Britain in the grip of Islamism? Don't believe what you read

Allow me to introduce my boss, the leader of the Conservatives in the European Parliament. Syed Kamall is a Thatcher/Reagan conservative: eurosceptic, patriotic, a devotee of Austrian economics. He's a handy cricket-player and a Jimi Hendrix fan. He's also a practicing Muslim who does his best to pray regularly and observe the other pillars of his faith.

Occasionally, some of his more disagreeable coreligionists email to ask why he has had so little to say about Iraq or Palestine or Chechnya. Syed replies politely that he represents London, and that his priorities are to cut taxes, reduce the state's role in welfare and enlarge liberty. If they are concerned about Iraq, he says, he'll gladly put them in touch with Iraqi politicians.

There is an important difference between Syed and the bearded nuts writing to him. He has taken the trouble to get himself elected to something, thereby demonstrating the popularity of his opinions. British Muslims are in politics at every level and in all parties. Their views span the spectrum; but they don't exceed the spectrum. No elected British Muslim has ever, to my knowledge, suggested that we adopt a shari'a-based system.

The trouble is, Muslim MPs don't make especially entertaining television. For that, you need someone like Anjem Choudary, who occasionally appears on Fox News saying obnoxious things. That's what he does: He's a Muslim shock-jock.

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