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Defending Moazzam Begg and Amnesty International

Andy Worthington | 11.02.2010 23:31 | Guantánamo | Other Press | Terror War | Birmingham | Sheffield

Just when it seemed that Republicans in America had a monopoly on Islamophobic hysteria, the Sunday Times prompted a torrent of similar hysteria in the UK by running an article in which an employee of Amnesty International — Gita Sahgal, head of the gender unit at the International Secretariat — criticized the organization that employed her for its association with former Guantánamo prisoner Moazzam Begg.

Before getting into the substance — or lack of it — in Sahgal’s complaints, it should be noted first of all that her immediate suspension by Amnesty was the least that should have been expected. What other organization would put up with an employee badmouthing them to a national newspaper on a Sunday, and then allow them to return to work as usual on Monday morning?

That Sahgal’s many defenders have all chosen to ignore this point suggests that they believe that her allegations were so significant — the actions, indeed, of a self-sacrificing whistleblower — that this blatant unprofessionalism was acceptable, whereas, in fact, it was no such thing.

That Sahgal also chose to air her complaints in the Sunday Times, a newspaper owned by Rupert Murdoch, is also significant, particularly because the Times first attempted to smear Begg and Cageprisoners a month ago, in connection with the failed plane bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, in an article by the normally reliable Sean O’Neill, entitled, “Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab had links with London campaign group.” To me, this suggests that Sahgal may have been used as part of an ongoing attempt to vilify Begg that was part of a specific editorial policy.

It is also significant that Sahgal confided in Richard Kernaj, a reporter who, as Rick B explained at Ten Percent, enjoys his work “specialising in exposing shortcomings, crime and corruption in the Muslim community” to such an extent that, when he exposed child abuse in an Australian Islamic council in 2006, he boasted afterwards — using a distinctly inappropriate analogy — that being handed the documents that led to his scoop “was like a journalist’s wet dream.”

So what of the allegations? According to Kernaj’s article, Sahgal stated her belief that collaborating with Begg “fundamentally damages” Amnesty’s reputation. Kernaj added that, in an email “sent to Amnesty’s top bosses,” she suggested that “the charity has mistakenly allied itself with Begg and his ‘jihadi’ group, Cageprisoners, out of fear of being branded racist and Islamophobic.” He also explained that she described Begg as “Britain’s most famous supporter of the Taliban.”

Kernaj also claimed that Sahgal had “decided to go public because she feels Amnesty has ignored her warnings for the past two years about the involvement of Begg in the charity’s Counter Terror With Justice campaign,” and quoted more extensively from the email written on January 30, which stated:

I believe the campaign fundamentally damages Amnesty International’s integrity and, more importantly, constitutes a threat to human rights. To be appearing on platforms with Britain’s most famous supporter of the Taliban, whom we treat as a human rights defender, is a gross error of judgment.

Right-wingers — and other thinly-disguised right-wingers described, laughably, as the “decent left” — seized on the article with glee, and responded to Sahgal’s inevitable suspension not with recognition of her lamentable lack of professionalism, but by providing her with a platform for further misplaced allegations, and by writing opinion pieces drawing on their rarely submerged hostility towards Islam.

In the Spectator, Martin Bright posted a statement by Sahgal on his blog, David Aaronovitch followed up with an article in the Times, Nick Cohen set up a ridiculous Facebook group, “Amnesty International You Bloody Hypocrites Reinstate Gita Sahgal,” and even the Guardian allowed a friend of Sahgal’s, Rahila Gupta, to write an opinion piece that failed to justify the descriptions of Begg and Cageprisoners, and that also failed to address the question of why Sahgal should keep her job after criticizing her employers in a national newspaper. Gupta also suggested, erroneously, that Amnesty International had “filtered out” negative comments responding to a statement that the organization issued on its website, whereas, in fact, a cursory glance at the comments should convince anyone that Islamophobia is as alive and well in Amnesty’s supporters as it is in the world of Kernaj, Bright, Aaronovitch, Cohen et al.

