You couldn’t make this up: As thousands of people in large swathes of the planet, including war-torn Syria, are dying daily for lack of adequate medical care, the one geographic area whose “health conditions” are slated for condemnation at the World Health Organization’s annual conference is, naturally, “the occupied Palestinian territory, including east Jerusalem, and in the occupied Syrian Golan.” What makes this surreal isn’t just that the above areas enjoy far better “health conditions” than much of the rest of the world. It’s that the Palestinian Authority (Israel’s “peace partner”), together with Syria and other Arab countries, is seeking to condemn Israel at a time when it is actively providing medical services to both Palestinians and Syrians.
The denunciation of health conditions on the Golan is particularly surreal: Syrians in Syria, where medical care of any kind is often simply unavailable, would be thrilled to get the same state-of-the-art care as their brethren on the Golan–where, as in East Jerusalem, Israeli law applies, entitling residents to the same services as all other Israelis.
But thanks to Israel, some of those Syrians actually are getting such care–which is doubtless Syrian President Bashar Assad’s real gripe. Israel has quietly set up a field hospital on the Golan where dozens of Syrians wounded in the civil war have been treated; others, who need more intensive care, have been transferred to regular Israeli hospitals.
Israel has also offered treatment to some Syrian refugees. Just this month, via Israel’s Save a Child’s Heart program, Israeli doctors saved the life of a four-year-old Syrian refugee with a serious heart condition. Similar treatment was offered to three other Syrian children in Jordan who have similar conditions, but their parents refused: Apparently, they fell victim to their own anti-Israel propaganda. Still, the doctors are hoping they will change their minds once the first girl returns to Jordan healthy and happy.
In the PA and Hamas-run Gaza, health care is also far better than in much of the rest of the world, though admittedly not up to Israeli standards. Of course, any deficiencies are their own fault: Both have had complete autonomy in civil affairs for years; Israel can hardly be blamed if they chose to invest in, say, military training for schoolchildren rather than better health care.
But more importantly, they have an advantage most other countries with similar health-care systems don’t: generous access to Israeli hospitals for any problems their own can’t treat. And you needn’t take my word for it: Just this month, after PA Health Minister Hani Abdeen visited Jerusalem’s Hadassah Ein Karem Hospital, the official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadidareported that “30% of the patients who are children are Palestinians.” It also reported that Hadassah is now training some 60 Palestinian doctors, who will then return to serve the PA’s own population.
It’s disgraceful that an otherwise respectable organization like WHO would lend its countenance to a farcical resolution like this. But it’s an excellent lesson in why the positions of the “international community” are often deserving of derision rather than respect–especially when it comes to Israel.
Thanks to Kuperwasser al-Dura report, truth is on its way
By PHILIPPE KARSENTY 22/05/2013
I strongly recommend that the State of Israel establish another investigative committee to determine the problems which led to this situation.
For over 10 years, I’ve been fighting, along with many friends, to get out the truth about the al-Dura blood libel.
For many years, the strongest argument of our opponents has been the silence of the State of Israel when my efforts were sometimes undermined by Israeli diplomats. So getting the support of Israeli public diplomacy was an important objective.
On Sunday, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu received Moshe Ya’alon’s and Yossi Kuperwasser’s report, which confirms my accusation against French public TV.
It’s a milestone on the way to the truth.
Yesterday, a French court of appeals was expected to release its verdict on another episode of my defamation trial against France 2, but the verdict was postponed, for the second time. It is now due to be given on June 26.
My victory in that case could be an important step forward, but nothing is certain.
Five years ago, after I won the appellate court trial, France 2 denied the report was a hoax and appealed to the French Supreme Court on technicalities. Last year, they won and the verdict was annulled. The highest French court said we didn’t have the right to look at France 2’s raw footage to decide if I was right or wrong to accuse them of having staged their news report.
Kafka was back! If I lose, you can be sure Israel demonizers and France 2 will use the verdict to slander Israel, and me, even if I lose on technicalities.
Almost 13 years after the broadcasting of the Dura hoax, Israel is still trying to recover its good name, and this should be a reason to worry for the State of Israel and its citizens. Thirteen years and so many lives lost because of Israel’s silence, because of Israel’s incapacity to understand global anti-Semitism is fed by Israel’s reluctance to defend its point of view.
During all these years, I’ve been undermined by Israelis; ambassadors, politicians, journalists and by a prominent American Jewish organization which preferred to keep access to the French politicians over fighting for the truth. Nevertheless, I was confident because the truth has always been on my side.
NOW THAT the State of Israel has taken the official decision to fight for its good name, it is important to encourage it to continue and to analyze how this huge PR failure has been allowed to go on for so long.
This Kuperwasser investigation committee has been important and productive. I strongly recommend that the State of Israel establish another investigative committee to determine the problems which led to this situation.
One day or another, Israel will face another lie, another blood libel or other false accusations during military operations. Israel was not prepared for this war, and Israel lost.
Since the creation of the State of Israel, Arabs, with the complicity of some Western countries, have tried to destroy this tiny nation by open warfare. They failed.
Then they tried terrorism. In the end, that also failed. So, they turned to media war – and here, unfortunately, they succeeded.
The result is that now, the wars Israel wins on the ground, while respecting international laws and treaties, are lost on the media battlefield, and then in the diplomatic arena.
The official Israeli report, which was issued on Sunday, shows a turning point in the Israeli authorities’ state of mind: they decided to fight for their good name. This is good news, and will be effective only if they are able to analyze their mistakes and draw conclusions in order not to repeat past mistakes.
As in every previous war, Israel has no choice but to win. It’s a question of survival, and I’m sure Israel will succeed.
The writer has been a truth fighter on the Dura case for more than 10 years.
The Usual Nonsense Offered Up To Explain Muslim Rioters In Sweden
NBC news misleadingly identifies the Muslims riotiing in Sweden and destroying property both of individuals and the state as "immigrants' or as "youths" but never as Muslims. But these "youths" are not just any "youths" of all ethnicities and religions. And these "immigrants" are not a representative sampling of immigrants -- there's not a single Chinese or Hindu among them, but Muslims, Turks, Kurds, Arabs, the same Muslims whose Qur'an teaches them that they are the best of peoples, that they should not take Christians and Jews as friends, that when the holy months pass, they should make war on the Infidels, that the Infidels owe them support -- the Jizyah which, in lands where Muslims do not yet rule, should be taken by Muslims in the form of seizure -- theft -- or inveigling -- massive exploitation, through fraud, of whatever benfits the generous states of the Western world so trustingly offer.
What is never asked is: why is it that in every country of Western Europe, no matter that country's history, or its political regime, that the Muslim immigrants are always unable to integrate, despite the best efforts -- and in Sweden the entire country has fallen all over itself not only to offer "asylum" to undeserving Muslims, but to provide them with free or heavily subsidized housing (and the housing, with the nursery schools and kindergartens attached, and the stores, and everything else the Swedish state so unstintingly has provided for so long), and free language-training, and education, and subsidised transportation, and free health care, and all the rest of it, for people who come from Islamic lands of misrule where they get nothing. And instead of overwhelming gratitude toward Sweden and the Swedes, the Muslims demonstrate resentment, and ill-concealed -- or sometimes unconcealed -- hatred toward the non-Muslims who still insist on treating Sweden as a country where their Infidel laws and customs should prevail, and where Muslims feel they are not given their due - but their due is clearly that of superior status, whiich is their right because, you see, they are Muslims, and any other status -- equality or inferiority, in economic or social or political status, to non-Muslims is siimply intolerable, contra naturam, against the Will of Allah. It cannot be accepted.
Look not only at Sweden, but at all the other countries of Western Europe. People of substantially lower I.Q. than the indigenous non-Muslims arrive. Many of them are the products of cousin-marriage, so favored in Muslim socieites because the level of aggression and mistrust is high, so that one favors marriage within families -- and that of course has its effects,in the large number of congenital defects, now to be paid for by the non-Muslim taxpayers, and also has effects on I.Q. Education, in the Western sense, about the language, history, literature, and laws of Infidels, is of little or no interest to Muslims, who have everywhere disrupted classrooms and refused to listen, or allow non-Muslims to listen, to those topics that Muslims find offesnive (includiong, of course, any discussion of local kings, or the history of Christianity, or sympathetic study of the artifacts of Western Christendom, or of antisemitism in any of its manifestations, including the industrial-strength murders, by the Nazis and their collaborators all over Europe, of Jews)/ And when it comes to science, which requires training in skepticism and questioning, how can those raised up in a fanatical faith that is based on punishment of any questioning of that faith, and of its central figure, not Allah but, rather, Muhammad -- no wonder that despite the trillions of dollars that have flowed to Muslim oil-and-gas countries, the contribution of Muslims to modern science has been negligible, practically invisible, and it is only here and there, and in a very few fields, working in the West, that a handful of Muslim researchers have gone beyond the mediocre.
And the Muslims in Sweden resent this state of affairs. They think they deserve not only whatever they get -- and they get so much -- from the Swedish taxpayers, but that they deserve more and more. They should not be expected to simply accept their comfortable state-supported conditions which, in fact, are superior to anything they could obtain on their own, or enjoy at home, in their own dreadful and dreadfully-governed countries. They want more, more, more.
But that's not how the pious reporters of NBC News see it. Just read, below, their report on the sixth day of rioting in Stockholm by "youths" and "immigrants" whom you know, and I know, are nothing but Musliims rioting against the Infidels:
Sweden riots: Cops seek reinforcements, US citizens warned
Fredrik Sandberg/Scanpix via Reuters
Firefighters extinguish a row of burning cars in the Stockholm suburb of Rinkeby Thursday after youths rioted for a fifth night.
By Simon Johnson and Patrick Lannin, Reuters
STOCKHOLM - Police in the Swedish capital are to seek reinforcements after youths again set cars ablaze and threw stones at police for a fifth night running, officials said on Friday.
