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    23rd February, 2010

    Tories show their nasty side again

    by Sunny at 2:56 pm    

    The Express Newspaper today has a front page headline claiming: ‘Labour says we are all racist’. Typically, the reasoning behind it is so obtuse that it would take ages to explain. Thankfully, Anton Vowl has done it. Read that blog post and you’ll see how wrong they are.

    And the thing is - any person with a shred of intelligence can see the Express and Mail have been claiming conspiracy over nothing. And yet here is Chris Grayling’s statement on the issue:

    The Government has simply not been telling the truth about its policies on immigration. More and more evidence is now emerging to show that they deliberately planned a big jump in immigration for their own political purposes.

    Now they are trying to rewrite history to pretend those decisions never happened. Their conduct over all of this has been a complete disgrace.

    It’s one thing for ministers to score partisan political points - it’s an entirely different matter for a shadow cabinet minister to endorse a lie and a conspiracy theory. The man is a nutjob.

    PS - I also have an article on CIF today on How the Media helps the BNP. It is relevant to tonight’s event.

    Filed under: Race politics

    Hitchens on Amnesty (circa 2005)

    by Sunny at 3:05 am    

    … this is one long-running vendetta. This time he attacked “Amnesty International’s disgraceful performance” because it dared to oppose Guantanamo Bay then. They were soooo nasty to Alberto Gonzales. What has that guy ever done wrong?

    Filed under: Civil liberties
    22nd February, 2010

    Nick Cohen doesn’t like to tolerate dissent does he?

    by Sunny at 8:22 pm    

    So much for Nick Cohen and Martin Bright’s willingness to debate and handle opposing points of view - they’ve thrown me off and banned me from the Facebook group supporting Gita Sahgal. My crime? I pointed out that Salman Rushdie had no right to speak of “moral bankruptcy” given his support of Polanski. My comment was deleted and I was banned. So much for toleration of dissent eh. I only ban people here who come merely to abuse me; I didn’t swear once on the FB group.

    Filed under: Humour

    Irene Khan challenges Gita Sahgal’s version of events on Amnesty

    by guest at 6:32 pm    

    contribution by Earwigca

    Irene Khan, Secretary General of Amnesty International 2001-2009, was on Woman’s Hour this morning to discuss her book The Unheard Truth - Poverty and Human Rights in which Khan ‘advocates for awareness about what she sees as the indisputable link between the title’s two components. Khan states flatly, “Poverty is the world’s worst human rights crisis.”‘. More details can be found here.

    At the close of the interview Khan was asked about Gita Sahgal’s campaign against Amnesty International, specifically her claim that Amnesty has shown a gross error in judgement in those it has chosen to work with in it’s campaign to close Guantanamo. Gita Sahgal is specifically accusing Moazzam Begg of supporting the Taliban and has accused Amnesty of ignoring her complaints for years, which has led to ‘absolutely no credibility across the world in being serious about treating the equality of women and the emancipation of women seriously’.
    Khan had this to say:

    I hired Gita and she worked with me for six years. While I was there those concerns did not come to light. She didn’t ever express them to me so I can’t comment on her specific case or what’s happened since I left.

    Then when pushed she added the following:

    Continue Reading...

    Man in Burkha demands a ban on Burkha, while alongside an Indian flag??

    by Sunny at 4:21 pm    

    This is unintentionally the most hilarious video ever by a bunch of wannbe-extremists. The idiots from the English Defence League have released it:

    Note - he is actually standing alongside a flag of India! And another one with the Sikh Khanda on it! I can just imagine the Sikh groups being very happy about that (not).

    Richard reports:

    A video statement has also been released, explaining that “Tommy Robinson”, the EDL’s pseudonymous leader, has been arrested on “racial” charges, and that armed police allegedly raided both his home and that of his parents (the speaker then goes off-topic with an attack on the neo-Nazi Blood & Honour, who are the subject of a new report from the Centre for Social Cohesion and Nothing British). The speaker is standing in front of an upside-down Union Flag, which perhaps is a deliberate sign of distress; why the Indian flag to his left is also upside down is less apparent (thanks to a reader for spotting that).