On Cageprisoners, Begg defended himself admirably, asking Kernaj why, after discussing his planned article with him, and asking him detailed questions, he chose to ignore all his responses. Begg also criticized Sahgal for not talking to him first, noting, “Whilst it gives me no personal pleasure to hear of the suspension of Ms. Sahgal for holding her view, the newspapers were not the right place to air them without first putting them to Cageprisoners or me.”

In key passages addressed to Kernaj, he wrote:

When asked specifically about the Taliban I told you my view: that I have advocated for engagement and dialogue with the Taliban well before our own government took the official position of doing the same — only last week — although I did not say, like the government, we should be giving them lots of money in order to do so.

I also clearly told you, though you deliberately chose to ignore, that I had actually witnessed what I believe were human rights abuses under the Taliban and have detailed them in my book, from which you conveniently and selectively quote. I added that the US administration had perpetrated severe human rights abuses against me for years but that didn’t mean I opposed dialogue with them.

I even told you that Cageprisoners and I have initiated pioneering steps in that regard by organising tours all around the UK with former US guards from Guantánamo and men who were once imprisoned there. Cageprisoners is the only organisation to have done so. One of these soldiers, in response to your article, sent this message to me: “They are attacking you and your causes … don’t forget you have real support by some of us ex-soldiers who have seen the light.” […]

Had you — and Ms Sahgal no doubt — done your homework properly you’d have discovered also that I was involved in the building of, setting up and running of a school for girls in Kabul during the time of the Taliban, but of course, that wouldn’t have sat well with the agenda and nature of your heavily biased and poorly researched article.

Cageprisoners, for whom I write on a regular basis, describes itself, accurately, as an organization that “exists solely to raise awareness of the plight of the prisoners at Guantánamo Bay and other detainees held as part of the War on Terror.” In his letter to Kernaj, Begg also mentioned that Cageprisoners would not “be forced into determining a person’s guilt outside a recognised court of law.” This happens to be a view that I share, and it has motivated me for the last four years as I have assiduously chronicled the stories of the men and boys — all Muslims, in case anyone has overlooked this particular point — who have been redefined as a category of human beings without rights in a post-9/11 world of hysteria in which apparently intelligent non-Muslims regard the indefinite detention without charge or trial of Muslim “terror suspects” as somehow appropriate.

I know from personal experience that Moazzam Begg is no extremist. We have met on numerous occasions, have had several long discussions, and have shared platforms together at many events. He also features in the new documentary about Guantánamo, “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo,” directed by Polly Nash and myself, talking about Afghanistan, and his hopes, in 2001, that civilized intervention from other Muslims would help the country to engage with the modern world.

Along with other representatives of Cageprisoners, Moazzam and other released prisoners have all welcomed me — a non-Muslim — with nothing less than friendship, support and openness at all times, as they have with numerous other non-Muslim supporters of universal human rights. Is this really what we should expect from extremists or supporters of the Taliban?

I also know, from my conversations with Moazzam, that he is capable of far more open-minded discussions than many of his critics mentioned above (of the kind that sustained him in his conversations with guards throughout his long ordeal in US custody), and that his calm and considered response to the treatment he received is a far more moderating and moderate influence than that of his divisive critics.

It also seems clear to me that the manner in which this story has been stirred up by the media actually has less to do with Moazzam and Cageprisoners than it does with illiberal attempts to smear Amnesty International’s reputation, and to advance an all too prevalent anti-Islamic agenda.

This is supposedly disguised through the purported defense of an Amnesty employee who had no excuse for speaking to the press as she did, but instead, I would suggest, Gita Sahgal is largely being used by those whose only aim is to stir up hostility towards a man who was imprisoned without charge or trial for three years, who has never been charged with a crime, and who dares to defend the rights of other Muslims not to be held without charge or trial.

