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The Oil Cringe of the West: The Collected Essays and Reviews of J.B. Kelly Vol. 2
edited by S.B. Kelly
The Impact of Islam
by Emmet Scott
Sir Walter Scott's Crusades and Other Fantasies
by Ibn Warraq
Fighting the Retreat from Arabia and the Gulf: The Collected Essays and Reviews of J.B. Kelly. Vol. 1
edited by S.B. Kelly
The Literary Culture of France
by J. E. G. Dixon
Hamlet Made Simple and Other Essays
by David P. Gontar
Farewell Fear
by Theodore Dalrymple
The Eagle and The Bible: Lessons in Liberty from Holy Writ
by Kenneth Hanson
The West Speaks
interviews by Jerry Gordon
Mohammed and Charlemagne Revisited: The History of a Controversy
Emmet Scott
Why the West is Best: A Muslim Apostate's Defense of Liberal Democracy
Ibn Warraq
Anything Goes
by Theodore Dalrymple
Karimi Hotel
De Nidra Poller
The Left is Seldom Right
by Norman Berdichevsky
Allah is Dead: Why Islam is Not a Religion
by Rebecca Bynum
Virgins? What Virgins?: And Other Essays
by Ibn Warraq
An Introduction to Danish Culture
by Norman Berdichevsky
The New Vichy Syndrome:
by Theodore Dalrymple
Jihad and Genocide
by Richard L. Rubenstein
Spanish Vignettes: An Offbeat Look Into Spain's Culture, Society & History
by Norman Berdichevsky

These are all the Blogs posted on Wednesday, 2, 2013.
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
Al Gore Becomes Absurd And Disgusting

Al Gore, who has traded on his name and his stint as Vice-President and his publicizing, not always accurately, the matter of global warming, to amass a fortune of 100 million dollars (roughly the same amount as Bill Clinton has made since leaving office, trading on his name and his stint as President), has now, with a partner, sold his Current TV to Al Jazeera, the Arab propaganda station that whipped up Iraqis and other Muslim Arabs to murderous attacks on American troops in Iraq, and that, in its Arab-language version, continues to be as venomous an outlet of Islamic propaganda and conspiracy theorizing as before, but in its English-language variant is less hysterical, and more plausible, though with a steady undercurrent of anti-Infidel (especialy anti-Israel, bien entendu) news and equally steady, if ever more implausible, defenses of Muslim behavior around the world.

But that's not the worst of it -- giving Al Jazeera a way into the American market, to poison the minds of the ignorant, that is those who are ignorant of Islam and thus open to the Al-Jazeera view of the universe.

The worst of it is the statement that Al Gore and his partner Joel Hyatt, having just pocketed a tidy sum from rich Qataris (the same people who indiscriminately supplied weapons to fanatical Musilms in Libya, and now to the same kinds of people in Syria), declare that those who now own Current TV, that is the men of Al Jazeera, will "speak truth to power" (as if the vast and fantastically-financed Muslim Arab propaganda machine had somehow been silenced all these decades, and only now was managing to have its tiny voice heard).

Here's the full nauseating tale:

Al-Jazeera buys Current TV from Al Gore
By RYAN NAKASHIMA , AP Business Writer

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Al-Jazeera, the Pan-Arab news channel that has struggled to win space on American cable television, has acquired Current TV, Al Gore confirmed Wednesday.

Gore and his partner Joel Hyatt announced the sale in a statement.

"Current Media was built based on a few key goals: To give voice to those who are not typically heard; to speak truth to power; to provide independent and diverse points of view; and to tell the stories that no one else is telling," Gore and Hyatt said.

"Al-Jazeera has the same goals and, like Current, believes that facts and truth lead to a better understanding of the world around us."

The acquisition could extend Al-Jazeera's reach beyond a few large U.S. metropolitan areas, where some people can watch Al-Jazeera English.


Al Gore sullied, even vitiated,  his own work on global warming by eagerly accepting all the directorships in alternative energy companies, and all the other unmerited inside deals and emoluments that came his way, even though he must have known that in , allowing himself to graspingly take full advantage of this, he became vulnerable to criticism and that criticism was easily transferred to the very cause -- slowing down global warming -- that he claimed so consumed him. Wouldn't you think that he might have foregone the hundred million dollars, or at least ninety million of those dollars, in order to help save the world and humanity and so on and so forth?

The comment he made about Al Jazeera, probably the best-financed propaganda quasi-news station in the world, financed from the deep-as-the-Mariana-Trench pockets of the the government of tiny Qatar, which possesses nearly a trillion dollars in budgetary surplus, needs to be read again:

To give voice to those who are not typically heard; to speak truth to power; to provide independent and diverse points of view; and to tell the stories that no one else is telling,"

It's absurd. It's disgssting.

Posted on 01/02/2013 9:15 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
France: Thousand of vehicles burnt on New Year's eve

This is from The Muslim News, who got it from the Chinese news site Xinhua. Its an English language report of this story Hugh posted yesterday. Now I wonder why they think it is of interest to Muslims?

PARIS, (Xinhua): A total of 1,193 vehicles were burnt on the New Year's eve in France, in comparison with last official figure of 1,147 torched cars in 2009, French Interior Minister said Tuesday.

"When it concerns insecurity, there is nothing to hide ... There is no significant change from torched cars and two-wheelers of recent years," Manuel Valls said.

Setting cars ablaze has become quite a tradition in French suburbs on New Year's eve these years as a display of vandalism.

On this New Year eve 53,000 policemen and gendarmes were mobilized across the country to secure safety in roads, in the famous Champs Elysee and in the Eiffel Tower where hundreds of thousands of people gathered for the New Year countdown.

One young man was killed in the Bas-Rhin in Monday's celebration due to an explosion of a mortar type firework, (some firework! Not exactly  Carnival Spray by Standard of my childhood) while three policemen and four gendarmes suffered from slight injuries, according to the minister.

