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These are all the Blogs posted on Tuesday, 17, 2011.
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
How close to a train track can you set up a vegetable market?
Posted on 05/17/2011 6:39 AM by Rebecca Bynum
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
Al Nakba Day Message: Palestinians want ’Rights of Return’ to Extinguish Israel

Palestinai Children carrying symbolic keys on al Nakba day, May 15, 2011 signifying 'rights of return'

A tip of the hat to Rick Greenfield, publisher of The Connecticut Jewish Ledger.

The dead and wounded from attempted breaches of the Israeli borders with Lebanon and Syrian borders on Al Nakba Day,  on Sunday May 15th were all about extinguishing the Jewish State of Israel.  Look at the picture of Palestinian children carrying keys. Keys to unlock the doors of mythic homes lost when the Arab Muslim population fled at the behest of  the Arab Higher Authority leaders including the late infamous Haj Amin al Husseini to live in a squalid eyesore-the UNWRA refugee camps in surrounding Arab ‘neighbors’ of Israel and in the Palestinian territories on the West Bank and in Gaza. An eyesore that the US and other feckless international donors have bankrolled in the billions for over 60 years.  An eyesore that the Arab League and the wind of the so-called Arab Awakening are trying to build into a tsunami of Jihad to overwhelm Israel.

President Obama and his National security advisors have tried to impose a possible settlement of the languishing and intractable Israeli –Palestinian peace process; however, that has clearly failed as witnessed by the resignation of Special Envoy former US Senator George Mitchell. The peace process has come to a dead stop for all intents and purposes and the Obama outreach to the Muslim ummah in Cairo in June 2009 and purposeful isolation of Israel have been major contributing factors.  Because of this  the Obama initiatives in the region has emboldened Arab Muslim Jihadists to rise up, as they consider the US a weak force incapable of bringing about a ‘just peace’ –code word for elimination of the Jewish State of Israel. As a result, the al Nakba day display has riveted the minds of Israelis about the existential threat and thrown out the tattered playbook of Obama’s diplomatic and security advisers of isolating Israel and trashed the banal comments of the weak leftist opposition in its parliament, the Knesset.  Israel now stands alone.  That is the conclusion  that can be drawn from remarks of PM Netanyahu and  several commentaries by P. David Hornik in Pajamas media, Bret Stephens in the Wall Street Journal and Walter Russell Mears Meade in The American Interest .

This al Nakba day as PM Netanyahu told the Knesset yesterday was all about extinguishing Israel and not making peace. Witness his comments  in this New York Times report:

“A government, half of whose members declare daily their intention to destroy the State of Israel, is not a partner for peace,” he said, speaking at the opening session of Parliament.

[. . .]

“We must stop beating ourselves up and blaming ourselves,” he said. “The reason there is no peace is that the Palestinians refuse to recognize the State of Israel as the Jewish people’s nation-state.”

[. . .]

“As for those who orchestrated these riots, 63 years of our independence has not changed a thing. They yelled that they want to return to Jaffa, to the Galilee. And the head of Hamas in Gaza yelled that they want to see the end of the Zionist enterprise, repeating the words voiced by his Iranian patron.”

Note this banal retort by opposition Kadima party leader, former Tzipi Livni:

“If you do not initiate, decisions will be made for Israel,” Ms. Livni said. “You have missed your opportunity to provide Israel with a vision. You are going to the United States without initiatives for peace.”

 

Hornik in his Pajamas Media article, “Nakba’ Concentrates Israeli Mindsmade these comments with respect to the Israeli left, in particular Yediot Aharanot commentator Nahum Barnea and  Knesset opposition leader, Tzipi Livni;

. . . there is a side to Nahum Barnea and Israelis like him that is still connected to reality. As he also wrote in his Nakba Day column:

The truth about the right of return should be told not only to the Palestinians, but to the Israelis as well. Revoking the possibility of returning to Israel is the red line that Israelis who endorse the two-state solution won’t cross….
…those who wish to live in the sovereign, Zionist and democratic State of Israel have no other option but to keep telling our cousins: With all due respect, what’s in the past is in the past. We are destined to share: We shall return our settlers to our country; you will absorb your refugees in your country. You will not be returning to Israel.

In other words: “But if you’re really serious about that ‘right of return’ stuff, I will unite with my right-wing brethren –‘settlers’ and all — in resisting it.”
“Nakba,” then, concentrates Israeli minds wonderfully. The moderate left — journalists like Barnea, politicians like opposition leader Tzipi Livni — will continue to speak nonsense, sometimes harmful nonsense, out of one side of their mouth. But Israel as a whole senses the threat and is already coalescing.

Bret Stephens in today’s Wall Street Journal column, Israel Will Never Have Peace”   echoes PM Netanyahu’s Knesset comments:

But just as the West has consistently misunderstood the Muslim problem, so too has it failed to grasp the Palestinian one. And what it has failed to grasp above all is the centrality of Palestinian refugees to the conflict.

The fiction that is typically offered about the refugees by devotees of the peace process is that Palestinian leaders see them as a bargaining chip in their negotiations with Israel, perhaps in exchange for the re-division of Jerusalem. But listen in on the internal dialogue of Palestinians and you will hear that the "right of return" is an inviolable, inalienable and individual right of every refugee. In other words, a right that can never (and never safely) be bargained away by Palestinian leaders for the sake of a settlement with Israel.

In this belief the Palestinians are sustained by many things.

One is the mythology of 1948, which is long on tales of what Jews did to Arabs but short on what Arabs did to Jews—or to themselves. Another is the text of U.N. resolution 194, written in 1948, which plainly states that "refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbors should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date." A third is UNRWA, the U.N. agency that has perpetuated the Palestinian refugee problem for generations when most other refugees have been successfully repatriated. A fourth is their ill treatment at the hands of their Arab hosts, which has caused them to yearn for the fantasy of a homeland—orchards and all—that modern-day Israel succeeds in looking very much like. A fifth is the incessant drone of Palestinian propaganda whose idea of Palestinian statehood traces the map of Israel itself.

Other things could be mentioned. But the roots of the problem are beside the point. The real point is that a grievance that has been nursed for 63 years and that can move people to acts like those witnessed on Sunday is never going to allow a political accommodation with Israel and would never be satisfied by one anyway.

Walter Russell Meade in The American Interest drew attention to the failure of the Obama peace effort and the core ‘refugee’ issue in his article, “White House Down in the Middle East.”

There will be no peace in the Middle East until a workable solution is found for the human problems of the Palestinian people.  Part of this involves an independent Palestinian state including the West Bank and Gaza; part of it includes compensation for Palestinian refugees (and for Jews forced out of their homes throughout the Arab world by mob violence and government decree after 1948); part of it includes the resettlement of Gazans and stateless Palestinian refugees from countries like Lebanon, Syria and beyond where even today Palestinians lack passports and full legal rights.  Part of it will involve the increasing isolation and marginalization of the shrinking minority of Palestinians who reject terms that the rest of the world (including more and more Muslims) recognizes as reasonably just.  Part of it will come from pressure on governments (Syria and Iran for example) who consciously try to block peace: too many foreign powers and political groups feed on Palestinian misery and anger.

None of this means turning on Israel.  The refugee problem in the Middle East is not solely or even primarily Israel’s fault, and Israel can’t solve it.  No amount of pressure on Israel can solve the Palestinian refugee problem; Israel cannot and will not take them back and this has been clear for sixty years.

If anybody is to blame for the refugee mess, it is the United Nations and the ‘world community’.  When the British gave up their League of Nations mandate over Palestine and returned it to UN jurisdiction, the UN failed in its duty to protect both Arabs and Jews.  The war that broke out between Palestinians and Israelis and that created the refugee problem was a consequence of the UN’s failure to ensure an orderly implementation of the partition plan it approved.  Had the Arabs won the war there would have been a massive Jewish refugee problem as desperate Jews fled from or were expelled by advancing Arab armies; when the Israelis won the war it was the Arabs who fled and/or were expelled.

We cannot have peace in the Middle East without a solution to the Palestinian refugee problem.  It may be that the refugees (and their descendants: it has been more than 60 years since the Palestinians fled or were driven from their homes) will not accept any settlement that the world is willing or able to make.  If they don’t, however, the conflict will not come to an end.

So far, there is no sign that the Obama administration is ready to face this painful truth.  Israel is 63 years old; for two thirds of that time (since Henry Kissinger initiated ‘shuttle diplomacy’ after the 1973 war) the US has been trying to make peace without coming to grips with the refugee issue.  After forty years of failure, perhaps it is time to try something new.

As Bret Stephens said at the conclusion of his WSJ commentary:

 Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is due in the U.S. soon to deliver what is being billed as a major policy address. What should he say? I would counsel the same wisdom that sailors of yore used to tattoo to their knuckles as a reminder of what not to forget on the yardarms of tall ships in stormy seas. Eight easy letters:

H-O-L-D  F-A-S-T.

