30 Sept 2005: Danish paper publishes cartoons
20 Oct: Muslim ambassadors complain to Danish PM
10 Jan 2006: Norwegian publication reprints cartoons
26 Jan: Saudi Arabia recalls its ambassador
31 Jan: Danish paper apologises
1 Feb: Papers in France, Germany, Italy and Spain reprint cartoons
4-5 Feb: Danish embassies in Damascus and Beirut attacked
6-12 Feb: Twelve killed in Afghanistan as security forces try to suppress protests
13-18 Feb: Five killed as protests break out across Pakistan
17 Feb: Ten killed in Libya as protesters target the Italian consulate in Benghazi
The Cartoon dispute
Kaare Bluitgen wrote a children's book on the Prophet Muhammad Bluitgen asked three artists to illustrate the book, feeling that it was "the western tradition to illustrate the main character of a book", and hoping to teach children of the Islamic faith... but artists declined, fearing possibly deadly retaliation from Muslims upset by images of the Prophet.
One of them recalled the fate of Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh...
Word of Bluitgen's inability to find an illustrator reached the Politiken newspaper, which on September 12 ran an article headlined 'Deep Fear of Criticism of Islam', questioning whether fear of violent reprisals was causing Danes to exercise self-censorship.
The trouble really started when rival newspaper the Jyllands-Posten later picked up the story and sent out a challenge to 40 cartoonists to draw Muhammad. Twelve responded and the newspaper on September 30 published their drawings under the headline of 'The Face of Muhammad'.
The Right-wing Danish government defended the newspaper that initially published the cartoons, and newspapers in Norway, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Iceland and Hungary, both conservative and liberal, defended the right to reprint them.
Compare: Danish Cartoons - death threats ...a diplomatic row & boycotts...[apologies to Muslims...but i have to show it to make the comparison] remember the cartoon is supposed to be a depiction of the Prophet Mohammed...Others have taken a more ironic tone Labelling the whole thing PR stunt|
Compare; one of numerous Sturmer cartoons comparing Jews to inhuman and unpleasant creatures. (February 1930) Caption: "Sucked dry." Explanation: The caricature suggests the Jews are sucking the economic life from Gentiles.
also in this timeframe
Austria holds 'Holocaust denier'
British revisionist historian David Irving is being held in Austria under laws against denying the Holocaust.
An interior ministry spokesman said police in the province of Styria acted on a warrant issued in 1989 to arrest him last Friday.
Mr Irving was on his way to give a lecture in the capital, Vienna.
In his books, Mr Irving has argued that the scale of the extermination of the Jews by the Nazis in World War II has been exaggerated. He also claimed that Nazi leader Adolf Hitler knew nothing of the Holocaust. He told a libel hearing in London in 2000 that there had been no gas chambers at the Auschwitz camp.
He lost the case and the judge branded him "an active Holocaust denier".
A spokesman for the Austrian interior ministry, Rudolf Gollia, told the BBC that Mr Irving was first taken to the town of Graz, but was now in custody in Vienna.
Anti-Nazi groups in the UK congratulated the Austrian government.
The chairman of the Holocaust Educational Trust, Lord Greville Janner, said he hoped the move would "lead to a successful prosecution". The head of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust said denial was not a matter of opinion. "Austrian law demands incisive action to protect its citizens from a repeat of the past," he added.
Mr Irving was previously arrested in Austria in 1984. This time, the historian was stopped near the town of Hartberg while reportedly on his way to address a students' club in Vienna.
Mr Irving came into the spotlight in 2000 when he sued US academic Deborah Lipstadt for describing him as a "Holocaust denier" in her 1994 work Denying the Holocaust: The Growing Assault on Truth and Memory.
Giving his verdict, the British judge said Mr Irving was "an active Holocaust denier; that he is anti-Semitic and racist and that he associates with right-wing extremists who promote neo-Nazism".
Meanwhile the BNP stood trial for hatecrimes: In 2004 Six speeches were filmed by an undercover BBC journalist for a documentary on the BNP. It was then that charges were brought against NAZIS Collett & Griffin. The NAZI BNP leader had denied two charges of using words or behaviour intended to stir up racial hatred and two alternative charges of using words or behaviour likely to stir up racial hatred. A jury at Leeds Crown Court cleared them of several charges. The jury was discharged after failing to reach verdicts on the remaining charges.
this all comes after De Menezes LIAR Met Police chief Sir Ian Blair accused the media of "institutional racism" in its reporting of murders - Yet strangely another undercover BBC documentary exposed rascism in the UK Police...The maker, Mark Daly, was arrested for doing a valuable public service.
at the time of Griffins exposure which saw the British National Party accusing gangs of Asian men of grooming/raping young white girls... Blair was busy spinning for African OIL revenues... Announcing that the UN should be brought into Sudan because Jangaweed militants were Raping Christian women
Why do the BNP always seem to turn up at the right time as the distraction the UK Gov needs? Blair needed to push through his draconian religious hatred laws and let the bill get defeated [actually it was ammended]...cock & Bull 'west wing' story is circulating even though MP's are already under survelliance by the Blair Junta ...The Wilson doctrine is a sham law...as we know the UK Gov spied on the UN & Sinn Fein to get its way -
So will Blair use these Religious/BNP Psyops try and bring in the original draft anyway? er...yep! as well as pressuring MPs not to vote against the UK Anti-Terror laws - "Charles Clarke said last week's Commons defeat watering down the Government's religious hatred legislation could in future be exploited by groups like the far right British National Party. And he said that any weakening of the terror laws could similarly be exploited by other groups."
Odd timing? Same day as the BNP trial - Theo Van Goghs killer presented religious defence in new trial - Bouyeri said he carried out Van Gogh's 2004 murder alone because he believed The film-maker had insulted Islam in his film criticising the treatment of Muslim women.
Not unrelated: TWATS Get Retrial
is there nothing that can be learned from History?
Why were Jews [along with Communists] targeted as the 'Rulers of the world'? Why Not The elites from ALL interested parties?
The Mystery Cults via organised Political & Religious forces...Shahs, Princes, Puppets...European Royalty ...Ivy leaguers ...Wall St bankers...the Ruling classes with their Post Fuedal / Malthusian / Hobbesian / Eugenics
[Corporatism] helped formulate the Middle East into a managable region...it also set into motion an exercise in European Fascism which had the aim of setting a threat of global domination... this assured it's Allied opposition - we were given a playbook which eventually gave the world The Deathcamps...& the Hiroshima & Nagasaki 'experiment - ALL HOLOCAUSTS -
The USA & Russia thencreamed the crop from the NAZI experiment & had Cart blanche to take over 'The Global domination' role under yet another shadenfraud of the cold war 'western democratic values' versus 'Communism' -
This in turn has given way to UBER CAPITALISM - The end of Nationalism & the beginnings of Regionalism - the Geostrategic posturing which is masking Neo-Corporate GLOBALISATION - It's not just the Neo-cons...its Neoliberals...G8, NATO...Bilderbergers all in collusion
Danish Embassy stormed in Indonesia...protests also in Iraq...GW BUSH & UK FM JACK STRAW have given statements condemning publishing of cartoons
"On Thursday the largest number of protesters, in a world of over one-billion Muslims, was "around 300" in Pakistan. As of noon Friday, the only reported demonstration attributed to these cartoons consisted of "about 300" Indonesians, which, somehow, Reuters viewed as meriting the headline "Uproar over Images of Mohammad Spreads across Asia." Now, self-righteous and xenophobic fires fanned by such hyperbolic headlines, the fires have begun in earnest as people of the East and West glower at the imagined Other shrieking, "How could they!" - wave on IMCUK
BBC PSYOPS links a A Shooting which killed priest in Turkey to Muslim protests
Andrew Dismore, the Labour MP makes the same comparision I make above... for a Cartoon that has been published in only ONE Paper...the cartoons of Mohammed were published all over Europe
I can't find the offending Cartoon... so here is one by Morten Morland
from a report in The Independent
An anti-Semitic cartoon in a British paper The Muslim Weekly...It depicts Israel's acting Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert, as a hook-nosed figure wearing a giant Star of David, last night drew protests from MPs and Jewish groups. Andrew Dismore, the Labour MP for Hendon, said the cartoon was "obscene" and in terribly "bad taste", and has now made a formal complaint to the paper. He added: "This cartoon depicts people in the most obscene fashion, reminiscent of Die Sturmer, the Nazi propaganda sheet. It denigrates and incites hatred towards Jewish people. I sympathise with the Muslim complaints about the cartoon that appeared in Denmark, but it is hypocritical to publish a cartoon like this." A spokesman for the Muslim Weekly said the cartoon was an "evocative" caricature
[The Muslim Weekly Online has no reference to such a cartoon]
On the 3rd Feb 2006 a newspaper published cartoons that Jewish groups say they find offensive, and US generals protested about a cartoon in the Washington Post. It showed Donald Rumsfeld, the Defense Secretary, beside a limbless soldier, but the generals said, on behalf of the normally robust Mr Rumsfeld, that the drawing was "tasteless".
What is really going on...my opinion:
A true examination of free speech would see ALL religions being lampooned in the Press - Thus their free-speech argument doesn't hold water - because this unimaginative endeavor disproportionately targets one religion over another...Denmark's Jyllands-Posten published 12 caricatures of Mohammad - He set the remit...so why not include the Pope [on a rope...perhaps?] or Jesus H Christ [on a fucking bike...i presume] or Buddha [as a fat greedy fuck who thinks the disabled & ill are being punished for bad past lives] - they are all derived from the same thing...The Prophet Mohammed was supposedly visited by The Archangel Gabrial 'fer crying out loud! - so it is a derivitive of Chritsianity - that means that this stage-managed war is a Neo-Christian Schizm...exactly the same as Protestants versus Catholics --- WAKE UP!
All the Abrahamic religions are derived to some extent from Judaism as practiced in ancient kingdoms of Israel and Judah prior to the Babylonian Exile, at the beginning of the 1st millennium BC. Many believe that Judaism in Biblical Israel was renovated and reformed to some extent in the 6th century BC by Ezra and other priests returning to Israel from the exile. Samaritanism separated from Judaism in the next few centuries.
Christianity originated in Israel, at the end of the 1st century, as a radically reformed branch of Judaism; it spread to ancient Greece and Rome, and from there to most of Europe, Asia, the Americas, and many other parts of the world. Over the centuries Christianity split into many separate churches and denominations. A major split in the 5th century separated various Oriental Churches from the Catholic church centered in Rome. Other major splits were the East-West Schism in the 11th century, which separated the Eastern Orthodox Churches, and the Protestant Reformation in the 16th century, which eventually gave birth to hundreds of independent Protestant denominations.
Islam originated in the 6th century, in the Arabian cities of Mecca and Madinah. Although not properly a dissident branch of either Judaism or Christianity, it explicitly claimed to be a continuation and replacement for them, and echoed many of their principles. For example, Muslims believe in a version of the story of Genesis and in the lineal descent of the Arabs from Abraham through Ishmael, but they teach that Ishmael was through Abraham's wife, instead of his servant. Muslims reject the Jewish Bible because they think it has been intentionally corrupted, in part to erase any mention of the coming of Muhammad; but nevertheless revere it as having had divine origins.
|see the latest PSYOPS bulletin - Information Operations Roadmap
Apparently signed by Rumsfeld himself: The "roadmap" calls for a far-reaching overhaul of the military's ability to conduct information operations and electronic warfare. And, in some detail, it makes recommendations for how the US armed forces should think about this new, virtual warfare. It seems to see the internet as being equivalent to an enemy weapons system.
Are Muslim 'placegroups' allowing their strings to get pulled? How many hundreds of years has this religion been active?...how many provocations Muslim groups have been restrained to peaceful protest after, Racial Profiling seen after 911... the war on Terror, war in Afghanistan & Iraq, abuse, the rendition program...Control orders...and now we see this reaction... to Cartoons?
On the 4th Feb The UK Telegraph ran a reactionary opinion peice by Charles Moore entitled "If you get rid of the Danes, you'll have to keep paying the Danegeld"
Before going on to chastise & goad Muslims in general... he makes one interesting observation
scroll down to see the same picture used in context
"It's some time since I visited Palestine, so I may be out of date, but I don't remember seeing many Danish flags on sale there. Not much demand, I suppose. I raise the question because, as soon as the row about the cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed in Jyllands-Posten broke, angry Muslims popped up in Gaza City, and many other places, well supplied with Danish flags ready to burn. (In doing so, by the way, they offered a mortal insult to the most sacred symbol of my own religion, Christianity, since the Danish flag has a cross on it, but let that pass.)"
Now where have we seen the spontaneous political use of flags before....
From Russia - the news has another slant -
Yushchenko slams reprinting of Muhammad cartoons in Ukraine
Kiev, February 8, Interfax - President Viktor Yushchenko has condemned a Ukrainian newspaper for reprinting some of the caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad that have sparked protests by Muslims across the world.
"We regard any publication and any material or action that could insult people's national or religious beliefs as inappropriate and the Ukrainian president condemns any manifestation of intolerance and xenophobia," presidential spokeswoman Iryna Herashchenko told a news conference in Kiev on Wednesday after the paper Syohodni reprinted the cartoons.
Yushchenko was doing his best to achieve religious and interethnic harmony in Ukraine, she said.
Georgian Muslims protest against Muhammad cartoons
Tbilisi, February 8, Interfax - A group of Georgian Muslims have staged a protest against the publication of cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad in newspapers in Denmark and a number of other European countries.
About 600 residents of the village of Marneuli, 50 kilometers to the east of Tbilisi, held a peaceful protest on Wednesday.
The protesters, ethnic Azeris, told journalists they were expressing solidarity with Muslims around the world who objected to the defilement of Islam. They did however admit that Georgia has never seen any instances of religious insults.
Similar protests were also held in Tbilisi and Batumi on Wednesday.
Russian senator urges Europe to apologize for cartoons
Moscow, February 8, Interfax - Russian Federation Council Speaker Sergey Mironov has criticized remarks claiming that freedoms enjoyed by newspapers that published caricatures satirizing the Prophet Muhammad have been somehow restricted.
"Such publications do not do the European media any good. Nobody has the right to offend the feelings of believers. However, retaliatory acts of violence are unacceptable as well," he told journalists. Mironov said he supports other senators' initiative to ask the Russian delegation at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe to call on the European countries whose newspapers published the offensive caricatures to offer an apology to the Muslim world. "This issue needs to be raised, simply ask the European countries where the cartoons were published to issue an official apology to the whole Muslim world," he said.
PACE has repeatedly criticized Russia and asked it to apologize, he said. "We have been asked to apologize for Communism, for the Soviet Union which does not exist anymore but which defeated Fascism, which Europe has overlooked," Mironov said.
The speaker said that he, as an ordinary man, understands Chechen Deputy Prime Minister Ramzan Kadyrov's vow to keep Danish humanitarian organizations out of the republic. But it is not a good idea to reject a helping hand extended by organizations that actually help Chechnya, he said.
Holocaust cartoons contest a provocation - Russian foreign ministry
Moscow, February 8, Interfax - Moscow has assailed a contest for Holocaust caricatures announced by an Iranian newspaper to retaliate for the Prophet Muhammad cartoons published in European media.
"We condemn such provocations on both sides. This is counterproductive and is only fanning tensions," the Russian foreign minister's Middle East envoy Alexander Kalugin told Interfax on Wednesday.
President Vladimir Putin earlier said in an interview with Spanish media that no provocations are possible in the religious sphere. "One should think a hundred times before publishing, doing or drawing anything," Putin said.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the scandal that erupted after the Prophet Muhammad cartoons were published in Western newspapers has hurt efforts to settle conflicts, including the Iranian nuclear problem.
hmm... is the Overt acknowledgement
of the censorship of the News Media
one of the aims of this Psyop?
Do the powers that be want you to plead with them to keep you safe from nasty news? that might cause a world war?
Strangely 2 weeks before this cartoon episode kicked off...we saw the Russian UK spy story which I believe had the purpose of closing down and regulating NGO's and human rights activists/groups...
|Russian UK spy bollox! G8 Nuclear power grab!|
UK Spies: Marc Doe. Christopher Pirt. Paul Crompton. Andrew Fleming - er...don't give up the day job...
Putins now totalitarian Russia wants a crackdown on all Non Govermental organisations working in the country - These NGO's range from humanitarian to legal / human rights issues...Many NGO's are believed to be infiltrated and/or sponsored by State actors as a method used in the control of organized dissent...a stunt like this would present Putin with an opportunity to crack down on ALL dissent - especially those NGO's or other groups, which have not been compromised... So if looked at in this context...is Blair actually taking part in a G8 energy cartel stage-managed political theatre... which helps solidify Putins ever emerging Police state? and creates an impression of tit for tat spying in G8 member countries...which enables a crackdown across the board? - more
Flemming Rose, the cultural editor of Jyllands-Posten, told CNN that :
"...the ongoing violence in the Middle East has "very little to do with the cartoons we've printed."
