Rabiya_egypt

Fly on the wall

Sisi’s charm offensive in London Will he, won’t he? Prime Minister Cameron is due to host Egypt’s putsch leader General Abdel Fateh Al-Sisi – however a petition  to Parliament is now underway urging him to desist. Preparing the ground, there is apparently a high-powered delegation arriving in Britain, led by some of Azhar’s compliant ulema. A poorly…

extremists-box

Extremists – what us?

David Keys in The Independent, ‘During the Cold War, the British Government used the general public as unwitting biological and chemical warfare guinea pigs on a much greater scale than previously thought, according to new historical research…Up until now historians had thought that such operations had been much less extensive. The new research, carried out…

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…

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…

terrorism-laws2

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…  Joshua Rozenberg in the Guardian, 5th February 2015: Police will be forced to seek the permission of a judge if they want to retrieve the phone and email records of journalists. The ruling comes after the prime…

immigration

Immigration – Britain cannot do without!

          Niki Chesworth in the Evening Standard, 24 November 2014: ‘…the London Ambulance Service (LAS) has been forced to look abroad to fill its vacancies as a result of the shortage of paramedics in the UK, hiring paramedics from Australia and New Zealand after a recruitment drive…However, nursing and midwifery has…

Revolving Doors

There seems to be a seamless progression of public servants and politicians pursuing lucrative second careers…and vice versa. “It is a curious coincidence that Assistant Chief Constable Anton Setchell, head of the entire UK domestic extremism spying operations between 2004 and 2010, is now head of security for engineering firm Laing O’Rourke…”. Dave Smith, the Guardian,…

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 Michael Clarke of RUSI: …the British took responsibility for Helmand in 2006. It was a move dictated as much by…

censored

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…