These are all the Blogs posted on Friday, 1, 2012.
Friday, 1 June 2012
all the English papers will talk of me tomorrow. The crazy wolf Kurdish Turk who covered London in blood. The knife is ready, you know Iâ€™m handy with a knife'
From The Daily Mail
A Turkish man, who knifed to death his new bride and mother-in-law in a prolonged and vicious attack, grinned in court today as he was told he would serve a life sentence for their murders.
Smirking Ensar Gol, 22, repeatedly stabbed Michala, his wife of six months, as she lay sleeping in their bed in Thame, Oxfordshire, because he was unhappy in the marriage.
Michala's mother Julie Sahin, who was watching television downstairs with a friend, rushed up to find Gol perched over her daughter repeatedly plunging the knife into her neck. As she tried to pull Gol away, she slipped to the floor where she was set upon in a frenzied attack. A post-mortem examination revealed the two women had been stabbed around 70 times.
After murdering the two women Gol scooped up his three-year-old daughter and carried her through the streets, the kitchen knife still in his hand and his jeans splattered with the blood.
High Court Judge Mr Justice Supperstone said he would adjourn Gol’s sentencing until the following day although it was agreed by both prosecution and defence that he would serve at least 30 years.
The jury previously heard how just hours before the double murder Gol bragged on Facebook that his English bride and her mother 'would be cut'. He had even had sex with another woman before he went on the murderous rampage after he fell out with bride Michala and mother-in-law - who disliked the way that Gol treated her beloved daughter.
Before the killing spree, Gol wrote on Facebook: 'Have a look, all the English papers will talk of me tomorrow. The crazy wolf Kurdish Turk who covered London in blood. The knife is ready, you know I’m handy with a knife, good with knives.'
Just hours later Gol returned to his marital home in Thame, Oxon., and stabbed his sleeping wife. Miss Wilson had described to the court how she and her friend had rushed upstairs to help.
Miss Wilson (family friend) managed to pull the Turkish-born restaurant worker off her friend but was herself stabbed four times, one of the wounds missing her pulmonary vein by just a millimetre. She managed to flee but tragically petite Julie was trapped in the house with her knife-wielding son-in-law, and eventually collapsed through a lack of blood at the foot of the stairs, curled in the foetal position and inches from the front door.
A post mortem examination revealed both women had died from the blood lost from their numerous stab wounds, most of which were dealt to their necks and chests. Both women also had defence-type injuries to their hands.
He (Gol) went to a pizza restaurant just minutes after the killings in the early hours of September 4, last year, where Julie’s husband Mehmet Sahin was working and chillingly told him: 'You didn’t believe me but I did it.'
Posted on 06/01/2012 6:36 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Friday, 1 June 2012
Professor â€˜cut off his wifeâ€™s lips and ate them because he believed she had insulted his honour by having affairâ€™
From the Swedish edition of The Local and the Daily Mail which reports the odd little detail which the Swedish press are discouraged from mentioning.
A prominent researcher at Sweden's Karolinska Instiutet is in custody for having cut off his wife's lips with a knife and then eating them.
The man attacked his much younger wife in their home south of Stockholm after flying into a jealous rage over suspicions that his wife had been unfaithful, the Aftonbladet newspaper reported.
Prosecutors considered the attack to be so vicious that they requested the man be remanded in custody on suspicion of attempted murder.
During a remand hearing, however, the court ruled the suspicions should be classified as aggravated assault and ordered the man held on remand pending the filing of formal charges. "It was honour related. He doesn't seem to regret a thing; he believes she insulted him," a source with knowledge of the matter told the paper.
Ingela Hessius Ekman, a lawyer representing the victim, said her client has suffered both physically and emotionally from the attack. "She has very serious injuries; the doctors can't yet say whether or not she can be healed," she told Aftonbladet. Miss Ekman added that the trial is due to start at the beginning of July
The researcher reportedly has several children from a previous marriage, but a few weeks after divorcing his first wife he married a much younger woman who he recently believed had cheated on him.
Karolinska spokesperson Claes Keisu told the Expressen newspaper that the man is no longer employed at the prestigious research institute. "He has ties with us but his regular job is in another country," he said.
