These are all the Blogs posted on Thursday, 22, 2010.
Thursday, 22 July 2010
Terror charge after South Park threat
Posted on 07/22/2010 1:46 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Thursday, 22 July 2010
The love of the high-end heist
From The Telegraph
As a book thief and air hostess are found guilty of theft, prison doctor Theodore Dalrymple examines the allure of the high-end heist.
Books have long been the object of desire, a desire that in intensity (among the susceptible) is stronger than for sex. Bibliomania, the obsession to possess books, was first recognised as a disease by doctors at the end of the Eighteenth Century, and many learned tomes - themselves now the object of bibliomanes’ desires - have been written on it.
Not long ago I bought a small volume, Book-lovers and Book-thieves, that suggested that the two types of person were very similar, and often one and the same, covetousness easily defeating honesty. Everyone knows that to lend a book, even to someone whom you know well, is to risk losing it. People who are scrupulously honest in all their other dealings don’t think that failure to return a book to its owner is theft in the usual sense of the term.
William Jacques, the Cambridge-educated serial book thief who has just been sent to prison for stealing books from the Royal Horticultural Society (and goodness knows from where else) probably thought that he was showing his connoisseurship and even his erudition by his activities. After all, it takes knowledge and discrimination to know which books to steal from library shelves, and which will find a ready market, and such knowledge and discrimination is most likely to develop in someone who loves the object of his knowledge and discrimination. Perhaps he has even retained the choicest items for himself somewhere, just to preserve the illusion of higher purpose.
Book thieves need buyers, of course, unless they are stealing purely for their own collection, and buyers can be almost as crooked as the thieves. Suppose I am a bibliomane and someone comes to me with a title I have coveted unsuccessfully for years. My hand will tremble with excitement and desire will overcome scruple about provenance almost without a struggle. I will even mention to him, though in my heart of hearts I know that his wares are stolen, that I am on the lookout for such-and-such a volume, and will express my surprise and delight when, at some time in the future, he just happens upon a copy of the very book I wanted.
The excitement of book theft – another benefit of this dubious profession – is that it has usually to be done under the very eyes of the owners or the guardians of the books. To the pleasures of illicit appropriation are added, therefore, those of making a fool of supposedly clever, educated and even learned people. If you haven’t quite got the patience for a life of scholarship yourself, at least you can prove yourself the superior of those who have. In my time I have met antique thieves who prided themselves on their powers of discrimination, equal to those of the average dealer, and greater than those of the average owner. In their eyes, this superiority almost justifies the dishonesty.
Posted on 07/22/2010 2:11 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Thursday, 22 July 2010
Six Afghan police officers beheaded by Taliban militants
From The Telegraph
Six Afghan policemen were beheaded when Taliban militants overran their checkpoint during an assault on government buildings. The police were killed during an attack in the previously calm northern province of Baghlan where Taliban influence has grown significantly in the past two years.
The Nato-led coalition said the officers died as police fought off an attack on a school, clinic and the district governor's building in Dahanah-ye Ghori, killing several insurgents. Decapitation is a favoured Taliban punishment for those who work with the government, or are accused of spying for Kabul.
Col Rafael Torres, a spokesman for the Nato-led coalition, said: "This incident once again demonstrates the brutal, barbaric and senseless acts committed by the Taliban." Some districts of Baghlan and neighbouring Kunduz have become inaccessible for government workers and foreigners as insurgents have grown in strength.
Meanwhile the Afghanistan government said a shoot-out at an army boot camp where a soldier killed two Americans appeared to have been triggered by an argument. There were no initial reports the killer was a militant sympathiser, though an investigation was continuing. The ministry of defence said: "It's said that after a verbal argument between an army soldier and his two US trainers, the soldier opened fire." A perfectly natural thing to happen - no cause for alarm.
Posted on 07/22/2010 2:52 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Thursday, 22 July 2010
$30 Billion Arms Sale To Saudi Arabia: "Bolstering Allies"
U.S. Saudi Sale Is Said to Approach $30 Billion Including 84 F-15 Fighters
By Jul 21, 2010 -
A proposed U.S. arms sale to Saudi Arabia will include 84 new Boeing Co. F-15 fighter jets and may be valued at as much as $30 billion, according to a government official familiar with the plan.
The deal also calls for selling 72 UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters built by United Technologies Corp.’s Sikorsky unit and refurbishing 70 Saudi F-15s, said the official, who asked not to be identified because terms are still under discussion.
Navy Vice Admiral Jeffrey Wieringa, director of the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, which oversees foreign sales, said separately today that Congress may be formally notified “within two months” about the transaction, which he said includes F- 15s, helicopters, ships and missile-defense systems. He said he couldn’t give specifics.