   This message by Netanyahu  will hopefully be conveyed  in Washington in talks with President Obama and in speeches before the AIPAC Policy Conference and a joint session of Congress.

              

 

 

Posted on 05/17/2011 9:42 AM by Jerry Gordon
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
Why Should The American Government Continue To Support So Many Muslim States and Peoples?

The American military wait anxiously for the Iraqi government to grandly allow it to keep troops in Iraq, so as to keep one set of  Iraqis from attacking other Iraqis. And today there is talk of Blackwater-like companies of mercenaries being hired, and paid for by Americans not Iraqis --  to protect the American diplomats and civilians who will apparently remain, in large numbers, in Iraq to make Iraq a better place.

The belief that Americans, and Europeans, should by spending vast sums and risking the lives of our soldiers (and civilians) save Muslim peoples and states from the consequences of Islam itself. But the best way to lessen the threat of Islam, that is the threat coming from those who take Islam to heart, is to allow the spectacle of Islamic failure, Islamic violence, Islamic poverty, Islamic mental stasis, Islamic internecine warfare, to appear, and to keep appearing, both on the pages and the airwaves of the West, and presented to the Muslims themselves, without Infidels to blame, for they will, they are, they have been blamed.

Churchill concluded that the British presence in Mesopotamia, meant to support the Sunni Hashemite monarchy which had been given to Feisal, the son of the Hashemite booted out of the Hejaz by the triumphant Al-Saud, and given by the British the consolation prize of becoming king of a newly-formed Iraq, as a little later  his older brother Abdullah was given the consolation prize of the Emirate of Transjordan, when the British had been assured the role of Mandatary, and could then remove all of Eastern Palestinefrom the territory that the  League of Nations had intended be set aside for the Jewish National Home and hand it to a Hashemite who resented his brother's throne, and wanted one of his own.

Here is what Churchill wrote:

"I think we should now put definitely, not only to Feisal but to the Constituent Assembly, the position that unless they beg us to stay and to stay on our own terms in regard to efficient control, we shall actually evacuate before the close of the financial year. I would put this issue in the most brutal way, and if they are not prepared to urge us to stay and to co-operate in every manner I would actually clear out. That at any rate would be a solution.".

This is the attitude that the Americans should adopt toward Iraq. You will have to "beg us to stay" and, what's more, you will have to pay for our staying, out of the vast oil revenues your reserves, the second largest, or possibly the largest, in the world, are now and will even more in the future throw off, in trillions of dollars.

Some will want to add another requirement -- that the government of Iraq pay back at least part of the vast sums expended by the Americans to remove Saddam Hussein, to suppress Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia, to keep Sunnis and Shi'a Arabs, and Kurds anhd Arabs, from each other's throats, and to build a great deal of infrastructure -- schools, hospitals, roads, airfields -- that cost tens of billions.

That is how to talk to the government of Maliki in Baghdad.

That is how to talk to Karzai in Kabul.

That is how to talk to the I.S.I., and the generals in the regular army too, in Islamabad.

That is how to talk to the sinister holdovers of the ancien regime -- Amr Moussa, Al-Araby, and others -- in Cairo. 

The end of American aid is at hand.

You Muslims can seek aid from Qatar, with its quarter-million Qataris.

You can seek it from the United Arab Emirates, whose ruling Al-Nahyan family in Abu Dhabi (the most important of the Emirates) has hired American mercenaries to assure their survival.

You can seek it from Kuwait, rescued by the Americans from Saddam Hussein .

You can seek it from Saudi Arabia, that like Kuwait and the Untied Arab Emirates and Qatar, has been the beneficiary of the largest transfer of wealth in human history, for the Muslim oil states of OPEC have received fifteen trillion dollars in unmerited oil revenues since 1973 alone. And while the Umma is united when it comes to hostilty toward, or inveiglement of (that inveiglement simply being another way of expressing hostility) Infidels, it is disunited, is very much not a Community, when it comes to sharing the oil-and-gas wealth.

And the Western world has failed to use that clear economic division to sow discord within the Camp of Islam. Instead of allowing the poor and primitive Muslim masses in Pakistan, in Egypt, in many other places, to come to resent, as their demands for the rich Arabs (and Iranians too) to share  Allah's bounty -- for the oil wealth is clearly a gift from Allah to the Muslims, the "best of peoples" --- are rejected, or met with the reluctant handing out of derisory sums -- this can only increase resentment by poor Muslims of rich Muslims.

Instead, we in the West assume that the burden of supporting the poor Muslim states -- lest they collapse, lest they become "failed states" (one of those tell-tale phrases, that means almost nothing, but is meant to shut off discussion) -- should be prevented by large amounts of Western aid. But the dismal performance of these states, their decline into ever greater poverty and distress, is a factor of many things, including the unwillingness of Muslims to limit family size, so that American soldiers in Iraq who themselves, like most people in the advanced West, are keenly aware of the cost of children, and limit their families accordingly to a few children, found themselves protecting and defending and handing out plackets of money to Iraqis who seem, almost universally, to have six or eight or ten children apiece, even when the father is unemployed, and no one in Iraq raises the issue that is present all over the Muslim lands -- the issue of women who are breeding machines, and men who are encouraged to procreate so as to increase the world's Muslim population. This is done in the assurance that the West will either provide aid, or better still, will remain wide open to Muslim immigration.

This all has to stop. We don't have to spend tens or hundreds of billions to keep Pakistan or Egypt or Iraq (most maddening of all given its oil revenues) from poverty, or internecine warfare, or collapse.

And if we don't, either the rich Arabs will help out -- in which case they will have less to spend on mischief-making against the West, less to spend on mosques and madrasas and campaigns of Da'wa all over the world -- or they won't, in which case the resentment against them in the poor Muslim states will rise and rise.

Let it.

Posted on 05/17/2011 8:13 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
Saudi Arabia As Prague Book Festival's "Guest Of Honor"

From The Guardian:

How can a book fair make Saudi Arabia 'guest of honour'?

Book World Prague 2011 has laid on a lavish welcome for Saudi Arabia, but there's scant room for the writers the Saudi government persecutes

Bookworld Prague
Book World Prague in 2008

At Book World Prague 2011, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is the "guest of honour". But guest, in this context, actually means high-paying client: an oppressive regime hoping to buy itself some cultural legitimacy with its petrodollars. And honour? Given the dismal Saudi Arabian record on freedom of speech and other human rights, honour basically means shame.

Under the soft rainbow colours of an arching art nouveau roof, the Saudis have erected a huge and lavish stand, in the form of a turreted (and carpeted) mock fortress, replete with scale models of Mecca and Medina, children's play area, some blonde women in Saudi costumes, and plenty of individually plastic-wrapped dates for all. There are even a few books, presumably as a concession to this being a book fair – and one or two of them are literary titles.

But where are the Saudi writers? That the little-known Abdullah Al-Nasir was the only Saudi author on the programme of events who made it to Prague serves as the regime's most eloquent comment. It seems that despite the desire to represent the Kingdom as a literary culture, it is not celebrating actual Saudi writing. The Saudi author who is most conspicuous by his absence, Jeddah native Abdo Khal, won the 2010 IPAF prize for Spewing Sparks as Big as Castles, his searingly critical allegory of the criminal rule of a corrupt super-rich oligarchy. Given that Khal's books are banned in his home country it would be naive to expect the regime to invite him here – or him to accept such an invitation. But given that Saudi writers have won the IPAF for two consecutive years now, their complete absence from the fair is hard to explain.

Thanks to the dedication of Literature Across Frontiers, the European platform for literary exchange that works tirelessly to promote intercultural dialogue, there are several Arab authors here. There are many fascinating and illuminating debates – both on and off the stage – with these pan-Arab guests, guests in the original sense of the word, many of them blazing with the true honour of ongoing revolutionary involvement. Their talk turns repeatedly to revolution, in all its senses – regime change, paradigm shift, toppling the dominant father, the censor, the auto-censor, the harasser, and challenging the dominant narratives that keep Arab identity confined to the all-too-familiar tropes.

Literary censorship and artistic freedom are of course central issues in the daily lives of many Arab writers, even with the Arab spring in full bloom. For Egyptian writers such as Mansoura Ez Edin, the giddy prospect of the revolution being completed and delivering a progressive and democratic regime that allows true freedom of expression is still a dream, and almost too much to hope for. For others, such as Iraqi Hassan Blassim, pan-Arab publishing censorship has meant that his work has still only been published online in Arabic – despite the English translations of his work, published by Comma Press, earning him much praise.

During a depressing session on literary and press censorship by the Index On Censorship team, the question of international book fair sponsorship by repressive regimes is explored. Given the prospect of London International Book Fair hosting China as "Market Focus" in 2012, current Index editor Jo Glanville is clear that this issue must be tackled head-on, and the magazine's founding editor Michael Scammell refers to the attempt by authoritarian regimes to whitewash their outrageous human rights record via book fair attendance as a "sinister trend".