The unrest has led the United States embassy to warn U.S. citizens this week not to go to areas hit by rioting.
"I can confirm we have sent out a Warden message," embassy spokeswoman Danielle Harms said, referring to alerts by the Department of State with safety or travel information.
Around 30 cars were set on fire in poorer neighborhoods in northwestern and southwestern parts of the capital on Thursday night and rioters caused widespread damage to property, including schools, police said.
Despite Sweden's reputation for equality, the rioting has exposed a fault-line between a well-off majority and a minority, often young people with immigrant backgrounds, who cannot find work, lack education and feel marginalized.
"In terms of extent, it is a little less, a little quieter," police spokesman Kjell Lindgren said of the disturbances on Thursday night. Eight people, mostly in their early 20s, had been detained during the night.
He said police were planning to request reinforcements from other areas to help deal with the rioting, upcoming football matches and the wedding of Princess Madeleine, third in line to the throne, on June 8.
He said the police needed to be prepared to maintain a heavy presence on the streets. "We will do that for days, weeks, as long as it is necessary," he said.
The violence of recent days appears to have been sparked by the death in Husby - the centre of the rioting - of a 69-year old, shot by police earlier this month.
One recent government study showed up to a third of young people aged 16 to 29 in some of the most deprived areas of Sweden's big cities neither study nor have a job.
The gap between rich and poor in Sweden is growing faster than in any other major nation, according to the OECD, though absolute poverty remains uncommon.
Two arrested after RAF diverts Pakistan jet to Stansted
The two men were arrested by police on suspicion of endangering an aircraft. An RAF typhoon jet was launched after an incident on board the Pakistani passenger aircraft within UK airspace.
Manchester Airport said the aircraft was a Pakistan International Airlines passenger plane which was flying from Lahore to Manchester.
The incident is understood to have happened around 10 minutes before the plane, flight number PK709, was due to land in Manchester at 2pm. The plane has now landed at Stansted Airport in Essex and is in an isolated stand, away from passenger areas. The Essex airport is the UK's anti-terrorism base, where planes can be safely isolated.
Channel 4 News understands that Essex police are now carrying out security checks on the aircraft.
And from Sky News: A witness speaking in Urdu to Pakistani station Geo TV, said that two men over 6 feet tall tried to enter the pilot's cabin.
Mashood Takwar, from Pakistan International Airlines, told Sky News that 25 minutes before landing Manchester air traffic control contacted the pilot after apparently receiving some information from British security services.
The second suspect in the killing of drummer Lee Rigby in Woolwich was today identified as a former London schoolboy who attended the same university as his accomplice. Michael Adebowale, 22, was shot by police along with his accomplice Michael Adebolajo, 28, during the attack outside the Army barracks on Wednesday.
The pair are throught to have plotted the attack in Adebowale’s flat in Greenwich which was raided by up to 20 heavily armed police yesterday. Neighbours said both men were regularly seen at the address where Adebowale was living with his mother Juliet.
He and Adebolajo - said to have also been a drug dealer and robber - both attended Greenwich University, though it is not known how they met.
A man and a woman, both 29, were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to murder during a series of raids on six addresses in London, Essex and Lincolnshire yesterday.
It came as MI5 also faced continued questions over whether they had let the two men slip through the net. Adebolajo was once intercepted by police as he tried to travel to Somalia to fight alongside Al-Shabaab and is also said to have served a jail sentence for violence. Both men were said to be known to the security services but were not classified as an active threat.
Anjem Choudary, the former leader of banned radical group al-Muhajiroun, said Adebolajo regularly attended meetings and demonstrations held by his group and successor organisations.
Omar Bakri Mohammed, a hate preacher banned from Britain, claimed he had converted Adebolajo himself.
At least two schools, a police station, and 15 cars were set ablaze in Stockholm on Thursday night as riots in the suburbs of the Swedish capital continued for the fifth straight night.
In Rinkeby a predominantly immigrant district in northern Stockholm, firefighters rushed to put out flames that engulfed six cars parked alongside each other. Three more cars were torched in the southern suburb of Norsborg, and a police station in Älvsjö, also on the city's south side, was set on fire but quickly extinguished, police said.
Eight people were arrested in Älvsjö, while four arrests were made in Norsborg.
Firefighters also reported a school in Tensta, another north Stockholm suburb, was set ablaze but quickly extinguished, while a Montessori school in the neighbouring Kista suburb was also on fire.
Meanwhile, police in Södertälje, a town south of Stockholm, said rioters threw stones at them as they responded to reports of cars set alight.
Car fires were reported in the suburb of Sollentuna, while a car fire in Jordbro had spread to a nearby shopping centre before being brought under control, police told the Aftonbladet newspaper.
The previous night, the fire brigade had been called to some 90 different blazes, most of them caused by rioters.
SEYDA ZEINAB, Syria—This town on Damascus's southern fringe, with a shimmering golden-domed shrine at its center and a heavily patrolled perimeter of berms and concrete barriers, has become the first stop for many foreign fighters entering Syria to battle alongside President Bashar al-Assad's forces.
Shiite fighters, primarily from Lebanon, Iran and Iraq, are now flowing into Syria in greater numbers to bolster government forces, say Syrians familiar with them. They are arriving to defend Mr. Assad's regime, but more fundamentally to protect the Shiite faith from what they see as a regional Sunni onslaught, say people in Seyda Zeinab and the fighters' hometowns.
Shiite mourners in Basra, Iraq, May 17. Relatives say Mohammed Aboud was killed defending Seyda Zeinab, Syria. His coffin reads 'Sigh in grief, Zeinab.'
The influx provides more concrete illustration of how Syria's conflict, long viewed as a civil war fought largely along sectarian lines, is now a full-fledged religious conflagration drawing its oxygen from across the region.
The dynamics have been most visible over the past week in the battle for rebel-held Qusayr, whose capture would bring the regime secure logistical lines in the center of the country, running from Damascus to the pro-Assad Syrian coast and into sympathetic territory inside Lebanon.
In Qusayr, Iran-backed Shiite Hezbollah fighters from Lebanon have battled openly alongside forces loyal to Mr. Assad, whose regime is dominated by the Shiite-linked Alawites. On Thursday, Hezbollah's media arm said regime forces were in control of roughly the southern half of Qusayr and were pressing ahead with an air and ground offensive to take the whole town.
But Shiite militants are increasingly involved in combat elsewhere in the country as well. These include fighters from Hezbollah, from Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps and from Iraq's Asaib Ahl al-Haq—an Iran-backed group that was responsible for some of the most sophisticated and lethal attacks against U.S. troops in Iraq—according to militia members and Syrians familiar with the fighters.
Such fighters have been active in campaigns launched this year to wrest control of Damascus suburbs from the rebels, said Maher Ajeeb, the commander of a Syrian pro-regime militia in Seyda Zeinab. Many Shiite warriors have answered calls to protect important shrines like the one here, a mausoleum where Shiites believe Zeinab, a saint-like granddaughter of Prophet Muhammad, is buried.
Mr. Ajeeb said he faced a dilemma when Syrian rebels launched an assault here on New Year's Day this year. His brother was battling on one front, he said. Pressing against rebels on a second front, he said, was a group of fighters he called "the friends"—members of Hezbollah.
Mr. Ajeeb, whose group was mustered the previous month, backed up the Hezbollah fighters. The town's defense proved successful. But his brother Hussein was killed, he said.
"They are my brothers, too," said Mr. Ajeeb of his choice to battle alongside Hezbollah. "And we are all servants of Seyda Zeinab."
The number of Shiite foreign fighters in Syria isn't clear. President Assad told an Argentine newspaper last week that only senior Iranian and Hezbollah military experts with long-standing ties to the Syrian army are in the country. But Syrians and Iraqis fighting alongside the regime say hundreds of foreigners have come this year, compared with dozens late last year.
"I personally get dozens of calls each day from people in the provinces and Baghdad who want to go," said a commander of Asaib, the Iraqi militia. "We send well-trained ideological fighters."
These Shiites form a counterpoint to similarly religiously motivated fighters who have entered the country to aid the predominantly Sunni rebels. Many Syrian rebels are increasingly under the sway of al Qaeda fighters, clerics and benefactors from Gulf Arab states who extol the eradication of "heretic" communities of Shiites and Alawites.
Foreign Sunni fighters represent more than two dozen nationalities, from Saudi and Turkish to Chechen, Mr. Assad and other Syrian officials have said. Some 500 to 700 Europeans are among the nearly 6,000 Islamist foreign fighters who have come to Syria to support the rebels since the start of the war, a European diplomat said. In April, the London-based International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation placed the number of European rebel fighters at 135 to 590, with the largest numbers from the U.K., France and the Netherlands, basing its count on media reports and martyrdom notices.
The religious fervor extends to fighters' communities as far away as Kuwait, Libya, Iran and Saudi Arabia—on dueling satellite channels, online chat forums and social-media websites. Some Shiite clerics are propagating the idea that the war in Syria is laying a foundation for the imminent return of the Messiah-like Imam Mahdi, who Shiites broadly believe will wage an end-times battle against evil on Syrian soil.
"We must be ready for the reappearance and committed to its aftermath because the process won't be easy," Jalaleddin al-Saghir, an Iraqi Shiite cleric and politician, said in October in one of his many sermons in Baghdad about the topic.
The influx of Shiite fighters to Syria has triggered calls, particularly from Syrian rebel backers and clerics in Gulf Arab Sunni states, for all-out jihad against Iran and its allies in Syria. Faisal bin Jasim al-Thani, a member of Qatar's royal family, warned on his Twitter account Tuesday that Shiites in the region would now face revenge attacks. "Iran and its tails will be crushed in Syria," he wrote.
