Raheem Kassam is the editor of Breitbart London, which he established with James Delingpole. Born into a Muslim family, now an atheist, Kassam was a former chief advisor to Nigel Farage. “No Go Zones” is his first book. This Minnesota exclusive interview was conducted by phone on August 15th and has been edited for clarity.
JG: I was struck by your exploration and discussion of what you called “furqa lands” in the United States. People reading this interview will scoff at the idea (a) that sharia law is in America or (b) that it is going to come to America. How do you think the examples that you use in “No Go Zones” with regard to furqa lands refute that? What should people know?
RK: Look, I’m glad you’re asking those specific questions because you go on television and they don’t ask very specific questions, it’s just “Hey, Raheem, what’s a no go zone?”
I’m glad we’re getting into the specifics because this is really important. When I say sharia is coming to a neighborhood near you, it actually accidentally paraphrases Christopher Hitchens in a talk he once gave where he reflected upon the fact that just a couple of miles away from him where he was living—he lived in Dupont Circle in DC—he was talking about how in Virginia, and I believe he was talking about the East Falls Church area specifically, there was sharia going on.
There were Islamist bookstores selling pro-jihadist material, halal stores showing up everywhere, Islamic hate preachers teaching about how you must kill and slaughter the Jews and the Christians and the apostates and the homosexuals.
That Hitchens clip really resonated with me. It is only the next state over for a lot of people. If it’s not in your state, it’s in the next state over.
When you talk about the al furqa stuff, these are compounds, private compounds, fully recognized within US law, whereby you have an extremist hardline and cultish, very cultish Islamist sect, that gets its moral authority and guidance from Sheikh Gilani in Pakistan.
What they’ve done in the United States is that they’ve basically built up little pockets or areas in which they recruit from the nearby prisons and the nearby mosques and the nearby community centers and they do weapons training. They do guerilla warfare training.
It’s very psychological, in fact. It bears a striking resemblance to Scientology, in the sense that if you go to these places and if you become one of their members, it’s very difficult for you to get out.
This is the kind of stuff that is going on in the United States today. And it’s done using your own liberties, using your own laws, which is to say this is private property, we can do whatever the heck we like here.
JG: You mentioned that in “No Go Zones,” when you toured parts of France with Marine Le Pen, who said “they’re using Western liberties against us.”
RK: Absolutely. It occurs several times in the book where people said that to me.
JG: What do you make of Linda Sarsour? By the way, Minnesota media have refused to run any stories on her, despite the national controversy surrounding her.
RK: Let me say this in the most constructive way because she doesn’t bring out the most constructive parts of me. She’s evil embodied as far as I’m concerned. She’s a screeching, relativistic, female genital mutilation excusing activist who seems to have no self-awareness.
Actually, I don’t think that’s the case. I think she’s full of self awareness, she’s happy with the evil she’s propagating. That doesn’t mean to say she knows she’s evil, she very well may be brain washed. But I know she knows what she’s doing.
When she calls for Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Brigitte Gabriel to have their vaginas cut off, there’s no way you don’t know what you’re doing when you say things like that.
Somebody like Linda Sarsour isn’t necessarily the problem in and of themselves. You know how this works: every group gets a figurehead. She just so happens to be the figurehead of the most nefarious group in the United States today and that is radical Islam.
CAIR is an organization, by the way, that has been designated as a terrorist group by foreign countries. The United States needs to act very, very quickly to proscribe the Muslim Brotherhood and therefore to proscribe CAIR.
When that happens, the Linda Sarsours of the world, all their oxygen goes away. She’s only as big as CAIR allows her to be.
JG: Thoughts about Keith Ellison?
RK: Honestly I don’t know enough about him to comment.
JG: Were you a bit naïve in your book when you made suggestions to the Left as to how to improve things? The Regressive Left mindset seems difficult to change.
RK: Those points I make—stop relitigating the 2016 election, recognize these no go zones are different, accept their own naïveté with regards to political Islam—that wasn’t for the Left if I’m honest with you. That was for our side. Those are the things that conservatives need to start throwing at them as talking points.
The end of the book is supposed to teach people a lesson: you don’t play by their terms. We always play by their terms. When CNN wants to do a debate about Russian “collusion” Sen. Rick Whatever will go on and say “Well yes on the one hand this and on the other that.”
The Left doesn’t do that. In fact, I’ll give you a contemporary example. Go to CNN’s archives when they had Ken Cuccinelli and this screeching Simone Sanders I think her name is. Simone is screaming at him over the course of the entire interview and at one point Ken Cuccinelli loses it and says “Why don’t you just shut up for a second?”
Of course, all hellfire rained down on him. The host and the other guests all screamed at him to apologize and by the end of the interview, he apologized.
I wouldn’t have apologized. I would have said “You were screaming at me and I told you to shut up. Don’t scream at me and you won’t be told to shut up.” That’s how it works.
We always play by their terms. Later on in the day, you had four black people on CNN, an all black panel, talking about Charlottesville. Two Trump supporters, two Democrats. One of the Democrats accused one of the Trump supporters of not being black enough!
Nobody called for CNN to apologize. Nobody called for this guy to apologize. We always play by their rules. We should be up in arms about this, there should be a protest outside CNN’s offices in Manhattan right now.
So these points at the end of the book, they were things we can throw at the Left when we’re having arguments with them. “You’re too busy relitigating the 2016 election to realize we have an existential crisis on our hands.” “You won’t acknowledge the fact that these no go zones exist. Why don’t I take you to them? Why won’t you come with me?”
We’ve reached out to Anderson Cooper, we’ve reached out to CNN, on the launch of this book because I want to take him there and I want to show him firsthand. But of course he won’t do that. We have to start making a point of these things.
I’ll give you one last example. Yesterday I was doing an interview with the BBC about Charlottesville because I was there. I said fine, I don’t have much time but yes.
I set up Skype and just as we were about to do the interview I thought to myself “Hold on, I’d better record this on my end as well in case they clip it.” So I recorded it on my phone.
Sure enough, what was an eight minute interview was clipped into sixteen seconds. They cut almost everything I said of substance. They cut my criticism of Obama, they cut my criticism of the neo-Nazis, they cut my criticism of the mainstream media, all of that.
They even cut the stuff I told them about like what it was to be on the ground in Charlottesville! The only thing they left in was a clip that made it look like I was defending the neo-Nazis. I said that I believed that Antifa are the same in their levels of extremism with the neo-Nazis. They literally clipped just that bit.
I’m going to publish the full clip to show people what liars they are. That’s the kind of stuff I was trying to get at in the close of the book.
JG: Andrew Breitbart once said, “Media are evil.”
JG: I understand that you accompanied Nigel Farage when he came stateside after the election to meet the Emperor.
RK (laughing): It’s not just true, but that was actually my meeting that Nigel snuck in with me for!
JG: I love it.
RK: It was extraordinary. I was in there because actually I had dinner with Steve [Bannon] the night after the election. He said come in to Trump Tower tomorrow, I’ll see if the Big Man is available.
So I went in there and we hung around with Steve and with Kellyanne [Conway]. One of our people asked “So where’s Trump?” And she said, “Alright, I’ll take you up.”
JG: Wonderful. It’s good to be alive, isn’t it?
RK: It is great.
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In addition to Alpha News, John Gilmore is also a contributor to The Hill. He is the founder and executive director of Minnesota Media Monitor.™ He blogs at MinnesotaConservatives.org and is on Twitter under @Shabbosgoy.