These are all the Blogs posted on Friday, 21, 2009.
Friday, 21 August 2009
Robert Spencer on Cartoon Rage etc
It is a widespread misconcpetion that Muslim rage and violence over cartoons, books, the Pope and so forth is the fault of the persone exercising free speech. Not so, of course. Robert Spencer puts it very neatly:
[I]f someone flies into a murderous rage because of a perfectly reasonable action, the reasonable actor does not thereby become responsible.
If I meet someone who says that he will kill a person every time I step on a crack in the sidewalk, I do not thereby become responsible for the deaths of those people he murders as a result.
Simple, you would think, yet so many fail to grasp it.
KARACHI, Pakistan — Judith A. McHale was expecting a contentious session with Ansar Abbasi, a Pakistani journalist known for his harsh criticism of American foreign policy, when she sat down for a one-on-one meeting with him in a hotel conference room in Islamabad on Monday. She got that, and a little bit more.
After Ms. McHale, the Obama administration’s new under secretary of state for public diplomacy and public affairs, gave her initial polite presentation about building bridges between America and the Muslim world, Mr. Abbasi thanked her politely for meeting with him. Then he told her that he hated her.
“ ‘You should know that we hate all Americans,’ ” Ms. McHale said Mr. Abbasi told her. “ ‘From the bottom of our souls, we hate you.’ ”
Beyond the continuation of the battle against militants along the Pakistani-Afghan border, a big part of President Obama’s strategy for the region involves trying to broaden America’s involvement in the country to include nonmilitary areas like infrastructure development, trade, energy, schools and jobs — all aimed at convincing the Pakistani people that the United States is their friend. But as Ms. McHale and other American officials discovered this week, during a visit by Richard C. Holbrooke, the special representative to Pakistan and Afghanistan, making that case was not going to be easy.
“We have made a major turn with our relationship with Pakistan under President Obama,” Mr. Holbrooke told reporters at a news conference in Karachi on Wednesday. Time and again, Mr. Holbrooke tried to delineate the differences between the Obama administration and the Bush era, painting the new administration as one that wants to see a better life and more business opportunities for Pakistanis.
He said his very presence in Karachi — Pakistan’s largest city and its commercial capital — demonstrated that drone attacks and the hunt for Al Qaeda were not the only American foreign policy activities in the country.
To polite applause, Mr. Holbrooke told local officials at the Governor’s House that the United States Consulate in Karachi would start granting business visas —100 a week — instead of making would-be business travelers to the United States go to Islamabad for the visas, as has been the case.
He stopped at a shantytown in the city to chat with schoolboys crowded into three classrooms, and even visited the home of a local resident, to get a feel for how people in Karachi live. On Tuesday, he met with opposition leaders in Islamabad, including Liaqat Baloch, the secretary general of the anti-American political party Jamaat-e-Islami, and Fazlur Rehman, the leader of another anti-American party, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam, who is sometimes referred to as the spiritual founder of the Taliban.
In Karachi on Wednesday, Mr. Holbrooke kept bringing up a trade bill that just passed the House, which would set up so-called reconstruction opportunity zones so that textiles and other goods made in Pakistan’s tribal areas could get preferential access to the United States market. And Ms. McHale, whose job is, in part, to try to repair America’s relations with the Muslim world, strayed from his side only when she ventured out on fence-mending missions of her own, meeting with 17 Pakistani journalists, 8 officials of nongovernmental organizations and members of several political parties, all in an effort to deliver one message: America cares about Pakistan.
But Mr. Abbasi’s reaction — a response that, Ms. McHale acknowledged, apparently reflects the feelings of about 25 percent of the population, according to a recent poll — demonstrated just how tough the job is. For all of the administration’s efforts to call attention to the nonmilitary ties that would bind the two countries, America is still being judged by many Pakistanis as an uncaring behemoth whose sole concern is finding Osama bin Laden, no matter the cost in civilian Pakistani lives.
“He told me that we were no longer human beings because our goal was to eliminate other humans,” Ms. McHale said Wednesday, recounting the conversation with Mr. Abbasi. “He spoke English very well, and he said that thousands of innocent people have been killed because we are trying to find Osama bin Laden.”
Following Mr. Holbrooke’s example when he received a similar lashing from Mr. Baloch, Ms. McHale said she argued her points with Mr. Abbasi, points that to many Americans would appear logical, but that often fail to impress over here: Al Qaeda and Mr. bin Laden attacked the United States on Sept. 11, 2001; the war in Afghanistan, unlike the war in Iraq, is blessed by the United Nations and is a multinational effort; America will always do whatever it takes to defend itself.