This regional reach makes a political compromise to end fighting that much more elusive.
"I have every right to ask a Lebanese military expert to help me with my just cause," said Fadi Burhan, a Syrian Shiite cleric in Seyda Zeinab. Mr. Burhan heads public relations at a local office of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the Iranian supreme leader who also conveys religious guidance through offices serving Shiite communities around the world.
Mr. Burhan, a tall and imposing figure in his 30s, lifts his shirt to show scars on his stomach from three bullets that he says were from a failed assassination attempt in Seyda Zeinab in April 2012. His assailants, he said, were two Sunni teenagers—members of the many Sunni families who had sought refuge here because, at the time, it was safer than other areas. The attempt on his life came two weeks after another Syrian Shiite cleric, Naser al-Alawi, was killed here in a similar manner.
By July, most Sunnis had left Seyda Zeinab. At the same time, Shiites and Alawites were brutally chased from a neighboring district, Hajeera, that is now under the control of extremist Sunni rebels and foreign jihadists, according to residents.
Seyda Zeinab is now a virtual fortress accessible only through army checkpoints. The shrine's perimeter is sealed off with concrete walls. Rebels recently fired mortar shells that narrowly missed the shrine. They have also threatened in text messages sent this year to some residents to level the shrine and turn it into an ice-skating rink, said residents.
Hundreds of male residents have joined government-sponsored paramilitary groups tasked with securing the town and participating in operations against rebels around Damascus.
The very name of Mr. Ajeeb's militia, the Abu al-Fadhel al-Abbas Brigade, positions it within the sectarian drama: Al-Abbas was the half-brother of revered Shiite Imam Hussein, the grandson of Muhammad. The brothers were among the Shiites slaughtered more than 1,300 years ago in Karbala, in present-day Iraq, by forces dispatched by the Damascus-based Sunni caliph. The shrine here to the men's sister is one of Shia Islam's holy sites.
The brigade's creation, coupled with the threats against the shrine, have attracted volunteer fighters. especially from Lebanon and Iraq, Mr. Ajeeb said. Iran's Ayatollah Khamenei and Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah both issued in April what amounted to religious justification to Shiites fighting in Syria.
"To be martyred in Syria is like being martyred in Karbala" 1,300 years ago, said Mr. Ajeeb, a bearded and stocky 30-year-old in a military uniform, who said that before the conflict he owned a fruit and vegetable stand in town.
In Lebanon and Iraq, funerals for fighters slain in Syria are now an almost daily occurrence.
"At your service, Zeinab!" read one of the banners carried in the southern Iraqi city of Diwaniyah on Saturday at the funeral of Muthana al-Karawi, whom a local news website identified as a fighter killed in Syria a week ago.
Taj Hargey, Oxford Imam, Tries Out His Taqiyya To See If Anyone Salutes
‘There was no Muslim terrorism in the UK until Iraq’ – Oxford imam
May 23, 2013
A police forensics officer investigates a car at a crime scene where one man was killed in Woolwich, southeast London May 22, 2013.(Reuters / Stefan Wermuth)
British Muslims “disown” the Woolwich murderers, and such extremists should be “totally demolished” in UK society – but in order to do that, the UK must change its “illegal” foreign policy, imam of the Oxford Islamic Congregation Dr. Taj Hargey told RT.
The beheading of a UK soldier near the Woolwich army barracks in southeast London on Wednesday has shocked the country, and was condemned as “horrific” and “sickening” by UK officials. “Strong indications” the murder was connected to terrorism and Islamic extremism were also noted by UK Prime Minister David Cameron.
But the Muslim community in the UK had never known such brutal terrorist attacks until the UK’s previous government drew Britain into overseas conflicts in countries like Iraq and Afghanistan, and started “slavishly following” US policies, Dr. Hargey explained.
RT:Do you agree with the allegations that the attackers’ actions were inspired by radical Islam?
Dr. Taj Hargey: We need firstly to condemn this murder in the strongest possible terms, and to send condolences to the victim’s family and the loved ones. Yes, I think there is an element of that… But it’s not just Islamic fundamentalism, there is also a linkage, I believe, between what Tony Blair did with his illegal war in Iraq and subsequent slavish following of US policy. I mean, there was no Muslim terrorism in the United Kingdom until Blair went illegally into Iraq. And I think we need to admit and to acknowledge that fact… not just to blame it on Islamic fundamentalism.
RT:One witness report is saying one of the meat cleaver killers was seen in the local community days before “preaching hatred.” From what you see and hear around you – how widespread are radical sentiments among Muslims in Britain?
TH: I think, they are most probably recent, or new Muslim converts, they are fundamentalists, this brand of Islam is attractive to them. I don’t think they were born Muslims, these two people, I would be very surprised if they were. But what is important to remember is that they are being breast-fed on this… Islamic extremism and radicalism – that the only way to deal with the situation is by violence. All integrated British Muslims know that, although we are against British foreign policy, we can protest legitimately and through democratic means – you do not have to slaughter someone in the streets of London.
RT:When it comes to the Muslim community in the United Kingdom, some refer to an ‘outspoken minority but a silent majority.’ Isn’t there a responsibility for the majority to step up and do something about this?
A woman looks at floral tributes placed near the scene of the killing of a British soldier in Woolwich, southeast London May 23, 2013.(Reuters / Luke MacGregor)
TH: Absolutely, and I think it’s high time that the majority came out of the woodwork, so to speak. They have to put their heads above the parapet, we need to confront these radicals and extremists. Now, where is this extremism coming from? It is coming from the philosophies, like the Wahhabis in Saudi Arabia, and the Taliban in Afghanistan and elsewhere, and the Salafis in Syria.
We need to tackle this – this type of imported virus is coming from the Muslim heartland, it’s got no place in a Western society, or in the United Kingdom. So yes, it is up to the majority to take on this minority. The minority is very few – I wouldn’t put them more than 1 or 2 percent of the population, and their ideology and philosophy must be totally demolished. It must be shown not have anything to do with Islam.
RT:What can the UK authorities do to protect the people and to prevent such attacks from happening in the future?
TH: The United Kingdom must look at the causes of this. I think that for us just to deal with the aftereffects of this slaughter in Woolwich is nonsense – we need to look at what is causing this. It is clearly UK forces in places like Afghanistan, and the UK’s blind support for US policy with the Somalia, or Yemen, or Syria, or wherever else. We need to take stock of that, we can’t just expect that we are blameless. And I think once the United Kingdom takes stock of this and sees how to be an impartial actor on the world’s stage, that would be a big step forward.
RT:We’ve already seen anti-Muslim protests in London in the aftermath of the attack, do you think there’s a danger of a significant growth in anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant sentiment?
TH: Absolutely. Last week, as you know, we had this issue of Muslim pedophile gangs… in Oxford – they were convicted, thankfully. So, last week it’s pedophilia, this week it’s terrorism – so there is an escalating tendency to label all Muslims either as terrorists or pedophiles. So the right-wing British national party, and English Defence League, and other fascist groups are obviously taking advantage of this.
So it’s incumbent on the mainstream majority Muslims to tackle this, and say, firstly, we disassociate ourselves totally from all forms of pedophilia, and, secondly, terrorism is not part of Islam. And whatever is engaging in violent bloodshed and terrorist activities – we disown you, and you can’t do that in our name… You don’t kill someone in the name of God, Islam condemns that… it’s pure blasphemy.
From Kinana of Khaybar --five postings on a thread at another site, on the Matter of England, or rather, On What's The Matter With England, and Why Is Mehdi Hasan and his ilk allowed to disseminate his nonsense and lies?
British mainstream media:
"Uh oh! A British soldier has been killed by an Islamic extremist who has nothing to do with Islam. Quick--we must save Islam! Let's get as many Muslim apologists as we can to come on and deluge the general public with Islamic propaganda."
The Idiot Uri Savir, And His Grand Plans For Helping Syria Out Of Its Mess
I don't know anything about this Uri Savir save that he was an Israeli negotiator of the disastrous Oslo Accords, and is president of the Peres Center for Peace. That's all I need to know. That explains everything. Instead of wanting to see Syria sink into a long-term morass, instead of seeing what profit can be derived from world-without-end conflict in Syria, this Uri Savir wants the West (and of course Israel) to end the conflcit, and what's more, to "reconstruct" Syria. He's mad. How are such people created? What gives them their mental makeup?
No Syrian regime can be worse than this one, with the biggest chemical and non-conventional arms arsenals in the Arab world.
A fighter from the Islamist Syrian rebel group Jabhat al-Nusra Photo: REUTERS
Yemen produces coffee, Egypt cotton... Palestine oranges, and Syria trouble.
This understatement comes from John Gunther, the American author of the popular series Inside Asia. Since its independence in 1946, Syria has been a theater of confrontation between ethnic and religious groups and a battlefield for outside Arab powers to gain influence in the socalled “mother of Arab nationalism.”
Syria has been governed since 1971 by the Alawite minority that constitutes only 10 percent of its population. The Assads – father and son – while propagating a blend of Arab socialism (the Ba’ath) and nationalism, enforced one of the most brutal dictatorial regimes, not only abusing human rights, but committing massive atrocities and massacres against their own population.
In February 1982, Hafez Assad had more than 20,000 of his countrymen killed, supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood, in Hama, in a period of one month. Few would have predicted that his Western-educated son, Bashar, would become an even more horrendous murderer – close to 100,000 Syrians have lost their lives in the current civil war, many if not most at the hands of Assad’s military.
The opposition to Assad, which first expressed itself in 2011 as part of the Arab Spring but was then confronted by the Syrian Army, has not been able to bring down this dictator, unlike in Egypt, Tunisia and Yemen. Today we are witnessing a bloody battle without a winner or an end in sight, with a world community standing by in paralysis.
