Generation Jihad: Troubled Teens Turn Terrorist

February 8, 2010 by  
Filed under - Home, Reviews

3generationjihad300GENERATION JIHAD: Monday 8th February, BBC2, 9pm ALERT ME

Hammad Munshi was just 15 when he was arrested by police while on his way home from a GCSE chemistry exam carrying two small bags of ball-bearings – key components for making a suicide bomb vest.

Anti-terrorist officers stormed his middle-class home in West Yorkshire and discovered notes on his computer about making napalm, detonators, grenades and scribblings about martyrdom under his bed.

Shocking stuff made more shocking when we find out that Munshi was quiet and hard-working at school, had a stable family life, earned good grades and had well-respected parents.

In this, the first of three programmes on the subject, veteran journalist Peter Taylor visits his home county of Yorkshire to explore why some Muslim boys like Munshi are becoming extremists – the so called Generation Jihad.

The answer – put forth early on is that, like so many of the world’s evils, the internet is to blame. Extremists make the most of everyday teens facing an identity crisis, giving them respect and inclusion online, grooming them to commit terrorist acts.

The extreme views are baffling to resident Muslims who have lived in Britain for generations, they see these extreme organistions as a “bizarre cult?.

While the radicals’ opinions seem hypocritical and illogical the programme avoids confrontation – merely shedding light on these groups, not arguing with them.

The second part investigates how young Muslims radicalised over the internet formed themselves into a terror network that spread across three continents planning an attack which, it was claimed, would dwarf the 2005 London bombings.

The documentary is compelling and with the Chief Constable of West Yorkshire saying the problem will be with us for the next 20 years makes it well worth watching.

It’s not just Muslim youth that are prone to grooming by extremists. On Friday, Young, Angry And White airs the views of a 19-year-old British nationalist from Milton Keynes.

These are extreme times indeed…

Sheikh Mohammed says:

Frank Gardner:
Let’s cut to the chase here Sheikh Hamza, where do you stand on President Bush’s war on terror?

Hamza Yusuf:
I think that the idea of a war on an abstract noun is unacceptable. I really believe that carpet-bombing, bombing civilian populations is a form of terror – it’s state terror as opposed to vigilante terrorism. Obviously state terror – the state has a power to justify it. But at the end of the day innocent people killed anywhere – when I see Iraqi children in a state of terror because of bombs I consider that a form of terrorism. So I think the war on terror has to be a war on modern warfare – period.

Sheikh Mohammed says:

Re: above comment,

Logical answer, yes…but THIS IS their birth country! You only need to do a google search (try it now!) to find out exactly how many multitudes of youth organisations there are to work on the aspects you noted above. Surprised? Im not. The issue is this. Take 2 billion christians, 1.9 billion are doing good works and charitable deeds….the fact gets ignored. 0.0000001% do something odd like mass suicide because their leader said so…what happens? people start viewing that friendly lady coming to knock on your door to tell you about Jesus (pbuh) as a demon.
Well guess what?, theres 2 billion muslims in the world too and they are not all brown skinned, turban wearing, indian accented, sabre wielding fanatics. Compare on google, for example, Abu Hamza to Hamza Yusef.

I agree that the Media is out of control. I also agree that when youths are marginalised they are easy targets for extremism of any kind. However, if young muslims are feeling displaced when living away from their birth countries and are not happy with what is happening in their birth countries…then why don’t they do something positive towards changing the circumstances in those countries. Start a movement for change, or study to go into politics or raise funds to build the communities. I don’t understand why they use violence. It doesn’t achieve anything positive.

Sheikh Mohammed says:

Good job on the fear mongering, [claps hands]. Im just surprised we havnt moved away from the age old “mods & rockers” style moral panic era. I just hope one day people will gather enough intellegence and turn there attention to the real threat we face wherever we turn….the bombardment of media propaganda designed at controlling how we think. “Hey everyone! Lets forget about the recession and the fact that property prices are due to fall even further by 40%. Instead why not turn our frustrations upon each other”.
Stop marginalising muslims and working class white youths, and you wont have problems like BNP or Al Qaeda. Regenerate the northern mill towns and give kids some hope for Allah’s or Christ’s or Krishna’s sake! Simples!