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Thursday, June 28, 2007

Egypt Bans ALL Female Genital Mutilation

Hooray! There is sanity in this world after all. As an empathetic human being and a female, I am overjoyed at this civilized move, which strengthens the ban against female genital mutilation (FGM) implemented by Egypt in 1997. Let the rest of the world follow suit - there is hope!!

If you ever wonder why we activists stick out our necks and run the risk of being hammered, keep this victory in mind. Like so many others, I've been speaking out against this nightmare for many years, almost as long as I've been online, starting in 1995! I've been beaten on mercilessly for even daring to bring up such subjects - hysterical cries of "bigot" and "phobe" of assorted stripes have been tossed my way. I have maintained my strength by considering, in this case, the poor girls and women who have been hideously tortured and sometimes killed in this vile manner, in the name of "tradition" and/or "religion." Upwards of 100 million females still alive at this writing suffer from this wretched abuse, among many other types of brutality, worldwide.

Finally, a break from the violence and savagery committed endlessly against living, breathing and feeling beings.

Now, can the human species stop hacking at boys' genitals as well?!
Egypt outlaws all female circumcision: "CAIRO (AFP) - Egypt on Thursday finally banned all female circumcision, the widely-practised removal of the clitoris which just days ago cost the life of a 12-year-old girl.

Officially the practice, which affects both Muslim and Christian women in Egypt and goes back to the time of the pharoahs, was banned in 1997 but doctors were allowed to operate 'in exceptional cases'.

On Thursday, Health Minister Hatem al-Gabali decided to ban every doctor and member of the medical profession, in public or private establishments, from carrying out a clitoridectomy, a ministry press official told AFP.

Any circumcision 'will be viewed as a violation of the law and all contraventions will be punished,' said the official, adding that it was a 'permanent ban'.

A survey in 2000 said the practice was carried out on 97 percent of the country's women.

In the latest fatality, 12-year-old Bedur Ahmed Shaker was taken by her mother to a private clinic in Minya, a town on the Nile south of Cairo, for the operation. She died before she could be transferred to hospital.

Her mother accused the woman doctor of negligence, charging that her daughter's death was linked to the anaesthetic and not the removal of the clitoris, for which she had paid 50 pounds (nearly nine dollars). Police have arrested both women."

Monday, June 25, 2007

Islam in the UK - Coming Soon to the U.S.?

A new government report in Great Britain has all but handed the keys to the (united?) kingdom to the Islamic brotherhood. Prediction: Islam will become dominant in Britain faster than the majority realize. Prediction: Canada, the U.S., Australia and New Zealand will follow, so long as the brotherhood's coffers are being filled by massive amounts of oil money, etc.

And so long as there are vast numbers of "dhimwits" to aid and abet, like so many Rahabs opening the gates of Jericho, we of the freethinking world are doomed. (Rahab, by the way, was a Canaanite prostitute who became a great hero to Joshua's Israelites by allowing them to invade the walled Canaanite city of Jericho and slaughter every man, woman and child they could find.)
"dhim·wit (dmwt) -- A non-Muslim member of a free society that abets the stated cause of Islamic domination with remarkable gullibility or guile. A dhimwit is always quick to extend sympathy to the very enemy that would take away his or her own freedom (or life) if given the opportunity."
Lest you think we are exaggerating, please be sure to read the following article:
Islam and the Blair legacy in the UK

A recent government report on how Islam is taught in British universities signals another step towards the Islamisation of Britain and its education system. It was launched by the Prime Minister, Tony Blair, at the opening of the “Islam and Muslims in the World Today” conference sponsored by Cambridge University on 4 June 2007. Should this report be implemented, education will be handed over more and more to Muslims who will train and shape the next generation. This means a further move towards the establishment of Islam in the UK as a religion of state....

Some of the report’s recommendations:

1. Universities should employ Muslim scholars to teach Islamic theology: “Students should be given the opportunity to learn from competent traditionally trained Islamic scholars in at least those parts of the syllabus that directly inform everyday practice of Islam”.

2. All universities must employ Muslim chaplains or advisers to deal with the growing number of Muslim students on campus. More prayer rooms for Muslims should be provided.

