KHARTOUM, Sudan — Sudan and the breakaway nation of South Sudan have been locked in an exceedingly dangerous game of brinkmanship over billions of gallons of oil, seizing tankers, shutting down wells and imperiling the tenuous, American-backed peace that has held — just barely — between the two countries after decades of war.
Not for years have north-south relations been so poisonous, with a proxy war between the two nations that has already flared into direct Sudan-South Sudan clashes. The jagged, disputed frontier separating Sudan from its newly independent neighbor is now probably the most incendiary fault line in Africa, with big armies that fought each other for generations massing on either side.
After emergency talks to prevent a full-fledged conflict, the two sides agreed to a nonaggression pact late on Friday, yielding to intense pressure from the African Union, the United States and China — a major oil partner for both sides — to move beyond the language and tactics of mutual destruction. But few analysts see any easy solutions to the heated push and pull over oil.
Both sides desperately need the oil to run their governments, feed their people and stamp out spreading rebellions within their borders. And theoretically, both sides need each other. The conundrum of the two Sudans is that 75 percent of the oil lies in the south, but the pipeline to export it runs through the north. Because of this, oil was once thought to be the glue that would hold the two nations together and prevent a conflict. Now, it seems, oil is becoming the fuse.
When South Sudan broke off from Sudan last year, after years of guerrilla struggle, its independence was heralded as the triumphal capstone ending one of Africa’s deadliest civil wars. But the question of how exactly the two sides would share oil profits loomed ominously over the separation, unresolved. Now that both nations are struggling to make it on their own, the issue has proved to be as prickly — and perilous — as many feared.
It was South Sudanese oil that drove Sudan’s economic boom of the past decade and made the repression by Sudan’s Islamist government (which is still heavily penalized by the United States) tolerable to many Sudanese. When South Sudan declared independence, it took billions of dollars’ worth of oil with it, gutting Sudan’s economy and creating one of the deepest crises that President Omar Hassan al-Bashir has faced in his more than 20 years in power.
Mr. Bashir is now battling high inflation, a shrinking economy, student protests and several simultaneous rebellions — in Darfur, the Nuba Mountains and Blue Nile State — as well as genocide charges related to the massacres several years ago in Darfur, and stiff American sanctions.
At the same time, South Sudan, one of the poorest countries on earth, is facing a major food crisis and heavily armed ethnically based militias that have been sweeping parts of the countryside, killing hundreds and making a mockery of the South Sudanese security forces.
Stoking the tensions, Sudan and South Sudan are covertly backing rebels in each other’s backyards, leading to border clashes and relentless aerial bombings. The more than 1,000-mile border between them is now effectively closed, with millions of pounds of emergency food and just about all trade held up in a two-way stranglehold.
Before the emergency accord on Friday, the situation was so precarious that many saw only violent outcomes. “I, personally, expect full-fledged war,” said Mariam al-Sadiq al-Mahdi, a leading opposition politician in Khartoum, Sudan’s capital. “This is like the previews before a film.”
In the fight over oil, the south has refused to turn over royalties for using Sudan’s pipelines. Sudan upped the ante in late December by seizing oil tankers filled with South Sudanese crude. Then, the south took the drastic step of abruptly shutting down all of its oil wells, a measure that could quickly bring the economies of both north and south to their knees. South Sudanese officials have admitted they are using their oil to squeeze Khartoum to make concessions on all sorts of issues, including the disputed area of Abyei, insisting that oil production, about 350,000 barrels a day, will resume only after “all the deals are signed.”
The south has even threatened to sit on its oil for years while it builds an alternative pipeline through Kenya. But it is not clear how the new country would survive that long; oil provides about 98 percent of government revenue. Experts question whether the Kenya pipeline is even feasible. It would have to run uphill, requiring many expensive pumping stations, and most likely slice across Jonglei, a South Sudanese state that, with all its marauding militias, is essentially a war zone these days.
In Khartoum, many people are still struggling to swallow the fact that the south is gone. Nobody likes the new map of Sudan. It used to be Africa’s biggest country. Now it looks as if it has been crudely amputated, with the ragged edges of a raw wound.
“I still can’t get used to it,” said Nada Gerais, a sales manager in Khartoum. “It looks, looks ...,” she struggled for the right word. “Weird.”
Mrs. Gerais is a perfect example of the nose dive Sudan’s economy has taken. She works in a meticulously polished Nissan dealership that used to sell 50 cars a month. Now, sometimes, it is down to five. She is thinking of switching to pharmaceuticals or food.
“People can stop buying cars, but they can’t stop eating,” she explained.
During the past decade, Sudan’s oil wealth fueled new factories, roads, countless shish kebab joints and plans for a futuristic minicity, a billion-dollar airport and the entire reconfiguring of this capital to include a breezy promenade along the Nile.
But so many of these plans have been shelved. High-rise buildings stand half-finished, and the plummeting value of the Sudanese pound has pushed electronics, books and even tomatoes out of reach for many.
Officials in Khartoum say the south owes them nearly $1 billion in pipeline fees, money needed to keep their economy from collapsing, and they recently sold some of the oil from the seized tankers before releasing them. South Sudan’s president, Salva Kiir, said the amount Khartoum wanted, $32 per barrel, was “exorbitant” and “completely out of international norms.”
Sabir M. Hassan, a Sudanese government negotiator, said that the north was willing to be flexible, but that the southerners were “too emotional” and still saw themselves as rebels.
“If you give them two choices, they’ll choose the one that hurts the north, not the one that helps the south,” Mr. Hassan said.
South Sudanese leaders say the same about Khartoum, which has blockaded roads leading south and recently held up humanitarian shipments, all to punish the south at the cost of millions of dollars in lost business.
Many political analysts wonder whether Mr. Bashir will be able to survive all these crises. But it is hard to see who would replace him.
Sudan’s political opposition is deeply divided and run by white-bearded septuagenarians. The rebel movements do not have much support in Khartoum. Sudanese students started an Arab Spring-like movement last year, but they failed to gain any traction. The security forces were quick to arrest protesters and string them up from ceiling fans.
And Sudan has a resilience that transcends the turmoil. Every Friday, in a dusty ring on Khartoum’s outskirts, hundreds of Nuban men gather to watch traditional wrestling. Ethnic Nubans are leading the rebellion against Khartoum in the Nuba Mountains. But there is little evidence of that here.
“Things are fine,” said one elderly spectator.
Just as he was about to elaborate, a young wrestler scooped up his opponent and body-slammed him in the dirt.
“You see that!” the old man hollered. “My God, I love this.”
The great Irish writer C.S. Lewis once said that ‘of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive’. That is a perfect description of the bullying authoritarianism bred by the dogma of political correctness.
Nothing ever exemplified this pattern of behaviour more graphically than the downfall of former Bradford headmaster Ray Honeyford, who died yesterday, aged 77. A mild-mannered, popular teacher who devoted his career to the education of disadvantaged children, Honeyford was hounded from his job in the mid-1980s for daring to challenge some of the fashionable orthodoxies of race relations.
Like a character in George Orwell’s 1984, he was deemed to have committed a crime for expressing his views. Branded a racist, he was turned into a figure of national notoriety by a noisy alliance of Left-wingers, municipal ideologues and professional grievance-mongers.Yet Honeyford was the victim of a gross injustice. The portrayal of him as a racial bigot could not be further from the truth.
As the headmaster of Drummond Middle School in Bradford, he spent most of his time working with ethnic minority pupils, since 95 per cent of Drummond’s intake was of Pakistani or Bangladeshi origin. It was a measure of his success that the school was heavily oversubscribed, with the greatest demand for places coming from Muslim parents.
. . . he hailed from an unprivileged working-class background in Manchester, one reason that he had such a passion for education as a force for social mobility.
Honeyford’s experience of running a largely Asian school gave him a special insight into the iniquities of multiculturalism, the official doctrine that had held sway in state education since the 1970s. According to this policy, ethnic minority children were encouraged to cling on to their cultures, customs, even languages, while the concept of a shared British identity was treated with contempt. Honeyford thought this approach was deeply damaging.
He feared that it promoted division, hindered integration and undermined pupils’ opportunities to succeed in wider British society. He voiced his concerns by writing an article in the obscure conservative political magazine The Salisbury Review, which was then edited by the distinguished philosopher Roger Scruton.
In it, Honeyford stated that white children constituted the ‘ethnic minority’ in many urban schools: ‘It is very difficult to write honestly and openly of my experiences and the reflections they evoke,’ he wrote, ‘since the race lobby is extremely powerful in the State education service. The term racism functions not as a word with which to create insight, but as a slogan designed to suppress constructive thought . . . decent people are not only afraid of voicing certain thoughts, they are even uncertain of their right to think those thoughts.’
Among the points that Honeyford made was a criticism of ‘the large number of Asians whose aim is to preserve intact the values and attitudes of the Indian sub-continent’, while he also condemned certain black intellectuals ‘of aggressive disposition who know little of the traditions of understatement, civilised discourse and respect for reason.’
Despite the journal’s tiny circulation, the article sparked a huge outcry in Bradford. A mood of hysteria seemed to grip the city. The mayor Mohammed Ajeeb stoked the flames of anger by calling on Honeyford to be sacked for demonstrating ‘prejudice against certain sections of our community’.
Honeyford had to be given police protection after a number of death threats, picket lines formed outside the school and subjected him to constant abuse, while pupils were given badges proclaiming ‘Hate Your Headmaster’ along with a ‘Pupils’ Charter’ advocating open disobedience.
When one Sikh shopkeeper privately expressed his support, Honeyford urged him to speak out. The Sikh said he could not, because he feared that his shop would be burnt down.
Above - Mr Honeyford and Muslim protestors at Bradford Town Hall in 1985. Little did we know how familiar a sight bearded men in little hats with angry, scrawled placards would become.
Soon Honeyford was suspended by the local education authority, and though he was subsequently reinstated by the Court of Appeal, a group of aggrieved, politicised parents ensured that it was impossible for him to do his job. In December 1985, he accepted a financial settlement and retired from Drummond Middle. A broken man, he never returned to teaching.
Despite all the abuse he endured at the time, many of his warnings about multiculturalism proved correct. He predicted that, without a unifying sense of national identity, we would become an ever-more divided country, which is exactly what has occurred. Large parts of urban Britain are increasingly split along racial lines, with many Britons now feeling like aliens in their own land. In London, only six per cent of primary schools have a significant white majority.
