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JDN
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« Reply #250 on: November 21, 2008, 03:52:56 PM »

Actually, my original post was in response to yours; the issue/point I made is that Sharia court aka voluntary arbitration is just that; VOLUNTARY
therefore it is fair for everyone.  It was a legal point - I did not nor did your article if I recollect discuss the issue or "reality" of it's being voluntary.

That being said, domestic violence (gender thread?) is a real problem.  It never ceases to amaze me that often even after severe domestic violence happens,
the aggrieved party often returns to the relationship.  How do you stop domestic violence?  I don't know, but perhaps through education, quick police work..... it is not easy.

Nonetheless, the aggrieved party does have the choice to leave.  If they are "forbidden" or stopped by their spouse or family, at least in England and in America, the police and the courts
will quickly intercede granting a restraining order if necessary.  If not obeyed, the offending party can and will be arrested.  I grant that culture, tradition, etc.
are important, but since the aggrieved party (domestic violence is not gender based) does have recourse and can voluntarily refuse arbitration or request police/court assistance if necessary.
And if the offending party continues their illegal action an arrest will quickly be made.  My point is that the aggrieved party has "free" choice; it is up to them to exercise it.  By so doing,
they may alienate their friends and family, but still they have voluntary choice.  It is up to them to choose whether to exercise their rights or not.  And the law will protect their choice.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #251 on: November 21, 2008, 04:28:11 PM »

FWIW IMHO your logic is as correct as it is naive.
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G M
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« Reply #252 on: November 21, 2008, 06:26:19 PM »

http://www.centerforinquiry.net/isis/islamic_viewpoints/girls_nightmare_in_muslim_families_forced_marriages_in_europe/

Girls’ Nightmare in Muslim Families: Forced Marriages in Europe

By Azam Kamguian

Every year, many thousands of young girls, living in Muslim inhabited communities in European countries face forced marriages. In Muslim immigrant families, often from the Middle East, North Africa and Turkey, teenage girls are struggling against the pressure of tribal culture and Islamic customs imposed on them by their parents; and forced marriage is often their fate.

A women group against sexual mutilation of women, formed in 1980s in France, estimates that more than 30,000 young girls have been involved in forced marriage since 1990. In Britain, south Asian women groups have records of numerous cases of young girls who have been forced to marry by their parents.

This nightmare started in 1990s, when young girls from Muslim immigrant families in Europe reached their early teenage years and were considered mature and marriageable by their parents. Teenage girls from Turkish immigrant families are especially under intense pressure. According to statistics provided by women groups in France and Britain, in 1990s, 43% of girls from Turkish families, and 36% of girls from South Asian families in Britain, have been involved in forced marriages.

Forced marriage is a taboo, untouchable, and is performed secretly. The secret is revealed when the girl suddenly behaves strangely, gets isolated and is not doing well at school. She often breaks the silence and talks about her painful ordeal with a friend or some teacher at school. In this way, she unveils the bitter reality that is awaiting her. Once the forced marriage becomes known outside the family, the real fight starts. Zahia Hasan, chair of a women association; "Women's Voice" in France, and a victim of forced marriages says: " it is a painful experience, it was a nightmare for me for many years. I was deeply ashamed, I lied about my life and hid my misery"

Girls, who reveal the terrible secret outside family, often clash with their parents and leave home. They even feel ashamed and guilty of revealing the secret and having betrayed their families and relatives. Many young girls under a heavy family and community pressure undergo forced marriage because they don't want to lose their families and relatives. Forced marriage is their inevitable fate, because there is no government or social support network to protect their rights. Forced marriages are practiced in France, Britain, Scandinavian countries and among Turkish community in Germany.

Early marriage is another aspect of forced marriages. Girls, 15 or younger, undergo forced marriages, are considered as part - times wives, continue to live with their parents and go to school, living with their dark and heavy secret.

In most cases, these marriages end to divorce; according to statistics; two out of three. Rape, teenage pregnancy, disrupted education; nervous breakdown, neurological disorders and suicide are all fruits of forced marriages for young girls. But, their families insist that their act is decent and good for the girls. They defend it by referring to Islam and Islamic Law; according to which, a girl cannot marry without the consent of her father, and in the absence of her father, that of her paternal grandfather. These families, not only haven't been affected by advanced and modern culture in Europe, but also are out of tune with the current situation in their countries of origin, where social and cultural norms and values have moved forward. By marrying their young girls in this way, Muslim parents try to block the integration of their daughters into a modern and European life style. As a result, parents deprive their own children of enjoying the civil rights and individual freedom entitled to them. They harm their children physically, emotionally and psychologically.

Under French law, a forced marriage can be annulled if there has been lack of consent. But if the marriage ceremony is a customary one, the French courts cannot act. However, magistrates can intervene before a marriage takes place if an underage girl, who has broken with her family, is in physical danger.

Under the guise of respecting 'others' traditions and Islamic values, the legal system and authorities tend to overlook forced marriages. They say: "there are customs and religion, which are different from those, practiced here. It is not for us to judge these traditions and religion, unless the young girls are in physical danger and there should be proof for that."

Consider a young girl under legal age, undergoing the ordeal of a forced marriage, clashing with her family, without a legal help or a supporting social network, who must provide proof against her own parents in the court, in order to get rid of this nightmare. Isn't it inhumane and shameful? What is respectable in this misery imposed on these innocent young girls? What is respectable in destroying and wasting lives, hopes and dreams of these girls? And of course, both 'Western' and Eastern 'intellectuals', shamelessly, tell us that "to talk of forced marriages is an Euro - centric way of looking at things."

Young girls in Muslim inhabited communities in Europe are victims of tribal and Islamic values and traditions, as well as a racist treatment by government authorities, intellectuals and mainstream media. These girls are born and have grown up in European countries, and should be entitled to all rights and freedom like other European citizens. Forced marriages must be prohibited by law as rape; and mental and emotional damages to teenage girls.

Girls from Muslim families are not the belongings of their families; they should be treated as equal citizens. The governments and the legal system must protect them from the harm caused by their parents. Society is duty bound to help the victims of forced marriages to recover from the emotional, mental and physical damages they suffer.

azam_kamguian@yahoo.com
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JDN
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« Reply #253 on: November 23, 2008, 10:37:07 AM »

FWIW IMHO your logic is as correct as it is naive.

It nice to know that you concede that my logic is correct;   smiley   albeit in you opinion naive.   huh
Still, it's better than being wrong and acting like Don Quixote, running off and discussing numerous but irrelevant evils of Islam. 
This topic is about voluntary arbitration or as you said and seem to prefer "whether the reality of it (arbitration) is voluntary."

But naive?
I presume you are inferring that some Muslim women are "forced" to participate in "voluntary" arbitration
leaving them at a disadvantage and therefore although you concede my logic is impeccable, reality is different?

OK, what do you suggest?  We, England and America are bound by our legal system.  Frankly, overall I
think it is pretty good.  What should we do?  I mean in a Civil matter (divorce for example) if both parties (on the surface) agree to voluntary arbitration, what can the police do? 
Or what can the courts do?  One person needs to file a complaint and if after the fact, there must be proof of coercion. Otherwise the answer is the court
can will and will do nothing.  Nor frankly should it.  Or everyone would complain after an adverse arbitration ruling. 

I further contend that if a woman/man is strong enough to file a complaint for coercion (a criminal matter) than surely they are mentally
strong enough to simply state that they prefer English Law versus voluntary arbitration under Sharia Law.  And then they will have the full protection
of that country's law, i.e. restraining orders if coerced or threatened and the fair distribution of property. 
And if any illegal action is taken against them, or if the law is not followed, the perpetrator will be arrested.  That is fair.
But if both parties voluntarily choose voluntary arbitration; the court is tied.  A crime (i.e. coercion) must be committed before the state can intercede.

So back to my question, given that arbitration is a legal part of the court system, and given that both parties together are allowed to choose the arbitrator, how do
you solve the problem of the arbitrator being biassed or the process being unfair?  Remember, in many matters, the arbitrator is going to being biased.  You
cannot simply do away with arbitration or prohibit one group from being the arbitrator just because they are biased.  The Church of England is biased on many matters as
are many other arbitrators biased for their own reasons.

Frankly, while I am sympathetic, Muslim women in divorce, inheritance or other civil matters have a much better deal in England and the US than women in many other countries. 
They have a choice; Sharia Court (voluntary arbitration); fast and efficient or they can choose the State's Legal System which is usually gender fair, albeit slow and expensive.
Many "advanced" Asian countries for example including Japan's legal system in divorce matters do not usually give anywhere close to 50% of the assets to the woman. 
I think that this is one of the reasons divorce is so low in Japan - who can afford to leave?    Nor, as it regards other issues are women equal to men in many Asian countries. 
Latin America is another example; women and men are not equal.

Easy for me to say they are wrong, but then they too will say we are often wrong.  I guess each has their own problems and good points.





« Last Edit: November 23, 2008, 11:10:32 AM by JDN » Logged
Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #254 on: November 23, 2008, 01:45:45 PM »

Just in from a weekend of camping with my son and now I am quickly catching up around here.  Bypassing for now the substantive points raised, for the moment I ask for examples supporting this assertion:

"Latin America is another example; women and men are not equal."
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JDN
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« Reply #255 on: November 23, 2008, 10:50:39 PM »

Hope you enjoyed the weekend.

I will withdraw my comment about Latin America; I was making a broad generality and am not as knowledgeable about Mexico or further south as I am about Asia.
That being said, I sincerely like Mexico and the people.  I have been to various parts of Mexico maybe ten times, however in my personal experience, I do find it to be a male dominated society
in business, banking, law, government, religion and the home.  Perhaps I am wrong and women and men are equal in ALL aspects of Mexican society?
I will stand corrected if I am.

However, in my post Latin America (Mexico) was only a minor example, clearly not my main point or as you noted not even an issue of substance.

Rather, I look forward to your thoughts on a solution for a "fair" voluntary arbitration system within the confines of the law.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #256 on: November 24, 2008, 01:46:52 AM »

I am under the impression that the question presented concerns the legal system, not whether Latin society thinks men and women are different.

Will try to get to the big questions tomorrow, but no promises.
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JDN
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« Reply #257 on: November 24, 2008, 09:41:36 AM »

Yes, my primary question concerned the legal system; and how to prevent discrimination and subrogation of women.

My point indirectly is that even in countries (Japan for example) where the law does not specifically discriminate, in fact it does favor the man
and/or not protect the women in regards to many financial issues,, job promotion, and opportunities.  It is not a "fair" system like we have
here and in England.  Women suffer subrogation in many countries.

As a side note, I happened to be reading a biography of Edward Weston (photographer) last night.  I coincidentally came across his quote,
"God help me to some day return to a man's land, ---- Mexico or Japan or Somewhere...."

No demand for you "answer to the big questions" today or tomorrow; it's Thanksgiving Week a holiday and we need to remember we
all have a lot to be grateful for.

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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #258 on: December 16, 2008, 09:08:32 PM »

That right wing bastion, the BBC, weighs in on the application of Sharia law.

Some Imams 'biased against women'
By Sanjiv Buttoo
BBC Asian Network

A Muslim think tank has found some UK Imams discriminate against women when enforcing Islamic Sharia law.

Scholars at the Centre for Islamic Pluralism (CIP) interviewed 90 Muslims in London, the West Midlands, Lancashire and West Yorkshire.

They found some women did not get fair hearings in forced marriage, arranged marriage and domestic violence matters.

It comes after an NHS doctor was freed in Bangladesh following claims she was being held there for a forced marriage.

Sharia law governs every aspect of a Muslim's life, and Imams or scholars give out rulings on how to live by God's wishes. Some mosques hold Sharia courts.

The CIP's international director and its report's author Dr Irfan Al-Alawi said women seeking help in situations like forced marriages often turned to Imams for a ruling on what to do.

"Our research shows that domestic violence and forced marriages seem to be the dominant problems that women are facing and seeking Sharia rulings on.

"In every case it is a male who is the defendant coming from India, Pakistan or Bangladesh.

"Some ladies have approached the Imams and the Imams... have encouraged the ladies to stay with their husband or with their in-laws, whereby they have a duty bound under the Sharia."

He said he knew of a 15-year-old girl in Pakistan who was tricked into marriage over the telephone with a 40-year-old man from Sheffield, who had the mental age of a four-year-old child.

"The Home Office refused to recognise the validity of the marriage but the Islamic Sharia Council in Britain accepted it," said Dr Al-Alawi.

He said Imams should be working at the heart of their communities showing leadership, but some were failing to do so.

He accused some Imams of "cashing in" on the Sharia system.

On average it may cost someone £250 to go and get an Islamic divorce, he said.

"There are Pirs [Muslim holy men] and Imams who come here from south Asia and charge people for charms, holy water... how is this helping anyone?" he asked.

"They should be putting back something useful into society."

The spotlight has been on forced marriages in recent weeks, with the introduction of new laws designed to help victims, and a high-profile case in Bangladesh.

Lawyers for trainee NHS GP Humayra Abedin, 33, from east London, said her family planned to force her into marriage after she travelled to Dhaka.

She had travelled there as she thought her mother was ill, and then was held against her will for months, they said.

Ms Abedin is due to arrive back in the UK later, after London's High Court ordered her return under the new Forced Marriage Act and the High Court in Dhaka also ruled she must be freed.

Thirty-year-old Sophiya (not her real name) from West Yorkshire, was 13 when her father arranged her marriage to a distant cousin in Pakistan.

She said that after much resistance she was forced to marry a man she did not want to, but decided to go through with it so she could get back to the UK and put her case to a local Imam.

"I saw three Imams but they all ruled that I was legally married according to the Sharia. I told them I had been forced but they said that did not change anything."

Sophiya decided to try and please her parents and her new husband and carry on, but three years later she sought an Islamic divorce.

"I met some more Imams and said that we had been separated now for nearly two years but instead of giving me guidance with my divorce, they suggested I had to go for counselling or therapy.

"I told them I had been forced and this was not Islamic, but they disagreed."

A few months later Sophyia's husband wrote and gave her the Islamic divorce she longed for.

"I went through the proper Islamic way and these men told me to go away."

Sophiya said she wants the government to send Imams back to their countries of origin if they cannot uphold the true values of the Sharia.