For Maghrebi-Dutch Abdelkader Benali, whose Dutch writing is published free of censorship in Holland, the sight of the mock Saudi fortress here is a painful reminder of the repression so many of his colleagues are suffering across the Arab world, whether in stable regimes like Saudi Arabia that are not currently being rocked by protests, or as part of the brutal crackdown on the many uprisings elsewhere. The whole Arab literary community is keenly aware of the Syrians who are currently in hiding, for example, fearing for their lives, as a result of having taken an anti-regime stance in their writing.

For Benali, any European city "hosting a regime that is against literature" therefore gives the message to the Arab world that "in Europe, we are on the side of the oppressors". And of course this is not just any European city, this is Prague. "The Arab media will pick up on this," stresses Benali, "and they will be asking why the Czechs, who were at the forefront of the revolt against the Soviet Union less than 30 years ago, and who know so well what it is to be oppressed and deprived of freedom of expression, are calmly hosting a regime which is against any form of free expression."

In the middle of the most significant revolutionary moment since 1989, in the middle of one of the most iconic revolutionary cities in Europe, is the hijacking of literary culture for use as instant kudos by the distinctly anti-literary regime of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia really acceptable? And in the broader context of this as a growing trend, the question that the shameful Saudi presence here in Prague really poses is whether we are simply being naive by expecting the international book fair scene to promote writers and books, rather than high-paying despotic regimes.

Posted on 05/17/2011 10:31 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
Why Does This Story About A Saudi Woman Spitting In The Faces of American Infidels Not Surprise You?

From Florida Today:

Spitting Saudi woman faces hate-crime charges

 

64 Comments

Nuha Mohammed Al-Doaifi, 21, a Saudi Arabian national, faces a charge of battery with a hate-crime enhancement after Palm Bay police were called at about 1 p.m. Sunday to the Wal-Mart store at 1040 Malabar Road to investigate reports of a disturbance.
 
Nuha Mohammed Al-Doaifi, 21, a Saudi Arabian national, faces a charge of battery with a hate-crime enhancement after Palm Bay police were called at about 1 p.m. Sunday to the Wal-Mart store at 1040 Malabar Road to investigate reports of a disturbance. / Booking photo

A 21-year-year-old woman faces hate-crime charges after police said she repeatedly spit at a Walmart customer who told her she entered the wrong door and later proclaimed that “Americans are pushing us around.”

Nuha Mohammed Al-Doaifi, a Saudi Arabian national, faces a charge of battery with a hate-crime enhancement after Palm Bay police were called at about 1 p.m. Sunday to the Walmart store at 1040 Malabar Road to investigate reports of a disturbance.

The hate-crime enhancement means that the battery charge could be elevated to a felony.

Police said the incident started when Al-Doaifi attempted to roll a shopping cart into the store and struck the exit door.

A customer told her she was using the wrong door, prompting Al-Doaifi to spit in the person’s face before turning and walking on into the store to go shopping, police said.

“Her actions were directed at random people based on their ethnicity and that’s according to her own statement,” Yvonne Martinez, spokeswoman said.

Witnesses said Al-Doaifi, accompanied by her 2-year-old son, also spit at another customer who apparently got to close to her.

The spittle missed in that case, police said.

Workers at the store were notified and called police.

Several patrol officers approached Al-Doaifi to talk in the store and asked her why she spat at customers.

“Americans are pushing us around,” Al-Doaifi stated before officers took her into custody, according to reports.

She was arrested and booked into the Brevard County Detention Center in Sharpes where she remains jailed today.

She’s also had an incident with one of her Florida Tech professors,” Martinez said.

“She also spit at the professor. They have initiated procedures to have her sent back to Saudi Arabia.”

Posted on 05/17/2011 11:02 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
How Many Muslims Celebrated Bin Laden's Death? And How Many Had Celebrated His "Great Deed"?

Osama Bin Laden was killed by American troops.

Muslims who lived in the West, and who depend -- but only for now, as they see it -- on continued Western gullibilityand goodwill -- said that they were glad to hear of his removal from the scene because he, and Al Qaeda, had been "bad" for Muslims, and then those who made the mistake of going a bit further made clear that he was "bad" not morally - there was no mention of that -- but "bad" for the "image" of Muslims and of Islam, and nothiing must be allowed to damage that, not while Muslims still gathering numerical strength in the West have to, at least minimally, watch out for Infidels learning too much about Islam too soon.

But lest, as time passes, some begin to allow others to rewrite history and to claim that Muslims had expressed unalloywed and unfeigned delighted at news of Bin Laden's death, make sure you take note of all the demonstrations, held around the Muslim world, by Muslims outraged at his death, including those continuing to go on in Pakistan. 

And ask yourself, and others, this: Where in the world, and where in Great Britain or the United States, did any Muslims gather as a group -- or even three, or two, or one -- to publicly celebrate the death of Bin Laden? It didn't happen anywhere. There is no recorded case of Muslims celebrating the death of Bin Laden -- but when news of Bin Laden's great deed in New York and Washington arrived in Cairo, in Beirut, in Riyadh and Jiddah, in Ramallah and Gaza, then there was celebration, then there was joy and the handing out of sweets, and invitations to partake of a feast (many sheep were sacrificed that night), there was much mafficking all over the Arab and Muslim world.

Compare.

Contrast.

Posted on 05/17/2011 11:06 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
John Milton On Berlusconi, Strauss-Kahn, And Other Ithyphallic Personages

Samson:

Then swoll'n with pride into the snare I fell

Of fair fallacious looks, venereal trains.

Softened with pleasure and voluptuous life; 

At length to lay my head and hallowed pledge

Of all my strength in the lascivious lap

Of a deceitful concubine who shore me

Like a tame wether, all my precious fleece,

Then turned me out ridiculous, despoiled,

Shaven, and disarmed among my enemies.

Chorus:

Desire of wine and all delicious drinks,

Which many a famous warrior overturns,

Though couldst repress, nor did the dancing ruby

Sparkling, out-poured, the flavor, or the smell,

Or taste that cheers the heart of gods and men,

Allure thee from the cool crystalline streams.

 

                                   Milton, Samson Agonistes, l. 532-546

Posted on 05/17/2011 11:29 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
Given Islam, Why Should Anyone But Muslims Take In Muslims?

Hundreds of refugees returning to Libya to attempt boat passage to Europe – UN

Shipwreck of boat just short of Lampedusa's harbour in which three people died

17 May 2011 – The United Nations refugee agency today reported that hundreds of people who had entered Tunisia after fleeing the conflict in neighbouring Libya have now returned intending to board boats and travel to Europe.

Those who intend to make the passage to Europe include refugees who originally came from Somalia, Ethiopia and Eritrea, and have been accommodated in camps at Shousha, near Tunisia’s border with Libya, according to Melissa Fleming, spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

The agency is holding discussions with those communities to raise awareness of the dangers at sea, as well as the risks they face when crossing the Libyan border, Ms. Fleming told reporters in Geneva. In March, UNHCR learned from the Somali community at Shousha camp that two Somalis were shot and killed in Libya after crossing the border from Tunisia.

An estimated 14,000 people have arrived in Italy and Malta by boat from Libya. Some 1,669 of them arrived on Friday and Saturday. According to accounts received from those who survived the treacherous voyages and their families, more than 1,200 of those destined for Europe remain unaccounted for since 25 March. [this is in addition to 26,000 who have arrived from Tunisia, after its "revolution"]

UNHCR representatives have met with refugees in Tripoli who are planning to make the journey and made them aware of the high death toll, but the refugees said they had nothing to lose.

“One Eritrean man told us he would rather die trying to reach safety than continue to live in danger,” said Ms. Fleming. “Many have been living in Libya for several years, have faced periods of detention, and come from countries like Eritrea and Somalia where safe return is not a possibility,” she said. [but all Muslim countries are violent or potentially so-- does that mean that all of their inhabitants should be taken in by the advanced Western non-Muslim countries? On what theory? And with what unavoidable result?]

Based on discussions with people who have arrived in Italy, UNHCR believes that thousands more will attempt to make the journey by sea. The majority have made the voyage in boats that are overloaded with passengers and in a very poor state of repair. Often, there are no qualified crews to operate the boats.

“UNHCR repeats its call to all vessels on the Mediterranean to consider all boats departing Libya to be in need of assistance, and likely to face a situation of distress at some point in the journey,” said Ms. Fleming.

She said UNHCR would soon re-establish an international presence in western Libya, but in the interim, national staff and partners are running the agency’s projects to assist refugees and asylum-seekers.

UNHCR has teams of staff interviewing asylum-seekers and refugees in Egypt and Tunisia to assess their status and, where possible, refer them for resettlement.

“It is with great sadness that UNHCR has learned that people on track for resettlement following interviews last year in Libya lost their lives while trying to reach Europe recently. People in the middle of the resettlement process and vulnerable cases are prioritized in our interview schedule,” said Ms. Fleming.

