My name is Fred and I am a gay conservative living in Ottawa. This blog supports limited government, the right of the State of Israel to live in peace and security, and tries to expose the threat to us all from cultural relativism, post-modernism, and radical Islam. I am also the founder of the Free Thinking Film Society in Ottawa (

Friday, March 31, 2006

Iran test fires new missile....

I'd like to know whether the features are just hype..or real.
Iran successfully test-fired Friday a missile with the ability to avoid radar and hit several targets simultaneously, the air force chief of the elite Revolutionary Guards said.

"Today, a remarkable goal of the Islamic Republic of Iran's defense forces was realized with the successful test-firing of a new missile with greater technical and tactical capabilities than those previously produced," Gen. Hossein Salami said on state-run television.

Salami said the Iranian-made missile was test-fired as large military maneuvers began in the Persian Gulf and the Arabian Sea.

"This missile can simultaneously hit several targets, has near stealth capabilities with a high maneuverability, pin point accuracy and radar avoidance features," Salami said, possibly referring to Israel's Arrow missile defense system designed to intercept a Shihab-type missile.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

El Baradei gives up....

How on earth does this guy have any credibility? Here's his raction to the possibility of sanctions against Iran.
And Mohamed ElBaradei, head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, said: "Sanctions are a bad idea. We are not facing an imminent threat. We need to lower the pitch." He told a forum in the Qatari capital, Doha: "My message to Iran?: the international community is getting impatient and you need to respond by arming me with information."
So, what he wants is information. How deaf can he be....THEY'RE BUILDING FUCKING NUCLEAR WEAPONS....

Selective outrage over profiling...

Dan Abrams has a must-read column on profiling.
Where is the outrage over 46 members of the Duke University Lacrosse team being asked to provide DNA samples to the local police? All but one player provided samples after a dancer, hired by certain members of the team for a party, claimed she was sexually assaulted, sodomized, and beaten in the bathroom. Why did only 46 of the 47 players offer up samples? Because one wasn't asked. The alleged victim told police she was positive the suspect or suspects were white, so the sole black member of the team was exempt. That makes perfect sense to me.

The alleged perpetrator was definitely white, why bother asking for DNA from someone who wasn't responsible? When police put together a lineup and the suspect is a white man, white men are included in the lineup. It's a race-based decision, but in my mind not simply profiling. But that's not how some civil liberties groups have seen it when black men have been asked voluntarily for samples.

In Omaha, Nebraska, efforts to find a serial rapist where the victims claimed he was black met with public outrage when police asked nearly two dozen black men to give DNA. In Charlottesville, Virginia, efforts to find a different serial rapist led police to swab the cheeks of 187 black men. In those cases, the American Civil Liberties Union called the DNA sweep racial profiling. Where is the same ACLU that decried profiling when random men in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, were asked for DNA in connection with the murder of former fashion writer Christa Worthington?

Look, sometimes the police are wrong.

Back in 2002 in Baton Rouge, they took DNA swabs from over 1,000 white men, believing a serial killer stalking the area was white. When the suspect was finally arrested, he was black.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

More on the Abdul Rahman case...

He's left Afghanistan and has been granted asylum in Italy.

We can breathe a sigh of relief. However, the bigger issue is that of Sharia law and the fact that this sort of thing could have happened in a number of countries - including Saudia Arabia, Iran etc. At some point, we are going to have to face up the fact that Sharia Law is inconsistent with human rights, as we understand them. This is a big issue - and one that we have yet to sit back and think about.

Good for Peter MacKay!

One of the reasons why I vote Conservative.
Canada announced Wednesday that it was suspending assistance to the Palestinian Authority because the new Hamas-led government refuses to renounce violence and recognize Israel.

Foreign Affairs Minister Peter MacKay said in a statement that Canada therefore had no choice but to suspend assistance to the authority and decline contact with the new Hamas Cabinet.

Canada is the first country after Israel to formally cut assistance to the Palestinian Authority and other nations were expected to follow suit. With Hamas now at the helm, the cash-strapped Palestinian government faces a crippling international economic boycott,

Iran tries to censor blogs...

Ultimately, they will fail...but until they do, lots of people are going to be harassed...
On his last visit to Iran, Canadian-based blogger Hossein Derakhshan was detained and interrogated, then forced to sign a letter of apology for his blog writings before being allowed to leave the country.

Compared to others, Derakhshan is lucky.

Dozens of Iranian bloggers have faced harassment by the government, been arrested for voicing opposing views, and fled the country in fear of prosecution over the past two years.
And, how are they censoring blogs?
It also is one of a growing number of Mideast countries that rely on U.S. commercial software to do the filtering, according to a 2004 study by a group called the OpenNet Initiative. The software that Iran uses blocks both internationally hosted sites in English and local sites in Farsi, the study found.

The filtering process is backed by laws that force individuals who subscribe to Internet service providers to sign a promise not to access non-Islamic sites. The same laws also force the providers to install filtering mechanisms.

The filtering "is systematically getting worse," said Derakhshan, who was detained and questioned during a visit to Iran last spring, just before the election of hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Katyusha rockets now in Gaza...

More powerful Katyusha rockets are now in Gaza...
The Islamic Jihad, who on Tuesday morning fired for the first time a Katyusha rocket into Israel from the Gaza Strip, announced Wednesday that it has many more of those rockets, Army Radio reported.

The Katyusha rocket has twice the range of the primitive Kassam rocket, is more accurate and can carry more explosives.

An IDF officer called the use of Katyushas, "an escalation on the Gaza battlefield."

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

How's this for art?

Ramapo College in Mahwah, New Jersey, has been rated number one among regional public community colleges and ninth in the United States for educational value by U.S. News & World Report magazine. Now a six-week art exhibit at the college’s Kresge Gallery threatens to tarnish that reputation.

The guest curator is Isolde Brielmaier, a Ugandan art professor from Vassar College who seems to have a particular affection for anti-social “art” including explicit anti-Jewish themes. One work featured in the exhibit, created by artist Deborah Grant (who has no relationship to Ramapo College), depicts a Jewish rabbi dressed in phylacteries with a Star of David on his yarmulke, holding up Torah scrolls with the Nazi swastika instead of text. The inscription below the image reads: “The Old and the New Testament.” The implication could not be clearer: the Jews’ holy text is fascism and they are the new Nazis.

The exhibition is part of African Ancestry Month. What does such an anti-Semitic image have to do with African ancestry? One also wonders what American taxpayers would make of the exhibition which they are funding in part by grants from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts.

For obvious reasons, the college has not been eager to publicize its controversial exhibition. Indeed, I learned of the art only after a Jewish student, upset with the college’s insistence on keeping it in the exhibit during its entire six weeks run, provided a photograph she had secretly taken of it.

Another expert condemns the seal hunt...

I see today that yet another internationally-recognized seal expert is condemning the hunt. Yes, Morrissey likens the seal hunt to the holocaust. Why are so many experts - Paul McCartney, Brigitte Bardot, and Morrissey - so against us? It appears the weight of expert opinion has spoken, no?

Mom shackles daughter...could you imagine if it had been the father?

Looks like nothing will happen.
Authorities are investigating allegations that a Massachusetts woman shackled her 14-year-old daughter in chains to teach her a lesson for skipping school.

The 37-year-old mother of four, whose name was not released, told police the same chain-and-shackle technique had proved effective with a truant son several years earlier.

“She was saying that more parents should do this because of the problems with kids today,” Blackstone Detective Wayne Mowry said.
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Police have not arrested the mother but she is being investigated by state social workers, authorities said Monday.

About two weeks ago the mother bought chain and two padlocks after being told that her daughter had missed school. She tracked the girl to a shopping district, bound her daughter’s ankle to one end of the chain and shackled her own wrist to the other, and then drove to their home in Blackstone, about 35 miles southwest of Boston, police said.

A police officer who pulled the woman’s car over because it did not have a license plate discovered the two chained together but he let them go because he had to respond to a more urgent call, Mowry said.

Police who visited the woman’s home later found the daughter’s ankles chained together as she helped her mother cook dinner, Mowry said.

“The kid was actually upset that we were there,” she said.

“She was sticking up for her mother.”

Police removed the shackles from the girl, who they said appeared physically unharmed.

“It was a bad choice,” Mowry said. “But the intent wasn’t to hurt her daughter. And there doesn’t seem to be a pattern at all of any type of abuse or neglect.
Could you imagine the uproar if the father had shackled his son or daughter?

Enough to make you an atheist...

This is a snippet from the National Post today.
A muslim couple in the Indian state of West Bengal have been told by a religious judge they must separate after the husband "divorced" his wife in his sleep. Sohela Ansari told friends her husband, Aftab, had uttered the word 'talaq', or divorce, three times while asleep. The judge said his words constituted a divorce and told the couple, married for 11 years with three children, they had to split. Then if they wanted to remarry they would have to wait 100 days and Sohela would have to spend a night with another man and be divorced by him. The couple have refused to obey. Other Muslim authorities are appalled by the decision. The pronouncement of 'talaq' must be intentional, said Zafaryab Jilanikr.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Boy, 8, accused of sexual harassment....

This incident took place in Lorain, Ohio.
Lorain school officials this week executed an "emergency removal" of an 8-year-old boy who they say sexually harassed a girl in gym class.

The boy's mother, Tammy Barth, said yesterday her son was playing in gym on Tuesday when a girl student said he and two other boys may have grabbed her buttocks.

He was then questioned in an informal hearing by school officials and he admitted he had been passing love notes to the same girl.

The second-grader then asked to sign a notice of emergency removal form for sexual harassment without a parent present, Barth said. The boy printed his first name on the portion of the form asking for his signature.

School documents provided by Barth and the boy's father, Frank Johnson, did not give specifics on the incident but showed that the second-grader was removed from school on Tuesday for "sexual harassment during gym." It also states the student "admits to writing notes saying 'I love you' and giving them to a student."

''It's an embarrassment to me and it's an embarrassment to him because he doesn't understand what's going on,'' Barth said.

Lorain schools spokesman Dean Schnurr confirmed yesterday that a student was sent home on an "emergency removal" for inappropriate actions. Schnurr insisted that his removal was a minor, precautionary action.

"It's not a disciplinary action," Schnurr said yesterday, adding the allegation will not be placed in the student's permanent record. "We don't want to put something in the permanent record of a youngster who may not understand what they did wrong."

"He admitted to what he was being accused of," Schnurr said, unable to give specifics but said they were "inappropriate" in nature.

However, the student's mother said the school assumed her son touched the girl because he had written her a love letter a few weeks ago.

"Apparently, they had to treat it as sexual harassment," Barth said, adding the girl has been friends with her son for a long time. ''And then he was given a day off of school because of passing notes that say 'I love you.'"

Johnson said the incident was harmless and referring to it as sexual harassment is what was "inappropriate."

"Little kids are going to do stupid things like that," he said of his son passing love letters.

The student was temporarily removed from school for a day, March 23, and instructed to come back to school on March 24 with a parent.

"It's our job to teach students at a young age that inappropriate behavior is unacceptable," Schnurr said. "The student did something wrong, admitted he did something wrong and received the proper discipline."

He added it is unfortunate that this discipline is not emphasized at the student's home.

The second-grader's parents are still wondering how to discipline their son because they are not sure of what he did wrong. Barth said being reprimanded for passing love notes to another student is not and should not be a disciplinary matter.

Dieudonne prepares a new show...

The anti-semitic comic is preparing a new show.
All through the show, however, something else intrudes, something darker and more sinister. Dieudonné is obsessed with Jews. All races, including his own mixed black and white origins, get a gentle mickey-taking in his show. When Jews are mentioned - and they are mentioned often - the tone becomes more aggressive, even violent.

In one skit, Bernard-Henri Lévy, the Jewish-French philosopher, haggles with a street potato seller. Dieudonné/Lévy says: "How can you ask me to pay so much when 6 million of us died in the Holocaust?" Roars of delight from the audience.

There is also a Hitler-in-his-bunker sketch that is moderately funny until the closing line: "You will see, in the future, people will come to realise that I, Adolf Hitler, was really a moderate."

Dhimmitude in Denmark...

Here's a description of Denmark leading up to the cartoons.
In late 2004 -- a University of Copenhagen professor of Moroccan Jewish descent -- was kidnapped in broad daylight and brutally beaten by three Muslim youths for the "crime" of having read from the Quran during a lecture. A few months later, a Danish publisher used anonymous translators for an essay collection critical of Islam for fear that any named assistant would suffer a similar fate. And in an incident immediately preceding Jyllands-Posten's decision to run the cartoons as a test of self-censorship, Danish artists refused to illustrate a children's book about Muhammad.

These incidents, all disturbing, don't even scratch the surface of the appeasement Danes have made to accommodate the people who unleashed violence against them. In Copenhagen's public schools, the only food available to students -- regardless of their religious affiliation or lack thereof -- are Halal (prepared according to Islamic dietary requirements). In Denmark, a country which enjoys well-deserved praise for the courage with which citizens came together to save its small Jewish community during World War II, Danish Jewish students today cannot attend certain public schools because their very presence is viewed by administrators as "provocative" to radicalized Muslim peers. The country's only Jewish school, Copenhagen's 300-pupil Carolineskolen, founded in 1805, nowadays is constrained to operate behind a double ring of barbed wire.

Naser Khader, the Damascus-born son of a Palestinian father and Syrian mother who has served as a Danish parliamentarian from the Social Liberal Party since 1994, now lives under round-the-clock police protection because he committed the "crime" of giving his daughter a kafir ("infidel," read "Western") name. Compounding his "apostasy," he founded a moderate Muslim group with over 700 members, Democratic Muslims, after the outbreak of the "cartoon jihad" to campaign against Islamic establishmentarianism. Imam Ahmad Abu Laban -- the same character who instigated Middle Eastern anti-Danish riots with his portfolio of doctored cartoons -- then labeled Mr. Khader and his supporters "rats in a hole." One of the members of Khader's new group, Iranian refugee Kamran Tahmesabi, recently told a Belgian newspaper, "It is an irony that I am today living in a European democratic state and have to fight the same religious fanatics that I fled from in Iran many years ago."

After the "cartoon jihad" had seemingly run its course, this past February 12, the Danish chapter of the radical group Hizb ut-Tahrir availed itself of the Scandinavian country's "decadent" freedoms to hold a meeting in the Copenhagen neighborhood of Nørrebro, where it attempted to stoke the flames of hatred. The participants at this gathering minced no words about the "infidels" who populate their country. Leader Fadi Abdullatif (who had previously received a 60-day sentence for threatening to kill Jews) turned his wrath on Denmark's popular bicycle-riding sovereign, Queen Margarethe II, whom he accused of involvement in a "conspiracy" with Jyllands-Posten and Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen to "harm Islam." The state prosecutor, under pressure from Muslim groups, declined to bring charges.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Anti-Semitism suges amongst the youth of France...

A frightening report about the youth in France from the New York Times.
"The minister of education has done nothing," said Jean-Pierre Obin, an inspector general of education in France, who wrote a report in 2004 that called anti-Semitism "ubiquitous" in the 61 schools surveyed. "He prefers not to talk about it."

Mr. Obin wrote in the report of "a stupefying and cruel reality: in France, Jewish children — and they are alone in this case — can no longer be educated in just any school."

Ianis Roder, 34, a history teacher in a middle school northeast of Paris, said he was stunned by what he witnessed after Sept. 11, 2001. The next day, someone spray-painted in a stairwell of the school the image of an airplane crashing into the World Trade Center beside the words "Death to the U.S., Death to Jews."

When he told his class months later that Hitler had killed millions of million Jews, one boy blurted out, "He would have made a good Muslim!" Mr. Roder told of a Muslim teacher who dismissed her class after a shouting match over Nazi propaganda. The students said the offensive images accurately depicted Jews.

Even today, he said, there is widespread belief that the Sept. 11 attacks were a Jewish plot and that Jews were notified beforehand.

Barbara Lefèbvre, a history teacher who has taught in several of the working-class suburbs, said many people minimize the anti-Semitism among France's youth.

"They say, 'That's the way the kids talk — they don't mean it in the same way that you or I would,' " she said. Ms. Lefèbvre, who is Jewish, said she had to argue with the principal of her school several years ago to get an investigation when a student wrote "dirty Jew" on a notebook used by her class. The student, a French-Arab boy, was ultimately given just two hours of detention.

Sunshine and global warming...

It sort of makes sense, no, that the sun is involved with global warming?
THE amount of sunshine reaching earth is increasing, accelerating the pace of climate change, scientists have found.

A series of independent studies around the world show a significant rise in the amount of sunshine penetrating the atmosphere to be absorbed by the earth’s surface and turned into heat.

The research will concern climate researchers who are already predicting a rapid rise in global temperatures due to man-made emissions of so-called greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide.

“The enhanced warming we have seen since the 1990s along with phenomena such as the widespread melting of glaciers could well be due to this increased intensity of sunlight compounding the effect of greenhouse gases,” said Professor Martin Wild of the Institute of Atmospheric and Climate Science in Zurich, Switzerland.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

The dupes now head to Caracas....

An evening class in 21st century socialist theory sounds scrumcious to me!
Venezuela is overtaking Cuba as the inspirational holiday destination for Left-wing tourists, thanks to the socialist revolution of President Hugo Chavez.

Wooed by reports of his crusades against poverty, globalisation and American imperialism, groups of visitors, nicknamed the "Sandalistas", are flocking to admire his policies at first hand.

Among the progressive pilgrims who have come to marvel are the American civil rights leader, Jesse Jackson, the actor and United Nations "goodwill ambassador", Danny Glover, and Harry Belafonte, the Jamaican-American musician known as the king of calypso. Belafonte led a delegation to Caracas, the capital, in January, touring shanty towns before appearing on state television with Mr Chavez, chanting "Viva la revolución!"

At the same time, there is a growing crowd of students, academics and unreconstructed Marxists for whom a visit to Caracas offers an experience reminiscent of the jaunts peddled by Intourist, the Soviet-era travel agency.

Rather than relaxing in luxury hotels or trekking through the Andes, the most adventurous stay with families in the slums and take trips around shiny new health clinics, perhaps rounding off the day with an evening class in 21st century socialist theory.

"We have come to see the revolution. It is an experience of a lifetime," said Bjorn Hansen, 23, a political science student who has recently arrived with his girlfriend, Sitne Faerch, 24, from the Danish capital, Copenhagen.

"Israel Lobby" authors drew from Neo-Nazi sites...

I doubt the authors of the study will ever debate Dershowitz.
A prominent Harvard law professor, Alan Dershowitz, is alleging that the authors of a Harvard Kennedy School paper about the "Israel lobby," one of which is the Kennedy School's academic dean, culled sections of the paper from neo-Nazi and other anti-Israel hate Web sites.

"What we're discovering first of all is that the quotes that they use are not only wrenched out of context, but they are the common quotes that appear on hate sites," Mr. Dershowitz, who is identified in the paper as part of the "lobby," told The New York Sun yesterday.

"The wrenching out of context is done by the hate sites,and then [the authors] cite them to the original sources, in order to disguise the fact that they've gotten them from hate sites."

The paper, "The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy," was written by the Kennedy School's Stephen Walt and a political science professor and the codirector of the Program on International Security Policy at the University of Chicago, John Mearsheimer, and published by the Kennedy School.

In the 83-page "working paper," the professors suggest that a vast network of journalists, think tanks, lobbyists, and largely Jewish officials have seized the foreign policy debate and manipulated America to invade Iraq.

The paper has drawn sharp criticism from prominent Harvard faculty, Harvard students, and a member of Congress, with many critics alleging that the document is riddled with factual inaccuracies and suffers from bias and faulty research.

According to Mr. Dershowitz, one of the paper's most prominent critics, Messrs. Mearsheimer and Walt not only demonstrated "shallowness" in their analysis,but also based that analysis on quotes and viewpoints widely available on the Web sites of hate groups.

Gee, who knew he was a terrorist?

Another so-called moderate muslim gets caught...
A Danish Islamic group said its spokesman will be removed from his post after he was secretly filmed making an apparent call for a bomb attack against a moderate Muslim lawmaker.

The spokesman, Ahmad Akkari, was shown on French television Thursday suggesting a bomb attack against the lawmaker, Naser Khader. Akkari later said it was a joke.

The hidden camera interview was recorded in February as raging protests swept the Muslim world over the Prophet Muhammad cartoons first published in a Danish newspaper.

The Islamic Faith Community decided Friday that Akkari can no longer be its spokesman, Kasem Said, a high-ranking member of the group, told Danish broadcaster DR.

"Akkari can no longer be our spokesman after these statements," Said said.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Palestinian Children's Festival....

This so-called festival was in Yemen. Isn't this child abuse?

Source: Palestinian Media Watch.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Ban the Easter Bunny!

Even I like the Easter Bunny! This is from St. Paul, Minnesota.
The Easter Bunny was spotted at City Hall -- briefly.

A small Easter display was removed from the lobby on Wednesday out of concern that they would offend non-Christians.

The display -- a cloth bunny, pastel-colored eggs and a sign with the words "Happy Easter'' -- were put up by a City Council secretary. They weren't purchased with city money.

Tyrone Terrill, the city's human rights director, asked that the decorations be removed. Terrill said no citizen had complained to him.

Council Member Dave Thune called it a shame.

"This has just gone too far," he said. "We can't celebrate spring with bunnies and fake grass?"

The council president, Kathy Lantry, said the removal wasn't about political correctness.

"As government, we have a different responsibility about advancing the cause of religion, which we are not going to do,'' she said.

It's not the first time a holiday symbol has been removed from City Hall. In 2001, red poinsettias were briefly banned from a holiday display because they were associated with Christmas.

If only he had said that Bush was less intelligent....

I don't know if he is right or wrong (there is a cultural component of IQ)....but I think he should have the right to say what he thinks...
The lecturer who claims that black people are, on average, less intelligent that whites was suspended by Leeds University yesterday.

Frank Ellis was told to stay at home and make no further comment. He now faces disciplinary action.

The lecturer claims that his views are backed by research in America showing that the average IQ of black people is lower than that of white people and that he has the right to voice his opinions.

But students say his views are inflammatory and insulting and that they cannot be sure that he will not discriminate against them on grounds of colour.

In a strongly-worded statement yesterday Roger Gair, the university's secretary, said Mr Ellis, 53, had "recklessly jeopardised fulfilment of the university's obligations under the Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000".

By publicising his personal views on race and other matters Mr Ellis had "acted in breach of our equality and diversity policy" in a way that was "wholly at odds with our values", he alleged. Mr Ellis was also accused of failing to comply with reasonable requests from his employer, such as apologising for the distress his remarks had caused and refusing to undertake not to repeat them.
It all sounds like a knee-jerk reaction. I'd like to see more on whether he was a good teacher or not.

However, I agree totally with these views:
In a subsequent interview with The Daily Telegraph, Mr Ellis, a former special forces soldier, claimed that multi-culturalism was doomed to failure because it was "based on the lie that all people, races and cultures are equal and that no one race or culture is better than any other".

How about a contract like this for immigrants to Canada?

I like the idea, but I am skeptical the EU is actually going to do it.
New migrants to Europe could be forced to sign "integration contracts", pledging to learn the languages of their host countries and respect Western freedoms, under plans announced yesterday.

Interior ministers from the six largest EU states agreed that: "The values of our societies - democracy, respect for other faiths, free speech, the rule of law, free media and so on - are values we would expect everybody wanting to settle in these countries to respect."

The meeting, in Germany, brought together ministers from Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Poland.

The host, Wolfgang Schaeuble, said the idea was to make clear that immigation was a "reciprocal" process, and that "successful integration is always something that presupposes mutual rights and obligations".

Asked if immigrants who broke the proposed contracts could be deported, Charles Clarke, the Home Secretary, said: "That would be an issue that could arise."

Now here's a gay leader!

Peter Tatchell, the leading gay activist in the UK, is going to speak at the Freedom of Expression Rally in London on March 25th. Here's an article by Tatchell.
The strength and survival of free society and the advance of human knowledge depends on the free exchange of ideas. All ideas are capable of giving offence, and some of the most powerful ideas in human history, such as those of Galileo and Darwin, have given profound religious offence in their time. The free exchange of ideas depends on freedom of expression and this includes the right to criticise and mock.

We assert and uphold the right of freedom of expression and call on our elected representatives to do the same. We abhor the fact that people throughout the world live under mortal threat simply for expressing ideas and we call on our elected representatives to protect them from attack and not to give comfort to the forces of intolerance that besiege them.

This is the statement of principle that Saturday's freedom of expression rally has been called to defend. How can anyone disagree with these progressive values?

I can’t, and that is why I will be joining the thousands in Trafalgar Square.

The rally is backed mostly by secular, humanist and libertarian groups, but with support from some left-wingers and liberal Muslims.

Some of my friends on the left are refusing to take part. Preferring to remain marginal but pure, they object to the involvement of right-wing groups like the Libertarian Alliance and the Freedom Association.

I share their distaste for these groups. But my participation on Saturday is based on supporting the statement of principle, not on who else is taking part. I will not let the dubious politics of others dissuade me from supporting what are important, progressive humanitarian values.

Sections of the left moan that the rally is being supported the right. Well, if these socialists object so strongly why don’t they organise their own demo in support of free speech?

The truth is that is that some of the left would rarely, if ever, rally to defend freedom of expression because they don’t wholeheartedly believe in it. Mired in the immoral morass of cultural relativism, they no longer endorse Enlightenment values and universal human rights. Their support for free speech is now qualified by so many ifs and buts.

When push comes to shove, it is more or less worthless.

As a left-wing Green, committed to human rights and social justice, I do not share the politics of some other speakers and rallyists. But this is the whole point of Saturdays’ demo – to defend the free speech of those with whom we disagree.

While I support the right of newspapers to publish cartoons satirising any religious or atheist leader, there are bigger, more important free speech issues to fight.

When I speak in Trafalgar Square on Saturday, I will defend Muslim communities against prejudice and discrimination, attack the BNP and the war on terror, and condemn the government’s erosion of civil liberties and individual freedom.

My speech will also assert the right to condemn British troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, urge less state secrecy and more freedom of information, and call for the disestablishment of the Church of England and the freedom to insult the Queen, Prime Minister and Archbishop of Canterbury.

When it comes to free speech, I am an equal opportunities free speecher. I even defend the right of others to mock and ridicule me.

I may not like it. It might be unfair. But that’s democracy.

Some critics are mischievously portraying Saturday’s protest as an anti-Muslim rally. I condemn any attempt to demonise or scapegoat my Muslim brothers and sisters. I also reject the suggestion of a clash of civilisations.

Both fundamentalists and progressives can be found in all faiths, politics, ethnicities and cultures. No society has a monopoly of enlightenment and plurality. Muslim societies like Bangladesh have produced Enlightenment icons like the feminist writer Taslima Nasreen; while supposedly cultured nations like Britain and France have spawned the Dark Ages ignorance of the British National Party and the Front National.

When considering the vexed question of the limits to free speech, perhaps we should start with first principles:

Article 19 of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that: “Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression.”

By this standard, freedom of expression is a fundamental human right for every person on this planet. It is a right for all, not some. If we expect free speech for ourselves, then we are duty bound to ensure that it also exists for others.

Contrary to what the cultural relativists try to suggest, freedom of expression is not a western value; it is a universal humanitarian value that every member state of the United Nations has pledged to uphold.

By demanding the right to free speech, we are not seeking to impose western values on non-western nations. We are merely asking the governments of the world to honour the human rights commitments they agreed when they signed up to the UN.

Free speech is one of the litmus tests of a free and democratic society.

Alas, not everyone shares a commitment to democracy. To maintain their power, political and religious tyrants have always censored ideas and opinions. Some liberals and left-wingers, often with the honourable motive of tackling prejudice, have also attempted to place constraints on what can be publicly said on issues such as race and sexuality. This authoritarianism lite has its downside too. Suppressing intolerant ideas doesn’t make them go away. They just go underground and fester. This is not a solution.

While many people of faith have been recently up-in-arms over cartoons, plays and operas they find offensive, ironically it is the free expression they oppose that is the precondition for genuine political and religious freedom. It is in the interests of people of all political and religious beliefs – and of none – to defend freedom of expression. By defending the freedom of others we are also defending our own freedom.

The right to free speech is the surest guarantor of religious freedom. Without freedom of expression, religious minorities tend to be persecuted by religious majorities. Witness, in theocratic Iran, the victimisation of Sunni Muslims by Shia Muslims.

A democratic secular state is the true protector of all religions. It guarantees religious freedom and equality, ensuring that no one faith lords it over others. That is why, among other things, I favour the disestablishment of the Church of England, to end the privileged constitutional and legal status of this increasingly diminished protestant sect.

Freedom of expression should not, of course, be abused. A harmonious, good natured society is one where people are civil and courteous to each other. Prejudice and discrimination have no place in civilised discourse. Offensive language – whether sexist, anti-gay or racist – is rude and divisive and should always be challenged.

Those who justify legal limits to free speech need to answer a number of questions:

When it comes to censorship and bans, where do you start and where do you stop?

Who decides what is sufficiently offensive to merit restriction? At what point do you draw the line? Isn’t this an inevitably subjective judgement? When does a well-meaning desire to protect vulnerable communities spill over into the dangerous territory of giving some communities privileged protection and immunity from criticism?

All human beings are worthy of respect, but not all ideas deserve respect. There is, for example, no obligation to respect Nazism, misogyny, white supremacism, homophobia or creationism.

I grew up in Australia in the 1960s, during a period of McCarthyite-style red-baiting. Because I opposed the US and Australian war against Vietnam, I was denounced as a communist and nearly lost my job. From firsthand experience, I know freedom of expression is a precious freedom that must be safeguarded.

That is why I argue the right to free speech can be legitimately restricted only when it involves incitement to violence or libel/defamation. The threat of violence and the spreading of untruths diminish free, honest and open debate. Otherwise, speech must remain free. The rare exceptions are instances like not being free to publish terrorist bomb-making instructions.

The price of living in a free society is that we are sometimes confronted with views we find offensive and insulting. Faced with bigoted, intolerant opinions, the most effective way to challenge them is by calm, reasoned debate to dispel ignorance and prejudice – not by bans and censorship. Physical threats and violence are unacceptable.

In January, I challenged Sir Iqbal Sacranie of the Muslim Council of Britain when he denounced homosexuality as immoral, harmful and diseased. But I did not seek to ban him, nor did I support calls for his prosecution. I defended Sir Iqbal’s right to free speech.

Will he and his fellow MCB leaders now defend my right to freedom of expression? Or is Sir Iqbal another of those selective free speech proponents? Freedom of expression for me, but not for you?
Could you imagine a Gay activist in Canada writing such an article??? No way!

Are Tom & Jerry part of a Jewish Plot?

You can watch the video here of Iranian University Professor hasan Bolkhari on Iranian TV!

Are gays being targeted in Iraq?

I wish the press would be as loud on this case as on the Rahman case.
Following a death-to-gays fatwa issued last October by Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, death squads of the Badr Corps have been systematically targeting gay Iraqis for persecution and execution, gay Iraqis say. But when they ask for help and protection from U.S. occupying authorities in the Green Zone, the secure area officialdom has carved out within Baghdad, gays Iraqis are met with indifference and derision.

“The Badr Corps is committed to the sexual cleansing of Iraq,” said Ali Hili, a 33-year-old gay Iraqi exile in London who, with some 30 other gay Iraqis who have fled to the United Kingdom, five months ago founded the Abu Nawas Group there to support persecuted gay Iraqis. The group is named for a revered eighth-century classical poet of Arab and Persian descent known throughout Middle East cultures and famous for his poems in praise of same-sex love.

“We believe that the Badr Corps is receiving advice from Iran on how to target gay people,” Hili told Gay City News.

In the Islamic Republic of Iran, the regime of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been carrying out a lethal anti-gay pogrom against gays, notably through entrapment schemes carried out on the Internet. The Badr Corps in Iraq has recently begun to use this tactic to identify and hunt down Iraqi gays.

The well-armed Badr Corps is the military arm of the Iranian-backed Supreme Council of the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI), the powerful Shia group that is the largest political formation in Iraq's Shia community, which was headquartered in exile in Tehran until Saddam Hussein's fall. The SCIRI's Badr Corps is trained and commanded by former Iraqi army officers.

The Ayatollah Sistani, the 77-year-old Iranian-born cleric who is the supreme Shia authority in Iraq, is revered by SCIRI as its spiritual leader. His anti-gay fatwa-available on Sistani's official Web site-says that “people involved” in homosexuality “should be killed in the worst, most severe way of killing.”

Speaking by telephone from London, Hili said that “there is a very, very serious threat to life for gay people in Iraq today. We are receiving regular reports from our extensive network of contacts with underground gay activists and gay people in Iraq-intimidation, beatings, kidnappings, and murders of gays have become an almost daily occurrence. The Badr Corps was killing gay people even before the ayatollah's fatwa, but Sistani's murderous homophobic incitement has given a green light to all Shia Muslims to hunt and kill lesbians and gay men.”

The case of Abdul Rahman...

It's time for me to comment on the case of Abdul Rahman, the Afghani who converted to Christianity and who now faces the death penalty. We all need to speak out about this horror. No one should face any penalty for what they believe. Unfortunately, this is all part of Sharia law....and the same sort of thing happens in places like Saudi Arabia. How many churches are there in Saudi Arabia?

We need to confront this on two levels. First, to put pressure on the Afghan government to stop this persecution...and to ensure this sort of thing never happens again. Second, we must confront the horrors of Sharia law everywhere it is applied. We must not be silent.

Hamas to co-ordinate terrorist attacks...

This is the new Palestinian Interior Minister talking!
As well as vowing not to arrest militants for carrying out attacks against Israel, Seyam said Hamas would try to coordinate militants' operations.

"Talks with the factions in the future will focus on the mechanisms, the shape and the timing (of any attacks)," he said.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Al-Qaeda targets Israel directly....

An ominous sign...
Israel provided the first evidence of al-Qa'eda activity in the West Bank yesterday when two Palestinians were charged with receiving funds and training from the group for a double bombing in Jerusalem.

While Israel has often connected its own struggle against Palestinian extremism with the international "war on terror", the case gives the most concrete proof yet of al-Qa'eda penetration of the country.

However, Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian leader, recently announced he had evidence that it had tried to recruit in Gaza and the West Bank.

According to military court documents, the two Palestinians, Azam Abu Al'aads and Ba'lal Hafnaui, both 19, from Nablus, were recruited while visiting Jordan.

They then returned to Nablus and received e-mail messages from handlers to prepare for a double attack involving a bomb at a pizzeria and then a secondary device intended for the resulting crowd.

Could you imagine a ruling like this in Canada???

Given the latest ruling on the Kirpan issue by our Supreme Court, one doubts schools could ever ban islamic gowns.
schoolgirl who was refused permission to wear a full-length Islamic gown in class was not deprived of the right to manifest her religion, five law lords ruled yesterday.

The House of Lords allowed an appeal by Denbigh High School, in Luton, against a unanimous ruling by the Court of Appeal last March in favour of Shabina Begum, 17.

Lord Bingham said it would be "irresponsible" for any court to overrule the school's judgment "on a matter as sensitive as this".

The power to devise a school uniform had been given to the school staff and governors for the "compelling reason" that they were best placed to exercise it, the senior law lord said, and he saw no reason to disturb their decision.

School rules permitted the shalwar kameez, loose trousers under a smock-like dress worn by some Muslim, Hindu and Sikh girls.

But Shabina was sent home when, aged 13, she arrived wearing a jilbab, a long coat-like garment that "concealed, to a greater extent than the shalwar kameez, the contours of the female body".

The school "had taken immense pains to devise a uniform policy that respected Muslim beliefs but did so in an inclusive, unthreatening and uncompetitive way," Lord Bingham continued. "The rules laid down were as far from being mindless as uniform rules could ever be. The school had enjoyed a period of harmony and success to which the uniform policy was thought to contribute."

Anti-Israel bigotry in the dance world...

I missed this earlier this month..but this is shameful.
A British-based dance magazine has been accused of “shocking politicisation” for refusing to publish an article about a new Israeli company.

Purporting to offer “an unbiased platform for dance,” Dance Europe was approached by freelance journalist Stephanie Freid about publishing a piece on the Dance Drama Company in Tel Aviv.

Ms Freid said she was quizzed about the dance company’s view on the Israeli occupation and asked whether it was government funded.

“The editor, Emma Manning, told me they had allowed an Israeli advertisement once, but only with a disclaimer saying it disapproved of the occupation.

“She said she hadn’t been to Israel but she knew the situation.”

In an email to Ms Manning and the head of advertising, Naresh Kaul, Ms Freid accused them of “blatant ignorance and racism. Shame on both of you for unwillingness to entertain the notion of a dance company attempting to bridge gaps and create understanding through art.”

Ms Manning would say only that “as an editor, I am entitled to choose what to print. It is my prerogative.” Mr Kaul was more forthcoming, telling the JC: “We are opposed to the occupation. If any company in Israel co-operates with us by adding a disclaimer saying it is opposed to the occupation, settlements and everything else, we will co-operate with them.”
So, the only way to write about Israel is to have a disclaimer??? The dance troup choreographer grew up in South Africa and has always tried to break down barriers...but it's sometimes hard to break down the barriers of bigots.

Canada's Warm Winter: Does it mean anything?

Yes, it was the warmest winter in 40+ years...but that's nothing when it comes to climate.
According to a recent story in The Globe and Mail, "Canada has experienced its warmest winter since modern record-keeping began." The corner where Alberta, Saskatchewan and the N.W.T. meet experienced the greatest deviation. But before you buy a time-share in Uranium City or Fort Smith, it's worth considering a few facts.

Alert and patient readers who read the entire Globe piece learned that Canada's "modern record-keeping" began in 1948. In other words, the global warming zealots and their media acolytes are trying to compress geological time into little more than half a century.

Not to mention that virtually everywhere except Canada had some of the worst winter weather in news media paleo-terms, i.e., about 60 years. Despite the certainty of stirring Canadian schadenfreude, this went curiously under-reported here at home. Newspapers in Dubai and China were more interested in bizarre blizzards hitting places that are normally green in March.

If you were consigned to wintering in Minsk or Pinsk, things were pretty bad. In Poland, up to 175 cold-related deaths occurred just to the end of January. Temperatures plunged to -25 C in Warsaw and -35 C in southeast Poland, with Krakow suffering disruption of its hot water heating system. In Ukraine, 53 people died on a single cold day. The Baltic States also suffered, with as many as 150 Latvians hospitalized due to the cold. Riga felt a bone-chilling -29 C, the lowest temperature recorded since 1956. Moscow sank to -38 C, a figure not observed since 1978-79.

Massive snowfalls hit Japan -- up to four metres in Niigata Prefecture northwest of Tokyo -- and by mid-February the cold had claimed 118 lives. Central and southern Portugal saw snow for the first time in 50 years. Heavy snow forced the closure of the Acropolis on Jan. 25, while the Danube in northeast Bulgaria was 90% frozen over. New Delhi experienced frost for the first time in 70 years. An estimated 180 people succumbed to cold in India.

Anti-Semitic Acts Dip Slightly in 2005

Anti-semitic acts in Canada were down 3.3% in 2005 after seeing a 47% in 2004 - however, anti-semitic acts are still at a very high level.
Klein said there has been a progressive rise in anti-Semitic events on university campuses, a resurgence of neo-Nazi groups operating in Canada and an increase in Holocaust denial.

Some of the reported incidents:

* Anti-Semitic comics are offered for sale at a school book sale;
* Students at an exclusive high school created an anti-Semitic website;
* A team coach made discriminatory remarks at a hockey game;
* A visibly Orthodox boy was threatened by gang members;
* Three teenage girls attacked a rabbi outside a synagogue;
* A synagogue was defaced;
* Death threats were made against individuals; and
* Bomb threats were made against synagogues.

Klein said many of the targets were the elderly or schoolchildren, "singled out because of their vulnerability." She said Jews recognized by their attire were also prime targets.

The group said there were:

* 113 incidents targeting Jews in their own homes;
* 35 incidents targeting Jewish houses of worship;
* 19 incidents against Jewish community buildings;
* 46 incidents in the workplace;
* 48 incidents against Jewish students on campus; and
* 48 incidents in school settings.

Police Firearms task force - Out of Control?

The police love to show off weapons that are turned in under amnesty laws....but here is another view.
THE OTTAWA Police Firearms Task Force yesterday swooped down on a Navan Rd. homeowner suspected of having a cache of illegal weapons, shot him and his dog with a Taser and left without finding any weapons.

Yvon Richer says he was returning from an early-morning snowmobile ride on his 50-acre property in the city's southeast end at around 9:15 a.m. when a vehicle pulled into the driveway and a voice behind him screamed, "Get on the ground!"

He looked back at a police officer with his weapon drawn and as many as 40 others, some of them in tactical gear, lining the street.

They blocked off Navan Rd. between Mer Bleu and Renaud roads after receiving a "reliable tip" that the 60-year-old electrician, father and grandfather had a cache of weapons, and possibly dynamite stored in his 125-year-old farmhouse.

Richer was fumbling in his thick snowmobiling jacket for his keys to open the door when he was struck by a Taser dart. Shot twice, he has four puncture wounds and numerous bloody scratches to his face.
And, they found nothing!

You might have noticed that just about all the guns that are turned in under amnesty laws are old, rusty firearms that people have found in their attics. Next time you see a picture in the newspaper, look closely! You'll easily see the age of the weapons. I wish the police would spend more time on illegal aliens, muslim incitement to violence, and on terrorism.

The Libyans flunk a test...

Even when Israelis are on a peace mission, they are rejected....
History was thwarted early Wednesday morning when a peace mission making its way across the Sahara Desert was refused entry into
Libya due to the participation of three Israelis who were flatly denied entrance at the border.

The group of people from around the world, including four Americans, was welcome in Libya, a special representative of Libyan leader Mohmar Qadaffi told the mission as it stood on Libyan soil just five meters from the formal border crossing. But not the Israelis.

"Israel does not exist as a country, it is Palestine. We don't allow occupiers into our country," the official said. "Now I order you all to leave Libya."

Earlier, the group had decided it would not cross into Libya unless everyone was allowed in.

After being denied, the nine-person group voted to stay the night at the border and see if diplomacy and their message of goodwill to all peoples would gain them admittance Wednesday into the nation which has until now barred Israeli visitors.

As of Wednesday afternoon, it appeared those efforts had failed and the group was considering its options.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Terror plot in the UK...

This is the plot in which a Canadian, Mohammed Khawaja, has been implicated.
A terrorist cell allegedly linked to al-Qa'eda planned to blow up pubs, nightclubs and trains in a bombing campaign in Britain, the Old Bailey was told yesterday.

Some of the seven-strong gang, all British citizens, had trained at terrorist camps in Pakistan where they hatched the plot after practising causing explosions with ammonium nitrate and aluminium powder, it was alleged.

The plot to kill and maim is said to have involved more than half a ton of ammonium nitrate fertiliser and they planned to smuggle detonators into Britain through Belgium hidden in small radios, the court was told.

Two of the alleged plotters claimed to be working for al-Qa'eda's "number three", said David Waters, QC, prosecuting. "Most of the necessary components were in place and all that remained before their plans achieved their ultimate goal was for the target or targets to be finally agreed," he said.

One of the defendants, Waheed Mahmood, had been working for National Grid Transco which was "of significance in this case", Mr Waters said. The company operates the high voltage electricity system in England and Wales and the high pressure gas system in Britain.

The aim of the plot was "at the very least to destroy strategic plant within the UK or more realistically to kill and injure citizens of the UK", Mr Waters said. A "great deal of preparation" had been done in Pakistan but the targets were to be in Britain, he said.
Pretty horrifying that one of the defendants worked for the company operating part of the electric grid.

More on WMD....

Yet another senior Iraqi figure is saying Saddam had WMD.
Saddam Hussein's foreign minister was recruited by the CIA to spy on the regime, a US television network said.

Naji Sabri told the intelligence agency that Iraq possessed secret stocks of chemical weapons.

If confirmed, the claims made yesterday by NBC's Nightly News help to explain why President George W Bush and Tony Blair were so confident that Saddam was lying about weapons of mass destruction.

Mr Sabri reportedly said Saddam had around "500 metric tonnes of chemical warfare agents", that production of the agents had been renewed and that Iraq had additional stockpiles left over from the Iran-Iraq war.

As a senior member of Saddam's inner circle and a friend of his son, Qusay, Mr Sabri would have seemed an extraordinarily good source. He also claimed that although Saddam desperately wanted a nuclear device, he was years from building one.

Noam Chomsky - Hypocrite!

A nice profile of Noam Chomsky in today's National Post.
One of the most persistent themes in Noam Chomsky's work has been class warfare. The iconic MIT linguist and left-wing activist frequently has lashed out against the "massive use of tax havens to shift the burden to the general population and away from the rich," and criticized the concentration of wealth in "trusts" by the wealthiest 1%. He says the U.S. tax code is rigged with "complicated devices for ensuring that the poor -- like 80% of the population -- pay off the rich."

But trusts can't be all bad. After all, Chomsky, with a net worth north of US$2-million, decided to create one for himself. A few years back he went to Boston's venerable white-shoe law firm, Palmer and Dodge, and, with the help of a tax attorney specializing in "income-tax planning," set up an irrevocable trust to protect his assets from Uncle Sam. He named his tax attorney (every socialist radical needs one!) and a daughter as trustees. To the Diane Chomsky Irrevocable Trust (named for another daughter) he has assigned the copyright of several of his books, including multiple international editions.

Chomsky favours massive income redistribution -- just not the redistribution of his income. No reason to let radical politics get in the way of sound estate planning.

When I challenged Chomsky about his trust, he suddenly started to sound very bourgeois: "I don't apologize for putting aside money for my children and grandchildren," he wrote in one e-mail. Chomsky offered no explanation for why he condemns others who are equally proud of their provision for their children and who try to protect their assets from Uncle Sam. (However, Chomsky did say that his tax shelter is OK because he and his family are "trying to help suffering people.")
Read the whole's delicious.

An attack on the "Israel Lobby"....

This is an outrageous attack.
In a scathing attack on what they termed the “Israel Lobby,” the Kennedy School’s Stephen M. Walt and the University of Chicago’s John J. Mearsheimer argued in a recent article that supporters of Israel have seized control of U.S. foreign policy, making it reflect Israel’s interests more than those of the U.S.

The article was published last Thursday in the London Review of Books and on the Kennedy School’s website as part of the its faculty working papers series. Walt is the academic dean and a professor of international affairs at the Kennedy School and Mearsheimer is a professor of political science.

In their piece, the authors savaged those on both the political Left and Right, calling groups as diverse as the Brookings Institution and American Enterprise Institute, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal editorial boards, and Sen. Hillary R. Clinton, D-N.Y., and World Bank President Paul D. Wolfowitz members of the “Israel Lobby.”

“The overall thrust of the U.S. policy in the region is due almost entirely to U.S. domestic politics, and especially to the activities of the ‘Israel Lobby,’” the authors wrote in their introduction. “[No] lobby has managed to divert U.S. foreign policy as far from what the American national interest would otherwise suggest.”
Gee, I really wish the Jews really did have all that power....if you read the whole article, you'll see the responses of Alan Dershowitz.

This article reminds me of the joke where there is a jew sitting in a park in Berlin during the Second World War reading the anti-semitic newspaper, Der Sturmer. Another jew is reading a jewish newspaper. He leans over and ask the first jew why he is reading such anti-semitic filth. He says, "in your paper, all we have is my paper, we control the banks, we control the media....makes me feel better."

Monday, March 20, 2006

Liberal Muslim Theologian Intimidated in the UK....

Peter Tatchell is a well-known gay activist in the UK.
Liberal Muslim theologian Sheikh Dr Muhammad Yusuf was to have called for a reconciliation of Islam with democracy and human rights, including human rights for women and gay people in a lectures this evening (March 20) in London.

But he has been pressured to pull out of the lecture – the annual Peter Tatchell Human Rights Fundraiser (PTHRF) – at the last moment following protests and warnings by Muslim leaders.

His planned call for an “Islamic Reformation” provoked the wrath of senior Muslim figures, who warned they could not guarantee his safety if the lecture went ahead.

In place of Sheikh Yusuf, the guest lecture at tonight’s annual Peter Tatchell Human Rights fundraiser will be delivered by exiled Iranian feminist and human rights campaigner, Maryam Namazie. She will highlight the danger posed by to democracy and human rights by the rise of “political Islam”.

Sheikh Yusuf, a research fellow of the Inter-Faith Alliance UK and Chair of the Council of University Imams, was to have delivered a lecture Time for an Islamic Reformation in Britain in which he would have called for the development of an authentically British and European Islam.

“I deeply regret that extreme pressure from some Muslim leaders has forced Sheikh Yusuf to pull out of this evening’s fundraiser,” commented Peter Tatchell. “We were looking forward to welcoming him as an honoured guest.”

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Dr. Wafa Sultan - A Hero for our Times...

You've probably seen the video of Dr. Sultan on Al-Jazeera TV. Here's a profile from the Times of London.
While some acclaim her as “a voice of reason” others have denounced her as a “heretic” and insist that she deserves to die. What seems to have most infuriated many Muslims were Sultan’s comparisons between how Jews and Muslims have coped with the tragedies that have befallen them.

“The Jews have come from tragedy and forced the world to respect them,” she said, “with their knowledge, not with their terror; with their work, not with their crying and yelling.

“We have not seen a single Jew blow himself up in a German restaurant. We have not seen a single Jew destroy a church. We have not seen a single Jew protest by killing people. Only the Muslims defend their beliefs by burning down churches, killing people and destroying embassies. The Muslims must ask themselves what they can do for humankind, before they demand that humankind respect them.”
Please read the whole thing...and please visit this web site which has a lot of her writings.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Saddam-Al-Qaeda links!

First, we had audio tapes hinting at documents detailing more links between Saddam Hussein and Al-Qaeda.
NEWLY released documents seized in Iraq immediately after the American invasion in 2003 point to the presence of Al-Qaeda members in the country before the war and moves to hide traces of “chemical or biological materials” from United Nations weapons inspectors.

The documents were posted on the internet as part of a rolling programme by the US government to make public the contents of 48,000 boxes of untranslated papers and tapes relating to the workings of Saddam Hussein’s regime. Saddam is said to have routinely taped talks with cabinet members and intelligence chiefs.

John Negroponte, the director of national intelligence, was ordered by President George W Bush to release the material. Hundreds of thousands of previously unseen documents and hundreds of hours of tapes will be placed on the web in the coming weeks.

The first documents to be released offer tantalising clues to possible Iraqi contacts with Al-Qaeda. An Iraqi intelligence report dated September 15, 2001 — four days after the attacks on America — says Osama Bin Laden and the Taliban were in contact with Iraq and Al-Qaeda members had visited the country.

It claims America had proof that the Iraqi government and “Bin Laden’s group” had agreed to co-operate to attack targets in America and that the US might strike Iraq and Afghanistan in retaliation.

A new Iranian Opposition Leader?

She's got balls, for sure.
She is the female figurehead of what she hopes will become a new Iranian revolution. Now, after almost 25 years in exile, the world is beginning to beat a path to her door.

Maryam Rajavi wants those who visit her near Paris to know what sort of regime Iran's mullahs are running.

As the leader of the largest exiled Iranian opposition group, she talks angrily of the 15-year-old boy flogged to death for eating during Ramadan, and the girl of 13 buried up to her neck and stoned for a similarly trivial "crime".

When she describes the punishments meted out by Iran's rulers, a picture of the limp bodies of two hanged men suspended from a crane is projected onto a screen.

She waves a large bound book that, she says, contains the names of 21,676 people who have died resisting the clerical regime. Another 120,000 people have been executed since the mullahs took power in 1979, she claims. Now Iran's rulers are trying to develop a nuclear weapon.

"We have always said that a viper cannot give birth to a dove, but nobody believed us," she told the Sunday Telegraph. "Only a fraction of the true nature of this regime, which is a brutal dictatorship of religious fanaticism, has come to public attention."

More on Iran-Iraq contacts....

More evidence that Iran is formenting trouble.
Iran held secret talks with Shia militant leaders from Iraq and Lebanon only days before the country's nuclear negotiators threatened America with "harm and pain", independent sources in Teheran have revealed.

The Iraqi firebrand cleric, Moqtadr al-Sadr and the chief of the armed Shia group Hizbollah in Lebanon, Hassan Nasrallah, held separate consultations with leading officials in Teheran.

Perks in Prison...

The Times of London lists the perks the Palestinian prisoners, seized by Israel, had in the jail in Jericho.
# Monitors complained that Saadat, Shobaki and the four other “special” prisoners were given the run of the compound by Palestinian guards

# They were not “locked down” at night

# They were never separated from the 300 other prisoners

# They had mobile phones and computers; Shobaki ordered the monitors’ phone jammers to be turned off

# They had up to 90 visitors a week and used other prisoners “as domestic staff”

# Saadat kept birds and had a big book collection

# Inmates and guards referred to Shobaki as “brigadier”. He smoked up to five Cuban cigars a day

Irshad Manji on Ariel Sharon's "Apartheid Wall"...

The security barrier saves lives and improves the lives of Palestinians...
After all, this barrier, although built by Mr. Sharon, was birthed by "shaheeds," suicide bombers whom Palestinian leaders have glorified as martyrs. Qassam missiles can kill two or three people at a time. Suicide bombers lay waste to many more. Since the barrier went up, suicide attacks have plunged, which means innocent Arab lives have been spared along with Jewish ones. Does a concrete effort to save civilian lives justify the hardship posed by this structure? The humanitarian in me bristles, but ultimately answers yes.
And, many Palestinian towns are in better shape today than when the fence went up - since the Israelis are no longer coming to find terrorists.

Hat Tip: Shamthetoryman.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Prince Philip and the Nazis...

A new book claims that Prince Philip had admiration for the Nazis and held 'inhibitions about Jews.'
The book also shows damning pictures of Prince Philip and members of his family dressed in full SS and other Nazi regalia. Another photo shows Philip’s sister sitting near Hitler at a wedding.

The 84-year-old Philip attempted to explain his family’s sympathy to the Nazis. "I can understand people latching on to be something or somebody who appeared to be appealing to their patriotism and trying to get things going,” he said. “You can understand how attractive it was.”

Philip added that there was "a lot of enthusiasm for the Nazis at the time, the economy was good, we were anti-Communist and who knew what was going to happen to the regime?"

While openly expressing sympathy for the Nazis, the Prince was far more circumspect about his family’s anti-Semitism. He said that he was not "conscious of anybody in the family actually expressing anti-Semitic views," but acknowledged that that there were "inhibitions about the Jews" and "jealousy of their success."

Philip’s four sisters married German princes and three of them became members of the Nazi party.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Another gay Iranian faces deportation....

Yet once again, a gay Iranian faces deportation.
Medhi is a 26-year-old gay Iranian who fled Iran to escape persecution. While doing his military service, Mehdi was discovered having sex with another soldier. After being smuggled from Iran into Turkey by donkey, he eventually made his way to England, where his application for asylum as a sexual refugee from Iran's lethal anti-gay pogrom was denied, and is now facing deportation proceedings on March 28. If he is deported, Mehdi is under explicit threat of arrest and probable execution in Iran.

Brokeback High?

Here's a link to a student who made a film in High School called Brokeback High.

He was expelled because there was a snuggle scene with two guys. You can find the link on the page for the scene. Suppposedly, now that there has been an uproar, he is back in school.

The misguided Europeans....

They think they can mediate with genocidal terrorists?
The leading European human rights watchdog has decided to invite Palestinian lawmakers from the Hamas group to Strasbourg in hopes of bringing them together with Israeli counterparts who were also asked to come.

The Council of Europe's Parliamentary Assembly said it would invite members of the Palestinian Legislative Council, including Hamas deputies, and members of the Israeli parliament to its April 10-13 session, but did not give any names.

Margelov, who leads a committee on the Middle East at the assembly, an advisory body to the council, said it was important not to isolate a Palestinian government.
Hamas has stated that not only does it want to destroy Israel, it also wants to kill all, how on earth can the Israelis sit down and talk with them. These are the same Europeans who would have sat with Hitler to discuss appeasement.

Are cosmic rays behind global warming?

