These are all the Blogs posted on Wednesday, 21, 2011.
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
Muslims in Australia Have New Capo dei Capi, a Grad of Al Azhar
From the ABC.
'Imams unanimously elect Australia's new Grand Mufti'
'Australia's Muslim community has a new spiritual leader, after the Australian National Imams Council (ANIC) elected a Melbourne-based scholar as its Grand Mufti.
'Dr Ibrahim Abu Mohamed, who was born in Egypt, has been appointed to the position after a unanimous vote from imams in Sydney over the weekend.
'Born in Egypt'. 'A unanimous vote'.
I hope that ASIO is taking a long, long look at every detail in his CV, from birth onwards, and checking and double-checking - if they have not done so already. And I hope they have got their eyes open for Ikhwan, or Muslim Brotherhood, connections. Or for connections with any number of other Muslim organisations that are of dubious 'peacefulness'.- CM
'Council spokesman Sheikh Mohamadu Saleem says imams Australia-wide voted for Dr Mohamed, following the resignation of the previous grand mufti, Sheikh Fehmi, due to bad health.
'Sheikh Saleem says it's an important position.
"[He] is the figurehead, our spiritual head of the Muslims, and also he enjoys the respect and the regard from the general Australian community".
Really? I must say I can't recall having heard his name before. But since he has now been brought to my attention, and the Australian branch of the Ummah has made him their Big Boss - by a unanimous vote, no less, I wonder how on earth that was achieved? - I shall be watching him very closely, you may be quite sure of that. - CM
'Dr Abu Mohamed attained a PhD in Islamic Studies from Al Azhar University in Cairo, and has been in Australia for around 20 years.
That is, since 1991. Perhaps I should google around and see whether he is on the record as saying anything about the jihad mass murders of 11 September 2001, or in Bali in October 2002, and if so, what, precisely.
And I wonder whether any of our journalists will be brave enough to ask the newly-elected mufti point blank whether he endorses the sharia punishment for blasphemy, or the sharia punishment for apostasy from Islam, or the sharia ban on Muslim females marrying non-Muslim males, or the Quranic command to beat wives whom the husband fears may rebel, or the Quranic encouragement of polygyny, or the sharia endorsement of marital relations with girls as young as nine. - CM
Posted on 09/21/2011 12:36 AM by Christina McIntosh
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
Muslim Jihad Plot King-Pin: "I am not involved in anything here. I am teaching my brothers here the Koran and the Sunnah...".
Another report relating to a story flagged earlier by Esmerelda, in which we learn a lot more about two collaborating gangs of Mohammedan jihad plotters in Australia, one in Sydney, one in Melbourne.
The cream of the story, and the main reason why I am posting it here, comes about halfway down, where we learn what the king-pin said in an interview with the ABC three months before his arrest.
From Australia's ABC, the PM show, Alison Caldwell reporting.
'Two terrorist cells worked together to plot attacks'.
In other words - two gangs of Muslims worked together to prepared violent Jihad. - CM
'It can now be revealed that two terrorist cells (i.e. two Muslim jihad gangs - CM) based in Sydney and Melbourne worked together to plot terrorist attacks (i.e. to carry out violent jihad terror raids - CM) on Australian soil.
'Operation Pendennis uncovered the network headed by radical Melbourne cleric (sic: by jihad-minded Melbourne Muslim cleric - CM) Abdul Nacer Benbrika.
'Cleric'. Local Jihad gang boss. - CM
'He and his seven followers in Melbourne were all found guilty back in 2009 of planning a terrorist attack on Australian soil.
'Later that year five men in Sydney (i.e. five Muslim men in Sydney - CM) were found guilty of planning the same attack, after a further four men in Sydney earlier pleaded guilty to lesser charges.
'But it can now be revealed the groups were all working together when ASIO, the Australian Federal Police, and Victorian and New South Wales police uncovered the plot.
'The tip-off came from members of Melbourne's Muslim community in 2004.
I wonder what precipitated that? Slow jihadists worried that fast jihadists were jumping the gun and making the Australian non-Muslims a bit too aware and alarmed, too soon? In general, Muslims seem to close ranks around their own, vis a vis outsiders, and to be reluctant to proffer information to non-Muslim law enforcement, so this seems a bit unusual. - CM
'Following an investigation lasting 17 months, eight men were arrested in Melbourne and another nine in Sydney, as part of Operation Pendennis.
'The links between the groups can now be reported because the Supreme Court in Victoria today lifted 21 suppression orders made during the trial process.
'Until now the links between the groups could not be revealed so as to avoid prejudicing either trial.
Now for the most interesting, and telling, part of this entire report. - CM
In the Sydney trial, Abdul Nacer Benbrika (if you click on the link I've provided, you will see a mug shot...Note the bushy Islamic beard. - CM). He pleaded his innocence in an interview with the ABC three months before he was arrested in 2005.
"I am not involved in anything here.
Perhaps that depends what you mean by 'anything'. - CM
"I am teaching my brothers here the Koran and the Sunnah
(well, he was certainly telling the truth about that - CM)
"and I'm trying my best to keep myself, my family, my kids and the Muslims close to this religion", he said in 2005.
Precisely. - CM
'Members of the Sydney group including the Cheikho brothers, Mohamed Elomar and Abdul Hasan were all referred to by other names during the Melbourne trial.
Why? Do we do this with other criminals? Would we have done that with Nazi sympathisers and suspected saboteurs, during WWII? - CM
'Some of the members of both groups met for up to three days at Louth near the Victorian-NSW border (this is way out in the bush - CM) where they camped and trained together.
Using live ammo, perhaps? Memo to Aussie farmers, bush walkers, forestry workers, beekeepers and others whose line of work takes them out into remote parts of our countryside: keep an eye open for bearded, be-capped Mohammedans - in robes or in military-type gear - skulking through the bushes, or encamped in remote clearings, with weaponry in evidence. - CM
'A fingerprint belonging to a member of the Melbourne group was found on batteries in a car belonging to the Sydney group.
'The trials heard how the Sydney group was one step ahead of the Melbourne group.
'One of the Sydney men admitted to trying to make an improvised explosive device. Another two admitted possessing ammunition, batteries, and clocks.
'A chemist called the terrorism hotline after one of the Sydney men asked to purchase large quantities of chemicals which could be used in bomb-making.
Was this chemist the much-vaunted tipster from the Muslim community? - CM
'An off-duty officer came across Abdul Hasan at a Sydney hardware store as he ordered acetone and methylated spirits.
'Off-duty'. 'Came across'. So, pure serendipity? - CM
'Reason to be concerned'
"The broad overall effect of both of the Pendennis cells, the Melbourne and the Sydney cells, [was that] this was the most comprehensive and serious terrorist plot so far", says Professor Greg Barton, lead researcher in the Global Terrorism Research Centre at Monash University.
"It appears that some of the men knew much more about what was going on than others, and in particular, four men in Melbourne were in regular contact with their colleagues in Sydney, and appeared to be very knowingly well down the path towards preparation for terror".
They were zealous Muslims preparing to use terror as weapon of Jihad against non-Muslim Australians, Professor Barton. Come on, spit it out. - CM
'While describing Benbrika as a 'pivotal character', Professor Barton says it appears he played "more of the role of a kind of spiritual mentor or adviser".
Oh, come on, Professor Barton. Have you read the Quran, and the other Mohammedan texts, or haven't you? If you don't know that orthodox Islam, past and present, is what Churchill called it - "a religion of blood and war" - then your professorship is worthless. Benbrika was pivotal precisely because he knew the verses of Jihad, of which there are many, and the Sunnah of the so-called prophet, the war-lord and slave-raider Mohammed, which is meant to be admired and imitated, in every conceivable detail, by all devout Muslims. He was the Boss, encouraging these men to keep close to Islam...by emulating the life and exploits of the mass-murderous war-lord, Mohammed. CM
"There are other men who were more active in the exchanges between Melbourne and Sydney", he said.
"Both groups of men are a fairly rag-tag collection; none of them were very experienced in what they were doing, and they were not particularly efficient.
But they were working hard to reduce their level of inexperience and to increase their skills and efficiency. If they had not been caught, and if they had had time to get in a lot more practice - at, for example, bomb-making, or the firing of weapons - they could have killed quite a lot of people. Professor Barton, if you are trying to persuade me that they were really a lot of harmless bumblers whom I should not worry about at all, then you are not succeeding. - CM
"But the cell was much more advanced in that they'd begun collecting chemicals and they had some light weapons, small arms and so on, so there was reason to be concerned about how close they might have been to actually committing an offence."
'Most of the members of the Melbourne group have served their jail sentences and are now living in the community.
Good god. Why were they not deported, or exiled? Instead, they have spent a bare few years in jail - the merest slap on the wrist - and are now back out, 'living in the community'. They are still Muslims, I assume. Are they still regularly attending 'prayers' at the mosque/s? Whose 'sermons' are they listening to, now? And is their internet usage still tracked, and their phonecalls? Even if ASIO and/ or the police are keeping an eye on them, what's to stop them from lying low and playing nice for a few years more, waiting till the watchers get bored and decide they've 'reformed', and then...back to the Jihad? - CM
'Abdul Nacer Benbrika is still behind bars, as are some of the Sydney men.
Was Benbrika born here? If not, can he not be stripped of citizenship, and deported, once his term is served?
But now for more minimisation of the threat represented by these people and by the ideologically-defined gestalt from which they spring. - CM
'Small motley crew'
'A spokesman for the Australian Federal Police says as a result of the joint task-force investigation, the Australian public was protected from a terrorist act.'
This time. But there will be a next time, and a next time, I guarantee it - and not from among the Buddhists, the Jews, the Sikhs, the Hindus, the Christians or the Confucians and Taoists, but from among the Muslims. And how much did all that surveillance and police work cost, in time and money? And how many other investigations are in hand? And how many other plots may be a-hatching, where there has been no tip, and no-one has stumbled across something odd that they felt like reporting? - CM
'In a statement, he says the community can be assured that law enforcement and intelligence agencies continue to work collaboratively across the country to prevent terrorist-related crimes.
'He says every piece of information received by the AFP from members of the public today could prove to be invaluable in keeping Australia safe from terrorism tomorrow.
If you see - or hear - something, say something. But I wouldn't rely too much on the prospect of tips from the Muslim community, even if one such helped to uncover this case. Are the AFP aware of these two dicta from an authoritative Muslim text? - The Sira or Life of Mohammed, by Ibn Ishaq, contains the following - "Men do you know what you are pledging yourselves to, in swearing allegiance to this man [Mohammed]? "Yes. In swearing allegiance to him we are pledging to wage war against all mankind". And it also contains this - "Muslims are one ummah (community) to the exclusion of all men. Believers are friends of one another to the exclusion of all outsiders". - CM
'Professor Barton says building positive social networks and bridges (i.e. trying to make nice to Muslims - CM) is now a key focus of government agencies and police.
Professor Barton, looks like you, too, need to read those passages from Ibn Ishaq that I quoted, just now. And have a long, cold, hard think about what they imply for all those earnest attempts by non-Muslim Authorities to curry friendship with devout Muslims who take texts like that - and all the Quranic texts that forbid the befriending of, or allying with, non-Muslims - very much to heart. - CM
"This Operation Pendennis we're discussing here today...[was] only possible because of community tip-offs and that's a promising thing in itself", he said.
Not to me it isn't. Because I know how many core Muslim texts there are about not befriending non-Muslims, except temporarily, and feigningly, and expediently, for the benefit of the Muslim or Muslims who finds themselves in the company of non-Muslims who are, as yet, too numerous and strong to subdue, I am inclined to view the occasional tip-off to the Infidels as the exception rather than the rule. I would like to know what has happened to the tipster - whether he must conceal his identity, or not - and how he is viewed by the rest of the Ummah, right now. I would also like to know just how many Muslims attended the various trials, and how they conducted themselves, inside and outside the court-room. - CM
"But it also speaks to the extent to which extremists like Benbrika struggle to find acceptance among Muslim communities in Australia and how difficult it was for them to put together a small motley crew."
'Small'. Eight adult men in Melbourne and nine in Sydney. That's seventeen men. Nineteen men carried out the September 11 jihadist mass-murder in the USA. Would Professor Barton dismiss those men, also, as 'a small motley crew'? And why does he assume it was 'difficult' to find seventeen? And ...there have been no plots of this kind, at all, from among any other religious community in Australia. Only from among the Muslims. Seventeen men prepared to mass-murder Australians for ideological reasons is seventeen too many. - CM'
'Professor Barton says Australia does not have a very extensive terrorist threat.
Yet. That is because although we have a lot more Muslims than we had in 2001, or in 1996, or in 1986, and far, far more than we had in - say - 1970 - we still have, relatively speaking, very few Muslims (considered as a percentage of our total population) than many other Western countries. They are still mostly in 'Mecca' mode. But if we permit their numbers and their perceived and actual power to grow, and grow, and grow, then more and more from among them will flip into 'Medina' mode, and there will be violence. - CM
:Muslim communities are just as concerned as anyone else, and are quick to speak up when they have concerns", he said.
Really? Examples, please, Professor Barton. Be specific. - CM
"But of course [the operation] also speaks to the fact that this is a terribly expensive exercise and you wouldn't want to be doing it very often.
"So if we can find ways to deal with these threats as they emerge before we get to the point of possible criminal action and criminal charges, then that would be much better".
