Crumbling “Counterjihad”? EDL, SION, SIOA and the Transatlantic Kerfuffle
We have noted the unstable nature of the “counter-jihad” fascist movement since the day Loonwatch began. Cracks and fissures between various groups and websites were apparent from the start.
It was Charles Johnson who first alerted us to the fact that Robert Spencer had joined a group calling for the extermination of Turks and the Reconquista of Anatolia. For this revelation Spencer and Geller have been relentless in their vitriolic demonization of Johnson, regarding him not only as an apostate but also– their favorite epithet– “dhimmi.”
The reasons for the inherent instability in the “counter-Jihad” reflects the fissures in ideological make up between the various personalities, as well as incongruities between their inflated egos.
A brief history of the internecine civil wars amongst the counter-Jihad on this point is informative: Debbie Schlussel vs.: Brigitte Gabriel, Pamela Geller, Robert Spencer, Zuhdi Jasser, Walid Shoebat, etc. Logan’s Warning against Brigitte Gabriel. Spencer vs. Andrew Bostom. Roberta Moore of the JDL vs. the EDL and now the latest kerfuffle: Geller and Spencer vs. Tommy Robinson and Kevin Carroll.
All that binds them is Islamomisia and Islamophobia. On the surface their ideological backgrounds provide a motive: a belief in the need to preserve Christianity in the face of post-Modernity and a rise in Secular Humanism, a belief that it is good for Israel and Zionism, a desire to keep White Europe pure, the nostalgic belief that they are the vanguard “defenders of freedom” who will not only save the “West” from a resurgent Islam but harken in a golden age and if not–Armageddon.
When you dig a little deeper underneath the surface of ideology and identity politics one sees there is another more primitive motive at work; garnering dead presidents and Euros.
Recenlty, I have taken an interest in the famous medieval Muslim theologian Ghazali who it seems to me has identified, in universal terms, the reasons for the sickness that pervades the Islamophobia movement:
“The greatest of all desires is ravenousness, the source of all spiritual maladies, followed, in second order, by lasciviousness. Ardently seeking to fulfill these desires inevitably involves one in garnering wealth, in turn leading to indulgence in both spheres. It appears Ghazali posits a causal link between these two instincts, on the one hand, and the personal desire to acquire power and influence, on the other. To protect wealth and power, it is inevitable for the covetous individual to engage in competition and envy, which in turn engender greed, hypocrisy, arrogance, and hatred. And once these become habits of the soul, it is a short step for the individual to be implicated in morally repugnant acts.” (Hallaq, The Impossible State, p.131)
“Counter-Jihad” is a lucrative business as the reports by Fear, inc. and CAIR have made plain. The economy of Islamophobia isn’t going out of business anytime soon as long as wealthy Right-Wing foundations and individuals continue to support the industry.
Ex-EDL Tommy Robinson/Stephen Yaxley-Lennon and Kevin Carroll Haven’t Changed
It has been two weeks since the announcement by former EDL chief Tommy Robinson and Kevin Carroll that they were leaving the organization. In that time there have been several major developments, including the supposed termination of an official relationship between Geller/Spencer and Robinson and even accusations that Robinson is a poster boy for “stealth Jihad.” (h/t: Jai Singh)
Tommy Robinson and Kevin Carroll’s closest international allies, Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller, have publicly terminated their involvement with them and thrown them off the board of their “SION Presidents Council”. Geller has announced this in an article published on her Atlas Shrugs website.
The reason is partly due to Robinson and Carroll’s current involvement with Quilliam and Mo Ansar (Geller’s full article provides further details), but apparently it also has a lot to do with some statements Robinson made to The Daily Beast, specifically the reasons that he has been refusing to publicly denounce Spencer & Geller. Furthermore, Geller herself makes some accusations about the real reasons for Robinson’s resignation from the EDL.
Pamela Geller: A month ago, Tommy Robinson called me…..Not being on the ground in the UK, and having worked with him at a distance for four years, I understood his concerns, and looked forward to a new organization — perhaps even SIO-England. I did not know when he was going to make his move away from the EDL, and he did not tell me. The only thing he told me was that he was going to make the break before his upcoming court case — perhaps to incur the sympathy of the court.
Then, the night before he made his announcement, Tommy tried to contact me numerous times on Skype and by phone while I was busy with other matters. It was clear that it was urgent. Finally, we spoke on the phone, and it was on that phone call that he told me that he would be resigning from the EDL the next day, and that the Quilliam Foundation was going to be at the press conference — but he made that a minor point. I had no idea that it was a Quilliam press conference, and certainly had no idea that Tommy and Kevin Carroll would be led around like dogs 0n a leash. It was after that phone call, and before I had any idea that Tommy would be closely allying with false moderate Muslim deceivers who would crow about “decapitating the EDL,” that Robert Spencer and I composed our first statement, supporting Tommy and his decision. We never would have come out in support of him if we had known that he would soon be parroting politically correct nonsense about “extremists on both sides.”
