Sunday, 30 July 2006
Leaked documents
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DISTURBING details have emerged about the radical background of the chief adviser on Islamic affairs at the Foreign Office.

Mockbul Ali, a 26-year-old civil servant, was involved in a Muslim student group that has published material supporting Palestinian female suicide bombers.

 
The Union of Muslim Students (UMS), which has been repeatedly praised by ministers as a paragon of moderate Islam, also carried articles in its newspaper by Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, a Qatar-based preacher banned from entering America.

Leaked documents show that since joining the Foreign Office Ali has argued for Qaradawi to be allowed into Britain and played a part in sending Sharif Hasan al-Banna, president of the UMS, to Islamic conferences in Indonesia and Nigeria at taxpayers’ expense.

MPs have voiced concern about Ali’s role at the heart of government. They accuse him of using his position as a senior member of the Foreign Office’s Engaging with the Islamic World Group (EIWG) to promote dialogue with Islamist groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood, which is outlawed in many Arab countries.

Ali also had a key role in co-ordinating seven Muslim taskforces set up by Tony Blair to tackle extremism in the wake of the July 7 bombings last year...

["Leaked documents"? Does that imply that so fierce is the debate within the British government, that those alarmed by the presence, and influence, of this clear agent of Jihad within the British government, did not get their way and had to resort to the desperate act of "leaking documents" about him to arouse the press and through it, the public? Has it come to that in Great Britain? Where an agent of Islam cannot easily be dislodged? - HF]

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Posted on 07/30/2006 11:40 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
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Sunday, 30 July 2006
"we disassociate this act..."
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"we disassociate this act from our Islamic teachings and beliefs."
-- from this article quoting a local Muslim leader (echoed, no doubt, by Muslim spokesmen across the country) about the Seattle shootings.

Really? From Qur'an 9.29? 9.5? From all the Jihad-verses, more than a hundred, that clearly tell Believers to kill Infidels? What about the hundreds and hundreds of Hadith, with the same message? What of the history of Muhammad, and the list of what he did to the Jewish tribes of Medina, the Jewish farmers of Khaybar (Khaybar being the name of Iran's new missile)? How long will it be before official Jewish organizations stop the nonsense with "Muslim-Jewish Dialogues" and "reaching out" for some "interfaith" harmony that does not and can not exist, though of course Muslims will, still unsure of their position, still needing to shore up that position with this "three abrahamic faiths" stuff. Who in his right mind, having read the Qur'an with comprehension (in English, as in French, its ferocity is less obvious -- but still apparent), or the more comprehensible Hadith, or -- still more comprehensible and less subject to deliberate distortion by Muslim apologists -- the Sira, the biography of Muhammad, that Perfect Man, uswa hasana, al-insan al-kamil, could conceivably believe that Islam can be "dissociated" from the murder and attempted murder of one disgruntled Haq, no doubt expressing, as Taheri-reza, as that Egyptian co-pilot whose personal and professional life was a mess, or all those others, supposedly "crazy," who in the United States, in Egypt, in Jordan, or for that matter in the southern Sudan, in Nigeria, in India and Bangladesh and Kashmir, are eager to kill, and have killed, with great enthusiasm, Christians and Hindus.