What exactly do you mean by that, Professor Barton? That we must find some way of keeping all these Muslim young men fat and happy and prosperous and blissfully unoffended, so that they will not Go Jihad upon us? But the only way to be quite, quite sure of nobody at all from the Muslim 'community' choosing to Go Jihad, would be for us all to convert to Islam and turn Australia into a replica of Saudi Arabia or of Iran.
I have a better idea. Let's just stop importing Mohammedans. And let's deport all the ones we've already got, who are caught plotting or attempting Jihad terror raids, or who are caught clandestinely or openly practising aspects of the sharia that breach Australian law (such as child marriage and polygyny or FGM [which is obligatory, according to the Shafi'ite school of sharia, though not according to the other three] or flogging someone for drinking alcohol) or who are caught attempting or threatening to kill apostates or 'blasphemers', or who are advocating the imposition of sharia in Australia whether in whole or in part; as well as all the ones - the Chaouks and Haddaras come swimmingly to mind - who are up to their necks in major criminal activity. The Muslim Ummah is the sea in which the jihadists swim and from which, ceaselessly, prompted by the Quran, the Sira, the Hadith, the Sunnah of the 'prophet', they emerge. And the more Mohammedans we have, the more Jihad plots we shall have. And the more Muslim-run organised crime, Muslim gang rapes of non-Muslim girls, and attacks upon non-Muslim institutions (the Turkish Muslim desecration of the monument to the Assyrian Christian victims of Muslim genocide; the Muslim firing of guns at the Shri Mandir Hindu temple in Auburn; the threats against Coptic Christian churches) we shall have. And conversely, the fewer Mohammedans we have, the fewer of these 'threats' we shall have to worry about. - CM
Posted on 09/21/2011 12:53 AM by Christina McIntosh
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
A "Wild Horde" Shouting "Death To The Jews" At French Airport
Passive Police view wild mob shouting death to Jews in French airport
About 30 pro-Palestinean activists invaded the embark lobby of the Israeli airline El-Al at Roissy, crying "Death to Israel” "Death to the jews” and preventing the check-in of passengers.”
According to witnesses on the spot ”a wild horde terrorized, threatened, intimidated passengers.” They were responding to a call from the extremist organization EuroPalestine. Some wore t-shirts calling for a boycott of Israel.
The National Bureau of Vigilance Against Anti-Semitism (BNVCA) condemned "the attack” and appealed to the Prefect of Seine Saint Denis "to stop this aggression and discrimination that those responsible are arrested and brought to justice for disturbing the public order and incitement to hatred ".
The police and security service from the airport intervened and asked the reinforcements to disperse the demonstrators.
NOTE: Over at the French Blog Véronique Chemla (courtesy of Yisrael Medad) there is a mentioning of the inactivity of the police, saying that the police remained passive.
Posted on 09/21/2011 7:01 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
Natacha Polony Pays Tribute To Lucien Jerphagnon
Les Japonais, qui savent plus que nous que les hommes et leur mémoire sont les garants de la civilisation,
ont imaginé le statut de Trésor vivant, qu’ils décernent à ceux de leurs anciens dont le savoir et l’autorité morale incarnent leur Nation. Le 16 septembre, dans la discrétion de quelques entrefilets de presse, la France a perdu un de ses Trésors vivants.
Lucien Jerphagnon, jeune homme de 90 ans, a tiré sa révérence. Son sourire espiègle ne viendra plus éclairer le monde et nous mener à la rencontre de ces hommes qui, il y a vingt-cinq siècles, ont poussé la réflexion et le questionnement sur des chemins que nous ne faisons qu’emprunter à leur suite.
Lucien Jerphagnon était, après Jacqueline de Romilly et Jean-Pierre Vernant, un des derniers représentants de cette culture humaniste que la mise à mort du latin et du grec dans les écoles françaises condamne aux oubliettes de l’Histoire. Car l’encyclopédisme qu’ils avaient hérité d’une Renaissance où l’on pensait que l’Homme conquiert sa dignité par le savoir n’avait rien de cet élitisme que fustigent les égalitaristes complaisants. Avec le « vieux Jerph » - comme il se surnommait lui-même – la philosophie antique et l’histoire romaine parlaient à chacun de nous, comme à un ami. « On n’a pas le droit d’emmerder un lecteur – ou un étudiant - qui ne vous a rien fait », disait-il en riant. Alors, il déroulait ses récits comme des romans, et les empereurs romains s’animaient sous sa plume en un tableau fascinant.
Avant tous les autres, il fit émerger, derrière la figure tutélaire de Platon, ces philosophes présocratiques qui prônaient le bonheur et le plaisir. Avant tous les autres, il sut, tant il avait intériorisé cette culture, tant il l’incarnait tout simplement, nous rendre proche une pensée antique dont on a voulu nous faire croire qu’elle ne servait plus à rien dans un monde voué à la technologie et à la performance. Et sa petite moustache frisait de joie, ses yeux s’illuminaient d’une jubilation communicative, quand il racontait Julien l’apostat ou Saint Augustin.
Lui qui se promenait si facilement dans les siècles, et qui rappelait que l’école devrait avant tout dépayser, c’est-à-dire nous conduire vers des lieux et des époques à nous inconnus, avait publié notamment un petit ouvrage merveilleux sur la sottise, rassemblant, de Simonide à Valéry Larbaud, d’Hésiode à Maurice Druon, autant de citations sur les différentes manières d'être sot. « J’ai dit la sottise, pour ne pas dire la connerie » plaisantait-il. Et de regretter qu’aucune thèse n’ait jamais été consacrée à déterminer la nature de cette étrange affection, et sa variation au cours des siècles. Et d’observer, surtout, combien cette sagesse de l’école primaire de son enfance, qui incitait les jeunes gens à tourner sept fois leur langue dans leur bouche pour éviter la honte de proférer une énormité, s’était évanouie avec l’impératif d’épanouissement de tous et l’injonction à ne pas juger, même le pire con. « Gardons-nous en effet de jamais oublier que nul ne se défausse absolument de la sottise, toujours prête à envahir la façon dont on regardait pas plus tard qu’hier les choses et les gens. On n’est que trop tenté de reproduire à son profit la maxime selon laquelle "la sottise, c’est les autres". Des textes que j’ai mis sous les yeux de mes lecteurs, il ressort que nul en ce monde ne s’en peut croire exempté du seul fait d’être lui et pas l’autre ni les autres. Qui se trouverait à le penser, ne fût-ce qu’un instant, démontrerait par là même, et de façon apodictique, que nul parmi les humains ne saurait échapper au péril de la sottise, certains y étant plus exposés que d’autres. On ne démontre jamais si bien le mouvement qu’en marchant. » (La... sottise? (Vingt-huit siècles qu'on en parle); Albin Michel)
Ce qui préservait le vieux Jerph de toute pédanterie, qui est une des formes de la connerie, c’était autant cet humour de l’homme si baigné de culture qu’il sait la relativité des choses, que la profonde droiture que confère une vertu aujourd’hui disparue : les Grecs l’appelaient aïdôs, ce sens de l’honneur qui nous oblige à nous montrer dignes du regard des autres. On pourrait aussi l’appeler vergogne, et ce n’est pas un hasard si ce mot n’est plus employé que dans une forme négative, pour déplorer que nous soyons tous, désormais, « sans vergogne ».
Lucien Jerphagnon est mort, et j’ai pleuré en recevant la triste enveloppe cernée de noir. Car si je défends, à longueur d’articles et de livres, une école qui transmette les humanités, c’est pour que tout enfant puisse un jour vivre dans un monde où existeraient des Lucien Jerphagnon, et les entendre, et les comprendre. Cher Lucien, vous m’aviez un jour déclaré avec une solennité de potache brillant : « Nous vous faisons notre fille honoris causa » et c’est sans doute la seule chose dont je me sente fière. La seule chose dont je tenterai toute ma vie d’être au moins un tout petit peu digne.
PS: Les lecteurs de ce blog ont peut-être remarqué depuis son ouverture la colonne de liens, sur la droite. Y figure le site de Lucien Jerphagnon. Que ceux qui n'ont jamais eu la curiosité de s'y promener aillent le visiter pour découvrir l'oeuvre de ce merveilleux géant. Nous y ajouterons enfin ce lien vers un portrait paru dans Marianne en 2007, sous la plume de votre servante.
Posted on 09/21/2011 7:13 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
News From The Netherlands
Posted on 09/21/2011 7:35 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
Russia Doesn't Much Care For Turkey's Threats Against Cyprus
Erdogan Creates International Complications for Turkey
Israel Hayom, September 23, 2011
While Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan has been using his anti-Israeli rhetoric to build up Turkey as a new great power in the Arab world, his neo-Ottoman policy is sparking a reaction among other countries that could pose for him serious problems in the period ahead. For Erdogan has not only been using aggressive rhetoric against Israel. In the last few weeks the Turkish government has also been threatening Cyprus for developing its undersea gas resources in the Mediterranean. As a result, Russia has been drawn in to neutralize Turkish behavior.
Cyprus just signed an agreement with the Texas-based Noble Energy, which is in a partner in developing Israeli maritime gas fields, as well. Turkey's Minister for EU Affairs, Egemen BaÄŸÄ±ÅŸ let it be known that the Turkish Navy could intervene if Greek Cyprus does not call off the project. He said "That's what a navy is for." As a result, the Russian Foreign Ministry publicly backed the right of Cyprus to develop its Mediterranean gas. Cyprus, in turn, described Russia as "a shield against any threats by Turkey."
Last Friday, the famous Russian daily, Pravda, published an article entitled "Turkey Wants to Revive the Ottoman Empire." The article reviewed the way Turkey has been building its influence in the last few years with the Muslims of Bosnia, which is a sensitive point for Moscow, the traditional ally of the Serbs. The article also warned that Turkey was undergoing a process of "gathering strength" in order to claim territories that it lost with the breakup of the Ottoman Empire. It predicted greater Turkish activity in the Caucuses and in Crimea, "which cannot but worry Russia."
Turkish policy in the Balkans has also raised eyebrows among a number of states in recent years, During a visit to Sarajevo in 2001 Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu declared "The Ottoman centuries of the Balkans were success stories. Now we have to reinvent this." He also has spoken about the Balkans, the Caucuses, and the Middle East as Turkish spheres of influence, which were better off under the Ottoman Empire than they are today. The Caucuses are of course part of Russia, which puts this new Turkish policy into a potentially direct clash with Moscow in the future.
Where does this Russian concern with the revival of Turkish power come from? Are there special links between Russia and Cyprus that cause Moscow to act as its defender? Looking back with some historical perspective, many have forgotten that Russia was at war with the Ottoman Empire for centuries. In 1774, the Russians seized Muslim populated territories from the Ottoman Empire for the first time when they took control of Crimea and signed a peace treaty at Küçük Kaynarca in which Russia claimed to be the protector of all Greek Orthodox Christians--including those in Greece and Cyprus. [during the First World War, it was Russian liberals, members of the Kadet Party, such as Prof. Milyukov, who thought one of Russia's war aims should be the seizure of Constaninople, for these constitutional democrats understood that Islam was a force of black reaction, and in 1914 the population of Constantinople was 50% non-Muslim]
By World War I, the Russian Army invaded what is today Eastern Turkey; while after World War II, Russia claimed the Turkish Straits into the Mediterranean, and was held back by the US at the beginning of the Cold War. In short, Russia and Turkey are old rivals. What Erdogan and his ministers have succeeded in accomplishing is to awaken a sleeping Russian bear by reviving Moscow's historical concerns with with an atavistic Turkey with ambitions to restore its old areas of influence.
Looking at the Middle East from Moscow's vantage point, a Turkey with an Islamist foreign policy poses a greater problem for Russia than Iran. Across much of Russia, most of the peoples living there speak dialects of the Turkish language. Because they are Sunni Muslims, they are more open to Sunni organizations based in Turkey than to Shiite groups operating on behalf of Iran. Secular Turkey fought against Islamist groups; yet Erdogan's Turkey supports them, including organizations like the IHH, which was responsible for the violence on the lead ship in the 2010 Gaza Flotilla, the Mavi Marmara. According to a July 2010 report in the New York Times, many board members of the IHH have been officials in Erdogan's ruling AKP Party.
The Russians probably noticed that one of the IHH operatives on the Marmara, Erdinç Tekir, participated in a 1996 terrorist attack on a Russian ferry in the Black Sea, whose purpose was to obtain the release of Chechen terrorists from a Russian prison. Indeed the founders of the IHH served as volunteers in the Mujahideen Brigade that fought the Russians' Serbian allies during the Bosnian War. Previous Turkish governments seized IHH documents which showed that its members were going to fight in Afghanistan, Bosnia, and Chechnya. The IHH leader, Bulent Yildirim, gave a speech in October 2010, attacking Russia, as well as other major powers for killing Muslims.
Russia is not about to go to war with Turkey. And Israel still prefers that its old relations with Turkey can be restored in the future. But at the same time Israel should be aware of the fact it is not the only state having problems with Turkey lately. Erdogan and his foreign minister are visiting former Ottoman territories and rather than acting according the the subtle rules of diplomacy that an ambitious state should follow, Turkey comes off like a "bull in a china shop" after many of these visits. Last week, Ankara threatened the European Union if it gives Cyprus the rotating presidency of the EU in 2012. The lesson is that the international politics of the Middle East are dramatically changing, and Israel will have to carefully monitor who is allied with whom in the Eastern Mediterranean in the years ahead.