Posted on 01/02/2013 4:51 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
It Appears That, Thanks to the Mayhem In Syria, Australia Now Has Two Fewer Jihad-Minded Muslims Than It Otherwise Would Have

From Australia's ABC.

First, from 31 December, a report on the demise of one Roger ('Roger'? is this an Anglicised forename taken to camouflage an Islamic name?)  Abbas.

'Australian Man Killed in Syrian Crossfire'.

'Australian man'.  No: 'Muslim from Australia'.  Or, 'Australian passport-holding Muslim'. - CM

'Victoria's Muslim community is paying tribute to a Melbourne man ( a Muslim formerly resident in Melbourne - CM) killed in Syria.

'The Islamic Society of Victoria says Roger Abbas, 23, from Meadow Heights was killed while working in a refugee camp.

'Secretary Baha Yehia has praised Mr Abbas's courage.

"He's a top person", he said.

"We see these horrible pictures of what's happening in the refugee camps and what's happening in Syria and one sometimes gets motivated to go and try to help out in whatever capacity they can and in terms of our friend Roger he went there to do some aid work and got caught in the crossfire."

'Aid work'.  Hmmmm. - CM

'Mr Yehia says members of the Preston Mosque are rallying behind Mr Abbas's family.

The Preston Mosque, eh?   I think I've heard of that mosque before.   Like here, for example:

'Justice King said the men had planned an armed attack on Sydney's Holsworthy army base by up to six men, who would shoot dead as many people as they could before they were killed.  She said they all had a connection to the Preston  mosque, support for a Somalian terrorist group, and were driven by extremist Muslim views...".

So why is the Preston Mosque still open for business?  O well, back to the story of 'Roger' Abbas. - CM

 'Considering the situation they're in, they're actually holding up reasonably well", he said.

"They're holding onto the fact that he departed doing something that he loves doing which is helping people.

That is, helping Sunni Muslims overthrow the hated Alawite heretics? - CM

"There have been people going over to Syria to help with aid since the war broke out.  They're very courageous.  They're doing very dangerous work in a very hostile environment but these people need help and we can't sit back and watch".

The deceased Mr Abbas is being represented as if he had been providing food and/ or first aid to civilian victims of the fighting.  But I have to say that there is a nasty cynical side of me that wishes the reporter had thought to ask who, precisely, were the  recipients of Mr Abbas's 'help': whether he had been , for example, risking his life to provide food and/ or first aid to any and all sufferers without distinction: to Christians, to Alawites, and to Shiites as well as to his fellow Sunni Muslims; or whether he was only helping Sunni civilians; or whether in fact his primary purpose was to support the Sunni jihadists, and even to participate in the fighting as a jihadist himself.  The phrase 'dangerous work in a very hostile environment' is capable of being read in more than one way. - CM

'The Department of Foreign Affairs says it is having difficulty investigating the case, because it does not have a diplomatic presence in Syria.

'It says its warnings to Australians not to travel to Syria remain current...

 Australian non-Muslims - unless perhaps they had very good reason to think that they were in a position to assist Syrian Christians to escape from Syria to somewhere else a bit safer - should heed that warning.  As for Muslims with Australian passports or residency: I must say that I would be inclined to waft them on their way, if I only knew that once they were gone they would not be coming back  - as this fellow is not coming back - or that, if so be they managed to survive the fighting, our Authorities would refuse to re-admit them to this country, because of being a clear and significant security risk due to their demonstrated jihad-mindedness and combat jihad experience

And so to our second 'Australian', believed deceased in the course of waging, or assisting to wage, Jihad in Syria.

'Syrian rebels eulogise 'Australian martyr'

'The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFAT) says consular officials in Cairo are investigating reports that an Australian man (sic: that is, 'a Muslim from Australia' - CM) has been killed in Syria.

'A video posted on the internet shows Syrian rebels (that is, Syrian Sunni jihadists - CM) hailing a man identified as Abu Walid "The Australian" as a martyr.

'The man is shown with heavily armed rebel fighters, and in one section of the video he appears to be preparing makeshift explosives.

'A Google translation of the video ('google translation'??? - Has no-one thought to run this video past the experts at MEMRI? - CM) says the man was killed on December 30 by "sniper gangs".

'The Australian newspaper says the man is believed to be Melbourne-based Turkish-Australian Yusuf Toprakkaya.

Another one from Melbourne?  The Preston mosque is in Melbourne.  I wonder whether this fellow, too, attended the Preston Mosque?  And - 'Turkish-Australian'.  He's not an Australian.  He may have been born here, to Turkish Muslim parents, but his actions show that his primary and probably sole real loyalty is (or was, if he is indeed deceased) to the Sunni Muslim portion of the Ummah, or Mohammedan Mob. - CM

'A DFAT spokeswoman says the department is not able to confirm the reports, but is making inquiries'.

I would like to know whether he really is dead.  And if he's not...I'd like to see DFAT hurry up and figure out a way to keep him, and others like him, from ever getting back into Australia.  I don't want some combat-hardened jihadist, fresh from terrorising Alawites, Christians and Shiites, moving in up the road and biding his time till he can put his experience into practice against Australian infidels. - CM

Posted on 01/02/2013 4:46 AM by Christina McIntosh
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
New report on Iranian Biological Weapons Developments corroborates Syrian Bio-Warfare Threat Assessment

As we were publishing our interview with Dr. Jill Bellamy van Aalst on  Syrian bio- warfare in the January 2013 edition, Reza Kahlili, ex-CIA agent   alerted us  to a major  report on Iranian  biological weapons  developments.  According to Clare Lopez, senior fellow at  the Washington, DC Center for Security Policy  Kahlili’s report on World Net Daily, “8 deadly agents 'to bring U.S. to its knees” corroborates our interview with Dr. Bellamy van Aalst.  Iran has apparenty pursued this deadly program despte being a signatory of the UN's Biological Warfare Convention. 

