Marie Waters and Tommy Robinson who dare to speak the truth about the religion publicly, regardless of the grave risks. Boris by comparison will say whatever he thinks needs to be said to get him into no. 10. Quite what he will actually do when he gets there is literally anybody’s guess. Given all the above, are you really sure that you want to support his leadership ambitions?