Tommy told me that his move would not be announced until 6PM London time the next day, and asked me to hold our statement until then, but when I woke up the next morning, it was already all over the international media. That was the first indication that he had not been entirely up front with me about what was happening. Then at the press conference, both he and Kevin Carroll were the showcases of a Quilliam victory dance.
…..I only subsequently learned, after releasing our initial statement of support, that he had been meeting with Islamic supremacist deceivers like Mo Ansar for 18 months, and was taking instruction on Islam from the false moderates of the Quilliam Foundation. And I didn’t hear about it from Tommy, who never gave me any hint of any of this — I read about it in the press along with everyone else.
…..He made a deal with the devil. He didn’t want to go back to jail, and this looks like his bid to stay out.
Today at the Daily Beast, the gleeful reporter doesn’t quote Robinson, but says that he “distanced himself from some of Geller’s most egregious remarks.” I challenge the Daily Beast reporter to produce the quotes. What exactly did Tommy distance himself from? And then he quotes Tommy explaining why he won’t denounce me now: “I went to America to speak at one of their events. I feel indebted to Pamela. I have a great deal of respect for her personally because she helped my family when I was in custody. She provided a roof over our head.” This cop-out from Tommy — that he wouldn’t denounce me because I supported him financially — was the lowest blow of all. I was not supporting the EDL financially. We gave some money to his wife and kids when Tommy was in jail. And Tommy has said that before, implying that his loyalty was bought, and was not because of ideological agreement. He’s been using the quiet help I gave to his wife and kids as one mom to another. I didn’t do that for the organization. I did that as a human being.
It is clear what is happening. Now he is the poster boy for the stealth jihad. It seems they have taught Tommy well. His deception to friends and colleagues mirrors the Islamic teachings of kitman (lie by omission) and taqiyya. So Tommy Robinson and Kevin Carroll are no longer on the SION board.
According to the Huffington Post Robinson has claimed that the EDL’s publicly pro-Israel stance was to garnish support and “attract funding from Zionist organizations.” [which failed to materialize in the way that he had hoped]
Robinson also appeared as a guest on the BBC’s “Sunday Morning Live” program on October 13th, discussing “Does the English Defence League represent a view that needs to be heard?”:
— There is very little change in Robinson’s anti-Muslim views. He is simply expressing them more carefully.
— Throughout the discussion, Robinson essentially continues accusing the entire Muslim population of collective guilt and collective responsibility.
— 12m 30s: Robinson describes the Quran as “extremely evil”.
— 20m 08s: Robinson claims “There are two types of Muslims: Radicals/extremists and apologists”.
— 21m 10s onwards: Robinson enthusiastically praises the EDL, including its current demonstrations.
— Debate continues from 53m 40s onwards: Robinson claims that he will not give the Police any incriminating “inside information” on EDL members.
Robinson has not changed, he admits that he is only shifting tactics.:
Screenshot of Robinson’s comment on his new Twitter account on 12 October 2013, responding to a member of the EDL’s “Oldham Division”, stating “I’ll continue the fight, and wake up the nation”:
Spencer and Geller have co-authored a detailed statement, cross-published on their respective websites. They excoriate Robinson for being an ignorant, gullible lad who has facilitated the “decapitation of the EDL” and has capitulated to the government funded Quilliam which they laughably describe as representing the “forces of Jihad and Islamic supremacism.”
Richard Bartholomew has also published an excellent article highlighting Spencer & Geller’s other statements on the matter, including Spencer’s confirmation that Robinson “has repeatedly stated that he hasn’t changed his views.”
Robert Spencer himself has now written an article on these developments. Spencer’s indignant, confused and “betrayed” reaction is definitely worth reading. Seems that Robinson’s “secret” discussions with the popular British Muslim commentator Mo Ansar during the past 18 months are a particularly sore point.
Tommy Robinson is continuing to refuse to denounce Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller.
TellMAMA’s new article documenting Robinson’s continuing behaviour on his new Twitter account. Take particular note of the recent screenshot where Robinson claims that his time with Mo Ansar has actually strengthened his opposition to Islam.
Note on the Quilliam Foundation:
The Guardian has an excellent summary of the plausible reasons for the organization’s new found involvement with Robinson and Carroll, specifically detailing the problems that Quilliam has recently been experiencing.
Another Guardian article includes revealing information about “the next steps” involving Quilliam and Robinson, including the fact that Robinson has contradicted his statements on the BBC regarding cooperation with the Police:
[Maajid] Nawaz said he would work to introduce [Tommy] Robinson to his own contacts in government and the Home Office in an attempt to procure government funding. Robinson said his future work would involve taking on radicalism on all fronts, although he could not support anti-fascist groups because they also subscribed to “communism” or were “anarchists”.
When pressed as to whether he would work with the police to root out criminal racists in the group he helped form four years ago, he agreed he would now talk to the authorities.
Robinson, whose financial assets have been frozen because of ongoing criminal proceedings for public order offences, said he did not doubt he would be successful again in any endeavour he pursued as long as he was passionate about it.