Posted on 09/21/2011 7:49 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
Come To Sunny Mexico
Gunmen dump 35 bodies on busy street in Mexico
General view of the scene where 35 bodies were found at the Adolfo Ruiz Cortinez Blvd in Boca del Rio municipality, Veracruz State, Mexico, on September 20, 2011. More than 40,000 people have been killed in rising drug-related violence in Mexico since December 2006, when President Felipe Calderon deployed soldiers and federal police to take on organized crime. (Getty Images)
MEXICO CITY - Masked gunmen blocked traffic on a busy avenue in a Gulf of Mexico coastal city Tuesday and dumped the bodies of 35 slaying victims as horrified motorists watched, authorities said.
Veracruz state Attorney General Reynaldo Escobar Perez said the bodies were left piled in two trucks and on the ground of an underpass near a shopping mall in the city of Boca del Rio.
Police had identified seven of the victims so far and all had criminal records for murder, drug dealing, kidnapping and extortion and were linked to organized crime, Escobar said. He didn't say to what group the victims belonged to.
The Zetas drug cartel has been locked in a bloody war with drug gangs for control of Veracruz, a state along an important route for drugs and Central American migrants heading north.
Motorists first began tweeting Tuesday afternoon that masked gunmen in military uniforms were blocking Manuel Avila Camacho Boulevard in Boca del Rio's downtown and pointing their guns at civilians.
"They don't seem to be soldiers or police," a tweet read. Another said, "Don't go through that area, there is danger."
Escobar said police were reviewing surveillance video recorded in the area.
Local media said that 12 of the victims were women and that some of the dead men had been among prisoners who escaped from three Veracruz prisons on Monday, but Escobar said he couldn't confirm that.
At least 32 inmates got away from the three Veracruz prisons. Police recaptured 14 of them.
Earlier Tuesday, the Mexican army announced it had captured a key figure in the cult-like Knights Templar drug cartel that is sowing violence in western Mexico.
Saul Solis Solis, 49, a former police chief and one-time congressional candidate, was captured without incident Monday in the cartel's home state of Michoacan, Brig. Gen. Edgar Luis Villegas said during a presentation of Solis to the media.
Solis is considered one of the principal lieutenants in the Knights Templar, which split late last year from La Familia, a pseudo-religious drug gang known as a major trafficker of methamphetamine.
He is accused in various attacks on the military and federal police, including one in May 2007 that killed an officer and four soldiers, Villegas said. Solis also is suspected of planting and harvesting drugs, managing clandestine labs manufacturing synthetic drugs and ordering attacks on police facilities in cities around the entire state.
Mexico's attorney general had offered a $1.1 million reward for information leading to his capture.
Solis is a cousin of one of the Knights Templar's main alleged leaders, Enrique Plancarte Solis. Saul Solis served as director of public safety in the Michoacan town of Turicato in 2003-05 and ran for the federal congress in 2009 as a Green Party candidate, finishing fourth in his district with about 11,000 votes.
Family members of people allegedly killed by drug gang related violence embrace during the "Caravan for Peace with Justice and Dignity" led by Javier Sicilia in Oventic, in Mexico's Chiapas state, Friday, Sept. 16, 2011. The son of Javier Sicilia, the leader of the caravan, was killed by gunmen allegedly belonging to a drug gang. Sicilia organized the peace caravan through cities and states affected by drug-related violence in southern Mexico.
(Credit: AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo)
Authorities said a judge had issued an arrest warrant for Solis on charges of organized crime and drug trafficking at the time of the vote.
President Felipe Calderon launched an offensive against organized crime in 2006 in his home state of Michoacan, where much of the violence had been attributed to La Familia. Knights Templar became a splinter group after the leader of La Familia, Nazario Moreno Gonzalez, was killed in a shootout with federal police last December.
A second La Familia leader, Jose de Jesus Mendez Vargas, was arrested in June, leading Calderon's government to say it had all but dismantled the gang. But violence continues in Michoacan and other parts of western Mexico where Knights Templar is trying to control territory.
Both groups claim to be devoted to God and to be fighting poverty and injustice under a strict code of conduct.
Late Monday, four gunmen died in a clash between drug cartels in the Michoacan towns of Caracuaro and Tiquicheo, the army said in a statement. It said residents told authorities several vehicles packed with gunmen had been seen in the area earlier Monday.
Drug violence has claimed more than 35,000 lives across Mexico since 2006, according to government figures. Others put the number at more than 40,000.
In northern Mexico, the army announced the detention of two more suspects in a casino fire that killed 52 people last month in the northern city of Monterrey.
The two men captured at a bar in Monterrey late Monday confessed to being members of the Zetas drug cartel and participating in the attack, federal prosecutors said.
Six others, including a Nuevo Leon state police officer, previously were arrested in the case and 16 more suspects remain at large.
Last week, the parents and a brother of a police officer involved in the casino investigation were shot to death at their Monterrey home. Authorities said the attack could have been revenge because the officer helped identify some of the alleged attackers.
Separately in Nuevo Leon, Mexican marines captured 19 alleged members of the Zetas drug cartel at a ranch that was being used as a training camp in the town of Colombia, the military announced.
A navy statement said that seven minors were among those detained and that marines seized four rifles, a pistol, and several military uniforms and boots.
Posted on 09/21/2011 8:35 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
What Erdogan Has Done To Turkey
He has alienated Israel, a country which famously went all out to win the hearts and minds of Turks, because the Israelis were so touchingly convinced -- as they had been, to a lesser extent, in the case of ancien-regime Iran -- that they might be able to win over non-Arab Muslim powers that had their own reasons for despising the Arabs (once upon a time, the opening conservational gambit of educated Turks, in speaking to Westerners, was the same as that for educated Iranians: "We're not Arabs, you know. Don't confuse with Arabs. We hate Arabs." ). With that alienation, and the inability to receive Israeli military know-how and weaponry, the Turkish military will suffer.
He has alienated Cyprus, and made it more determined than ever to go ahead with exploration in its territorial waters for natural gas. And the government of Cyprus may, finally, decide it will not press for integration of the Turkish enclave in the north -- after all, why should the Greeks in Cyprus now share the natural-gas wealth with the Turks in the north, who watched, or participated in, the destruction by the Turksih military of Greek churches and monuments of every kind?
He has alienated, or at least worried, Russia, over his threats to Cyprus -- that is the Orthodox of Cyprus -- and that has prompted Russian officials to speak about sending warships to the Mediterranean.
He has forever alienated the members of the E.U., thank god, especialy in his absurd demand that Cyrpus not be allowed to assume, next year, the presidency of the E.U., and in his sabre-rattling and viciousness toward Israel. Turkey will now never be a member of the E.U., and that is an excellent thing.
He has alienated Syria, by not standing with Bashar al-Assad, and a staple of the Syrian government's propaganda is now the perfidy of the Turks, and especially -- this has gone unreported in the West -- that cheap Turkish goods flooded the Syrian market and damaged Syrian merchants, both Sunni and Christian (Arab and Armenian). Whatever happens in Syria, those who want the Alawites to continue to rule -- and that includes the threatened Christians -- will never look at Turkey with favor.
He has alienated Iran, by taking a stand as a supporter of the Sunni revolt, when the Islamic Republic of Iran wants the Alawites, and Assad, to survive, fearing a Sunni takeover (for the Alawites can be regarded as Shi'a, or at least the Iranians choose to do so).
He has alienated all the opponents, in Lebanon, of Hezbollah - the Sunnis, the "moderrate" Shi'a, and the Christians.
He has alienated the Egyptian Ikhwan by calling for Egypt to follow the "secular" (!) model of Turkey -- though what he means by this is unclear.
He has increased fury among Serbs, Croats, and others in the Balkans by having members of his regime praise Ottoman rule in the Balkans, when that rule meant oppression and the devshirme.
He has enraged the Kurds, by the attacks on Kurdish forces in Iraq, and even managed to antagonize the Arabs in Iraq, who do not like the infringement on their sovereign territory.
He has reneged on his promises to the government of Armenia, claiming that nothing more can be done until the Armenians start behaving themselves, not only in Nagorno-Karabakh, as he sees it, but in dropping all this annoying talk about "genocide."
So what friends has he made? Are the countries of Central Asia, once the focus of pan-Turanian dreams, mightily impressed with Turkey? No, they are not, and Russia's opposition to Turkey will make it harder for the Turks all over the former Soviet Union.
What allies has he won for Turkey? What good has he done for Turkey?
This may not be apparent now. It is certainly not apparent to the Turkish masses. But among those masses are millions of Kurds. And millions of Alevis, who regard the Sunni Muslims with suspicion and may not take kindly to the abandonment of the Alawites in Syria, especially if the Alawites start to lose, which means start to be slaughtered in large numbers.
Now if only the Obama Administration would do what it won't do.
Read Erdogan the Riot Act.
But someone -- possibly the Congress of the United States -- will.
He's a swaggering, blustering bull in the world's china shop. He'll have his comedown.
Meanwhile, let him keep making threats all over the place. His behavior is so bad, it's good.
Posted on 09/21/2011 8:39 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
In Sirte, The Forces Of Darkness Cause The Forces Of Light To Retreat
From The Australian:
Fierce resistance forces Sirte retreat by Libyan NTC force
Admitting heavy losses from the assault on Muammar Gaddafi's hometown, National Transitional Council fighters were forced to retreat from Sirte last night to allow NATO warplanes to blitz unexpectedly heavy resistance from loyalist forces.
While the NTC announced yesterday at its headquarters in the eastern city of Benghazi that the new Libyan government would be formed in 10 days, it is reeling from losses in the fight for Sirte that began last week.
"The offensive on Sirte has been high-intensity in terms of casualties," said Suheib Abu Garza, a doctor in Misratah, about 150km west of Sirte. Casualties are being taken to Misratah.
Gaddafi, who remains on the run, yesterday claimed in his first broadcast since September 8 that the new regime was temporary.
"What is happening in Libya is a charade which can only take place thanks to the (NATO-led) air raids, which will not last forever," he said in the message aired by Syria-based Arrai television.
Gaddafi's forces in Sirte have put up unexpectedly fierce resistance and the NTC fighters have been forced to retreat from the city by night to allow NATO warplanes to target their weaponry. NTC forces admit Gaddafi enjoys broad support in Sirte.
"The majority of residents are with Gaddafi," said Zuber al-Gadir, spokesman of the Misratah military council.
Politically, however, the NTC is prospering, with world powers yesterday hailing the African state's fledgling leadership in New York. With the new Libyan flag flying at the UN headquarters, the interim leader of the new government, Mustafa Abdel Jalil, thanked all countries that had helped the "success of the Libyan revolution", which he said had cost at least 25,000 lives.
US President Barack Obama, meeting Mr Jalil for the first time, was among those who feted the country's rulers after a more than six-month armed struggle to overthrow the rule of Gaddafi.
"Today, the Libyan people are writing a new chapter in the life of their nation," Mr Obama said.
"After four decades of darkness, they can walk the streets, free from a tyrant."
At a special summit, the UN and world leaders promised to help the new government.
Libya's interim prime minister and deputy to Mr Jalil, Mahmud Jibril, unveiled the timeline for a new administration.
"I expect the government to be announced within a week, 10 days maximum from now," he said. "Most of the work has been done."
In New York, French President Nicolas Sarkozy made a plea for support in all the Arab countries whose populations have stood up against strong-arm leaders. "When we saw the people taking to the Arab streets to call for liberty and democracy, we took some time to respond as we were astonished at what we were seeing" in Tunisia, Egypt and then Libya, Mr Sarkozy said.
The African Union, which had long held out against according Libya's seat to the NTC, yesterday announced it was recognising the new leadership after weeks of foot-dragging that had caused divisions on the continent.
Posted on 09/21/2011 9:18 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
The Obama Administration Is Making Plans For "After The Assad Regime Falls" -- But The Alawites Will Never Loosen Their Grip
From The New York Times:
U.S. Is Quietly Getting Ready for Syria Without Assad [or, Innocents Abroad]
WASHINGTON — Increasingly convinced that President Bashar al-Assad of Syria will not be able to remain in power, the Obama administration has begun to make plans for American policy in the region after he exits.
In coordination with Turkey [that great defender of the Christians who are so important in Aleppo and Damascus? That great defender of the Kurds, who are so important in eastern Syria? That great defender of the Druse, of the Alawites? There is no thought, no knowledge, no cunning, no guile, behind any of this]. the United States has been exploring how to deal with the possibility of a civil war among Syria’s Alawite, Druse, Christian and Sunni sects, a conflict that could quickly ignite other tensions in an already volatile region.
While other countries have withdrawn their ambassadors from Damascus, Obama administration officials say they are leaving in place the American ambassador, Robert S. Ford, despite the risks, so he can maintain contact with opposition leaders and the leaders of the country’s myriad sects and religious groups.
Officials at the State Department have also been pressing Syria’s opposition leaders to unite as they work to bring down the Assad government, and to build a new government.
The Obama administration is determined to avoid a repeat of the aftermath of the American invasion of Iraq. Though the United States did not stint in its effort to oust Saddam Hussein, many foreign policy experts now say that the undertaking came at the expense of detailed planning about how to manage Iraq’s warring factions after his removal.
