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Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Douglas Murray : UK: Two Systems of Justice : The Tommy Robinson case!


  • Tommy Robinson has not been -- as Choudary was -- at the heart of a nexus of terrorists and terrorist-supporters going back years. He has not been on friendly terms with numerous people who have beheaded civilians and carried out suicide bombings.
  • Robinson is in an exceptionally unfortunate position. He is not a radical Islamist and nor is he from any discernible minority. He is a white working-class man who, it appears, can thus not only be harassed by certain authorities with impunity, but can find few if any defenders of his rights among the vast panoply of people in our societies who are only too keen to defend the rights of Islamists.
  • Civil liberties groups such as "Liberty," which are so stringent in protecting the rights of Islamist groups such as "Cage," are silent on the case of Tommy Robinson.
So farewell, then, Anjem Choudary. For two and half years at least. On September 6, the radical cleric was sentenced by a British judge to five and a half years in prison for encouraging people to join the Islamic State. If he behaves himself in prison he could be out in half that time, although whenever he emerges, it is unlikely that it will be as a reformed character. But the law has taken its course and in a rule-bound society has responded in the way that a rule-bound society ought to behave -- by the following due process. So it is useful to compare the experience of Anjem Choudary and the way in which the state has responded to him with the way in which it has responded to another person.

It is now seven years ago that a young British man from Luton going by the name of Tommy Robinson formed the English Defence League (EDL). He did so after he and other residents of the town of Luton were appalled by a group of radical Muslims who protested a home-coming parade for British troops. There is some interesting symmetry here in that the Islamists present in Luton that day were members of Anjem Choudary's group, al-Muhajiroun. Robinson and other residents of Luton were not only taken aback by the behaviour of the radicals but by the behaviour of the police who protected the radicals from the increasingly angry local residents.

Whatever its legitimate grievances when it began, the EDL did undoubtedly cause trouble. Protests often descended into thuggery, partly because of some bad people attracted to it and partly because "anti-fascist" counter-demonstrators often ensured that EDL protests became violent by starting fights with them. But through most of the time that Robinson led the EDL, there did appear to be -- confirmed by third-party observers including independent journalists -- a sincere and concerted effort to keep genuinely problematic elements out of the organisation.

To those who said that Robinson and his friends had no right to organise protests, there are two responses. The first is that they had as much right to be there as anyone else. And second, that the problems they were objecting to (hate-preachers, grooming-gangs and so on) are real issues, which the state has increasingly realised are such in the years that followed.

In 2013 Robinson left the group he started, and in the years since, has engaged in a range of activities, including authoring a book. The book chronicles, among other things, a campaign by the state of harassment, which began from the moment Robinson formed the EDL. His own house and those of his nearest relatives were repeatedly raided by police, and computers and other materials taken away for examination. Any fair reading of the book -- whose details have again been broadly confirmed by the few journalists who have been interested in the case -- suggests that there was a very clear and concerted effort to find something -- anything -- on Robinson to get him locked up.

In the end the police did find something -- a mortgage fraud matter -- for which Robinson was eventually tried and found guilty. In 2014, he was imprisoned for eighteen months. Even after his release, the effort to find something on Robinson continued. His movements were restricted. His ability to speak and congregate was restricted. He was repeatedly threatened with a return to prison for alleged breaches of bail conditions. On one occasion, the nature of the charge was a brawl Robinson had been involved with in prison, with a Muslim prisoner who was allegedly in the act of attacking Robinson -- who had repeatedly been placed in prison wings where there were large numbers of Muslim inmates.
Since his release, as before, Robinson has been repeatedly assaulted in the streets, including by Luton Muslims who have faced no subsequent charges for their attacks, even when caught on camera. In February of this year, he was hospitalised after being assaulted upon leaving a nightclub in Essex.

Then, this August, as he and his family were attending a football game in Cambridge, they were once again the subject of police harassment. While sitting in a pub with his wife and young children, they were ejected from the pub by Cambridgeshire police. The police did this despite the volunteered insistence of the management of the pub that the family had been doing nothing wrong and were causing no trouble. Police escorted Robinson and his family from the premises, and on the video footage of the incident you can easily hear the sound of Robinson's young children crying.


Unlike Anjem Choudary (left), who was at the heart of a nexus of terrorists and terrorist-supporters, Tommy Robinson (right) is a white working-class man who can not only be harassed by police and other authorities with impunity, but can find few if any defenders of his rights among the vast panoply of people in our societies who are only too keen to defend the rights of Islamists.

There will be those who think that such harassment of Robinson is correct -- that in order to keep the peace it is necessary to keep an eye on anybody who may have any effect to the contrary. But if that is true, it is curious that such measures were not routinely used on Anjem Choudary in all his years living freely in the community. It would be interesting to know if there are any records of Choudary and his family being harassed by police or removed from establishments while the hate-preacher was on whatever down-time he used to have. Or whether the British police ever routinely raid and search the houses of radical Islamists in the hope of finding errors in their VAT returns and the like.

But of course the very comparison is unfair and in many ways lazy, because Tommy Robinson has not been -- as Choudary was -- at the heart of a nexus of terrorists and terrorist-supporters going back years. He has not been on friendly terms with numerous people who have beheaded civilians and carried out suicide bombings.

There are not any occasions, of which the author is aware, on which Robinson has called for violence or the breaking of the law in the name of his political views. But in the eyes of the law, much of the media and a certain number of people in the country Robinson is in an exceptionally unfortunate position. He is not a radical Islamist and nor is he from any discernible minority. He is a white working-class man who, it appears, can thus not only be harassed by certain authorities with impunity, but can find few if any defenders of his rights among the vast panoply of people in our societies who are only too keen to defend the rights of Islamists.

Civil liberties groups such as "Liberty'" which are so stringent in protecting the rights of Islamist groups such as "Cage," are silent on the case of Tommy Robinson. To consider why this is so is to see to the heart of a problem that Britain has been going through in recent years and which seems destined to continue for many years to come.
Douglas Murray, British author, commentator and public affairs analyst, is based in London, England.
======================

Nonie Darwish : What About the Cultural Imbalance?


  • If we do not demand equal cultural access, such a cultural imbalance will result in one side absorbing the values of the other, while keeping the Islamic nation "pure" and free of any outside influence. This one-sided cultural tyranny is forcing us, the American citizen, into tolerating intolerance while never expecting anything more aligned to Western values from the Muslim world.
  • As soon as Muslims form a small community inside a Western nation, they immediately deny access to any kind of Biblical preaching or education inside their community, but at the same time apparently feel entitled to demand access to preach the Koran in American prisons and spread Islamic culture and values in American schools.
  • If Muslims finance Islamic Studies departments on American campuses and teach Islam in our public schools, the same rights must be awarded to Americans. It is true there are a few American schools in the Middle East, such as the American University in Cairo, but these schools are forbidden from having departments of Biblical Studies.
  • If Muslim governments and citizens have full access to build mosques in America, America must insist on having the same access in their countries. That is not the fault of Muslim countries, so much as it is the fault of Western "multiculturalism," which expects nothing and is adhered to only by Western nations.
  • If such one-sided access of Islam into the West continues, while other religions in Muslim communities and countries are considered by them illegal "hate crimes," Western culture and the values of free will and religious freedom will atrophy and die. Islamists are counting on Western inertia to win.
Similar to the often-mentioned trade imbalance, there is a large imbalance Western nations and Muslim nations that is hardly ever mentioned: the cultural imbalance.

