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February 2008
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No Moderation in Islam

Asia Times:

A self-described revolution in world affairs has begun in the heart of one man. He is the Italian journalist and author Magdi Cristiano Allam, whom Pope Benedict XVI baptized during the Easter Vigil at St Peter's. Allam's renunciation of Islam as a religion of violence and his embrace of Christianity denotes the point at which the so-called global "war on terror" becomes a divergence of two irreconcilable modes of life: the Western way of faith supported by reason, against the Muslim world of fatalism and submission.

Cristiano echoes some of my thoughts here:

Magdi Allam has a powerful voice as deputy editor of Italy's newspaper of record, Corriere della Sera, and a bestselling author. For years he was the exemplar of "moderate Islam" in Europe, and now he has decided that Islam cannot be "moderate".

Since September 2001, the would-be wizards of Western strategy have tried to conjure an "Islamic reformation", or a "moderate Islam", or "Islamic democracy". None of this matters now, for as Magdi Allam tells us, the matter on the agenda is not to persuade Muslims to act like liberal Westerners, but instead to convince them to cease to be Muslims.

Such persuasion can be hazardous. It's not particularly healthy to converse with those who, likely, believe that a murtad ought to be slaughtered.


We're such rebels:

As you can see, "Earth Hour" had practically zero effect on the electricity demand in the Province of Ontario. While electricity use was barely below forecast, it was actually up slightly from the previous hour!

Screw darkness!

Great Leap Backward

The Epoch Times via Daimnation:

A rally that was billed as promoting "anti-violence" turned hostile on Saturday as flag-waving Chinese denounced Tibetans who they blamed for the recent turmoil in Tibet in which 100 are said to have died.

Here's some of that anti-violence rhetoric:

"Dalai Lama die there!" some Chinese shouted at a group of Tibetans who had gathered across the street from the square to protest. "Leave Canada!" others urged.

The cherry on top:

They also sang communist party songs.


A Bad Role Model

The Sun:

The rant by 49-year-old Bakri — exiled in Lebanon after being kicked out of Britain — came in an internet exchange with other extremists.

Asked if Amir [a British boxer] was setting a bad example by draping himself in the flag, he replied: “I don’t think somebody should really look to Amir Khan as a good example for the youth.

“So now for him to be wrapping himself in British flag is another sign of somebody who is completely jahil [ignorant]. You give him the excuse of ignorance for living among the kuffar. So you can’t call him kuffar but you can call him jahil and deviant person.”

There's more:

He said: “Amir Khan is not a good example for Muslims. He wears shorts with the Union Jack. That is a sin.

“He should not be wearing the flag because sovereignty is for God. His only allegiance should be to the Prophet Mohammed.

“The ideal situation would be to have a Muslim team not registered to any state so he can represent the Islamic community.”

Indigo Jo writes:

on this issue I partly agree with Omar Bakri, but in any case, find them not exactly sensational. He has not called anyone a kafir (unbeliever) or called for anyone to be killed, just called someone ignorant and a bad role model.

The Union Jack is a montage of crosses of various Christian "saints". As Muslims we reject what the Cross stands for: the falsely claimed assassination of a Prophet, peace be upon him. It is a point of difficulty for us to use this emblem even though we may be representing this country.

Halaal Transportation

The Sun via IBA:

A MUSLIM bus driver told stunned passengers to get off so he could PRAY.

The white Islamic convert rolled out his prayer mat in the aisle and knelt on the floor facing Mecca.

Passengers watched in amazement as he held out his palms towards the sky, bowed his head and began to chant.

Look at the bright side: The infidels weren't on an airplane.

The Sound of Evil

A Bengali in T.O.: Geert Wilders' Fitna - A Review.

Honestly, a high school student could have produced a better Islam-critical animation. That the verses and their "controversial" meanings (when taken out of context) has been explained numerous times is immaterial.

Oddly enough the author doesn't enlighten us with the relevant context. Perhaps he can provide a few links to resources where Westerners can learn about the proper Islamic time and place for terror.

In fact, the only good thing about Fitna is the recitation of the said verses of the Quran. The qari who recited those verses had a melodious voice.

I can relate. Last year, I saw a brief documentary regarding the Nazis. I just couldn't help but gush, "Oh, what sexy uniforms!"

Exposing Hatred is ... Hate Speech?

Michael van der Galien:

At this moment, a Muslim group has already taken action. “A Dutch judge is due on Friday to hear the petition of a Muslim group seeking an independent review of an anti-Koran film by lawmaker Geert Wilders to see whether it violates hate speech laws.”

In the petition the group says that “the situation of Muslims in the Netherlands is comparable with that of our Jewish fellow-citizens in the 1930s.”