 In a mid -December 2012  Iconoclast article, “Iran pursues development of deadly biological weapons,” Kahlili’s  Revolutionary Guards intelligence sources identified a  secret Iranian bio-warfare complex  developing Category A  microbial agents with the assistance of Russian scientists. Moreover Kahlili’s sources  indicated that the Islamic Republic has several dozen missiles with warheads containing these deadly  biological weapons.

In  this follow up report, Kahlili’s Iranian Revolutionary Guards  intelligence sources noted the range of deadly microbial agents and means of their delivery:

Iranian scientists, working under orders from the radicals running the Islamic regime, have genetically altered microbial agents in a nightmarish scheme to bring the West to its knees.

According to a source in the Revolutionary Guards intelligence unit with knowledge of Iran’s microbial research and development, the scientists, with Russian and North Korean help, currently possess eight extremely dangerous microbial agents that, if unleashed, could kill millions of people.

As reported exclusively on WND on Dec. 16, the source revealed the existence of a plant in Marzanabad, Iran, where 12 Russian and 28 Iranian scientists are working on microbial agents for bombs. At that time, the source disclosed that Iran was working on 18 agents, with four completed. He has now provided information that with work at two other plants, Iran has created a total of eight microbial agents, with research on insects to be used as the vector to infect the societies of its enemies.

The eight agents are anthrax, encephalitis (the blueprint of this virus, Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis, was provided by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez in an agreement two years ago with the Islamic regime), yellow grain (developed with the help of North Korea), SARS, Ebola, cholera, smallpox and plague.

Iran, with North Korea’s help, has genetically altered the smallpox virus that makes current vaccinations useless against it. And research at two facilities that act as drug companies but are fronts for the deadly research shows insects can be used as the vector to carry plague, infamous as the “Black Death,” according to the source.

The outbreak of plague in the Middle Ages killed one-third of Europe’s population, and it resurfaced in the 19th century in Asia, killing millions in China and India.

The radicals ruling Iran believe their planned microbial attacks cannot be traced to them, the source said. Through various commerce channels and trade with Europe and even through Mexico into the U.S., the regime could release the infected insects and small rodents into populated cities, causing an epidemic that could possibly kill tens of millions of people, he said.

Clare Lopez, Senior Fellow at the Washington, DC Center for Security Policy  commented in this latest Kahlili report:

Iran and Syria are reported to be among the recipients of such deadly (biological weapons) agents; each of these countries also has an extensive medical and pharmaceutical research and development infrastructure within which to produce (and also conceal) its BW programs. Both Iran and Syria also have shared not only these pathogens, but the artillery, ballistic missile and munitions technology with each other and, likely, with Hezbollah as well, for delivery of such pathogens.

Our NER interview with Dr. Bellamy van Aalst and this latest Kahlili report  should start a new conversation among  national security echelons in  Israel and US on   how to eliminate  these deadly bio-warfare weapons  of mass destruction.  The conversation  would  define the  breadth  of  the bio-warfare threats  from  Iran  and  Syria, and how  to reduce  them . .As  Dr. Bellamy van Aalst noted in her NER interview:

Middle East threat reduction requires a far more aggressive and comprehensive approach to deter the proliferation of biological weapons. In my view, any new threat reduction paradigm must have a component wherein ultimately we take out those scientific teams. BW is heavily underpinned by knowledge transfer and we need to be prepared right now to target and take out their scientific teams as has been done in Iran with several of their nuclear scientists. This must be a component of a total threat reduction plan.

Once again Iran's  Supreme leader and his  more radical echelons in Tehran have conned us with taqiyya, diverting our attention from their real intentions,  developing an arsenal of  virtually untraceable deadly biologiocal  weapons   that could result in tens of millions of deaths.  All while Israel, the US and the P5+1 at the UN   are  contending with the Islamic Republic approaching  looming ‘red lines’  of nuclear  enrichment and  weapons development. The unleashing of bio-warfare agents  against Israel and the US, as Kahlili said in his report ,  could bring both countries to their knees.  The threat from these deadly microbial agent  developments is both breathtaking  and frightening.  These deadly   bilogical weapons programs  in both Iran and Syria must be stopped

Posted on 01/02/2013 12:26 AM by Jerry Gordon
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
How Australia's ABC Reported On Those Muslims From Australia Who Went to Gaza to Visit Hamas

From the ABC.  Be it noted that these were not just any Muslims; this party included the Capo dei Capi of all Muslims in Australia,  the Mufti himself.

'Australian Muslim Cleric Meets Hamas Leader'

'Australia's most senior Muslim cleric has met the leader of the Hamas government [sic: the Hamas jihad gang boss - CM] during a visit to the Gaza Strip.

That is, a visit to Jihad Fortress and Military Base Gaza. - CM

'The Mufti of Australia, Dr Ibrahim Abu Mohammed, is leading a delegation of Australian Muslim scholars to Gaza.

'Australian Muslim scholars'.  'Scholars'.  Hmmm.  I wonder whether I can find out exactly how many of them there were, and what their names are, and which mosques or Islamic centres - or 'Islamic studies' centres within our universities - they frequent?    I hope that ASIO and the AFP have a list of their names, and are keeping an eye on them, or will be keeping an eye on them henceforward; and that they are going to share that list, and whatever dossier they may have upon them, with Mossad and Shin Bet.

For more on 'Dr' Ibrahim Abu Mohammed, Mufti of the Muslims in Australia, see a previous item that appeared in this blog in September 2011.

From that posting, for those who don't have time to click on the link, a bit of background on the Mufti: he is an Egyptian-born Muslim, has lived in Australia for more than 10 years yet still speaks no English and, after his elevation to the position of Mufti, gave interviews to the press through an interpreter.  His 'university' education in Islam was at Al Azhar; his thesis was 'in relation to how Islam makes peace in practice'; and he taught Islamic studies from 1988 to 1991 in Ajman College, Al-Ayn University, Abu Dhabi, then from 1991 to 1996 taught 'postgraduate studies in Islam at Leaders College under the Defence Ministry of Abu Dhabi'.  I hope that ASIO are doing due diligence to find out whether he has Muslim Brotherhood connections.  But now, back to our news story. - CM

'Local television has shown pictures of Dr Mohammed meeting with Hamas's political leader, Gaza's prime minister Ismail Haniyeh, on December 26.