Muslims have access to build mosques in the West, yet give no access to the West to build churches or synagogues in Muslim countries. Muslim governments finance "Islamic Studies" and "Middle East Studies" departments in almost all major American universities, but will not allow Christian Studies or Judaic Studies departments at any university in the Muslim world. They freely preach Islam everywhere and consider it their right. But not one Muslim country legally permits Christian missionary work, and those few missionaries who dare to try are harshly punished, imprisoned or killed.

As soon as Muslims form a small community inside a Western nation, they immediately deny access to any kind of Biblical preaching or education inside their community, but at the same time apparently feel entitled to demand access to preach the Koran in American prisons and spread Islamic culture and values in American schools.

Evangelical ministers have often been expelled from Arab and Islamic communities. This happened at an Arab festival in Dearborn, Michigan. The city of Dearborn had to apologize for arresting several Christian missionaries who were peacefully preaching to Muslims at the Dearborn Arab International Festival in 2010.


Dearborn police arrest a Christian for the "crime" of peacefully preaching to Muslims at the Dearborn Arab International Festival, in 2010.

It was also reported by the Telegraph that two Christian ministers in the UK were ordered by a "community support officer" to "stop handing out gospel leaflets in a predominantly Muslim area of Birmingham." The local Muslims threatened to beat the pastors, and accused them of committing a "hate crime" against Muslims by preaching the gospel -- while Muslim preachers are preaching Islam and building mosques all over the world.

If such one-sided access of Islam into the West continues, while access to other religions in Muslim communities and countries is considered by them an illegal "hate crime," Western culture and the values of free will and religious freedom will atrophy and die. Western values will be the loser in this equation. Islamists are counting on Western inertia to win.

If Muslim governments and citizens have full access to build mosques in America, America must insist that it has the same access in Muslim countries. The fault is not with the Muslim countries so much as it is the fault of Western "multiculturalism," which expects nothing and is adhered to only by Western nations.

If Muslim countries have the right to proselytize in America, then Americans must insist on having the right to do the same in Muslim countries. If Muslims finance Islamic Studies departments on American campuses and teach Islam in our public schools, then the same rights must be awarded to Americans. It is true there are a few American schools in the Middle East, such as the American University in Cairo, but these schools are forbidden from having departments of Biblical Studies.

The Coptic Christians of Egypt have no access to any services from the Egyptian government to study the Bible. While every school in Egypt teaches Islam and the Koran, Egyptian Christians are left to play instead of being provided with equivalent religious studies.

If we do not demand equal cultural access, American Christians and Jews who live in majority Muslim neighborhoods could one day be forbidden from studying the Bible. Such a cultural imbalance will result in one side absorbing the values of the other while keeping the Islamic nation "pure" and free of any outside influence. This one-sided cultural tyranny is forcing us, the American citizen, into tolerating intolerance while never expecting anything more aligned to Western values from the Muslim world.

For many decades, America has set itself as the light of freedom to the world, an example for the world to emulate. Our politicians and media allowed the signing of agreements to lift up other nations at the expense of the American worker in the hope that the world would eventually reciprocate.

But reciprocation in kind, as planned by the do-gooders in the West, was not given. As Donald Trump said, we give them the money and the jobs and they give us the drugs and unemployment.

Trump's statement struck a nerve among the suffering and hard-working American middle class. No other American politician in recent history has said such a long-awaited comforting statement to the American people, even after 9/11.

It is also time to treat US citizens, culture and values as number one again. Culture matters, and it is time to acknowledge the importance of values, sovereign law, and Western freedoms. The multiculturalists have for too long trampled over American pride, traditional values and Judeo-Christian ethics. The damage done to American national pride and dignity has been profound.

The American and European public has been suffering in silence for too long and getting the short end of the stick from those who were elected to look after their own citizens first. It is time for Western politicians and leaders, from the left and right, to treat their citizens as number one again inside their own countries.
Nonie Darwish, a Middle East Expert born and raised in Egypt, is the author of the upcoming book: "Wholly Different: Why I Chose Biblical Values over Islamic Values."
===================

Yves Mamou : France's Politician Dhimmis


  • "Moreover, it is puzzling and disturbing that France adopts a double standard in relation to Israel, while ignoring 200 territorial conflicts currently taking place around the world, including those taking place right on its doorstep." — Response of Israel's Foreign Ministry to France's new labeling regulations.
  • In the Ukraine, a few sanctions were imposed by France and EU, but there was never any labeling of food or cosmetic products.
  • Ironically, and sadly, the people most negatively affected by the French and EU regulations will be the 25,000 Palestinians employed by Israelis in the West Bank.
  • In just one year, 2016, France and its socialist president have made multiple hostile gestures towards Israel, which reveal more about raw anti-Semitism posing as anti-Israelism in France than about its unjustly solitary target.
  • The Muslim vote is now an important factor in French politicians' decisions. In 2012, socialist President François Hollande was elected with 93% of the Muslim vote. That is how diplomacy is made conducted in France, and in Europe generally. It is a diplomacy solidly rooted in domestic policy. It is a domestic policy made by dhimmi politicians.
In France, retail chains and importers now have the legal obligation to label products originating in Judea, Samaria, eastern Jerusalem and the Golan Heights.
On November 24, the Official Gazette of the French Republic (JORF) published Regulation No 1169/2011, ordering "economic operators" to inform consumers about "the origin of goods from the territories occupied by Israel since June 1967."
This French regulation is an application of the interpretive notice issued by the Official Journal of the European Union (OJ), on November 12, 2015. The notice states that the EU "does not recognise Israel's sovereignty over the territories occupied by Israel since June 1967, namely the Golan Heights, the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and does not consider them to be part of Israel's territory" and claims it is responding to "a demand for clarity from consumers, economic operators and national authorities".
The European Commission allowed member states to arrange their own national implementation of this European regulation, with financial penalties.
The French adoption of this EU policy insists on labeling Israeli products with the greatest precision possible.
A limited reference to "originating from the Golan Heights" or "product originating in the West Bank" is not acceptable... The omission of the additional geographical information that the product is derived from Israeli settlements is likely to mislead the consumer into error as to the true origin of the product. In such cases, it is necessary to add, parenthetically, the term "Israeli settlement" or similar terms. Thus, expressions such as "product originating in the Golan Heights (Israeli settlement)" or "product originating in the West Bank (Israeli settlement)" can be used.
Apparently, "precision" in the French regulation is not associated with financial penalties. It is a kind of "moral recommendation."
The Israeli Foreign Ministry issued a tough response to the French decision, stating:
"The Israeli government condemns the French government's decision...
"We regret that France, at a time when there are anti-boycott laws, promotes such measures, which can be interpreted as a boost to radical elements and to the boycott movement against Israel. Moreover, it is puzzling and disturbing that France adopts a double standard in relation to Israel, while ignoring 200 territorial conflicts currently taking place around the world, including those taking place right on its doorstep."
Israel's Foreign Ministry may have been thinking of the island of Alboran in the Mediterranean Sea, controlled by Spain but claimed by Morocco; the Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla, claimed by Morocco; northern Cyprus, occupied by Turkey; Crimea belonging to Ukraine but annexed by Russia. In the Ukraine, a few sanctions were imposed by France and EU, but there was never any labeling of food or cosmetic products.