Amazing. Muslims largely deny the Holocaust; at best they are completely ignorant, at worst they're sad that Hitler didn't finish the job. Still, they have no qualms about making this fatuous comparison.

After the piece is over, we get this info:

Michael van der Galien is the founder and editor-in-chief of PoliGazette and Chief Political Reviewer at Monsters and Critics.

The PoliGazette website is down.

Update: PoliGazette is back up.

Why was it down? It seems to be a mystery ...

The Man Who Likes Big Hundreds

It was a wretched day for South African bowlers. Virender Sehwag destroyed them and reached a score of 309 -- he equaled the highest score by an Indian batsman which, by the way, is his own record!

His last ten hundreds have all been 150-plus knocks, a trot unlike any other batsman in Test history. He joined Brian Lara and Don Bradman as the only two batsmen to cross 300 twice. He may not be mentioned in the same league as those two legends - not as yet - but like them he remains a man apart.

He's still not out. So, tomorrow, new records will most certainly be created.

The "Too Bad" Muslims

The Toronto Star:

Attack was to be bigger than London bombings, expected evidence shows.

From the article:

[...] an adult reported he had built the "first radio frequency remote-control detonator," but pointed out it only had a range of 30 feet (nine metres), "which is not good." In response, another man pointed out "30 feet away? So you have to get blown up? Might as well sit in the car." He explained that if they could get the detonator to work from 300 metres, "then we'll do it." He then said that when the bomb went off on Front St., innocent people would be killed, which would be "too bad for them," according to the Crown's factum.

Can you feel the empathy?

Also don't miss the tiny transcript on the right side there.

Harsh Life

Saba via Armies of Liberation:

UNICEF Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa Sigrid Kaag confirmed on Saturday the UNICEF's interest to support plans and programs of Yemeni government to improve children and women's status in Yemen.

A stunning statistic:

The UNICEF really care for Yemeni children, she said, adding that we seek to reduce children labor in Yemen, which reached 60 percent among children under age 18.

I wonder just how many are full-time workers? That would imply they're not going to school at all. If many are part-time laborers, then that's not a worrying situation.

An Ex-Muslim on Israel

Magdi Christian Allam:

"Having been condemned to death, I have reflected a long time on the value of life. And I discovered that behind the origin of the ideology of hatred, violence and death is the discrimination against Israel. Everyone has the right to exist except for the Jewish state and its inhabitants," he said. "Today, Israel is the paradigm of the right to life."

Link via The Dawn Patrol.

There is No Spoon

Gulf News via Secret Dubai Diary:

Dubai: An imprisoned precious stone dealer has asked a court to allow him to 'challenge the world' to prove that an onyx, which he promoted for Dh1.8 billion, is bulletproof.


Defence lawyer Saeed Al Ghailani, of Saeed Al Ghailani Advocates and Legal Consultants, asked the Appeal's Court judge to assign a physics expert or Dubai police's criminal laboratory to test the stone and decide whether it contains any electromagnetic powers which deviates the bullet before it hits the stone wearer.


The Neocon Identity

Ummah Pulse:

"Trickle-Down Theory", which first surfaced in the 1930s, is an old con-trick idea which promises that if rich people were encouraged to make themselves as wealthy as possible through huge salaries, tax cuts, bonuses, stock options and perks, their wealth would trickle down to the rest of the population and thereby raise the standard of living for all. Although in theory it appeared appealing, in practice it has always led to a drastic increase in the gap between the rich and the dispossessed. The rich always get richer and the poor are always swamped by more destitution.

So what if the income gap got larger? Relative poverty ought to be meaningless. What matters is that one can live a comfortable, individual, debt-free life in most of the US for under $1,000-a-month.

Another point: There will always be poverty because some people just do not know how to save and spend money. One can give them a million dollars and a few years down the road they would be broke and wallowing in debt. Blaming Neocons (hunh?) for the poor in the US is asinine.

During the Reagan administration, the Neocon darlings could not tout Trickle-Down Theory for it was by then thoroughly discredited through bitter experience. So they came up with a new disguise for it. Trickle-Down Theory was re-branded as the Laffer Curve, named after its inventor Arthur Laffer, a colleague of Milton Friedman who had famously written a column, Hooray for Magaret Thatcher, in Newsweek magazine urging American politicians to follow her example.

What will those Jews Neocons think of next!

Throughout the 1980s there was continuous decline in the long-term capital investment upon which growth and jobs are dependent. In that same decade a recession began, the Federal Reserve was forced to raise interest rates to dampen inflation and unemployment rose, for the first time since the 1930s, above 10 per cent.