'Grey area'

Ishtiaq Ahmed, is a spokesperson the Council for Mosques, a Bradford-based group which represents over 90 mosques and religious schools.

"We have in Britain... Muslims from all over the world, people are practising their own cultural, their social, kind of way of life.

"We have looked into this issue on many occasions and have found that for some Imams a grey area can form where the rulings of the Sharia finish and long-held cultural practices start.

"Imams do need more training and help; we also need lots more female scholars, ulemas, to work with our communities and try and help women."

"I feel Imams are not trying to deliberately discriminate against anyone we just have to be more open in how we pass judgements so everyone is happy and understands the process."

The report is due to be published next month and will be sent to the government and agencies.

It will recommend that Imams coming to the UK from south Asia and Africa need to be vetted to ensure they have a broad knowledge of Islam and a good command of English, so they can carry out their duties in a professional and competent way.

Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/uk_news/7783627.stm

Published: 2008/12/15 13:09:38 GMT
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G M
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« Reply #259 on: December 16, 2008, 09:56:50 PM »

Comment JDN?
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G M
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« Reply #260 on: January 08, 2009, 04:44:38 AM »

w w w . h a a r e t z . c o m

Last update - 14:34 07/01/2009
Report: Islamist site compiling list of U.K. Jews to target over Gaza op

By Haaretz Service

An Islamic extremist Web site is believed to be drawing up a list of prominent British Jews to target over Israel's offensive against Hamas in Gaza, The Sun reported on Wednesday.

According to the British newspaper, Amy Winehouse record producer Mark Ronson and Foreign Secretary David Miliband were among names discussed on the online forum Ummah.



The report came as a British Jewish watchdog group, the Community Security Trust, said there has been a rise in anti-Semitic incidents in Britain since the upsurge of hostilities in Gaza.

The British daily quoted the Ummah site as saying, "Saladin1970" asks for help compiling "a list of those who support Israel."

"Abuislam" asks: "Have we got a list of top Jews we can target? Can someone post names and addresses?"

Tony Blair's Middle East envoy and tennis partner Lord Levy, TV's The Apprentice boss Sir Alan Sugar and Princess Diana's divorce lawyer Anthony Julius were also reportedly among those mentioned on the site.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #261 on: January 15, 2009, 07:34:49 PM »

It is heartening to see some outrage at this shameful and cowardly act of dhimmitude.

==========================

http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,601122,00.html

OUTRAGE OVER DEMONSTRATION IN GERMANY
Police Remove Israeli Flag during Islamist Protest March
By Yassin Musharbash

Police in the western German city of Duisburg have admitted they removed flags a student had hung in his apartment in support of Israel during a pro-Palestinian protest march in the city. Officers broke down his door and removed the flags. The city's police chief has issued an apology, but outrage is spreading.

It's certainly not a new phenomenon in Germany for feathers to be ruffled every time bombs fall or rockets fly in the Middle East. It is unusual, though, for German police officials to use force to enter into an apartment and remove an Israeli flag from a bedroom because people protesting the Gaza Strip invasion on the street below are bothered by it.

But that's what happened this weekend in Duisburg in the western German state of North Rhine-Westphalia. Around 10,000 people had gathered on Saturday morning at the central station in the city, located in the Ruhr region, to protest against Israel's course of action in the Gaza Strip. The protest, organized by the Islamist group Milli Görüs, which, although legal, has been monitored for years by German domestic intelligence agencies in charge of observing potentially radical or fundamentalist groups.

After a short time, the protest passed along one of the city's main thoroughfares. At a house on the corner, protesters spotted two Israeli flags -- one hanging from a balcony and the second from the window of a bedroom inside the apartment. Twenty-five-year-old student Peter P.* and his 26-year-old girlfriend had mounted them there.

'Suddenly I Saw a Police Officer in my Bedroom'

It wasn't the first time, either. At the beginning of the year, P. flew the Israeli flag on the day commemorating the Holocaust. And in May, he flew the flag for several weeks because the state of Israel was celebrating its 60th birthday. For years, Hamas fired rockets at Israel, and few people took notice, P. told SPIEGEL ONLINE, explaining his reasons for flying the flag. This time around, he said, he did it to express "solidarity with the sole democracy in the region."

P. also knew that on that day people participating in the protest march against the Israeli offensive would go past his house. But he said he was also concerned about what he saw as the "greatest onslaught of anti-Semitism in Europe since 1945," namely marches against Israel's actions that included anti-Semitic hate campaigns that he claims are being tolerated in cities like Paris and London.


REPRINTS
 Find out how you can reprint this SPIEGEL ONLINE article in your publication. As the first protesters recognized the flag, P. and his girlfriend were standing on the street nearby. He said he followed the march because he wanted to document any incidents of anti-Semitism or hate campaigns. He described the sentiment that developed within the crowd as it viewed the Israeli flag as tantamount to that of a "lynch mob." "Death to Israel," some of the protestors shouted. He said the police appeared to be overburdened.

"Suddenly," the student explained, "I saw a police officer on the balcony on the second floor" in the apartment located directly beneath his. The officer ripped down the Israeli flag that had been affixed to P.'s balcony. A short time later he witnessed an officer inside his own apartment taking down the flag that had been hung in the bedroom.

A Hail of Icicles, Nail Clippers and a Pocket Knife

The police's moves caused loud cheering amongst the protesters -- a fact not only reported by the student, but also confirmed in videos of the event that have been widely circulated on YouTube. The incident first came to the attention of the media after journalists at the local blog "Die Ruhrbarone" reported on it. The objects reportedly thrown at the apartment included what appeared to be small chunks of ice, a folded up pocket knife, nail clippers and also what looked like a stone.



P. said he was "shocked" by the incident. Afraid to return to his apartment, he first went to a friend's place nearby. Around two hours later he returned with his girlfriend and an acquaintance -- but he claims youths were still throwing things at the house.

He said he didn't return to the apartment until they had left. A police car passed by and P. asked the officers to come to his apartment. The officers warned that P. and his girlfriend should stay away from the window and that police would watch the house for a few hours.

"I was beside myself," P. said, "I was afraid." Two hours passed without any incident. Then P.'s acquaintance, also in the apartment, went out to the balcony for a smoke and claims he was immediately cursed as a "shit jew".

Two minutes later, the police returned to P.'s door -- and for the second time they did something unexpected. They ordered the acquaintance to leave the apartment.

A Police Apology

The actions of Duisburg officials have since caused outrage -- sparking criticism from the Central Council of Jews in Germany. Rainer Wendt, the head of the German Police Union for the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, said: "It is intolerable that German Islamists be able to determine police actions." At the same time, he expressed understanding for what he described as a "difficult deployment situation" police officials in Duisburg had run up against. He said it appeared too few officers had been dispatched to the protest. Frank Richter of the Union of Police, another organization representing officers in the state, said the police mission should be explored and clarity brought to the incident.

Initially, Duisburg police defended their actions. In its Monday issue, the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper quoted a police spokesperson stating that the flags had been removed in order to de-escalate a potentially dangerous situation. German news agency DDP quoted the spokesperson on Tuesday saying "the right thing had been done here."

But by Tuesday afternoon, the city's chief of police, Rolf Cebin, expressed his apologies for the incident. "I deeply regret the fact that, especially, the feelings of Jewish people were hurt. From the standpoint of the present, it was the wrong decision."


NEWSLETTER
Sign up for Spiegel Online's daily newsletter and get the best of Der Spiegel's and Spiegel Online's international coverage in your In- Box everyday.

 Despite the apology, the row may not be over yet. The state chapter of the center-left Social Democratic Party (SPD) wants a discussion about the police actions to take place in the state parliament in Düsseldorf. "We are going to raise the issue during a meeting of the state domestic affairs committee on Thursday," the party's deputy parliamentary chief, Ralf Jäger, told SPIEGEL ONLINE. "The central question is this: Why was the potential for danger during the protest so underestimated that police were forced into a situation in which they had to concede to the demands of violent (protesters) rather than (protect) the right to the freedom of speech of others?"

The politician claims that Duisburg police believed 1,000 people would attend the rally, far fewer than the 10,000 who eventually turned up. He claims they should have better predicted the situation and the fact that they didn't raises the question of whether the state's Office of Criminal Investigation had done enough "preparation."

As of Tuesday, Milli Görüs has not yet provided any statement about the incident. The acting spokesperson for the organization's secretary general could not be reached for comment, and the group's office said its chairman was currently outside the country.

On Tuesday, Peter P. said he had obtained the services of a lawyer. He still hasn't been told who will be held responsible for paying for the door broken down by police.

* The name of the main source of this story has been changed at his request by the editorial staff.
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G M
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« Reply #262 on: January 18, 2009, 08:45:02 AM »

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1120831/Muslim-civil-servant-suspended-killing-British-troops-justified-blog.html#

Muslim civil servant suspended over 'killing British troops is justified' blog

By Simon Walters and Jason Lewis
Last updated at 1:27 AM on 18th January 2009



Hardline: Azad Ali attacked Britain's call for a ceasefire in Gaza

A senior Muslim civil servant has launched an astonishing verbal onslaught against the Government over its response to Israel’s military strikes in Gaza – and has suggested that killing British troops in Iraq is justified.

Treasury official Azad Ali, president of the Civil Service Islamic Society, now faces the sack over the remarks.

Cabinet Secretary Sir Gus O’Donnell – who is the patron of the society – acted immediately after being alerted to the comments by The Mail on Sunday.

Shortly after this newspaper contacted the Cabinet Office, a senior official disclosed that Mr Ali had been suspended for the remarks made on his personal internet blog.

In it he:

Quotes an Islamic extremist who says it is his ‘obligation’ to kill British and American soldiers in Iraq;
Accuses the Government of failing to condemn the ‘Zionist terrorist state of Israel’; and
Attacks moderate British Muslims as ‘self-serving vultures, feeding on the dead flesh of the Palestinians’.
The Treasury lists Mr Ali’s title as ‘Business Partner’. He is understood to work as an IT administrator.

On the Civil Service Islamic Society’s official website, Mr Ali declares that it is bound by strict rules that say Whitehall special-interest groups must be ‘non-partisan and non-political’ and act with ‘honesty, impartiality and integrity’.

But there is no such restraint on his personal blog, which highlights his civil service role and provides a link to its Whitehall website.


Azad Ali's blog suggests that the killing of British troops is justified (file picture)
He takes a far more hardline approach, using the most provocative language, and appears to challenge the Whitehall code of practice that restricts mandarins’ political activities.

In one posting, ‘Defeating extremism by promoting balance’, he appears to condone the killing of British and US troops in Iraq.

He said there was ‘much truth’ in an interview with an Islamic militant who said: ‘If I saw an American or British man wearing a soldier’s uniform inside Iraq I would kill him because that is my obligation.


‘If I found the same soldier over the border in Jordan I wouldn’t touch him. In Iraq he is a fighter and an occupier, here he is not. This is my religion and I respect this as the main instruction in my religion for jihad.’

Last week Mr Ali wrote on the ‘Between the Lines’ site: ‘We are the Resistance. The Zionist terrorist state of Israel had only one aim, to destroy all semblance of resistance. We have yet to hear any condemnation from our government.’

He pours scorn on the British Government’s call for a ceasefire and mocks official representatives of moderate British ‘Muslims’ (his quotation marks) who support them.

He observes witheringly that he ‘can see the £ signs in their eyes!’ – an apparent suggestion that they believe their groups may get more public money as a result.

He lambasts Foreign Secretary David Miliband for condemning Hamas leader Mahmoud Zahar for saying Jewish children are ‘legitimate targets’.

‘Blaming Hamas does not wash any more... you can stop peddling the Zionist lie about Mahmoud Zahar!’ Mr Ali writes.


Azad Ali is considered a high profile 'moderate' Muslim who is trustee of the East London Mosque & London Muslim Centre, among many posts
And he derides Mr Miliband’s refusal in the Commons to disown Israel for ‘terrorist’ actions. ‘You’re going to love his response, “As I said in my statement, I do not think it is right to compare a democratic state with a terrorist organisation.” What!’

He added: ‘The [British] government is engaging with individuals who have no credibility in the community...a motley crew who are nothing but self-serving vultures, feeding on the dead flesh of the Palestinians.’

Mr Ali said people who blame the Palestinians or Hamas for the Gaza attacks ‘are like sick men or women who blame the woman who has been raped, saying she brought it upon herself’.

Tory MP Patrick Mercer, an adviser to Gordon Brown’s Security Minister Lord West, questioned how Mr Ali could continue as a civil servant.

‘I can’t see how this man can ever be viewed as objective again,’ said Mr Mercer. ‘It is extraordinary to me that a civil servant who is meant to be politically neutral should be making these sorts of comments about the Government.

‘It would seem that Mr Ali is not trying to conceal the fact that he is a civil servant, nor suggesting these statements are purely made in a personal capacity. I believe he has compromised himself seriously with these comments.’

The civil service code restricts political activities ‘which impinge wholly or mainly on party politics’ including ‘speaking in public on matters of national political controversy; expressing views on such matters in letters to the Press, or in books, articles or leaflets’.

Officials who want to engage in this kind of activity need permission from their Whitehall bosses.

Until his internet outburst, Mr Ali was regarded as a moderate Muslim who could help tackle Islamic fanaticism in Britain.

As a former chairman of the influential Muslim Safety Forum and the current head of its counter-terrorism work-team, he works with the Home Office, senior police officers and the Security Services trying to combat extremism.

Last night the Treasury said: ‘HM Treasury takes allegations of this nature extremely seriously and will investigate them thoroughly.’

Mr Ali, who is married with three children and lives in East London, declined to comment.

The proceeds of a recent Civil Service Islamic Society annual dinner were passed to Interpal, a Palestinian charity that is banned by the US government – although not in the United Kingdom – due to allegations of links to terrorism.

The dinner was attended by Labour MP Sadiq Khan and Peter Lewis, head of the Crown Prosecution Service.

As well as being a career civil servant, Mr Ali has been a community activist for more than 20 years.

He is also on the board of London CrimeStoppers and sits on the Metropolitan Police’s Strategic Stop & Search Committee and Police Use of Firearms Group.

Mr Ali is a member of the Independent Police Complaints Commission’s Community Advisory Group and the Home Office’s Trust and Confidence Community Panel.

