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Fly on the wall

French hypocrisy So is the French state really neutral about religion? Not from President Francois Hollande’s latest statement (11th October 2016, reported in lexpress.fr). “Ce n’est pas l’islam qui pose un problème dans le sens où ce serait une religion qui serait dangereuse en elle-même, mais parce qu’elle veut s’affirmer comme une religion dans la République.”…

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Archives’ sorry tales

An unhappy catalogue of lost (or concealed) archives…. Ian Jack in The Guardian, ‘. . . When Britain quit India in 1947, a colonial official noted that “the press greatly enjoyed themselves with the pall of smoke which hung over Delhi with the mass destruction of documents”. By the time of Malayan independence in 1957, the…

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Torture – a shared value?

                  Spencer  Ackerman in the Guardian, 11 September 2016, ‘Bush was, for the first time, acknowledging the existence of the program that Senate intelligence committee staff investigator Daniel Jones would later expose as taking power drills to the heads of captured men; making them stand with their…

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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. However, censorship is widespread… UK Self-censorship at the Catholic Herald, reported by Roy Greenslade in the…

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The Honey Traps

Martin Evans and Ben Farmer in the Daily Telegraph, ‘. . . [Anjem] Choudary was eventually prosecuted after swearing an oath of allegiance to Isil and posting YouTube videos in which he praised the murderous group. But there have been questions about why it took the authorities so long to prosecute Choudary, with some suggesting the…

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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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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…