“There are three major efforts for Saudi Arabia -- aviation, Army missile defense-related and Navy,” Wieringa said in an interview at the Farnborough Air Show near London. “We have been working all those for about four years or so. Saudi is a key country for us and we continue to work hard.”
Negotiations were already under way in August 2007, when Wieringa’s predecessor, then-Air Force Lieutenant General Jeffrey Kohler, said in an interview that a sale to the kingdom might be valued at as much as $20 billion and include F-15s, Littoral Combat Ships and satellite-guided bomb kits.
Completing the deal would be a step toward President Barack Obama’s goal of buttressing the defense capabilities of Middle East allies to counter Iran’s growing offensive missile might and suspected nuclear weapons program. It would be part of the Gulf Security Initiative started by the Bush administration.
The $30 billion total includes hardware as well as spare parts, training and support, according to the government official who asked not to be identified.
Saudi Arabia’s last significant U.S. weapons purchase was 72 F-15s in 1992, a transaction valued at as much as $9 billion. The last planes in that contract were delivered in November 1999.
The kingdom spent $36.7 billion worldwide on arms and support activities from 2001 to 2008, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service.
“I can’t go into specifics,” Wieringa said of negotiations surrounding the arms package. “When the two countries agree on a deal and Congress agrees, then I can talk about it.”
Notification of Congress usually occurs in three stages in such deals. First are preliminary discussions with members and staff of the Senate and House foreign affairs committees, followed by a 20-day “informal” notice. Those steps would be followed by a 30-day review period after which the Pentagon submits a formal notification. Congress could then reject all or parts of the package.
The U.S. has previously sold Saudi Arabia Boeing-built AWACS surveillance aircraft, Sikorsky’s UH-60 Black Hawks, Raytheon Co.-built Patriot and Hawk missile defense systems, and General Dynamics Corp.’s M1A2 tanks.
Boeing, based in Chicago, fell 70 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $63.18 in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. Hartford, Connecticut-based United Technologies dropped 51 cents to $67.03 as broad market indexes declined.
Wieringa said talks also are under way with Iraq on equipment to rebuild the country’s military forces.
“It parallels the broad discussions with the Saudis,” he said. “We have got efforts for their aviation, land forces and their navy.”
Army General Raymond Odierno, the outgoing commander of U.S. forces in Iraq, told reporters in Washington today the Iraqi government has formally requested 18 General Dynamics F-16 fighter jets for delivery in 2013, a year when increased oil revenue should allow for the purchase and maintenance expenses.
The Pentagon agency will finish the year ending Sept. 30 with $37.8 billion in orders, Wieringa said. “Next year we could easily go to $50 billion or more,” he said.
If Congress approves, sales in the next fiscal year may include as much as $10 billion in arms to equip Afghanistan’s National Army and its police forces, Wieringa said. “It’s an extensive list of equipment,” he said without elaborating.
1. Saudi Arabia is not an ally; arms sales are not part of a program of "bolstering allies." Saudi Arabia is the bnakroller for mosques, madrasas, campaigns of Da'wa, all over the world, and the paymaster for others, including Wiestern hirelings (former diplomats, busiinessmen, journalists, teachers).
2. Instead of selling advanced weapons as a way to get money from Saudi Arabia, the American government should be demanding that the Saudis reimburse the Americans for their effort in Iraq to keep the country together, and to protect Sunni interests, for the Americans might long ago have left the place to the Shi'a, who (along with the Kurds) possess all of the oil, and at any time could abandon the Sunnis to their oil-less fate.
3. Instead of the American government continuing to supply Afghanistan with weaponry and aid, or Pakistan, demand that Saudi Arabia, which was one of three countries that recognized the Taliban (the others were Pakistan and the U.A.E.) provide the aid, and pay for any weaponry delivered. The money and other support that came from, and still come, from Saudi Arabia, have helped not only the Taliban, and Al Qaeda, but all kinds of terrorist groups, and all kinds of groups supporting Jihad through other means. The Saudis must be made to pay.
4. Supplying Saudi Arabia with weapons, and not asking them to contribute part of the three trillion dollars now spent or committed in Iraq and Afghanistan (and Pakistan, and Egypt) allows them to that nothing will be denied them, and that no demands will be made on them.. And they are allowed to continue to spend in the West on the promotion and expansion of Islam -- close to $100 billion has been spent on such efforts in the last three or four decades, without demanding a halt. This promotes an attitude among the Saudis that they can get away with everything they have been getting away with, an attitude that is dangerous, one that must be discouraged.
