extremists-box

Extremists – what us?

The Guardian reports, ‘The government delayed taking action to prevent Iraq obtaining chemical weapons partially because British exporters were involved in the trade, according to Foreign Office documents.Newly released papers from 1983 show that even before Iraq began widespread use of poison gas to repel Iranian attacks, diplomats were aware of Baghdad’s covert technology programme.[…] In…

no.10

Fly on the wall

Strange Encounters at No.10 Shortly after 9/11, some Muslim community representatives were summoned by Prime Minister Tony Blair. His Rasputin-like Director of Communications, Alistair Campbell, assumed that the Muslim leaders would obediently come ‘on message’ in backing the imminent war in Afghanistan. He sidled up to the Muslim delegation, and breathing down heavily, announced, “You guys have got a selling job…

secret-state2

Metrics of Domestic Security

  The Amnesty website reports, ‘The IPT (Investigatory Powers Tribunal) admitted in a short email that GCHQ has been unlawfully intercepting and storing our communications. How could the IPT make such a fundamental error? How had they failed to notice for over a week? Why had our communications been under surveillance? When did this happen? How did…

torture

Torture – a shared value?

                  Libya rendition update: ‘According to the documents discovered after the fall of Gaddafi, five men were subjected to control orders on the basis of intelligence assessments that are now alleged to have been based in part on information extracted during Libyan interrogation of the two opposition…

Rabiya_egypt

Lessons from Egypt

Reflections on the Arab Spring, the challenges besetting Muslim communities, the crisis of the nation-state project, the Sisi Conspiracy… Exposing the apologists for the military coup of 30th June 2013 &  various Sisi supporters Shaykh Ali Ju’mah Shaykh Ali Jum’ah was my teacher, 25 years ago. I have always respected his knowledge and profound critical…

witches

Islamophobia Dossier 2015

29th June 2015, Daily Mail’s license to abuse Islam, Muslim graves desecrated, Exeter school scare  – Three part dossier:  FIRST THE CLUMSY ACTIONS & STATEMENTS,  THEN THE MOCKING, ALARMIST TALK  AND FINALLY THE ABUSE, PHYSICAL DAMAGE, VIOLENCE Like the Witches of Pendle of yesteryear, Muslims are a convenient scapegoat today. For 2014 Islamophobia log, click here…

syria-britain

Syria/Iraq – a time for cool heads

  The Government’s mixed signals on Syria revealed in the Bherlin Gildo case, as reported in The Guardian, ‘ The prosecution of a Swedish national accused of terrorist activities in Syria has collapsed at the Old Bailey after it became clear Britain’s security and intelligence agencies would have been deeply embarrassed had a trial gone ahead… His…

quotes

Dodgy Padres!

Wobbly church fathers, monks and rabbis! No Drivers Please! Naomi Alderman expressing indignation with the London-based Jewish orthodox community objecting to women driving cars: ‘But I wish the office of the chief rabbi – supposedly a moderate and outward-facing organisation – had come up with more leadership than the milquetoast statement: “The Belz Hasidic dynasty…

WoT & the deeper malaise

Paul Krugman in the NYT, 18th May 2015: ‘…America invaded Iraq because the Bush administration wanted a war. The public justifications for the invasion were nothing but pretexts, and falsified pretexts at that. We were, in a fundamental sense, lied into war. The fraudulence of the case for war was actually obvious even at the…

bbc

Watching the BBC

Frances Stonor Saunders, writing about the left-wing academic Eric Hobsbawm, also provides new insights on the vetting of BBC staff in the 1980s: ‘Vetting of sensitive posts was presented as a perfectly sensible policy, a national security matter, and insofar as the practice was discussed at all, it was not controversial. Yet it provided legitimacy…