There are few people with a higher profile within the ‘moderate’ Muslim community. He is a trustee of the East London Mosque & London Muslim Centre. He chairs the Muslim Council of Britain’s membership committee and is a member of its central working committee.

He is also the vice-chairman of Canon Barnet School board of governors and chairman of the Saturday Islamic School board of governors.

He has a wide network of friends, making him an influential figure as the Government tries to ‘engage’ with radical Islamic groups to prevent them turning to terrorism.

Mr Ali’s friends on the Facebook website include former Guantanamo Bay inmate Moazzam Begg, Inayat Bunglawala of the Muslim Council of Britain, and journalist and Muslim convert Yvonne Ridley.
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« Reply #263 on: January 19, 2009, 07:20:28 AM »

Bomb found at Florence Chabad House
Jan. 18, 2009
jta , THE JERUSALEM POST
A rudimentary explosive device was found at the entrance of the Chabad House in Florence.

The device, described as being constructed from a small camping gas canister, was reportedly discovered during the day Saturday but not reported to police until Saturday night after Shabbat.

The Chabad House is located half a block from the city's main synagogue.

Media reports said a paper fuse apparently had been lit, but had burned out, and no damage occurred.

Florence Chief Rabbi Joseph Levy said the episode was "a very serious gesture that shows how one can pass from irresponsible words to actions such as this."

Tensions are high in Italy over Israel's operation in Gaza. Last week, red paint was thrown at the façade of the synagogue in Pisa. On Saturday, thousands of people, many of them Muslim, staged a pro-Palestinian march in Rome. Some of the placards showed swastikas superimposed on the Star of David.

About 300 people staged a counterdemonstration in Rome's historic Jewish ghetto neighborhood.

This article can also be read at http://www.jpost.com /servlet/Satellite?cid=1232292896268&pagename=JPArticle%2FShowFull
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« Reply #264 on: January 24, 2009, 02:42:24 PM »

http://www.metimes.com/International/2009/01/19/the_middle_east_war_comes_to_europe/7128/
 
The Middle East War Comes to Europe
OLIVIER GUITTA
Published: January 19, 2009

EUROPEAN-WIDE DEMOS -- People demonstrating here in Paris on Jan. 18, and in cities across Europe, against Israel's military campaign in Gaza, which ended Sunday. Since Israel unleashed Operation Cast Lead on Dec. 27, at least 1,199 Palestinians, including 410 children, have been killed in the Gaza Strip and 5,300 wounded. (Sipa Photo via Newscom)

After three weeks of war in Gaza, Israel has implemented a unilateral cease-fire. The coverage of this war has been overwhelming. From Washington to Amman to Paris and London, the images, reports and articles on this conflict have been hyper-present.
While it is true that the Israeli-Arab war has been a very passionate issue, the so-called peaceful demonstrations in Europe have unfortunately turned more than often into pure Jew-bashing. And like in 2003-2004, Europe is importing the Middle East war once again.

In fact, the intent of demonstrating for peace - real peace - is quite laudable. But when it comes to calling for the destruction of a democratic state acting in self-defense against a group classified as a terrorist organization by among others the United States and the European Union, then the peaceful aspect seems totally gone.

Lots of demonstrations in Europe have turned quite violent physically and verbally. While it is totally acceptable to criticize Israel and deplore the Palestinian civilian victims, cries of "Hamas, Hamas, Jews to the gas" that erupted during demonstrations throughout Europe are unacceptable and show the extent of the problem Europe is once again facing.

Also most of the demonstrators consider Hamas, a legitimate resistance movement that they compare to the French resistance during WWII. That disturbing comparison totally whitewashes a movement that is viewed by the large majority of European countries as terrorist. Interestingly the WWII comparisons do not stop at Hamas, but are mostly targeted at Israel, described as the "new Nazi state" committing a "holocaust."

Unsurprisingly this rhetoric has pushed in some cases to calls of boycott not against Israel but against all its alleged supporters. So in one instance, Giancarlo Desiderati, the head of a small Italian union called Flaica-Uniti-Cub, called for the boycott of all Jewish-run businesses. In another case, a famous Jewish French stand-up comedian had to cancel his one-man show on Friday because dozens of pro-Hamas angry demonstrators prevented the spectators from going into the venue.

In one troubling example, authorities have even played into the hands of the Islamists that were behind some of the demonstrations. For example, in the German city of Duisburg, during a pro-Palestinian protest organized by the Turkish Islamist group Milli Gorus, demonstrators demanded that the police removed an Israeli flag that was hanging out of a window. And the police complied: they broke down the door of the apartment in question and removed the flag, to the demonstrators' great satisfaction.

But this is just the tip of the iceberg: in fact violence against European Jews has resurfaced. In France alone, 67 anti-Semitic acts have been perpetrated since Dec. 27. These crimes include violent aggression of Jews, burning of synagogues.

The situation has been so bad that some Danish schools in largely Muslim neighborhoods are going to refuse Jewish students because they cannot guarantee their security.

Some Islamist groups are also playing the terrorism card to scare off authorities and advance their agenda. For instance, anonymous posters calling for "Jihad in Palestine" have been found on walls of some London streets.

It is not surprising that Europe is importing the Middle East war: indeed Hamas is the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood. And since the Muslim Brotherhood is very active and present among European Muslim communities through local organizations with lots of clout, such as the Union Des Organisations Islamiques de France, it is their duty to support their Palestinian peers. Even when it means to burn down synagogues.

And that is exactly where the problem lies. Europe is facing an acute challenge at the moment because some in the various Muslim communities are seeing this Gaza war not as an Arab-Israeli war but rather a Muslim-Jewish war. And the most striking example of this dangerous slide is France, which hosts both the largest Muslim (about 6 million) community and the largest Jewish community (about 600,000) in Europe.

That is why the Nicolas Sarkozy government is taking this threat quite seriously and monitoring some suburbs that could erupt in violence. But the French authorities, who want to avoid this tension between religious communities, have called the respective religions for help. So in a way they are reinforcing the view that the war is more of a religious war than anything else.

The current escalation in France is reminiscent of what occurred in 2004 when a staggering 970 anti-Semitic incidents were registered in the country.

A few years ago, Frederic Encel, a geopolitical expert not known for crying wolf, stated that France was turning into a new Lebanon. He was just observing that communities were rapidly growing apart and that tensions were increasing at a rapid pace. Today what is going on in Europe as a result of the Gaza war is a stark reminder of the challenge Europe faces.

--

Olivier Guitta is an Adjunct Fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies and a foreign affairs and counterterrorism consultant. You can read his latest work at www.thecroissant.com/about.html
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« Reply #265 on: February 08, 2009, 09:04:53 PM »

http://www.worldpress.org/europe/0402faz.htm

Germany Grapples with Integration
Uncertain Expectations

Georg Paul Hefty, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (conservative), Frankfurt, Germany, Jan. 22, 2002

 
"Nobody is Illegal" Police in riot gear stand guard during a protest in support of asylum seekers at a Frankfurt pre-deportation detention center (Photo: AFP). 
No politician ever speaks about immigration without using the word “integration,” but no one will say what integration really is. In the famous outline document, which Otto Schily created in order to establish himself as a thorough minister of the interior, the problem of integration—including both laws and explanations—accounts for just five of the 252 pages.

And this section is highly bureaucratic: Which courses will be offered, who must attend them, and what will happen to those who refuse the offer? What about people who merely sit there during the German lessons? And will the “knowledge” provided about the German legal system lead immigrants to accept, exploit, or reject the German way of life?

These questions do not interest Schily—those who complete the course are, ipso facto, “integrated” and can count on the right to remain here and, eventually, to gain citizenship.

To the extent that government officials at the state and federal level have argued about integration, the disputes have been about who will pay for the courses, meaning paying for the German teachers, the foreign interpreters, the classrooms—and not about the meaning of integration. Even the prime minister of Bavaria [and candidate for chancellor in Germany’s general elections to be held this fall—WPR], Edmund Stoiber, admitted in the Bundesrat a month ago, “We have, if we are honest about it, no rigorous conception of it so far.”

Two developments occurred between Schily’s outline and Stoiber’s confession: the formulation, on May 10, 2001, of the Christian Socialist Union’s (CSU) position paper on immigration, and then Sept. 11. The [conservative] Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and its Bavarian sister party, the [conservative] CSU, did not merely sketch out the supply side of integration; they also summarized what should be demanded: “Integration means more than being able to speak German and recognize our legal system. It also includes...acceptance of the norms and customs that the native population feels obliged to obey. This means accepting the system of values of our Western, Christian culture, which has been influenced by Christianity, ancient philosophy, humanism, Roman law, and the Enlightenment.”

Sept. 11 made it clear that these demands are not enough. German authorities must recognize that foreigners will pretend to be “integrated” while fighting with all their strength, if necessary even sacrificing their lives, to harm the society absorbing them. The phenomenon of “sleepers” is small, but it eliminates any certainty in assessing whole strata of immigrants.

No laws and no government agencies can prevent, in advance and over the long run, crimes and criminals of the Al-Qaeda variety unless the potential perpetrators themselves refrain from acting. Nor can integration policies have, for example, the goal of absolutely eliminating conflicts among foreigners themselves, or between foreigners and Germans. What the policies must seek is to see that such conflicts are settled according to the rules accepted in Central European civilization and that they do not result in bloodshed any more often than is typical for conflicts among Germans. Nor is it principally an act of integration that German government agencies and private groups are demanding to increase the esteem in which girls and women of families of Muslim or other cultures (such as Asian or African) are held.

Humanitarian organizations and the government pursue this goal, together with respect for the rights of women—not just for immigrants but in their homelands, too.

When Manfred Stolpe, the prime minister of Brandenburg, presented his wish list of changes to Schily’s document, under pressure from his coalition partner, Interior Minister [of Brandenburg] Jörg Schönbohm (CDU), there was no mention of integration. For him, as well as Schönbohm, what is important are legal prescriptions, not their effects.

The Bavarian Greens demanded that the German people work for integration, including official and labor-law recognition of Islamic holidays, the creation of quotas for people of various “immigrant backgrounds” in civil service jobs, regular broadcasts by Radio Bavaria in Arabic, and interreligious education in schools that would present all religions on an equal basis.

Now the CSU faction in the state legislature has weighed in with a paper titled “Dialogue with Islam,” attempting to stake out part of the territory on integration policies. This document affirms the necessity of a “constructive dialogue with our Muslim fellow citizens.” But it stresses, “Our leading culture [is] the only basis on which a dialogue on cultural and social-policy issues with our Muslim fellow citizens may be conducted.”

The West may not have any right to assume that the standards of its civilization are accepted in other cultural circles; “however, we must expect that members of other cultural traditions living in Germany will respect the laws and values in effect here.” The paper brings up the issue of the fundamental compatibility of the Quran with the German constitution.

Spokesmen for the Caliphate [an Islamist organization suspected of ties with Osama bin Laden], which was declared illegal in Cologne a few months ago, rejected such compatibility. Now the CSU faction in the legislature brings up the same issue: “The equality of men and women and priority of our laws over the provisions of Sharia are absolute.” What such a declaration could mean in everyday life—given the Supreme Court’s [Jan. 16, 2002] decision on ritual slaughter—does not take much imagination to see. [The court’s decision permits ritual slaughter of animals according to Muslim law, i.e., without anesthetics. The same provision had already been in effect for years for Jewish ritual slaughter. Ritual slaughter had come under fire in Germany because it was seen as cruelty toward animals.—WPR]

Germany’s legal system provides many avenues for going to court to get laws redefined. The CSU seeks to head that off. “Any divided loyalties, which would put ethnic or religious ties above loyalty to the constitution, are unacceptable to us.”

Obviously, the chairman of Bavaria’s CSU, Alois Glück, and his team had only a part of the foreign population in mind in this statement on integration policy: They were considering only the Islamic aspects. It is true, of course, that the 3.2 million Muslims represent the largest formally identified segment of the 7.3 million foreigners in Germany.

But the question of how the foreigners now living here, and those who will arrive in the future, ought to be integrated must be answered, as well as what being integrated actually means. Both questions must be answered for all those people who, unlike the 1.9 million citizens of the European Union living in Germany, do not enjoy complete freedom of movement. 
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« Reply #266 on: February 11, 2009, 09:13:53 AM »

Foster parent who has looked after 80 children struck off...because a Muslim girl in her care became a Christian

By Jonathan Petre
Last updated at 10:11 PM on 07th February 2009

A foster mother has been struck off by a council after a teenage  Muslim girl in her care became a Christian.

The carer, who has ten years’ experience and has looked after more than 80 children, said she was ‘devastated’ by the decision.

‘This is my life,’ she revealed. ‘It is not just a job for me. It is a vocation. I love what I do. It is also my entire income. I am a single carer, so that is all I have to live on.’

The foster mother said she had recently bought a larger car and had been renting a farmhouse, with a pony in a field, so that she could provide more disadvantaged children with a new life.

‘That was always my dream and then suddenly, bang, it was gone. I am now in a one-bedroom flat,’ she added.

The girl is understood to be back with members of her family, who have not been told of her conversion. A second girl the woman was fostering has been moved to another carer.

The woman insisted that, although she was a Christian, she had put no pressure on the Muslim girl, who was 16 at the time, to be baptised.

But council officials allegedly accused her of failing to ‘respect and preserve’ the child’s faith and tried to persuade the girl to reconsider her decision.

The carer, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is now preparing to take legal action against the council with the support of the girl, now 17, who also cannot be named.

Her case follows the controversy over Caroline Petrie, 45, the Christian nurse in Somerset suspended without pay in December for offering to pray for an elderly woman patient. She was reinstated this week.

Yesterday, Christians expressed outrage over the foster carer’s treatment, saying that it was a basic right for people to be able to change their religion and the woman should be praised, not punished.

Mike Judge, a spokesman for the Christian Institute, a pressure group which is funding her case, said: ‘I cannot imagine that an atheist foster carer would be struck off if a Christian child in her care stopped believing in God.

‘This is the sort of double standard which Christians are facing in modern Britain. In recent months, we have seen grandparents, a nurse, adoption agencies, firemen, registrars, elderly care homes and now a foster carer being punished because of the Christian beliefs they hold. It has got to stop.’

The carer, a mother-of-two in her 50s, has worked with young children for much of her life and became a foster parent for the local authority in the North of England in 1999.
In 2007, she was asked to look after the girl, who had been assaulted by a family member.

