extremist

I respect Anjem Choudary. You basically know where you are with him. He's not a Politician - i.e. someone who knows that they don't mean what they say. Nor is he a Moderate - someone who doesn't know that they don't really mean what they say. Choudary, I think, means exactly what he says. And he says it like it's written in his Book - so you can go and check it afterwards

As for his insignificance, I'm not sure. There is much placed on the reassuring idea that extremists - because they represent "only a tiny minority" - are therefore somehow not something to worry about; that they are "not representative". This is wishful thinking. All great political change or upheaval is precisely the work of a "tiny minority" - often of a single charismatic person. The world-views of Bonaparte, Lenin, Ataturk, etcetera - and their little cliques - could hardly be described as having been "representative" even in the most pivotal moments of their ascent to power.

Humans - being animals - have a strong taste for hierarchy. The vulgar majority "falls in" with the self-organising order. The tip of the power-pyramid is rarely more than the tiniest of groups. And by virtue of his particularity, the leader himself is extremist; he is at that extreme position of command precisely because of his extremist will to power.

The comforting idea that democracy - with its brute majoritarian inertia - guards against all this, is false. Or, true only in a secondary sense: being a mechanism for the eventual removal of leaders. (Though not guaranteed: democracy is easily be cancelled by the incumbent, Hitler-style ). Liberal democracy does nothing to prevent the rise of extremists. If anything it encourages them; it offers them a self-legitimizing path to power, while actually cherishing their freedom from suppression.

Even if Choudry is completely implausible (apart from his absurd ideology being inadmissible in a country like the UK, he just isn't enough of a politician), the fact we don't stop seeing him in the media shows how a "tiny minority" can make a disproportionately huge impact on the mainstream.

Thankfully, at least Choudry is honest enough to say exactly what he has planned for us. All good reasons to prefer him, for instance, to certain other Fashionable Islamic Scholars.