She said UNHCR estimates that 6,000 people will need resettlement from the border areas of Egypt and Tunisia in the coming months, as well as 2,000 others from Cairo. Thus far, 11 countries have offered more than 900 resettlement places. The United States has also offered a significant but unspecified number of resettlement places.

Posted on 05/17/2011 11:46 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
Baron Bodissey: Tennessee The Model

Baron Bodissey writes at Gates of Vienna:

Notwithstanding the traffic ticket, my three days in Tennessee left me with a decisively favorable view of the Volunteer State. I saw a lot of majestic scenery during the long ride across the state, but my close-up view began after I arrived at Wednesday evening’s event in the suburbs of Nashville. That’s when I had the chance to meet and mingle with some of the dedicated anti-jihad activists who are resisting the Islamization of their state.

Two of the Tennessee Freedom Coalition people I met that night will serve as examples of the caliber of Tennessee’s volunteers.

Andy Miller is the Chairman of TFC, and was our host for the evening. He’s a native of Middle Tennessee and an alumnus of Vanderbilt’s Owen School of Business Management. After graduation he moved to Manhattan for a career on Wall Street. He returned to Tennessee in 2000, buying a farm in Williamson County where he lives with his family. His profession remains in the area of finance, focusing on venture capital for local companies. He is also active in Republican Party politics, recently chairing “Tennessee Victory”, the GOP’s Get Out The Vote effort. His work helped the GOP to fully regain control of both houses of Tennessee’s Legislature and the Governor’s Office. Andy continues to be active in the Williamson County Republican party, including its Chairman’s Circle.

Lou Ann Zelenik is the Executive Director of TFC. Following graduation from Vanderbilt’s School of Engineering, Ms. Zelenik founded her own construction company, specializing in road work and utilities. This practical experience as a small business owner fueled her activity in local conservative and Republican Party politics; early on she helped organize local Tea Party groups. Such endeavors earned recognition for Ms. Zelenik: 2010’s Conservative of the Year (the National Fiscal Conservative PAC), and in 2011 a Lifetime Achievement Award (Rutherford County’s Republican Party). She ran for Tennessee’s Congressional District Six in 2010.

There were a number of other Tennessee volunteers in the crowd that night, including sixteen state legislators. Along with all the other activists from Tennessee and farther afield, they were there to greet Geert Wilders and Sam Solomon, who were to be featured speakers at Thursday night’s event.

Bill Warner was the third guest speaker for both events, but he is a local Tennessee boy, already well-known to most of the attendees. I have admired his work at Political Islam for several years, and it was a pleasure to meet him at last and talk shop with him and his wife.

Geert Wilders and Georgette GelbardIn the dinner line I met Rebecca Bynum, the editor of The New English Review, as well as Rabbi Jon Hausman of Boston, who has been active for years in the fight against sharia and Islamization.

A number of people came in from Canada, New York, and the West Coast to meet Geert Wilders, and I had the opportunity to discuss their efforts on behalf of our shared cause. Pictured at the right with Geert is Georgette Gelbard, who came all the way from Los Angeles to take part in this historic occasion

During and after dinner the three keynoters and a number of other speakers gave brief talks about the mission of the Tennessee Freedom Coalition and its resistance to the growing Islamization of the state.

The evening was warm and pleasant, the food was delicious, and the company unmatched. It was a night to remember.

 

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The following afternoon many of the same people made a road trip to Franklin, a town just south of Nashville. The occasion was a meet-and-greet for Mr. Wilders at the local Republican Party Headquarters, culminating in a press conference for TV reporters, newspaper writers, and internet journalists.

A small group of demonstrators gathered across the street from us, holding up signs and placards for the passing cars. There were about ten or twelve of them, and they were an orderly bunch — no anarchists or culture-enrichers, just ordinary middle-class Tennesseans with a liberal-progressive mentality.

I wandered across the street to talk to them for a few minutes. I always like to hear opposing points of view, and I’ve found that if I stay civil and let other people explain themselves, I can learn a lot about the basis for their opinions.

Two of the women were willing to talk and argue with me at length. They explained that they were opposed to Mr. Wilders’ brand of hate, as they perceived it. They felt that he was tarring all Muslims with the “terrorist” brush, even though only a tiny minority of them were extremists. They also said that he was condemning all of Muslim culture based on the behavior of a few violent people.

 

Protesting Geert Wilders in Franklin, TN


When I spoke to them about sharia, they responded by asserting that “those people” (pointing across the street) desired to reverse the separation of church and state, so they were just as bad. Not only that, Christians had done things that were at least as horrible as anything Muslims have done.

The last fellow I chatted with was of a slightly different political stripe. His main concern was the real cause for the destruction of the towers of the World Trade Center, which he believes were brought down not by the jetliners, but by controlled explosives. He kindly gave me a booklet he had written, which refers to a much longer book has made available online as a free download. If I have time over the next few weeks, I’ll go through his writings more carefully and post about them.

After speaking to him, I handed out my Gates of Vienna business cards to a few people and then made my way back across the street.

 

*   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *


The main event occurred that night (Thursday the 12th) at the Cornerstone Church, a mega-church north of Nashville. I got there early, and while I was waiting, I had coffee — the church has its own coffee shop, and serves espresso! — with Janet Levy, an activist and writer from California whom I had met briefly at an earlier event in the Washington area. We had a lengthy discussion about different aspects of the struggle against the Great Jihad, and shared ideas for future operations.

The main hall can seat about 6,000 people. When I spoke to Ms. Zelenik afterwards, she told me that about 4,500 people had been there, but when I looked around it seemed that the vast majority of seats were filled, so that may be an underestimate.

They all came to hear Bill Warner, Sam Solomon, and Geert Wilders talk about the true nature of Islam and the dangers posed by Islamization and the gradual imposition of sharia law. You’ve seen the text of Mr. Wilders’ speech, and with luck we will eventually be able to post videos of the event — which was recorded in its entirety by TFC — so that you can see how superb the other two keynote speakers were.

The audience was also treated to talks by several local people, including radio host Steve Gill, Andy Miller, and Lou Ann Zelenik. Ms. Zelenik is a real firebrand of a speaker, and her rousing talk ahead of Mr. Wilders’ speech set the tone for what came after. She told me later that she has had ten death threats, and I can understand why: this courageous woman tells the truth without mincing words, and it’s no wonder that the Muslims and their allies on the Left want her taken out of the game.

There was only one brief heckle during Geert Wilders’ speech — a man yelled from the back something about Jesus telling us to love our enemies. I saw no demonstrators, although one of the cops told me there had been a dozen or so out by the edge of the road, and by his description they may have been the same ones I talked to in Franklin. He also said there had been a few Muslims out there, but there was no trouble.

 

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Last week’s events in Nashville can provide inspiration for the rest of the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia, and anywhere else in world where grassroots groups are resisting Islamization. Tennessee can also serve as a model for future actions all across the American heartland.

This was the largest and most effective event of its type that I have ever attended, and one of the main reasons for its success was the mega-church environment. I realize that this doesn’t sit well with some of our atheist or secular readers, but it’s hard to argue with effectiveness.

The plans to bring in Mr. Wilders gained TFC some media attention a day or two ahead of the event, but most of the advance publicity was by word-of-mouth through churches, civic organizations, and the local Republican party. The venue was ideal for a large crowd, since it could seat as many people as a convention hall, and had enough parking to accommodate all their vehicles. The church already had the expertise and personnel to direct traffic, deal with crowd control, and provide security. With the local police co-operating, the setup was orderly and secure.

There was no entry fee — near the end of the evening, ushers passed around donation baskets, just as they would at a church service. But no one was obliged to pay.

The most moving features of the event were the religious and patriotic displays. We sang the national anthem, said the Pledge of Allegiance, and heard public prayers. This sort of civic culture was the norm when I was young, but has almost disappeared from much of the country in the decades since. It was a delight to discover that is alive and well in Middle Tennessee — for an old-fashioned geezer like me, it was a draught of cool water after a long, long drought.

The audience response to the speeches was uniformly positive and enthusiastic — Geert Wilders was interrupted by applause over and over again. One could tell that people had been desperate to hear these things actually spoken out loud. These were opinions which they had thought were forbidden, but which they now understood to be held in common with thousands of other Tennesseans. Mr. Wilders reminded them of their rights under the First Amendment — as he said, “here I can say what I want to say without having to fear that I will be dragged to court upon leaving this church.”

Thousands of people who had never heard of Geert Wilders have now listened to him and understood his message. A plainclothes cop told me he had known nothing of Mr. Wilders until he was assigned to the day’s detail. “Then I got online and googled him, and wow! There it all was.”

The more local cops who become aware of all these ideas, the better we will all be.

This is why Tennessee is the model. This strategy can be replicated all across Middle America. Nashville prides itself as being the “buckle on the Bible Belt”, but it’s a huge belt, and there are a lot of mega-churches across a wide swath of the country.