"We came here in order to learn from learn steadfastness, sacrifice, and the defence of one's rights from them", Dr Mohammed said 

Speaking as an Australian, I do not feel happy about the idea of Australian Muslims going to Gaza to 'learn' from Hamas.  What kind of 'lessons' about the conduct of Jihad - propaganda jihad, and 'hot' combat jihad, and the concoction of weaponry, are they going to be bringing home to teach in the mosques and Islamic schools here, behind closed doors, when they think the dirty Infidels are not listening?  I wonder, did this delegation of Aussie-passport-holding Muslims visit  the bomb-making factories and the arsenals?  Did they go to the launch sites from which rockets were fired, day after day, week after week, at Jewish civilians within Israel?  - CM

'in remarks translated by Memri TV.

And that is probably the most significant and interesting part of this report.  It tells us that somebody on the team at Australia's ABC, or elsewhere, has 'discovered' MEMRI, and is learning to make use of it, and trusts it enough to cite it as a source in a news story published on an official website.  

By all means, ABC journalists, and all other non-Muslim journalists working for non-Muslim news outlets in non-Muslim countries: read MEMRI.  Read, read, read.  Search the archives.  Watch the video clips, with the subtitles.  See the Muslim 'clerics', and other Muslim pundits, hysterically shrieking and gesticulating, and the ecstatic mobs similarly shrieking - or roaring 'allahu akhbar' - and be reminded of old newsreel footage of Herr Hitler in his rise to power, and of Nuremberg Rallies.  When the hair rises up on the back of your your instinct that is telling you, 'These people, these Muslims, whether ranting and raging in beards and robes or besuited and slyly hissing with oily smiles, are dangerous'.  Read the translations  of what appears daily in the media of assorted Muslim countries and communities and organisations, world-wide.  Read, learn, mark and inwardly digest.  Begin to get a handle on the meaning and menace of Islam, as revealed by the stuff that comes out of their own mouths, ad infinitum. - CM

'The military wing of Hamas is listed as a proscribed terrorist organisation by the Australian Government.

And do people really believe that someone like Ismail Haniyeh knows nothing about, and has nothing to do with nor any control over what that 'military wing' does?  I am very tired of this 'military wing' business.  If the jihad outfit Hamas has a 'military wing' then that military wing is part of Hamas, and the whole thing, not just the hand holding the rocket launcher or the kalashnikov, ought to be banned.  No member of Hamas - of any 'wing' of Hamas - should be permitted to set foot within a free non-Muslim country.  And those - currently resident in Australia -  who support and visit with Hamas and express admiration of its activities and its goals (see its charter, steeped in genocidal Islamically-orthodox Jew-hatred, to get an idea of what Hamas is all about) should be viewed with great distrust.  Myself, I would be happy to see the Mufti stripped of his Australian citizenship and deported to the Islamic Egypt which produced him and from whence he came. Let him enjoy the sharia hellhole that the Muslim Brotherhood is well on the way to creating there. - CM

'The Department of Foreign Affairs says it is up to the individuals in the delegation to make sure they do not breach Australian laws.'

Understatement of the year.  

These people have gone to Gaza to hobnob with and 'learn from' known genocidal Jew-haters who have openly and repeatedly stated their intention of destroying the Jewish state of Israel.  I see no reason whatever why any of them should be permitted to re-enter Australia.  In a sane world, they would not be permitted to re-enter.  But given that that is too much to hope for right now, in the meantime, at the very least, ASIO and the Australian Federal Police should be examining most minutely all their antecedents, their associations, and in particular the circumstances under which they gained either residency in or citizenship of Australia; and I would advise both those agencies to confer with Mossad and the Shin Bet, who may well know more about some of these Muslim 'scholars' - or be in a better position to find out - than we do. - CM

Posted on 01/02/2013 12:31 AM by Christina McIntosh
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
Part 1 of Charlie Hebdo's Life of Mohammed - out today 6€

La vie de Mahomet - 1ère partie - Les débuts d'un prophète.

Arabia:- Where men are men and camels are nervous.

Posted on 01/02/2013 5:35 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
Stopping American Military Aid To Muslim-Brotherhood-Run Egypt

From Fox News:

Pressure builds to nix gift of tanks, F-16s to Egypt

January 02, 2013

Later this month, the new government in Egypt is scheduled to begin taking delivery of 10 F-16 fighter jets and 200 Abrams tanks – courtesy of U.S. taxpayers.

The $213 million deal is part of a foreign aid package signed when American ally Hosni Mubarak was president, but a growing chorus of critics say the Obama administration should pull the plug. They cite Egypt’s new Muslim Brotherhood government’s mixed signals to the U.S. and Israel, as well as America’s fiscal problems, as reasons for rescinding the deal.

“A Shariah dictatorship on Israel’s border – armed with American weapons – is a deadly threat to Israel and America,” reads a petition being circulated by The American Center for Law and Justice. “All U.S. funding to Egypt must be cut off until we can certify that aid to Egypt will help the national security interests of the United States and Israel.”


The petition has garnered more than 150,000 signatures, and ACLJ Executive Director Jordan Sekulow believes it could bolster mounting opposition in Washington. Although the deal has already been approved by Congress and could only be rescinded by President Obama, Sekulow said lawmakers have leverage because Obama needs their backing for some $1.5 billion in aid earmarked for Egypt later this year.

“It’s all up to the president,” Sekulow said. “It will take people speaking out, and we have a limited time to act.”

Egypt would add the state-of-the-art F-16s, built by Lockheed-Martin, to its fleet of 200 fighter jets. The M1A1 Abrams battle tanks would allow Egypt to increase its number of tanks by 20 percent. The first delivery is to take place Jan. 22. Critics say the arms could end up being used against neighboring Israel or even against the Egyptian people, should Morsi ever face a Syria-style revolt.