She said that even though she knew that she did not sway Mr. Abbasi, it was good to hear what he thought because she wanted to try to understand the source of much of the anti-Americanism in Pakistan.
Meanwhile, in Karachi, Mr. Holbrooke continued to push an agenda of soft power, telling business leaders that the United States wanted to invest in energy projects in Pakistan. But he acknowledged that some of the projects that Karachi technocrats put before him, with their complex ownership structures, would never get approval in the Congress.
The trade bill, now before the Senate, has labor provisions that are unlikely to get past free-trade Republicans, whose support is needed for it to pass.
And on top of that, in a concession to the United States textile industry, the bill would not include imports of cotton tops and pants, items that are made in abundance in Pakistan.
Menzies Campbell Apparently Thinks Any Criticism Of the Freeing of Al-Megrahi Can Only Be "For An American Audience"
Sir Menzies Campbell, a former leader of the Liberal Democrats, said: 'Labour is clearly facing two ways on this issue: wanting to enhance relations with Libya, but at the same time determined to criticise the SNP for an American audience.'
Greeley, Colorado: Dhimmitude breaks out on the eve of Ramadan
The Greeley Tribune reported on a looming breakthrough on the eve of Ramadan in discussions between Somali Muslim workers, management and union reps at the JBS Swift & Company plant in Greeley, Colorado.The Gale brothers, Marty and Michael, and other intrepid opponents of Somali-imposed Sharia in Greeley were at it again, protesting at the JBS plant. See this latest You Tube video, here. Yesterday, the Gales were interviewed by a local NPR affiliate KUNC reporter.
The Tribune report, “JBS, Muslims vow harmony,” in today’s edition reeks of feel good sentiments about this patent capitulation to Dhimmitude.
Just a day before the beginning of Ramadan, the holy month of fast and prayer for Muslims, talks between meat plant workers, union representatives and company officials continued in earnest.
The objective: Avoid a repeat of the showdown at sundown that flared at JBS USA meatpacking plants in Greeley and Grand Island, Neb., last September.
Miscommunication about how to handle the religious practices resulted in more than 100 Muslim workers — mostly Somalis, but also other East African refugees who've moved to Greeley in recent years — being fired last September for walking off production lines.
Graen Isse, a Somali who helps operate the East Africa Community Center in Greeley, said he thinks conflicts will be avoided this year.
“We have good communication with the company,” he said. “I don't think it's going to happen. Before, there was no communication at all. The key is communication.”
Unlike last year at this time, JBS has created two prayer rooms for Muslim workers inside the plant — one for men and one for women. Also, the company has installed stations in restrooms that allow workers to thoroughly wash, which is custom before prayers.
Still, some Muslims on the B shift, which runs from late afternoon to late evening and runs into prayers at sundown, have requested a month long switch to the daytime A shift to avoid conflicts, Isse said.
“I don't think they're going to move 400 workers to A shift,” Isse said of JBS. “It's hard for them to do.”
Chandler Keys, JBS spokesman, declined to comment on specific proposals being discussed.
East Africans?Isn’t that a big tent for warring Somalis versus South Sudanese Christians to be underneath?The reality is that self-appointed local Somali spokesman, Mr. Isse, is simply another community organizer paid for with taxpayer dollars at another Somali cultural center furthering Somali- imposed Sharia interests in this Colorado Front Range community. It is patent Dhimmitude at both the local and national levels.
The ghost of Sayyid Qutb, who attended what became the University of North Colorado in Greeley and was so offended by American social values he found there that he reverted to fundamentalist Jihadist Islam. The result of that experience drove him to create the foundational documents for Al Qaeda that led to 9/11. Qtub, who was ingloriously hung by Egyptian strong man Gamal Abdel Nasser after a rigged trial in 1966, must be smiling from his grave about this latest capitulation by patent dhimmis in Greely.
Yesterday, Mike Gale sent us via email this ‘humorous’ bon mot of the anti-Sharia protest scene at the JBS Swift plant in Greeley.
Three of us protested at the plant today. There was increased security. We have found that Somalis know how to say the F word and also how to flip the bird. We were told to F - off several times and even the Somali women are flipping us off now. We must be doing something right. The majority of the workers at the plant still support us. They do thumbs up, wave and honk.
The white shirt security guard chief at the plant harassed us. He yelled at me to turn the camera away from him. Then he shouted, "Don't ever put that camera on me again!"
