Gates of Vienna News Feed 9/8/2014

Three elderly Italian nuns were raped and killed in Burundi. According to one report, two of them had their throats slit, while another account said one was beheaded. No reports mentioned any motive for the beheading. The Vatican issued a statement by Pope Francis, who said he was “deeply saddened” by the tragedy.

In other news, eight militant extremists have been identified in the congregation of the Islamic Society mosque in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the mosque attended by the Boston Marathon bombers. One of the radical militants is said to be the maker of all those exciting professional-quality ISIS videos.

To see the headlines and the articles, click “Continue reading” below.

Thanks to C. Cantoni, Fjordman, Henrietta, Insubria, JP, Papa Whiskey, RR, and all the other tipsters who sent these in.

Notice to tipsters: Please don’t submit extensive excerpts from articles that have been posted behind a subscription firewall, or are otherwise under copyright protection.

Caveat: Articles in the news feed are posted “as is”. Gates of Vienna cannot vouch for the authenticity or accuracy of the contents of any individual item posted here. We check each entry to make sure it is relatively interesting, not patently offensive, and at least superficially plausible. The link to the original is included with each item’s title. Further research and verification are left to the reader.

Financial Crisis
» Italians Remain ‘Food, Techno Maniacs’ Despite Crisis
» Italy Held Back by Red Tape, Taxes, Inefficiency Says WEF
» Lagarde Says Current Euro Austerity Not Excessive
 
USA
» Boston Bombers’ Mosque Tied to ISIS
» Federal Grand Jury Targets Local Terrorist Pipeline
» Filmmaker Dresses as ‘Ebola-Infected ISIS Terrorist’ To Sneak Across Lake Erie From Canada to Cleveland and Into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Without Being Challenged Once
» Murdoch Meets Nigel Farage in Private Meeting at NewsCorp Offices in New York
» Ravens Drop Ray Rice After Video of Punch Emerges
» White House Names Google’s Megan Smith the Next Chief Technology Officer of the United States
 
Europe and the EU
» Anjem Choudary: The British Extremist Who Backs the Caliphate
» Arrest Warrant for French Couple Suspected of Taking Girls to Mideast
» Arrest After Sweden Democrat Assaulted
» Austria: Gun Ownership Up as Vienna Becomes Jihad Hot-Spot
» Belgium: Jewish Museum Gunman Planned Paris Attack
» Ex-MI6 Chief: Encourage UK Jihadis to Return Home
» Five Reasons Why We Should Not Welcome British Jihadists Home
» France: Brussels Museum Shooting Suspect ‘Beheaded Baby’
» French Papers Highlight Renzi-Valls ‘Tortellini Pact’
» French Far Right at ‘Gates of Power’
» Germany’s “Sharia Police”
» Germany: Three Terrorism Suspects Arrested at Frankfurt Airport
» Greece: Parliament to Pass Anti-Racism New Law Tomorrow
» Italy: High-Speed Rail Works Attacked Again
» Morocco-Born French Minister Files Suit After ‘Arabic Letter’
» New Viking Ring Fortress Discovered in Denmark
» Norway Terror Suspect Kidnaps Own Family
» Panicking Tory MPs Plot to Do Deal With UKIP — and Demand Farage is Made Deputy PM
» Pound Down to 10-Mth Low on Scottish Yes Poll
» Rebel Tories Refusing to Campaign Against UKIP Defector Douglas Carswell in by-Election
» The ‘Good Samaritans’ Who Are Only Interested in Helping Other Spaniards
» UK: Charles Bronson in Prison Bust-Up With Islamic Extremists Who Warned ‘We’Ll Cut Off Your Head’
» UK: George Orwell: No Wonder the Mere Ordinary Don’t Like Him
» UK: Islamic Rape Gangs: Rotherham is Just the Tip of the Iceberg
» UK: One Bribe That Even MPs Don’t Want
» UK: Rotherham Council Chief Executive Steps Down in Wake of Abuse Scandal
» UK: The Self-Destructive Discontent in a Tory Party That Has Lost Its Way
» UK: Why I Believe We Must Give Clegg’s Job to Nigel Farage …
» UKIP Leader Nigel Farage Dismisses Pact With Tories on Visit to Bristol Area
 
Israel and the Palestinians
» Jerusalem Doubts Indyk’s Institute After Qatar Funding Reports
 
Middle East
» 18 Killed in Clashes, Suicide Bombing in Iraqi Town
» American, Arab-Made Terrorism
» Arab League to Back Iraqi-U.S. Campaign Against Islamic State: Sources
» Czech Republic to Supply Iraqi Kurds With $2 Mln Worth of Ammunition: Czech Foreign Ministry
» Danish Jihadist Poses With Severed Heads
» Fresh Violence Kills 22 in Syria
» Iraqi Troops Retake Town in Western Province of Anbar
» ISIS Killed or Maimed 700 Kids Since Year’s Start
» Islamic State Militants Use US-Made Weapons — Report
» Jihadi John to be Unmasked ‘Within Days’: Identity of Masked British Executioner to be Revealed as FBI Prepares to Arrest 12 of His UK Associates
» McCain: Obama’s National Security Team Agreed on Arming ISIL, But…
» Pampered Child is Out of Control
» Scots Jihadi May be Member of ISIS All-Woman Police Force in Syria
» Syria-Iraq: Obama for 3-Year Campaign vs. Islamic State
» Two Traffic Police Officers Killed in SE Yemen
» Wiping Out Islamic State ‘Impossible’: Julie Bishop
 
Russia
» France Halts Warship Delivery to Russia
» Le Pen: EU ‘To Blame’ For Ukraine Crisis
» Medvedev: Russia Will Respond Asymmetrically to New Western Sanctions
» Russia May Restrict Airspace if New Sanctions Imposed
» Russia ‘To Close Down Airspace’ if West Imposes New Sanctions — PM
» Russia Threatens to Close Airspace to EU Planes
» Ukraine Crisis: 1 Dead as Heavy Shelling Breaks Ceasefire
» Ukraine: Donetsk Defense Minister: Self-Defense Forces to Return Fire if Provoked by Kiev Forces
 
South Asia
» India: Muslims-Only Apartments Coming Up in Greater Noida
» Roadside Bomb Kills 4 Afghan Soldiers
 
Far East
» Chinese Muslims Start Annual Mecca Pilgrimage
 
Australia — Pacific
» We Will Keep Australia Safe …
 
Sub-Saharan Africa
» Burundi Police Say Elderly Italian Nuns Raped, One Beheaded
» FBI: U.S. Air Marshal Assaulted at Airport in Nigeria
» Nigerian: Boko Haram Makes Another Key Advance
» Somalia: 12 Killed in Al-Shabab Attack on AU Bus
» Three Italian Nuns Killed in Burundi, Pope ‘Deeply Saddened’
» Three Italian Nuns Murdered in Burundi Attack
» UN-Funded African Troops Raped Vulnerable Somalis, Says HRW
 
Latin America
» Jamaica’s Child Abuse Cases Increase in 2013
» Lord’s Prayer in Venezuela Invokes Chavez: ‘Lead US Not Into Temptation of Capitalism’
» Venezuela: Catholic Church Denounces Lord’s Prayer to Hugo Chavez
 
Immigration
» Bavaria Wants Border Controls in Italy Migrant Row -Update 2
» Calais Crisis: UK to Send Old NATO Security Fence
» Calais Crisis: ‘Britain is No Soft Touch When it Comes to Illegal Immigration’
» UK: PM’s Own Backbenchers Tear Into ‘Puce-Faced’ Cameron Over Failure to Get Grip on Immigration
 
General
» Europa’s Icy Plate Tectonics May Support Life
» Why Muslims Rape by Y.K. Cherson
 

Italians Remain ‘Food, Techno Maniacs’ Despite Crisis

Average income has dropped 2,700 euros since 2007 says Coop

(ANSA) — Milan, September 3 — Italians have continued to spend money on quality food and technology products despite the huge impact the global economic crisis has had on consumer spending, according to a study released Wednesday by the country’s Coop Italia consortium of consumer cooperatives.

Italy is currently in its third recession since the start of the global economic crisis in 2008.

The study by the Coop, which runs a big chain of supermarkets, said that the average Italian income had fallen by 2,700 euros since 2007. It said that this had led to consumer spending “generally reaching a standstill”, while stressing retail sales patterns showed Italian people were “food maniacs on one hand and technology maniacs on the other”. The report said that technology and the health, fairtrade, ethnic, organic and vegan foods segments were the only categories in which retail sales had grown. The Coop said that 2014 will not be the year of a new start, but the one in which the country pulled back from the brink, while predicting that the recessionary trend will be reversed in 2015. At the presentation of the report, Coop Italia President Marco Pedroni called on the authorities to take action to fight price deflation, which experts say could make recovery even harder, after Italy’s annual inflation rate dropped to -0.1% in August. “Deflation is a nasty beast,” said Pedroni. “If it isn’t attacked with power and determination, it could induce families to cut spending even further”.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Italy Held Back by Red Tape, Taxes, Inefficiency Says WEF

Ranks low in latest Global Competitiveness Report

(ANSA) — Rome, September 3 — Italy is being held back by bureaucracy, high taxes, lack of access to credit, and restrictive labor laws, the World Economic Forum (WEF) said Wednesday in its 2014-2015 Global Competitiveness Report.