She told council officials that she was very happy to support the girl in her religion and culture.

‘We had a multicultural household and I had no problems helping the young person maintain her faith of birth,’ she said. ‘I have always prided myself in being very professional in what I do. If something works for a young person, whether I agree with it or not, I am happy to support them in that.’

But the girl, whom the foster mother describes as caring and intelligent, defied expectations by choosing not to wear overtly Muslim clothes or to eat Halal food.
The girl, whose interest in Christianity had begun at school some time before her foster placement, also made it clear that she wanted to go to church.

The carer, an Anglican who attends a local evangelical church, said: ‘I did initially try to discourage her.

‘I offered her alternatives. I offered to find places for her to practise her own religion. I offered to take her to friends or family. But she said to me from the word go, “I am interested and I want to come.” She sort of burst in.’

The carer said that the girl’s social workers were fully aware that she was going to church and had not raised any objections.

The girl had told her auxiliary social worker of her plans to convert before she was baptised in January last year, and the social worker had appeared to give her consent.

‘At that point the brakes were off,’ the carer said. ‘I couldn’t have stopped her if I had wanted to. She saw the baptism as a washing away of the horrible things she had been through and a symbol of a new start.’

Three months later, however, senior officials complained that they had not been fully informed of the girl’s intentions to become a Christian.

They said that she should have undergone counselling to ensure that she understood the implications, especially as such conversions are dealt with harshly in some Muslim countries.

The foster carer said, however, that the girl had thought about her decision very carefully and was aware that members of her family might react strongly, so she was adamant that they should not be told.

The carer said that as the auxiliary social worker knew about the baptism, she had not thought it necessary to tell the fostering team as well.

But she received a phone call from the fostering manager who was ‘incandescent with rage’ that the baptism had gone ahead.

The carer said: ‘Up to that point, we had had a good relationship, so I was quite taken aback. I was very shocked.’

In April, council officials told the girl that she should not attend any church activity for six months, so that she could reconsider the wisdom of becoming a Christian.

The carer was also instructed to discourage the girl from participating in any Christian activities, even social events. The council then told the carer there had been a breakdown of trust and in November removed her from the register.

‘It never occurred to me that they would go that far,’ she said. ‘I was concerned that the council seemed to view Christianity in such a negative light. I wonder whether if it had gone the other way – if one of my Christian young people had decided to embrace another faith – there would have been this level of fuss.’

She added that the girl has been devastated by the experience.

The carer’s solicitor Nigel Priestley said: ‘There is no doubt that the event that provoked the council was the decision by the girl to be baptised. This girl was 16 and has the right to make this choice, so for the council to react in this way is totally disproportionate. Even at this late hour, we hope that the council will resolve the issue.’

A council spokes-man said: ‘From the details provided, we believe that this information relates to a child who is the subject of a final care order in favour of the council. In those circumstances, we are unable to pass any comment.

‘We would never be able to comment on sensitive issues surrounding a child in care.
‘To do so would be irresponsible and in this particular case may put the child at risk of harm.’

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1138701/Foster-parent-looked-80-children-struck--Muslim-girl-care-Christian.html#
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« Reply #267 on: February 11, 2009, 01:23:36 PM »

Second Post.

Panned over pork takeaway
By ANDREW PARKER
Published: Today
 
TAKEAWAY giant Domino's has pizza-ed off customers by taking pork off the menu and serving only HALAL meat.
The group have opened the first halal-only pizza store in the country, catering to the needs of Muslim customers in the mixed race area of Hall Green, Birmingham.

The controversial menu change means Brummie pizza lovers hoping to tuck into classic pizzas like a Hawaiian with ham and pineapple will be disappointed.

Instead, they will have to travel over two miles to the next closest Domino's branch, something which has angered some non-Muslim customers who say they are being discriminated against.

Angry

One disgruntled punter Chris Yates, 29, a hospital worker living in Moseley said he was told he couldn't have a "Meteor" pizza, topped with pepperoni, sausage, meatballs, ground beef and smoky bacon, when he called up at the weekend.

"It's a disgrace, I can appreciate them having it as an option but to have it completely halal is just not on."

Halal items on the menu include halal spicy beef sausage, roast and tandoori chicken, halal pepperoni and halal cured turkey – all produced and stored within the Halal Food Authorities guidelines.

A spokesman for Domino's, who recently announced profits were up 33 per cent, said: "In that particular area of Birmingham there are a large number of Muslims so there is naturally more of a demand for halal based products.

"We appreciate we cannot please everybody but there are alternatives, such as turkey ham, and we have thought long and hard about this decision and we are sure it is the right one."

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/article2226711.ece
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« Reply #268 on: February 24, 2009, 02:45:06 PM »

I had the opportunity to see a Davis Cup semifinal years ago featuring USA v. Sweden in Minneapolis.  There were no riots in the streets or car burnings.  This story in Malmo is amazing, they are host to Israel v. Sweden and the show just won't go on.  I would be very interested in hearing from people who have witnessed the unrest in places like France and Sweden.
---------------------------------
 Anyone for tennis in Malmo?
February 24, 2009 Powerlineblog.com

The AP reports that spectators will be barred from the Sweden-Israel Davis Cup match next month in Malmo. There appears to be a vague concern about controlling Swedish youth in Malmo:

    The Davis Cup matches between Sweden and Israel will be played without spectators in Malmo next month. Attempts to move the venue to Stockholm fell through.

    Officials have cited security concerns for the World Group series, which will be played March 6-8. Several anti-Israeli demonstrations have been planned in Malmo.

    Stockholm had offered to host the matches, saying it was better prepared to guarantee security arrangements. But that possibility ended when Stockholm officials said they couldn't get organized in time for Sunday's arrival of the Israeli team.

What's the problem in Malmo? Interested readers are left to fill in the blanks for themselves.   
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« Reply #269 on: February 25, 2009, 07:51:10 PM »

Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Steyn on Britain and Europe - THE NEXT STAGE

from National Review

The other day I found myself wondering when the conversion rate would become an avalanche. To Islam, I mean. If you’ve been following recent developments in the Netherlands, you’ll know that Geert Wilders, a Dutch Member of Parliament, is to be put on trial for offending Muslims. “Look at what you’re doing,” the sardonic Brit Pat Condell pointed out. “You’re prosecuting a man who is under 24-hour protection from attack by violent Muslims. Yet he’s the criminal for expressing an opinion.”

Quite. But, while Europe has a high degree of tolerance for intolerant imams, it won’t tolerate anyone pointing out that intolerance. It is not necessary for Minheer Wilders to be either jailed or forced into exile to conclude that the Netherlands, like many of its neighbors, has already conceded the key point - that Muslims now have the exclusive right to set the parameters of public debate on Islam. And, given that they don’t regard it as debatable at all, that means that the remorseless Islamization of Europe will continue and accelerate while the deWildered political establishment stands mute.

When I talk like that, I’m assumed to be nuts – or, to use the preferred term, “alarmist” (The Economist et al). Brian Barrington, a Dublin blogger, recently concluded a review of my book by asking:

Is Mark Steyn a scaremongering fool indulging in Islamophobic fantasies..?

Answer: yes he is.

Here’s a 2008 headline from Le Figaro re demographic trends in Brussels:

La capitale européenne sera musulmane dans vingt ans.

For those who haven’t taken up President Obama’s urgings to learn another language, that’s French for “Nothing to see here, folks.”

Now here’s a 2009 headline from The Times :of London

Muslim Population ‘Rising 10 Times Faster Than Rest Of Society’.

A little bit harder for that one to get lost in translation. According to the United Kingdom’s Office of National Statistics, the greatest number of “Christians” (whatever that means in a contemporary Anglican context) is to be found among the over-70s, and the largest number of Muslims is in the cohort aged four and under. Which is Britain’s past and which Britain’s future? No need to ask a “scaremongering fool”. In a land where the head of state is also Supreme Governor of the established church, a quarter of all public elementary schools in England are what are known as “Church of England schools”. In practice, they cannot teach Christianity because many of them, especially in the inner cities, are now overwhelmingly Muslim. In the Blackburn and Dewsbury C-of-E schools, every single pupil is Muslim. At others, the retreating Christian community can still muster up to one per cent of the enrolment. In Bradford, the Church is building a new school for what will be an entirely Muslim student body. “Demographics change,” says the Venerable Peter Ballard, Archdeacon of Lancaster. “There was certainly a Christian population there at one time and, who knows, 20 years from now the Christians might be back.”

Not in 20 years. According to official statistics, of “white British Christian” households 16 per cent have two or more dependent children; among the UK’s “Pakistani Muslim” households, the figure is 50 per cent; “Bangladeshi Muslims”, 58 per cent. The British Government “sustainable development chair” (whatever that is) Sir Jonathon Porritt has just announced that he thinks parents are being “environmentally irresponsible” if they have more than two children.

That 16 per cent will listen to the sustainable baronet. The 58 per cent will fill the void.

So Britain and Europe are becoming more Muslim. The only question is how much more, how fast. And in that respect I think the only thing I got wrong in America Alone is that I was insufficiently “alarmist”. I’ll bet that “la capitale européenne sera musulmane” a lot sooner than 20 years.

Islam is not a race: As The Times reported, “Experts said that the increase was attributable to immigration, a higher birthrate and conversions to Islam.” That last category is the next stage. Like many readers, I’ve been enjoying Robert Ferrigno’s Prayers For The Assassin trilogy, set in an Islamic Republic of America a decade or three hence, while being just a wee bit skeptical about the premise – that a nuclear catastrophe would prompt millions of Americans to convert to Islam. But in Europe? There’s no need for nukes, just the quiet, remorseless daily reality.

In the next few years, Brussels, Antwerp, Amsterdam, Rotterdam will become majority Muslim. Let’s say you work in an office in those cities: One day they install a Muslim prayer room, and a few folks head off at the designated time, while the rest of you get on with what passes for work in the EU. A couple of years go by, and it’s now a few more folks scooting off to the prayer room. Then it’s a majority. And the ones who don’t are beginning to feel a bit awkward about being left behind.

What do you do? The future showed up a lot sooner than you thought. If you were a fundamentalist Christian like those wackjob Yanks, signing on to Islam might (pace Mr Ferrigno) cause you some discomfort. But, if you’re the average post-Christian Eurosecularist, what’s the big deal? Who wants to be the last guy sitting in the office sharpening his pencil during morning prayers?

Funny how quickly it all happened. There was the woman on reception, but she retired. And the guy in personnel who used to say, sotto voce, that Geert Wilders had a point. But he emigrated the year after Wilders did.





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« Reply #270 on: March 18, 2009, 10:47:53 AM »

Jihad Chic Comes to London

In the city's Muslim neighborhoods, an Afghan reporter finds a few too many uncomfortable reminders of home.

Sami Yousafzai
NEWSWEEK

From the magazine issue dated Mar 23, 2009


I still don't know who wanted me dead. I was sitting in my car one day last november, not far from my house in the northwest Pakistani city of Peshawar, when a group of strangers walked up. One of them pointed a pistol through my window. I remember he wore a turban and shalwar kameez—the tunic and baggy pants common in the area—and he had a long beard, dyed red with henna. He shot me in the chest, hand and arm, and then fled with his friends. Miraculously, none of the bullets hit any arteries or vital organs, and as soon as a doctor patched me up and I was strong enough to travel, I booked a flight to London. I planned to lie low for a while, to rest and seek further medical help for a bullet that was lodged in my arm. But more than that, I just wanted to be somewhere calm and safe, far from AK-toting gunmen, suicide bombers and the daily, random violence of Pakistan's borderlands.

London was a revelation—cold, clean and orderly—but my sense of relief didn't last long. In one of the city's many South Asian neighborhoods, I saw a tall young Afghan who reminded me of my would-be assassin, striding down the street like a bad dream. He too wore a shalwar kameez, and a big turban of white silk was wrapped loosely around his head. His beard was long, and his hair was shoulder length. Anyone dressed like that in Islamabad would be immediately picked up for questioning by the police. I had flown halfway across the world to get away from killers who resembled this young Londoner. I stared after him until he was gone from view.

But as days passed I spotted him again and again. He stood out even in a neighborhood full of Asians dressed in traditional garb—shalwar kameez, saris, abayas. Locals had a nickname for him: Talib Jan. It's a friendly Afghan slang term for a Taliban member, something like GI Joe for Americans. The area's crowded, rundown row houses had become home to hundreds of Afghans who first arrived in England as fugitives from the Taliban's intolerance and brutality. Nevertheless, most of Jan's neighbors spoke of him tolerantly or even approvingly.

In fact, during my three-month stay in England I met a surprising number of Muslims who shared Jan's fascination with the Taliban. The older generation, urbane and relatively well educated, had little love for the extremists. But among some younger men, frustrated and marginalized in British society, I discovered a fury that was depressingly familiar. I met many immigrants who were blatant, vocal and unquestioning in their support for what they imagined to be "jihad." Few seemed troubled by the brutality that characterized Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar's reign, or by his banning of music or girls' education. Indeed, many looked back on Omar's rule as a kind of Islamic utopia, and they eagerly snapped up the Islamist leaflets handed out after Friday prayers at various mosques around town.

I first introduced myself to Jan at one of those mosques. I complimented his taste in clothes: that's how people dress back home in Afghanistan, I said. (I was born in northern Afghanistan; my family fled to Pakistan in 1979 to escape the Soviet invasion.) His fierce appearance to the contrary, Jan turned out to be friendly and outgoing. He listened with interest to my story, but mostly he talked about himself, his Islamist views, his fierce support for the Taliban and his contempt for the Brits and Americans fighting them.

His vehemence surprised me. Twenty-three years old, Jan had been born in eastern Afghanistan and attended a madrassa in Pakistan. The Taliban still ruled Afghanistan when his parents paid a people smuggler to sneak Jan to England at 14. There he applied for and was granted political asylum, claiming that the Taliban had persecuted him and his family. Now he's a legal resident, yet openly cheers for his supposed oppressors to defeat troops from his adopted homeland in Afghanistan. The irony seems lost on him.

