Police in Peru have arrested a number of people on suspicion of murder. It is feared that the victims were sought for their body-fat, which was then sold for as much as £9,000 per litre to Western cosmetics companies.
Archive for November, 2009
THIS IS A GUEST POST BY DHAIBHIDH C MHAC DHUIHDHLHEIGH OF THE LENINIST VANGUARD (DRUMNADROCHIT CHAPTER).
I am truly, truly, truly disturbed. I wrote before about the shameful attempts to smear me, our Brothers Osama Saeed and Azad Ali and the forces of good hegemony over our past statements concerning Anwar al-Awlaki, and his tour-guide business to Somalia.
I cannot stress enough that I refute any allegations that these past statements reflect a desire to see American troops being killed in America. I am now disgusted to see similar allegations being made against the truly inspiring East London Mosque and London Muslim Centre. The Khatib, or primary iman of this place of worship and community outreach is Shaykh Abdul Qayyum, a man of peace, who has also been the target of neo-con smear-attempts for his support for the Palestinian people.
In an article, the notoriously right-wing The Times stated:
This year a video lecture by Mr Awlaki was delivered at the East London mosque under the banner “The End of Time” with a poster depicting New York in flames. The mosque said that an outside group had used its facilities for the event.
It is truly disengenuous to attempt to link promotion literature for this eschatological discussion to a support for terrorism. Look, for instance, at the promotion literature for the upcoming blockbuster, 2012. Why is this not being condemned?
Obviously, our Brothers at the mosque were most disturbed, and wrote immediately a letter of clarification to The Times, which was not published. They wrote a second letter, which The Times has seen fit to publish:
Sir, Contrary to reports in The Times (Nov 12), Anwar Al-Awlaki did not give a lecture via video link at an event held at the East London Mosque on January 1, 2009.
The article implied that the event was organised by the East London Mosque. The event titled the “End of Time” was a private ticketed event, organised by an external company called Noor Pro Media, which hired the London Muslim Centre (LMC).
The East London Mosque hires its facilities (LMC) to all members of the community, Muslim or non, with the proviso that nothing unlawful takes place. The centre has a robust hiring policy to ensure this, and as far as we are aware, nothing illegal and/or extreme took place at this event.
We unequivocally condemn the actions of Major Hasan, and the reported statement of Anwar Al-Awlaki expressing support for him.
Assistant Executive Director
East London Mosque and London Muslim Centre
I think this is reasonable. I am unsure why the ELM did not heed warnings prior to the event from The Telegraph or leader of the opposition at Tower Hamlets, Cllr Peter Golds, as reported by The East London Advertiser but this matter should now be put to rest and wounds allowed to heal.
One of the most disreputable arguments for an academic boycott of Israel came from Tom Hickey, a philosophy lecturer at Brighton University who said in the well-known political publication, the British Medical Journal:
In the case of Israel, we are speaking about a society whose dominant self image is one of a bastion of civilisation in a sea of medieval reaction. And we are speaking of a culture, both in Israel and in the long history of the Jewish diaspora, in which education and scholarship are held in high regard. That is why an academic boycott might have a desirable political effect in Israel, an effect that might not be expected elsewhere.
Even if this were true, and the achievements of the likes Aaron Ciechanover and Avram Hershko, or Ada Yonath were front page news in Entitean newspapers (hint, they were not), how obscene would it be for anyone claiming to represent the unifying force of academia and scientific thought to ostracize a society in which such brainboxes are uniformly praised?
Yet, apart from senior and genuinely brilliant academics such as Professors Stephen Rose or Terry Eagleton, many of the pro-boycotters – not least, Hickey – are minor lecturers or higher education staff whose ‘political activism’ is pursued due a lack of professional responsibilities. I assume Israeli institutions are seen as a soft-target because of their real or perceived lack of co-operation with British institutions: true moral consistency would surely involve a similar call for boycotts of American institutions, and definitely those with ties to the US Government and/or military, but this would likely result in a rapid response from university Senates at such a threat to their academic relations.
In my experience, people involved with academic life for the love of knowledge and learning may have disagreements with the policies of named countries, but never have been so perverse to boycott their institutions such as those in Serbia at the height of the Balkan wars.
