How one veteran martial arts expert is 'de-radicalising' former terrorists by cage fighting

Discussion in 'Global Affairs' started by abu hadeed, Jul 22, 2012.

  1. abu hadeed

    abu hadeed <A HREF="showthread.php?t=70991"></A>

    By Tom Goodenough
    PUBLISHED: 14:03, 21 July 2012 | UPDATED: 16:47, 21 July 2012

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    Just a stone's throw from the Olympic stadium, where the eyes of the world will soon descend, an inspiring project to re-integrate terrorists into society is taking place.

    With dozens of convicted terrorists released into the area, and even, in some cases, the same street after serving prison sentences, the east London neighbourhoods just beyond the Olympic village are a potential tinderbox of extremism.

    But thanks to the work of one of the UK's top cage fighting trainers, hate is being turned into hope.

    [​IMG] Abu Bakr Mansha, right, and trainer Usman Raja, left, battle it out in the cage during a training session in east London

    [​IMG] A Home Official official has said that Usman Raja, pictured, has an 'ability to inspire' former terrorists to re-think their old ways

    34-year-old Usman Raja, the son of a Pakistani immigrant, says he is proud to be both British and Muslim and is using his talents in the sport as well as his spiritual beliefs to win over the hearts and minds of the former radicals.


    And the former cagefighter, who has worked with 10 convicted terrorists, has been lauded by the Home Office for his success.

    [​IMG] Abu Bakr Mansha, left, who served a prison sentence for terrorist offences, says the sessions are helping him to turn his life around

    [​IMG] Usman Raja, pictured with his wife, is a devout Muslim and uses his religious beliefs alongside his skills as a cage fighter to inspire former convicts

    'He's the most successful guy out there doing this sort of work,' an official for the Government agency told CNN.

    'He has that ability to inspire; that personality X-factor.'
    Former convict Abu Bakr Mansha, who was exposed to the twin threats of right-wing extremists eager to beat him up and Islamists keen to radicalise him in jail, said that he had already felt the impact of the sessions.

    'He has a big name in the MMA world so I wanted to meet him, plus he is a Muslim brother as well you know we have a lot of things we can relate to.

    [​IMG] Usman Raja has been described as having 'that personality X-factor' which has allowed him to inspire reformed terrorists

    'We clicked straight away (and) as soon as I met him me and him got along very well because we have got a lot of things in common.'

    'He's obviously teaching me stuff I have to learn...and I want to learn this stuff, whatever he tells me.'

    'Having the right people around you (to) push you in the right direction...they change your mind (and) you get knowledge.'
    [​IMG] The head of MI5 Jonathan Evans, pictured, has previously warned of the danger of prisoners remaining radical upon their releases

    And Mansha's inspiring coach is now the subject of a documentary on CNN to be broadcast this week, which is the culmination of six months of filming.

    The programme shows clearly the impact the work is having on the lives of those deemed likely to re-offend.

    Jonathan Evans, the director of MI5, warned several years ago that merely jailing terrorists was not a complete solution.

    'Unfortunately, we know that some of those prisoners are still committed extremists who are likely to return to their terrorist activities,' he said.

    But although Raja has only so far worked with a handful of the former radicals, his approach is paying dividends.
    Usman Raja said his approach was all about confronting the attitudes of the men straight on.

    During the documentary, to be broadcast tonight at 8pm, he said: 'This environment challenges you from the very beginning.

    '(And) once that challenged and that opening happens, we are able to go in and start dismantling that perception.

    'It's famous around the gym: leave your ego at the door because if you bring that thing in here with you, we will take it away.'

    'Caging Terror' will be shown on CNN tonight at 7p.m. and 10.30p.m. as well as tomorrow afternoon at 2.30p.m.

    Read more: Usman Raja: How one veteran fighter in east London is trying to win the hearts and minds of former terrorists | Mail Online
  2. Layth

    Layth Abu Shawarma

    Why is this guy being portrayed as some MMA celebrity? Never heard of him until I read this article.
    gag order likes this.
  3. خالد

    خالد New Member

    He used to work for Quilliam. Says it all.
    Abu Hawwa likes this.
  4. Ghazi al Mujahid

    Ghazi al Mujahid Not a Wobbler

    are combat sports like MMA even allowed?
  5. Muneer88

    Muneer88 هنيئاً لك الشهادة

    the guy works with Mi5 to rat in muslims/"rehabilitate" Muslim prisoners that holds opinions and ideas that are not in line with the judeo- christian british government.
    Guess MMA fighting is not his biggest issue...
    as for the brothers forced into this..i would give them the benefit of doubt under the "duress" principle..
    gag order likes this.
  6. Layth

    Layth Abu Shawarma

    If it's done for the sake of learning self-defence or simply to get a good workout, why wouldn't it be allowed bro?

    But I guess if people do it in order to compete etc, then that would seem a bit more problematic. Allahu A'lam.
    ahmad10 and gag order like this.
  7. ahmad10

    ahmad10 حسبي الله ونعم الوكيل

    Al-Salamu `Alaykum Wa Rahmatu 'Llahi Wa BarakaTuhu,

    What!? Do people really think that terrorists become terrorists for the sake of fulfilling their desire to punch others inside a cage - and thanks to this guy and MMA, there is now a Western-friendly alternative?

    Idiots. This guy is nothing but a hypocrite. Hypocrites have come before him, and will come after him - he's just the middle age fool who fights like a dog in a cage.

    MMA, specifically the ones like in UFC are haram according to hundreds of Scholars who have spoken on the matter. And why should it not be haram? Is it not haram to hit another person in the face? What about hitting them until they bleed in the face? All for the sake of 'sport'.

    By Allah (swt), even animals don't deserve the amount of cruelty that these men put on each other. I have no problem with training MMA programs where you punch gloves, and bags etc. but sparring is another matter completely which needs Islamic rules (like avoiding the face, etc.) - and only then would it be permissible self-defense training, etc.

    It's not wrong to wrestle, and 'fight' amongst each other - the Sahabah used to do it...but it's definitely not like the MMA we see today. There are halal forms of this stuff, and then haram forms of it. If by MMA (that is being referenced here) it refers to the UFC-like things...then I have no doubt what most Scholars would say about it.
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2012
  8. gag order

    gag order Anti-Troll

    leave your Islam at the door becos if you bring that thing in here with you, we will take it away
  9. abu hadeed

    abu hadeed <A HREF="showthread.php?t=70991"></A>

    I personally think hes just another typical Asian with a get rich scheme thinking that he can get government funding if he throws in the "de-radicalisation" card.Its been done many times with crooks and fraudsters setting up charities and youth clubs under the guise of combating terrorism and act as advisors to the government only to end up pocketing the money in the end.
  10. gag order

    gag order Anti-Troll

    they were not terrorists to begin with, they were ALL political prisoners framed by an organisation which specialises in deception and misinformation how can their testimony be valid? its like the Gestapo testifying against a Jew or a Stasi testifying against a dissident..
  11. Abu'l 'Eyse

    Abu'l 'Eyse Rep-manz

    And that sums up these guys like Quillium. Remember Majid Najas he was only going to get 40k funding and all he could worry about was "that will not even cover my salary" lol well if you are sincere in your work to get another Job and do Quillium on the side and self-fund, but these get rich quick schemes attract a lot of munafiqs
    Abu-Asiya likes this.
  12. Ghazi al Mujahid

    Ghazi al Mujahid Not a Wobbler

    I agree about the training

    Training is one thing ... but actually participating is another ... these MMA guys are literally pitted against another like animals in a cage ... nevermind the fact that the awrah is not completely covered ...
    Layth likes this.
  13. abu hadeed

    abu hadeed <A HREF="showthread.php?t=70991"></A>

    he is trying to do an Alex Reid.
  14. Riaz77

    Riaz77 <A HREF="showthread.php?t=70991"></A>

    An inside source within a certain branch of the civil service supplied me with information that the government has an almost unlimited budget available even in these times of austerity and cutbacks to provide cash to munafiqin who wish to set up projects to deradicalise Muslims because it is believed to be money very well spent. More so than with traditional security and intelligence activities.
  15. gag order

    gag order Anti-Troll

    Quilliam was facing the chop fairly recently and after the Olympics the counter terrorism budget may be hit by austerity measures. if your source is referring to the £2 billion a year CONTEST budget for the next three years then thats hardly "unlimited"
  16. abu hadeed

    abu hadeed <A HREF="showthread.php?t=70991"></A>

    I dunno, this guy sounds like a typical case of Salafi burnout rather than somebody with a genuine cause and clear conviction.

    Yousef Khattab became Keith Floyd while this guy Kimbo Slice.Woah these de-radicalisation programs really do work and are more successful at getting people jobs and skills than the DWP.I mean getting a Salafi into employment thats an accomplishment in itself isnt it?

    Whataya want from me eh?
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2012
    gag order likes this.
  17. خالد

    خالد New Member

    Maybe it's an HT burnout. From an obsession with the Khilafah to an obsession with secularism. Most of the Quilliam guys are ex-HT.
  18. abu hadeed

    abu hadeed <A HREF="showthread.php?t=70991"></A>

    from the article he said that this particular joker was running around with Salafees and hence why he has such an angst to grind against them.

    I dont want to speculate but I have seen a lot of ex Madkhalees take a turn for the worse.
  19. gag order

    gag order Anti-Troll

    lol, I've been "off the Minhaj" ever since I got a job...

    I've seen a lot of Madkhalis "on the Minhaj" who are worse than the ex-Madkhalis...
  20. Abu_Maryam

    Abu_Maryam New Member

    He needs a good schooling like (or preferably an increase) on the one given to Alex Reid by Roger Gracie. He's been touted as a former mma fighter, but i cant find his fight record anywhere. May Allah remove this people from amongst our midst, ameen
    Apparently he trains with the team USB (now legion wrestling) brothers. If thats the case then the brothers need to make it clear to him that his shenanigans are not appreciated.

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