Reneging on the deal would be justified, say critics, because new Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood has long supported terrorist groups in the Middle East. Since being elected, Morsi has declared himself above the law and rammed through a constitution based on Sharia law. Human rights advocates say the regime’s treatment of women and non-Muslims is cause for concern.

President Obama has even said that Egypt’s alliance with the U.S., which was solid during Mubarak’s 30-year reign, may be in a state of transition.

"I don't think that we would consider them an ally, but we don't consider them an enemy," the president told Telemundo in September.

Tearing up the agreement would not blemish America’s honor, given the new regime in Cairo, said Sekulow.

“Would we have given these to the Mubarak government when the revolution was occurring in Tahrir Square?” he said. “When things aren’t stable, you don’t just say, ‘Well we made this agreement two years ago so we have to go through with it.’

“This is a different government. The government we made that deal with is now in jail.”

A spokesperson at the U.S. Department of State declined to say whether the deal is being reviewed, but said the Obama administration seeks to “maintain a strategic partnership with Egypt that enhances the security and peace of the region.”

“We are closely following the political situation in Egypt,” the spokesperson said. “We support a stable and democratic Egypt, and we look to all Egyptians to resolve their differences peacefully.”

Florida Rep. Vern Buchanan, who recently called for ending foreign aid to Egypt altogether, told last month the Muslim Brotherhood-backed Morsi government has been sending increasingly troubling signals to Washington, and giving it state-of-the-art fighter jets is a dangerous idea.

“American tax dollars must not be used to aid and abet any dictatorial regime that stands with terrorists,” Buchanan said.

Posted on 01/02/2013 11:49 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
Sentimentalizing Serial Murder

The most notorious murderer whom I ever met during my time as a prison doctor was Frederick West. In a small house in Gloucester, he and his wife, Rosemary, had sexually tortured, murdered, dismembered, and buried 12 people, including two of their own children. Their crimes came to light in 1994, more than 20 years after they had committed the first of them; their depravity shocked even an age rich in criminal sensation. When I first encountered West, he seemed affable, spending much of his time playing pool with the prison officers (later, unexpectedly, he hanged himself, to the unanimous rejoicing of the other prisoners). Still, I found something sinister and lycanthropic about him, even when he tried to be deferential and charming.

The murderous couple’s modus operandi—except with their own children—was to drive out together in their car and offer lifts to isolated young women, sometimes suggesting that they come back to their house to sleep. The women probably would have refused the offers had they come from a man alone; they accepted them because of Rosemary’s reassuring presence. One victim abducted and murdered this way was Lucy Partington, a student of English literature at Exeter University; she wrote poetry, had recently converted to Catholicism, and had just applied to the Courtauld Institute in London to study medieval art history. Lucy was the child of a prosperous but bohemian family and a first cousin of the writer Martin Amis, who mentions her extensively in his memoir, Experience.

Lucy’s sister Marian has recently published a book, If You Sit Very Still, about the murder. The title refers to a dream that Marian had shortly after Lucy’s disappearance, in which her sister said to her: “If you sit very still, you can hear the sun move.” A comparison of Partington’s book with Obsessive Poisoner—written 40 years earlier by Winifred Young, the sister of an earlier serial murderer—is instructive in tracing a change in our cultural sensibility: from a robust and truthful common sense to a sickly and canting sentimentality.

Winifred Young was the elder sister of Graham Young, a highly intelligent boy interested from an early age in only one subject: poisons. I suppose today he would be described as suffering from Asperger’s syndrome; but this would be merely a redescription rather than an explanation of his conduct.

Their family was of the respectable, striving lower middle class. Winifred and Graham’s mother died of tuberculosis shortly after his birth, but the father took another wife, who treated both children well. When he was about 13, however, Graham, who had nothing personally against her, poisoned his stepmother to death (with thallium, according to his later confession), and then went on to poison both his father and his best friend with antimony and his sister with antimony and belladonna. Charged with these three nonfatal poisonings but not with the murder—Young’s stepmother had been cremated at his suggestion, and the evidence thereby destroyed—he was diagnosed as psychopathic and sent to a high-security hospital for the criminally insane called Broadmoor, where he remained for a decade.

Despite strong suspicions that Young had poisoned the tea of scores of inmates and distilled cyanide from laurel leaves, with which he killed another inmate, officials (acting on the advice of his psychiatrist) deemed him cured and released him in 1972. He found a job in a photographic laboratory, where he promptly killed two of his coworkers with thallium and poisoned some others nearly to death with antimony and thallium, alternating the two poisons to make it harder to trace his actions, since they produce different symptoms. Young poisoned people in the same spirit as a cruel child pulls the wings from a fly: just to see what happens. Utterly without remorse after his arrest, he was imprisoned for life and died in prison of a heart attack.

Winifred Young and Marian Partington were born ten years apart: in 1938 and 1948, respectively. Young, unlike Partington, had no university education and held a job as a secretary in London, whereas Partington worked as a homeopath and alternative-medical therapist in the beautiful countryside of Montgomeryshire, on the Welsh side of the border between England and Wales. But the woman of lesser education and humbler occupation displays in her book a much higher level of intellectual sophistication and moral intelligence than her more educated junior. Where one is modest, self-effacing, and straightforward, the other is grandiose and egotistical, her capacity to see clearly clouded by a combination of self-importance and obfuscatory pseudo-intellection. I believe that this contrast results not only from individual differences between the two women but from the different cultural environments in which they grew up and subsequently wrote. A week, said Harold Wilson, is a long time in politics; and it seems that ten years is a long time in the history of a culture.

Partington’s book has one strength. Anyone with an ounce of human feeling can sympathize with the sorrow of a much-loved sister’s unaccounted disappearance, followed by the horror of discovery, 20 years later, of what was done to her before her death. “I can’t remember your voice, Lucy,” Partington writes. “Now, after all this time, more than three decades, it is hard to remember the tones, the intonations, the inflections, the words that you would have chosen in your life.” This is authentic and moving because it suggests not only the pain of loss but the guilt associated with forgetfulness. We think that to forget is not to have loved sufficiently, and this adds to the pain.