Note: Moazzam Begg, Omar Deghayes and Andy Worthington will attend a screening of “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” at Amnesty International’s Human Rights Action Centre in London on Tuesday February 16, at 6.30 pm, and will take part in a Q&A session following the screening, moderated by Sara MacNeice, Amnesty’s Campaign Manager for Terrorism, Security and Human Rights. For further details, see here. Tickets are free, but booking is required. Please visit Amnesty’s site for booking details, and see here for details of other UK tour dates for the film.

Andy Worthington
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Hatred and Another Agenda

23.02.2010 20:50

In the Name of Allah Most Compassionate Most Merciful,

I had not imagined that the poorly researched Sunday Times article last week with the suggestion that it promised to expose a tangible link between Amnesty International, the Taliban and I was actually a prelude to something far more sinister against Cageprisoners and I in the days to come.

What I've found most puzzling about this whole episode is the timing and what the argument claims to be about. So here I wish to point out some glaring facts that have been purposefully neglected by those leading the charge against me, including, I'm afraid, Gita Sahgal, who I'd really hoped would have applied a little more wisdom before she began her crusade.

The first and only time I've ever met Ms. Sahgal was on a BBC Radio 4, Hecklers programme hosted by Mark Easton, in 2006. She made a presentation which alleged that the Blair government was pandering to fundamentalists in its fight against terrorism by engaging with groups like the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) - who she alleged were linked to "some of the most dangerous movements of our time." Responding to her I joined a panel that included Daud Abdullah (MCB), Tariq Ramadan, Tahmina Saleem of the Islamic Society of Britain (ISB) and Nazir Ahmad of the House of Lords.

Ms Sahgal now avers that Amnesty's relationship is damaged through association with me, but her ideas seemed a little more paradoxically amenable when I suggested that her thesis was flawed because the MCB, ISB, Mr. Ramadan and Ahmed - with all due respect - were largely regarded as sell-outs by some of the very people we needed to engage. I gave her the example of the British government's banning the BBC from broadcasting Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams' voice during the Irish "Troubles." I said, based on this experience, that the government should in fact be speaking to people like Abu Qatadah, no matter how unpalatable that sounded. Ms Sahgal responded unexpectedly by saying she had no quarrel with my analysis.

So if Gita Sahgal in fact does not oppose dialogue with "extremists" then why all this fuss now? I have been harking on about engagement for years. This seems even more bizarre because only a couple of weeks ago Gordon Brown met in London with Hamid Karzai and outlined a new policy to engage with the Taliban. How ludicrous it seems therefore that I am described the very next week as "Britain's most famous supporter of the Taliban." Does anyone really believe this? Surely if that was the case I'd have been invited to the discussions with Messrs. Brown and Karzai about talking to the Taliban, being their "most famous supporter"?

If this matter was not so serious I'd be rolling over in laughter. But it is - deadly serious. Over the past few days we have received numerous death threats at Cageprisoners - and this is just the beginning. No doubt, the police will be trawling through the copious hate-mongering posts on right-wing, anti-Muslim blogs but I doubt that will solve anything.

I think much of it can be traced back to when Cageprisoners launched a report on the detention of terrorism suspects in the UK last year entitled "Detention Immorality" (PDF), which was hijacked by a seemingly unhinged lawyer-cum-blogger who has openly stated that he aims to destroy Cageprisoners and me - though I still don't understand why. He regularly blogs and cross-posts attacks against Cageprisoners, Islamic organisations and me - amongst others - in an effort to "expose" us. But that is only a part of the problem.