The man, who is from Iran, was doing post-Doctoral research at the institute in 2010. He is now employed by a university in Tehran, but still lived partly in Stockholm, where he collaborated with his old research group at the university, and used its email services and library through a 'declaration of association.'
Posted on 06/01/2012 2:41 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Friday, 1 June 2012
Egypt's Muslim presidential candidate allegedly said Christians should convert, pay tribute or leave
From Christian Today Australia
Mohammed Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood candidate competing against Ahmed Shafiq in a runoff election to become Egypt's first elected president in 60 years, has allegedly said that the Coptic Christian population should "convert, pay tribute, or leave" the predominantly Muslim country.
The Egyptian news website El Bashayer quoted the presidential candidate as allegedly telling a journalist in the context of a private meeting that he will "achieve the Islamic conquest of Egypt for the second time, and make all Christians convert to Islam, or else pay the 'jizya' (Islamic tax)
The conversation reportedly took place at the headquarters of the Muslim Brotherhood Freedom and Justice Party.
"We will not allow Ahmed Shafiq or anyone else to impede our second Islamic conquest of Egypt," Morsi allegedly told the journalist. "They (Christians) need to know that conquest is coming, and Egypt will be Islamic, and that they must pay 'jizya' or emigrate."
Jerry Dykstra, spokesperson for the Christian persecution watchdog Open Doors, told The Christian Post that it seemed unlikely that Morsi would make comments suggesting Christians should convert or leave Egypt. If the Muslim Brotherhood presidential candidate truly made those statements as reported by El Bashayer, then Christians have a reason to fear for their future in the predominately Muslim country, he said.
"It seems a stretch that Morsi would use such strong language when he reportedly is trying to portray himself as the centralist candidate. But perhaps those are his real views and the ultimate aim of the Muslim Brotherhood,"
At a Tuesday press conference Morsi promised both women and Christians full access to rights, saying that he would protect women's right to work and education and place "no imposition on women to wear the veil." Morsi also suggested that should he be elected Egypt's next president, the Coptic Christian community would have a say in the government.
"Our Christian brothers, let's be clear, are national partners and have full rights like Muslims,"
Posted on 06/01/2012 3:10 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Friday, 1 June 2012
Students kicked out of Islamic campus dorms - 'Not allowed to carry Bibles'
South Africa - from the Sowetan and The Mercury
More than 70 students were kicked out of dormitories in a South Coast college for refusing to follow Islamic customs and rules. Management at the Coastal As-Salaam campus, in Braemar near Umzinto, allegedly forced students in the dormitories to study the Qur'an and wear Muslim clothes.
They were reportedly not allowed to carry Bibles inside the premises.
The students at the further education training college went on strike two weeks ago and lectures were suspended until Tuesday. Those living in dormitories were told to find accommodation outside the institution.
Those living in dormitories were funded by the Department of Higher Education’s national student financial aid scheme, which was believed to be paying about R16 000 a student a year towards meals and accommodation. The beneficiaries said they could not afford to pay for their accommodation and meals because they were from poor families.
“Now that we have been kicked out of the dormitories, our parents have been forced to pay for rent outside the college. I’m paying R300 a month and I’m sharing the room with 11 other students, and I still have to buy groceries. In the dormitories, I was sharing the room with four people, and the meals were provided by the college,” student Zanele Mgedezi said.
The Mercury has learned that there were no lessons yesterday as lecturers had gone on a go-slow protest to force the institution to allow students back into the dormitories.
Thabile Mofokeng, an office administration student, said she was concerned that her parents would not be able to pay for her expenses. For the past three years she had been supported by the national student financial aid scheme. “All we wanted was to be free to practice our own religions and not be forced to follow Islam, but now we have been punished by being deprived of safe accommodation,” said Mofokeng.
Higher Education spokeswoman Vuyelwa Qinga said her department was talk- ing with the college management and education officials in the province to resolve the matter.
The comments in the Sowetan newspaper are not all sympathetic.