That Marian Partington suffered terrible loss and its consequent pain, however, does not justify self-centeredness, self-absorption, and self-congratulation, or absolve her of the responsibility to think clearly, at least when she lays her thoughts before the public. Over and over again, Partington extols forgiveness, indiscriminately and without proper examination, as if to fail to forgive were necessarily to fall prey to insensate vengefulness and automatically to inflict cruelty, and as if compassion required forgiveness of wrong in every case. Her book is a description, often unctuous and syrupy, of her struggle to forgive Rosemary West. In the process, she ropes in as many different kinds of mysticism as she can—both Buddhist, from Tibetan and Chinese to Zen, and Christian, from Saint John of the Cross and Rowan Williams to Quaker. For her, a cloudy benevolence always trumps a hard-edged truth; her views are therefore a potpourri, minestrone, or Mickey Finn of religious—or rather, religiose—ethics; she is that very modern type, spiritual but not religious. One can almost smell the joss sticks and hear, as she writes, the wind chimes tinkling in the background, above the healing chakras of the earth that happen to cross her garden (which is not far from a mountain that she considers holy, as did the ancient Celtic Druids).

It is not surprising that someone so indifferent to the propositional, and therefore potentially contradictory, content of different religions or mystical traditions easily elides or collapses moral distinctions. In particular, Partington repeatedly attributes moral equivalence to murder and what she calls “murderous rage.” When finally, after much hesitation, she writes to West in prison, she says: “When I vowed to forgive you I experienced murderous rage shortly afterwards. Somehow I knew that I could have killed someone too.” Speaking to prisoners in England, she says: “Like all of you, I have ended up having to search inside myself, investigating my own cycle of violence and abuse. I have found debilitating grief, fear, shame and murderous rage.” On a Buddhist retreat, she says, psychobabbling away: “Working towards becoming forgiving began with an experience of murderous rage. In other words, I was not so different from the Wests as I might wish to think. . . . From that moment it would not be possible to write off these people who had acted from this place.”

The author, too, has mastered the modern art of constantly talking about herself in an imprecise but self-important way, without revealing anything of herself—perhaps because there is little to reveal: “It seems that as soon as I feel as if I have understood something about myself the next layer of unresolved pain looks me in the eye, as if I am sabotaging my aspirations by thinking I have arrived somewhere safe and clear.” Or again:

I’m not sure when I did attain adulthood. Have I? Adulthood is something about responsibility. I have to reach a compromise between what is demanded of me within my family relationships (as a mother, partner, sister, aunt, niece, daughter) and what calls me, what I am called towards as a unique individual—when I allow myself to be unraveled and re-knitted.

Oddly enough, this constant focus on herself is carried out in the name of the reduction of ego: “The movement towards comprehension is neither logical or straightforward. Essentially it involves becoming less self-centered, which makes space for the experience for oneself and others. It involves getting out of the way. Ultimately it may involve becoming forgiving.” And, of course, the first person to be forgiven is herself: “It was necessary to dissolve my own grief and anger and find compassion for myself before opening up to the possibility of forgiving those who caused this terrible pain.” The dissolution of the ego is supposed to result in a universal compassion that moves beyond considerations of morality: “The attitude of insight and compassion, that is able to love my enemies and pray for them, is waiting to be known and expressed beyond that which is Ωright≈ or Ωwrong≈. If only ΩI≈ (my small self that I cling onto as my only identity) can get out of the way.”

By now, reading this, I felt slightly sick, as if I had eaten too many chocolates. One would not expect a person who talks so much of forgiving herself to have anything valuable to say about forgiveness. She does not consider the possibility that incontinent forgiveness, deemed good in itself regardless of the act to be forgiven or the attitude of the person to be forgiven, means that no human behavior is beyond the pale, that nothing is unforgivable. This is to turn forgiveness into a kind of inalienable human right of the wrongdoer (a profoundly un-Christian view, incidentally).

That Partington thinks this way shows up particularly clearly in her reaction to Rosemary’s response to her letter of forgiveness. West chose not to respond herself. Instead, a note came from a prison official: “Ms West has received your letter and asked me to relay a message on her behalf and asked that you cease all correspondence, she does not wish to receive any further letters from you.” This utter rejection of her advances—the only comic moment in her book, albeit unintentionally and bleakly so—has no effect on Partington. Her forgiveness rolls on undeterred like a panzer division, flattening all monstrous immorality in its path.

So wrapped up in herself is Partington that the question of her locus standi to forgive does not occur to her. What is it that she actually forgives and has a right to forgive? She certainly has no right to forgive the torture and murder of her sister; it was her sister, not she, who was the principal victim. She could forgive Rosemary West the suffering that the torture and murder caused her, but this implies blindness to the sheer moral enormity of the crime. Nor does it occur to her that the Wests’ infliction of violence on 11 other victims, apart from her sister, reduces the significance of her forgiveness, even if she had the right to bestow it. Does she suppose that everyone else who suffered because of the Wests’ sadism should follow her example, or, if they do not, that they are her moral inferiors? Moral grandiosity hardly comes grander. Her forgiveness is like the grin of the Cheshire Cat, subsisting without anchorage to, or expression of, anything, except ego.

The question of the public significance of her forgiveness never occurs to her, either, for she mentions it not at all. Marian Partington forgives Rosemary West: So what? Does it mean that our primitively vengeful system—in Partington’s estimation, “focussed upon retribution, causing more pain,” by which “healing is imprisoned”—should release West from prison, so that Partington can feel good about herself?