He said the initial uproar "came right after ... radical imams from Denmark traveled to the Middle East, deliberately lying about these cartoons, and deliberately lying about the context." The imams "were saying that my newspaper was owned by the Danish government, they were saying that we are preparing a new version of the Koran, a new translation of the Koran in Denmark, censoring the word of Allah, which is a grave sin according to Islam," Rose said. "This is a lie."
then, In another 'reactionary blog' Gatway Pundit' we see The original cartoons being ignored to favour a slanted story accusing Akhmad Akkari, spokesman of the Danish Muslim organisations of introducing to the furore, a further 3 cartoons & having the intention to stir up Global Jihad
The organisation Islamic Society in Denmark toured the Middle-East to create awareness about the cartoons, bringing 3 additional images, which HAD NEVER been published in any media source. Evidently, the originals were not offensive enough for the trip so they had to add these three:
The first of the three additional pictures, which are of poor quality, shows Muhammad as a pedophile demon.
The second shows Muhammed with a pig snout.
The third depicts a praying Muslim being raped by a dog
BBC World also aired a story showing one of the three non-published images, on 2006-01-30, and wrongly claimed it had been published in Jyllands-Posten.
On the tour, the group claimed to represent 21 different Muslim organisations in Denmark, although many of these groups have disclaimed any connection.
Akhmad Akkari, spokesman of the Danish Muslim organisations which organised the tour, explained that the three drawings had been added to "give an insight in how hateful the atmosphere in Denmark is towards Muslims."
Akkari claimed he does not know the origin of the three pictures. He said they had been sent anonymously to Danish Muslims. However, when Ekstra Bladet asked if it could talk to these Muslims, Akkari refused to reveal their identity. These images had however never been published in Jyllands-Posten.
The society also allegedly exaggerated its membership, claiming to represent all of Denmark's 200,000 Muslims, when the actual number of adherents is believed to be fewer than 15,000. . 500-1000 people attend their Friday prayer gathering each week.
Imam Ahmad Abu Ladan is involved in an international group of Muslims who are known for supporting the anti-Western Islamist struggle of the school of global Jihad. [Muslimsk kritik af Hizb-ut-Tahrir - in Danish]
Imam Ahmad Abu Ladan also tried to block the re-election of the right-wing government in Denmark in the previous election. Imam Ahmad Abu Laban, the leader of the organisation stated in Al Jazeera that Muslims should boycott Denmark, despite giving contradictory assurances to Western media. Ahmad Abu Laban, previously declared unwelcome in several Arab states, was one of the front figures on the tour .
Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen said of Muslims criticising the country in the Arab territories: "I am speechless that those people, whom we have given the right to live in Denmark and where they freely have chosen to stay, are now touring Arab countries and inciting antipathy towards Denmark and the Danish people"
Further misinformation spread among Arab Muslims include claims that Jyllands-Posten is a government-owned newspaper (it is privately owned) - spokesman for the Danish delegation Muhammed al Samha, and delegation member Ahmed al-Harbi said in the Egyptian newspaper al-Ahram: "Jyllands-Posten, a newspaper belonging to the ruling Danish party - an extreme right-wing party - [was] publishing drawings and sketches of the prophet Muhammad."
wait a minute:
from an article in The Times:
Hizb-ut-Tahrir are on the media alongside Muslim Association
Cartoon wars and the clash of civilisations
The BBC was drawn into the row after broadcasting the images on its main evening bulletins. The move drew accusations from Muslim leaders that the corporation was inciting racial hatred. Channel 4 News and The Spectator magazine website also showed the images, originally published in Denmark, dragging Britain into an increasingly ugly confrontation between Islam and the West.
Western diplomats from Denmark and Norway began pulling out of their missions in Gaza as gunmen searched hotels for Europeans from countries where newspapers had printed the pictures, declaring them legitimate targets.
The editor of a Jordanian newspaper that suggested Muslim anger was unreasonable, was sacked by his publisher. Al-Shihan had run the cartoons, arguing: "What brings more prejudice against Islam, these caricatures or pictures of a hostage taker slashing the throat of his victim?" Across the region, including Baghdad and Basra, Muslim leaders called for protests after Friday prayers. Protests are also expected to spread to European capitals after a dozen more publications in Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain carried the cartoons.
Senior BBC executives said last night that they would not be "bullied or censored" into dropping the images, which were only shown as glimpses to illustrate the story. There are no immediate plans to increase security at BBC offices, though this will be kept under review. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office said it was not changing its advice over travel to Islamic countries.
Downing Street tried to distance itself from the row by saying it was wrong for Tony Blair to tell the media what to do. Asked if he agreed with Peter Mandelson, the EU Trade Commissioner, who urged newspapers to think twice before publishing the cartoons, the Prime Minister's spokesman said: "This is entirely a matter for the media organisations to decide what they ought to do within the law." The BBC decided to show the images after the managing editor of the French newspaper France Soir was sacked for printing all 12 drawings in Wednesday's edition. Bulletins on domestic TV and on BBC World carried the cartoons, which a spokesman said were broadcast "responsibly" and "in full context" and "to give audiences an understanding of the strong feelings evoked by the story". It is understood that neither Mark Thompson, the BBC Director-General, nor the governors were consulted over broadcasting the cartoons.
Last night both the Muslim Association and the militant Islamic group Hizb-ut-Tahrir in Britain condemned the BBC's behaviour and pleaded with it to drop the broadcasts.
A spokesman for the Muslim Association said: "The BBC is inciting racial hatred and not conducting a serious debate on freedom of speech. This threatens to become another Salman Rushdie affair."
A senior figure in Hizb-ut Tahrir said: "It's become open season by media to insult Islam. There was no need for the BBC to reproduce them, but we would urge protesters to be peaceful but vocal".
The Demonstration in London was headed [or at least - usurped]
by Hizb-ut-Tahrir - observe: All the signs are written by the same hand
where have we seen that before?
How Labour used its election troops to fake popular support
Documentary shows activists writing letters to newspapers and posing as 'local people' to greet Blair on campaign trail
Sunday May 22, 2005 - In America, they call it 'astroturfing': the faking of grassroots support for a politician or a product whose popularity is on the slide.
Now it emerges that a tactic invented by US pharmaceutical firms to promote drugs - and promptly adopted by the Republicans to shore up George Bush after 9/11 - was imported to Britain to help get Tony Blair re-elected.
A documentary to be screened on Channel 4 tomorrow, filmed by an undercover journalist who got a job in Labour's war room, reveals how party members and supporters were systematically used to create the impression of 'real people' passionately backing the government.
Model letters were drafted for them to 'write' to local papers, as if they had been spontaneously roused to complain about Michael Howard's tactics - while party staff were drafted in to represent 'local people' whom Tony Blair could meet on campaign visits.
'Spontaneous' demonstrations against rival politicians were also organised, with activists instructed to use handwritten homemade-looking placards. - guardian.co.uk
Flashback 2 months: Blair loves Egypt hes been there 3 times in 3 years...
Blair [the twat pictured above trying to look cool] on Holiday in Egypt as Police give him a show of 'power' - his previous jaunts include Berlusconi / Strozzis villas in Italy & Cliff Richards resort in Barbados
Dec 2005 - Tony plays away - "cheap holidays in other peoples misery"
TONY Blair is on holiday in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh. The Blairs have been regular visitors to the Red Sea resort which has long been popular with winter sun-seekers and diving enthusiasts. In July, terrorist bombs in the town left more than 60 dead - including 11 Britons. The Egyptian authorities have begun to build a 12-mile-long security fence in Sharm, part of an attempt to restore its reputation as a world-class holiday destination. Once completed, the fence will have only four access points, each monitored by Egyptian police and security forces. The president, Hosni Mubarak, maintains a large villa in the town and its numerous hotels 'have attracted' a number of Middle East peace summits.
[have attracted??? try - have got their snouts in the corporate warcrimes for greed & power slavery schemes trough]
Meanwhile: At least 10 people are dead after Riot Police beat refugees, including women and children, dragged them out of the square and forced them onto buses. Police flooded the neighborhood with about 5,000 officers in full riot gear, armed with truncheons, cordoned off the area a little before midnight local time. After a night-long standoff outside the improvised refugee camp situated in an upscale Cairo neighborhood, the State Goons then stormed & indiscriminately attacked the migrants... Ambulances raced to tend to the wounded, at least one small child is among those killed.
Many Mainstream Muslims feel this group Hizb-ut-Tahrir is a schizm from traditional Islam
In reaction to this loss of the Khilafa in 1924 there arose many Islamic groups who claim to be fulfiling the obligation of working for the return of the Islamic State. Amongst these groups is one known as the "Hizb-ut-Tahrir."
This group has been the cause of many of the youth being led astray, indoctrinated in false Islamic beliefs and fooled by false methodology. By this, they fall into those who maybe included in those astray sects who will be punished in the Fire of Jahannam, as made clear from the following aayah and hadeeth.
"And whoever contends with and contradicts the Messenger after guidence has been clearly conveyed to him, and chooses a path other than that of the faithful believers (the companions and those that follow them in faith), We shall leave him in the Path he has chosen and land him in Hell, what an evil refuge" [Surah An-Nisa 4:115]
neocon Taheri lets slip?
Bonfire of the Pieties
By AMIR TAHERI
February 8, 2006; Page A16
"The Muslim Fury," one newspaper headline screamed. "The rage of Islam
sweeps Europe," said another. "The clash of civilizations is coming,"
warned one commentator. All this refers to the row provoked by the
publication of cartoons of the prophet Muhammad in a Danish newspaper four
months ago. Since then a number of demonstrations have been held, mostly
-- though not exclusively -- in the West, and Scandinavian embassies and
consulates have been besieged.
But how representative of Islam are all those demonstrators? The "rage
machine" was set in motion when the Muslim Brotherhood -- a political, not
a religious, organization -- called on sympathizers in the Middle East and
Europe to take the field. A fatwa was issued by Yussuf al-Qaradawi, a
Brotherhood sheikh with his own program on al-Jazeera. Not to be left
behind, the Brotherhood's rivals, Hizb al-Tahrir al-Islami (Islamic
Liberation Party) and the Movement of the Exiles (Ghuraba), joined the
fray. Believing that there might be something in it for themselves, the
Syrian Baathist leaders abandoned their party's 60-year-old secular
pretensions and organized attacks on the Danish and Norwegian embassies in
Damascus and Beirut.
The Muslim Brotherhood's position, put by one of its younger militants,
Tariq Ramadan -- who is, strangely enough, also an adviser to the British
home secretary --
can be summed up as follows: It is against Islamic
principles to represent by imagery not only Muhammad but all the prophets
of Islam; and the Muslim world is not used to laughing at religion. Both
claims, however, are false.
There is no Quranic injunction against images, whether of Muhammad or
anyone else. When it spread into the Levant, Islam came into contact with
a version of Christianity that was militantly iconoclastic. As a result
some Muslim theologians, at a time when Islam still had an organic
theology, issued "fatwas" against any depiction of the Godhead. That
position was further buttressed by the fact that Islam acknowledges the
Jewish Ten Commandments -- which include a ban on depicting God -- as part
of its heritage. The issue has never been decided one way or another, and
the claim that a ban on images is "an absolute principle of Islam" is
purely political. Islam has only one absolute principle: the Oneness of
God. Trying to invent other absolutes is, from the point of view of
Islamic theology, nothing but sherk, i.e., the bestowal on the Many of the
attributes of the One.
incidently this article is hosted by
- Benador associates
who are the Public relations firm to: Richard Perle, Charles Krauthammer, Michael A. Ledeen, John O'Sullivan, Victor Davis Hanson, Richard Pipes, James Woolsey & Arnaud de Borchgrave,
this Arnaud de Borchgrave Commentar isn't very subtle:
Cartoon war-global intifada?
By ARNAUD DE BORCHGRAVE - WASHINGTON, Feb. 9 (UPI) -- The combustible cartoon war quickly became shorthand for what radical Muslim clerics had been planning for months - a clash of civilizations. The offending Danish cartoons, first published almost five months ago, were mild compared to how some cartoonists in Western democracies slash and singe organized religion.
One late night comedian did a skit of a TV news anchor announcing Moses had just come down from the mountain with the Ten Commandments. "And now to Sam Donaldson in the foothills of Mount Sinai to report on the three most important ones."
As for Prophet Mohammad wearing a smoking, turban-mounted bomb, Osama Bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri, and their Islamist terrorist fan club the world over, invoke and hail his name five times a day as their leader in the war they are waging against the "crusader infidels." That's us Judeo-Christians. The countless millions of Muslims in some 50 Muslim countries who tell pollsters bin Laden is more trustworthy than President Bush are deeply religious people. They scoff at the widely held notion in the U.S. that a tiny minority of terrorists has hijacked Islam.
These same Muslim faithful approve of Islamist terrorist leaders who promise brainwashed volunteer suicide bombers the reward offered by the prophet - the keys to paradise and 72 virgins to keep them busy for a while, if not eternity. The Danish cartoonist elicited a few chuckles with his drawing of tattered suicide bombers, bits of clothing still smoking, being greeted at the Muslim pearly gates by a frantic gatekeeper waving them away and shouting - "Get lost, we've run out of virgins."
More seriously, the "spontaneous" protests and riots that ricochet throughout the Muslim world from Iraq to Indonesia and on to Denmark and Norway, peaceful countries that give a wide berth to international rumbles, were carefully prepared over several months. Following publication of the cartoons in a Danish newspaper last September, a group of fundamentalist clerics flew to the Middle East to arouse indignation and anger among other radical imams and mullahs in both Sunni Islam and Shiite Islam, from Cairo's al-Azhar University, Islam's oldest, to the holy cities of Najaf in Iraq and Qum in Iran.
The delegation of Danish Muslim clerics was led by Ahmed Abu-Laban, a fundamentalist Palestinian preacher who was expelled by the United Arab Emirates for his vitriolic Friday sermons. They got a hearing with Arab League chief Amr Moussa at his headquarters in Cairo and persuaded him to move the issue onto the agenda of a December meeting of several Arab heads of state. Next came a fatwa, or religious edict, from Cairo's senior Muslim cleric. The fatwa became a signal for global demos.
Meanwhile, back in Denmark, Flemming Rose, the cultural editor of the newspaper Jyllands-Posten that had published the cartoons critical of Islam, which included the forbidden face of the prophet, was warned by a counter-terrorism informant there was now a "halal" decree against him. Islam had now sanctioned a contract on his life. Rose now moves only with bodyguards.
When Iran's firebrand president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says the Holocaust never happened and Israel should be made to disappear from the map, there are just as many millions of Sunnis as there are Shiites who nod their heads in agreement. So all it requires is a match to light the fuse of Islamofascism, much the way Hitler's brown shirts in the 1930s got an eager populace to demonstrate against Jews - and ransack their stores. The moderate Muslim majority was once again spooked. As it doubtless will be again when another fatwa emanates from Iran -- this time authorizing the use of a nuclear weapon against Israel.
The cartoon war could be seen as a limbering exercise for a global intifada. It would be a miracle if the Wahhabi and Salafi and Deobandi and Shiite clergy leaders didn't see it the same way. Iran's Ahmadinejad, surveying the global cartoon thunderclaps, must have concluded that the return of the 12th Imam, known as the Mahdi, is drawing nearer, which means world chaos, death and destruction, before a new era of world peace under Islamic rule.
- upi.com [owned by Rev. Moon]
So, anyway according to 'Benador affiliate' & neocon AMIR TAHERI -
Professor Tariq Ramadan, an outspoken critic of the US occupation of Iraq, [see below]
is an adviser to the British home secretary - Charles Clarke
Muslim Leaders' Task Force Already on Rack in Britain
Mushtak Parker Arab News LONDON, 2 September 2005 -
A Task force of prominent Muslim individuals and organizations set up by the British Home Office aimed at combating Islamic extremism has hardly had time to convene properly and already the knives are out to undermine its work. The Task force, whose convener is the Labour peer Lord Nazir Ahmed, has a wide remit including the education of Imam, the organization of mosques, and how to better engage with young British Muslims.
The Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC), headed by Iranian Massoud Shadjereh, who is on the Task force, came under attack for having exiled Saudi dissident Dr. Muhammed Al-Massari, allegedly a supporter of Osama Bin Laden, as an adviser. Al-Massari, who a few days ago removed offensive footage from his website of three Black Watch British soldiers being blown up by a suicide bomber in Iraq and encouraging insurgents in Iraq to attack foreign troops.
Al-Massari is also a prime target for deportation under new rules published last week by Home Secretary Charles Clarke. IHRC Chairman Shadjereh stressed that Al-Massari is "one of many advisers we have. Having an adviser in one particular area does not mean we endorse all activities that an individual believes in or does." "There is no doubt that he is an expert on Gulf States. If anything is proven against him, then there will definitely be a review of his position as an adviser."
IHRC has previously regularly met with the Metropolitan Police to discuss safety in the Muslim community.