Syria is indeed too fragmented a society to look for a clear-cut solution. Yet this bloodletting must stop, and this dictatorship must go. The endgame to this war is of great importance to the future of Syria and the region.
The West, led by the United States, must look for a sustainable solution for the day after, taking into consideration the complexity of Syrian society. The Syrian battlefield is clearly not a “Western” bad guy/good guy story, but a Byzantine Middle Eastern gambit. On this Levantine field of confrontation, the Alawite ruling minority is still backed by most of the army (although hundreds of officers have defected), most of the army leadership is Alawite and most will not jump ship for fear of revenge. Although Assad’s regime is relatively secular, its main backing comes from fundamentalist Islamic forces, led by Iran (Hezbollah) and the Shi’ites of Iraq. Iran sees in Syria its principal ally in its aspiration for regional dominance also vis-à-vis Lebanon and the Gulf.
Assad is still backed by Russia and China, which veto Security Council resolutions against Damascus and refuse to join in the international community’s sanctions. The Russians even continue to supply sophisticated missiles to Assad.
Most of the Arab world rejects Assad and has expelled his government from the Arab League. The opposition to Assad is mostly Sunni (70% of Syrians with 10% of Kurds) and is today organized as the Syrian National Coalition, which was already recognized by the Gulf states as the legitimate government.
Its military wing is the Free Syrian Army, formed by various opposition factions and many defecting army officers. Its military activity is decentralized, yet has headquarters in Turkey. Many civilians have joined its ranks in order to defeat Assad and his army.
The opposition is also joined by radical Islamist forces, such as the Iraqi-linked Jabhat al-Nusra, among the most aggressive and violent fighters. The Syrian National Coalition and the Free Syrian Army are backed by most Arab countries, including Islamic Egypt, and by the international community.
While Assad’s army is armed by Iran and Russia, and helped by Hezbollah, the Free Syrian Army lacks arms and support. The West, led by the United States, is horrified by the humanitarian tragedy, bewildered by the complexity of civil war and paralyzed by a lack of clear strategy. There also seems to be no easy way, if at all, to intervene militarily, as was done in Libya, to overthrow the regime. Assad has proven more resilient and ruthless than predicted and threatens to use chemical weapons. His hold on Syria is shrinking but his coalition is more united than the opposition.
The onus is on the Obama administration.
It must forge a strategy, not only for “victory,” but for a sustainable solution for Syria’s future. For that it must look at the economy of the country, without which there can be no long-term stability.
Syria is completely devastated and its bigger cities are destroyed. All infrastructure has been severely damaged – roads and bridges, water pipes, the oil industry, hospitals and schools, etc. This has brought the economy to a standstill with over 50% unemployment, galloping inflation and a sharp depreciation of the Syrian pound.
The biggest cost is the human one – almost 100,000 killed, millions injured and maimed, approximately 1.5 million have become refugees in Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan. Much of the magnificent cultural heritage has been destroyed; mosques and churches have not been spared. The GDP of Syria decreases every year by 18%, the net foreign assets in Syria are down from $18 billion in 2010 to $2b. in 2012, also a result of the international sanctions. Today’s Syria is the Somalia of the Middle East.
If stability is to be restored in Syria, then, beyond the necessary regime change, there must be an international effort for the reconstruction of the country, with a new and appropriate governance structure.
This requires a long-term strategic outlook and policy by the West, led by the United States, to be agreed upon by the Syrian National Coalition. It should be composed of the following elements: • An internal pact by the Syrian National Coalition, bridging internal differences and reaching out to all ethnic groups and minorities in the country. Internal unity within the main opposition group is key. It must be based on a new commitment to a free Syria, with pluralistic governance, respect for women, religious minorities, economic transparency and accountability.
It should include a Syrian plan for the social and economic reconstruction of the country (the existing generic economic plan of the Syrian National Coalition is insufficient).
The Alawites should be included once Assad is out of power, and vengeance should not be tolerated. Syrian nationalism can and will coexist with Islam, but not the Iranian-exported fundamentalism. Simultaneously, terrorism and its perpetrators must be outlawed, Hezbollah and al-Qaida alike.
In favor of stability, government institutions must be planned, which should include professionals with economic and international know-how, of which Syria has plenty. This is particularly true for the establishment of a reconstruction agency and internal reconciliation body, learning from the South African model.
• On the basis of such a program for a new Syria, by Syrians, the international community has to plan its reconstruction program according to some basic guidelines: – Secret negotiations to be conducted with the Syrian National Coalition as to a plan of governance, with pluralism, transparency and accountability. Turkey should be involved as the Turkish model of more pragmatic Islam is the appropriate one. The Syrians must make a strategic chose between Turkey and Iran.
– Given an agreement on governance, the Syrian Free Army should be armed by NATO to assist in the downfall of Assad.
– In parallel, a donor mechanism should be established for the socioeconomic reconstruction of Syria. It should include the Friends of Syria framework together with Russia and China. Moscow and Beijing cannot be left out of the planning of Syria, despite current support for Assad.
– In parallel to the governments, the international private sector should be involved as an important partner to donor institutions.
Infrastructure and consultancy companies can assist in the planning of reconstruction efforts.
– The areas of reconstruction should include: a) Infrastructure repair and development, including energy, transportation and water; b) Rehabilitation of the education and health systems; c) Absorption and rehabilitation of refugees; d) Reconstruction of the tourism industry around Syria’s special archeological and coastal sites; e) The establishment of a Syrian investment agency that will be able to work with the international private sectors; f) Establishment of a chamber of commerce to reinvigorate international trade; g) Creation of professional training programs, especially to retrain fighters for civilian jobs and for the training of young women; and h) Establishment of more effective local government.
Such a plan and process that includes new governance and reconstruction should be presented publicly and in detail. The Syrian people should know the alternatives before them – either the continuation of dictatorial brutality by the minority regime, backed and infiltrated by fundamentalist radical Islamists, or an inclusive government, more modern, effective and open, with good relations with the West. There is little doubt what they will opt for. That will be the basis for a new program and partnership between the international community and Syria.
As for Israel, we can make no difference in the civil war, and should coordinate policies with the United States and Turkey. No Syrian regime can be worse than this one, with the biggest chemical and nonconventional arms arsenals in the Arab world, the arming of Hezbollah, the hosting of other terror groups, the alliance with Tehran and the mass murder of its own people.
The writer is president of the Peres Center for Peace and served as Israel’s chief negotiator for the Oslo Accords. Barbara Hurwitz edited this column.
Mehdi Hasan, Of The Huffington Post UK, A Tireless Deceiver And Apologist, Up To The Predictable Trick
In The Telegraph, that good old reliable apologist, the meretricious and oleaginous Mehdi Hasan (who has managed to make himself into that appetizing thing, the "political director of the Huffington Post UK) trots out the same verse from the Qur'an - (there are really less than a half-dozen deceptively soothing verses in the Qur'an , with the one about "there is no compulsion in religion" and 5.32 being the favorites)f) -- that is, 5.32, which appears to be a denunciation of killing. Now I won't bother to list all the verses, the more than 100 verses, in the sections of the Qur'an that are later, and hence not to be abrogated (that is, subject to "naskh" or abrogation, as the most peaceful verses, which appear in earlier suras, so often are), that are all about killing Infidels and seizing their property and women. I will stick here to the most obvious remark, which is that 5.32 can only be read with the verse that immediately follows, 5.33, which gives 5.32 a completely different significance.
Mehjdi Hasan in his Telegraph article does exactly what all the Muslim apologists do when they speak or write, for an audience of non-Muslims whom they hope are still uninformed about Islam -- the apologists who appear after every atrocity committed by Muslims. Apparently there may still be some non-Muslims who are still taken in. Why, the same invocation of 5.32 without 5.33 occurred just a few weeks ago, in Boston, after the Marathon atrocity, with the carefully-vetted for his "moderation" Muslim representative at an "Interfaith Service" quoting 5.32 and leaving out the key modifying clause of 5.33.
This has happened so many times, in the last decade or so, that one can hardly stand having to make the point yet again. But again it will have to be made.
Here's the re-posted article:
Qur'an 5.32 But Not 5.33, Or, Kitman At The Cathedral
The same text,but a different title. I'm trying to be Google's Little Helper, just in case someone uses "5.32 But Not 5.33." And though I think Taqiyya is perhaps more widely known, Kitman also characterizes the Muslim speaker's performance, and besides, it alliterates with "cathedral."
At That Interfaith Service In Boston, The Muslim Representative Clutches At His Deceptive Straw And His Taqiyya Should Be The Talk Of The Town
The Muslim representative who showed up at the Cathedral in South Boston -- I remember it well from when a friend of mine became a Deacon, and Sean O'Malley was the presiding bishop -- for the "Interfaith Service" -- had a hard row to hoe. How could he, after all, quote much from the Qur'an, or tell a tale from the Hadith, when so much of both are full of hatred toward non-Muslims, violence, and aggression? So he did what Muslims who are slyly defending the faith do when they want to pretend that Islam is "just like all other faiths." But Islam is not. It is an aggressive and warlike doctrine, and its hero worthy of emulation, its Perfect Man, was a warrior who took women and made them his sex slaves (and allowed his men to take their share), and attacked innocent farmers (the Khaybar Oasis) in order to seize their property (and allowed his men to take their share), and took part in military campaigns in order to subdue all those who refused willingly to be subdued.
So what's a sly Muslim to do?
Only this: repeat, over and over, Qur'an 5.32, a passage lifted entirely from the Mishnah of the Jews.
Had that been all, had 5.32 stood, unmodified, that at least would have been something, a straw to clutch at.
But the Qur'an, the Muslims, have a verse that immediately follows 5.32, which clearly modifies it. And that verse, 5.33, is the passage that gives all the exceptions to what has just been declared in 5.32.
Obama, and Bush, too, have in their time discussed or alluded to 5.32, without the slightest sign that they know -- do they know? -- about 5.33. Now either they were, and are, ignorant of 5.33, in which case they need to learn, at this point, with a world permanently convulsed by Islam, what exactly is in that Qur'an (and a good reader will have to understand both that 20% of the Qur'an is incomprehensible even to native speakers of Arabic, and that the Arabic version is far more violent than any of the translations into English or French, and very likely into other languages as well).
In 2009 Obama spoke about 5.32, and I commented on June 5, 2009:
Fitzgerald: When Obama Channels Bush, Or, Qur'an 5.32 Without 5.33
“The Holy Koran teaches that whoever kills an innocent, it is as if he has killed all mankind; and whoever saves a person, it is as if he has saved all mankind.” -- from the speech by Barack Obama
Is that really what the “Holy Koran” teaches? It’s true, there is a verse in the Qur’an, taken verbatim from an earlier Jewish text, that says “whoever kills an innocent, it is as if he has killed all mankind,” etc.
But that verse, verse 5.32, in the Qur’an is followed by another verse, one that Barack Obama carefully or carelessly -- it hardly matters which -- chose to overlook, and by overlooking, mislead not his Muslim audience (who were no doubt pleased he left out, just as any Muslim apologist for Islam would have left out, the following verse 5.33) but rather, all of the world’s Infidels, which includes 99% of the American people, whose welfare he is supposed to keep foremost in mind, for the right instruction and the protection of the American people is his solemn duty.
We’ve been here before, of course. When Barack Obama quotes 5.32 and leaves out 5.33, he is merely channeling George Bush. For Bush, in his deep respect for the “religion” of Islam, liked to quote the same Qur’anic passage, that is, 5.32. The passage, of course, one of the more appealing ones in the Qur’an, was lifted wholesale from the Jewish text of the Mishnah. Barack Obama might have recognized that, but he didn’t dare -- for if he had said it, it would have infuriated Muslims. They don’t want to have the Qur’an’s sources in other, prior monotheisms, revealed, and they don’t even want the elements, such as the djinn, borrowed wholesale from pre-Islamic Arab pagan lore, connected to their original sources. For the Qur’an is for Muslims never to be subjected to the kind of historical analysis that was done for both Judaism and Christianity by the practitioners of what is called the Higher Criticism, beginning with Julius Wellhausen and other German and English Protestant scholars of the mid-to-late 19th century.
What Bush always left out, and what Obama left out today, was the following passage, 5.33, that was added by the composers of the Qur’an and that they did not lift from any Jewish text. This is 5.33:
"The only reward of those who make war upon Allah and His messenger and strive after corruption in the land will be that they will be killed or crucified, or have their hands and feet on alternate sides cut off, or will be expelled out of the land" (Qur'an 5:33).
And who do those who take their Islam most feelingly to heart and most thoughtfully to mind think are the people who “make war upon Allah and His messenger and strive after corruption in the land”? Why, it’s non-Muslims, it’s the Infidels, the ones who do not submit to Islam but for some strange reason hew to their own non-Muslim beliefs, and their own legal and political institutions and founding documents (such as the Declaration of the Rights of Man in France, and the Constitution of the United States in this country). Those institutions and which founding documents are flatly contradicted by the letter and spirit of the Shari’a, the Holy Law of Islam, and thus those who continue to support them are people who, in the Muslim view, are not acting defensively but offensively. Anyone who resists Islam is making offensive war on Islam, and thus they are those who “make war upon Allah and His messenger and strive after corruption in the land” -- so that, according to 5.33, that follows the appropriated Jewish text of 5.32, they should be “killed or crucified, or have their hands and feet on alternate sides cut off, or will be expelled out of the land.”
Here is just one example, this one from the Islamic Republic of Iran, where the charge of “corruption” -- as in “spreading corruption in the land” -- is fleshed out in a real-life case:
Tehran, 28 Nov. 2005(AKI) - Iranian parliamentarian Kurosh Niknam, a member of Iran's Zoroastrian religious minority has been summoned to appear before the country's Revolutionary Tribunal after being accused of spreading false news and showing lack of respect for the authorities. The charges stem from comments Niknam made to protest against derogatory remarks against non-Muslims uttered by a close aide to Iran's Supreme Leader, Seyyed Ali Khamenei.
Non-Muslims "cannot be called human beings but are animals who roam the earth and engage in corruption." said Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati last week at a ceremony in north-eastern Iran to commemorate the 'martyrs' of the Revolutionary Guards and the war against Iraq (1980-88).
Nikam described the remarks as "an unprecedented slur against religious minorities."...
The Zoroastrian community in Iran is estimated to number some 22,000 - half the size of that in existence before the 1979 Islamic revolution.
One more time: Non-Muslims “cannot be called human beings but are animals who roam the earth and engage in corruption.” Who said that? A simpleton, untrained in Islam? Not at all. A full-fledged Ayatollah, that is, a learned Shi’a cleric, with a thorough knowledge of Islam.
Now, getting back to that so-often-unquoted 5.33, wouldn’t it be fair to say that if, in being told about 5.32, we were also told at the same time about the very next verse, 5.33, since that might make a difference in our understanding of 5.32? And don’t you think that George Bush, in quoting 5.32 but not 5.33, clearly misled us, his audience, and perhaps was also misled himself? Perhaps he was never told about 5.33 and didn’t think to ask.
There are two possible explanations for what Bush, and now Obama, have done in their highly selective, and indeed utterly misleading, quotation from the Qur’an. (They have, by the way, stayed well away from the Hadith and the Sira. Perhaps they don’t even know what the Hadith and Sira are. Perhaps they have failed to read even a few dozen of the former. Perhaps they do not know what the Banu Qurayza, and the Khaybar Oasis, and Asma bint Marwan, and Abu Afak, and little Aisha were all about, and the meaning that present-day Muslims give to those important events in the life of the Perfect Man, al-inan al-kamil, Muhammad.
The first explanation, for both Bush and Obama, is that neither is a great or a serious reader. At this point, too, their days are so overfilled with the hectic vacancy of office that they have lost the habit, if they ever had it, of studying for themselves, and so are easily manipulated by those who control what information they see, and what they even consider finding out about. If “everyone knows” or “everyone thinks” a certain way, why then, who is George Bush, and who even is Barack Obama, to seek knowledge elsewhere, to suspect that something might be deeply wrong with what “everyone knows” about the sources of Muslim hostility and aggression, not just toward Americans (the entire focus of Obama’s speech), but against all Infidels, everywhere?
It is hard, after all, to read the opaque, sometimes downright incomprehensible Qur’an. Christoph Luxenberg, Ibn Warraq, and other scholars of the Qur’an and early Islam insist that 20% of the Qur’an cannot be understood by anyone. And it is also difficult, if you are unwilling to put in the time, to quite grasp what the study of the isnad-chain is all about, and how it helps determine the rankings of “authenticity” assigned by the muhaddithin, such as Bukhari and Muslim, to the tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of Hadith that they winnowed down to a manageable number. And then there are the early Muslim biographies of Muhammad, the Sira, with the first one being composed some 150 years after his death. All of this is unlikely to have been quite understood by Obama, just as it was never quite explained to Bush.
And so both are creatures of, captives of, their advisers, their advisers “on Islam” (that sweetly-smiling confidently-hijabbed Ms. Mogahed, for example), and the others called in for special advice (those “Muslim heads” of “American corporations” referred to today in The Times). And perhaps even John Esposito still has managed to escape being declared a virtual agent of Islam and thus persona non grata for his complete dependence on the vast amounts of Arab money he has been able to attract, originally from a rich Lebanese contractor, and latterly from the same Saudi prince whose check was ostentatiously offered to Mayor Giuliani, and promptly, and correctly, torn up. John Esposito has never met a check he wouldn’t cash.
In Bush’s case, and in Obama’s too, perhaps each was made aware of 5.32 and never bothered to find out if there might be a “context” they should know about. Or perhaps one, or both, knew about 5.33, but also knew that the long-suffering American public would not know about 5.33, but would simply accept the quoting of 5.32 without its indispensable -- for meaning -- following verse. What reporter, after all, even nearly eight years after the 9/11/2001 attacks, and with thousands of Muslim terrorist attacks carried out, or thwarted, all over the globe against every kind of non-Muslim in every possible setting, knows anything about the Qur’an? What reporter knows anything about Islam, even after the colossal sums -- some two trillion dollars -- spent in pursuit, in Iraq, of the will-o’-the-wisp goals of “prosperity” and “national unity”? Such goals are not only hopeless of attainment, but from the viewpoint of intelligent long-term policy to protect Infidels everywhere and to weaken the Camp of Islam, are exactly the wrong goals.
I suspect that Bush didn’t really know about 5.33. I suspect that Obama, on the other hand, did. But he is so intent on currying favor with Muslims that he is quite prepared to mislead his own people, the American people, and all the non-Muslims who at present (but perhaps not for much longer) look to America as the strongest Infidel power. They still (but perhaps indeed not for much longer) look to America as the power most willing to stand up against, and to refuse in any way to yield to, those conducting Jihad by many means other than terrorism and qitaal or combat. These include diplomatic campaigns, the Money Weapon, campaigns of Da’wa, and demographic conquest. Perhaps Obama is deeply condescending to the American public, certain that it will not find out, and will not choose to inquire, into what the texts of Qur'an and Hadith and Sira say. And he may be right. After all, have you ever seen, once, in major newspapers or on television ever, a single mention of Asma bint Marwan, Abu Afak, the Khaybar Oasis, the Banu Qurayza, little Aisha? You haven't? No, I didn’t think you had.
Muslims, by contrast, know all about 5.33 and a great deal more about the “Jihad verses” of the Qur’an. They know, in fact, all about what the Qur’an, Hadith, and Sira say about Infidels, for Islam is a faith that was cobbled together in order, precisely, to offer an alternative to the Christians and Jews (and then the Zoroastrians). These were the inhabitants of the first lands conquered by Muslim Arabs. They were to be presented not with an entirely new faith, but with one that seemed a little bit familiar, for it incorporated, though in greatly distorted form, many of the main personages, and stories, of both Judaism and Christianity. Those two prior-in-time monotheisms were not denounced outright as completely false, but rather presented by Muslims as illegitimate because greatly distorted versions of Islam, of the true Message that had been received by Muhammad, the Seal of the Prophets.
Among Muslims, many will think to themselves that he, Barack Obama, can be counted on to carefully ignore those passages that provide the essential “context” -- the absence of which “context” Muslims are always complaining about. He doesn’t want Muslims to think he cares, or perhaps even that he knows, what immediately follows 5.32. And what’s more he, Barack Obama, doesn’t care if by such selective quotation he furthers the ignorance and the misconception of the people whose understanding of Islam he claims to wish to further, and whose safety is his primary responsibility, and not the self-esteem of Muslims, in Cairo or anywhere else.
Oh, there is so very much that is wrong with this speech, that it will be seen as a defining moment -- a moment downwards, so that many in this country, including many dismayed by the impenetrable stupidity of Bush and so many around him, will now feel as if they are abandoned and forlorn, because they put their faith in Barack Obama, and he turned out to be, quite quickly in fact, someone with far less to offer than met the eye. But there will always be those who will still sing his praises, and ask, obliquely, when the subject of the recognition of Barack Obama’s deep deficiencies is raised, in order to deflect such talk, “who you gonna believe -- me, or your lying eyes?”
Bush and Obama have a great deal in common. Both appear to be deeply impressed with the notion that something called a “religion” deserves, for that reason alone, immediate respect. Bush thought that “religions” were always and everywhere a Good Thing. Obama may not truly believe that (it’s hard to get a handle on what he truly believes, except in himself and his Personal Journey, or in the Personal Journeys of others, especially if they are akin to his in being, as he liked to call it, “improbable”). But Obama suggests that criticism of Islam is illegitimate, and that those who would, for example, criticize the imposed restrictions on what women wear as using “the pretence of liberalism” to “criticize Islam.” Instead, he should see that the true liberals are those who will not allow Islam to remain immune from the same kinds of criticism that we should all be free to level against any religion, or any ideology, or any Total Belief-System, even one that we make the mistake, faute de mieux, of calling too carelessly a “religion” when it clearly contains a politics and a geopolitics.
I ran across two quotes just today, made by a recent American President. Here they are:
"Islam, itself, is a peaceful religion, and those who adhere to Islam are people that respect the rights of others... we cannot allow... these totalitarians, these Islamic extremists to distort a great religion and define the nature of that religion."
"There needs to be more understanding between the Muslim world and the Western world. There needs to be a better understanding of the true beliefs of their respective religions."
Both were made by George W. Bush. But both could easily, in the sentiment they expressed and in their wording, both treacly and untrue, have appeared in the Cairo Declaration of Barack Obama that was delivered on Thursday morning, June 4, 2009. That shows us how far we’ve come: we haven’t come far at all. We haven’t made a step beyond the misunderstanding of Islam, and the messianic sentimentalism, of the Bush Administration.
Obama is better at playing the role, or role-playing, as the Messiah who will bring Peace On Earth. It’s a tall order, but he’s a well-pleased pleaser, and thinks if anyone is up to it, he is.
So we are still colossally squandering men, money, and materiel, in Iraq, in Afghanistan, in Pakistan. And Obama would like Americans to spend still more on those people, Muslims, who have been the recipients of the largest transfer of wealth in human history, and one which came about not through any effort on the part of those Muslim, chiefly Arab, recipients, but purely as the result of an accident of geology.
What does he say the Task of Americans now is, those Americans suffering from economic desarroi that is not temporary but permanent, and that threatens Social Security and Medicare? Oh, our new task, should we choose to accept it -- and Obama assumes we will choose to accept it -- is to be here to help the world’s Muslims, lest they think we are insufficiently caring and sharing. We are here to supply -- can that favorite English phrase of so many Arabs, “Marshall Plan,” be far behind? -- still more money, and more money, despite the fact that the rich Arab states have received more than twelve trillion dollars in revenues from the sale of oil and gas since 1973 alone, and now sit collectively on far more than a trillion dollars, while America is the greatest debtor nation on earth. And we will mislead ourselves, or our leaders will do it for us, telling us what Islam stands for, and what the history of Islam, and of Muslim conquest of vast non-Muslim lands and peoples, has meant. Barack Obama does not recognize Islam as a vehicle of Arab imperialism, in which the conquered peoples were, quickly or slowly, forcibly converted -- most often to avoid the onerous condition of humiliation, degradation, and physical insecurity that was the lot of all dhimmis, even if sometimes an unusual Muslim ruler, such as the syncretistic Akbar, might temporarily soften the effects of Muslim rule. Akbar even lifted the payment of the Jizyah, but after Akbar came Aurangzeb with all his ferocity. He has given no thought to how, in Islam, all pre-Islamic and non-Islamic elements that have gone into the making of a people are ignored, belittled, forgotten, or destroyed, as examples of Jahiliyyah, of the Time of Ignorance before Islam arrived.
Bush and Obama are showing themselves to be very much alike. But Bush, as everyone knew, was a dope. What, many would like to know, is Obama’s excuse?
Update on April 18, 2013:
And what will be the excuse now, for all those who report on the Muslim who spoke at that Interfaith Service, if they say nothing of his deliberate act of deception, and fail to take the opportunity, as I have not, to point out that the Qur'an 5.32 requires the reader, or listern to its recitation. to immediately modify its contents with what is in Qur'an 5.33.
EXCLUSIVE:A new Department of Homeland Security intelligence bulletin warns it could be "impossible" to stop 3D-printed guns from being made, not to mention getting past security checkpoints.
A May 21 bulletin distributed to numerous state and federal law enforcement agencies and obtained by FoxNews.com states that the guns, which can be made by downloading blueprints into cutting edge computers that mold three-dimensional items from melted plastic, "poses public safety risks" and are likely beyond the current reach of regulators. The guns threaten to render 3D gun control efforts useless if their manufacture becomes more widespread.
"Significant advances in three-dimensional (3D) printing capabilities, availability of free digital 3D printer files for firearms components, and difficulty regulating file sharing may present public safety risks from unqualified gun seekers who obtain or manufacture 3D printed guns," warns the bulletin compiled by the Joint Regional Intelligence Center.
The bulletin refers specifically to Defense Distributed, a nonprofit company started by a University of Texas law student, which has successfully made and fired a 3D gun whose only metal parts are the bullets and a small firing pin. Some 100,000 plans for a gun called "The Liberator" were downloaded in just a few days before May 3, when a branch of the U.S. State Department told it to stop sharing the file. But the government bulletin seems to acknowledge that the genie is out of the bottle.
"Limiting access may be impossible," concludes the three-page bulletin.
A source tells FoxNews.com the potential problems faced by government authorities involve securing large, high-profile events or those attended by the President, where magnetometers used to screen for weapons would not pick up a 3D printed gun.
"This is a serious threat," the law enforcement source said. "These could defeat magnetometers. The only security procedure to catch [the 3D firearms] is a pat down. Is America ready for pat-downs at every event?"
In a section called "Liberator design poses Public Safety Risks," the bulletin explains:
"Magnetometers may fail to detect the Liberator, depending on device sensitivity. Though it is prohibited by federal law, manufacturers may deliberately omit the unnecessary metal insert, leaving only a small nail and ammunition as the sole metal component. Future designs could further reduce or eliminate metal entirely.
"Unqualified gun seekers may be able to acquire or manufacture their own Liberators with no background checks."
Other concerns mentioned in the bulletin include: that 3D-printed firearms can be made without serial numbers or unique identifiers, hindering ballistics testing. And improvements in technology and decreasing 3D printer costs are likely to mean even more sophisticated printed guns will become easier to acquire.
"Proposed legislation to ban 3D printing of weapons may deter, but cannot completely prevent their production," the memo says. "Even if the practice is prohibited by new legislation, online distribution of these digital files will be as difficult to control as any other illegally traded music, movie or software files."
In May 2013, the Church of Scotland issued a document titled The Inheritance of Abraham? A Report on the ‘promised land'.
This text, which was a follow up to another paper on the same subject, Theology of Land and Covenant, published in 2003, generated a lot of complaints, most of them directed at its criticism of the belief that the Jewish people have a legitimate claim to the land of Israel by virtue of the promises made to the Jews in Hebrew Scriptures. The document was also roundly condemned for promoting the Kairos Palestine Document, issued in 2009. This text, prepared by Palestinian Christians with a history of assailing the legitimacy of the Jewish state, described Palestinian terrorism as legal resistance and invoked the Holy Land to subject Israel to intense scrutiny while giving its adversaries a pass.
The controversy proved to be so intense that the Church of Scotland retracted The Inheritance of Abraham? for a few days and then issued revised version in which the authors emphasized the legitimacy of Israel as a modern nation state. They also apologized for creating anxiety on the part of Jews in Great Britain.
The revisions and apology notwithstanding, the document (which can be accurately and fairly described as "Judeo-centric"), is a good example of how Christian churches in the West have subjected Jews, the religious and political ideas they embrace – and their state – to intense scrutiny while largely ignoring the impact which Muslims, Islam and Islamism have had on life in the Middle East.
Ostensibly, the text addresses the manner which Christians should view the Holy Land and how, if at all, they should affirm the Jewish presence in the Land of Israel. Ultimately, however, the text is a treatise about the transformation that Israeli Jews need to make in order to live in peace with their Arab and Muslim neighbors in the Middle East.
According to this and similar statements issued by liberal Protestant churches in Europe and North America, the Arab-Israeli conflict is rooted in Jewish self-understanding and self-expression and almost nothing else. According to their logic, the way to peace between Israel and its adversaries is through a conversion experience on the part of the Jewish people.
The authors of The Inheritance of Abraham? were not so ham-handed as to expect Jews to convert to Christianity, but they do expect the Jewish people, especially those living in Israel, to repent of their exclusivist ways, get over the Holocaust and make peace with the Palestinians.
In order to promote this conversion, the document depicts the land promise as a threat to Jewish wellbeing because of the rules that come with it and the inability of Jews to live up to these rules. Since Jews cannot live up to the rules that come with the land, they risk expulsion and the loss of sovereignty that follows, the authors state. At one point, the authors ask, "Would the Jewish people have a fairer claim to the land if they dealt justly with the Palestinians?"
In sum, the text subjects Israeli Jews to intense theological scrutiny, finds them wanting in their pursuit of peace and implicitly justifies violence against them. At no point in The Promise of Abraham? do we see any attempt to understand or challenge the ideology used to justify violence against Israel and Jews in the Middle East.
Groups like Hamas and Hezbollah that seek Israel's destruction become ciphers, non-descript tools whose violent acts against the Jewish state are of a potentially divine mechanism that punishes Israel for falling short of the moral demands imposed upon them by their scriptures.
We have seen this behavior before. In Approaches to Auschwitz: The Holocaust and its Legacy (Westminster John Knox Press, 2003), Richard L. Rubinstein and John K. Roth report that in 1942 the towering Protestant theologian "reproved a stricken Jewish community for failing to understand the Holocaust as divine punishment for its willful refusal to believe in the lordship of Christ. ‘There is no doubt,' [Barth] wrote, ‘That Israel hears; now less than ever, can it shelter behind the pretext of ignorance of ignorance and inability to understand. But Israel hears—and does not believe.'"
Rubenstein and Roth also report that in 1949, Barth "continued to suggest that the evil that came to the Jewish people was a ‘result of their unfaithfulness,' that the Jew ‘pays for the fact that he is the elect of God,' and the Jewish people are ‘no more than the shadow of a nation, the reluctant witnesses of the Son of God and the Son of Man.'" In other words, Jewish suffering caused by the Holocaust was the result of Jewish faithlessness and consequently this suffering testified to the credibility of the Christian faith.
A similar schema is evident in The Inheritance of Abraham? With Barth we have a Christian theologian invoking the Holocaust as a consequence of Jewish obduracy.
With the Church of Scotland document we have Christian commentators promoting a view of the Arab-Israeli conflict that blames Israel for the violence directed at its citizens. Hamas and Hezbollah attack Israel not because they embrace an antisemitic ideology but because Israeli Jews refuse to "deal justly" with the Palestinians.
The document does offer Israel and its Jewish inhabitants and supporters a way to escape this divine scrutiny and judgment (and the violence that accompanies it) through the abandonment of an exclusivist mindset and resentment over the Holocaust in favor of a universalist worldview or ideology.
To encourage Israeli Jews to make this conversion, the authors invoke the writings of Mark Braverman, an American Jew who in his 2010 book Fatal Embrace: Christians, Jews, and the Search for Peace in the Holy Land (Synergy), condemns his fellow Jews for the blindness and insensitivity in their dealings with the Palestinians. His description of Hamas, however, fails to acknowledge the group's totalitarian agenda and its stated goal of destroying Israel. This helps explain why Braverman, who is very popular among liberal Protestants, has no Jewish following to speak of. Like St. Paul before him, Braverman preaches to the gentiles.
The polemics deployed in The Inheritance of Abraham? have obvious analogues in the anti-Judaic passages in the New Testament and in the writings of the early church fathers that depicted all but a few Jews as unable to accept interpret their own scriptures and accept Christ's universalistic message of God's love for all humanity. On this score, the Church of Scotland is not unique. Liberal supporters of Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center in both North America and Europe have deployed similar arguments for years.
The persistent use of and tolerance for such polemics by would-be peacemakers in the progressive Christian churches and para-church organizations in the West raises serious doubts about the ability of these institutions to deal rationally with issues related to the Jews.
It is well known that significant numbers of Christians are fleeing countries in the Middle East in an effort to avoid oppression and murder at the hand of Islamists in that region. But instead of addressing the theological and ideological arguments used to incite violence against Christians and to expand the reach of Islam throughout the world, the Church of Scotland deems it necessary to interrogate Israel and its claim to the land.
In light of the church's silence about anti-Christian violence, and its obsession with Jewish sovereignty, it seems reasonable to conclude that the denomination is more troubled by Jewish sovereignty and survival than it is by Christian destruction.
British Salafi "Abu Mounisa": We Should Attack David Cameron, Attack the Law and Order, and Make the Entire System Bow Down to Allah
What is being taught in British mosques, from MEMRI:
Abu Mounisa: "When we talk about da'wa [call for Islam], don't ever think, my brothers and sisters, that our da'wa is only to address a few people on the streets, and call them to Islam. Our da'wa should be the da'wa that attacks their system, and we replace it with Islam. That's what we need to do, my dear brothers, we need to call the whole of society to Islam. We're not just calling one sister or one brother to follow the religion of Allah. We want the whole society to bow down to Allah. We don't want only one sister to wear the khimar [veil] and jilbab [cloak]. We want the whole society to wear the khimar and jilbab. We don't want only our brothers and sisters to make sujud [bow down] to Allah. We want the whole society to make sujud to Allah. This is the da'wa of the Prophet Muhammad. This is our da'wa, my dear brothers and sisters."
"If you carry your da'wa stall, and you stand there, just inviting people to Islam, like [cleric] Zakir Naik [does], do you think that is going to change society? Without attacking the law and order? No, my dear brothers, there is no way it is going to change society. It's impossible that society will change.You need to provoke society for society to be changed.
"Also, my dear brothers, what we need to understand is that when the Prophet Muhammad was inside Mecca, there were 360 idols in Mecca at that time.Today, people don't worship physical idols. Today, people worship the ideas of democracy, freedom, and capitalism. This is what the people are worshipping today. The woman says: I am free to have an abortion. The man says: I am free to go for sexual promiscuity. Do you see what I mean? This is the reality of today.
"Who allows that freedom? Who allows that democracy? Who allows these false gods to exist? The government, the law and order, they are the ones that allow it. When the [people] said to the Prophet Muhammad: Why don't you add your god amongst our gods? Just one more, just add it in. He said: No way!"
"He said: Do you think I am going to mix my God with your gods? I'm never mixing my God with your gods. It's impossible for me to mix my gods [sic] with your gods, and I would never do so. I believe Allah is self-sufficient. He doesn't need your gods. I have come to destroy your gods. When Allah gave the Prophet Muhammad victory inside Mecca, he went to the Kaaba and destroyed all 360 gods inside it. But do you know what? He never stopped there. Do you know what he did? He went to the areas of [the idols] Lat, Uzzat, and Manat... He went inside these areas, and he asked the people: Where is Uzzat, where is Manat? He went and destroyed them, killed them, chopped their heads off, beheaded them. That is why, my dear brothers, we need to behead democracy from its roots.
"We need to behead capitalism from its roots, take it, kill it from its roots. That is what we need to do. We should hate it so much, my dear brothers, that every day, we should attack their system. Every day. Just like the Prophet Muhammad did."
"This is how we should feel. This is how we should believe. We should have the zeal in our hearts, for the sake of Allah, to destroy all their system and replace it with Islam."
"Who allows alcohol in the first place? The law and order. So we need to address the law and order. We need to attack the law and order. A man during the time of the Prophet Muhammad... Sorry, I apologize. One time, Omar Ibn Al-Khattab saw some woman, and she was dressed inappropriately. What Muhammad did... No, I'm sorry what Omar Ibn Al-khattab did... He went up to her, and he hit her. He hit her. He said to her: "How dare you walk in the streets of Al-Madina, which belong to the Prophet Muhammad, dressed the way you are dressed?" She turned around and said to him: "Who the hell are you to tell me to dress like this?!" Do you know what he said? "I am the Emir of the Believers." But today, we can't go around slapping every woman in the street. We cannot do that. It is not allowed for us to do that.
"So what we need to do is to address the munkar [evil]. We need to turn around and attack society. By removing the roots of the problem, you remove the issue. But if you just deal with the branches, grab a couple of branches here, a couple of branches there, it's not going to solve the problem. It would never solve the problem. We need to attack the root of the problem, which is the man-made law, the man-made system, which we live under today. Do you understand, brothers? That is what we need to do.
"We cannot just sit down until our brothers say: Brother, what you are doing is forbidden. Sister, your scarf is completely forbidden, a big hump on the head. You can't do it like this. What you need to is tell the sister that her hump is wrong. You need to tell the brother he is wrong. Plus you need to command good and forbid evil, and make the society bow down to Allah.
"That is what we need to do, my dear brothers. We need to attack the leaders. We need to turn around and attack, what's it? Daoud Kamroon... Cameron. He calls him Daoud Kamroon. We need to attack him. We need to say: Your laws are oppressive. We need to deal with those laws, and replace them with Islam. "Whoever rejects the Taghout and believes in Allah..." So we would destroy his system and replace it with Islam. That is what we need to do."
Listen to 1330amWEBY Middle East Roundtable Discussion on the Sunni Shia War in Syria
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. Our guests will be Dr. Jonathan Schanzer, Vice President for Research of the Washington, DC – based Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (FDD) and Shoshana Bryen, Senior Director of the Jewish Policy Center in Washington.
The WEBY program will air today during the 5 to 6:00PM CST (6:00 to 7:00PM EST) segment. You may listen live here.
Among the topics to be discussed:
1. Why the Syrian conflict is a stalemate pitting Iran Backed Shia versus Sunni Supremacists backed by Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia
2. Why Israel is preparing for a possible war in the North unlike its brief engagements with Hamas in Gaza.
3. Why the Obama Administration is not committed to stopping a major humanitarian crisis in the Syrian conflict with more than 80,000 dead and over a million refugees in Turkey and Jordan.
4. Why the Iran Revolutionary Guards and Hezbollah fighters are engaged in the effort to create an Alawite stronghold to facilitate continued arms supplies?
5. What is behind the Russian direct assistance to the Assad regime with deliveries of advanced anti-air and shore to ship missiles, as well as sending a flotilla to protect the ports at Tartus and Latakia?
6. How the US is not involved with the formation of the UN sponsored Syria conference that Russia and China have backed Iran as a participant?
7. That two candidates in The June Iranian Presidential have outstanding Interpol arrest warrants for their involvement in the 1994 AMIA Jewish Center bombing in Buenos Aires.
8. The new sanctions passed b y the House Foreign affairs Committee that may cut Iran oil exports and stop Turkey gold trade and purchase of Iranian Oil.
9. How Turkey’s PM Erdogan a NATO member is leading the Sunni Supremacist initiative in the Middle East defying Obama’s agenda with direct aid to terrorist groups and militia in Syria and Hamas visits shortly.
10. How Jordan is besieged with refugees from the Syria conflict and internal conflicts and protests with the Muslim Brotherhood seeking to overthrow King Abdullah that may put the Israeli Peace treaty in jeopardy?
11. How Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood - led government is tottering on the brink of failure and the secular and Salafist opposition may have an opening with upcoming parliamentary elections?
12. The futility of US efforts to bring the Israelis and the Palestinian to the table for peace discussions against the rising autocracy of PA President, Mahmoud Abbas who has ejected US moderates from the PA government.
13. How the NYPD Counterterrorism program with Israeli security assistance was able to net 16 Palestinians engaged a massive cigarette smuggling scam skimming illegal profits that may have been funneled to terrorist group Hamas.
An article based on today’s 1330AMWEBY international round table discussion will appear in the June edition of the New English Review.
Here's the clear statement, from this convert, this self-infected victim of Adult-Onset Islam who like all converts takes his Islam undiluted (by nuance, by custom, by indifference, by deliberate avoidance -- all of which are at least available, to one degree or another, to those born into Islam), as to why he did what he did:
"The only reason we have killed this man today is because Muslims are dying daily by British soldiers. And this British soldier is one. It is an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. By Allah, we swear by the almighty Allah we will never stop fighting you until you leave us alone. So what if we want to live by the Shari'a in Muslim lands? Why does that mean you must follow us and chase us and call us extremists and kill us? Rather you lot are extreme. You are the ones that when you drop a bomb you think it hits one person? Or rather your bomb wipes out a whole family? This is the reality. By Allah if I saw your mother today with a buggy I would help her up the stairs. This is my nature. But we are forced by the Qur'an, in Sura At-Tawba, through many ayah in the Qu'ran, we must fight them as they fight us. An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. I apologise that women had to witness this today but in our lands women have to see the same. You people will never be safe. Remove your governments, they don’t care about you. You think David Cameron is going to get caught in the street when we start busting our guns? You think politicians are going to die? No, it’s going to be the average guy, like you and your children. So get rid of them. Tell them to bring our troops back so can all live in peace. So leave our lands [Dar al-Islam] and we can all live in peace. That’s all I have to say. [in Arabic:] Allah’s peace and blessings be upon you."
Somerset Maugham, the great doctor-author, once said that he would rather read a railway timetable than nothing at all, and I am of that ilk. One of the few lessons that life has taught me is never to go anywhere without a book, for then delay cannot irritate, and indeed (if it is a good book) can delight. A life of frustration is thereby transformed into a life of pleasure.
But no one ever keeps entirely to his principles, and recently I found myself walking in a provincial city without a book. Worse still, I had no notebook with me when suddenly I was struck by an idea for an article. My memory not being what it once was (or what I think it once was), I felt the need to write down my idea at once. I went into a stationer’s and bought an exercise book.
In my childhood such books had on their covers information about how many drachmas made a grain and how many rods and poles made a perch (or was it the other way round?). But now that we have the metric system – so dull by comparison – to blunt our brains, we need different information, a different stimulus, from the covers of our exercise books. The one I bought taught ‘Active reading and listening skills for your studies, work and life.’ There was enough in it to read and keep me occupied if the bus came late; by thus purchasing it, I had killed two birds with one stone. Not bad for £2.99!
One learns a lot from casually-encountered sources, I find. For example, ‘Active reading’ involves, among other things, understanding what is written; one’s notes should always be appropriate. But now that so much of doctors’ time is taken up by meetings, it was the section on ‘Active listening’ that I found most illuminating.
When you are at a committee meeting and some boring fool is droning on, proposing something absurd because some bigger boring fool higher up the ladder has told him to propose it, ‘smile and use other facial expressions’ (not grimaces, of course), and ‘nod occasionally’ (but not from sleep). You ‘should encourage the speaker to continue with small verbal comments such as “Yes” and “uh-uh,”’ and you should ‘Note your posture and make sure it’s open and inviting.’
In the world of active listening skills, there is no one who is ill-intentioned or needs no encouragement to continue speaking. That is why you must remember that ‘Active listening is a model for respect and understanding.’ At no time must you ever be distracted by the thought that the speaker is a time-serving apparatchik who would sell his mother for a team-building away-day (with or without a vegetarian option for lunch), let alone promotion to the post of Director of Co-ordination. ‘Responding appropriately’ is one of the five keys to ‘Active listening’ and never includes anything as vigorous as disagreement, let alone scorn: for appropriate is now as weaselly a word as ‘valid,’ as (for example) in ‘My opinion is as valid as yours.’
Am I imagining it, or are we living in a world of increasingly inescapable exhortatory platitude, from which an awareness of the tragic dimension of life has been expunged by ‘active reading and listening skills’? If you doubt it, I can only advise the following, with regard to this article:
Once you have read appropriate sections, run through the key information in your mind several times. Isolate the core facts or essential processes…
Exclusive: Woolwich attacker named 'Mujahid' was known to banned Islamist organisation Al Muhajiroun
One of the two men involved in the Woolwich terror attack was known to a banned Islamist organisation and went by the name of Mujahid, The Independent has learned. Anjem Choudary, the former leader of the group, Al Muhajiroun, confirmed that he had known the man who was seen on video in the immediate aftermath of yesterday's horrific killing waving a cleaver with bloodied hands and making political statements.
Mr Choudary said Mujahid, who he said had converted to Islam in 2003 and was a British-born Nigerian, had stopped attending meetings of Al Muhajiroun and its successor organisations two years ago. The former solicitor said he had also known "Mujahid" as Michael.
He told The Independent: “I knew him as Mujahid. He attended our meetings and my lectures. I wouldn’t describe him as a member [of Al Muhajiroun]. There were lots of people who came to our activities who weren’t necessarily members.
“He was a pleasant, quiet guy. He reverted to Islam in about 2003. He was just a completely normal guy. He was interested in Islam, in memorising the Koran. He disappeared about two years ago. I don’t know what influences he has been under since then.”
Mr Choudary said: “My position is clear. There is a covenant which says that in return for Muslims being allowed to live peacefully and practice their faith in Britain, then it is forbidden to attack the British authorities, soldiers, in the UK. When people go abroad then the inhabitants of those countries have a right to defend themselves. The biggest aggravating factor we have today is British foreign policy.”
He denied that Mujahid could have been radicalised by his teachings, adding that more extremist material, including the sermons of Yemen-based cleric Anwar Al Awlaki and the Al Qaeda-linked magazine Inspire, have been easily available via the internet.
“Mujahid left us two years ago. There is plenty of material out there that does not observe the covenant we do that there can be no attacks in Europe. There is Al Awlaki and Inspire. I do not know what sort of material Mujahid could have seen.”
Elsewhere it is reported that was claimed that one of the attackers was stopped last year from travelling or was arrested on his way to join the terror group al-Shabaab to fight in Somalia.
Police said a property in Lincolnshire has been searched in connection with the murder. From This is Lincolnshire
Police have raided the former Lincolnshire home of Woolwich murderer Michael Adebolajo, believed to be in Saxilby near Lincoln. The house in a Lincolnshire village is believed to belong to his dad, nurse Anthony Adebolajo, 56. Neighbours said the same family had lived in the house for about a decade
Michael Adebolajo was listed as being resident in 2004, shortly after the family moved in.
A Lincolnshire Police spokesperson said: “Lincolnshire Police can confirm that the Metropolitan Police executed a search warrant under Police and Criminal Evidence act PACE at an address in Lincolnshire. This is in connection with the ongoing investigation into the murder of a man in Woolwich. The Metropolitan Police are not prepared to discuss the matter further at this stage.”
The Woolwich killers are of Nigerian background and the man seen ranting on video immediately after the soldier's murder is believed to be Michael Adebolajo.
Wednesday night saw more burning cars, smashed windows, and stone throwing at police in at least 15 suburbs around Stockholm, as the fourth night of riots swept the Swedish capital.
The unrest began shortly after 10pm in Husby, northwestern Stockholm where the riots began on Sunday night. Youths gathered in the town square, some of them masked.
Hagsätra in southern Stockholm came under fire at roughly the same time. A police patrol was attacked, and one officer was taken to hospital with serious injuries to the head.
By 2am, Stockholm's fire service had attended 75-80 incidents across the city. Much of their work was delayed by youths throwing stones at them, meaning police were left to attend to the stone-throwers to allow the fire fighters access to the fires.
A restaurant went up in flames in Skogås, southern Stockholm. Police labelled the crime as aggravated arson. In Rågsved, a police station was set on fire.