5. The readiness of the West to sell arms to the Saudis and other Arabs reflects incapacity and fear. Western governments are apparently tongue-tied in the presence of Saudi rulers, that is the Al-Saud, a venal and primitive and vicious family, that happens to have control of a country whose national wealth it diverts to its own immediate interests whenever it feels like it, one completely dependent on the Americans for their protection. No one in the American government can apparently bring himself to suggest or rather demand that the Saudis contribute to the gigantic costs of keeping parts of the Muslim world from collapse. In Iraq the American government should threaten to drop all efforts to promote compromise by the Shi'a (including carcely-veiled support for Allawi and his Sunni-supported list). And in Afghanistan, constant reminders that it was Saudi Arabia that along with Pakistan was the big backer of the Taliban, as part of a campaign to force Saudi Arabia to pay to undo what it has done, could help force the Saudis to contribute. The American government might start to reveal a willingness to allow two Muslim countries sink into the morasses of their own Islamic making should the Saudis, and the U.A.E., and other rich Arabs, fail to contribute, and substantially, to pay for future costs and to reimburse the Americans, and other Western governments, for some of what has already been spent.
Money, money, money.
Arms sales are not the answer.
Posted on 07/22/2010 6:35 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Thursday, 22 July 2010
Cut, cut, cut
I am pleased that the new Government is making cuts in the public sector. Huge savings can be made without sacrificing a single worker, because those who do the real work in the public sector are not well paid, while those in non-jobs are. I am particularly pleased that the Prevent initiative is to be axed. This bit of nonsense involved "reaching out to" - that is paying jizya to - Muslims, in the hope that they would stop blowing us up or supporting those who do. The reaching out had to be done without mentioning Muslims, so there was a lot of waffle about "extremism", but Muslims saw through this caper, and moaned about being "singled out".
Now it's time to pull the plug on that wolf in sheep's clothing the Quilliam Foundation, and its fork-tongued spokesman "Ed" Husain. And not a penny for "Palestine".
Muslims should get less taxpayers' money not more, and ideally they should get none. Working for a living might keep their minds off Islam, and a less generous Britain is a Britain less attractive to Muslims.
Posted on 07/22/2010 6:59 AM by Mary Jackson
Thursday, 22 July 2010
Obama: Al Qaeda Racists Give Radicals a Bad Name
Red Square writes at The People's Cube:
In a last-ditch effort to find a moral justification for a war that his radical leftist base could accept, President Obama attributed recent bombings in Africa to al Qaeda's bigotry, describing the terrorist masterminds as racist radicals. Accompanied by a somber Rev. Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, and NAACP President Ben Jealous, President Obama read a joint declaration denouncing al Qaeda's bigoted practice of "sacrificing innocent African life" as a means to hit a legitimate Western target.
To cover all possible bases, the declaration included a list of other random offenses, such as, the terrorist group's failure to embrace the local LGBT community, their complete lack of interest in environmental activism and in raising awareness about climate change, turning a blind eye to the existence of a "glass ceiling" for female suicide bombers, and a few documented instances of not separating paper from plastic. "This is not a behavior most self-respecting radicals would condone, nor expect from fellow radicals," Obama said.
"From now on," the President concluded, "our number one priority in Afghanistan and elsewhere is to impose strict Rules for Radicals on local extremists. If they want to continue to enjoy moral support while fighting U.S. imperialism, they'll have to play by the book and conform to established standards. They're going to have to learn the meaning of diversity quotas and sensitivity training. They're going to have to provide proof of employment of a proportional number of atheists, Jews, Buddhists, Hinduists, Animists, and followers of The Ancient Science of Soul Travel, in order to lift the undeserved stigma of violence and extremism from the Muslim faith."
Obama's change of priorities brought a welcome relief to US field commanders, who were all too happy to force the enemy units to comply with the same government-imposed rules and restrictions that the U.S. Army is facing on a daily basis.
As a result, a number of radical groups in Iraq and Afghanistan have already switched sides after only a few days of living under U.S.-mandated Rules for Radicals.
One man, identified only as a "Soldier for Allah" explained, "We were led into a classroom and had to sit in circles for what they called 'Collective Self-Attaining Support Sessions' where they lectured us on matters such as "Gender Awareness," "Multicultural Identity," and "Environmental Racism." For the love of Allah (peace be upon him and his messenger, the Prophet Muhammad), even in Saddam's prisons, I was never accused so often of being guilty!"
Trembling, he continued. "We had... had... gender role-playing. We had... had... non-dairy vegan diets. We had... had," at which point he broke down and cried, "You win, America! I had to write a 17-page memo explaining why my unit did not have an Hispanic presence! Please, you win!"