Let's see if we can find a guide to Infidel-hatred, or more specifically, to the inculcated hatred of Jews which is a subset of that general Infidel-hatred. Some 30 years ago, the Sheik al-Azhar, Tantawi (not yet having reached that eminence) as shown by Andrew Bostom below, compiled a 700-page book, essentially a compilation of all the Qur'anic passages, and Hadith, and incidents in Muhammad's life, that showed the fierce hatred of Jews that Islam teaches, that Islam -- if the adherent is paying attention and trying to keep being a Muslim without really knowing what Islam is all about --naturally inculcates. It may be some consolation, for Jews, that Islam teaches hatred of all Infidels. But were all these Jewish organizations whistling in the dark for so long and "reaching out" to their "Muslim brothers" to have even a small amount of those 700 pages translated and distributed, they would forever lose their suicidal innocence. And the same goes for those still in Israel who, no matter what happens, will still go back to the idea of giving up more territory as the way to somehow reach an accommodation with what cannot be accommodated, what must only be constrained, held in check, by the demonstration, so clear as to never be doubted, of overwhelmingly greater force. Darura -- necessity -- is the only doctrine that Muslim rulers, who may be more aware of how they, and their regimes, will suffer if they go to war -- can invoke to explain their failure to join in a collective gang-up. The more powerful Israel appears -- and it will not appear powerful if it further shrinks in size by giving up one dunam more of territory -- the less likely an all-out war will occur. Already the supposed ferocity (it's nonsense, of course - the Israelis have been scrupulous in trying to minimize civilian casualties, as all intelligent people know) of Israel's attacks on Hezbollah have had a good effect, not a bad one, on the calculations of many in Jordan and Egypt and even Saudi Arabia and the sheiklets. Who wants to see all those palaces, all those skyscrapers in Dubai and elsewhere, paid for with OPEC revenues that, out of environmental if not geopolitical common sense, may sooner rather than later have to be diminished, destroyed by a "ferocious" Israel?

But let's go back to the remark that prompted these remarks: "we dissociate this act from our Islamic teachings and beliefs."

Oh, do you?

We don't. We find them completely consonant with those "Islamic teachings and beliefs." We find them in the same spirit as so much of the Qur'an, so many of the Hadith (in the best, most authoritatie, collections of Bukhari and Muslim), so many of the acts of Muhammad as recorded in the Muslim versions, the accepted versions, of his biography. We find that the history of Islamic Jihad-conquest, and the subsequent subjugation of all non-Muslims, to provide further evidence, if such were needed, of the attitudes and atmpospherics of Islam, of its "teachings and beliefs," that support rather than contradict the behavior of such Muslims as Mr. Haq. We find his behavior, whether he was "crazy" or not, in locating the source of all his woes, the source of the world's villainy, in Infidels, or in his case in Jews, to be "completely consonant" with that 1350-year history of "Islamic teachings and beliefs."

And there is one other thing that we find "completely consonant with Islamic teachings and beliefs." And that is the exercise in taqiyya of all those Muslim spokesmen who would have us, Americans, or other Infidels in other countries, believe their nonsense, as they engage in the religiously-sanctioned dissimulation -- lying about the faith in order to protect it -- which is exactly what they do when they, in Washington State or in Texas or Pennsylvania or Massachusetts -- attempt to make us believe that such-and-such an act is to be "dissociated" from "Islamic teachings and beliefs." Dissociate away. Practice taqiyya and kitman all you want. It isn't working in quite the same way as it did just after 9/11/2001, with all those imams taking part in those touching "candlelight vigils" and "interfaith ceremonies" -- not when so many of those imams and others involved were discovered to have said before, and to say later, to Muslim audiences, quite different things, and some even to have gone further than mere words in the expression of their hatred of Infidels.

Infidels everywhere are now keenly interested in how Muslims in other Infidel countries are behaving. We are watching. What do Muslims in this country think will be the reaction here, if the islamization of Western Europe continues apace, and Europeans flee here, to tell us, to warn us not to repeat their errors? What do they think will happen to their position in this country?

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Posted on 07/30/2006 10:10 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
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Sunday, 30 July 2006
Our Friends the Saudis Threaten Israel with the "War Option"
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while we announce plans to arm them.

Here's part of the statement put out by the official website of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (h/t, the Belmont Club):

[THE KINGDOM OF SAUDI ARABIA] WARNS ALL THAT IF THE PEACE OPTION IS REJECTED DUE TO THE ISRAELI ARROGANCE THEN ONLY THE WAR OPTION REMAINS AND NO ONE KNOWS THE REPERCUSSIONS BEFALLING THE REGION, INCLUDING WARS AND CONFLICT THAT WILL SPARE NO ONE INCLUDING THOSE WHOSE MILITARY POWER IS NOW TEMPTING THEM TO PLAY WITH FIRE.