Jan is a terror to his neighbors. He prowls the streets as a one-man, self-appointed morality patrol. He castigates young Muslim couples he sees holding hands in public, and he badgers acquaintances for shaping their beards into what he disapprovingly calls a "French cut" that frames the mouth. His diatribes can be frightening. Several young men told me they were afraid Jan had friends who could create problems for them or their relatives in Afghanistan or Pakistan. Some feared they might be disowned if Jan got word to their families about their "immoral" living in London.

At a neighborhood restaurant one day I noticed that my waiter looked miserable. Khalil is a clean-shaven, broad-shouldered young Afghan who wears a gold ring in one earlobe. I asked why he was so unhappy, and he told me his story as he cleaned the table and took my order. He said he had been dumped a few days earlier by his girlfriend, a beautiful young Englishwoman. They were out walking when Talib Jan marched up and began denouncing Khalil, threatening to let his family back in Afghanistan know that their son was having a forbidden affair. The girl was frightened by Jan, but more than that, she was furious at Khalil for lying to her: he had told her he was Turkish. She told him they were through.

Now Khalil worries that same routine will be repeated with every girl he meets in London. He's convinced that Jan knows how to find his family in Afghanistan and can make big trouble for him there. "I wanted to marry that girl, but now I have no hope," he told me. "My family lives in the insecure countryside. If I go back and the Taliban know I have an English girlfriend, they will behead me." I asked if he thought Jan was an actual Taliban member. "No," Khalil answered. "He is not with the militias, but he is a big headache for every Afghan who knows him."

As far as I could tell, Jan is an armchair jihadist. I saw no sign that he had direct ties to the Taliban, or that anyone was paying him to proselytize. On the contrary, he works hard to support himself with business deals like buying and selling used cars. I often found him in a little store that sells mobile phones and watches at a London shopping plaza. A crowd of young, bearded men hangs out there: more armchair jihadists. The shop's 35-year-old owner, a Pakistani from Peshawar, loves to show them the latest Taliban videos on his mobile phone, featuring beheadings of alleged anti-Taliban "spies" and ambushes of U.S. forces. When asked if he worried that British authorities might discover his collection of videos, he told me: "If our Taliban brothers can stand up to B-52 bombing and modern U.S. war technology, it would be cowardly of me to be afraid to watch and share their heroic actions."


=================
Brave words, I thought, but still the shopkeeper disturbed me. He was relatively well educated and a former banker, but made no secret of his Islamist leanings. Giving change, he avoids touching a woman's hand. He also tells a chilling tale—maybe true, maybe not—of his days as a radical religious student in Peshawar in the mid-1990s. He claims that he and a group of friends murdered several prostitutes there in what he called a "moral cleansing drive." He warned me against speaking against the Taliban even in London: people's loved ones at home could get hurt, he said darkly.

Jan, too, is always glad to pull out his Bluetooth-enabled mobile phone and share streaming videos of Taliban training camps and Coalition convoys hitting IEDs. He even has Taliban ring tones—fire-and-brimstone sermons and Qur'anic recitals from jihadist mullahs. If you want copies, he'll transfer them to your phone or point you to the right Web site. "I'm winning converts to a holy cause every day," he says. As for the cops, Jan says he's careful to break no laws and claims he's never had problems with the police. They seem to regard him as a deeply religious man, he says, or at least as a harmless eccentric.

In fact, Jan embodies a powerful need among many young Muslims in Britain to preserve a sense of identity in a strange land. One 50-year-old engineer told me he worries constantly about his four children, especially his two sons, ages 19 and 20. He says they seem addicted to Internet porn, but what scares him even more is the amount of time they spend on jihadist Web sites. He worries as well about extremist operatives who hang out at local mosques trying to recruit young people to the Taliban cause.

Extremism's appeal is especially strong for immigrants fed up with hard times and bigotry. In economically depressed Birmingham I met an unemployed man from Kandahar. He said he had just lost his job and feared he wouldn't be able to feed his family. "If I get hit by a car or bus one day crossing the street, who will look after my family?" he asked. "It would be better for me to go and fight and die with the Taliban. Then at least I could see paradise." One 35-year-old British Muslim told me he's infuriated by widespread discrimination. An office worker, he says he hasn't had a promotion in 10 years. The reason, he believes, is that he's an ardent Muslim who wears a long beard and never joins his coworkers at the local pub. "This kind of behavior is what makes Muslims extremist," he said. Jan himself says most Britons look on him with "love and kindness," but others occasionally stare at him with "hate" and won't sit next to him on the train. Their hearts, he says, "are black and full of enmity toward Muslims."

Most of these young men, even Jan, would probably never give up their lives in Britain to join the jihad in Afghanistan. But something of that far-off fight, some tinge of blood and chaos and hatred, has certainly seeped into London's streets. Alokozai, 27, arrived in London a year ago after an arduous trip via the Afghans' underground railway. He used to be an interpreter/fixer for British troops in Kandahar. The pay was excellent by Afghan standards—some $1,600 a month—but then the death threats began. His family's life would be worthless unless he left his job, the anonymous letters warned. He quit as he was told; in Britain he applied for political asylum, thinking he had finally escaped the Taliban's wrath.

Then the phone woke him one night at 3 a.m. "Death angels will soon clutch at your throat," an Afghan voice warned. "Remember, we have Islamic brothers in the U.K. Your family should not rest easy in Kandahar either." He says he could only listen to the voice, too scared to say anything.

Alokozai worries all the time now. Too many Afghans in London sympathize with the Taliban, he says. He thinks many recent asylum seekers, especially from southern Afghanistan, have ties to the Taliban and remain under the sway of extremist ideas. "They will create trouble for Britain in the near future," he predicts. But equally disturbing to him are the thoroughly assimilated Muslims who also treat him like a traitor to his religion. When they find out he worked for British forces in Afghanistan, they ask him, "How many houses did you bomb?" and "How many innocents did you kill?" "These people are as narrow-minded and have as much hate in their eyes as the Taliban do in Afghanistan," he says. "I cannot understand how these Afghans and Pakistanis can wear Western clothes, dance and drink, and then condemn me and see the Taliban as their heroes."

Neither can I. As I was riding the train one day, Owais, a 27-year-old Pakistani from Kashmir, began praising the Taliban and talking seriously of going to live in Afghanistan after Mullah Omar returned to power. "My fervent wish is that next winter we may be able to breathe freely in the restored Islamic state of Afghanistan," he declared in Urdu. Here you can breathe freely too, I told him. "No, only in a true Islamic state can we be free," replied his friend Ishaq. A 25-year-old Afghan immigrant, Ishaq wore a long, white tunic over his blue jeans. "The West is destroying the spirit, soul and values of Islam. Muslims should avoid contact with and coming to the West." As I go home to my family, I too wonder and worry about such men. There is too much of Peshawar in them, and in London.

URL: http://www.newsweek.com/id/189241
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« Reply #271 on: March 19, 2009, 07:38:27 PM »

Headmistress accused of 'Islamophobia' wins £400,000

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Head accused of 'Islamophobia' wins £400,000 after being forced out by Muslim governors

By Andy Dolan, Matt Sandy and Nick Mcdermott
Last updated at 11:20 PM on 19th March 2009





A headmistress who was hounded out of her job after being falsely accused of racism was yesterday awarded more than £400,000 in compensation.

Erica Connor had run a 'happy and successful' primary school but was driven to a breakdown by the allegations.
The Daily Mail can reveal the school's troubles started when a local mosque decided to pack the governing body with Muslims.
Paul Martin - a Muslim convert - and Mumtaz Saleem began monopolising meetings with the aim of turning New Monument in Woking into an Islamic faith school.

The Surrey town is home to the first purpose-built mosque in the country - the Shah Jahan Mosque - which dates from 1889.
Mr Martin, a businessman, yesterday confirmed there had been a 'conscious effort' to increase the number of Muslims on the board.
But when Mrs Connor resisted the new governors' plans - such as the introduction of Islamic worship into the school - she became the target of a smear campaign.

An anonymous petition was circulated among parents, stating that those signing 'no longer have confidence in Erica Connor to educate our children in a way that respects and values our faith, culture and heritage'.
An accompanying document accused the headmistress of 'racism and Islamophobia'.

The accusations drove her to suffer from depression.

She eventually retired from the 300-pupil school because of illhealth in December 2006.
She is unlikely ever to return to teaching and now does voluntary work for a cancer charity.
A judge at the Royal Courts of Justice in London yesterday ordered Surrey County Council to pay Mrs Connor £407,781 in compensation.

He ruled that the local education authority had failed to support her properly against the unfounded accusations.
Deputy Judge John Leighton Williams said the council disregarded the 'health and welfare' of Mrs Connor because it was more concerned about being reported to the Commission for Racial Equality.

Erica Connor was headteacher of New Monument School in Woking (pictured) where 80 per cent of pupils are Muslim. She claimed she was forced to retire through ill health after a campaign of harrassment


After the case, Mrs Connor said the allegations 'attacked the core of my being and my values'.   She accused the council of cownorardice for failing to stand by her while the non-demoninational primary school - where around 80 per cent of the pupils are Muslim - was torn apart by the split in the governing body.

She had told the court earlier: 'I felt the LEA, because of the political sensitivity of the issue, were not addressing it.
'I felt - I will be honest - that this was racism towards me, because I felt that, had I been a Muslim head, things would have been conducted in a different way. I felt that they didn't have the courage to stand by me in this.'

The divorced mother of one was made headmistress in 1998 after joining the school four years earlier as the deputy head. In 2001 she was invited to a Downing Street reception after the school was named the second most improved in the country for SATs results.  Her problems started in 2003 when four Muslim governors, including Mr Martin, joined the board. He was appointed as a parent-governor, despite having no children at the school.

'It was tense': Paul Martin at home in Woking, Surrey

Shortly afterwards, Mr Saleem joined as one of two LEA-appointed Muslim governors.  Mr Martin also nominated another Muslim as parent-governor - Sofia Syed, who also had no prior connection to the school. Over the next two years Mrs Connor believed the governing body became 'dysfunctional' because of the conduct of Mr Martin and Mr Saleem, the court heard. In her witness statement, Mrs Connor said they 'effectively railroaded' meetings, repeatedly raising issues of religious education, content of assemblies and religious worship. They wanted more formal Islamic worship in the school and closer links with the local mosque.
From late 2003, Mr Martin, now 58, repeatedly complained about the school's policies and its stance towards Islam, as well as its links with the Muslim community and Mrs Connor's management.

His complaints resulted in an investigation. Its report acquitted the school of racism, Islamophobia and religious bias. Mr Martin was finally voted off the governing body in June 2005. He complained that he had been 'removed for blowing the whistle on institutional racism'.

The council wrote to parents saying it had no evidence that the allegations were true and reiterated the results of the investigation.
But at the start of the following school term in September, a second investigation - this time at the instigation of the council - concluded the school 'had not been responsive to the needs of the faith community'.

Mrs Connor went on sick leave suffering from stress and depression soon afterwards.

By then, the entire governing body had been disbanded. The following year the school was put in special measures by Ofsted.
Mrs Connor did not sue Mr Martin or Mr Saleem, but claimed that Mr Saleem had harassed her. Judge Williams cleared him of harassment, but ruled that he had been guilty of 'offensive verbal attacks' towards Mrs Connor.

The judge said of the two governors: 'I am satisfied that they sought to monopolise governing body meetings with a view to imposing their own agenda, and were prepared to do so regardless of the interests of the school and anyone who resisted that agenda. What was that agenda? It was at the very least to introduce an increasing role for the Muslim religion in New Monument School.'

The judge added that it was also 'not unreasonable' for Mrs Connor and the school's staff 'to consider that there was an agenda to convert New Monument to an Islamic faith school'.

The judge said the council's 'excessive tolerance' of the Muslim governors' behaviour, its 'misplaced sympathy' for Mr Martin - and its failure to provide Mrs Connor with proper support were the reasons for her depression. Last night, Mr Martin said that he and other governors had simply lobbied for an increase in the number of Islamic assemblies.
He said: 'There were many Muslims in the school and they should be properly represented. It is only fair and democratic.'
Mr Martin, who converted to Islam 28 years ago and was treasurer of the mosque, said he thought Mrs Connor 'became very defensive and it got very tense'.

Mrs Connor, who is believed to live with her partner Neil in Skenfrith, near Abergavenny in South Wales, said after the ruling she was 'thrilled that justice has prevailed'.

She added: 'I finally feel vindicated. I was subjected to dreadful pressures from a small group of individuals, unrepresentative of the local community, without the support I would have expected from Surrey County Council.'

Her damages claim covered sums for her pain and suffering and loss of income and pension.
A Surrey County Council spokesman said the authority was 'disappointed' with the decision
The council was refused permission to appeal, but could take the case to the Court of Appeal.


http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...governors.html
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« Reply #272 on: March 24, 2009, 04:44:26 PM »

Politicians Fret as Muslim Population Swells in Europe

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Politicians Fret as Muslim Population Swells in Europe Amid Little Integration
Tuesday , March 24, 2009

By Greg Burke
BRUSSELS, Belgium —

A clash of civilizations may be taking place on the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan, but it's also happening a lot more quietly in European cities.  Old Europe's population is dwindling even as immigration and high birth rates among Muslim groups are swelling in cities all over the continent.  And in Belgium, it is no different.

Filip Dewinter, a leader of the far-right separatist party Vlaams Belang, predicts there will eventually be a kind of civil war when the longtime residents of Brussels — the nation's capital and administrative seat of the European Union — realize their city is about to be taken over by Muslim immigrants.

• Click here for video.

Although there are no official statistics on how many Muslims live in Brussels, it is believed they make up about 25 percent of the city’s 1 million urban residents. Dewinter, who opposes immigration and has called Islamophobia a "duty," claims three of the 19 sections of Brussels, each with its own mayor, now have Muslim majorities.

"In those neighborhoods it's not our government that's in power," he said, "but the Muslim authorities — the mosques, the imams — who are in charge."

FOX News visited one of those neighborhoods, called Molenbeek, which looks more like North Africa than the heart of Europe.

For some Belgians, that's not a problem. The mayor of Molenbeek, Socialist Philippe Moureaux, has worked hard to help Muslims try to integrate over the past decade and a half.  Moureaux believes multiculturalism is a good thing. He says even those who disagree with him should get used to life as it is in Brussels today: "Be realistic. They're here. They're relatively numerous and they're growing."

