We have gathered here to affirm a faith, a faith in a common purpose, a common conviction, a common devotion. Some of us have chosen America as the land of our adoption; the rest have come from those who did the same. For this reason we have some right to consider ourselves a picked group, a group of those who had the courage to break from the past and brave the dangers and the loneliness of a strange land. What was the object that nerved us, or those who went before us, to this choice? We sought liberty; freedom from oppression, freedom from want, freedom to be ourselves. This we then sought; this we now believe that we are by way of winning. What do we mean when we say that first of all we seek liberty? I often wonder whether we do not rest our hopes too much upon constitutions, upon laws and upon courts. These are false hopes; believe me, these are false hopes. Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women; when it dies there, no constitution, no law, no court can even do much to help it. While it lies there it needs no constitution, no law, no court to save it. And what is this liberty which must lie in the hearts of men and women? It is not the ruthless, the unbridled will; it is not freedom to do as one likes. That is the denial of liberty, and leads straight to its overthrow. A society in which men recognize no check upon their freedom soon becomes a society where freedom is the possession of only a savage few; as we have learned to our sorrow.
"What then is the spirit of liberty? I cannot define it; I can only tell you my own faith. The spirit of liberty is the spirit which is not too sure that it is right; the spirit of liberty is the spirit which seeks to understand the mind of other men and women; the spirit of liberty is the spirit which weighs their interests alongside its own without bias; the spirit of liberty remembers that not even a sparrow falls to earth unheeded; the spirit of liberty is the spirit of Him who, near two thousand years ago, taught mankind that lesson it has never learned but never quite forgotten; that there may be a kingdom where the least shall be heard and considered side by side with the greatest. And now in that spirit, that spirit of an America which has never been, and which may never be; nay, which never will be except as the conscience and courage of Americans create it; yet in the spirit of that America which lies hidden in some form in the aspirations of us all; in the spirit of that America for which our young men are at this moment fighting and dying; in that spirit of liberty and of America I ask you to rise and with me pledge our faith in the glorious destiny of our beloved country.”
In case any New English Review readers are wondering what my politics are, having bashed the Liberal Democrats, I will now bash Labour. But I don't need to - even its supporters at Harry's Place have gone off them. Here's why, from commenter Joseph K. Not to be confused with Joseph K, even though the confusion, indeed any confusion, might be suitably Kafkaesque:
Labour is simply no longer the party of the white working class. It has been captured by the liberal metropolitan middle-class. Labour has drifted so far from its roots that it has lost its way. It no longer understands white working class voters because its upper hierarchy has no connection with white working class voters. (Let’s be honest about this, many of them don’t really like white working class people.)
I mean, the party’s idea of appealing to its traditional voters is to wheel out John Prescott, a semi-literate jibbering troglodyte whom Labour probably believes epitomises the working class male. He doesn’t. He’s an embarrassing arsehole.
Labour’s white working-class vote has collapsed in the South, and is declining in the North. The likes of Mandelson and Ed Balls, of Tristram Hunt and “BevaniteEllie” – these are the faces of the modern Labour party. Moneyed, middle-class and totally removed from life as lived by its [rapidly shrinking] core vote.
Jihad Watchin johtokunnan varapuheenjohtaja Hugh Fitzgerald esittää lyhyesti, mistä taqiyyassa ja kitmanissa, petollisuuden kahdessa eri muodossa, on kysymys.
Taqiyya on uskonnollisesti pyhitetty doktriini, jonka alkuperä on shiialaisuudessa mutta jota harjoittavat nyt myös muut kuin shiiat. Se tarkoittaa uskonnollisia asioita koskevaa tahallista valheellisuutta (teeskentelyä, todellisten intentioiden kätkemistä), johon voidaan ryhtyä islamin ja uskovien suojelemiseksi. Toinen samansukuinen termi, jonka sovellusala on laajempi, on “kitman”, ja se määritellään “mentaaliseksi varaukseksi”. Esimerkkinä taqiyyasta voisi olla se, kun islamia puolusteleva muslimi väittää, että “tietenkin” islamissa on omantunnonvapaus, ja siteeraa sitten Koraanin jaetta (2:256): “Ei uskontoon pakoteta.” Annettu vaikutelma on kuitenkin väärä, sillä sen yhteydessä ei mainita islamin doktriinia naskhista eli kumoamisesta, jonka mukaan Koraanin myöhemmin annetut jakeet, jotka ovat paljon suvaitsemattomampia ja julmempia, kumoavat sellaiset varhaisemmat jakeet, kuten “ei uskontoon pakoteta”. Historia joka tapauksessa osoittaa, että islamin sisällä on ja on aina ollut “uskonnonpakko” niin muslimeille kuin muillekin.
“Kitman” on taqiyyaa muistuttava käytäntö, mutta suoranaisen valehtelemisen sijaan se viittaa puolittaisen totuuden kertomiseen tietyllä “mentaalisella varauksella”, joka oikeuttaa loppuosan poisjättämisen. Yksi esimerkki riittää. Kun muslimi väittää, että “jihad” merkitsee todellisuudessa “henkistä kilvoittelua”, eikä tule lisänneeksi, että tuo määritelmä on islamissa kehitelty vasta äskettäin (hieman yli sata vuotta sitten), hän johdattaa harhaan salaamalla tuon tiedon ja harjoittaa täten “kitmania”. Kitmanin harjoittamisesta on kyse myös silloin, kun hän tuon arveluttavan väitteensä tukemiseksi esittää hadithin, jossa (tietyn todistajaketjun eli isnadin perusteella) Muhammadin mainitaan eräältä lukuisista sotaretkiltään palatessaan sanoneen palaavansa pienemmästä jihadista ryhtyäkseen suurempaan jihadiin, ja kun hän ei lisää tähän sitä todeksi tietämäänsä seikkaa, että tämä on “heikko” hadith, jota useimmat arvostetut muhaddithinit pitävät alkuperältään epäilyttävänä.
For Some, Apparently, History Is Whatever They Want It To Be
Bouchareb film slammed for 'falsifying' history of French-Algerian massacre
A film picked to compete at the forthcoming Cannes Film Festival, French-Algerian director Rachid Bouchareb’s Outside of the Law (Hors la loi), has caused a storm following charges of historical inaccuracy.
Lionnel Luca, a French deputy from President Nicolas Sarkozy’s centre-right ruling party, has accused Bouchareb of “falsifying” history. "Outside of the Law" examines the legacy of the notorious Sétif massacre of 1945: the Algerian uprising against occupying French forces on the day after World War II ended -- as well as France’s suppression of the uprising -- resulted in mass deaths on both sides. Algerian casualties were estimated in the thousands and those of the Europeans, or “pied noirs”, were estimated in the hundreds.
“I don’t think Mr. Bouchareb is doing a good deed by saying in his film that on one side there were victims, and on the other there were bad guys”, said Luca, a representative from France’s south-eastern Alpes-Maritime region. Luca has not yet seen the film, but he voiced his disagreement with its portrayal of events after reading interviews with writer-director Bouchareb.
A screenplay full of ‘errors and anachronisms’
The film tells the story of three Algerian brothers – and survivors of the Setif massacres – who leave their birth country for France, where they become involved in the movement for Algerian independence. In an interview with Algerian newspaper “El Watan”, Bouchareb said one of the film’s ambitions was to “shed light on this bit of history that the two countries share” and to “restore a historical truth that has been tucked away”.
The film is an Algerian-French-Belgian co-production, but was selected for Cannes as a film representing Algeria, and not France. Luca told FRANCE 24 that he may be responsible for this decision to avoid labelling the film as French, despite the film’s French-born director, actors who are well-known in the French film world, and partial French financing.
After the interviews he read led him to suspect that Bouchareb’s account of the massacre might be inaccurate, Luca asked the Defence Ministry’s historical service to submit a “historical opinion” on the film’s screenplay.
“Mr. Bouchareb has the right to tell the story of what he thinks is true, but I didn’t want the film to be categorised as French,” Luca explained. “His truth is not France’s truth”.
The report from the Defence Ministry confirmed that the film’s screenplay indeed contained “errors and anachronisms so numerous and obvious that they could be seized on by any historian”.
Regarding the portrayal of the Sétif massacre, the report states: “The director wants to suggest that on May 8, 1945, Muslims in Sétif were blindly massacred by Europeans, whereas it’s the contrary that transpired….all historians agree on that….Europeans lashed out against Muslims in response to Muslims massacring Europeans”.
Neither director Bouchareb nor the Cannes selection committee was available for comment on the flap, or the decision to have the film compete as an Algerian entry.
Bouchareb vied for the Palme d’Or in 2006 with his film "Days of Glory" (Indigènes), which told the story of North African soldiers who fought for France in World War II.
Quelque chose pour le weekend, monsieur? As well as being perfidious and unwashed, the French can't even speak French and now speak Franglais:
Elle assure également ne pas avoir dit aux footballeurs incriminés qu’elle était mineure. «J’ai toujours fait plus vieille que mon âge et, quand j’ai compris que je plaisais aux hommes, je me suis dit : "Pourquoi ne pas en profiter"», explique-t-elle.
L'escort-girl? Don't the French have a dozen far more elegant words for a slapper? The Times reports:
In Britain it would be a classic tabloid scoop — a front page featuring a blonde teenager who recounts her nocturnal adventures with football stars.
Yet when the glossy weekly Paris Match ran an interview yesterday with an escort girl who allegedly slept with three members of France’s national team it was a milestone for the Gallic media, which has traditionally scoffed at kiss-and-tell stories.
“It is the first time I have seen this here,” Renaud Revel, a media commentator for L’Express magazine, said. “It means we have turned a corner and we are on the slippery slope towards Anglo-Saxon customs. It’s sad but I think it’s irreversible.”
British taxpayer forced to fork out for Jihadi molls
If you give money to Muslim "charities" to help "families in need" you may as well cut out the middleman and buy the jihadis a bomb belt. Aid to jihadi wives and families simply frees up money for terrorism that would otherwise be spent supporting them. Give to Hamas (and, incidentally, Noraid) and you're a terrorist enabler. But at least you have a choice. The British taxpayer, on the contrary, has been forced into this invidious position. Jizyah alert from The Times:
Curbs on state handouts to wives of terrorist suspects were ruled illegal yesterday by European judges and may have to be relaxed.
The European Court of Justice ruled that Britain was wrong to restrict social security payments to the wives of three men on a list of people with alleged links to al-Qaeda, the Taleban and Osama bin Laden.
Suspects on the list, which was drawn up by a UN sanctions committee, have their funds and other assets frozen as part of attempts to cut off funding to terrorists.
Under the Treasury rules, benefits such as income support, child support and housing assistance must be paid into a bank account and the spouse can draw only up to £10 in cash for each member of her household. All other payments from the account must be
The spouses, all living in Britain with their husbands and children, must submit a monthly account to the Treasury, detailing all spending and including receipts for any goods bought and copies of bank statements so that officials can check that the purchases do not exceed “basic expenses”.
The women challenged the conditions, claiming a violation of their rights, and the case was referred to the European Court of Justice by the House of Lords. The women argued that while their husbands were subject to an asset freeze, they themselves were not, and should continue to receive social security aid such as child benefit and housing support.
Notice that these women, submissive under Islam, show no such humility when it comes to demanding money from the infidel taxpayer.
The judges agreed yesterday, ruling: “The freezing of funds of persons with suspected links to bin Laden, al-Qaeda or the Taleban does not apply to certain social security benefits paid to their spouses. The regulation ordering funds to be frozen applies only to assets that can be used to support terrorist activities.”
The Treasury’s interpretation that “by receiving state benefits, the wives indirectly make funds available for the benefit of their husbands, is not based on any danger whatsoever that the funds in question may be diverted in order to support terrorist activities”.
The judges added: “It is hard to imagine how those funds could be turned into means that could be used to support terrorist activities, for the benefits are fixed at a level intended to meet only the strictly vital needs of the person concerned.”
The British authorities had ordered that payments, such as child benefit, housing benefit and income support, should be withheld from people named on the UN list, which requires an assets freeze.
No one had argued that the wives handed over the state benefits to their husbands instead of using them for household expenses, the judges said.
They concluded that the benefits that a person on the list might indirectly derive from the social allowances paid to his spouse did not compromise the objective of the regulations.
A Treasury spokesman said that the case would be referred back to the Supreme Court for a final ruling. Yesterday's judgment is believed to affect fewer than a dozen people currently in Britain.
It's a dozen too many. Muslim wives must, by the obedience demanded under Islam, be complicit in their husbands' crimes. And their children are Jihadis in waiting. Deport the lot.
A BRITISH Muslim has shown ‘no remorse’ after desecrating Burton’s War Memorial with extremist Islamic slogans, a court has heard.And senior lawyers from the Crown Prosecution Service have decided that graffiti proclaiming future world domination for Islam, glorifying Osama Bin Laden and calling for the assassination of the British Prime Minister “was not religiously or racially motivated”.
Tohseef Shah, 21, of Norton Road, Horninglow, admitted a charge of criminal damage to the memorial, outside Burton College, in Lichfield Street, when he appeared at Burton Magistrates Court yesterday. Shah admitted spraying the words ‘Islam will dominate the world — Osama is on his way’ and ‘Kill Gordon Brown’ on the plinth of the East Staffordshire Borough Council-owned memorial, on December 10 last year. He was given a two-year conditional discharge and was ordered to pay £500 compensation to the council, plus £85 costs.
During yesterdays proceedings, from which one magistrate had to withdraw himself after declaring an interest, prosecutor Andrew Bodger said information about Shah and photographs of the graffiti were sent to CPS headquarters in London, for a review by senior lawyers. They found there was insufficient evidence that the criminal act was racially or religiously motivated — which could have led to a more serious charges and a harsher sentence.
Shah, who has no previous convictions, was later identified from DNA on the spray can and admitted his actions.
Mr Bodger said: “Shah wouldn’t give an explanation as to why he had done it and had shown no remorse for this very sensitive matter. The words were cleaned off without difficulty at a cost of £500. The CPS specialist unit was sent the pictures, as well as his mobile phone records, to see if there was a racially or religiously motivated connotation. It was decided there was not enough evidence to prove this, and they decided it was politically motivated. It has caused great offence to the community.”
Defending solicitor Mumtaz Chaudry dismissed any belief that Shah held extremist views. He said: “This is nothing to do with his religious beliefs, his family’s beliefs or his cultural beliefs. He is just an ordinary guy. He is remorseful, but at the time of his interview, he was simply answering questions and didn’t realise that was the right time to show remorse."
The CPS lost whatever credibility they started out with 20 years ago. Too much PC, diversity, agenda and indolence.
Dennis Fletcher, chairman of East Staffordshire Racial Equality Council, said he suspected someone from the far right was responsible. “I suspect members of the far right have done this to stir things up and there are generally very good inter-cultural relations in East Staffordshire. Graffiti of any type is terrible but when it includes racist material it has to be considered utterly unacceptable.”
So it is racist when it might have written by the far right, but not so when DNA evidence and a confession show it to have been writen by a Muslim, who, one assumes, meant the statement literally. And surely calling for the death of someone is a crime over and above criminal damage. The drunken student who urinated on a war memorial only narrowly escaped a prison sentence last year because he was genuinely contrite and there was no malice in his actions; he was too drunk to know where he was. This traitors actions were deliberate.
"The Obama administration said Tuesday it would provide more information to Congress about the Fort Hood shootings but continued to defy a subpoena request for witness statements and other documents.
After days of negotiations, the Pentagon and Justice Department informed a Senate committee that they would not comply with congressional subpoenas to share investigative records from the Nov. 5 shootings at Fort Hood, Tex., which killed 13 people. The agencies said that divulging the material could jeopardize their prosecution of Army Maj. Nidal M. Hasan, the accused gunman.
The Pentagon did budge in other areas, however, saying it had agreed to give the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs access to Hasan's personnel file, as well as part of an Army report that scrutinized why superiors failed to intervene in Hasan's career as an Army psychiatrist, despite signs of his religious radicalization and shortcomings as a soldier.
Leslie Phillips, a spokeswoman for the Senate committee, called the refusal by the Pentagon and the Justice Department to hand over all the requested material "an affront to Congress's constitutional obligation to conduct independent oversight of the executive branch."
Wilders Launches Freedom Party Parliamentary Campaign in The Netherlands in the midst of his political Trial
Geert Wilders launched the PVV (Freedom Party) campaign for the upcoming June 9th Hague Parliamentary elections on April 26th with a speech in the port City of Rotterdam – symbol of anti-Islamization given the assassination of the late Dutch politician and Mayor, Pim Fortuyn. Baron Bodissey at The Gates of Vienna (TGOA) website has the translation of the PVV manifesto., “A Sandwich with a Spine”. A De Telegraaf report cited by TGOA noted the symbolism in its coverage:
“Here in Rotterdam we plant our flag and begin the reconquest of the Netherlands.” Geert Wilders had a clear message on Monday evening in Rotterdam at the start of his Party for Freedom’s campaign for the parliamentary elections on June 9. He deliberately chose Rotterdam, the city of Pim Fortuyn, “the man who paid with his life for his ideals.”
Wilders again indicated that he wants to govern. “The Netherlands needs a strong PVV that can put affairs in order.” And: “Without the PVV in a new government, the Netherlands will descend further into a morass of politically correct inaction, and the problems will not be solved but only worsen.”
According to Wilders, the CDA [Christian Democrats], PvdA [Labour, Socialists] and VVD [Center-Right Liberals] have made an ever bigger mess of it in recent decades when they governed. The PVV leader warned his supporters that a vote for VVD leader Mark Rutte or CDA leader Jan Peter Balkenende might just as well be a vote for Job Cohen (PvdA) and Alexander Pechtold (D66).
Wilders especially turned against Cohen, leader of the PvdA, whom he blamed for having no spine. The red flag that characterizes the Labour Party has made way for a red carpet being rolled out for Islam and mass immigration, according to the PVV leader. The PVV chooses optimism and hope, he said. “We are hard where needed, and soft where possible.” Opposite Islam the PVV places “our identity” and “opposite Job Cohen more security and less immigration,” he said.
A relaxed Wilders on stage had short conversations with candidates on the list. He sat on a bar stool in front of an audience of about two hundred interested people who later were able to put forward their questions in conversations with the candidates. Afterwards Wilders’ sympathizers queued to have their picture taken with Wilders and to have a short talk.
In the run-up to the June general elections all the parties have now presented their election manifestos. Bringing up the rear is right-wing populist Geert Wilders. Mr Wilders used his launch party in Rotterdam on Monday evening to lay into his biggest opponent, Labour Party leader Job Cohen. "He is a spineless man who did little for Amsterdam's original inhabitants when he was mayor of the city. Cohen is 100 percent pro Islam," Mr Wilders is quoted in de Volkskrant.
“Wilders blustered as usual about the themes his party has set as its spearheads,” comments AD. The Rotterdam-based daily points out that the Freedom Party chose the port city for its manifesto launch because of its symbolic value.
The paper reminds us that murdered anti-immigration politician Pim Fortuyn began his career in Rotterdam. "We'll plant our flag here and begin reconquering the Netherlands,” said Mr Wilders. “Unlike Job Cohen, we want more law and order and less immigration."
Despite his non-stop attacks on left-wing politicians, Mr Wilders is getting unexpected support from the left. Both de Telegraaf and de Volkskrant quote Femke Halsema of the Green Left party, who is accusing public broadcasters VARA (the social-democrat broadcaster) and NPS (officially neutral) of airing "a scare-mongering pamphlet" about the Freedom Party.
Sunday evening's edition of the Zembla programme – a co-production by the two organisations - presented a roundup of Geert Wilders' fieriest statements on Islam and deportation. Ms Halsema said on Twitter, "This confirms prejudices people have about public broadcasters".
Geert Wilders wants to impose sharp cuts on the publicly-funded networks. Not mincing his words, he tells de Telegraaf, "The ‘state broadcaster’ compared us to the Nazis and Milosevic. The programme was disgustingly biased. We should send the makers to Nova Zembla once we get them off the subsidy drip-feed."
Meanwhile, the Amsterdam trial court proceedings, deferred to October, continue with the completion of expert witnesses’ testimony for Wilders’ defense. The current schedule ends with the testimony of Former Muslims United co-founder, Dr. Wafa Sultan on June 28th. Testimony of Mr. S.R. Admiraal was heard on April 26th. Professor J.J. G Jensen will testify on May 6th. The current schedule calls for trial proceedings on October 4th, 6th and 8th with indictment on October 12th, presentation of Wilders’ defense on October 15th and rebuttal on October 19th. A verdict in this political show trial may be handed down by the Amsterdam court on November 2nd.
Given his trial, it would be ironic if Wilders and the PVV finished strong enough to be asked by Queen Beatrix, who was feted on Queen’s Day in the Netherlands, April 29th, to form a ruling coalition in the Hague Parliament. One wonders whether if that occurred would the Amsterdam trial collapse like a proverbial house of cards? But first, let’s see what the outcome of the general elections is on June 9th.
Belgium is set to become the first country in Europe to ban the burqa after the country's parliament voted on Thursday night to prohibit the wearing of the face-covering Islamic veil in public.
Not a single MP in the lower house of parliament voted against the ban on clothes or veils that do not allow the wearer to be fully identified, including full-face Muslim dress such as the niqab or burqa. There were two abstentions. Supporters said the law would help fight terrorism and grant rights to Muslim women.
Daniel Bacquelaine, one of the liberal MPs who originally called for the ban, insisted the new law was "aimed at stopping people from not being identified". "It's not about introducing any form of discrimination," he said.
The ban, which is thought to affect around 100 women, would be imposed in streets, public gardens and sports grounds or buildings "meant for public use or to provide services".
Those Muslims who ignore the ban could face fines of £22 and a jail sentence of up to seven days unless they have written police permission to wear the garments. President Nicolas Sarkozy has declared the burqa not welcome in France, calling it an affront to French values that denigrates women. He is pressing ahead with a bill to ban it, despite advice that such a law could be illegal.
Unrest erupted in the Malmö district of Rosengård on Wednesday evening with police forced to seal off the area before regaining control of the situation.
Some 20 police units, a total of 50 officers, were deployed to the troubled Malmö suburb to try to calm the situation as around 20 youths rampaged through the district leaving a spate of fires and vandalism.
"We have concluded that there were a total of five fires. A couple of cars, as well as a recycling station, were some of the things burning," Peter Martinsson at Skåne police told the Dagens Nyheter daily.
Police were called to the area in the vicinity of Ramels väg in Rosengård at around 9pm on Wednesday. Residents of the area had become concerned over the gangs of young people and feared that fighting would break out.
Fire fighters were obliged to seek a police escort as they were subjected to stone throwing while battling to put out the fires in various parts of the district.
The police have confirmed that they considered the situation had been brought under control during Wednesday night and were able to withdraw their units.
An update to this story. By Munir Ahmed and Ishtiaq Mahsud for AP:
ISLAMABAD – The head of the Pakistani Taliban is now believed to have survived a U.S. missile strike earlier this year, intelligence officials said Thursday, reversing earlier claims he had died and handing the militants something of a propaganda victory.
U.S. security officials had also said they believed Hakimullah Mehsud was killed in the January attack in an area between the North and South Waziristan tribal regions close to the Afghanistan border. They were not immediately available for comment.
The Taliban themselves had always claimed Mehsud was alive, but have said they were not going to offer any evidence such as a video recording because doing so could help security forces hunt him down. Until or unless they do, questions are likely to remain over his fate, given the patchy nature of intelligence from the tribal regions.
Four intelligence officials said Pakistan's main spy agency now believed Mehsud was alive and well. They cited electronic surveillance and reports from sources in the field, including from inside the Taliban. One official said Mehsud was believed to have been wounded in the attack and had been seen alive after the attack.
In early January, Mehsud appeared in a video with a Jordanian suicide bomber who killed seven CIA employees in late December in eastern Afghanistan.
If he is alive, it won't be the first time Hakimullah, believed aged in his 20s, has defied reports of his death.
This guy must be the reincarnation of Rasputin, if Rasputin ever actually died. In some of the earlier reports of Hakimullah's deaths, the Pakistani government claimed that he had a twin brother, and the twin brother had taken the place of the "real" Hakimullah. Maybe there were triplets?
NEW YORK — Without fanfare, the United Nations this week elected Iran to its Commission on the Status of Women, handing a four-year seat on the influential human rights body to a theocratic state in which stoning is enshrined in law and lashings are required for women judged "immodest."
Just days after Iran abandoned a high-profile bid for a seat on the U.N. Human Rights Council, it began a covert campaign to claim a seat on the Commission on the Status of Women, which is "dedicated exclusively to gender equality and advancement of women," according to its website.
Buried 2,000 words deep in a U.N. press releasedistributed Wednesday on the filling of "vacancies in subsidiary bodies," was the stark announcement: Iran, along with representatives from 10 other nations, was "elected by acclamation," meaning that no open vote was requested or required by any member states — including the United States.
The U.S. currently holds one of the 45 seats on the body, a position set to expire in 2012. The U.S. Mission to the U.N. did not return requests for comment on whether it actively opposed elevating Iran to the women's commission.
Iran's election comes just a week after one of its senior clerics declared that women who wear revealing clothing are to blame for earthquakes, a statement that created an international uproar — but little affected their bid to become an international arbiter of women's rights...
THE history of Western civilisation is expected to come full circle today when Greece brings it crashing to the ground.
With most European and American banks now filled to bursting with worthless pieces of paper handed out willy-nilly by the Greek 'government', experts say the world of science, art and democracy which was born in Athens 2500 years ago and spread its glow across the Western hemisphere is now fucked into a tinker's bucket.
Professor Henry Brubaker, of the Institute for Studies, said: "Given that it was founded by Greeks, I'm amazed it lasted as long as it did.
"Plato's Republic is full of spelling mistakes and airy-fairy bullshit, Aristotle was always dropping trays and bumping into pillars and Archimedes spent his entire life inventing a water pump that takes absolutely fucking ages."
He added: "If only we had been inspired by Spaniards. The buildings may not have been so grand - or actually finished - but we'd have afternoons off and be able to maintain a clear conscience while doing unspeakable things to a donkey.
"Beyond that I'm not sure we had much choice. Italian civilisation is based largely on paying protection money to hot-headed olive oil importers, British civilisation is fine as long as you actually prefer it when things don't work, while German civilisation does have a tendency to get a bit... carried away.
"And French civilisation is of course an oxymoron, much like German humour, Italian ethics, British cuisine and French soap, French decency and French not fucking my wife."
Professor Brubaker said it was now time to plan for a post-civilisation society, stressing the transition would be much easier for long term viewers of ITV.
A pertinent (and impertinent) Peter Brookes cartoon in The Times (h/t Alan):
Also in The Times, Ann Treneman argues that Gordon Brown should take lessons from Boris:
Boris Johnson really could teach Gordon Brown a thing or two (or 300) about “real” people on the campaign trail. Yesterday, in Ealing, Boris went walkabout amid scenes of unscripted chaos and never, once, did he blame anyone else for anything, even when he was photographed with a candidate named Bray in front of a horse’s ass.
Yes, truly. The rump in question belonged to a statue (Small Work Horse, by Judith Bluck, 1985) in the pedestrianised shopping precinct. “Group photo!” shouted someone from Angie Bray’s team, stopping with uncanny precision right next to the upturned tail.
“Boris! Is this a three-horse race?” shouted someone as everyone gurned and raised their DIY poster boards.
“It’s a one-horse race!” shouted Boris.
What, asked someone, was the caption for this photo? “Braaaay!” brayed Boris, quickly moving away from the rump. Angie (or Ange, as Boris called her) scrambled after him, insisting: “No, that would be if it was a donkey!”
Hee-haw, as donkeys (and asses) would say. I’m not sure Gordo could have coped with even one part of that scene. First he’d have to blame someone (Sue, mostly likely). Then he would have to return to the scene to beg the horse’s forgiveness.
But the truth about walkabouts and “real” people is that they are (actually) real and so, by definition, random. Yesterday people told Boris about autistic children, illnesses, parking, travel, unemployment and, yes, their anger at immigration. So here are some tips from the Book of BoJo:
• When someone from Poland talks to you, answer back in Polish. “Dzien dobry!” cried Boris at the Pole, who was thrilled.
• When someone hands you a mobile phone, do not throw it (habits of a lifetime, etc) but talk into it. Yesterday it was the owner of the Chitter Chatter phone shop trying to give him a new phone. Of course, Boris rejected it (well, he had to, the BBC was filming ) but only after securing a vote for Ange. (This is an ultra-tight three-way marginal).
• When someone disagrees with you, have a bit of a good-humoured debate, then say: “Well I’m sorry we disagree!” And walk away.
• Have fun. When asked about the Lib Dems, Boris began to splutter: “How can you conceivably trust the Lib Dems! Spineless protoplasmic invertebrate amoebic fibbers — Janus-faced!” (Isn’t that so much better than “bigoted”?) Finally, pretend you don’t know where you are going. As Boris left yesterday, he walked away from his own car. “Boris!” cried everyone as the blond-haired one looked abashed. Personally I think he did it on purpose. Gordon needs a masterclass — now.
Boris has the advantage of a keen mind and a sense of fun, neither of which are much in evidence on the Left. Brown, with his sanctimony and self-importance, can't hold a candle to him. And if he ever does, here's hoping Boris is in fine farting fettle and it blows up in his face.
Today's Hadith, though potty as ever, has an almost Biblical cadence. Perhaps it gains something in translation:
Ibn Abbass narrated that Rasulullah S.W.T said: "Whoever lives the life of a Bedouin becomes coarse. And whoever occupies himself with hunting becomes heedless and whoever visits the rulers falls into fitnah."
Narrated by Abu Dawud, al Tirmidhi, al Nasai, and al Bayhaqi
Heedless Hunters could include our Henry, who was forever falling into Fitnah:
Pastime with good company
I love and shall unto I die;
Grudge who list, but none deny,
So God be pleased thus live will I.
For my pastance
Hunt, song, and dance.
My heart is set:
All goodly sport
For my comfort,
Who shall me let?
From the Connexion, France in English, thanks to a source. Cheers!
FRANCE'S biggest police union has attempted to distance itself from a protest by some of its members over the use of halal food in a staff canteen.
A group of CRS officers in Rouen have written a tract voicing their anger after learning that they had frequently been served halal turkey and sausages at meal times for two years without knowing. The letter, written by local representatives of the SGP-Force Ouvrière union, said the "foreign ritual" did not "correspond with our values".
Management said halal food was used because it was cheaper and easier to find locally in large quantities. Which says something about local markets and trade.
SGP-FO union spokesman Yannick Danio told Le Post: "Union tracts should not have this sort of tone. The ideas in this letter do not correspond with our organisation's deeply secular position." So what meat was supposed to be in the sausages? I though even French sausage had pork in, albeit in different proportions and seasonings?
THE word 'bigot', introduced into the English language in the late 16th Century, lost all meaning shorty after 11pm last night, it has been confirmed.
Word managers at the Oxford English Dictionary said 'bigot' became officially meaningless when the one millionth person on Twitter used it to describe an old lady from Rochdale who used the word 'immigrants'.
Tom Logan, the OED's deputy director of A to C, said: "Meaning-wise, 'bigot' has been on shaky ground for quite some time and, like most bad things, it's entirely the fault of The Guardian.
"Guardian readers think anyone who doesn't love The Wire is a bigot. They think anyone who hasn't had an interesting experience in a two-star hotel in Ho Chi Minh is a bigot. They think anyone who doesn't like Greco-Javanese fusion food is a bigot.
"Meanwhile, anyone who hasn't read a book about the right-wing media conspiracy against Hezbollah is the absolute worst kind of bigot and of course they now think I'm an appalling bigot for pointing that out.
"But perhaps most damning of all is that these are the sort of twisted, ruined people who will endure at least 15 minutes of The Kumars at Number 42 simply to prove that everyone else is intellectually evil."
Meanwhile, Professor Henry Brubaker of the Institute for Studies, stressed the use of the word 'immigrants' by 66 year-old grandmother Gillian Duffy would have been bigoted it had been followed by 'are not nice people', but it wasn't.
"Mrs Duffy said 'You can't say anything about immigrants... all these eastern Europeans are coming in, where are they flocking from?'. So let's just examine that one section at a time.
"Now, the first bit is factually correct. You can't say anything about immigrants and I'm fairly confident that we all understand that now.
"The second bit is a little tricky because it does seem to answer its own question - which Guardian readers have pointed out many, many, many times. But of course what she really meant was 'I'm just a normal old lady and I don't really know why any of this is happening'.
"But Guardian readers should continue to patronise her anyway because that just impresses the grade-A shite out of everyone."
Tom Logan added: "The really wonderful thing is that the original meaning of bigot was 'sanctimonious hypocrite', so in the next edition of the Oxford English Dictionary we're going to go back to our etymological roots and adjacent to the word 'bigot' it will simply say 'noun - a reader of TheGuardian'.