“The Ideal Muslim Student”: Uthman Lateef and Extremism at Imperial College ISOC

Last week, University College London provost Malcolm Grant claimed that there is no problem with extremism on Britain’s campuses. He said:

“Talk to our Muslim and Jewish students and they will tell you that it is a non-issue: it just doesn’t exist,

Last Friday, Imperial College ISOC held its first “Friday Night Live” event of the term. The speaker was the notorious hate preacher, Uthman Lateef:

InshaAllah this Friday will be the first event by FNL. It begins our Ideal Muslim Student series which aims to focus on the lives of Muslims students in the UK. How they can engage in a positive manner with their university community and make a difference to society. Later in the year we will seek inspiration from the great Muslim students of the past as well as showing students how to be successful when it comes to those dreaded exams.

So make sure your there this Friday for our first event with inspirational talks from Ustadh Uthman Lateef and Saad Ali Raja. And of course free food afterwards

This is how Uthman Lateef’s talk on The Ideal Muslim Student was billed:

In our first event, of what will inshaAllah be a trilogy of events, we examine the qualities and attributes that make-up the ideal Muslim student drawing on examples from the history of Islam. Further we will look at how we as Muslim students can engage and make a difference to our university community and to society as a whole.

So join us for a night of true inspiration and a free dinner afterwards.

Uthman Lateef, is an outspoken and vicious homophobe and supporter of jihadist politics. Famously, he appeared at an event at the East London Mosque/London Muslim Centre featuring Anwar Al-Awlaki into 2009, when it was very clear that Awlaki was a leading Al Qaeda operative. He regularly appears at the notorious Belmarsh Iftar event, at which supporters of those held on terrorism charges gather to show solidarity.

I recommend that you read the comprehensive posts to which this article links. Here are some highlights:

We can gauge what Uthman Lateef is likely to have said to students, from his conduct in the past. Lateef said this to Queen Mary students in 2007:

“We don’t accept homosexuality … we hate it because Allah hates it”

Can you imagine the uproar that there would be, were a speaker to appear on campus who said “We don’t accept Islam. We hate Islam”?

Last year, at the Belmarsh Iftar solidarity event with those detained on terrorism charges, Uthman Lateef said this:

A Muslim is a brother to another Muslim. He does not wrong him. He does not oppress him. He does not look down on him, does not imprison him, does not hand him over to be imprisoned by anyone, does not hold him in contempt as if he is some kind of criminal.

Comparing those detained on terrorism charges to the biblical figure of Joseph, Lateef said:

What was he in need of? Response. He needed his companions to support him. The same way that Muslims today require our support. The same way that those who found themselves in prison require our support. The same way that those who are humiliated require our support, our voice, our assistance.

Lateef was one of the speakers at the “End of Time” event at the LMC on 1 January 2009, where star turn Awlaki delivered a speech and answered questions via video link from Yemen.

In April 2009 Lateef spoke at another Awlaki video link event at the Brady Centre in East London, a public sector facility.

The al Wasatiyyah Foundation, a fly-by-night London support operation for Awlaki, still lists Lateef as one of its three teachers. One of the others is the late Al Qaeda leader, Anwar Al Awlaki.

Here is a little of what Lateef said in 2009:

Brothers, if we are teaching the way of life of the disbelievers, of the kuffar, Allah will bring humiliation upon us. If we are seeking this name and fame, and to be pranced around the world as some kind of government spokesmen and representatives, speaking about this reformed and redefined and repackaged Islam, Allah will bring humiliation upon people like that. And be careful. Because people will be in that condition, that they will wake up asmuqimeen (believers) but they will go to sleep as kuffars. And they will go to sleep as muqimeen and they will wake up as kuffars. Because we live in a time of deception. [12:00]

Lateef also attacked Muslims who support secularism, socialism and social democracy, and who believe that it is possible to be both a liberal and a Muslim:

They tell you about a secular Islam, right? Islamic secularism. New Islam. They will sell you a democratic Islam, a socialist Islam, a social democratic Islam, every Islam except the Islam of Mohammed. A new talk. Beware of the new things. The redefined, repackaged Islam. The so-called Islam that speaks of abolition of sharia, like we don’t need sharia anymore. The so-called Islam that speaks about the fact that sovereignty does not belong to Allah. The so-called Islam that speaks about the fact that, you know, we don’t need the laws of Islam anymore. There is no politics in Islam. We’ve got to separate these two things. So beware of them and your fathers should beware of them. Don’t let these people be a cause of misguidance for you. Don’t let these people be a cause of fitna for you. Deception! [19:00]

Every week, up and down the country, ISOCs affiliated to FOSIS are holding meeting after meeting, featuring hate preachers who support terrorists, encourage hatred of gays, attack Muslims who are liberal and who are linked to Al Qaeda figures.

This, we are told, is neither a symptom of a growing extremism not a matter for concern.


In a similar vein, read Hasan Afzal in the Huffington Post, on Zahir Mahmood and extremism at University College London’s ISOC.