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13.3.10

Cornish Domestic Extremists?

This from a Scottish friend, Ray Bell, author of: The Case for Cornwall.

I woke up to this story on the BBC radio news the other day, and couldn't quite believe my ears.

Why would they do this in Kernow which has a negligible Muslim population, and which probably is about as "radical" as a sponge pudding? Is there something else going on here, or is the Muslim thing a smokescreen for trying to weed out the next generation of Cornish nationalists before there's any trouble? And what exactly would they consider "radical"? An child who doesn't consider Cornwall to be English? Or who wants a Cornish Assembly? Or who speaks Cornish?

The BBC article here.

Civil rights fears over Cornwall schools terror watch

Civil rights group Liberty has questioned the value of an anti-terrorism plan in Cornwall schools.

The county council is holding a £3,500 conference to train secondary schools teachers how to spot children who might grow up to become suicide bombers.

It follows a presentation from police to the council's Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education.

The council's religious education advisor said curbing violent extremism should be "core to education".

If there's any suggestion they are sharing personal information on pupils it is a pretty terrifying state of affairs
Corinne Ferguson, Liberty

Liberty said the initiative, part of the Home Office's anti-terrorism strategy, could foster paranoia.

Spokeswoman Corinne Ferguson told BBC News: "Teachers can be really good role model for children.

"But the idea of teachers being constantly suspicious of pupils rather than trying to engage in a positive way is quite scary.

"If there's any suggestion they are sharing personal information on pupils it is a pretty terrifying state of affairs.

"I think we should be working on more positive things with young people rather than treating them as suspects."

The conference will be held on a date to be agreed in the summer.

Cornwall's religious education advisor, David Hampshire, said: "Just because we are in Cornwall and it feels we are far away from everywhere this agenda is still important to us in preventing violent extremism and should be core to education.

"Religious education has a particular role to play in getting people to question very extremist narratives."

Far be it from me to say that Labours illegal war in Iraq was an act of extremism. Perhaps if Blair and his then cohorts had had this kind of treatment at school......

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