Many Moroccans have been in Belgium for decades and are now citizens, as are their children. The imam of one of the main mosques, which thousands of young Moroccans attend each Friday, stressed that Muslim immigrants have starting blending in around Brussels.

During FOX News' brief visit, there were no fiery demonstrations of the kind that have wracked the Netherlands, though the municipality is sometimes considered dangerous to traverse at night.

Yet Molenbeek remains disconcerting. Belgian police assigned three plainclothes officers to watch over a FOX News team shooting street scenes one morning in Molenbeek. When FOX News returned in the afternoon as more people were out and about, the police said it would be safer not to get out of the car. It wasn't even dark yet.

Part of that fear stems from particularly nasty street crime, something that can happen in bad neighborhoods in any big European — or American — city. But part of it is due to strong anti-Western sentiment among Belgium's Muslims, which suggests that true integration is still a long way off.

Mayor Moureaux blames the problems on a tiny number of very violent youths who are condemned by everyone, including the Muslim community.

But for Dewinter, integration simply isn't working. He claims the great majority of the Muslims don't want it to work. So instead of being a melting pot, Brussels has become a city that does everything possible to appease Islam, he claims.

"Halal food is served in the schools, not only for Muslim children, but for all the children," said Dewinter, adding that municipal pools in Brussels now have separate hours for men and women to swim.

The anti-immigrant Vlaams Belang, once considered a pariah party, now controls about 24 percent of the Belgian vote, a trend matched in other European countries with burgeoning Muslim populations.

Though the immigration debate has not yet reached the fever pitch it has in the U.S., a real test will come when a major European city has a Muslim majority. The first could be Marseilles, in France, or Amsterdam, in the Netherlands. But don't count out Brussels, the heart and capital of Europe.


http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,510364,00.html
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« Reply #273 on: March 29, 2009, 11:49:05 AM »

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‘100 dangerous Islamists in Germany’

AFP/Berlin

Germany is home to several hundred “potentially dangerous Islamists” including a hard core of around 100 people classed as dangerous, a senior interior ministry official said yesterday.  Between 60 and 80 “Jihadists” have returned to Germany out of some 140 who have undergone training in camps in the tribal areas of the Pakistan-Afghanistan border area, state secretary August Hanning said.

“The danger should not be underestimated. The 60 to 80 who have returned make up the overwhelming majority of up to around 100 people whom we class as dangerous,” Hanning told the Tagesspiegel daily’s Saturday edition.  “On top of that there are about another 300 potentially dangerous Islamists. All in all we are talking about a circle of around 1,000 people,” said Hanning, who used to head Germany foreign intelligence agency, the BND.

He added that he is worried about the possibility of attacks in the run up to this September’s general election.
“We remember that the attacks in Madrid in 2004 were carried out a few days before elections in Spain,” he said, referring to the train bombings that left 191 people dead in Europe’s worst terror attack. “That really did affect the outcome of the elections ... Al Qaeda sees this as a model for success.”

A number of videos - sometimes in German or with German subtitles - have emerged in recent months warning of future attacks on German soil because of the presence of 3,500 of the country’s troops in Afghanistan.

The closest Germany came to an attack was in July 2006 when suitcases containing homemade bombs were placed on two regional trains passing through Cologne’s busy main train station. They failed to detonate.

http://www.gulf-times.com/site/topic...9&parent_id=21
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« Reply #274 on: May 07, 2009, 12:40:30 PM »

From powerline: A video of Israel haters scouring a French supermarket to remove Israeli products from the shelf. There isn't a manager in sight. All the shoppers go about their business like it is 1942 Vichy France. The video was apparently shot in the northeastern suburbs of Paris that gained attention as the scene of the mysterious French "youth" riots of 2005.

This video is even more grotesque than you think. It was shot in a suburb of Paris called Aulnay-sous-Bois. The next-door town to Aulnay is called Drancy, about one mile away. Drancy was used by the Nazis between 1942-1944 as a deportation holding camp for the Jews of Paris prior to the deportation to the extermination camps in eastern Europe. Sixty-five thoursand Jews passed through Drancy, of whom 63,000 were killed. In other words, the Israeli boycotters have chosen, of all the supermarkets in France, the one closest to France's most important Holocaust memorial site. Look on Google Maps to see how close they are.

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« Reply #275 on: May 07, 2009, 02:08:43 PM »

I differentiate between a "Boycott Israel" i.e. people who oppose Israel's politics (valid or invalid depending upon your viewpoint)
versus a "Boycott Jews" which I would find repugnant. 

Here in America, I have heard/seen boycott this, that, and everything else it seems under the sun.  In and of itself, why can't a person/group
oppose another group's/country's products or politics?  Free speech?

And I am a little unclear as to the video (I don't speak French) but it seems that the group simply bought up all Israel products on the shelf.
Heck, if I was manager, I would be grateful, not apologetic. 
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« Reply #276 on: May 07, 2009, 03:44:57 PM »

I have sent the video to my mom, who speaks French very well, to ask what it says.  Somehow, I doubt they are paying for these products-- it seems rather contrary to the notion of a boycott  cheesy

I respect the point you make about boycotts, but I note the front of the shirts says what I think means "Long Live Palestine".  Somehow I doubt they are working for a two state solution , , ,
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« Reply #277 on: May 07, 2009, 06:15:49 PM »

I too am curious as to the translation, but I assume it consists of various people vilifying Israel for "oppressing"
Palestinians.  Whether it is be a two state solution, or......   however in this instance, the French views do not seem
religiously oriented, rather it's all politics.  Agree with Israel's "solution" to the Palestinians or not is the question.
It is a "fair" question.

As for the economics of boycotts, I understand your point, but perhaps they merely sought publicity?  Because,
speaking of economics, I cannot imagine a Supermarket here or in France allowing "customers" to walk
off with significant merchandise regardless of where is was manufactured without calling the police or
at minimum, putting up struggle; everyone seemed too relaxed. I would venture to guess the merchandise was either
paid for or never physically taken from the store.  Yet the protestors still garnered attention.  Everyone
"accomplished" their goal.
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« Reply #278 on: May 07, 2009, 09:09:19 PM »

Just another version of jihad.
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« Reply #279 on: May 09, 2009, 10:05:00 AM »

Just another version of jihad.
huh



Actually there is a wave of "Boycott Israel" across Europe; people from all walks of life
are protesting the abdominal treatment of Palestinians.  Agree or disagree with Israel's
treatment of Palestinians, I believe there are two valid sides to the discussion.

The tape was simply misleading and the conclusions drawn absolutely incorrect.  The right to protest
and boycott is deeply seated in American culture as well.  And this boycott seemed rather peaceful,
albeit some may object to the vilification of Israel by the participants yet that is their right. 
Frankly, store management didn't care since the protestors were doing nothing wrong.
Free speech is the bedrock of a democracy. 

And no where did I see "Boycott Jews" etc.  Palestine and the treatment of the
Palestinians seems to be the issue sweeping Europe.  I think it is wrong to assume that if
one opposes a particular policy of Israel, they are against all Jews.

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« Reply #280 on: May 09, 2009, 10:10:48 AM »

"Frankly, store management didn't care since the protestors were doing nothing wrong."

How many stores you know freely allow that sort of actiivty?  We are still waiting to here from someone who can say whether they were paying for the food they were taking.  What meaning do you put to their shirts' fronts "Long live Palestine"?   I think they are calling for the destruction of Israel.
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« Reply #281 on: May 09, 2009, 10:28:04 AM »

Jeepers, maybe we should wait for the next Kristallnacht before we grow concerned over signs of European anti-semitism.

As for those poor Palestinians, and as has been discussed at length here before, perhaps if they abided by the terms of Camp David et al, quit embracing the indiscriminate killing of civilians as a military tactic, fired all their kleptocratic and bloodthirsty leaders, abandoned the racist and sexist rhetoric they force feed their children in the hope of continuing to breed cannon fodder, and so on, they'd find their lives improving a bit more than any boycott would bring. Just a wild guess, one that will continue to be speculation so long as those on the left continue to reward the current counter-productive Palestinian behavior.
« Last Edit: May 09, 2009, 11:15:43 AM by Body-by-Guinness » Logged
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« Reply #282 on: May 09, 2009, 10:29:26 AM »

Perhaps I am wrong, but it seems to me that if they were stealing all the food from the store, management would
have called the police and at minimum, objected.  And no where could I find testament that they stole anything.

As for "Long live Palestine" it can mean many things; not just the destruction of Israel.  I for example believe
Palestine has a right to exist and deplore their treatment and Israel's expansion; however I strongly support Israel's right to exist
and frankly support and respect Israel on many other issues.

But for arguments sake, let's say the T-Shirt said, "Eliminate Israel, let Palestine rule". As absurd (for many reasons)
as this statement is, isn't this the right of a protestor to express their opinion about a political issue?  For example
my South Korean friends might approve of a T-Shirt that said, "Eliminate North Korea, let Seoul rule".
Probably, many on this forum would also support such a T-Shirt.

But one should not pick and choose when it comes to free speech or one day we may not have it.
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« Reply #283 on: May 09, 2009, 11:25:59 AM »

"Perhaps I am wrong, but it seems to me that if they were stealing all the food from the store, management would
have called the police and at minimum, objected.  And no where could I find testament that they stole anything." 

Do you speak French so as to be able to find that testament?

Why would boycotters BUY the food?

"As for "Long live Palestine" it can mean many things; not just the destruction of Israel."

In this context, I think it is pretty clear that it means precisely the destruction of Israel.  For example PLO school books, despite having signed to the contrary in Oslo, still show Palestine as being from "river to sea".

"But for arguments sake, let's say the T-Shirt said, "Eliminate Israel, let Palestine rule". As absurd (for many reasons)
as this statement is, isn't this the right of a protestor to express their opinion about a political issue?"

Sure, but that's not the point here.

"For example my South Korean friends might approve of a T-Shirt that said, "Eliminate North Korea, let Seoul rule".
Probably, many on this forum would also support such a T-Shirt."

Actually I would suport the people of NK truly deciding.

"But one should not pick and choose when it comes to free speech or one day we may not have it."

Again, read again and see that no one here has called for anything against free speech.  Not sure where you are getting this  huh

Subject to confirmation by a competent French speaker, what we are noting here is the apparent intimidation of the store by an organized group going in and taking its products off the shelf-- I'm guessing without payment.
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G M
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« Reply #284 on: May 09, 2009, 12:39:39 PM »

Ah yes, as usual a liberal bends over backwards to defend evil.

Peaceful protest is different that disrupting a store's business and intimidating people. Gee, the French cowered and didn't fight back? SHOCKING!  shocked
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« Reply #285 on: May 09, 2009, 12:53:44 PM »

Crafty and GM covered most of what my reaction to it is.  We don't need a translation to know that this group is not buying up all the products from Israel.  JDN, I hope you were pulling our chain or just enjoying an adult beverage as you wrote.

"And this boycott seemed rather peaceful"

Did you miss the intro that explained that this is the area with the car fire riots?

Again, with or without a translation there is a level of intimidation present IMO that you and I can hardly imagine.  

There is a difference between a free speech boycott and physically removing items from shelves that a private store keeper obviously paid people to put on the shelves.  This is a serious violation of the storekeepers private property rights, with or without knowing the laws of France.

At least an implied threat of violence exists to the patrons and the establishment, based on the numbers and the known past of the movement, with or without a visual sign of weaponry.  

The distinction between hating Jewish people and hating all people of Israel is lost on me.  I am neither and I fear these people greatly.  To most Americans, protecting Israel is part of protecting America and for Europe, turning their back on Israel and coddling Israel's enemies has not been helpful to security at home.

Not mentioned was that this is actually a promo video for the group ransacking the store, posted to the internet, obviously encouraging others/all to copy and join them.

An example of a free speech boycott IMO would be to put a sign on YOUR lawn or YOUR website and encourage people not to buy certain products from certain origins.

How about if 500 straight people walked into a shop of gay orientation all wearing colored shirts boldly marked 'straight power' and removed all items from the store that are gay oriented?  Still just an expression of free speech, not tromping on the civil rights of others?  I don't think so.
--

I posted and removed a video ('wrong thread') from Sweden in March that showed unrest (a peaceful boycott?) against Israel.  The victims were the tennis fans of Sweden because a major event, the Swedish hosted Davis Cup match, had to be played in an empty stadium BECAUSE OF FEAR OF VIOLENCE if they did not succumb to the wishes of the protesters.  Another version or the video is posted below.  My point then was that there is cross-link between the social behavior of these do-nothings and the social programs that pay people who contribute nothing.  Unemployment in the immigrant-ghetto neighborhoods is as high as 40%.  They do not come to the greatest social welfare states in the world for the job opportunities, or to Sweden for the climate or to France out of French pride.  Whether you call it hate-politics, intimidation or jihad, it is an invasion exploiting the generosity (and weakness) of the developed nations, not a friendly merger.

« Last Edit: May 09, 2009, 12:59:42 PM by DougMacG » Logged
JDN
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« Reply #286 on: May 09, 2009, 02:32:16 PM »

Doug, I do enjoy adult beverages from time to time, but in this instance only coffee so far this morning  smiley

As for the peacefulness and "intimidation" I merely observed the video.  The protestors are intermixed with other shoppers
who obviously don't seem to mind and are simply going about their own shopping.  And as the protestors are exiting,
everyone seemed to be smiling and having a good time.  Hardly a violent or "intimidating" protest...

And while I don't speak French; I do understand economics (why boycott and buy the product) however as the protestors are peacefully
leaving the store there is no indication of any resistance by management and therefore I think it is reasonable to conclude that merchandise is not being stolen. 
To assume otherwise without evidence is wrong.  (If they stole, they should be arrested, regardless of what their T-Shirt says).  And doing
a search I did not find one credible site saying that these items were stolen.

And I do believe that there is a distinction between hating Jewish people and hating Israel.  I don't hate either, but I think a reasonable person
can disagree, even strongly, with some of the policies of Israel, yet have no religious biasses against Jewish people. 

And I am not sure if your gay analogy is valid.  The store in question was a Supermarket, not a Jewish delicatessen.  And the boycott was
centered on Israel and it's foreign policy, not some protected group based on race, religion or one's sexual persuasion.

