The Merry Minuet

The bitter argument waged in the comments section of yesterday’s post brought to mind a song from the late 1950s. The Kingston Trio covered a number that came out earlier in the ’50s, and the words were written by the Broadway lyricist Sheldon Harnick.

I had to make some slight modifications to the second stanza:

Merry Minuet

They’re rioting in Africa,
They’re starving in Spain.
There’s hurricanes in Florida,
And Texas needs rain.
The whole world is festering
With unhappy souls.
The French hate the Germans,
The Germans hate the Poles.
Italians hate Yugoslavs,
South Africans hate the Dutch.
And I don’t like anybody very much!

But we can be tranquil, and thankful, and glad,
For man’s been endowed with Islamic Jihad!
And we know for certain that some lovely day,
After greeting the Twelfth Imam, we will all be blown away!

fratricideConsidering all the animosity between Croat and Serb, between Orthodox and Roman Catholic, between Iberians and Central Europeans, between the Irish and the English, and especially between Americans and everyone else, it’s no wonder that the Great Jihad is eating our lunch.

Close your eyes and throw a dart at the timeline of world history. It doesn’t matter where it lands: I can guarantee you that sometime during that year, somewhere on the planet, one group of people was being brutalized, enslaved, massacred, or supplanted by another.

It’s late and I don’t have any time for research, so I’ll just pick a few dates off the top of my head:
– – – – – – – –

146 B.C.   Carthage destroyed by Rome.
70 A.D.   The Temple in Jerusalem leveled by the Romans, beginning the Jewish Diaspora.
410 A.D.   Rome sacked by the Visigoths.
580 A.D.   The Celts at York defeated by the Anglo-Saxons at the Battle of Caer Greu.
711 A.D.   The Moorish conquest of Iberia.
793 A.D.   The Vikings looted the monastery and Lindisfarne and slaughtered the inhabitants.
1389 A.D.   Serbia was defeated by the Turks at the Battle of Kosovo, and absorbed into the Ottoman Empire.
1453 A.D.   Constantinople overrun, sacked, and occupied by the Turks.
1658 A.D.   Denmark ceded Skåne after being defeated by Sweden.
1759 A.D.   The French defeated at the Plains of Abraham; Quebec fell to the British.
1795 A.D.   The final partition of Poland. The Polish nation ceased to exist.
1848 A.D.   California annexed by the United States after the Mexican-American War.
1865 A.D.   Richmond occupied by the Yankees.
1871 A.D.   Alsace-Lorraine ceded to Germany after the Franco-Prussian War.
1907 A.D.   Indian Territory abolished when Oklahoma became a state.
1922 A.D.   The Greeks and Armenians massacred and expelled from Smyrna by the Turks.
1940 A.D.   Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania occupied and annexed by the Soviet Union.
1945 A.D.   The expulsion of the Sudeten Germans from Czechoslovakia under the Beneš decree.
1950 A.D.   Tibet forcibly occupied by China.
2008 A.D.   Kosovo removed from the control of Serbia by the United States, Britain, France, and Germany.

I could continue, but you get the idea.

There isn’t a square meter of ground in the world that hasn’t been defiled and brutally taken from one group by another.

Every single existing tribe, people, or ethnic group — every group, even the most peaceful and spiritual Indian tribe — obtained its current territory through violence, stealth, subterfuge, or purchase. Nobody has the original claim to any piece of ground on Earth. There aren’t any truly aboriginal inhabitants.

If we’re going to tear at one another’s throats over the grievances of fifty or a hundred or a thousand years ago, the strife won’t end until the Hosts of Mohammed joyfully celebrate the will of Allah and parade into our emptied cities.

Don’t you think we should forget these old grudges and stand against the common enemy?

Are we going to behave like the English under King Alfred and unite against a foe that threatens us all?

Or shall we be like the Irish, and traduce one another while the enemy hews us to pieces?

Honest to God, what’s wrong with you people??

Serbs are going to have to get along with Croats. Swedes are going to have to put up with Danes. The Irish and the English will have to forget their animosity. The Spaniards and the Portuguese will need to set aside their differences.

And — most difficult of all — I’ll have to learn to make friends with Yankees.

The Motoons Will Always Be There

If the Motoons didn’t exist, Muslims would have to invent them.

That’s the only conclusion one can draw when reading about the latest frenzy of Islamic offendedness. Muslims just can’t wait to be offended. The very existence of infidels offends them. If it weren’t the Motoons, it would be something else — a billboard showing a piggybank, an uncovered woman, a man walking his dog…

But fortunately the Motoons are there to be exploited on every possible occasion.

Apparently the Danish embassy in Amman has not yet been reduced to rubble, and the Jordanians demonstrated in front of it yesterday to protest the existence of the Motoons. According to the Arab News:

Jordan Media Plan Joint Response to Cartoons

Motoon demonstration in JordanAt least 21 Jordanian daily newspapers, weeklies and other media said yesterday that they had decided to carry a unified text tomorrow that responds to the recent reprinting of blasphemous cartoons. “The unified text is designed to carry a media message of a professional and objective nature as part of an expanded media campaign,” the papers said in a statement.

“It also has the aim of driving the idea home that the reprinting of the sacrilegious pictures by 17 Danish newspapers at the same time represents a flagrant, systematic and well-studied offense to Islam and the Prophet (peace be upon him) and has nothing to do with the freedom of expression,” they added.

The statement urged all other media and the journalists’ syndicate to join this campaign to turn Wednesday into an “historic day” in Jordan which it said performed a “pioneering role in defending Islam and Prophet Mohammed,” a reference to King Abdallah who belongs to Hashemite clan. The statement also appealed to all Arab and Islamic media to follow suit.

The move by the Jordanian press represented an escalation in the reaction to the reprinting of the caricatures 10 days ago by a dozen Danish newspapers which said they wanted to show their firm commitment to the freedom of expression following reports of an attempt on the life of cartoonist Kurt Westergaard. The pictures first appeared in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten two years ago.

Scores of Jordanians staged an angry demonstration outside the Danish Embassy yesterday, demanding that their government cut ties with Denmark. “We don’t want to see a Danish Embassy on Jordanian soil,” shouted the protesters in the Jordanian capital, men and veiled women affiliated with the Islamic Action Front, Jordan’s largest opposition group. They also told the Jordanian government to “dismiss the Danish ambassador” and insulted him and his government while they burned the Danish flag.

The embassy was open for business, but no embassy personnel could be seen at the windows of the four-story white limestone building, which sported the Danish flag on the roof. Jordan is unlikely to heed the call since it maintains cordial ties with the European Union nation. But in 2006, when the controversy over the cartoons first erupted, Jordan demanded an official explanation from Denmark and allowed merchants to remove popular Danish dairy products from the shelves.

Our Norwegian correspondent HTP sent an email today with a tip about the latest from the creepy children’s television programming on Hamas TV. In one particular video clip, the little girl who hosts the show discusses with the giant bunny Assud the necessity for good Muslims to kill the Danes.

According to HTP:

This is front page news in Norway’s biggest newspaper (VG) today. Norway was, embarrassingly, the first and only country (they mistakenly thought other countries would follow suit) to acknowledge the Palestinian government run by Hamas.

The leader of the Progress Party, Siv Jensen, thinks this is a good time to admit the mistake.

You can watch the video clip, or see the MEMRI article for the transcript. Here are some choice excerpts:
– – – – – – – –

Saraa:   “How did these Danes have the audacity to affront the Messenger of Allah? Do you have an answer to that, Assud?”
Assud:   “No, I don’t. Maybe because the Arabs and Muslims keep silent, [the Danes] humiliated them and did these things to them.”

“Allah Willing, the Soldiers of ‘The Pioneers of Tomorrow’ Will Redeem the Prophet Muhammad with All That They Possess — Even with Their Blood”…”We Will Kill Them”

Saraa:   “That’s one reason, but there is an even more important reason, Assud.”
Assud:   “I have no idea.”
Saraa:   “It’s because the West has seen that we’ve moved away from the religion of Allah, and from the Sunna of our Prophet Muhammad. They have also seen that we have forsaken the religion of Allah, and therefore, they could affront the Prophet, because… We have done nothing to redeem the Prophet Muhammad. But I say to them: You haven’t seen anything yet. Allah willing, the soldiers of the ‘Pioneers of Tomorrow’ will redeem the Prophet Muhammad with all that they possess, and even with their blood, Assud. They will not allow them to do this again.”
Assud:   “If they do it again, Saraa, we will kill them, right?”
Saraa:   “Allah willing.”
Assud:   “I will bite them and eat them up.”
Saraa:   “Yes.”

Henrik Ræder Clausen, being Danish, has a definite opinion on the topic. Here are some excerpts from his editorial at Europe News:

Traditionally, Muslims have great confidence in their leaders, and these leaders are now drawing heavily on this confidence to evoke anger over the Muhammad cartoons. When an Islamic leader claims Islam is under attack, Islam is under attack, and violence is justified.

Allah go boom!The Motoons are central to this. It depicts Muhammad in a significantly different way from how the imams and muftis are used to depicting him. Further, the idea that Muhammad was a murderous plundering rapist undermines their authority, because religious figures are supposed to be good examples for their followers. Beheadings do not look like nice examples to follow.

So much for the violent Jihad movement. If you are interested, you can get recruited at Jihad Unspun. It explicitly propagates the myth that Islam is under attack.

And in a way, they are right. Islam is being attacked by rationality and freedom of information. Everyone is now able to look up the Life of Muhammad (the Sirat), either by reading the original books or modern critical analysis such as The Truth about Muhammad, The Legacy of Jihad, Prophet of Doom or Defeating Jihad. The picture isn’t pretty, and we are struggling between the freedom of the West and the religious dogma of the Middle East.

But conversely, the assertion that Islam is under attack from the West is patently false. Islam is being exposed in the world of rationality and freedom of information, and the Islamic scriptures, read literally and uncritically, are self-incriminating. There is a lot of material in there pertaining to the life and example of Muhammad, material that simply doesn’t look holy, by any reasonable definition of the word.

By implication, it is near impossible to say anything about Islam or Muhammad worse than what is in the Islamic scriptures themselves, and the so-called “Islam critics” are largely pointing out the nature of the Islamic scripture and the legacy of Islamic history. This is, of course, the root cause for the Islamic attack on freedom of expression.

As for the opinion of Europe News, let it be expressed by the Motoon above. Muslims need to relate to and solve the problem it expresses. If the Muslims burn our flags, our embassies or even kill our artists, we shall respond by publishing more Motoons! Violence is not holy, and should be completely banished from religion, even in face of (gasp) mockery! Without freedom of expression, there can be no democracy, no human rights, and no freedom for artists and other existing people.

Muslims must accept scrutiny of their religion, criticism and suggestions for bringing it up to date with a modern world. Islamic leaders are encouraged to interpret the Motoons not as an evil insult, rather as an encouragement for reform. Muslims need that.

The truth shall set us free.

Part of the truth is that the sins of “un-Islamic behavior” and “offending the Prophet” are not reserved exclusively for infidels. It seems that Muslims can be offended by cartoons drawn by Muslims about Muslims:

Gaza: Anti-Hamas Cartoon, 6 Months in Prison For Author

Six months of imprisonment and a fine: this is the penalty imposed by a tribunal in Gaza (subject to the control of Hamas) to the editor-in-chief of Palestinian daily ‘al-Ayam’, Akram Haniyeh, and its political cartoonist Baha Boukhari for having published last November a cartoon considered offensive to former prime minister Ismail Haniyeh.

Hamas has also prohibited the distribution in Gaza of ‘al-Ayam’, a daily which in general expresses the position of the PNA. With the offensive picture Boukhari illustrated Ismail Haniyeh in front of MPs looking alike him. The headline qualified them as ‘The Illegitimate’.

“In the motives of the decision it was also affirmed that this picture represents an offense against Islam and the Muslims,” Boukhari told ANSA today.

The author added that the tribunal in Gaza had no right to try him which is why he will not apologize to the leaders of Hamas. Palestinian journalists and writers are organising for tomorrow a manifestation of solidarity with ‘al-Ayam’. (ANSAmed) [emphasis added].

So the cartoon “represents an offense against Islam and the Muslims”, eh?

Move over, Denmark! Time to make room for the leaders of the Palestinian Authority!

The above gives you a little foretaste of what the Ummah will be like after the last infidel is vanquished. First the Sunnis and the Shiites will decide (by violence) who represents the “true Islam”, and who offends the Prophet. Then the survivors will repeat the process, splintering into ever-smaller groups, each struggling to put the curved knives to the other’s throats.

In the end, there will be only a single Muslim left standing.

But he’ll be a really good Muslim, and beloved of the Prophet.

Hat tips: For the Jordanian demo, TB; for the Palestinian cartoon controversy, insubria.

Is Kosovo the Beginning of a New Domino Theory?

Map of the central Balkans -- thanks, LN
Reader DP111 left a link in our comments to one of my favorite analysts, David Warren, who has this to say about Kosovo:

…I was opposed not only to the wanton bombing of Serbia, but also to the whole “inevitable” project of carving a new European Muslim state out of the flesh of that Orthodox Christian country.

I was not without sympathy for the “plight of the Kosovars,” however. Like virtually all journalists at that time, not of Serbian ethnicity, I fell for a great deal of typically Balkan propagandist rubbish that has since been quietly withdrawn.

My rule of thumb, on wars, is to fight them with your enemies, when absolutely necessary; but never with your friends, and in particular, never in order to create new enemies…


The Serbians, under the late Slobodan Milosevic, seemed determined to inspire loathing and distrust, and suspicion that he was doing in Kosovo precisely what his nationalist allies had done in Bosnia: “ethnic cleansing,” also known as the massacre of innocents. Although not nearly as monstrous as, say, Saddam Hussein, nor anything like Saddam’s threat to the West, Milosevic missed as many opportunities to come clean with his diplomatic interrogators. The Serbs, who allowed this vicious old Communist, turned nationalist demagogue, to remain in power, showed very poor judgment.

But the fact that Kosovo had a significant ethnic majority of Albanian Muslims over Serbian Christians was not, in itself, sufficient argument to detach it from Serbia by main force. For if that is the argument, the state system which provides the only order the planet currently enjoys will tend to disintegrate. [my emphasis – D]

Strange to say, I am with Vladimir Putin on this one, and against George W. Bush. Mr. Putin’s remarks on the inspiration that Kosovo’s independence has given to violent separatists in Chechnya, Abkhazia, South Ossetia, and elsewhere, are entirely to the point.

Indeed, driving the Serbian government and Serbian people into the protective embrace of ex-Soviet Russia, and ultimately her ex-KGB strongman, was among several counter-productive dimensions in the war that Madeleine Albright organized, along with other ruinous Clinton interventions in areas of peripheral interest to the U.S. (Haiti, Somalia, Bosnia).

The NATO action in Kosovo brought Mr. Putin – the hammer of the Chechens – to power, by demonstrating that force and force alone will decide secession struggles, East or West. It restored anti-Americanism to its place in the Russian national security consensus, indirectly bringing an end to the Yeltsin reform era.

It was an incredibly stupid war to wage, and the product was on display in Brussels yesterday where the Russian ambassador to NATO, Dmitry Rogovin, actually threatened the use of force to prevent Kosovo’s declaration of independence from going any farther.

President Bush, who was prompted to recognize the self-declared Kosovar state (together with most European powers), feels obliged to accept the fait accompli he inherited from the preceding administration.

He, or his successor, will then try to resist the next stage of demands, for a Greater Albania in which Kosovo attempts to merge with Albania, and the Muslim majorities in adjoining districts of Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia, and Greece begin insurrections to join them. By recognizing Kosovo, Bush et al. have validated exactly that: a deadly new round of Balkan troubles, ripe for Islamicization.

We cannot afford to validate the principle of armed insurrection, whether in Kosovo or Chechnya or Palestine or Kashmir or northern Sri Lanka or southern Thailand or the southern Philippines or in any of the many other places where terrorism demands to be rewarded with an independent state. And, within Europe, a couple of thousand EU policemen (about to be installed without United Nations cover, and in defiance of agreements with Serbia) cannot guarantee order in a territory that is already a European refuge for radical Islamist cells, and threatens to become Europe’s terrorist safe house.

There is a deeper history here, for the understanding of which we would have to review the rest of the legacy of Ottoman imperialism in the Balkans. But that is, alas, something the Serbs understand a lot better than we do

Well, that’s pretty clear, isn’t it? I felt I knew a bit more about the morass after reading Mr. Warren’s take on the situation.

Then, in the comments, I found two coherent arguments – one from a Mr. Thomas Anderson, reflecting his agreement with Mr. Warren, and another by someone who calls himself “Witness to History,” and who stands opposed to both, presenting his reasoned disagreement quite well. I will present their opposing points of view below.
– – – – – – – –
Having read both points of view, I was as lost as ever. Knowing that “Google is your friend” and that my geographical knowledge about this area is hazy at best, I tried to find out exactly what the regional parameters are. Perhaps a geopolitcal map will provide some clues?

Forget it. Wikipedia left me more confused than before. It seems that no one quite agrees on what is central Europe versus eastern Europe. You open the page and it’s more bristly with disclaimers than a porcupine. Even here, there are arguments:

Eastern Europe is a concept of a geopolitical region recently influenced by the Cold War. Its borders are defined more by culture than by clear and precise geography. Throughout history and to a lesser extent today Eastern Europe has been distinguishable from Western Europe and other regions due to cultural, religious, economic, and historical reasons. Although the term Eastern Europe was largely defined of the Cold War, it still remains much in use.[1] The term is commonly used in the media and in everyday use both in “eastern” and other regions of Europe.

The wiki goes on to explore the various definitions given by various interested parties:

1 Definitions [of eastern Europe]

1.1 UN
1.2 CIA
1.3 Time Almanac
1.4 Academic
1.5 Geographical
1.6 Soviet era
1.7 Post-Soviet

And the maps on that page aren’t much help, either. The parameters of the map(s) you choose seem to depend on your political and historical leanings. If you go to the page you’ll find a UN map, one from the CIA, another from Time, and a last one showing the divisions post-WWII until the break-up of the Soviet Union.

My conclusion: this place is so mined with both ancient feuds and recent political/historical conflict that there is no “real” truth to be had. Your truth seems to be what you want to see accomplished. Or perhaps, your truth proceeds from your own family’s past.

Here are the two commenters to Mr. Warren’s essay. As you see, they have diametrically opposed points of view. The first debater, Mr. Thomas Anderson, left his email address so I was able to get his permission to put up his ideas here. The other is anonymous with no contact. He calls himself “Witness to History”. Mr. Anderson agrees with Mr. Warren; “Witness to History” does not. They are both worth reading.

First, Mr. Anderson:

…Stupidity, including political stupidity, like the poor, has been with us and will be with us always. What I cannot understand is why, in the last half-century, it has become fashionable to be so politically stupid that we embrace personal, national and indeed cultural suicide with closed eyes and open arms.

I do understand such things as the life cycle of nations and the desire of leaders for a “good” war to enhance their reputations and prop up their support. What puzzles me is the seemingly recent unseemly rush to sell out Western Civilization lock, stock and barrel.

Concerning the situation in the Balkans, for instance, which you describe so well, one has only to look at a map to see that the 1500-year Moslem encroachment on Europe, indeed the rest of the world, is proceeding apace. The Serbs, being on the front line of this struggle between civilizations, understand the situation very well. Never mind this firefight here and that little car-bombing over there. And do not even look at their attempts to preserve a national identity. In the larger view, as you say, they see that we are piece-by-piece giving up land and everything our culture stands for to what I see as a backwards and even evil belief system.

I am puzzled. Why do we not stand up to this monstrosity? Why are we so eager to bend over and give in to these savages? And I say savage by intent. Have we become so short-sighted that we will sell our very souls for gratification in the instant? Is it necessary for us to prove we are so sensitive to our beliefs that we must carry them to sophomoric extremes? Are we now so weak that we will just give them whatever they ask for? Are we just stupid? As little as one hundred years ago, well within my grandfathers’ lifetimes, we as a civilization would have understood the Serb’s attempt to stem this dark tide. We as a civilization would have rushed to their aid. Instead, we tried to bomb THEM back to the stone age. And now we want them to give more land to millions of people who profess a belief in the Koran and the Moslem philosophy of life.

That philosophy, of course, is another sticking point. Except in very rare cases, there can be no such thing as a “moderate” Moslem. Anyone who embraces the Moslem path has already chosen to believe that by teaching and by definition, theirs is the superior way of life and must prevail at all costs. There is no room for any other thought. Even a cursory reading of the Koran will illustrate this. In the end, if someone defines himself as a Moslem, he or she must of necessity side with those who would destroy us.

…As trite as it may be, it does seem that in a most simple-minded way we are repeating the mistakes of history. Again, I am puzzled. Is this inevitable? …

After I read Mr. Anderson’s comment and amplification, I felt as though I understood the situation somewhat. But then, two comments below, I come to “Witness to History’s” strong disagreement with Mr. Warren’s analysis:

Mr. Warren is mostly mistaken in the conclusions he has drawn. He paints the Kosovar Albanians as the demons and then ties them to extremist Islam. Nothing is further from the truth. The ancestors of modern Albanians were in the area now known as Kosova for hundreds of years before the Slavic invasions. They were there during the reign of the Ottomans and actually fought on the same side as the Serbs during the famous battle of Kosovo Polje. Only after the fall of the Ottomans was the Serbian empire able to attempt to re-occuppy Albanian lands.

However, that’s all ancient history. Modern history provides plenty of justification for the independence of Kosova from Serbia. Milosevic’s attempts to disenfranchise completely Albanians in the largely autonomous province of Kosovo were the spark that lit the inferno of Yugoslavia’s dismemberment. Serbs started the bloodbath in Kosova, continued to attempt the same in Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, Macedonia, and then, unsuccessful in all their previous campaigns of ethnic dominance, returned to Kosova. They attempted to cleanse the province and got their heads handed to them on a plate by a rag-tag army backed by NATO. Throughout this time, the Serbian people supported and defended Milosevic. Now is time to pay the piper. They backed the wrong horse and lost.

Much has been made of the “precedent” of Kosova starting problems in the areas of “frozen conflict”. Why is this bad? Why should the Kurds have to live under Arab Iraqi domination because some British prig drew the lines on a map as the Ottomans collapsed? Why should Chechens have to remain part of Russia in light of their miserable treatment for hundreds of year by the Russians. Because the conflict was “frozen” in 1945 at Yalta? If we really believe it’s better to let sleeping dogs lie than to allow people to determine their own futures, we better give everything east of Berlin back to the Communists and allow that conflict to remain “frozen”.

Let people decide if they want to continue where they are or go their separate ways. It worked fantastically for the former British colonies now known as the US, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.

Serbs, follow the example of the Germans after WWII. Apologize for the racist, nationalist crimes of your former leaders, pay reparations to all those you tried to liquidate, and concentrate on rebuilding your economy and earning some measure of respect in the civilized world. You have a lot of work ahead of you. Stick with Putin and his crowd and you will learn the true meaning of the old African saying: “When elephants fight, the grass suffers.”

And for a further complication, a third commenter notes this bit of information:

Ms. Albright is ethnically Albanian BTW. She had a blood feud with the Serbs who killed her Grandfather and Uncle in the 30’s. It was damnably foolish to allow this woman to pursue her blood feuds/psychotherapy with the USAF. It is unforgiveable that we made Russia an enemy over it.

Arrgh! How is anyone who is not already familiar with the millennia of history in this region – a knowledge that seemingly would have to cover not only the present, but go back to the period before the invasions by the Imperial Muslims – how could this fictional “anyone” begin to sort out a consensual meaning that would serve the truth?

Now I know why we Americans seem so simple-minded. Given the brief span of our time on the North American continent, our history is relatively transparent. It’s easy to watch it unfold for we are not that many generations from its very beginnings or its eventual foundation as a nation. We can disagree about what our various historical points mean but nothing is lost in the mists of time.

By comparison, European history is almost as unfathomable as China’s past. More scrutable perhaps, but nonetheless confusing. (I said “almost.”)

The difference between the Americas and other places is that we all have precise demarcations in our histories: for us, who relatively quickly came to dominate, “history” begins with the arrival of Europeans. Since winners write history, we gloss over the sagas of the indigenous tribes already resident when we came. Tribal history simply hasn’t much appeal for the Western mind, since we have long left tribal arrangements, preferring to center on the liberty of the individual.

Meanwhile in central Europe, or eastern Europe, or the Balkans, the tale called “history” changes depending on which small region is telling the story. This is true even in my ancestral homeland, where the argumentative Gaelic Irish were invaded, defeated, and dominated by the more united Sasanach – i.e., Anglo Saxons. That story is still in dispute and will be for as long as there are those who tell the tales to the next generation.

Light Posting (Again)

Work pressures are once again keeping me from blogging. For the last week, including the weekend, I have been working ten to fifteen hour days, and the crunch is not over. So my posting will be light for a while.

For those who like to send me things to read: please keep on sending them. I may even read some of them!

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Concerning the post about Ronbo in which some of your comments were deleted:

Dymphna linked to the post in an entry to the guest-book at the Cleveland funeral home site. In the event that the entry is ever approved, grieving family members may see the comments on that post. Anything that might be considered insulting, derogatory, or disrespectful to the dead was deleted, out of consideration for the feelings of those who grieve.

This is a situation with which Dymphna is personally familiar, so she is emphatic about it. It does not portend a change in our general comments policy.

The Ronbo affair grows more and more mysterious. Although I exchanged a few emails with him, I didn’t know the man personally, nor did anybody else that I communicate with. Hence none of us knows for certain whether Ronbo really did commit suicide, whether the Ronald Barbour listed in the Cleveland obituary is really him, or whether the blogger Ronbo’s real name was in fact Ronald Barbour.

For now I’m assuming that he was who he said he was, and that he did what he said he was going to do. If you read the comments on the earlier thread, you know that conflicting tidbits of information have emerged from the investigations people have undertaken to try to find out what happened.

If anything definite is confirmed about Ronbo, we will post it.

[post ends here]

When did the United States become the Islamic Republic of America?

“The Repetition of History”
by Theodore G. Karakostas

We are very fortunate in our readers. They supply us with information we wouldn’t get easily in other forms. In this case, the essayist is Theodore G. Karakostas and the subject is one he knows well: the roots of the current crisis in Serbia and Kosovo.

But this post is much more than that. Mr. Karakostas opens the door to the long history of the area, and the bloody borders created there by the influx of Islam so long ago. He says:

I would like to express how much I like your website. I am a writer coming from an Eastern Orthodox-Byzantine point of view and a Greek American and would like to share such an assessment regarding the new Islamist success in Kosovo over the past week.

And here is his provocative essay:

In November 1979, Iranian militants seized the American embassy and took hostages for 444 days. Throughout the 1980’s, the Iranians launched a variety of attacks on American targets (as in Lebanon) and sponsored terrorism. During the 1990’s Al Qaeda attacked the United States in Somalia, Saudi Arabia, and bombed the American embassies in Africa. On September 11, 2001, Al Qaeda attacked the United States on its own soil.

The reaction of the United States has been to destroy Yugoslavia. Osama Bin Laden, Ayman Al Zawahri, and Al Qaeda remain at large. Al Qaeda in fact, according to Youssef Bodansky, terrorism expert and biographer of Osama Bin Laden established bases in Kosovo and Bosnia. In 2006, Muslims from Kosovo were implicated in the plot to bomb Fort Dix in New Jersey. The reaction of the United States is to ignore the very spirit of the alleged war on terror and to approve the establishment of a terrorist Islamic State in the Balkans at the expense of the Serbs who were allies of the United States in both World Wars.

When did the United States become the Islamic Republic of America? My own idea is that the United States drifted toward pro-Islamic sympathies when it became involved with the Turkish nationalists between 1919 and 1922. Today, many of the Western backers of independence for Kosovo were also those States who armed and supported Mustafa Kemal and the Turkish nationalists in Asia Minor. Italy, France, and Great Britain have extended immediate recognition to Kosovo.

The burning of Smyrna in 1922In 1919, the Italians were the first European power to arm Mustafa Kemal in Asia Minor. According to Marjorie Housepian Dobkin in her brilliantly researched “Smyrna 1922 the Destruction of a City” the Greek Army might have destroyed Mustafa Kemal’s Army had it not been for the intervention of the Italians and the British who according to Dobkin, rescued Kemal from destruction. The connection between the betrayal of the Greek cause in Asia Minor, and the betrayal of the Serbs today reflects the continuing evolution of Western policy which is in effect pro-Islamic.

The Greek-Serbian alliance in the Balkan Wars drove the Ottoman Empire out of the Balkans. These achievements are being systematically undermined today. Kosovo was liberated during the Balkan Wars, and now the change of borders there challenges the outcome for Greek achievements as well. The Ottomans who were defeated by the Greeks and the Serbs get the last laugh! The Ottomanization of the Balkans is under way.

The genocide at SmyrnaTurkey’s recognition of Kosovo was to be expected. The Turks are reestablishing links with their former Muslim subjects and expanding their influence in the region at the expense of Greece and Serbia. In 1922, in the aftermath of the Genocide and mass slaughter of Greeks at the City of Smyrna, the Greeks wanted to make a last stand in Eastern Thrace, and pondered the possibility of entering Constantinople. The Greeks were told in no uncertain terms by the three European Powers that if they entered Constantinople, they would not be permitted to remain there. Ultimately, over 1,000,000 Greek Orthodox Christians were ethnically cleansed from Asia Minor with the full cooperation of the Americans and the three European Powers.

The burning of a church in KosovoDuring the 1990’s, the Serbs were ethnically cleansed from Krajinna by the Nazi armies of Croatia and from Bosnia. They have also been ethnically cleansed from Kosovo since 1999 with their Churches and Monasteries being destroyed. In both Asia Minor and Yugoslavia, the Western powers were present when the Christians were slaughtered by the Muslims. Today, NATO and the European Union talk of protecting the rights of Serbs in Kosovo, and of maintaining “peacekeepers” even while Serbs have been lynched, murdered, beaten, and terrorized into leaving under the auspices of the “peacekeepers”.

During the fall of 2007, a resolution in the House of Representatives was introduced which would have recognized the Armenian Genocide. The Bush administration lobbied against it, and intimidated many of the Democrats who supported it, into withdrawing their support. The extermination of a Christian people by an Islamic government was not recognized in order to placate the Islamic successors of the Genocidal regime! One would think that Islamists were dictating American policies.
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Over two million Christians in the Sudan have been slaughtered by the Islamists. The Coptic Christians of Egypt have suffered relentless discrimination and persecution by Islamic extremists. Saudi Arabia prohibits the practice of Christianity. While Monasteries in Kosovo are being destroyed, the Saudis are subsidizing the construction of Mosques in Kosovo, which fly the Saudi flag. In the struggle between Armenia and Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh, the West is backing the Muslims.

Then there are the benefits of European multiculturalism. The European Constitution does not mention Christianity (a fact which outraged the Orthodox Church of Greece). Various feminists in the European Parliament have suggested that the Monastic Republic of Mount Athos should be compelled to lift its prohibition on the entry of women onto its hallowed grounds. This Orthodox Monastic community established on the Holy Mountain of Athos which is dedicated to the Theotokos (Mother of God) does not allow women in order to specifically honor the Theotokos. The Orthodox Church of Greece has bitterly resisted the attempts by the European Union to undermine Greek traditions and to impose secularism on Greek society.

Dr. Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of CanterburyContrast these radical anti-Christian stances with the recent statement of the Archbishop of Canterbury who suggested that Sharia law should be allowed to coexist with Civil laws in Great Britain. It is not ironic that the capitals of Europe are being thoroughly Islamicized, or that they are being held hostages (the riots in France 2005) by extremists, considering the extent to which Eastern Christians have been sacrificed throughout the twentieth century. Gone are the days of the Austro-Hungarian Empire which saved Europe from the Ottoman Empire in 1539 and 1683.

A Rock Concert in Croatia recently received a great deal of publicity because the band in question proceeded to give the Nazi salute. The wars that were waged against the Serbs during the 1990’s were waged by a government of Nazi sympathizers on the one hand, and two Islamic governments in league with Al Qaeda on the other. The 800,000 Serbs that were slaughtered by the pro-Nazi Croats and Muslims during the Second World War were entirely ignored by western media.

The Republic of Cyprus is another Christian country struggling to survive. Over 500 Greek Orthodox Churches have been destroyed or converted into Mosques. From Cyprus to Kosovo, Christianity is being eradicated and the destroyers in both cases are being embraced by Europe and the United States. The Greek Orthodox in Constantinople are on the verge of extinction. The betrayal of the Greek Christians of Constantinople since the 1940’s represents another heartbreaking tragedy in the history of the Orthodox Church during the twentieth century.

Turkey today is notoriously anti-American. Islamic fundamentalism is faring quite well despite the assurance of American and European officials that Turkey is a “secular, democratic” country. Ordinary Turks have become enraged by American policies toward Iraq and the Palestinians out of Islamic solidarity, but Ankara’s public relations people have successfully convinced many Americans that Turkish-American relations were fine until Nancy Pelosi introduced the Armenian Genocide Resolution in Congress. When the Iraq war was launched in 2003, Turks cursed the United States for attacking a Muslim country long before the Armenian Genocide Resolution was introduced.

Western sacrifices of Christians preceded the pro-Turkish policies undertaken between 1919 and 1922. During the nineteenth century, Tsarist Russia took up the cause of the Christians of the Ottoman Empire. In 1853, Great Britain and France occupied Greece to prevent Athens from aligning with Moscow in the Crimean War. In 1878, the Russians had Constantinople in their sights, but the Ottomans were protected by London and Paris.

During the 1870’s, the slaughter of the Bulgarians by the Ottoman Turks was widely publicized. As the nineteenth century concluded, the Armenians, Assyrians, and Asia Minor Greeks came under extreme persecution by the Ottomans. International conferences were convened by the three great powers of Great Britain, France, and Russia. Only the Russians were interested in protecting the Christians, as in Kosovo today. The strategic interest in the Ottoman Empire by London and Paris prevented the Russians from interfering.

Kosovo independenceThis essay is a response to the events being undertaken in Kosovo and the Balkans today. It is extremely difficult to believe that in the age of Al Qaeda, the Great Powers maintain an irrational hatred of the Serbs and the Russians. The essay began by noting the various terrorist attacks on the United States. The Serbs have done nothing to the United States or the Europeans, and have found themselves being mercilessly deprived of their ancestral homelands and holy places.