Lou Ann Zelenik told me several days later that she has received calls from pastors in other cities who want to do the same thing that TFC did in Nashville. So the model is already spreading virally, just as any good model should.

There are other excellent speakers, more volunteer organizations, and numerous venues out there waiting to be filled by the Tennessee model. This is how all the politically correct media roadblocks can be bypassed.

The truth will out, and the Tennessee Freedom Coalition is helping to make it happen.

 

Posted on 05/17/2011 12:34 PM by Rebecca Bynum
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
If You Believe The New York Times, Islam Inculcates The Golden Rule

In a story published in The New York Times today about rebels in Misurata burying dead soldiers who belonged to Qaddafy's army, there is this dreamy misinformation:

In our faith we have the book,” Sheik Abdulhafiz Abu Ghrain, the man who oversees the cemetery and the soldiers’ last rites, said of the Koran. “And this book tells us we must do to others as we would have done to us.”

This is false. There is no Golden Rule in Islam.

Nowhere does it say that a Muslim must do unto others as he would have done unto him. And while some Muslims are willing to treat enemies killed in war decently, many others are not. And none of them is obligated to do so either by the spirit or letter of the Sharia.

And were those killed non-Muslims, what would happen to their bodies is something you can imagine from what happened to the bodies of Israeli soldiers, so often mutilated, and of Americans killed in Iraq (see those contractors whose burned bodies were, to the great delight of hysterical crowds, hung up for monuments from bridges in Fallujah), and of the treatment of the American soldiers, too, killed and dragged through the streets of Mogadishu.

For more on the absence of the Golden Rule in Islam, and the near-impossiblity of appealing to Muslims on that basis, see the article by the former Muslim, Ali Sina, at www.faithfreedom.org.

Or you can start with this excerpt from Ali Sina's replies, in a debate with Yamin Zakaria (a Muslim apologist from India), about the Golden Rule: : :

"The closest that Islam comes to this principle[of the Golden Rule]  is a hadith that says:

"None of you [truly] believes until he wishes for his brother what he wishes for himself." [Number 13 of Imam "Al-Nawawi's Forty Hadiths."]

The same hadith is reported by Bukhari 1.2.12

"The Prophet said, "None of you will have faith till he wishes for his (Muslim) brother what he likes for himself."

The brotherhood in Islam, however does not extend to everyone. Verse 9:23 of the Quran states that the believers should not take as friends and protectors (awlia), even their own fathers and brothers, if they love Infidelity above Islam. In fact there are many verses in the Quran that tell the Muslims to be harsh to unbelievers. The unbelievers in Islam are treated in the same way that the “niggers” and Jews are treated by white-supremacists[sic].

 

Posted on 05/17/2011 12:43 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
A Musical Interlude: Weather Man (Adrian Rollini)

Listen here.

Posted on 05/17/2011 2:26 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
'Put on your burkas, DSK is on the way'

A prescient video by FranceInter from 2009:


Guillon: Visite de DSK à France Inter, tous aux... by franceinter

Posted on 05/17/2011 5:26 PM by Artemis Gordon Glidden
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
Pseudsday Tuesday

BHL should not be confused with DHL. BHL, or Bernard-Henri Levy, always delivers. Often his subject is BHL, but this time it is DSK. Joseph W at Harry's Place translates his defence of Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who cannot be a rapist because he is BHL's friend:

I know Strauss-Kahn. The Strauss-Kahn whom I have been friends with for 25 years and with whom I will stay friends, is nothing like the insatiable and evil beast, the monster, the caveman that he will inevitably be portrayed as, from now on.

Sure, Strauss-Kahn is a seducer, a charmer, a friend of women (his own wife above all, naturally). But this brutal and violent character, this savage animal, this primate? No. Evidently this is absurd.

This morning, I hate the American judge who, in delivering him to the mob of papparazzi in front of the palace of justice in New York, made it look as if he thought that Strauss-Kahn was an ordinary person subject to trial, like anyone else.

[...]

If the Left lets Strauss-Kahn slip away, the Left will lose its champion.

Quelle horreur! A champion of the Left being treated like an ordinary person.

Posted on 05/17/2011 6:05 PM by Mary Jackson
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
What is it about glasses?

Glasses and grief. Even in a soap, and Coronation Street is the best of soaps:

The window to the window to the soul? A sign of human frailty, since even those with 20 -20 vision come to need them as they age?  And worse than glasses is no glasses, when the loved one has always worn them. He won't need them where he's going, Hilda would say, in her Lancashire accent, brusque and stoical like so many of my elderly relatives.

Posted on 05/17/2011 7:24 PM by Mary Jackson
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
Timmerman: Iran Behind Israel Border Clashes

Ken Timmerman in Northern Iraq

NewsMax.com columnist Kenneth Timmerman has given us confirmation via Iranian dissidents that Iran's  I.R.G.C. organzied the al-Nakbah Day violent border clashes with Israel.

In an email he notes:

New information received from Iranian dissidents confirms what the Israeli government has been saying, namely that Iran was behind the coordinated assault on Israel’s borders on Sunday.

Iran sent teams of IRGC intelligence officers to Beirut and Damascus several weeks ago to convoke the leaders of Hamas and Hezbollah to Tehran, so they could give them  instructions on how to organize the border assaults.

The Palestinians moved on three fronts simulataneously with help from the Syrian government and from Hezbollah, which bussed demonstrators to the borders from refugee camps. Hezbollah also sent al Manar TV reporters to the scene of the protests before they actually occurred.

Here is his full NewsMax.com report, Iran behind Israel Border Clashes.

The Iranian regime called the political leaders of Hamas and Hezbollah to Tehran last month, to work out the details of an unprecedented series of protests they wanted them to launch along Israel’s border on the anniversary of Israel’s founding in 1948, according to Iranian dissidents.

The meetings were an overwhelming success. Thousands of Palestinians took place in organized protests, storming across mine fields and border fences into Israel from the Palestinian territories, Lebanon, and Syria.

Israel troops opened fire on the demonstrators, killing five protestors along the border with Syria and 10 along the border with Lebanon. Thirteen Israeli soldiers were wounded in the clashes.

The meetings last month in Tehran between senior Iranian government officials and Hamas and Hezbollah leaders came to the attention of Iranian dissidents through their sources inside the Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC).

“We initially thought they had come for some kind of military training, but then our people told us it was the political leadership that had come,” said Hossein Zohari, spokesman for the Organization of Iranian People's Fedaii Guerrillas, a left-wing opposition group.

“The Iranians had sent IRGC intelligence officers to Syria and Lebanon to invite these people to Tehran” well before the border clashes. “This shows that Iran was deeply involved in planning and coordinating of these attacks,” Zohari told Newsmax in an interview.

Walid Phares, a Middle East analyst, said the coordination of the attacks was a clear sign of Iranian involvement.

“The three fronts that moved at the same time are all backed by Iranian assets or Iranian allies, Hamas and Hezbollah. Even the Palestinian factions that organized the thrust on the Golan are controlled by Damascus and the Iranian regime. The regional connection of all these forces is the IRGC.”

Phares believes that Iran is desperate to protect Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. “If Assad goes down, Iran's reach to Lebanon will be severely restrained. It is a strategic goal for Iran to help Assad by deflecting attention from the uprising inside Syria to a clash with Israel,” he told Newsmax.

Former IRGC officer Reza Kahlili, who worked as a spy for the CIA inside Iran for more than a decade, told Newsmax that the Iranian leadership was seeking to “turn up the heat on every front” in the region.

The border attacks on Sunday “were part of a larger plan to increase the pressure on Israel, protect Syrian president Assad, and to assert Iran’s dominance as the leader of the revolutionary forces in the region,” Kahlili said.

The Iranian regime is “itching for a fight with both Israel and the United States,” Kahlili believes.

Last month, on Iran’s orders, Hamas launched a series of rocket attacks that hit targets deeper in Israel than ever before. “They were trying to provoke an Israel reaction, but the Israelis didn’t respond. The Iranians said that Israel was being ‘besieged by Muslim anger,’” Kahlili said.

Israel’s military spokesman, Brig. Gen. Yoav Mordechai, told Israel’s Channel 2 TV that he saw “fingerprints of Iranian provocation and an attempt to use ‘Naqbah day’ to create conflict.”

The Arab states refer to the founding of the state of Israel as “al-Naqbah,” or “the Catastrophe.” Even the Palestinian Authority, which the United States believes wants to live side by side with the Jewish state — uses the term and sponsors riots to protest Israel’s founding every year.

The Syrian authorities used Palestinians from refugee camps all across the country so they could take part in the demonstrations along the border with Israel.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he had ordered the military to act with “maximum restraint,” but that Israel would not tolerate further incursions across its border.

In Tehran, Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said the clashes showed Israel’s real nature. “Like a cancer cell that spreads through the body, this regime infects any region. It must be removed from the body,” he said.