Diversity requirements are among the most effective weapons wielded by the Americans. A White House aide pointed out, "Islamic radicals need to understand that they must meet our goals and timetables. That is, if you're a terrorist and you shoot at us, we're gonna speak with you. And if your terrorist group doesn't meet our minority-and-women representation requirements, you're gonna be filling out forms for the rest of your days.
"We also check for other signs of discrimination. Were the correct percentages of your weapons built by approved minority vendors? Were your explosive belts manufactured by non-union labor? Were you using hurtful language while you were tossing grenades at us? Is everyone in your death squad being treated equally? These things matter more to us than whether you kill our troops. You see, individuals are replaceable, but progressive values are sacrosanct. And if you attack our values, you're going to be explaining yourself in remedial education sessions and you're going to be doing a lot... and I mean a lot... of writing!"
Although the new White House directive is largely incoherent, civil rights lawyers believe it offers a long-sought compromise between conventional combat and the ACLU requirement that "enemies be treated as though they are United States civilians."...
Posted on 07/22/2010 7:53 AM by Rebecca Bynum
Thursday, 22 July 2010
Two Muslim women marched out of swimming pool in French holiday village because they were wearing burkinis
From The Daily Mail
Two Muslim women were ordered out of a swimming pool at a French holiday village because they were wearing 'burkinis'. The pair leapt into the water wearing the specialised bathing suits that covered their entire bodies, including a veil over the head.
The women at the Rives des Corbieres holiday camp in Port Leucate, southern France, were told the rules stated only swimming costumes may be worn in the water.They were asked to either change into conventional bikinis or one-piece costumes or leave the swimming pool. Police were then called to the drama on Wednesday after the husband of one of the women threatened the pool's lifeguard with a bowling ball.
A holiday camp spokesman said: 'The husbands became very irate that their wives were not allowed to swim with their bodies covered, and one of them threatened violence. Police were called and he eventually backed down. The two Muslim couples left the pool area and no charges were brought.'
Regional government official Marie-Paule Bardeche said: 'This is an issue stemming from the holiday centre's own regulations. They state men and women must wear ordinary swimwear for hygiene reasons. Men are not even allowed to wear long shorts in the water.'
Last year a Muslim woman was banned from wearing a burkini at a public swimming pool also for hygiene reasons. She later failed in her bid to sue the council in the Paris suburb for discrimination.
Posted on 07/22/2010 11:11 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Thursday, 22 July 2010
"World-Class" Harvard's Press Release On The Latest HDS Hire
April 24, 2009
Latina/o Religious Studies Scholar to Join HDS Faculty
Contact: Jonathan Beasley, 617.496.6004
Constructive theologian and former chemical engineer Mayra Rivera Rivera has been named Assistant Professor of Theology and Latina/o Studies at Harvard Divinity School. She will join the HDS faculty July 1, 2010.
Since 2006, Rivera Rivera has served as Assistant Professor of Theology at the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, California. She also advises doctoral students of the Graduate Theological Union—a consortium of graduate theological seminaries and centers located in the San Francisco Bay area.
"The HDS faculty is very pleased to know that Professor Rivera Rivera will be joining us in 2010," said Dean William A. Graham in announcing the appointment. "Her work as a theologian will give us new strength in Latina/o religious studies and will add to our women's religious and theological studies at HDS. Her ability to engage theoretical and social issues across several fields of study will be an especially welcome addition to our growing capacity for substantive conversations among the numerous fields and disciplines at HDS."
A PhD graduate of Drew University in 2005 in theology and religious studies—with a secondary concentration in women's studies—Rivera Rivera is a transdisciplinary Latina theologian whose scholarship focuses on the intersections between feminist theory and cultural studies. Before entering theological studies, she earned a bachelor of science degree in chemical engineering from the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez and worked in the engineering field in Puerto Rico for more than a decade.
"I look forward to joining faculty and students at the Divinity School in their journeys of theological inquiry," Rivera Rivera said. "Especially exciting to me is the School's decision to make Latina/o studies an integral part of its theological education—a move that reflects an interest in engaging contemporary cultural and political contexts. I am committed to the transdisciplinary approach that such a study implies."
From 2003 to 2005 she served as a consultation participant for the program "Reading and Teaching the Bible as Asian, Black, and Latino/a Scholars in the United States," funded by the Wabash Center. Her remarkable book, The Touch of Transcendence: A Postcolonial Theology of God (Westminster John Knox Press, 2007), explores the relationship between God's otherness and interhuman difference, and presents a compelling example of how her scholarship engages theological constructs to find new ways to transfigure metaphors, bodies, and the space between bodies to affect dominant knowledge and power.
