Real Madrid have removed the cross from their club crest as part of a lucrative three-year deal with the National Bank of Abu Dhabi.It is believed the European champions' new crest, minus the Christian cross, was created so as not to offend Muslim sensibilities in the United Arab Emirates, where a marketing drive will take place.
Club president Florentino Perez labelled the deal as a "strategic alliance with one of the most prestigious institutions in the world".
But the redesigning of the famous club badge shows, according to Spanish sports paper Marca, how far top clubs are willing to go, including sacrificing part of their famous identity, to generate new revenue streams
The 10-times European Cup winners, revealed the new design with no fanfare, with images only emerging now, despite the "strategic alliance" being signed off in September.
The original logo, which will still be used in Europe, is pictured, left, complete with the tiny Christian cross on the top.
A SICKENING underworld of sexual exploitation has been dismantled in Bristol – and can now be made public for the first time. In all, 13 Somali men have been convicted of 31 sex crimes against seven vulnerable teenage girls. They used and abused their victims, exploiting their trust and, in some cases, trafficking them across the city to exploit them.
Including drug offences, prison sentences totalling more than 75 years have already been imposed at the crown court, with punishments lasting decades more to follow.
The youngest victims were only 13 when they were shared around and forced to commit degrading and emotionally-damaging sex acts.Some of the more manipulative offenders told lies about their “culture” and “traditions” to persuade girls to give in to abuse. In time, victims succumbed to the demands because, for them, it had become the norm. Against a background of upbringings in care or broken homes, some felt they were in loving relationships with abusers, but they knew no better.
This year, two trials have been held at Bristol Crown Court as part of an extensive Avon and Somerset police investigation called Operation Brooke. Due to reporting restrictions to avoid the probe being jeopardised, only now has the Post been able to tell the shocking story.
The second trial finished yesterday after eight days – more than 32 hours - of jury deliberation.
Arafat Osman, AKA Left Eye, 20, NFA, has been found guilty of two counts of payment for sexual services of a child. He admitted two counts of being concerned in supplying a class A drug (cocaine and heroin). He was sentenced to 13 years imprisonment.
Idleh Osman, AKA Sniper, 21, of Brooklyn Road, Bishopsworth, has been found guilty of one count of arranging/facilitating payment for sexual services of a child. He admitted two counts of being concerned in supplying a class A drug (cocaine and heroin). He was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment.
Mustafa Farah, AKA Greens, 20, NFA, has been found guilty of two counts of payment for sexual services of a child. He admitted two counts of being concerned in supplying class A drugs (cocaine and heroin). He was sentenced to 13 years imprisonment.
Liban Abdi, AKA Leftback, 21, NFA, has been found guilty of two counts of payment for sexual services of a child. He admitted two counts of being concerned in supplying class A drugs (cocaine and heroin). He was sentenced to 13 years and eight months imprisonment.
Abdulahi Aden, AKA Trigger, 20, NFA, has been found guilty of one count of rape. He admitted two counts of being concerned in supplying a class A drug (cocaine and heroin) and two counts of possession of indecent photographs of a child. He was sentenced to 13 years imprisonment.
Mustafa Deria, 22, NFA, has been found guilty of one count of rape. He was sentenced to seven years and six months imprisonment.
Trial 2 (yet to be sentenced)
Mohamed Jumale, AKA Dec, 24, of Allfoxton Road, Eastville, has been found guilty of one count of rape, seven counts of sexual activity with a child and one count of aiding/abetting/procuring sexual activity with a child.
Mohamed Dahir, AKA Kamal, 22, Lansdown Court, Easton, has been found guilty of one count of causing/inciting child prostitution.
Said Zakaria, AKA Target, 22, of Seymour Road, Easton, has been found guilty of two counts of rape, two counts of sexual activity with a child and one count of trafficking within the UK.
Jusef Abdirizak, AKA Starns, 20, of Hither Bath Bridge, Brislington, has been found guilty of one count of rape.
