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…  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…

torture

Torture – a shared value?

                  “Lawyers for Abdel Hakim Belhaj and his wife Fatima Bouchar will also seek to sue the then foreign secretary, Jack Straw, who was responsible for MI6, for his alleged complicity in the family’s secret rendition to the Libyan capital in 2004….Court documents served by the law firm…

cricket

Hit for a Six!

Who said this? Living in Britain kills me. Everything is so safe, so sanitized and regulated, life here feels like being shut into a tiny box Not some problematic young Muslim male – but rather Aris Roussinos – author of the recently published My Life Behind Enemy Lines with warlords, fanatics, and not so friendly fire…

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 [...]…

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 July 2014   In a remarkably frank articulation of London’s subservience to Washington, William Hague said in response to the Isis advances: ‘We…

Blair – the tired/tiring record

July 2014 One of the attractions for Blair in working with the United Arab Emirates and al-Sisi is apparently that the latter two have turned against the Muslim Brotherhood. Blair is a profound Islamophobe and hates the Muslim religious Right, even though he has been perfectly happy to shill for the Christian religious Right. Al-Sisi…

collar

Dodgy Padres!

Wobbly church fathers,monks and rabbis! Blessed are the poor in spirit,     for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 5:3) No wonder the Pope has been embarrassed by the actions of Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, in charge of the Holy See and its administration under Pope Benedict XVI . This church leader has apparently decided to…

censored

Censorship is OK for the lascars

So there are limits to freedom of expression after all! But not if it applies to Muslims. New York’s famed Metropolitan Opera cancels ‘Death of Klingoffer’       New York’s Metropolitan Opera have cancelled an international simulcast of John Adams’ opera The Death of Klinghoffer due to “an outpouring of concern” that it “might…

immigration

Immigration – Britain cannot do without!

          All our Yesterdays! Ian Jack, reviewing Chapman Pincher’s biography in the London Review of Books (5 June 2014) quotes an encounter the veteran journalist had with Harold Macmillan in the 60s: A sad, otherwordly conversation with Macmillan occurs when he asks the retired prime minister why he didn’t foresee that…

Extremists – what us?

“Every year the American historian William Blum publishes his ‘updated summary of the record of US foreign policy’ which shows that, since 1945, the US has tried to overthrow more than 50 governments, many democratically elected; grossly interfered in elections in 30 countries; bombed the civilian populations of 30 countries; used chemical and biological weapons;…