Madam Prime Minister Theresa May,
We are group of Military Veterans who are writing to you because we are extremely concerned about the dangers posed to the United Kingdom by Islamist extremists, both violent and non-violent. We are also vexed by the polarization of our great country by elements of the extreme right and the extreme left who are seeking to divide us further, we do not identify with any of these groups or any political party.
We love our country as you do and have risked our lives in its defence, we are prepared to do so again. We do not speak for all Military veterans, but there are over 4 million ex-military men and women in the UK who could be called upon to protect the country and community if needed by the Government.
After the dreadful attack on London bridge you quite rightly identified “The evil ideology of Islamist extremism that preaches hatred and division” we believe this is the main cause of the breakdown of community cohesion in the UK today, if this is dealt with other forms of extremism will lose their raison d’être.
As you said in your statement “Enough is enough” we echo that and say never again, we agree that there is no acceptable level of Jihadist terror.
We humbly ask that you consider the following proposals as part of the solution to the problem.
1. High treason charges for returning or returned Jihadists
In 2014 the then Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond revealed that the British Government was considering high treason charges for Islamist extremists in response to the growing numbers of British Jihad fighters travelling to Syria and Iraq to join the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, now these terrorists are returning we request that HMG charge all returning terrorists with high treason and arrest and charge all returned Jihadists with high treason.
2. Temporary detention of Terror suspects and deportation of non-UK nationals
We request that the 3000 active Jihadists that the security services tell us pose an immediate threat to our people are detained in secure accommodation away from the normal prison population if they are UK subjects, if the suspects are foreign nationals we request they are deported to their country of origin with immediate effect.
3. Transparency relating to the funding of extremism
We request that HMG publishes all information relating to the funding and organization of Islamist organizations in the UK, nonviolent Islamist groups pose a long-term threat to the political and social cohesion of the UK, the public should be fully informed about who supports these groups and the threat they pose to the good governance of the UK.
4. Action against Islamist political groups
Groups who through the legitimate political process are seeking to institute Sharia law in the UK and who have as a goal the establishment of a global caliphate must be challenged by Govt and civil society, the public must be made aware of groups who aim to institute sharia law in the UK. We are also deeply disturbed by the close relationship some MPs seem to have forged with Islamist groups and apologists for Jihad this gives credibility to the terror groups and is a threat to national security.
5. Action against extremist Islamist preachers
We are also extremely concerned about preaching in certain extremist Mosques which incites hatred and violence against Jews, Homosexuals, Christians and other non-Muslim groups, with calls for the murder of “apostates”, “blasphemers” and the“Kafir” these preachers must be investigated for incitement to violence, we are also aware of the fine line between freedom of speech and religion and would ask that action is only taken when violence is incited.
6. Freedom of speech and religion for critics of Islamic theology, ideology and history
The veiled threats from Islamist “human rights” and lobbying groups towards people they consider apostates or blasphemers or “Islamophobes” must stop, these threats are particularly sinister, the Islamist groups use the cover accusation of racism or Islamophobia to silence intellectuals, commentators and ex Muslims who critique the ideology and theology of Islam based on the source texts and history of the faith. No ideology or religion is above critical examination to allow the silencing of critics of classical Islam undermines the fundamental right to freedom of speech and religion, it also undermines the battle against Jihadist ideology and theology.
7. Protection of our Muslim neighbours
The vast majority of our Muslim neighbours are not engaged in terrorism and must be protected from violent attacks from the far right and the ravages of Islamic extremism. They must be set free from the oppression and intimidation of radical groups that seek to control them. We are extremely worried about the oppression of women in Islamic communities and we are also concerned that minorities in Islamic communities are being targeted by extremists whether they be ex Muslims, progressives or small sects like the Ahmadiyya.
We would also call for protection and support for progressive reformist Muslims like the brave men at the Quilliam foundation.
We condemn all violence against Muslims by extreme right-wing groups and lone wolf attackers, the rule of law must always be respected and adhered to, we commit to love our Muslim neighbours as ourselves and to protect them from violence as we would any other British citizen.
8. Increased funding of the intelligence agencies and establishment of QRFs in all UK counties.
We ask that government would exempt the security apparatus from any financial cuts and increase the numbers of operatives that are needed to carry out surveillance on suspects, also we call on HMG to establish QRFs in all cities and counties throughout the UK to deal rapidly with major terror attacks.
We are totally committed to the rule of law and offer our total support to the security forces, security services and police, we are committed to helping on a voluntary basis in any way we can, we want to see the scourge of terrorism in all its forms and in all parts of the UK permanently eradicated.
Veterans Against Terrorism
5th August 2017 meet at Parliament Square 1000 – 1200 Hrs march to 10 Downing Street, deliver letter to the PM, all veterans, their families and supporters very welcome.