"She is an exceptionally gifted voice in Latina feminist, liberation, postcolonial, and constructive theology circles," said Susan Abraham, Assistant Professor of Ministry Studies at HDS and member of the faculty search subcommittee. "Her unique gifts as a brilliant scholar and teacher will enhance HDS's offerings across the board. I know from experience that she is a fantastic colleague and friend, and I am thrilled to soon be working more closely with her."
Posted on 07/22/2010 2:58 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Thursday, 22 July 2010
Performative Deformation, Or Harvard Divinity School's Penchant For Self-Parody Has Been Displayed For Some Time
Alt the same time as the latest proudly announced "world class" hiring of a "fantastic" invidual Harvard Divinity School apparently made another hire.
You can read about that hire here:
And here is an excerpt from the description of one of the courses offered by that new hire:
"Both Martin and Malcolm extend from religious traditions where notions of race and manhood are inextricably linked to social uplift. The aim of this course is to engage [sic] the theological, philosophical and social thought of these men, but to interrogate the explicit and implicit assumptions about race, gender and sexuality that animate masculinist organizing strategies. We will critically unpack the gender politics that underlay the thought and praxis of Martin King and Malcolm X toward engaging black masculinity as a performative deformation of the black male body and as frustrating to humanist liberatory efforts."
Posted on 07/22/2010 4:16 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Thursday, 22 July 2010
Ikhwanophobia Website Attacks Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Report
And as a result look pretty silly. From The Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Report:
Ikhwanophobia, an Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood front website, has responded to a GMBDR posting on the latest anti-Semtic article by Khaled Amayrah, reposted on Ikhwanophobia from the Egyptian Brotherhood website. In its response, titled “Anti-Semitism!! Seriously??”, Ikhwanophobia employs the usual combination of fallacious reasoning, deception, and outright lies. According to the post:
On July 15, Ikhwanophobia republished the article titled: “Muslims need to tackle Jewish Islamophobia“, by Khaled Amayrah. Ikhwanophobia offers a simple explanation to the fabricated allegations, regarding the MB and its views of its position regarding Jews. The famous report published by Steven Brooke and Robert S. Leiken titled “The Moderate Muslim Brotherhood” described the MB’s attitude towards Jews
The Muslim Brotherhood explicitly denies that their organization is anti-Semitic.
The former Egyptian MB Chairman Mr. Mohamed Mahdi Akef argues
that there is no con?ict between the Muslim Brotherhood and the
Jews, however he asserted that there are conflicts between the Muslim Brotherhood and the Zionists who, Akef asserted “are not Jews.”
This is the endorsed attitude of the Muslim Brotherhood, which expresses the MB ideology. In all reality the Muslim Brotherhood enjoys affable relations with the Jewish intellectuals and academics. To ikhwanophobia.comIn fact when the MB contacted prestigious Jewish intellectuals to support it in the struggle against racism and smear casting. We found them extremely co-operative and helpful. Professor Noam Chomsky simply described the site as an interesting project. Professor Norman Finkelstein, was also supportive of the fresh website; ascertaining that he would certainly want to cooperate with the site whenever it was mutually advantageous and convenient. This attitude from professor Finkelstein is a clear indication that the Muslim Brotherhood does not stand against Jews, on the contrary, the MB encourage affiliation and cooperation with the Jews so long as they do not support the racist Israeli-Zionist agenda. Second, One of the most important issues that should be clarified is the stance of Hamas towards Jews and the Jewish faith. The MB believe that Hamas targets the Zionist occupational project, Hamas and as a liberating movement it does not have any prejudices against Jews, their struggle is against the racist Israeli occupation and their massacres committed against Palestinian people throughout 60 years of occupation. In all reality the Muslim Brotherhood has no relations with the Islamic Resistance movement (Hamas), and is the compiling of imaginative and manipulative individuals. In fact in 2008, The Palestinian government led by Hamas, presented the Palestinian citizenship to Daniel Barenboim, world renowned Israeli pianist and conductor. Rather than discussing the Muslim Brotherhood’s attitude against Judaism which is merely hearsay the MB calls for discussing racism by GMBDR and FSM against Muslims? The latest article titled: “Islam Must be stopped in America” speaks for itself where it reeks of racism and hatred.! Ikhwanophobia.com confirms that the MB does not promote any anti-western agendas and calls on all to view both sides of the coin in an effort to bridge the gap and eliminate any racist and hate sites which ultimately anger citizens on all levels.
This response can be broken down into the following strategies:
1. Fallacious reasoning
The Muslim Brotherhood claims it is not anti-Semtic because the Brotherhood denies that it is anti-Semitic. Not much more need about this other than noting the comment by Akef that “Zionists” are not Jews.
