A local district court in the West German city of Bochum fined a student 300 Euros on Wednesday for displaying an Israel flag at a demonstration organized by Muslim organizations against the IDF Operation Cast Lead in January. According to Der Westen, a regional paper in Bochum, the public prosecutor termed the Israeli flag as "provoking" within a special situation.
The 30-year-old student, who spoke on condition of anonymity because she fears for her safety due to "massive problems with Nazis", told The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday that the "Israeli flag is a provocation for the anti-Semites." She asked rhetorically, "What is provocative about an Israel flag?" The public prosecutor in Bochum was not available for an immediate comment on the case.
According to Der Westen, the local district court judge deemed the protest of the five activists expressing solidarity with Israel as a "dangerous situation."
Here is video from Duisburg, Germany taken in January 2009, which shows the incident. German police broke into a citizen's apartment and tore down the Israeli flag hung from the window, in order to appease an enraged (aren't they always?) crowd of Hamas supporters.
The Harrow Times has let editorial opinion become the publication's policy in this. Since the rally was first announced they seem to have given the concerns of SIOE no professional objective consideration whatsoever.
HARROW communities are bracing themselves ahead of two rival protests being held today outside Harrow Central Mosque on the eighth anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Stop the Islamisation of Europe (SIOE) is holding a rally outside the mosque, in Station Road, starting at 5pm, saying it wants to commemorate the victims of the terror attacks.
Unite Against Fascism (UAF) has rallied supporters to hold a peaceful vigil and counter-demonstration between 1pm and 7pm in the same place today.
The Harrow Times has stood shoulder to shoulder with the mosque and community leaders, condemning any attacks on the Harrow community and appealing for calm in Wealdstone this afternoon.
Navin Shah, assembly member for Brent and Harrow, is due to address the UAF demonstration this afternoon alongside Tony McNulty, MP for Harrow East.
He said: “I am going to be emphasizing the message of unity. Harrow is one of the UK's most vibrant (ah yes, 'vibrant'. We know what that means) multi-cultural communities which thrives in racial harmony and the many achievements we have had.
I will ask people to not let attacks from within or outside our community to damage what we have achieved in Harrow.”
Former London Mayor Ken Livingstone, who is chairman of UAF, ('nuff said!) spoke out ahead of the demonstrations against the SIOE rally.
He said: "People should wake up to the fact the protests outside mosques are taking us back to the fascism of the 1930s, when fascist thugs marched against Jews and their places of worship. (As a friend, toady and lapdog of some of the most anti-Jewish people on the planet today he would know all about that). “This demonstration should be condemned and banned on the grounds of blatant religious discrimination and a threat to public order." I will follow the Harrow Times website during the day but hope that other journalists also attend as I do not expect unbiased professional reporting from them.
From The Copenhagen Post
Militant Islamists remain the main threat to Denmark . . .
Denmark is facing increasingly serious terrorism threats, domestic intelligence agency PET has concluded.
According to PET’s director Jakob Scharf, the number of specific threats against Denmark spiked in the first few months of this year but despite declining since then had become more serious.
‘More terror groups are looking to attach themselves to al-Qaeda, and al-Qaeda’s leadership has clearly stated that Denmark should be seen as a potential target,’ Scharf told Berlingske Tidende newspaper.
Denmark, he said, remained a terrorist target due to the publication of the Mohammed cartoons in 2005 and again last year. Al-Qaeda and other terrorist networks wanted to keep the cartoon controversy alive for strategic reasons, Shcarf said.
‘It resonates with people in many Muslim countries. The cartoon controversy isn’t going away and that means the increased awareness of Denmark isn’t going to subside for many years to come.’
Brynjar Lia, a terrorism and security expert at the Norwegian Defence Research Institute, was surprised that al-Qadea had continued to keep Denmark on its list of enemies.
‘Jihadists haven’t forgotten Denmark,’ he said.
According to Lia, al-Qaeda’s targeting of Denmark broke its pattern of targeting countries based on their military actions in Muslim countries.
‘With the cartoon controversy al-Qaeda is throwing its attention towards something that is more about religion and culture.’
Haringey sent child to live with Heathrow bomb plotter
From The London Evening Standard
The council at the centre of the Baby P scandal sent a foster child to live with the ringleader of the airline bomb plotters, the Standard can reveal. Non UK readers may not be familiar with the murder of Baby P, a small child tortured to death by his mother's boyfriend with her connivance and that of his brother. The local council Haringey of North London failed to spot any of the neglect and abuse and failed to take action to protect the child despite being alerted by the GP. Other health professionals were also at fault. The case is even more notorious for the failure of the head of Haringey Social Services to admit that any blame fell to her team as protocol had been followed, every box ticked. Her response was "Why have I been dismissed? I am being persecuted!" Abdulla Ahmed Ali lived in the same house as relatives who were approved as official foster carers by the council and given a child by Haringey social workers even as Ali plotted mass murder.
The child was with Ali's family in Walthamstow at the time of his arrest in August 2006 and was only removed afterwards.
Police found extremist literature, including a book by Abdullah Azzam, a key mentor of Osama bin Laden, hidden in a baby's cot at the house.
Haringey may have even unwittingly supplied Ali with an element of camouflage for the plot - and risked the child being murdered with his other would-be victims.
According to evidence at the trial, Ali and his co-conspirators discussed taking children on board the flights to allay the suspicions of security staff. It is not clear whether the Haringey foster child was among the children he proposed to use.
Ali's wife has also been charged under anti-terror laws for allegedly failing to inform authorities of the plot. However, she strongly asserts her innocence.
Other members of Ali's extended family have also been investigated or had their assets frozen in connection with the bomb plot.
One source said: "A desperate shortage of Muslim foster families may have been a factor. Muslim children can only be placed with people of the same faith and the need to find foster parents could mean that corners were cut in the vetting process."
In a statement, Haringey council said: "The placement here was made after checks and before anyone was made aware of any terrorist activity in the extended family network. The placement was ended immediately when the police were in touch and the arrests were made. The family no longer fosters for Haringey."