As for immigration, I don't pretend to understand the reasons why, but surely there were good reasons why such mass immigration is/was allowed.
And I think Europe's welfare state exasperates the problem.  Now these policies are coming back to haunt individual countries.  Also,
I think recent dire current economic times contributes and enlarges the problem; throughout history in difficult times it was often the most recent immigrant
or foreigner who was blamed yet in good times they were encouraged and badly needed.
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« Reply #287 on: May 09, 2009, 05:41:37 PM »

"Hey, nice little store you got here. Shame if all these Israeli products made it catch on fire."
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« Reply #288 on: May 09, 2009, 06:13:17 PM »


Mayhem in the Marais
Nidra Poller from Paris
May 2009

Firefighters tackle a blazing car during anti-Jewish violence in January

Saturday night in spring 2009, in a quiet corner of the Marais. Sounds of tumult and smashing. A pause. An ominous silence. Then, the first explosion. Gunshots? Gas? It's on the rue des Arquebusiers. A fire engine pulls up, the firefighters jump out, ready for action. They're stymied. They run in circles, shouting to each other like helpless civilians. Cars are burning in the narrow side street and they can't get near the roaring inferno. Seven cars in a row, popping like huge champagne corks. It takes an eternity before a bigger engine arrives. It has a huge hose but it's hours before the last flames are extinguished.

Torched cars are a familiar sight on the French landscape. Tens of thousands are burnt out every year. But this isn't video footage on the evening news. It's not the banlieue in 2005. It's very close and extremely scary.

By Sunday noon, municipal workers had towed away the ghostly skeletons and swept up the debris, baring deep scars in the asphalt. Three weeks later, the scene is a black gaping wound. The stone kerb is cracked and chipped, as if it were made of clay. Metal awnings are buckled and blistered, the wooden façades are burnt away, revealing melted wires and pipes. A period street lamp is gutted. A thick coat of black soot reaches up to the wrought-iron balconies.

Apart from one laconic article in the daily le Parisien, the incident was not considered newsworthy in France. The international readership of the atlasshrugs.com newsblog knew more from my on-the-spot coverage than people living nearby. I was tipped off about another big fire at the Résidence Madeleine Béjart, a city-owned retirement home on rue de la Perle, five minutes' walk from Arquebusiers. That fire started in a decorative alcove on the façade and charred the ceiling of the wide portico. In some places, it's completely burned away.
Who would be torching the Marais? Punk jihadis? Anarchists? Stupid kids? Is this a fluke or the beginning of a new phase? No one in the vicinity seems to care. They dismiss it with a Gallic shrug. "The insurance will pay for the damages." Torching cars could become as commonplace as the graffiti that disfigures beautiful 18th-century mansions. The Marais is Paris's old Jewish quarter, with emphasis on the old. Orthodox families go to synagogue. There's a Jewish day school, some remnants of the declining garment business and the rue des Rosiers with its mix of kosher delicatessens, Judaica shops and encroaching upscale boutiques. But there are more Jews and more anti-Jewish violence in the 19th arrondissement, where Rudy Haddad was beaten into a coma last summer. I'm told the investigation is stalled because they are still trying to prove it was inter-communitarian strife-Jewish gangs fighting Arabs/Muslims/Blacks-instead of gratuitous, violent anti-Semitism.

On the other hand, we can't be sure the Marais fire was aimed at Jews. I start my inquiry with the chief of the third arrondissement police station, who tells me to phone the press attaché at the Préfecture (police headquarters), who refers me to the Cabinet du Parquet (public prosecutor's office), where I speak to a gracious but bemused spokeswoman. "Burned cars?" she asks. "There are so many..." The investigation is under way but if it turns out to be arson, she admits, it is unlikely the police will find the culprits. And the case will be closed. She is surprised that I think the two fires in the Marais might be related.

I had a scoop on the Marais fires, but didn't even know about the "supermarket intifada", in which French supermarkets, such as Carrefour, have been invaded and any produce suspected of originating from Israel is destroyed, until I was told about it by my friend and colleague, Tom Gross (www.tomgrossmedia.com). Except for a brief mention on the France 2 TV channel, the media have ignored that story.

Boycott Israel is a longstanding passion of Olivia Zemmour, a Tunisian Jew whose venomous hatred of Israel knows no bounds. Goons from her organisation, CAPJPO, now united with an outfit called EuroPalestine, beat up Jewish boys from the left-wing Zionist Hashomer Hazaïr youth movement during a 2003 "peace march".
Look at the EuroPalestine website (www.europalestine.com) and you don't need to understand French to get the flavour of their unabashed anti-Zionist operations. Islamists face the camera and spew out hate-filled talking points: Israel=Occupation, Genocide, Apartheid. A "commando" with a trademark beard and North African accent holds up an Israeli product, declaring: "We won't allow this stuff chez nous. This is our country." Then he sweeps up bottles of shampoo and threatens: "This is what will happen to anyone who supports Israel."

If it were only a few thousand wackos here, a handful of delinquents there, a few pinpricks in a healthy society, but this is not the case. It is an onslaught and it's moving fast. France-Info radio just reported a little sugar-coated item on the joyous Muslim converts attending the annual UOIF (French branch of the Muslim Brotherhood) convention at Le Bourget.

Islamist movements are emboldened because the authorities, the media and secular society have failed to react properly to their show of force in January. Using the Israeli operation in Gaza as a pretext, the French-Arab street swung into action with a vengeance. I watched angry Muslims pouring from all directions into Place de la République on 3 January, hastily donning their keffiehs, marching as to war. While the
media (with the notable exception of an unsigned article in Le Figaro) painted this explosion of organised rage in the soft colours of anti-war protest, Islamist websites proudly displayed their true face: blood-curdling shouts of "Death to Israel, Death to the Jews"; Hamas and Hizbollah flags, slogans; violent attacks on the police; and the destruction of public and private property. Those were not demonstrations, they were acts of conquest by jihad foot soldiers claiming our streets, in our society, for the free expression of hate speech, death threats and genocidal promises.

As anti-Jewish attacks reached a new high, President Nicolas Sarkozy promised to punish anti-Semitism and Islamophobia with equal severity, reinforcing the myth of reciprocal inter-communitarian violence. When two naïve, Jewish 15-year-olds handing out pro-Israel leaflets in front of Lycée Jeansson-Sailly, in the affluent 16th arrondissement, got into a fight with some Muslim kids and won, Le Monde turned the Jewish kids into extremists from the Jewish Defence League. They were detained by the police and the incident was repeatedly cited to balance out real attacks against Jews.
Michaël Benamou, 29, was attacked by three Arab-looking men on the busy platform of the Auber suburban railway station. He told YNet, an Israeli news website: "They called me a ‘f***ing Jew' and said they would kill me. They broke my nose and beat me all over." He has decided to emigrate to Israel. Désiré Amsellem, a 70-year-old Jewish family doctor devoted to his patients of all faiths and origins, was shot in the back as he left his office in Valenton, 10 miles south-east of Paris. Investigators have no clue as to the motive or identity of the killer. On 15 January, after a pro-Hamas demonstration in Strasbourg, 50 men travelled to Metz with the intention of breaking into a synagogue during a service. They were held off by the police. On 24 January, the 1,500 square-metre warehouse of a major distributor of kosher foods burned down in Montreuil, a rough eastern Paris suburb. Obviously arson but, with no graffiti, authorities hesitate to classify it as anti-Semitic.

The attack on 24-year-old Jonathan Guez began as an ordinary carjacking in Fontenay-sous-Bois, a Paris banlieue. "I came out with my car keys in my hand. A masked man stepped up and asked me to hand over the keys. A second man grabbed me from behind. The first man saw the Hebrew letters on my pendant. He asked me if it was Hebrew, and I said, ‘Yes.' He asked, ‘Are you Jewish?' I looked him in the eyes and said, ‘Yes.' He pulled out a butcher's knife, said Israel was drinking the blood of Palestinians. They spoke to each other in Arabic, they insulted me in Arabic and in French. The one with the knife said, ‘I am going to cut you until you bleed.' He slashed once. He said: ‘I am going to cut you until you die,' and drew the knife across my skin a second time, a third time. I fell to my hands and knees. The fourth time, the blood started to flow. Then he kicked me in the head with all his might.

"This shouldn't happen in France. I am French and Jewish and for that I was almost killed. The doctor said the last slash was two millimetres from the carotid."
He is physically and psychologically devastated. His ordeal is among the more than 350 anti-Semitic incidents, from insults to savage beatings, reported for the month of January alone as compared to 460 for the whole of 2008. This has been going on, with ups and downs, since the outbreak of the "al-Aqsa intifada" in September 2000. It has reached proportions that should be unacceptable to any self-respecting person, Jewish or not. We should be aware of the growing danger, not only for Jews but for everyone.

I am American, but I have lived in Paris for more than 35 years. Thousands of Jews have left France, many thousands think that they will have to leave, but hope they won't. Sephardi Jews who fled North Africa in the 1950s and '60s are now hounded and harassed by Muslim immigrants. The energy expended by the Jewish community since 2000 to defend itself and its honour has been weakened by endless insults,
repeated setbacks and the feeling that there is no collective heart in this society that can be truly reached. An "enough is enough" ad published by Jews in Le Figaro in April is more despondent than determined.

And yet, life can be so sweet on a balmy springtime evening in the Marais. How can such grace and charm be sacrificed to hostile forces whose strength is drawn from our weakness? Two years ago this month, Nicolas Sarkozy was triumphantly elected by citizens determined to stem the tide of reckless violence and reassert secular values. What went wrong? Could it be that the surrender to obsessive anti-Zionism is
disabling French society, turning it away from its true purpose, delivering it into the hands of its enemies?

Copyright © Social Affairs Unit Magazines Limited 2008
Source URL: http://www.standpointmag.co.uk/mayhem-in-the-marais-may-09-dispatches-paris-anti-semitism-violence
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DougMacG
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« Reply #289 on: May 11, 2009, 12:58:56 PM »

We received two types of responses from the 'BOYCOTT' video, one a literalist who saw nothing other than peaceful, free expression, and all others who connected this intimidation with car fires and property crime at the least, the implied threat of burning the store and ‘I am going to cut you until you die' at the worst.

I wanted to ask the one who saw nothing wrong in the France 'boycott' what he thought of the brick throwing rioters attacking 'Polis' cars in Sweden, but anticipating the answer that there was no connection, I refrained, but there is a connection.

I went to 'boycotters' website europalestine.com (google will translate websites but not videos) and found that they hate more than Jews and they support and applaud more that non-violence.  They attack Obama's war in Afghanistan and they link and post nice comments about the Swedish riot protesters.  Reading the website in its entirety it is pretty easy to ascertain that the expression "boycott" is meant in jest, allowing them more freedom to operate in France but that their view is that this is a war, they are participants, and you very likely are the enemy.

http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=fr&u=http://www.europalestine.com/&ei=MmMISobbNYyjtgew97z5Bg&sa=X&oi=translate&resnum=1&ct=result&prev=/search%3Fq%3Deuropalestine%26hl%3Den%26sa%3DG

Computer translations are not so perfect, here is 'europalestine' on Obama:
---
Obama stronger than Bush to Massacre the Population of Afghanistan

Published on 8-05-2009 (Europalestine.com)

The aviation of NATO has achieved a new record this week, killing more than 140 Afghan villagers, mostly women and children, in the western province of Farah. This is the balance the bloodiest in a single strike, attributed to U.S. troops and their subsidiary, since the launch of the war seven years ago.

The horror, that the U.S. authorities have sought to silence for 48 hours under a stream of lies, has finally been declared Wednesday afternoon, while Barack Obama received exactly the White House its Afghan puppet Hamid Karzai.

The U.S. administration has made a few crocodile tears over the bodies of Afghan villagers, but it has no intention of slowing its destructive madness, quite the contrary.
Obama has just to ask for a special supplementary budget of more than 60 billion dollars only for military operations in Afghanistan during the next fiscal year (October 2009 - September 2010) to finance the dispatch of tens of thousands (including 21,000 in the next quarter) troops as reinforcements.
----

BOYCOTT BOYCOTT   [Code word for destroy, destroy.  Please read.  - Doug]

No spectators, but many police officers for the Davis Cup in Sweden

Publié le 8-03-2009 Published on 8-03-2009

C'est dans un stade vide de 4000 places, protégé par un millier de policiers, que s'est déroulé le match de la Coupe Davis de Tennis, qui opposait un joueur Suédois à un tennisman israélien, hier à Mälmö. In a stadium of empty seats in 4000, protected by a thousand police, that held the match of the Davis Cup Tennis, a player who opposition to a Swedish tennis player Israel yesterday in Malmo.

La Fédération Internationale de Tennis, a eu beau faire les gros yeux, la Suède a maintenu sa décision de faire jouer cette coupe à huis clos, samedi. The International Tennis Federation, took to the big beautiful eyes, Sweden has maintained its decision to cut the play closed on Saturday.

Plus de 7000 manifestants s'étaient déplacés pour manifester contre les massacres israéliens à cette occasion, et le stade a dû être protégé par un millier de policiers, rapporte Al Jazeera. More than 7000 protesters had come to demonstrate against the Israeli massacres at this time, and the stage had to be protected by a thousand police, reports Al Jazeera.

Pas tout a fait une première en Suède, où la même chose s'était produite en 1975, lorsque la Suède avait accepté de recevoir un joueur d'une équipe chilienne de tennis, alors que le dictateur Augusto Pinochet faisait régner la terreur dans son pays. Not quite a first in Sweden, where the same thing occurred in 1975, when Sweden had agreed to receive a player from a team of Chilean tennis, while the dictator Augusto Pinochet was a reign of terror in his country .

Israël est désormais paria, de la même façon. Israel is now a pariah in the same way.

Et dans tous les cas de figure, c'est sous haute protection policière que ses représentants sportifs, culturels, artistiques, scientifiques, devront désormais se produire, dans le monde entier. And in any case, it is under police protection high that its sports, cultural, artistic, scientific, will now occur throughout the world.