But it suspended all formal links with the police in protest against the mistaken shooting of 27-year-old Brazilian electrician Jean Chalres de Menezes a day after the failed 21/7 bomb attacks on the London transport system. De Menezes was mistaken for Osman Hussein, one of the 21/7 suspects who is awaiting extradition appeals in Rome pending his deportation to Britain to stand trial for his role in the failed 21/7 attacks. Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Ian Blair was in discussions with senior advisers and Home Office officials to see whether there could be more legal protection for armed police officers who face the prospect of serious criminal charges in the case of shootings involving deaths despite having carried out their duties with the best of intentions. Sir Ian is particularly concerned that officers in such circumstances should not be charged with murder.
While the IHRC and Al-Massari links have been construed as an embarrassment for the Home Office, a new controversy is brewing following the reported appointment of controversial Muslim academic Professor Tariq Ramadan to sit on the Task force designed to combat Islamic extremism.
A source near to the Task force warned that it was "open season" on attacking the Muslims in Britain and that their plight is dire.
Professor Tariq Ramadan, is banned from the US and France, who have both accused the Egyptian-born academic of supporting the use of violence - an allegation he strongly refutes. Last year the Department of Homeland Security revoked Prof Ramadan's visa nine days before he was due to take up a professorship in the US, claiming he had "endorsed terrorist activity".
Right wing newspapers and politicians in the UK have attacked the Home Office for allowing Professor Ramadan to enter the country days after the July 7 suicide bombings, in which 56 people died and over 700 were injured. They described the decision to allow Prof. Ramadan into the UK as "utter madness". Professor Ramadan, an outspoken critic of the US occupation of Iraq, stressed in London in July that "what happens sometimes in the name of Islam has nothing to do with our religion and we have to say it and we have to condemn it. We condemn terrorists, but I really think we have to do something more to promote the right education and to say where this is wrong."
The Task force, which met for the first time last week, could not confirm to Arab News Professor Ramadan's appointment. The Group will report to Home Secretary Charles Clarke and Prime Minister Tony Blair by the end of September on ways of engaging British Muslim youth and how to stop them turning towards violence and extremism.
A Home Office spokeswoman said: "We haven't yet agreed the final make-up of the working group and are not able to confirm its membership."
Meanwhile Home Secretary Charles Clarke indicated that Britain could opt out of a new EU directive banning member countries from sending people back to countries where they may face torturer the death penalty. Last week Clarke published the grounds on which foreigners considered to be promoting terrorism can be deported or excluded. The Home Office confirmed that it was waiting to see the new EU commission rules and stressed they would "only affect the UK if we opt in". The government is on the verge of signing memorandums of understanding with several countries including Egypt and Algeria seeking assurances that no one it deports will be ill-treated. It recently signed the first such agreement with Jordan. While the EU commission's proposal is understood to cite the European Convention of Human Rights as the yardstick, Prime Minister Tony Blair has stressed that in his wart against extremism the rules of the game have changed. This meant that the government was prepared to amend the Human Rights Act 2000 to by pass the provisions of the Convention.
Time magazine no strangers to controversy [their man of the year 1938 - was Hitler] focus on someone seemingly more liberal
Tariq Ramadan has the measured delivery of an academic, which is no more than you would expect from a man who used to be a high school principal and wrote his doctoral thesis on Nietzsche.
But as the leading Islamic thinker among Europe's second- and third-generation Muslim immigrants, the Geneva-based university lecturer also inspires a good deal of mistrust-from both Arab Muslims for his Western sensibility and Westerners for his controversial Islamic roots.
Ramadan, 38, is the grandson of Hassan al-Banna, founder, in 1928, of the Muslim Brotherhood, an Islamic revival movement that spread from Egypt throughout the Arab world, criticizing Western decadence and advocating a return to Muslim values. Yet Ramadan says, "I'm a European who has grown up here. I don't deny my Muslim roots, but I don't vilify Europe either." - time.com
the Muslim Brotherhood, an Islamic revival movement ?
or just Plain NAZI sympathisers
remebering it also valid to ask - Is Ramadan responsible for his Grandfathers actions?
Throughout its history, the Muslim Brotherhood has been supportive of the Palestinian cause. During the anti-Jewish riots in British Mandatory Palestine of 1936 and 1939 the Brotherhood supported Haj Amin al-Husseini, the Mufti of Jerusalem and leader of the Arab Higher Committee.
Brotherhood members were sent from Egypt to participate as fighters together with the Palestinian Arabs, an effort that was repeated during the 1948 war. Volunteers from both the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood movement and its newly formed counterpart among Palestinian Arabs fought to prevent the establishment of the State of Israel. - Hamas & the MB - source
Islamism, or fascism with an Islamic face, was born with and of the Muslim Brotherhood. It proved (and improved) its fascist core convictions and practices through collaboration with the Nazis in the run-up to and during World War II. It proved it during the same period through its collaboration with the overtly fascist "Young Egypt" (Misr al-Fatah) movement, founded in October 1933 by lawyer Ahmed Hussein and modeled directly on the Hitler party, complete with paramilitary Green Shirts aping the Nazi Brown Shirts, Nazi salute and literal translations of Nazi slogans. Among its members, Young Egypt counted two promising youngsters and later presidents, Gamal Abdel Nasser and Anwar El-Sadat.
al-Banna, [..] had already been in contact with German agents since the 1936-39 Palestine uprising against the British
- asia times
Irans Leader AHMADINEJAD is a fan of al Bana too
WHO IS AHMADINEJAD AND WHAT HE IS UP TO?
By Safa Haeri Posted Monday, December 12, 2005
PARIS, 12 Dec. (IPS) ".... He is viscerally anti Jew, anti West...This is rooted in his education, his fascination for Hasan al Bana, Gamal Abdol Naser and third worldism, the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, the late Egyptian leader and the movement that once was the flag ship of developing nations... and above all his total and fanatic belief in Shi'a doctrine", said an Iranian journalist who knew Mr. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad from the time he was Mayor of Tehran, commenting the islamo-populist Iranian President who, in less than four months destroyed all the credits – and respect -- his predecessor, Mohammad Khatami, a charismatic cleric, had obtained painfully for Iran during the eight years he was in office October.
After declaring on 26 October 2005 that "the Zionist Entity", -- the jargon Iranian officials use to name Israel -- must be "wiped off the map of earth", Mr. Ahmadinejad did it again, by not only questioning the Holocaust, the killing of more than 6 million Jews and the gas chambers, but also calling on Europe, mostly Germany and Austria, the two nations responsible for the massacres during World War II, to provide one or two of their states to the Zionists in order to plant there their nation. - iran-press-service.com
This story from the Telegraph was Filed: 12th September 2005 -
the same day as the Danish Newspaper started it's campaign: a coincidence?
On September 12 Politiken newspaper ran an article headlined 'Deep Fear of Criticism of Islam',
questioning whether fear of violent reprisals was causing Danes to exercise self-censorship.
Extremist goading? a set up?
Jews and Freemasons controlled war on Iraq, says No 10 adviser
By Toby Helm - September 12 2005
Tony Blair decided to wage war on Iraq after coming under the influence of a "sinister" group of Jews and Freemasons, a Muslim barrister who advises the Prime Minister has claimed. Ahmad Thomson, from the Association of Muslim Lawyers, said Mr Blair was the latest in a long line of politicians to have been influenced by the group which saw the attack on Saddam Hussein as a way to control the Middle East.
A Government spokesman confirmed last night that ministers and officials consulted Mr Thomson on issues concerning Muslims but refused to be drawn on his views. "We talk to a lot of people, including many whose views we do not necessarily agree with," she said.
Mr Thomson said: "Pressure was put on Tony Blair before the invasion. The way it works is that pressure is put on people to arrive at certain decisions. It is part of the Zionist plan and it is shaping events."
Mr Thomson wrote a book in 1994 in which he said Freemasons and Jews controlled the governments of Europe and America and described the claim that six million Jews died in the Holocaust as a "big lie". In The Next World Order, Mr Thomson, a Muslim convert who was born Martin Thomson in Rhodesia, wrote: "When the majority of people in a predominantly Christian society cease to worship God, the result is fascism.
"When the people in a predominantly Jewish society cease to worship God, the result is either communism or capitalism. A predominantly Christian society is concerned primarily with establishing a political ideology, whilst a predominantly Jewish society is concerned primarily with establishing an economic system."
This, he suggested, led to the rise of Adolf Hitler. Mr Thomson, who was called to the bar in 1979, wrote: "The fascism of Hitler was the Christian element in the increasingly "Jewish" environment in which he and his followers found themselves."
He also wrote that the Jews have no right to live in "the Holy Land" because they are not a pure race and therefore not the true biblical Israelites and that Saddam was used as an excuse for US troops - "including thousands of Jews" - to occupy Saudi Arabia.
A Government source said: "It is by talking to people with varying views that we find out what the range of opinions is. It doesn't mean we agree with what they are saying." - telegraph.co.uk
'BOMBER' PROTESTER IS CRACK DEALER
He could be sent back to jail
By Tom Parry 7th Feb 2006 - Daily Record
THE Muslim protester who dressed as a suicide bomber in the heart of London is a convicted crack cocaine dealer. Omar Khayam, 22, was jailed for six years in 2002 for possession of the Class A drug with intent to supply. He was freed after half his sentence and is on parole. Khayam wore a vest similar to those used by suicide bombers to a demonstration against newspaper cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed on Saturday. His stunt sickened relatives of the people killed and wounded in the July 7 London terror attacks. Police are studying film of the demo to decide whether to charge any of those who took part. Because he is on parole, Khayam could be sent back to jail if convicted of any other offence.
A source who knew Khayam in jail said he was influenced by radical Muslim prisoners. He said: "He was a very quiet guy. He would only ever speak out when he was with the other extremists. "He told people that he would use the money from drugs for the cause, meaning radical Muslim groups." A Prison Service source added: "It was well known that Omar made a lot of money from drugs."
Khayam, now a building student, tried to defend his bomber outfit last night.
He said: "I would do it again to make a point. I could have gone along and held up banners or something but this made the point better. "I wasn't trying to appear like a terrorist at all. I admit that it may have appeared in a bit of a military style and a bit provocative - but that's not illegal in this country."
Khayam's defiant words came just hours after he issued a grovelling statement admitting that his stunt was "wrong, unjustified and insensitive". Speaking outside his home in Bedford, Khayam said he had wanted to protest against the "deeply offensive" cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed printed in a Danish newspaper. But he added: "By dressing the way I did, I did exactly the same as the Danish newspaper, if not worse. "My method of protest has offended many people, especially the families of the victims of the July bombings. "This was not my intention. "What happened in July was a tragedy and un-Islamic. I do not condone these murderous acts, do not support terrorism or extremism and would like to apologise unreservedly and wholeheartedly."
Ministers queued up yesterday to pledge full support for any police action against the protesters who caused outrage in London. Fanatics waved placards threatening Europeans with death, and calling for the beheading of those who drew the cartoons.
Is a crack dealer...? or was? in 2002...
who is the bomb vest guy, really? who did he deal crack for?
Bomb-vest protestor arrested
07/02/2006 - Omar Khayam, the student who dressed as a suicide bomber at a protest in London on Friday, has today been arrested for breaking his parole conditions.
It was this morning revealed that the 22-year-old is a convicted drug dealer and Bedfordshire police have now arrested him on the behest of the Home Office under the Criminal Justice Act 2003. The Bedford man was sentenced to six years in jail for the possessing and intending to supply crack cocaine and heroin in 2002. He was released on parole in 2004 but is now set to return to jail.
"Bedfordshire police have this morning arrested Omar Khayam in Bedford," a spokesman for the force confirmed. He added: "He is now being conveyed to prison."
Mr Khayam dressed as a suicide bomber, sporting a mock-explosive vest, during a rally outside the Danish embassy in Knightsbridge, London
Downing Street condemned the actions of the demonstrators at the rally, as well as slogans and banners displayed at a number of more recent ones as "completely unacceptable".
In response to the publication of cartoons, first published last September by the Danish newspaper, Jyllands-Posten, and later reissued by EU newspapers, some British Muslims at the rally on Friday vented their anger, shouting: "UK you must pray, 7/7 is on its way." Other slogans included "massacre those who insult Islam" and "Europe, your 9/11 will come".
The caricatures of Mohammad have sparked outrage in Muslims states and led to the death of at least five people yesterday. One of the cartoons shows Muhammad wearing a turban shaped as a bomb with a burning fuse, while another shows him holding a sword, with his eyes covered by a black rectangle.
Apparently succumbing to pressure from Muslim leaders, Mr Khayam yesterday told journalists outside his home in Bedford his protest was aimed at the insensitivities of those who practise their right to free speech while trampling on the feelings and beliefs of others. "A free media doesn't mean we may say or do as we please, and not take into account the effect it will have on others," he said.
Apologising to the families of the July 7th London bomb atrocities, he said: "My method of protest has offended many people, especially the families of the victims of the July bombings. This was not my aim.
"What happened in July was a tragedy and un-Islamic. I do not condone these murderous acts. I do not support terrorism or extremism. "I would like to apologise unreservedly and wholeheartedly to the families of the victims. I understand it was wrong, unjustified and insensitive of me to protest in this way."
in this timeframe wee also see
Muslim cleric [& former Sandhurst Military acadamy engineer] Abu Hamza
found guilty of incitement / soliciting for murder
Abu Hamza guilty of inciting murder
Tue Feb 7, 2006 LONDON (Reuters) - Muslim cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri, accused by U.S. authorities of terrorism offences, was found guilty by a London court on Tuesday of inciting murder.
Egyptian-born Hamza, 47, who is also wanted by the United States on 11 charges including trying to set up a "terrorist training camp" in Oregon, faced 15 charges in Britain. - reuters
- this comes days after BNP were aquitted [for a retrial] of inciting racial hatred...and the resumption of the Theo Van Gogh trial [see above]
Furious muslim uproar continues over prophet cartoons
Thousands of Syrians enraged by caricatures of Islam's revered prophet torched the Danish and Norwegian embassies yesterday - the most violent in days of furious protests by Muslims in Asia, Europe and the Middle East.
Faced by the spreading violence and international concern, top religious officials in Syria urged calm.
In Gaza, Palestinians marched through the streets, storming European buildings and burning German and Danish flags. Protesters smashed the windows of the German cultural centre and threw stones at the European Commission building, police said.
Iraqis rallying by the hundreds demanded an apology from the European Union, and the leader of the Palestinian group Hamas called the cartoons "an unforgivable insult" that merited punishment by death.
Pakistan summoned the envoys of nine Western countries in protest, and even Europeans took to the streets in Denmark and Britain to voice their anger.
At the heart of the protest: 12 caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad first published in Denmark's Jyllands-Posten in September and reprinted in European media in the past week. The cartoons have touched a raw nerve in part because Islamic law is interpreted to forbid any depiction of the Prophet Muhammad. Aggravating the affront: one caricature of Muhammad wearing a turban shaped as a bomb with a burning fuse.
Denmark's Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen has said he cannot apologise for his country's free press. But other European leaders tried yesterday to calm the storm.
Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel said she understood Muslims were hurt - though it did not justify violence.
"Freedom of the press is one of the great assets as a component of democracy, but we also have the value and asset of freedom of religion," Merkel told an international security conference in Munich, Germany.
US President George Bush's Press Secretary Scott McClellan said in a statement yesterday that "the Government of Syria's failure to provide protection to diplomatic premises, in the face of warnings that violence was planned, is inexcusable.
"We will hold Syria responsible for such violent demonstrations since they do not take place in that country without government knowledge and support," the statement continued.
The Vatican deplored the violence, but said certain provocative forms of criticism were unacceptable.
"The right to freedom of thought and expression ... cannot entail the right to offend the religious sentiment of believers," the Vatican said in its first statement on the controversy.
British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, who has criticised European media for reprinting the caricatures, said there was no justification for the violence.
"We stand in solidarity with the Danish government in its call for calm and its demand that all its diplomats and diplomatic premises are properly protected. It's incumbent on the Syrian authorities to act in this regard."
Poland's Foreign Minister Stefan Meller said he would tell Muslim ambassadors next week "how sorry he feels that these caricatures have been reprinted," his spokesman said.
But Denmark and Norway did not wait for more violence. With their embassies in Damascus up in flames, the foreign ministries advised their citizens to leave Syria without delay.
"It's horrible and totally unacceptable," Danish Foreign Minister Per Stig Moeller said on Danish public television yesterday.
No diplomats were injured, officials said. But Swedish Foreign Minister Laila Freivalds - whose country, along with Chile, has an embassy in the same building - said she would lodge a formal protest over the lack of security.
In Santiago, the Chilean Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the Chilean Embassy in Damascus was also torched, but nobody was injured.
Amid the furore, Syria's Grand Mufti urged calm, noting the demonstration had started in a "nice and disciplined way," but then turned violent because of "some members who do not understand the language of dialogue with others and turned it into destroying and burning of properties."
"We never expressed our anger in such a way, and we believe that dialogue should be done through guidance and teaching, not through killing, harming and burning," Sheikh Ahmed Badr-Eddine Hassoun said in remarks carried by state-run Syrian Arab News Agency, or SANA.
The country's minister of Religious Affairs, Mohammed Ziyad al-Ayoubi, also criticised what had happened, saying: "it is our right to demonstrate and express our anger over what some European newspapers published, but it is not our right to cross the lines that were drawn by Islam."
The demonstrations in Damascus began peacefully with protesters gathering outside the building housing the Danish Embassy. But they began throwing stones and eventually broke through police barricades. Some scrambled up concrete barriers protecting the embassy, climbed into the building and set a fire.
"With our blood and souls we defend you, O Prophet of God!" the demonstrators chanted. Some replaced Danish flag with a green flag printed with the words: "There is no god but God and Muhammad is the messenger of God."
Demonstrators moved onto the Norwegian Embassy, about six kilometres (four miles) away, also setting fire to it before being dispersed by police using tear gas and water cannons. Hundreds of police and troops barricaded the road leading to the French Embassy, but protesters were able to break through briefly before fleeing from the force of water cannons.
In Gaza, masked gunmen affiliated with the Fatah Party called on the Palestinian Authority and Muslim nations to recall their diplomatic missions from Denmark until the government apologised.
In the West Bank town of Hebron, about 50 Palestinians marched to the headquarters of the international observer mission there, burned a Danish flag and demanded a boycott of Danish goods.
"We will redeem our prophet, Muhammad, with our blood!" they chanted.
Mahmoud Zahar, leader of the militant Palestinian group Hamas, told the Italian daily Il Giornale that the cartoonists should be punished by death: "We should have killed all those who offend the Prophet and instead here we are, protesting peacefully," he said.
Hundreds of Iraqis rallied south of Baghdad, some carrying banners urging "honest people all over the world to condemn this act" and demanding an EU apology.
Anger swelled in Europe, too. Young Muslims clashed briefly with police in Copenhagen, the Danish capital, and some 700 people rallied outside the Danish Embassy in London.
A South African court banned the country's Sunday newspapers from reprinting the cartoons.
Iran's president ordered his commerce minister to study cancelling all trade contracts with European countries whose newspapers have published the caricatures, the official Islamic Republic News Agency reported.
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said the caricatures showed the "impudence and rudeness" of Western newspapers against the prophet, as well as the "maximum resentment of the Zionists (Jews) ruling these countries against Islam and Muslims."
The leaders of Indonesia, Malaysia and Pakistan denounced the publication of the cartoons. Pakistan's Foreign Ministry summoned nine envoys to lodge protests against the publication of the "blasphemous" sketches.
"Let the perpetrators of the insult see the gravity of their own mistakes which only they themselves can and should correct," Malaysian Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said.
One more US paper prints blasphemous cartoons
Monday, February 06, 2006 WASHINGTON: The Philadelphia Inquirer has become one more American newspaper to publish cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) that have set Islamic communities across the world aflame.
The newspaper has published one cartoon on an inside page and provided a website link to the rest. In a justifying story, the newspaper writes, "The Inquirer's senior editors decided at yesterday afternoon's news meeting to publish the most controversial image in today's editions. The cartoon was being published 'discreetly' with a note explaining the rationale, said Amanda Bennett, The Inquirer's editor. 'This is the kind of work that newspapers are in business to do,' Bennett said. 'We're running this in order to give people a perspective of what the controversy's about, not to titillate, and we have done that with a whole wide range of images throughout our history.' Bennett compared it to decisions in the past to publish photographs of the bodies of burned Americans hung from a bridge in Iraq, as well as a photograph by Andres Serrano showing a crucifix submerged in a jar of urine."
Several American broadcasting organisations have shown full or partial images of some of the cartoons. The New York Daily Sun published two of the cartoons on Thursday. The Associated Press declined the Inquirer editor's request to transmit photographs of the cartoon "because they didn't meet AP standards for acceptable content," the agency said in a statement.
"Our practice is to not move material that is known to be offensive - not just the photographs under discussion now, but images of graphic genitalia, extreme close-ups of body parts, images showing offensive language, etc," the agency explained. The BBC showed several images briefly on Thursday, saying it was acting "responsibly in full context to give audiences an understanding of the strong feelings evoked by the story".
The US network ABC showed the cartoon on Thursday on its World News Tonight programme, arguing that it was doing so to "tell the story". CBS has not done so. khalid hasan - dailytimes.com
Denmark faces Iran trade ban
By Roula Khalaf in London and Najmeh Bozorgmehr in Tehran - February 6 2006
Iran has cut trade relations with Denmark following the publication of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed, the state-run news agency reported on Tuesday.
All on-going contract negotiations with Denmark will be suspended and "all signed contracts will also be reviewed,'' IRNA quoted Iran's Commerce Minister Massoud Mir-Kazemi as saying on Monday evening.
Iran moved to the forefront of the controversy over the cartoons on Monday as protesters attacked the Danish and Austrian embassies in Tehran. The protests in Iran added urgency to European diplomatic efforts to seek regional support to calm tensions amid violent protests in Lebanon, Syria and Afghanistan where four people were killed on Monday.
State television in Iran, where reaction to the cartoons had been muted, possibly because of preoccupations with the dispute over its nuclear programme, reported the country would suspend trade with Denmark.
It also reported that Danish-registered ships entering Iranian ports would be charged "heavy" fees. The commerce ministry was not available for comment.
The moves came as Iranian protesters pelted the embassy of Austria, holder of the European Union presidency, with petrol bombs and stones. Protesters later attacked the Danish embassy.
Meanwhile, the EU stepped up efforts aimed at agreeing a joint statement with the 22-member Arab League appealing for calm. Philippe Douste-Blazy, French foreign minister, called on Arab countries to "talk with moderation" about what was happening following the violent protests over the weekend.
The controversy started with a series of caricatures in a Danish newspaper in September. But last week popular outrage and a boycott of Danish goods spread across the Muslim and Arab world after some European newspapers reprinted the caricatures. The crisis appears to have become a rallying cry for other grievances and a convenient pretext for hardline governments and groups to advance their political agenda.The US accused Syria, where the Danish and Norwegian embassies were set alight on Saturday, of exploiting anger over the cartoons for political purposes. In Lebanon too, Sunday's burning of the Danish consulate in Beirut was seen by many politicians as a deliberate attempt by Syrian agents to provoke sectarian unrest.
Moderate Muslim groups in the Middle East and Europe cautioned against violence. Mainstream Muslim organisations in the UK publicly distanced themselves from acts of violence, backing a rally in London next Saturday in support of political and religious dialogue.
The rally, planned in Trafalgar Square next Saturday, comes as UK police said they were investigating a small group of individuals linked to the disbanded radical Islamist faction al-Muhajiroun who demonstrated outside the Danish embassy in London on Friday with placards threatening violence in protest at the Danish cartoons. - FT.com
Yahoo News report 6th February
- Security forces open fire on demonstrators in Afghanistan, Somalia, Lebanon
at least four dead. The worst of the violence was outside Bagram, the main U.S. base in Afghanistan, with Afghan police firing on some 2,000 protesters as they tried to break into the heavily guarded facility. Two demonstrators were killed and five were injured, while eight police also were hurt. No U.S. troops were involved in the clashes, the military said. Afghan police also fired on protesters in the central city of Mihtarlam after a man in the crowd shot at them and others threw stones and knives. Two protesters were killed, and three other people were wounded, including two police, officials said. The demonstrators burned tires and threw stones at government offices.
The unrest also spread to East Africa as police in Somalia fired in the air to disperse stone-throwing protesters, triggering a stampede in which a teenager was killed and raising to six the number of deaths in protests.
Lebanon, meanwhile, apologized to Denmark a day after thousands of rampaging Muslim demonstrators set fire to the building housing the Danish mission in Beirut. At least one person died, 30 were injured - half of them security officials - and about 200 people were detained in Sunday's violence. The arrested included 76 Syrians, 35 Palestinians and 38 Lebanese.
Danish lawyer shot & injured in Moscow as fury of Muslims sweeps world
Tit for Tat escalation: Will this help?
Iran's largest selling newspaper has announced it is holding a contest on cartoons of the Holocaust in response to the publishing in European papers of caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad. Mortazavi said Tuesday's edition of the paper will invite cartoonists to enter the competition, with "private individuals" offering gold coins to the best 12 artists - the same number of cartoons that appeared in the conservative Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten.
It has emerged... The Danish daily turned down the cartoons of Christ three years ago, on the grounds that they could be offensive to readers and were not funny. In April 2003, Danish illustrator Christoffer Zieler submitted a series of unsolicited cartoons dealing with the resurrection of Christ to Jyllands-Posten. Zieler received an email back from the paper's Sunday editor, Jens Kaiser, which said: "I don't think Jyllands-Posten's readers will enjoy the drawings. As a matter of fact, I think that they will provoke an outcry. Therefore, I will not use them."
Cartoons part of 'Zionist conspiracy', says Iran's supreme leader
· One killed, scores wounded as rioters clash with police in Afghanistan
· Danes advised to leave Indonesia as protests spread outside Jakarta
· 5,000 demonstrators burn effigies in Peshawar
· Australia warns its citizens against Middle East travel
Staff and agencies Tuesday February 7, 2006
Afghan Muslims burn a Danish flag outside the Danish embassy in Kabul to protest against the publication of cartoons depicting prophet Muhammad. Photograph: Syed Jan Sabawoon/EPA The furious international row over the publication of cartoons satirising the prophet Muhammad intensified today when Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, claimed it was an Israeli conspiracy motivated by anger over Hamas' win in the Palestinian elections.
Speaking to Iranian air force personnel, Ayatollah Khamenei said the cartoons were a scandal, particularly as they came "from those who champion civilisation and free expression". "The west condemns any denial of the Jewish Holocaust, but it permits the insult of Islamic sanctities," Ayatollah Khamenei said. The caricatures amounted to a "conspiracy by Zionists who were angry because of the victory of Hamas," he said, referring to the militant group that won a surprise landslide victory in last month's Palestinian elections.
Yesterday, hundreds of Iranians hurled stones and petrol bombs at the Danish and Austrian embassies in Tehran in protest against the cartoons. The Austrian mission was targeted as the country currently holds the EU presidency. A bestselling Iranian newspaper, Hamshari, announced it was retaliating by holding a competition to find the best images satirising the Holocaust. The move mirrors the exercise of the Danish newspaper, Jyllands-Posten, which inadvertently started the cartoon row in September when it published 12 images of Muhammad, ostensibly to promote a debate about free speech.
As Ayatollah Khamenei made his comments, an Iranian foreign ministry spokesman, Hamid Reza Asefi, said diplomatic missions should be respected and a small, peaceful protest took place outside the Danish embassy.
The EU's executive office warned Iran that attempts to boycott Danish goods or cancel trade contracts with European countries would lead to further strain in already frosty relations. The EU was trying to confirm comments attributed to Iran's hardline president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, that the country should boycott Danish products, an EU spokesman, Johannes Laitenberger, told reporters. "A boycott of Danish goods is by definition a boycott of European goods," Mr Laitenberger said. "A boycott hurts the economic interests of all parties, also those who are boycotting, and can damage the growing trade links between the EU and the countries concerned."
Elsewhere, angry protests against the publication of the cartoons showed no sign of abating. At least one person was killed and scores were injured when thousands of rioters clashed with police and Nato peacekeepers across Afghanistan, officials said. Norwegian troops fired on hundreds of protesters outside their base in Maymana, a city in the north-west of Afghanistan, after the demonstrators shot at them and threw grenades, said the provincial governor, Mohammed Latif.
A spokeswoman for Nato's peacekeeping force, Squadron Leader Annie Gibson-Sexton, said tear gas was used against the protesters, adding that there were no reports of injuries among the troops.
The UK Ministry of Defence later said British reinforcements had been sent to the riot-hit town. Britain's Quick Response Force (QRF) - part of the Nato operations in the country - involves the Royal Gloucestershire, Berkshire and Wiltshire Regiment, and was being sent from its base at Mazar-al-Sharif. The UN was evacuating its staff from the area.
In the capital, Kabul, police used batons to beat stone-throwing protesters outside the Danish diplomatic mission office and near the offices of the World Bank.
Security has been tightened in the past 24 hours in Kabul, home to some 3,000 foreign diplomats, aid workers and others. Police have set up barricades and peacekeepers have been on constant patrol. More than 3,000 protesters threw stones at government buildings and an Italian peacekeeping base in the western city of Herat, but no one was injured, a witness said.
The Danish government advised its citizens in Indonesia to leave the country after protests spread to other islands. Several hundred students rallied outside the offices of the European Union in Aceh province on Sumatra, but dispersed after meeting an EU representative outside the gates, witnesses said.
Rowdy protests were also held in Jakarta and at least two other cities. Danish missions have been repeatedly targeted by protesters and have been shut because of security concerns, said Niels Erik Anderson, the country's ambassador to Indonesia.
"The foreign ministry recommends that Danes already in Indonesia leave and that those interested in coming, postpone their plans," he said.
The 12 cartoons first appeared in a Danish newspaper in September, but have since been republished by newspapers in several other countries, most of which have claimed to support free speech in doing so. Mr Anderson said he did not know exactly how many Danes were in Indonesia. Close to 250 had registered at the embassy, he said, but the number was likely to be much higher. "My concern is that I have not seen any adequate security measures at all to protect the Danish embassy or other places," he said.
In the Pakistani city of Peshawar, around 5,000 demonstrators gathered in the country's biggest protest yet against the cartoons, chanting and burning effigies. The demonstrators - many of them bearded religious students wearing white prayer caps - shouted, "Hang the man who insulted the prophet!"
Some burned effigies of Denmark's prime minister and the cartoonist who first drew the prophet's image for a Danish newspaper. Under Pakistani laws, insulting the prophet or the Qur'an can be punished with the death sentence. The city is the capital of the conservative, Islamist-ruled North-west Frontier province. The province's most senior elected official, Akram Durrani, led the rally, joined by other members of his cabinet.
"We demand that whoever made the cartoons should be punished like a terrorist," Mr Durrani told the crowd. "Nobody has the right to insult Islam and hurt the feelings of Muslims."
Australia temporarily closed diplomatic missions in the Palestinian territories and warned its citizens to be wary if travelling to Israel, Lebanon, Syria or Iran because of the protests. Its foreign minister, Alexander Downer, told parliament that the office in Ramallah had been closed because it shared a building with the Danish mission, which had been targeted by protesters.
The Italian prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, today said the cartoons should not have been published and called for dialogue. Authorities in China and Malaysia also criticised the publication and urged calm.
Elsewhere, the Turkish network, NTV television, reported that a 16-year-old student arrested in connection with the murder of an Italian priest on Sunday had told interrogators he killed the Rev Andrea Santoro to avenge the publication of the cartoons. Mr Santoro, 60, was shot while praying in his church along the Black Sea coast. Witnesses said the killer screamed "Allahu Akbar", Arabic for "God is great," before firing. Thousands have protested in Turkey against the publication of the cartoons.
Meanwhile, two Thai rap CDs featuring a song containing verses from the Qur'an have been recalled from stores after local Muslims complained that the track insults their faith, distributor Sony BMG said. Rapper Joey Boy and songwriter "Suki" Kamol Sukosol Clapp apologised to "all Muslims" for producing the song, Maya, insisting they did not mean to insult anyone. - guardian.co.uk
So Now ask this: why are Iran denying the Holocaust...when propaganda techniques that were used against the Jews are so blatently being used in EXACTLY THE SAME WAY against Muslims? - Irans rhetoric, like many holocaust deniers...is that an international Jewish elite lied/fabricated details of the Holocaust as an emotional blackmail on the world to enable the formation of Isreal...
What is not being mentioned n the Media is that the Editor of the Danish Paper has links to both US Neocons & The Bilderbergers...
Flemming Rose, the Jyllands-Posten editor who made the original decision to publish the cartoons has cose links to US Neocons....according to some - Rose "traveled to Philadelphia in October 2004 to visit Daniel Pipes, the Neo-Con ideologue who says the only path to Middle East peace will come through a total Israeli military victory. Rose then penned a positive article about Pipes, who compares ‘militant Islam’ with fascism and communism,"
Here is Fleming Roses' article' on Daniel Pipes
The Threat of Islamism
by Flemming Rose Jyllands-Posten - October 29, 2004
Daniel Pipes's Introduction: This translation from Danish of "Truslen fra islamismen," was done anonymously and posted on the Internet. I am grateful for my translator into Danish, Mette Thomsen, for editing the text and improving it.
According to Daniel Pipes, the Muslim world at the moment is trying, for the third time, to define itself in relation to the West. The two first attempts aimed at (or resulted in) imitating various aspects of the West. The third represents a totalitarian ideology, commensurate to fascism and communism.
Philadelphia - There is no name sign on the door, and it is locked. The visitor must pop in at a neighbor's to verify that the address is correct. Yes, that it is for sure. The Middle East Forum and Daniel Pipes are on the tenth floor of an anonymous skyscraper, just a stone's throw away from the building where the Fathers of the Nation assembled in 1787 to set down the country's foundation. Down on the street, a few middle-aged women are trudging away with voting posters in favor of John Kerry, who is in town to kick off the finish of his campaign. Pennsylvania is one of the so-called "swing states" that may well determine the outcome of the presidential election next Tuesday.