Meanwhile, the Pentagon indicated yesterday that it has new plans to sell billions in weaponry to the Saudis, among others in the region:

The Defense Department reported that they have a plan to sell military hardware and worth up to $5 billion to certain Arab countries. ... The plan calls for a nearly $3 billion deal with Saudi Arabia, involving sales of 58 Abrams tanks and a [sic] upgrade of Saudi-owned Abrams tanks, as well as Apache helicopters worth $400 million, according to a statement released by the Pentagon's Defense Security Cooperation Agency.

Congress has 30 days to approve the sale once it is officially notified.
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Posted on 07/30/2006 9:23 AM by Andy McCarthy
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Sunday, 30 July 2006
Karl Kraus
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In a posting yesterday I quoted Karl Kraus: "Psychoanalysis is the disease for which it is supposed to be the cure"

That particular quote, by the way, was mentioned by Auden twice -- once in his Commonplace Book, and again in the collection of aphorisms he did with Kronenberger. So I suspect that was his favorite Krausism.

Canetti, on the other hand, begins his lecture on Karl Kraus, in whom he had such a great interest, with a different memorable quote, which I give a-peu-pres, not having the book within reach:

"The population of Vienna consists of 2,030,864 people. That is, 2,030,863 people, and me."

It's hard to choose between those two quotes. One tries to imagine certain people who died in 1939, just before the war, as not having died, but having made it to America and lived long enough to see the end of the war and all the details of the death camps, and then tries to imagine what they might have said, or written. What would James Joyce have written about Paul Leon (husband of Lucie Leon), who was caught by the Germans, then murdered, only because he delayed his departure by one day in order to permit his son to sit for the bac. What would Karl Kraus, who in the early 1930s about Adolf Hitler had written "About Mr. Hitler I have nothing to say" have written in 1946? There was a long silence by most of the stunned world, and for many things went on as before -- and certainly, in Europe today, the signs of what went on between 1933 and 1945 never having occurred, never having made an adequate impression or never having been adequately conveyed to the mindless young and the vicious old, are all about.

Well, Kraus, who was maddened by the cheapness of newspapers (newspapers which, by comparison with newspapers today, seem to have been written by a staff consisting of James Bryce, Max Muller, Elie Halevy, and Wilamowitz-Moellendorf) would probably be living in a state of permanent fury at idiocy after idiocy.

I'm sure you know that feeling.

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Posted on 07/30/2006 7:41 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
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Sunday, 30 July 2006
Boyhood asphyxiated
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Thanks, John, for the opportunity to plug my book, The UFOs of October, a collection of five poem cycles, the last of which, "River Edge, 1959," deals specifically with the loss of latitude in the lives of boys.  Boys these days are either feral or "projects" of their parents, at least in the major population centers and their suburbs.  This has been going on for decades, now, a function of the explosive post-war growth of the 'burbs as much as anything else, and though it's very late on the scene, I'm glad Psychology Today has "discovered" the problem.
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Posted on 07/30/2006 6:56 AM by Robert Bove
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Sunday, 30 July 2006
What, me profile?
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Another example of how the West has failed to fight the war to win, in this case by permitting Muslims to work in Hanford.  From LGF:

Tossed off at the end of this Associated Press story on the Islamic terrorist attack in Seattle is a little tidbit of disturbing information. (Hat tip: dlc.)

    Yousef Shehadeb, 46, a member of the Islamic Center of the Tri-Cities, recalled Haq as quiet and something of a loner. Shehadeb said he and Haq’s father, Mian Haq, both work at the Hanford nuclear reservation, as do many members of the area’s Muslim community.

Hanford Nuclear Reservation is the largest nuclear waste dump in the Western Hemisphere.

