British PM Cameron urges ‘muscular liberalism’ to combat Islamic extremism

By admin
Saturday, February 5, 2011 19:24 EDT
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British Prime Minister David Cameron condemned his country’s long-standing policy of multiculturalism as a failure Saturday, saying it was partly to blame for fostering Islamist extremism.

In a speech to the Munich Security Conference, Cameron said many young British Muslims were drawn to violent ideology because they found no strong collective identity in Britain.

Signalling a marked change in policy towards ethnic and religious minorities, he urged a “more active, muscular liberalism” where equal rights, the rule of law, freedom of speech and democracy were actively promoted.

“If we are to defeat this threat, I believe it’s time to turn the page on the failed policies of the past,” he told the conference during a panel discussion attended by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

But his remarks sparked a chorus of condemnation at home, with the Muslim Council of Britain expressing anger that the Muslim community was still being treated “as part of the problem as opposed to part of the solution.”

Many criticised his timing, on the day that 2,000 members of the far-right English Defence League (EDL) held a rally in the ethnically mixed city of Luton to protest against the spread of Islam in Britain.

Cameron did not mention the EDL but a lawmaker for the opposition Labour party, Sadiq Khan, accused him of “writing propaganda for the EDL”.

The prime minister’s speech was the first of his premiership on Islamist extremism, a major concern for British governments since four home-grown suicide bombers attacked London in 2005, killing 52 people.

It echoed controversial comments made by Merkel last year, when she also called multiculturalism a failure, saying Germany had not devoted enough attention to the integration of immigrants.

Cameron, who took power in May 2010, argued that “under the doctrine of state multiculturalism, we have encouraged different cultures to live separate lives, apart from each other and the mainstream”.

“All this leaves some young Muslims feeling rootless. And the search for something to belong to and believe in can lead them to this extremist ideology,” he said.

The response, he argued, should be “a lot less of the passive tolerance of recent years and much more active, muscular liberalism”.

“A passively tolerant society says to its citizens: as long as you obey the law, we will leave you alone. It stands neutral between different values,” he said.

“A genuinely liberal country does much more. It believes in certain values and actively promotes them.”

Cameron was careful to distinguish between Islam the religion and the political ideology of Islamist extremism, saying they “are not the same thing.”

But Muslim groups in Britain reacted with a mixture of disappointment and outrage.

“It is disappointing,” Faisal Hanjra, assistant secretary general of the Muslim Council of Britain, told BBC radio, adding that it did not appear to mark in shift in the approach to tackling terrorism.

“Again it just seems the Muslim community is very much in the spotlight, being treated as part of the problem as opposed to part of the solution.”

Mohammed Shafiq, chief executive of British Muslim welfare group the Ramadhan Foundation, added: “Singling out Muslims as he has done feeds the hysteria and paranoia about Islam and Muslims.”

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  • Anonymous

    I’d like to see a lot of muscular liberalism here in the US to combat theofascist and GOP/Nazi extremism, instead of the usual, “Please…don’t…hurt…me” approach. When will libs and Dumocrats ever learn to fight?

  • Anonymous

    all roounda an’ musculature

  • Anonymous

    AMEN! “bipartisanship” is a filthy word that should be stricken from the vocabulary of every liberal. The right wing stands for horrible, evil, America-hating polices. You don’t fight that by meeting it half way and holding hands with it. Or sitting next to it at the State of the Union address. Stand up and FIGHT, liberals!

  • Anonymous

    Meeteth all thein neweth Lord, Sameth as theine olde one.

  • Anonymous

    Wow, what kind of dog is that? Man I wouldn’t want one of those coming after me.

  • http://www.rawstory.com/ hounddogg

    it’s genetic…the dog was bred…


  • cannotvote

    Maybe this is what Enoch Powell’s famous Rivers of Blood speech forecast! He was no bigot and no racist, just a very intelligent man speaking reason to ignorance – much maligned and misunderstood!

  • Anonymous

    i cant even read this article.. that dog is going to be in my nightmares… everyones nightmares…

  • Guest

    What it is with these “types” of white people. Don’t they get the fact that we have a parallel value system? That we view the world differently; that the West and its democratic pretentions of moral superiority is doomed to failure? The U.S., Israel, and Britain are so far from being able to control the next 10 years of human development – it’s our time and that means now and until Palestine is whole and free that we will fight our corner and that the correlation of power is shifting in our favor…

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_LJMNZL5KJFX2H5CKWK2S75HU7I Kevin

    What do you expect from the country that gave us: On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_LJMNZL5KJFX2H5CKWK2S75HU7I Kevin

    If the progressives had any balls they wouldn’t be supporting corporate/ war-party Dems. So much for standing up and fighting.