The report ranks 144 economies based on what it says are the drivers of their productivity and prosperity. Italy’s labor law placed it near the bottom the list at 141, while its justice system, government efficiency, and tax incentives to stimulate investment and job creation put it in 143rd place, the Swiss non-profit said.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Lagarde Says Current Euro Austerity Not Excessive

Reduction in public spending must continue, says IMF chief

(ANSA) — Paris, September 8 — International Monetary Fund (IMF) chief Christine Lagarde said Monday that the current austerity policy in the euro area is not “excessive”.

In an interview published in Les Echos, a French business daily newspaper, Lagarde said that European nations must also continue to cut public spending.

“You cannot talk about excessive austerity policy in the euro area…we must keep the pace in the reduction of public spending,” she said in the interview.

Structural reforms are also important, and low inflation is no excuse to delay change, she said “Even if inflation is weaker than usual, it cannot be used as a screen to put off the necessary efforts on spending,” Lagarde said.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Boston Bombers’ Mosque Tied to ISIS

When it was revealed that the Boston Marathon bombers attended a Cambridge, Mass., mosque, its leaders were quick to disavow their actions.

Elder brother Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s ideology was not their own, the leaders of the Islamic Society mosque claimed. In fact, he was admonished for an extremist outburst he made during one sermon.

So, one crackpot in a congregation. Who can blame the mosque?

But what about eight — including a prominent member of ISIS?…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Federal Grand Jury Targets Local Terrorist Pipeline

A federal grand jury in St. Paul is investigating a group of Somali-Americans who were allegedly conspiring to join terrorists fighting in Syria, according to sources with direct knowledge of the probe.

The proceedings, which have been going on all summer, appear to be centered on trying to find out who is behind efforts to convince 20 to 30 people that they should leave Minnesota to fight in the Middle East. That question has stymied federal agents for the last year as they have struggled to build inroads and trust with the Muslim community in the Twin Cities in order to cut off a new pipeline of recruits.

Seven years ago, about two dozen young Somali men from Minnesota were recruited to fight in Somalia with another terrorist group, Al-Shabab. As many as nine were reported killed, and after a series of indictments and high-profile convictions, federal authorities and community leaders believed that the recruiting had stopped.

Instead, it has shifted to a new region.

In June, investigators stopped a Somali teen just before he boarded a plane at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, his final destination believed to be Syria.

But federal authorities say upward of a dozen Somali men and three women from Minnesota have fled the country to fight alongside or aid extremists in the Middle East. They estimate as many as 100 Americans have gone to Syria and Iraq to join insurgents whose brutality, including mass executions and beheadings of American journalists, has prompted the U.S. and other countries to consider airstrikes against the movement. The departures also have heightened fears that some may try to return to carry out attacks in the U.S…

           — Hat tip: Henrietta [Return to headlines]
 

Filmmaker Dresses as ‘Ebola-Infected ISIS Terrorist’ To Sneak Across Lake Erie From Canada to Cleveland and Into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Without Being Challenged Once

An Ebola-infected ISIS terrorist could easily motorboat across Lake Erie and reach Ohio from Canada, according to an American conservative filmmaker who videotaped a fictionalized one-jihadi incursion across Lake Erie and released the footage Monday.

‘On the eve of the 9/11 anniversary our man, dressed as an ISIS terrorist was able to cross Lake Eris, walk off a boat into Cleveland, Ohio — and into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,’ guerrilla documentarian James O’Keefe narrates.

‘At no point did anyone even question (him) or ask him what he was carrying in his suspicious brown duffel bag.’

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Murdoch Meets Nigel Farage in Private Meeting at NewsCorp Offices in New York

Nigel Farage met Rupert Murdoch in his New York offices after filming interviews for some of the mogul’s news channels, it has been revealed.

The Ukip leader was summoned to Murdoch’s NewsCorp Manhattan office after taping a segment for Fox News’s Sean Hannity and Neil Cavuto shows.

During an advertisement break, Cavuto turned to Farage and said: ‘Sir, the boss wants to see you… the big boss,’ it was reported…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Ravens Drop Ray Rice After Video of Punch Emerges

The Baltimore Ravens terminated running back Ray Rice’s contract Monday after the emergence of new, more graphic video of him punching his fiancée, who is now his wife, which raised fresh questions about N.F.L. Commissioner Roger Goodell’s handling of the situation. In July, the N.F.L. had suspended Rice for two games.

The team, which had not disciplined Rice in any way publicly, made the announcement on its Twitter account Monday afternoon.

The website TMZ published video Monday that shows Rice and his fiancée in an elevator, where Rice punched her. He then dragged her unconscious body from the elevator.

The release of the video triggered outrage against the league and Goodell.

Previously published video of the incident was taken from a camera outside the elevator at a hotel in Atlantic City in February. Rice was charged with felony assault in March, but after Janay Palmer declined to testify against her husband, charges were reduced to court-supervised counseling.

[Return to headlines]
 

White House Names Google’s Megan Smith the Next Chief Technology Officer of the United States

The White House announced Thursday that it has named its next Chief Technology Officer. She is Megan Smith, a Google executive with decades of experience in Silicon Valley. The Obama administration named as deputy U.S. CTO, Alexander Macgillivray, a former Twitter lawyer known as a staunch defender of the free flow of information online.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Anjem Choudary: The British Extremist Who Backs the Caliphate

by Andrew Anthony

Anjem Choudary, the radical Muslim linked to many Britons who have fought in Syria, talks about stoning women, rejecting democracy and freedom, and why executions are OK

Anjem Choudary is well practised in the art of making contentious or provocative statements. An acolyte of the extremist cleric Omar Bakri Muhammed, who fled the UK for Lebanon, the 47-year-old former lawyer was a founding member of Al-Muhajiroun, which celebrated the 9/11 attacks, and was proscribed along with several other groups that Choudary has fronted, including Islam4UK.

So it’s no surprise that when I spoke to him last week he dismissed all allegations of Islamic State (Isis) atrocities, defended the use of crucifixion, and acknowledged Isis leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi as “the caliph of all Muslims and the prince of the believers”…

There is a tendency in public discussion of Islam in Britain either to dismiss Choudary’s type of scriptural literalism out of hand or to recast it as a product of alienation, oppression, marginalisation and racism. The idea that anyone sincerely wants to live in a society that exults in horrific executions and religious control of all aspects of public life is one that seems too far-fetched for mainstream society to accept…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Arrest Warrant for French Couple Suspected of Taking Girls to Mideast

French prosecutors said Monday that two European arrest warrants had been issued for a couple thought to have left for the Middle East with four young girls.

The warrants follow suits filed separately by the former spouses of the couple. They are believed to have taken with them four girls aged between three and five.

The first suit was filed by Ilham Tarbouni, who had no news of her three-year-old daughter after she went to her father’s home for the summer.

Police went to the home of the father, a Muslim convert, and found it empty.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Arrest After Sweden Democrat Assaulted

A man has been arrested after a Sweden Democrat politician was beaten up as he walked home in Linköping in southern Sweden on Sunday.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Austria: Gun Ownership Up as Vienna Becomes Jihad Hot-Spot

Just days after revelations that Vienna is becoming a European hub for Jihadists on their way to Syria through the Balkans, a separate report reveals applications for gun permits in the Austrian capital are growing and there are now 85,000 registered weapons in the capital.

Speaking to local press, a native Viennese said she had been prompted to buy a gun after several of her neighbours had been the victims of crime. In Austria, gun laws are much less strict by the United Kingdom; many weapons that require a full licence from police can be purchased over the counter, such as pump-action shotguns and repeating rifles. Only weapons like handguns and semi-automatic rifles require a licence, and there were 460 new applications last year, reports theLocal.at…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Belgium: Jewish Museum Gunman Planned Paris Attack

The suspected perpetrator of the Jewish museum killings in Brussels, Mehdi Nemmouche, was reportedly planning a terrorist outrage in France. According to the French daily ‘Libération’, the gunman had planned a terrorist attack in the ‘heart of Paris’ on 14 July, the French national holiday or ‘Bastille Day’. He relayed this information to four French hostages while working for IS in Syria.

His plans were revealed thanks to the testimonies of four French hostages who were captured by Islamic State in April. Nemmouche was detained in France, because of his suspected involvement in the museum shootings.

In the statements made by hostages Didier Francois, Edouard Elias, Nicolas Hénin and Pierre Torres, who had recognised Nemmouche as an IS guard, he reportedly intended to perpetrate a ‘terrorist attack on a grand scale’ under his jihadi guise ‘Abou Omar’.

The intended target is unclear, but he was planning to strike on the Champs-Elysées during Bastille Day. At the time of his planned attack, he had already been detained.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Ex-MI6 Chief: Encourage UK Jihadis to Return Home

Counter-terrorism expert Richard Barrett says repentant jihadis ‘can expose true nature of Islamic State’

Britain should encourage jihadis fighting in Syria and Iraq to “come home”, the former global counter-terrorism director of MI6 has said.

