Abu Izzadeen: Freed and Again Inciting Hate
by THE EDITOR
October 29, 2010
Yesterday, one of Britain’s most notorious Islamists was released from prison. Abu Izzadeen is the loudest voice in the network of front groups that comprise the extremist Al-Muhajiroun network.
On April 17, 2008, Izzadeen (also known as Trevor or Omar Brooks) had been convicted and on the following day he was officially jailed for inciting terrorism. The trial had commenced in January of that year. Izzadeen’s conviction related to comments he had made in the Saudi-funded Regents Park Mosque during Ramadan in November 2004. According to Britain’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), the evidence against Brooks and others had been found on a five-hour long DVD which had been recovered from the former home of Omar Bakri Mohammed, the “emir” of Al-Muhajiroun. Bakri had fled from Britain to Lebanon in August 2005. Izzadeen had joined Bakri in Lebanon but he and other Al-Muhajiroun members were deported back to Britain.
According to the CPS:
All 8 defendants; Saleem, Brooks, Hussain, Zaheer, Keeler, Khan, Hassan and Muhid, were charged with fundraising for terrorist purposes (under section 15 of the Terrorism Act 2000) and 5 of them (Saleem, Brooks, Keeler, Khan and Hassan) were charged with inciting acts of terrorism overseas (under section 59 of the Terrorism Act 2000). Brooks was also charged with encouraging terrorism (under section 1 of the Terrorism Act 2006).
In essence, all 8 defendants, who were members or associated with an extremist Islamic group called Al-Muhajiroun, jointly sought to raise money to be sent to Iraq to support the terrorist insurgents in their attacks on Coalition Forces. Five of the defendants went further than simply seeking to raise money for terrorist activity. They actually incited others to join in the jihad in Iraq, to join the insurgency and to take up arms against American and British forces serving there....
...Brooks - Guilty to fundraising (2.5 years), guilty to inciting terrorism overseas (4.5 years concurrent) and no verdict (later recorded as not guilty) to encouragement of terrorism.
An extract of the DVD had been made public. In this, Izzadeen had been recorded inside the Regents Park Mosque in 2004 declaring that Muslims should kill British soldiers. He had said:
"He who joins the British Army, the American Army, he is a mortal kaffir and his only hukum (punishment) is for his head to be removed. Indeed, whoever changes his deen (Muslim code of life); kill him."
He had originally been sentenced to four and a half years’ jail, but this had been reduced to three and a half years on appeal.
Izzadeen had been released from jail early, on May 6, 2009, but within two months of his release he was returned to jail to complete the entire term of his sentence. When released early, a condition of his parole had been to be monitored by police. Izzadeen had responded angrily and sworn at police officers on June 25, 2009 leading to him being returned to jail.
Within minutes of his release yesterday, Izzadeen was making headlines. He denounced British soldiers as murderers and torturers, and called for a boycott of remembrance poppies. He claimed these supported “murder and illegal war.”
The tradition of making and selling paper poppies, reflecting the poppies that grew in Flanders Fields in the First World War is 92 years old. These hand-crafted poppies were first made and worn in remembrance by American teacher Moina Michael in 1918. The custom in America is to wear them on Memorial Day and in Britain they are worn on Remembrance Sunday, which occurs later in the year, on the Sunday closest to November 11, the anniversary of the 1918 Armistice. In Britain, these poppies are made by disabled veterans, raising funds for wounded soldiers and the relatives of those killed in war.
Outside Pentonville Prison, London, Izzadeen declared yesterday:
“I don’t believe anybody, even non-Muslims, should buy a poppy because they should not endorse this illegal war. The reality is that the troops are carrying out legalised killing, which is murder as far as I’m concerned. Houses are being destroyed, mosques are being destroyed, Muslims are being murdered and tortured by the forces.”
Izzadeen had been born in Hackney, east London, as Trevor Brooks, His family was Christian but at the age of 17, he had become a convert to Islam. In an interview in 2006, he recalled:
“I still vividly remember the day I pronounced the Shahadah, in my father’s house. It was a day before I turned 18, on 17 April 1994.”
