UK bans Muslim protest group

Theresa May, the British Home Secretary, has banned a Muslim group named Muslims Against Crusades, which was planning to protest Armistice Day and burn poppies. Perhaps for them there’s a symbolic tie-in between the poppy fields of Northern France and the poppy fields of Afghanistan.

The Guardian has the story:

“May said: “I am satisfied Muslims Against Crusades is simply another name for an organisation already proscribed under a number of names including Al Ghurabaa, The Saved Sect, Al-Muhajiroun and Islam4UK. The organisation was proscribed in 2006 for glorifying terrorism and we are clear it should not be able to continue these activities by simply changing its name.”

A parliamentary order was laid at Westminster on Thursday morning implementing the ban.”

I can’t help thinking that Theresa May has missed her own point quite spectacularly: If you ban groups like this, they’ll just re-name themselves and effectively un-ban themselves for a few months until you ban them again.

Conversely, sometimes banning an organisation just drives it underground and further radicalises its members – This happened with a number of paramilitary organisations in the Northern Ireland troubles. Certainly it feeds their delusions that they’re righteous people being persecuted by infidels; personally, I’d rather take offense at their silly demonstrations that take shrapnel from a bombing. Why nurture a persecution complex that’s already built-in to their religion?

And finally, my attitude to things like this has changed markedly in the time I’ve been coming to UF. It’s probably exposure to all you yanks. To paraphrase a yank: I might disagree with what Muslims Against Crusades are planning on saying and doing, but I’ll fight for their right to say and do it.