Afghanistan

Afghanistan – Pride & Prejudice – Part X

                      23 October 2014 “In the summer of 2006, some British forces in Afghanistan found themselves effectively stranded in a number of outposts in the north of Helmand province. Overstretched, under constant fire and heavily dependent on helicopters, soldiers ran dangerously low on food, water…

That Special Relationship

    What is the nature of the special relationship between Britain and the US? “Britain’s special relationship with the US is so special only one side knows it exists” – Helmut Schmidt     October 2014 The UK Government is known to have flown its own armed RPA missions in Iraq, Libya and Afghanistan,…

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Extremists – what us?

“The US and Saudi Arabia feared Iran’s Islamic revolution would sweep the Mideast and overthrow its oil monarchs. So Washington and its Arab allies convinced Iraq’s president, Saddam Hussein, to invade Iran (1980-1988) and overthrow its new government. Arms and money flowed to Iraq from the US, Britain, Kuwait and the Saudis…After three years of…

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Lessons for socio-political activists

                Egypt’s neo-Pharaohs –  Ahdaf Soueif writing in the Guardian: “Since 30 June 2013, some 40,000 people have been arrested and 16,000 of them remain in prison. The majority probably belong to the now outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, of whom some will have committed acts of violence; most will…

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Hit for a Six!

An evening with the Radicals It is not often that community organisers and activists, for ever reacting to one or other crisis, have an opportunity to raise their level of political literacy and even think long-term. The book launch of S.Sayyid’s Recalling the Caliphate, Decolonisation and the World Order  was a welcome opportunity for such…

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Metrics of Domestic Security

  Rob Evans reports in the Guardian: “…There are more than 1,200 undercover police officers operating in 39 units across England and Wales the police watchdog has revealed for the first time…The watchdog [Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary] broke new ground by disclosing the breadth of modern undercover work, revealing that there were 3,466 undercover…

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Terrorism Laws – crows come home to roost?

The misuse of Britain’s hastily conceived anti-terrorism/counter-terrorism laws and security regimes is now affecting society as a whole…  The Sun has made an official complaint about the Metropolitan police’s use of anti-terror laws to snoop on its political editor’s phone calls. It has written to the Investigatory Powers Tribunal to seek a public review of the…

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Islamophobia – the facts – 2014

Updated 1st October – Muslim boy attacked in Southend – THE ABUSE, PHYSICAL DAMAGE, VIOLENCE. Three part dossier:  FIRST THE CLUMSY ACTIONS & STATEMENTS,  THEN THE MOCKING, ALARMIST TALK  AND FINALLY THE ABUSE, PHYSICAL DAMAGE, VIOLENCE   Islamophobic talk inevitably leads to anti-Muslim hate crimes – it is time an irresponsible media and populist politicians recognise how their loose…

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Syria/Iraq – a time for cool heads

Home Secretary Theresa May’s Tory Conference speech – on Britons travelling to Syria: The threat we face from ISIL is made even greater by the fact that there are at least 500 British nationals who have gone to Syria and Iraq, many of them to fight. Where they have dual nationality, I have the power to…

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Censorship is OK for some!

So there are limits to freedom of expression after all! But not if it applies to Muslims. If Muslims protest, then it becomes a battle to preserve artistic freedoms and the rights of expression, regardless of the insult caused. Catholic theologian banned A female Catholic theologian has been banned by the Archbishop of St Andrews…