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Reading University cancels anti-gay Islamic preacher visit amid violent protest fears

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  1. Liam the God 27 Feb 2013, 6:40pm

    “Threats from Extremist Groups”? HE IS AN EXTREMIST! HE IS THE THREAT! The NUS and RU are SPINELESS! Anyone that is in the NUS; I hope you write to your head office about this repeated capitulation to Extremist and Homophobic Religious groups and speakers by them and their representatives.
    Now if you’ll excuse me I’ll have a lie down and try to relax a bit…..

  2. Jock S. Trap 27 Feb 2013, 6:53pm

    Good but I do question why he was put up as a speaker in the first place.

    1. So do I. There must be muslim extremists on the planning committee.

    2. casparthegood 28 Feb 2013, 10:08am

      Exactly why is he even in a position to speak at Reading? This so called man of god should never have been granted an entrance visa in the first place

  3. The University may have cancelled his hate-speech event, but only did so “reluctantly” and is “disappointed that we had to take this course of action” due to threats “from EXTREMIST groups”! WOW, they’re accusing protesters of being extremist?!

    According to the University, its Muslim Society aims to raise awareness of Islam and build mutual understanding.

    This could be considered a joke if it wasn’t so f-ing serious. They have some cheek to talk about mutual understanding when their guest wants us killed and label protesters as extremist. Hypocritical Bastards.

    1. SUPERB post James.

    2. and murdering gays isn’t extreme?

  4. Whaaat?! They invoke threats from extremist groups to cancell this fascist’s speech?! The wording is such as if Mother Theresa came to give a speech and she was threatened by a buch of foam-mouthed Nazis! The level of spin is just plain disgusting.

  5. Robert in S. Kensington 27 Feb 2013, 7:30pm

    Never mind cancellation, bombard the Home Office asking for his deportation as an undesirable.

  6. “Reluctantly”? So they’re reluctant to stop this extremist from speaking? That’s really insulting.

  7. Look with the greatest of respects I am a muslim, i dont personally agree with homosexuality but we live in a free democracy and we are entitled to our opinions. An opinion that is shared by followers of the Torah, Bible and the Quran. I am wondering how you know that his speech did you preview it. The threats they are talking about is from the EDL who have apparently been threatening members of the organising parties. I am sure if mother theresa had been asked the same she would have maybe not as brutally answered but would have agreed homosexuality is not permissible in any of the three core religions of the descendants of Abraham. Sorry if you don’t like you dont have to attend just like we dont attend your parades or parties. Hope this doesnt come across as disrespectful to anyone reading this. But if you dont like what you see on the tv you switch the chanel, if you see a conference that doesnt appeal to you that don’t attend it. Its quite simple actually.

    1. It does come across as disrespectful Amenah. We don’t call Muslims “perverted, dirty, filthy dogs who should be murdered” by being thrown from a mountain. He does and by doing so he is inciting hatred and murder which is against the law. He is not welcome in the UK and should be deported immediately. If you, or any other Muslim, cannot accept that then you are free to move to a country that is more accommodating to your views. The UK does not tolerate the idea of killing people in the name of religion.

    2. Yes, I totally agree with free speech. But how would you feel about a speaker asking for Muslims to be thrown off mountains and to be killed? Free speech does not include incitement to murder in my honest opinion.

      1. Free speech is legal, incitement to murder isn’t. Muslims should remember that before inviting anyone into this country who cannot tolerate our laws.

    3. You do realise your religion was created by a paedophile? And that your religion is a violation of pretty much all human rights? You disgust me, your religion is a foul, evil pit of filth and hatred. You do not belong in a free country.

    4. What’s simple is your tiny little brain for believing in your stupid bigoted religion and not being able to see the difference between ‘our parties’ and your ‘conference’ where your invited speaker advocates our murder. If you know of any of our ‘parties’ where we advocate the murder of muslims, feel free to get them shut down. It’s quite simple actually.

    5. You must be one of those moderate muslims I keep hearing about.

    6. I don’t personally agree with your bullying, misoginistic superstition – you monsterous scumbag and humanity hater – so go back to the rancid country your for fathers came from and leave us to evolve without your religious nonsence

    7. Look amenah, I don’t personally agree with Islam but I accept that we live in a free democracy in which everybody is entitled to their own beliefs, as narrow-minded and medieval they may be. However, no one has the right (at least not here in the UK or other enlightened countries) to use his beliefs in order to discriminate against other people and most certainly no one has the right to use them in order to incite hatred and murder. People like at-Thahabi who do exactly that have no place in this country (or in any other enlightened country) and neither have, and I say that with the greatest of respects, people like you who believe they should have the right to do it.