A front page article from the Ottawa Citizen today about a University Of Ottawa Professor who believes that cosmic rays cause global warming.
A prominent University of Ottawa science professor says what we know about global warming is wrong -- that stars, not greenhouse gases, are changing Earth's climate.

Jan Veizer says high-energy rays from distant parts of space are smashing into our atmosphere in ways that make our planet go through warm and cool cycles.

The recently retired professor (he still holds a research chair and supervises grad students and postdoctoral fellows) knows that to challenge the accepted climate change theory can lead to a nasty fight.

It's a politically and economically loaded topic, and as polarized as an election campaign.

Yet he is speaking out -- a bit nervously -- about his published research.

"Look, maybe I'm wrong," he said in an interview. "But I'm saying, at least let's look at this and discuss it.

"Every" part of the theory "has its problems," Mr. Veizer adds. "But so does every other model" of how Earth's climate behaves.

And, these are the so-called moderates...

Fatah gunmen in Nablus on Thursday.

Source: Jerusalem Post.

When Gays are Wrong...

I support the right of Gay people to adopt..but in this case, Catholic Charities are right.
On March 10, Catholic Charities of Boston had announced that it was being forced to shut down its highly regarded adoption services, since it could not in good conscience comply with the government's demand that it place children for adoption with homosexual couples. Caught between the rock of Catholic teaching, which regards such adoptions as "gravely immoral," and Massachusetts regulations, which bar adoption agencies from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation, the Boston Archdiocese had hoped to obtain a waiver on religious-freedom grounds. But when legislative leaders refused to consider the request, the archdiocese was left with no option but to end a ministry it had been performing for a century.

Whereupon the Human Rights Campaign issued its news release. It was headlined "Boston Catholic Charities Puts Ugly Political Agenda Before Child Welfare," and a more perfect illustration of psychological projection would be hard to imagine.

For the political agenda driving this affair is the one favored by the Human Rights Campaign and its many allies in the media and state government: the normalization of homosexual adoption. So important is that agenda to its supporters that they will allow nothing to stand in its way — not even the well-being of children in dire need of safe and loving families. Catholic Charities excels at arranging adoptions for children in foster care, particularly those who are older or handicapped, or who bear the scars of abuse or addiction. Yet the Human Rights Campaign and its friends would rather see this invaluable work come to an end than allow Catholic Charities to decline gay adoptions.

Note well: Catholic Charities made no effort to block same-sex couples from adopting. It asked no one to endorse its belief that homosexual adoption is wrong. It wanted only to go on finding loving parents for troubled children, without having to place any of those children in homes it deemed unsuitable. Gay or lesbian couples seeking to adopt would have remained free to do so through any other agency. In at least one Massachusetts diocese, in fact, the standing Catholic Charities policy had been to refer same-sex couples to other adoption agencies.
Shutting down the Catholic Charities in Boston just makes no sense. This will just hurt children and do nothing to help gay people and/or their rights.

Is "Crash" Realistic?

It might have won Best Picture, but is it realistic? Larry Elder has a look.
Actor Matt Dillon plays an immoral cop who pulls over a black couple and proceeds to fondle the wife right in front of the husband. Just before the couple pulled over, they laughed at the idea of getting stopped — after all, they'd done nothing. But, no, Officer Dillon shatters their naivete, showing why the "black community" refuses to trust the police.

But does this square with reality?

The U.S. Justice Department, in 1998, undertook a nationwide survey. They asked the following question: Are you satisfied with your local police? The results surprised local "civil rights leaders." In Los Angeles, the site of the movie "Crash," 86 percent of all respondents said yes, they were satisfied with the police in their neighborhood. Eighty-nine percent of whites agreed, but what about blacks? Despite the 1992 riots, despite the horrific videotaped beating of Rodney King in 1991, 82 percent of black Angelenos approved of their local police in their own neighborhood.

William Bratton, a white man, runs the Los Angeles Police Department. But Los Angeles' first black police chief, Willie Williams, followed by up-from-the-ranks black chief Bernard Parks, served as Bratton's immediate predecessors. Yes, many blacks complain about race mistreatment and being pulled over for DWB — Driving While Black — but take a look at the numbers. The LAPD logs almost 1 million encounters with the public every year, from 9-1-1 responses to warnings for traffic stops. If casual interactions are included — when the cop on the beat just stops to chat with a civilian, for instance — LAPD estimates the number of "encounters" would double or triple. In 2004, 4,907 public complaints were filed, of which — to date — 4,760 have been closed. Only 164 of the closed complaints were sustained. Even if the 138 complaints with a determination still pending are included with the 164 sustained complaints, that's a small fraction of a percent of all the interactions police have with the public.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Fatwa against gays in Iraq...

This is discouraging...
On his Web site, used to communicate with Shiite masses throughout the country, Sistani this week issued a fatwa against Sunnis and gays.

He urges followers to kill homosexuals in the "worst, most severe way".

"Sistani's murderous homophobic incitement has given a green light to Shia Muslims to hunt and kill lesbians and gay men,” says exiled gay Iraqi, Ali Hili, of the London-based gay human rights group OutRage.

Hili also heads up the new Iraqi LGBT – UK Abu Nawas group, which consists of exiled gay Iraqis and has close links with clandestine gay activists inside Iraq.

"We hold Sistani personally responsible for the murder of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Iraqis. He gives the killers theological sanction and encouragement,” Hili in a statement on Wednesday.

Hili accused the West of allowing Sistani and the Badr Corps to go on a witch-hunt of lesbian and gay Iraqis.

"Despite Badr’s murderous record, the UK allows its political arm, SCIRI, to have offices and fundraise in the UK. Badr is the terrorist wing of SCIRI. Badr should be proscribed as a terrorist organization," said Hili.

He also alleged that Badr militants are entrapping gay men via internet chat rooms.

"They arrange a date, and then beat and kill the victim," Hili said.

"Our sources inside Iraq report the murders of the following gay and bisexual men. All the killings bear the hallmarks of the execution-style murders for which the Badr organization is notorious.

"These killings are just the ones we have been able to get details about. They are the tip of an iceberg of religious-motivated summary executions. Gay Iraqis are living in fear of discovery and murder,” said Hili.

Will the New York Times apologize?

Ed Koch asks a good question.
On March 12, The New York Times published the first of two articles on "Saddam's Secret Strategy." The Times reported that "the Iraqi dictator was so secretive and kept information so compartmentalized that his top military leaders were stunned when he told them [in December of 2002] three months before the war that he had no weapons of mass destruction and they were demoralized because they had counted on hidden stocks of poison gas or germ weapons for the nation's defense."

This information was provided to a CIA task force called the Iraq Survey Group by Tariq Aziz, who had been deputy prime minister of Iraq. The survey group was established "by the CIA after the second gulf War ended to investigate what happened to Iraq's weapon's programs." The Times article continues, "to ensure that Iraq would pass scrutiny by United Nations arms inspectors, Mr. Hussein ordered that they be given the access that they wanted. And he ordered a crash effort to scrub the country so the inspectors would not discover any vestiges of old unconventional weapons, no small concern in a nation that had once amassed an arsenal of chemical weapons, biological agents and Scud missiles, the Iraq Survey Group said."

If the Iraqi generals believed that Iraq had WMD up until they were informed by Saddam Hussein three months before the war started, and the UN was unaware of how and where the weapons of mass destruction had been dispersed or destroyed, it is not surprising that the CIA, with few, if any, agents in Iraq before the war, also believed that Iraq still had WMD.

Will The New York Times editorial board and the radicals on the left like MoveOn and the ACLU, all having for years accused the Bush administration of lying to the American people on Iraq's possession of WMD, now admit error? Will the ACLU run another full-page ad in The Times admitting that it was wrong when it accused the President of lying about Iraq's possessing WMD thereby committing high crimes and misdemeanors worthy of impeachment?

Iran's First Mission: Setting Israel on Fire....

Is Iran's Ayatollah Khamenei sane?
In response to former Spanish premier Jose Maria Aznar's question on what was the main topic on Iran's agenda, Iran's spiritual leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei replied without hesitation: "Setting Israel on fire."

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Palestinian Textbooks still do not have maps of Israel...

Here's a report from the Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center at the Center for Special Studies on the latest Palestinian textbooks.
In the 2004-2005 school year, at the end of Yasser Arafat’s era and the beginning of Mahmoud Abbas’s (Abu Mazen) tenure, the Palestinian Education Ministry published 29 new textbooks for the fifth and tenth grades. We examined the books, used to this day, with the purpose of analyzing their outlook on issues related to the State of Israel, Zionism, the Jewish people, and the Palestinians’ attitude towards the State of Israel. The findings of the review of that year’s books, compared to books from previous years, indicate a consistent, long-standing negative attitude of the
Palestinian curriculum towards the State of Israel, the Zionist movement, and the Jewish people.

As in the past, the existence of the State of Israel is conspicuously ignored in this year’s curriculum. Israel does not appear on the maps, and when it does appear in written texts, it is only in negative contexts. The agreements achieved between Israel and the Palestinians are not mentioned. A strong emphasis is placed on the “Israeli occupation” and settlements in the “territories”, portrayed as part of the phenomenon of global imperialism, coveting the lands of the weak. The list of negative actions attributed to Israel has grown to include the construction of the Security Fence.
Read the whole report.

The latest UN Scandal...

Interestingly, Canada voted for Israel....which might indicate a change of policy in the new Harper Government.
On Friday, March 10, 2006 the UN Commission on the Status of Women -- the UN's highest body dealing with women's rights -- adopted only one resolution that specifically condemned the abuse of women's rights by any of the 191 UN member states. That state was Israel.