Omar Jumale, aged 20, NFA, has been found guilty of one count of sexual activity with a child.
Abdirashid Abdulahi, AKA Abs, 21, of River Street, St Paul's, has been found guilty of one count of rape.
Sakariya Sheikh, AKA Zac, 21, of Howard House, Barton Hill, has been found guilty of one count of rape and one count of sexual activity with a child.
When questioned by police, most of the defendants denied knowing their victims at first.
But with phone and computer records, CCTV footage and the girls’ statements stacked against them, some went on the offensive.
Target, for example, painted the girl he raped in the hotel as a “dirty slag”, said what he did was “consensual” and that he believed the girls he was with were all over 16. Talented amateur fighter and Olympic hopeful Omar claimed he was too busy boxing.
Ultimately, their deceit and vain attempts at self-preservation crumbled and the shocking secret lives they were leading could be uncovered, much to the shock and sadness of their families, who supported them from the public gallery throughout the second trial.
Despite Ennahda's Smiley-Face Campaign, A Sign Of Common Sense?
Rached Ghannouchi has been welcomed at Columbia and other universities, and his ghostwritten deeply-sincere Op/Eds on his devotion to democracy and how the example of Tunisia shows that Islam and democracy go together llike a horse and carriage have appeared in The Times (or was it the Wall Street Journal?). But at least for now, his aide, slightly less adept at the game, has been prevented from addressing a group of "Palestinian-Americans" in Chicago. Hope that, as a simple sign of sanity, he continues to be barred.
The threat appears in the foreword of the fifth edition of the organization's official magazine, Dabiq - named for a town in the suburbs of Syria's Aleppo, in which the group's members believe their will be a great war between Muslims and the West after its armies conquer Syria.
"While the eyes of the world were all blinded and spellbound by the sorcerous media 'covering' the battle for ‘Ayn al-Islām (Kobani), the eyes of the Islamic State were scanning East and West, preparing for the expansion that – by Allah’s permission – would put an end to the Jewish State, Āl Salūl, and the rest of the apostate tawāghīt, the allies of the cross," the article says.
The group further vows that "the flag of the Caliphate will rise over Mecca and Medina, even if the apostates and hypocrites despise such. The flag of the Caliphate will rise over Baytul-Maqdis (Jerusalem) and Rome, even if the Jews and Crusaders despise such."
It adds: "The shade of this blessed flag will expand until it covers all eastern and western extents of the Earth, filling the world with the truth and justice of Islam and putting an end to the falsehood and tyranny of jāhiliyyah (the state prior to Islam), even if America and its coalition despise such."
Britain's benefits system is being abused to fund terrorism, a senior police officer has warned. Terri Nicholson, from the Metropolitan Police’s counter-terrorism command unit, said that taxpayers’ money was being claimed fraudulently and used by terrorists in countries such as Iraq and Syria. She said there had been “a number of cases” recently of terrorists making fraudulent student loan claims to fund their activities.
Miss Nicholson, a Met Assistant Commander, said terrorists were using “innovative” techniques to send money abroad. “We are seeing a diverse fraud, including substantial fraud online, abuse of the benefits system, abuse of student loans, in order to fund terrorism,” she said.
She also said women were being used to smuggle money out of Britain to fund terrorists abroad, as it is believed they will arouse less suspicion.
MPs described the prospect of British money being used to bankroll potential terrorist plots on British soil as “sickening”.
Philip Davies, the Tory MP, said of Miss Nicholson’s claims: “I know the Government has been cracking down on benefit fraud. It seems to me that this shows that if anything, they need to go further. . . It is sickening to think that [UK money is funding terror plots] but whenever there is any money being doled out, it’s obvious that terrorists will be trying to get their hands on as much of it as possible.”
A spokesman for the Department for Work and Pensions said: “No one should doubt our commitment to rooting out benefit fraud.”
Mohammed Noure Alo And "His Close Personal Friend" Amer Ahmad
Mohammed Noure Alo, lately of Ohio, has just been sentenced to four years in jail. His "close personal friend" Amer Ahmad left the country for his native Pakistan. Perhaps he will be extradited.
The story of Muslims in government, long used in their own countries to exploiting positions in government for gain - personal, family, tribal -- and what they do for other Muslims, not in the government, is a problem of which the non-Muslim welcoming world has been insufficiently aware. One example can be read about here.
Ivan Rioufol: The Light-Headed Homily Of Pope Francis
Pope Francis correctly identfies the weariness, the general depression, of the peoples of Europe and, in a speech, deplores this. And in the same speech, without understanding of how immigration, especially Muslim immigration, has contributed so much to the unease and general depression he has just deplored, he further says that the peoples of Europe must not allow the Mediterranean to become a cemetery (all those boat-people who must, you see, be allowed to land at Lampedusa, by the tens and hundreds of thousands, and then to roam freely through Schengenland, bringing with them Islam in their mental baggage) and must, instead, welcome these people from North Africa and the Middle East and sub-Saharan Africa. He is suggesting that the disease will contribute to the cure.
Ivan Rioufol does not think that Pope Francis, attractive as he is in many ways, deserves to be exempt from criticism for his buonismo, that goody-goodiness that used to drive Oriana Fallaci crazy. His comment, and the many comments on his comment, can be found here.
A jihadist who skipped bail and fled to Syria to join Isil has taunted lapse British security arrangements that allowed him to slip out the country. Abu Rumaysah has also boasted having a child under the Islamic State and posted images of himself hold the infant and an automatic weapon.
The 31-year-old, who was a lieutenant of the hate preacher Anjem Choudary, was arrested on suspicion of encouraging terrorism last month but disappeared within 24 hours of being released on police bail. He later began tweeting from Syria where he claimed to be a “citizen of the Islamic State”.And he has now mocked the UK, adding: “What a shoddy security system Britain must have to allow me to breeze through Europe to the Islamic State.”
Rumaysah, who is also known as Siddhartha Dhar, was arrested in September along with Choudary and eight other men as part of an investigation in to the banned extremist group al-Muhajiroun, which Choudary used to lead. They were all later bailed and Rumaysah, a father-of-five, was told to hand in his passport but is understood to have taken a coach from London to Paris before travelling on to Syria, along with his family. He was a former member of al-Muhajiroun and various offshoot groups and was behind a series of roadshows in London to try and recruit youngsters to Islam.
Dhar was interviewed by CBS News' 60 Minutes programme earlier this month, telling presenter Clarissa Wards that he was unable to love his mother because she was not a Muslim. It is understood that Dhar is of Indian origin and was raised a Hindu before converting to Islam.
Earlier this week he tweeted that Allah had “blessed me with a healthy baby boy in the Islamic State”. He added: “He is another great addition to the Islamic State. And he's definitely not British.”
Before his disappearance, Rumaysah had regularly featured in TV interviews and told Channel 4 News that he wanted to move to the so-called Islamic State. "I would love to live under the Islamic State, I'd love to live under the Shariah, and I hope that one day Britain gets to live under the Shariah as well," he said.
Facebook is still withholding the contents of five accounts set up by Fusilier Lee Rigby's murderer Michael Adebowale, as the soldier's family said the social network had "blood on its hands" over his death. A report into the intelligence held on Adebowale and his accomplice Michael Adebolajo details 11 Facebook accounts set up by the killer, of which GCHQ has had sight of six.
One of the accounts which has not been handed over "was suspected by the company to have been associated with terrorist accounts before the attack" according to the report by Parliament's Intelligence and Security Committee.
In December 2012 Adebowale used Facebook to chat to a Yemen-based Al Qaeda operative codenamed Foxtrot, discussing in "graphic" detail his desire to kill a soldier. Foxtrot encouraged him and suggested several potential methods, from a suicide attack to using a knife.
Facebook's automatic warning system did not pick up on the conversation - even though four other accounts had been disabled because of suspected terrorist links - and it was only brought to the attention of GCHQ on June 6, 2013, the month after the murder.
Facebook has been widely condemned for its failure to alert the authorities when it disables accounts because of suspected links to terrorism, and the ISC has said that if MI5 had known about the "kill a soldier" exchange it might have been able to prevent the murder.
Fusilier Rigby's sister Sarah has said Facebook has "blood on their hands", adding that she holds the company "partly responsible for Lee's murder".
GCHQ asked for all 11 Facebook accounts to be handed over, but, the ISC said, "over a year since the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby, GCHQ has not received all the information requested". The report adds: "Having not seen the content of the other five accounts, GCHQ cannot be certain that there is no evidence of attack planning in the rest of these accounts."Of the Facebook accounts that have not been seen by GCHQ, two were still open at the time of the murder and two were disabled by Facebook for reasons that "do not appear to be terrorism related".
Nor is Facebook alone in being criticised in the report.
Apple, Microsoft, Twitter, Yahoo, Google and BlackBerry were all contacted by the ISC, but: "None of the US companies we contacted accept the UK's jurisdiction on requests for Lawful Intercept (i.e. content) for intelligence investigations.For example, Twitter's 'Guidelines for Law Enforcement' clearly state that 'requests for the content of communications...require a valid US search warrant'. The companies will therefore only provide information on users under US - and not UK - legal processes."
David Cameron has told internet firms their platforms are being used by terrorists "to plot murder and mayhem" and called on companies to accept their "moral duty" to police their content and pass on suspicious material to the authorities.
Yet Facebook regularly suspends UK Patriot pages and walls. In particular the first EDL London Division page, which had reached over 100 thousand readers, was taken down and never reinstated, despite requests. I myself had the FB account I use for this work suspended as Esmerelda Weatherwax is 'not your real name'. I got it back by making a minor change but it was a nuisance.
Low back pain is a condition so common that, intermittently, I suffer from it myself. It comes and goes for no apparent reason, lasting a few days at a time. Nearly 40 years ago I realized that, though I had liked to think of myself as nearly immune from nervous tension, anxiety could cause it.
I was in a far distant country and I had a problem with my return air ticket. At the same time I suffered agonizing low back pain, which I did not connect with the problem of my ticket. When the problem was sorted out, however, my back pain disappeared within two hours.
In general, low back pain is poorly correlated with X-ray and MRI findings. Epidemiological research shows that the self-employed are much less prone to it than employees, and also that those higher in the hierarchy suffer it less than those lower – and not because they do less physical labor. Now comes evidence, in a recent paper from Australia published in the Lancet, that the recommended first treatment usually given for such pain, acetaminophen, also known as paracetamol, is useless, or at least no better than placebo (which is not quite the same thing, of course).
The Australian authors designed a double-blind trial for people with low back pain. The first group was given the drug regularly, up to the maximum safe daily dose; the second group was given it to take as and when they felt it necessary, up to the maximum safe daily dose; and the third group was given a placebo, made to look exactly the same as the supposedly active drug, to take regularly. There were about 550 patients in each group, whose initial characteristics were very similar.
The end-point of the trial was seven successive pain-free days. It was supposed initially that the drug would be helpful because pain relief would promote the movement of the back muscles that is thought to promote recovery.
The results surprised me because in the past I had sometimes (though not always) had relief from the drug. It seems that I was mistaken and that, like the rest of mankind, I was susceptible to the placebo effect. The median time to recovery of the first group was 17 days; that of the second, 17 days; and that of the third, 16 days. In other words, the drug was of no use at all in shortening the duration of the pain.
But what about its severity and the consequent disturbance of function? When I have low back pain I am much slowed down in my daily life. Here again the drug was quite without beneficial effect compared with placebo. At no time in the treatment, and in no respect, was the active treatment better than placebo. The conclusion of the authors was categorical:
Paracetemol… had no effect on pain, disability, function, global symptom change, sleep, or quality of life.
But this conclusion was not quite justified; strictly speaking, it would have to be shown that the placebo effect did not improve low back pain, for only in this way could it be shown that the drug had no effect on low back pain. An experiment to demonstrate that a tablet given as a placebo had no placebo effect would be difficult to conduct, both for practical and ethical reasons.
I know that my low back pain is caused, at least in part, by anxiety. I know (now) that paracetamol (acetaminophen) has only a placebo if any effect at all. But I shall still take it whenever I have low back pain. So much for being a rational man.
When Barack Obama was elected president in 2008, the prevailing assumptions on broad geopolitical issues were that global warming would require radical reduction of carbon use to prevent the destruction of much of the world’s habitable environment; that China was inexorably going to become the world’s preeminent economy; that the United States would soon become a predominantly non-white country; that many of the principal European nationalities would dwindle into extinction like the carrier pigeon, because of cultural dyspepsia and narcissism that strangled the will to procreate; and that the Roman Catholic Church would finally disintegrate and largely vanish, even as Islam, vigorous if disconcerting, asserted itself. This was the collective conventional wisdom, and while there were certainly dissenters from some and all of it, these views were very widely embraced. All of these suppositions have either evolved almost unrecognizably or evaporated altogether, a fact that we would do well to remember as new truisms take hold and become the subject of abject reflexive and even genuflective adherence.
Global warming has metamorphosed into climate change, a more or less orderly retreat from the deafening fear-mongering of the Copenhagen Conference of 2009, an army retreating on a peninsula, like MacArthur on Bataan and in Korea before his Inchon counter-stroke, buffeted and battered but not encircled and routed. The environmentalists are fighting hard for every inch but they are a bedraggled and battle-weary force compared with their former status as occupants of the commanding heights of public opinion, warning of inundations, species extinctions, and richly deserved Old Testament plagues to punish ecological abuse. As it stands now, global warming (one centigrade degree in 75 years) is improbable, climate change is unclear, and there is no probable causal link between human activity and climate change. Every sane person in the world accepts that environmental pollution must be relentlessly reduced and that extreme vigilance is called for, but there is no majority anywhere now to charge into the Valley of Fiscal and Economic Death of Kyoto and cap and trade.
The bloom is also off the forces-of-history, wave-of-the future Sino-groupiness; China’s ostensible growth rate is only down (from 10 percent) to about 7 percent, but the spectacle of vast apartment blocks in new cities eerily unoccupied and the increasing revelations of corruption and of the proportions of the housing bubble that drove much of recent Chinese economic growth have taken the wind out of this platitude that for at least a decade was endlessly repeated by commentators, lesser social bores, and even passers-by. China is the greatest developing-economy story in the history of the world. But it is still about 40 percent a command economy, and it is facing chronic deficit problems as well as the deflation provoked by all large bubbles when pierced. It is a country with no working political institutions, except perhaps the army, and one in which the official statistics do not add up and not one utterance of the government of the People’s Republic, verbal or numerate, can be believed. Hundreds of millions of people still live essentially as they did 3,000 years ago. And, like other emergent great powers, in flexing its muscles and demanding increased respect from its neighbors, China has pushed them together: The Indians and Indonesians (both countries under capable new leadership), Japanese, South Koreans, Filipinos, Vietnamese, Australians, and others have been driven into greater collective intimacy and the Chinese have managed to be expelled from Burma. Of course China is a great and important country, but taking the leadership of the world is not like falling off a log, as the leaders of the Third Reich, the Soviet Union, and Japan Inc. learned, but the rulers of Tiananmen Square didn’t notice. The Hong Kong unrest won’t just go away, though there is no reason to believe that unrest will spread around China as it did in the Arab world, but if the regime has to resort to repression again, it will be very damaging to China’s international economic relations.
It never particularly mattered what the skin color of most Americans was as long as the entire population subscribed to the American constitutional system, and strove, where necessary, to learn English, and the stresses between the component groups did not become intolerable; the melting pot had to go on simmering and creating committed Americans. This appears to be happening, but apart from that, the country has notoriously awakened to the immigration issue, even if the political system has fumbled and postured with as much cowardice and backbiting as ever. But in the affray over immigration, and the Mexican economic surge despite the drug violence along the border, the infiltration of unprocessed foreigners has been sharply reduced and the national demographic trends are unclear. Both U.S. political parties ignored the issue for decades, as they ignored abortion, income disparity, and other issues, and both share blame for the present impasse. Whatever anyone thinks of Obama’s half-measure of last week, it is only politics from a political leader who lost his last electoral battle, is revocable by a successor just by writing his (or her) name, and will not achieve anything. Obviously, the United States cannot expel 11 million people, any more than it can continue to allow unskilled peasants to flood into the country, but the trend that caused the confident predictions of the imminent end to the status of the United States as a Northern Hemisphere, Caucasian country has stalled.
These confident predictions of the takeover of the United States by a Latino and African-American coalition were uttered largely by Europeans, who did not notice that a much likelier event would be a Muslim demographic surge within the Western European countries that would be much less assimilable and more abrasive and dangerous to the host cultures than the continued increase in the Latin American population of the United States. The fact is that the conclusion that the Germans, Russians, Spanish, Italians, French, Dutch, and others were all headed for the demographic boneyard is and always was nonsense. They are rich cultures and – while they are still reeling from the blunders and atrocities that gave us two world wars, Communism, Fascism, Nazism, and the most heinous acts of genocide in history — they are not permanently possessed by a death wish. They will recover demographic stability and create conditions in which intelligent Muslims embrace the civilization to which they chose to emigrate while exercising normal religious freedom without infringing the rights of others. The Europeans, led in this by the French, will suppress the militants in their midst. The cradle of Western civilization, which, despite its torpor, is not seeking death with dignity (or otherwise), will not be strangled from within by an impoverished and ignorant minority of a minority, fanatically determined to destroy the venerable and distinguished nations where they reside. There will be turbulent times and many official acts of folly, mistaken appeasement, and implausible bravura, but the correlation of forces overwhelmingly favors the continuity of the West in all its principal states.
The process of containing the Islamist threat may accelerate the failure and abandonment of the last of the enumerated pillars of conventional wisdom: the demise of the Roman Catholic Church. Pope Francis has struck from the hands of his church’s ancient and faddish foes the sword brandished for 60 years, that this was an anachronistic organization run by a claque of septuagenarian celibates and closet queens scolding the world about its sex life. The pope’s assertion that the raison d’être of the Roman Catholic Church was to be the ark of the Christian message, to assist and comfort souls (and that meant a gay person no less than a heterosexual or sexually abstinent one), disarmed the legions of ill-wishers without traumatizing the militant traditionalists within the Church. “Who am I to judge?” was a transformative assertion by this pope, its impact partly concealed by its simplicity. Religious attendance and vocations have moved generally up in many countries, sharply up in disparate places including South Korea (almost 100 percent), and Spain (40 percent); in Spain’s case the revival has been dramatized by one of the country’s most glamorous models and television personalities, Olalla Oliveros, abruptly joining a convent of the Order of St. Michael.
The spectacularly inadequate performance of the secular leaders in the main Western countries in this new millennium has highlighted the credibility, integrity, and effectiveness of Pope Francis. Despite the incumbency of atheism as the unofficial religion of almost all non-Islamic countries, the Western majority that believes in the existence of spiritual forces and some form of deity or quasi-deity will be fortified by the high expectations incited and dashed by the secularizers and materialists. Militants will devalue Islam; criminally diseased murderers cannot compete with a spirituality of saints and prophets. The Roman Catholic Church has been around this track many times. It has the problems inherent in any organization that espouses a heavenly kingdom through human spokesmen afflicted by human failings, but those failings are not as aggravated by exposed pretense as are those of the world’s political and commercial and cultural leadership, and in terms of ultimate legitimacy and proximity to truth as best it can be perceived, Rome remains the big brand, with the big market share, the most distinguished ethos, and the most compelling and humane chief. Rome isn’t going anywhere; people in numbers that will continue to scandalize and nonplus the New York Times and the BBC will continue to go to it.
UPDATE: Listen to 1330amWEBY Middle East Roundtable on Turkey “Bordering on Terrorism”
Listen to the latest in a series of international discussions on developments in the Middle East on 1330AMWEBY, Pensacola, Florida. This is the latest program in the periodic round table discussions led by “Your Turn” host Mike Bates and Jerry Gordon, Senior Editor of the New English Review and author of The West Speaks.
Failure of the P5+1 negotiation with Iran over its nuclear program to achieve a final agreement.
Bi- partisan support in US Congress for stronger sanctions against Iran despite objections by the Administration.
Erdogan’s Turkey emerges as a NATO member with state sponsor of terrorism given its porous border allowing passage of ISIS recruits, providing Hamas a base for launching attacks against Israel, facilitating financing and oil sales for the Islamic State while curtailing support for Syrian Kurds fighting ISIS.
The row between Israel and Jordan over the Temple Mount riots and violence in Jerusalem led to meetings in Amman with Secretary of State Kerry, King Abdullah and Israeli PM Netanyahu.
PA President Abbas’ manipulation of the Arab nationalist riots in Jerusalem furthers his legacy, seeking recognition of a Palestinian State as the 194th Country in the UN.
The emerging partnership of convenience between Egypt and Israel with the former destroying hundreds of smuggling tunnels between Rafah and Gaza isolating Hamas from its Salafist ISIS allies in the Sinai.
The significance of Secretary of Defense Hagel’s ‘resignation’ under pressure by the Administration.
An article based on this broadcast will appear in the December 2014 edition of the New English Review.
A catalogue of blunders, errors and delays by MI5 and the police hampered the monitoring of the killers of Drummer Lee Rigby, a parliamentary investigation found. The Intelligence and Security Committee concluded the Security Service could not have prevented the gruesome, random killing by Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale on May 22 last year.
Andrew Parker, the Director General of MI5, told the committee that his agency “threw the kitchen sink” at Adebolajo from an investigation point of view over the five years they monitored him but no clues as to his intentions came to light.
But the report highlighted a series of missed opportunities and mistakes, some of which may have resulted in one or both of the men being seen has a higher security risk or put under greater surveillance. It emerged that surveillance was cancelled on Adebolajo just weeks before the killing and a request for surveillance on Adebowale was submitted to the Home Office the day before the murder.
The ISC stressed that none of the errors, with the exception of the Facebook issue, would have prevented the killing of Fusilier Rigby. The report lists four key events that it concluded were missed opportunities during the various investigations of Adebolajo and Adebowale.
The most significant was the failure by an Internet company – now identified as Facebook – to flag up an online conversation between Adebowale and a mystery Yemen-based al-Qaeda fanatic – identified in the report only as Foxtrot.
In late 2012, Adebowale spoke of wanting to “kill a soldier” in a graphic and emotive manner" due to UK military action in Iraq and Afghanistan. He and Foxtrot discussed targeting someone in a less secure location, and possibly with a knife, in a chilling echo of the murder of Drummer Rigby who was killed on a public road as he returned to his barracks.
The Internet company was not aware of the message but it’s automated vetting system had previously closed down seven of Adebowale’s accounts, many for suspected terrorism-related reasons. But the pattern was never flagged up to MI5 or the British authorities.
Both MI5 and MI6 were criticised for “unsatisfactory” action on Adebolajo after he was caught in Kenya trying to cross the border to Somalia to join the terror group al-Shabaab. He was arrested by the Kenyans in November 2010 but despite the British authorities being alerted, MI6 made no effort to interview him or feed questions to be put to him, the report said.The agency took no further action and considered Adebolajo's own voluntary return from the country after his release without charge as a “sufficient solution”.
The report concluded that the Secret Intelligence Service’s (SIS) “apparent lack of interest in Adebolajo’s arrest deeply unsatisfactory”. “SIS’s role in countering ‘jihadi tourism’ does not appear to have extended to any practical action being taken.”
Meanwhile the Times reports that Adebolajo has been moved from HMP Belmarsh to HMP Frankland in County Durham to stop his radicalising other inmates. He is now in isolation.
Adebolajo wrote to Muslim Prisoners, a support group, saying: “The guards at Frankland are worse than Belmarsh for treatment of Muslims. This move is deliberate.” A spokesman for Muslim Prisoners said: “In their eyes, Muslims getting together is conspiracy, just talking to each other is seen as radicalisation.”
In light of the protests in Ferguson, MO, in Ferguson itself and throughout the U.S., a pro-Islamic State (ISIS) social media group has called upon ISIS supporters in the U.S. to use the protests as a cover to carry out lone-wolf attacks. Al-Nusra Al-Maqdisiyya, a prominent group of pro-ISIS activists on social media, wrote on its Twitter account: "O lone mujahid, you must use the breakdown of security in #Ferguson to increase the burning in America. They are squabbling over worldly [matters], so you send them to hell! #ISIS". Another tweet read: "O supporters of the Islamic State in America, what is happening in #Ferguson is a valuable opportunity that will not return. Rise up and engage them with themselves, away from the mujahideen. Spill their blood in the roads and in the neighborhoods." The group likewise urged ISIS supporters to distribute ISIS videos, especially ones in English, on the trending Twitter hashtags related to the events in Ferguson.
ISIS members and pro-ISIS supporters online are also spreading inciting tweets in reaction to the protests. Following are examples:
More than 30 people are dead after two female suicide bombers attacked a market in the northeast Nigerian city of Maiduguri.
The bombers targeted the crowded market Tuesday. Witnesses said the first bomber set off her explosives, killing at least three people, and as people gathered at the blast site, the second bomb exploded.
A reporter for VOA in Maiduguri, Abdulkareem Haruna, reports 37 people were killed with many others wounded.
The French news agency (AFP) puts the death toll at more than 45.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility, but suspicion will likely fall on militant group Boko Haram.
The group is blamed for scores of deadly bombings and other attacks over the past five years, and has made increasing use of female suicide bombers.
Boko Haram is strongly suspected in two other brutal attacks over the past week that killed nearly 100 people.
The group has taken over territory in Borno and neighboring Adamawa state for what it calls a caliphate to be ruled under Islamic law.
Imran ibn Mansur, 24, also known as the self-styled Dawah Man who helps people be spiritual “superheroes”, was today banned from appearing at the University of East London. The university also banned this week’s event, advertised on Facebook by its Islamic Society, over fears — denied by organisers — that gender segregation could be enforced, after “brothers” and “sisters” were given separate contact points for tickets. It comes six months after another Islamic Society event was banned after being advertised as a “segregated event”.
Former rapper Mr Mansur, who has visited other campuses and given Muslim students a university “survival guide”, made the comments in apparently homemade online videos. Protest groups have welcomed the ban.
In one video posted in July last year Mr Mansur preaches to a “brother” seeking advice on his gay desires. The preacher blasts “filthy Western culture” and tells him to marry a woman to “protect” himself. He adds: “It’s not something you were born with, the same way a person who’s sick, we’re all born healthy but then you get an illness so you take the treatment to get rid of not only the symptoms, but the disease.”
He adds: “Homosexuality, sodomy, is an act that in the sharia… comes under the category of ‘obscene, filthy, shameless’ acts.”
In another video posted a month later he tells a young Asian man in the street to remove his “gay” earring. He says: “You like women not men? Take the earring off then bro. Know that an earring is something that a woman wears… don’t do that, it’s gay.” The man then takes it out.
Mr Mansur today said he was exercising his right to freedom of speech and did so “sensibly and with tolerance”.