The appearance in the Maily Telegraph of an article under the by-line of Jane Kelly, titled “I feel like a stranger where I live” – fortunately without the intervention of the comments sewer – brings a predictably Islamophobic tone to proceedings, as she tells how Acton Vale has changed “almost overnight” into “Acton Veil”. The Tel loves this kind of thing. But then you get to the end of the piece.
And here, readers are informed that Ms Kelly “is consulting editor of the ‘Salisbury Review’”. Anyone not hearing alarm bells ringing long and loud may not have made the connection. I will explain. The Salisbury Review was founded in 1982 under the editorship of Roger Scruton, and promoted as a journal of “traditional Conservatism” of the small state variety.
However, the Review also espoused the concept of voluntary repatriation for those it labelled immigrants (for which read those from the Indian sub-continent and Afro-Caribbeans). But very few people read it, at least for the first two years. Then an article on race and education by headmaster Ray Honeyford was reproduced – not by accident – in the rabidly Conservative Yorkshire Post.
The Honeyford Affair looked set to initially damage, but then made the career of, up and coming West Yorkshire politician Eric Pickles, whose later tenure as leader of Bradford Council achieved such popularity that he later became MP for a constituency A Very Long Way Away. When Honeyford died last year, the Telegraph willingly reproduced his Review piece.
Put directly, the Telegraph’s staff know what the Salisbury Review is about. When they get its “consulting editor” to pen an article about what it’s like to live in an area of west London where there is a significant Muslim population, they are sure enough about the result that they disallow comments on it. They cannot be surprised when Ms Kelly asserts “mass immigration is making reluctant racists of us all”.
Nor can they be surprised at some of the characterisations used: her part of Acton “has been transformed into a giant transit camp and is home to no one”. She says there are “other Europeans in my area who may share my feelings but I’m not able to talk to them easily about this situation as they are mostly immigrants, too”. And she’s read all about what happens with Muslims patrolling Tower Hamlets.
She whines that “most of the tills in my local shops are manned by young Muslim men who mutter into their mobiles as they are serving”. Yes, they’re bloody busy having to do several things at once. Welcome to the world of the overworked small businessman. The Telegraph ought to be ashamed of publishing this drivel, yet it went ahead, knowing exactly what its source would write.
Not that the Tel is racist, you understand. The thought never entered their heads.