Labeling food and cosmetic products is a compromised position. Like dhimmi nations, moved by a strong desire to comply to the wishes of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (a bloc of 56 Islamic countries and "Palestine"), many countries in the European Union, with France as usual foremost among them, were advocating even tougher measures against (only) Israel -- a move that reveals more about raw anti-Semitism posing as anti-Israelism in France than about its unjustly solitary target.

Economic impact: If all EU member states adopt this labeling regulation, Israel's Ministry of the Economic estimates that the negative impact would be about $50 million a year, and affect fresh produce such as grapes, dates, wine, poultry, honey, olive oil and cosmetics (Dead Sea products). But this $50 million would represent only one-fifth of the $200-$300 million worth of goods produced in settlements each year -- and a drop in the ocean compared to the $13 billion in goods and $4 billion in services Israel exports to the EU annually.
Ironically, and sadly, the people most negatively affected by the French and EU regulations will be the 25,000 Palestinians employed by Israelis in the West Bank, and earning as much as two to three times the wages paid by Palestinian factories.
Political and diplomatic impact. EU officials have insisted that the labeling is not a boycott of Israeli products in general, but the singling out of Israel, and in such pettiness, unmasks their denial as just another French fraud.
In just one year, 2016, France and its socialist president have made multiple hostile gestures towards Israel.
  • On January 27, 2016, International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Hassan Rouhani, President of the Islamic Republic of Iran -- a regime that denies the fact that the Holocaust took place and does not hide its intention to commit still another one -- was received in Paris for an official visit. Iran was presented on every side as a "reliable ally" of the West in the fight against the Islamic State.
  • The day after Rouhani's visit in Paris, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius (who has since resigned) announced that France wanted to organize a major international conference to relaunch the Israeli-Palestinian "peace process," based on an old Saudi peace plan, which includes, of course -- as a poison pill -- the "right of return." Fabius added that if the French initiative failed, France would nevertheless recognize a Palestinian state.
  • On April 15, 2016, France supported, voted on and passed another fraudulent resolution at the Executive Board of UNESCO, the Paris-based UN organization dealing with education, culture and heritage. The resolution was drafted by the Palestinians, but officially submitted by Sudan's genocidal regime together with Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, and Qatar -- all members of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. The text of the UNESCO resolution tries to "delete" any Jewish link to Jerusalem's Temple Mount, and erase any historical record of a first Jewish Temple and a second Jewish Temple in Jerusalem. From now on, according to UNESCO, the area is supposedly just the Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al Sharif.
  • On October 13, France was among 26 countries that abstained from adopting the same resolution denying any Jewish link with Temple Mount at UNESCO.
France has the first largest Muslim community in the European Union. More than six million Muslims live in France, and make up approximately 10% of the population. The Muslim vote is now an important factor in French politicians' decisions. In 2012, socialist President François Hollande was elected with 93% of the Muslim vote. In 2017, the same president will probably pursue reelection and is already looking for the votes of French Muslims, on the basis of hatred towards Israel. That is how diplomacy is made conducted in France, and in Europe generally. It is a diplomacy solidly rooted in domestic policy. It is a domestic policy made by dhimmi politicians.
Yves Mamou is a journalist and author based in France. He worked for two decades for the daily, Le Monde, before his retirement.
======================

Giulio Meotti : Islamic Terrorists not Poor and Illiterate, but Rich and Educated


  • "The better young people are integrated, the greater the chance is that they radicalize. This hypothesis is supported by a lot of evidence". — From a report by researchers at Erasmus University in Rotterdam.
  • "The proportions of [Islamic State] administrators but also of suicide fighters increase with education," according to a World Bank report. "Moreover, those offering to become suicide bombers ranked on average in the more educated group."
  • Britain's MI5 revealed that "two-thirds of the British suspects have a middle-class profile and those who want to become suicide bombers are often the most educated".
  • Researchers have discovered that "the richer the countries are the more likely will provide foreign recruits to the terrorist group [ISIS]."
  • The West seems to have trouble accepting that terrorists are not driven by inequality, but by hatred for Western civilization and the Judeo-Christian values of the West.
  • For the Nazis, the "inferior race" (the Jews) did not deserve to exist; for the Stalinists, the "enemies of the people" were not entitled to continue living; for the Islamists, it is the West itself that does not deserve to exist.
  • It is anti-Semitism, not poverty, that led the Palestinian Authority to name a school after Abu Daoud, mastermind of the massacre of Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics.
"There is a stereotype that young people from Europe who leave for Syria are victims of a society that does not accept them and does not offer them sufficient opportunities... Another common stereotype in the debate in Belgium is that, despite research which refutes this, radicalization is still far too often misunderstood as a process resulting from failed integration... I therefore dare say that the better young people are integrated, the greater the chance is that they radicalize. This hypothesis is supported by a lot of evidence."
That was the result of extremely important Dutch research, led by a group of academics at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam. Terrorists seem to be models of successful integration: for instance, Mohammed Bouyeri, the Moroccan-Dutch terrorist who shot the filmmaker Theo van Gogh to death, then stabbed him and slit his throat in 2004. "He [Bouyeri] was a well-educated guy with good prospects," said Job Cohen, the Labor Party mayor of Amsterdam.



Terrorists seem to be models of successful integration. Mohammed Bouyeri (left), the Moroccan-Dutch terrorist who shot the filmmaker Theo van Gogh (right) to death, then stabbed him and slit his throat in 2004. "[Bouyeri] was a well-educated guy with good prospects," said Job Cohen, the mayor of Amsterdam.

The Dutch research was followed by research from France, adding more evidence to the thesis that goes against the liberal belief that to defeat terrorism, Europe must invest in economic opportunities and social integration.

Dounia Bouzar, director of the Center for Prevention, Deradicalization and Individual Monitoring (CPDSI), a French organization dealing with Islamic radicalism, studied the cases of 160 families whose children had left France to fight in Syria. Two-thirds were members of the middle class.

These findings dismantle the myth of the proletariat of terror. According to a new World Bank report, "Islamic State's recruits are better educated than their fellow countrymen".

Poverty and deprivation are not, as John Kerry said, "the root cause of terrorism."
Studying the profiles of 331 recruits from an Islamic State database, the World Bank found that 69% have at least a high school education, while a quarter of them graduated from college. The vast majority of these terrorists had a job or profession before joining the Islamist organization. "The proportions of administrators but also of suicide fighters increase with education," according to the World Bank report. "Moreover, those offering to become suicide bombers ranked on average in the more educated group."

Less than 2% of the terrorists are illiterate. The study also points to the countries that supply ISIS with more recruits: Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Morocco, Turkey and Egypt. Examining the economic situation of these countries, researchers have discovered that "the richer the countries are the more likely will provide foreign recruits to the terrorist group."

Another report explained that "the poorest countries in the world don't have exceptional levels of terrorism".

Despite the evidence, a progressive mantra repeats that Islamic terrorism is the result of injustice, poverty, economic depression and social unrest. Nothing could be farther from the truth. 