  • Anonymous

    The problem is corporate hegemony of our political system. Support Vermonts proposed ammendment to strip personhood from corporations. We also need a constitutional ammendment to ban anyone but elected representatives from the floor of congress when it is in session. The only exception would be witnesses called by committees. Cameras rolling all the time except when secret classified material is being discussed. We have to take our government back.

  • Guest

    i expect you would expect rational thought and open discourse, but clearly i would be incorrect.
    you do realize that book is 151 years old right?

  • Guest

    so you are saying we cant all just get along? one of us has to fail, and the other has to win?

    how exactly are you any different from these “types”.. from my perspective you deserve each other.

  • Guest


    How many of the middle east countries are multicultural?


  • Guest

    Is that a GMO dog?

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/LEUDUVF5EGJZRZETF3KV53P7BQ Thomas

    Niiiiccceee puppy. Want a doggy treat? Other than my arm?

  • Anonymous

    You wanna be like them?

  • Anonymous

    I am an American that agrees that we and the Brits had no right or authority to give Palestine to the Zionists. I also believe I am morally superior to someone that believes his mother, sisters and wife are chattel to be controlled by him, and to be punished by him for taking actions with which he disagrees. Power will never belong to the Middle East because, once the oil runs out, they simply don’t have the resources.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1046573071 Matt Mosley

    That is a scary-ass dog – I’d have to put it down upon seeing it just to make sure I was never attacked by it.

    Why didn’t Cameron condemn all the anti-Islamist crap in the papers that spreads unfounded fear makes people scarred for no reason?

    And what about WHITE extremism? We’ve had at least 7 BNP members convicted of having explosives (ACTUAL EXPLOSIVES, not just a “how to make” guide) and one of these guys had enough RICIN to kill 10 people, if he had been a Muslim we’ve have never heard the end of it and it would have been 30-years in jail rather than the 7 this guy got.

  • Anonymous

    Look RAW, I was going to let it go but you left it up as your headline pic all night so I have to say something. I love RAW, I would like it to maintain its journalistic integrity and not turn into supermarket bird cage liners. Anyone can put weird looking pictures to try and increase traffic, rotten.com made a whole website out of it, but if you want to be a NEWS site, try to have your pictures have something to do with the story please. A picture of a pitbull on steroids has nothing to do with the supposed failure of multiculturalism!

  • Anonymous

    Multiculturalism is a failure. It is a philosophy of violence, oppression, separation, and national disintegration.

  • RobertX

    The dog is a sweet little whippet who happens to have a genetic defect.

  • Guest

    I want them to be like me.


    Let’s see if the denizens are as tolerant when they are the host culture.
    If my sister goes to certain places in the ME, she must cover her head.
    Now. If the women of the ME come to Canada, they are made to remove their



    Get some balance to the equation before insisting things are imbalanced.

    In other aspects?

    Would that my fellows had the nerve the people of the ME do.


  • DriveBy

    Did multiculturalism fail, or is this proof that religion will destroy us all?

    In a secular society it would not matter what ridiculous fairytale you place your faith in, but once the society starts respecting irrationalities, we’re all fucked. Islam can still be stopped, but you can’t stop just one religion, you that to stop them ALL. Stop respecting absurdities. Kick all religions off the public square.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/3ETFGMQ3B7VD4AAMILBBEVMCWE JasonA

    And it is high time to accept the fact that God never existed in the first place. That concept is a myth and lie from the Dark Ages, and needs to be cast off, like all other superstitions.

  • Anonymous

    Unfortunately, that won’t happen. We’re too outnumbered. Religion is the refuge of little minds.

  • Anonymous

    A real History buff, you are. Quack!

  • Anonymous

    Lets face it, the western countries could squash your people like the cockroaches that they are in under 30 minutes.

    Tell you what, we won’t do it if you can name something of value your countries have provided to the world since 1000 BCE that didn’t come out of the ground.

  • Anonymous

    “bipartisanship” is only a bad word when you’re talking about good and evil.. If you’re talking about two different ways to get to the same end, then that word can be a good thing, a check and balance tool.