It is a Muslim facility. When you enrolled you were obviously told about the rules and regualtions of the school
If I were these students I wld embrace this Islam thingy cause its the ONLY thing which seems to help many of its followers from being alcoholics, drug addicts, sex addcits/slaves etc even Malcolm X wrote abt how he was saved by Muslim faith from the life of drugs and crime, he turned out to be a super husband dad and leader
However;- Take Note: The Muslims are lying when they say they want to "help". They want to further Islam by their charity.
Posted on 06/01/2012 7:25 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Friday, 1 June 2012
The Russian Orthodox Church, Syrian Christians, And Putin's Policy
The New York Times:
Russian Church Is a Strong Voice Opposing Intervention in Syria
June 1, 2010
MOSCOW — As the West sought to pressure the Kremlin recently to help stop the killing in Syria, diplomats from Damascus were ushered into the heart of one of Russian Orthodoxy’s main shrines.
Opening an exhibition devoted to Syrian Christianity in a cathedral near the Kremlin, they commiserated with Russian priests and theologians about their shared anxiety: What would happen if Syria’s president, Bashar al-Assad, was forced from power?
It is clear by now that Russia’s government has dug in against outside intervention in Syria, its longtime partner and last firm foothold in the Middle East. Less well known is the position taken by the Russian Orthodox Church, which fears that Christian minorities, many of them Orthodox, will be swept away by a wave of Islamic fundamentalism unleashed by the Arab Spring.
In his warnings, Patriarch Kirill I invokes Bolshevik persecution still fresh in the Russian imagination, writing of “the carcasses of defiled churches still remaining in our country.”
This argument for supporting sitting leaders has reached a peak around Syria, whose minority population of Christians, about 10 percent, has been reluctant to join the Sunni Muslim opposition against Mr. Assad, fearing persecution at those same hands if he were to fall. If the church’s advocacy cannot be said to guide Russia’s policy, it is one of the factors that make compromise with the West so elusive, especially at a time of domestic political uncertainty for the Kremlin.
“Someone once said George Soros was the only American citizen who has his own foreign policy,” said Andrei Zolotov Jr., a leading religion writer and chief editor of Russia Profile. “Well, the Moscow patriarchate is the only Russian entity with its own foreign policy.”
Three and a half months ago, intent on achieving a commanding win in presidential elections, Vladimir V. Putin sought support from Russia’s religious leaders, pledging tens of millions of dollars to reconstruct places of worship and state financing for religious schools.
But Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, chairman of the patriarchate’s department of external church relations, did not ask for money. The issue of “Christianophobia” shot to the top of the church’s agenda a year ago, with a statement warning that “they are killing our brothers and sisters, driving them from their homes, separating them from their near and dear, stripping them of the right to confess their religious beliefs.” The metropolitan asked Mr. Putin to promise to protect Christian minorities in the Middle East.
“So it will be,” Mr. Putin said. “There is no doubt at all.”
The request was one that plunged deep into geopolitics, since Christian minorities are aligned with several of the governments that have faced popular uprisings. The statements on “Christianophobia” amount to a denunciation of Western intervention, especially in Egypt and Iraq, which lost two-thirds of its 1.5 million Christians after the fall of Saddam Hussein.
Western analysts acknowledge the dangers faced by Christians in Syria, but say the church would be wise to distance itself from the Assad government and prepare for a political transition.
“What we see now in Syria is systemic failure — it’s brutal, it’s now an insurgency — but in the end it’s just systemic failure,” said Andrew J. Tabler, a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and an expert on Syria. “If the Christian population and those that support it want a long-term future in the region, they’re going to have to accept that hitching their wagon to this brutal killing machine doesn’t have a long-term future.”
The Russian Orthodox Church regularly meets with the Russian Foreign Ministry to discuss its agenda outside Russia’s borders, and is seen by most experts as eager to render support to the Kremlin.
Still, there have been moments when the church’s foreign policy aims appeared distinct. In 2009, just as President Dmitri A. Medvedev publicly blasted his counterpart in Ukraine, Viktor A. Yushchenko, Patriarch Kirill published a note thanking Mr. Yushchenko for his hospitality on a visit, Mr. Zolotov said.
Tension was also apparent surrounding Patriarch Kirill’s visit to Damascus late last year, which was delayed repeatedly and planned under conditions of high secrecy, Mr. Zolotov said. By that point, the United Nations estimated that 3,500 people had been killed as government forces tried to put down the uprising, and the Arab League had suspended Syria’s membership in an attempt to increase diplomatic pressure.