Canadian parliamentarian Irwin Cotler calls such comments “incitement to genocide,” and has introduced legislation in Canada to refer Ahmadinejad to the World Court for violating the International Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.

Also today, a flotilla of small ships left the southern Iranian port of Bushehr heading for Bahrain, according to Iranian news reports.

Former IRGC officer Kahlili tells Newsmax that his sources inside the Guards revealed that the Bahrain flotilla was carrying “martyrdom forces,” members of the Guard and its Bassij militia who had been trained to carry out suicide attacks.

Iran and Saudi Arabia are engaged in a giant power struggle that is playing itself out all across the region, Kahlili believes. “They are fighting through proxies, such as Hezbollah, Hamas, and Syria,” he said.

 

© Newsmax. All rights reserved.



 
 

Posted on 05/17/2011 10:22 PM by Jerry Gordon
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
Muslims, yet again, push for sharia law in Australia; Attorney-General says No

From the ABC, and from The Australian.

First, the ABC, Jacquelyn Hole reporting.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2011/05/17/3219546.htm?section=justin

'Muslim group wants sharia law in Australia'

'The Australian Federation of Islamic Councils wants Muslims to be able to marry, divorce and conduct financial transactions under the principles of sharia law.

It sounds so innocuous; unless one knows that sharia permits child marriage, polygamy, marital rape, wife-beating, men divorcing their wives by saying talaq three times; and that sharia finance can be used and is used to launder money for Jihad terror. And also, as regards marriage, that sharia forbids Muslim women to 'marry out'. And that it is exceedingly difficult for women to obtain a sharia divorce; and that divorced men basically own any children of the marriage. - CM

'In a submission to the Federal Parliament's Committee on Multicultural Affairs, the Federation has asked for the change.

They will keep on pushing.  We will have to keep on saying no. - CM.

'It argues that all Australians would benefit if Islamic laws were adopted as mainstream legislation.

To which mind-boggling statement only netspeak supplies  a sufficiently contemptuous response: ROFLMAO. - CM

'That is not a view shared by many other contributors to the usually low-profile committee.

Understatement of the year. - CM.

'It has received hundreds of submissions on the topic.

'Ikebal Patel, president of the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils, agrees the very word sharia could invoke notions of a fierce, unjust, male-dominated legal code.

Sharia is a fierce, unjust, male-dominated legal code which institutionalises and sacralises abuse of women by men and abuse of non-Muslims by Muslims.  That is not a 'notion'.  That is a fact. - CM.

'Short of trying to really find or use another word, really I would like to suggest that what the Muslim community at least in Australia has to do is to try and explain that there's no aspect of sharia that is being tried to be introduced here.

Suuuure, Mr Patel, I seem to recall Muslims in Australia pushing for official recognition of Muslim polygyny, at least twice before - CM.

'However, Mr Patel believes everyone would benefit if sharia law were utilised in a pluralistic society such as Australia.

No we would not. - CM.

'"Under the global financial crisis that we had the established market, the sharemarket sector, the products that are there suffered very badly," he said.

"Whereas the sharia-compliant investment funds did tremendously well and that's been identified by the financial community around the world."

I suspect him to be lying.  I do not have the evidence at my fingertips, but I seem to recall that this claim that sharia-compliant funds did better in the 'crash' than others, is not in fact the truth.  And in any case, Patrick Sookhdeo in 'Understanding Sharia Finance' shows that sharia finance can be used, and has been used, to 'launder' money for Jihad.  One may also note that Mr Patel is building upon the acceptance of sharia finance, to push for the recognition of elements of 'family sharia'. As Hugh Fitzgerald says: tout se tient.  - CM.

'Even popular beliefs that sharia marriage laws are oppressive towards women are wrong, Mr Patel asserts.

He's lying.  Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Wafa Sultan, Taslima Nasreen and Nonie Darwish, all of them apostates from Islam, say that he's lying. - CM

'Rather sharia guarantees women's rights that are not recognised in mainstream Australian courts, he said.

What rights? The right of a Muslim woman to be prevented from marrying any man who is not a Muslim. The right to be beaten, to be maritally raped, to be wedded and bedded at age 9 or 10 or 12, to be denied food if you don't come across in bed, the right to be divorced by triple talaq, the right to share your husband with three other 'wives' and an unlimited number of 'possessions of the right hand'?? - CM

'But author Ada Lichter, who has written on the lives of Muslim women in both the West and predominantly Islamic countries, disagrees.

'"The members of the Iranian and Kurdish Women's Rights Organisation in Britain have drawn attention to these oppressive laws that they escaped by migrating to the West and they've said that women are much better under legislation based on universal human rights," she said.

And that should have been that, Mr Patel soundly refuted; but no, the ABC reporter runs off to a sly Mohammedan female to get a pile of taqiyya - CM.

'Law lecturer Ghena Krayem, who has researched the issue of legal pluralism (shall we ask her about the dhimma? - CM) says the Islamic community does not want a parallel legal system set up.

Sure they don't - CM.

"[We] found that there's no evidence from any community leaders of any desire to set up a parallel legal system and I think to pose the question in this way presupposes this assumption that the Muslim community wants an alternative or parallel legal system", she said.

She's telling the truth, in a way: because the really pious orthodox Muslims won't settle for a parallel legal system. They want sharia to replace the Australian legal - and political - system altogether; that's the end game.  - CM.

'Rather, Ms Krayem says some of the processes around legal matters such as divorce and inheritance could take on board Muslim notions of dialogue and alternative dispute resolution,

Again, the only proper response is ROFLMAO.  Yeah, let's ask the Coptic Christians in Egypt, and the Christians and Hindus in Pakistan, and all those western women who have been through messy divorces from uber-abusive Muslim spouses (some of whom have skipped to dar al Islam with the kids) how those Muslim notions of 'dialogue' and 'alternative dispute resolution' have been working out for them, lately...- CM.

'but the law should service all community members alike'.

'But Federal Attorney-General Robert McClelland has ruled out any chance of sharia law being introduced to Australia.

'In a statement released to the ABC, Mr McClelland said: "There is no place for sharia law in Australian society (hear! hear! - CM) and the Government strongly rejects any proposal for its introduction.

Stick to that line, please, Mr McClelland, come hell or high water - CM.

"Australia's brand of multiculturalism promotes integration. If there is any inconsistency between cultural values and the rules of law then Australian law wins out."

And that, O Muslims, means, among other things, that we non-Muslim Aussies don't give a stuff what the Quran, Sira or Hadith or the imams and ayatollahs have to say: in Australia, under Australian law, wife-beating is a crime, wedding and bedding girls under 16 is a crime, forced marriage is a crime, marital rape is a crime, polygyny is a crime, women can get a divorce with no more difficulty than men, and a Muslimah can marry a non-Muslim if she wants to. - CM.

Now for The Australian's take on the affair. First, the push for Sharia.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/muslims-use-multiculturalism-to-push-for-sharia/story-fn59niix-1226057100331

Patricia Karvelas reports.

'Muslims to push for sharia'

'The nation's peak Muslim group is using the Gillard government's re-embracing of multiculturalism to push for the introduction of sharia in Australia (surprise, surprise, who didn't see that one coming? - CM) but it says it would be a more moderate variety of Islamic law that fits with Australian values.

Oh, suuure it would..for now, while Muslims are still relatively few and weak...but just you wait...- CM.

'The Australian Federation of Islamic Councils, in a submission to a parliamentary inquiry into the government's new multiculturalism policy, argues that Muslims should enjoy "legal pluralism".

A state within a state...- CM.

'In an interview with The Australian, the organisation's president, Ikebal Adam Patel, who wrote the submission, nominated family law and specifically divorce as an area where moderate interpretations of sharia could co-exist within the Australian legal system.

Thin end of the wedge - CM.

'In the submission, the AFIC acknowledges some Muslims believe Islamic law is immutable, regardless of history, time, culture and location.

'Some' Muslims?  All orthodox Muslims. - CM.

'They claim that Muslims may change, but Islam will not", he says.  

This is an important admission, and The Australian should do some more research into the matter. - CM.

'The AFIC argues this is not the case and sharia can be applied in a way that fits in to Australia and is not extreme.

Suuure - CM.

'"This means most of the regulations in Islamic law may be amended, changed, altered, and adapted to social change".

Observe he said 'Most of the regulations', not 'The regulations'.  It might have been interesting to ask him which regulations he thought could not be amended, changed, altered or adapted...Darura. Necessity. The surrounding infidels are, as yet, too strong and too numerous...and, right now, just a bit too suspicious...- CM.

"Therefore, Muslims Australia-AFIC takes the position that Islamic law is changeable according to the requirements of different places and times, and therefore suits the values shared by Australian people", the submission says.