David Cameron outlined new powers last week for police to seize the passports of terrorist suspects and stop British extremists from returning to the UK. Others, including Boris Johnson, the London mayor, have called for British jihadis to have their citizenship removed.

However, Richard Barrett, a former counter-terrorism chief at MI5 and MI6, said repentant fighters needed “to know that there is a place for them back at home”…

Senior Liberal Democrat figures are also understood to be open to the notion of offering jihadis a way back home, so long as they renounce violence. Sir Menzies Campbell, a former party leader, said: “I don’t think we could give them a total amnesty, but we could treat them leniently in return for completing a de-radicalisation programme.”…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Five Reasons Why We Should Not Welcome British Jihadists Home

by James Brandon

In the last few days, the British media has reported that some British jihadists in Syria have had second thoughts about their jihad and now want to ‘come home’.

In response several experts have suggested that these jihadists should be ‘de-radicalised’, that they could become ‘could become an extremely powerful tool in the fight against the Islamic State’, and that it ‘would seem sensible to encourage British and other foreign fighters who have joined the Islamic State or other extremist groups in Syria and Iraq, and now realise that this was wrong, to come home’.

Legal arguments aside, here are five key reasons why known jihadists should not be welcomed back so hastily…

[Reader comment by Fenbeagle on 8 September 2014.]

They are our enemies. Has it become necessary to say more?

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

France: Brussels Museum Shooting Suspect ‘Beheaded Baby’

A freed French hostage held with David Haines has said one of his kidnappers took a perverse pleasure in torturing Syrian prisoners, and had boasted of how he had raped and killed a young mother before beheading her baby.

Nicolas Hénin, a journalist, identified one of his kidnappers as Mehdi Nemmouche, 29, the French jihadist awaiting trial in Brussels for shooting dead four people at the city’s Jewish Museum after returning to Europe.

He gave details of torture inflicted on prisoners by Isil militants holding the British aid worker David Haines…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

French Papers Highlight Renzi-Valls ‘Tortellini Pact’

After two premiers and other European leftists meet in Bologna

(ANSA) — Paris, September 8 — Premier Matteo Renzi and his French counterpart, Manuel Valls, were on the front pages of leading French papers Monday after they entered into a so-called “tortellini pact” on Sunday.

Renzi invited leftist European leaders to the Democratic Party (PD) Festa dell’Unità (Unity Feast) in the northern Italian city of Bologna on Sunday, where he called on them to enter into a pact to promote a socialist agenda in Europe in front of a plate of tortellini.

“Under the Bologna sun, Manuel Valls put his entente with Matteo Renzi center stage,” wrote daily Le Monde.

“Manuel Valls shows himself in Italy at Matteo Renzi’s side, Le Figaro newspaper headlined.

“They share a will to reform, but with different methods”.

Financial daily Les Echos said “Valls has become a Renzist” since the French left saw its approval ratings plummet after a string of scandals.

“Valls has gone to Bologna in search of a glimmer of hope on Renzi’s ground”.

Spanish Socialist party leader Pedro Sanchez, Party of European Socialists leader Achim Post and Dutch Labour Party MP Diederik Samson also participated in the tortellini pact, as Renzi dubbed it.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

French Far Right at ‘Gates of Power’

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls on Sunday (7 September) warned that the far-right is “at the gates of power”, as the ruling left struggles under its unpopular president, Francois Hollande.

“In France, the extreme right of Marine Le Pen is at the gates of power,” he said, speaking at an annual gathering of fellow left-wing politicians in Bologna, Italy.

The warning followed an IFOP opinion poll over the weekend, which suggests Marine Le Pen would beat all her rivals by winning the first round of a presidential election.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Germany’s “Sharia Police”

by Soeren Kern

According to Burkhard Freier, the director of domestic intelligence for North Rhine-Westphalia, German Salafists are increasingly inclined to use violence to achieve their aims, and many have travelled to Iraq or Syria to obtain combat training.

“The intention of these people is to provoke and intimidate and force their ideology upon others. We will not permit this.” — Wuppertal Mayor Peter Jung.

“In Germany, German law is determinative, not Sharia law.” — Christian Democratic Union (CDU) politician Volker Kauder.

Salafist ideology posits that Sharia law is superior to all secular laws because it emanates from Allah, the only legitimate lawgiver, and thus is legally binding for all of humanity. According to the Salafist worldview, democracy is an effort to elevate the will of human beings above the will of Allah.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Germany: Three Terrorism Suspects Arrested at Frankfurt Airport

Three German nationals have been arrested at Frankfurt airport upon returning from east Africa, according to media reports. The trio are suspected of belonging to the Somali militant group al-Shabab.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Greece: Parliament to Pass Anti-Racism New Law Tomorrow

(ANSAmed) — ATHENS, SEPTEMBER 8 — The process of passing the anti-racism bill, which punishes hate crimes, is due to be completed by the Greek Parlliament on Tuesday, as daily Kathimerini online reports. The vote was delayed last week after a number of parties asked for a vote by roll call, while socialist Pasok also proposed a last-minute amendment. Justice Minister Haralambos Athanasiou on Friday accepted the junior coalition partner’s suggestion that punishment should be stiffened for those who commit racially motivated crimes. The change was backed by radical-leftist Syriza and Democratic Left (Dimar). The draft law seeks to toughen sanctions for incitement to hatred, discrimination and violence. It also aims to criminalize denial of genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity. Syriza only backed one of the bill’s five articles, arguing that in some places the would-be law does not go far enough, while in others it may infringe on freedom of expression. Specifically, the opposition party expressed concern about the government’s bid to punish those, such as members of the Muslim minority in Greece, who refuse to recognize the slaughter of Greek and Armenian Christians by Turks as genocide.

Athanasiou however insisted that the bill does not target those who challenge the term but those who do so “in an insulting and ill-intentioned manner” that may lead to violence.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Italy: High-Speed Rail Works Attacked Again

40 No-TAV assailants scale fences

(ANSA) — Turin, September 5 — About 40 hooded protesters against a high-speed rail line being built between Turin and Lyon again scaled barriers to vainly try to blow up a power generator Thursday night.

The No-TAV campaigners threw rocks, firecrackers and iron bolts at police before dispersing.

No one was hurt.

Work on the line resumed shortly after the attack.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Morocco-Born French Minister Files Suit After ‘Arabic Letter’

France’s Morocco-born education minister said on Monday she would take legal action after a false letter circulated on the Internet advising towns to offer a weekly Arabic language class.

Vallaud-Belkacem, a rising star in French politics who is the first woman to hold the office of education minister, has found herself the target of attacks from the far-right for her Moroccan roots.

Last week, far-right weekly Minute sparked a firestorm of controversy by describing her as a “Moroccan Muslim” and calling her appointment a “provocation”.

While born in Morocco, Vallaud-Belkacem grew up in northern France and holds dual nationality. She has described herself as a “pure product of the Republic”, an example of “happy integration” in a country which is home to the largest Muslim population in Europe.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

New Viking Ring Fortress Discovered in Denmark

Archaeologists led by Dr Nanna Holm of the Danish Castle Center have discovered a massive Viking ring fortress near Køge, a seaport about 39 km southwest of Copenhagen.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Norway Terror Suspect Kidnaps Own Family

A Norwegian citizen was arrested on Saturday evening after he kidnapped his wife and five children and took them as hostages to war-torn Syria.

The 35-year-old of Syrian origin told his wife he was taking the kids for a holiday in Turkey, but his wife soon learned he had taken the children over the border into Syria against their will.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Panicking Tory MPs Plot to Do Deal With UKIP — and Demand Farage is Made Deputy PM

Tory MPs are putting pressure on David Cameron to offer Cabinet positions to Ukip as part of a pre-Election ‘peace deal’ with Nigel Farage.

With Ukip’s Douglas Carswell predicted to romp home in next month’s Clacton by-election — triggered by his bombshell defection from the Conservatives — rebel Tory Eurosceptics want a formal pact with Ukip which would offer both Mr Farage and Mr Carswell the chance of ministerial office.

The move comes as Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg today makes a public call for the Prime Minister to reserve two Cabinet seats for Ukip — or sit back and watch Ed Miliband move into Downing Street…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Pound Down to 10-Mth Low on Scottish Yes Poll

First poll showing independence campaign lead

(refiling to fix typo in slug, add photo). (ANSA) — Rome, September 8 — The pound fell 1% against the pound and euro Monday, hitting 10-month lows after the first poll showing a majority in favour of Scottish independence in the September 18 referendum.

The No to independence campaign said it was not panicking while the Westminster parties scrambled to offer a raft of self-rule concessions in a bid to keep the Union together.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Rebel Tories Refusing to Campaign Against UKIP Defector Douglas Carswell in by-Election

More than a dozen Conservatives have assured the renegade they will not campaign against him either through friendship or fear of a voter backlash

Rebel Tories have told defector Douglas Carswell they will not block his bid to be UKIP’s first MP.

Their bombshell decision will be a blow to David Cameron who is desperately hoping to stop him winning next month’s by-election in Clacton, Essex.

More than a dozen Tory MPs have assured the renegade they will not campaign against him in the poll ­triggered by his defection. Some MPs are refusing to join the effort to stop him holding the seat out of friendship.

Other Tories fear campaigning against UKIP will spark a backlash from the party’s supporters in their own constituencies in May’s general election.

One Tory MP said: “Several of us have told Douglas we will not be going to Clacton to campaign against him. His decision to defect was a blow but he is still popular with many of us and we understand why he did it.”…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

The ‘Good Samaritans’ Who Are Only Interested in Helping Other Spaniards

Tucked away amid the maze of narrow back streets in Madrid’s working-class Tetuán district, an abandoned three-story building has been taken over by around 30 young people who are cleaning it up with the aim of turning it into a soup kitchen and hostel.

Such initiatives are to be found throughout the capital, sometimes set up by neighborhood associations, or as often as not by groups describing themselves as anarchists or anti-system. But the swastikas and signs daubed on the walls of the building reading “Nazis get out of my neighborhood” suggest that the people inside are of a very different stripe, and that the offer of food and somewhere to sleep will apply only to Spaniards.

“In this country there is positive discrimination in favor of foreigners,” says one of the group, a young woman in her mid-20s who is a single-mother and philosophy student, and prefers to remain anonymous.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Charles Bronson in Prison Bust-Up With Islamic Extremists Who Warned ‘We’Ll Cut Off Your Head’

Jailed Charles Bronson got in an argument with Islamic extremists who told him “We’ll cut your head off”, his brother has revealed. Britain’s most notorious prisoner was threatened after he told them to shut up because they were being noisy in HMP Full Sutton.

Bronson’s brother Mark Peterson said: “He’s been having some verbals and they threatened to cut his head off. I’m not sure how it started but they were up all night praying and kept him awake so there was some verbal.”

He said the hardman told them to “pipe down.” “There were some threats made by these prisoners,” Mark said. The ex-naval policeman insisted he was not worried about his brother…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: George Orwell: No Wonder the Mere Ordinary Don’t Like Him

By Michael Henderson

The great reporter, essayist and novelist can withstand Will Self’s silly barbs — and even an absurd comparison with Owen Jones

‘Mediocrities everywhere, I absolve you all,” Salieri declared at the end of Peter Shaffer’s play, Amadeus. Salieri, the darling of the Habsburg court in 18th-century Vienna, could not deceive himself.

He knew he was mediocre. Will Self, poor chap, has yet to acquire the gift of self-knowledge and, if his comments this week about George Orwell offer a reliable guide, he will remain in the dark for a good time yet…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Islamic Rape Gangs: Rotherham is Just the Tip of the Iceberg

By James Delingpole

If you haven’t yet listened to the latest Radio Free Delingpole podcast I urge you to do so: but first you’ll need a strong stomach.

In it, I talk to George Igler of the Discourse Institute who has been following the Rotherham child rape gang story closely for the last three years. The full story is more shocking than you can possibly imagine, not just because of the ugliness of the abuse itself (redolent of that horrible scene from the movie Taken where smack-addled girls are serially abused in a filthy dive by countless grubby men) but also because of the extent of the cover-up by the left-liberal establishment of social workers, local government officers, child welfare charities, diversity co-ordinators, not to mention the regional police forces and even imams.

Truly this is one of the biggest scandals of our time. And it’s going to get bigger.

Here are some of the disturbing revelations in the podcast…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: One Bribe That Even MPs Don’t Want

by Black Dog

Tory Chief Whip Michael Gove is resorting to bribery to lure his MPs down to Clacton to campaign in next month’s by-election.

After the bombshell Mail on Sunday poll predicting a landslide for Douglas Carswell, the Tory MP who defected to Ukip, most of his ex party colleagues now regard the Essex seat as a lost cause.

‘I’m off to Clacton on the train next week and I’ll buy drinks for anyone who joins me,’ Gove begged them last week

‘You can’t afford it!’ they shot back — an unkind reference to Gove’s £36,000 pay cut when he was demoted from Education Secretary in July…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Rotherham Council Chief Executive Steps Down in Wake of Abuse Scandal

Martin Kimber’s decision to go puts more pressure on South Yorkshire police and crime commissioner Shaun Wright

The chief executive of Rotherham Council is to step down in the wake of a shocking report that detailed the sexual exploitation of at least 1,400 children in the town.

Martin Kimber, who joined the authority in 2009, will leave his post in December after concluding that “new leadership” was needed to help the town “recover”…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: The Self-Destructive Discontent in a Tory Party That Has Lost Its Way

With the election only months away, the Conservatives have lost their grip on the issues that matter to voters

Not so long ago, the safer electoral bet was that Ed Miliband could not become prime minister in 2015. He lacked leadership qualities. His personal appeal was underwhelming. He was not palatable to southern middle England. He assumed a leftish take on the economy, more resonant in the nation’s seminar rooms than the instincts of aspiring voters…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Why I Believe We Must Give Clegg’s Job to Nigel Farage …

By Jacob Rees-Mogg [Con MP, North East Somerset] For The Mail On Sunday

In many ways the current Government has been highly successful. It has begun the long process of restoring sound money, made major reforms to a number of public services and managed to begin restructuring the bloated Welfare Bill.

Unfortunately, this is not reflected in the opinion polls.

Between them, the (small ‘c’) conservative parties have nearly 50 per cent, while the two major forces of the Left are on 42.5 per cent…

Historically, one of the strengths of the Tory Party has been its ability to stretch from Rab Butler to Enoch Powell in so civilized a way that Powell supported Butler’s leadership ambitions.

Narrowing the base with a third of potential supporters in another similar party is a sure way to defeat.

Generosity, courage and sense pave the path to victory.

Sadly, I doubt this will be done in time, so I am looking forward to some fair weather in Clacton for a spot of canvassing against a respected erstwhile colleague. It is the district in which my wife grew up, so it could be something of a family outing to join fellow Conservatives opposing someone with whom they agree on most policy issues.

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UKIP Leader Nigel Farage Dismisses Pact With Tories on Visit to Bristol Area

NIGEL Farage has dismissed a pre-election pact with the Conservatives as “extremely unlikely”.

The UKIP leader was speaking in the heart of Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg’s North East Somerset constituency today hours after the Tory politician had called for a pre-election deal to avoid a split in the “conservative family” over Europe, which he said could split the vote and allow Labour back into power.

But at the event in Chelwood, near Chew Magna, Mr Farage said: “The game has changed. If you are a genuine Eurosceptic you should not be in the Conservative or Labour Parties, you should be in UKIP.”…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Jerusalem Doubts Indyk’s Institute After Qatar Funding Reports

Brookings think tank is home to former Middle East envoy; Arab state’s four-year donation totals $14.8m.

Israeli government officials on Sunday questioned the impartiality of the prestigious Brookings Institution, the past and present employer of former US Middle East envoy Martin Indyk, following a New York Times report Sunday revealing that Qatar is a major contributor to that think tank.

“Qatar has been a major bankroller for Hamas and other terrorist organizations,” one government official said. “The fact that the same Qatari government is also a major provider of funds for a respectable Washington think tank raises a whole series of questions about that think tank’s relationships and impartiality.”

According to the Times report, Qatar — the single biggest foreign donor to Brookings, which gets 12 percent of its funds from foreign sources — agreed in 2013 to make a $14.8 million, four-year donation to the institution.

Among the questions this has raised in Jerusalem is the degree to which the institute can impartially draw up papers relating to Qatar, such as its role in the Middle East and the financing of terror organizations.

Qatar is Hamas’s main financial backer…

[Return to headlines]
 

18 Killed in Clashes, Suicide Bombing in Iraqi Town

DHULUIYAH, Iraq, Sept. 8 (Xinhua) — A total of 18 people were killed and 170 others wounded on Monday in clashes between Sunni tribesmen and Islamic State militants in a town in the predominantly Sunni province of Salahudin, a local security source said.

The clashes erupted early Monday morning when dozens of Islamic State militants attacked the defensive lines of fighters of the al- Jubour Sunni tribe in the town of Dhuluiyah, some 90 km north of the Iraqi capital of Baghdad, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

During the clashes, a suicide bomber drove an explosive-laden vehicle into the northern entrance of al-Jubour area in the town of Dhuluiyah, but the tribesmen opened fire on him and blew him up. Another suicide car bomber followed and blew up his vehicle at the entrance, paving the way for a third suicide car bomber to penetrate the Jubour area and detonate his vehicle among a crowd of people, leaving nine local policemen and tribal fighters killed and others wounded, the source said…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

American, Arab-Made Terrorism

By Abdellatif Al-Duaij

The United States is going all out and seeking to fight terrorism seriously as it claims, after telling about the danger of the Islamic State group. The United States seeks to fight terrorism through the formation of an alliance that includes in it some Middle East countries, particularly Arabian Gulf countries. First, terrorism is American-made in origin, and maybe its extension too. I wrote a few years ago that bin Laden is American made. A bad game that its manufacturer must recall.

Today, it is possible to say the IS is made by Arab regimes and the product of backwardness and fanaticism that these regimes insist on cultivating and care for it in its media and through its “education ministries” and information programs. Terrorism is an Arab-American product since the American-Arab alliance decided to “liberate” Afghanistan. The clear goal was to remove a civil regime and replace it with a religious one. This same alliance decided a short time ago to topple Assad’s regime to replace it with a religious regime.

The Islamic State is a direct result of Arab regimes and those who went along with the West to remove the Assad regime. I am not in support of the Syrian regime, but any neutral observer cannot but admit that targeting the Assad regime took place after the regime started to go towards reform and openness to political and social powers. Second, the alternative for the current Syrian regime does not indicate any good thing, and it was better to take an example from the Afghanistan and Iraq experience, during which civil or semi-civil regimes were replaced by pure religious ones. Fighting terrorism requires freedom from fanaticism and be open to the modern civil world.

We will not exaggerate in asking the allied countries to fight terrorism by adopting democratic principles and become democratic countries, because this is not possible, at least in the foreseeable future. But it is our right and duty to ask those who claim to fight terrorism to adopt humanitarian issues and stop teaching children and citizens hatred and contempt towards those who do not belong to them among Allah’s creations. Regimes of countries the United States seeks to get allied with to fight terrorism are concerned with racism against others and preferring their citizens legally over expats, which instills in them the feeling of supremacy and the feeling of narcissism (egomania) or perfection, which they then try to forcefully impose on others.

He who does not have a thing cannot give it, and what is required is to liberate the Arab regimes from their backwardness and zealousness. Only then will it be possible to seek their help to fight terrorism, if terrorism was to exist away from them.

—Translated by Kuwait Times from Al-Qabas

           — Hat tip: RR [Return to headlines]
 

Arab League to Back Iraqi-U.S. Campaign Against Islamic State: Sources

(Reuters) — Arab foreign ministers meeting in Cairo are set to issue a resolution on Sunday backing Iraqi and U.S. efforts to confront Islamic State insurgents who have overrun large areas of Iraq and Syria and declared a cross-border caliphate, diplomats said…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Czech Republic to Supply Iraqi Kurds With $2 Mln Worth of Ammunition: Czech Foreign Ministry

PRAGUE, September 7 (RIA Novosti) — The Czech Republic will grant the authorities of Iraq’s Kurdistan Region ammunition worth over $2 million, Czech Foreign Minister Lubomir Zaoralek said in a televised statement Sunday.

“Right after Iraq’s new government begins its work, which is planned for September 14, I will visit the country for talks on the supply of weapons, the first tranche of which has already been approved by the Czech government. The cost of the first delivery is over 40 million korunas [or $2 million], but it is gratuitous on our part,” Zaoralek said…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Danish Jihadist Poses With Severed Heads

A 25-year-old from the Copenhagen suburbs posted photos of himself, fully-armed, posing near severed heads in Syria. A Scandinavian terror expert tells The Local it is the first time a Dane has been seen in such a gruesome situation.

The radio station obtained nine photos that show the man with a thick beard, a head scarf, and a weapon belt that holds a gun and grenades. He is wearing all black and bearing the logo of militant organisation Isis.

In one of the photos, he is pointing at a severed head, while in others he is posing near a fence that has several severed heads displayed in spikes.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Fresh Violence Kills 22 in Syria

DAMASCUS, Sept. 7 (Xinhua) — At least 22 people were killed on Sunday during the ongoing violence in the unrest-torn country.

The rebels in the northern province of Aleppo fired multiple mortar shells against the government-controlled districts of Salhuddien and Midan on Sunday, killing five people and injuring 30 others, according to the pan-Arab al-Mayadeen TV.

Also in Aleppo, three people were killed and nine others wounded when armed militants opened fire at a passenger bus on the Athraya road in Aleppo, according to the report…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Iraqi Troops Retake Town in Western Province of Anbar

BAGHDAD, Sept. 7 (Xinhua) — Iraqi security forces on Sunday retook control of a town seized earlier by Islamic State militants and seized large areas around the besieged city of Haditha in the country’s western province of Anbar, as U.S. warplanes carried out air strikes against the militants, a security official said.

“Security forces backed by the local tribesmen began a wide- scale offensive to clear the areas around Haditha from the gangs of Daash (Arabic first letters of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant ISIL),” the Interior Ministry spokesman Saad Maan told reporters in Baghdad…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

ISIS Killed or Maimed 700 Kids Since Year’s Start

Including summary executions

(ANSA) — Rome, September 8 — The Islamic State (ISIS) militant group has killed or maimed some 700 children in Iraq since the beginning of the year, the United Nations secretary-general’s special representative for children and armed conflict told the UN Security Council Monday Some of the killings, said Leila Zerrougui, were “summary executions”.

Zerrougui said she was “appalled” at the killing of civilians, including children, by ISIS, which now controls a large swath of Iraq and Syria.

She said the extremists have ordered boys as young as 13 years old to carry weapons, guard strategic locations or arrest civilians, and have used other children as suicide bombers.

Zerrougui said her office has also received report of militias allied to the Iraqi government using children in the fight against ISIS.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Islamic State Militants Use US-Made Weapons — Report

A new report reveals that the militants from the so-called Islamic State (ISIL/ISIS) terrorist group are using US-made weapons , Al-Alam reports. The study, conducted by the London-based small-arms research organization Conflict Armament Research, documented arms captured by Kurdish forces from militants over a period of 10 days toward the end of July.

According to the investigation, the ISIL militants have been using “significant quantities” of arms including M16 assault rifles marked “property of the US government’.

The weapons were originally given to the so-called moderate anti-government militants in Syria, the study found.

“They (the ISIL militants) are transporting these weapons in batches, and have a solid organizational approach to moving these weapons around,” said field investigator Shawn Harris.

The report also found that anti-tank missiles used by militants against the Syrian army were “identical to the M79 rockets transferred by Saudi Arabia to forces operating under the [so-called] Free Syrian Army umbrella in 2013.”

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]
 

Jihadi John to be Unmasked ‘Within Days’: Identity of Masked British Executioner to be Revealed as FBI Prepares to Arrest 12 of His UK Associates

Anti-terror police are set to arrest up to 12 British associates of Islamic State executioner Jihadi John, it has been reported.

British and American authorities say they know the identity of the hostage killer — and are set to reveal it within days. The executioner is one of four British jihadis known as the ‘Beatles’ holding hostages in Syria…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

McCain: Obama’s National Security Team Agreed on Arming ISIL, But…

US republican senator John McCain says the federal government recommended arming ISIL Takfiri terrorist group which has been killing hundreds of people in Iraq and Syria, Al-Alam reported.

Speaking in an interview with the American FOX news, McCain mentions a meeting the US President Barack Obama held with his national security team in which all members reportedly “recommended arming ISIS (ISIL),” Al-Alam reports.

“Hillary Clinton has described already the meeting in the White House over two years ago… everyone in the national security team recommended arming ISIS and the President, by himself, turned it down,” McCain said.

The comment follows a question from the interviewer regarding the arming of the so-called “Free Syrian Army,” making McCain’s statement appear to be a simple Freudian slip.

Despite McCain falsely claiming that the President declined to arm the group, the pairs’ direct involvement in the rise of ISIL, a name simply referring to Al Qaeda in Iraq, is undeniable, the InfoWars writes in an article.

McCain has worked feverishly with the Obama administration for the last several years to arm radical Takfiris across the region in an admitted decades-long plan to overthrow the governments of several countries including Iraq, Libya and Syria.

As far back as March 2011, McCain was cheerleading the CIA’s plans to provide support to the “Libyan rebels” even as Libyan rebel leader Abdel-Hakim al-Hasidi admitted to working with Al Qaeda. Only months later, those same “rebels” would place an Al Qaeda flag on top of the courthouse in Benghazi.

Just last year, McCain traveled to Syria to meet with senior members of the Asifat al-Shamal Brigade as well as the Free Syrian Army, two groups that have admittedly “pledged allegiance to Al Qaeda” as well. Widespread controversy was sparked after several of the men at the secret meeting were found to be radicals accused of recently kidnapping 11 Lebanese pilgrims.

Despite McCain and Obama’s never-ending claims of only supporting “moderate rebels,” Free Syrian Army commander Jamal Maarouf admitted in 2014 that his fighters regularly fight alongside Al Qaeda, the same Al Qaeda now “merging” with ISIL on the Syria-Iraq border.

Thousands of Takfiris were even trained by US instructors at a secret base in neighboring Jordan before fleeing to Iraq to join ISIL according to one Jordanian official. Similarly, a recent PBS News report featured Takfiris who admitted to being trained in Qatar by US forces.

The backlash against McCain’s unfettered support of radical Takfiri terrorists came to a head in 2013 when a US Marine confronted McCain at a town hall meeting in Arizona and accused the senator of treason.

Only hours before McCain’s statement on Fox News, retired United States Air Force Lieutenant General Thomas McInerney stated that “we helped build ISIS” during a similar interview with the network.