    The problem is, in the U.S., we don’t have a “direction” or destination in mind that is for the “good of the people”. We have a few Liberals and Progressives in a party that is divided that is trying to “work with” (as a party) some vile, sub-human filth that wants to turn human lives into fodder and commodities they can use to build and staff palaces with. One group (which is only a subsection of their party) wants better lives for all men, while the other group is content to kill and abuse for their own entertainment. One side wants Democracy and Freedom for all, the other wants Demagoguery and Fiefdoms for the few. — opposite directions.

  • Anonymous

    Agreed. Without the need for the oil, they will return to the trash heap of history.

  • Anonymous

    Good idea! Just explain how Holywood and the burkha can co-exist in an information age and we are all set!

  • Anonymous

    “That we view the world differently;”

    And isn’t that the core issue? Religion is literally delusion, but everyone tries to pretend that religion can co-exist with reason in the modern world. It can not. You’re “view” is tied to 2000+ year old documents that try to explain reality with no understanding of reality, and as understanding has grown the books and their teachings have not. Couple that with core tenets of your “view” suggesting it’s just dandy (if not demanded) that you abuse other people and you have a serious problem.

    Freedom for all people can not exist when billions believe in superstition and a dogma that promotes abusing/enslaving/killing people who don’t accept your fairy tales. If your religion isn’t a strictly personal construct, you make peace impossible — that goes for any and all religions. Religious institutions calling for the killing of anyone that doesn’t believe the same myths are the problem; always have been and always will be.

  • Anonymous

    It’s a 10″ tall whippet, not a pit bull. While I agree it’s fairly unrelated, it is also not exactly inappropriate since the word “muscular liberalism” was used by the PM.. showing something “muscular” kind of ties in (and, I actually learned something interesting aside from the article thanks to the pic).

  • Anonymous

    Prove god with more than “the sun comes up, the sun goes down.. the tide comes in, the tide goes out.. never a miscommunication”. Then, disprove all of the other gods from myths through history.

  • Anonymous


  • Anonymous


  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/3ETFGMQ3B7VD4AAMILBBEVMCWE JasonA

    Yes I am, and you are an easily manipulated person if you believe religion is anything but a vestige from the age of the primitives.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_MPX7NFFJTZ2SGG6RL2WPV43A2Y Albert

    Is Shafiq trying to tell us that the resurgence of gay-bashings in Amsterdam, one of the most liberal cities in Europe, has nothing to do with a rising Muslim population?
    Hell, I understand not all Muslims are bigots, but a truly liberal nation stands for values, not statistics or diversity in terms of color.

  • http://www.myspace.com/dermezel Megaprole

    I’m not religious but I’m not buying the Rights sudden conversion to secularism.

    The fact is the US and Britain have enacted racist foreign policies against Muslims and Arabs from the beginning. THAT is why they are mad.

    What this guy is talking about is a small step above Hitler. See George Galloway destroy racist Islamophobia: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gnB66wXe1xY

    Also “Multiculturalism has failed Britain”?! Shouldn’t that be something like the other way around- Britain has failed to integrate ethnic minorities into their society?

  • http://www.myspace.com/dermezel Megaprole

    First They came… – Pastor Martin Niemoller

    First they came for the communists,
    and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a communist.

    Then they came for the trade unionists,
    and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a trade unionist.

    Then they came for the Jews,
    and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Jew.

    Then they came for me
    and there was no one left to speak out for me.

  • realnewz

    If multi culturalism has failed, it failed due to being a product of a racist intolerant society.
    Its mans (usually wealthy white men) inability to accept and respect differences that allow for multi culturalism to fail. Like when the British banned the burkha for example.
    Banning the burkha is not promoting a multicultural environment of respecting other peoples religious/cultural preferances, that is intolerance at its finest.

    This reminds me of when Pat Buchanan claimed public schools poor test scores on minority students. He fails to acknowledge that minority students get sub par education compared to wealthy public schools. He also fails to acknowledge that minority students in Charter schools do better academically than their public school counterparts.

  • ToyotaBedZRock

    Religion is what has failed. And yeah the conservative is calling for liberalism, nothing contradictory about that.

  • Greg Eckhart

    Part of the rapid paradigm shift….
    When laws, rights, court rulings, Constitutions, become inconvenient to Power, they get rid of them.

    If you look out over human history and all the great Empires, there were periods of liberalism and ‘enlightenment’ that lasted for awhile either because the regime couldn’t stop it and so then purged it or because the regime encouraged it to gain support for it’s expansion. When it enters a period of consolidation, there is no need for ‘liberalism’.