As Deobandi sharia judge Taqi Osmani put it in his book "Islam and Modernism" - "our followers 'must live in peace until strong enough to wage jihad'".  Andrew Norfolk in The Times, September 8, 2007, reported that Usmani 'argues that Muslims should live peacefully in countries such as Britain, where they have the freedom to practise Islam, only until they gain enough power to engage in battle.'  And there was one Sheikh Hamza Yousef who in 2004 stated, as reported here

http://www.jihadwatch.org/2004/11/hamza-yousef-jihad-is-actually-considered-a-rahma-mercy-in-islam.html

"There are times when you have to live like a sheep in order to live in the future like a lion. - CM.

'A hardline (no, an entirely traditional and mainstream - CM) reading of sharia confers unilateral divorce rights on men, while women who initiate divorce are stripped of their property and financial entitlements.

'A more moderate interpretation and common practice in Islamic countries is to recognise divorce by mutual consent.

It would be interesting to ask for some specific examples - CM.

'In the interview, Mr Patel said: "I'm saying that instead of letting the extremists within Islam take over the agenda, we are saying there is a path whereby it will work for all the communities in a moderate way.

In other words, he's a slow jihadist rather than a fast jihadist. - CM.

"It is iimportant for someone who is a Muslim or a practising Jew that aspects of our religion which can be incorporated within the greater legal system are introduced.

Note the sly attempt to equate Muslims with Jews. It is a false comparison. Jews do not aim to impose Talmudic law on everybody else in the world; Muslims do intend to impose sharia law world-wide.  Jews outside of Israel are prepared to coexist permanently in tandem with non-Jews; Muslims are supposed to convert every inch of the planet into dar al Islam, and therefore Muslim accommodations to non-Muslim law and government are temporary and tactical accommodations only.  - CM.

"This is about personal issues, about family, and won't affect any other Australian", he said.

It won't? What if a Muslim girl wants to marry a non-Muslim Aussie without demanding that he convert to Islam?  Australian law says they can get married.  Sharia says they can't. - CM.

"It's about a system that does not impinge on the rights of any other Australian".

Yet. - CM.

'In its submission to the inquiry, the AFIC says criticisms of sharia as being biased against women and treating them as second-class citizens are wrong.

They're lying. - CM.

"It is important for Muslims to seriously consider this criticism", the submission says.

"But it is also important for the Australian government to respect the rights of Muslim women who want to keep and maintain the way they dress, eat, and interact with others, as long as such behaviour does not inflict harm on others.

Wearing the Slave Mask in public damages civil society and creates a security headache.- CM.

"Muslims in Australia should accept the Australian values (okay, Mr Patel, just tell Muslim men that threatening or vulgarly propositioning non-Muslim women in the street or on the beach, and ordering them to 'cover up' is not on, eh? - CM) and Australia should provide a 'public sphere' for Muslims to practise their belief.  It takes two to tango.

And is there any Muslim majority, Muslim-ruled society that permits non-Muslims the free and unimpeded public practice of their beliefs?  - CM.

"This approach demands a (temporary, tactical - CM) compromise from Islam, which should be open to other values (ROFLMAO - there is no majority- Muslim society anywhere that is 'open to other values' in any meaningful sense - CM) and also to make a similar demand of Australia.

He's got the fair go rhetoric down pat. But at bottom it's about getting concessions...and then pushing for more, further down the road. - CM.

"It is not only Australian Muslims who should reconcile these identities, but all Australians".

'Mr Patel says the AFIC, as the peak body of Islamic organisations in Australia, "strongly supports that multiculturalism should lead to legal pluralism...and twin tolerations".

"The submission cites regulations governing Islamic finance and halal certification in Australia as examples of how legal pluralism can work.

So first the Muslims get one thing installed, then they push for another, and another, and another...By the way, some of us are not best pleased about the way in which halal is being pushed to become the (often unlabelled) norm rather than the exception, creating a nice little earner for all those Muslim clerics who get paid for carrying out inspections to 'certify' things as halal, and pushing non-Muslim slaughtermen and butchers out of business..- CM.

'British law since 1996 has allowed for alternative dispute resolution through sharia tribunals, the rulings of which are enforceable in county courts and the High Court.

And there are plenty of people in Britain who are beginning to realize that this was a disastrous mistake. - CM.

'The submission calls on the inquiry members to consider "hard questions" from Muslim communities.

Now we get the typically Muslim whining  - CM.

"Muslims are required to have social integration with the majority of people in Australia: what does this really mean?  Should Muslims remove the hijab, dress like others, drink alcohol and go to the pub to demonstrate that they have actually integrated?"

Removing the hijab and adopting normal Australian street wear, which is perfectly modest, would be a start.  Not forcing your women to wear the Slave Rag if they don't want to, would be a good idea.  And nobody's asking or forcing you to drink alcohol (plenty of non-Muslim Aussies are 'on the wagon'); but refraining from attacking, harassing and trying to drive out of business pubs and bottle shops that happen to be located in or near suburbs you have colonised,  and not firing rifles at Hindu temples or Christian churches, would also be much appreciated. And not demanding prayer rooms or wash rooms or sessions at publicswimming pools for your exclusive use, when everyone else has to share...- CM

'In most Western countries, the submission notes, the idea of an "Islamic family tribunal or arbitration is likely to fuel the debate on radicalism and liberalism".

Muslim family law is misogynistic and unjust, period. - CM.

"But is it true that Australia will never consider Islamic law?" it asks.

If we can put a stop to the influx of Muslims, yes. - CM.

"It seems that in two areas, namely Islamic finance and halal food, the Australian government has been actively involved.

And now we see what a mistake that was. No aspect of sharia should be admitted or recognised, because it all hangs together; there's no such thing as having 'just a little bit' of sharia, any more than there is such a thing as being 'only a little bit pregnant'. The Muslims, having got their way in one area, are pocketing their gains and pressing for more.  Halal and sharia finance should have been rejected. Then we wouldn't have these new demands. - CM.

"So although the Attorney-General ruled out introducing Islamic law, or sharia, at the same time Australian financial institutions are encouraged to do much more to attract Muslim business by developing innovative products which comply with Islamic law.

"Apart from the economic motive, how can we reconcile the conflicting statement and fact?"

Easy. We non-Muslim Aussies will press our Government to rescind its very foolish acceptance and promotion of sharia finance and halal food. - CM.

Finally, let's hear how The Australian reported Mr McClelland's drawing of the line.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/imam-wants-sharia-law-here-but-a-g-says-no-way/story-fn59niix-1226057823890

'Imam wants sharia law here, but A-G says no way'.

'One of the nation's top Muslim leaders, Sheik Mohamadu Nawas Saleem (click on the link to see his picture - a typically arrogant Islamic 'cleric' - CM) has supported a plan to introduce sharia law in Australia, saying it could operate in the family law system through a new model of Islamic arbitration.

What? Like the 'Islamic arbitration' we've been observing across the Arab Islamic lands of late? - CM

'But Attorney-General Robert McClelland yesterday killed off any calls for sharia law in Australia, saying there was no place for it in the Gillard government's debate about multicultural policy.

'In its submission to the parliamentary inquiry into the policy, the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils called for Muslims to be offered "legal pluralism".

First they seek a separate system. Then once they are strong enough they move to impose their system on everybody else..- CM.

'But Mr McClelland said there was no place for sharia law in Australian society, and the government strongly rejected any proposal for its introduction.

"As our citizenship pledge makes clear, coming to Australia means obeying Australian laws and upholding Australian values", he said. "Australia's brand of multiculturalism promotes integration. If there is any inconsistency between cultural values and the rule of law, then Australian law wins out".

And if you want it to continue to win out, Mr McClelland, you and all our other politicians will have to move, pretty soon, to put a stop to Muslim immigration into Australia. - CM.

"We were blessed to live in a stable democracy underpinned by the rule of law", he said. "People who migrate to Australia do so because of the fact we have a free, open and tolerant society where men and women are equal before the law irrespective of race, religious or cultural background.

And that is not the case in any majority-Muslim, Muslim-ruled society on earth.  But, Mr McClelland, you should bear in mind that some Muslims, at least, migrate to non-Islamic societies with hostile intent: that what we see as good - equality of men and women, and of persons of different races and religions - sharia condemns as unlawful, and that therefore, sharia-minded Muslims feel themselves called in the long run to destroy that offensive equality and those offensive freedoms. - CM.

"Indeed, all applicants for citizenship swear collective allegiance to the people of Australia, and undertake to respect our customs and abide by our laws. The values underpinning those principles will not be changing."

Mr McClelland, you need to do some research on taqiyya.  Begin with the case of the Times Square bomber, who when asked about the pledge of allegiance he had taken when he acquired his American citizenship, told the judge coolly that he had sworn the oath without meaning it. - CM.

'Sheik Nawas, a sharia expert and member of the Australian National Council of Imams and the imam of a mosque in the Melbourne suburb of Hopper's Crossing, told The Australian he backed an Islamic tribunal or arbitration option that worked with the Family Court to settle disputes.

'In the area of divorce, there has been a demand for a long time that religious divorce should be recognised.  