“We backed I believe in some cases, some of the wrong people and not in the right part of the Free Syrian Army and that’s a little confusing to people, so I’ve always maintained… that we were backing the wrong types,” McInerney said.

Now, with ISIL gaining ground and new fighters by the day, McCain and President Obama remain fixated on bombing Syria to allegedly stop the ISIL threat they helped create instead of the reported ISIL threat at the US-Mexico border, Iranian Al-Alam reported.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]
 

Pampered Child is Out of Control

By Abdellatif Al-Duaij

The United States knows and also announces that terrorist organizations receive finance support from Arab regimes, and of course, Arab oil regimes are in the forefront, with which the United States is working hard these days to form an international alliance against terrorism, with its base being the states and regimes of these the states and regimes of countries that are officially accused by the United States and international monitoring systems for financing terrorism! How can the United States put its hands in the hands of those who just recently put millions in the hands of Nusra or IS?! Maybe they are desperate because this is the best there is. The real danger of terrorism makes the United States strike an alliance with the devil to face it.

Then if this is the case, why the hesitance towards supporting Egypt? And why work on the other side to topple the Syrian regime, which is the only Arab regime in the region that is practically and tragically preoccupied with receiving terror hits?! I do not imagine that American administrations, with all the research, eavesdropping and intelligence, do not know the continued cooperation between some establishments and Arab regimes, its rich people and some organizations the United States is getting ready to charge with claims of terrorism. So it is clear that the Americans are dreaming of finding means to tame terrorism, or at least preoccupy it with the region’s domestic issues, or they may think that they can return the genie into the bottle and place it under control as the case was in the last decades of the previous century. I think this is like the hope of Satan to enter heaven — because the terrorist organizations, after years of support and financing, became independent to a certain extent from traditional financial support.

It is a fact that religious initiation and teaching that were practiced by most Arab regimes and forced in the region for decades resulted in the existence of popular powers that support terrorism with conviction and belief. This makes it difficult to control these popular powers, or even convince them to shrink their supplies to terrorism and terrorists.

The genie is out of the bottle, multiplied and spread, and it is no longer possible to control or direct it, so the United States can only face the truth with terrorism, and maybe face its allies in fighting it instead of cooperating with them. —Translated by Kuwait Times from Al-Qabas

           — Hat tip: RR [Return to headlines]
 

Scots Jihadi May be Member of ISIS All-Woman Police Force in Syria

Scots jihadist Aqsa Mahmood may be a senior member of an all-women Isis police force in Syria, experts believe.

Academics believe British women, including former private schoolgirl from Glasgow Ms Mahmood, have been given key roles in the Al-Khanssaa Brigade.

The extremist police force, an arm of Isis, punishes females for behaviour they think goes against the beliefs of the Islamic State…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Syria-Iraq: Obama for 3-Year Campaign vs. Islamic State

UK jihadists lead IS women’s religious police in Raqqa

(ANSAmed) — NEW YORK/BEIRUT, SEPTEMBER 8 — US president Barack Obama is preparing a three-phase campaign against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria that may take at least three years, reported the New York Times on Monday, citing US senior administration officials. Obama will also be requesting that Congress authorize an additional 500 million dollars to train and arm pro-Western Syrian rebels, reports the Wall Street Journal. The daily noted that the US president wants Congress to push through a proposal submitted in the spring for the extra funding. Meanwhile, a joint front of Syrian rebel groups fighting against both the Assad regime and the Islamic State (IS) has been announced in the northwestern part of the country.

According to reports in Arab media and sources in the Idlib regime ANSA contacted via Skype, Syrian Revolutionary Front (SRF) Jamal Maarouf leader spoke on Sunday in front of about one hundred fighters representing the major armed groups operating in northern Syria. Maarouf said that “the battle of moderation” would involve their fighting against “two states: Assad’s state and Baghdadi’s state”, in reference to IS leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi. “The men of Free Syria will fight to lift the siege of Aleppo and will aim to take back Deir Al-Zor and Raqqa,” Maarouf added, in reference to territory partially or entirely under the control of regime forces and IS jihadists. Other anti-regime military fronts in central and southern Syria have said they will take part in the joint efforts. Violent clashes continued on Monday in the eastern part of the Golan Heights — for the most part under Israeli control — between Syrian rebel fights and pro-government forces. Reports were from local sources contacted via Skype by ANSA. The rebel groups involved include Jabhat Al-Nusra, who in recent days took 40 UN peacekeepers hostage and are keeping them in an unknown location in the area. Last week rebel groups took over the Quneitra border crossing and over the past 48 hours they have continued their offensive.

A group of UK jihadists leads the Al-Khanssaa brigade, a sort of Islamic State (IS) women’s police force enforcing compliance with Sharia law among women living under the ‘Islamic Caliphate’. Reports were in the UK media on Monday, citing the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation (ICSR) of King’s College London. One of the key figures inside this group is Aqsa Mahmood, a 20-year-old from Glasgow who left the UK last year to join the Islamists in Syria. The religious police operate in the city Raqqa, held to be an IS stronghold and tasked with finding those who show symbols of Western culture in public. Members of the militia wear a dark veil covering their faces, are all young and single and are paid about 120 euros per month.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Two Traffic Police Officers Killed in SE Yemen

ADEN, Yemen, Sept. 7 (Xinhua) — Unknown gunmen killed two senior officers with traffic police department in the southeastern Yemeni province of al-Bayda on Sunday afternoon, a government official told Xinhua.

“The attackers opened fire on the officers’ vehicle near the city of al-Bayda, sprayed it with bullets and fled the scene immediately,” the local government official said on condition of anonymity…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Wiping Out Islamic State ‘Impossible’: Julie Bishop

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has warned that destroying the marauding Islamic State group entirely will be “impossible” and that it may become a long-term threat similar to al-Qaeda.

Reflecting the immense difficulties facing the West as it wrestles with how to stop the militant group creating terror in the Middle East, Ms Bishop said the Islamic State (also known as ISIL) is an ideology as well as a military force and will therefore survive efforts to stamp it out…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

France Halts Warship Delivery to Russia

Conditions ‘not right’ because of Ukraine actions

(ANSA) — Rome, September 3 — France on Wednesday halted delivery of the first of two Mistral assault navy ships to Russia, saying the conditions are “not right” because of Moscow’s recent actions in Ukraine.

France had hitherto resisted pressure to stop the delivery as part of Western sanctions against Moscow.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Le Pen: EU ‘To Blame’ For Ukraine Crisis

THe EU is to blame for the crisis in Ukraine as it forced Kiev to choose between East and West, French National Front leader Marine Le Pen has said. The EU’s trade deal with Ukraine “essentially blackmailed the country to choose between Europe and Russia”, Le Pen told Le Monde.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Medvedev: Russia Will Respond Asymmetrically to New Western Sanctions

The Russian government does not rule out that Russia could close its airspace in response to new Western sectoral sanctions, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said, ITAR-TASS reported.

Western nations “should be asked whether there will be new sanctions, but if there are sanctions connected with energy or further restrictions for our financial sector, we will have to respond asymmetrically,” Medvedev said in an interview with the Vedomosti business daily. “For example, with restrictions in the transport sphere.”

“We proceed from the fact that we have friendly relations with our partners, so the sky above Russia is open for flights; but if we are restricted, we will have to respond,” he said.

“If Western carriers fly out beyond our airspace, it may lead to bankruptcy of many airlines that are teetering on the brink of survival.”

Medvedev, however, said it would be a bad option. “We would just like our partners to realize that,” he said. The premier regretted that the West already announced a few rounds of sanctions against Moscow. “I hoped our partners would be smarter,” he said.

Sanction wars do not offer peace in Ukraine. On the contrary, they threaten the global security system, Medvedev said, and added “Most politicians realize that.”

“However, there is certain inertia of thought, and, regretfully, a desire to use force in international relations,” Medvedev said.

“We know that at first economic sanctions come, and they are followed by political sanctions in response; and political actions are not symmetrical and are worse than limited supplies: here is a risk of breaking the security system in the world,” the prime minister said. “I hope this is not what our Western counterparts aspire, and no one is insane are among decision-makers.” “Sanctions are always double-edged,” he noted.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]
 

Russia May Restrict Airspace if New Sanctions Imposed

Current ceasefire at risk after new bombings

(ANSA) — Rome, September 8 — Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has said that Russia could restrict access to its airspace if the European Union imposes new sanctions as a result of the crisis in Ukraine.

In an interview with Russian daily Vedomosti, Medvedev said that EU sanctions threaten the global system of security.

The current ceasefire remains at risk after new bombings on Sunday in the port city of Mariupol and near the airport in Donetsk.

Pro-Russian separatists have announced the possibility of a prisoner exchange with Kiev on Wednesday.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Russia ‘To Close Down Airspace’ if West Imposes New Sanctions — PM

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has announced Moscow could restrict the movement of foreign flights in its airspace if new sector sanctions are introduced against the country.

“If there are sanctions related to energy [or] further restrictions to our financial sector, we have to respond asymmetrically,” Russian agency ITAR-TASS quoted Medvedev as saying.