Pleasant dreams.
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Posted on 07/30/2006 6:14 AM by Robert Bove
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Sunday, 30 July 2006
Tantawi's dissertation
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Atlas Shrugs has this from Andy Bostom:

Jew Hatred from the “Muslim Pope”

Andrew G. Bostom, MD, MS

Imagine the following (thankfully unimaginable) scenario: Some twenty years prior to being elected Pope Benedict, then Cardinal Ratzinger wrote a 700 page treatise detailing and rationalizing for present (and all) times the most virulent anti-Jewish motifs extant in Christian theology. Sadly, what is unimaginable in Christendom, has not only occurred, but passes virtually without recognition in the Islamic world of today.

Muhammad Sayyid Tantawi wrote these words in his 700 page dissertation rationalizing Muslim Jew hatred, Banu Isra’il fi al-Qur’an wa al-Sunna [Jews in the Koran and the Traditions], originally published in the 1970s, and then re-issued in 1986:

[The] Koran describes the Jews with their own particular degenerate characteristics, i.e. killing the prophets of Allah, corrupting His words by putting them in the wrong places, consuming the people’s wealth frivolously, refusal to distance themselves from the evil they do, and other ugly characteristics caused by their deep-rooted lasciviousness…only a minority of the Jews keep their word….[A]ll Jews are not the same. The good ones become Muslims, the bad ones do not.

Tantawi was apparently rewarded for this scholarly effort by being named Grand Imam of Al-Azhar University in 1996, a position he still holds. These are the expressed, “carefully researched” views on Jews held by the nearest Muslim equivalent to a Pope—the head of the most prestigious center of Muslim learning in Sunni Islam, which represents 90% of the world’s Muslims. And Sheikh Tantawi has not mollified such hatemongering beliefs since becoming the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar as his statements on the Jews as “enemies of Allah, descendants of apes and pigs”, the legitimacy of homicide bombings of Jews, or “dialogue” with Jews (excerpted just below), make clear.

…anyone who avoids meeting with the enemies in order to counter their dubious claims and stick fingers into their eyes, is a coward.  My stance stems from Allah’s book [the Koran], more than one-third of which deals with the Jews…[I] wrote a dissertation dealing with them [the Jews], all their false claims and their punishment by Allah. I still believe in everything written in that dissertation.

Unfortunately, the orthodox Islamic archetypes of Jew hatred promulgated by Hizbollah and Hamas, are also being disseminated by the most respected, mainstream Islamic institutions. Tantawi’s case illustrates the prevalence and depth of sacralized, “normative” Jew hatred in the contemporary Muslim world which can no longer be ignored.

Dr. Bostom, www.andrewbostom.org is the author of “The Legacy of Jihad”, from Prometheus Books

UPDATE: Andrew Bostom will be on History TV today:

History on Book TV
A look at non-fiction history books. On Sunday, July 30 at 1:30 pm EST.

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Posted on 07/30/2006 5:48 AM by Rebecca Bynum
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Saturday, 29 July 2006
a meeting in Damascus
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Report: Kuwait’s Al Seyassah newspaper reported that Hassan Nasrollah, the capo of Lebanon's Hezbollah traveled to Damascus to meet with Syrian leader Bashar al-Asad and the secretary of the supreme national security council of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Ali Larijani. On Thursday, the Islamic regime’s news media announced Larijani’s trip to Syria. However, later they denied it.

Al Seyassah however wrote that Nasrollah was able to reach Syria with the assistance of Syrian security agents stationed in Lebanon. The topic of discussion between the 3 men will be about the ways Syria and the Islamic Republic of Iran can deliver weapons and ammunition to Hezbollah; Nasrollah intends to be consulting with his “big brothers”.

This newspaper reported that the Hezbollah capo appeared in plain clothes in Damascus without his usual clerical attire and rode in a bullet proof, Syrian Baathist security vehicle. Since the beginning of the war against Lebanese Hizbullah, this is the first time it is reported that Nasrolah has in fact traveled out of Lebanon.