In a BBC discussion with my colleague Asim Qureshi last week, Ms. Sahgal said, "I feel profoundly unsafe … talking to Asim Qureshi and Moazzam Begg, but I'm more than willing to meet them." This sits very strangely with the fact that Asim was already seated next to her during the discussion and that she expressed no such sentiment when she actually did meet me in 2006. In reality it is we who are and have been living in fear for a very long time. We are afraid not only of Britain's anti-terror measures, which are amongst the most draconian in the world - that would see, for example, a girl convicted of terror offenses for writing poetry - but we have to accept, on a daily basis, the vilification of all things Muslim by certain politicians, a public that increasingly sees Muslims as a "fifth column," fuelled by a media and blogosphere that vilifies us as a matter of routine. Still, I'd be more than happy to sit with Ms. Sahgal, safety permitting, and put to her some of the things I've written here.

I could insist that she first disassociate from the support and association she has from the pro-war lobby as they have cemented and justified, through the media, illegal wars of occupation which have led to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people and created severe human rights abuses for many - not least women - or her status as universal human rights advocate should be publicly called into question. However, it is my code of life that my oppressor does not become my teacher. And guilt by association does not mean moral bankruptcy. I am more interested in the work I do - and I had hoped the same of Ms. Sahgal, a lot of whose work she might be surprised to discover I would support.

In May last year I appeared alongside Colonel Tim Collins (famous for the stirring speech he gave to British soldiers on the eve of the 2003 Iraq invasion) on a televised panel discussion about Barack Obama's attempt to censor the publication of photographs of alleged prisoner abuse which included images of apparent rape and sexual abuse of Iraqi women by US soldiers. Col. Collins opined that these pictures should be made public so that the world becomes aware of the abuses and that the culprits are brought to book. Again, there was a deafening silence on this issue - especially from the journalists who promoted the war, the same ones who now champion Ms. Sahgal's work on women's rights.

Sadly, Ms. Sahgal, and subsequent columnists and bloggers, have wilfully misled people into believing that I am somehow opposed to women's rights. During the mid-90s I took several aid convoys to Bosnia, motivated to help the people there after genocide, ethnic cleansing and mass rape was used as a weapon of war against women. Bizarrely, my decision to go there too has been described as part of a mindless "jihadist" fantasy, overlooking completely that an entire Muslim population, in the heart of Europe, was being systematically put to the sword, under the noses and "protection" of European nations.

It is by now public knowledge that I was involved in the establishing and running of a school for girls in Kabul, Afghanistan, during the rule of the Taliban. The Taliban did not give us a licence to operate but neither did they impede us from having the school - openly - or from having the girls collected to and from the school in buses clearly marked with the name of the girls' school. There is a deliberate attempt by my detractors to neglect this point each time I mention it - and I can only assume why: it doesn't fit the stereotype, or the agenda.

Then there is the repeated allegation that because I went to live in Afghanistan - with my wife and children - I deserve what happened to me because I chose to live under a regime that was known for abusing women's rights - amongst other things. I have never denied the Taliban were guilty of abusing women's rights, but my presence there should not be equated as an endorsement of their views regarding them. A similar charge however is not put to the numerous white, Caucasian and non-Muslim NGO workers who were living there during the time of the Taliban - sometimes with their families - well before I ever arrived. I wonder why?

It might come as a surprise to some that the executive director of Cageprisoners for over six years was a Muslim woman - someone who was regarded as the backbone of the organisation and an immense source of pride for us all. Since my return from Guantánamo, Cageprisoners and I have been very closely involved in organisations which assist the silent victims of anti-terror measures (utilised against men detained without charge): their wives and children. These organisations help to empower women to face the harsh reality of life without a partner. Cageprisoners' patron, Yvonne Ridley, has been the most active and vociferous in this regard whilst I am a patron of one of these support groups for women. But what support, if any, have this section of our population received from the great women's rights defenders who claim to champion their cause?