I would have said that egotism could go no further, except that it can. In the acknowledgments at the back of Partington’s book, she writes: “Finally, thank you Lucy. Your life and death have deepened my knowledge of love and grace.” This is no mere slip of the pen. It is an unseemly thought expressed several times in the book. “The crisis caused by Lucy’s death was long,” Marian writes. “It has been an extraordinary opportunity for change, a valuable chance to deepen my powers of compassion by facing the reality of my deepest fears, and that which has been buried within me.” Here is a lesson she learned from a Buddhist teacher: “To be grateful for whatever life brings, especially to those who cause you pain or humiliate you.” In short, the abduction, rape, torture, murder, dismemberment, and burial of Lucy Partington was a sovereign opportunity for Marian Partington’s personal growth, so that she could learn to be compassionate toward herself (and therefore, as a side effect, toward others).

It is a relief, after bathing in this oil and syrup, to turn to Winifred Young’s account of her brother and of her reaction to his crimes. Unlike Partington, she is lucid, honest, straightforward, modest, and lacking in ego. For example, wondering whether anything in her brother’s home circumstances led him to the practice of poisoning, she writes:

So it was pretty quiet at home; and, really, there was nothing very exciting for Graham to do. Yet can one really say that if things had been much different; if there had been other things to occupy his mind, that he might have become a useful member of society, instead of the terrible menace he has become?

Her judgment is suitably tentative and yet sound and sensible: “I find it difficult to give a completely satisfactory answer to such a hypothetical question, but I don’t believe that there was anything in Graham’s home background that made him the psychopath he has become.”

She sees her brother in a clear-eyed way, describing how he nursed an ambition to go down in criminal history as one of the great poisoners, reveling in his own notoriety; how he would poison people only if he could watch or monitor the effects, as if they were insects; how he would be apparently solicitous about the symptoms of some but cold-blooded about those of others.

Winifred Young’s reaction (and that of her family) to her brother’s first trial, in 1962, was of exemplary clarity: “Even we, his family, persons who were more emotionally affected by it all; the ones who more than any others in the world, were reluctant to see him put behind bars, felt that this was the only right thing to do with him.” This response is sophisticated compared with Partington’s pseudo-spiritual maunderings. Not only is it far from the vengefulness that Partington ignorantly supposes is the only alternative to forgiveness; it clearly draws a distinction, as Partington does not, between the private sphere of the emotions and the public sphere of policy.

When her brother is committed to Broadmoor, Winifred writes:

I must say I could never understand how the people at Broadmoor proposed to cure him. It did not seem to me that there was any way of effecting a cure by physical means. As psychiatrists explained it to me, Graham had no properly developed moral sense, no conscience. . . . I didn’t see how you could instill a moral sense into someone who, basically, had a character defect.

Indeed, the first psychiatrists to examine Graham Young agreed with Winifred; but by the late 1960s, therapeutic optimism reigned, and Young’s new psychiatrist mistakenly believed him cured and safe for release.

Winifred Young also deals with the question of forgiveness. She is obviously a good and kind person:

Reflecting on my personal feelings at the time, I remember that I was not at all bitter or angry with Graham. I felt ready to forgive him, as I think most of the family were except, perhaps, Dad. . . . Now that he was in Broadmoor, I couldn’t hate him.

When one bears in mind that Graham had nearly poisoned her to death, this statement is remarkable; but it becomes clear that she does not consider her more forgiving attitude superior to her father’s. Graham had observed with chilling detachment his father’s agony in the hospital from antimony poisoning, from which he nearly died. Winifred has no expectation that her father will forgive Graham. Nor is she in the least censorious when he says, understandably, that he wants never to see his son again and that he should be locked up for good. Further, she clearly believes that her own forgiveness is a personal matter; indeed, a precondition of it appears to be that her brother should be locked up.

She wrestles with difficult moral problems, but in a non-exhibitionist way. To what extent is her brother, clearly born different from most human beings, morally responsible for his actions?

My own attitude is still very confused and ambivalent. How far can you go feeling sorry for him, when he doesn’t feel—is, in fact, incapable of feeling—sorry for anything he has done; when he does not care about the havoc he makes of other people’s lives as long as he gets personal satisfaction. I cannot understand the hairline difference between being a psychopath and being insane.

Winifred Young is a genuinely compassionate person, for she describes her “most heart-rending and traumatic experience” of Graham as his telling her, just before his second arrest, that he could not “get close to people.” Winifred, unaware that her brother had returned to poisoning, suggested normal social activities that might help, to which he replied, “No, nothing like that can help. You see, there’s a terrible coldness inside me.” But her sorrow for him personally did not mean that she was unable to make distinctions: “I forgave him for trying to kill me. When he was arrested the second time I felt differently about him.” In other words, she could forgive him for what he did to her, but not for what he did to others. There she has no right to forgive.

The contrast between Marian Partington and Winifred Young is, I suspect, not merely one between two individuals, though it is that as well. The difference between the transparently honest, modest, public-spirited Young, whose ambivalence reflects the real moral dilemmas that the world throws up, and the patently dishonest, self-regarding, and complacent Partington, is cultural. The first grew up before the transformation of the 1960s; the second, probably not by nature a bad person, grew up during that transformation (and participated in it enthusiastically). Marian Partington’s book is a compendium of the spiritual sickness of our times; Winifred Young’s is a reminder of the possibility of real decency—of decency as a great social virtue.

First published in City Journal.

Posted on 01/02/2013 12:43 PM by Theodore Dalrymple
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
Bassen Youssef's Misunderstanding Of What The Muslim Brotherhood Would Allow
See here.
Posted on 01/02/2013 1:11 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
Afghan woman killed on conjugal visit to prison - husband strangled her with her veil.

From The Telegraph

Din Mohammad was sentenced to 20 years in prison two years ago for killing his mother-in-law, and his wife's brother and sister in the northern province of Samangan.

Mohammad's wife, whose name has not been disclosed, visited him in jail in the provincial capital Aybak on Monday and was found dead in a small private room used for inmates to see their wives, police said.

