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Wednesday, 17 May 2006
That's the way to do it. That's the way to do it.

From the BBC.  I think one or two individuals at the BBC are starting to realise certain unpalatable facts, which is why they slip articles like this one in with the propaganda.

Malaysia is considering its multi-cultural credentials after a crowd of Muslims on Sunday broke up a meeting called to defend the rights of religious minorities.

The country's leaders condemned the disturbances, but the BBC's Jonathan Kent in Kuala Lumpur says non-Muslims feel increasingly beleaguered.

"I'm becoming an alien in Malaysia, in my own country," says Dr Jacob George.

The president of the Consumers Association of Subang and Shah Alam in Selangor State has been helping to organise efforts to stop the local authorities in the ethnic Malay-Muslim dominated city of Shah Alam from demolishing a 107-year-old Hindu temple.

Earlier in April another 19th-Century temple was demolished a few kilometres away in the capital Kuala Lumpur.

The authorities said in both cases the temples' founders did not have permission to build them.

Did my ancestors have planning permission for St Pauls Cathedral and Stonehenge? Probably not.

And just before Christmas a newly completed church of an indigenous community near Skudai in Johor state was reduced to rubble, closely monitored by Islamic department officials and the police.

In all cases the Muslim-dominated local authorities say the buildings were illegal. Many such buildings are deemed as such because they pre-date land records. Others are put up illegally because some local authorities seem reluctant to grant permission for temples and churches, but worshippers build them regardless.

In contrast, the issue of illegally built mosques rarely arises because many local governments are generous with both land and money for their construction.

Nor are the demolitions non-Muslims' only cause for concern.

The police recently ordered non-Muslim policewomen to wear Muslim headscarves for their annual parade, something that many non-Muslims felt set a worrying precedent. "There's a creeping Islamicisation in our society and this isn't appropriate because we're a multi-religious, multi-racial country"

The article does end with a bit of multicultural fluff but the hard information speaks for itself.  Meanwhile, elsewhere on the website the BBC is back to it's usual "celebration" of things Islamic with this advert for the British Museums exhibition "Word into Art - Artists of the Modern Middle East"

Over 80 visual artists from today's Islamic world are represented, their birthplaces stretching from Iraq to Algeria.

The unifying theme is how the artists have taken Arabic script and adapted it to their own needs on canvas and on the page.

But this central idea is not allowed to get in the way of presenting work which is fascinating or delightful in its own right. 

It's not purely calligraphy, as there are some photos and paintings (of the sort that would be banned in Saudi Arabia).  This is Three Uncles by Malekey Nayiny (Iran/France).  Which as I can only count one man suggests that the much vaunted Islamic excellence in bringing modern mathematics to the mediaeval world has lost a little something lately.

I don't believe that they are showing Submission either.  I can't think why not?

Posted on 05/17/2006 2:57 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
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