torture

Torture – a shared value?

                  AFP report in the Guardian: “British authorities have been accused of funding a four-year intelligence operation in Nepal that led to Maoist rebels being arrested, tortured and killed during the country’s civil war. Thomas Bell, the author of a new book on the conflict, says MI6 funded…

immigration

Immigration – Britain cannot do without!

            “Foreign students should be excluded from the government’s target for cutting non-EU immigration, the former Deputy Prime Minister Michael Heseltine has urged.[...] His remarks were supported by Labour’s shadow business secretary, Chuka Umunna. “Government immigration policy and rhetoric has already done immense damage to higher education – one of the…

pentagon

Hit for a Six!

What’s in a name! For some time now, George W Bush’s ‘War on Terror’ has been dropped by the US Department of Defense – it is the ‘US Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO)’. One vacuous term replaced by another. This is a common wheeze to deflect opprobrium and public disgust. The private mercenary firm Blackwater changed…

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Islamophobia – the facts – 2014

  Updated 19th August - Chadderton Cemetery vandalism – THE ABUSE, PHYSICAL DAMAGE, VIOLENCE 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 talk demonising Muslims…

quotes

Lessons for socio-political activists

                Egyptian security forces intentionally killed at least 817 protesters during last August’s Rabaa massacre, in a premeditated attack equal to or worse than China’s Tiananmen Square killings in 1989, Human RightsWatch (HRW) has argued in a report. The 195-page investigation based on interviews with 122 survivors and witnesses has found Egypt’s…

john-bennett

An English spiritualist’s Yezidi encounters

John G Bennett (died 1974) travelled widely in the regions now lying between the Turkish-Iraqi-Syrian borders in the early 1950s, visiting tekkes, zawiyas and other sacred sites, later settling in England to establish the Coombe Springs sanctuary for spiritualist studies. Saturday 31st October 1953 After Nimrud, we had an experience of quite a different order when we went…

collar

Dodgy Padres!

Wobbly church fathers,monks and rabbis! The Churches during the National-Socialist era Charles Marsh’s recent biography on the heroic Pastor Bonhoeffer provides some insights on the less laudable responses of the Churches to the Nazis in 1930s Germany. Christian teachings “could be commandeered in the service of Germany, especially when the German theological establishment prsumed the…

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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 current British definition of terrorism is so broadly drawn that it could even catch political journalists and bloggers who publish material that the authorities consider dangerous to public safety, said the official counter-terrorism watchdog [David Anderson…

gaza

Gaza: merely a retaliation?

Ilam Pappe was brilliantly incisive in his recent contribution to Electronic Intifada: The present genocidal wave has, like all the previous ones, also a more  immediate background. It has been borne out of an attempt to foil the Palestinian decision to form a unity government that even the United States could not object to [...]…

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Metrics of Domestic Security

  Official data to be released on Tuesday will show that the details of 1,281 people were referred to the government’s “Prevent” scheme, up from 748 the year before, with officers citing the civil war in Syria as the main reason for the increase…Since 2007, 1,450 children aged 18 and under have been referred to…