The latest wheeze from professional political agitators in Norway, appealing to their status as the indulged children of state-education, has been to pursue an academic boycott of Israeli institutions and individuals deemned to move in the wrong circles.
They reckoned without, however, the likes of Professor Bjørn Alsberg of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and the tendancy of the Board of Trustees NTNU to reject outright vanity projects which single out only one country for especial oppobrium.
THIS IS A GUEST POST BY DHAIBHIDH C MHAC DHUIHDHLHEIGH OF THE LENINIST VANGUARD (DRUMNADROCHIT CHAPTER).
I normally am pleased to address you all, but I am sure you will appreciate why I do so with such a heavy heart today. I was truly saddened to hear of the shameful events surrounding the slaying of 13 American soldiers at Fort Hood, Texas. The eagerness which the international and Islamophobic media showed in naming Major Nidal Malik Hasan who surely deserves to be considered innocent until proven guilty was truly disturbing.
We must, of course, all stand against such acts of terrorism, wherever they may occur. For that reason, I was truly saddened to read an apologia for the slayings by a man whom I had once considered to preach nothing but peace.
I have previously been truly inspired by the words of US-born cleric, Anwar al-Awlaki but feel cheating by his recent thoughts on the Fort Hood slayings, which he called the actions of a hero.
I cannot stress how much I disagree with these words, and consider it truly disingenuous to attempt to smear me and my comrades in the struggle against Imperialism, hegemony and Islamophobia as the notorious neo-con Centre for Social Cohesion has done. Equally shamefully, the right-wing The Times has picked-up this and accused our Brothers, Osama Saeed and Azad Ali of praising the viper, al-Awlaki.
Brother Azad’s is a truly inspiring civil servant whose advice on incitement of racial and religious hatred is sought by the Crown Prosecution Service, and before being named in the national media, had described al-Awlaki as:
”one of my favourite speakers and scholars” and “I really do love him for the sake of Allah, he has an uncanny way of explaining things to people which is endearing”.
As if the shameful forced repayment of much needed set-up money was not demeaning enough, Brother Osama is right to feel offended, and has said:
I completely disagree with what he has said about Fort Hood, and a host of other matters which he has more recently written and spoken about.”
Like any normal human being with a scintilla of compassion and sense of justice, I believe it is essential to settle to sore in humanity which is the settler state of Israel and establish a bi-national haven of peace, but words such as these are not helpful:
The illegal state of Israel needs to be eradicated. Just like Rasulullah drove them out of the Arabian peninsula the Jews of Palestine need to be driven out to the sea. There are no Israeli civilians unless they are Muslim. When the enemy targets our women and children we should target theirs.
Engagement with the democratic process is essential for any revolutionary socialist, and I cannot agree with al-Awlaki’s words on the truly disturbing situation in Somalia:
“[Al-Shabaah] not only have succeeded in expanding the areas that fall under their rule but they have succeeded in implementing the sharia and giving us a living example of how we as Muslims should proceed to change our situation.The ballot has failed us the bullet has not.
Had I known that al-Awlaki’s 44 Ways to Support Jihad would be made public, I never would have offered him support.
I am led to believe that this political activism is like a computer game, so I would like now to press the reset button.
Nadine Dorries MP recently was awarded an undisclosed sum in damages from former Downing Street special advisor, Damian McBride, for his role in planning potential smears against her (and other political opponents).
“It was important for me that he admitted guilt. I have lived with the worry that people would think there was no smoke without fire. It was vitally important for me to clear my name. What he paid really was not the issue. It is important people know what a cesspit No 10 has turned into.”
She wrote on the Twitter social networking website yesterday: “The first hurdle in clearing my name down. Two to go.”
These two refer to McBride’s alleged co-conspirator, Derek Draper and Downing Street itself which Dorries has described as being mired in a “cess-pit culture”.
I agree entirely with that, not least with McBride’s description of Gordon Brown as descending into an apoplexy of fury when informed. Quite repellently there was a suggestion that George Osbourne’s wife be publically humiliated, and even the suggestion of mental instability in the Cameron family related to the death of their seven year old son, Ivan.
Funnily, though, I have difficulty accepting such outrage from Dorries. Following a grossly ill-advised blog-posting by Recess Monkey (aka Alex Hilton) concerning the Facebook profile of Dorries’ elder daughter, Dorries responded with none too subtle suggestions that Hilton may have been taking an inappropriate interest in her pre 16 year old daughter.