The thesis that poverty breeds terrorism is pervasive today in the West, from French economist Thomas Piketty to Pope Francis. It is probably so popular because it plays on Western collective guilt, seeking to rationalize what the West seems to have trouble accepting: that terrorists are not driven by inequality, but by hatred for Western civilization and the Judeo-Christian values of the West. For Israel, this means: What are Jews doing on land that -- even though for 3,000 years it has been called Judea -- we think should be given to Palestinian terrorists? And these terrorists most likely wonder why they should negotiate, if instead they can be handed everything they want.

For the Nazis, the "inferior race" (the Jews) did not deserve to exist but must be gassed; for the Stalinists, the "enemies of the people" were not entitled to continue living, and had to die of forced labor and cold in the Gulag; for the Islamists, it is the West itself that does not deserve to exist and has to be blown up.

It is anti-Semitism, not poverty, that led the Palestinian Authority to name a school after Abu Daoud, mastermind of the massacre of Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics.

The Paris bombings, the anniversary of which France will commemorate in a few days, was a blow unleashed by an ideology that does not seek to fight poverty, but to gain power through terror. It is the same Islamist ideology that murdered the Charlie Hebdo journalists and the policemen on duty to protect them; that forced British writer Salman Rushdie into hiding for a decade; that slit the throat of Father Jacques Hamel; that butchered commuters in London, Brussels and Madrid; that assassinated hundreds of Israeli Jews on buses and restaurants; that killed 3,000 people in the United States on September 11; that assassinated Theo Van Gogh on an Amsterdam street for making a film; that committed mass rapes in Europe and massacres in the cities and deserts of Syria and Iraq; that blew up 132 children in Peshawar; and that regularly kills so many Nigerians that no one now pays any attention to it.

It is the Islamist ideology that drives terrorism, not poverty, corruption or despair. It is them, not us.

The whole history of political terror is marked by fanatics with advanced education who have declared war on their own societies. Khmer Rouge's Communist genocide in Cambodia came out from the classrooms of the Sorbonne in Paris, where their leader, Pol Pot, studied writings of European Communists.

The Red Brigades in Italy was the scheme of wealthy privileged boys and girls from the middle class. Between 1969 and 1985, terrorism in Italy killed 428 people.

 Fusako Shigenobu, the leader of the Japanese Red Army terrorist group, was a highly-educated specialist in literature.

 Abimael Guzman, founder of the Shining Path in Peru, one of the most ruthless guerrilla groups in history, taught at the University of Ayacucho, where he conceived of a war against "the democracy of empty bellies." 

"Carlos the Jackal," the most infamous terrorist in the 1970s, was the son of one of the richest lawyers in Venezuela, Jose Altagracia Ramirez. 

Mikel Albizu Iriarte, a leader of the Basque ETA terrorists, came from a wealthy family in San Sebastián. 

Sabri al-Banna, the Palestinian terrorist known to the world as "Abu Nidal," was the son of a wealthy merchant born in Jaffa.

Some of the British terrorists who have joined the Islamic State come from wealthy families and attended the most prestigious schools in the UK. Abdul Waheed Majid made the long journey from the English town of Crawley to Aleppo, Syria, where he blew himself up. Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh, the mastermind of the kidnapping and killing of the American journalist Daniel Pearl, graduated from the London School of Economics. Kafeel Ahmed, who drove a jeep full of explosives into the Glasgow airport, had been president of the Islamic Society at Queen's University.

Faisal Shahzad, the failed terrorist of Times Square in New York, was the son of a high official in the Pakistani military.
Zacarias Moussaoui, the twentieth man of the 9/11 attacks, had a PhD in International Economics from the London's South Bank University. 
Saajid Badat, who wanted to blow up a commercial flight, studied optometry at London University. Azahari Husin, the terrorist who prepared the bombs in Bali, studied at the University of Reading.

Britain's MI5 revealed that "two-thirds of the British suspects have a middle-class profile and those who want to become suicide bombers are often the most educated."

Most British terrorists also had a wife and children, debunking another myth, that of terrorists as social losers.

 Mohammad Sidique Khan, one of the suicide bombers of July 7, 2005, studied at Leeds Metropolitan University. Omar Khan Sharif had a scholarship at King's College before carrying out a suicide bombing on Tel Aviv's seafront promenade in 2003. Sharif was not looking for economic redemption, but to slaughter as many Jews as possible.

Virtually all the heads of international terror groups are children of privilege, who led gilded lives before joining the terror ranks.

 15 of the 19 suicide bombers of September 11 came from prominent Middle Eastern families. 
Mohammed Atta was the son of a lawyer in Cairo. Ziad Jarrah, who crashed Flight 93 in Pennsylvania, belonged to one of the most affluent Lebanese families in Lebanon.

Nasra Hassan, who wrote an informed profile of Palestinian suicide bombers for The New Yorker, explained that, "of 250 suicide bombers, not one was illiterate, poor or depressed." The unemployed, it seems, are always the least likely to support terror attacks.

Europe and America gave everything to these terrorists: educational and employment opportunities, popular entertainment and sexual pleasures, salaries and welfare, and religious freedom. 
These terrorists, such as the "underwear bomber," Umar Farouk Abulmutallab, the son of a banker, have not seen a day of poverty in their life. Paris's terrorists rejected the secularist values of liberté, egalité, fraternité;
British jihadists who bombed London and now fight for the Caliphate rejected multiculturalism; the Islamist who killed Theo van Gogh in Amsterdam repudiated Dutch relativism, and ISIS's soldier, Omar Mateen, who turned Orlando's Pulse Club into a slaughterhouse, said he wanted to purge it from what he perceived as libertine licentiousness and apparently his own homophilic wishes.

If the West does not understand the real source of this hatred, but instead indulges in false excuses such as poverty, it will not win this war being waged against us.
Giulio Meotti, Cultural Editor for Il Foglio, is an Italian journalist and author.
=================

Vijeta Uniyal : Angela Merkel: False Prophet of Europe


  • With his initiative for tighter gun laws, to prevent weapons getting into "the wrong hands," Justice Minister Maas does not mean to target the Islamists who pose an existential threat to Germany, but an obscure German group called the "Reichsbürger."
  • As the German newspaper Bild describes the law proposed by Maas, "a 13-year-old child bride would have to testify against her husband, saying that her well-being as a child is under threat. If neither the child nor the Child Welfare Service lodges a complaint, for all practical purposes the marriage would be declared legitimate." This law clearly does not take into account the possibility of private coercion against a child, let alone the blinding likelihood of outright threats.
  • Justice Minister Maas evidently cares more about "gender image" than he cares about truly oppressed women and vulnerable children. In a recently drafted new law by his ministry, Mass refused to ban child marriage.
  • With both France and Germany going to polls next year, there is the possibility of a democratic, peaceful "European Spring."
In her first message to President-elect Donald Trump, German Chancellor Angela Merkel lectured him on gender, racial and religious equality. As the New York Times put it, Merkel "named a price" for Germany's cooperation with the Trump-led administration, namely the "respect for human dignity and for minorities from a man who has mocked both."

If this was anything more than political posturing, and Chancellor Merkel truly cared about "human dignity" or the rights of those most vulnerable, she might have started closer at home.

After a year-long investigation into the mass-sexual attacks in Cologne, where an estimated 2,000 migrant men -- mostly from Arab and Muslim countries -- molested at least 1200 women, almost all the men have managed to walk free.
Last week, the Interior Minister of North Rhine-Westphalia, Ralf Jäger, confirmed this outcome when he said that "most of the cases [of rape and sexual assault in Cologne] will remain unsolved." Similar coordinated sexual assaults by migrants also took place in other German cities, including Hamburg, where over 500 such cases were reported. They are expected to remain "unsolved" too.

Merkel, who lectured Trump on gender, did not even bother to visit the women who were raped and assaulted in Cologne or other German cities -- even though these women were victims of her own failed open-border policy.

As New Year's Eve approaches again, Merkel's "Multikulti" paradise looks more and more like a police state. According to leaked, confidential police reports published by Germany's Express newspaper, Cologne will be turned into a fortified city to avoid a repeat of last year's mass sexual assaults. Security forces will monitor the streets with helicopters, surveillance cameras, observation posts and mounted units. The city of Hamburg has also reportedly taken similar steps.

While the Merkel government arms the police, efforts are underway to tighten gun laws for the citizenry. As the German state-run broadcaster Deutsche Welle reported on November 28: "Justice Minister Heiko Maas called for tighter weapons laws to prevent guns from falling in to the wrong hands." With this latest initiative, Minister Maas does not mean to target the Islamists who pose an existential threat to Germany and the rest of the Western World, but an obscure German group called the "Reichsbürger."

The Justice Minister apparently shares Merkel's skewed worldview. After the New Year's Eve sexual assaults in Germany, Maas, to "cure" the country's rape epidemic, proposed a ban on "sexist advertising." In April, Deutsche Welle reported:
The aim of the proposal - which is reportedly in response to the sexual assaults in Cologne on New Year's Eve - is to create a "modern gender image" in Germany... In future, posters or ads which "reduce women or men to sexual objects" could be banned. In the case of dispute, a court would have to decide.
Justice Minister Maas evidently cares more about "gender image" than he cares about truly oppressed women and vulnerable children. In a recently drafted new law by his ministry, Mass refused to ban child marriage. Official German statistics estimate the number of married children in Germany at 1,475, of whom 361 are under the age of 14 -- a rising trend thanks to uncontrolled migration from Muslim countries.
As the German newspaper Bild describes the law proposed by Maas:
"a 13-year-old child bride would have to testify against her husband, saying that her well-being as a child is under threat. If neither the child nor the Child Welfare Service lodges a complaint, for all practical purposes the marriage would be declared legitimate."
This law clearly does not take into account the possibility of private coercion against a child, let alone the blinding likelihood of outright threats.
In Merkel's Germany, the rights of an able-bodied migrant man trump the rights of a sexually assaulted woman and subdued child.

Following the electoral victory of Donald Trump, liberals all over are pinning all their hopes on Merkel. The "orphaned" liberals, in essence actually authoritarian, are probably looking for a new leader behind whom to rally. Many in the mainstream in the West are already calling the German Chancellor the "Leader of the Free World." Following Clinton's loss, the U.S. online magazine Politico described Merkel in almost messianic terms as "Global Savior."

As Merkel seeks re-election to a fourth term in the autumn of 2017, she is counting on extremely favourable media coverage and glowing celebrity endorsements to enable her to win again.

(Image source: Tobias Koch/Wikimedia Commons)

After Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton's presidential bid went south, President Barack Obama flew to Germany to endorse Merkel's re-election bid. After Britain's Brexit vote and Trump's White House win, the liberal establishment and its rank and file in the mainstream media seem frantic to keep Merkel in power. Merkel's defeat at the hands of a resurgent nationalist party such as the Alternative for Germany (AfD) would strike their "globalist project" right at the heart of Europe.

Next year's German elections will be first and foremost a referendum on Merkel's open-border policy. It was her suspension of border controls -- or the Dublin Protocol -- in September 2015 that opened the floodgates for Arab and Muslim mass-migration in the first place.

If Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) emerge as the largest party and she manages to head the next ruling coalition, it will be sold by the media and the elites as a vindication of her "Refugees Welcome" policy.

An upset defeat for Merkel, however, could spell doom not only for her policy of mass-migration but for the entire Brussels-based "European project" -- a German "Brexit" ("Dexit"?).

With both France and Germany going to the polls next year, there is the possibility of a democratic, peaceful "European Spring."
Vijeta Uniyal is an Indian current affairs analyst based in Europe.
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Giulio Meotti : Self-Censorship: Free Society vs. Fear Society

  • "The drama and the tragedy is that the only ones to win are the jihadists." — Flemming Rose, who published the Mohammed cartoons in 2005, as cultural editor of Jyllands-Posten newspaper.
  • "Why the f*ck did you say yes to appear on stage with this terrorist target, are you stupid? Do you have a secret death wish? You have grandchildren now. Are you completely out of your mind? It's okay if you want to die yourself, but why are you taking the company through all this?" — The managers of Jyllands-Posten, to Flemming Rose.
  • "We are also aware that we therefore bow to violence and intimidation." — Editorial, Jyllands-Posten.
  • "I do not blame them that they care about the safety of employees. I have bodyguards 24 hours a day. However, I believe that we must stand firm. If Flemming shuts his mouth, democracy will be lost." — Naser Khader, a liberal Muslim of Syrian origin who lives in Denmark.
In the summer of 2005, the Danish artist Kåre Bluitgen, when he met a journalist from the Ritzaus Bureau news agency, said he was unable to find anyone willing to illustrate his book on Mohammed, the prophet of Islam. Three illustrators he contacted, Bluitgen said, were too scared. A few months later, Bluitgen reported that he had found someone willing to illustrate his book, but only on the condition of anonymity.
Like most Danish newspapers, Jyllands-Posten decided to publish an article about Bluitgen's case. To test the state of freedom of expression, Flemming Rose, Jyllands-Posten's cultural editor at the time, called twelve cartoonists, and offered them $160 each to draw a caricature of Mohammed. What then happened is a well-known, chilling story.
In the wave of Islamist violence against the cartoons, at least two hundred people were killed. Danish products vanished from shelves in Bahrain, Qatar, Yemen, Oman, the UAE and Lebanon. Masked gunmen stormed the offices of the European Union in Gaza and warned Danes and Norwegians to leave within 48 hours. In the Libyan city of Benghazi, protesters set fire to the Italian consulate. Political Islam understood what was being achieved and raised the stakes; the West did not.
An Islamic fatwa also forever changed Flemming Rose's life. In an Islamic caricature, his head was put on a pike. The Taliban offered a bounty to anyone who would kill him. Rose's office at the newspaper was repeatedly evacuated for bomb threats. And Rose's name and face entered ISIS's blacklist, along with that of the murdered editor of Charlie Hebdo, Stéphane Charbonnier.

Less known is the "white fatwa" that the journalistic class imposed on Rose. This brave Danish journalist reveals it in a recently published book, "De Besatte" ("The Obsessed"). "It is the story of how fear devours souls, friendships and the professional community," says Rose. The book reveals how his own newspaper forced Rose to surrender.

"The drama and the tragedy is that the only ones to win are the jihadists," Flemming Rose told the Danish newspaper Weekendavisen.

The CEO of Jyllands-Posten, Jørgen Ejbøl, summoned Rose to his office, and asked, "You have grandchildren, do not you think about them?"

The company that publishes his newspaper, JP/Politikens Hus, said: "It's not about Rose, but the safety of two thousand employees."

Jorn Mikkelsen, Rose's former director, and the newspaper's business heads, obliged him to sign a nine-point diktat, in which the Danish journalist accepted, among other demands, "not participating in radio and television programs", "not attending conferences", "not commenting on religious issues", "not writing about the Organization of the Islamic Conference" and "not commenting on the cartoons".
Rose signed this letter of surrender during the harshest time for the newspaper, when, in 2010-2011, there were countless attempts on his life by terrorists, and also attempts on the life of Kurt Westergaard, illustrator of a cartoon (Mohammed with a bomb in his turban) that was burned in public squares across the Arab world. Westergaard was then placed on "indefinite leave" by Jyllands-Posten "for security reasons."


Is democracy lost? Eleven years after Jyllands-Posten published the Mohammed cartoons, the newspaper has a barbed-wire fence two meters high and one kilometer long. Kurt Westergaard, the illustrator who drew one of the cartoons (left), lives in hiding in a fortress, and Flemming Rose (right), the editor who commissioned the cartoons, has fled to the United States.

In his book, Rose also reveals that two articles were censored by his newspaper, along with an outburst from the CEO of the company, Lars Munch: "You have to stop, you're obsessed, on the fourth floor there are people who ask 'can't he stop?'".

Rose then drew more wrath from his managers when he agreed to participate in a conference with the equally targeted Dutch parliamentarian, Geert Wilders, who at this moment is on trial in the Netherlands for "hate speech." Rose writes:
He starts yelling at me, "Why the f*ck did you say yes to appear on stage with this terrorist target, are you stupid? Do you have a secret death wish? You have grandchildren now. Are you completely out of your mind? It's okay if you want to die yourself, but why are you taking the company through all this?"
Jyllands-Posten also pressured Rose when he decided to write a book about the cartoons, "Hymne til Friheden" ("Hymn to Freedom"). His editor told him that the newspaper would "curb the harmful effects" of the book by keeping its publication as low-key as possible. Rose was then threatened with dismissal if he did not cancel two debates for the tenth anniversary of the Mohammed cartoons (Rose, in fact, did not show up that day at a conference in Copenhagen).

After the 2015 massacre at Charlie Hebdo, Rose, no longer willing to abide by the "diktat" he was ordered to sign, resigned as the head of the foreign desk of Jyllands-Posten, and now works in the U.S. for the Cato Institute think-tank. The former editor of Jyllands-Posten, Carsten Juste, who was also blacklisted by ISIS, confirmed Rose's allegations.

Rose writes in the conclusion of his book: "I'm not obsessed with anything. The fanatics are those who want to attack us, and the possessed are my former bosses at Jyllands-Posten."

Rose's revelations confirm another familiar story: Jyllands-Posten's surrender to fear. Since 2006, each time its editors and publishers were asked if they still would have published the drawings of Mohammed, the answer has always been "no." This response means that the editors had effectively tasked Rose with writing the newspaper for fanatics and terrorists thousands of kilometers away. Even after the January 7, 2015 massacre at the weekly Charlie Hebdo in Paris, targeted precisely because it had republished the Danish cartoons, Jyllands-Posten announced that, out of fear, it would not republish the cartoons:
"We have lived with the fear of a terrorist attack for nine years, and yes, that is the explanation why we do not reprint the cartoons, whether it be our own or Charlie Hebdo's. We are also aware that we therefore bow to violence and intimidation."
A Danish comedian, Anders Matthesen, said that the newspaper and the cartoons were to blame for the Islamist violence -- the same official position as the entire European political and journalistic mainstream.
A year ago, for the 10th anniversary of the affair, instead of the cartoons, Jyllands-Posten came out with twelve white spaces. These white spaces represent what Rose, in his previous book, called "Tavshedens tiranni" ("The Tyranny of Silence"). Naser Khader, a liberal Muslim of Syrian origin who lives in Denmark, wrote:
"I do not blame them that they care about the safety of employees. I have bodyguards 24 hours a day. However, I believe that we must stand firm. If Flemming shuts his mouth, democracy will be lost."
Is democracy lost? The headquarters of Jyllands-Posten today has a barbed-wire fence two meters high and one kilometer long, a door with double lock (as in banks), and employees can only enter one at a time by typing in a personal code (a measure that did not protect Charlie Hebdo). Meanwhile, the former editor, Carsten Juste, has withdrawn from journalism; Kurt Westergaard lives in hiding in a fortress, and Flemming Rose, like Ayaan Hirsi Ali, fled to the United States.
Much, certainly, looks lost. "We are not living in a 'free society' anymore, but in a 'fear society'", Rose has said.
Giulio Meotti, Cultural Editor for Il Foglio, is an Italian journalist and author.
=================

Hugh Fitzgerald: “I’m a Muslim — Ask Me Anything”

Hugh Fitzgerald: “I’m a Muslim — Ask Me Anything”

A Muslim ex-Marine has been travelling across country with a sign: “I’m A Muslim And A U.S. Marine — Ask Anything.”

He’s one of a small army of I’m-A-Muslim-Ask-Me-Anything propagandists, moving about our land, attracting small groups of onlookers, and then posting his exchanges with them, which always end with a hug from a newly-enlightened non-Muslim, on YouTube. Here’s one treacly example.

The questions posed are usually of the most anodyne and simple-minded sort, but even these sometimes require a little prefabricated taqiyya, delivered in the most deeply sincere way. In order to make it easier for those who’d like to upset the applecart of these ambulatory propagandists, I’ve made a list of “anythings” that you might want to ask, should you run across one of these Ask-Me-Anything Muslims. Of course, there is always the possibility that once your interlocutor realizes that you actually know something about Islam, and taqiyya is out of the question, he might accuse you of being an “Islamophobe” not interested in “real dialogue,” and attempt to get those onlookers to take his side against you, the troublemaker. You have to be ready with sweetness-and-light, affecting an innocent goshdarnit I-just-want-to-know attitude, which may help, experience suggests, to keep the bystanders on your side and increasingly skeptical of the Ask-Me-Anything mountebank.
You should come prepared with a few dozen questions, to which you possess the answers, with the relevant supporting passages from the Qur’an or Hadith or Sira easily retrievable from your smartphone or notecards. ……………

THE TEXT OF QUESTIONS-ANSWERS IN PDF:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8V_fhA6elUKLUswYVd1NTFRa00/view?usp=sharing


 

Giulio Meotti : Islamists Won: Charlie Hebdo Disappears


  • "The newspaper is no longer the same, Charlie is now under artistic and editorial suffocation." — Zineb el Rhazoui, French-Tunisian intellectual and journalist, author of Destroying Islamic Fascism.
  • "We must continue to portray Muhammad and Charlie; not to do that means there is no more Charlie." — Patrick Pelloux, another cartoonist who left the magazine.
  • "If our colleagues in the public debate do not share part of the risk, then the barbarians have won." — Elisabeth Badinter, philosopher, who testified in court for the cartoonists in the documentary, "Je suis Charlie."
  • After the Kouachi brothers slaughtered Charlie Hebdo's journalists, they ran out into the street and cried: "We have avenged Muhammad. We killed Charlie Hebdo." Two years later, it appears that they won. They succeeded in silencing the last European magazine still ready to defend freedom of expression from Islamism.
Over twenty years, fear has already devoured important pieces of Western culture and journalism. They all disappeared in a ghastly act of self-censorship: the cartoons of a Danish newspaper, a "South Park" episode, paintings in London's Tate Gallery, a book published by the Yale University Press; Mozart's Idomeneo, the Dutch film "Submission", the name and face of the US cartoonist Molly Norris, a book cover by Art Spiegelman and Sherry Jones's novel, "Jewel of Medina", to name just a few. Most of them have become ghosts living in hiding, hidden in some country house, or retired to private life, victims of an understandable but tragic self-censorship.