In the same interview, he made reference to his belief that it would be treachery for a real Muslim to join any armed forces. He said: “It is haram (religiously prohibited) to join the armies of secular regimes,” because “military service under those regimes contradicts Walaa and Baraa (sincere loyalty to Islam).”
In 2009, when Izzadeen had been released early, Douglas Murray of the Centre for Social Cohesion had said:
“Abu Izzadeen and his organisation publicly call for attacks against those whom they see as enemies of Islam. Their ideology not only glorifies violent jihad but teaches their followers that taking part in suicide bombings is their duty as Muslims. The early release of a hate preacher like Abu Izzadeen demonstrates that the British courts are still far away from understanding the very clear and present danger that this country is facing from militant Islamists."
Fortunately, Izzadeen’s uncompromising behaviour saw him incarcerated for breaching bail conditions. Now he is free and he has served his full sentence (his time spent in custody awaiting trial counts as jail time) he can only be removed from the streets if the authorities deem his actions to be illegal. In the past, it seems that fear of provoking a backlash had led to Islamists being given a more lenient treatment than any other citizen. Omar Bakri Mohammed had even issued a death fatwa against former prime minister John Major, and had been arrested sixteen times, but had never been charged with any offense.
There is a tendency throughout the West to turn a blind eye to provocative preachings by Islamists, lest national authorities are accused of discrimination and “Islamophobia.”. The Al Muhajiroun group to which Izzadeen is a member and an icon is also closely linked to the American groups called the Islamic Thinkers Society and the group Revolution Muslim. These groups hold public meetings in New York and elsewhere but rarely have their provocative street protests broken up. The websites of these American Islamist groups have carried sermons by British Al-Muhajiroun members such as Sayful Islam and Anjem Choudary.
These anti-establishment preachings do lead to real-world consequences, and the leaders of Revolution Muslim, ITS and Al-Muhajiroun know this. Zachary Chesser, who had posted a threat against the creators of South Park on the Revolution Muslim website, was intending to commit jihad in Somalia and
After it was publicly revealed that Abu Izzadeen had called for Muslims in Britain to behead a British soldier, a group of Muslims did go on to plan the kidnap and decapitation of a Muslim soldier, as I reported here. The leader of the group was Parviz Khan of Birmingham. The intention had been to video the decapitation and then distribute the video on the internet.
Now Izzadeen is free, he will become a rallying-figure for the members of Al-Muhajiroun front groups. It is to be expected that his provocative behaviour will make headlines. He will also be inspirational for the American affiliates of Al-Muhajiroun. It would be tempting to treat Izzadeen as a buffoon, a cartoon character. Such tactics were used by the media in describing Omar Bakri Mohammed and hook-handed Abu Hamza, and distracted attention from their complicity in acts of violence and jihad carried out abroad.
Some speeches of Abu Izzadeen
On July 2, 2005, five days before four terrorists had blown themselves up in London (two of these had close links to Al-Muhajiroun members), Izzadeen had said to some young Muslims that it was a religious duty to “instil terror into the hearts of the kuffar [unbeliever].” He continued: “I am a terrorist. As a Muslim of course I am a terrorist.” He said he did not want to die in his bed like an “old woman” but :
“I want to be blown into pieces with my hands in one place and my feet in another.”
The TV Appearance that made him famous
Shortly after the suicide attacks of July 7, 205, Izzadeen appeared on BBC television in an interview on the news strand called “Newsnight.” This is from a transcript, made from a video of the show, which was broadcast on August 1, 2005:
Richard Watson narrates in voiceover:
RW: "...Al-Muhajaroun announced that it was disbanding. We've now learned that its members have moved on to create two new organisations. One is known as the Saviour Sect, which was involved in violent protests against George Galloway at the recent election."
George Galloway is seen in a room, besides a white woman in black jogging outfit. He is being heckled. One of his hands nervously touches a large bottle of diet coke. The loudest voice heckling is that of Abu Izzadeen.
AI: "We're going to follow you. We're going to follow you George. Hey! Georgy Boy! You're frightened. You're a frightened man! I thought you was a champion! You're a coward!"