    We are leaving a short period of western ‘liberalism’

    Multiculturalism is as much a fictional political term as ‘secular humanism’. Secular humanism was invented simply because religious people don’t accept legal separation of church and state and so they struck on the idea that if you can ‘demonstrate’ that secularism is a religion, then you can argue that is violates this separation and it’s the duty of the true believer under both God’s law and the Law of the Land to righteously oppose it….and further their own agenda.

  • Anonymous

    You’re just a racist – from the other side.
    You don’t have a ‘parallel’ value system.
    A ‘value system’ that allows and encourages honour killings and stonings is amoral and valueless. Sheer pretension of moral superiority – without the democracy.

  • Anonymous

    OK, You have nothing to do for about a month?

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/3ETFGMQ3B7VD4AAMILBBEVMCWE JasonA

    You are wasting your time… God cannot be proven with science, the only medium which counts. The rest is belief and there are hundreds of religions in the world, believing in different concepts and gods. The only consistency in their collective teachings is: nonsense.

  • JhoffaX

    It has failed and it was a stupid idea to begin with.

  • Anonymous

    Why should a people have to integrate minorities into their society to the extent it challenges what and who they are and if they criticise they are branded racist – hardline Islamist’s want their own legal and representative system – a system within a system which is not acceptable. If I tried to set up something similar in another country I would not get very far would I.

    The fact is that some minorities don’t want to be integrated and want to remain isolated. Therefore, your comment that Britain failed to integrate ethnic minorities is one that I would reject totally.

    People from different backgrounds in the UK have become integrated with each new generation and perhaps increasingly regard themselves as British although they have a West Indian or Asian background and are proud of that.

  • Anonymous

    I’m with Jason A.

  • Anonymous

    It takes fear and paranoia to insist on and enforce sameness.
    It takes nerve and courage to allow and encourage diversity.
    I don’t envy what those “people of the ME” you refer to do – I pity them.

  • Guest

    We are kindred spirits – well met, good lady.


  • Anonymous

    Al-gebra :-)

  • Anonymous

    Algebra was invented by the Muslim mathematician Al-Khwarizmi in the book he wrote in 820. Algebra is the Arabic word (aljabr) for “equation”, and the word “algorithm” comes from the author’s name, Al-Khwarizmi. He is rightly known as “the father of Algebra”.

    Keep trying…it isn’t easy.

  • Anonymous

    Agriculture was invented 5,000 years ago, Dude. Where have you been?

  • Anonymous

    Sorry, Math is old also. Remember, I said since 1000 BCE. Was I typing too fast for you? See this:

    Algebra was invented by the Muslim mathematician Al-Khwarizmi in the book he wrote in 820. Algebra is the Arabic word (aljabr) for “equation”, and the word “algorithm” comes from the author’s name, Al-Khwarizmi. He is rightly known as “the father of Algebra”.

    BEFORE 1000 BCE!

  • Anonymous

    You wrote:-
    “Tell you what, we won’t do it if you can name something of value your countries have provided to the world since 1000 BCE that didn’t come out of the ground.”

    So your reply of “Keep trying…it isn’t easy” to “Algebra” means you’re suggesting that algebra came out the ground, is not something of value or that Persia wasn’t part of the ME?

    If you don’t like algebra and want something else – get out your dictionary and look up all the words that start with “al” — a great many of them are of Arabic or Middle Eastern origin. Guess why?

  • Anonymous

    I guess you missed the concept of “1000 BCE” being after Algebra. It had nothing to do with coming out of the ground! (Was I typing too fast for you?) By the way Persians/Iranians are not Arabs, just in case you did not know that either. Shahana, the point is that the Arab World has provided almost nothing of value since 1000 BCE. I guess you couldn’t see the context from the question.

    Go ahead, take your time…tell me what the Arab world has provided to civilization since 1000 BCE.

  • Anonymous

    1000 BCE or Before Common Era
    Previously known as 1000 BC or Before Christ…
    1000BCE till now = 3000+ years.

    Have you heard of The Dark Ages?

    Persians might have been Persians and not Arabs – but they were part of the ME…
    Or are you referring to another ME? Like the ME of Outer Mongolia or something?
    …And your original post specified ME not Arab.

    I think you type too fast for yourself.

  • Anonymous

    My bad, I meant 1000 AD. Can you name anything. ME is not Iran, that is southern Asia.

  • Anonymous

    Seems I was right…..
    You type too fast for yourself!