    I bet they don’t even know the Union Jack and Indian flag are upside down.

    Filed under: Humour,Race politics

    Asian millionaire plans to join BNP

    by Sunny at 11:46 am    

    This story in the Sun is ace:

    A TYCOON who starred on TV’s Secret Millionaire is joining the British National Party to RILE them - because he is Asian.
    Mo Chaudry, 49, will formally apply today - days after the BNP had to change its whites-only constitution because it breached equality laws.

    The Pakistan-born businessman, who is worth £60million, admitted last night: “I will not be welcomed with open arms.” Despite blasting the party as racist, he vowed: “I want to stand up and be counted - and expose the BNP for what they are.

    Looks a bit like a publicity stunt, but who cares.

    I had a long-ish argument with Trevor Phillips about the EHRC’s decision to take the BNP to court. My argument was that it handed the BNP an excuse to pretend they were a normal party and thus sanitise their public image over a longer period of time. One side-effect I did NOT anticipate was a big split within party members who would be driven to the National Front. Watch the video below. Maybe Trevor was right after all…

    via North of Westminster

    Filed under: Race politics
    21st February, 2010

    The vendetta against Amnesty Int becomes more blatant

    by Sunny at 4:13 pm    

    When I started writing first about the Amnesty / Gita Sahgal / Moazzam Begg controversy I said that many of those taking up Gita Sahgal’s cause were people who actually had an agenda against Amnesty International. As yet she hasn’t even distanced herself from these fruitloops.

    Evidence of this is further highlighted in today’s Sunday Times with a statement by Salman Rushdie. This is of course the same newspaper that blatantly misrepresented what Amnesty’s Asia director Sam Zarifi had to say to try and present it as another split.

    Salman Rushdie was naturally a big supporter of the Iraq war externally driven regime change in Iraq and ideologically in the same camp as Cohen, Hitchens et al. The man who once said: “The only just cause for a war with Iraq is to liberate its population” - how’s that piece of advice working out for you?

    Anyway, Rushdie’s blatant attempt to undermine Amnesty Int is so over-the-top that his mate Norm Geras distance himself from Rushdie’s agenda by saying: “Rushdie wrong about Amnesty“. Oh dear.

    Meanwhile, a letter in today’s Observer lays out the contradictions that go to the heart of Nick Cohen’s facile approach to human rights:

    Nick Cohen writes of his latest bogeyman, Amnesty International, that while they were “once the most principled defenders of human rights”, they have now “collaborated” with (ie defended) Moazzam Begg. He wonders what will happen when they realise that “the Islamists they embrace aren’t nice metrosexuals who support women’s rights”, and then hopes they will remember that “promoting human rights is a hard and often thankless task that has to be done regardless of the consequences”.

    I’m baffled as to how this incoherent sneering is supposed to translate into a criticism of AI. If the organisation is to stick to its principles, as Cohen urges, then it has to oppose any transgression. Cohen manages to trumpet the fundamental value of universal and unconditional human rights, then point out the difficulties of consistently upholding these rights by using AI and Begg’s case as an example, then chastise AI for doing so (or is it not doing so?).

    Update: Earwigca makes an excellent point:

    I wonder if Rushdie was “suffering from a kind of moral bankruptcy” when he signed the petition in support of Polanski? You know, the man who raped a 14 year old then did a runner for decades.

    Unbelievable hypocrisy.

    Update 2: What next? The Chinese criticising Amnesty for being too nice to Muslims?

    Filed under: Civil liberties

    CRB/ISA empire continues to grow

    by Rumbold at 10:30 am    

    Nobody wants potentially vulnerable people (whether children, those with disabilities, etc.) to be put at risk. Nor does anyone want to be the person who allowed those people to be put at risk. Which is why the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) regime is so insidious. No government will ever be able to prune it much, for fear of a tabloid storm if someone subsequently suffered as a result (“PM let paedos work with children”- that sort of thing).

    Yet it does need to be curbed. The rigorous nature of the system means that more and more people are not bothering to offer their services, whether on a part time of temporary basis. It is an expensive hassle. One friend of mine has undergone four CRB checks in the last one and a half years, despite his first one which was enhanced, so could have been transferred over to his other roles. Another friend was unemployed for three months while he waited for his to come through. And they were two of the lucky ones, with hundreds of people incorrectly being branded criminals by the CRB.

    Now the ISA (which has a wider remit than the CRB) is poised to take this totalitarian (and it is totalitarian) regime one step further with new rules that would allow people to be banned from working with vulnerable people even if they have never done anything wrong:

    Workers judged to be lonely and to have a chaotic home life could be barred from working with vulnerable people, even though there is no evidence that they pose a risk, according to guidelines from the Government’s new vetting agency. Decisions about staff will be taken by officials who have never met them, based on details passed on by their employers…

    Continue Reading...
    Filed under: Civil liberties
    20th February, 2010

    The BNP on form

    by Rumbold at 11:30 am    

    A bit late, but here are the farcical scenes from the BNP’s membership meeting, which voted to change the rules to allow non-whites to join in order to head off a possible prosecution by the Equality and Human Rights Commission. The spat has already cost the BNP more than £100,000.

    The meeting saw a journalist manhandled out of the meeting (despite being invited), which Nick Griffin hailed as an example that the BNP hadn’t gone soft (perhaps in response to renewed pressure from the National Front and disgruntled BNP members).

    Filed under: The BNP
    19th February, 2010

    Southall Black Sisters win award

    by Rumbold at 6:46 pm    

    Southall Black Sisters (SBS) have been named as secularists of the year because:

    They provide a secular space where women fleeing violence or injustice — often resulting from religious attitudes — can find a safe haven.

    The £5,000 prize caps an excellent period for SBS, who in 2008 managed to stop Ealing Council cutting their funding. Well done to Pragna Patel, Rahila Gupta and all the other workers at SBS.

    Rod Liddle’s mates are crying; the long war has begun.

    by Sunny at 5:01 pm    

    The Media Guardian is reporting today that Rod Liddle is no longer running to be editor of the Indy. I wouldn’t start celebrating just as yet as it’s not been confirmed 100%.

    However I’m amused to see that Rod Liddle’s mate is wailing about it over at Guardian CIF. Aww diddums Tim Luckhurst - you probably missed out on some cushy commissions. That’s too bad eh?

    I’m not going to go over again the stupidity of an argument that says making yourself heard about the unsuitability of Rod Liddle being editor of the Indy - a newspaper I like and buy - is censorship. In fact the depth of that feeling was big enough that over 3000 people emailed Alexander Lebedev to make themselves heard, and we raised over £700 in 48 hours (target was only £500) to take out an ad against him. The money for the ad will now go to various women, immigrant and climate change charities (deliberately).

    That’s the great thing about living in a liberal democracy - people have the right to make themselves heard. And if enough of them do then media owners or corporations have to listen. It’s not censorship it’s called people power.

    What Tim Luckhurst is angrily railing against there is the destruction of the old order - where the media has become so incestuous that no one even dared to ask Liddle in the MSM whether he had posted those comments on the Millwall website. As soon as he railed against the “metropolitan elites” (as Luckhurst is doing now), all the wimpy lefties backed away. The last thing they want to be associated with is being metropolitan!

    The reason the left is so weak in this country is because they’re too scared of saying what they believe in, in case the Daily Mail or some other smug idiot calls them ‘metropolitan elite’. And now Luckhurst has invented “liberal bigotry” for people who disagree with what my mate has to say.

    There’s another point, that Anton Vowl makes very well here.

    Perhaps the reaction to Liddle’s possible appointment, the Facebook group, and all of that stuff, wasn’t a bunch of nasty liberal bastards bullying the Indy bigwigs into rejecting the stellar candidate. Maybe it really was the case that Liddle would have been a liability, and a business decision was taken, rather than a hysterical “hiding behind the settee because of those ghastly lefties and their supreme power” decision that we’re supposed to imagine has taken place, if you believe what some are saying.

    It’s important to bear this in mind because there’s a danger in all this that liberals inevitably end up getting painted as fascists by the kind of people who view them with nothing but contempt. Look at the censorship-happy liberals, they will say. First they tried to ban Jan Moir because she just spoke her mind - we didn’t, but thanks anyway - and now they’ve banned a brilliant genius from being the best Indy editor ever - we didn’t, but thanks anyway. The left only gets made to look powerful when it’s being wrongly blamed for clamping down on freedom. The narrative is a familiar one, though, one in which the hypocritical liberal-left fascist scum are the real anti-freedom people out there, and it’s only brave souls like Liddle who are battling for freedom and truth, and de dah de dah de dah, you get the general idea. We encounter it so often it’s wearying.

    Read the whole article - it also spot on. I’m sick of lefties standing by and doing nothing while insufferable idiots take over the establishment. It’s time to fight back. This was merely the first shot in what is going to be a long war. Luckily, there’s more of us.

    Filed under: Media

    Our misplaced sense of priorities over Israel

    by Sunny at 9:04 am    

    I find this whole kerfuffle over Mossad ‘allegedly’ killing some Hamas people in Dubai quite absurd. The British government is acting all horrified over this? Nearly 1,500 innocent people were killed by the Israeli government when they invaded Gaza in Dec 2008. They chucked chemical weapons on them for god’s sakes!

    But oh no, all the government did was shuffle its feet. There were some mumblings about human rights. But generally, no real noise. Who the hell cares if White phosphorus was used eh? It’s faaaar more important to get angry when a few flipping passports get faked.

    The BBC’s Middle East editor Jeremy Bowen said if there was proof Israel had used British passports “for some nefarious uses of its Mossad service - as they have in the past with Canadian and New Zealand ones”, then relations between the UK and Israel would be “in a crisis”.

    No they won’t. They’ll make a few noises as an act and then things will go back to normal. Israel will be back to it’s ‘we’ll break international law and use chemical weapons and we don’t care‘ mode. It’s actually gobsmacking when the political fallout from a passport-faking scandal is more than the lives of over a thousand innocent people.

    18th February, 2010

    What? Amnesty defending white terrorists? I never…

    by Sunny at 6:24 pm    

    A common accusation levelled at Amnesty Int over the Moazzam Begg saga has been that even if they weren’t choosing to endorse all this views - Amnesty is somehow complicit anyway because it does this only for Islamists.

    That “white liberal guilt” card is played by Nick Cohen et al so many times that it’s a wonder no one has coded a Nick Cohen column generator program yet.

    Anyway, let’s take a little trip down memory lane shall we?

    British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher angrily criticized Amnesty International yesterday for requesting details of what it called a possible “extrajudicial execution” by the military of three unarmed Irish Republican Army members last month.

    She called the human-rights organization’s request “utterly disgraceful” and added, “I hope Amnesty has as much concern for the more than 2,000 persons murdered by the IRA since 1969.”

    Continue Reading...
    17th February, 2010

    Whose agenda to undermine Amnesty is this anyway?

    by guest at 11:44 pm    

    This comment was posted by ‘rupewawa‘ in another thread and I thought it was spot on, so I’m re-posting it as a fresh blog-post. Hope the author doesn’t mind.

    I’m a fan of WLUML, SBS and WAF however I think their statements are misguided. Gita Sahgal is indeed a respected human rights activist but I think she has got it very wrong here.

    To take a quote from their statement above:

    Gita Sahgal’s concerns are about Amnesty International’s association with fundamentalist groups that have claimed to support the Taliban and promote ideas of the Islamic Right…
    (my emphasis)

    Continue Reading...

    Did Channel 4 give an open platform to National Front activist?

    by Sunny at 3:35 pm    

    On Friday Channel 4 aired a documentary titled: Young, Angry and White. The documentary said if offered insight into the political ideas of a disaffected young man, let down by the established political parties, who was considering joining the BNP.

    “Young, Angry and White” showed the trained and experienced young racist Kieren in an extraordinarily positive light, allowing him unchallenged to insist on the “racial purity” of his girlfriend, accuse his friend of “genocide” because he had a black girlfriend and was therefore guilty of “racial mixing”, and to introduce his masked, far-right associates, who spoke about the “filth flooding through our streets” – non-white people.

    But was he some angry Tory voter who wanted to go further and vote BNP? No, he was actually the national organiser for the youth wing of the extreme right National Front.

    And yet the entire programme apparently missed out this teeny weeny fact. I’m going to watch it tonight to confirm this, and if true complain to Ofcom.

    The National Front website in fact loudly proclaims that a documentary would feature him. In fact it adds:

    He is looking for a home in the BNP but is unsure that it represents his views. Having been a fervent nationalist from the age of 15, he is concerned that the BNP is losing its radical edge and selling out its racial policies.

    So in fact he thinks the BNP is too moderate, while it looks like the programme is inferring he is becoming extreme after rejecting mainstream politics. That’s the opposite of what happened.

    I don’t have a problem with C4 featuring such nutjobs but why hide the person’s background? Why not point out he is part of the National Front?

    Filed under: Media,Race politics

    The campaign to try and trash Amnesty continues

    by Sunny at 9:39 am    

    I said yesterday that many of those loudly pushing the Amnesty / Moazzam Begg story are doing merely so to malign Amnesty’s name. For them Gita Sahgal is just the latest excuse to push pre-prepared narratives.

    Right on cue, here is Melanie Phillips:

    The true intolerant, illiberal, unjust face of the ‘human rights’ industry has been on graphic display in recent days in the case of Gita Sahgal.

    The point is that her real crime has been to expose the extraordinary sympathy by white ‘liberals’, committed to ‘human rights’, for Islamic jihadists — who are committed to the extinction of human rights. This love-in by white ‘liberals’ for theocratic totalitarianism is then further reflected by the totalitarian manner in which they themselves deal with anyone who opposes them.

    Ergo, Amnesty are also committed to the extinction of human rights.
    And what might be the reason for Mel Phillips’ ire?

    When pondering the extraordinary obsession with Israel by the ‘human rights’ industry and the way in which it ignores real human rights abuses in the third world…

    Well that was a surprise wasn’t it? Damn those people at Amnesty for not publishing a statement about Congo in the last 6 weeks! Also, apparently, it is Amnesty and HRW that are to blame for why the world hasn’t heard much about Congo over the last decade. Nothing at all to do with the media industry and prominent newspapers that Mel Phillips writes for. The Daily Mail and Spectator are of course known for their unparalleled humanitarian coverage of atrocities around the world.

    To put it another way, Amnesty is living in the make-believe world of a phoney war, where it thinks that liberals are free to form alliances with defenders of clerical fascists who want to do everything in their power to suppress liberals, most notably liberal-minded Muslims.

    Oh wait - that was Nick Cohen - sounding exactly the same. The agenda here is so blatant that you’ll forgive me for being so gung-ho about cheering them on.

    And to make an obvious point: this doesn’t mean I’m hating on Gita Sahgal. I’ve had the utmost respect for WAF and SBS from day one. I just don’t agree with them here, and don’t want to get sucked into Nick Cohen and Mel Phillips’ agenda. But I expect such a nuanced position will be hard for some to understand.

    Also, Louise is spot on.

    Filed under: Civil liberties,Media
    16th February, 2010

    This campaign to undermine Amnesty is shameful

    by Sunny at 10:06 am    

    I’ve now got a clearer picture of what is going on with the Amnesty and Moazzam Begg saga.

    And it’s easy to see why this is a campaign to Amnesty and its work. On 14th Feb the journalist who kicked this all off - Richard Kerbaj - published another article titled: Second Amnesty chief attacks Islamist links.

    But actually that wasn’t quite correct because Amnesty’s Asia director Sam Zarifi says the article “mischaracterizes” his views.

    I do not oppose our current initiative working with Moazzam Begg in the recent European tour seeking to convince European states to receive more of the Guantánamo detainees who cannot be repatriated because of the risk of further human rights abuses.

    As I told my programme staff in the internal email leaked to your paper, my concern has been that AI’s campaigning has not been sufficiently clear that when we defend somebody’s right to be free from torture or unlawful detention, we do not necessarily embrace their views totally.

    So will the Sunday Times and the blogs that quoted Zarifi initially issue a retraction? Fat chance. This has turned into a straightforward campaign to malign Amnesty.

    Continue Reading...
    15th February, 2010

    Begg’s statement: why he pulled out of Amnesty event

    by Sunny at 11:53 pm    

    Exclusive: I’ve managed to get a statement by Moazzam Begg on why he pulled out of the Amnesty event tomorrow. I’ll have more on this tomorrow.

    * * * * *
    It has been my pleasure to have worked closely with Amnesty since my return from Guantanamo on highlighting the cases and campaigning against the human rights abuses that have occured in the name of fighting terrorism since the outset of the ‘War on Terror.’ The relationship I have with Amnesty goes back to the years when I was incarcerated in US custody and my father was receiving immense moral and practical support from the organisation - something both he and I will never forget.

    Continue Reading...
    Filed under: Events,Islamists

    Is the BNP racist?

    by Sunny at 6:58 pm    

    There’s a website called: Is the BNP racist? You know, just in case people are confused. Please feel free to link it from your blogs too.
    well done to Matt Wardman

    Filed under: Humour

    Indy columnist Bruce Anderson: torture their wives and children!

    by Sunny at 4:37 pm    

    If this The Independent now, as a newspaper supposedly holding up liberal ideals, then bring on bloody Rod Liddle - it can’t get worse.

    Bruce Anderson starts off by saying:

    Torture is revolting. A man can retain his human dignity in front of a firing squad or on the scaffold: not in a torture chamber. Torturers set out to break their victim: to take a human being and reduce him to a whimpering wreck. In so doing, they defile themselves and their society.

    There is bound to be a ‘but’ here because Anderson is the resident war-mongering neo-con, employed by (supposed) liberal-left newspapers who like to think they should be balanced. Here’s his argument:

    We and the Americans have long-established methods of intelligence co-operation, which are now even more important than they were in the Cold War. It also makes sense to work with other threatened nations, such as Pakistan, where a brave political elite is bearing a disproportionate burden, and receiving few thanks for doing so.

    Before 9/11, in front of some serious lawyers, I once argued that if there were a ticking bomb, the Government would not only have a right to use torture. It would have a duty to use torture.

    After much agonising, I have come to the conclusion that there is only one answer to Sydney’s question. Torture the wife and children. It is a disgusting idea. It is almost a tragedy that we even have to discuss it, let alone think of acting upon it. But there is nothing to be gained from refusing to face facts, in the way that the Master of the Rolls, Lord Neuburger, did last week.

    There is a threat not only to individual lives, which is of minor importance, but to our way of life and our civilisation. Torture is revolting, but we cannot substitute aesthetics for thought.

    If I wanted this kind of balance I’d read the bible of wingnut neo-conservatism - FrontPage Magazine. I thought that kind of crap was only limited to the US, but now we’re getting it here.

    On Sunday, in the Observer, Nick Cohen was having a go at judges for the Binyam Mohammad ruling:

    Jonathan Evans, the head of MI5, added a further complication when he said that the Mohamed ruling provided a propaganda victory for our enemies. And I am sure he was right.

    Nick Cohen has earlier justified torture under certain circumstances.

    Now all Bruce Anderson needs to do is condemn Amnesty for not upholding human rights and the circle would be complete.

    [hat-tip @Naomimc]

    Australian anti-immigrant politician becomes an immigrant herself

    by Sunny at 2:40 pm    

    The BBC reports:

    Australian former anti-immigration politician Pauline Hanson is selling up and heading to Britain, according to an interview with an Australian magazine.

    She told Women’s Day that Australia was no longer a land of opportunity and she had “had enough” of living there. Ms Hanson built a career on claims that Australia was being “swamped by Asians”

    You know I’d normally parody this but the amount of people who post on the Daily Mail site with something like: ‘I hate immigration so much I moved to Spain‘ that it’s almost become redundant. These people are the biggest hypocrites around. Any chance we could stop her from coming into the UK? Someone should start a petition…

    Filed under: Race politics
    14th February, 2010

    Are you being ripped off by motor insurers?

    by guest at 9:09 pm    

    This is a guest post. The author is a retired barrister.

    They tried it on with me. But they struck unlucky because this little old lady had access to free legal advice - her own, remembered albeit from long ago.

    When a novice pulled outplace into the main road at the point when my car was passing, his insurers said from the outset that they would not be disputing liability. The bodywork damage was assessed by my repairers and theirs at around £1500, and I was vaguely aware of a doctrine to the effect that insurers were entitled to limit their indemnity to the value of the vehicle.

    Having discussed this with my insurers I suggested that they drop out and let me deal with the other driver’s insurers with a view to securing a cash settlement. I also asked my own repairers to go ahead with repairs limited to around £750, which was enough to restore the car’s appearance to respectability (there was no damage to the working parts) and from my searches on the Autotrader website I reckoned that this would be close to the value of my car.

    Continue Reading...
    Filed under: Economics

    The dangers of the blogosphere

    by Rumbold at 3:23 pm    

    Councillor Terry Kelly (Labour, Paisley) isn’t an easy man to defend. A fan of despotic regimes, he has praised Stalin in the past. I often find myself disagreeing strongly with his views, particularly on foreign countries (most notably Cuba and Israel), and have found them very unpleasant on occasion. He has frequently attacked others, most notably accusing Clairwil of this parish of being mentally ill. He refuses to provide evidence for most of his assertions, and has been investigated several times by the standards board.

    Yet now he is the victim of a series of comments posted under his name. To my knowledge, Terry Kelly never leaves any comments on any blog other than his own. Examining the things he writes on his blog, it is unclear why he would leave comments under his own name and then pretend he never wrote them.

    Given some of Terry Kelly’s blog posts in the past, why should people bother to stick up for him? Well, apart from basic human decency, there is also an important principle to defend: on the blogosphere we are all judged on the comments we leave and the blogposts we write. Compromising that (by having people post under our monikers) creates serious problems, particularly for those writing under their own names. Take the Terry Kelly case. An individual is under attack despite there being no actual evidence that he made said comments. Some left-wing blogs have recently seen an imposter pretending to be various bloggers/commentors.

    Other dangers lurk too. Richard Bartholomew and Tim Ireland are still under attack from a thuggish group calling themselves ‘The Cheerleaders’. Tim has had his family threatened and has been smeared as a paedophile because he and Richard have worked on exposing the dubious nature of some ‘anti-jihadists’.

    Ultimately, those of us who enjoy blogging are all in the same boat. In order to combat impersonators, we need to start taking denials at face value, especially when the comment seems out of character; after all, why leave a comment under your own name/moniker only to deny it later? As for threats, we need to highlight them as quickly as possible, as was achieved most notably in the Usimov affair.

    Filed under: Blog
    13th February, 2010

    The Rajinder Singh interview

    by Rumbold at 10:09 am    

    Recently the Guardian interviewed the BNP’s Sikh, Rajinder Singh. Reading through the interview is both depressing and hilarious (at times).

    Mr. Singh confesses to only put the turban on for the media, not because he feels it has any importance:

    It feels strange to hear these words from a man in a turban, but Singh ­admits he’s only wearing it for my ­benefit. He’s not a religious man and is clean shaven, but he wore a turban the first time he ever had “media exposure” – on BNPTV, the party’s online ­channel – and has decided to do so whenever speaking to the media because “the message carries more weight” coming from a turban-wearing Sikh.

    The there is this bit:

    He’s been to several party meetings and says he never feels awkward in their company. “They treat me normally,” he insists. “I feel at home.” I ask if he thinks many BNP members can tell the difference between Sikhs, Hindus and Muslims. “They might think of me as a Paki,” he replies. “I’ve had people shout ‘Paki Go Home!’ when I walk down the street. But that speaks much about the ‘Paki’ reputation – it’s a negative reaction to Pakistan.”

    In other words, “my mates are racist towards me but its my own fault for being brown.”

    Filed under: Sikh,The BNP
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