The “some of my best friends are Jews” defense employed by Ikhwanophobia is a case of deception by claiming that the Muslim Brotherhood enjoys any form of close relationship with the Jewish community. The two individuals cited in the post, Noam Chomsky and Norman Finkelstein, are perhaps the most virulent critics of Israel from the academic community and therefore it should be no surprise that they are looked upon favorably by the Muslim Brotherhood who also enjoy close ties to a group of Jewish rabbis whose dream is “dismantling the state of Israel” and who have have attended a Holocaust denial conference in Tehran as well as praising Iranian President Ahmadinejad after calling for the destruction of Israel.
The statement that the Muslim Brotherhood has “no relations with the Islamic Resistance movement (Hamas)” is a brazen lie. In dozens of posts, the GMBDR has documented the massive political, financial, and other forms of support provided to Hamas by the Global Muslim Brotherhood and Youssef Qaradawi, the leader of the Global Muslim Brotherhood, is widely regarded as the spiritual patron of Hamas. On the Hamas side, the Hamas charter states that it is ” is one of the wings of the Muslim Brothers in Palestine” and an Israeli TV station has reported that in 2008, Muslim Brotherhood “representatives” traveled to Gaza from Egypt through the open border to meet with Hamas. An earlier media report indicated that shortly after Hamas took over the Gaza strip, Muslim Brotherhood representatives were present to review Hamas military formations. Last June, a Hamas journalist acknowledged the role that the “international Muslim Brotherhood” has played in providing funds for the purchase of weapons.
The Ikhwanophobia, post also accused the GMBDR of “racism against Muslims.” We categorically deny this charge and challenge anybody to cite a single example of racism in the thousands of posts we have done. On the other hand, in previous articles for the Egyptian Brotherhood website, Mr. Amayreh has called Israel a “sick and cannibalistic society that is as bestial as Nazi Germany was during the Holocaust” , accused Israel of the “wanton slaughter of children [which] occurs each day and every day of the year, and called Jews “a cancer on the world.” In the article in question from July 15, Mr. Amayreh accused “Zionist Jews of spreading venomous hatred against Islam and concludes that “a real alliance is being forged between Zionism and European neo-Nazism.” The article opens by accusing “Zionist Jews” of inciting genocidal hatred against Muslims using “the Jewish controlled media and show biz.” As for Hamas, previous posts have reported on a sermon delivered on Hamas TV by a Hamas affiliated cleric in which he says that the conflict between Muslims and “Jews and Crusaders will continue to the Day of Judgement” and a TV interview with the Hamas Deputy Minister of Religious Endowments in which he calls Jews “foreign bacteria” that should be “annihilated.”
As discussed in an earlier post, the Ikhwanophobia site it self is an example of deception as it claims that it was established “by a group of Academic intellectuals” without disclosing that is in fact an arm of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, as revealed by analysis of its domain information.
Posted on 07/22/2010 4:38 PM by Rebecca Bynum
Thursday, 22 July 2010
By Their Words Shall Ye Judge Them
What shall we make of the makers and fakers of up-to-date academe, those who are so very up-to-date that they are now behind the times, having inherited hand-me-down verbal rags -- off, off, you lendings! -- that now seem comically old-fashioned and vieux jeu?
What do we make of someone who is capable of describing herself thus:
"Her transdisciplinary work as a theologian engages key Christian themes, constructively and deconstructively, in relation to current theory and philosophy—especially in feminist, postcolonial, and Latina studies. Her book The Touch of Transcendence: A Postcolonial Theology of God (Westminster John Knox Press, 2007) explores the relationship between God's otherness and interhuman difference. It demonstrates how her scholarship engages theological constructs to find new ways to transfigure metaphors, bodies, and the space between bodies in order to affect dominant modes of knowledge and power."
or who describes one of her courses thus:
"This course will engage critically and constructively Christian writings about the human body in dialogue with current theoretical debates including: the boundaries between the human and the non-human; definitions of sexuality, gender, and race; understandings of materiality and performativity; and discourses about health and normative forms of embodiment."
What do we make of someone else who describes one of his courses thus:
"Both Martin and Malcolm extend from religious traditions where notions of race and manhood are inextricably linked to social uplift. The aim of this course is to engage the theological, philosophical and social thought of these men, but to interrogate the explicit and implicit assumptions about race, gender and sexuality that animate masculinist organizing strategies. We will critically unpack the gender politics that underlay the thought and praxis of Martin King and Malcolm X toward engaging black masculinity as a performative deformation of the black male body and as frustrating to humanist liberatory efforts."
What do we make of them?
Well, if you are Harvard Divinity School today, apparently you hire them, and tell the world of your great delight at managing to nab such "world-class" catches.
The Elizabethan sonneteers maintained that the eyes were the windows of the soul. Perhaps. But surely the vigilant use of words, the absence of gobbledygook , is in most if not all cases (there are some laconic or even tongue-tied Diracs and Godels and Erdoses here below to throw a spanner into that particular works) the surest measure of the intellect.
The ghosts of Theodore Parker and Ralph Waldo Emerson and Krister Stendahl are not amused.
Nor are the ghosts of those who long ago left legacies to Harvard Divinity School, expecting those rich endowments to be used for one thing, and now finding them used for quite another. And the same thing is going on all over the place. Moral: don't give any money to such places, because you will have no control over what they do with it. Avoid especially giving to Our Prestigious Universities. They can't be trusted. And they are taking sides in the War on the Intellect -- the wrong side.
Posted on 07/22/2010 4:35 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Thursday, 22 July 2010
A Musical Interlude: Strange Things Happening Everyday (Sister Rosetta Tharpe)
Posted on 07/22/2010 5:04 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Thursday, 22 July 2010
That MESA NOSTRA Contest, Or, Harvard Divinity School Here I Come
Perhaps you've forgotten the MESA Nostra Contest. That contest was simple. It offered a single paragraph, itself consisting of a single sentence, transparently written in Mesanostran. Contestants were asked to identify the author.
Here is that paragraph:
"In conclusion, I feel that this work of analysis, by focusing on the implications of the phallic hegemony of Wehrmacht-helmeted Israeli troops and their supporters throughout the American empire, both equally unappeasable in their demonstrable need for "the Other," does what in a quasi-heuristic sense it was intended to do, as it manages to break away from all Eurocentric approaches to discourses of postcolonial subalternity, or even of meta-alterity, and comes so subversively close in its disjunctive interrogation of the counter- or, more exactly, anti-mimesis which is inherently essential to Mesopotamian or indeed to Cairene, Abbasid, Jordanian or Palestinian thought for, as a native of (Amman, Baghdad, Beirut, Cairo, Damascus, Islamabad, Ramallah, Teheran, etc. – choose one) and hence a non-European, I am of necessity self-assigned to that category of people best placed to perform such a mission of interrogating all postcolonialist as well as narrativised specificity, but of equal necessity, not as one obviously intent on de-undermining or rather meta-determining the poststructuralist or post-postmodern universalism, with its customary relativised discourse analysis which seldom lends itself to anticipatory prolepsis, but on the other hand my critique is quite meta-consciously deeply para-rooted within, as well as up-rooted out of, and obviously from, Western thought with its inalienably alien constructions of meta-identity and hypersexuality, which necessarily give rise to post-essentialism which, in a larger sense, serves merely to violate all the strategic critiques of hegemonic historiographical constructions of essences, whether of the Orient or of scholars who deny the self-referentiality of all postcolonialist essentializing."
I won't bother going into the various entries I received, or the prize that was offered. You can find out all about those details on-line.
But what I want to know is: given the mastery of a certain language displayed in that paragraph above, do you thiink the author of that paragraph could apply for, and be given a job at, Harvard Divinity School?
I think so. And by gad, I could certainly use the money.
Posted on 07/22/2010 5:08 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Thursday, 22 July 2010
Newt Gingrich Statement on the Proposed “Cordoba House” Mosque near Ground Zero
Newt Gingrich issued this official statement:
There should be no mosque near Ground Zero in New York so long as there are no churches or synagogues in Saudi Arabia. The time for double standards that allow Islamists to behave aggressively toward us while they demand our weakness and submission is over.
The proposed "Cordoba House" overlooking the World Trade Center site – where a group of jihadists killed over 3000 Americans and destroyed one of our most famous landmarks - is a test of the timidity, passivity and historic ignorance of American elites. For example, most of them don’t understand that “Cordoba House” is a deliberately insulting term. It refers to Cordoba, Spain – the capital of Muslim conquerors who symbolized their victory over the Christian Spaniards by transforming a church there into the world’s third-largest mosque complex.
Today, some of the Mosque’s backers insist this term is being used to "symbolize interfaith cooperation" when, in fact, every Islamist in the world recognizes Cordoba as a symbol of Islamic conquest. It is a sign of their contempt for Americans and their confidence in our historic ignorance that they would deliberately insult us this way.
Those Islamists and their apologists who argue for "religious toleration" are arrogantly dishonest. They ignore the fact that more than 100 mosques already exist in New York City. Meanwhile, there are no churches or synagogues in all of Saudi Arabia. In fact no Christian or Jew can even enter Mecca.
And they lecture us about tolerance.
If the people behind the Cordoba House were serious about religious toleration, they would be imploring the Saudis, as fellow Muslims, to immediately open up Mecca to all and immediately announce their intention to allow non-Muslim houses of worship in the Kingdom. They should be asked by the news media if they would be willing to lead such a campaign.
We have not been able to rebuild the World Trade Center in nine years. Now we are being told a 13 story, $100 million megamosque will be built within a year overlooking the site of the most devastating surprise attack in American history.
Finally where is the money coming from? The people behind the Cordoba House refuse to reveal all their funding sources.
America is experiencing an Islamist cultural-political offensive designed to undermine and destroy our civilization. Sadly, too many of our elites are the willing apologists for those who would destroy them if they could.
No self deception.
The time to take a stand is now - at this site on this issue.
Posted on 07/22/2010 7:12 PM by Rebecca Bynum
Thursday, 22 July 2010
No sale! Says Staten Island parish to Muslim American Society
A tip of the Chapeau to Madeline Brooks of Act! Manhattan. There's the ground zero mosque in Lower Manhattan and the Murfreesboro Mosque in Tennessee still out there roiling the public. No longer the case with the controversial pending sale of a former Convent of St. Margaret Parish to the Muslim American Society (MAS), a Muslim Brotherhood front, to create a Mosque on Staten island . Today, the Board of St. Margaret Parish ratified a statement in opposition to the sale . The board decision: no sale to the MAS. Score one for St. Margaret Parish, Pastor Father Keith Fennessy and community opponents of the proposed sale to the MAS, an un-indicted co-conspirator in the Dallas Holy Land Foundation trial. Remember the lyric from the song, New York, New York. "If you can make it there, you can make it anywhere."
Witness this from the Archdiocese of New York news release:
STATEMENT ON SAINT MARGARET MARY PARISH
Father Keith Fennessy, pastor of Saint Margaret Mary parish on Staten Island, announced in June that after careful consideration he was withdrawing his support for the planned sale of the parish convent to the Muslim American Society.
The trustees of the parish have met, as legally required under New York State law, and voted to ratify the pastor’s decision.
The Muslim American Society has been informed that the sale of the convent will not take place.
The Archdiocese of New York has enjoyed a good relationship with the Islamic community in the past, and looks forward to continued dialogue, friendship, and understanding in the future.
It is also our prayer that unity will now return to the parish and to the Midland Beach community.
Posted on 07/22/2010 8:00 PM by Jerry Gordon
Thursday, 22 July 2010
The Caudillo And Fascist Chavez Breaks Relations With Colombia
Venezuela severs ties with Colombia
President Hugo Chavez has severed Venezuela's diplomatic relations with Colombia over claims he harbours guerrillas, and he also suggested that his neighbour's leader could attempt to provoke a war.
Mr Chavez said he was forced to break off all relations because Colombian officials claim he has failed to move against leftist rebels who allegedly have taken shelter in Venezuelan territory.
Mr Chavez acted moments after Colombian Ambassador Luis Alfonso Hoyos presented a meeting of the Organisation of American States in Washington with photos, videos, witness testimony and maps of what he said were rebel camps inside Venezuela and challenged Venezuelan officials to let independent observers visit them.
Neither Mr Chavez nor his OAS ambassador directly responded to the Colombian challenge to let people visit the alleged site of the camps.
In Washington, Hoyos said that roughly 1,500 rebels are hiding out in Venezuela and he showed fellow diplomats numerous aerial photographs of what he identified as rebel camps on Venezuelan territory.
Mr Hoyos said that Colombian President Alvaro Uribe's government has repeatedly asked for Venezuela's cooperation to prevent guerrillas from slipping over the 1,400-mile (2,300-kilometer) border that separates the two countries. He insisted that several rebel leaders are hiding out in Venezuela.
OAS Secretary General Jose Miguel Insulza told reporters after the four-hour session that his organisation couldn't mount an inspection mission without Venezuela's consent.
On another front, Colombia announced it would file a complaint with the International Criminal Court against members of Venzuela's government alleging collaboration with Colombian guerrilla groups and providing refuge to terrorists.
The charges would fall under war crimes and crimes against humanity, chief prosecutor Guillermo Mendoza told reporters after a meeting with Uribe and Cabinet members.
Venezuelan Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro announced that Chavez's government had closed its embassy in Bogota and demanded that Colombia's ambassador in Caracas leave the country within 72 hours.
Posted on 07/22/2010 11:30 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald