Posts Tagged Islam

Al-Jabba, or a silly tale from Austria

Al-Jabba, or a silly tale from Austria

First of all, a belated Happy New Year to all of you who might be reading this. To explain my not writing anything for months, I blame a combination of winter writing malaise, real life and there being just so many stories to potentially write about – so many in fact that one ends up not writing anything at all.

2013 begins with a silly story coming from Austria – or rather a group that calls itself The Turkish Cultural Community of Austria (Die Türkische Kulturgemeinde in Österreich) – where toy manufacturer Lego has been accused of “inciting racial hatred and insulting human dignity” (yes, that old chestnut) with its release of a Star Wars series model of Jabba the Hutt’s palace. Read the rest of this entry »

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Has the world gone mad?

Has the world gone mad?

Here’s the scene.

Some small-town religious extremist kicks up a bit of a local stink by publicising a book-burning ceremony. A Qu’ran-burning ceremony to be precise. Well, whatever floats your bateau.  A newshound out for a controversial story gets wind of this sorry little episode, and blows it up into something it should never have been; Read the rest of this entry »

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Twit of the Week

Twit of the Week

There are so many twits out there, but Mahmoud Ahmedinejad stands head and shoulders above everyone else this week. With nothing better or more important to talk about, the Iranian leader laid in to poor old Paul the Octopus, claiming that tentacled football sage is a symbol of “decadence and decay” among his “enemies”. Read the rest of this entry »

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What a burqa…

What a burqa...

So far, the coalition government has pootled along nice and quietly – unlike the previous administration, the noises have been pretty good. Things have gone slightly off-key however with the ongoing discussion of the Burqa, and in particular the rather odd statement offered by Environment Secretary Caroline Spelman. Using a logic that I still cannot fathom, Spelman defended the Islamic sackcloth by describing it as “empowering” to women. Hmm. Read the rest of this entry »

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Welcome to Londonistan

Welcome to Londonistan

Electoral fraud, way too many people per square foot, mass deprivation, urban violence, wall-to-wall Muslims… Bangladesh? Pakistan? The fresh and democratic shithole of Afghanistan? Nope, it’s the East End we never get to see in East Enders, the wonderful multikulti paradise much loved by socialist drummerboy and tub-thumper Billy Bragg – who now conveniently lives leafy Dorset. Read the rest of this entry »

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Two more DM Nazi Stories of the Week…

Two more DM Nazi Stories of the Week...

It’s getting just a little bit silly now, but with the Daily Mail’s rather crazy obsession with Adolf Hitler and the Nazis my jokey plan to write a book on the subject is becoming more of a reality. There have been two new stories since my last submission; it would appear that they are churning them out far faster than I can write reviews. Read the rest of this entry »

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Born to be Wilders

Born to be Wilders

He was banned from entering this country, and shepherded out of Heathrow when he tried to come to Britain having been invited by a British citizen. He had to to overturn this ban in court in order to visit this country. Are we talking about a criminal? A terrorist, maybe? No, it’s Geert Wilders – a democratically elected Dutch parliamentarian.

Wilders has stoked some pretty large fires in his country for speaking up against Islamic extremism – more often than not in the starkest terms. And good on him, for both the Netherlands and Europe as a whole needs people to stand up and be counted in combatting this virus.

Those that have fought tooth and nail to keep Wilders out of this country – while at the same time turning a blind eye as armies of grubby interlopers and malcontents head to these shores – just don’t get it. As far as I am concerned Wilders doesn’t even need to say a word – we just need to look at the sort of people he is talking about.

Islam will dominate the world? Not on my watch, matey!

Islam will dominate the world? Not on my watch, matey!

Islam will dominate the world? Freedom can go to hell? Just how in God’s name did these individuals make their way over here? Who let them in? And if they were born here, who educated them? There may be many positive things to say about Islamic culture – after all, it has provided the world with many things. Its modern standard-bearers however are a light years away from the enlightened scholars of ancient times.

Commentators have argued that Geert Wilders’ increasing popularity in the Netherlands has brought into question that country’s reputation as a bastion of tolerance – not a bit of it I say. Tolerance is all well and good, but it is what it is – tolerance. Which suggests that an individual, a society and a country can only take so much before its reaches its breaking point.

If Muslims bring in trade, hard work and chicken tikka masala – that’s all and well and good. But they can leave their religious extremism – and with it the mosques, veils and ridicuous demands – back in their own countries where it belongs. And if this isn’t possible, offenders should be carted off back to a suitable destination without fuss or ceremony.

Geert Wilders is accused of being “far right” – ah, that wonderfully catchy cachet loved so much by the leftist intellectual elite and their media mouthpieces. The truth is that is that, if anything, he is an ultra-liberal whose devotion to the very concept of freedom is offended by the presence of what is an insane political ideology dressed up as a religion.

The leftist bleaters may find it all rather difficult to stomach, but Wilders is as far-right as I am a socialist bleeding heart that might wish to welcome an army of Romanian gypsies to set up home in my back garden.

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Monday Madness

Monday Madness

So, it’s back to the grindstone.

I guess it will take a little while for things to warm up – after all, it isn’t just me who is slowly cranking back into gear. The sharply cold weather isn’t helping, but down here in the Saarf we shouldn’t really be complaining too much as we are still able to get about fairly easily and haven’t been served with yet another dumping of snow like those poor folks oop north.

One would have thought that the start of another year would see some people winds their necks back in, but hope would be a fine thing. Right there at the top of the list are our Muslim friends led by the wonderful Anjem Choudharywho has now threatened to lead a march through the otherwise obscure Wiltshire town of Wootton Bassett.

To those who may not know, Wootton Bassett is a small market town located near RAF Lyneham (where my father was once based, I believe) which is the point of arrival for servicemen and women who have been killed abroad. Given the town’s proximity to the RAF base, its streets have become the informal mourning place for dead service personnel on account of the fact that hearses leaving Lyneham pass through them.

This, of course, makes any planned march or protest by Islamic extremists doubly inflammatory.

I think most people in this country are agreed that the mess that has been made in both Afghanistan and Iraq could easily have been avoided; however rather than use this as a valid bargaining chip to built better relations and create a common front against the likes of Tony Blair and his warmongering minions, malcontents like Choudhary feel the need make his point by spiting the families of all those who have given their lives in this pointless conflict.

If Choudhary’s army really want to make a point, they should march on Blair’s armoured compound and give us taxpayers some value for the six million pounds we are currently paying for his well being. Rather than wasting their time travelling down to the sticks and getting up the collective nose of the British public, Choudhary and his motley band of rabble rousers, benefit scroungers and interlopers should make it their mission to land one square on Blair’s smarmy mug. And I am sure that if they did this, most of the rest of us wouldn’t lose much sleep over it.

Of course, Choudhary’s claim that Allied forces have killed more civilians in Afghanistan and Iraq than the Islamic extremists is absurd; there is no point arguing the toss though, as these people are simply deluded. After all, what else could you expect from the sort of people who would arm their underpants with explosives when boarding a plane?

The truth is that we’d all be better off if we just shoved these undesirables on a plane and jettisoned them over the desert – which should by rights far more welcoming than our land of milk and honey and easy to get benefits. I’d happily send Blair, Brown and all of those other slime-ridden tosspots with them as well.

And now to the latest from the pointless non-story newsdesk… It appears that the spoofed Michelle Obama “chimp” image is doing the rounds again, proof that there are some journalists out there with plenty of time on their hands…

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Intercontinental Ballistic Minarets

Intercontinental Ballistic Minarets

This weekend Switzerland voted to outlaw the building of new minarets, with twenty-two of the country’s twenty-six cantons in favour of the proposal for a ban. Given that the official line from the government and mainstream political parties attempted to encourage people to vote against the proposal, it says something that well over half the population disagreed.

Some commentators have argued that this vote compromises Switzerland’s standing as a bastion of democracy and freedom; I would argue otherwise, in that the Swiss people have finally been allowed to stand up and say that they have had enough with what they see as an increase in the physical presence of Islam, a religious ideology whose core tenets run country to the very concept of freedom and democracy. Perhaps more disconcerting for the multi-kulti dreamers however is the fact that this issue is no longer the property of fringe right-wing elements but ordinary citizens; there is the very real threat that if Switzerland can vote this way for such a proposal, the rest of Europe could quickly follow. (To think, such a proposal here in the UK could have prevented the building of the eyesore that is the minaret in Harrow – a structure that does look like an ICBM).

The striking poster that was used in the anti-minaret campaign. Kudos to the artist.

The striking poster that was used in the anti-minaret campaign. Kudos to the artist.

It has been suggested that the Swiss economy could suffer as the country has for a long time been an investment bolthole for rich Arabs; I personally would doubt this as the fat, rich sheikhs that head over to Europe to indulge in the pleasures denied in their own countries will always be the same.  They may have the blustering rhetoric, but will always retreat to the safe havens of Europe to sip fine expensive whiskies, purchase their Maybach or Rolls-Royce and cavort with expensive prostitutes. It therefore follows that these individuals will always head to Switzerland to bury their ill-gotten gains, whether minarets are banned or not. So no, I don’t think the Swiss are going to be hit in the wallet in any way.

Yes, some may say that the ban on minarets reflects badly on the country’s international image, but when push comes to shove your average Swiss citizen is always going to care more about what is happening in their own street or town than how their country is viewed by a bunch of crooks in some feudalist desert Sheikhdom.

Alternatively, some politicians have trotted out the now familiar line that the Swiss have by voting in favour of this ban shown a certain “intolerance”; this rather facile argument never ceases to amaze me, in that these same politicans simply cannot see that the minaret itself is a symbol of dominance, a physical presence that is a clear and very obvious statement of intent. It crosses the line between Muslims being allowed to worship freely and the extremists among them wanting to entrench their religion and beliefs by aggressively attempting to alter the physical and cultural landscape.

No more ICBMs on the streets of Zürich...?

No more ICBMs on the streets of Zürich...?

People are entitled to their beliefs, and the democratic culture we have in Europe does not aim to compromise these fundamental rights: Muslims, like anyone else, are free to hold their beliefs and freely practice their religion. This of course means that they should attempt to blend their faith with the existing cultural and social norms of the countries in which they may choose to live; it certainly does not mean that they should be clinging to beliefs that run counter to the majority social values with the aim of entrenching them.

Muslims praying together is a simple matter of them respecting their faith; the building of a minaret on the other hand is a political statement that says, quite boldly, “we are here and we want you to know it”. Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who has been among the loudest of the critics of the Swiss ban, was once heard to utter an Islamic poem which includes the lines

The mosques are our barracks, the domes our helmets, the minarets our bayonets and the faithful our soldiers… (Source: “Turkey’s charismatic pro-Islamic leader”, BBC News 4th November 2002)

Hmm. Not something friendly and fluffy like ice cream cones, but bayonets… It is perhaps worth noting that Mr. Erdoğan is the leader of a country that is pressing very hard to become a member of the European Union.

One thing that has struck me during this debate have been the constant complaints by so-called informed commentators about the anti-minaret poster used during the campaign, in particular the way the structures have been supposedly made to look like missiles. Well, if you actually look at the very real image (illustrated above) of one of the four existing Swiss minarets, the dimensions and shape are remarkably similar. Indeed, with that almost blinding white light the real thing could very well be mistaken for an ICBM. Alternatively, we could just leave our brains in the jar on the beside table and conclude that only the truly nasty, mean-spirited, fondue-eating, cuckoo clock-making, gnome-loving Swiss could make these beautiful Islamic buildings look like horrible missiles.

It has always been wondered where Saddam Hussein’s mysterious WMDs were… Well I’ll tell you, at least one of them can be found on the mean streets of Zürich.

While the “serious” press in neighbouring Germany have either condemned the Swiss vote or have chosen to tread carefully, I think the German tabloid Bild is right on the mark:

“The minaret isn’t just the symbol of a religion but of a totally different culture. Large parts of the Islamic world don’t share our basic European values: the legacy of the Enlightenment, the equality of man and woman, the separation of church and state, a justice system independent of the Bible or the Koran and the refusal to impose one’s own beliefs on others with ‘fire and the sword.’ Another factor is likely to have influenced the Swiss vote: Nowhere is life made harder for Christians than in Islamic countries. Those who are intolerant themselves cannot expect unlimited tolerance from others.”

I don’t think I could have put it better.

Quite simply, Muslims do not need minarets to illustrate loyalty to their faith, in much the same way as they do not need forced marriages, honour killings or women wearing the niqab. The determination of some Islamic clerics to maintain these symbols can only suggest one of two things – either an inherent inferiority complex on the one hand, or a long-term desire to dominate on the other.

Right-thinking, law-abiding Muslims in Switzerland should not see the banning of minarets as a slight, but as a catalyst for them to finally cauterise the cancerous extremist strain that exists among their ranks. Swiss Muslims should be taking this opportunity to say that they, too, do not need minarets.

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It’s all kicking off Stateside

It's all kicking off Stateside

Most if not all of you would have by now heard about the gunman running riot at the US Army base at Fort Hood, Texas – yet another story of an American going apeshit with a loaded weapon resulting in the deaths of a dozen servicemen and women and injury to many more.