The Western governments have chosen to restore the heritage of the Ottoman Empire in the Balkans. Several years ago, then Assistant Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz praised Turkey for its treatment of minorities! In 1204, the Knights of the Fourth Crusade destroyed Constantinople and opened the door for the Ottomans. What the Crusaders did physically to the Christian East, the Western powers are doing intellectually by suppressing and rewriting the history of the Christian East.

The fall of ConstantinopleDuring the Seventh Century, the Emperor Constantine V of Constantinople successfully defended his Capital from the onslaught of Muslim invaders. He successfully defended the West as well as his own Empire. During the tenth century, Emperor Nikephoras Phokas took the offensive against the Arabs after three hundred and thirty years of being on the defensive and liberated most of Syria! In 1453, Emperor Constantinos Palaiologos died in battle defending his City against the Ottomans.

How tragic that the legacy of Christian Byzantium whose Emperors took up the fight against the forerunners of Osama Bin Laden has been cast aside as the model for the Balkans in favor of the Ottoman Turks who were the perpetrators of terrorism and Genocide. This is exactly what the sacrifice of Orthodox Serbia represents. In our own day, the Russians again represent the aspirations of Orthodox Christians, and it is to be hoped they will help save Kosovo and the Balkans.

The Myth of Tolerance in Classical Islam

The following is a brief excerpt from Fjordman’s latest essay, “The Truth about Islam in Europe”, which can be seen in its entirety at Brussels Journal.

Jihad piracy and slavery remained a serious threat to Europeans for more than a thousand years. As historian Ibn Khaldun proudly proclaimed about the early Middle Ages: “The Christian could no longer float a plank upon the sea.” The reason why the West, for centuries, didn’t have easy access to the Classical learning of the Byzantine Empire was because endemic Muslim raids made the Mediterranean unsafe for regular travel.

It has to be the height of absurdity to block access to something and then take credit for transmitting it, yet that is precisely what Muslims do. As stronger states slowly grew up in the West, regular contact with their Christian cousins in Byzantium was gradually re-established, especially with the city-states of northern Italy where during the Renaissance the printing press – an invention aggressively rejected by Muslims – made Greco-Roman texts, with translations aided by Greek-speaking Byzantine refugees from Islamic Jihad, available to future generations.

Thus, Westerners eventually gained access to the Greco-Roman manuscripts preserved in Constantinople, the Second Rome. Consequently, they no longer needed to rely on limited translations in Arabic, which had often been made from Byzantine manuscripts in the first place, and frequently by Christian or Jewish translators.

The Middle East had for thousands of years been more advanced than most of Europe. This situation didn’t begin with the introduction of Islam. On the contrary: it ended with Islamization. The region we today call the Greater Middle East, which includes Egypt, Palestine, Syria, south-eastern Anatolia, Iraq, Iran and parts of Afghanistan and Pakistan, is the seat of the oldest known civilizations on the planet and the source of many of the most important inventions in human history, including writing and the alphabet.

It is surely no coincidence that the first major civilization on the Indian subcontinent, the Harappan Civilization, arose in the Indus Valley in the northwest, i.e., closest to Sumerian Mesopotamia. A little-understood culture at the Mediterranean island of Malta has left us with megalithic temples that may be the oldest freestanding stone structures in the world. Dating back to 3600 BC, they predate the pyramids of Egypt with a thousand years.
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Still, it is not a coincidence that literate European civilizations took root in lands that were geographically close to Egypt, the Fertile Crescent and Mesopotamia: The Minoan civilization at the island of Crete, later mainland Greece and the Balkans, then Rome. Even in the Roman Empire, the Eastern part was more urbanized than its Northern and Western regions, which is one of the reasons why the Eastern half proved more durable.

Contrast this with modern times, when southeast Europe (the Balkans) is Europe’s number one trouble spot. So is the original seat of the first Indian civilization, in Pakistan and Kashmir. The Greater Middle East thus went from being a global center of civilization to being a global center of anti-civilization. This change largely coincided with the Islamization of these regions.

Muslim reformist Irshad Manji has asked in her book The Trouble with Islam what caused the earlier “golden age” of Islam, and concludes, with a few reservations, that “tolerance served as the best way to build and maintain the Islamic empire.” In light of the evidence quoted above I disagree with her, and even more so with David Levering Lewis. Islam’s much-vaunted “golden age” was in reality the twilight of the conquered pre-Islamic cultures, an echo of times passed. The brief cultural blossoming during the first centuries of Islamic rule owed its existence almost entirely to the pre-Islamic heritage in a region that was still, for a while, majority non-Muslim.

I’ve recently been re-reading some of the books of American evolutionary biologist Jared Diamond, including Guns, Germs, and Steel. What strikes me is how Diamond, with his emphasis on historical materialism, fails to explain the rise of the West and especially why English, not Arabic, Chinese, Sanskrit or Mayan, became the global lingua franca.

His most important flaw is his complete failure to explain how the Greater Middle East went from being a center of civilization to being a center of anti-civilization. This was not caused by smallpox or because zebras are more difficult to domesticate than water buffaloes. It was caused by Islam. Yet is striking to notice how Diamond totally ignores the influence of Islam. This demonstrates clearly that any historical explanation that places too much emphasis on material issues and too little on the impact of human ideas is bound to end up with false or misleading conclusions.

This Bishop is no Pawn

Most readers will remember the Anglican Bishop of Rochester, Dr. Michael Nazir-Ali, who has been notably outspoken on the topic of Islam and the Islamization of Britain — especially when one compares him with the Archdhimmi of Canterbury.

Dr. Nazir-Ali’s most famous and controversial statements concerned urban neighborhoods of the UK which have become virtual “no-go areas” to non-Muslims. The bishop has taken a lot of flak from the chattering classes, especially those within the Anglican hierarchy. According to today’s Telegraph, however, he’s not backing off from his assertions:

Bishop of Rochester reasserts ‘no-go’ claim

In his first interview since his controversial comments, Dr Michael Nazir-Ali vows not to be forced into silence

Michael Nazir-AliThe Rt Rev Michael Nazir-Ali, who received death threats for airing his views on Islamic issues, has vowed that he will continue to speak out.

His claim that Islamic extremism has turned some parts of Britain into “no-go” areas for non-Muslims led to fierce rows between political and religious leaders over the impact of multiculturalism on this country.

Those comments were followed soon after by the Archbishop of Canterbury’s suggestion that the adoption of aspects of sharia law in Britain was “unavoidable”.

The bishops’ views in The Sunday Telegraph sparked a storm of criticism and raised questions over the role of the Church in society but, most seriously for Dr Nazir-Ali, led to threats that he and his family would be harmed.

Yet, in his first interview since the sinister calls were made to his home, the Bishop of Rochester remains steadfastly defiant. He will not be silenced. “I believe people should not be prevented from speaking out,” he says. “The issue had to be raised. There are times when Christian leaders have to speak out.”


Threats were made warning that he would not “live long” and would be “sorted out” if he continued to criticise Islam.

Dr. Nazir-Ali originally fled from Pakistan to escape death threats from Muslims, so the irony of his current circumstances is not lost on him:
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However, it’s not the first time that his life has been endangered.

Shortly after being made a bishop in Pakistan — at 35 he was the youngest in the Anglican Church — he was forced to flee to Britain to seek refuge from Muslims who wanted to kill him.

He says that he never expected to suffer the same treatment in Britain and expresses concerns over recent social developments.

He continues to speak out, and is more concerned about the civilizational crisis within the West than he is with Islam itself:

“The real danger to Britain today is the spiritual and moral vacuum that has occurred for the last 40 or 50 years. When you have such a vacuum something will fill it.

“If people are not given a fresh way of understanding what it means to be a Christian and what it means to be a Christian-based society then something else may well take the place of all that we’re used to and that could be Islam.”

Dr. Nazir-Ali is daring to give voice to sentiments that many thousands of his fellow Britons hold, but which are denied utterance by the rubrics of political correctness:

Just over a year ago Abu Izzadeen, an Islamic radical, heckled John Reid, the former home secretary, as he tried to deliver a speech on targeting potential extremists. “How dare you come to a Muslim area,” Izzadeen screamed.

There was widespread dismay at the outburst, but nobody had dared to try to suggest that these views were entrenched across the country until the bishop spoke last month.

In warning of attempts to impose an Islamic character on certain areas, for example by amplifying the call to prayer from mosques, he seems to have tapped into the fears of a large section of society.

Many Christians — not least some of the leaders of the major Protestant denominations — seem to think that Christian morality always requires the faithful to submit without resistance to any form of violence. Dr. Nazir-Ali, however, believes the time has come for Christians to stand up for what they know is right.

To many, he has become a champion of traditional Christianity and its importance to Britain at the same time as the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, has been attacked for suggesting the adoption of aspects of sharia law is “unavoidable” in this country.

While the archbishop received widespread support from within the Church, Dr Nazir-Ali found himself isolated from his colleagues.

“I don’t court popularity. If I say something it’s because I think it’s important enough to say it. What I said was based on evidence, and that has been strengthened as a result of overwhelming correspondence.”

The moral cowardice that his been so evident of late within the Anglican Church is not lost on him, although he is circumspect about addressing it directly:

He wishes the Church would be more vocal on issues of multiculturalism and sharia law, but refuses to criticise his colleagues, although it is clear he is baffled by their silence.

“I can’t guess why they haven’t talked on the issue. I’m not responsible for other people’s consciences.” Is it due to cowardice? “You’d have to ask them.”

Above all he is opposed to the adoption of any form of sharia for Muslims in the UK:

“People of every faith should be free within the law to follow what their spiritual leaders direct them to, but that’s very different from saying their structures should replace that of the English legal system because there would be huge conflicts.” In particular, he points to polygamy, women’s rights and freedom of belief as areas in sharia law that would undermine equality.

There is a danger that the archbishop’s remarks could become a reality unless Britain quickly regains a sense of its Christian heritage.

“Do the British people really want to lose that rooting in the Christian faith that has given them everything they cherish — art, literature, architecture, institutions, the monarchy, their value system, their laws?”

As a Pakistani-born immigrant who has suffered racist abuse — he was called a “Paki papist” by Anglican clergy — he has gained an army of admirers who appear grateful to have someone brave enough to address controversial topics. He has vowed the latest threats will not change how he and his family live.

“The recovery of Christian discourse in the public life of this nation is so important. It’s that discourse that will allow us in a genuine way to be hospitable to those who come here from different cultures and religions.”

It’s ironic that a bishop of Pakistani and Muslim background should be the most visible defender of Christianity and British tradition.

Maybe it’s easier for someone coming in from the outside to see what we’ve got that’s worth saving.

Hat tip: TB.

Grotesque Saudi Arabia

The stories about the muttaween continue to intrude their cruel dogma into real life in Saudi Arabia. Remember the ban on Saint Valentine’s Day, or the poor woman who was arrested for having coffee in Starbucks with an office colleague while they waited for the electricity to be repaired at a planned conference? How about the odious and tragic story of the young girls beaten back into their burning school because they didn’t have headscarves on? Not even their parents could save them.

The latest stupidity would be funny if it weren’t so dangerous for those arrested:

President of the Religiosity Police Saudi Arabia began interrogating 57 men Saturday who were arrested after allegedly flirting with women in front of a shopping mall in the holy city of Mecca, a local newspaper reported.

The country’s religious police arrested the men Thursday night, alleging behavior that included dancing to pop music blaring from their cars and wearing improper clothing, according to the Okaz newspaper, which is deemed close to the government.

The Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice runs the religious police, who are charged with enforcing Saudi Arabia’s strict Islamic lifestyle.

Its members patrol public places to make sure women are covered and not wearing make up, the sexes don’t mingle, shops close five times a day for Muslim prayers and men go to the mosque and worship.

The police – informally known as the muttawa, literally “enforcer” – don’t wear uniforms. But they are recognizable by their long beards and their robes, shorter than the ones normally worn by Saudi men. They also shun the black cord that sits atop the headdress worn by most Saudi men.

Here’s the kicker though:
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…the men who were arrested Thursday could be released if they could prove they did not flirt with any women. Otherwise, they will be transferred to court and stand trial…

How in God’s name does one disprove such a nebulous charge as “flirting”? And just how powerful are the Religious Police?

The International Herald Tribune carried some details from the commission’s Al-Hisba newsletter report. These goons are officially known as the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice. Here’s the breakdown:

  • 16 percent increase over the previous year in their 2007 budget.
  • the force carried out 8.16 million activities last year, including patrols, lectures and publicity campaigns to guide people about Islamic religious requirements.
  • These activities were meant to “serve society and protect its intellectual, ideological and moral safety.” It said the government body employed 5,029 people in 2007.
  • Its members patrol public places to make sure women are covered and not wearing make up, the sexes don’t mingle, shops close five times a day for Muslim prayers and men go to the mosque and worship.
  • They have been labeled the muttawa (“enforcer”) and dress somewhat differently than the average Saudi men: shorter skirts, longer beards, and the absence of the usual black cord which circles male headdress.
  • The commission also set up 66 centers, held 583 forums and distributed 6.8 million pamphlets and books to instruct people on their Islamic duties.

    Ominously, the commission’s agents carried out 416,756 patrols to prevent vice. It said the commission, out of its concern not to expose violators, dealt with 94 percent of the cases inside its centers. and sent the rest to relevant authorities to deal with them as they saw fit. At least one man has died in their custody.

Saudis claim to support the Enforcers but at the same time, they complain that these bullies use their power to interfere arbitrarily in people’s lives.


As Rick Moran says in The American Thinker:

The incongruity of this nation sitting on half the world’s oil reserves grows more grotesque by the day.


The description of what the young men were doing is so common in the west that it shocks us and makes us pause to think of how it would be living in a society like that.

P.J. O’Rourke once wrote that Saudi society was set up by men with teenage daughters. Not allowing boys to see a girl’s face, dressing them head to toe in a canvas sack, and being able to execute them if they violated the rules was a teen daughter’s father’s dream come true.

Perhaps there’s more to that theory than just a joke…

It’s been well over a year since the blog, The Religious Policeman, became inactive. It was run by a Saudi living in the UK. He dedicated it to those girls who were beaten back into the flames for the sake of propriety.

For those of us who used to read him on a regular basis, The R.P. was a breath of fresh air. In his last post, there was this prophesy:

The blog will remain here for as long as Blogger does. Maybe, millennia from now, extraterrestrial digital archeologists will chance upon it, and wonder about this “Kingdom of Saudi Arabia” where half the people wore black and half the people wore white. An earnest Zargian Ph.D. student will expound in his thesis the theory that the land was so inhospitable, only chess pieces could live there. The rules of the game involved moving around a black rock in ever-decreasing circles. He will speculate as to whether, had the rock been in the Southern hemisphere, they would have circulated in the opposite direction.

Meanwhile we can wonder at the fate of the 57 men. Obviously, the “flirting” behavior had been going on for a long time because this was a coordinated raid in a number of different places. The authorities just let it go on until they had enough victims for a huge round up and headline…just a reminder to everyone that none can escape the long, strong, capricious arm of the Enforcer.

My guess? There will be a few sacrificial victims. The men who belong to families that are more powerful will get off, but there will be a show trial for others, ending in beheading.

What a grotesquerie Saudi Muslims are.

The Ramifications of Supporting Kosovo Independence

Atlas and Dr. Eldad, BrusselsAtlas Shrugs posted an essay by Dr. Arieh Eldad, who is currently in the Knesset and is planning to run for Israel’s Prime Minister. I will copy a snip of his writing about “The Moslem Republic of Kosovo” and link to the complete article.

First, however, I want to say how impressed everyone was who met Dr. Eldad at the Brussels Conference last October. As you can see from the essay, he is someone to be rooting for:

“The Kosovo Precedent”
by Arieh Eldad

The Moslem Republic of Kosovo declared its independence this week. The United States and several European countries have already recognized it. News reports that the Israeli Foreign Ministry was urging swift Israeli recognition were denied, and reporters were told that Israel does not want to be the first to jump, but once the list of countries recognizing Kosovo is longer, Israel will be one of them.

If Israel does recognize Kosovo, this will certainly be the result of a decision made by the prime minister and foreign minister. Such a decision will be indubitable proof of the foolishness and malignant shortsightedness from which they suffer. If their willingness to establish an Arab terrorist state in the heart of our own country can be explained by their having internalized the Peace Now ideology concerning what they call the “occupation” and the demographic problem – there can be no such explanation for Israel’s giving support to Islamic imperialism in

It’s hard to believe that Israel would consider recognition of a country that is inimical to its own existence as a state. Are we that far gone?

The fear of the spread of Islam is expressed today in increasing support for conservative parties in Denmark, Holland, Belgium, Switzerland, and Germany. These are not extreme right or neo-Nazi parties but rather mainstream conservative parties. They view Israel as a frontline fortress of Western culture facing jihad, and they fear that this fortress may fall under Arab pressure and because of the weakness of Israel’s leaders…

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Islamic proliferation in Europe took in a new country this week. The Moslem minority in Serbia in the Kosovo region bordering the Islamic state of Albania declared its independence. Serbia is a sovereign country, a member of the United Nations, with an ethnic minority. Based on the standards being used for Kosovian independence, the Basques should now be able to set up an independent state in Spain. Such states may also be established in Russia, Slovakia, Greece, and Cyprus. The flag of Kosovo is that of Islamic proliferation and a source of serious anxiety to Europe. Those European countries recognizing Kosovo are doing so under economic pressure from oil-rich Arab countries, the markets of Islamic countries, and internal pressure by millions of Moslem voters in Europe.

Well, that’s their “excuse.” What is America’s so-called reasoning in its support for a new Muslim state, one that threatens and abuses Serbians already?


…Only someone who doesn’t understand what the Moslems in Europe want can think that the establishment of an independent Kosovo will resolve the conflict in the Balkans. If Israel joins in recognizing Kosovo, there will be no political, legal, or moral claim it can make to oppose establishing an Arab state in the Galilee and Northern Negev. For what is the difference? An ethnic minority with territorial contiguity to neighboring enemy states demands, following a bloody war, to tear pieces from a sovereign country, and proclaim its independence.


I have heard commentators explaining that neither we nor Europe should fear Kosovo because the Kosovians are “moderate Moslems.” It was from these moderate Moslems that Haj Amin el-Husseini gathered tens of thousands of volunteers for the 13th SS Division (“Handschar”) and 21st SS Division (“Skanderbeg”). On them he built his dream of marching with Hitler’s armies into Palestine and destroying the Jews of Eretz Israel.

Kosovo’s independence bodes well for no one except those who are dedicated to the spread of the Ummah and the eradication of Western life, history and culture.

I hope Israelis have the wisdom to vote for Dr. Eldad. It has been too long without principled leadership.

The whole essay is here.

Sir Edward Grey Revisited

Sir Edward GreySir Edward Grey was Foreign Secretary in the Asquith government at the start of the Great War in 1914. His name is well known, not because he was a remarkable or accomplished Foreign Secretary, but simply because he had the misfortune to occupy his office at the historical moment when European civilization decided to destroy itself.

In fact, through his ineptness and miscalculations during the prodromal period of 1905 to 1914, Sir Edward helped contribute to the catastrophe. It’s doubtful whether even Gladstone or Palmerston could have staved off the inevitable, but Sir Edward Grey was no Gladstone or Palmerston.

He did, however, leave us with a statement which became an epitaph for Europe prior to 1914. Just before the war began he said to a friend, “The lamps are going out all over Europe; we shall not see them lit again in our lifetime.”

He was quite right; the lamps were not re-lit within his lifetime, nor within the several lifetimes that have elapsed since. In fact, it is doubtful that they can be rekindled in time to illuminate a continent that could recognizably be called “Europe”.

The Great War gutted the vital core from Europe. Western Civilization still manages to lurch along, but its beating heart no longer resides within Europe.

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Sir Edward Grey comes to mind because the year 2008 is starting to look a lot like 1911 or 1913. Events in disparate parts of the globe, but particularly in Europe, are converging again. Another grand spectacle seems to be in the offing, but this time it doesn’t promise mud and trenches and military stalemate. There won’t be any mobilization or declarations of war on this occasion. No Western Front or armistice will make the coming conflict neat and well-defined.

Civilization will collapse piecemeal and in slow motion, but collapse it will.

The Year of the Jackpot

Back in August I wrote about “the Year of the Jackpot”, the idea that cataclysms in human affairs occur when cyclical curves of varying periodicity all bottom out at the same time.
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In my post I mentioned the constitutional crisis in Belgium, the instability in Pakistan, the Iranian nuclear program, and the possibility of a Hillary Clinton administration.

Since then the world has given us six additional months without a real central government in Belgium, the assassination of Benazir Bhutto, the repudiation of Musharraf’s faction in Pakistan’s elections, the continuing defiance and determination of the mad mullahs in Tehran, and the rise of Barack Obama.

To these we can add the renewed Motoon crisis in Denmark, the signing of the Treaty of Lisbon, the freefall of civil society in the UK, the crisis in Chad, the independence of Kosovo, and a possible global economic slump triggered by the subprime mortgage crisis.

No, none of those curves is rising yet, and none of them has finished bottoming out.

Then there’s the increasing suppression of free speech through the Western world. The USA experienced the first little shiver of the coming winter a few days ago in the St. Louis minaret incident, but in Europe and elsewhere the puddles are freezing over rapidly.

Perhaps we should start keeping a central registry of people, blogs, or publications that have been censored in the name of political correctness, because the list is becoming rather long: Paul Belien, Mikko Ellilä, Lennart Eriksson, Ezra Levant, Lionheart, Dahn Pettersson, Mark Steyn, and Tomashot, just to name a few off the top of my head.

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So when will all these curves simultaneously reach their nadir?

2009 is one possible candidate. The Treaty of Lisbon will go into effect then, and the EU will begin the formal integration of its member states into a single “soft totalitarian” regime which will gradually become harder.

The new Wahhabist state in the Balkans will be a year old.

500,000 more immigrants — mostly Muslims — will have arrived in the UK, and 250,000 more native Britons will have departed.

Dozens of additional young women will have been flung from balconies in Sweden by their male relatives.

Pakistan will have seen another year of seething, intrigue, and assassination.

The United States will be on the verge of pulling its troops out of Iraq under President Obama…

Yes, we live in increasingly interesting times.

The jackpot may be delayed a little while longer; after all, it may take until 2012 or 2015 until the Iranians have a fully deliverable nuke. Pervez Musharraf may yet avoid the car bomb with his name on it for a while longer. The “youths” of the Parisian banlieues may not storm nearby bourgeois neighborhoods for a couple more years.

But the lamps are definitely being extinguished. You can see them winking off one by one.

Turn the last one out when you go, would you?

Moroccan-Italian Says: “Too Many Mosques!”

Zakaria Najib is a Moroccan immigrant to Italy who was done what was once expected of an immigrant: he assimilated to his adopted country. He learned its language and customs, became a citizen, respects its laws, and considers himself Italian.

And now he can see the damage done to his country by the new mass immigration with its accompanying Multiculturalism:

Italy: Far-right candidate of Moroccan origin says there are too many mosques

The first Moroccan-born member of Italy’s far-right Northern League party has complained that there are too many mosques in Italy.

Zakaria Najib is an Italian citizen who came to Italy when he was 20 years old. Now aged 50, he lives in the province of Padua in northern Italy.

He is now planning to run in Italy’s general elections in April as a candidate for the Northern League, an anti-immigrant party that campaigns for autonomy for Italy’s wealthy north.

Although a member of the Cadoneghe city council in the province of Padua between 1999 and 2003, two months ago he told a local newspaper that he had asked president Giorgio Napoletano to take away his Italian citizenship so he could be Moroccan again.

He said being a foreigner in Italy was better because they were “given homes and work, while I only have taxes and difficulties in paying the bills at the end of every month”.

He criticised in particular the policies of leftist city administrations for helping immigrants and in particular Muslim immigrants.

– – – – – – – –

“In a nearby city council, 30,000 euros were given to restructure a mosque,” Najib told AKI.

“Now they want to give another 800,000 euros to construct another bigger mosque a few kilometres away. It is time to say enough. I am not against mosques but here we really have too many.”

Najib admitted that he was no longer a practising Muslim and only considered himself culturally linked to Islam having been born in North Africa.

“I believe that everyone has the right to have their own beliefs but they must pay for it themselves,” he said.

“It is not fair that taxpayers’ money is being used to build mosques. On top of that I don’t like the imams that I have seen inside the mosques and I think these are places that have to be controlled.”

Najib has said that he is available to run as a candidate for a Senate seat for the Northern League. Party sources in Padua say that the decision depends on the federal and provincial councils of the party.

Despite that he says if elected, his first proposal would be to deal with what he called the excessive presence of mosques in the northern Italian region of Veneto.

Hat tip: insubria.

Sign #831 of a Failed State

UPDATE: Prairiepundit Poses a Rhetorical Question: Are the UK Police Idiots?

Prariepundit is running a story from The Telegraph:

Two fathers have condemned the criminal justice system after they were arrested and thrown into a police cell for trying to prevent a fight involving a gang of youths.

Christopher Dale, 38, and Arthur Parkes, 29, decided to intervene when they heard that a group of boys planned to catch and beat up another youth.

They made a citizen’s arrest of the two ring leaders, aged 12 and 14, and held them while Mr Dale’s wife called the police.

But when officers arrived it was the men who were handcuffed and led away after the boys accused them of assault.

What followed was a nine month “nightmare” in which the men faced losing everything as the Crime Prosecution Service refused to drop the case.

Their ordeal only ended in court when a magistrate finally decided there was no case to answer, “It has been an absolute nightmare,” said Mr Dale yesterday, an engineer who fits fire alarms and a trained pilot.

CPS district crown prosecutor Peter McNaught said: “We considered this case very carefully. However, in all the circumstances, we consider that it was in the public interest to bring this case.”

As I said, they’re all idjits.

[hat tip: Larwyn]

For the first time in history, British jails are full. Not a cell to be had anywhere:

Even court and police cells were packed as the number of prisoners rose to 82,068 – almost 100 above the official safety limit.

The crisis is expected to trigger the early release of thousands of muggers, burglars and other convicts.

In a desperate attempt to buy time, Jack Straw begged magistrates to imprison fewer offenders.

The Justice Secretary said the courts were giving short jail terms when community punishments would be better.

But magistrates refused point-blank to help him out of the shambles – saying they would continue to hand down whatever sentence they saw fit.

The Magistrates’ Association said it did not react kindly to being placed under “pressure” by ministers.

In other words, it’s not our problem, Jack. It sounds as though not only are the jails overflowing, but the system is broken, too. Perhaps the Parliament could begin overhauling its criminal code. They could start with their draconian “Hate Speech” crimes.
– – – – – – – –

Tory spokesman Nick Herbert said: “The prison system is now in genuine crisis. This is not the fault of magistrates but the result of sheer incompetence by this Government.”

Mr. Herbert is spot on. But what does this Government plan to do about its “sheer incompetence”? Any ideas, Mr. Herbert? How about jailing a few of the magistrates for “Careless and Uppity Attitudes?” They might change their minds…umm, I mean their snippy attitudes.

The scope of the crisis was revealed in a Ministry of Justice statement that the number of inmates had reached an all-time high of 82,068.

The total operational capacity – based on governors’ advice on what is safe for “control, security and proper operation” – is only 81,972, including more than 350 places in police cells and courts.

In a bid to get through the weekend, inmates jailed yesterday were crammed into prison spaces normally considered out of bounds by governors.

But next week even this overspill is likely to be exhausted.

Well, simply have any others remanded to the homes of the magistrates. An easy solution that offends the fewest people.

Plans have been drawn up to extend an existing early release scheme called End of Custody Licence, which lets convicts out 18 days before their sentence reaches even the halfway point.

It was implemented last June and has led to the early release of 16,000 inmates – one of whom has since committed a murder.

Extending ECL to 30 days would free hundreds of spaces, but Downing Street is nervous about such a drastic step for fear of yet more damage to Labour’s reputation on law and order.

They are concerned about how they’ll look? Good Lord, these politicians are idjits. Idjits sans principle or integrity.

Officials at the Ministry of Justice, however, believe all other options have been exhausted.

In the past week alone, they have bussed scores of inmates to open jails and announced a scheme to send foreign offenders home nine months early.

Here’s a suggestion: send all foreign offenders home when they are found guilty. That ought to free up scads of space, no? This is not a matter of common sense, though. This is about whose turf is being trampled upon:

But the panic measures have either come too late or achieved too little.

Mr Straw was reduced to appealing direct to the courts, echoing a similar Government request in January 2007 to jail only the most dangerous villains, which itself sparked uproar among the judiciary. He said: ‘We have 350 magistrates courts in England and Wales.

“If each one ends up sentencing one extra prisoner a week to jail then we have got the increase we face.

“There are effective alternatives in terms of non-custodial penalties which actually have a better record in terms of preventing re-offending.”

Sez you, Jack. Your colleagues on the bench don’t take kindly to being pushed. Here’s the huffy response from the Chairman:

But Cindy Barnett, chairman of the Magistrates’ Association, said the courts must have the freedom to impose sentences as they saw fit.

She added: “We don’t use custody lightly, we use it when it is so serious that nothing else can be justified and we must make that individual decision.

“I think it would be very unfortunate if anything was said that is seen as pressure on individual sentences. I think that would be wrong.”

Pooh. Rework your darned criminal code so people like Lion Heart don’t have to face seven years for what they write on their blogs.

Tories accused the Government of “catastrophic mismanagement”.

Mr Herbert said: “They have ignored repeated warnings, failed to build adequate capacity and their belated building programme has fallen behind schedule.”

He said there must be no extension of ECL.

Colin Moses of the Prison Officers’ Association accused ministers of “total mismanagement”.

He warned: “The prisons are not safe. We have increased numbers yet again with no change in regime and no increase in staffing. This is risk management at the highest level.”

When in history were prisons “safe”? They’re full of criminals, you twit.

Ministers have promised to build an extra 14,000 prison places by 2014, including giant Titan jails holding 2,500 inmates.

But the prison population is already outstripping projections made as recently as December. It means the building effort is unlikely to be sufficient.

They say 350 magistrates belong to that Association. If they each took five home prisoners – but only those they’ve sentenced themselves, of course…hmm. That’s a start.

Then the members of the Labour party could do their share to ease the crunch…I wonder how many each of them could take? Better make it no more than three.

As I’ve said before, England is showing all the signs of a failed state.

Latest News: Gays Cause Earthquakes

This story is from Australia News. I’ll bet The Jerusalem Post spiked it.

Wow, who would have dreamed gays had this kind of energy? We ought to channel it into some kind of cool science like, oh, synthetic replacements for oil.

Come on, y’all, get busy…the world needs your help:

Shlomo Benizri of the ultra-Orthodox Jewish Shas Party said the only way to prevent earthquakes was for parliament to stop liberalising laws concerning homosexuals, AP reported.

“Why do earthquakes happen? One of the reasons is the things to which the Knesset (parliament) gives legitimacy, to sodomy,’’ Mr Benizri said.

Mr Benizri said earthquake damage could be avoided if the parliament stopped “passing legislation on how to encourage homosexual activity in the state of Israel, which anyway brings about earthquakes’’.

Two earthquakes originating in Lebanon have shaken Israel in the past week. The first occurred two days after the Israeli attorney-general ruled that same-sex couples could adopt children.

In recent years, Israeli courts have ruled that the government must recognise sex-sex marriages performed abroad and grant gay couples inheritance rights.

Hmmm…I wonder if the heterosexuals are to blame for all those hurricanes? Lord knows with the on-going droughts in the southeastern U.S. that the transgnendered can’t haven’t been up to any good…

[the joke ends here. Yes, this is humor, folks]

The Netherlands Fouls Its Own Nest

Fjordman sent the following article today.

It is so disgusting that I do not trust myself to comment very much. The Netherlands seemed to be programmed now to kill off its own as soon as possible, while it demonstrates a truly perverted sense of justice. This story is the perfect example:

[A] woman who drove over and killed a Moroccan thief in Amsterdam three years ago has been living in secret locations since, for fear of retaliation. At the order of the judge, the woman has however been tracked down and taken to court.

The woman is being tried for causing the death of Ali El Bejatti. On 17 January 2005, this Moroccan youth opened her car door and snatched her handbag. The woman reversed against the boy, who was on a scooter. He was crushed against a tree, broke his neck and died.

The woman has been in hiding for three years, according to her lawyer Cees Korvinus. She is so afraid of reprisals that she moved from hiding-place to hiding-place, De Telegraaf quoted the lawyer as saying yesterday. The police advised her to go into hiding after the incident, according to the newspaper.

Korvinus entered a request yesterday for the judges to be replaced. This was in reaction to their decision that the session will be public. The court administrators rejected Korvinus’ request.

Korvinus wanted the case to be heard behind closed doors because the woman fears that a public hearing will increase the danger she claims she is in. The judge did permit the woman to hide her face yesterday with a scarf so that she could not be recognised.

The Public Prosecutor’s Office (OM) announced yesterday it was demanding a jail sentence of 30 months for the woman. The OM is charging her with manslaughter because she deliberately took the risk of seriously injuring El Bejatti.

That was not their original take on the accident. Three years ago, they considered her the victim:
– – – – – – – –

The woman has stated that the collision was an accident. The Public Prosecutor’s Office (OM) initially concluded this as well, but later decided to prosecute her after all.

This is Whim Theory as it applies to the law in the Netherlands.

Originally, the trial began without the woman present, but the judge “had her tracked her down to a secret address.” Nor will he allow her to put a scarf on her face to protect her identity. He wants the bull’s eye target as large and recognizable as possible.

Her lawyer describes her as “dead scared” that appearing in court will cause a fatwah to be issued against her – which will, of course, make it open season on the woman for the devout.

Meanwhile her psychiatrist reports that she lives “in a state of constant fear of death.” Well, duh…

The person who robbed her and died for his efforts had previously been in court that day on charges of armed robbery. The OM demanded a two-year jail sentence for El Bejatti, but the judge must have disagreed because he was free that very evening to meet his death in another attempted heist.

The solution to the problem is quite easy: this woman just needs to get over her fear of death.

Problem solved.

And if there is a hell, may this vengeful judge rot there.