I'm not sure why, after having spent years in Bagram and Guantánamo and being subjected to innumerable human rights violations and abuses - including witnessing two murders - I might be expected to be an expert on women's issues, especially when almost every single prisoner I encountered was male, even though some of the abuses were carried out by female soldiers. There was, however, one woman whose screams I still hear sometimes in my head. I was led to believe she was my wife being tortured in the next room while photographs of her and my children were waved in front of me as I lay tied to the ground with guns pointing at me and interrogators asking: "What do you think happened to them the night we took you away? Do you think you're going to see them again?"

Several months later I received news via the ICRC that my wife and kids were, thankfully, safe, but I knew the screams had been real, that it had been somebody's wife, sister, daughter or mother I had heard. After my return from Guantánamo I began investigating who that person might have been but have been unsuccessful in my findings. However, through my own investigations I discovered that there was a female prisoner once held in Bagram and her number was 650. After years of denial of the existence of women prisoners the US administration finally admitted that there had indeed been a female held in Bagram - but only after I'd asked a colleague to request the US administration's official policy on detaining women in Afghanistan.

Shortly after his return from Guantánamo Binyam Mohamed told me that he believed prisoner 650 was in fact Dr. Aafia Siddiqui. This is the same Dr. Siddiqui that last week's Times extraordinarily provides as evidence of Cageprisoners' campaigns for convicted terrorists. And while I'm making the point, Cageprisoners has not campaigned for anyone who has received a fair, transparent and appropriate sentence as a result of proper due process. As I've stated previously, Cageprisoners is an information portal which merely carries information and reports on the cases of all held as part of the War on Terror. In no place does Cageprisoners ever claim that some of these convicted prisoners are "innocent" or faced a "miscarriage of justice." Cageprisoners has raised the cases of those held under control orders, deportation, detention without trial, US extradition - making them no different from other human rights organisations that similarly do not face the same accusations as a result. The people we do campaign for are highlighted clearly on our "Campaigns" page on the site. But we also recognise that not everyone who is convicted of terrorism is always necessarily an "embodiment of evil" - Nelson Mandela serves as the greatest reminder of that.

In October last year I attended a conference in Malaysia where I met survivors of the Abu Ghraib prison. Amongst them was a woman who told me about some extremely disturbing experiences she and others had gone through. She now runs a women's refuge in Syria for Iraqi refugees. Cageprisoners intends to do more work on the cases of such women and it is an issue I discussed with some Amnesty UK members who were very keen to bring her over and start highlighting issues related to sexual violence against women during incarceration. In fact, I discussed this issue at the Amnesty Human Rights Action Centre only in November on a panel with Professor Joanna Bourke, who spoke about "Sexual Violence in the War on Terror." Ms. Sahgal, oddly, was nowhere to be seen. After countless events with Amnesty - or any of the 600-plus I've spoken at around the country - I've still never encountered Ms. Sahgal since meeting with her in 2006 when she had "no quarrel with my views."

I may be no expert on women's rights issues but I think I have a little idea and sympathy to some of their causes - as a husband and father. Take Johina Aamer for example, a 12-year old girl whose father, Shaker Aamer, has been held for over eight years without charge or trial in Guantánamo. Johina's mother has undergone repeated psychiatric treatment since her husband's abduction all those years ago. I went with Johina, Vanessa Redgrave, Victoria Brittain, Helena Kennedy, Gareth Peirce, Kate Hudson and Kate Allen to Downing Street so she could deliver a letter to the Prime Minister, asking that her father finally be allowed home. None of those who attack me now were there - from media or otherwise - to show their support for this innocent little girl. That really is shameful, because this is the sort of thing they are opposing when they address my relationship with Amnesty.

There is another charge implicitly laid against me (and Cageprisoners): that I am only concerned with the rights of Muslims. Just a few months after my release from Guantánamo I saw on the television images of four hostages in Iraq, dressed in orange Like-like suits, facing threats of execution. I contacted all the former Guantánamo prisoners I knew and issued a televised and written statement in all our names calling for their release. Sadly, the only American hostage was killed but the others, a Briton, an Australian and a Canadian (all non-Muslims), all lived and are safely back home. All of them have written to me the warmest messages of support I've ever read. I told them it was the orange suits that did it.