In October 2007, she was on of two members of a House of Commons Science and Technology Committee who disagreed with its suggestion for the removal of the need for the consent of two doctors before an abortion could take place. Science journalist, Ben Goldacre wrote an article pointing out the flaws in various claims made to the committee, not least by Professor John Wyatt, member of the Christian Medical Fellowship.
On her personal blog, Dorries accused Goldacre of breach of parliamentary procedure:
We were greatly concerned to read in the Guardian on 27 October an article clearly aimed at undermining the credibility of Professor John Wyatt, which contained detailed information about Wyatt’s evidence, which was passed by him to the committee after his oral evidence session, and which could only have been passed on to the journalist concerned by a member of the Select Committee. There should be an enquiry about how this information got into the public domain and as to whether such a personal attack represents a serious breach of parliamentary procedure.
Prompt responses from Goldacre’s supporters that all the information he discussed was in the public domain were not approved in Dorries’ blog, which went on to state that it would no longer publish any comments.
Back to her settlement with McBride, maybe whatever money she received will come in useful if Labour MP, Jim Devine pursues a case against her for suggesting he had discussed with her sexually revealing details of a dream.
The SNP PPC for Glasgow Central, Osama Saeed wrote in 2006 of Yemen-born US citizen, Anwar Al-Awlaki:
Imam Anwar Al-Awlaki was originally hounded in the US becuase two of the 9/11 bombers happened to pray at his mosque. Many of my Muslim readers will either know him personally or have heard his lectures. He preached nothing but peace, and I pray he will be able to do so again.
Perhaps al-Awlaki should have stuck to ministering to fallen women, as he has endured striking bad luck in his congregants at Dar al-Hijrah mosque in Great Falls, Virginia, where he was Grand Imam: for another was Major Nidal Malik Hasan, the only suspect in the Fort Hood shootings.
Al-awlaki wrote on his website:
Nidal Hassan is a hero.
He is a man of conscience who could not bear living the contradiction of being a Muslim and serving in an army that is fighting against his own people. This is a contradiction that many Muslims brush aside and just pretend that it doesn’t exist. Any decent Muslim cannot live, understanding properly his duties towards his Creator and his fellow Muslims, and yet serve as a US soldier. The US is leading the war against terrorism which in reality is a war against Islam. Its army is directly invading two Muslim countries and indirectly occupying the rest through its stooges.
Nidal opened fire on soldiers who were on their way to be deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. How can there be any dispute about the virtue of what he has done? In fact the only way a Muslim could Islamically justify serving as a soldier in the US army is if his intention is to follow the footsteps of men like Nidal.
The heroic act of brother Nidal also shows the dilemma of the Muslim American community. Increasingly they are being cornered into taking stances that would either make them betray Islam or betray their nation. Many amongst them are choosing the former. The Muslim organizations in America came out in a pitiful chorus condemning Nidal’s operation.
The fact that fighting against the US army is an Islamic duty today cannot be disputed. No scholar with a grain of Islamic knowledge can defy the clear cut proofs that Muslims today have the right -rather the duty- to fight against American tyranny. Nidal has killed soldiers who were about to be deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan in order to kill Muslims. The American Muslims who condemned his actions have committed treason against the Muslim Ummah and have fallen into hypocrisy.
Allah(swt) says: Give tidings to the hypocrites that there is for them a painful punishment –
Those who take disbelievers as allies instead of the believers. Do they seek with them honor [through power]? But indeed, honor belongs to Allah entirely. (al-Nisa 136-137)
The inconsistency of being a Muslim today and living in America and the West in general reveals the wisdom behind the opinions that call for migration from the West. It is becoming more and more difficult to hold on to Islam in an environment that is becoming more hostile towards Muslims.
May Allah grant our brother Nidal patience, perseverance and steadfastness and we ask Allah to accept from him his great heroic act.
Funnily, shortly after a number of US service personnel started posting on al-Awlaki’s website, it appears to have stopped responding.
HAT TIP – Harry’s Place.
The keffiyeh or Arab head-dress has been a must-wear symbol of chic. Originally a sartorial compromise against the desert sand and winds, it was popularized by being worn by the tea-leaf in chief, Yasser Arafat; and commericial production started by Palestinian Arab entrepeneur, Yasser Hirbawi in 1961.