George Galloway's female attendant has walked off camera and he is visibly disturbed. His eyes look ahead, then down, then ahead. He touches the bottle of Coke. He says:
GG: "I'm feeling very threatened by your behaviour."
Scene fades to an image of a website, with animation of burning flames.
A website fills screen. An animated banner of flames. In front of the flames, the words DO NOT VOTE These words eventually fade and are replaced with: VOTING IS APOSTASY.
VOICEOVER - Richard Watson narrates:
RW: The Saviour Sect, so named because they believe only their sect represents the true Islamic path, totally rejects democracy, and wants Britain to adopt Shariah, or Islamic Law. The second closely aligned group is known as Al Ghuraaba, Arabic for "The strangers". They too want Britain to become part of a worldwide Islamic state, or khalifa.
Scene changes to a London park. Image of Richard Watson, walking with Abu Izzadeen, a tall man with a white robe nearly reaching his ankles, a white cloth loosely framing his bearded face.
VOICEOVER - Richard Watson
RW: "This man, Abu Izzadeen, describes himself as Abu Ghuraaba's spokesman. He says that Britons brought the recent suicide attacks on themselves."
They sit together on park bench. Camera is close on Abu Izzadeen's face.
AI: "Osama bin Laden, excuse me, Sheikh Osama bin Laden, he offered to the British public, and the European people at large, an offer of ceasefire. He said that if they rose up against their governments, brought their troops home, he promised not to attack them. But unfortunately the stiff upper British lip became hardheaded, and we saw what took place on 7 July.
Scene changes. It is a London park I recognise near West Ham. A man in dark western clothing, walks toward the camera. He has a red and white Arabic scarf wrapped entirely around his head, with a only a slit for him to see through.
RW: "Abu Izzadeen comes from a Christian Jamaican family living in London. He converted to Islam aged 17. This is not the first time he has courted controversy. This previously untransmitted film, obtained by Newsnight, shows him, albeit face covered, just before the attacks on the Twin Towers in New York.
A banner top right of screen displays the words: January 2001. Abu Izzadeen speaks
AI: Because I believe America is one of the places where we should be bombing those...er, the Government. There are some Muslims that go to America, because obviously, you know, like firearms is available inside America, to be trained legally. So why not take that opportunity to use, the heart of the enemy that's attacking us."
RW: "That didn't stop him expressing views that most people in this country would find abhorrent."
RW: "Are you willing to denounce, right now, the London bombings which killed so many people?"
RW: "Why not?"
AI: "I would never denounce Muslims".
RW: "This was murder"
AI: "No. Mujahideen activity."
RW: "It's murder. Innocent people have died."
AI: "I'm sorry- when you bomb Muslims in Afghanistan, and I saw houses....I saw women and children murdered, on a huge scale. Not fifty, there was carpet bombing in Afghanistan. Nobody called for the denounciation (sic) for the murder of Muslims."
Image of emergency services in London. Back to Abu Izzadeen's face.
RW: "People like you, with the views you hold, you're vulnerable to becoming suicide bombers. What do you say about that?"
AI: "Vulnerability, I believe it's a weakness as long as understanding. What would I say about those who do suicide operations - or martyrdom operations - 'cause suicide is a term coined by the media - they're completely praiseworthy. Martyrdom operations are commonplace - fifteen every day in Iraq ag-"
RW: "Not in Britain."
AI: "Against the British and Americans every day in Afghanistan, all around the world, in Palestine. So it's not something that's unusual. What's shocking, for many, is that it took place on their own doorsteps. But hopefully, that will make many, wake up, and smell the coffee...
....Scene cuts to Abu Izzadeen, in same park.
AI: "I believe many people say you shouldn't negotiate with terrorists. It's a common theme, put in the media. But I'm sure, if you asked those who passed away on the 7th of July, should we negotiate with terr- Osama bin Laden, I'm sure they'd say 'Yes'. To bring their lives back, to save themselves from the burning inferno underground, they would have said, 'Let's negotiate'."
GRAPHIC of Abu Izzadeen and Abu Uzair. Music- same synth pad. Words below: Islam and the State.