The passing of time has shown that Honeyford was equally justified in his warning about Muslim separatism, which has dramatically accelerated in the 28 years since his Salisbury Review article. That process is reflected in the growth of Muslim faith schools and the informal official acceptance of sharia courts. The Department for Work and Pensions even turns a blind eye towards polygamy in its lax distribution of benefits. We have also seen the rise of Islamic extremism and domestic terrorism, as well as disturbing cases of practices such as honour killings and ethnic gang warfare.
When Honeyford wrote his article, he was branded a heretic.
His words had to be suppressed, his influence crushed. But that did not stop him being right.
Final note - Drummond Middle School under the headship of Mrs Anwar-Bleem closed in 2000. It was replaced, on the same site, by the Iqra Community Primary School, head teacher, yes, Mrs Anwar-Bleem.
Rest in Peace Mr Honeyford, all is not yet lost.
Extremist preachers are turning their backs on mosques and using private homes to radicalise young Muslims into becoming terrorists, according to one of Britain’s top security advisers. Third world charities set up to raise money to help people in Pakistan and Bangladesh are also being used as front organisations to fund terrorism, according to the Home Office’s top anti-terrorism adviser.
Mr Farr said extremist Muslim preachers could no longer radicalise young people at mosques and universities because of the increasingly effective activities of the Security Services on mainland Britain. He said that increasingly "it takes place in private premises, simply because the people who are doing the radicalising are now much more aware of the activities that we are conducting There has been a trend towards much greater use of private venues, simply because for obvious reasons they feel that they are much more secure.” He said that radicalisation often “rapidly migrates into a private house where people are brought together, usually under the excuse of there being a faith-based meeting, and the discussion rapidly develops into something much more about terrorism and the legitimacy of violence.”
Charities were also being used as fronts to raise money to fund terrorism. Mr Farr said: “We can see some activity going on in charitable organisations, often with the pretext of raising funds to be sent overseas for good works, for example to Pakistan or indeed Bangladesh.” Name them! Some Islamic charities are creeping into mainstream fundraising in schools and the workplace. We ought to know.
Mr Farr, who hardly ever speaks in public on the record, made the remarks last Autumn to the Home Affairs Select Committee. The comments were published quietly on the committee’s website in part-redacted form this week.
Mr Farr also described the English Defence League as a “significant organisation” adding “that it is deeply troubling in many respects and can cause great harm”. But he said that the attacks similar to those in Norway, when Anders Breivik Behring, with suspected far right sympathies, shot and killed 77 people last year, were unlikely. . . we don’t see such a tendency for people who hold those views to drift into the world of terrorism. . . Extreme right terrorism in this country is and remains rare, and there are no extreme right wing terrorist organisations operating here in the way that we may have seen in some other countries overseas.”
Mr Farr blamed “the view that we are conducting a war on Islam, not a war on terrorism” as “a very significant reason why people have gravitated and drifted into terrorist activities”. So its our fault for resisting is it? The bully always blames the victim.
Scenes From That "Meeting" (Demonstration) In Moscow
Look at the various and often imaginative placards here.
My favorite is the one that shows Putin, Medvedev, et al. as musicians holding their instruments, and the accompanying text is from a fable by Krylov, to the effect that no matter how they arrange their seating, they still won't be musicians.
Try to view the scenes from this "meeting" not as would a politically jaded Westerner, for whom this kind of demonstration may be nothing special and who wonders what's so great about one more demonstration (even if some of the placards exhibit individual imagination in a way the pre-fabricated slogans of Western demonstrators do not). Imagine yourself as a Russian, and look with the imagined and amazed eyes of someone who remembers the sullen silence of the Soviet period of Russia's existence, and is consequently, and understandably, thrilled by this display.
World Press Photo Prize Awarded To Aranda's "Muslim PietÃ "
Of course this photo will tug at many heart-strings.
But the award to this photo (one where the photographer may have helped arrange the positions of the parties) carries an insidious message. That message is: forget how that woman is dressed. Think only of the human drama -- her passion and compassion. Pay no heed to what that black burqa signifies about the condition of its bearer, and of all women, under Islam. Don't think about Islam and whether or not the wearer of that burqa, with not even her eyes visible, and only a slit for her mouth, shares the notion of that "common humanity" that the photographer, through that irresistible photograph, and the prize committee that honored it, both so obviously had in mind. But what about that "common humanity"? How many people in that mosque, comforting or being comforted, do you think are devout believers in what the Qur'an and Hadith instruct them as to the view they should have of all non-Muslims? What "common humanity" is that? Do we want to be so obviously unthinking, and manipulable, that we will allow this photograph, and these representatives, to carry the message that they wouldn't be caught dead (or wounded) conveying. To wit: that we are all mothers under the skin of our black burqas. We all see the same things, even if some of us must look through the narrowest of eye-slits or no eye-slits at all. We all have our Pietas, we are all the same, People Are The Same The Whole World Over. And don't you forget it.
It's the Family-of-Man business -- that We Are All One, that nothing else matters and especially pay no attention to how certain emotions may be snapped, but the reasons that evoke that (pity, laughter, tenderness, etc.) may vary -- some people can laugh at Charlie Chaplin as a singing waiter who has just shot his cuffs on which he had written his lyrics, and so has to improvise, while still other people can find hilarious their fellow German soldier who is tormenting, by tearing out the hairs from the beard of, a rabbi (and that was before things really got going) . My reference in the previoius sentence is to the celebrated Family-of-Man exhibit from the late 1950s, by the photographer Stieglitz, of photographs showing, in Samarkand and Salamanca, in Londonderry and Leopoldville, and everywhere in-between, the life-cycle (birth, childhood, adolescence, first love, marriage, parenthood, adulthood, aging, death), and its rich variety of rituals (baptism, circumcision, confirmation,graduations, weddings, anniversaries, funerals), and, above all, the ways -- facial and otherwise -- that humans express what they feel, which implies a similarity of emotions, and implies, misleadingly, that emotions are always caused by morally similar stimuli. This Family-of-Man exhibit left out any appeal to thought, to asking viewers to ponder not what made us all the same, but what made different peoples, civilizations, views of the world and of others unlike oneself, so very different. In the award, this year, of the World Photo Prize, there is more than a whiff of stieglitzian sentimentality, and that should not go unnoticed or unremarked.
Not moved by my refusal to be moved? Disgusted, rather, with someone who would show himself to be so churlish, so uncomprehending, so stonily or even, some might think, cruelly unwilling to concede a full measure of humanity to everyone -- so cruel, in fact, as to find something to object to in this glittering-prize-giving Exercise In Recognizing Our Common Humanity?
Go ahead. If you are the kind of person who thinks that way, then I positively wants to make your flesh creep.
This is Theodore Dalrymple in 2002 writing about Ray Honeyford in the City Journal. Much of what he said then was reiterated by Leo Mckinistry this morning. His description of the city of my late father-in-law's birth is worth reading of itself. In the 10 years since the situation has not improved. This was written after the terorist attacks of 11th September 2001 but before those in London of July 2005. After the riots of 2001; before the riots of 2011.
Not since I lived and worked briefly in South Africa under the apartheid regime have I seen a city as racially segregated as Bradford in the north of England. In South Africa, of course, the racial segregation was a matter of law: and the single road that separated the African townships from the white residential and business districts could be sealed off easily by an armored car or two. Then, if the blacks rioted, they would (in the words of my Afrikaner informant) “only foul their own nest.”
It goes without saying that there is no law to separate the races in Bradford. But stone walls do not a ghetto make: which is why it is possible in one part of Bradford to conclude that it is a typical northern British city, dominated almost completely by a white working class, and in another (reached by driving along a single major road that bisects the city) that it is an outpost of Islam, whose people have changed their hemisphere of residence, but not their culture or way of life.
Once a thriving woolen-manufacturing town, Bradford reached an acme of prosperity in the second half of the nineteenth century, before its success evaporated, leaving behind a legacy of municipal pride and magnificence, of splendid public buildings in the Gothic and renaissance-revival styles. (It was on the head of a Bradford millionaire that Eliot sarcastically stuck a silk hat in “The Waste Land.”) Even many of the terraced working-class homes are elegantly and expensively faced in stone, so that large areas of the city resemble nothing so much as Bath with textile mills added.
One beautiful part of the city, Hanover Square, is a small masterpiece of Victorian town architecture: it was long the residence of Margaret McMillan, who some 90 years ago founded the British nursery-school movement and agitated for improvements in working-class education. Nowadays, there is not a white face to be seen in the square, nor that of any woman. It is strictly men only on the street, dressed as for the North-West Frontier (apart, incongruously, from their sneakers); a group of them perpetually mills around outside the house that functions as a madrassa, or Muslim school. Horace’s famous line of two millennia ago comes to mind: they change their skies, not their souls, who run across the sea.
The informal ghetto that separates the races almost as effectively as South Africa’s formal ones nevertheless makes interracial rioting much easier. And in July last year, only a few weeks before September 11, serious riots (the worst in Britain for 20 years) did in fact break out in Bradford and other similar northern English cities, such as Blackburn and Oldham. White gangs clashed with Pakistani ones, indulging for several days in the pleasures of looting and arson, under the comforting illusion that they were fighting for a cause. The young whites believed themselves to have been dispossessed of something by the young Muslims, without the young Muslims believing that they had inherited anything from the young whites. Both groups were united in—though not, of course, by—their resentment.
One man was not at all surprised at this outbreak of inchoate racial fury. He was Ray Honeyford, the headmaster of a middle school in an immigrant area of Bradford in the early 1980s. He knew that the official multiculturalist educational policies that he was expected to implement would sooner or later lead to social disaster such as these riots: and when he repeatedly exposed the folly of these policies in print, the advocates of “diversity”—who maintain that all cultures are equal but that opinions other than their own are forbidden—mounted a vicious and vituperative campaign against him. For at least two years, the Honeyford Affair, as it was known, was a national preoccupation, calling forth endless newspaper and broadcast commentary, the man himself often branded a near-murderous racist and ultimately drummed out of his job. Hell, it seems, hath no fury like a multiculturalist contradicted.
Of course, the events of September 11 have concentrated at least some British minds a little harder on questions of cultural diversity and group loyalties. A disturbingly large number of British Muslims, from a variety of backgrounds, supported al-Qaida. Three of the captives now held at Guantanamo were from Britain, all of them products of the kind of homes that now exist in Bradford and elsewhere by the thousands. Two chemistry Ph.D.s of Bangladeshi origin are on trial in Birmingham, accused (not for the first time) of conspiracy to manufacture explosives for terrorist ends, and they are unlikely to have been acting merely as individuals. Several British Islamic charities were found to have been channeling money to terrorists. Richard Reid, who tried to blow up a transatlantic airliner with Semtex in his sneakers, had converted to Islam in a British jail. The newly alert intelligence service in the prison in which I work now believes that fully half of the Muslim prisoners there sympathize with the World Trade Center attacks: and since Muslim prisoners are by far the fastest-growing group of prisoners in Britain, already far overrepresented in the prison population, this is enough to disturb even the most complacent. The British elites, it appears, would have done far better to have heeded rather than vilified Honeyford almost two decades ago.