Metropolitan Hilarion said that “some analysts tried to dissuade the patriarch from going, saying that there is disorder in Syria, that the Assad regime is in international isolation and under great pressure.”
“But the patriarch never stops in the face of difficulties, and expressing solidarity to Ignatius, the Patriarch of Antioch, whom he has known for more than 40 years, was important right now,” the metropolitan said, in an interview posted on a church Web site. He also said that “any interpretation of the patriarch’s visit to Syria as support for the Assad regime is totally unfounded.”
Nevertheless, photos of the patriarch’s street procession alongside his Syrian counterpart showed the men flanked by people holding aloft Mr. Assad’s portrait. The patriarch made a sympathetic appearance with Mr. Assad, praising Syria’s treatment of Christians and making no mention of the mounting death toll.
Maksim Shevchenko, a journalist and television host who specializes in religious affairs, said the patriarch’s visit represented a turning point.
“It strengthened the Russian position on Syria,” Mr. Shevchenko said. “He’s such an influential figure. Imagine the influence of someone like Jerry Falwell or Billy Graham on the position of Ronald Reagan.”
The Rev. Nikolai Balashov, deputy chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s department of external church relations, said the visit had succeeded in focusing Russia’s attention on Syria, overcoming what he called an “information blockade” of one-sided coverage of the conflict in the world’s top news media outlets.
He went on to say that recent turmoil in the Middle East had made it more important for the church to involve itself directly in foreign affairs.
“Only bloody chaos will result from shortsighted attempts to plant, in a biblical region, political models from a different civilizational matrix, without taking into account the worldview and values that have shaped peoples’ lives for centuries and millennia,” he said. “Forming foreign policy without accounting for the religious factor could lead to a catastrophe, to the deaths of thousands and millions.”
Usama Matar, an optometrist who has lived in Russia since 1983, said he did not harbor any illusions about Russia’s motives for defending Syrian Christians like himself, whom he called “small coins in a big game.” But he said there were few international players taking notice of Eastern Christians at all.
“The West is pursuing its own interests; they are indifferent to our fate,” he said. “I am not justifying the Assad regime — it is dictatorial, we know this, it is despotic, I understand. But these guys, they don’t even hide their intention to build an Islamic state and their methods of battle, where they just execute people on the streets. That’s the opposition, not just the authorities. And we are between two fires.”
Posted on 06/01/2012 7:55 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Friday, 1 June 2012
Why Russia Is Protecting The Assad Regime (Posted Nov. 17, 2011)
Thursday, 17 November 2011
There are three reasons. Don't expect Tom Friedman to come up with any of them, or to understand anything about anything. Ditto for Nicolas "Heart-On-My-Sleeve" Kristof, who is too busy reporting on how much he wants to help, and how much he wants you to know he wants to help, child prostitutes in Cambodia or the Congo, or the obvious wretched of the earth anywhere.
The three reasons:
1) Georgiy Arbatov is gone, but Russia, as the Soviet Union, has longstanding ties to Syria and its odious regime.
2) The Russian government doesn't like intervention because it might give various nationalities ideas about intervention in the country with the most time zones, and that would never do.
3) Russia, not the Soviet Union, was the historic protector of Christians threatened by Muslims. In the past, it was the South Slavs, oppressed by the Ottoman Turks. But the Russians, with their Syrian experience, understand perfectly that if the Alawite regime goes, the position of Christians in Syria, including that of the hundreds of thousands of Assyrians and Chaldeans who fled Muslim attacks in Iraq and are now in Syria, will suffer, and so will the position of Christians everywhere in the Middle East. The Russians apparently know this better than, say, the louche quai-dorsayish Alain Juppe and the excitable Nicolas Sarkozy of France, once the historic protector of Christians in what are now Syria and Lebanon.
Most newspapers will mention Reason 1 or Reason 2, or 1 and 2.
None will Mention Reason 3.
But it's there.
And who do you think, back in 1914, in Russia, wanted the Russians, as part of their war aims, to seize and annex Constantinople, a city which was then 50% Christian?