“For instance, in the transport sphere,” he added, elaborating a ban on flights over Russia could lead many Western carriers to bankruptcy.

Medvedev’s announcement came as Brussels is poised to announce whether it has approved a new round of measures targeting Russia, a move Europe believes is necessary due to the long-standing escalation of the crisis in Ukraine.

EU Council President Herman van Rompuy nevertheless made clear the bloc might refrain from adopting a new package if the Donbass ceasefire is observed.

In Rompuy’s words such a decision is tied to “permanent” truce and to the start of new negotiations seeking solutions of the conflict, since the current ceasefire is just a single step.

Both the Kiev forces and pro-Russian rebels ended fire on Friday, following an agreement between Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and representatives of self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk “People’s Republics”, with the two sides subsequently upholding to the ceasefire for two days.

Reports of shelling in Mariupol on Saturday, resulting in the death of a woman, and exchange of fire near the Donetsk airport on Monday have marred the truce, but it is not yet known which side was responsible.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]
 

Russia Threatens to Close Airspace to EU Planes

Russian PM Medvedev has told the Vedomosti daily he might ban overflights by EU carriers if it imposes more sanctions: “If there are sanctions related to the energy sector, or further restrictions on Russia’s financial sector, we will have to respond asymmetrically … For example, restrictions in the transport sector”.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Ukraine Crisis: 1 Dead as Heavy Shelling Breaks Ceasefire

Truce between Kiev and pro-Russian rebels collapses in Mariupol, where artillery fire leaves one dead and three wounded, as details of peace plan emerge which coud see Donetsk and Luhansk remain within Ukraine as autonomous regions

A delicate ceasefire in Eastern Ukraine was in danger of falling apart on Sunday, as continued fighting in several parts of the region threatened to torpedo a twelve point truce plan signed on Friday.

Ukrainian government forces and pro-Russian separatists traded blame for the breaches of the truce, which saw intense fighting around Donetsk airport and a heavy over-night artillery garage of Ukrainian positions on the outskirts of Mariupol…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Ukraine: Donetsk Defense Minister: Self-Defense Forces to Return Fire if Provoked by Kiev Forces

DONETSK, September 7 (RIA Novosti) — In case of provocation on the part of Kiev forces, an order will be given to return fire, the defense minister of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic said Sunday.

“Ukrainian forces continue to fire at our positions. It looks like Poroshenko is not in full control of his troops. Kiev wants to use the ceasefire to regroup and launch an attack. We are ready for it. If the provocations continue, I will have to give an order to return fire,” the minister said as quoted by his press-secretary, who spoke to RIA Novosti Sunday…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

India: Muslims-Only Apartments Coming Up in Greater Noida

NOIDA: Apartments are usually targeted at particular income groups. But a developer in Greater Noida has narrowed down his focus group to a particular community.

The builder, Adarsh Group, is promoting the apartments — Gulistaan Golf View Heights — as “dream homes for elite Muslim brotherhood”. The apartments — 368 in all, priced at between Rs 2,500 and Rs 3,750 per sq feet — are coming up on 3.5 acres in Sports City, Greater Noida. It will have a mosque, a madrassa, and will face Qibla — the direction a Muslim faces when offering prayers. Construction is likely to begin by the end of this month…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Roadside Bomb Kills 4 Afghan Soldiers

FAIZABAD, Afghanistan, Sept. 7 (Xinhua) — Four Afghan soldiers were killed as a roadside bomb struck their vehicle in Badakhshan province with Faizabad as its capital 315 km northeast of Kabul on Sunday, a local official said…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Chinese Muslims Start Annual Mecca Pilgrimage

YINCHUAN, Sept. 5 (Xinhua) — A charter flight with 297 Chinese Muslims on Friday morning left Yinchuan, capital of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, heading to the city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia for an annual pilgrimage.

They are the first group among more than 14,000 Chinese pilgrims who will go to Mecca on a government-organized trip this year.

A total of 2,833 people are scheduled to fly to Saudi Arabia via nine Air China charter flights between Sept. 5 and 9, and return to Ningxia on Oct. 15, said Jin Pu, of the Ningxia Regional Administration of Religious Affairs…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

We Will Keep Australia Safe …

The Abbott Government celebrates its first anniversary in power with the Prime Minister pledging to keep Australia safe in a time of increasing global uncertainty.

Tony Abbott returned to Sydney after a three-day visit to India and Malaysia to spend Father’s Day and mark his first year in office on Sunday.

The prime minister said his government had delivered on its promise to tackle debt and repeal the carbon tax, and had signed two free trade deals with Australia’s major trading partners Japan and South Korea…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Burundi Police Say Elderly Italian Nuns Raped, One Beheaded

Pope Francis ‘deeply saddened’ by missionaries’ deaths in Africa

(ANSA) — Bujumbura, September 8 — Three Italian nuns murdered while working as missionaries in the African nation of Burundi were raped and one decapitated, according to media reports on Monday. Godefroid Bizimana, vice director general of the Burundi police said that Bernadette Boggian was found to have been beheaded. Earlier, the foreign ministry in Rome confirmed that the three Italians, part of the Xaverian order, were killed at their convent in the city of Kamenge. Police were searching for a motive for the killings of Boggian, 79, Luci Pulici, 75, and Olga Raschietti, 82, with a botched robbery attempt one early theory.

Two of the three Italian nuns were found with their throats slit, an anonymous police official was quoted as saying by media. Kamenge Mayor Damien Baseka said that two of the nuns had been killed “savagely”. The bodies of Pulici and Raschietti, were found on Sunday afternoon, leading to early reports that two nuns had been killed.

Boggian’s body was found later the same day.

Pope Francis sent his condolences to the victims’ religious order.

“Deeply saddened by the tragic deaths of the Xaverian missionary sisters killed in Burundi, the Holy Father wishes to assure his heartfelt participation in the profound suffering of the congregation for the loss of such dedicated sisters and, in the hope that the blood they have shed may become the seed of hope to build true fraternity between peoples, he raises fervent prayers for the eternal repose of their souls and for their generous witness of the gospel,” read the message to the Xaverian order from the pope.

“To their families, the entire institute and those who mourn their loss, he imparts the comfort of his apostolic blessing,” said the papal message. Italian Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini expressed condolences and said the murders brought “great pain”.

“We’re once again witness to the sacrifices made by those who, with complete dedication, spend their entire lives relieving the overwhelming suffering that still exists in Africa,” Mogherini said.

Vatican Radio said the three nuns had been working among the sick and poor in Burundi, a small central African state, for seven years. Prior to that, they had been missionaries in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Raschietti had spent 50 years in Africa.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

FBI: U.S. Air Marshal Assaulted at Airport in Nigeria

(CNN) — A U.S. air marshal was assaulted with a syringe containing an “unknown substance” at the Lagos, Nigeria, airport on Sunday, according to the FBI, which said it is investigating the incident.

The air marshal flew back to the United States after the attack and “felt fine” the entire 12-hour flight, a U.S. law enforcement official told CNN.

“Out of an abundance of caution, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention conducted an on-scene screening of the victim when United Flight 143 landed in Houston early Monday morning,” a statement from the FBI read.

[An attempt to spread the ebola virus here? — PW]

           — Hat tip: Papa Whiskey [Return to headlines]
 

Nigerian: Boko Haram Makes Another Key Advance

Northeastern town of Michika captured

(ANSA) — Rome, September 8 — Nigerian Islamist group Boko Haram made another key advance Monday in its bid to establish an Islamic state in the African country by holding on to territory rather than, as in the past, launching hit-and-run attacks.

The militants captured the key northeastern town of Michika.

The Nigerian army killed 50 militants during a raid on their hideout in the small north-eastern town of Kawuri at the weekend.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Somalia: 12 Killed in Al-Shabab Attack on AU Bus

(ANSA) — Rome, September 8 — A suicide car bomber on Monday killed 12 people in an attack on African Union (AU) troops in Somalia, the first since militant Islamist group al-Shabab’s leader Ahmed Abdi Godane was killed by a US air strike last week. A car laden with explosives was rammed into an AU convoy travelling south-west of the capital Mogadishu.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Three Italian Nuns Killed in Burundi, Pope ‘Deeply Saddened’

Two of women reportedly had throats slit

(ANSA) — Vatican City, September 8 — Pope Francis said Monday that he was “deeply affected” after three Xaverian nuns working as missionaries in Burundi were killed. The three nuns, named as Luci Pulici, 75; Olga Raschietti, 82; and Bernardetta Boggian, 79; were killed at their convent in Kamenge, a suburb of the capital, Bujumbura. “Deeply saddened by the tragic death of the Xaverian missionary sisters killed in Burundi, the Holy Father wishes to assure his heartfelt participation in the profound suffering of the congregation for the loss of such dedicated sisters and, in the hope that the blood they have shed may become the seed of hope to build true fraternity between peoples, he raises fervent prayers for the eternal repose of their souls and for their generous witness of the gospel,” read a message to the Xaverian order.