Honeyford’s fundamental ideas were as logical, sensible, and coherent as they were unfashionable. He argued that the 20 percent of Bradford’s population who were Islamic immigrants were in Britain to stay, with no intention of returning home; and that both for their own sake and for Britain’s, they needed to be integrated fully into British society. The children of immigrants needed to feel that they were truly British, if they were to participate fully in the nation’s life; and they could acquire a British identity only if their education stressed the primacy of the English language, along with British culture, history, and traditions.
Honeyford did not believe that the cultural identity necessary to prevent the balkanization of our cities into warring ethnic and religious factions implied a deadening cultural or religious uniformity. On the contrary, he used the example of the Jews (who emigrated to Britain, including to Bradford and nearby Manchester, in substantial numbers at the end of the nineteenth century) as an example of what he meant. Within a generation of arrival, Jews succeeded, despite the initial prejudice against them, in making a hugely disproportionate contribution to the upper reaches of national life as academics, cabinet ministers, entrepreneurs, doctors and lawyers, writers and artists. The upkeep of their own traditions was entirely their own affair, and they relied not at all on official patronage or the doctrines of multiculturalism. This was Honeyford’s ideal, and he saw no reason why the formula should not work again, given a chance.
When the storm broke over his head in 1984, Honeyford had been headmaster of Drummond Middle School for four years. His school was another magnificent piece of high-Victorian public architecture, grand without being overbearing, and conveying implicit aesthetic and moral lessons to its pupils, however humble the homes from which they came. The collapse of the cultural confidence that had produced such a school building was soon complete, however: after his departure as headmaster, Drummond Middle School quickly received a new Urdu name and then was burned down beyond repair by an arsonist, as also happened to a similar, neighboring school, now completely boarded up. All children in the area now go to school in the preternaturally hideous buildings of modern British architecture, whose combination of Le Corbusian functionalism, financial stringency, and bad taste are a complete visual education in brutality.
Honeyford brought his troubles down upon him when he published an article exposing the follies of multicultural education in the conservative Salisbury Review, after the worthy but dull Times Educational Supplement, for which he had previously written, turned it down. That the article appeared in The Salisbury Review gave almost as much offense as its content: for in the new, officially diverse Britain, the Review’s brand of cultural conservatism is beyond the pale. The Review’s name hardly ever appears without the qualification that it is rabidly right-wing, thereby implying that no intellectual engagement with the ideas expressed in it is ever necessary—only the kind of opposition appropriate to dealing with brown- and blackshirts. All opinion is free, of course, but some opinions are freer than others.
In his article, Honeyford enumerated some of multiculturalism’s problems and contradictions. The debasement of language that multiculturalist and anti-racist bureaucrats have brought about, he argued, has made it extremely difficult to talk honestly or clearly about racial and cultural matters. By lumping together all ethnic minorities as “black” in order to create a false dichotomy between white oppressors on the one hand and all minorities on the other, for example, these bureaucrats could obscure such complex and unpleasant realities as the continued hostility between Sikhs and Muslims, or the Muslim ill-treatment of women. Only by means of such deliberate blindness can the tenets of multiculturalism, feminism, and universal human rights be reconciled. Honeyford quoted Orwell to the effect that politicized language “is designed to make lies sound truthful” and “to give an impression of solidity to pure wind.”
He held up a very concrete example of how the multiculturalist mindset was damaging education. Immigrant parents, he observed, frequently sent their children back to Pakistan and Bangladesh for months or even years at a time, often precisely to keep them from acquiring any British cultural characteristics. Though this practice had obvious social and educational disadvantages for people destined to spend their adult lives in Britain—and though it was entirely illegal, as well—the authorities turned a blind eye to it.
British law obliges a parent, once his child is registered at a school, to ensure that he attends regularly; any white parent who kept his child away for so long would undoubtedly be prosecuted and punished. In the case of the children of immigrants, however, school authorities never pressed charges but instead directed teachers to keep absentees’ places open indefinitely and to regard their absence as a culturally, and therefore educationally, enriching experience. As Honeyford summed up: “I am left with the ethically indefensible task of complying with a school attendance policy which is determined not, as the law requires, on the basis of individual parental responsibility, but by the parent’s country of origin—a blatant and officially sanctioned policy of racial discrimination.” Seventeen years after he described the problem, it remains unsolved.
Honeyford’s article also called into question the unwarranted but widespread assumption that differences in educational achievement between groups reflect unfair discrimination and nothing else. In the Times Educational Supplement, Honeyford had already mentioned the great and growing educational success of some subgroups of Indian immigrants, which he linked to their system of values—with the obvious corollary that the educational failure of other groups was not attributable to British racial prejudice. As a result, a black pressure group in London branded him a “blatant racist” and demanded his dismissal if he did not accept “massive in-service training courses to purge [him] of [his] racist ideology and outlook.”
Finally, and even less forgivably, Honeyford made mention of the plight of another ethnic minority in his school: the white children, who, when the article appeared, made up a mere 5 percent of the pupils. Their education suffered in a school dominated by pupils from non-English-speaking homes, he said, and he suggested that officials disregarded their plight because their parents, ill-educated and inarticulate, had formed no pressure group, and no political capital could be made of them. (Once, in the 1960s, the city council had tried to disperse the children of non-English-speaking immigrants to schools throughout the city, precisely to prevent the development of ghetto schools such as Drummond, but race-relations experts and bureaucrats declared this practice to be discriminatory and therefore stopped it—to Honeyford’s regret.)
No one would have noticed Honeyford’s article—The Salisbury Review’s circulation being extremely small—had the local newspaper not drawn attention to it; but then an unremitting campaign against him gathered steam, under the leadership of local politicians and pressure groups, some of which sprang up expressly to get him fired. He received several death threats, which the police took seriously enough to connect his home by alarm directly to the local police station. (I repeat: he had proposed only that Muslim children should be fully integrated into British society—the very opposite of suggesting that they should be discriminated against or in any way maltreated.) For months, he had to enter his own school under police protection from the small but militant group of pickets that formed outside and grew in size and volume whenever a television camera appeared. A few small children, too young to understand what was at issue, learned from their parents to chant “Ray-cist! Ray-cist!” at him and to hold up denunciatory placards, some with a skull and crossbones above his name. The Bradford Education Authority considered the possibility of a court order against the demonstrators, since children who continued to attend the school were likewise insulted as stooges and sell-outs, but it decided that such an order would only inflame passions further. Thus political extremists learned a valuable lesson: intimidation pays.
No insult was deemed too scurrilous to hurl at Honeyford. A press release issued by an extremist group calling itself the Bradford Drummond Parents’ Support Group is a case in point: “One wonders,” it read, “whether Mr. Honeyford will be the next person to be advocating bird shots [sic] fired at the black children at the school.” Several months into the affair, Honeyford’s employer, the Bradford Education Authority, ordered him to attend a kind of public trial in a local college on the charge of disloyalty. Fortunately, the eminent lawyer representing him argued so vigorously that those intending to convict him had to acquit him.
The affair took its toll on him: after all, he was not a career politician but merely a schoolmaster who had spoken out against what he thought was wrong. His health, and his wife’s, began to suffer; and when his employer arranged to meet him secretly and offered him $30,000 in cash to agree to publish no further articles for three years, he was tempted to accept. His wife dissuaded him, however, telling him that he would never be able to live with himself if he concluded so sordid a deal.
Intimidation spread and became a tool against anyone who supported Honeyford. A Sikh shopkeeper told him that he supported his stand, to which Honeyford replied, “Why don’t you say so to the television people?” The answer was that the man’s business would be stoned or burned down if he were to do so. For very similar reasons, the majority of school headmasters in Bradford who agreed with Honeyford in private remained silent in public.
The campaign against Honeyford disregarded entirely the fact that no complaint had ever been received about his competence as a teacher, or the fact that there were always far more applications to his school (mainly by Muslim parents) than there were places. Several attempts by political zealots on the city council to have him dismissed failed for lack of legal cause. Eventually, however, he accepted early retirement: constant abuse, however unjustified, is wearing—and he wanted to spare his pupils, who, like him, had to enter the school through a daily gauntlet of 40 vituperative pickets. Although teaching was his vocation, Honeyford never returned to it. Instead, he wrote several books about race relations and education, and became a freelance journalist.
It is difficult, meeting him now, to believe that he was ever a natural controversialist. He lives in modest retirement. He is mild-mannered and unexcitable. He was once a naive believer in the freedom of expression and the virtues of plain speaking—formerly a tradition in the north of England. He thought that different opinions might be tolerated, not having grasped that the purpose of those who argue for cultural diversity is to impose ideological uniformity. In his naiveté, he also enunciated some painful truths that were tangential to his central argument: for example, that Pakistan (the country of origin of most of the immigrants in his area) had been unable throughout its history to develop either democratic institutions or a culture of tolerance. However accurate, such an inflammatory statement enabled his detractors to pretend that he was motivated by prejudice: a useful diversionary tactic from Honeyford’s underlying argument, that the induction of immigrant children into British culture and traditions was necessary both for their own personal good and for the nation’s future social harmony.
But it is impossible to meet Honeyford for long without realizing that he is a passionate believer in the redemptive power of education and in the duty of schools to give the children of immigrants the same educational opportunities as everyone else. His only regret about the affair was that it drastically shortened his teaching career. It is a tribute to the power of Orwellian language that a man who believes these things should successfully have been labeled a racist.
His own personal history would suggest some direct insight into the problems of the disadvantaged. His father was an unskilled laborer injured in the First World War and able to work only intermittently thereafter. His mother was the daughter of penniless Irish immigrants. His parents had 11 children, six of whom died in childhood. They lived in a small house in Manchester with no indoor lavatory (and not a single book). He was brought up in a place and in times when the next meal was not guaranteed to appear. Yet despite the poverty, theft was unheard of: everyone felt able to leave his front door unlocked.
Through nervousness rather than lack of ability, Honeyford failed the examination, given at the age of 11, for entrance to the local selective, state-run grammar school, a guaranteed (and by far the easiest) route out of the slums. He recalls having been disappointed by his failure, but it
was not the blow to his self-esteem that today’s educationists claim that all such failure must be—so that the principal goal of education should be the preservation of the child’s self-esteem from the slings and arrows of outrageous competition.