Only the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo was missing from this sad, long list. Until now.
The disappointment with what Charlie Hebdo has become is reflected in the words of the French journalist, Marika Bret: "From Italy we receive many threats." The reference is not to some Italian jihadist cell, but to a September Charlie Hebdo cover that mocked victims of the earthquake in Italy. It seems that the satirical weekly, almost destroyed by French Islamists two years ago, has been "normalized".
Take Charlie's recent covers. Against terrorists? No. Against those who called them "racists"? No. It was against Éric Zemmour, the brave French journalist at Le Figaro who has led a public debate about French identity. "Islam is incompatible with secularism, incompatible with democracy, and incompatible with republican government," Zemmour wrote.

Laurent Sourisseau, aka "Riss," now the publishing director and majority owner of Charlie, was shot during the 2015 attack on the magazine, and lives under police protection. He depicted Zemmour on the cover with an explosive vest, effectively comparing him to a terrorist.
Charlie Hebdo also recently satirized Nadine Morano, a critic of Islam, depicting her as a baby with Down Syndrome.
Riss also recently published a comic book attacking another easy target of submissive conformists, entitled "The Dark Side of Marine Le Pen." Le Pen leads France's National Front party, with a platform fighting for national sovereignty and Europe's Judeo-Christian identity. In Charlie, the political leader of the French "right" is dressed as Marilyn Monroe.
For the first anniversary of the massacre at Charlie Hebdo's office, Riss released a cover not with Mohammed, but depicting a murderous Judeo-Christian God, as if Riss's colleagues had not been butchered by Islamists but by Catholics. Riss had, in fact, announced earlier that the magazine would "no longer draw Mohammed".
The first person at Charlie to capitulate was "Luz", a well-known cartoonist. He surrendered, saying: "I will no longer draw Muhammad".


Charlie Hebdo, after Islamist terrorists murdered much of its staff in 2015, announced it would "no longer draw Mohammed." Instead, the magazine now focuses on attacking critics of Islamism, and mocking the Judeo-Christian God.

"The transplant that works worst," said Jeannette Bougrab, the companion of Charlie's late editor Stéphane Charbonnier, "is the transplant of balls."
Bougrab charged the attack's survivors with bowing to terrorism and threats by betraying the legacy of free speech for which these truthful men were murdered.

After the massacre of January 7, 2015, the cartoonist "Luz" cried in front of the cameras after presenting a cover depicting the survivors, in which Muhammad was portrayed as saying, "All is forgiven". Luz then appeared in Le Grand Journal along with Madonna, and in a gesture of sad voyeurism, displayed his genitals, covered by the logo "Je suis Charlie".

Charlie's "normalization" was also reflected in the recent dramatic decision to terminate the magazine's relationship with another survivor, the French-Tunisian intellectual and journalist Zineb el Rhazoui, who also now has to live under police protection for her criticism of Islamic extremists.

"The newspaper is no longer the same, Charlie is now under artistic and editorial suffocation," she told Le Monde. Rhazoui is the author of a new book, "Détruire le Fascisme Islamique" ("Destroying Islamic Fascism").

"We must continue to portray Muhammad and Charlie; not to do that means there is no more Charlie", said Patrick Pelloux, another cartoonist who left the magazine.

There were seven cartoonists at Charlie Hebdo. Five were killed on January 7, 2015: Charb, Cabu, Honoré, Tignous and Wolinski. The other two, Luz and Pelloux, resigned after the massacre. The headline of the monthly Causeur captured the atmosphere: "Charlie Hebdo Commits Hara-Kiri," playing with the Japanese form suicide and the previous name of Charlie (which was "Hara-Kiri"). Between murders, desertions and self-censorship, Charlie's story is almost over.

What is happening? Sadly, the Islamists' threats and attacks are working.
A similar crisis affected the Jyllands-Posten, the Danish newspaper that first published the 12 cartoons of Muhammad, which Charlie Hebdo immediately, to show solidarity, reproduced. "The honor of France was saved by Charlie Hebdo," wrote Bernard-Henri Lévy when the magazine republished the Danish cartoons, while many "right thinking" media blasted the "Islamophobia" of those caricatures.
"The truth is that for us it would be totally irresponsible to publish the cartoons today," the director of Jyllands-Posten, Jorn Mikkelsen says to justify his self-censorship. "Jyllands-Posten has a responsibility to itself and its employees." Such as Kurt Westergaard, author of the caricature of Mohammed with a bomb in his turban, who now lives in a house-fortress, with cameras and security windows and machine-gun toting guards outside.

An ideological clash inside Charlie Hebdo developed well before the terror attack. Zineb el Rhazoui arrived at the weekly magazine through editor Stéphane Charbonnier, "Charb", the brave journalist who lead the battle against Islamist intimidation in Europe. Even from his grave, he penned an "Open Letter to the Fraudsters of Islamophobia Who Play Into Racists' Hands."
But, as Libération writes, "Riss opposed Charb; he is less politically identified, more introverted than him."
Charbonnier belonged to the generation of Philippe Val and Caroline Fourest, the libertarian journalists determined to criticize Islam, who, from 1992 to 2009, shaped the weekly magazine.
"Charb? Where is Charb?", shouted the terrorists in Charlie Hebdo's office, to make sure they found the journalist they considered responsible for the Mohammed cartoons controversy.
Philippe Val, who as a former Charlie Hebdo editor, was put on trial in Paris for printing those cartoons, published a book "Malaise dans l'inculture" ("Sickness in the Lack of Culture"), which attacks "the ideological Berlin Wall" that has been raised by the Left.

In 2011, after a firebombing that destroyed Charlie's offices, an appeal by frightened, intimidated journalists announced their refusal to support the magazine's stance on Islam.
Two years later, one of the signatories, Olivier Cyran, a former editor of Charlie Hebdo, charged the magazine with being "obsessive about the Muslims." So did a former Charlie journalist, Philippe Corcuff, who accused his colleagues at the magazine of fomenting "a clash of civilizations."

The attacks continued with another former cartoonist at Charlie Hebdo, Delfeil de Ton, who, in Le Nouvel Observateur, after the 2015 massacre, shamefully accused Charb of "dragging" the staff into the slaughter by continuing to satirize Mohammed.

After the Kouachi brothers slaughtered Charlie Hebdo's staff, they ran out into the street and cried: "We have avenged Mohammed. We killed Charlie Hebdo."