Correct. The unemployment rate in 1982-83 was the worst since the Great Depression. So, an interesting question presents itself: Why didn't Americans vote out Ronald Reagan in 1984 like they did Herbert Hoover in 1932?

Drowning in the Estrogen Ocean

The Apostate:

My feelings about working in a female-dominant environment are unexpected.


I have to admit I miss having some men around to mix it up. I love women. I adore them. I prefer their company to men’s. But something about an almost all-female environment really galls me, especially if the girls are of the type I grew up with — too much enforced femininity. It reminds me of being a segregated woman again, confined to female spaces, trapped in feminine judgments, no escape from girl-talk - like, ever.

It gets annoying very quickly.

The Curse of the Black Gold

Pedestrian: Economic Prosperity: A Hurdle to Democratic Reform.

I think the Gulf region is the only place where you will find men in their prime “hanging out” at shopping malls during the day when all around the world, men of that age are at work.

This is the only place in the world where, if you step into a shopping mall in the middle of the day, you will be faced with the weird sight of young and middle aged men, in their long white robes – dishdashas - roaming around the mall, sitting around at Starbucks … in short, doing nothing.

Apparently nobody is in a hurry to get back to work.

Yup. They gained almost all their wealth by chance since it doesn't take any skill to be born in a land that is floating on oil. Their mentality is largely the one that has persisted for over a millennium. That's why after a quarter-century of amassing wealth, we still don't see Arabs managing their own oil infrastructure! They, collectively, simply have no desire to learn and be productive people.

What they are good at is sugarcoating their intellectual emptiness and civilizational void with spectacularly grotesque projects.

Not only is the emirates trying to outdo itself in towers – to a point where it’s even difficult to keep up with what they’re building today and how high it’s going to be – they are outdoing themselves in everything … What’s the deal with Abu Dhabi’s “Green City”? 22 BILLION dollars is going to be spent on creating it. And more than a haven for the environment, it seems just another vacation resort for those whose salaries go above 6 digits. More than that, not a single one of these projects are led or engineered by Arabs. Most often times, it is a British or American architectural firm doing the work.

Of course.

When the oil runs out or when the West finds another source of energy, the Middle Easterners will be in a grand world of pain.


Not your ordinary email:

'We just passed over the Himalayas and are en-route to Australia! The views today have been fantastic . . .,'' Gorie wrote in a ''Hello Earthlings'' e-mail he sent to friends from his days at Miami Palmetto.

That's from Gorie -- the shuttle commander of Endeavour.

That is the sort of thing -- along with an e-mail address that ends in -- that attracts attention when it hits your inbox.

'Guess it gives new meaning to the term 'cyberspace,' '' said Mike Pedersen, 51, a former Miami Palmetto classmate and wrestling team partner who received two e-mails from Gorie since his friend blasted into space March 11.

''It reminds you that, gosh, our country still does some amazing feats,'' Pedersen said. "To get an e-mail like that is just amazing.''

American Marine

LA Times Blogs:

In his speech Wednesday on the fifth anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, President Bush praised the bravery of Marine Gunnery Sgt. William "Spanky" Gibson, who lost a leg in Iraq but demanded to be sent back to help complete the U.S. mission there.

"When Americans like Spanky Gibson serve on our side, the enemy in Iraq doesn't got a chance," Bush told a Pentagon audience.

Who is this Gibson fellow?

While on a foot patrol in Ramadi on May 16, 2006, Marine Gunnery Sgt. William "Spanky" Gibson was shot by an insurgent sniper.

"Basically, the bullet disintegrated my [left] kneecap, completely," said Gibson.

Now, 21 months later, Gibson is back in Iraq, possibly the only above-the-knee amputee to redeploy to Iraq.

Oh Canada

Mark Steyn:

If only Unity had been conceived elsewhere in Canada and proposed the Nazis adopt the symbol of Medicine Hat, Alberta or Malignant Cove, Nova Scotia or even Dildo, Newfoundland, the history of the world might have been very different.

I just can't see the Germans blitzkrieging the French while saluting the Dildo.

Stop the Oppression!

It is always amusing to see what really offends Muslims.

Exhibit A:

I was walking through the aisles in the grocery store the other day when a particular product made me do a double take. I had to backtrack so I could see if what I thought I saw was what I actually saw. And unfortunately it was. It was a box of Canadian label President’s Choice "Memories of Marrakesh" couscous with a picture of the face of a niqab clad woman!

Oh. My. God.

President's Choice exploits and uses orientalist thinking to sell their product.

Those bastards!

With the kohl laden eyes of the niqabi woman one becomes aware of her femininity; her sexuality. In line with orientalist thought, she is the oppressed and sexualized woman, luring you to try some couscous; eager and ready to serve you as her submissive nature would dictate.

I love couscous.

Must Not Offend

Recent news about Taslima Nasreen:

The 45-year-old gynaecologist-turned-author - whose predicament is similar to that of Indian-born British author Salman Rushdie - had been seeking permanent residence in India, where she moved after spending time in Europe and the United States.

But New Delhi had stalled the request, fearful of a backlash from the country's 140 million-plus Muslims, and has given the openly atheistic author only six-month visas.

Robert Spencer:

If free people survive in India, they will look upon this as a moment of shame in the country's history.

One Smart Infidel

International Herald Tribune via Israellycool:

A mathematical mystery that has baffled the top minds in the esoteric field of symbolic dynamics for nearly four decades has recently been cracked — by a 63-year-old former security guard.

Avraham Trakhtman, a mathematician who worked as a laborer after immigrating to Israel from Russia, has succeeded where dozens have failed, solving the elusive "Road Coloring Problem."


Many Iranians Don't Like Islam (For Some Weird Reason)

AKI via Dhimmi Watch:

In its first session since last week's general elections, the new Iranian parliament is expected to discuss a law that will condemn to death anyone who decides to leave the Muslim faith and convert to other religions.

You see, the present punishment is just way too light:

Currently converts, particularly those who have decided to leave the Muslim faith for Evangelical churches, are arrested and then released after some years of detention.

Islam is losing the battle quite badly:

According to unofficial sources, in the past five years, one million Iranians, particularly young people and women, have abandoned Islam and joined Evangelical churches.

The solution offered by the Religion of PeaceTM: Let's kill those Christians!

Insensitive Pig

Kristina De Guzman:

Stelmach’s speech bored me for the most part, but the man came off as humble—at least, more so than Ralph Klein ever did during his tenure. Still, I was struck by his remark about how he’s glad that his grandparents’ boat arrived in Canada because the other destination would have been Argentina. He quickly added that his Spanish wasn’t all that great either, which made the audience chuckle. What’s even sadder is that the people at CTV News were praising Stelmach’s good sense of humour.


A few people I know took the remark at face value and felt that Stelmach was simply expressing happiness about living in Alberta. But if this were the case, shouldn’t it be enough to say just that and nothing more? There’s no need to bring up the other, supposedly lesser choice.


If Stelmach had actually meant to make a joke, that makes him more of a jackass than if he were simply stating facts. Unfortunately, culturally insensitive remarks like these are so subtle these days that few people seem to pick up on them. Stelmach didn’t say it outright, but by stating that Argentina would have been the other choice, he’s suggesting that it isn’t the best place to live in—which is true, if you’re part of the poor majority—but that’s completely dismissing all the reasons why that is.

It. Was. A. Joke. And a good one at that.

By the way, I'm glad my parents sent me to Canada after high school, instead of that Islamic hellhole called Pakistan. Plus, my Punjabi has always been rusty.

Link via Colby Cosh via Daimnation.

I Blame Skynet

NPR via Tim Blair:

Some 3,000 scientific robots that are plying the ocean have sent home a puzzling message. These diving instruments suggest that the oceans have not warmed up at all over the past four or five years. That could mean global warming has taken a breather. Or it could mean scientists aren't quite understanding what their robots are telling them.

Those robots are lying! They want us to think that we're not heading for disaster when in fact we truly (really!) are.

Those machines are evil, I tells ya.

Sweet Sweet Sharia

Muslim Matters:

There’s nothing like the thought of a gym or swimming pool running women-only sessions (at the request of Muslim women) to get some men all worked up. Take the recent ‘controversy’ surrounding one of Harvard University’s gymnasiums. Andrew Sullivan rushes to denounce it as “shariah at Harvard’; Jihadwatch says they have submitted to Islam; and on and on it goes.

It’s hard to see what all the fuss is about.

Yup, nothing wrong with a little gender apartheid.

The Slick Moderate

Ibn Warraq reviews a book about Tariq Ramadan:

In November 2003, in a televised debate with Nicolas Sarkozy, then France’s interior minister, Ramadan was asked about his brother Hani, who had justified stoning adulterous women to death. Instead of condemning the custom outright as barbaric, Ramadan replied, “I’m in favor of a moratorium so that they stop applying these sorts of punishments in the Muslim world. What’s important is for people’s way of thinking to evolve. What is needed is a pedagogical approach.” In other words, Ramadan wanted, as my dictionary entry on the word informs me, “a legally authorized postponement of the fulfillment of an obligation”—a temporary ban.

Yup. Tariq Ramadan opposes all such barbaric, Islamic punishments--for the moment. He's definitely a shining moderate Muslim.