As was the British working-class custom of the time, he left school at the earliest opportunity to find work, an office job that bored him. Restless, he decided to go to night school to get a high school education, and he then gained acceptance for teacher training. After receiving his teaching diploma, he obtained a B.A. by correspondence course and finally a master’s degree (in linguistics). Such a man is unlikely to wish to deny opportunity to others: and his experience led him to conclude that only educational traditionalism can offer the severely disadvantaged such opportunity.
Though he failed to gain admission to a selective grammar school himself, he bitterly regrets the passing of these quintessentially meritocratic institutions, which allowed so many poor but talented children a chance to join the mainstream and even to excel in Britain’s open society. (This fact alone suggests his large-mindedness: how many people can resist erecting a general principle out of their personal disappointments?) Such schools, which ideologues condemned as elitist, might have helped prevent the strife that convulses Bradford today by creating a common culture and an interracial elite. They would have drawn (by and large, though not of course with 100 percent accuracy) the most intelligent children from diverse areas, allowing lasting friendships to form across the races among people likely to grow up to be the most prominent citizens of their respective groups.
Instead, today the schools draw children of every level of ability, but from a single geographical area only. If that area is white only, then the school will be white only; if Muslim, the school will be Muslim. Different ethnic and cultural groups—their differences preserved in educational aspic—live in geographical proximity but without any real contact. It does not require a Nostradamus to predict the consequences.
Of course, the forces that deny a British education to the Muslims of Bradford have also denied it to the whites, who—on the grounds of the new need for a multiculturalist outlook—receive schooling that leaves them virtually as ignorant of British history and traditions as their Muslim counterparts, without giving them any useful knowledge of any other history or traditions. They are thus left to float free in the sea of popular culture, without cultural or moral bearings and prey to the inchoate but deep resentments that this popular culture so successfully inculcates.
The children of Bradford’s Muslim immigrants also bear the stamp of popular culture and the sense of loss and of entitlement denied that it fosters: indeed, this is the only aspect of the West with which, inescapably, they have any contact. In one Muslim community center that I visited in Bradford, the Muslim Youth League advertised a course of lectures: Islam for the 21st Century Dude.
The scene is set for a battle of competing resentments. If we had only listened to Ray Honeyford, we should not have sown what we are now reaping and what we (and others) shall reap for many years to come.
AFP - Three Muslim men were jailed in Britain on Friday for distributing leaflets calling for homosexuals to be executed.
Ihjaz Ali, Kabir Ahmed and Razwan Javed were the first to be convicted of stirring up hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation, under laws that entered into force in 2010.They gave out a pamphlet entitled "The Death Penalty?", which quoted Islamic texts that said capital punishment was the only way to rid society of homosexuality.
At Derby Crown Court in central England, taxi driver Ali, 42, was jailed for two years. Ahmed and Javed, both aged 28, were imprisoned for 15 months each.
Judge John Burgess told the men: "You have been convicted of intending to stir up hatred. It follows that your intention was to do great harm in a peaceful community. . . I am obviously keen to dissuade anyone from distributing this sort of material in the future,"
Two other men were found not guilty on the same charges.
The pamphlet read: "The death sentence is the only way this immoral crime can be erased from corrupting society and act as a deterrent for any other ill person who is remotely inclined in this bent way. The only dispute amongst the classical authorities was the method employed in carrying out the penal code." It went on to offer burning, being thrown from a high point such as a mountain or building, or being stoned to death as suitable methods.
If you are not familiar with them The Barron Knights made a good living in the 60s and 70s spoofing chart hits.
Long ago, outside a chip shop in Walthamstow, lived a young rocker called Greasy Joe, who put on his helmet and said 'let's go'.
He was keen, orf up the High Street like Barry Sheen, doing his best to look very mean, til he met Ann on her new machine.
Running away together, running away in leather, Ann and Joe. . .
A CARDIFF councillor says he is concerned for the safety of his young family after he was sent a “threatening” letter accusing him of being anti-Muslim. The letter arrived at the home of Riverside’s Plaid Cymru councillor Mohammed Islam, who is Muslim, on Thursday morning.
It makes reference to a police raid on a meeting at Canton Community Hall last month, following concerns from the city’s Muslim community that the group might be affiliated to a banned extremist organisation.
The two-page letter says he “instigated, plotted and planned against the Muslim community” and says he is an “enemy” of the faith. “The scholars of Islam are unanimously agreed that whoever supports the kaafirs against the Muslims and helps them in any way is a kaafir like them,” it continues.
Coun Islam, who has a six-year-old daughter and four-year-old son, has reported the incident to the police. It’s calling for me to stop talking about the Muslim community and if I continue working with non-Mulsims then I will be considered anti-Muslim. It is very offensive to say I am an enemy of Islam.” he said. “They have obviously done their homework because they know where I live. . . They are trying to scare me, but I will stick to my principles and I will speak the truth on behalf of the community.”
Presbyterian Church Struggle Continues, Jews Suffer the Consequences
Images like this were posted on a Facebook page run by the IPMN-PCUSA.
The Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA) has called on the Presbyterian Church (USA) to rein in the anti-Zionist and in some instances, anti-Jewish rhetoric proffered by its education and peacemaking organization, the Israel-Palestine Mission Network of the PC(USA). In a press release issued on Feb. 6, 2012, the JCPA, an umbrella organization of 125 local Jewish federations and 14 national Jewish organizations, called on the denomination to “take concrete actions to address the anti-Israel, anti-Zionist, and at times anti-Semitic content that has been all too common in the church's Israel Palestine Mission Network (IPMN-PCUSA).” The American Jewish Committee issued a similar statement that day as well.
The JCPA, which lauded the Presbyterian Church at the end of its General Assembly in 2010 for trying to reduce the level of anti-Israel demonization in its peacemaking efforts in reference to the Arab-Israeli conflict, was quite explicit in its criticism of the IPMN-PCUSA, stating the organization's “policies, programs, social media and other communications are a wellspring of anti-Jewish and anti-Israel invective…” At the heart of the controversy was the IPMN-PCUSA's Facebook page, which had become a focal point for anti-Zionist and anti-Semitic commentary on the internet.
What makes the controversy so lamentable is that Presbyterian leaders in Louisville had been given numerous behind-the-scenes warnings about the IPMN-PCUSA's tendency to demonize Israel and American Jews, but these warnings went unheeded, as did numerous public complaints from people inside and outside the denomination.
Presbyterian leaders and staffers knew that the IPMN-PCUSA trafficked in ugly anti-Zionist and anti-Semitic messages but failed to rein in the organization and distance the church from the group's hateful messaging. Initially, Presbyterian officials asserted that the organization was somehow outside of their jurisdiction, but even after they tacitly admitted they had authority over the organization, they said nothing about the hateful anti-Jewish messaging emanating from the IPMN-PCUSA.
Eventually, the IPMN-PCUSA took down its Facebook page, but only after the JCPA did extensive research on group's anti-Israel and anti-Semitic messaging, which has been a problem for years. The research was shared with Presbyterian leaders, who apparently warned the IPMN-PCUSA of the impending controversy.
Whatever happened, it is clear that the JCPA's report played a major role in the disappearance of the IPMN-PCUSA's Facebook page.
Initially the IPMN-PCUSA said the shutdown of its Facebook page was only a temporary move that would last until the organization figured out how to monitor the postings on the page. Later, the IPMN-PCUSA announced the shut down would be longer term and that its online posting would be restricted to the organization's Twitter account, which remains a veritable pipeline of anti-Israel propaganda.
Then, on Feb. 8, 2012, the IPMN-PCUSA issued a press release that denied the charge of anti-Semitism and then went on to portray American Jewish groups such as the JCPA and the American Jewish Committee as a blight on the American body politic.
Not very reassuring.
Broken Promises, Missed Opportunities
Vituperative commentary like this was supposed to be a thing of the past after the denomination's 2010 General Assembly in Minneapolis. After years of controversy over how to respond to the Arab-Israeli conflict, pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian activists told their church that they had come to a new understanding over how best to advocate for peace between Israelis and the Palestinians. This understanding – dubbed the “Miracle in Minneapolis” – was embodied in a statement issued by prominent Presbyterians hoping to bring an end to the ongoing church struggle that had plagued their denomination for years and prevent further damage to their church's reputation that this church struggle had caused. In the statement, church leaders who had previously been antagonists in the debate over the Arab-Israeli conflict proclaimed they had sought and found “a new way of being a church” and were going to provide a “model” for ending the conflict in the Middle East. This statement was signed by, among others, Carol Hylkema,moderator of the IPMN-PCUSA. The new paradigm that the church would embrace was described as follows:
We have learned that we do not have to choose between our commitments. We have learned that we can risk trusting people with whom we were afraid to engage. We have learned that addressing the conflict in the Middle East cannot be a question of winners and losers. We must model how the conflict itself will be resolved: if someone loses, everyone loses. Beyond any expectation, we find ourselves discovering a new model of ministry together, a model committed to seeking, hearing, and responding to the fullness of narratives and commitments with the Palestinian and Israeli peoples, Jews, Christians and Muslims.
The “Miracle in Minneapolis” was more than a renewal of fellowship among Presbyterians, but an assurance to Jews in the United States that the anti-Zionist and anti-Jewish polemics that emanated from the denomination's and its institutions for the past decade would come to an end. In response, a number of Jewish organizations welcomed the compromise in a statement issued by the JCPA for its actions, and CAMERA issued a statement as well. The response was cautious, but hopeful.
The hope communicated in these statements was misplaced. In the months since the 2010 General Assembly, the anti-Israel activists in the PCUSA have exhibited the same anti-Israel (and anti-Jewish) animus that dominated their activism prior to the 2010 General Assembly.
In particular, the Israel Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (USA), an institution created by a 2004 vote of the General Assembly, used its Facebook page to demonize Israel and engage in a persistent campaign of Jew-baiting, just as it had used its blog prior to the 2010 General Assembly. The press release issued by the JCPA provides some details:
The IPMN-PCUSA Facebook page includes a cartoon of President Obama wearing weighty Jewish star earrings to suggest Jewish control of the American leaders, a common theme on the site. The IPMN-PCUSA has posted articles that accuse Jews of controlling Hollywood, the media, and American politics - and blaming Israel for the American housing and economic crisis. IPMN-PCUSA's communications chair also posted her opposition to a two-state solution and the existence of a Jewish state, something which she terms "anachronistic.” The same IPMN leader, Noushin Framke, clicked "like" on the Obama cartoon with the Jewish stars and another post that Hamas should keep Israeli Gilad Shalit hostage until Palestinians are granted a right of return.
Yes, that's what she did.
