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In the nearly two years since 7/7, no one has come close to solving the mystery of how a soft-spoken, Leeds-born teaching mentor—Mohammad Sidique Khan—became a jihadist terrorist. Until now. Thanks to dogged reporting and a close knowledge of the many shades of Islamic belief and politics, Shiv Malik has breached the wall of silence in Beeston—the Leeds suburb that was home to three of the four bombers—and laid bare the roots of the radicalisation that left 56 dead.

Malik’s account decisively refutes the claim, often heard in the weeks after 7/7, that Khan had been a well-integrated British-Pakistani Muslim…

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