Ali's family was approved for fostering even though he had a poor employment record, never holding down any job for long, and was unemployed at the time. He was also under police surveillance and had a record of fundamentalist Islamic views, praising the Taliban and advocating the introduction of sharia law in the UK. I don't expect Social Services to be able to spot a terrorist plot to mass murder 10,000 people just by a home visit but it must have been obvious that this was a family whose practise of Islam was not of the 'ecumenical interfaith' kind.
On September 11, 2001, Islamic terrorists, well educated young men - Saudi Egyptian, and Yemeni nationals - hijacked and flew four airliners(American Airlines Flight 11 and United Flight 175 from Boston’s Logan airport, American Airlines Flight 77 from Dulles airport and United Airlines Flight 93 from Newark Airport), with captive passengers aboard, into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in Manhattan, the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia and one, due to brave actions of the passengers aboard, having been diverted from crashing into the Capital building in Washington, crashed into a field in southwestern Pennsylvania instead.
These Muslim terrorists killed more people than the Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 - over 3,000. They didn’t discriminate in their mindless slaughter whether their victims were Christians, Jews, fellow Muslims, Buddhists or Hindus. Economic losses from the unprovoked attack ran into the billions. Trauma touched hundreds of millions in America and around the globe. The names Osama bin Laden and Ayman al- Zawahiri of al Qaeda became front page news. Only the alleged mastermind of 9/11, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, has been captured. He confessed and is now being put on trial.
The country was suddenly adrift in the wake of this disastrous ‘Pearl Harbor of the 21st Century.’ In the years that followed 9/11, our country’s military found itself enmeshed in the long war against the network of Islamic Jihad terror groups in Afghanistan, Iraq and world-wide, costing thousands of casualties and billions of dollars to prosecute. Over ten thousand Islamic terror attacks have occurred, since 9/11. Hundreds of thousands have died or been horribly injured from these jihad attacks. Attacks like those made by Indonesian Islamists on a crowded Bali nightspot on October 12, 2002 favored by Australians, by Moroccan al Qaeda affiliates on commuter trains in Madrid on March 11, 2004, and by native born British Muslims on the bus and underground system in London on July 7, 2005.
Muslim young people, we suddenly learned, are being indoctrinated in fundamentalist Islam in Mosques and Madrassas throughout the world’s Muslim community of believers - the ummah. These believers are collectively engaged in a jihad, or struggle, to remove all obstacles to the spread and ultimate dominance of Islam. One of these obstacles is the Constitution of the United States of America. This effort is being financed with billions of petro-dollars from Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Emirates. Terms like Londonistan, and Eurabia are now commonly used to describe the Islamization and infiltration of the U.K. and the E.U. by Muslim advocacy groups demanding enclaves ruled by Islamic Sharia law.
Instead of rejecting and stifling this hate-filled Islamic doctrine threatening America, our national leaders have resorted to an ostrich-like pose to avoid this reality. Terms like “Islamist,” “Jihad,” and “Islamic terror” have been officially banned from national and homeland security lexicons. Our government treats Saudi Arabia as a “valued ally” while the latter fosters hatred of everything we stand for.
To commemorate September eleventh, we are re-publishing two recollections of the trauma and horrors of that day. Senior Editor Jerry Gordon recalls his experience in New York , while Act for America Northern Virginia chapter leader, Catherine Martin recalls what occurred in the terror attack on the Pentagon.
Both Gordon and Martin have been motivated by their experiences to become citizen activists. Their mission is to inform Americans of the threat Islam poses here at home and abroad and to oppose its advance here. Such recollections hopefully will re-kindle efforts to combat the Islamic doctrine that killed and injured thousands on 9/11.
Benny Morris Clearer-Eyed Now, But Still No Mention Of Islam And The Jihad Against Israel
Benny Morris has come a long way since he used to be a "revisionist" historian -- not to be confused with that far better thing in Israeli terms, a "Revisionist." But he still describes the local Arabs -- now carefully called, by all the Arabs, the "Palestinians," and carelessly called, by many Israelis, by the same name -- as if they really were members of a "national liberation" movement and not merely interested in effacing the Infidel nation-state of Israel on behalf of all the Arabs and Muslims. He writes, for example, in the piece below, of "Fatah – then the leading component of the Palestinian national movement" as if the local Arabs -- both the Slow Jihadists of Fatah and the Fast Jihadists of Hamas, were not engaged in an endless struggle, of which they merely serve as the shock troops, by Arab Muslims who take their Islam seriously (and who are also aided, in their propaganda efforts in the West, by what might be called the local "Islamochristians," that is Christian Arabs whose keen consciousness of being Arabs, of sharing 'Uruba or Arab-ness, causes them to endorse the views of the Muslim Arabs).This phenomenon may also be explained as part of the effort by Arab Christians to find a way to survive in the Middle East, just as the Syrian Christian Michel Aflaq was a founder of Ba'athism, which in its emphasis on pan-Arabism rather than Islam seemed to provide support for a role for Arab Christians (as well as for minority Shi'a Arabs -- the other co-founder of the Ba'ath movement was a Shi'a Arab). Both the consciousness of Arab identity, and the keen understanding of how permanently precarious is the position of Christian Arabs in a Muslim sea, explain such anti-Israel islamochristians as Naim Ateek, Hanan Ashrawi, and Michel Sabbagh, and no amount of Muslim attacks on Christians in Nazareth or Bethlehem will change their minds or their transparent, and ultimately ineffectual, strategies for survival.
But the article deserves reprinting for other points it does make:
Obama's impossible ambition
The US president's intention to bridge the divide between Israel and Palestine is bound to fail.
President Obama's efforts to revive the Middle East peace process are bound to fail because of the unbridgeable divide separating Israel's and Palestine's political goals. The minor problems are Israeli prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu's unwillingness to partition Jerusalem and enable the Palestinians to constitute the eastern half of the city as their capital, and his reluctance to freeze the settlement enterprise in the West Bank. The major problem is that the two-headed Palestinian national movement is averse to sharing Palestine with the Jews and endorsing a solution based on two states for two peoples.
