Not surprisingly Debbie Abrahams has comfortably won the Old & Sad bye election with an increased majority. The Tory vote collapsed although to be fair their campaign was half hearted to say the least.
While the usual cabal of political white folk scribble about the implications for all parties from their various biased standpoints LM will try a stab at objectivity. Incidentally the right wing white male Israelite political scribblers always seem to remind me of the sad geeks at school who had a torrid time at the bike shed and yes I agree bullying is unacceptable.
LM wonders how Muslims must be feeling now that they in large part have sent Abrahams to Parliament. The previous MP Woolas was a a proven liar, racist and cheat so naturally New Labour gave him the position of Immigration Minister while their new MP is very mysterious and selected under rather dubious circumstances.
The lessons for Muslims are clear, the importance of political engagement where we Muslims cannot simply leave politics to white folk and expose ourselves to their chicanery as was witnessed in Old & Sad. The removal of Woolas should have resulted in Muslims beginning a recruitment drive to increase Muslim membership of the party thus being positioned strategically to decide who the candidate should have been. I don't doubt that Muslims would have divided amongst Pakistani's, Bangladeshi's etc and the end result may have been the same however, the NEC would have taken note of a large Muslim membership and may have selected Afzal Khan.
Politics is not a one off, first Woolas was removed, then Abrahams was selected and now elected. This is the time Muslims in Oldham need to be organised, coordinated and strategic keeping a close eye on Abrahams as an MP. The first few days are crucial who speaks to her and what postbag she has will determine in large part her conduct throughout this Parliament.
My advice to Oldham Muslims is watch out for her maiden speech will she mention the importance of Muslims in Oldham, what issues will she take up, what PQs will she ask, which countries will she first visit, who does she appoint as her paid staff, what EDM's does she sign and which journalists does she confide in. The importance of regularly keeping up a sustained examination surrounding her activities should be of paramount importance, come to London and ask to see her, write letters to her regularly on Muslim causes but crucially do not allow her any breathing space that leads her to believe she has done the hard work.
One tactic Isralites often use when elected is to pursue Pakistani and or Bangladeshi causes hoping this throws their Muslim constituents off the scent and hides their close ties to Israel. Lorna Fitzsimmons in Rochdale used this tactic classically by focusing on Kashmir thus hiding her links to Israel before she got a good political kicking. Stella Creasy in Walthamstow also uses a similar tactic but has not yet been exposed although LM is keeping a close watch. Politicians need to fear their electorates not the other way round so Oldham Muslims the ball is in your court and the next move is yours.
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