IPMN leader Noushin Framke encouraged Hamas – a terrorist organization responsible for suicide bombings that have killed hundreds of Israeli civilians – to hold onto Corporal Gilad Shalit as a bargaining chip in its fight with the Jewish state, which neither she nor Hamas thinks should exist. This is not an exaggeration. In one Facebook comment Framke made her opposition to a Jewish state explicit, writing that “the only *just* solution is ONE binational states, with equal rights for all the citizens.” She continued:
YES, this means NOT a Jewish state, whose idea is an anachronism, anyway. The world has gone to pluralistic societies that are inclusive, and Israel going in the other direction, getting more an more exclusionary, which results in extreme racist nationalism.
Such anti-Zionism is allegedly against the policy of the PCUSA, whose leaders defend the church against charges from anti-Israel bias by stating it affirms Israel's right to exist and condemns terrorism. Nevertheless, no one from the denomination's headquarters in Louisville publicly announced that this was the case.
These are not the only outrageous statement Framke has made. Under one posting, documented on CAMERA's blog, Snapshots, Framke, declared that Israeli soldiers in the West Bank "are not human beings."
This is demonization pure and simple, proffered by a prominent “peace” activist within the PCUSA. Not only did Framke hold a leadership position within IPMN-PCUSA, she has also served on the Mission Responsibility Through Investment (MRTI) committee that has been a focal point of anti-Israel divestment activism inside the denomination.
IPMN's animus toward Israel is truly is a thing to behold. At its annual meeting in October, 2010, Rev. Craig Hunter gave the opening worship sermon in which he stated:
The modern nation of Israel resembles the ancient nation of Judah, not only in the gathering darkness, but in the greed and injustice that has corrupted the people as a whole. That greed and injustice is a cancer at the very core of Zionism. It is the desire to have a nation free of Palestinians, for Jews alone, a Jewish state for me and mine, that fed the Zionist movement from the very beginning.
Arab-Israelis comprise approximately 20 percent of Israel's population.
Jews have been ethnically cleansed from virtually every Muslim-majority country in the Middle East.
And yet Rev. Hunter states that it is Israel is afflicted with “the desire to have a nation free” of the other.
With his sermon, Rev. Hunter brought shame onto the PCUSA and to the local church where he serves as a pastor.
Sometimes the IPMN's animosity borders on the absurd. During the 2011 Christmas season, the organization posted a cartoon on its Facebook page that showed two Israeli soldiers harassing Santa Claus. One soldier rummages through Santa's bag of gifts, another searches Santa himself for weapons. Santa himself has his hands up against a concrete section of the security barrier. A church steeple can be seen off in the distance. The soldier rummaging through Santa's toys has a hooked nose, giving the image an obviously anti-Semitic touch.
Clearly, this is not the “model” for ending the Arab-Israeli conflict that prominent Presbyterians said they were going to provide after the denomination's 2010 General Assembly.
In short, the IPMN-PCUSA never changed its behavior despite the fact that its leader, Carol Hylkema, was one of the people who signed onto the statement regarding a “new way of being a church” at the 2010 General Assembly.
A Long Standing Pattern
In retrospect, it was probably unreasonable to expect the IPMN-PCUSA to change its behavior as a result of what happened at the 2010 General Assembly. In the years and months before the assembly, the organization had engaged in some pretty ugly Jew-baiting. It demonized Israel and then demonized American Jews who responded to these attacks.
In 2009, the IPMN-PCUSA's blog promoted anti-Israel incitement from the website of Al Manar, a Hezbollah-controlled television station that was the original source of the libel that 4,000 Jews stayed home on Sept. 11, 2001. Al Manar, which was designated as a “Global Terrorist Entity” by the U.S. Department of Treasury in 2006, spoke falsely of Israeli “bids to desecrate” the Al Aqsa mosque. The article also reported that Israeli officials allowed Jewish settlers to enter the compound and “desecrate the holy site” when in fact, Israeli officials have worked to prevent Jewish groups from setting foot on the site.
The organization's blog also promoted another article that falsely accused Israel of digging a tunnel under the Al Aqsa Mosque – a charge is regularly leveled at Israel in an effort to promote hostility toward the Jewish state. This was the type of stuff the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem said to incite riots against Jews in the 1920s and 30s.
In late 2009, the IPMN's blog linked to an obviously anti-Semitic video titled “I AM ISRAEL” that accused Israel of controlling American foreign policy.
And in a memo to church leaders about a document regarding Presbyterian-Jewish relations issued prior to the denomination's 2010 General Assembly, the IPMN-PCUSA falsely implicated Jewish groups in the U.S. as a source of terrorist threats against Israel's critics and attacks against Presbyterian churches.
In sum, the IPMN-PCUSA has offered two messages to Presbyterians and to the American people. The first message is that Israel is a uniquely sinful nation guilty of oppressing the Palestinians who are in no way responsible for the continued existence of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Israeli use of force is not a response to Palestinian violence but is instead rooted in a flaw in Israel's national character and in Zionism as a movement.
The second message is that by supporting such a monstrous nation, American Jews are a threat to American democracy and an insult to American values.
It was a down and dirty campaign that invoked the PCUSA's good name.
Institutional Denial and Dishonesty
The denomination's leaders in Louisville never reined in the IPMN-PCUSA, nor did they distance the denomination from the organization's hateful messaging, even when it contradicted official PCUSA policy.
On this score, they cannot claim ignorance. CAMERA regularly complained to leaders in the PC(USA) about the IPMN's behavior before and after the denomination's 2010 General Assembly. Initially in response to CAMERA's complaints, denominational officials pretended the IPMN-PCUSA was an independent entity.
Eventually, denominational leaders obliquely admitted they were responsible for what the organization said and did, but still did not intervene in a manner sufficient to solve the problem.
The denial of responsibility became evident in October 2009, when CAMERA wrote to Rev. Gradye Parsons, the denomination's stated clerk, telling him that the IPMN-PCUSA had posted anti-Israel incitement from the Hezbollah-controlled Al Manar television station. CAMERA asked Parsons to “condemn the posting on IPMN's website and distance the PC(USA) from its content.” (CAMERA did not ask Parsons to intervene in the inner workings of the organization itself, despite the fact that it is part of the PC(USA), as will be discussed below.)
Parsons responded by asserting that the IPMN-PCUSA “operates as an independent organization with full control over their website.” Rev. Jay Rock, the PC(USA) staffer responsible for the denomination's interfaith relations, took this line as well in his correspondence with CAMERA, stating the IPMN was “not part of the organizational structure” of the PC(USA). He wrote “it is not accountable to any office, nor does it report to any staff person in the PC(USA) structure, it also, like the other networks, receives no funding from the church.”
At this point, it's necessary to review a few facts about the IPMN-PCUSA.
First, it is named The Israel Palestine Mission Network of the … Presbyterian Church (USA).
Second, the organization was created by a vote of the 216th (2004) General Assembly of the … Presbyterian Church (USA).
Thirdly, at the time of Parsons and Rock's denials, donors who wished to contribute to the IPMN-PCUSA had to write a check to the … Presbyterian Church (USA). (This is still the case.)
Lastly, at the time of Parsons and Rock's denials, the denomination itself solicited funds for the IPMN-PCUSA through its website and PC(USA) staffers were listed as advisors to the organization. As of this writing (Feb. 7, 2012), the link on the denomination's website to solicit funds is dead, but is still listed on the organization's website.
Clearly, the Israel Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (USA) is part of the … Presbyterian Church (USA).
Denominational officials abandoned the line that the IPMN-PCUSA was independent of the denomination, when, after the 2010 General Assembly, CAMERA sent a detailed letter about the IPMN-PCUSA's anti-Israel and anti-Jewish messaging to the PC(USA)'s newly elected moderator, Cynthia Bolbach.
Bolbach told CAMERA to contact Rev. Hunter Farrell, the person who oversees the denomination's mission networks who in subsequent phone conversations reported that the denomination was in the process of creating a set of guidelines that organization's must follow in order to remain part of the denomination's mission network. Groups that did not adhere to these guidelines would ultimately have to separate from the denomination.
In a subsequent email, Rev. Farrell stated that these guidelines would be decided at the September 2011 meeting of the denomination's General Assembly Mission Council. (The minutes of this meeting do not provide any detail about these guidelines, so it is unclear what actually happened in reference to these guidelines.)
In any event, Farrell tacitly admitted what Parsons and Rock previously refused to acknowledge – the Presbyterian Church (USA) was ultimately responsible for the actions of the IPMN-PCUSA and had the authority necessary to stop the organization from demonizing Israel and American Jews in the name of the church.
A Problem of Leadership, Not Governance or Polity
All of this discussion threatens to distract readers from an important point. The challenged posed by IPMN-PCUSA's rhetoric is not one of polity or governance, but of leadership. Presbyterian leaders simply did not lead. Presbyterian shepherds simply did not protect their flock from the hostility put forth by the IPMN-PCUSA which had been well-documented by PCUSA blogger Viola Larson who at one point warned the PCUSA was going to be “shattered on the point of anti-Semitism.” After declaring “As a Presbyterian organization IPMN has proven to be anti-Semitic at its core,” she wrote:
At this moment we as a denomination have so much to lose. Our integrity, our goodness, our hope, will all be shattered on the anti-Semitism among us. We will take away with one hand what God is trying to put into the other, the righteousness and holiness of God. If we spit on his ancient people we will eventually spit on God.
People may not agree with her theology regarding the Jewish people, but the denomination cannot say it wasn't warned about the actions of the IPMN. Larson wrote a couple of dozen posts about the actions of the organization. She put it out there in black and white when she spoke openly about “the anti-Semitism plaguing” the PCUSA.
Page Finally Shut Down
Larson (and everyone else's) warnings went unheeded until Jan. 26, 2012 when IPMN-PCUSA took down its Facebook page and announced on its Twitter account that the organization's Facebook page was offline “until we can work out coverage for monitoring of comments and posts.” The problem was not that the IPMN-PCUSA failed to monitor its Facebook page for anti-Zionist and anti-Semitic posts and comments. The problem was that the organization itself posted some of the hateful cartoons and statements.
A few days later, the IPMN-PCUSA announced that it would restrict its social media presences to Twitter and its blog. The problem, according to the IPMN-PCUSA was not its own messaging, but with Facebook itself. Facebook “does not provide a setting where fans can “like” and “share” links without posting comments that need to be monitored,” the IPMN-PCUSA stated.
The organization took a more truculent tone when it responded to the JCPA's press release with a statement of its own on Feb. 8, 2012. In a pronouncement reminiscent of President Richard Nixon's “I'm not a crook” denial, the IPMN-PCUSA assured its supporters that “For the record, the Israel Palestine Mission Network is not an anti-Semitic organization.” The statement then goes onto to demonize the JCPA and the American Jewish committee as trying to stifle “open and free” discussion about Israeli government that sustains “illegal occupation and violates Palestinian human rights every day.”
