My Brother the Jihadist

On Wednesday evening following NOVA: MANHUNT BOSTON BOMBERS, WOSU TV will present a documentary from the BBC titled: MY BROTHER THE JIHADIST.  The program was originally titled MY BROTHER THE ISLAMIST, but the decision was made to change the title to better reflect the subject matter.

Film-maker Robb Leech sets out to discover why his step-brother, Rich, a white middle-class man from Dorset became a radical Islamist. Robb first heard of his brother’s conversion in a national newspaper in the summer of 2009. The article said Rich had converted under Anjem Choudary, leader of the radical Muslim group Islam4UK, which was later banned under Britain’s anti-terror laws.  Robb decided to reconnect with his extremist stepbrother to try to discover what led Rich to become Salahuddin.  We get a look at the brothers’ relationship and Robb’s attempt to understand why the person he’d once looked up to as a role model could so strongly reject all that his family and the Western world believe in. As Robb spends time with Salahuddin, he witnesses a very particular phenomenon, the embrace of radical Islamism by young men.

At a time when we just saw an innocent man hacked to death in the middle of a suburban London street by radical Islamists, this film hopes to give us a small window into the world of such extreme beliefs.

MY BROTHER THE JIHADIST airs Wednesday evening, May 29 at 10pm on WOSU TV with an encore presentation Thursday, May 30 at 10pm on WOSU PLUS.