As that link shows, demand amongst the politically conscious Western activists grew so much that Hirbawi and other producers in the dilapidated Middle Eastern economy could not rise to the challenge; and sales slowly passed to Chinese factories. Shortly after this article was written, Hirbawi’s factory closed and domestic production ceased.
All has not been lost, however, for traditional Palestinian Arab weavers seeking to export their wares. Haaretz reports on the village of Deir Abu Meshal in which women have, for 40 years, been producing yarmulkes or Jewish skullcaps.
Almost every house in the village of 3,000 west of Ramallah makes the little caps. It’s a social event as well as a helpful cash-earner. Women bring their wool and needles to each other’s home to crochet and chat.
“We make qors (the Arab name for kippah translates as ‘disc’) while having a gossip,” said Umm Ali. “We meet each other and we make money at the same time,” added the mother of three, whose husband is unemployed.
The women make around five caps a day, worth about 12 shekels each.
“Women here can’t sit down without knitting. We’ve gotten used to it,” jokes Ruqaya Barghouthi.
Six Palestinian skullcap dealers distribute the wool, needles and the models to women in this village and 10 neighboring villages.
Although I understand yarmulkes in Israel are more likely to be either weaved by family friends or imported from Romania, the womenfolk of Deir Abu Meshal have a supplemented their income generously with exports to the Israel, the USA and elsewhere.
A state-funded political protest group which launched a foreign tourism campaign with images of tartan and shortbread tins has launched an official complaint with Germany’s advertizing association because of the use of the term Schotten Preise (Scot’s Price) for bargain basement.
It believes the long-established marketing technique is offensive and promotes an unfair racial stereotype of Scots people as mean.
Angus Robertson, the SNP’s group leader at Westminster, is to write to officials in Germany seeking an end to the use of the phrase, which has promoted products ranging from fast food to air fares. Robertson, the son of a German, said it was unacceptable to portray Scots in such a pejorative way, which he believes could harm the country’s reputation.
Many discount stores in Germany begin with the prefix “Mac”. Geizkragen, one of the country’s most popular price-comparison websites, depicts a Scot wearing a kilt and tartan hat chasing coins and advising Germans how to save money.
Travel agents regularly advertise “Scottish prices” for bargains and last year the ADAC, a German motoring club, sent an e-mail to 15 million customers featuring a kilt-wearing Scot, with the caption: “It doesn’t have to be this way.”
There is putting the angry brigade in charge of Scottish politics, ands there is being unforgivably dim. Like most of Scotland, these grievance-merchants are a disgrace to Scotland.
Robertson went on to say:
“You wouldn’t do it with orthodox Jews, so why do it with Scots?
Oh, good, Jews have been brought into the discussion. Presumably, Robertson would have less objection to Liberal or Reform Jews being so portrayed.
The constant association of our country and people with meanness and cheapness is beginning to hit at the borders of defamation and insult.”
Cannot say I have noticed. Formal positions such as this, however, do a lot to present Scotland as a nation of humourless prigs. And, by their own standards, hypocritical prigs.
At the SNP annual
hate fest party conference, John Swinney, cabinet secretary for finance and sustainable development, said:
At the UK party conferences over the last few weeks, there has been a Dutch auction about public spending cuts and the effect on public services.
Well, considering that the PPC for Glasgow North East, David Kerr was either arrogant/stupid/naive enough to contradict his place-of-birth on separate campaign leaflets, this open contradiction is not that surprising.
Scotland, wha’ like us? None, thank fuck.
(Crossposted at Harry’s Place, with real Nazis and Strasserites in the comments-box!)
David Lucas was the fifth BNP list member for East of England during the Euro 2009 elections. Also a farmer in Suffolk, he appears to have made a better stab at it than his party boss, over by Welshpool, but I do not know if he has taken advantage of EU farming subsidies.
This direct descendent of peat-bog man has no doubt shared his party’s antipathy to the EU since been barred in 2006 from supplying gallows and other execution paraphernalia to foreign states, for as much as £100,000. He had boasted that his examples of English workmanship could dispatch as many as five people at once, and advocated the death penalty for terrorism-related offences.
This is not unheard of behaviour for BNP supporters.