RW: "The problem for society is that extreme Islamists, even those born in Britain, fundamentally disagree with the central tenets of democracy."
Scene: Abu Izzadeen in park.
AI: "There's always a clash of civilisations, there's always a clash of ideals. And because Islam is not written by a man, I can't change it. But because democracy's written by a man, they can change it to accommodate the Muslims. I'm born here. I have the right to call for Islam, wherever I am. And that's a problem for the British society and establishment; that the community here, the new generation of Muslims, are born in the UK. We have a British passport, and British citizenship but our allegiance is only to Islam."
Scene reverts to Abu Izzadeen.
RW: "That's the key point. Where is your allegiance first, Islam or Britain?"
AI: "There's no issue of first and second. I have no allegiance to the British queen whatsoever and to the British society - in fact, if I see Mujahadin attack the UK, I always stand on the side of the Muslims - NEVER against the Muslims."
RW: "You'd never denounce that?"
AI: "Never! Even if my own family was to be suffered (sic) inside attacks, because we always stand with the Muslims, regardless of the consequences."
GRAPHIC- as before, same slow pad chord. TITLE: UNDER WHOSE LAW?"
VOICEOVER by Richard Watson
RW: Democracy, they argue, is a man-made system, and therefore haram, or banned under Islamic Law.
Abu Izzadeen's face in shown in close up
RW: "You, as I understand it, think it would be justifiable to overthrow a democratically elected government to establish that Khalifa?"
AI: "Well of course! And what's the problem with that?"
RW: "Well, it's a huge problem."
AI: "The British government are willing to overthrow Muslims in Afghanistan, to kill, and rape, and murder, to establish a democratic system."
Scenes from the park - children on swings, a boy on a bike.
AI: "If the British public don't like Shariah, it's going to be over their noses, whether they like it or not. It's going to be over Tony Blair's nose and George Bush's nose as well - and for your information - the British government knows that."
Various images are shown as Abu Izzadeen continues speaking - A Newpaper hoarding reads: "Muslims are against Western Values." A view of rows of Mulsim men's bottoms as the prostrate themselves in prayer. The dome above a mosque.
AI: "That's why they're so terrified of Islamists. I don't believe in freedom. Because freedom's an absolute term. And your freedom encroaches on my freedom. We don't believe in freedom as Muslims. We believe we are, and every action is, restricted with the Shariah rules."
RW: "But I'm saying clearly, I don't want to live in a society like that. What do you say?"
AI: "You don't want to live in a Shariah? Well, when it comes, I'm sure you'll change your mind!"
Scenes of bomb devastation in London. Voiceover from Richard Watson:
RW: "At its height, al-Muhajaroun had fewer than a thousand activists, but as the new organisations' new leaders, Abu Ghuraaba now imply, it only takes a handful of extremists to threaten democracy and national security."
Speech in Birmingham, 2006:
On July 2, 2006, Izzadeen addressed followers at a community center in Small Heath, Birmingham. He praised bin Laden and mocked victims of terrorism. This is the transcript of that speech, which I made from a video recording:
"Mr Mohammed Sidique Khan [leader of the group that killed 52 people in suicide attacks on July 7, 2005) left us a will, saying exactly why he took these operations up. He said 'Until we feel security, you will be our targets." And you - the journalists - you will be the targets. Yeah... and you the journalists - you will be the targets. Are you prepared to die? No you're not. Because you're cowards. You like life.
"I'm quite firm on this issue. Because I remember there was one Japanese, or South Korean, he came to Iraq, and when he was captured by the 'terrorists' - we don't support terrorism - what did he say? Did he have a stiff upper lip? Was he praying? He said (Izzadeen's voice imitates a whining child) "I don't want to die". (The audience laughs). Do you remember that? It was a very heart-wrenching time. Until you saw the bombings, the gassing, imprisonment and torture, of my people. My people - what does that mean? It's all about the global mentality. Someone who believes 'I'm a Muslim' first, last. I know as timely apportions (?), there have been many epitaphs, speeches and sermons, and then your archbishop of somewhere-or-other's going to come out and say 'Yeah, vote for peace around the world, blah, blah, blah.' But I think it's time to read Mohammed Sidique Khan's will, you'll see the answer to our problems.