3. Islamic Student Societies should be better recognised and encouraged.

4. Universities should cooperate with Islamic schools and colleges (dar al-ulum) to break down the divisions between British society and the Muslim community. Universities should help madrassas and dar al-ulum because they play a key role in Muslim communities and in the training of future community leaders. They need a formal link to higher education qualifications.

5. Islamic studies should be linked to job opportunities such as teaching, chaplaincy and Islamic banking.

6. Universities should provide add-on modules in Islamic studies for all students.

7. Guidance should be given to all universities on Friday prayers, Ramadan and halal food. All university staff should receive awareness training on Muslims and Islam.

An analysis of these recommendations reveals that the report is in fact asking for a privileged position for Islam in the universities. It would seem to aim at transforming Islamic studies in Britain into a Muslim monopoly, a Muslim enclave in which the vast majority of staff and students are Muslim.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Ron Paul and the Reason Why

I have liked congressman and presidential candidate Ron Paul for a number of years now. On several salient issues, I concur with his intelligent and thoughtful insights. After hearing about the recent brouhaha regarding him, I was at first puzzled by Paul's remarks concerning 9/11, until I took his advice and spent some time "listening" to Osama Bin Laden by reading the latter's purported 9/11 "confession."

First of all, let's review Ron Paul's comments at the second Republican presidential debate. When asked about about whether or not the terrorist attacks on the U.S. had "altered his view" of the aggressive American foreign policy, Paul responded:
"Have you ever read the reasons they attacked us? They attacked us because we've been over there. We've been bombing Iraq for 10 years. We've been in the Middle East -- I think Reagan was right. We don't understand the irrationality of Middle Eastern politics. Right now, we're building an embassy in Iraq that is bigger than the Vatican. We're building 14 permanent bases. What would we say here if China was doing this in our country or in the Gulf of Mexico? We would be objecting. We need to look at what we do from the perspective of what would happen if somebody else did it to us."

Paul was then quizzed by Fox News's Wendell Goler, who asked, "Are you suggesting we invited the 9/11 attack, sir?"

Paul answered:

"I'm suggesting that we listen to the people who attacked us and the reason they did it. And they are delighted that we're over there because Osama bin Laden has said, 'I am glad you're over on our sand because we can target you so much easier.' They have already now, since that time, killed 3,400 of our men, and I don't think it was necessary."

Without getting into the various 9/11 conspiracy theories, some of which are meant to absolve foreign involvement and blame the "American government," let us look at the purported speech of Bin Laden's that was released on October 29, 2004, in which he clearly accepts responsibility for 9/11 - and states that the attacks will continue, essentially because the "enemy" has not learned his lesson.

Since I am very concerned about continued attacks on American soil as well as the aftermath of such decimation - to wit, America being "bled" into bankruptcy and subsequently overtaken - I do believe we need to heed Ron Paul's advice and pay close attention to what Bin Laden is saying, if there's any chance that by doing so we can avoid such attacks. In other words, we ignore Bin Laden's words at our own peril, as he is clearly spelling out his intentions.

If this 2004 speech is authentic and is accurately translated, it is evident that Bin Laden is not an uneducated hick but, rather, an intelligent person who is very much aware of numerous aspects of politics. His observations regarding the Bush dynasty seem to be uncannily accurate - few people outside of the extreme Right would not recognize the self-interests of the Washingtonian powermongers in the policy towards Iraq. Bin Laden is probably correct in surmising that Bush is after complete control of Iraqi oil - after all, Bush is an oil man.

From the perspective of a savvy person in Iraq, it would certainly seem that the aggression against that nation had much to do with financial gain, rather than the outward humanitarian appearance of being concerned for the Iraqi people - or the fallacious excuse of looking for "weapons of mass destruction." Knowing this fact, one could easily make the case that the American government, et al., had absolutely no altruistic reasons for making a move on Iraq - and this fact could understandably cause some people to become upset if not irate. Factor in other policies around the world, and we can understand precisely what Ron Paul is saying.

I do not believe Ron Paul is at all claiming that "we invited the attack." First of all, who's "we?" It's too bad Paul used that language in describing U.S. foreign policy, because "we" certainly didn't have anything to do with it. The U.S. government did, but I for one did not vote for those characters, and I do not include myself in the "we" bit of their policies. In any event, Paul is not saying "we invited it." He's saying, as far as I can tell, "If you want to know why these people did what they did, take a close look at what they're saying is the reason they did what they did."