Syria is sure to be discussed when President Obama meets Tuesday with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey on the periphery of the United Nations General Assembly meeting in New York, administration officials say. A senior administration official said the abandonment of Mr. Assad by Turkey, Saudi Arabia and European nations would increase his isolation, particularly as his military became more exhausted by the lengthening crackdown.
Another Obama administration official said that with 90 percent of Syria’s oil exports going to Europe, shutting the European market to Damascus could have a crippling effect on the Syrian economy and could put additional pressure on Mr. Assad’s government.
“Back in the 1990s, if Syria wanted credit and trade and loans that they couldn’t get from the United States, they went to the Europeans,” said Ray Takeyh, a senior fellow for Middle Eastern studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and a former Obama administration official. Now, Mr. Takeyh said, Europe has joined the United States in imposing sanctions on Syrian exports, including its critical oil sector.
Aside from Iran, he said, Syria has few allies to turn to. “The Chinese recognize their economic development is more contingent on their relationship with us and Europe than on whether Assad or Qaddafi survives,” he said, referring to the deposed Libyan leader, Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi.
Eight months ago, the thought of Syria without a member of the Assad family at the helm seemed about as far-fetched as the thought of Egypt without Hosni Mubarak or Libya without Colonel Qaddafi.
But intelligence officials and diplomats in the Middle East, Europe and the United States increasingly believe that Mr. Assad may not be able to beat back the gathering storm at the gates of Damascus.
Mr. Obama’s call last month for Mr. Assad to step down came after months of internal debate, which included lengthy discussions about whether a Syria without Mr. Assad would lead to the kind of bloody civil war that consumed Iraq after the fall of Mr. Hussein.
The shift moved the administration from discussing whether to call for Mr. Assad’s ouster to discussing how to help bring it about, and what to do after that.
“There’s a real consensus that he’s beyond the pale and over the edge,” the senior Obama administration official said. “Intelligence services say he’s not coming back.”
To be sure, Mr. Assad may yet prove as immovable as his father, Hafez al-Assad, was before him. Many foreign policy analysts say that the longer Mr. Assad remains in power, the more violent the country will become. And that violence, they say, could unintentionally serve Mr. Assad’s interests by allowing him to use it to justify a continuing crackdown.["Physically, that side will win which has the better guns."]
Many factors may make his exit more difficult than the departures of Mr. Mubarak in Egypt and President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali in Tunisia. For one thing, both the United States and Europe have become more distracted in recent weeks by their economic crises.
Furthermore, while Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and even Yemen all imploded, those eruptions were largely internal, with their most significant ramifications limited to the examples they set in the Arab world. A collapse in Syria, on the other hand, could lead to an external explosion that would affect Iran, Lebanon, Jordan, Israel and even Iraq, foreign policy experts say, particularly if it dissolves into an Iraq-style civil war.
“The Sunnis are increasingly arming, and the situation is polarizing,” said Vali Nasr, a former Obama administration official in the State Department and the author of “The Shia Revival: How Conflicts Within Islam Will Shape the Future.”
“Iran and Hezbollah are backing the regime,” Mr. Nasr said. “There’s a lot of awareness across the regime that this is going to be pretty ugly.” [Vali Nasr, a Defender and Protector of Shi'ism, has recently should that he would like the Americans to somehow figure out a way to protect the Shi'a. But our interest is different; our interest is in more, not less, sectarian and ethinc strife within the Camp of Islam].
That awareness is fueling the desire to plan for a post-Assad era, Obama administration officials say. “Nobody wants another Iraq,” one administration official said on Saturday, speaking on the condition of anonymity.
At the same time, the administration does not want to look as if the United States is trying to orchestrate the outcome in Syria, for fear that the image of American intervention might do the Syrian opposition more harm than good. In particular, administration officials say that they do not want to give the Iranian government — which has huge interests in the Syrian government and is Mr. Assad’s biggest supporter — an excuse to intervene.
But one administration official pointed to the remarkable call earlier this month by Iran’s president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, for Mr. Assad to ease up on his crackdown as a sign that even Iran’s leaders are worried about the Syrian president’s prospects.
Posted on 09/21/2011 11:58 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
Muslim Propaganda At Allvoices: Women Reverting In California
This article, which I found at a Malaysian website, is the kind of thing that routinely appears, meant to increase Muslim morale (as is constant exaggeration of the number of Muslims, repeated often and often, alas, accepted by non-Muslims as true), and also suitable for being brought to the attention of non-Muslims. A way of giving them ideas. Note the absence of any statistics, even made-up ones.
Dramatic increase in the number of women reverting to Islam in California
What is there about the religion of Islam that draws so many Sacramento and other California women to join the faith? What invites the women to follow the customs, rules, and laws and go through an official conversion? It's not always marrying into a Muslim family. Many single women are joining the Islamic faith, including many older women as well as younger students. Is it about community support and making new friends? New ideas to learn? What do women seek when they join the Islamic faith coming from Western European, Native American, Hispanic, African-American, or other ethnic groups--it it the basic teachings of Islam they read about in books, the closeness of the family life, the food, or the social life?
What is there about the faith and customs that appeals to so many women in California and in other areas such as Northern Europe or Latin America? What religion do you join if you're half Middle Eastern and half European and your family practices several different faiths?
How often does Sacramento celebrate diversity? Once a year is Celebrate Diversity Month, but besides that special day, celebrating diversity is a daily event. Anthropologists may be interested in asking what motivates an increasing number of Sacramento women of nearly all ethnic backgrounds to convert to Islam? There's even a local website for those looking for Muslim wives and/or husbands to start a family at Salaam Love. Is Islam the fastest growing religion in Sacramento?
According to a Sacramento, CA, Feb. 22, 2010 article, (AARP Bulletin) from McClatchy-Tribune News Service, Newstex, at perhaps age 112, Mother Ruby Muhammad, in that article was reported to be nearly the oldest person in the world living in South Sacramento, is fulfilling another dream: She performed on stage—singing gospel, telling stories and reciting poems she's written—to commemorate Sacramento Community Women of Color Day in March. Mother Ruby Muhammad converted to Islam in 1946 and was given the title Mother by her faith. The UCLA-based Gerontology Research Group currently lists 77 validated supercentenarians around the world.
She was born in the state of Georgia, March 20, 1897, is an African American, still works out to jazz music in her Sacramento apartment community for seniors. She has an incredible memory and sense of humor. Her exquisite poems need to be recorded by personal historians and put in books about the works of African American women raised many years ago who converted to Islam when there were far fewer American-born female converts to Islam in the USA in the 1940s (that didn't recently come from families that raised them in the Islamic faith).
At almost age 113 in a few months, she at last has been recognized as a performer. Ruby Muhammad performed with Brooks at the annual Sacramento Community Women of Color Day show on March 7 at Imani Community United Church of Christ at 2100 J Street, Sacramento.
In her youth, she picked cotton and tobacco and worked as a domestic. When she converted to Islam it was shortly after the end of WW 2. What motivated her at the end of WW2 to convert to Islam?
Was it related to working in the pre-civil rights era as a domestic, picking cotton and tobacco on farms, or coping with life in small-down Georgia in the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s as a Black woman at a time when eateries had separate entrances and Blacks were barred from a variety of restaurants? Or was it because she was orphaned young and raised by neighbors? How did Sacramento life influence her new faith?
Ruby Muhammad had married twice and had four children, along with more grands, great-grands and great-great-grands than she can remember. Her secret is staying busy. What motivated her and what motivates other Sacramento women of all ages to convert to Islam?
Is the desire to have a closer, warmer family relationship one of the motivating reasons why increasing numbers of Sacramento women (and men) are converting or reverting to Islam? Why is the number of women converting to Islam in Sacramento increasing? Could it be the sisterhood of the women, the family-oriented dinners, weddings, the food variety, studies, and conventions that focus on the family and close-knit family values?
There already is a sizable number of Sacramento women converting to Islam. They come from all backgrounds. From African American to Scandinavian and everything in between. See the Sacramento bee article, A daughter's conversion to Islam brings turmoil and reconciliation," by Stephen Magagnini - Bee Staff Writer, published November 26, 2006. The idea is to find common ground. In an interfaith family, the issues to be handled have to do with finding what people have in common rather than looking a differences.The big question is what moves Sacramento women toward Islam, say rather than converting to other religions? In Sacramento, conversion to Islam nowadays is on the rise. What appeals to Sacramento women when they convert to the religion? Is it a personal choice of faith or a road to social networking and finding an ideal spouse?
Actually people can volunteer on various projects at any house of worship and meet people just by working together as a team for a good cause. It's a study for ethnologists to look at the voices of confidence and resilience in the families and their children that pull together and are supportive. What's in current issues in the news that motivate some Sacramentans to become Muslims and other Sacramentans to join other religions? Is it about family togetherness, who one marries, a feeling of safety in community, or personal choices?
The whole idea, it has been said, is based on thinking in terms of generations not administrations. Why are so many Hispanic women becoming Muslims? Could it be because Spain in medieval times had so many Muslims and Jews that were forced to convert to Christianity or leave?
Or is it the close bond that Latino women feel with people from Central Asia and/or the Middle East because of similar looks between some Latinos and Central Asians and/or Middle Eastern peoples? See, "NBC: Latino women finding a place in Islam - Life- msnbc.com."
There's a psychological reason why women in the USA or N.W. Europe convert to Islam when they have not had recent ancestors from Islamic areas of the world. In Norway, for example, the number of converts to Islam has doubled in the past decade.
See the article, "Islam in Europe: Norway: Teenage converts." And one of the reasons why women in the USA or N.W. Europe convert to Islam is that it has to do with how fathers treat daughters, and how both parents treat sons, in the case of boys changing religions. With women, it's about how their dads treat them.
With boys, it's about how powerful, but kind they see their dad in their mom's eyes. And it's also about finding pieces of a psychological puzzle missing in their own religion that they are trying to find in another religion. They are looking to a religion they perceive as having strength. But why are so many religious changes to Islam taking place after 9/11 than before in the USA, Latin America, and Europe?
Why are so many Native American men reverting to the Muslim religion, sometimes because they've been told that Native American (Indians) had contact a thousand years ago with Muslim explorers and travelers to the New World before Columbus? See the article from a Native American (Cherokee-Blackfoot) who became a Muslim, "Native American Muslims." Also check out, "Islam in America before Columbus."
S.E. Asia, for example, Indonesia and Malaysia, have a high number of Muslims. Do European women convert to Islam because they're told it's the fastest growing religion in the world? Why is it the fastest growing? What are women getting from the religion that they are not getting from other religions? Is it identification with power in numbers?
The attention focused on Islam since 9/11? And why has there been so many changes of religion in the USA since 9/11? What's the psychological reason people change religions? Is it individual?
Why do European women convert to Islam? Check out, "Why European women are turning to Islam - CSMonitor.com." Why do these women who want to leave their former religions choose Islam? What does it promise women? And is becoming a Muslim woman a backlash against their mother's participation in the feminist movement of the 1970s in the USA?
What drives the women, and what peace and serenity do they find in Islam? What draws the women--the music, food, family life, ambiance--or some deeper need to experience submission, dress and food codes, community, or power?
Why would women choose a religion where men and women worship in separate spaces and where women can't be religious leaders in the same jobs that men have? They could experience separate spaces for worship in Orthodox Judaism, including Hassidism. And as for different leadership roles, women could find that in Roman Catholicism, where they could honor Mary or become a nun. Or women could experience the Eastern Orthodox Christian Church.
Why do women choose Islam over religions where women can be priests (Episcopal, Unitarian, Religious Science, or New Thought, for example) or become rabbis in Conservative and Reform Judaism? Why aren't more women turning to Buddhism (Buddhist nuns) or worshiping godesses in Hinduism?
Yoga classes and Ashrams certainly are popular for meditation and exercise in the USA, and there are plenty of female Yoga and meditation instructors. But what is bringing so many American women to Islam?
Is a religious choice about the opportunity for leadership or inter-dependency upon help from the community? Is it that Islam is open to all ethnic groups equally? So are many other religions. But why choose Islam? Or is it what draws them the media attention Islam gets in the news so often?
Do people change religions to escape the chance of being victims of hate crimes? Or is it about the opportunity to dress differently in order to feel protected and respected within your community, but different and a target for hate crime attacks from thugs in the community based on your dress appearance? See the uTube video, "Chicago Video: Muslim Woman Attacked in Response to Fort Hood Shootings."
Will reverting to Islam enrich the women's lives, give them protection in old age, save them from a life of addiction and abuse, or leave older women in poverty? And why are so many middle-class, educated, or wealthy women converting to Islam? It's not always because they have a Muslim boyfriend. How do their older children feel about the hijab? Or the change in religious customs, fasting for Ramadan, and changes in foods?
What does Islam promise women? For every one male convert to Islam there are four female converts. Are they doing this of their own will? What has their family upbringing have to do with their drive to revert to Islam--whether they're Hispanic, European, or Jewish? And why are so many Americans in the USA whose ancestors came from Northern Europe becoming Muslims? See, "Why Women are Converting to Islam."
When people, especially women, revert or change their religion to Islam, they're thinking in generations rather than in administrations, it has been said. According to a VOA news video, between 70,000 and 200,000 Hispanics in the USA have converted to Islam, according to Turn to Islam.com.