The paper also reported that while Larijani has traveled to Damascus in order to deliver to Nasrollah his new set of orders from Tehran, the Islamic Republic of Iran’s radio and television had claimed that the true nature of his trip was "to achieve the humanitarian objectives".

(Thanks to Jonah Goldberg at the Corner)

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Posted on 07/29/2006 7:06 PM by Rebecca Bynum
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Saturday, 29 July 2006
Death of Liberty
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This Psychology Today report is the most horrible, horrible thing I have read for a long time. I sort of knew it all, of course, as we all do, piecemeal; but to see it spelled out in one place, at such length, induced something close to clinical shock. Our poor kids, our poor poor kids.

I've been aware for some time, and reading that made me freshly aware, of my own great good fortune in having been in the last (actually, I think, about last but one, or last but a half) generation of Western children to have a real childhood: roaming over fields and through woods, falling out of trees and into ponds, experienced with firecrackers, roller-skates, airguns, and slingshots, being bullied and occasionally beaten up by older boys, playing "British Bulldog" in the schoolyard**, sailing model boats and flying model planes, playing complicated street games handed down intact from ancient Rome—-and all with never an adult in sight! How lucky we were! How miserable our children must be!


And someone please tell me how we are going to preserve liberty, when we are raising generations who have never experienced it?


Now you've gone and done it. Now I'm in that mood again: I ***hate*** the modern world.

**Rules of British Bulldog: About a dozen boys stand in a line with their backs against a wall. Another dozen stand likewise, facing them, with their backs against an opposing wall 50 feet or so away. At a signal, both groups charge headlong for the opposite wall, the two groups meeting in the middle. First group to get all its men to the opposite wall wins. Contact rules: there aren't any.

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Posted on 07/29/2006 5:35 PM by John Derbyshire
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Saturday, 29 July 2006
Whistleblower Award
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If we're going to put in for the whistleblower award, I want to submit the following:

Moral Clarity and Islam (April 23, 2005) in which I strongly criticized Natan Sharansky's influential little book. (The one we wish neither Rice nor Bush had ever laid eyes on.) And Slouching Towards Vietnam (April 29, 2005) in which I criticized Rich Lowry's NR cover story contention then that we were winning the war in Iraq or that we ever could "win" in Iraq. 

However, our own Hugh Fitzgerald had been going strong, snearingly dubbing Iraq the Light-Unto-The-Muslim-Nations Project for over a year before my articles appeared at JW.

So, if there are any foundations, stray millionaires or billionaires out there who want to fund prescient thinkers, send your money here. We need it. We really need it. Really.
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Posted on 07/29/2006 4:14 PM by Rebecca Bynum
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Saturday, 29 July 2006
a note on VDH
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Victor Davis Hanson has the right dislikes. His attacks on the American -- or at least the California -- university system are a pleasure to read. His hatred for those who are unfair to Israel, his general take on the universe endear him to all sensible people. But what is not endearing, what has been so disturbing and even maddening for the past 2 1/2 years, is his refusal, even though in his writing he has made much of the influence of "culture" in explaining the success of Western man as warrior (those free Greeks, those serried ranks of Persian myrmidons), to contemplate what the belief-system of Islam is all about, and how Islam so completely molds both its adherents, and the societies in which even those who are not full believers grow up, and drink in the atmospherics of Islam.


Had he done so, he would long ago have realized that in March or April, 2004, when I began setting out exactly what would happen and why it was inevitable (those sectarian and ethnic divisions that cannot be healed, that neither Sunni Arabs nor Shi'a Arabs will permit to be healed though both will play for Amercian protection, American military equipment and training, American fighting against their enemies under the guise of "protecting democracy") and furthermore, why it was in American and Infidel interests for these sectarian and ethnic divisions to be encouraged -- the first being a kind of Iran-Iraq War (which should have gone on forever), with repercussions in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Pakistan, Lebanon, and the second with repercussions in Algeria and elsewhere in the Berber-haunted Maghreb, and everywhree that non-Arab Muslims have been persecuted, or treated with contumely, or resented the linguistic and cultural imperialism of the Arabs, of which Islam is the obvious vehicle.