On this score, Rev. David Fischler, a pastor in the Evangelical Presbyterian Church and a blogger who has worked assiduously to confront anti-Semitism in the PCUSA, debunks many of the arguments offered in press release quite nicely:
“Open and free discussion” sounds great, and is normally what one should aim for. In the case of the extreme anti-Israel left, however, what that means is that every voice–no matter how vicious, bigoted, false, or mendacious–deserves an equal hearing. Hence you get IPMN links to the toxic swill of people like Gilad Atzmon, whose idea of “open and free discussion” is claiming that Israel is worse than Nazi Germany and that there's no such thing as a “Jewish people.” By all means, let's have that “open and free discussion,” but without the haters, please.
Elsewhere he writes:
As I have pointed out repeatedly, […] IPMN feels no compunction about giving people who cannot be considered anything but anti-Semitic a platform or a shout out. They've pointed their members repeatedly in the direction of people who claim that the U.S. is controlled by Jews, that Israel was behind 9/11, that “Jewish money” controls American elections, and so on. They link to Internet publications and sites that sell and trumpet the “truth” of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, deny the Holocaust, and call for the destruction of Israel if not the Jewish people. You can deny you're anti-Semitic all you want, but when you are willing to grant that Gilad Atzmon, Stuart Littlewood, Gordon Duff, Stephen Lendman, Ilan Pappe, James Wall, Veterans Today, Salem News, Occupied Palestine and their ilk are legitimate “news sources,” you've lost the argument.
The IPMN-PCUSA ironically accuses Jewish groups of mischaracterizing the outcome of the PC(USA)'s 2010 General Assembly, which made significant changes to the Middle East Study Committee's report on the Arab-Israeli conflict. The organization asserts there was “no substantial difference” between the report as it was submitted to the General Assembly and what was finally approved. This itself is a bizare mischaracterization. A whole section of the report – the one-sided historical analysis – was deleted entirely.
Will PCUSA leaders in Louisville step in to correct the IPMN-PCUSA's misstatement of fact?
Again, it's not a problem of governance.
It's a question of leadership, a commodity that has been in very short supply in the PCUSA.
As a result of the PCUSA's leadership failure, Presbyterian activists and the institutions they control can be counted on to regularly demonize Israel and Jews. And when Jews defend themselves and their state from these attacks, these activists and institutions respond with more demonization.
People inside the denomination have worked heroically to stop this cycle, but their efforts have failed, largely because the denomination's leaders in Louisville have not addressed the anti-Jewish animus that motivates the so-called peacemaking activists who have assailed Israel and Jews at virtually every one of the church's General Assemblies since at least 2004.
The vast majority of Presbyterians in the denomination do not share this animus, but those who do have been able to use the church's resources and name to spread their message.
Consequently, anti-Semitism has become one of the most salient characteristics of the PC(USA)'s witness to the American people.
About a year ago, I wrote a laudatory and hopeful article about the actions of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) that took place in Minneapolis in July 2010.
It was a long piece, but a quick summary is that a miracle took place in Minneapolis. Prominent Presbyterians – most notably pastors of “big steeple” churches in the PC(USA) – finally woke up to the ugly anti-Zionist activity that was taking place in their denomination and took responsibility for confronting it.
These Presbyterians objected to a terribly hostile and one-sided report about the Arab-Israeli conflict and said it should not pass. In response, the proponents of the report realized their was a good chance their document was going to go down in flames, blinked, and agreed to some major changes to the report.
To make sure the changes were approved by the General Assembly, the erstwhile antagonists stood shoulder-to-shoulder with each other like bandmates at the end of a Who concert and told their fellow Presbyterians they had set a model for ending the Arab-Israeli conflict and discovered a new way of being a church.
Yes, that’s what they said. And I believed them. Won’t get fooled again!
I got caught up in the moment and held my cigarette lighter aloft like a stoner at a Yes concert and wrote that while the PC(USA) needed watching there was reason to believe that during the 2010 General Assembly, the PC(USA) had created a process by which it could offer up a credible and truthful witness about the Arab-Israeli conflict.
Color me Oslo, cause it isn’t happening.
Things have really gone off the rails in the PC(USA). For details, please go here, here, here, here, here and follow the links in the articles. The catastrophe should be pretty well evident after a few clicks of your mouse.
For people who can’t be bothered to read the links (and I can’t blame them), the story is this: After the 2010 General Assembly, the Israel Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (USA) used its Facebook page to assail Israel, Zionism and Jews in the U.S. in a pretty ugly way. This wasn’t how it was supposed to be in light of that talk about providing a model for ending the conflict and a new way of being a church.
People inside and outside the denomination had been warning the denomination’s national leaders about the problem for years, but did not respond publicly.
Earlier this week, the Jewish Council for Public Affairs and the American Jewish Committee issued statements about the IPMN-PCUSA’s anti-Semitic messaging.
Then the IPMN-PCUSA responded with a statement of their own that said, in effect we’re not anti-Semitic, it’s just those Jewish groups keep trying to stifle debate about Israel in the U.S.!
The upshot is this: The anti-Zionists from the denomination’s Israel-Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (USA) have proven more committed to spewing out anti-Israel (and in some instances anti-Jewish) invective than they were in providing a model for ending a conflict. And they sure were not all that interested in pursuing a new way of being a church.
To make matters worse, the denomination’s leaders have failed to hold these activists accountable. People inside (and outside) the denomination warned the denomination’s national leaders that there was a problem, but these leaders failed to act.
Probably the best way to describe the PC(USA)’s actions over the past decade is to use a metaphor of an abusive husband who beats his wife, comes to his senses, expresses remorse and says it will never happen again.
And for a while, he’s good, but after a few months, he loses his temper and starts the cycle again.
That’s about how the PC(USA) deals with issues related to Jews, Israel and Zionism.
People (and institutions) that behave this way simply cannot be trusted.
This cycle is not a conscious one, but the consequence of an ongoing church struggle within the PC(USA).
Periodically, the denomination, under the influence of a small group of anti-Israel activists, goes off on a tear, attacks Israel, Zionism, and American Jews with a startling and undeniable viciousness.
American Jews respond to these attacks, and make themselves targets of further demonization. (This happens a lot, by the way and presents Jewish leaders with a conundrum. Do they let the attacks go unanswered, thereby giving them credence, or do they respond, knowing their responses will be used against them?)
After the ugly outburst from Presbyterian peacemakers, other people inside the PCUSA – people sympathetic to Israel – try to offer a course correction. They submit resolutions and issue statements intended to correct the problem.
As a result of their efforts, the PCUSA makes gestures that indicate it has come to its senses, realizes what has happened. Prominent Presbyterians step in and say in effect, “Enough, this anti-Zionism has got to stop.” Gustav Niebuhr provided this type of voice at the denomination’s 2010 General Assembly.
Then things seem to go well for a while, but after a period of calm, the anti-Zionists come roaring back with more anti-Zionist and anti-Jewish invective.
Jewish groups respond and its off to the races.
Since 2004, we have seen a few iterations of this cycle in the PCUSA and it looks like it’s happening again.
The only people who can bring it to an end are the Presbyterians themselves.
The burden is on them.
It appears that Jewish groups are starting to get wise to the cycle and are starting to realize that the anti-Semitism in the PC(USA) can only be fixed by the denomination itself and that maybe, it lacks the resources necessary to fix it. In his response to the IPMN-PCUSA’s behavior, JCPA President Steve Gutow stated: “For as long as it makes sense to do so we will continue to work with our friends in the PCUSA to call for responsible policy that promotes peace and positive relations and rejects partisanship and division.”
“For as long as it makes sense to do so …” is a warning indicating that at some point, mainstream Jewish groups will walk away from the PCUSA altogether. And why shouldn’t they given the abuse they’ve endured at the hand of Presbyterian peace activists? So-called peace a ctivists in this denomination have portrayed Israel as a monstrous nation (while ignoring massacres in the rest of the Middle East, by the way). Who but a monstrous people would claim Israel as their homeland?
To be sure, not everyone inside the PC(USA) supports the message offered the anti-Israel extremists in their denomination. Not even a majority.
But whatever anyone tells you, what has happened is not a failure of governance, or of polity.
It is a failure of leadership.
Dexter Van Zile is the Christian Media Analyst for the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA).
The father of an admitted terrorist was sentenced to 4 1/2 years in prison Friday after his conviction on charges that he destroyed evidence and lied to investigators to cover up his son's plot to attack the New York City subways in 2009 as one of a trio of suicide bombers.
Mohammed Wali Zazi, 55, could have faced up to 40 years.
His son, Najibullah Zazi, admitted that he returned from a trip to Pakistan to his family's Denver-area home to practice concocting homemade bombs using chemicals extracted from common beauty supplies. He then drove to New York City in September 2009 with plans to attack the subway system in a "martyrdom operation" before he learned he was being watched by the FBI and fled back to Colorado. The plot was sanctioned by al-Qaida.
The elder Zazi was found guilty of conspiracy and obstruction of justice at a trial detailing the unraveling of a working-class family of Afghan-Americans amid chilling allegations of homegrown terror.
At his sentencing, he gave a long statement in Pashto through an interpreter, saying he feared his wife would not be able to support their children without him, and that he and his family were mistreated.
"I believe that my son was pressured," he said. "I don't think that he was involved in any wrongdoing. I am sorry. The last three years my family ... went through very difficult times."
"I ask forgiveness from all of you," he said. "I had a trial in here, and the jury convicted me but the jury did not hear everything."
Following his trial, Mohammed Zazi, who is an Afghan-born U.S. citizen, admitted that he forged immigration forms on behalf of a nephew who ended up testifying against him at his trial. He said he instructed a lawyer to fill out the forms to say the nephew was his son so that he could enter the United States more easily.
The nephew and Zazi's brother-in-law both testified at the trial how the FBI and immigration agents pressured the family as soon as the plot unraveled. Both had pleaded guilty and agreed to become government witnesses to stave off stiff prison terms.
When it became clear Najibullah Zazi was a suspect and family members were getting grand jury subpoenas, the cousin said "Uncle Wali" recruited him to get rid of plastic containers of peroxide and other evidence. The family agreed to code name the chemicals "medicine" in case the FBI was eavesdropping, he said.
He also claimed his uncle told them not to say anything if they were asked questions.
Mohammed Zazi has maintained his innocence.
"There are so many things that didn't come out in court," the former cab driver from Aurora, Colo., said after his conviction. He didn't elaborate.