The number of Hispanic Americans converting to Islam is growing rapidly -- particularly in New York, California, Texas and Florida, which have the greatest concentration of Hispanic residents. Why are there four times as many women as men in the USA converting to Islam each year, according to the NBC news, Los Angeles, video, "NBC News: 20,000 Americans convert to Islam each Year."
Interestingly, in the 1960s and 1970s, many Americans converted to Buddhism. Why is it Islam in this decade after 9/11 that attracts so many Americans of all races and ethnicity? What is Islam offering to Americans? And why are so many Americans choosing Islam after 9/11?
What has influenced them--could it be the media, their community, or the rapid increase in immigration of Muslims into the US since the 1970s? Media would like to know what about the religion appeals to so many women, in particular? Why? What serenity does it give them? Is it the feeling of family togetherness? Are their families supportive?
Muslim leaders say interest in Islam has increased in the past few years, and they also note that Muslims and Hispanics, many of whom are immigrants, share a number of common concerns. Steve Mort reports from a mosque in Orlando, Florida that has seen a steady increase in Latino worshipers. Check out the VOA video, Hispanic Americans Converting To Islam. At the VOA video site, there are dozens of videos showing numbers of women in the USA and England converting to Islam to find a piece of the puzzle that's missing from their lives.
Check out the video on the English woman who works as a counseling professional in a hospital in England who converted to Islam. Or the video on a Southern American women, formerly a Baptist who converted to Islam "to find peace," according to the video at: "CNN News: 1.5 Million Americans coverted to ISLAM in USA."
The video shows the American woman's conversion ceremony. She was raised in South Carolina as a Baptist. She explains in the video when asked why she is converting, "...because it's much more about peace. I'm praying five times a day." The message idea is that it's difficult to do wrong or get into trouble when you're busy praying five times a day.
Why are so many people from a wide variety of ethnic groups in the USA converting to Islam? Could it be the belief or attitude that God, meaning love, wouldn't sacrifice his own son--that's not what the life force is about--that's turning so many, especially women, from organized Christian denominations to Islam? What about other religions?
Hindus and Buddhists don't convert on the same scale to Islam as Christians are doing, especially in the USA. Why? What is it about Islam that in particular draws women to convert, especially women not married to Islamic men? For example, see the video, "Jermaine Jackson Converted to Islam."
Why are there four times as many women as men each year in the USA converting to Islam? The question media asks, is what is there about Islam in the USA, England, and Germany that is drawing so many women, in particular to convert to Islam? Could it be the customary dress, the hijab? The feeling of protection and respect? See the NBC News video: "20,000 Americans Convert to Islam Each Year."
The high conversion rate, especially for women, from other religions in the USA and northern Europe comes at a time when Judaism, for example, has a 52 percent intermarriage rate, and websites such as Jews for Allah, show testimonies of Jews that are converting to Islam. See also Jews for Allah - Jewish testimonies. The site notes, "Because everyone is born a Muslim (in submission to Allah) everyday Jews are returning (reverting) to the religion of birth and religion of Abraham, Moses, and all the past prophets, Islam."
One question for some people seeking a religion of their choice may ask which religion really is the oldest? The answer might be nature worship. Then there came monotheism. It's a matter of personal choice what religion one chooses. Media asks why are Jewish males, in particular, converting to Islam? Do they feel stronger as Muslim men or as Jewish men in the USA? What do their families think of their choices? What's the reason most give?
Women converting from Judaism to Islam have very different reasons than males converting from Judaism to Islam. There are some women that revert from Judaism to Islam. Each will have her own reason. For impoverished Jewish women, it could be about the attitude of her father toward her in early life.
For wealthy women, there are other reasons she chooses. Each Jewish woman has her own personal reason for reverting to Islam. Muslims use the term 'reverting' rather than converting because reverting means returning to your chosen religion. For example, see the website, "Why I Chose Islam," by Jemima Goldsmith.
When Jemima Goldsmith, the 21-year-old daughter of billionaire Sir James, married Imran KhanImran Khan she embraced not only the world's most handsome sportsman but also the Muslim faith, taking the name Haiqa, according to the website. You can read in an exclusive account, how she tells about her journey from the glamorous society of London to the austere religion of Lahore.
It's fascinating. The question to ask is why, particularly after 9/11, are so many Americans, Northwestern Europeans, and Hispanics in the USA converting to Islam? Why are so many converting to Islam, and not so many to other religions such as Buddhism or Hinduism--or even the Unitarian church that accepts all religions?
Media has to ask why, particularly at a time when women dressing in Islamic dress to command respect and dignity make themselves look different to American and Northern European society. Why do they want to stand out, look different, and subject themselves to possible taunts from young males in their society, particularly in Europe?
Why are so many British women converting to Islam? These include women who have grown children and are now unmarried and younger women who are single, or in the USA, women marrying Muslim men.
Will Islamic dress bring women more respect and peace in the USA or N. Europe? The media can ask them years after their conversion, to tell their experiences. It's a great topic to explore and listen to the women's voices of confidence and resilience.
Apparently religion plays a major role in some people's lives at all ages. For some it's a path to explore in order to find the missing piece of the puzzle for which they're searching. You'll find more N.W. Europeans such as the English and Germans changing religions to Islam than you'd find S.E. Europeans, such as Greeks or Serbians who had more contact with Muslims in historical times.
The less historical contact a person had with Islam, the more they might switch to Islam, except for Hispanics. With both Native American (Indian) ancestry as well as Spanish, there's more of a tendency to become Muslim because of the long history of Muslims and Jews in Spain, and the distance Native Americans and Hispanics of Native American (Aztec, Inca, Maya,) or Native Americans, such as Cherokee, may have had with Islamic contacts in their medieval history. Many Hispanics trace the Spanish and possibly Muslim or Jewish side in Spain to their father's male ancestors, and the Aztec or other Native American tribal ancestry to their mother's female ancestors in the New World.
American women, including Sacramentans would like to ask the question: what is it that women born in the USA or N.W. Europe, or Hispanics are finding in Islam that they have not found in their own ethnic ancestries? And does it all depend on the father's attitude toward the women in their childhood that drives their decision to take a new religion?
How does the new religion contribute to their lives, and how does it relieve stress? Is it to acquire a voice of confidence and resilience that the conversion takes place in increasing numbers locally? And is it more cost effective or more expensive locally to raise children in Islamic households than in other religious household or in secular households?
These are some of the questions anthropologists and ethnologists may ask as well as where are any statistics showing the number of women converting to Islam is increasing in Sacramento or Davis? And is influence from foreign students at UC Davis or CSUS part of the reason why female college students (and some males) are converting to Islam?
Is this outlook researchable as far as who's keeping count? And where are the local surveys on who's changing religions at what stage in life, and in Sacramento is Islam the fastest growing religion compared to any other religions or secular humanism?
Is the diverse population in Sacramento a motivating factor in conversions of locals to Islam? Sacramento has a large Iranian population with numerous collections of Farsi books in Sacramento's public libraries. There are also other groups. Fulton Avenue has a successful halal meat and grocery market, and the Arabic Community Center as well as numerous markets and Middle Eastern restaurants also are found along Fulton Avenue.
Will anthropologists look at the increasing Middle Eastern population and its influence on local American-born women of varied ethnic backgrounds? What's the motivating factors that move local men and women in Sacramento to convert to Islam, and how has their lives changed after the conversion? The best way to find out is to ask or survey those interested in creating a survey.
Then again, it's the private business of individuals when they choose a faith. Considering any and all faiths, how has conversion to any religion changed your life, regardless of what the former or present faith may be? And should anthropologists even ask these questions? Or is it none of anyone's business, but the person and his/her relationship to the chosen religion?
AnneHart is based in Sacramento, California, United States of America, and is an Anchor for Allvoices
Posted on 09/21/2011 6:51 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
Jews, Pigs, And Dogs: From Muhammad To Mahmoud Abbas
Des Juifs, des chiens et des cochons
Itinéraire d’une calomnie, de Mahomet à Mahmoud Abbas
Publié le 21 septembre 2011dans Monde
Ayant tout récemment attiré l’attention des lecteurs de ce salon sur les propos de Mahmoud Abbas accusant les habitants des implantations juives de Cisjordanie d’utiliser des chiens et des cochons pour persécuter les Palestiniens, il m’a paru d’autant plus nécessaire d’effectuer quelques recherches pour découvrir la source de cette surprenante mise en cause.
Et cela d’autant plus que, du côté du Quai d’Orsay et de l’Elysée, on ne semble pas s’émouvoir outre mesure de ces graves accusations lancées par le chef de l’Autorité palestinienne à l’occasion d’un discours qualifié d’historique. À ceux qui viennent aux nouvelles à ce propos, de hauts responsables élyséens répondent qu’il y a bien eu, récemment, des plaintes palestiniennes relatives à des sangliers lâchés par des « colons » pour dévaster les cultures des villageois palestiniens. Ainsi, pour nos brillants diplomates, le chef de l’Autorité palestinienne est parfaitement dans les clous en portant de telles accusations.
Et, en effet, on peut trouver sur divers sites pro-palestiniens ce « rapport » récent qui met en cause les « sangliers sionistes ».
D’emblée le ton est donné : « Les agriculteurs palestiniens ont une grande appréhension de ces sangliers qui menacent leurs biens, des sangliers lâchés par les colons sionistes. » Cela suppose donc que les agriculteurs des implantations élèvent des sangliers pour les lâcher au moment des récoltes dans les champs cultivés par les Palestiniens. Or, on sait que la quasi totalité de ces implantations isolées sont peuplées de Juifs ultra-religieux qui n’hésiteraient pas à prendre un bain rituel purificateur si un tel animal, même par mégarde, était entré en contact avec leur corps.
D’ailleurs, si on continue la lecture de ce « rapport », on peut constater qu’aucune précision n’est donnée sur le nom et la situation de ces implantations qui pratiqueraient l’élevage de sangliers. Mais même si cela ne tient pas la route, nos éminents « rapporteurs » palestiniens ne se démontent pas : si les sangliers sont là, c’est parce qu’ils sont attirés par les égouts des « colons ». Tous les chasseurs connaissent l’intelligence de ces animaux, gibier qui se mérite, mais cela faut-il pour cela les créditer de la capacité de distinguer un égout « sioniste » de son équivalent palestinien ?
Donc, ces sangliers n’ont pas été « envoyés » comme il est affirmé dans la phrase liminaire de ce rapport reprise par Mahmoud Abbas, ils sont venus touts seuls, comme des grands. On devrait donc en conclure que ces colons juifs doivent être blanchis de cette accusation calomnieuse. Si ce n’est toi, c’est donc ton frère.
Quelques extraits du texte permettent de se faire une idée plus précise. « Zayd (un agriculteur) confirme que trouver des solutions est presque impossible, à cause des restrictions imposées par les autorités de l’occupation israélienne. La municipalité, ajoute-t-il, nous fournit quelques outils pour installer des pièges. Mais ils ne captent qu’une ou deux bêtes parmi les centaines qui envahissent les terrains. Et on ne peut pas utiliser les poisons à cause de leurs effets nocifs sur tout l’environnement.
La meilleure solution est de les chasser, mais les autorités d’occupation israélienne donnent l’autorisation trop tard, après que les bêtes ont tout dévasté, souligne pour sa part le fermier Hossein Islamiyya. »
À supposer que ces agriculteurs disent la vérité (la terre, comme chacun sait, ne ment pas), les responsabilités des manquements dans la lutte contre les dégâts commis par les hardes récoltivores sont, de leur propre aveu, au moins partagées : la municipalité (i.e. l’Autorité palestinienne) ne fournit qu’une aide dérisoire aux paysans pour protéger leurs cultures, et l’administration militaire israélienne ne donne pas à temps l’autorisation d’organiser des battues. On se croirait en Haute-Savoie, quand les éleveurs de moutons pestent contre un préfet qui leur interdit de faire un sort aux loups qui dévorent leurs brebis. Et au bout du compte, cela donne, dans un discours de Mahmoud Abbas retransmis en direct sur les télévisions du monde entier, que « l’occupant élève des chiens pour nous attaquer et des cochons sauvages pour déraciner nos arbres ».
Il faut être malveillant comme un juif sioniste pour voir là un clin d’œil lancé à tous les bons lecteurs du Coran qui n’auront pas manqué de noter le rapprochement des signifiants « juif » « chien » et « porc ».
Posted on 09/21/2011 3:47 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
The New York Times And The Inadequacy Of An Editorial That Purports To Be Critical Of Erdogan
Yesterday the New York Times wrote an editorial about Erdogan which, while critical, was not nearly critical enough. It focussed on what Erdogan has said about Israel, but passed over in silence the threats made against both Cyprus, if it dared to allow exploration for oil and gas in its own territorial waters, and against the E.U. if it dared to allow Cyprus to assume the presidency of the E.U. next year, as scehduled. Nor did the Times see fit to describe the systematic campaign, involving trumped-up charges, against Turkish military officers (which led to the simultaneous mass resignation of all of the heads of the Turkish military services), and the campaigns to frighten journalists, university rectors, and others who have kept the faith with Kemalism, that is with what makes modern Turkey good, and different from the much more primitive, because much more Miuslim, Arab states and, since the fall of the Shah, Iran as well.
