In the Media

Islamists, gangs, the EDL – all target alienated young men

PUBLISHED May 24, 2013

Almost eight years ago, I lost one of my dearest school friends in the 7/7 terrorist attack on London's transport network. James Adams and 25 others were murdered by Abdullah Shaheed Jamal on a train travelling between Russell Square and King's Cross. Jamal did not look like Osama bin Laden, Kaled Sheikh Mohammed or Mohamed Atta. In fact, he looked like me: black Caribbean, raised and schooled in Britain. Michael Adebolajo, one of the two people alleged to have killed Lee Rigby in Woolwich on Wednesday afternoon, has a similar profile to Jamal. Adebolajo also grew up and went to school in Britain. From the videos that have emerged, this was a man that looked and sounded like many of us. But by young adulthood, he had converted to Islam and had become radicalised enough to murder a complete stranger.

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