I find incredible too that there is a new re-reading of my book, Enemy Combatant - after having been in print for over four years - as some kind of handbook for the propagation of the Taliban, fanaticism and a latent Islamic extremism. That sits very peculiarly with the fact that it has received very positive reviews from the likes of Tony Benn, Jon Snow, David Ignatius (the Washington Post), Yasmin Alibhai-Brown (the Independent) and, ironically, Christina Lamb (the Sunday Times). Did I fool them all? The book - and I - has been scrutinised at every literary festival I can think of, from Hay-on-Wye to Edinburgh and Dartington to Keswick. The common response I get is that it (and I) lacks bitterness, is devastatingly reasonable, conciliatory in nature and, as Desmund Tutu says: "I feel that Enemy Combatant has the capacity to win hearts and minds."

Unfortunately some minds are not accompanied by hearts in order that they can be won. I would have thought that the pioneering work done by Cageprisoners and myself might also have served to create more understanding and less hatred by engaging in dialogue with former US soldiers and interrogators - but I seem to have been proved wrong. Up until now I have spoken all around the country addressing over 50,000 people with a view to educate, debate, understand and be understood so that hatred is eroded through interaction and knowledge.

The numbers of people who have told me they've been inspired to learn more, get involved, join human rights groups like Amnesty International, raise awareness and develop a new and nuanced understanding is countless. But, in spite of all the blatant anti-Muslim feeling and the rise of the far-right Islamophobic sentiments it is only now, after this episode with Ms. Sahgal and her protagonists, that I am reconsidering my entire approach towards engagement and dialogue to create understanding and acceptance. The fact is the climate of fear has just been raised a level - and I am no longer immune. I will continue to campaign for the men suffering in the concentration camps of Bagram, Guantánamo and the secret prisons. But withdrawal to a place of safety, my own Muslim community, seems to be the best option right now. It seems, at least to some, that engagement has its limits.

Before I do though, it is worth noting how we have reached this point.

The Times led the libellous charge straight after the failed Detroit bomb plot by suggesting that Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab had become radicalised by attending a couple of Cageprisoners' lectures, without offering one shred of evidence, and once again, choosing to completely ignore Cageprisoners' response. This charge was parroted again last week in David Aaronovitch's contribution to the attack.

A quick look at how the Sunday Times has dealt with the latest issue almost beggars belief: an article written by Richard Kerbaj, who quotes almost nothing of what I say and uses language to suggest the Taliban is actually involved in the whole affair as a headline. I write an immediate response, registering a complaint with the Press Complaints Commission, his editor and my lawyers. The following Sunday another two articles appear in the same paper: the first, a more sober one by Margaret Driscoll, which actually uses my responses that Kerbaj had so deliberately omitted the week before. The second, by Kerbaj again, claims that "Second Amnesty chief attacks Islamist links," showing clearly the Sunday Times sees the problem isn't even about the Taliban anymore, rather it's about having Islamic ideals. The only problem is that Sam Zarifi, upon whom the article is based, also says Kerbaj has mischaracterized his views. It is strange that Mr. Kerbaj and the Sunday Times make careers out of this sort of thing, calling it "news."

The fuse, however, had been lit and out came the others, the way they had done before, demonstrating their credentials in supporting the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan - and everything that came with that. This is what it comes down to in my estimation. The attacks have been very personal, questioning everything I've done in my life in the same way as the US/UK intelligence services had sought to when they colluded in my abduction, false imprisonment, torture and abuse. What no one had bargained for though, not even me, was what would happen after my release. The motto of Cageprisoners is "giving a voice to the voiceless." That voice has echoed across the world and has even reached the ears of some very influential and powerful people, who recognise just how appalling this whole process has been.