Here's that editorial
The Arab Spring tour taken this month by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey demonstrated the good and the bad of his increasingly confident leadership.
The Muslim world needs democratic role models. On his visits to Egypt, Libya and Tunisia, the Turkish leader, who leads the Islam-rooted Justice and Development Party, made a strong and very welcome case that Islam and democracy are compatible. “Turkey is 99 percent Muslim, yet it is a democratic secular state where all religions are equal,” he said in Tunisia where voters next month will elect their first constituent assembly since the ouster of President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali.
But Mr. Erdogan’s increasingly shrill denunciations of Israel are a danger to the region as well as to Turkey. During his visit to Egypt — where anti-Israeli protests have become violent — he called Israel “the West’s spoiled child.” He needs to stop playing for the applause lines and weigh the full consequences of his words.
There is a lot about Turkey that deserves to be emulated.
Comment: The New York Times does not say, because it fails to understand, that whatever it is that distinguishes modern Turkey from the much more primitve Arab states, and that is responsible for its relative mental freedom, and other advancements, is owed to Ataturk, and to Kemalism, that is to the systematic constraints on Islam that Ataturk carefully put in place. Erdogan is living off the fruits of that Kemalism, even as he tries to undo it. In this respect he is exactly like Musilms in the West, who enjoy the freedoms offered them, who even note that "in the West I can really practice Islam freely" (as is not possible, always, in Muslim countries with despots -- like Saddam Hussein or Qaddafy -- who regard the mosques as centers of political opposition to their rule.
The editorial continues:
Over the last nine years, Mr. Erdogan’s party has unleashed the energies of Turkey’s entrepreneurs, asserted civilian control of the once-dominant army and enacted human rights reforms. He also has a worrying authoritarian side and important choices to make as Turkey moves to replace its army-drafted Constitution with one that is fully democratic.
Comment: To describe his a-tous-azimuths campaign against the army officers, and journalists,and university rectors, quite like Mussolini in his first years in power, as merely displaying a "worrying authoritarian side," is grotesque in its understatement.
The editorial again:
Mr. Erdogan is playing a particularly dangerous game with Israel.[Allowing, or even encouraging, and then stoutly defending the supposed innocence, of Turkish fellow-travellers of Hamas, on that "peace" flotilla that was all along intended to weaken Israel's ability to regulate the flow of arms into Gaza, was dangerous but the Times passes over all that and simply describes Israel's response, as an "ill-fated" assulat [no, it wasn't. It was justified and its outcome was good, and there have been no "peace flotillas" allowed to sail since -- it was, in fact, a victory for Israel] on a Gaza "aid flotilla" (there was no "aid" of consequence; this was a propaganda stunt, designed to pressure Israel into letting that flotilla through, so that future flotillas, carrying arms, could similarly be allowed to pass. To call it an "aid flotilla" is to ignore the fact that nothing of value, merely some medicines that had passed their sell-by date, was on that flotilla. It was all fake, from first to last]. There is no question that dealing with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel can be frustrating. Turkey downgraded relations after Israel rejected a sound, American-mediated deal to close the book on Israel’s ill-fated assault on a Gaza aid flotilla that killed eight Turks and one Turkish-American. [no mention by the NY Times of the attack on the soldiers, who initially descended onto the deck without arms]
But Mr. Erdogan has dangerously upped the ante — and put the United States, a NATO ally, in a particularly difficult spot — with his threat to send warships into the Mediterranean Sea to escort Turkish shipping. If both sides aren’t careful, things could spiral out of control. At a minimum, Mr. Erdogan is risking his country’s substantial trade with Israel.
President Obama has worked hard to cultivate Mr. Erdogan but hasn’t spared the tough talk in private, including about the Turkish leader’s previous efforts to cozy up to Iran. And Mr. Erdogan has recently agreed to station a radar in Turkey as part of NATO’s American-designed missile defense system to protect the region from Iran. Mr. Obama also privately urged him to cut ties with President Bashar al-Assad of Syria. Mr. Erdogan has said he no longer believes in Mr. Assad. He now needs to use Turkey’s economic leverage and impose sanctions on Mr. Assad and his cronies.
As the chief of a major Muslim democracy, Mr. Erdogan can legitimately claim a leadership role. He needs to do so responsibly.
Posted on 09/21/2011 3:52 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
A French Report On The State Of Iraq's Christians
Posted on 09/21/2011 4:41 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
Syria And Turkey At Daggers Drawn
Turkey slams Syria over rape claim in refugee camps
By IPEK YEZDANI
ISTANBUL -- Turkey's worsening relations with Syria took another hit this week over a Syrian state news report about conditions in Turkish camps housing Syrian refugees.
The report, distributed Tuesday by Syria's SANA news agency, called the camps "centers of isolation full of rape and torture." A woman cited in the report said she'd been raped repeatedly there and that dozens of Syrian girls also had been raped.
The camps house more than 7,500 Syrians who fled the violent crackdown on dissent by the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad.
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, in New York for the United Nations General Assembly, called the report part of a "black propaganda" campaign that Syria is now waging against Turkey. He described developments in his country's relations with Syria as "very, very ugly."
Erdogan once was considered a close Assad ally, but he's distanced himself from the Syrian president in recent weeks after Assad rebuffed Turkish calls to end the crackdown on protests, which human rights groups estimate has killed more than 2,000 people since March.
Erdogan said he no longer talked to Assad, though the countries still have diplomatic relations.
"I myself have cut my contacts with the Syrian government," he said Tuesday in New York. "We would never like to come to this point, but unfortunately the Syrian government has made us come to a point where we had to take this kind of decision. We don't have any trust left for the current Syrian government."
Erdogan has been pressing ahead with a diplomatic offensive intended to project Turkey as a leader in the Middle East. Last week, he visited Cairo, where he won accolades for his recent break with Israel over Israel's refusal to apologize for the killings of nine Turks aboard a Gaza-bound boat that Israeli special forces intercepted in May 2010.
Turkish authorities said the Syrian report on the conditions in the camps in Turkey's Hatay district, on the Syrian border, appeared to be retaliation for their country's increasingly hostile position toward Assad's government.
The official Syrian report quoted a woman, identified only as Fatima, who the report said had returned recently to the village of Jisr al-Shughour in Syria, which had been the subject of a crackdown by Syrian soldiers in June.
The woman said political dissidents from Jisr al-Shughour had raped her in the camp and that they threatened to rape her daughters if she tried to return to Syria. She said a Turkish soldier also had raped her and that as many as 70 Syrian girls had been raped in the camps.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry denied the claims and said it had asked Syria to allow Turkish representatives to interview the woman. The Foreign Ministry called the report "a unique example of black propaganda, lies and evil." The ministry said it suspected that Fatima was a fictitious person.
Erdogan said he would visit the refugee camps when he returned from New York.
"I want to see the living conditions there," he said. He left open the possibility of further action regarding the camps "after our evaluation."
Posted on 09/21/2011 8:30 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
A Cinematic Musical Interlude: Non Dimenticar (Silvana Mangano)
Posted on 09/21/2011 8:18 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
An Artistic Interlude: Il Buon Governo (Ambrogio Lorenzetti)
Posted on 09/21/2011 8:36 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
Leo Rennert On Obama's U.N. Speech
OBAMA'S LONG JOURNEY ON THE ROAD TO ZIONISM -- ANALYSIS OF HIS UN SPEECH
When it comes to U.S.-Israel relations, this was a "new" Obama -- both in tone and substance -- who addressed world leaders in the UN General Assembly in New York.
Gone was the "old" Obama's 2009 Cairo speech, in which he justified Jewish claims to statehood in the Holy Land merely on the basis of European atonement for centuries of persecution culminating in the Holocaust -- a formulation that Iranian President Ahmadinejad also uses when he slams Europeans for dumping Jewish survivors and newcomers on land belonging to indigenous Muslims.
This time, the "new" Obama traced Jewish sovereignty back 3,000 years to the Jews' "historic homeland." This muffles his pronouncements in May that Israel should withdraw to the 1967 lines, with a few land swaps. In contrat, Israel's "historic homeland" encompasses land that stretches far beyond the 1967 line -- land that includes places like Jerusalem's Old City, the Western Wall, the Temple Mount, Hebron, and other biblical sites in the West Bank -- all part of what Mahmoud Abbas wants and demands for a Palestinian state.
In any further peace negotiations, this gives Israel a leg up to start with more expansive claims than Obama recognized just a few months ago. Israel may still opt for something less than its entire "historic homeland," but it now can demand a higher negotiating price from Abbas. The contest over borders has just been changed -- in Israel's favor. When you link Jewish sovereignty to the Jews' "historic homeland," this also strengthens, first and foremost, Israel's claims to almost all of Jerusalem. Taken literally, Obama's words rule out East Jerusalem as a Palestinian capital.
Gone also was the "old" Obama who targeted Jewish settlements as illegitimate. And gone was the "old" Obama, who insisted on one-sided Israeli concessions like freezing Jewish construction in East Jerusalem and the West Bank. Instead, Obama challenged Israel's Arab neighbors, including the Palestinians, to stop the hate, to stop the rocket attacks, to stop the suicide attacks. The "new" Obama was far more emphastic in defending Israel's security interests and its existential need for strong security guarantees.
Take a close look at the salient remarks in Obama's speech to an audience that is far from sympathetic to Israel:
"Any lasting peace must acknowledged the very real security concerns that Israel faces every single day.
"Let us be honest with ourselves: Israel is surrounded by neighbors that have waged repeated wars against it. Israel's citizens have been killed by rockets fired at their houses and suicide bombs on their buses. Israel's children come of age knowing that throughout the region, other children are taught to hate them.
"Israel, a small country of less than eight million people, looks out at a world where leaders of much larger nations threaten to wipe it off the map. The Jewish people carry the burden of centuries of exile and persecution, and fresh memories of knowing that six million people were killed simply because of who they are. Those are facts. They cannot be denied
"The Jewish people have forged a successful state in their historic homeland. Israel deserves recogntion. It deserves normal relations with its neighbors. And friends of the Palestinians do them no favors by ignoring this truth, just as friends of Israel must recognize the need to pursue a two-state solution with a secure Israel next to an independent Palestine."
Whatever Obama's motives may have been for deviating so strikingly from past pronouncements -- and skeptics immediately will point to his reelection needs -- what matters more are the worlds of a U.S. president and where and how he positions America on the world stage.
And on that global stage in New York, the world indeed heard a "new" Obama.
Posted on 09/21/2011 9:05 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
Sarkozy Worries That A U.S. Veto Will Cause "A New Wave Of Violence In The Middle East"
(AGI) New York - Speaking at the U.N. General Assembly in New York, French President Nicolas Sarkozy rejected Barack Obama's position stating that a USA veto to the Palestinian PNA's request for U.N. nationhood will spark "a new wave of violence in the Middle East."
How true. There might be violence in peaceful and united Syria. There might be violence in peaceful and united Egypt. There might be violence in peaceful and united Lebanon. There might be violence in peaceful and united Iraq. There might be violence in peaceful and united Yemen. There might be violence in peaceful and united Bahrain. There might be violence in peaceful and united Libya. There might be violence in peaceful and united Tunisia. There might be violence in peaceful and united Algeria. There might be violence even outside the U.N., in such peaceful and united countries as Afghanistan, or Pakistan, or Bangladesh.
Goodness, can't the Americans see what a veto at the U.N. will do, to an otherwise peaceful Middle East, and peaceful North Africa, and to otherwise peaceful Muslim countries, treating everyone with dignity and respect, and with a careful solicitude to uphold the tradition of non-violence for which Islam is famous? What's wrong with them? Cowboys!
Posted on 09/21/2011 9:12 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
Between Italy and East Asia, The Only Certain Ally Of The West Against The Forces Of Jihad Is Israel
Nothing more need be said.
Posted on 09/21/2011 9:24 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
The Revival Of Learning, Or, The Only Way Islam Can Claim Responsibility For The Renaissance
L'Empire byzantin était depuis longtemps entré en décadence. Les débuts de la crise remontent à la prise de Constantinople par les croisés en 1204. Les barons latins ruinèrent la ville qui ne se releva jamais complètement de ce pillage. En outre, le fossé entre riches et pauvres se creusait de plus en plus alors que les ressources de l'État diminuaient dangereusement. Incapable d'assurer la défense de ses propres frontières, l'empereur devait acheter la paix aux autres souverains. Il du se résoudre à confier l'armée à des mercenaires. En 1453, une puissante armée ottomane s'installe sous les murs de la ville. Constantinople finit par tomber sous la pression des janissaires. La chute de Constantinople, apparemment, ne bouleversa pas l'Occident : les souverains chrétiens laiTrès vite les Turcs menacèrent la ville. Assiégée de 1394 à 1402, Constantinople fut miraculeusement sauvée par l'invasion mongole de Tamerlan. Le répit fut de courte durée. L'avènement d'un énergique sultan, Mehmet II, à la tête de l'armée turc, précipita le dénouemessèrent s'écrouler le vieil Empire d'Orient. Toutefois, cet événement eut d'importantes conséquences pour les pays d'Europe. De nombreux prélats, artistes et hommes de science byzantins se réfugièrent en Occident, et notamment en Italie. Ils apportaient leurs connaissances, leurs idées et leurs bibliothèques de manuscrits antiques. Les savants et artistes italiens tirèrent profit du savoir accumulé en Orient. Ainsi la chute de l'Empire byzantin accélérait-elle la renaissance culturelle de l'Occident.
