15 June 2015

'Jihad': My Journey Into the Roots of Islamic Radicalism in Britain

.... As a person with secular, liberal convictions it was difficult on a personal level, but I tried to put my prejudices aside in order to try to understand the allure of extremism. As well as speaking with ordinary young Muslims who hadn't embraced extremism, I spent the last two years talking with some of the most prominent figures in the British jihadi movement.

I was surprised by their willingness to discuss both the violence they participated in, and what drew them to exit the world of extremism. My investigations brought me to a man who can be described as one of the founders of jihadism in the UK in the 1980s and 90s, amongst other former extremists who have been in conflicts across the world.

.... No-one is born a terrorist, but the route to become one is surprisingly easy. We need to listen to those who have been there, and those who have made their way back, if we want to stop others from taking their first steps down this same path into darkness. [The Huffington Post UK] Read more