"Because these people are making clear statements. 'If you stop, you'll be saved. If you don't stop, we're going to kill you - indiscriminately.' We're talking about people who like to die, the way you like to live. Do you know what that means? For the journalists especially. Friday night, and you've been working the whole week, and you're going to be spending all your money on the booze - Friday night is a kuffs' night out. Kuffar go out on a Friday - they go to the pubs, they go to clubs, they drink, they vomit, they lose all their sanity, that's their life. And you love that!
"They're like the animals, (he says something in Arabic) but they're worse! An animal never does that. Only kuffar do that. And, of course, we must declare, that we do not support terrorism. I don't support terrorism. I condemn the terrorism of the British government. I condemn the terrorism of the USA! Every single day, the biggest terrorist in the world is George W. Bush, and his sidekick haman (bath attendant) Tony Blair. I say (he says something in Arabic) I curse them. That's right.
"Bin Laden - he offered, before 7/7, by a few months - he made a statement where he offered to the European public - he never (made it) just (to) the governments - of sua, or gunda excuse me - the offer (of) gunda - the 'truce'. He offered to you, Madam, non-Muslim, and you sir, non-Muslim, and offered to you... The rest of us are Muslims so he knows what we want anyway - he gave it to you... Offer.. of.. truce. And did you respond, Madam? Did you respond sir? No. Therefore you're to blame as well.
"Let's talk about 9/11. They said - 9/11, 3,000 killed. Unfortunately they said it that day on the news - (word unclear) - 'That was the day that changed people's lives... Especially those inside the tower. (laughter). There was one woman - a black woman - you remember in 9/11 - she came out of the smoke and she's crying. (people laugh). I gonna cry - it's so touching, honestly. (more laughter). She came out, and she said - she's covered in sight, in sight, dust, smoke, and she goes: (his voice goes high) 'I was here the last time as well.' (more laughter) It's not a lie... It's so... so touching honestly.
"Look to Spain - example of what happened in Spain. The Spanish, too, they were part and parcel of the 'war on terror'. And the then prime minister - who sided with his ally in the White House - George W. Bush - to (unclear) the Muslims. And what did the Mujahideen do? And I say Mujahideen - obviously the word is terrorists - terrorists (unclear) anyway - the terrorists, what did they do? They decided to.. attack. In the heart of Madrid, the capital of Spain, with all the security, with all the CCTV cameras, with all the awareness about terrorism, didn't help in the end. You cannot stop someone who's determined to die. But more importantly, to take you with him.
"An Israeli soldier, he had dual citizenship, he was a French national. In the Israeli army there are numerous people, from around the world. Therefore, is France not also at risk from the terrorists? Not according to me - but if you apply the formula - I can see maybe France, could be Paris, the Eiffel Tower, who knows? It's a reality, something to be considered. I know I like to joke a lot, but if you think about it, why not?
"The Jewish community, outside Palestine, they also have a role to play, in the condemnation of the apartheid pirate state, cancerous state, of Israel. The Jewish community in the UK they need to condemn the terrorism of the Israeli state, vocally, publicly, in the streets (have) demonstrations - boycott Israeli goods, and the Jews themselves, that should be their role. Otherwise, who knows? What could happen? 7/7. (laughter)
"Because I believe - and it's only my own view - from surveying what's happening around the Muslim worlds (sic) - and it's taking place in the UK over the last year - I believe attacks in the UK are very likely. And I refer, once again to the chief of police who says, once again, 'inevitable", 'can't be stopped'. But I say with a slight footnote - it can be stopped. If we are willing, to stand side by side, and stop the oppression against the Muslims. And stop the occupation of the Muslim lands, stop supporting those type regimes, and maybe then, just then, as bin Laden said, in one of his statements, the offer of truce was there for all of us. If we had risen in the UK and shown that we were against the government, maybe there would have been no 7/7. But the lesson's in your own hands. If you make the effort, I'm sure that those terrorists see that, and won't bomb you again. But if you don't, you have no-one to blame but yourselves.”