Posted on 09/21/2011 9:27 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
Meet the New Mufti Down Under. Busy Peddling the Usual Lies About Sharia, But the Sneaky Aussie Infidels Are Not Easily Convinced
Let me introduce the new Grand Mufti, capo dei capi (by unanimous vote, we were informed - so Shiite and Sunni imams agreed upon him as candidate?) of all the Muslims in Australia, supposedly.
Here is his CV, to be found here,
along with the official Muslim CVs of various other prominent Mohammedans in Australia.
Excerpt: "Dr Ibrahim Abu Muhammad is one of the most prominent Muslim scholars in Australia.
'He is a hafiz (he memorised the entire Qur'an in his childhood).
'He continued his studies in Islam at the renowned and historic Al-Azhar University.
'He completed Masters at the College of Usuluddin, Al-Azhar University and later completed his PhD at the same institution.
I wonder whether he is familiar with the work of certain notable 'scholars' also trained at Al Azhar: for example, Yusuf Al-Qaradawi's "The Lawful and the Prohibited in Islam" (Al-Qaradawi who is on record as having preached, on Qatar Television, on February 25 2006, that "Our war with the Jews is in the Name of Islam"?), or Muhammad Sayyid Tantawi's distillation of Islamic antisemitism, "The Children of Israel in the Qur'an and in the Sunna" (Cairo, 1986-1987)? Wouldn't it be fun to ask him? - CM
'His PhD thesis was in relation to how Islam makes peace in practise [sic]. His thesis earned him a high distinction to achieve top of the class.
Memo to our Coptic friends in Australia: is there any way that someone fluent in Arabic can obtain a copy of the Mufti's PhD thesis, in order to read it, decode the double and triplespeak, and translate it into plain English, for the benefit of all non-Arabic-speaking Australian non-Muslims who would very much like to know what our winningly-smiling Abu Muhammad, born in Egypt, memoriser of the Quran, educated at Al Azhar, has to say on the subject of Islamic 'peacemaking'? We have seen so much of it in evidence in the streets of Egypt lately, especially at the Israeli embassy, and in and around Coptic churches, homes, and villages...- CM
'He taught Islamic Studies from 1988 to 1991 in Ajman College in Al-Ayn University, Abu Dabi.
'Dr Ibrahim has taught postgraduate studies in Islam at Leaders College under the Defence Ministry of Abu Dabi from 1991 to 1996.
The Defence Ministry. Hmmm. Would this have anything to do with his having written a thesis on "how Islam makes peace in practice"?? - CM
'Dr Ibrahim has authored 26 books which have been published in Arabic...[translations of some titles were then supplied]
I observe that only one of his books - 'Invitation to Contemplate' (sounds like an exercise in Da'wa) - has been translated out of Arabic "into both English and French". Yet again, I would like to know what is said in those of his books that remain in Arabic only. - CM
'Dr Ibrahim was a cultural advisor at the Islamic Council of NSW during 1997.
'Dr Ibrahim established Radio Voice of Peace in 1999 which broadcasts Arabic and English programs to an audience of more than 15,000 listeners.
ASIO, I hope you have non-Muslim masters of Arabic - Maronites, Copts, Arabic-speaking Jews - listening in on the Arabic programs, and comparing what is said therein, with what is said in English. It may be instructive to Contrast and Compare. - CM
'Dr Ibrahim has been the Shariah Advisor for The Muslim Community Co-operative (Australia) Ltd, better known as MCCA, since 1992.
'Dr Ibrahim is a serving member of the Fatwa Board of the National Imams Council of Australia.
Might be interesting to find out what his fatwa 'history' is. What kind of questions do people ask him and what are his rulings? And are there questions, and rulings, that are asked - and answered - only in Arabic? ASIO, have you got someone tracking this? - CM
'He regularly delivers Friday sermons at major mosques in Australia and holds regular monthly public lectures for the Muslim community".
Are there tapes of those sermons - and translations? And has ASIO vetted him - or will ASIO be vetting him - for possible connections with the Ikhwan, or Muslim Brotherhood?
But now let us see what he said when our newspapers asked him a few somewhat sticky questions. The fact that he was even asked questions about sharia, is significant. Ten years ago, or even five years ago, I doubt that such questions would have been asked; I am not sure that the word 'sharia' would have appeared in an Australian newspaper. And what is even more interesting than the Mufti's answers - which display the usual oily evasiveness, veiled threats, etc. - are the comments, at the Sun-Herald and at the Daily Telegraph, which show that many ordinary Aussie Infidels have done their own research, and formed - immovably, grimly - their own conclusions about this thing called 'sharia', and are not about to be bamboozled.
Let's start with the interview in The Australian, Paul Maley reporting, in which the new Mufti essentially informs us that the only way to stop young Muslims Going Jihad, is to allow Muslims to dictate our foreign policy...and, especially, to tell us what attitude we are to have toward that standing offence to Islam which is the Jewish state of Israel.
'Grand Mufti Ibrahim Abu Mohamed feels duty to 'cure' radicals'
Suuure he does. Slow Jihad works better than Fast Jihad.... - CM
'Homegrown Muslim radicals are like "ill" patients in need of guidance and whose extremism is often fuelled by examples of injustice abroad, such as the simmering conflict between Israelis and Palestinians.
Paul Maley, you need to learn the special Islamspeak definitions of Justice and Injustice. Justice = anything that conforms to sharia, which boils down to, anything that promotes the total dominance of male Mohammedans, especially Arab male Mohammedans, over everything and everybody else in the world. Injustice = anything not in conformity with sharia, which boils down to, anything that prevents or impedes male Mohammedans, especially Arab male Mohammedans, from exercising total dominance over everything and everybody else in the world. Bear that in mind, Paul Maley, when next you hear a Muslim complaining of 'oppression' and 'injustice'. - CM
'Australia's new Grand Mufti, Ibrahim Abu Mohamed, said young Muslims who were in the orbit of extremist preachers must be "corrected".
Tactics and timing, tactics and timing. As one Abu Hamza once said, it is sometimes necessary to live like a sheep, so that one may in future live like a lion...- CM
'Speaking just days after his appointment, Dr Mohamed said home-grown radicalisation, considered by security agencies to be the most serious terror threat confronting the community, was the result of a distorted view of Islam.
He's lying. 'A distorted view of Islam'. The usual line. - CM
'Our duty is to clarify those matters", Dr Mohamed said through an interpreter.
He has been living in Australia since - when? - 1997? He is a 'scholar'. He memorised the entire Quran as a child. But he has not exerted himself to learn English, though he has been in Australia for at least ten years. - CM
"An extremist is like an ill person, an unhealthy person. You need ot cure him and find the right cure for him more than just to destroy him and finish him off".
And those rehab programs for jihadists at Gitmo, and in Saudi Arabia, have been so resoundingly successful? - NOT. - CM
'Dr Mohamed, who was born in Egypt, was elected Grand Mufti by the Australian National Imams' Council. He takes over from Melbourne-based Sheik Fehmi Nagi El-Imam, who retired because of ill health.
'The role of Grand Mufti has often been a controversial one.
'Sheik Fehmi's predecessor, Sheik Taj Din Al-Hilali, often courted scandal, famously referring to immodestly dressed women as "uncovered meat".
Mr Maley: do not say 'immodestly dressed' but "unislamically dressed", "not in hijab". For in the eyes of such as Sheik Al-Hilaly, a respectable Australian non-Muslim matron in a baggy track-suit, with her hair visible from under her hat, is just as much 'uncovered meat', just as much fair game to be seized and 'eaten' by prowling Muslim tomcats, as any lass in short shorts and halter-neck top. - CM
'Dr Mohamed has earned a reputation as a bridge-builder between Australia's disparate Muslim communities.
'One law enforcement source contacted by the Australian described the Islamic scholar as "highly respected and very influential".
Would the Australian ask a 'law enforcement source' for an assessment of the character and activities of the new incumbent, if the Jews in Australia appointed a new chief rabbi, or the Catholics or the Anglicans chose a new Archbishop? - CM
His appointment came 10 years almost to the day after the September 11 attacks, a moment he agreed had created "a gap" between Muslims and the wider community.'
Of course it did. To those non-Muslims possessed of common sense, a survival instinct, and some knowledge of history, it exposed Islam, and Muslims, as a Clear and Present Danger. - CM
"It made a lot of Muslims apologise over a matter they had nothing to do with, or as a matter of fact they were totally against", he said.
Oh suuure they were against it, and had nothing to do with it, all those crowds of Muslims, all over the Muslim world and in various Muslim colonies within the non-Muslim world, gleefully partying, shouting allahu-akbar, and passing round candy. They were seen by many Infidels, and those who saw and heard them have not forgotten. - CM
'Nevertheless, Dr Mohamed suggested there was a relationship between Western foreign policy and the homegrown threat.
In other words: unless we alter our foreign policy and let Muslims - here or abroad - order us around, Muslim young men will Go Jihad in our midst, and start killing us in large numbers. We have been warned...CM
'Referring to the Israel-Palestine dispute and the recent push by the Palestinian Authority for UN recognition of Palestinian sovereignty, he said justice must have "one face".
Tell that to the Copts, Mr Abu Mohamed. - CM
"Unfortunately we play with a two-faced justice, that we strengthen the strong and weaken the weak", he said.
Speak for yourself, Mr Abu Mohamed. Worshipping the strong horse is an Arab/ Muslim - not a western - cultural trait. How many Jews are there in the world, Mr Abu Mohamed? How many Muslims are there? How many Arab Muslims? How many Arab Islamic states, and how many Jewish states? Who has taken in billions - trillions - in oil revenues since 1973, and who has not? And do not try to kid me, Mr Abu Mohamed, that a Muslim cares about 'the weak'. In all Muslim societies the strong mercilessly oppress the weak. And sharia shamelessly favours Muslims over non-Muslims. I've read the hadith in which Muslims are instructed - if they encounter Jews or Christians - to "push them to the narrowest part of the road". It is Islam that rejects the Golden Rule; Islam whose followers are encouraged to be ruthless, or harsh, or cruel toward the non-Muslims, whilst reserving 'compassion' only for one another. - CM
"One of the reasons (for) radicalisation is not being just with one nation and being just with another nation".
Come on, Mr Egyptian Muslim Ibrahim Abu Mohamed, don't try to fool me. I've read what Bat Yeor and William Lane and John Roy Carlson and Martha Gellhorn and Nonie Darwish have to say, about the ubiquity and venom of Muslim Jew-hatred in Egypt as in the wider Muslim world. You've been pickled in hatred of the Yahood since you were born; the Yahood who in the 1950s were either killed or driven out of Egypt - where they had lived for about a thousand years before Islam was even invented - and all their accumulated assets seized and looted - and wasted - by Muslims. Egyptian Muslims. Just come right out and tell us you want us to feed Israel to the Jihad crocodile...or else...well...those 'radicalised' Muslim youth, seething with rage at the 'injustice' of the existence of a Jewish state on land once seized by Islam, will Go Jihad in Australia. Won't they, Mr Abu Mohamed? - CM
'On the controversial subject of what role, if any, sharia should play in Australian society, Dr Mohamed urged perspective.
'Perspective'. I think I trust his fellow-Egyptian, ex-Muslim Nonie Darwish, and his other fellow-Egyptian, ex-Muslim Magdi Cristiano Allam, on the subject of Islam, and sharia, and the Jihad, much more than I trust 'Dr' Mohamed. And going by what I learn from Darwish's and Allam's writings, I reject sharia root and branch. No part of sharia belongs in Australia. Ever. - CM
'He said the Islamic legal code was largely misunderstood.
What is there to 'misunderstand' about 'kill the apostate'? Nonie Darwish understands and explains sharia very well indeed, for the instruction - and warning - of non-Muslims, in her book "Cruel and Usual Punishment". And for those who don't have time to read long books - such as busy modern non-Muslim politicians - ex-Muslim Patrick Sookhdeo's little pamphlet, 'What is Sharia?' which carefully pinpoints all the areas in which sharia violates human rights, puts the whole thing in a nutshell. - CM
'The more extreme examples, such as punishments, formed only a small part of Islamic law.
Oh, such a tiny, tiny part...But they are the part that matters. And sharia is a total system. Everywhere Muslims seek to institute sharia, sooner or later those punishments - those stonings, floggings, beheadings, amputations - are demanded, and inflicted. This is where The Australian should have asked Dr Mohamed, point blank, what he thought should happen to the Christian woman Aasia Bibi, facing the death penalty for 'blasphemy' in Pakistan. And whether he would accept the right of a Muslim, in Australia, to convert to Christianity or any other non-Islamic faith - or to profess atheism - without suffering any adverse consequences whatsoever. - CM
'Dr Mohamed said many of the values enshrined in sharia corresponded with Australian values.
