Brown IN – Blair OUT

It is a known fact that the eye of the storm is it’s calmest part, from this eye the strom will unleash it’s anger and wrath upon all that stand in it’s way. With Tony Blair stepping down on 27th June 2007 there has been a sense relief and calm amongst some of the Muslim community in the UK, a feeling of the dark clouds having lifted and a real hope of a new start ahead.

After all Blair was the problem not the otherwise “muslim friendly” Labour Party who for years had defended the rights of minority communities in the UK. Anyone starting a new job will know that there is a need to make a statement early on to show the kind of qualities you posses and what can be expected of you , with Gordon Brown it is no different. Journalists, Politicians and the general public have been speculating for months about the kind of approach Brown would have in key issues such as Security.

What Gordon Brown revealed during his recent speech to Labour Party activists destroyed the illusion that the calm that some felt was anything but a figment of their imagination. With the Muslim community having battled against the 90 day detention without trial law for months to see it binned in favour of an equally unjust 28 day law, most had hoped that was the end of that. But it seems Brown want’s to make his mark as PM by reviving the idea of detaining suspects for 90 days without charge.

Commenting on the proposal of Brown Shami Chakrabati of Liberty said “Twenty-eight days is already the longest period to hold a person without charge in the free world. If you go beyond 28 days it is internment” so much for an easing of the pressure on the Muslims under Brown.

Making these statements just days before John Ried proposed similar things shows it was Browns first influence on policy making in the government, and although the idea of “stop and quiz” laws being introduced was shunned by Reid it wouldn’t surpise anyone if this was introduced as well. These new proposals do nothing to quiten the noise being created about the Muslim community being a problem community in fact they do quite the opposite and suggest that despite all the demonisation and arrests on false evidence more needs to be done to “control” the Muslims in the UK.

Brown suggested to Party supporters in Glasgow that his leadership would be one for listening to the Party and public. Brown could do worse than listen to the voices of reason that say holding people for 90 days without charge will not diminish distrust of the government, nor will it gain them friends amongst the Muslims. In fact it just exposes the government plan to continually bully the Muslim community into submission to an unjust foreign policy and medieval anti-terror laws.

These voices of reason must eminate from Muslim communities up and down the country and be made louder by support from every sphere of the community. It is a time for a unifid message to be sent to the goverment and all other political parties that the Muslim community is not a political football with which to gain political points or make your mark as the new PM.

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