For Daniel Pipes himself, there is no doubt where his sympathy lies. He will vote for George W. Bush and describes himself as conservative. The 54-year-old historian, whose areas of special interest are the Middle East and the Middle Ages, has since 1994 headed the think tank "The Middle East Forum" which aims at "defining and facilitating American interests in the Middle East." Pipes spoke and wrote about the threat of Islamists long before September 11. Already in 1995 he observed that they had initiated an undeclared war on the U.S. and Europe.
Pipes' voice is so quiet that it is almost drowned out by the buzzing noise of the air conditioner in the modest office, but nevertheless, this voice, soft as velvet, has caused an uproar in academic, left-wing and certain Muslim circles. When Pipes talks about militant Islam at universities, his critics threaten with uproar and boycott. His appointment last year by President Bush to the board of the government's think tank, US Institute of Peace, triggered great clamor, and it is not coincidental that there is no name sign on the front door of the think tank's office.
A totalitarian ideology
For 20 years, Pipes has written and talked about militant Islam as a totalitarian ideology, commensurate to fascism and communism. His perspective on ideas, history and politics does not stem from far away. Daniel Pipes' father is Richard Pipes, one of the 20th century's foremost experts on Russian and Soviet history, who, opposed to the spirit of the 1960s and 1970s, insisted on the totalitarian nature of the Soviet regime and its hostile attitude towards the liberal democracies of the West.
The son recognizes his father's influence. "The Islamists' agenda is way different from that of communists or fascists. It is about belief, and as opposed to communism and fascism, they don't have large countries such as the Soviet Union or Germany behind them; but if you look at their methods and their goals, the likenesses are striking," Daniel Pipes says. "All three ideologies are radical utopias which, at their core, have a theory for how the human race can be improved. No more, no less. All three are dominated by a small, chosen elite that shall bring substance to the great idea. They are ready to resort to all conceivable means; they are true believers, fanatics, and they don't hesitate to resort to force and brutality to accomplish their project. They do not respect other perspectives and wish to control all areas of life. Once they have succeeded in one country, their ambition is to extend their control to other [countries]", he adds. "It makes sense to look at the current conflict between the civilized world and militant Islam in the light of the two earlier confrontations with communism and fascism. One we managed to defeat in a total war over a relatively short period of time, whereas the other conflict, the Cold War, lasted for decades. In this third confrontation, militant Islam is the challenge. The core of militant Islamic ideology is hidden in the expression "al-Islam huwwa al-hall", which means: Islam is the solution. No matter the context - education, upbringing, romance, work, public or private matters - Islam has the answer. This is a recipe for a totalitarian ideology."
Other than terror
Daniel Pipes' fascination with Islam and the Middle East started when he lived in Egypt in the early 1970s. Back then, he did not perceive Islamism as a threat. That did not happen until the Islamic revolution in Iran in 1979, the assassination of the Egyptian President Anwar Sadat two years later and a surge of violations of American interests in the region.
Pipes thinks that it is misleading to speak of the current conflict with Islamists as a war against terror. He points out that wrong definitions and terms lead to erroneous proposals for a solution. When President Bush cites the numbers of killed Al Qaida leaders to state how well the war on terror is going, he misses the point. "It does not say anything - or at least very little. It is a euphemism, a paraphrase, to speak of a "terror threat" or a "war against terror". Terror is a tactic, not an enemy. We don't say either, here in the U.S., that the Second World War was against sneak attacks. It was a war against fascism", argues Pipes.
Moderates must be supported
He stresses that the conflict is not directed at Islam as a personal belief, but at militant Islam, an aggressive political ideology striving for the establishment of Islamic law, sharia, throughout the world. This difference bears in it the seed of the conflict's solution. "If militant Islam is the problem, then the opposite, namely moderate Islam, must be the solution," Daniel Pipes concludes. "I don't mean to say that Islam, once and for all, is condemned to be on a collision course with the modern world. The majority of Muslims do not wish to live the sort of life as under the Taliban in Afghanistan. We have millions of Muslims on our side. If you look deeply into this matter, the current conflict is one that must be fought out and won within the Muslim world." According to Daniel Pipes, it is now important to find alternative leaders and ideas that can take up the fight against militant Islam. "In the confrontations with fascism and communism, we were victorious because we managed to marginalize the enemy's ideology, making it look repulsive in the eyes of the majority. In 1991, the Soviet leaders no longer believed in their system. We are also obliged to convince the Islamists of the fact that they are wrong. We have to find alternative leaders in the Islamic world, in the same way that Konrad Adenauer emerged in Germany and Boris Yeltsin in Russia. There are two steps: on the one hand, we must overthrow the ideology by force of arms and by means of education, media, and information; and on the other hand, we must support anti-Islamist Muslims, who wish to keep their faith, but do not wish to live under Islamic law - in much the same way that we supported anti-Communists and anti-Nazis in the Soviet Union and Germany respectively. In the end, it is a battle between two conceptions of the Muslims' place in the world."
Not the true nature of Islam
Daniel Pipes recognizes that the current situation does not exactly give rise to optimism, but he is nevertheless convinced that the Muslim world will, sooner or later, define itself in a positive way in relation to the modern world. "The current situation does not originate in the true nature of Islam. In principle, Judaism is also a law-shaped religion, just like Islam, but it has managed to coexist with modern life. Islam's current situation is the result of a historical development. If you and I were having this conversation in the 1930s, we would have pointed at Germany's and Japan's problems with modern life, but those were temporary. We may also have focused on the Turk leader Kemal Atatürk's attempt to build an alternative secular model for the Islamic world. Unfortunately, at the moment this idea is not considered very attractive in the Middle East. The ideas of the Islamists sound much more timely and attractive," Pipes explains.
A third attempt
Pipes subsequently delivers a cram course in the history of the Islamic world. "During the first 600 years of the history of Islam, being a Muslim was like playing on a winning team. It was an advanced society that got along well, materially as well as spiritually. It was a rich, powerful and healthy world. During the next 600 years, the Islamic world shut itself in and lost all connection to what happened elsewhere, not least in Europe. When Muslims in the 19th century discovered the wealth and power of the West, they asked themselves, perplexed and shocked: What went wrong, and how do we fix it? During the first 120-130 years, i.e., until the 1930s, they tried to imitate the liberal West, most of all France and Great Britain. During the next 60 years, on the contrary, they tried to imitate the non-liberal West, i.e. fascist and communist movements. Today, for the third time, they try to respond to the challenge of the West, and this time they have turned to early, non-liberal Islam. This also shall have its time and fail, and then they will try something different again. I believe that the next attempt will resemble the first one - the imitation of the liberal West - more closely than the other two", says Pipes with moderate optimism.
But this should not give us reason to lean back and wait for things to happen by themselves, Pipes thinks. He is amazed that Europe is not more alarmed about the challenge that Islam poses, considering plummeting birth rates and a weakened perception of its own history and culture. "This is one of the biggest stories of our time. The reactions in Europe are bafflingly relaxed. There is much denial at work. It is paradoxical that Muslims, coming from countries that are weaker in economic and political terms, within rich and strong Europe show more cultural ambition than the Europeans themselves. That baffles me as an American. Europe has been the driving force of history throughout the past 500 years, but now it looks as though that era has come to a close. Here in the U.S., the situation is far less dramatic." According to Daniel Pipes, Muslims do not account for more than about one percent of the (U.S.) population, 3 to 4 million people, and their social status differs from that in Europe. "There are groups calling for Islam in schools and intimidating politicians and Muslims who insist on their right to freedom of speech. Militant Islam has an extensive non-violent agenda. Muslims in the U.S. consist of two groups, immigrants and Americans converted to Islam. Muslim immigrants have a higher social and economic status than they have in Europe. There are doctors, engineers and others with a professional education, making serious money."
Daniel Pipes has fallen out with a large part of the academic world. He is critical of much of the research undertaken in Middle East Studies and thinks it has neglected or ignored important movements, while in other areas it has too quickly ascribed a modernizing or democratizing effect to the fundamentalists. It has, he thinks, often politicized with a (liability to) penchant for a left-wing twist. "Left-wingers are dissatisfied with the societies formed in the West, while conservatives are content. The discontent and feelings of guilt among left-wingers often make them go too far in their accommodation of opponents. They seek understanding and compromise, whereas conservatives are more inclined to take on a confrontation. People in Middle East studies have not perceived the hostile and violent elements in radical Islam. They have ignored Saddam Hussein's brutal regime, widespread anti-Semitism, slavery in Sudan, cultural repression of Berbers in North Africa, and they have attempted to convey the impression that the word jihad means something entirely different than military efforts to extend Islam's territory. Some even believe that jihad is about becoming a better person. As if Palestinian Islamic Jihad uses the word in the sense of becoming better men."
Biographical facts ("Blue Book")
Daniel Pipes, 54 years. Educated in history at Harvard University. He has held positions in the U.S. Department of State and the Department of Defense. Since 1994, he has concentrated on the operation of the think tank "Middle East Forum", as well as on an unusually popular website, www.danielpipes.org, that receives more than 2 million hits per year. Pipes also has 20.000 subscribers to a free newsletter on the web. He established the Middle East Forum at his home with two friends, but today his office is run from a select address in central Philadelphia, has 15 employees, and a budget of more than 1 million dollars. Pipes has authored 12 books, the latest being Miniatures: Views of Islamic and Middle Eastern Politics.
Here is an example of Daniel Pipes' weblog
The State Department Promotes Islamist Organizations
February 25, 2004
Not only does the U.S. government build mosques but it posts official pages on the Department of State website celebrating "Muslim Life in America" - something no other religion in the United States benefits from. In addition to the predictable feel-good writing and photography, the website also has a bibliography with select readings, Internet sites, and nongovernmental organizations. All of the sections hold interest, but the organizational one does most of all. A close look finds that the State Department provides links to and thereby endorses groups that the federal government has either effectively shut down (the American Muslim Council), is currently investigating (Islamic Society of North America), or has arrested multiple employees of (Council on American-Islamic Relations). Additionally, other organizations on the list (Council on Islamic Education, Islamic Institute, Muslim Public Affairs Council) were long ago exposed as sympathetic to militant Islam.
It's hard to win a war, you know, when one's foreign ministry publicly endorses the enemy's friends and agents. It's dispiriting and confusing. So, how about it, State Department, and take down the offending web pages? (February 25, 2004)
February 26, 2005 update: Quite the reverse: rather than take the offending names down, the State Department chooses to endorse Islamists in a new way. On a page listing "Selected Non-Governmental Organizations," the only two Muslim ones honored to be named are CAIR and MPAC.
April 28, 2005 update: Not content with promoting the likes of CIE, ISNA, CAIR, and MPAC, the State Department is also now in the business of promoting Muslim exchanges. "Islamic Life in the United States" is the title of a $300,000 grant announced today that has four objectives:
1) to enhance the non-American participants' understanding of the place of religion, particularly Islam, in American life;
2) to broaden participants' awareness of and appreciation for the serious religious study conducted in the United States particularly the study of Islam;
3) to provide a forum for examination and discussion of the compatibility of religious practice and democratic social and political structures; the social benefits produced by mutually respectful coexistence among diverse religious communities; ways in which Islamic practice in the United States, in particular, functions in a multi-cultural, multi-religious context; and
4) to broaden the understanding of American scholars, clerics, and laypersons of the place of Islam in the societies of the Middle East.
Comment: (1) I find it hard to imagine the courts would allow such a program for any other religion beside Islam. (2) If this is not da`wa, it is coming awfully close.
MERETE ELDRUP, managing director of company that published the cartoons (JP/Politikens Hus) is married to ANDERS ELDRUP, who has attended the last FIVE Bilderberg meetings. She is a former Head of Secretariat at the Ministry of Economic and Business Affairs and Deputy Director of the Danish Energy Authority her husband is chairman of DONG, the big State-owned energy company, which will soon be privatised.
This Stratgey of Tension is an obvious attempt to Manipulate Religious fevour in exactly the way Leo Strauss taught his students...Daniel Pipes, Richard Perle, Michael Ledeen, Paul Wolfowitz & John Bolton...
Second Principle: Power of Religion
According to Drury, [Leo] Strauss had a "huge contempt" for secular democracy. Nazism, he believed, was a nihilistic reaction to the irreligious and liberal nature of the Weimar Republic. Among other neoconservatives, Irving Kristol has long argued for a much greater role for religion in the public sphere, even suggesting that the Founding Fathers of the American Republic made a major mistake by insisting on the separation of church and state. And why? Because Strauss viewed religion as absolutely essential in order to impose moral law on the masses who otherwise would be out of control.
At the same time, he stressed that religion was for the masses alone; the rulers need not be bound by it. Indeed, it would be absurd if they were, since the truths proclaimed by religion were "a pious fraud." As Ronald Bailey, science correspondent for Reason magazine points out, "Neoconservatives are pro-religion even though they themselves may not be believers."
"Secular society in their view is the worst possible thing,'' Drury says, because it leads to individualism, liberalism, and relativism, precisely those traits that may promote dissent that in turn could dangerously weaken society's ability to cope with external threats. Bailey argues that it is this firm belief in the political utility of religion as an "opiate of the masses" that helps explain why secular Jews like Kristol in 'Commentary' magazine and other neoconservative journals have allied themselves with the Christian Right and even taken on Darwin's theory of evolution.
- Jim Lobe on alternet.org
of course these Neocons & Leolibs are all sweetness & Light
"Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen called for a resolution "through dialogue, not violence". Extremists seeking "a clash of cultures" were exploiting the dispute, he said. Some Muslim countries have enacted sanctions against Denmark, while its embassies have been attacked and its exports boycotted. Mr Rasmussen thanked international leaders who had offered support, including US President George W Bush."
8th Feb BBC story
- - World figures deplore cartoon row
well ...some of them are...Pipes continues
Hawks Slam Bush Over U.S. Response
By Ori Nir February 10, 2006
WASHINGTON - Supporters of the Iraq war are slamming the Bush administration for criticizing the publication of cartoons that triggered a wave of riots in the Arab and Muslim world.
The critics, including pro-war pundits Daniel Pipes and Christopher Hitchens, are saying that the administration should have taken stronger steps to condemn the violent reactions. They also contend that the administration should have emphasized its support for the right of the Danish newspaper to publish the inflammatory caricatures of Islam's main prophet, Muhammad - and the right of other publications that reprinted them - rather than stress understanding for Muslims who felt offended.
In response to the exploding violence, on February 3 State Department spokesman Sean McCormack read a carefully worded statement, saying: "Anti-Muslim images are as unacceptable as antisemitic images, as anti-Christian images, or any other religious belief." He added: "While we share the offense that Muslims have taken at these images, we at the same time vigorously defend the right of individuals to express points of view. We may not agree with those points of view; we may condemn those points of view; but we respect and emphasize... that those individuals have the right to express those points of view." - forward.com
The right-wing Jyllands-Posten has past form on provocation:
The right-wing Jyllands-Posten, the paper at the centre of the Danish cartoons affair, is an organ with a somewhat unsavoury past. Not only was it a forthright supporter of fascism during the interwar period, actually calling for the imposition of a dictatorship in Denmark in 1933, it is one of the main organs in an increasingly irrational Denmark for the dissemination of Islamophobia.
That the furore over caricatures of Mohammed centres on Jyllands-Posten (by the way, the name means 'The Jutland Post') is no accident. There is evidence that, unbeknownst to the English-speaking world, the paper has been engaged in cranking up the 'clash of civilizations' for some years now. What's more, the impunity with which it has been allowed to do so is tantamount to proof that Denmark, at least in matters of the mind, is now Zionist-controlled territory.
Back on August 11, 2002, Jyllands-Posten published a story written by a contracted freelancer, Stig Matthiesen, claiming that a militant Muslim group had launched an 'intifada' against Denmark by announcing a few days earlier that it would offer a 250,000 Danish kroner bounty for the murder of several prominent Danish Jews. A Danish blogger who read the story - which appears to have been pulled from Jyllands-Posten's website - points out that Matthiesen neither revealed his sources, nor the names of any of the individuals allegedly threatened by this unnamed Muslim organization.
To my knowledge, this story was scarcely noticed outside Denmark; it appeared in English only in a single version, "Islamic group in Denmark targets Jewish leaders" by Nina Gilbert, which ran on page 3 of the Jerusalem Post on August 20, 2002. In this report, Gilbert stated that an extremist Islamic group thought to be Hizb-Ut-Tahrir (HT, 'the Islamic Party of Liberation'), had created a hit list of 15 prominent Danish Jews, including Rabbi Bent Melchior, a leading Danish rabbi and father of Israel's then Deputy Foreign Minister Michael Melchior, and Oslo accords-architect Dr. Ron Pundak, Director-General of the Peres Center for Peace in Israel, who is son of Herbert Pundak, a former chief editor of the Danish daily newspaper Politiken, a paper which is politically at the other end of the spectrum from Jyllands-Posten.
The Jerusalem Post is a leading Israeli propaganda sheet whose board of directors includes the neocon pope, Daniel Pipes. It is no surprise, therefore, that Pipes helped insinuate this story in the American media, using it as the departure point for an article he co-wrote with a Danish anti-Muslim crusader Lars Hedegaard on Danish-Muslim tensions that was published in the New York Post on August 27, 2002.
- socialdemocracynow blog
So what do you get if you add Neo-liberal Bilderbergers with Nazi sympathies
to US neo-cons who love to use radical religion to further their agenda?
NATO: which coincidently [!] has a security conference in Munich in this timeframe.... "In this new world, solidarity is the key: political, military and financial solidarity..." NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer
NATO planning strikes on Iranian nuclear sites
[pinch of salt?]
Date: 16/1/2006 Source: NewsInsight Topics: iran usa nuclear
Limited military strikes on select secret Iranian nuclear sites are being planned by NATO, the Pentagon and some US allies, after concrete intelligence about Iran's WMD programme was revealed by the IAEA.
Western diplomats said that Iran's secret facilities at Isfan and the more sophisticated uranium enrichment plant at Natanz could be initially targeted, although the fully underground Natanz facility is air strike proof.
Natanz is causing greater concern since no Russian expert has visited it nor has Iran sought foreign participation on it.
The US and NATO are evaluating CIA and other intelligences that Iran has almost produced five to six crude atomic devices which can delivered by air, and there is overall agreement between America and a key Nato state, Germany, that the Iranian threat must be countered before it becomes blackmail.
Britain and Germany have mobilised all their resources to stymie Iranian adventurism, while president George W.Bush has authorised select diplomats to persuade important countries to join any showdown with Iran.
The idea is that military strikes could impress Iran to seriously consider deweaponisation, the preparedness for this will be reached by early April, and diplomats said it would have full UN sanction.
NATO planning strikes on Iranian nuclear sites [?]
In its 2007 budget proposal submitted to Congress, the Bush administration is asking for $2.46 billion in aid for Israel: $2.34 billion in military aid, and $120 million in civilian aid.
The amount of aid is calculated under a formula devised by former Minister of Finance Yaakov Neeman and then-Israel’s Economic Minister to Washington Ohad Marani. The Clinton administration and Congress approved the formula. Under the formula, US military aid is increased by $60 million a year, up to a ceiling of $2.4 billion, and civilian aid is cut by $120 million a year, until it is finally eliminated. 2007 will be the last year in which Israel will receive US civilian aid.
The 2007 US budget proposal also includes $1.3 billion in military aid and $455 million in civilian aid for Egypt. US civilian aid to Egypt is cut by $40 million a year. Jordan will receive $245 million in civilian aid and $206 million in military aid, the same as in previous years.
NATO renews Afghan commitment after cartoon storm
By Mark John and Will Dunham TAORMINA, Italy, Feb 9 (Reuters) - NATO defence chiefs pledged on Thursday to expand alliance peacekeeping in Afghanistan despite attacks on their troops triggered by the storm over cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammad. Protesters angered by the cartoons tried to storm a NATO base housing Norwegian troops on Tuesday in one of the worst outbreaks of violence prompted by the controversy. Afghan police opened fire, killing four.
Defence ministers meeting in Italy agreed to check security measures in place for their 9,000-strong International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) mission in Afghanistan, but insisted its expansion to 16,000 troops this year would go ahead as planned.
"There is full commitment to take forward the ISAF expansion to the south this summer. That commitment will not waver," NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer told a news briefing after a first day of talks in the Sicilian resort of Taormina.
"The key words today were solidarity ... but also the need for dialogue, respect for others and the need for de-escalation," he added. NATO ministers will meet counterparts from Israel and six Arab countries on Friday for long-scheduled talks on defence reform that will nonetheless touch on the cartoons controversy.
British troops in Afghanistan were rushed to the northwest city of Maymana on Tuesday to secure the airfield after crowds attacked a NATO base of Norwegian troops with guns and grenades. The Norwegians fired teargas while NATO F-16 jets flew over Maymana in a show of force before the violence died down.
Aside from calling for new checks on whether existing ISAF security measures were sufficient, ministers agreed the events showed the urgent need for well-trained Afghan security forces.
"The force protection worked, but there was a feeling we want to ensure that we are well prepared. There was an emphasis on training the Afghans," said one observer at the talks.
DENMARK STICKS TO MISSION
The upsurge in tension comes as NATO readies to expand ISAF -- already in the north, west and the capital Kabul -- to the more volatile southern Afghanistan and ultimately the east. NATO would then manage all international peacekeeping in the country, allowing the larger U.S.-led coalition to reduce troop numbers and focus on hunting the Taliban and al Qaeda remnants seen as behind the insurgency.
"That's the plan. And they're en route towards that," U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld told reporters travelling with him to the meeting.
Rumsfeld gave no fixed timetable for when NATO was expected to take over peacekeeping in the east, saying only that the plan was for it to happen "at some point either this year or next".
U.S. and NATO officials have in the past expressed firm hopes that ISAF would take over all peacekeeping by end-2006. But the move to the south, which was initially intended for early 2006, is now seen some time in the middle of the year after hesitation among some allies to come forward with troops.
After much debate, Dutch lawmakers finally voted this month in favour of sending up to 1,400 troops to Afghanistan to join the deployment into the south. Britain and Canada are the two other main contributors, taking ISAF strength up to 15,000.
Denmark -- a focus of protests because a Danish newspaper published the cartoons first -- is to contribute some 300 troops to the expansion. De Hoop Scheffer said there had been no discussion in Taormina of it pulling out of the mission.
Asked if he thought the row over the cartoons complicated NATO's plans, British Defence Secretary John Reid replied: "No. Naturally we regret it. We are there to help the Afghan people." - alertnet.org
Scapegoating of one religion helps hide a multi-headed ELITE who control ALL actors behind the scenes...IRAN vs The World IS A CONTROLLED situation... I assert that this can be directly compared to the MEDIA circus which led up to WWII... and is now a playbook set to take us to The BRINK of Armageddon - a crises that will demand a globalist solution -
Iraq errors show West must act fast on Iran: Perle
Sat Feb 4, 2006 11:07 AM ETMUNICH, Germany (Reuters) - Richard Perle, a key architect of the U.S.-led war against Iraq, said on Saturday the West should not make the mistake of waiting too long to use military force if Iran comes close to getting an atomic weapon.
"If you want to try to wait until the very last minute, you'd better be very confident of your intelligence because if you're not, you won't know when the last minute is," Perle told Reuters on the sidelines of an annual security conference in Munich. "And so, ironically, one of the lessons of the inadequate intelligence of Iraq is you'd better be careful how long you choose to wait."
Perle said Israel had chosen not to wait until it was too late to destroy the key facility Saddam Hussein's secret nuclear weapons program in Osirak, Iraq in 1981. The Israelis decided to bomb the Osirak reactor before it was loaded up with nuclear fuel to prevent widespread radioactive contamination.
"I can't tell you when we may face a similar choice with Iran. But it's either take action now or lose the option of taking action," he said. Asked if he thought a military strike against Iran's nuclear facilities was an inevitability, Perle said: "I hope that can be avoided but that's always a possibility. We are talking about physical facilities and they're always vulnerable."
Perle is one of the top U.S. neoconservatives who advocated a pre-emptive invasion of Iraq to topple Saddam and seize alleged stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction. No such stockpiles were found after the war and U.S. President George W. Bush has acknowledged that the intelligence was bad. Perle served under U.S. President Ronald Reagan as an assistant secretary of defense and on the Defense Policy Board Advisory Committee from 1987 to 2004. He was an influential chairman of the Board from 2001 to 2003. - reuters
Scotsman report 6th Feb 2006 - - Use of force against Iran is on agenda, warns bullish Rumsfeld
"All options - including the military one - are on the table," Rumsfeld told a German newspaper. "Any government that says Israel has no right to exist is making a statement about its possible behaviour in the future." At the conference, Mr Rumsfeld accused Tehran of being behind international terrorism. "Iran is the main sponsor of terrorist organisations such as Hezbollah and Hamas,"
His belligerent tone was echoed by Abdolrahim Moussavi, the Iranian head of the joint chiefs of staff, who told Iranian troops yesterday: "We are not seeking a military confrontation, but if that happens we will give the enemy a lesson that will be remembered throughout history. "This nation has proved its will many times to its enemies. Why do they want to test this great nation once again?"
...in the article below Rumsfeld actually projects the wishes of the CARTEL he works for - on the unseen enemy Al Queda
Washington digs in for a 'long war' as Rumsfeld issues global call to arms
Simon Tisdall - Tuesday February 7, 2006
The Bush administration's re-characterisation of its "global war on terror" as the "long war" will be seen by critics as an admission that the US has started something it cannot finish. But from the Pentagon's perspective, the change reflects a significant upgrading of the "generational" threat posed by worldwide Islamist militancy which it believes to have been seriously underestimated.
The reassessment, contained in the Pentagon's quadrennial defence review presented to Congress yesterday, presages a new US drive to rally international allies for an ongoing conflict unlimited by time and space. That presents a problematic political, financial and military prospect for many European Nato members including Britain, as well as Middle Eastern governments.
According to the review, a "large-scale, potentially long duration, irregular warfare campaign including counter-insurgency and security, stability, transition and reconstruction operations" is necessary and unavoidable. Gone is the talk of swift victories that preceded the 2003 Iraq invasion. This will be a war of attrition, it says, fought on many fronts.
Donald Rumsfeld, the US defence secretary, suggested at the weekend that western democracies must acknowledge they are locked in a life or death struggle comparable to those against fascism and communism. "The enemy have designed and distributed a map where national borders are erased and replaced by a global extremist Islamic empire." - guardian.co.uk
|This guy's a doctor?|
Asked whether Congress had the political will to use military force against Iran if necessary, Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist said: "The answer is yes, absolutely." "We cannot allow Iran to become a nuclear nation," Frist told reporters at the Missouri GOP's annual Lincoln Days conference. "We need to use diplomatic sanctions. If that doesn't work, economic sanctions, and if that doesn't work, the potential for military use has to be on the table."
Frist has stated he would support a constitutional amendment banning gay marriages..."I very much feel that marriage is a sacrament, and that sacrament should extend and can extend to that legal entity of a union between, what is traditionally in our Western values has been defined, as between a man and a woman," said Frist, appearing on ABC's "This Week" program.
Echoing similar comments from President Bush, Frist said "intelligent design" should be taught in public schools alongside evolution.
6th Feb 2006 - Robert Joseph, undersecretary of state for arms control, took a tough line with the Iranians two days after the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) voted to report Tehran to the UN Security Council for its nuclear work.
"I would say that Iran does have the capability to develop nuclear weapons and the delivery means for those weapons," Joseph told a news conference at the Foreign Press Center here. Asked about the next steps with Iran, he said, "No options are off the table. We cannot tolerate a nuclear-armed Iran, but we are giving every chance for diplomacy to work and again we've entered the next level of diplomacy. "What is necessary to stop Iran is a firm indication that the international community not only will speak to this issue but will take whatever measures are necessary to convince Iran that it is in its interest to forego a nuclear weapons capability."
The top U.S. government official in charge of arms control advocates the offensive use of nuclear weapons and has deep roots in the neoconservative political camp . Moving into John Bolton's old job, Robert G. Joseph is the right-wing's advance man for counterproliferation as the conceptual core of a new U.S. military policy. Within the administration, he leads a band of counterproliferationists who-working closely with such militarist policy institutes as the National Institute for Public Policy and the Center for Security Policy-have placed preemptive attacks and weapons of mass destruction at the center of U.S. national security strategy.
Blair denies use of force will be used - evades last minute questions from fellow MP's
Tony Blair's evidence to the Commons liaison committee as he faces his twice-yearly question-and-answer session before senior MPs.
February 7, 2006 - Questions on Iran
Mr Blair is asked what measures are needed to tackle the threat from Iran follwing its being reported to the United Nations security council last week.
Military action is not on the agenda. he says. "I think it can be dealt with through peaceful and diplomatic means and that is what we are looking to do but it is interesting that in the past few months there has been a change in mood both in Europe and the US and there is certainly a degree of concern and unity about it."
Mr Blair goes on to discuss the "inflammatory" remarks made by the Iranian president as a symptom of a wider malaise sweeping the world. "There is a virus of extremism and fanaticism that come out of religious fanaticsm, political repression in the Midde East that has been imported to other parts of the world. You can see its effects even in this country... we will only secure our own future if we deal with every aspect of this problem."
This means making clear to Iran what is acceptable and not acceptable, and finding the two-state solution to the Palestine issue.
Frank Doran, Labour MP for Aberdeen North and chair of the administration committee, asks is this a domino solution to the problem? If we resolve the problem in Iran, are we well on the way to resolving the Middle East problem? Mr Blair thinks so.
What is mportant is that countries work together, whether economic sanctions are the answer or not, says the PM. "The interesting thing about this is that there is a greater degree of transatlantic cooperation than there has been for some time," he adds.
But he adds a little later on: "We are not at the stage where we have agreed what we might do."
Labour MP Andrew Miller, chair of the regulatory reform committee, asks how long it would take Iran to develop a nuclear weapon with their current technology. Mr Blair claims he is not expert, and moreover the problem is that no one knows what stage Iran is at. But there is an export market in this so we have to be careful about that as well, he warns.
An unstable regime such as Iran, "which has made some pretty extraordinary comments about Israel, your long term stability is when you have a regime that is accountable to its people", he adds.
Mohammad Sarwar, Labour chair of the Scottish affrairs committee, asks Mr Blair to comment on the Hamas electoral win in Palestine. "We have said we won't be able to have contact with a Hamas-led government unless it is clear that they are prepared to forswear that part of their constitution that says they want to get rid of the state of Israel and are prepared to embrace democratic means. If we don't have that it will stand in the way of us being able to help."
WIthout engaging with the Palestinian government, we are saying we don't respect the democratic will of the people. What message are we sending? asks Mr Sarwar. If they want our help, both financial and otherwise, than the premise has to be a commitment to a two-state solution, explains Blair.
Mr Blair is challenged by Mike Gapes, chair of the foreign affairs select committee, on whether important issues such as military action should be brought to parliament for a vote.
On the recent protests by Muslims over the controversial Danish cartoon, Mr Blair applauds the response from Muslim leaders. "There is a real sense of outrage," he says about the weekend excesses. "What is more healthy about this situaton and its important we emphasise the whole time is that sense of outrage stretches across all communities."
Back to Iran, Alan williams tries to draw Mr Blair on what would happen if the situation with Iran took a dramatic turn for the worse. Unluckily for Mr Williams, keen to know the worst-case scenario, Mr Blair refuses to give him a categorical answer as he knows his grilling is coming to a close. Thus ends the first of Mr Blair's twice-yearly sessions with the liaison committee. - guardian.co.uk/
compare to this tabloid reaction:
Tabloid Press slam dunk
The warning is a significant increase in the language the PM has used against the Tehran-based regime which is also accused of developing nuclear weapons. American military experts have already said war-planes are on standby to attack. Mr Blair said he would prefer to resolve disputes with Iran through "peaceful and diplomatic means".
But he attacked the regime which has threatened to wipe Israel off the map. He said: "The concern about Iran is growing very, very substantially - and the more the President of Iran carries on using this type of language and saying what he says about the state of Israel, the more people get worried."
The PM warned the Tehran government would be making a "very serious mistake" if it defied international calls to stop making nuclear weapons, adding: "When they try to export terrorism, it's a problem. When they are trying to meddle in Iraq, it's a problem."
TONY BLAIR YESTERDAY
Blair went on: "There is a virus of extremism which comes out of the cocktail of religious fanaticism and political repression in the Middle East which is now being exported to the rest of the world. "We will only secure our future if we are dealing with every single aspect of that problem. Our future security depends on sorting out the stability of that region."
The warning comes as an Iranian newspaper announced a contest for cartoons satirising the Holocaust in response to the caricatures of the prophet Mohammed which appeared in Denmark. Iran said it was cutting trade ties with the Danes - but the EU warned that attempts to boycott Danish goods or stop trading with European countries would lead to further deterioration in relations.
During his session in front of senior MPs on the Commons Liaison Committee, Mr Blair also pledged a police crackdown on Islamic fanatics who brandished hate-filled placards in the UK last week.
DEFENCE Secretary John Reid last night said there could be "significantly fewer British forces" in Iraq within a year - but only if threats from insurgents are reduced and the country has effective local government systems. - Daily Mirror
Same timeframe: British troops sent as part of NATO/UN
force to Afghanistan
UN - NATO - Civil-Military Collaboration - PSYOPS from Radio Free Europe
Michael Williams heads the Transatlantic Programs at the Royal United Services Institute in London. He says that even with superior weaponry and air support, the new British contingency faces a tough slog. "The south is notoriously unruly, and it is not under any sort of control by [International Security Assistance Force] or [Operation Enduring Freedom] forces," Williams says. "This is the logical extension of the NATO progression now, which has started in Kabul, then went north [and] then went west. Now they need to go south and east in order to guarantee security, and then stabilize and reconstruct."
All 3,300 of the newly arriving soldiers will be dispatched to Helmand Province and placed under Canadian command. Military experts say the tasks there will be mainly focused on helping with reconstruction efforts under the United Nations mandate.
"It is called SIMIC, which is Civil-Military Collaboration, which means ensuring that there is a secure environment in which civil processes and reconstruction can take place," says Bruce Jones, a military strategies adviser to NATO. "Also expertise and capability such as digging wells, medical, road-building, certain aspects of engineering construction and de-mining."
Bruce Jones says the government's detailed announcement last week seems to have dispelled opposition doubts.
"The Secretary of State [Reid] has given a categorical assurance as to what is going to happen," Jones says. "Politics aside, he's always been good to his word in the past, and that's why in these particular circumstances his word is taken."
Michael Williams agrees. He explains, however, that the question of the exact nature of the NATO units' deployment has been debated more robustly elsewhere in Europe. "That's exactly, I think, the question that has been the debate in several European capitals," Williams says. "There has always been a bit of blurring, but I think that issue right now is that some European countries are worried about being sucked into the war on terror. But that said, inevitably they're going to have to provide some sort of security, and that might mean fighting insurgents here or there."
Both Williams and Jones conclude that the British troops have enjoyed a good reputation in the region. But will the British public stay resolute -- and allow U.K. troops to remain -- if they come under heavy attack? Shadow defense minister Mark Harper concludes that he is sure they will.
"Yes, people understand we can't let Afghanistan collapse into a security vacuum that could be filled by the Taliban or by Al-Qaeda or similar groups," Harper says.
"The terrorists that bombed London were trained in camps in Afghanistan. So, I think there is a very clear national interest in making sure that the democratically elected Karzai government is successful, and is able to govern the whole of Afghanistan."
Radio free Europe
British troops sent to riot-hit Afghan town
By Joe Churcher, PA Published: 07 February 2006
British troops have been sent to a riot-hit town in Afghanistan in a bid to protect Norwegian soldiers, the MoD said today. The UK's Quick Response Force (QRF) was deployed to Maymana after reports that international reconstruction teams there were under threat.
A crowd of up to 300 demonstrators were said to have thrown stones at the Norwegians.
The British unit - part of the Nato operations in the country - is based at Mazar-al-Sharif and involves the Royal Gloucestershire, Berkshire and Wiltshire Regiment. United Nations staff have already been evacuated from the city amid violent protests against publication of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed in a Danish paper.
A Nato spokesman in Kabul, Warrant Officer Cosimo Argentieri, said British troops were being rushed to Maymana to secure the airfield there.
Armed protesters attacked the main Nato base in the remote northern town, burning an armoured vehicle, a UN car and guard posts, reports said. One protester was said to have been shot dead and two Norwegian soldiers injured, one by a splinter from a grenade and the other by flying rock. Two Finnish soldiers were also hurt at the base, Nato said. The emergency mission came as Armed Forces Minister Adam Ingram visited RAF crews who are due to leave for a dangerous region of Afghanistan shortly. Mr Ingram chatted to the personnel of 18 Squadron based at RAF Odiham in Hampshire, just days before they send three Chinook heavy lift helicopters to Afghanistan to pave the way for a substantial British military deployment to the region in the summer.
The helicopters will assist Royal Engineers to build a base for about 5,000 UK troops who are part of a multinational peacekeeping force in the country. The British military contingent is hoping to bring democracy to the Helmand area, which has a strong Taliban and opium-growing presence.
Mr Ingram said at the base: "We always said this would be a difficult task. We do not know how difficult until we get there. We are ready for the worst and hopefully that will not happen. "I know precisely how difficult their task is and I'm immensely proud of their outstanding achievements and unswerving commitment."
The town is of ancient origin. According to the Arab geographer Yakut (13th cent.) the city was first settled by Israelites sent here from Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar. Prospering within the orbit of Samanid renaissance, it was one of the many flourishing towns which studded the plains from Herat to the mountains of Badakhshan before the Mongol invasions engulfed the area. Ravaged, most of the cities perished, only a few, like Maimana, revived.
Rumsfeld, NATO Ministers To Discuss Afghanistan and Rapid Reaction Force
By Al Pessin Washington - 08 February 2006
U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld will be in Italy Thursday and Friday for an informal meeting of NATO defense ministers that is expected to focus on final preparations for expanding the alliance's role in Afghanistan and for the creation of the NATO rapid response force. VOA Pentagon Correspondent Al Pessin will be traveling with the secretary and filed this report on what is expected at the meeting.
The [..] senior defense official, who spoke anonymously, [..] the force will have a major exercise in West Africa in June, and is supposed to be declared operational in October. But the official says NATO members have committed only about 80 per cent of the troops needed for the force, and Secretary Rumsfeld will be pressing for more commitments at this week's meeting.
The official says the Italy meeting will also include a session with the Russian defense minister, and another one with defense ministers from the seven members of NATO's Mediterranean Dialogue group. In the Russia meeting, the official says the main issues will be the sharing of radar information, strategy for fighting the drug trade in Central Asia and Afghanistan and concern over Russia's recent withholding of natural gas supplies from Ukraine in a political dispute.
The official says Russia and three of the Dialogue countries will participate for the first time later this year in a NATO counter-terrorism naval operation in the Mediterranean. The three regional countries will be Morocco, Algeria and Israel, representing what the official called a "not insignificant" moment of cooperation between Israel and the two Arab countries. - VOA
Cartoon Protesters Direct Anger at U.S.
By NOOR KHAN QALAT, Afghanistan Feb 8 (AP) -- Police killed four people Wednesday as Afghans enraged over drawings of the Prophet Muhammad marched on a U.S. military base in a volatile southern province, directing their anger not against Europe but America.
The U.S. base was targeted because the United States "is the leader of Europe and the leading infidel in the world," said Sher Mohammed, a 40-year-old farmer who suffered a gunshot wound while taking part in the demonstration in the city of Qalat. "They are all the enemy of Islam. They are occupiers in our country and must be driven out," Mohammed said. Wednesday's violence began when hundreds of protesters tried to storm the U.S. base, said Ghulam Nabi Malakhail, a provincial police chief. When warning shots failed to deter them, police shot into the crowd, killing four and wounding 11, he said. Flying rocks injured eight police and one Afghan soldier, he said.
Two Pakistanis arrested for allegedly firing at police were being questioned to see whether they were linked to al-Qaida, Malakhail said. Some officials accuse al-Qaida of inciting three days of bloody riots across Afghanistan that have left 11 dead. Protesters also burned three fuel tankers waiting to deliver gasoline to the base, said Malakhail. He said U.S. troops fired warning shots into the air. U.S. military spokesman Col. James Yonts said the American forces fired flares above the crowd, but he said it was not clear whether they fired their weapons.
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, at news conference: Rice says world leaders and religious leaders share a responsibility for dealing with the violence.
Muslims around the world have demonstrated over the images - including one depicting the prophet wearing a turban shaped as a bomb - printed in Western media. Islam is interpreted to forbid any illustrations of the prophet.
In Baghdad, Iraq's top Shiite political leader criticized attacks on foreign embassies by Muslims. "We value and appreciate peaceful Islamic protests," said Abdul Aziz al-Hakim. "But we are against the idea of attacking embassies and other official sites."
In the West Bank, about 300 Palestinians overpowered a Palestinian police detail and attacked an international observer mission in the city of Hebron.
Sixty members of the mission were inside, said Gunhild Forselv, spokeswoman for the Temporary International Presence in Hebron. A few protesters forced their way in, where unarmed observers waved clubs in an attempt to drive them off. Police reinforcements eventually restored order.
Muslims also demonstrated in Indian-controlled Kashmir, Bangladesh, Bosnia-Herzegovina, and in Turkey.
In Washington, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice accused Iran and Syria of instigating protests in their countries, and President Bush called upon governments to stop the violence and protect the lives of diplomats overseas. The United States and other countries were looking into whether extremist groups may be inciting protesters to riot, said Yonts, the U.S. spokesman in Afghanistan.
Zahor Afghan, editor for Erada, Afghanistan's most respected newspaper, said the riots in his country have surprised him. "No media in Afghanistan has published or broadcast pictures of these cartoons. The radio has been reporting on it, but there are definitely people using this to incite violence against the presence of foreigners in Afghanistan," he said.
Afghans who rioted Wednesday said they heard about the cartoons on the radio but none questioned had seen printed versions.
"The radio is talking about them all the time. Everybody heard about them this way," said 28-year-old shopkeeper Ramatullah, who uses only name. Wednesday's riot erupted despite an appeal from Afghanistan's top Islamic organization, the Ulama Council, for an end to the violence.
"Islam says it's all right to demonstrate but not to resort to violence. This must stop," senior cleric Mohammed Usman told The Associated Press. "We condemn the cartoons but this does not justify violence. These rioters are defaming the name of Islam."
In France, President Jacques Chirac asked media to avoid offending religious beliefs as another French newspaper reprinted the caricatures. The satirical French weekly Charlie-Hebdo also printed a new drawing under the headline "Muhammad Overwhelmed by the Fundamentalists" that showed the prophet with his head in his hands, remarking, "It's hard to be loved by idiots."
Flashback Oct 2005: NATO role changing to Global corporate protectionists...
The NATO commander's remarks, which signal a fundamental new direction for an alliance that for decades was designed to meet a conventional Soviet military threat, came as two former top NATO generals issued a highly critical new report on the military state of the alliance.
NATO Means Business To Protect Pipelines
By Martin Walker Prague, Czech Republic (UPI) Oct 13, 2005
NATO's top military commander is seeking an important new security role for private industry and business leaders as part of a new security strategy that will focus on the economic vulnerabilities of the 26-country alliance.
Two immediate and priority projects for NATO officials to develop with private industry are to secure the pipelines bringing Russian oil and gas to Europe against terrorist attacks and to secure ports and merchant shipping, the alliance Supreme Commander, Gen. James Jones of the U.S. Marine Corps said Wednesday.
A further area of NATO interest to secure energy supplies could be the Gulf of Guinea off the West African coast, Jones noted, where piracy, theft, political unrest and tensions between Islam and Christianity combined to present "a serious security problem." Oil companies were already spending more than a billion dollars a year on security in the region, he noted, pointing to the need for NATO and business to confer on the common security concern.
used to work for Chevron
Below is a picture of the oil tanker before Chevron quietly renamed it the "Altair Voyager" and before President George Bush appointed Ms. Rice as National Security Advisor.
Do you get the picture?
Condoleezza Rice was a Chevron Director from 1991 until January 15, 2001 when she was transferred by President George Bush Jr. to National Security Adviser. Previously she was Senior Director, Soviet Affairs, National Security Council, and Special Assistant to President George Bush Sr. from 1989 to 1991.
Another Chevron Corporation giant in the Bush administration is Vice President Dick Cheney. Vice President Cheney was Chairman and Chief Executive of Dallas based Halliburton Corporation, the world's largest oil field services company with multi-billion dollar contracts with oil corporations including Chevron. Lawrence Eagleburger, a seasoned Bush counselor who held top State Department posts under George Bush Sr., is a director of Halliburton Corporation.
Hamid Karzai... PUPPET leader of Afghanistan...Rand Corporation Appointed advisor to Unocal.
When the Taliban emerged onto the political scene in the 1990s, Karzai was initially among their supporters. - global security
The man who spotted Karzai's leadership potential and recruited him to "the fold" was then RAND (the Santa Monica, California think tank, mostly conducting contract research for the Pentagon) program director, now US National Security Council member and special Bush envoy to Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad. Like Karzai, Khalilzad is an ethnic Pashtun (born Mazar-i-Sharif, PhD University of Chicago). He headed Bush's defense department transition team, and served under present US Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz in the Reagan State and Bush I Defense Departments. Also like Karzai (whom Mullah Omar once asked to represent the Taliban at the UN), Khalilzad early on supported and urged engagement of the Taliban regime, only to drop such notions when the true nature of the regime became patently obvious by 1998. And one further thing both men have in common is that in 1996/97 they advised American oil company Unocal on the US$2 billion project of a Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan pipeline. In 2000, Khalilzad invited Karzai to address a RAND seminar on Afghanistan; the same year, Karzai also testified before the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee and met periodically with Christina Rocca, then a Senate aide (to Kansas Republican Sen Sam Brownback), now the assistant secretary of state for South Asian affairs. "To us, he is still Hamid, a man we've dealt with for some time," said a state department official. Such close connections to the US foreign policy, security and intelligence community lay Karzai open to the charge of being an American puppet - Asia Times
"We know that without the strategic partnership with America, Afghanistan would not make it as a sovereign, independent nation," - Hamid Karzai
Danish paper won't run Holocaust cartoons
By ASSOCIATED PRESS COPENHAGEN, Denmark Feb 9th
The top editor of the Danish newspaper whose caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad sparked rage throughout the Islamic world said Wednesday the daily would not reprint Holocaust cartoons being solicited by an Iranian newspaper.
Editor-in-Chief Carsten Juste said his newspaper Jyllands-Posten "in no circumstances will publish Holocaust cartoons from an Iranian newspaper."
A prominent Iranian newspaper has said it would hold a competition for cartoons on the Holocaust to test whether the West extends the principle of freedom of expression to the Nazi genocide as it did to the Muhammad caricatures.
Earlier, culture editor Flemming Rose said of the Iranian cartoons: "We would consider publishing them, but we will not make a decision before we have seen the cartoons." "I have committed an error," Rose said later in an interview with Danish television. "I am 100 percent with the newspaper's line and Carsten Juste in this case."
Juste, meanwhile, has rejected suggestions that he step down in the wake of the furor, which has brought sometimes-fatal protest outbursts and the burning of two Danish embassies in the Middle East. The Danish paper has come under mounting pressure, at home and abroad, after publishing the drawings in September. Former Foreign Minister Uffe Ellemann-Jensen said Wednesday on national radio that "when an editor in chief admits he made an erroneous judgment ... he should quit."
In a brief reply on the daily's Web site, Juste said, "I do not feel called ... in that direction."
The drawings - including one depicting the prophet wearing a turban shaped as a bomb - have touched a nerve in part because Islam is interpreted to forbid any illustrations of the Prophet Muhammad for fear they could lead to idolatry. - jpost.com
Muslims call for changes in law
8th Feb 2006 -
Muslim scholars who gathered for an emergency meeting have called for changes to the law to stop images of the Prophet Muhammad being published.
Members of the Muslim Action Committee (MAC) who met in Birmingham called for changes to the Race Relations Act and the Press Complaints Commission code. They are to stage a protest march in London on 18 February, expected to attract 20,000 to 50,000 people. The MAC was responding to the cartoons which satirise Muhammad.
Shaikh Faiz Saddiqi, who chaired the meeting, said Wednesday's gathering of about 300 Islamic religious leaders was the largest meeting of its kind he knew of in his 25 years of living in the UK.
He said the MAC was meeting to bring cohesion to the debate among Muslims about how to respond to the publication of the cartoons in a Danish newspaper and their subsequent repetition in other countries. The discussions among the religious leaders, who had travelled to an Islamic centre in Small Heath from across the UK, lasted for two hours.
Mr Saddiqi said they had concluded they wanted the Race Relations Act modified to give Muslims the same protection as Sikhs or Jews. He also said the Press Complaints Commission code of conduct should be tightened to prevent publication of any images of Muhammad, but added the clerics accepted criticism and discussion of Islam should be allowed. He said the code was a voluntary code to ensure the media treated people with respect and called for that respect to be shown to Muslims, whose religion forbids any pictorial depiction of Muhammad.
The cartoons have been repeated in other papers, such as France Soir
Mr Saddiqi said: "That act in itself is deeply offensive, it's akin to someone standing up in your face and abusing your mum, your sister, your dad, and it's akin to a deliberate act of provocation." He said Muslims could accept a one-off publication of such an image as a misjudgement and said this was why it took several months for anger at the cartoons, first published in October, to gain momentum.
But he said other media organisations continuing to show the cartoons knew they were causing offence. He said: "It happens once, it happens twice but a third time you are going to take action. "Enough is enough, we have to get back to being a civil society. "What kicks can you get out of seeing this caricature, except to insult the Prophet of Islam?" He praised the UK media for not publishing the cartoons.
USA seeks allies for the next crusade
US Asks Turkey to 'Warn Iran over its Nuclear Program'
By Cihan News Agency, Washington Weds February 08, 2006 - zaman.com
The US administration wants Turkey to send a warning to Iran, suspected of manufacturing nuclear weapons.
Robert Joseph, the Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security, said Washington expects Turkey to send a message to Tehran warning that it will not accept Iran being in possession of nuclear weapons.
Joseph assessed the recent developments on Iran in a press conference held in Washington.
"Turkey, like other members of the international community, can openly communicate to Tehran that it will not tolerate Iran acquiring nuclear weapons, and that this is a very dangerous and stability breaking situation that goes far beyond the Basra Gulf. When taken into consideration Iran's ability and possibility to use nuclear weapons by means of ballistic missiles developing more and more, Turkey has to note this and continue cooperating with the other members of the international community," Joseph said.