In other words, they're saying "we invited it." There's a subtle but important difference. If one reads the speech by Osama Bin Laden - again, assuming it's authentic and accurately translated - he clearly spells out the reasons why the Twin Towers were attacked: Because of previous aggressions in predominantly Arab and/or Muslim countries that have killed thousands of men, women and especially children. That's what Bin Laden said was the motive for the attacks, not "because they hate our freedoms." Here are some pertinent excerpts from the Bin Laden speech of 2004:
I say to you, Allah knows that it had never occurred to us to strike the towers. But after it became unbearable and we witnessed the oppression and tyranny of the American/Israeli coalition against our people in Palestine and Lebanon, it came to my mind.

The events that affected my soul in a direct way started in 1982 when America permitted the Israelis to invade Lebanon and the American Sixth Fleet helped them in that. This bombardment began and many were killed and injured and others were terrorised and displaced.

I couldn't forget those moving scenes, blood and severed limbs, women and children sprawled everywhere. Houses destroyed along with their occupants and high rises demolished over their residents, rockets raining down on our home without mercy.

The situation was like a crocodile meeting a helpless child, powerless except for his screams. Does the crocodile understand a conversation that doesn't include a weapon? And the whole world saw and heard but it didn't respond.

In those difficult moments many hard-to-describe ideas bubbled in my soul, but in the end they produced an intense feeling of rejection of tyranny, and gave birth to a strong resolve to punish the oppressors.

And as I looked at those demolished towers in Lebanon, it entered my mind that we should punish the oppressor in kind and that we should destroy towers in America in order that they taste some of what we tasted and so that they be deterred from killing our women and children.

And that day, it was confirmed to me that oppression and the intentional killing of innocent women and children is a deliberate American policy. Destruction is freedom and democracy, while resistance is terrorism and intolerance.

This means the oppressing and embargoing to death of millions as Bush Sr did in Iraq in the greatest mass slaughter of children mankind has ever known, and it means the throwing of millions of pounds of bombs and explosives at millions of children—also in Iraq—as Bush Jr did, in order to remove an old agent and replace him with a new puppet to assist in the pilfering of Iraq's oil and other outrages.

So with these images and their like as their background, the events of September 11th came as a reply to those great wrongs, should a man be blamed for defending his sanctuary?
Accordingly, in his mind Bin Laden's continuous aggressions against Western agencies over the past several years have been in retaliation for the destruction of Arab and/or Muslim peoples and interests by the selfsame Western agencies. The reason for the 9/11 attacks given by Bin Laden is that the assaults which left so many people dead were "unbearable oppressions." When he describes the situation in this manner, with graphic images of the mass killing of children, we can understand the impetus for the assault on American interests. While I do not know the facts he bases his allegations on concerning "Bush Sr." being responsible for "millions" of deaths or the "greatest mass slaughter of children mankind has ever known" - by not only warfare but also starvation, perhaps? - if such allegations are true, the angry reaction would be understandable. Certainly, the previous aggressions in Iraq left some pretty hideous developments, including the results of depleted uranium that almost no one is discussing.

Now, back to Ron Paul and his advice: Point well taken, Congressman Paul, and once again you've proved yourself a highly intelligent man entirely worthy of consideration to lead the American nation. In listening to what the "enemy" is saying about his reasons for aggression, we can learn how to avoid further attacks and to prevent his stated intention from becoming reality. What is this stated intention? To quote Bin Laden:
"So we are continuing this policy in bleeding America to the point of bankruptcy. Allah willing, and nothing is too great for Allah."
Perhaps we can prevent this frightening decimation not by kowtowing or capitulating to counter-aggressions but by applying a more sane and less destructive policy towards other nations. Regardless of whether or not the move into Iraq can be ethically supported, the fact is that it has been handled very badly all around. If the American nation is so sophisticated, surely there is a better and more intelligent way to conduct itself than pounding the crap out of poor people half way around the world.

Maybe Ron Paul has the answer to this sad quandary - at this juncture in history, with such an atrocious mess on our hands, I for one am more than willing to listen to his seemingly sane voice of reason. And to gladly vote for Paul if we are lucky enough to have him make it that far.