Hamas, which won the Palestinian national elections in 2006, says so bluntly. Its charter of 1988 explicitly calls for Israel's destruction and assures the believers that "Islam will destroy Israel". It repeatedly compares Israel to the medieval crusader kingdoms and states that its end will be identical. (This comparison, incidentally, has been a constant in Arab discourse on Zionism. In September 1947, the Arab League's secretary general, Abdul Rahman Azzam, told Zionist emissaries: "Centuries ago, the crusaders established themselves in our midst against our will, and in 200 years we ejected them.")
Fatah too has a constitution, never revised since the 1960s, which advocates Israel's destruction. During the 1990s, Fatah – then the leading component of the Palestinian national movement – agreed in negotiations with Israel to produce a revised Palestinian National Charter that deleted the clauses calling for Israel's destruction. No such revised charter was ever produced, though these clauses were ostensibly revoked by a gathering of Palestinian notables in Gaza in 1998.
Fatah's head, the president of the Palestine National Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, in effect continues to promote the same rejectionist message. He publicly hails, to propitiate Washington, "the two-state solution", but when pressed declines to endorse it. Yes, one state for Palestinian Arabs and another for whoever lives in Israel, but not a "Jewish state". He seems to be hoping that Israel's 20% Arab minority, with birth rates double those of the Jews, will overtake the Jews demographically; or that Israel will accede to Palestinian demands to allow the return of refugees. There are around five million refugees (nine-tenths are the descendants of the 1948 refugees). Israel has 5.5 million Jewish citizens. A mass repatriation coupled with the incumbent Arabs would turn Israel instantly into an Arab-majority state. Hence Abbas's unwillingness to recognise Israel as a "Jewish state".
The Jewish national movement, Zionism, and the Palestinian Arabs' national movement enjoyed common starting points but, over time, followed radically different trajectories. Both initially sought to establish a state of their own over all Palestine. This was the Zionists' aim from the movement's inception in the early 1880s until the late 1930s. All of Palestine, the ancient land of Israel, rightfully would be theirs.
But the Arab revolt of 1936-39 and the resurgence of antisemitism in Europe persuaded the Zionist leaders that they would have to make do with only part of Palestine. They accepted, in principle, the 1937 Peel commission partition proposal and, a decade later, the UN General Assembly partition resolution; thus, since the 1990s, they have reaffirmed the principle of two states for two peoples.
But from the beginning, the Palestinian national movement saw the struggle as a zero-sum game. As Palestinian notables told the King-Crane commission in 1919, "We will push the Zionists into the sea, or they will send us back into the desert"; there could be no partition.
This was to be the stance of the Palestinian national movement's first major leader, Haj Amin al-Husseini, and of its second, Yasser Arafat. (His only concession to the realities of power was that Israel would have to be destroyed not in one fell swoop but in stages.) And this remains the goal to this day. The rejection of Israel as "a Jewish state" and the unwavering insistence on the refugee "right of return" are the "tells".
Obama will press Netanyahu on settlements and achieve some sort of freeze. But once the negotiations begin, the issue of Jerusalem will loudly surface. And then the refugees. And Israel will insist that Abbas – who does not represent Hamas and perhaps only a minority of Palestinians – accept the Clinton-Barak formulation of an "end to the conflict" and an "end to all claims". And Abbas will demand Israeli acceptance of the "right of return" – the demographic battering ram designed to subvert Israel's Jewish character and existence. And the talks will founder, possibly followed by a new round of violence.
Or as the Harrow Times tries to spin it -Anti-mosque protesters chased out of Wealdstone
HOARDS of rampaging young Asian men chased a small group of men through the civic centre car park after they apparently came to protest against Harrow Central Mosque.
Hundreds of people had gathered in Station Road, united against any protest against the mosque, and determined to protect their religion.
When the small group of men arrived, chanting from the crowd turned to anger and groups of protesters, some armed with sticks, broke ranks and began to chase the men.
The men, who had arrived at Harrow and Wealdstone station to head down to the mosque, quickly turned and ran through the car park when faced by the hostile crowd, hotly pursued by the protesters.
Police tackled the protesters on the edge of the civic centre car park, stopping them catching up with the group of men, and a short stand-off ensued between officers and the marauding protesters.
They were eventually coaxed into returning to the mosque, as hundreds spilled into Station Road, forcing police to shut it down.
The protesters are continuing to block the road, waving banners and placards and chanting, as a police helicopter circles overhead.
Cops have formed three lines blocking the protesters from leaving Station Road. More follows. Young Asian men, angry and armed with sticks. Where have I seen that before?
A comment from one 'Saracen' gloating about the 'HELL OF A BEATING' given to the SIOE. Update - before I could copy the increasingly lengthy comment stream to save for future reference the posts were deleted. Botheration.
The BBC London news wasn't much better - the best they could do was harangue Stephen Gash because he would not meekly agree that a protest outside a Mosque on a Friday in Ramadan was inflammatory.
MEMRI: On the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks, the major jihadist web forums appear to be the target of a coordinated attack. The two most important websites have been taken down: Al-Falluja is not working at all, and on Shumukh Al-Islam all links just lead to a statement from the forum saying that "the enemies of Allah" are trying to "silence the voice of truth." Al-Shura is also offline. The Ansar Al-Mujahideen forum was down temporarily, but has managed to return and lash out at the "worshippers of Satan" supposedly behind the coordinated attack. The other forums appear to be operating as usual.
The attack on these websites came together with the announcement of the purported return of Al-Ekhlaas, a major jihadist forum that was taken down one year ago. The statement was posted on the revived Al-Ekhlaas in the name of Al-Fajr, the jihadist media distribution company that handles Al-Qaeda productions, among others; it was reposted by individuals on other forums, such as Ansar Al-Mujahideen. The statement described the forum's return as "a Ramadan gift from Sheikh Osama bin Laden."