He lied. - CM
"Sharia also calls for freedom (ROFLMAO - sharia condones slavery and there are Muslims, in Egypt and in Kuwait, openly calling for Muslims to resume slave-taking and slave-trading, precisely because it is not forbidden by sharia and because Mohammed seized and traded in and kept slaves and if Mohammed did it, it is OK for Muslims to do it - CM), justice (tautology - the only 'justice' sharia recognises is sharia itself, which institutionalises the dominance of Islam, of Muslim men over everyone else who is not a Muslim man - CM), right of speech (i.e. the right of Muslims to slander and curse non-Muslims and their beliefs; but sharia calls for the execution of all those who question, criticise, mock or otherwise 'blaspheme' any aspect of Islam/ Muslims/ Mohammed; at this point the interviewer should have asked Dr Mohamed: "do you, therefore, unequivocally condemn the murder of Theo Van Gogh and the death threats against Geert Wilders?" - CM) and this is something we are very fortunate to have."
The magnitude of the lies, contained in this sentence that I have just dissected, is such that I am surprised that the noses of both Dr Mohamed and his interpreter did not suddenly grow to a foot in length, like Pinocchio's., the moment the words left their mouths. - CM
"These are all matters that we already implement here as Australians, and we're proud to have it as Australian values".
In which case, Dr Mohamed, should Geert Wilders choose to visit Australia, I expect to see you at the airport rolling out the welcome mat, as proof of your devotion to freedom of speech.
So much for the interview with 'The Australian'. Now let's see what he told Sydney's 'Daily Telegraph'. Tim Vollmer reports.
'New Mufti Dr Ibrahim Abu Mohamed assures us Muslim law fits with Australian culture.
Then I'm sure he won't raise any objections if we legislate to ban the burqa and niqab. - CM
'Australians should not be scared of Sharia law because it is consistent with our own culture and values, the country's new Muslim leader says.
"Australians should not be scared'....Why am I reminded of the scene in Disney's version of the 'Jungle Book' in which Kaa the snake is singing to Mowgli and hypnotising him, whilst slowly wrapping him around with strangling coil after coil? 'Consistent with our own culture and values'??? Death for apostasy. Death for 'blasphemy'. A flogging, if you drink alcohol or eat during the day in Ramadan. The dhimma: religion-based apartheid with all non-Muslims deliberately humiliated, degraded, exploited and periodically killed? And that is supposed to be consistent with Australian culture and values? - CM
'Dr Ibrahim Abu Mohamed yesterday said his goal as the Grand Mufti of Australia was "clarifying the misconceptions about our religion".
No it ain't, mate; it's going to be about you running round in circles blowing smoke and throwing sand, frantically trying to undo the indelible impression that has been created by, for example, that redoubtable apostate Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who has spoken here more than once, to jam-packed houses, and whose books have sold here like hot-cakes. And that other redoubtable apostate, Canon Patrick Sookhdeo, who has been quietly going the rounds of our churches. Not to mention that a lot of ordinary Australians - and more and more every day - are doing their homework, reading their history, exploring Quran and Sira and Hadith, or the archives at MEMRI, and are finding out just exactly what Muslims believe and do and have believed and done, on three continents, for 1400 years. The gremlin is out of the bag, Dr Abu Mohamed, and more and more Australians are seeing the teeth and the claws. - CM
'He said debate was clouded by misunderstanding and a focus on the more extreme punishments, such as a death penalty for Muslims who convert to another religion.
What is there to 'misunderstand' about 'death for apostasy'? That mafia-style punishment is not a 'dead letter' either within or outside of dar al Islam, O Mr Abu Mohamed, as Magdi Cristiano Allam and Ayaan Hirsi Ali and many another apostate within the West could tell us. And that one fact - that Muslims are supposed to KILL those who leave their cult, and that quite often they do kill, or try to - makes all other points moot. That - and the rule that those who 'blaspheme', whether Muslim or non-Muslim - must also be killed, and that Muslims even within the west have done it, or tried to do it - is all I need to know, to cause me not only to reject any and all accommodation of any aspect of the sharia in Australia, but to desire a total ban on any further immigration of Muslims into Australia or into any other non-Muslim country. - CM
"It's not fair that you just look at one element out of a hundred elements in the Sharia law and make that element to be the most important thing", he said.
Death for anyone who tries to leave Islam, is - as far as non-Muslims are concerned - precisely the most important thing. It is the thing that tells us that Islam denies - crushes - freedom of conscience. - CM
"We see a lot of the Australian culture and values are part of our Sharia law.
You're talking through your hat, mate, and you know it. Pet dogs, pubs, vineyards, piggeries, church bells, synagogues, the Opera House, Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australian sculptures and paintings representing living beings, unveiled women, monogamy, 16 as the age of consent for girls, the fair go (reciprocity), no death penalty, taking the mickey out of anybody or anything that has too high an opinion of itself...all of these are 'Australian culture and values' and they are all forbidden by the sharia. - CM
"Freedom is a Sharia law (oh, really? - see what I said in a previous comment, about the permanent Sharia permission of slavery - CM), respecting others is a Sharia law (but non-Musims are 'the vilest of creatures' and the life of a non-Muslim is worth less than the life of a Muslim...- CM), justice is a Sharia law (see my comment above, for the special Islamspeak definition of 'justice', i.e. "Muslims. rule" -CM), tax and paying tax and fulfilling your obligations is also considered to be a Sharia law (oh suure, Muslims will want the dhimmis to pay that jizya right on the dot..and as for 'fulfilling your obligations' - I seem to recall that the school of sharia that prevails in Egypt holds that "cutting out the clitoris" of a girl is 'obligatory', so shall we ask the Mufti, who is from Egypt, whether this 'obligation' has been fulfilled in the case of his daughter, if he has one? Or shall we ask him about the Treaty of Hudaybiyya and the obligatory non-permanence of agreements with non-Muslims?- CM), respecting others and honouring others (yeah: dhimmis 'respect' the Muslims and the Muslims diss the dhimmis, that's the way the Sharia says it ought to be; and if a girl 'dishonours' her family, say, by being raped, well, they slit her throat and bury her in the back garden - CM)
'Dr Abu Mohamed insisted the Muslim community believed in a democratic system: "We are a democratic nation, and whatever the majority votes for is what goes".
Translation: "We Muslims believe in mob rule (see Egypt, see Libya, see Pakistan, see Malaysia, see Indonesia, see, see, see. What the Muslim mob wants, the Muslim mob gets; the mob that is told what to think and do by people like me, Dr Ibrahim Abu Mohamed, in the Friday sermons, and the fatwas). As soon as we Muslims become the majority in Australia - which we fully intend to do, by means of the hegira and fast-breeding - then we will vote for sharia, and that will be that. " - CM
'He also hit out at talk that radical groups were drawing young Muslims to extremism and violence (i.e. that young Muslims were being recruited for Fast Jihad - CM) saying "evilness always had followings".
"Extremism and radicalisation is not just in Islam and among Muslims, it does exist in all societies and all communities", he said.
Except that we haven't had any groups of Jewish, Christian, Buddhist or Hindu youths and men getting together hatching plots to mass-murder their neighbours in Australia anytime in the past fifty years but just in the past ten years we've had at least four major mass-murder plots hatched among Muslims. (And if any tu quoque artist wants to go further back in time, and bring up what some Australian historians call the 'frontier wars' that ran from 1788 to the 1930s, I would remind them that none of what went on then - much of which was roundly criticised by Christians while it was happening, Lieut. William Dawes being only the first in a long and honorable roll-call - can be in any way derived from the Christian gospels. 'Christian' nations who played the bloody game of Empire could not claim either the teachings or life of Jesus to sanctify what they did; whereas Muslim imperialism is both commanded in the Islamic texts and in full continuity with the example of Mohammed the war-lord and slave-raider. And whereas the 'Aborigines Protection Act', with its stifling abrogation of civil liberties, was criticised and ultimately undone, releasing Aborigines from its humiliating and dehumanising restrictions, the dhimma remains a permanent part of Islamic doctrine, which a significant number of pious Muslims wish to formally and publicly reimpose upon conquered non-Muslim minorities within what might be called the Empire of Islam.)
And now we get the threats. ''Do what Muslims want, or else'. - CM
"He also said Australian troops in Afghanistan had the potential to inflame passions in the community, adding: "It is a nature of mankind that if there is any oppression upon any nation that our emotions start to move and react".
One must remember the very special Islamspeak meaning of 'oppression', which is similar to the Islamspeak meaning of 'injustice'. For Muslims, 'oppression' is anything which gets in the way of the absolute dominance of Islam - that is to say, Muslim males - over everybody and everything else in the world. For more, look up Bangladeshi ex-Muslim Abul Kasem's scathing little article, "When Is Islam Oppressed?"
I encourage readers of this article to click on the Daily Telegraph link I have provided. For there are Comments, and it appears that the readers of the Daily Telegraph are, in general, not convinced.
Just two examples, which are fairly typical - 'Warnesie' of 'Strathpine, Qld', observed: "Err, how about the fact that this 'Grand Mufti' has been in Australia for over 20 years and speaks no English? He's a professional scholar so how does he support himself? Sorry, Sharia has NO PLACE in the western world and it fails in every Islamic country that supports its use. Perhaps these people can seek out a country already offering everything they believe in, rather than trying to change a country's already established beliefs and principles?".
And 'unglee guru', after quoting Abu Mohamed's line about "Freedom is a sharai law, respecting others is a Sharia law, justice is a sharia law, tax and paying tax and fulfilling your obligations is also considered to be a sharia law, respecting others and honouring others, that is all Sharia law", observed, briefly but devastatingly, "Afghanistan would be a paradise according to this doctor's definition of Sharia law".
Third and last, we have the report in the Herald-Sun'
'You have nothing to fear, says Aussie mufti'
Suuuure. And Kaa the snake sways, and sings, and sways...- CM
'Islamic religious law, or sharia, is often vilified, but is really about freedom and tolerance, Austraia's new grand mufti says.'
'Freedom and tolerance.' Only netspeak suffices to respond. ROFLMAO. 'Freedom and tolerance'. Tell that to Aasia Bibi and Gilad Shalit, Mr Abu Mohamed. Tell it to the Christians of Iran or the Copts of Egypt, or the Hindus and Christians and Buddhists of Bangladesh and Indonesia and Malaysia, or the Assyrian Christians of Iraq. Tell us how much 'freedom' they enjoy and how much 'tolerance' they experience from the Muslims among whom they live. - CM
'Dr Ibrahim Abu Mohamed, elected in weekend voting by imams and sheiks, also said sharia corresponded with Australian laws.
"The sharia law also calls for freedom (yes, for Muslims to be free to do what they like to non-Muslims - CM), justice (for justice, read, 'sharia rules' - CM), right of speech (tell that one to the family of Theo Van Gogh, and to Salman Rushdie and Aasia Bibi - CM) and this is something we are very fortunate to have", Dr Mohamed told journalists in Sydney yesterday, speaking through an interpreter...
'The Egypt-born scholar and author said controversial (sic: brutal, harsh, barbaric - CM) penalties under sharia law often attracted attention, but they were a small part of the code.
Oh, suure they are...So, then, I'm sure you won't object, O Grand Mufti, if Aussies publicly criticise - and even poke fun at - Islam, Mohammed, and the foibles of Muslims, and when Muslim girls decide to marry Christian or atheist Aussie blokes, and when Aussie evangelists start converting Muslims to Christianity? You'll issue stern warnings telling Muslims that they must not attack, threaten or try to kill the people who engage in these activities, all of which are strictly forbidden and criminalised by the sharia? - CM
'Dr Mohamed said he did not want to preach sharai, but wanted people to better understand it.
Thanks to Canon Sookhdeo, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Nonie Darwish, Robert Spencer, and many, many others, and thanks to their own wary - and increasingly horrified - explorations of the jungle of Islamic texts and the interpretations thereof, and thanks to the use of their lyin' eyes and ears, many Australians (and more and more of us every day) understand sharia just fine, Dr Mohamed. And that is precisely why we do fear it, and heartily despise it, and do not want even the smallest part of it to be recognised or accommodated on Australian soil. - CM
'As the new spiritual leader of the nation's Islamic communities (Does that mean, of the Shiites as well as the Sunnis? Goodness me, wonders will never cease. - CM) he said he would focus on "correcting" Australian Muslims drawn to extremism.
"If such thoughts and elements do exist within any community...(there is no 'if' about it, Dr Mohamed, and you know that; the jihad plots exist, the jihad incitement exists, the Jihad imperative exists in all the core Islamic texts - CM) that is our role, to correct that thought and bring it back on track".
I can imagine the shape that that 'correction' may take. "Strategy. Tactics. It is too early and Muslims are as yet too weak, for too obvious a display of force which may create an undesirable reaction among the non-Muslims and lose us our beach-head. The Fast Jihad is alarming the Aussie non-Muslims. Tone it down, brothers. Leave it to the Slow Jihad; in a democracy, demography is destiny. Lie low and wait. Be patient!"
If you click on the link to the Sun-Herald report, you will find that, as with the Telegraph report, there are Comments. Last time I looked there were no less than 117. And the majority were, shall we say, distinctly sceptical, and indeed witheringly sarcastic about the Mufti's attempts at Da'wa and obfuscation of the flamingly obvious.
Take 'Apollyon of Yarra Bend' as a fair sample: "The new King Mufti has obviously not seen the application of his Sharia law as done in many African, Arabic and even some Asian countries. It is best decribed as senseless, brutal, and merciless, not ot mention sexually biased to males and belittling of females. I suggest all Muslim adherents living in Australia who want Sharia Law to be exported on a one-way ticket to a country where it is already practised. Now take Pakistan [it] is close by :)."
Posted on 09/21/2011 8:31 PM by Christina McIntosh