Some of the cars in the parking lot had AA flyers on them. Must be lots of recovering alcoholics working there. They were big and laminated and did not look like our little handout. One of them fell in the gutter by where we were standing. As we were leaving, Marty (twin brother-pastor-rabbi) picked it up. When we crossed the parking lot exit to go home Marty handed the AA flyer to one of the gray shirt security people. The boss thought it was one of our flyers and he lost his cool. He shouted at his guard - NO! NO! I said to him that it was not one of ours. It was the AA flyer and it was litter so we picked it up. We wanted them to put it in their trash can. He began shouting at us and lost it in front of his own security staff. Then he said our flag touched the ground and we had to burn it. It never touched the ground. The shouting match continued until he yelled at us to go home at which point we started shouting our Constitutional Rights back at him. He walked away as we continued to shout at him. He made a complete fool of himself in front of his people. I don't know why he is so mad at us. We have done nothing to JBS and nothing to him or anyone else.
Just another Thursday in Greeley...
Sic Gloria transit Greeley and “creeping sharia” in America.
Saif al-Islam Khaddafy spilled the obvious beans -- on the plane home to Libya, not even waiting to arrive for the hero's welcome for Al-Mugrahi, the man he was escorting -- iin an interview to the LIbyan media. And then the British government, in its LIbyan dealings so nauseating in both words and deeds (Blair apparently raised the matter of al-Mugrahi whenever he visited Libya, which means he was suggesting the mass-murderer could be released, long before the "prostate cancer" became so very terminal, in order for British oil and gas companies to get a leg up) denies away, and we are expected to believe it, believe the likes of Tony Blair, or George Brown, or the intolerable David Miliband.
This is the verso of the medal, the recto of which is the Saudi bribery case, with Prince Bandar in the middle, that was hushed up and British "justice" no longer allowed to take its course, because the Al-Saud thieves who claim to own much of "Saudi" Arabia threatened B.A.E. with a loss of contracts.
Money rules, in everything to do between Great Britain and the Arabs. Or if it isn't money, then its Lawrentian romanticism (see how Richard Aldington way back in 1956 demonstrated the mythomania of T. E. Lawrence, and of the Arabs who would invoke him, and all the great things the soi-disant "Arab Revolt" had supposedly done, and therefore all the things the British supposedly "owed" the Arabs. Or if it isn't money, and it isn't Lawrentian romanticism, then its plain old antisemitism. There's plenty of it going around, in the press, in Bush House, dappertutto. Those who do not suffer from that mental illness sometimes, however, can't quite believe that the reason others talk and think as they do can be explained by that antisemitism. I don't why they have such trouble seeing that as widespread, and malevolent, as it is. Within living memory, it killed six million people. It would be madness, looking at the European media today, and the campaign of vilification and misrepresentation of israel, and of Israel's attempts to survive the endless Jihad against it,, to deny the influence of antisemitism.
But here, at least, with al-Mugrahi's release, its only obvious venality, obvious greed. That's the story here. Radix malorum - everywhere you look.
SANAA — The Yemeni army is tightening the noose around Shiite rebels in the north of the country, according to military sources quoted on the defence ministry's website on Thursday.
"Army and security forces units have taken control of many areas which were in the hands of the rebels and are conducting cleaning up operations" as well as pursuing fleeing fighters, one of the sources told the 26sep.net site.
Other military sources said the 10-day-old campaign has been stepped up in the past 48 hours, chiefly through air raids on rebel positions in Saada and Amran provinces.
"The eagles of the air force continue to land painful blows on the saboteurs, destroying their fortifications," one of the military sources said, without giving figures for losses amongst the rebels or the army.
Yemen's President Ali Abdullah Saleh pledged on Wednesday to crush the Shiite rebellion in the north as the army pressed on with the offensive launched in Saada province 10 days ago.
The campaign, dubbed Operation Scorched Earth, targets Zaidi Shiite rebels, also known as Huthis, in the rugged mountainous region, local officials said.
Fighting began in Saada province on the border with Saudi Arabia and has since spread to Amran province to the south.
The rebels accuse government forces of having killed dozens of civilians.
An offshoot of Shiite Islam, the Zaidis are a minority in mainly Sunni Yemen but form the majority community in the north. President Saleh is himself a Zaidi.
The rebels reject the current government and want to restore the Zaidi imamate overthrown in a 1962 coup. Thousands of people have been killed since the conflict first erupted in 2004.
Too bad the BBC didn't ask non-Muslims -- those who have endured life in Muslim countries, or now find themselves living within or near encroachiing Muslim communitites that have been allowed to form within the naive and generous West, what Ramadan means to them.
Of course, the "slay the unbeliever" provisions are held in suspense, so that's a good thing. Isn't it?