Article: UK’s collusion with Islamists ‘catastrophic’

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UK’s collusion with Islamists ‘catastrophic’

Richard Norton-Taylor, 05 July 2010

British collusion with radical Islamist forces, including extremists who provided training camps for the leader of the 7/7 London suicide bombers and who are fomenting the insurgency in Afghanistan, has had a catastrophic impact, according to an account of British policy in the Middle East and central Asia.

Writing in the Guardian, Mark Curtis, author of Secret Affairs, says: “The terrorist threat to Britain is partly ‘blowback’, resulting from a web of British covert operations with militant Islamic groups stretching back decades. And while terrorism is upheld as the country’s biggest security challenge, Whitehall’s collusion with radical Islam is continuing.””

He adds: “Declassified government files reveal that planners recognised their Islamist collaborators were anti-Western but entered into marriages of convenience to achieve short-term objectives.” The past is returning “to haunt British policy in Afghanistan, and British soldiers along with Afghan civilians are paying the highest price for this blowback,” he says.

Successive British governments have secretly connived with militant forces linked to al-Qaida to control oil resources, overthrow governments, and promote Britain’s financial interests, Curtis writes. The policy of covert support was first applied to the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, encouraging it to overthrow or assassinate the country’s Arab nationalist president, Gamal Abdel Nasser.

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