Cageprisoners' previous work on reports like "Off the Record" (PDF), which details the cases of "ghost prisoners" and enforced disappearance and the secret detentions network discussed in "Beyond the Law" (PDF) illustrate the levels of criminality we have stooped to in the name of fighting terrorism. The extent to which our own government has been involved in this is quite breathtaking too. Our report last year, "Fabricating Terrorism II" (PDF), highlighted the cases of 29 individuals - one of them before September 11 - who had been tortured and abused with the complicity of British intelligence services, while "Detention Immorality" showed the extent to which prisoners are held without charge or trial in the UK under secret evidence.

The cases we, the former Guantánamo prisoners and torture victims, have against our own government for complicity in torture is so troubling that I have actually been questioned at UK airports if I had travelled abroad in pursuance of my case against the intelligence services.

Last week's revelations that British intelligence was involved in the torture of Binyam Mohamed came as no surprise to me. It is something I've been saying publicly, at Amnesty meetings, in my book and my writings since my return. Cageprisoners and I have also led the campaign for Shaker Aamer who I believe was not only tortured in the presence of MI5 but the government is very worried that revelations of complicity in his torture might be even worse than Binyam's.

Ms. Sahgal has, perhaps unwittingly, become a cause celebre for some of the pro-war hacks in this country - and around the world (who, as a result, are pro-by-products of the wars: targeted assassinations, "collateral damage," refugee crises, secret and military prisons, torture etc.) They are a tool for the intelligence services or people like Paul Rester, the director of the Joint Intelligence Group at Guantánamo, who says, "[Begg] is doing more good for al-Qaeda as a British poster boy than he would ever do carrying an AK-47." I firmly believe this, more than anything else, is the reason why people want my voice and that of Cageprisoners silenced. But it won't be - not as long as I can help it.

It has been my great pleasure to break many a stereotype one would assume of a Guantánamo terrorism suspect who believes in Islam as a way of life. As a child I had studied at a Jewish primary school and as an adult I married a Palestinian woman. Both have given me fond and loving memories. Last week I was walking with a friend in the streets of Berlin, where Adolf Hitler had once created - and ultimately destroyed - the capital of his Nazi wonderland. My friend is an observant Jew whose family had fled the pogroms in Eastern Europe around the same time. The experience was surreal for both of us: for him, the knowledge of the sort of hatred that once spewed out on these very streets so many years ago changed the world; for me, the growing feeling that hatred of a comparable sort, albeit in a subtler guise, is on the march once again. I can't help but to think now, as we passed what was once the Reich Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda, what Joseph Goebbels once said about the truth: "If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it."

My God, was he right.

Moazzam Begg
- Homepage:


Display the following 20 comments

  1. Moazzam Begg Audio -- make your own mind up — Chris
  2. Statement by Gita Sahgal Head of Amnesty International’s Gender Unit — many sides to every story
  3. where does moazzam begg stand on women's rights? — tear down the patriarchy
  4. Whats the real agenda here? — Troops out now
  5. Where is the evidence against Cageprisoners? — Solidarity with all Prisoners!
  6. On Moazzam Begg and the Girls School in Kabul — Paul Stott
  7. Stotts strawman — Chris
  8. No Strawman Here - Only Facts Chris Can't Handle — Paul Stott
  9. Stott's Strawman Redux — Troops out now
  10. Lies? What lies? — Chris
  11. Bad Company — Secular Socialist
  12. @ Secular Socialist — Troops out now
  13. Paul's complaints against Cageprisoners — Solidarity with all Prisoners!
  14. "I'd rather be with Nick Cohen" — Unbelievable
  15. Real villains — Perspective
  16. British intelligence were there at every stage of my detention — Moazzam Begg
  17. Paul Stott's dubious links -- nothing new... — Chris
  18. Real villains — Rachel
  19. Moazzam Begg's response — Chris
  20. Dangerous game: a reply to Gita Saghal and her supporters — Victoria Brittain


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