Occasionally I wonder why Leo McKinstry has ended up at the Express. And then he looses off a tirade of bigotry like today’s attack on Muslims, and I wonder no more. Rather, I wonder why he isn’t getting called out for incitement – apart from the sheer dishonesty on display. McKinstry has a simple explanation for the Boston bombings, but sadly, it is an all too simple one.
“There is no puzzle about what drove Boston bombers” he thunders, before asserting “There should be no puzzle about this atrocity. The Tsarnaev brothers were Islamic jihadists and their actions were all too predictable ... Intolerance, butchery, assassination and intimidation are at the very core of Islamist ideology”. Find them in the Qur’an then. You won’t.
What you will find in the Qur’an is that followers of The Prophet are told that Islam is the only true religion – just like you’ll find in the Bible. But Leo doesn’t want to talk about past less than savoury behaviour entered into by Christians. For him, all that is wrong in the modern world is down to Muslims. To reinforce his message, though, he sells the pass by also indulging in a little creative storytelling.
The Tsarnaev brothers were ethnic Chechens. “Chechen rebels have been integral to the jihadist movement worldwide, establishing close links with the Al Qaeda network” proclaims McKinstry, wrongly. One of the brothers married, and “he persuaded her to convert to Islam and adopt the oppressive traditional Muslim dress code”. Covering your hair is “oppressive”? Yeah, right.
“What the jihadists want is not the settlement of specific territorial claims but a global Islamic empire in which mankind is forced to live under Sharia law”. Baloney. Islam encourages its followers to bring others into the faith – just like Christianity. “The Boston bombing also exposes the absurdity of claims that Muslim extremism is driven by poverty or lack of education”. It’s absurd because nobody’s making it.
Anyway Leo, what would you have in mind to tackle this problem of your own making? “What we require is robustness in facing up to jihadism - an end to the Human Rights Act”. Marvellous, another Mad Mel. Then he raises the spectre of Muslims coming to the UK from Bulgaria: “a worrying prospect given that Bulgaria has proportionately the largest Muslim population in Europe”.
Homework isn’t Leo’s strong suit. “People who evoke the scarecrow of Islamic fundamentalism in Bulgaria are wrong ... Religion is not of primary importance to Bulgaria's Muslims” a recent study has concluded. But don’t worry, McKinstry says “We must uphold free speech and equality before the law”. Yeah, but you just tore up the Human Rights Act. No, it’s no surprise he ended up at the Express.
Mind you, he’ll be a cheap hire. And that’ll be another Benchmark Of Excellence.