There was no resolution on Saudi Arabia and the million female migrant workers living in slave-like conditions there. There was no mention of Jordan, home to the phenomenon of "honor killings" -- the alleged entitlement to murder female relatives. Nothing on China, land of forced abortions and sterilizations. Nothing on Mali's appalling record on female genital mutilation. No mention of Palestinian women who volunteer to be suicide bombers in order to kill Jews. And of course, no mention of the Israeli women and girls who are their victims.

The Commission on the Status of Women makes it abundantly clear that the victims of the UN's obsession with demonizing the Jewish state go far beyond Israelis. They are the billions of women around the world who cannot garner the attention of this organization because it is otherwise occupied.

Violence in the west bank entirely fault of the Palestinians...

They couldn't even live up to a simple agreement to guard some prisoners.
"Regrettably, the Palestinian Authority has never in the last four years met all its obligations under the Ramallah Agreement despite our repeated demands that they do so" Straw said, noting a pullout had been under consideration for over a year.

On March 8 Straw informed the Israeli government and the PA the UK would pull out of the Agreement "with immediate effect". The timing of the withdrawal, Straw said, had been withheld for "security reasons".

"If we gave notice, we could end up with a situation where our own monitors were themselves subject to kidnap or siege inside the prison" Straw said.

White police recruit in the UK wins his case....

We need some cases like this in Canada.
A police force has agreed to pay a rejected white male recruit undisclosed compensation after being warned that its recruitment policy might be illegal.

Avon and Somerset Constabulary reached the deal, believed to run to thousands of pounds, with Ralph Welsman, one of 186 white men whose applications were rejected in favour of those from women and ethnic minorities.

The settlement means the case will not go to an employment tribunal, but the force and Mr Welsman's solicitors declined to comment on it, citing a confidentiality agreement.

The force said reports that it faced a bill of millions of pounds if all the rejected applicants made successful claims were "inaccurate", and it disputed suggestions that Mr Welsman was receiving up to £25,000. In a statement issued by his solicitors, Mr Welsman said: "I am happy the police have admitted they were wrong to discriminate against me on the grounds of race and sex." It is not known if he will re-apply to join.

Monday, March 13, 2006

International Day for the elimination of Racial Discrimination....

Stats Canada is getting ready to celebrate the so-called International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (March 21st) by having a workshops on "Diversity in Motion." Here's the program:
March 21 is the United Nations Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. The date was chosen because it is the anniversary of the Sharpeville Massacre in 1960 when South African police shot at peaceful anti-apartheid demonstrators. To commemorate this Day, the Visible Minorities Consultative Group of Statistics Canada is organizing a Workshop entitled Diversity in Motion. This would place emphasis on taking action and eliciting participation from employees in Statistics Canada to achieve the transformation of the Federal Public Service where diversity is prominent in building a representative workforce.

Analysis of Statistics Canada's Current and Future Workforce Needs, Robert Kopersiewich, Program Manager, Center for Workforce Analysis and Forecasting, BLMA

Implications of the new Human Resource Modernization Act on Staffing, Sange de Silva, Director General , Institutions and Social Statistics Field

Concurrent Workshops:
#1 Attracting and Retaining Visible Minorities at Statistics Canada
Facilitated by: Marcelle Dion, Director General, Business and Trade Statistics Field

#2 Benefits and Challenges of having a Diverse Team
Facilitated by: Gary Catlin, Director, Survey Operations Division

#3 Career Development Strategy for Visible Minorities
Facilitated by: Peter Morrison, Director, Labour Statistics Division
Isn't it ridiculous that in its effort to eliminate racial discrimination, Stats Canada (and the rest of the Canadian Government) have to focus on discriminating racially in its hiring. I really hope the new Conservative Government will do something about this and get back to the merit principle.

Political Correctness for Nursery Schools..

Hard to believe that it's true.
A nursery school in Oxfordshire, England, has changed "Baa baa, black sheep" to "Baa baa, rainbow sheep."

Have a look at the Islamic chaplain for NY Jails...

New York is not the only place where this is going on....
According to the current director of Islamic chaplains in the New York City Department of Corrections, the "greatest terrorists in the world occupy the White House," Jews control the media, and Muslims are being tortured in Manhattan jails. Those statements were made by Umar Abdul-Jalil, 56, the executive director of ministerial services for the NYC Department of Correction in two separate speeches he made on or about 15-16 April 2005 at a symposium sponsored by the Muslim Students Association in Tucson, Arizona. Abdul-Jalil is also imam of the Masjid Sabur mosque in Harlem. The speech was covertly recorded by operatives from Steve Emerson’s the Investigative Project.

About the Bush administration, Abdul-Jalil stated: “We know that the greatest terrorists in the world occupy the White House, without a doubt.”

Also in his speech, Abdul Jalil also appeared to promote action against Jews and non-Muslims, stating: "the Zionists of the media to dictate what Islam is to us" and said Muslims must be "compassionate with each other" and "hard against the kufr [unbeliever]."

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Another reason to keep Turkey out of the EU....

If this is the kind of thinking they want to bring to the EU, then keep them out....
Deep divisions have appeared among European Eunion governments over suggestions that they should alter their blasphemy laws to protect Islam, and not just Christianity.

Abdullah Gul, the Turkish foreign minister, sparked disagreement among his EU counterparts at a weekend meeting in Austria, when he called for European nations to review existing laws, to ensure they outlawed the "defamation" of all religions.

Mr Gul told a meeting of EU and Balkan foreign ministers in Salzburg that many Muslims believed that European laws amounted to a double-standard, protecting established Christian religions, and banning anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial, while doing nothing to defend Muslims who felt offended.
He doesn't understand anything about free speech.

Friday, March 10, 2006

I'll huff and I'll puff and I'll huff and I'll puff...

More threats, little action.
The European Union will not provide funding to a Hamas-led Palestinian government "unless it seeks peace by peaceful means," a senior EU official said Friday.

"We have set down some principles against which we review funding" for the incoming Palestinian government, EU External Relations Commissioner Benita Ferrero-Waldner said. "Money will not flow to the new (Palestinian) authority unless it seeks peace by peaceful means."

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Self-censorship in Spain....

Bcause of the cartoon uproar, we're going to see a lot more self-censorship.
An annual festival of satire in Valencia has fallen foul of censorship after more than four centuries following the furore over Danish cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed.

In the Fallas festival, giant sculptures of the high and mighty are placed in the streets for the public to mock before being destroyed in an orgy of gunpowder and flames. It has survived attacks by the Roman Catholic church, various puritanical rulers and the Franco dictatorship.

This year's figures will include President George W Bush, several of the Spanish prime minister, José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, and the Prince of Wales dancing, in Highland dress, with the Duchess of Cornwall. But self-censorship has seen Muslim and Arab figures modified to avoid offence.

The Fallas season is now underway until March 19 but as it approached, Valencians watched global protests against newspaper cartoons of Mohammed with growing alarm. Last month, the mayor, Rita Barberá, urged artists to "temper freedom with a sense of responsibility" when referring to religious subjects.

At least one well known local Fallas artist admitted to removing elements from his display of comic sculptures.

He had sculpted three life-size figures of illegal Arab immigrants storming the Spanish border, in a reference to last year's crisis in Ceuta and Melilla, Spain's enclaves in North Africa, involving thousands of migrants. The artist has now removed details that identified them as Arabs.

The artist asked not to be named, partly for fear of reprisals, partly because he did not feel proud of such "self-censorship". But this year was "different", he said. Radical Muslim leaders appeared to be looking for excuses to cause trouble.

Why aren't Feminists protesting this?

Violence at a International Women's Day March in Iran.
The peaceful gathering of women's rights activists, women's groups and human rights defenders who had gathered in Park Daneshjoo (Student Park) yesterday, in commemoration of March 8th, International Women's Day, ended in violence, when they were attacked and assaulted by plain clothes militia, special anti riot forces of the Revolutionary guards, soldiers and police.

Tehran_womens_march_1 Approximately 1,000 women had gathered in Park Daneshjoo on the occasion of the International Women's Day to emphasize their stance in support of women's human rights and peace. The ceremony which started at 4:00 pm, and was scheduled to last one hour, was charged by security forces shortly after it began, who relentlessly beat the protesters, in an effort to disperse the group.

The sit-in, which was organized by independent women's groups and activists, was supposed to be carried out silently, with protesters holding signs reading some of the following statements and slogans: discrimination against women, is an abuse of their human rights; women demand their human rights; women oppose any form of forced aggression or war; Iranian women demand peace; injustice means discrimination against women, etc.

Ten minutes into the protest, after security forces had managed to fully film and photograph the protesters for follow-up and interrogations at a later time, the women were asked to disperse, on the grounds that their assembly was illegal and did not have a permit. At this point, the protesters started singing the Tehran_march_3 anthem of the women's movement, which again calls for changes in their human rights status. At 4:20 the final statement of the sit in was read, during which the security forces dumped cans of garbage on the heads of women who were seated in an effort to prevent easy dispersal. The security forces then charged the group and began beating the protesters. Even after the protesters had dispersed many were followed by the security forces and beaten. Some of the female protesters were beaten repeatedly with batons, and some male protesters were beaten severely by security forces who administered the beatings in teams.

Ms. Simin Behbehani, feminist poet, who is elderly and has difficulty with her vision did not escape the wrath of the police either. She was beaten by a baton and then kicked repeatedly by security guards, amidst objection by women protesters. Female and male pedestrians passing by the protest also received beatings by the police.

Journalists, including several foreign correspondents, who had filmed and photographed the event, were rounded up, held in custody and released only after their films and photographs had been confiscated.