“To their families, the entire institute and those who mourn their loss, he imparts the comfort of his apostolic blessing.

Two of the three Italian nuns were found with their throats slit, an anonymous police official was quoted as saying by media. Kamenge Mayor Damien Baseka said two nuns were killed “savagely”. The bodies of Pulici and Raschietti, were found on Sunday, while Boggian’s was found early on Monday, Vatican radio said.

Italian Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini expressed condolences overnight, and said the killings brought “great pain”.

“We’re once again witness to the sacrifices made by those who, with complete dedication, spend their entire lives relieving the overwhelming suffering that still exists in Africa,” Mogherini said.

Church sources said initial reports indicated that the killings could be the result of a robbery that went wrong.

Vatican radio said the three nuns had been working among the sick and poor in Burundi for seven years. Prior to that, they had been missionaries in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Raschietti had spent 50 years in Africa.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Three Italian Nuns Murdered in Burundi Attack

Three Italian nuns were found murdered over the weekend in a parish in the north of Burundi’s capital, officials and a priest in the African state said on Monday, in killings the Vatican said had “greatly saddened” Pope Francis.

Police said two suspects had been detained for questioning.

Father Mario Pulicini, responsible for the parish in a northern suburb of Bujumbura, named two of the nuns as Lucia Pulici, who was 75 and due to celebrate her birthday on Monday, and Olga Raschietti, 82. He said they were found dead in their dormitory on Sunday.

The third nun, 79-year-old Bernadetta Boggian, was found early on Monday morning, he told Reuters, adding that the killings appeared to have happened at two separate times…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UN-Funded African Troops Raped Vulnerable Somalis, Says HRW

Human Rights Watch report says internationally-funded African Union troops in Somalia have raped women and girls as young as 12

Internationally-funded African Union troops in war-torn and impoverished Somalia have raped women and girls as young as 12 and traded food aid for sex, Human Rights Watch said in a damning report on Monday.

“Some of the women who were raped said that the soldiers gave them food or money afterwards in an apparent attempt to frame the assault as transactional sex,” the HRW report said…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Jamaica’s Child Abuse Cases Increase in 2013

KINGSTON, Sept. 5 (Xinhua) — Jamaica’s child abuse cases reached a worrisome level of 11,018 last year, an increase of 26 percent over that of the year before, according to data released this week by Jamaica’s Office of the Children’s Registry (OCR).

Many other cases were not reported, said Greg Smith, the registrar with the OCR, at a press briefing…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Lord’s Prayer in Venezuela Invokes Chavez: ‘Lead US Not Into Temptation of Capitalism’

In Venezuela honoring late President Hugo Chavez is nothing out of the ordinary, so it was not unusual for a congresswoman of Chavez’s political to pay homage to her former leader.

It was what she said that is raising eyebrows.

At an event in Caracas Monday, Maria Estrella Uribe said the Lord’s Prayer, changing the words to dedicate it to Chavez, because they could not “leave without this spiritual commitment,” according to La Patilla.

“Our Chavez, who art in Heaven, in earth, in the sea and in us the delegates,” Uribe started in Spanish. “Hallowed be Thy name, Thy legacy come to us to take to the people … gives us today your light to that it guides us all days and lead us not into the temptation of capitalism, deliver us from evil, oligarchy and the crime of smuggling, for centuries of centuries. Amen.”

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Venezuela: Catholic Church Denounces Lord’s Prayer to Hugo Chavez

A reworking of the Lord’s Prayer to commemorate the late Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez has been causing controversy.

The trouble started on Monday when a Socialist party delegate read the prayer at a party convention.

“Our Chavez who art in Heaven, land and sea, and in us, your delegates,” began Maria Estrella Uribe.

The Archbishop of Caracas has denounced her ode to the late president as “profanity.”

Henrik Clausen

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Bavaria Wants Border Controls in Italy Migrant Row -Update 2

‘Unless Schengen breaches stop’ says governor

(ANSA) — Berlin, September 8 — Germany should “seriously think about” stopping Italy’s alleged breaches of the Schengen accords by new border checks on migrants, Bavarian Governor Horst Seehofer told German daily Bild Monday. “Unless the situation changes,” the minister-president and CSU party chief said, “Germany will have to seriously weigh the possibility of stopping infractions via border controls.

The CSU is the Bavarian sister party of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU. Bavaria last month accused Italy of blatantly waiving EU migrant rules. Rome is deliberately ignoring standard refugee procedures such as finger-printing in order to let them seek asylum in other countries, Bavarian Interior Minister Joachim Hermann said on August 22.

Italian Interior Minister Angelino Alfano is “barefaced” in complaining about high refugee arrivals to Italy while at the same time allegedly not respecting EU norms on them, Herrmann said.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Calais Crisis: UK to Send Old NATO Security Fence

James Brokenshire, immigration minister, offers to “help” by sending nine-foot high steel fences used to keep Nato summit safe to Calais but warns that keeping the port secure against illegal migrants is French responsibility

Ministers will offer to send the security fences used to protect world leaders at last week’s Nato summit to Calais to help the French authorities stop illegal immigrants trying to reach Britain.

More than 12 miles of fencing was set up to create a ring of steel around Celtic Manor in Newport, and summit venues in Cardiff, to protect President Obama and 150 other leaders and ministers from potential terrorist attacks…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Calais Crisis: ‘Britain is No Soft Touch When it Comes to Illegal Immigration’

By James Brokenshire, Immigration Minister

Commentary: There will be no return to the chaotic scenes of Sangatte seen under the last government, Immigration Minister states

I want to send out a very clear message today to people on both sides of the Channel — Britain is no soft touch when it comes to illegal immigration.

Since coming to power, this Government has been working hard to restore control to our immigration system, stamping out the abuse that was widespread under the previous regime, and investing millions in strengthening the security of our border in Calais and other key ports. We are clear: there will be no return to the chaotic scenes of Sangatte seen under the last Government…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: PM’s Own Backbenchers Tear Into ‘Puce-Faced’ Cameron Over Failure to Get Grip on Immigration

David Cameron has been given a humiliating dressing-down by his own MPs over the ‘failure’ to get a grip on immigration.

The Prime Minister was ‘puce-faced’ as Tory MPs queued up to challenge his record on reducing the flow of immigrants into the UK and demand answers to what he was going to do about it.

He was openly contradicted after praising Home Secretary Theresa May for doing a ‘good job’ on the controversial issue.

Outspoken Tory backbencher Philip Davies rounded on Mr Cameron, saying: ‘I don’t think she’s done a good job at all!’…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Europa’s Icy Plate Tectonics May Support Life

Jupiter’s moon Europa sports a chilly version of plate tectonics. The icy shell that encases the moon has sections that slide beneath each other in a similar way to Earth’s continents and ocean floors. The finding strengthens the notion that Europa could harbour life.

Europa has long been considered one of the best sites in the solar system to search for extraterrestrial life, because it has more water than even Earth does. Its global ocean is encased in a shell of ice 20 to 30 kilometres thick.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Why Muslims Rape by Y.K. Cherson

In the wake of the Rotherham Muslim sex grooming gang controversy, along with so many other recent cases of Muslim rape in the West and the sexual abuse of Western natives by Muslim immigrants, it is important to understand why these cases are so widespread.

Here is a revisit to Y.K. Cherson’s “Why Muslims Rape.”…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

5 thoughts on “Gates of Vienna News Feed 9/8/2014

  1. @Pound Down to 10-Mth Low on Scottish Yes Poll

    Interesting times in Scotland there is not only a momentous political shift but a reawakening of cultural assertiveness, doubt that can be put back in the UK container.

    This is different from the independence movements of the eighties and nineties, difficult to describe but the politicians have almost been side lined and a state of independence is being scored deep into the Scots psyche.

    • Don’t know if you get “Private Eye*” there, Peter, but the cover of the current issue has a photo of David Cameron and Theresa May, alone around the cabinet table. He wants to know where the others are; she says they’ve all joined UKIP!

      *For non- Brits, “Private Eye” is a British satirical magazine, often sued for libel but kept afloat by benefactors; the late, great comic Peter Cook was one such.

  2. Re: “Calais Crisis: ‘Britain is No Soft Touch When it Comes to Illegal Immigration’”, By James Brokenshire, Immigration Minister

    There was a scene in the British serial Yes, Minister in which a civil servant has called a meeting with one of his colleagues to propose that the MP he himself serves be elevated to the Cabinet, specifically to the position of Minister of Culture.

    The second civil servant asks the first, concerning the MP in question, “Isn’t he a philistine?”

    But the first instantly and nonchalantly deflects this implied criticism of his suggestion with this pair of observations: “The Minister of Employment is unemployable. The Minister of Industry is the idlest man in Britain.”

    After reading report after report of the Rotherham scandal since it was first made public, and just now the text of Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff’s eloquent and moving Chanhassen speech, my eye strayed upon this post, and the name and title of its author.

    I fervently hope the gentleman’s surname is not a portent of the future of England’s countryside following the demographic policies of the current government.

    But, somehow, the exchange from Yes, Minister quoted above did leap to mind, despite my not having watched it in two decades.

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