So you mean that in Australia, a Muslim man should be able to repudiate his wife by saying merely talaq talaq talaq, and that the Family Court should subsequently recognise this as a valid divorce? - CM.

"That could be accommodated under the Family Law Act, where there are provisions for arbitration", he said. "Islamic arbitration could harmonise sharia law into the Australian law.  We would keep the Australian divorce laws, but at the same time accommodate the religious part of it. Going to the Federal Court and getting a divorce is not good enough."

"It doesn't break the sharia part of the relationship".

So he's after a situation under which, if a Muslim woman seeks and obtains a divorce from an Australian court, she won't be regarded as divorced unless the local sharia court says she is?- CM.

'Mr McClelland's comments follow a submission from the AFIC to the parliamentary inquiry, arguing that Muslims should enjoy "legal pluralism".

Like I've said before, thin end of the wedge. - CM.

'Labor MP Maria Vamvakinou, who holds a seat in Melbourne's west and is chairing the parliamentary inquiry into multi-culturalism, said sharia law had every right to be part of the debate.

With a name like Maria Vamvakinou, this woman of all people - a descendant of Greeks, who suffered within the seven hells of dhimmitude for five centuries before managing by near-superhuman effort to throw off and throw out their Muslim imperialist tormentors - should know why sharia is to be adamantly rejected.  Let sharia be 'part of the debate' sure.  Let's debate sharia.  Let's examine and discuss every aspect of sharia as laid out in the classic Islamic law books, and as promoted by the likes of Yusuf al-Qaradawi and the Ayatollah Khomeini, and as critically analysed by non-Muslim scholars such as Joseph Schacht and Antoine Fattal.  Let's focus especially on what sharia prescribes to be done to non-Muslims and to women.  Let's read Mark Durie's 'The Third Choice', on the lot of dhimmis within sharia regimes.  And then we will know exactly why we must, all of us, always, in Australia, say NO to Sharia. - CM.

Post scriptum: if you click on the first of the stories from 'The Australian' that I have linked, you will see that Comments are open, and that some 120-odd people have commented so far.  The great majority are strongly opposed to any acceptance of any part of Sharia in Australia; and some are identifying as people who have witnessed the fruits of sharia in Islamic countries, and did not like what they saw.

 

Posted on 05/17/2011 9:02 PM by Christina McIntosh
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
Melbourne, Australia: Australian Defence League protests against sharia, Useful Idiots attack them

From the Herald-Sun, John Masanauskas reporting.

http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/protesters-clash-at-anti-muslim-rally-in-melbourne/story-e6frf7jo-1226056365048

'Protesters clash at anti-Muslim rally in Melbourne'

'Muslim groups are worried by a new nationalist organisation that claims Australia is in danger of being Islamicised.

The Muslim groups are worried? Good. It's about time they started to get worried. - CM.

'Australian Defence League supporters clashed with Left-wing protesters (actually, it was the other way around, to judge from a number of eyewitness accounts that appeared in the Comments section, which see below - CM) in the city yesterday as the group held its first local rally, sparkign a warning from the Baillieu Government that bigotry would not be tolerated.

At least he didn't say 'racism'.  But was it bigotry to oppose Nazism and Bushido?  So why should it be bigotry to oppose the sharia-pushers? He ought to spend a little time on MEMRI and find out who the real bigots are: all those screeching, hysterical antisemitic sheikhs and imams - CM.

'A small team of police initially kept the groups apart, but ADL supporters were forced to end their protest early when activists encircled them and tore up placards.

That should not have been allowed to happen.  More police, next time, please. - CM.

'The ADL is an offshoot of the English Defence League, which has staged demonstrations in areas of high Muslim concentratiion n the UK.

'About 40 ADL members, including women dressed in mock hijabs, protested in Federation Square yesterday (that is, in the heart of the Melbourne CBD - hardly an area of high Muslim concentration, at least it wasn't last time I looked - CM) over issues such as the certification of halal meat and concern sharia law would be introduced.

It is perfectly rational to have these sorts of concerns. - CM.

'Protest organiser Martin Brennan claimed the group had 1400 members but denied it was anti-Muslim.

"We are not racist whatsoever, we are against radical Islam infiltrating Australia", he said.

'Australian Federation of Islamic Councils presient Ikebal Patel said the group was provocative and wrong to believe that most Australian Muslims wanted to bring in sharia law.

Most? So, this means that some Australian Muslims - how many, I wonder, exactly? - do want to bring in sharia law? - CM.

"It's of great concern that anyone is out there trying to disrupt the peaceful social fabric of Australia", he said.

Translation: we don't like it that people are waking up to the stealth jihad. - CM.

'Islamic Council of Victoria spokesman Nazeem Hussein said the ADL's views were uninformed and saddening.

"Uninformed" is exactly what the ADL is not.  They are fully informed, and that is why they are coming out on the streets to voice their concerns as publicly as possible.  I  know one of the ladies who attended that rally.  She has lived and worked in the Sudan and knows many, many Muslims personally. - CM.

'State Multicultural Affairs Minister Nick Kotsiras said the Government did not tolerate racism, bigotry, or the incitement of hatred.'

Well, he had better read the Quran, then, and find out how much of it is devoted to incitement of hatred of and aggression toward Jews, Christians, and every other kind of non-Muslim.  Not to mention the other canonical Islamic texts, the Sira and the Hadith.  And sermon after sermon of hysterical hatred, as preached on Islamic television all over the Islamic world, and translated for us by the folks at the MEMRI website, so we all know exactly what Muslims are taught to think of us dirty kaffirs. - CM

"Activities which undermine the multicultural harmony of Victoria will be dealt with swiftly", he said.

Well, mate, start by bugging a few mosques and imams' phone lines and see what you discover. I suggest you also watch 'Undercover Mosque' and "Undercover Mosque: the Return' and track down a Czech documentary called "I, Muslim' which found out that what Muslims say to the faces of the non-Muslims in a free western country they do not yet rule, and what those same Muslims say to one another behind closed doors, when they think the kuffar can't hear them, are two entirely different things. - CM.

'The ADL protest was swamped by the much bigger group of activists and unionists (and, I am reliably informed, a number of Muslims - CM) who shouted anti-racism slogans.

'Anti-racism protester Mick Armstrong, from Socialist Alternative, said the ADL was trying to copy the tactics of its British counterpart.

I am not so sure. I think the ADL will do its own unique Aussie thing.  Wait and see, mate. - CM.

'"They have had their protest, and we have ended it", he said.'

You have not ended it at all, O useful idiot and water-carrier for the Jihad.  The fun is only just about to begin.  The Herald-Sun permitted Comments to their report upon this incident.  I read those comments.  I think the ADL is getting a lot of new members, judging from the number of comments along the lines of 'where do I sign up?'

Some of the other comments were particularly of interest, and I will reproduce them here, just in case they get lost in cyberspace at some later date.

Here's 'Angel of Australia', posting at 11.51 pm on May 15. "I watched from the outside and must say, that the ADL group were very peaceful in the way they were expressing themselves.  The Left-wing protesters were out of control, using mass intimidation.   I am disgusted that these people try to portray themselves as do-gooders.  The Left-wing side were very violent and many of them were removed by the police. Everybody has a right to express themselves and they should be able to do so without fear of being physically attacked.  Shame on the Left-wing protesters'.

Jay, posting at 6.22 am on May 16, wrote - "Interesting attitude from the police and government.  The article says the activists and unionists surrounded the ADL and ripped up their placards, but apparently the police did not try to stop this attack and the government did not condemn the activists (for attacking the ADL) but instead warned the ADL that it would not tolerate racism and bigotry. How about not tolerating physical attacks on legitimate protests?'.

Common Sense, at 6.26 am on May 16, asked -'Why is it racist to say you don't want radical Islamists here, but not racist when radical Muslims say they want Australia to be ruled by Islamic law?'

'Mortified by lefty violence' said, (at 9.44 am on May 16) - 'As a by stander, looking in from where I felt safe, I was disgusted that the Lefties were violently attacking 60-plus-year-old women, who were there peacefully protesting.  There are loads of photos now circulating that will show the truth..".

And 'Sorry Vic Tourist', at 12.13 PM on May 16, wrote - "I was there yesterday visiting Fed Square, saw it with my own eyes, the ADL totally behaved and represented themselves and should walk away with heads  high. The other group was a disgrace, attacking Police and Security who were stuck in the middle and totally outnumbered trying to hold them back.  Just because it was a message people don't want to hear, doesn't mean they should not be allowed to be heard.  Well done to the Police and Security on the day.' (Presumably this person didn't see the 'activists' break through the lines and rip up the ADL placards - CM).

I say, well done to the ADL folks in Melbourne, and I look forward to more - and much bigger - demonstrations that will let our politicians, journalists and religious leaders know what the diligent and well-informed among us have found out about Islam,sharia,  jihad and dhimmitude, and what we think should be done to prevent the Islamoforming of Australia. - CM

 

Posted on 05/17/2011 11:28 PM by Christina McIntosh

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