Najibullah Zazi, who pleaded guilty to federal terrorism charges and is awaiting sentencing, faces life in prison.
One of Zazi's former high school classmates also has admitted in a guilty plea that they wanted to avenge U.S. aggression in the Arab world by becoming martyrs. Both could testify against a third former classmate at a trial expected to begin in mid-April.
The elder Zazi's attorney, Deborah Colson, portrayed him as a kind, selfless man whose major weakness was that he put his family before himself. He cared for his 10 brothers and sisters in Afghanistan at a young age, eventually moving to the U.S. and working as a taxi driver for years. His friends and family wrote in to give examples of his kindness, like helping the homeless.
He became a U.S. citizen on Oct. 23, 2007, one of the happiest days of his life, she said. "He was never politically minded but he fervently believed in the American dream."
And Zazi didn't know of his son's plans. Najibullah Zazi told prosecutors that his father didn't understand what his son was doing.
"He never believed that his son would do anything like that," Colson said.
L'idéologie antiraciste est une plaie pour la démocratie. Elle détourne les mots et les regards au profit de minorités protégées qui tentent de subvertir la République avec l'appui de faiseurs d'opinion somnolents. Dire d'une civilisation qu'elle n'est pas équivalente à une autre (blog de lundi) n'est pas faire une hiérarchie entre les races, comme le suggère le discours automatique. Le stupéfiant parallèle fait mardi à l'Assemblée par le député martiniquais Serge Letchimy (apparenté PS) entre "le régime nazi", les "camps de concentration" et l'éloge fait par Guéant de la civilisation européenne est l'illustration de cette angoissante bêtise qui assimile la défense de la liberté, de l'égalité et de la fraternité - ces valeurs rappelées par le ministre de l'Intérieur - à un plaidoyer pour Hitler et la Shoah (1). Le fait que François Hollande refuse de présenter les excuses du PS et que son lieutenant Michel Sapin dise "comprendre parfaitement", ce mercredi matin sur RFI, l'outrance du parlementaire, rappelle combien la gauche est imprégnée de cet antiracisme qui ne dit rien, par exemple, des nouvelles formes de racisme et d'antisémitisme qui s'observent au sein de certaines communautés protégées : un fait que dénoncent, ce mercredi dans Libération, des "Français juifs et de gauche" qui demandent de raviver "les valeurs d'humanisme, de tolérance et de respect"....
La France saura-t-elle s'extraire de cette prison intellectuelle, qui met scandaleusement les opinions sous surveillance pénale (l'association Riposte Laïque étant la dernière victime en date) et interdit d'aborder les réalités qui dérangent? Le hasard de l'actualité veut que le Conseil de Paris a voté, mardi, l'attribution du nom d'Alexandre Soljenitsyne à une place Porte Maillot (XVI e), en dépit de l'opposition de certains élus de gauche qui veulent voir dans l'écrivain russe un antisémite pour l'un, un homophobe pour l'autre. Soljenitsyne a le mieux décrit, notamment dans L'archipel du Goulag, ce qu'est l'omniprésence du mensonge idéologique et de sa novlangue, mis au service d'une société totalitaire. L'intellectuel libéral, lecteur de Montesquieu et Tocqueville, explique que c'est par refus délibéré de la réalité que se construisent ces mondes faux et oppressifs, détachés des faits, des hommes et du sens commun. Or c'est ce mensonge que porte l'idéologie antiraciste, qui estime que l'Occident ne doit cesser d'expier ses fautes du XX è siècle. Mais ces tragédies ont justement été commises par d'autres idéologies totalitaires, contre lesquelles la civilisation européenne n'a su se prémunir.
(1) Lundi soir dans On refait le monde (RTL), Valérie Lecasble a tenu des propos similaires au cours d'un débat nous opposant sur ce même sujet: "Je pense qu'Ivan Rioufol a dû aimer Hitler et considère que Hitler est supérieur à d'autres civilisations". J'avoue qu'une telle ânerie m'a peu touché et j'ai pensé qu'elle disqualifiait son auteur. Mais je constate que de nombreux auditeurs ont été offusqués, au point que certains me pressent de déposer plainte. Puis-je leur rappeler amicalement ce proverbe arabe que j'aime bien: "les chiens aboient la caravane passe".
Uzbek Student Who Came To Study Medicine Changes Mind, Decides To Kill Obama
February 10, 2012
Uzbek man guilty of plotting to kill President Obama
By Verna Gates
BIRMINGHAM, Alabama (Reuters) - A man from Uzbekistan living illegally in the United States pleaded guilty on Friday to terrorism and weapons charges involving a plot to kill President Barack Obama.
According to court evidence, defendant Ulugbek Kodirov believed he was acting on behalf of an Islamist militant group in his homeland and was plotting to shoot Obama while the president campaigned for re-election this year.
Kodirov 22, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Birmingham, Alabama, to three charges as part of an agreement that spares him from a potential life sentence.
He still faced up to 30 years in prison and $750,000 in fines for providing material support for terrorist activity, being an illegal alien in possession of a firearm and threatening to assassinate the president.
Four other charges against him were dropped, and mainly involved additional threats to kill Obama.
U.S. District Judge Abdul Kallon set sentencing for May 17.
Kodirov came to the United States in 2009 to study medicine and his student visa was revoked in April 2010 after he failed to enroll in school, investigators said.
He "self-radicalized" through Internet research and sought like-minded individuals, U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance said.
Kodirov met a mentor he called "Emir," whom he believed to be a member of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, an Islamist militant group the United States has designated as a foreign terrorist organization.
Kodirov conversed with the man and decided to kill the president, according to court evidence.
He determined that the upcoming 2012 campaign would be an opportune time to either shoot the president with a sniper's rifle or shoot him up close, according to evidence read by Assistant U.S. Attorney Mike Whisonant.
"He did not care if he got shot and killed as long as he killed the president," Whisonant said.
Kodirov was arrested in July at an Alabama motel where he had obtained a fully automatic machine gun and four hand grenades from an undercover agent. "He was attempting to obtain weapons and explosives that he intended to use to kill the President of the United States," Vance said.
According to his plea agreement, Kodirov also showed jihadist Web sites and videos on his computer to another individual and told that person he wanted to assist others in jihad overseas. He also had lengthy conversations with another person about killing Obama, and that person introduced him to the undercover agent.
Vance said members of the local Muslim community were instrumental in thwarting the threat to the president, but did not give specifics. "We have warm relations with the Muslim community - they also want a safe place to live and raise their children," said Vance. [could this mean: Muslims now know that the FBI is going all out, and that they never know who is a real Muslim, and who is an informant,and they don't want to endanger their status, and want to make sure they are not deported back to various unpleasant places, which is what "want a safe place to live and raise their children" must mean. That is not the same as describing them as "fiercely loyal to this country, etc. etc." ]
Prompted by the news of quarrels between North and South Sudan over oil (three-quarters of which is located in the Southern Sudan as that country is currently constituted, and all of which is wiithin the borders of the black-African-populated Southern Sudan as it ought justly to have been created), I'm reposting the link to the piece I put up in December 2010, right here.
Aussie Journalists read indispensable MEMRI, find translation of Afghan Muslim soldier boasting about shooting diggers
And the result is (among others) a lengthy report in the 'Sydney Morning Herald' and in Australia's national news outlet, the ABC.
it is very telling. The soldier's statement couldn't be plainer: he shot the soldiers because he is a Muslim. (This point is a little obscured by the repetition of the word 'foreigners', because it doesn't really explain things: there are plenty of non-Afghani foreign Muslims - Arabs and suchlike - running around in Afghanistan, busily waging jihad and pushing sharia, without getting much of a reaction beyond some resentment of the Arab Muslim habit of viewing other kinds of Muslims as inferior.). Fortunately the second paragraph of the SMH coverage also includes, in quotes, the word "heathen". In this video, 'foreigner' seems to be interchangeable with 'kuffar'.
But the most important thing about this report, at least as it appears in the ABC and in the SMH (which is the paper read by Sydney intellectuals, as its sister The Age is read by Melbourne intellectuals) is this: that it mentions MEMRI by name as the indispensable translators of that oh-so-revealing Afghan Muslim video boast. Someone - or more than one - at the SMH, and perhaps elsewhere, has discovered MEMRI. Which is good to know. And given that MEMRI gets mentioned by name in the report, I suspect that the number of Australians deciding to acquaint themselves, for the first time, with what's on offer at the Middle Eastern Media Research Institute, is about to increase perceptibly. One hopes that some of those new Aussie visitors will be friends and family of Aussie diggers serving in Afghanistan, and officers in the Australian Defence Forces, and Australian politicians, and all those journalists who haven't yet discovered what a extraordinary treasure-trove of specimens of The Mohammedan Mind 'in the raw' are to be found handily translated and on display in the MEMRI archives.
And so to the Sydney Morning Herald, Rory Callinan reporting.
'The Afghan soldier who gunned down three Australian Diggers last year has gloated about his attacks and told how his unit comrades fantasised (sic: dear Mr Callinan, 'plotted' might have been a better word here - CM) about launching similar jihad operations.
'Mohammed Roozi has appeared in a Taliban video, telling how he ambushed the "heathen" Australian troops with a machine-gun and rocket launcher before joining Taliban and hiding with Kuchi nomads.
'Heathen' is the all-important word. It means, in this context, someone who is not a Muslim; who is an unbeliever. - CM
'A manhunt has been under way for Roozi - then an Afghan National Army member serving alongside Australians - who vanished after firing on his Australian mentors on November 8, seriously injuring three of them and two Afghan soldiers at the remote Nasir patrol base in Oruzgan province. His escape and the video raise doubts about whether the shifting of most Australian troops into training roles would lower the risk of casualties.
You can say that again. - CM
'The video, linked through a recognised Taliban website, provides a disturbing (no - a revealing and very educational - CM) look inside the insurgency (sic: the Jihad - CM) and the mindset of the Afghan troops (the Afghan Muslim troops - CM) serving with Australians. In one five-month period last year, Afghan soldiers shot 14 Australians, four of whom died (sic: 'Afghan Muslim soldiers attacked 14 Australian non-Muslims, four of whom were killed - CM),
'One expert said the video would be used to inspire recruits, especially in Pakistan's tribal areas, where madrasa students have access to cyber cafes.
The cognitive dissonance in that final clause is massive. Primitive minds, who spend most if not all of their time memorising the deadly anti-thought gibberish of the Quran, Sira and Hadith, strolling down the road to make malevolent use of an advanced technology that, had Islam succeeded in conquering Europe in the 8th or in the 17th century, would never have come into existence. - CM
'Released by the al-Emarah Taliban studios, the 47-minute clip shows a masked interviewer in a turban in a studio, appearing to ask questions of a relaxed Roozi.
