Social commentator, scourge of the British intelligensia and multiculturalists alike, Melanie Phillips has written a sobering book about the current state of the Islamist threat that exists in Britain. Alas, the trouble with Melanie is that a lot of her social conservatism gets in the way of the more important aspects of the book. She can't quite resist taking potshots at some of the secularisation and increased freedoms that have eminated from the last three decades.
This is a rather tiresome distraction from the real threat posed to this country from Islamists, both the home-grown and imported variety. Her continued bleating about secularisation and amorality quite bizarrely echoes many of the complaints from the Muslim community of the UK. She does, at times, almost provide excuses for some of the behaviour of the Muslim minority in the UK. She would like to see the same complaints and pressure from the Judeo-Christian aspects of the country but rather thinks the Muslims have a point.
The title reflects the fact that since the 80s London has been the home to many of the exiled Islamist groupings from around the world. The clear attitude of the establishment and the security sources was that if the British left them alone and were accepting of their exile requests, they would never shit on their own doorstep.
The London bombings of 7/7 clearly put their "live and live attitude" in the limelight and exposed it to the ridicule it quite rightly deserved. In addition, Melanie details the parallel society that exists in the Muslim community not only in London but in larger cities in other parts of England. While not as bad as the situation in France, as demonstrated by the riots in suburbs, there is clear danger that things are heading that way in the UK.
She clearly demonstrates to the reader that the Iraq war had little or nothing to do with the rise of Islamic radicals in the UK. It is just one of many excuses used by both them and their defenders on the left for their murderous outrages.
The book makes for sobering and depressing reading, whether it be in reflection to the attitude of those who should know better in government, or Melanie herself. It is quite depressing to see her so often drift off on to tangents that distract from the real danger Britons and the rest of the world are facing.
As many have said, it is indeed a must-read to gauge the situation in the UK, but the book does have its weaknesses. A bit of curate's egg all around, much like most of Ms Phillip's writing.