Mohammad confessed to her murder, Samangan police chief Ikram Nikzad told AFP. "Mohammad was told by his mother that his wife had affairs," he said, citing a police investigation. "When she came to visit him in jail he strangled her with her veil and killed her. They were meeting in a private prison room,"

Mohammad's mother has been detained for questioning,

Posted on 01/02/2013 1:34 PM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
Tribes Fighting In Libya

From The Daily Star:

Tribal clashes in Libya kill 2: local official
FILE- Libyans inspect the destroyed side room of the Coptic church on December 31, 2012. (AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA)
FILE- Libyans inspect the destroyed side room of the Coptic church on December 31, 2012. (AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA)

TRIPOLI: Two Libyans were killed on Wednesday when fighting erupted between rival tribes in the southern oasis of Sabha, a local official told AFP.

"Two people were killed in clashes today," said Ayub al-Zarroug, president of the local council of Sabha, 750 kilometres (465 miles) south of Tripoli.

"A personal problem escalated into fighting between the Gaddadfa and Awlad Suleiman tribesmen. The army is now in control of the situation," he added.

Toppled dictator Moamer Kadhafi hailed from the Gaddadfa tribe.

Tribal clashes last year claimed hundreds of lives in southern Libya, and the government is trying to provide better security for the country's sparsely populated but oil- and gas-rich desert region.

In December, the authorities slapped martial law on the south and ordered the closure of land borders with Chad, Niger, Sudan and Algeria.

Posted on 01/02/2013 1:42 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
Mais Où Sont Les Neiges D'Antan?

Extraordinary amounts of snow would be needed to relieve drought in time for spring planting

Posted on 01/02/2013 2:07 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
Venice, Italy: Arab Muslim Gang Attacks American Jewish Tourist

As reported by Tzvi ben Gedalyahu for Israel National News.  Yet another demonstration of the ugly fact that the vast influx of Muslims into Europe has made life more and more dangerous for everybody else there - indigene, immigrant, visitor - who is visibly non-Muslim;  and perhaps most especially for Jews, whether resident or visiting.

'Arabs Brutally Attack US Yeshiva Student in Italy'.

'Arabs'.  Please, Israel National News, call things by their right names.  They did not mob him and bash him because they were Arabs; they did it because they were Muslims.  If they had been Pakistani or Turkish or any other kind of non-Arab Muslim, they would most likely have done exactly the same.  Whereas if they had been Arabs who had left Islam and become fervently evangelical Christians (like Walid Shoebat) or intelligent Catholics (like Magdi Cristiano Allam) this young Jew would have been perfectly safe.  This is not about ethnicity but about ideology. - CM

'A gang of Arabs (that is, a gang of Arab Muslims - CM) brutally attacked an American yeshiva student visiting with his family in Venice, Italy, in what local community leaders said was a rare instance of anti-Semitism.

'Rare'.  Maybe for now...though I recall a similar attack, by a group of Muslims upon a Jew, that took place in an Italian university campus, not so very long ago.  And if the flood of Muslims into Italy continues unabated, violent attacks like this - upon Jews in Italy, or upon any other kind of non-Muslim - will cease to be 'rare' and become commonplace. - CM

'The student was knocked unconscious on Tuesday when he strolled late at night in the centre of the city.  A band of 15 Arab youths (and I am sure they would have been Muslims, since the vast majority of Muslims entering Italy of late, illegally, have been North African Arab Muslims - CM) pounced on him, dragged him into a dark corner, and pummelled him, using sharp weapons.

'The student lost consciousness, and the attackers fled when a passerby spotted them and called police and medics.

Cowardly thugs, prepared to attack when there are 15 of them against 1, but fleeing like rabbits when one more Infidel comes on the scene and raises the alarm. - CM

'The police are investigating, but have not caught the attackers.

'The Milan-based Centre for Jewish Documentation's Observatory on Anti-Jewish Prejudice reported last month that the number of anti-Semitic episodes in the country soared last year.

I wonder how much bigger the Muslim population in Italy became during 2012?  - CM

'The incidents ranged from street insults and swastika graffiti to physical aggression.

It would be interesting to try to work out what proportion of these 'incidents' - especially the street insults and the acts of physical aggression -  have been carried out by native non-Muslim Jew-haters (though these, not merely in Italy but all over Europe and the wider Western world,  have been emboldened and incited by and frequently team up with the Muslims) and what proportion by Arab - and non-Arab - Muslims. - CM

"We observed approximately 70 cases so far this year, most of them graffiti and online attacks, over 40 % more than last year", said Observatory researcher Stefano Gatti.  "The boom might be due partly to more efficient data-gathering, but the episodes have undeniably increased," he added.

'Gatti also pointed out that Italian pundits and politicians "such as Silvio Berlusconi, Beppe Grillo or Piergiorgio Odifreddi" are now writing discriminatory posts and telling racist jokes.

"Making certain issues seem normal, even funny, is one of the root causes of the rise in anti-Semitic episodes in Italy", Gatti said.

And it is, perhaps, a symptom not merely of the emboldening of indigenous Jew-haters as they observe the open display of Jew-hatred by Muslims and continue to lap up the Muslim propaganda about the Plight of the Poor Palestinians [TM], but of the continuing process of dhimmification, whereby fearful non-Muslims, trying to curry favor with Muslims, mimic Muslim attitudes and serve a Muslim agenda, such as the ongoing Muslim jihad against the Jews.  - CM

Posted on 01/02/2013 2:21 PM by Christina McIntosh
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
How Al Jazeera Reports On That Woman Who Was Completely Bonkers
Sen was pushed to death by a woman who "hated Muslims", as anti-Muslim bigotry in the US sinks to violent new depths.
Her long history of mental illness, as well as her confused remark about hating "Hindus and Muslims" ever since the World Trade Center attack, is ignored.
Still, the Al Jazeera story has its points. If it makes Muslims believe that "anti-Muslim bigotry in the US" has sunk "to violent new depths" that may keep them from coming, and that would be highly desirable. Would that they thought it accurately described the entire Western world.
Posted on 01/02/2013 4:10 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 2 January 2013
A Musical Interlude: I Found A Million-Dollar Baby (Adolf Ginsburg Orch., voc. Paul Dorn)
Listen here.
Posted on 01/02/2013 4:31 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald

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