The US official claimed Iran has the capability of developing an atomic bomb on its own. Meanwhile, the Chinese administration called on Iran to follow "a calm diplomacy" to solve the nuclear problem. Beijing announced the responsibility of solving the problem had not been fully referred to UN Security Council.
flashback: Jan 31st
|Flashback: Friday, 3 February 2006 -
Egypgtian ferry AL-SALAM 98 sinks|
Built: Italy 1970
Length: 118m (388ft)
Gross tonnage: 11,779t
Owner: El-Salam Maritime
During the Six Day War between Israel and the Arab States, the American intelligence ship The USS liberty was attacked for 75 minutes in international waters by Israeli aircraft and motor torpedo boats. Thirty-four men died and 174 were wounded.
climate of fear in the USA - Bush rehashes 2002 threataganda
Bush make an 'error' during his press conference:
Bush Reveals New Details of Purported 2002 Attack Plot
In Washington, President Bush discussed a purported attack on the United States that the White House has claimed it helped prevent. President Bush said: "We now know that in October 2001, Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, the mastermind of the September the 11th attacks, had already set in motion a plan to have terrorist operatives hijack an airplane using shoe bombs to breach the cockpit door and fly the plane into the tallest building on the West Coast. We believe the intended target was Liberty Tower in Los Angeles, California. Rather than use Arab hijackers as he had on September 11, Khalid Shaikh Mohammed sought out young men from Southeast Asia whom he believed would not arouse as much suspicion."
White House aides later corrected the President, saying the intended target was not the Liberty Tower but the Library Tower.
It has since been renamed the US Bank Tower.
Liberty error goes down the memory hole
Bush has referred to the 2002 plot before. In an address last October, he said the United States and its allies had foiled at least 10 serious plots by the al-Qaida terror network in the last four years, including plans for Sept. 11-like attacks on both U.S. coasts. The White House initially would not give details of the plots but later released a fact sheet with a brief, and vague, description of each.
The president filled in details on Thursday.
He said that Khalid Sheik Mohammed, the alleged mastermind of the Sept. 11 attacks who was captured in 2003, had already begun planning the West Coast operation in October, just after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. One of Mohammed's key planners was Hambali, the alleged operations chief of the al-Qaida related terrorist group Jemaah Islamiyah. Instead of recruiting Arab hijackers, Hambali found Southeast Asian men who would be less likely to arouse suspicion and who were sent to meet with Osama bin Laden, Bush said.
Under the plot, the hijackers were to use shoe bombs to blow open the cockpit door of a commercial jetliner, take control of the plane and crash it into the Library Tower in Los Angeles, since renamed the US Bank Tower, Bush said. In his remarks, Bush inadvertantly referred to the site as "Liberty Tower," and immediately afterward, the White House corrected him.
- Associated Press
Israel plans to build 'museum of tolerance' on Muslim graves
By Donald Macintyre in Jerusalem - Published: 09 February 2006
Skeletons are being removed from the site of an ancient Muslim cemetery in Jerusalem to make way for a $150m (£86m) "museum of tolerance" being built for the Los Angeles-based Simon Wiesenthal Centre. Palestinians have launched a legal battle to stop the work at what was the city's main Muslim cemetery. The work is to prepare for the construction of a museum which seeks the promotion of "unity and respect among Jews and between people of all faiths".
Israeli archaeologists and developers have continued excavating the remains of people buried at the site - which was a cemetery for at least 1,000 years - despite a temporary ban on work granted by the Islamic Court, a division of Israel's justice system. Police have been taking legal advice on whether the order is legally binding. The Israeli High Court is to hear a separate case brought by the Al Aqsa Association of the Islamic Movement in Israel next week.
The project, which a spokesman said had been conceived in partnership with the Jerusalem municipality and the Israeli government, was launched at a ceremony in 2004 by a cast of dignitaries ranging from Ehud Olmert, who is currently the acting Prime Minister, to the governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger.
The Israeli branch of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre declined to comment yesterday and has had no role in the project.
Durragham Saif, the lawyer who brought the Islamic Court petition on behalf of three Palestinian families, Al Dijani, Nusseibeh and Bader Elzain, all of whom have members buried at the cemetery, said: "It's unbelievable, it's immoral. You cannot build a museum of tolerance on the graves of other people. Imagine this kind of thing in the [United] States or England. And this is the Middle East where events are sensitive. If this goes ahead in this way it is going to cause the opposite thing to tolerance."
Mr Saif said he had written to the Israeli State Attorney, Menachem Mazuz, seeking police enforcement of the original order. He said on a visit to the site he had entered three out of five tents where excavations were being carried out. "I was shocked to see open graves and tens of whole skeletons there," he said.
Ikrema Sabri, the Mufti of Jerusalem, demanded a halt to the excavations and said the Muslim religious authorities had not been consulted on the dig. Saying that the cemetery was in use for 15 centuries and that friends of the Prophet Mohamed were buried there, the Mufti declared: "There should be a complete cessation of work on the cemetery because it is sacred for Muslims."
Under Israel's "absentee property" law the cemetery was taken over by the Custodian of Absentee Property after the 1948 war. Mr Saif said the Custodian had no right to sell the cemetery to the Jerusalem municipality in 1992. While parties to the work are resting part of their case on what they say was an 1894 ruling by the then Sharia court that the sanctity of a cemetery could be lifted, Mr Sabri said that ruling meant that only a Muslim could make such a decision.
Osnat Goaz, a spokeswoman for the Israel Antiquities Authority, which is carrying out the excavations, said it was common in Jerusalem to build on cemeteries. Adding that in such cases the bones were reburied, she said: "Israel is more crowded with ancient artefacts than any other country in the world. If we didn't build on former cemeteries, we would never build."
Dutch MP backs Muhammad cartoons
The Somali-born Dutch MP who describes herself as a "dissident of Islam" has backed the Danish newspaper that first printed the Prophet Muhammad cartoons.
Ayaan Hirsi Ali said it was "correct to publish the cartoons" in Jyllands Posten and "right to republish them". Her film-maker colleague Theo van Gogh was murdered by a Muslim extremist in a case that shocked the Netherlands. Ms Hirsi Ali, speaking in Berlin, said that "today the open society is challenged by Islamism". She added: "Within Islam exists a hardline Islamist movement that rejects democratic freedoms and wants to destroy them." Ms Hirsi Ali criticised European leaders for not standing by Denmark and urged politicians to stop appeasing fundamentalists. She also said that although the Prophet Muhammad did a lot of good things, his decree that homosexuals and apostates should be killed was incompatible with democracy.
Ms Hirsi Ali wrote the script for Submission, a film criticising the treatment of women in Islam that prompted a radical Islamist to kill Van Gogh in an Amsterdam street in November 2004. Papers in several European nations have reprinted the satirical Danish cartoons - most recently carried in the French magazine Charlie Hebdo. A dozen people have died in violent protests in Afghanistan over the cartoons, which have also been denounced throughout the Islamic world. The drawings include an image of Muhammad with a bomb in his turban. Islamic tradition explicitly prohibits any depiction of Allah and the Prophet.
Ms Hirsi Ali said the furore over the cartoons had exposed the fear among artists and journalists in Europe to "analyse or criticise intolerant aspects of Islam".
Pope meets Laura Bush, says worried about terror
Thu Feb 9, 2006 8:46 AM ET By Steve Holland VATICAN CITY (Reuters) -
Pope Benedict received U.S. First Lady Laura Bush on Thursday and told her that he was worried about terrorism around the world and violence sparked by the publication of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad.
"He talked to me about the worries of terrorism, the worries right now about the violence in Beirut, Damascus and other cities," she told reporters after the meeting the Pope. "His hope and certainly our hope (is) for peace and tolerance for each of us, to treat everyone else with respect," she said.
Angry Muslims have demonstrated around the world over the cartoons, first published in Denmark, then Norway and several other countries in Europe and elsewhere. The caricatures, including one showing the Prophet Mohammad wearing a bomb-shaped turban, have unleashed fury among many Muslims who consider any portrayal of their prophet as blasphemous, let alone one showing him as a terrorist.
The Vatican has already condemned the cartoons.
"I know that Muslims are offended with these cartoons. I understand their offence (but) on the other hand I don't think violence is the answer. I think everyone around the world needs to speak out and say 'lets stop the violence,'" she said.
The Pope told Mrs Bush that he hoped her stay in Italy for the start of the winter Olympics would be peaceful. "We hope you will have a peaceful time," the Pope told Mrs Bush and her daughter Barbara when he welcomed them into his private study in the Vatican's Apostolic Palace. Mrs Bush and Barbara, 24, are in Italy as head of the official U.S. delegation to the Turin games, which start on Friday. The First Lady, Barbara and Francis Rooney, the U.S. ambassador to the Vatican, spoke privately for about 15 minutes in the Pope's study.
At the picture taking session afterwards Mrs Bush gave the Pope a silver bowl and he gave his visitors rosary beads and medals of his pontificate.
Mrs Bush is due to have lunch with Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and visit a Rome hospital before heading to Turin for the start of the games.
She will also visit U.S. military personnel stationed at the Aviano air base in the north before returning to the United States.
Malaysian leader warns of 'chasm' between Muslims and the West
10/02/2006 - Malaysia's leader today warned of a "huge chasm" between Muslims and the West, as thousands of people took to the streets in Asia for the largest demonstrations yet in the Prophet Mohammed cartoons row.
Thousands of Muslims rallied in Pakistan, Malaysia, Bangladesh and India, while smaller demonstrations were held in Indonesia and the Philippines.
Protesters shouted anti-American and other slogans and burned Danish flags, but there were no immediate reports of violence. The demonstrations grew out of traditional Friday prayers. Some were held outside mosques in some cities while in others protesters marched on the diplomatic missions of Denmark, which have sometimes been pelted with rocks, eggs and other missiles in previous demonstrations.
In Malaysia's largest city, Kuala Lumpur, about 3,000 protesters marched from a mosque to the high rise building housing the Danish Embassy shouting: "Long live Islam. Destroy Denmark. Destroy Israel. Destroy George Bush. Destroy America!"
Opening a conference at a nearby venue, Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi talked of a "huge chasm that has emerged between the West and Islam," particularly because of Muslim frustrations at Western policies toward Iraq, Afghanistan and the Palestinians. He said many Westerners viewed a Muslim as "a congenital terrorist." "They think Osama bin Laden speaks for the religion and its followers," Abdullah said in his speech. "The denomination of Islam and the vilification of Muslims, there is no denying, is widespread within mainstream Western society." He did not mention the prophet cartoons.
Abdullah, a Muslim scholar whose country heads the 57-member Organisation of the Islamic Conference, also urged Muslims to oppose "sweeping denunciation of Christians, Jews and the West" as well as violence and terror perpetrated by fringe groups.
Denmark has been the main target of Muslim outrage because a newspaper there was the first to publish 12 cartoons of the prophet. Other media, mostly in non-Islamic countries, have reprinted the cartoons. Many Muslims view the cartoons as sacrilegious because Islam is interpreted as banning depiction of the prophet to prevent idolatry. Proponents say publication of the cartoons is a free speech issue.
In Pakistan, about 5,000 supporters of radical Islamic groups demonstrated in the capital, Islamabad - the biggest turnout since protests against the cartoons began about a week ago. In a fiery speech, Mian Aslam, a leader of a coalition of Islamic groups, urged Pakistan to sever ties with all those countries with newspapers that published the drawings.
In Bangladesh, more than 5,000 Muslims watched by hundreds of riot police marched on Denmark's embassy in the capital, Dhaka, burning the country's flag and shouting, "Death to those who degrade our beloved prophet!"
Small demonstrations were also held in Indonesia, where protesters burned tyres in one town. About 175 students at an Islamic school in Surabaya, in East Java province, signed a pact saying they are "ready to die" for Prophet Muhammad, and would confront any Danes they met, said their headmaster, Yusuf Muhajir.
"The will ask Danish citizens wherever they meet to apologise," Muhajir said. "They will be slapped if they refuse to apologise. The slap is a merely intended as a lesson, instead of hurting them."
Denmark earlier this week advised its citizens to leave Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim country. Hundreds of angry Muslims burned a mock Danish flag outside a mosque in the Philippine capital, Manila, demanding an apology from Denmark's prime minister and punishment for the newspaper that first published the caricatures. "Muslims love Prophet Mohammed. Peace be upon him," read a banner carried by the protesters. Malaysia's Internal Security Ministry declared that it was an offence for anyone to publish, produce, import, circulate or possess the prophet caricatures. It said the measure was ordered to curb the circulation of material that could cause disrupt public order in Malaysia. It did not specify what penalties offenders faced.
The ministry indefinitely closed a small newspaper, the Sarawak Tribune, yesterday after it reproduced one of the caricatures, despite an apology from the publishers for what they called an editorial oversight. Malaysia's newspapers operate under government licence.
Australian prime minister John Howard today said he considered the violent reactions to the cartoons "are completely disproportionate to the offence that could possibly have been given" - IOL.
Ready to die?
Muslim hard-liners 'ready to die' to defend prophet
10/02/2006 - Indonesian Muslim hard-liners signed a pact saying they were ready to die in defence of the Prophet Mohammed, while others burned tyres in streets today amid fresh protests in the world's most populous Muslim nation.
A weekly news magazine issued an apology after reprinting several of the 12 cartoons of the prophet that have triggered sometime violent protests across Indonesia and the rest of the Islamic world.
The cartoons were first published in a Danish paper in September, but have since appeared in papers around the world.
About 175 students at an Islamic boarding school in Surabaya city have signed a pledge saying they are "ready to die" to defend the honour of the prophet, said headmaster Yusuf Muhajir. Such pledges are traditional in Indonesia, and are considered to be symbolic. He said the students would demand an apology from any Danish citizens they met in Surabaya, the capital of east Java province, and jokingly said they would be "slapped" if they refused to do so.
Small, peaceful protests were reported in at least three towns, including one on Sulawesi island where demonstrators burned tyres outside a university campus.
Islam-West divide 'grows deeper'
Malaysia's prime minister says a huge chasm has opened between the West and Islam, fuelled by Muslim frustrations over Western foreign policy. Abdullah Badawi, seen as promoting a moderate form of Islam in largely Muslim Malaysia, said many Westerners saw Muslims as congenital terrorists. As he spoke at a conference in Kuala Lumpur, thousands protested outside at cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad. Their publication in Europe has led to demonstrations across the Muslim world.
Friday's demonstration was the biggest in Malaysia's capital for years. "Long live Islam. Destroy Denmark. Destroy Israel. Destroy George Bush. Destroy America," protesters shouted as they marched to the Danish embassy in the rain from a nearby mosque.
The satirical cartoons include an image portraying Muhammad with a bomb in his turban. Islamic tradition explicitly prohibits any depiction of Allah and the Prophet. The cartoons were first published by a Danish newspaper in September, but have since been reprinted in several other European publications.
On Thursday, Mr Abdullah shut indefinitely a Borneo-based paper, the Sarawak Tribune, for reprinting the cartoons. He described their publication as "insensitive and irresponsible". The paper had apologised for what it called an editorial oversight. The prime minister had also declared possession of the cartoons illegal.
In other developments:
In the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, security forces fire tear gas to disperse hundreds of protesters trying to march on the Danish embassy
The culture editor of Jyllands-Posten, the newspaper which first published the cartoons, is sent on leave for an indefinite period, as the editor of a Norwegian magazine that reprinted them apologises
A Swedish internet service provider shuts down the website of a right-wing anti-immigrant party which invited readers to send in cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad
Around 10,000 Muslims stage a silent protest rally in Bhopal, India, carrying banners reading: "Stop all anti-Islamic activities... Do not invite disaster."
Hundreds of international peacekeepers and Afghan soldiers prevent demonstrators entering the Afghan capital, Kabul
Around 3,000 Muslims march in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka, and more than 4,000 in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad, in demonstrations organised by hardline Islamists
Thousands march in an Islamic Jihad demonstration in Gaza City, joined by members of other militant groups
Nato defence ministers seek to soothe the dispute in scheduled talks with counterparts from six Arab nations in Sicily.
Addressing an international conference intended to promote dialogue between Western and Islamic thinkers, Mr Abdullah said Islam and the West should stop demonising each other, and try to curb extremism and promote moderation.
He said mere talk and being nice to one another were not enough, and mutual respect should replace hegemony. "They think Osama bin Laden speaks for the religion and its followers," he said, quoted by the Associated Press news agency. "The demonisation of Islam and the vilification of Muslims, there is no denying, is widespread within mainstream Western society." But Muslims for their part had to avoid "sweeping denunciation of Christians, Jews and the West", he added. "The West should treat Islam the way it wants Islam to treat the West and vice versa. They should accept one another as equals," he said.
The BBC's Jonathan Kent in Kuala Lumpur says that if this speech had been made by a firebrand or a radical it might more easily be dismissed as rhetoric, but Mr Abdullah has been avidly calling for Muslims worldwide to embrace education, science, technology and development, while rejecting extremism.
While Western diplomats at the meeting were unwilling to accept a link between Western military intervention and Islamic radicalism, he says, it remains one widely believed across the Muslim world.
Malaysia is currently the head of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference.