([London] Times Editorial) 'A stubborn failure of Muslim leaders to confront a poison'

With few exceptions, online hate preachers play a central role in the poisoning of these people’s minds. That is why Lord Carlile is right to call for a compelling “counter-narrative” to be fostered to counter the murderous propaganda of jihadists, harnessing if necessary the expertise of video game makers. But this battleground is not entirely virtual. Hundreds of young Britons are absconding, killing and some are dying in the real world. It is in the real world that they must be intercepted.

A leading West Yorkshire imam likened the grooming of young Muslims for violence to the grooming of children for sex by paedophiles. There are doubtless similarities, but none that absolve community leaders of an urgent responsibility to do more to immunise young Muslims from the powerful pull of jihadist websites. The same imam said of the disappearances of teenagers heading for Syria: “We never find out before.” This is a depressing admission of defeat. It is precisely the moderate Muslim leadership, working with parents and teachers, that needs to find out before it is too late.

It is failing in this and in its basic duty to face down IS[IS] recruiters with sufficient vigour.

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