egypt_sisi

Lessons from Egypt

Egypt’s reputation Abdullah Al-Sinawi writes in middleeastmonitor.com, August 2016, ‘The economic crisis in Egypt is escalating and the government is looking to sign a contract with the IMF for the value of $12 billion and for other loans worth $9 billion from other international institutions as a final resort before any possible collapse. The most…

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Dodgy Padres!

Wobbly church fathers, monks and rabbis! Child abuse not taken up under Bishop Nazir Ali’s watch Michael Nazir Ali was appointed Bishop of Rochester in 1994, resigning after 15 years of service, in order  ‘to work with Muslim converts to Christianity in Britain’ (Daily Telegraph, 28 March 2009) and collaborating with Patrick Sookhdeo of the Barnabas Fund,…

Revolving Doors

There seems to be a seamless progression of public servants and politicians pursuing lucrative second careers…and vice versa. Some Post-Chilcot revelations: ‘ Jack Straw (former Home Secretary & Foreign Secretary) . . . has worked as a well-paid consultant to a commodities firm ED&f Man’; ‘Geoff Hoon (former Defence Secretary) . . . in May 2011, he…

RICU

RICU in focus

RICU remains in the news…  Ian Cobain, Alice Ross, Rob Evans and Mona Mahmood reporting in the Guardian, 2 May 2016: One Ricu initiative, which advertises itself as a campaign providing advice on how to raise funds for Syrian refugees, has had face-to-face conversations with thousands of students at university freshers’ fairs without any students realising…

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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… a climate of suspicion permeates, with an impact on individual and collective behaviour. Rob Evans and Vikram Dodd in the Guardian, 28th April 2016, ‘A  secretive police unit tasked with spying on alleged extremists intent on committing serious…

Islamophobia2

Islamophobia Dossier 2015

Most recent: Bow  violence; clumsy headline in broadsheet; Woking graffiti.  Three part dossier:  FIRST THE CLUMSY ACTIONS & STATEMENTS,  THEN THE MOCKING, ALARMIST TALK  AND FINALLY THE ABUSE, PHYSICAL DAMAGE, VIOLENCE For 2014 Islamophobia log, click here For 2013 Islamophobia log, click here For 2012 Islamophobia log, click here For 2011 Islamophobia log, click here…

memobookaward

Celebrating the Palestinian identity

The fourth Palestine Book Awards, an event ‘to honour and endorse the best books written in English on the subject of Palestine’, took place last night (19th November) in Paddington. The annual awards are organised by Middle East Monitor,  a media research institute based in London.  This year’s recipients were Jean-Pierre Filiu (for Gaza: A…

synagogue knocker

Visiting a Synagogue

The air was a bit musty but the welcome warm and friendly. Salaam Blogger had often passed the Fieldgate Street Great Synagogue doorways, wondering what it was like inside. The opportunity arose on a Sunday afternoon (25th October 2015), at an Open Day organised by the East London Mosque, which surrounds the place on three sides!…

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…

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…