This story however is one with a grisly twist in that the crazy shooter, one Major Nidal Malik Hasan, was a Muslim of Jordanian descent.

Naturally, the story has thrown the entire country – and armies of journalists and commentators across the globe – into a scribbling frenzy. While we have had those in the neocon Amen Corner babbling on about Islamic terrorism, those on the left have been quick to counter with the argument that Hasan’s religion had nothing to do with his decision to open fire on his erstwhile colleagues, and that it was yet a simple case of his being driven by a range of psychological problems.

The truth, as we will no doubt discover when the facts begin to emerge and the hubbub dies down, probably lies somewhere in between.

From reading initial reports, it would appear that Maj. Hasan – who ironically was an Army specialist in mental health Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington DC – was a devout Muslim who had for years expressed reservations about the ongoing struggle in Afghanistan and Iraq, and that he had been driven to the very brink by the fear of being posted to one of these locations. Not a comfortable position to be in whichever way one chooses to look at it, but clearly not enough to conclude that he was some sort of terrorist with any sort of long-term or thought-out agenda.

On the other hand, those who have argued that Hasan’s religious convictions are irrelevant are clearly deluding themselves – the fact that the man had expressed such strong reservations about the situation in Afghanistan and Iraq for years suggests that there was clearly a conflict between his loyalty to the country of his birth on the one hand and his religion on the other. This was an outrage perpetrated by a man who was caught in a psychological bind – and whether some of us like it or not, his religion was a very obvious motivating factor.

Islam is more than just a religious faith; it is also a political ideology, a fundamental way of life that can be – depending on how far you take it – incredibly uncompromising. It naturally demands a certain degree of loyalty, and so long as this loyalty remains in place there will always be room for doubt when trying to understand the mindset and motivation of those Muslims who claim to be part of Western society. On the one hand they appear willing to go along with the flow, but at the same time they fiercely cling onto beliefs that very clearly hark back to the dark ages. It is the sort of warped mindset that might make someone shout “Allahu Akbar!” before opening fire on his colleagues.

It is my belief that one can never truly be both a devout Muslim and a happy, cooperative member of Western society, as at some point contradictions will crop up – contradictions that to a devout Muslim would be non-negotiable. Communal showers at sports clubs. Dinnertime at school. Attitudes to women and girls. A night out with the lads down at the pub.

Being sent to serve your country in a Muslim country such as Afghanistan or Iraq.

Some have attempted to portray Hasan as the victim in all this, with some of his relatives suggesting that he had been harrassed over his Middle Eastern origins and Muslim beliefs. One is not going to suggest this sort of thing may or may not have happened – it must have been hard for any Muslim serviceman post-9/11 – but we aren’t talking about some wet behind the ears greenhorn recruit here. Hasan had reached the rank of major, not something that can be achieved overnight; he had joined the Army not long after leaving high school, which suggests he would have served the best part of two decades in the military.

While a general antipathy towards Muslims among those in the US military would have peaked in 2001 following the September 11th attacks, it had always been bubbling under the surface after the Lockerbie bombing in 1988 and the first invasion of Iraq in 1991; quite simply, the argument that Maj. Hasan had been forced to endure a life of harrassment just does not wash, for if this were the case he would have left the Army long before.

There is also the argument that Hasan’s having to deal with injured and psychologically damaged comrades during the course of his work at the Walter Reed Center had caused him to snap; this too is highly dubious in that the natural reaction to this would not have involved randomly shooting your colleagues and adding to the list of casualties. It just doesn’t make sense.

Rather than trying to point the finger at his colleagues, I’d argue that Hasan decided to develop his devotion to Islam after the 9/11 attacks, which not only created a conflict of interest but made his position in the US military increasingly untenable. This need to show a wider Islamic solidarity was not an uncommon phenomenon; one only needs to have observed the sudden surge of veil-wearers after 9/11.

My conclusion is rather inevitable, in that I’d simply go back to the idea that Islam and Western societal mores are essentially incompatible: it’s a sad case of never the twain shall meet. Those that believe that Islam and Western society can peacefully co-exist are living in a fantasy world, for it is a simple fact that those Muslims whom we would see as moderate would not even be seen as Muslims by some of their more aggressive brethren; they’d simply be among those infidels lined up to be killed in any impending Jihad.

It would simply be better if so-called moderate Muslims who wish to be part of mainstream Western society were to jettison their association with this archaic religious doctrine entirely; it would get what is a rather nasty monkey off their back, and at the same time let the rest of us know where we all stand.

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