The statement announcing the return of Al-Ekhlaas
The renewed Al-Ekhlaas forum is in fact operating, and it contains content from before the crash and recognizes old usernames and passwords. The consensus on the forums, however, is that it has been revived by an intelligence agency in an attempt to gather information on online jihadists. Commentators have pointed out supposed inconsistencies in the Arabic of the new Al-Ekhlaas, such as basic grammatical errors, and have written that its IP is in California.
Normally when someone issues a fake communiqué in the name of Al-Fajr, it issues a disclaimer that it is not the one who sent it.(1) The problem is that Al-Fajr's lines of communication are down, since it only distributes directly to Al-Falluja and Shumukh Al-Islam. (It is possible that this was known to whoever is attacking the forums. If the new Al-Ekhlaas is bogus, it may have been launched only after the other two forums were taken down in order to prevent Al-Fajr from responding). A moderator on the Shabakat Al-Mujahideen Al-Iliktroniyya forum, however, claims that he has received word from Al-Fajr by way of a third party that the new Al-Ekhlaas is bogus.
Al-Ekhlaas has responded testily to these doubts, writing that it was "the infidels" who were impugning the forum. But at the moment it appears that it is on the losing side of the battle for credibility.
With or without Al-Ekhlaas, the attacks on the jihadist forums may so far be considered a success. If an Al-Qaeda 9/11 release exists, its distribution has been blocked (for now at least). More importantly, if both Al-Falluja and Shumukh Al-Islam remain down, Al-Fajr will have been "flushed out": it will have to seek alternative avenues of distribution, and in so doing will risk danger of detection. But it is not uncommon for these forums to go down temporarily; it remains to be seen whether the current disruption is of a more serious nature.
Last night I attended the premier of a new documentary, "The Forgotten People," at the Cornerstone Church in Madison, TN. It was attended mainly by Christians (some 350) but there were some Jews there, including a rabbi or two, and there were some Holocaust survivors in attendance as well.
I spoke to a woman named Eva Rosenfeld who has fled East Prussia with her family in 1937. They went to Italy, where they were interned. Her mother died of natural causes and her father fled to France in 1939 where he was captured by the Nazis and sent to a death camp. Then, at age 17, Eva was chosen to be one of the select group (the only group) of Jewish refugees allowed into America during the war. She, along with 982 other refugees, were interned here in America at a place called Oswego, near Syracuse, New York. As she recited these events to me, Mrs. Rosenfeld kept repeating, "It's a long story."
Ruth Gruber was instrumental in bringing the refugees over and she came to Nashville to interview Mrs. Rosenfeld for her book, Haven. Ruth Gruber will be 98 years old on September 30. Here is a short film about Oswego.
Safe Haven Museum and Education Center
The Forgotten People documentary, produced and directed by Stan and Laurie Cardoza-Moore, was very nicely done. Its main purpose seems to be to shame Christians into doing something (anything) about the rising tide of antisemitism worldwide. They argued that many Christians are simply ignorant of history and current events and so, if they can be educated on these things, they will rise up in defense of their Jewish brethren. I, however, am not so sure.
Here is a music video made prior to the full documentary that distills the message very well.
Even the BBC has no option but to report on the violence displayed by Muslim youths on the streets of Harrow tonight. Eight people have been arrested during a demonstration outside a mosque in north-west London where an anti-Islamic protest was planned.
Bricks, bottles and firecrackers were thrown at police officers who are present in riot gear at the scene.
Hundreds of youths, some covering their faces with scarves, are still in the area and there are small skirmishes with police as some demonstrators break the police cordon.
Stop Islamification of Europe (SIOE) said they planned a "peaceful protest" against the building of a new five-storey mosque next to the Harrow Central Mosque.
But in a message on their website SIOE said the protest had been called off and organiser Stephen Gash had been arrested.
The posting read: "If you are on your way to the demo, don't go, it's being called off right now. The police can't handle the Muslim counter-demonstrators. The senior sergeant said that he doesn't want any of his policemen killed."
Seven people were arrested for possession of offensive weapons including a hammer, a chisel and bottles of bleach. Police believe these arrests were not linked to the SIOE protest.
Another person was arrested to prevent a breach of the peace, police said.
Police also stopped a number of people, who they believed were heading for the anti-Islamist protest, from getting to the protest area.
"If the SIOE demonstration started it would have resulted in serious disorder," a statement from police said. Sky News says
Rocks were thrown at officers and there were a number of skirmishes in an area between the Harrow Central Mosque, and Harrow and Wealdstone tube station.
The trouble began when around 1,600 anti-fascists turned up at the site - where a new five-floor mosque is under construction.
The Stop Islamification Of Europe group had received permission to hold a two-hour protest there.
The Unite Against Fascism group also organised a demonstration in response to show solidarity for the mosque. Some then clashed with the Metropolitan Police after trying to chase off around a dozen SIOE supporters.
There was further trouble when a group of around 250 Asian youths, throwing rocks and sticks and pushing a wheelie bin, later tried to charge officers. Channel 4 News reports and has a video.
Young Muslim men clash with police in Harrow after gathering to confront an anti-islamist organisation which had threatened to hold a demonstration outside a new mosque. And the Daily Mail has a picture which says it all. Peace and love.
John Negroponte: "I Applaud Yale Press For Its Brave And Principled Decision"
A Risk of "Violence of an Unpredictable Nature" September 9, 2009
by John Negroponte '60
John Negroponte '60 has served as U.S. Deputy Secretary of State, Director of National Intelligence, and Ambassador to Iraq. He is on the faculty of the "Grand Strategy" seminar at Yale and is a lecturer at the university in International Affairs.
Earlier this summer I learned about a challenging dilemma confronting Yale University Press: whether to reprint the Danish cartoons and other images of the Prophet Muhammad in a forthcoming book by Jytte Klausen. The press is an institution deeply committed to free expression, with impeccable credentials and a reputation for publishing controversial, scholarly works. Yet these images have a demonstrated track record of violence associated with their republication, with deaths occurring as recently as last summer.
The ready accessibility of the cartoons online and elsewhere means the book is not materially diminished.
Given my 44 years of diplomatic and intelligence experience, which included service in the Middle East, I knew that publishing these images could very well result in violence of an unpredictable nature. I advised Yale of my serious concerns, and I was relieved to learn that multiple experts in national security and academia had offered Yale similar counsel. I also did not believe that the book's academic purpose was diminished without these images. The ready accessibility of the cartoons online and elsewhere means the book is not materially diminished; in fact, I believe the book is now more likely to encourage scholarly debate rather than perpetuate this violent controversy.
The Yale Press's decision is not without precedent, and it is noteworthy that, at the time of the initial crisis over the cartoons in 2005-2006, the New York Times, Washington Post, and Boston Globe declined to print these images as well, along with almost every leading newspaper in the United States. These media outlets no more wished to incite violence by publishing the cartoons than did the Yale Press, and they too reached the conclusion that the context in which they would have published them -- as part of objective news coverage -- did not make a difference.
This was no doubt a tough call, but it was most certainly the correct one, and it was taken knowing full well that there would be criticism in some circles. I applaud the Yale Press for its brave and principled decision.
Negroponte pompously tells us that "[g]iven my 44 years of diplomatic and intelligence experience, which included service in the Middle East, I knew that publishing these images could very well result in violence of an unpredictable nature." Yes, we all know that, and it didn't require 44 years, or 44 days, of "diplomatic and intelligence experience" to know that Muslims might react violently to this as to a thousand other things. And so what? Are we to modify the observance of our own freedoms in the Western world, in order to avoid the possibility that Muslims will engage in violence? Should Jyllands-Posten never have published those cartoons? Should they not, rather, be published so often, and in so many places, that everyone gets used to it, rather than refraining from publishing them, even in a book about the very subject of the "Danish cartoon controversy," which will do nothing but encourage Muslims with a sense of their own power, feed their triumphalism?
It's a telling stand he's taken, and as for the last sentence, describing the pusillanimity (and possible money-grubbing) of Yale as being "brave and principled" -- well, the ghosts of those who surely were his most memorable teachers -- such principled (in a different sense) master pedagogues as D'Arcy Curwen and Henry Bragdon, those disinterested pure souls who never confused education with vocational training, and with whom he might possibly have read "Areopagitica" or the case of John Peter Zenger -- are not exactly pleased with how one student who once haunted Phillips Hall, John Negroponte, an apparent Company Man, turned out.
Streets of Wealdstone closed after violent scuffles at mosque protest
The Harrow Times seems to have forgotten their promise to stand should to shoulder with the Muslims of Harrow Central Mosque. A DEMONSTRATION against fascism outside Harrow Central Mosque descend into violence and ugly scenes as groups of young Asian men ran amok through Wealdstone.
Despite earlier calls for calm and peace from community and mosque leaders, hundreds chased people through the streets around the mosque and got into scuffles with police.
On The Bridge, close to Harrow and Wealdstone station, the baying crowd of predominantly Asian young men pelted officers in riot gear with rocks, sticks, glass bottles and in some cases, fireworks.
With some peacemakers among the crowd, the protesters began turning on each other, leading to angry scuffles and confusion across the streets of Wealdstone.
A group of six white men were spotted heading from the station to the mosque at around 5pm, but before they could make their intentions clear, they were chased by dozens of the protesters, some armed with sticks, through the civic centre car park.
I have had enough of rampaging spawn of jihad for one evening.
I was driving up the A11 last month heading for the Norfolk coast when I saw a sign which said "Elveden 7 miles".
Oh I thought, is that where the 700 Elves came out the wood?
I couldn't follow the sign as I was already very late having made several detours including one to Six Mile Bottom, where I thought I would feel at home, until I took a wrong turning and had to go back through the Wilbrahams.
On the way back I promised the teenager a voyage of discovery.
"Mum, that's just your excuse for getting lost".
So we went first to Thetford, then Elveden.
We didn't stop at the estate, which was the home and eventual burial place of Maharajah Duleep Singh, we will save that for another visit, but we had to stop and look at the War memorial which was a very arresting sight. A Corinthian column set against one of those East Anglian skies which reminds you of how small and insignificant we really are.
Scamming "the system" trumps anything and everything. Fox News:
Two more ACORN officials were fired Friday after a second video surfaced showing staffers in the community organizers' Washington office offering to help a man and woman posing as a pimp and prostitute acquire illegal home loans that would help them set up a brothel.
The firings came less than 24 hours after another pair of ACORN officials from the group's Baltimore office were canned for instructing the "pimp" and "prostitute" how to falsify tax forms and seek illegal benefits for 13 "very young" girls from El Salvador that the pair said they wanted to import to work as child prostitutes.
Both of the encounters were videotaped on a hidden camera wielded by 25-year-old independent filmmaker James O'Keefe, posing as the pimp — tapes that have ignited calls for investigations of ACORN, the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now.
The United States Census Director has sent a letter to the National Headquarters of ACORN notifying the group that it will no longer help work on the 2010 census.
The group's leaders said Friday they were "appalled and angry" at what their staffers had done, but insisted the videos were part of a political "smear" campaign and not representative of the institution as a whole.
"But that does not excuse the behavior of the employees," wrote ACORN's president Alton Bennet and executive director Mike Shea. "We have fired them and are initiating an internal review of practices and reminding all staff of their obligation to uphold the highest legal and ethical standards."
Rep. Charles Boustany, R-La., called for a hearing to investigate ACORN's tax filing assistance programs following the release of the videos he said suggested multiple incidents of tax fraud.
"In light of the apparent flagrant and willful attempts to suborn tax fraud, I ... (am seeking) a hearing of the Oversight Subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee as soon as practicable to investigate ACORN’s activities," he said Friday.
O'Keefe, the filmmaker, was accompanied by 20-year-old Hannah Giles, who posed as a prostitute. On a videotape of their visit to ACORN's Washington's office, they are seen receiving guidance to establish the woman as the sole proprietor of a bogus company to mask the nature of her business.
"She's not going to put on (the loan application) that she's doing prostitution ... she doesn't have to," a now-fired ACORN staffer says. "You don't have to sit back and tell people what you do."
The ACORN staffer is heard suggesting that O'Keefe can purchase a house, and as the landlord, if he is ever questioned by authorities, he can say he was unaware of the illegal business going on inside.
"[W]hen the police ask you, (tell them) you don't know where (the money is) coming from," the staffer said. "We are looking out for you."
The ACORN employee later suggests that O'Keefe, who said he had a budding political career, not linger at the house in case people "put the dots together" and leave him "smeared and tarnished" by his association with his prostitute girlfriend. She should keep her business "low key," the employee continued, saying "You have neighbors and they see stuff. Don't think that people won't get on the telephone and call Fox."
One day before the Washington video was shot, O'Keefe and Giles sought help from ACORN workers in Baltimore, who told the pair how to falsify tax forms and seek illegal benefits for 13 "very young" girls from El Salvador that they said they said they wanted to import as prostitutes.
As he did in the taping in Baltimore, O'Keefe told the Washington officers that he had plans to bring as many as 10 women from El Salvador to work as prostitutes in Giles' "business."
"There's like 10 girls," O'Keefe says. "There's ten El Salvodoreans."
The ACORN staffer replies, "I understand what you are saying."
ACORN — the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now — calls itself a network of families "working together for social justice and stronger communities," according to its Web site.
The organization has been accused by conservatives and Republicans of committing fraud in voter registration drives around the country, and reaction to the videotape came swiftly after its release on Thursday.
"Taxpayers should be outraged that their money has gone to an organization that, in addition to facing charges of voter fraud and tax violations, is willing to facilitate prostitution," said Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa.
"As this video confirms, ACORN continues to operate as a criminal enterprise."
The first videotape, made in the Baltimore offices of ACORN, was made public Thursday on the political blog BigGovernment.com. That night, after portions of the video were aired throughout the day on FOX News, the group fired the two women who assisted O'Keefe and Giles in Baltimore.
BEIJING – Mystery needle attacks appeared to spread in China's far western region as authorities arrested nine new suspects in three cities, officials said Friday.
The suspects were recently detained in the Xinjiang region cities of Hotan, Altay, and Kashgar in connection with alleged attacks involving hypodermic needles, a press officer at the Xinjiang government press center in the provincial capital Urumqi said Friday. He declined to give his name as is customary or provide more details.
Since last week, more than 500 people in Urumqi have reported attacks, though only about 100 showed evidence of being pricked. The bizarre stabbings led to mass demonstrations by tens thousands of Han Chinese earlier this month against what they said was a government that can't guarantee their safety.
The needle assaults have aggravated tensions in the restive western region of Xinjiang where ethnic riots in July left nearly 200 dead. The violence exposed the long-term rifts between Muslim Uighurs, a Turkic-speaking ethnic minority group, and the Han Chinese, who are the majority group in China.
A staffer surnamed Li at the propaganda department of the Communist Party in Kashgar confirmed that people had reported cases but said none showed any evidence of a syringe attack.
"As of now, according to the diagnoses, we haven't confirmed any syringe attacks yet. Most of them only felt some sudden pain when they were walking in the crowd, and some of them felt they'd been tapped on the body. But the doctors and medical examiners did not find any signs of a hypodermic attack on their bodies," he said.
The official China Daily reported out of 19 reported attacks in the three cities, only six were confirmed.
Calls to the city governments in Kashgar, Altay and Hotan were not answered Friday.
Reports of the needle attacks emerged several weeks ago though the size and scale remain unclear. None of the reported victims have suffered from illness, poisoning or other effects. Officials and state media have repeatedly blamed the attacks on separatists bent on destroying ethnic unity.
Rioting in early July by the minority Muslim Uighurs, followed by revenge attacks by Han Chinese, was the worst ethnic unrest in China in more than a decade.
On Friday, two well-known bloggers published accounts of at least two Uighurs being beaten, one of them fatally, last week by Han Chinese, and called on state-run media to provide more balanced reporting of the events.
On his Web site, economist and professor Ilham Tohti — who was detained earlier this year for writing about the reasons behind the ethnic strife in Xinjiang — posted a report on the Sept. 3 beating of local journalist Kaynam Jappar by six or seven Han Chinese men near his home in Urumqi.
In addition, Tibetan writer and blogger Woeser posted on her Web site an account of the beating death of Uighur singer Mirzat Alim, 43, on Sept 2., after being attacked by an armed group near his home.
Obviously we are supposed to assume that the 'armed group' was made up of Han, since everyone knows that Muslims never attack Muslims.
The news coming out of China is obviously inconsistent and unclear, whether by intention or not. The Chinese government has their own motivation to 'avoid inflaming ethnic and religious tensions' by covering up what is going on in Xinjiang.
Our Austrian correspondent ESW has compiled a report on last week’s podium discussion at the University of Vienna on the accession of Turkey to the EU. Most of her material is translated from an account by Harald Fiegl, and we owe him a debt of gratitude for his careful observations of the proceedings.
Report: A Common European Future and Turkey
University of Vienna
1010 Vienna, Dr.-Karl-Lueger-Ring 1
organized by OIIP
Harald Fiegl, a member of the Akademikerbund and author of the essay “EU, Turkey, and Islam”, attended a podium discussion featuring the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs, who attempted to present Turkey’s point of view with respect to his country’s accession aspirations.
Here is Harald’s assessment:
Bagis showed neither the intention of persuading the European population nor the need to forge friendships. He spoke from a position of power and considers Turkey’s full membership in the EU beyond any doubt, as a privileged partnership is out of the question.