Car aucun de ses sportifs, artistes, intellectuels... Because none of its athletes, artists, intellectuals ... ne conteste la colonisation israélienne et son escorte de crimes. does the Israeli settlement and its escort of crimes. Bon nombre d'entre eux font même partie de l'armée israélienne, et acceptent sans broncher —entre deux matches, deux concerts, ou deux dédicaces de livres— de participer à l'occupation des territoires palestiniens et la répression qu'ils subissent depuis plus de 60 ans. Many of them are also part of the Israeli army, and accept without flinching-two matches, concerts or two book-signings to participate in the occupation of Palestinian territories and the repression they suffered from more than 60 years. Et quand il n'y vont plus eux-mêmes, il y envoient leurs enfants, jouer le rôle de bourreaux. Car on sait le peu de valeur qu'ils accordent à la vie et à la moralité de leurs enfants. And when there are more themselves, send their children, act as executioners. Because we know how little value they attach to life and morals of their children.

BOYCOTT ! So to those who ask in the heart the mouth that "we do not mix politics and sport" or "politics and culture," we answer: BOYCOTT!


The words say "BOYCOTT!"  The photo immediately below the word "BOYCOTT" shows masked protesters trying to break windows on Swedish police vehicles by throwing large bricks.  You do the math.

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JDN
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« Reply #290 on: May 11, 2009, 04:02:40 PM »

We received two types of responses from the 'BOYCOTT' video, one a literalist who saw nothing other than peaceful, free expression, and all others who connected this intimidation with car fires and property crime at the least, the implied threat of burning the store and ‘I am going to cut you until you die' at the worst.

Hmmmm - could that one person be me?   huh

Literalist; Fidelity to observable fact (Webster).

Yep, that's me.   grin

And no, there is no direct literal connection between the "Boycott" video in France, and the rioters in Sweden.  The "boycott" in France was peaceful
and uneventful.  An example of free speech which we all value highly.  And I am only addressing the issue of the boycott in France.

To answer your question, "what do I think about the brick throwing rioters .... in Sweden"  I say arrest them all.  They are committing a crime.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #291 on: May 12, 2009, 12:13:39 AM »

JDN, I was wrong and I apologize.  You are only selectively literal since you remain confused over  whether or not the boycott people (boycott means DON'T BUY) were kind enough to pay for the items they ransacked off the stores shelves.  The placement of the items on the shelf is part of the investment of the proprietor and part of the product the store offers its customers.  The placement of the products was taken by the protesters WITHOUT COMPENSATION and they also should all be hauled off to jail for theft and destruction as much as the 'Swedish' rioters who were unable to break a window.

Your tolerance is not reciprocated.  They hate you the exact same amount that they hate GM or myself.

I'm guessing you don't own a store and never had a gang come in and 'peacefully' strip your shelves.

Arrest and prosecution did not not happen because of car fires, arson and intimidation.  Even though you don't see that, God Bless your right to hold and express a view.
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G M
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« Reply #292 on: May 12, 2009, 12:22:35 AM »

JDN,

You might want to read up on how protection rackets work. Islam, from it's origin has been a form of organized crime. It's "boycott" is nothing more than a version of the protection game.
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JDN
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« Reply #293 on: May 12, 2009, 08:36:08 AM »

"Even though you don't see that, God Bless your right to hold and express a view."

Thank you; different views makes the discussion much more interesting.  And I am always grateful I
live in America where we all can express our different views.

It is true, I am a literalist, but I try to be a consistent one.   smiley

IF (no proof that I am aware) the product was taken (stolen) without compensation, these protestors in France also should
be hauled off to jail for theft and be prosecuted accordingly.

But on what fact do you base your statement that these products were taken (stolen)?  And yes, I understand the "logic"
of a boycott, buying the product accomplishes the opposite, but this is not proof the products were stolen.   And in contrast
to Sweden, the French boycott seemed almost relaxed and casual.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #294 on: May 12, 2009, 10:21:56 AM »

"I am always grateful I live in America where we all can express our different views."

 - Same goes for freedom in France.  This group however openly favors the Taliban over the elected government of Afghanistan for example, which means to forcibly remove rights from others that they currently enjoy.

"IF (no proof that I am aware) the product was taken (stolen)..."

 - I will try a third time.  The product was taken from shelves.  If it was left in baskets instead of destroyed or stolen to avoid arrest for theft, they have still taken and stolen from the shopkeeper.  A store is not just a pile of products randomly strewn.  Part of the 'product' IS the placement and design.  The right to have oranges neatly arranged and stacked in the produce section and shampoos of the vendor's choice in the shampoo section.  If one customer takes one item from the shelf, changes his mind and leaves it by the checkout, that may be a nuisance less than a crime.  I have left a loaded cart in a store when I discovered that I had no chance of a checkout in a reasonable amount of time.  But I did not take their products from their shelves WITHOUT the intention of buying them as is the case here, on a massive and systematic scale.

The "product" in "GDP" includes goods and services.  The product of a supermarket is again not a pile of random goods, it is a arrangement, a presentation, an offering to the customer that they will be able to find and purchase that which they expect to be able to find and purchase and we know the shopkeeper wanted THOSE GOODS on THOSE SHELVES until someone takes the quantity they desire for purposes of BUYING them, which is where he can finally recover his sunken from buying the goods and PAYING THE LABOR cost and electric lighting cost and property tax, insurance etc to try to eek out a profit.  The store owner paid to have them put there and pays everyday to have them always look full and neatly arranged!  That is where he wanted them, until sold.  A mob even with a smile that undoes that has STOLEN something from him.  On the third try, do you really still not see that??

"An example of free speech which we all value highly."

 - Please do not include me in your "WE ALL VALUE...".  I certainly don't value any type of "free speech" that tromps all over other peoples rights and freedoms such as the right to conduct business in a legal manner of their choosing, to buy and sell products from the sources of THEY choose and for the shopkeeper's right to design his own displays and have product stay in those arrangements until a customer comes and takes them with the intent of buying.  What you say 'seemed peaceful' I witnessed as LITERALLY trespassing and vandalism, even more evident and 'proven' than a brick thrown at a window that did not break glass.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2009, 11:03:35 AM by DougMacG » Logged
JDN
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« Reply #295 on: May 12, 2009, 12:37:35 PM »

Back to my being a Literalist.

And while I understand your point about labor, lighting costs, property taxes, etc.
that has what to do with criminal theft in this instance???  Zero...  I mean, as you pointed out, any customer can
take merchandise off the shelf, decide not to buy it, and leave it in the store.  Criminal theft  huh
For what?  The DA would have a good laugh grin

Further, it was peaceful; this supposed "mob" as you call them were laughing and smiling as were the other customers in the store.
All shopping and going about their business I might point out.

I suppose you can read into and interpret as you desire, and disagree with their reasons for demanding a boycott, but...

So just a summary, i.e. the literal FACTS.
No one was hurt.
The protestors expressed a legal free speech opinion (boycott) supported by many, i.e. Israel is acting in the wrong regarding Palestine.
Nothing was stolen.
Nothing was vandalized (The intentional and malicious destruction of or damage to the property of another.)
Nobody trespassed (entering onto land without consent of the landowner.)
No one seemed to complain; neither management nor other customers.
Everyone seemed to be having a good time.
Business went on as normal...

Only you complain???  And post.  And imply violence, theft, vandalism, trespass, etc. when none are true?

And maybe you are right; I should not say "WE", I will say "I" value free speech. 


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G M
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« Reply #296 on: May 12, 2009, 01:20:33 PM »

If you disrupt a business, you are depriving a business of money, which is a form of theft. If you are doing it to force it to submit to you, this is racketeering/extortion.


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/1581141/Mafia-free-supermarket-defies-mob-extortion.html

Mafia-free supermarket defies mob extortion
 
By Nick Pisa in Rome
Last Updated: 9:42PM GMT 08 Mar 2008

Fabio Messina (left) in his mob-free shop in Palermo
Shoppers in Sicily have the chance to take on the Mafia after the first racket-free supermarket opened yesterday on the island long dominated by the mob.
Its owner, Fabio Messina, is taking a brave stand against the organisation by stacking his shelves with products only from firms which - like his own - have refused to pay pizzo, the local term for protection money.
 

"For too long ordinary citizens of Palermo and business people have been held to ransom, and now we are fighting back," said Pasquale Masucci, a computer technician who was one of the store's first customers.
The supermarket, located in the heart of Palermo, is the latest initiative from campaign group Addiopizzo (Goodbye Pizzo) that has been fighting racketeering since 2004.
Its campaign was launched by pasting up posters around the city overnight, bearing the slogan: "A society that pays pizzo is a society without dignity.''
Investigators estimate that the Mafia extorts more than £130 million a year from shops and businesses in the Palermo region, with the island as a whole handing over 10 times that figure. The more money a business makes, the more money the Godfathers expect - and those who don't pay up are quickly paid a visit.
It starts with a friendly chat to explain the rules, followed by a nudge such as a brick through the window. If that fails to make the point, a home, business or car might be firebombed.
Small shops are expected to hand over around £100 a month: for supermarkets and jewellers, the going rate is nearer £1,000.
But shoppers and businesses are rebelling, with those refusing to pay adding their names online at the Addiopizzo website. As of yesterday, 241 firms and individuals were listed.
Now Mr Messina, 29, has decided to bring them together by stocking their items in Supermercato Punto Antipizzo - literally, anti-pizzo point supermarket.
He said: "I felt the time had come to give those businesses that had refused to pay the pizzo an extra economic opportunity.
"All the products in the store are supplied by firms who have refused to pay pizzo — we are talking about products from fruit and vegetables to wine, olive oil, pasta and bread. The sort of items you find in any normal supermarket."
Gerlando Mazone, an optician who is among the anti-Mafia traders, has refused to back down despite suffering several break-ins.
Mr Mazone said: "I refused to pay the pizzo and the windows were smashed and I lost £230,000 worth of stock.
"I then also noticed my customers were falling away and it broke my heart. I am not ashamed to say I cried every night. But with the help of Addiopizzo I am starting to get back on my feet.
"Of course I could have gone to the local boss, paid the money and got my stock back - but I don't see why I should share my profits with anyone other than my staff.''
Centre left senator Francesco Ferrante, who has campaigned against Mafia racketeering, said: "With the opening of this supermarket a new symbol of rebellion and pride has been born from a category that has too often been crushed by Cosa Nostra.
"They have decided to declare war on the racketeers by giving honest citizens the opportunity to fight back against the godfathers with a simple gesture - such as buying from a pizzo free supermarket.''
Shoppers in Palermo hope this stand will prove successful. "If everybody does just one thing like this then we are all making a stand against the Mafia," said Mr Masucci's wife Tiziana, a teacher. "I am not afraid to come shopping here and I have told all my friends about it. I wish the owner all the success in the world."
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JDN
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« Reply #297 on: May 12, 2009, 01:51:13 PM »

If you disrupt a business, you are depriving a business of money, which is a form of theft. If you are doing it to force it to submit to you, this is racketeering/extortion.

huh

It is my understanding GM that you are connected with Law Enforcement.  How many times in all your years of service have you heard about arresting someone because they took a few items
off a retail supermarket shelf, decided they didn't want to buy these items, and then simply left them in another part of the store.  NEVER?
Of course the answer is never!  It is not a crime.

Your example in Palermo is like comparing apples and oranges.  "windows are smashed, firebombing and stock destroyed". 

In the French example, it was a peaceful boycott; period.  Nothing illegal done, nothing broken or destroyed.

And your point is?
« Last Edit: May 12, 2009, 01:53:15 PM by JDN » Logged
G M
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« Reply #298 on: May 12, 2009, 01:59:53 PM »

Did you miss this article posted above?

I had a scoop on the Marais fires, but didn't even know about the "supermarket intifada", in which French supermarkets, such as Carrefour, have been invaded and any produce suspected of originating from Israel is destroyed, until I was told about it by my friend and colleague, Tom Gross (www.tomgrossmedia.com). Except for a brief mention on the France 2 TV channel, the media have ignored that story.

Boycott Israel is a longstanding passion of Olivia Zemmour, a Tunisian Jew whose venomous hatred of Israel knows no bounds. Goons from her organisation, CAPJPO, now united with an outfit called EuroPalestine, beat up Jewish boys from the left-wing Zionist Hashomer Hazaïr youth movement during a 2003 "peace march".
Look at the EuroPalestine website (www.europalestine.com) and you don't need to understand French to get the flavour of their unabashed anti-Zionist operations. Islamists face the camera and spew out hate-filled talking points: Israel=Occupation, Genocide, Apartheid. A "commando" with a trademark beard and North African accent holds up an Israeli product, declaring: "We won't allow this stuff chez nous. This is our country." Then he sweeps up bottles of shampoo and threatens: "This is what will happen to anyone who supports Israel."

If it were only a few thousand wackos here, a handful of delinquents there, a few pinpricks in a healthy society, but this is not the case. It is an onslaught and it's moving fast. France-Info radio just reported a little sugar-coated item on the joyous Muslim converts attending the annual UOIF (French branch of the Muslim Brotherhood) convention at Le Bourget.

Islamist movements are emboldened because the authorities, the media and secular society have failed to react properly to their show of force in January. Using the Israeli operation in Gaza as a pretext, the French-Arab street swung into action with a vengeance. I watched angry Muslims pouring from all directions into Place de la République on 3 January, hastily donning their keffiehs, marching as to war. While the
media (with the notable exception of an unsigned article in Le Figaro) painted this explosion of organised rage in the soft colours of anti-war protest, Islamist websites proudly displayed their true face: blood-curdling shouts of "Death to Israel, Death to the Jews"; Hamas and Hizbollah flags, slogans; violent attacks on the police; and the destruction of public and private property. Those were not demonstrations, they were acts of conquest by jihad foot soldiers claiming our streets, in our society, for the free expression of hate speech, death threats and genocidal promises.

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JDN
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« Reply #299 on: May 12, 2009, 02:19:27 PM »

No I read it and I deplore such violence.

But the issue in question is the French Boycott tape.  Doug posted it;
I said, "What's the problem" and baseless accusations were thrown about that the protestors
were stealing merchandise, destroying property, trespassing, vandalizing, etc. yet in this instance NONE
of these accusations were true.  It was was it looked like; a simple peaceful protest against
Israel's involvement in Palestine.  Agree or disagree, they are entitled to peaceably protest.
And frankly, I think many people in Europe all across religious faiths agree that Israel is in the wrong.  They are entitled
to their opinion, aren't they?  And suggesting a boycott is a valid and legal method of protest, isn't it?

If at other locations, i.e. Palermo or Marais or South Los Angeles there is violence, well, arrest the perpetrators
but that has nothing directly to do with the peaceful protest at the French Supermarket in question.



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