Readers of this blog will know that I have often locked horns with Robert Lambert, one of Britain’s most important Islamist fellow-travellers, for the deeply shoddy work he has produced in his capacity as an Exeter University academic.
Lambert’s unit, the “European Muslim Research Centre,” is heavily funded by Islamist groups and serves its clients by producing pseudo-academic reports claiming, against nearly all the evidence, that life for British Muslims is going to hell in a handcart. You can see my explanation of the deceit involved in his last one here (another part of the same report even had to be withdrawn as libellous.) Lambert is a key defender of Islamism – and a key attacker of its critics, such as myself – and is to be found on every public platform where the East London Mosque,IFE, Muslim Council of Britain and others gather to mourn lost influence. Now, his credibility appears to have been destroyed.
Lambert, a former police officer, has made no secret of the fact that he used to work for Special Branch (as head of the Met’s Muslim Contact Unit, he pioneered the now discarded approach of officially anointing “good Islamists” in the hope that they would act as a bulwark against “bad Islamists.”)
Today’s Guardian, however, goes much further, calling him “a former spy who controlled a network of undercover police officers in political groups” and “ran operations at a covert unit that placed police spies into political campaigns, including those run by anti-racism groups. The unit also disrupted the activities of these groups. Lambert became head of the unit after going undercover himself…he becomes the seventh police officer to be exposed as a police spy in the protest movement.” They are the Guardian’s claims – and we don’t have Lambert’s side of the story – but they are endorsed by at least one of the groups he allegedly infiltrated. The story has been up for nearly 24 hours now and I haven’t heard any denials.
The claims relate mainly to the 1980s and 90s, but the interesting question is whether Lambert has continued to work undercover since supposedly leaving the police. I must say I was always glad to have Lambert as an opponent, simply because his arguments were so easy to unravel. I thought he was just stupid – but maybe he was playing a much cleverer game.
Certainly, Britain’s Islamists are deeply upset and depressed today at the implosion of a man they thought was one of their key advocates. The East London Mosque is hosting an event next month to promote his “ground-breaking research.” I wonder if that one will stay on the calendar much longer?