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Wednesday, Sep 29, 2021
Outlook.com

Yasmin Alibhai-Brown

One of UK's best-known columnists, she writes on politics and culture for major dailies like The Independent and Evening Standard

Yasmin Alibhai-Brown
Yasmin Alibhai-Brown
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53
What made you leave Uganda in 1972?

Idi Amin was making life very difficult for Indians there, trying to kick us out. I got a scholarship to Oxford and left as a young girl.

How did that experience shape your writing?

I’ve always felt I don’t belong anywhere. Not African, not Indian, certainly not English.

You’re seen as a liberal writer. What sort of expectations does that create?

Blacks and Asians say I should never criticise our own communities. But we have to examine ourselves to move ahead.

How do you view New Labour’s role in Iraq?

I have no words to describe the utter shame I feel for voting for Tony Blair. He should be tried in an international court.

Why did you return your MBE?

I didn’t agree with the war and I don’t buy this concept of a ‘New Empire’. The poet Benjamin Zepheniah shamed me into it live on TV.

Was there a change in attitude towards young Asian Muslims in Britain after 7/7?

There were backlashes, sometimes violent. But like America,...

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