Two years later, it appears that they won. They succeeded in silencing the last European magazine still ready to defend freedom of expression from Islamism. And they sent a special warning to all the others. Because after Charlie Hebdo, writing articles critical of Islam, or penning a cartoon, make them a target for assassination attempts and intimidation campaigns.

The feminist and philosopher Elisabeth Badinter, who testified in court for the French cartoonists in the documentary, "Je suis Charlie," said: "If our colleagues in the public debate do not share part of the risk, then the barbarians have won."

The magazine Paris Match asked Philippe Val if he could imagine the disappearance of Charlie Hebdo. Val replied:
 "This would be the end of a world and the beginning of Michel Houellebecq's 'Submission'". 
After attacks comes self-censorship: submission. If Charlie Hebdo is tired and fleeing from responsibilities, who can blame it? But the others, the rest?
Giulio Meotti, Cultural Editor for Il Foglio, is an Italian journalist and author.
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Judith Bergman : "Nothing to do with Islam"?

  • "Until religious leaders stand up and take responsibility for the actions of those who do things in the name of their religion, we will see no resolution." — The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby.
  • "The Islamic State is a byproduct of Al Azhar's programs... Al Azhar says there must be a caliphate and that it is an obligation for the Muslim world. Al Azhar teaches the law of apostasy and killing the apostate. Al Azhar is hostile towards religious minorities, and teaches things like not building churches... Al Azhar teaches stoning people. So can Al Azhar denounce itself as un-Islamic?" — Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah Nasr, a scholar of Islamic law and graduate of Egypt's Al Azhar University.
  • The jihadists who carry out terrorist attacks in the service of ISIS, for example, are merely following the commands in the Quran, both 9:5, "Fight and kill the disbelievers wherever you find them..." and Quran 8:39, "So fight them until there is no more fitna [strife] and all submit to the religion of Allah."
  • Archbishop Welby -- and Egypt's extraordinary President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi -- has finally had the courage to say in public that if one insists on remaining "religiously illiterate," it is impossible to solve the problem of religiously motivated violence.
For the first time, a European establishment figure from the Church has spoken out against an argument exonerating ISIS and frequently peddled by Western political and cultural elites. The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, speaking in France on November 17, said that dealing with the religiously-motivated violence in Europe
"requires a move away from the argument that has become increasingly popular, which is to say that ISIS is 'nothing to do with Islam'... Until religious leaders stand up and take responsibility for the actions of those who do things in the name of their religion, we will see no resolution."
Archbishop Welby also said that, "It's very difficult to understand the things that impel people to some of the dreadful actions that we have seen over the last few years unless you have some sense of religious literacy".

"Religious literacy" has indeed been in short supply, especially on the European continent. Nevertheless, all over the West, people with little-to-no knowledge of Islam, including political leaders, journalists and opinion makers, have all suddenly become "experts" on Islam and the Quran, assuring everybody that ISIS and other similarly genocidal terrorist groups have nothing to do with the purported "religion of peace," Islam.

It is therefore striking finally to hear a voice from the establishment, especially a man of the Church, oppose, however cautiously, this curiously uniform (and stupefyingly uninformed) view of Islam. Until now, establishment Churches, despite the atrocities committed against Christians by Muslims, have been exceedingly busy only with so-called "inter-faith dialogue." Pope Francis has even castigated Europeans for not being even more accommodating towards the migrants who have overwhelmed the continent, asking Europeans:
"What has happened to you, the Europe of humanism, the champion of human rights, democracy and freedom?... the mother of great men and women who upheld, and even sacrificed their lives for, the dignity of their brothers and sisters?"
(Perhaps the Pope, before rhetorically asking Europeans to sacrifice their lives for their migrant "brothers and sisters" should ask himself whether many of the Muslim migrants in Europe consider Europeans their "brothers and sisters"?)
A statement on Islam is especially significant coming from the Archbishop of Canterbury, the senior bishop and principal leader of the Anglican Church and the symbolic head of the Anglican Communion, which stands at around 85 million members worldwide, the third-largest communion in the world.


The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby (left), recently said that dealing with the religiously-motivated violence in Europe "requires a move away from the argument that has become increasingly popular, which is to say that ISIS is 'nothing to do with Islam'... Until religious leaders stand up and take responsibility for the actions of those who do things in the name of their religion, we will see no resolution." (Image source: Foreign and Commonwealth Office)

Only a year ago, commenting on the Paris massacres, the Archbishop followed conventional politically correct orthodoxy, pontificating that, "The perversion of faith is one of the most desperate aspects of our world today." He explained that Islamic State terrorists have distorted their faith to the extent that they believe they are glorifying their God. Since then, he has clearly changed his mind.

Can one expect other Church leaders and political figures to heed Archbishop Welby's words, or will they be conveniently overlooked? Western leaders have noticeably practiced selective hearing for many years and ignored truths that did not fit the "narrative" politicians apparently wished to imagine, especially when spoken by actual experts on Islam. When, in November 2015, Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah Nasr, a scholar of Islamic law and graduate of Egypt's Al Azhar University, explained why the prestigious institution, which educates mainstream Islamic scholars, refused to denounce ISIS as un-Islamic, none of them was listening:
"The Islamic State is a byproduct of Al Azhar's programs. So can Al Azhar denounce itself as un-Islamic? Al Azhar says there must be a caliphate and that it is an obligation for the Muslim world. Al Azhar teaches the law of apostasy and killing the apostate. Al Azhar is hostile towards religious minorities, and teaches things like not building churches, etc. Al Azhar upholds the institution of jizya [extracting tribute from non-Muslims]. Al Azhar teaches stoning people. So can Al Azhar denounce itself as un-Islamic?"
Nor did Western leaders listen when The Atlantic, hardly an anti-establishment periodical, published a study by Graeme Wood, who researched the Islamic State and its ideology in depth. He spoke to members of the Islamic State and Islamic State recruiters and concluded:
"The reality is that the Islamic State is Islamic. Very Islamic. Yes, it has attracted psychopaths and adventure seekers, drawn largely from the disaffected populations of the Middle East and Europe. But the religion preached by its most ardent followers derives from coherent and even learned interpretations of Islam".
In the United States, another establishment figure, Reince Priebus, Chairman of the Republican National Committee and Donald Trump's incoming White House Chief of Staff, recently made statements to the same effect as the Archbishop of Canterbury. "Clearly there are some aspects of that faith that are problematic and we know them; we've seen it," Priebus said when asked to comment on incoming National Security Adviser former Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn's view that Islam is a political ideology that hides behind being a religion.

In much of American society, Flynn's view that Islam is a political ideology is considered controversial, despite the fact that the political and military doctrines of Islam, succinctly summarized in the concept of jihad, are codified in Islamic law, sharia, as found in the Quran and the hadiths. The jihadists who carry out terrorist attacks in the service of ISIS, for example, are merely following the commands in the Quran, both 9:5, "Fight and kill the disbelievers wherever you find them..." and Quran 8:39, "So fight them until there is no more fitna [strife] and all submit to the religion of Allah."

The question becomes, then, whether other establishment figures will also acknowledge what someone like Archbishop Welby -- and Egypt's extraordinary President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi -- has finally had the courage to say in public: that if one insists on remaining "religiously illiterate," it is impossible to solve the problem of religiously motivated violence.
Judith Bergman is a writer, columnist, lawyer and political analyst.
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