Prof. Pavel Miliukov and the Kadets (Constitutional Democrats). The liberal, secular, anti-monarchist, advanced people of Russia.
Posted on 06/01/2012 8:08 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Friday, 1 June 2012
A Musical Interlude: The Wine Of Love (Pyotr Leshchenko)
Posted on 06/01/2012 8:20 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Friday, 1 June 2012
A Cinematic Interlude: The Larch (Monty Python)
Posted on 06/01/2012 8:47 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Friday, 1 June 2012
A Good-In-A-Bed-But-Even-Better-Up-Against-A-Wall Query
In what growing zones -- that is, how far south given that it is described as naturally (as a cultivar) growing in Zone 2 -- can one hope or expect a Larix decidua 'Horstmann's Recurva' to flourish?
This is a real, and not a trick, question.
Youth wants to know.
Posted on 06/01/2012 8:48 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Friday, 1 June 2012
Americans Demand Iraq Extradite Daqduq For Murdering Americans
U.S. asks Iraq to extradite Hezbollah suspect
By Phil Stewart
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States has formally asked Iraq to extradite a suspected Hezbollah operative accused of killing American troops, a U.S. official told Reuters, amid heightened concerns in Washington that he may go free.
It was not immediately clear when the request was filed and Iraqi officials approached by Reuters denied knowledge of it, casting doubt on whether an extradition was seriously being considered at this point in Baghdad.
The fate of Ali Mussa Daqduq has been vexing American officials since last December, when the United States was forced to hand him over to Baghdad after failing to secure a custody deal ahead of the U.S. military's withdrawal from the country.
At the time, the White House said it had received assurances from Baghdad that Daqduq would be tried for allegedly orchestrating a 2007 kidnapping that resulted in the killing of five U.S. military personnel. But an Iraqi court earlier this month cleared him of the charges, citing a lack of evidence.
Daqduq's attorney confirmed that the Lebanese-born suspect remained in Iraqi custody but scoffed at the suggestion that Daqduq might face American courts.
"The Americans have no right to get him," Abdulalmehdi al-Mutiri, Daqduq's lawyer, told Reuters. "Whatever they claim that he did, it would have happened on Iraqi soil and that means he is under Iraqi jurisdiction."
Indeed, there are real questions about whether Iraq - which previously shunned U.S. efforts to retain custody of Daqduq - would respond positively to an extradition request.
The White House declined comment on whether any request had been made but President Barack Obama's government has said it will pursue all legal options to bring justice to Daqduq.
Republicans have sharply criticized Obama's handling of the case. In a May 10 letter to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Attorney General Eric Holder, Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee asked whether any formal extradition request had been made for Daqduq, who was born in Lebanon.
"The U.S. has filed a formal extradition request" with the Iraqi government, a U.S. official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's media advisor Ali al-Moussawi said he was unaware of any extradition request for Daqduq and declined to be drawn into what he saw as a hypothetical question about how the Iraqi government would respond to one.
Asked about the possibility Daqduq might soon go free, the U.S. official confirmed: "That's a real worry."
Daqduq was captured in March 2007 and initially claimed he was a deaf mute. U.S. forces accused him of being a surrogate for Iran's elite Quds force operatives and say he joined the Lebanese Hezbollah in 1983.
Daqduq's attorney said a representative of Hezbollah had come to Iraq but left "because he felt he could not do anything more."
"But legally Daqduq is clear, there are no charges against him," Mutiri said.
If Daqduq were extradited, he would face charges for war crimes. A second U.S. official confirmed that charges filed against Daqduq in the U.S. military commissions system earlier this year included murder, attempted murder, attempted taking of hostages, spying, and terrorism.
It was not immediately clear where the U.S. military commission trial for Daqduq would be held if he were ultimately extradited. But Panetta last year told Congress that Daqduq would face "better justice" if tried by the United States.
FBI Director Robert Mueller said last month his department would be "willing and able" to cooperate with a military commission trial if the U.S. wins custody of Daqduq.
"In the meantime, however, we have cooperated with the Iraqi authorities in providing intelligence and information for their proceedings in Iraq," Mueller told Congress.
Posted on 06/01/2012 4:54 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald