Archive for May, 2006

Rainbow Politics

Tuesday, May 23rd, 2006

In a post called Rainbow Politics, Clive Davis says:

Only I’m not entirely sure it’s a mark of a reactionary to be concerned about immigration’s effect on social cohesion. (One reason I feel strongly at this is that my kids would be more vulnerable if things ever went badly wrong. They’re already getting used to be mistaken for Muslims.)

I find this really interesting and even brave for Mr Davis to admit that. Because in a way our responses to political and social issues are often conditioned by personal fears and concerns. Sikhs and Hindus are always on the receiving end of racism (including violence) whenever there is a terrorist atrocity by Islamists. It is a simple fact of life and something we have had to always put up with.

 But I can’t help feeling that this is in some way a negative reaction. Worrying about your family members in times of increased bigotry is natural. I suspect that Mr Davis’ children will always be mistaken for Muslims - this is the way of British society, in which all Asians are generally assumed to be Muslims. Certainly, an impatience with the hateful rhetoric of Muslim extremists is forcefully expressed by Sikhs and Hindus these days, who know that they will suffer in the racist backlash.

But then, so are moderate Muslims growing impatient with them, and I cannot help feeling that there is too much assumption of a taint by being associated with Muslims which might be counter-productive to the solidarity we need with Muslims in Britain today, and the assumption that immigration restrictions will solve all problems associated with Muslim extremism can lull you into simplistic solutions.

 

Must read report on Asian communities in the UK

Monday, May 15th, 2006

 

Essential reading

The media has focussed on the negative issues facing parts of the Muslim community brought to light here. It actually is a fascinating and detailed survey of contempory Hindu, Sikh and Muslim economics and demography in Britain today. I will absorb it and post more later. The quoted figure of 50% of Muslims over 25 being unemployed is broken down by Geezer on PP as follows:

I think I may have found the 50%, it relates to economic activity, meaning participation in the active work force. The national average activity rate is 67% and 70% for Sikhs 71% for Hindus. The Muslim rate is 50% which is largely due to the low female participation rate among Muslims in the formal economy[see page 18 and figure 1.6] 

 

Scary Stuff

Tuesday, May 9th, 2006

 

Well it frightens the hell out of me. A review of a book in the Daily Telegraph about Nuclear Terrorism - the review is titled A matter of when, not if”

 Some extracts: 

Detonated above Times Square, such a bomb would incinerate 1,100,000 people, kill thousands more in their panic to escape radiation, render the entire borough uninhabitable for years, and cause a psychological devastation that “remains almost inconceivable”

The book is called Nuclear Terrorism and is written by Graham Allison. Some other stuff to give you nightmares:

The consensus among experts, writes Allison, is that a dirty bomb is “long overdue”, and that “on the current course, nuclear terrorism is inevitable”. He quotes the US General Eugene Habiger, in charge of strategic nuclear weapons until 1998: “It is not a matter of if; it’s a matter of when.”

More shit-your-pants stuff:

 Exactly 20 years after Chernobyl, and in the month of Iran’s claims to be the ninth nuclear power, this is a book of awful relevance. As John le Carré writes: “Lucid, calm, cogent and majestically well-informed, Allison’s Nuclear Terrorism is required reading for every Western politician, journalist and espiocrat.” I would go further. Everyone ought to read it.

Read the review in full here

Would they aim for America or London or Paris? Scares the bejeezus out of me.  

Scary Stuff

Tuesday, May 9th, 2006

 

Well it frightens the hell out of me. A review of a book in the Daily Telegraph about Nuclear Terrorism - the review is titled A matter of when, not if”

 Some extracts: 

Detonated above Times Square, such a bomb would incinerate 1,100,000 people, kill thousands more in their panic to escape radiation, render the entire borough uninhabitable for years, and cause a psychological devastation that “remains almost inconceivable”

The book is called Nuclear Terrorism and is written by Graham Allison. Some other stuff to give you nightmares:

The consensus among experts, writes Allison, is that a dirty bomb is “long overdue”, and that “on the current course, nuclear terrorism is inevitable”. He quotes the US General Eugene Habiger, in charge of strategic nuclear weapons until 1998: “It is not a matter of if; it’s a matter of when.”

More shit-your-pants stuff:

 Exactly 20 years after Chernobyl, and in the month of Iran’s claims to be the ninth nuclear power, this is a book of awful relevance. As John le Carré writes: “Lucid, calm, cogent and majestically well-informed, Allison’s Nuclear Terrorism is required reading for every Western politician, journalist and espiocrat.” I would go further. Everyone ought to read it.

Read the review in full here

Would they aim for America or London or Paris? Scares the bejeezus out of me.  

Hilarious Stupid Fuckwits

Sunday, May 7th, 2006

Need cheering up? Read about the stupid fuckwits of the BNP via Nick Cohen

Everyone in Britain has had ample opportunity to learn that the BNP is a neo-Nazi party and a pretty useless neo-Nazi party at that. Journalists have exposed its links to the Ku Klux Klan and European far right, while the anti-fascist magazine, Searchlight, has detailed the Hitler worship and criminal records of some of its candidates.

Whenever the BNP gets into power, its councillors make the Home Office appear a model of administrative efficiency. In Burnley, one resigned after smashing a bottle into the face of another BNP member. A second left because he didn’t have a clue about local government - ‘There’s meetings that go right over my head and there’s little point in me being there,’ the poor dear complained. In Stoke-on-Trent, the city’s first BNP councillor spoke only twice during two years in office (and one of his ’speeches’ was an interruption to ask what ‘abstain’ meant).

Loss of Faith

Saturday, May 6th, 2006

I just finished reading an excellent book called Loss of Faith by the Canadian journalist Kim Bolan about the bombing of the Air India airplane in 1985 by Khalistani terrorists. It deals with the aftermath of the failure to convict the accused ringleaders and catalogues a litany of thuggery and mafia like intimidation by the coterie of the accused which led to witness statements being retracted under pressure from associates of the extremists.

 It also details how Sikh journalists in Canada were shot and attacked when they started to oppose the fascism of the extremists and exposed the corruption and criminality of the scum who used the banner of Sikh extremism to lead rich lifestyles and gangster activity, including the sordid love lives of these people. Hypocrites to the maximum and a disturbing book by a brave journalist. Thankfully Canada has just announced a public inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the acquittal of the accused and it will be part of an overview into ensuring that lessons regarding the activities of extremists are monitored so that they can never set up base from there again. This fits in with its current crackdown on the Tamil Tigers in Canada and seems to chime with a broader approach and rigourous engagement with these issues by the new Conservative Canadian government, which will have implications for its attitude and fears towards the most alive threat at the moment - that of Islamist extremists.

An interesting extract from the article about the Tamil Tigers:

 A Human Rights Watch (HRW) report released in March described how Tamils in Canada and Europe have been systematically threatened and intimidated into giving money to the Tigers. The report also said that LTTE monitors expatriates who travel in LTTE-controlled portions of Sri Lanka, restricting the movements of those who have not paid up.

This is fairly typical behaviour of extremist movements particularly those devoted to ‘armed struggle’ - thuggery, absolutism and intimidatory practice is common. I have heard of this kind of activity (protection rackets, intimidation) being used by the IRA too.