Bagis’ arguments in favor of this position are as follows:
* Turkish contributions to European culture and way of life, such as Mozart’s Turkish March, the opera “The Abduction from the Seraglio”, and coffee; Turkey has geared its policies towards the West for the past centuries (after 1683, an army reform modeled after European armies; the term “sick man at the Bosphorus” points to Turkey’s European affiliation.
* Turkey’s military support of the West in Korea, Somalia, and Afghanistan as well as Turkey’s sacrifices.
* The EU is in need of Turkey’s young and well-educated and trained manpower.
* Turkey is crucial for European energy resources.
* Turkey as a full member raises the political strength of the EU.
* Turkey is pushing democratization.
During the question-and-answer session, Harald was able to ask the following questions:
1. How do the following examples prove “Turkish Europeanness”?
PM Erdogan’s speech in Cologne and the issuing of ultimatums in EU/Turkey negotiations.
Reply: Erdogan only told Turks living in Germany to learn German.
Why did Turkey take the lead in the Islamic World in the cases of the Mohammed cartoon crisis and nomination of the new NATO Secretary General?
Reply: We respect freedom of speech, but we do not respect insulting religion.
For sake of good relations of NATO with Islamic World Turkey objected to Rasmussen. We do not want to put at risk the life of western soldiers. In Ankara we had iftar together and Rasmussen expressed respect for Islam.
2. During a private conversation, Harald asked even more questions, such as:
During the course of democratization, will Turkey dismantle the
Diyanet (religious authority)?
Reply: No, as this would be an act of revolution.
By the military?
Reply: No, by the supreme court.
Bagis adds that he himself has already been indicted, he knows how the Turkish justice systems operates.
3. Other questions from the audience:
- - - - - - - - -
Turkey uses its water to act as a political strongman vis-à-vis Syria.
Reply: This has been sorted out with Syria and there will be investments made in the area.
Parties with less than ten percent of the vote cannot sit in parliament, which is not very democratic.
No clear answer.
Will the democratization process end the influence of the military?
Reply: The military is in favor of EU accession.
Religious minorities have no rights in Turkey.
Reply: We are making progress.
In an interview with the Austrian newspaper Kurier (print edition, Sept.3, 2009, page 5) (www.kurier.at), Bagis added, in response to the interviewer’s question regarding the population’s skepticism, “The most important factor is time. Europe’s challenges are rising: energy supply, an aging populace, climate change, the lack of new markets, the struggle against migrants (immigrants), drug dealers, and terrorists. At the end of the day, the EU needs Turkey more than vice versa.”
Bagis also explained that “Turkey is currently working on a new communications strategy, especially geared towards Austria (whose citizens are extremely critical of Turkey’s accession plans). One thing is for certain: We do not want to burden the EU; we want to be part of the EU to solve problems.”
To explain these statements, here an excerpt from Harald’s essay on Turkey:
Turkey’s Janus-faced relations with Europe and the EU — there was never a Turkish Europeanness and there never will be a Turkish Europeanness.
Turkey is a regional power with a specific foreign policy and foreign intervention doctrine, which enables it to counter the divided EU foreign policy with great power. It has only its own interests in mind; EU interests are not considered or are even actively worked against. In line with this foreign policy opportunism, the thrust of its foreign policy is not only aimed at the EU or Europe, but also the Islamic and central Asian regions.
There is no shortage of military interventions to enforce its foreign policy objectives. Approximately 30,000 Turkish soldiers have been stationed in Cyprus since 1974, although the reason for intervention (the fall of the Greek military regime) has been eliminated. Military interventions in northern Iraq are also part of the intervention doctrine.
Turkey intervenes in order to enforce its interests; if a military intervention is not feasible, Turkey uses any means of considerable political and economic pressure. This includes diplomatic activities in the U.S. and the EU with respect to the Armenian genocide and the Kurdish PKK.
Turkish interventions against the nomination of former Danish prime minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen as NATO secretary-general remain in fresh memory. Not freedom of expression, but Muslim sensitivities were important for Turkey.
Anti-Western sentiments from Turkey are no surprise. In the framework of the OIC, where the secretary-general is a Turk, Turkey acts as an important spokesman in the battle of Islam with the West.
This was the case in the cartoon controversy, as it is now with the current efforts of the OIC to subordinate the UN Human Rights Declaration of 1948 to sharia law. This notion aims at subduing criticism regarding the Islamic view on human rights.
Turkey has a constitution incompatible with that of the EU because political life and religion are under the influence of the military. The right to exercise religious beliefs and the right to belong to a religious group are not in the individual’s sphere as it is in the western world.
The religious authority, the Diyanet, regulates the religious life of Sunni Islam, the confession of the majority of the population. Other beliefs are disadvantaged.
The once-thriving Christian minority has been reduced to numerical insignificance. Even 20 million Alevis, who are considered Muslim, are impeded by the Sunni majority from practicing their religion.
The Diyanet appoints imams and sends them to countries with Turkish populations and with populations of Turkish descent, for example to Germany and Austria. There are local Diyanet representations in both countries fostering religious and national ties with Turkey, but not mandating integration efforts into the host society.
In Austria, the Diyanet is represented by ATIB. Turkish secularism is imposed from above, not grown from the bottom up like Western secularism. The comparison with French laicism is misleading.
The founder of the Turkish Republic, Kemal Atatürk, established the separation of religion and state about eighty years ago, with the military being the guarantor of the secular state and the overseer of everything from religious life to the banning of political parties.
Despite all of Kemalism’s control, its efforts to inculcate secularism in the population have failed. Even today there are still two antagonistic groups: the religious population in rural areas, including migrants to the cities, and the diminishing group of western-oriented people in the cities.
One reason for concern is the failure of the Turkish constitutional court: the judges could not agree on the banning of the ruling party and the banning of the prime minister, and the head of state as well as other politicians from politics as such due to disrespect of principles of Turkish laicism.
For all intents and purposes, Turkey finds itself in a clash of cultural beliefs. The headscarf has been and remains a highly explosive ideological matter. In twisting the facts, the EU supports the Islamic side.
The “moderate Islamist” government is step by step leading Turkey towards the establishment of an Islamic state, and is currently completing the necessary ideological reorientation within the state’s administrative system.
The Turkish constitution provides not only for the special roles of military and religious authority, but also for a religious-ethnic centralized state. Consequently, Turkey’s constitution recognizes no ethnic minorities, such as the twelve million Kurds living within its borders.
In accordance with this centralized state, a striking nationalism in Turkey lives protected by penal code provisions (prohibition of insulting Turkishness, no criticism of the official position towards the Armenian genocide and the Turkish invasion of Cyprus).
The omnipresent Atatürk images and statues testify to this nationalism together with the national motto — visible almost everywhere — “If you’re a Turk, you’re happy”. In addition to Islam, this nationalism offers an explanation for the lack of readiness for integration and the capabilities of the Turks in Europe.
A shocking demonstration of this religious-nationalist attitude is the murder of the employees of a Bible-printing press in Malatya in 2007. The perpetrators justified this act as a fight against the enemies of the faith and the Turkish nation.
Then German socialist MEP Vural Öger, of Turkish descent, poured oil on the fire when he declared that the EU was responsible for this criminal act because of the pressure applied on the Turkish legislature to institute reforms.
Bringing the Turkish constitution into line with EU principles would entail the destruction of both pillars of the Turkish constitution and would thus put an end to Atatürk’s Turkey.
In addition, it can be seen in all clarity that the EU will either accept a de facto military dictatorship or an Islamic state within its ranks provided the “negotiations” with the EU continue to proceed at the same pace. In any case, the EU will remain the pawn of Turkish politics.
Turkeys ploughs its way into the European Union. It bullies concessions and does not show any willingness to fulfill accession criteria. It follows its well-established negotiation tactics: wooing — being offended — threatening.
It wants a Turkish Europe, as clearly expressed by the Turkish prime minister, during his recent appearance in Cologne.
Reason becomes nonsense, benefits turn into menace.
Obama Administration Calls For Israel To Commit Suicide
RPT-US drafts UN resolution urging nuclear disarmament
Fri Sep 11, 2009 9:37pm EDT
* Obama to preside over special Security Council session Sept. 24
* All countries urged to abandon nuclear weapons, join NPT
By Louis Charbonneau
UNITED NATIONS, Sept 11 (Reuters) - The United States has drafted a U.N. Security Council resolution calling on all countries with atomic weapons to get rid of them, a text Washington hopes will be approved by a special council session presided over by U.S. President Barack Obama.
The 15-nation council will debate the draft resolution on Sept. 24 on the sidelines of the annual meeting of the General Assembly, where Obama is making his debut appearance at the United Nations. Washington holds the rotating presidency of the Security Council during September.
The draft resolution was circulated to the full council on Friday, diplomats said.
The text, obtained by Reuters, calls for signatories of the 1970 nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to begin talks on nuclear arms reduction and to negotiate "a treaty on general and complete disarmament under strict and effective international control, and calls on all other states to join in this endeavor."
Diplomats said the U.S. draft was yet another example of the sharp shift on disarmament policy taken by the Obama administration. Obama's predecessor, George W. Bush, had angered many NPT members by ignoring disarmament commitments made by previous U.S. governments, analysts say.
The five permanent council members -- the United States, Britain, France, Russia and China -- all have nuclear weapons. The "other states" -- referred to but not named in the text -- are Pakistan and India, which have not signed the NPT but are known to have atomic arsenals, and Israel, which neither confirms nor denies having nuclear arms but is presumed to have a sizable stockpile warheads.
Council diplomats told Reuters it also referred to North Korea, which withdrew from the treaty in 2003 and later tested two nuclear devices -- one in 2006 and another earlier this year.
It also urges those countries outside the NPT to join it. Becoming a party to the NPT would require scrapping their nuclear arsenals, something the nuclear powers outside the pact have refused to do so far.
The draft resolution does not name specific countries, but it clearly has North Korea and Iran in mind when it says the council "deplores in particular the current major challenges to the nonproliferation regime that the Security Council has determined to be threats to international peace and security."
URGES ALL STATES TO JOIN TEST BAN TREATY
The West suspects Iran is developing nuclear weapons under cover of a civilian atomic energy program and have pushed three rounds of U.N. sanctions against it, despite initial objections raised by Russia and China. Tehran says its atomic program is entirely peaceful and is aimed solely at the production of electricity.
Without referring to any specific regions, the draft resolution has the council "welcoming and supporting the steps taken to conclude nuclear-weapon-free zone treaties." Egypt and other Arab states have long called for the establishment of such a zone in the Middle East - which would mean Israel would have to get rid of any atomic bombs it possesses.
The draft resolution also calls for the creation of a treaty that would ban the production of fissile material made specifically for nuclear weapons.
The U.S. resolution would also urge "all states to refrain from conducting a nuclear test explosion and to join the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, thereby bringing the treaty into force."
The United States signed the treaty, which would ban all nuclear tests, in 1996 during the administration of President Bill Clinton, a Democrat. In 1999, the then-Republican-majority U.S. Senate made clear that it opposed the treaty as an unnecessary limitation on its military research options.
When Bush took office in 2001 his administration said it did not want its options limited by such a treaty and never asked the Senate to vote on the test ban treaty.
Washington is joined by China, North Korea, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Iran, Israel and Pakistan as hold-out countries whose ratification is necessary for the treaty to enter into force. There will be a major conference on the test ban treaty on Sept. 24-25 at U.N. headquarters in New York.
The draft resolution also voices support for the U.N. nuclear watchdog in Vienna, the International Atomic Energy Agency, and urges countries to accept its more rigorous inspection regime under the agency's so-called Additional Protocol intended to smoke out clandestine nuclear weapons activities.
It also expresses the hope that next year's NPT review conference will be a success. The last review conference in 2005 was a failure and some delegates accused the United States, Iran and Egypt of sabotaging the meeting and preventing it from agreeing on an overhaul of the landmark arms control pact.