"I had one mission on my mind - to kill foreigners and teach them a lesson. We are Muslims. We cannot accept foreigners", he says.
'Foreigners'. Non-Muslim foreigners, he means. The Muslim variety, not such a big deal. - CM
"I prepared the grenade launcher and my gun with 200 bullets. Foreigners were sitting in a room. They were fire worshippers around a big fire. (And that's the Muslim mind in all its glory...Aussie non-Muslim soldiers round a fire are 'fire worshippers'...!!! I never knew our Aussie troops were Zoroastrians.... - CM)
"There were 12 of them. A soldier ran to me and asked me what I was doing. He suspected my motives. I told him that it was none of his business...I opened fire. when the bullets ran out it was time to use the rocket launcher".
'The account appears heavily embellished, with Roozi claiming he killed 12 Australians. Three Australians and two Afghans were wounded.
'Despite its blatant propaganda content, the video reveals some telling insights (I should say it does, and then some! though nothing that would surprise any intelligent non-Muslim who has read the Koran and one or two other little items from the Islamic corpus. - CM) about attitudes of Afghan soldiers in the lower ranks (why assume that it is only those in the lower ranks who think like this, Mr Callinan? there is nothing to say that those higher-up do not harbour exactly the same Quran-Sira-Hadith inspired hatred of and contempt for the dirty kuffar, even if for the moment they may think it prudent not to reveal their feelings nor to translate them into action in the way that Mr Roozi did. - CM) and their impression of their foreign (that is, their non-Muslim - CM) counterparts.
'Roozi says he spent years in a religious school (that is, a madrasa, where he would have been soaked in orthodox traditional Islam - CM) before joining the Afghan army, where he found other soldiers did not accept the foreigners.
'He says he attacked the Australians because he was a Muslim and did not accept foreigners (that is, non-Muslim foreigners - CM) working alongside him.
No red-blooded orthodox Muslim can be expected to endure the presence of unsubdued non-Muslims, non-Muslims who are not only on a par with him but are even, some of them, in authority over him, giving him orders and expecting him to obey. - CM
'His friends in the army regularly thought of attacking. "We used to sit there and they were telling these things [attacking foreigners] and whenever it was possible we will do this", he says.
Every Aussie, or Canadian, or American, or (insert name of country here) soldier who is about to be deployed for the first time in Afghanistan, should be made to watch this video (so helpfully and informatively translated by MEMRI) not once but several times; and he should be told to take it absolutely seriously. - CM
'On another occasion he says: "For 24 hours we were discussing and our first discussion point was jihad and killing".
Memo to the Australian Defence Minister and our top brass: do you hear this man? Believe him. This is the way many Mohammedans are taught to think, from the moment they can walk. - CM
'The interview reveals the Taliban's focus on the departure of US troops in 2014.
'The interviewer asks Roozi whether he is aware of the foreigners leaving in 2014. "I know the American soldiers as well as other soldiers from other foreign (sic; non-Muslim - CM) countries will leave Afghanistan and that too many soldiers have been killed...And German and Australian troops and others they always claim that they want to leave Afghanistan."
Of course they do. Because Islam makes Afghanistan a ghastly, desolate, miserable and fiendishly violent hell-pit where no decent and sane human being would wish to remain for even two seconds together. You can have your hell-pit, Mr Roozi - the hell-pit that Islam has made of the land that once created the Bamiyan Buddhas and the glorious paintings that filled the caves in the mountains behind them. Just do not dare to follow us to our lands with a view to dragging them, too, down into Hell. - CM
'the content of the video was being widely disseminated on websites, said Tufail Ahmad, the director of the South Asia Studies project at the Middle East Media Research Institute.
'Mr Ahmad, who has translated and viewed the video, has "no doubt" that it is genuine. "It is posted on the official Taliban website and it is not hacked", he said.
'Mr Ahmad suspects Roozi is still in Afghanistan.
'The Australian Defence Force yesterday confirmed it was aware of the Taliban video, which contained "unfounded and false" allegations.
Go right ahead, stick your head in the sand, O Top Brass, pretend that Mr Roozi is not a perfectly orthodox Muslim expressing the classical Muslim hostility toward the Infidel; and more soldiers will be killed by pious Muslims within the Afghan army. - CM
'"Mohammed Roozi is clearly relying on the insurgency (sic: other jihad-minded Muslims - CM) for support following his cowardly attack", the ADF said. "His statements are designed to support an insurgent propaganda campaign and are designed to justify his illegal act."
He spent years being programmed in a madrasa - a Muslim religious (cult) school. I think there would be Mohammedan scholars who would regard what Mr Roozi did, as perfectly legal, that is, sharia-compliant. - CM
'The Defence Minister, Stephen Smith, said the video was aimed "among other things, at sowing mistrust between Australian and Afghan troops".
ROFLMAO. The very first time an Aussie digger was bushwhacked by his Afghan Muslim army 'colleague' or 'trainee' should have been sufficient to render all survival-minded fellow diggers deeply suspicious of any Mohammedan carrying a gun, whether in Afghan Army uniform or out of it. - CM
'He said he had spoken to the Afghan Defence Minister, Abdul Rahim Wardak, about the issue of Afghan troops attacking Australians.
And I'll bet you got a splendid pile of fresh steaming taqiyya, Mr Smith. Because Mr Wardak subscribes to exactly the same malevolent creed as Mr Roozi, with its division of the world into Us (Mohammedans, born to rule) and Them (the najis kuffar, who if they will not submit to Islam, must be either subjugated or killed). - CM
'Mr Smith said he had met Defence chiefs at home and abroad. Adjustments had been made to the Australian troops' protection to reduce the risk, but no protection could comprehensively guard against a person intending to commit a crime."
Oh good god, Mr Smith. Do some homework on Islam and get a clue, before you get more of our soldiers bushwhacked by murderous Mohammedans who are merely obeying their religious obligation to wage jihad against the Infidel. Start with Quran 9: 29 and 9: 5. - CM
And now for the ABC report which contains a few very telling additional snippets from the video.
Translation: Afghan Muslim soldier boasts of shooting Australian infidels - CM
'A former member of the Afghan army who seriously wounded three Australian troops last year has boasted about the attack in a video posted online.
'Muhammad Rozi shot the diggers along with two (deemed insufficiently Islamic, because cooperating with Infidels - CM) Afghans at a patrol base in Uruzgan province in November.
'He opened fire on his mentors from a watchtower at the base, using an automatic weapon and grenade launcher to inflict maximum damage.
'It was the third attack by an Afghan National Army (ANA) soldier on Australian troops in 2011, and came 10 days after three Australians were killed and seven were wounded when another Afghan soldier turned his weapon on his trainers.
When another Afghan Muslim soldier turned his weapon on his Infidel trainers. - CM
'In May, one Australian soldier was killed when a member of the ANA opened fire.
'Rozi's whereabouts have been a mystery since then, but this week an interview with the former soldier appeared on a jihadi website.
'During the interview Rozi said he had one thing on his mind that day: killing foreigners and teaching them a lesson.
'He claimed many of his colleagues in the Afghan National Army dreamed of committing (sic: not 'dreamed of committing', intended to commit would be a better way to describe what is going on - CM) similar attacks.
'A translation provided by the Middle East Media Research Institute (and there is the all-important information that one hopes will send curious Australians off in droves to check out a fascinating website - CM) reveals the attack was carefully premeditated, with Rozi taking the time to watch his targets through binoculars before opening fire.
'"I had been with the ANA for one and a half years. During this time I had one mission in my mind - to kill foreigners and teach them a lesson", he said.
'He says he had initially been working alone, but that he was quickly taken in by the Taliban after fleeing the scene in a stolen humvee.
"I asked, is there a Muslim who can save me, I have gunned down 12 foreigners. Then a white-bearded old man held my hand and said, "Here it's Taliban and mujahedeen territory, we will help you", Rozi said, according to the MEMRI translation.
Way to go, Auntie ABC, slily casting doubt on the accuracy of MEMRI. A baseless doubt.The people at MEMRI are scrupulous about their translation work. - CM
'Rozi said he wanted to teach the troops a lesson that Muslims in Afghanistan would not accept the presence of foreigners.
They don't seem to mind Muslim foreigners, there are plenty of those from all kinds of ethno-linguistic backgrounds tooling around the place, all that much. It's the non-Muslim foreigners they object to - because they are non-Muslim, that's all. - CM
'The Defence Departmment has described the video as one of many released in an ongoing insurgent propaganda campaign.
'In a statement released overnight, a defence spokesperson said Rozi was clearly relying on the insurgency (nah, just fellow members of the Ummah who think he done good - CM) for support following his cowardly attack.
'The Defence Department says the ADF is working closely with local Afghan authorities to find Rozi.
In which case, he is perfectly safe. No way will his fellow Muslims rat on him to the Infidels. Look at how Pakistan sheltered Osama Bin Laden for all those years, whilst pretending to assist in the pursuit. - CM
'Experts believe the Taliban-produced video provides an important clue to his whereabouts.
'Tufail Ahmad from the Middle East Media Research Institute says Rozi could still be in Afghanistan, or the tribal regions of Pakistan.
Or, for that matter, in Karachi or Lahore or Islamabad or Abbottabad...-CM
"It's often the case that someone from outside, someone from Al Qaeda's media arm, goes to that region and interviews them on the front. So many of the big Taliban leaders are interviewed in that region," he said.
But do they live there? bin Laden didn't. - CM
'Thirty-three Australians have been killed while serving in Afghanistan: 32 with the Australian Defence Force and one with the British Armed Forces."
All I can say, to any fellow Australian who happens to come across this article, and is new to the subject, is this: go to MEMRI. Read around in their archives. Allow yourself to absorb the fact that these people - from many different parts of the dar al Islam, and within Muslim colonies in the non-Muslim lands - think just like Mohammed Rozi, and given the opportunity, would act as he did. And read the Quran, and a good English translation of the Life of Mohammed. And take seriously the fact that many, many Muslims, not only in Afghanistan but all around the world - including young Afghan Muslim men of military age who are now in Australia as 'refugees' and 'asylum seekers' - believe everything in those texts, and think exactly the same way about us dirty kuffar, as Mr Roozi thought about the Australian soldiers whom he killed with a machine-gun, that day in Afghanistan. Just google a few phrases - 'dar al Islam' 'dar al Harb', 'al walaa wa al baraa - loyalty and enmity' (check out Quran surah 48 verse 29 - and have a good long think about it. - CM