  8. The muslims who invited him said: “we live in a free democracy and we are entitled to our opinions.”

    In 1989 we had 100s of muslims marching through the streets of England, threatening to kill Salman Rushdie, because he wrote a book you didn’t like (even though none of you even read it). The Dutch film-maker Theo van Gogh was assassinated by a muslim. The Somali ex-muslim writer Ayaan Hirsi Ali is living under threat of death from your people. Geert Wilders lives under 24×7 police protection, because of death threats from your people. Peter Tatchell was threatened with assassination by your people. I’ve been threatened with assassination by your people.

    Two weeks ago, an arab made an assassination attempt on the life of the Danish journalist Lars hedegaard.

    I’m glad to see the shoe is now on the other foot. We have 25 years of evidence that your people will threaten and kill those whose opinions they don’t like.

    1. Well said, Joe. Very well said.

  9. NorthernIrishGuest 27 Feb 2013, 9:08pm

    It’s a sad day when the people who defend the rights and equality of their community are deemed “extremist” when protesting against someone who would see the majority of us enslaved, raped, or stoned to death.

    University of Reading – sort yourself out.

    Raise awareness and build mutual understanding? It’s extremely hard to take this seriously given their religion and culture is so violently opposed to the liberation of women, the protection of children, and the right for LGBT people to live openly and safely. Take your awareness and mutual understanding elsewhere because I am completely opposed to Islam in the Uk and Ireland – it may not be “politically correct” – but I cannot tolerate something that does not tolerate me.

  10. As he has made calls for gays to be thrown from mountains, the best way to get him out of the UK would be to throw him off Beachy Head. That isn’t incitement because I personally want to it myself!

  11. I’m a current student at the University and I’d just like to emphasise an important fact that amenah mentioned and the writer of this article chose to leave out. The event was cancelled due to “the increasing threat of violent protest from extremist groups OUTSIDE THE UNIVERSITY COMMUNITY.” (My emphasis). The full statement is available here:

    Unfortunately the statement doesn’t name these extremist groups (which I find a little unnerving if the claim is that the safety of students is being threatened by them). Of course, this doesn’t touch on the legitimate qualms expressed about allowing at-Thahabi to speak here, but it’s not the case, as James has been led to believe, that “they’re accusing protesters of being extremist.”

    1. The University’s explanation IS disgusting Thomas. It wanted that hate-preacher to have an audience and “reluctantly” cancelled the event, adding that it was “disappointed that we had to take this course of action”.

      at-Thahabi has said that gay men are “perverted, dirty, filthy dogs who should be murdered” by being thrown from a “mountain”. The University invited this monster to have an audience!!!!! Its Muslim Society said that it aims to raise awareness of Islam and build mutual understanding in its statement! MUTUAL UNDERSTANDING?????

      The University’s Muslim Society have succeeded in raising awareness of Islam. It is apparent from al-Thahabi’s hatred and his following at Reading University that Islam is evil. Pure and utter evil.

    2. @Thomas, your Islamic group IS the extremist one for fucks sake, they invited this Nazi Bastard knowing full well his hatred & Incitement to Murder of LGBT people.

      Frankly this world would be a better place withour Abu Usamah…& yes I wish him dead & soon.

      1. bloody right!

  12. So calling gay people “perverted, dirty, filthy dogs” and advocating killing them is considered “raising awareness of Islam and building mutual understanding”
    and protesting against it makes you a member of an “extremist group”…
    Welcome to the UK in 2013 where the spirit of intolerance, of contempt for mankind, a spirit that smashes democratic institutions, the spirit that hates everything that is not how it would like it to be, aka Islamism, is protected by the University of Reading under the guise of freedom of speech while people protesting against it are considered to be “extremists” by the same University.

    “Tolerance of intolerance is cowardice”
    Ayaan Hirsi Ali

    1. I refer you to my above comment. The “extremist groups” are an allegedly violent threat “outside the university”, endangering “those who had planned to attend OR TO PEACEFULLY PROTEST outside the talk.” (My emphasis). The university is not branding protesters as extremists. Please read the full statement (link in my comment above).

      1. Liam the God 27 Feb 2013, 9:49pm

        You also point out that there is no mention of the ALLEGED Extremist groups by name. This in itself is suspicious. I would say that it’s a cover for “If we put this on we will get negative press, so we’ll cancel now and quietly reschedule for closer to the summer break”.

        1. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a tiny bit suspicious about that too, but I’ve just found this:

          “A post on the EDL-linked Casual’s United blog states that “local activists will be turing up to disrupt” the event.””

          “Disrupt” sounds ominous. Just to reiterate for the sake of others here, these are the people the university is referring to as “extremist groups”, not just anybody protesting against the choice of speaker. I’m a little more suspicious as to the author of this article’s failure to make that clear.

          1. Liam the God 27 Feb 2013, 10:49pm

            The EDL would have a lot more support if they protested at ALL religious interference in British life. As it is they have attracted the usual Racist nutballs and Daily Mail readers that think UKIP too moderate. It’s still very tenuous, and I’m still not convinced.

      2. Liam the God 27 Feb 2013, 10:21pm

        Face it, Thomas, the NUS and ALL the Universities have missed the facts about Islamism and all the attendant baggage because they’ve been too busy thinking about being seen to be “More Liberal Than Thou”. These are the Pant wetters and Apologists I have previously spoken of that think that only White people can be nasty, violent, racist, misogynist bastards. People are people, regardless of their colour, race, RELIGION, and should be judged on their merits. This bloke is a GIT!

        1. Please don’t tell me to “face it” when I haven’t actually expressed an opinion on whether it was prudent to invite him in the first place. I’m just trying to make it clear that the University is not accusing all protesters of being violent extremists: a separate matter. If you want my opinion, I’m of two minds. I can see the danger of giving publicity to people with a history of extreme views and inciting violence, and I understand why the victims of his hate speech will be offended. But at the same time, how are you and I in a position to condemn him? Because his views made it onto the public platform. Why not let him shine the spotlight on himself, let him expose himself for what he is, rather than relying on Channel 4 documentaries to find all the dirt? It’s a tough call, a divisive debate, so there’s a real need to remain balanced and rational and not lose sight of the relevant facts, rather than resorting to rhetorical generalisations like your “Pant Wetters and Apologists” spiel.

          1. Liam the God 27 Feb 2013, 11:12pm

            What words would you like me to use? “Fifth Columnists”? “Quislings”? I await your suggestions.

      3. The idiots should have cancelled the event because this hateful cunt should not be speaking there period and that is what they should reported in their statement.

        They provided the setup for anyone to become a protester against this scum. Your defending them is an inane and just implies we are too stupid to read between the lines.

        1. Until two minutes ago I hadn’t expressed any opinions on whether it was prudent to invite me to speak. I was just debunking the myth that the university had branded all protesters as violent extremists.

          1. Invite *him* to speak, rather. Not sure where “me” came from… need to sleep.

      4. Thomas, have you ever heard of “violence breeds more violence”?
        I’m not advocating “violent protests from ‘extremist groups’ that endanger people” but let’s not confuse cause and effect.

        Just ask yourself, would your University have allowed a (white) cleric who had made the same comments about black people or Jews to speak at your University? And would that same University then release a statement that they “reluctantly” cancelled the event, adding that it was “disappointed that we had to take this course of action” and praising the “laudable aims” of said event?

        This whole story casts a poor light on your University. I’m really sorry for all LGBT students there, their University is obviously OK with events featuring people who call for their death. Absolutely disgusting and sad.

  13. Now we in the LGBT are being labeled violent extremists See how they try and demonize anyone with legitimate concerns about islam or Islamists? This is where the gay community and the pro islamic left part ways.

  14. Robert in S. Kensington 27 Feb 2013, 9:56pm

    Would the University of Reading similarly ban a speaker preaching intolerance of Islam or Christianity? Why aren’t so called “Christians” and people of other faiths not decrying this man?

    1. Robert, it might be because ‘nice’ Christians never speak up and the rabid Christians choose not to speak up against homophobic Muslim hate-preachers because they secretly admire them.

    2. Liam the God 27 Feb 2013, 10:13pm

      Because ALL Religion is simply Fascism dressed up in Clerical Vestments and mumbo-jumbo rituals.

    3. really is about time a group was formed to do back to them what they wish to do to others!

  15. Remember the pro islamic left sacrifices all other minority groups on the alter of islam. Women , gays, atheists are abandoned and betrayed.

  16. Incitement to murder is freedom of speech! Doesn’t say much for Reading Uni. nor others does it?

    1. thelostdot … I think I may have misread your post and reported it by mistake. As you put an exclamation mark at the end of “Incitement to murder is freedom of speech” I thought you were expressing that as being your opinion, but I now think you meant to put a question mark instead of an exclamation mark, or that the exclamation mark was to express that you’re flabbergasted by the idea of incitement to murder being considered freedom of speech! If that is the case, then I’m sorry for mistakenly reporting your post. (p.s. as you can see I can’t explain something in a few words!).

  17. Why has he got such a fixation on homosexuality I wonder?

    The lady doth protest too much.
    (meaning when someone decries something too much and too often, they’re usually guilty. They’ve either done or want to do whatever it is they’re condemning so vigorously)

  18. BOLLOCKS….Think this REALLY NEEDS STATING, Reading University Muslim Society are also a Far Right Group, they invited this Evil Nazi Bastard & in full knowledge of his ‘Incitement to Murder’ LGBT people….I can only conclude that they share Abu Usamah’s views on LGBT people….In my view they (Reading Muslim Society) are a deeply HOMOPHOBIC group, SHAME on them, SHAME on the Students Union (RUSU) who were happy to stand by & choose not to challenge The Muslim Society & finally to Reading Univirsity for allowing this sham of a talk to get this far!

    1. Hear Hear. You’ve described it as it really is.

      1. Cheers James

  19. From all I read, from all I hear, on here, and at large…one thing is sadly true, and coming our way, wether we like it or not. We are at war. For now it’s words but it will not stop there, I fear it can’t. And we ALL will have to choose a side. Do you have the guts and the courage to recognise that?

    1. Liam the God 28 Feb 2013, 12:18am

      I know which side I will be on: MINE!

    2. Muslims and Christians are on the same side against us.

    3. @Blue, I’m afraid I do agree with you….once again I’ve clashed with so called ‘Liberal’ friends & family who WONT have a word said against Islam, a very worrying state of affaires indeed.

  20. What has Abu Usamah at-Thahabi got perched on his fat head?
    It looks like one of Nan’s bathroom storage baskets.

    1. Hahaha.

  21. The University of Reading and the Student Union “reluctantly agree to cancel this event”. The University and the NUS should hang their heads in shame – would they have reluctantly agreed to withdrawing an invitation to Herr Hitler to speak at the university 80 years ago?

    1. Sadly, in the 1920s and 1930s they would have had no problem with Hitler speaking at a university in Britain. Mussolini was hugely admired across the west (he was a socialist like Hilter was a National Socialist). Hitler was crowned Man of the Year by Time magazine in 1938.,9171,760539,00.html In the 1920s, the British Fabian Society of socialists were committed to a programme of eugenics just like Hitler. And the Fabian Society is still grooming Labour politicians to this day.

  22. Oh dear. Conflict again. Funny how often religion is at the heart of anger and aggravation. I thought it was supposed to be about peace and love and being kind to one another?. It’s not. It’s about ‘My god is better than your god … nar nar ne nar nar’. How childish and backward.

    1. tribalism – like football fans bitching about what team is better –

  23. I would like to direct you all to this very good Liberal LGBT friendly Face Book page dealing with ‘religion in the modern world’. Have a look, its an open page, This issue here has been covered & very well too.

  24. Liam the God 28 Feb 2013, 1:55pm

    NOW, I’d forgotten about this, but Reading University have form when it comes to “Protecting” islamist sensibilities. Anyone remember last years “Pineapple-Gate”?

  25. Really sad when minorities and victims of prejudice turn on each other.

    Asking this man to speak was no doubt a terrible thing to do and the University should take a look at themselves.

    But so should some of the people commenting here.

    Some of what I have read today is disgusting. People have gone off on anti-Muslim bandwagons and attacked one person just for trying to be rational.

    It’s amazing that some of you are shouting about tolerance towards gays when you’re so intolerant of Muslims.

    Did, for instance, any of you care for the feelings of gay Muslims who may read these comments before going off on your tirades?

    Very sad indeed.

    1. Liam the God 28 Feb 2013, 5:20pm

      If you read through most of them they’re condemning the University and the Students Union: My opinion is that religion has too many apologists ready to defend whatever bigot spouts off homophobic bollocks, particularly if they are Non-White/Non-European. This is a good case in point when you consider reactions to Catholic/Evangelist bigotry: Cardinal Kate, sorry I mean Keith O’Brien was voted “Bigot of the Year” last year, but I doubt Usamah here, or Anjem Choudry, or Mahmoud Ahmedinejad will ever be even considered for that title due to this warped belief that “Only White People Can Be Bigots” held by large aspects of the Liberal/Left, including the NUS and any number of Anti-Fascist groups.
      Opinionated bit over.

    2. Jimmeh, I have appeared as being very anti-Muslim in my posts above. I suppose my posts are intolerant, but it is an intolerance of intolerance. Tolerating intolerance is being naïve and such naivety, no matter how well intentioned, needs to be discouraged. There are people of religion (and that includes Christianity – look at Uganda), who want to kill gay people or want others to do the killing. That hatred and incitement to murder has to be opposed with complete contempt.

      I have sympathy for gay Muslims and gay Christians. However, faith in a god is a choice whereas sexuality isn’t a choice. They should free themselves of a religion that condemns them.

    3. People who are threatend by monsters of hatred are entitled to defend themselves in words and deeds – If his upsets you then clearly you can be seen to agree with said monsters –

  26. GulliverUK 28 Feb 2013, 6:13pm

    As I said on the topic of the bus ads, these people represent a threat to national security – because we all have to live together – and where one groups seeks to victimise and turn others against any one group that can lead to violence or harm.

    They say they cancelled it due to fear of violence, but in fact they cancelled due to his homophobic views, because there wouldn’t have been a threat of violence if HE didn’t have those extremist homophobic views, calling for the murder of people who are gay.

    If he was a nice peaceful cleric there would have been no threat of violence.

  27. This is a phoney pc agenda by bubble world elitists , who are actually covert fascists trying to convey islamofascist speakers as almost victims and portray those who are decent enough, to take a stand against those who advocate terrorism as extremists. Oxymoronic, The irony would be funny if this was not such a serious issue of hate being supported by reading.

  28. Peter Tatchell 1 Mar 2013, 2:08am

    Reading University did not cancel this hate preacher because of his advocacy of murder but only because of the of threat of violent protests against him. Shame on the university.

    Thahabi not only endorses the murder of gay people and of Muslims who give up their faith. He also says women are intellectually and morally deficient and he encourages Muslims to beat young girls who refuse to wear the hijab. Appalling bigotry.

    See my critique here:

    1. Why does your “human rights foundation” solicit money referring to countries where people are executed for being gay (all under the influence of sharia law), while you are too busy campaigning for Balochistan and Bahrain whilst muslims in Britain have ethnically-cleansed Tower Hamlets of gay people? Why are gay people here not one of your campaigns? STOP soliciting money from gay people for the human rights of people in muslim countries, when the entire muslim world has put the Cairo Declaration above the UN Declaration of Human Rights. They want sharia law not human rights. And you are standing idly by whilst they are imposing sharia law in Tower Hamlets.

      Shamnesty International and Human Rights Watch can deal with international issues. Why aren’t you campaiging about the 9 year old muslim girls in schools in Islington, being sold off by their family to be raped by old men??

  29. thoughtful 1 Mar 2013, 9:32am

    I would urge everone to complain to the BBC over its shameless & biased promotion of Islamic values to children, how much longer will it be before we see them openly promoting homophonic & anti semitic views under the banner of ‘diversity’?

    Complaints line 03700 100 222

  30. Stupid little Reading university, trying to make a name for itself by being controversial through inviting this odious little toad to spew bile.
    I am an advocate of free speech, but just, as I expect, to be treated as a criminal if I publicly advocate the death of another group within my society, I expect him to be. This society will not budge to religious extremism, but it will definitely NOT entertain it as a novelty in order to gain a mediocre institution some attention.

  31. Look I don’t claim to know whether or not al-Thahabi is homophobic, but this is a nasty misrepresentation of what he actually said. The quote in full…

    “If I were to call homosexuals perverted, dirty, filthy dogs who should be murdered, that’s my freedom of speech, isn’t it?”

    The operative word here being ‘murdered’ (that is, *unlawful* killing… nobody uses the word ‘murder’ for executions or assassinations they approve of). He is not recommending execution of gay people or defending his right to say things like that, but making a point about how wrong it is to defend bigoted opinions as ‘free speech’.

    If he had defended the position he is accused of taking by racist journalists, I could understand this, but he has repeatedly denied it and cooperated fully with the police investigation over his ill-chosen words back in 2007 (he wasn’t convicted).

    Forgive me if I refuse to take part n this kneejerk outrage.

    1. Liam the God 2 Mar 2013, 11:06pm

      Well done with your nit-picking over semantics. Given the context I would still say he was inciting violence. As for him not being prosecuted that is because of a lack of political will to bring Hatemongers of ANY religion to task for their words; after all, it’s MUCH easier to arrest someone for swinging from a flag on the Cenotaph than it is to prosecute a screaming Homophobic Cleric!
      If you don’t want to be involved in this conversation DON’T STICK YOUR OAR IN! By even posting on this subject you have taken part in this “Knee-Jerk” outrage.

  32. Islam is Fascism under a different guise. The only advocates are straight men who seek to dominate all others.
    The pro-Islamic left are gutless fools governed by fear who unfortunately hold power in the Guardian, the Independent and academia. If standing up for myself deems me an extremist then so be it. You fight fire with fire not a bloody bucket of limp apologies.

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