His refusal to see this, his ignoring of what his associate Bruce Thornton was writing in those "Private Papers," and his failure to see that the war in Iraq had been won, as far as Infidel interests were concerned, just as soon as Saddam Hussein was captured, his sons killed, the game of Fifty-Two Pickup successfully completed, and -- this is the main point -- the country scoured for weapons of mass destruction and for projects intended to produce such weapons, in the first case an effort of search and destroy, in the second case an effort of search and disrupt for a very long time.

All that was accomplished within the first year, and everything was then set inevitably in motion. It was time then to leave.

This is still somethiing Hanson has trouble with. But he's much more intelligent than the smug Kristols and all those others who will keep prating about what "needs to be done" in Iraq, and has no need to obstinately defend the Administration for its folly, its lack of low or high cunning, its miscomprehension that this "war on terror" stuff will not do, and the "war of self-defense against the Jihad" (Jihad standing in, synecdochically, for "Islam").

Incidentally, I realize now that setting all this out, declaring victory, as has been done here repeatedly since late March or early April, 2004, should entitle the author of that victory-declaraation, trying to halt the squandering of taxpayers' money (and the lives of soldiers), should be worth something, some kind of whistle--blower's award. A third of the avoidable hundreds of billions would seem like a lot. A million would do just fine.

Meanwhile, let's hope that Hanson, given his many admirers, begins to see the plans for Iraq as the hopeless -- and self-defeating from the Infidel point of view -- nonsense it is. It would help push the Pentagon and Bush and Rice into recognizing reality.

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Posted on 07/29/2006 4:11 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
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Saturday, 29 July 2006
The Not War on Not Terror
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We've seen the problem before of the government not wanting to refer to a "war," or "terrorism," or, of course, "Islam."  Last year, when the administration tried to rebrand the, er, um, w-thingy as the "Global Struggle Against Violent Extremism," I suggested that we just call it "Mabel."  I still think this has promise.  You know, "The FBI immediately announced that the shooting had nothing to do with Mabel, none of the victims was a Mabel, and the shooter himself was not a Mabel, although he was a M—" ... Nope, don't wanna go there.
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Posted on 07/29/2006 4:02 PM by Andy McCarthy
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Saturday, 29 July 2006
Britishism
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My exhortation, at the end of this week's Radio Derb, to "keep your pecker up" has been widely misunderstood.  I apologize.  This is a Britishism.  It means:  Keep an optimistic attitude and mien—shoulders back, head up, nose (that's the pecker) in the air.  I hope that is clear.
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Posted on 07/29/2006 4:00 PM by John Derbyshire
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Saturday, 29 July 2006
Smartest Gink
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Steve Sailer on the Seattle shooting:  "Anti-Semitic terrorism ... another job Americans just won't do!"
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Posted on 07/29/2006 3:59 PM by John Derbyshire
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Saturday, 29 July 2006
Is There Something Rotten in Denmark?
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Apparently not.  It is the world's happiest country, according to a Leicester University survey of 178 countries (here, via Bloomberg).  Burundi is the most miserable, er, I mean, the "least happy."  U.S. finished 23rd.
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Posted on 07/29/2006 3:56 PM by Andy McCarthy
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Saturday, 29 July 2006
Role Models
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My son Danny, age 11, just got back from his first full-dress football practice.  The coach was a local guy who's been football-coaching kids for 25 years, and is a grand master at it.  To my great pleasure and delight, he was MEAN.  If a kid wasn't paying attention when Coach was talking, Coach went up and YELLED at the kid in his face, like a USMC drill instructor.  If a boy carried out some drill half-heatedly, Coach made him do push-ups.  (One lad didn't have his mouthpiece in for a drill.  Coach made him do 15.  The lad started doing them with his mouthpiece still not in.  Coach: "PUT YOUR MOUTHPIECE IN SO YOU REMEMBER WHY YOU'RE DOING IT!")  All this, in 90-degree heat.

This is great stuff.  I've been taking my kids to various "activities" for years, and got very weary with all the happy-clappy, kumbaya, let's-sit-down-and-talk-about-this-shall-we? sludge that's been tipped into their poor little heads by the ed biz establishment.  Here's a guy who YELLS at them!  I love this guy.

It's also great, as in boxing, to see my son being egged on to ASSAULT someone with physical force.  Though Coach made a point (also painstakingly made by Danny's boxing instructors) of telling them all afterwards that while he wants lots of controlled violence on the field, they shouldn't take that off the field with them.

I'm beginning to regret being so clueless about American football.  It really looks like a great game.

This, however, is outside-the-home socialization.  Role models are great; kids likely need role models;  but neither thing necessarily has anything to do with parenting...
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Posted on 07/29/2006 3:50 PM by John Derbyshire
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Saturday, 29 July 2006
Watch Your Language
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... at least if you find yourself in Iran or Russia.

AP reports (h/t Iran Focus) that "Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has ordered government and cultural bodies to use modified Persian words to replace foreign words that have crept into the language, such as 'pizzas' which will now be known as 'elastic loaves,' state media reported Saturday."  The story continues: 

The presidential decree, issued earlier this week, orders all governmental agencies, newspapers and publications to use words deemed more appropriate by the official language watchdog, the Farhangestan Zaban e Farsi, or Persian Academy, the Irna official news agency reported.

The academy has introduced more than 2,000 words as alternatives for some of the foreign words that have become commonly used in Iran, mostly from Western languages. The government is less sensitive about Arabic words, because the Quran is written in Arabic.

Among other changes, a "chat" will become a "short talk" and a "cabin" will be renamed a "small room," according to official Web site of the academy.

Meanwhile, in Putin's fourishing democracy — where the Wall Street Journal reports that a law has just been enacted making criticism of government officials a crime punishable by imprisonment for three years and closure of a media outlet — "Russia's Parliament is in the process of adopting a law that will fine ministers for saying 'dollar' when they could have used 'ruble.'" 

And, the Journal continues, "On Friday, a government agency responsible for monitoring political and religious groups announced that media are forbidden from mentioning the name of a fringe political party, the National Bolshevik Party, headed by the anti-establishment novelist Eduard Limonov.  The agency said media shouldn't mention the party, which lost its official registration in a court order last year, because it doesn't officially exist."  
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Posted on 07/29/2006 3:39 PM by Andy McCarthy
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Saturday, 29 July 2006
I feel much better now, doctor journalist
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Power Line picks up on the "psychopathology" of the Seattle jihadist and his ilk, mentioning Andy McCarthy's Corner piece among others--including Hugh Hewitt, who makes a number of cogent points in his piece, "A History of Mental Illness": MSM and The Investigation of Domestic Terrorists":

There is a continuum in the media's coverage of terrorist incidents that runs from John Hinkley through Sirhan Sirhan and Oswald to McVeigh and the 19 of 9/11.  Each was a political act, though in Hinkley's case there wasn't a "political" motive.  But the "mental state" of a terrorist doesn't help the public sort through the implications of a terrorist act.  Any crime of violence done to avenge a political grievance is an act of terrorism.  Haq's murder of at least one employee of the Jewish Federation is an act of terrorism.  What the public needs to know is the likelihood of other such acts being committed by similarly situated individuals.  Introducing "mental illness" so early in the story is an invitation to say "lone whacko," and leave it at that. Mistake number one.

Again, we are in "late-therapeutic society," media division, wherein an individual's psychology is examined as if it was an actual autonomous thing, unconnected to anything else at all--unless to things that justify and exhonorate said individual of culpability for his actions.  Such easy analysis is a function of nothing so much as mental sloth.

Says Hewitt, "Can we agree that all terrorists have some degree of mental illness?  Can we also agree that it is completely and utterly irrelevant to the victims of their crimes?"

Just lets drop the term "crimes."   How about, "the victims of our enemies."  There are already too many courts involved for our own good.
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Posted on 07/29/2006 3:24 PM by Robert Bove
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Saturday, 29 July 2006
Not Facing Mecca
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David Warren is not happy with the Olmert government's prosecution of Israel's war against the Hezbo/Hamas/Islamist hydra and the questionable state of Israeli morale:

If "liberalism" can survive under such intense conditions, as those to which Israel has been exposed for nearly sixty years, it can survive until the West is extinct.

Not that there's anything wrong with liberalism.

I'm reminded of Mark Steyn's essay in the current dead trees National Review (subscription required), also arguing that liberalism is a suicidal political philosophy.  Steyn submits Jens Orback, Sweden's minister of democracy, as Exhibit A.  Says Jens:

We must be open and tolerant towards Islam and the Muslims because when we become a minority, they will be so towards us.

But will they, then, stop raping your women, Mr. Orback?

I am also reminded of Paul Belien's report that the Brits are not far behind in their sensitivities to their presumed demographic conquerers:

Until recently I did not know that Muslims are not allowed to face Mecca (nor turn their back to it) when sitting on the loo. I heard about it last April when the British press reported that Brixton Prison near London is rebuilding toilets so Muslim inmates can defecate in the right direction. First I thought it was a joke. This week, however, the BBC website has a story on a housing estate in North England. The homes, with wind turbines and solar panels on the roofs, have up to seven bedrooms, kitchens that comply with halal cuisine and “bathrooms that face away from Mecca.”

The estate, developed by Manchester Methodist Housing Association, has been built exclusively for Muslims because, as one of the residents says, “We’re all Muslims here so yes, it is important [to live exclusively among Muslims]. For myself I’m not really too bothered but to a lot of the Muslim people, yes it is important to them and yes it is a very good idea.”

Try to imagine what would happen if a housing company in contemporary Europe were to develop a project exclusively for non-Muslims. Undoubtedly there would be an outcry, while anyone in contemporary Britain who would dare to state (even in a private conversation) that “to a lot of non-Muslims people, yes it is important not to live among Muslims and yes it is a very good idea” might find themselves convicted in court for racism.

Meanwhile, one wonders how easily a non-Muslim British family would find an affordable seven-bedroom home. Perhaps there is no demand for such homes since there hardly are any large non-Muslims families left. Many indigenous Brits no longer procreate. It is sometimes said that the birth rate in Muslim families will drop, too, when immigrant families become affluent and secularized. Manchester Methodist Housing Association, however, clearly does not think this will happen soon, otherwise it would not be building state-of-the-art houses for large families with bathrooms for Islamists.

Ah, Manchester Methodist--one chokes on the irony.  As one should.
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Posted on 07/29/2006 2:23 PM by Robert Bove
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Saturday, 29 July 2006
Botox ban for Malaysian Muslims
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From the BBC.

Muslims in Malaysia are going to have to learn to live with their wrinkles, after the country's top Islamic body ruled against Botox injections.

The council decided that the serum contained prohibited substances, including those derived from pigs. At the last meeting of the National Fatwa Council, Malaysia's top Muslim clerics decided to ban black metal music - a kind of heavy metal. (I'm not keen myself;  I much prefer a nice classic rock)  They also ruled that it was alright for Muslims to eat cheese. (More cheese Gromit?)

But they could not make up their minds about Botox. Now they have come down against it, amidst fears that it contains pig products.

Never mind, they can always follow the advice here, and use this.

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Posted on 07/29/2006 1:32 PM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
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