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Nick Clegg launches extraordinary defence for Abu Hamza's family

Nick Clegg launches extraordinary defence for Abu Hamza's family | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
The Deputy Prime Minister rejected demands to cut benefits for the hook-handed cleric’s wife and children after he was convicted of 11 terror offences in the U.S.

Nick Clegg has sparked outrage by defending the taxpayer-funded £1.25million house lived in by hate preacher Abu Hamza’s family.

The Deputy Prime Minister rejected demands to cut benefits for the hook-handed cleric’s wife and children after he was convicted of 11 terror offences in the U.S.

The firebrand – who for years spouted evil on Britain’s streets – is expected to die behind bars after a jury in New York found him guilty of aiding the kidnapping of hostages in Yemen in which three Britons were killed and trying to set up an Al Qaeda training camp in Oregon.

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Not for the squeamish!!..... but to illustrate what horrors have been endured by both sides in Iraq.....as we sit cocooned and protected with our laptops and computers,whilst others to do our dirty work ....

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Plans for new Islamic centre spark debate

Plans for new Islamic centre spark debate | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
Plans to convert a former Methodist youth centre into a new Islamic centre in Belfast have sparked debate.

Leaders of the Belfast Islamic Centre (BIC) unveiled plans on Monday night at Wellington Park Hotel to submit a planning application for the conversion of Aldersgate House, which previously belonged to the Methodist Church.

Dr Saleem Tareen, BIC chairman, said: “As the Muslim community in Northern Ireland increases, so does our requirement for additional space. Our existing premises on Wellington Park are no longer fit for purpose and BIC has been striving to secure an alternate place for its activities and worship for some time.”

Alliance councillor Paula Bradshaw said she was “thrilled” about the plans.

“We need to ensure that Belfast continues to evolve as an open, welcoming and inclusive city,” she said.

UUP councillor Jeffrey Dudgeon was also pleased.

The plans involve public areas and community engagement which will be “especially valuable in bringing about integration”, he said.

SDLP MLA Claire Hanna agreed the proposal was “very welcome”, adding that BIC engagement with politicians is “a sign of the multi-cultural and mutually tolerant community that is south Belfast”.

But others noted Christians would not enjoy the same freedoms in the Islamic world - and expressed annoyance that a complaint from a former BIC leader recently resulted in the prosecution of Pastor James McConnell.

DUP MP Sammy Wilson said: “In our society - unlike many Moslem dominated countries - freedom of religion is a right which we dearly defend, though it is a pity that the former head of the Islamic centre did not believe that Pastor McConnell should be afforded that right.”

He said that normal planning regulations should not be relaxed for the application and that no public funds should support it.

Pastor McConnell said: “It is wonderful that you can plan to create a new Islamic centre like this in Belfast. If I was in the Islamic world I could not buy land to build a church, or worship Christ, rap a door, give out a tract or tell someone of their need of the gospel of Christ. They should take note of the liberty they enjoy here.”

Blogger David Vance added: “The plan for a larger Islamic Centre in Belfast shows that liberty and freedom for all to worship is still a central part of our western values. Sadly, in the Islamic world, Churches and Synagogues are not welcome and one hopes that Belfast’s Muslim community will recognise our enlightened ways. I would also hope that gender segregation will be clearly prohibited in this Centre as I am sure the NI Equality Commission would otherwise be deeply concerned”.
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Angela Merkel Diagnosed by Psychoanalyst as 'Narcissistic', Verging on 'Mental Breakdown'

Angela Merkel Diagnosed by Psychoanalyst as 'Narcissistic', Verging on 'Mental Breakdown' | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
One of Germany’s most celebrated psychoanalysts has said the refusal of Chancellor Angela Merkel to reverse her “completely irrational” migrant policy is evidence of a potential “mental breakdown” that endangers society.

Hans-Joachim Maaz, a German psychiatrist, psychoanalyst and best-selling author, was speaking with Huffington Post Germany when he suggested a “stubborn” Angela Merkel has “lost touch with reality”.

According to Mr. Maaz, the German Chancellor suffers from “narcissism” brought on by people lauding her position as ‘mother of the nation’ and most powerful woman in the world, and calling for her to have been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. He says the “artificially inflated self-image” she labours under leads to the “stubborn attitude” on display by her during the ongoing migrant crisis.

Mr. Maaz claimed that Mrs. Merkel has not, in fact, taken any difficult decisions or displayed genuine leadership. In his opinion she reacts to situations rather than leads, something which testifies to her uncertainty and an underlying lack of self-worth.

The result of this, he says, is that she tends to make “emotional” decisions which meet immediate popular approval instead of making difficult but rational moves. By way of example he cites first Mrs. Merkel policy of phasing out nuclear power after the Fukushima nuclear disaster, a decision she took knowing most Germans backed the move.

The second “emotional” decision she took was to open Germany’s borders to Syrian migrants. Although met with worldwide approval as a “great humanitarian gesture” it was actually poorly thought through, as hindsight confirms. Now her refusal to move represents a danger to Germany.

Mr. Maaz confirmed that overachievers such as Mrs. Merkel, often suffer from “self-esteem deficit, inferiority and insecurity”.

That is not a problem when sufferers enjoy success and recognition, but it does lead to hubris and immunity to criticism which means that when things go wrong people can become prone to “loneliness” and “mental breakdown”. He sees no reason why Mrs. Merkel would react any differently, adding “a psychological or psychosomatic collapse is imminent.”

With ever more defiant reactions to criticism seeing the Chancellor “digging her heels in” rather than change course, Mr. Maaz diagnoses a very real risk to Germany, saying that by insisting on sticking with policies which no longer enjoy the support of a majority, she contributes to the breakdown of German society.
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Ibrahim Anderson and Shah Jahan Khan guilty of 'promoting IS' outside Topshop - BBC News

Ibrahim Anderson and Shah Jahan Khan guilty of 'promoting IS' outside Topshop - BBC News | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
Two men from Luton have been found guilty of promoting the so-called Islamic State outside Topshop in London's Oxford Street.
Ibrahim Anderson, 38, and Shah Jahan Khan, 63, had denied inviting support for a proscribed organisation.
The Old Bailey heard they were in a group that set up a stall near the store on 9 August 2014.
The pair have been remanded in custody and will be sentenced later this month.
Distributed leaflets
Prosecutor Mark Seymour had told jurors Khan, of St Catherine's Avenue, and Anderson, of Dallow Road, spent two and a half hours speaking to passers-by and distributing a leaflet.
He said both "would have been well aware that this is what they were doing".
Anderson's home was later searched and a notebook computer was seized which contained three images that "formed part of a set of instructions for travel to Syria to support jihad", the prosecutor said.
The Muslim convert, who represented himself in court, appealed to jurors to "see who I really am - a devoted father to my family", saying he only wanted to practise his religion and exercise his freedom of speech.
He had denied knowing the other people who had gone to Oxford Street that day for dawah (call to Islam) - and said he only glanced at a leaflet he was given.
Anderson was also found guilty by majority of possessing information likely to be useful to a terrorist, in December 2014.
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Pastor McConnell: I will meet with Muslim leader who reported me to police - BelfastTelegraph.co.uk

Pastor McConnell: I will meet with Muslim leader who reported me to police - BelfastTelegraph.co.uk | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it

Pastor James McConnell has said he is willing to meet the Muslim leader who reported him to police over his controversial comments about Islam.

The firebrand preacher said that if he received a private invitation he would visit the Belfast Islamic Centre to talk to Dr Raied Al-Wazzan.

"Even though his actions led to my prosecution, I am prepared to do the Christian thing and meet him. I am not a man for holding grudges and I wish Dr Al-Wazzan well," Pastor McConnell said.

"But I would tell him that there was no call for him to report me to the PSNI and that he needed to start respecting the right to freedom of speech and freedom of worship."

A fortnight ago, Belfast Magistrates Court found the 78-year-old preacher not guilty of making "grossly offensive" remarks about Islam.

He had branded the religion as "heathen" and "Satanic" in a sermon in his Belfast Metropolitan Tabernacle church in May 2014.

Dr Al-Wazzan, who was later himself to make controversial comments praising the rule of Islamic State in Iraq, lodged a complaint about the pastor's "offensive and disgusting" remarks with the PSNI four days after the sermon.

Following Pastor McConnell's acquittal, the Muslim leader said he had no regrets about his involvement in the case.

He told the BBC that he "would do it again if somebody was stereotyping the Muslim community".

Dr Al-Wazzan said he hoped the Christian preacher had learned from his experience and "would choose his words carefully" in future.

He added that he would be prepared to meet the pastor to discuss the issues involved.

Pastor McConnell last night told the Belfast Telegraph: "If Dr Al-Wazzan privately asks me to meet him, rather than making such an invitation through the media, I would agree without a moment's hesitation.

"I'd be prepared to visit the Belfast Islamic Centre and to shake his hand. There are many things I'd like to say to him face-to-face but I wouldn't want our meeting to be a media gimmick. If it takes place, it should happen in private, away from the cameras."

The pastor said he would tell the Muslim leader that he had to respect freedom of speech: "I would tell him he never should have gone running to the police over what I said and that he shouldn't be so touchy in future.

"I would say to him that he has to learn to take criticism of his religion.

"He has to acknowledge that I am as free to condemn Islam as Muslim clerics are to condemn Christianity." Pastor McConnell expressed disappointment that Dr Al-Wazzan had not been present in court for the case.

"His actions started the whole prosecution process. I had to appear in court seven times and I think that Dr Al-Wazzan was a coward for not going to court once," he said. "I know the prosecution didn't call him as a witness but he was free to attend the trial as a member of the public and to listen to proceedings. Given how important the case was to him, you'd think he would at least have done that."

Last year Dr Al-Wazzan was embroiled in controversy when he said that Islamic State had made his home city of Mosul in Iraq "the most peaceful city in the world".

Pastor McConnell said that had he wanted to retaliate, he could have called for Dr Al-Wazzan's prosecution for those comments.

"But I didn't lodge a complaint with the police or anybody else because everybody has a right to freedom of speech," he said.

"As strongly as I disagreed with what he said, I acknowledged his right to say it. I bear no ill-will to Dr Al-Wazzan. I have no bad feeling or hate in my heart for him."

Pastor McConnell was charged under the 2003 Communications Act with "sending, or causing to be sent, by means of a public electronic communications network, a message or other matter that was grossly offensive".

Finding him not guilty, Judge Liam McNally said: "The courts need to be very careful not to criminalise speech which, however contemptible, is no more than offensive.

"It is not the task of the criminal law to censor offensive utterances."

The pastor said that while he still remained strongly opposed to Sharia law, he regretted if his words had hurt Muslims.

"I didn't mean to do that. I wouldn't hurt a hair on their head. I am against their theology, not them as individuals," he said.

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Switzerland Seizes Valuables From Refugees To Pay For Upkeep

Switzerland Seizes Valuables From Refugees To Pay For Upkeep | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
ZURICH, Jan 14 (Reuters) - Refugees arriving in Switzerland have to turn over to the state any assets worth more than 1,000 Swiss francs ($994.53) to help pay for their upkeep, broadcaster SRF reported on Thursday, revealing a practice that has drawn sharp rebukes for Denmark.

SRF's 10 vor 10 news program showed a receipt a refugee from Syria said he got from authorities when he had to turn over more than half of the cash his family had left after paying traffickers to help them get to the neutral Alpine country.

It also showed an information sheet for refugees that states: "If you have property worth more than 1,000 Swiss francs when you arrive at a reception center you are required to give up these financial assets in return for a receipt."

"This is undignified," it cited Stefan Frey from refugee aid group Schweizerische Fluechtlingshilfe as saying. "This has to change."

SRF cited the state migration authority SEM as justifying the measure, noting the law calls for asylum seekers and refugees to contribute where possible to the cost of processing their applications and providing social assistance.

"If someone leaves voluntarily within seven months this person can get the money back and take it with them. Otherwise the money covers costs they generate," an SEM spokeswoman told SRF.

In addition, refugees who win the right to stay and work in Switzerland have to surrender 10 percent of their pay for up to 10 years until they repay 15,000 francs in costs, according to the report.

Denmark is amending a proposal to confiscate refugees' possessions to pay for their stay by raising the amount they will be allowed to keep after coming under fire from the United Nations refugee agency.

Several organizations, including the UN High Commission for Refugees, have censured the Nordic country for the proposal, as well as for others that will delay family reunification and make acquiring refugee and residence status more difficult.
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Ex-Muslim Professor: Rape Gangs Inevitable, Muslim Men Live In Britain As If It Was Pakistan - Breitbart

Ex-Muslim Professor: Rape Gangs Inevitable, Muslim Men Live In Britain As If It Was Pakistan - Breitbart | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
Years of permissive multiculturalism is to blame for the rise of Sharia courts and the Rotherham rape scandal, an academic claimed yesterday.

Dr Rumy Hasan, a senior lecturer at the University of Sussex’s Centre for Migration Research, said “do-what-you-want” and “laissez-faire” policies had let immigrant communities live as if they were still in countries such as Saudi Arabia and Pakistan.

This has led to a “psychiatric detachment” from mainstream British culture, he added, which in turn leads to a “social detachment” where minority communities do not mix with wider society.

Dr Hasan – who is a former Muslim – also said that Muslim rape gangs in towns such as Rochdale and Rotherham were an “inevitable consequence” of this.

The Sun quotes him as saying: “The authorities in towns and cities — Rochdale, Rotherham, Oxford, Oldham, Birmingham — kept quiet because they were embarrassed.

“It’s time we woke up and smelled the coffee.”

Dr Hasan made his comments at a meeting of the Henry Jackson Society in the UK Parliament discussing the rise of Sharia law in the UK.

Also on the panel was Machteld Zee who has recently written a report on Sharia courts in the UK. She said how 95 per cent of all cases heard in these courts are women seeking divorces after being caught in “martial captivity” where they are unable to get a religious divorce.

She disagreed that these courts were necessary to free women, and even said that “martial captivity” should be a criminal offence in the UK and that Muslim women should seek arbitration from a civil judge.

In July last year, a poll found that more British people think multiculturalism makes Britain a worse place to live than those who thinks it makes Britain better.

The YouGov poll found 38 per cent thought it had been bad for the country, compared to 37 per cent who thought it was good. The rest either thought it made no difference or had no opinion.

The poll also found growing antipathy towards Islam. More than half of Britons thought Islam posed a threat to the West, and 79 per cent though Britain would be the victim of a large-scale terror attack in the future.

When asked in 2001, just a month after the 9/11 attacks, whether Islam posed a threat, just 33 per cent said it posed ‘some’ or ‘a major’ threat.
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Merkel seeks easier expulsion of refugees after sexual assaults

Merkel seeks easier expulsion of refugees after sexual assaults | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
Cologne police chief removed for failing to prevent assaults Merkel s party would consider whether such violations would result in forfeiting refugees right to hospitality

Berlin: German Chancellor Angela Merkel will push to ease barriers for expelling refugees who commit crimes, responding to what she called “outrageous” acts of sexual assault against women on New Year’s Eve.

A week after scores of women celebrating in Cologne reported being sexually assaulted as they passed through a group of 1,000 men in front of the city’s main train station, Merkel said her Christian Democratic Union would consider whether such violations would result in “forfeiting” refugees’ “right to hospitality.”

“We’re doing this for us, for our convictions, for cohesion in our country,” Merkel told a CDU gathering in the western German city of Mainz. “But just as much for the many, many refugees who were not there for these incidents in Cologne and in other places.”

The CDU proposal underscores the political risks Merkel faces as she seeks to uphold her open-door policy toward refugees while avoiding a breakdown of passport-free travel in Europe. Last week’s assaults in Cologne are inflaming Germany’s debate about how to integrate more than 1 million asylum seekers who arrived in Europe’s biggest economy last year.

Germany should “lower the hurdles for the expulsion and deportation of foreigners who commit crimes,” according to the draft resolution obtained by Bloomberg, which the CDU’s national executive board plans to discuss at a two-day meeting starting later Friday in Mainz.

“The CDU is the party of homeland security,” according to the draft. At the same time, it says, “no country in the European Union benefits as strongly” from open borders within the EU as Germany.

More than 120 women filed sexual-assault complaints with police, including two cases of rape, after passing through the melee of men at the foot of Cologne’s iconic Gothic cathedral. Police in Hamburg received sexual harassment complaints from 70 women. Federal police have identified 18 asylum seekers in the Cologne crowd, German Interior Ministry spokesman Tobias Plate said in Berlin on Friday.

With Cologne police describing the crowd as mostly men of “North African or Arabic” origin, the incident has compounded the refugee crisis that Merkel has called the most complex challenge of her 10-year chancellorship.

Cologne’s police chief, Wolfgang Albers, was removed from duty Friday for failing to prevent the New Year’s Eve assaults, according to a statement on the city police department’s website.

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Robinson support for McConnell sparked widespread outrage

Robinson support for McConnell sparked widespread outrage | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
It was support for Pastor James McConnell's inflammatory comments that plunged First Minister Peter Robinson into a controversy that proved as newsworthy as the sermon itself.

In an interview with the former DUP leader in the aftermath of the 2013 European elections, Mr Robinson told The Irish News that he supported the firebrand preacher's comments.

The East Belfast MLA said Pastor McConnell had been demonised because of his remarks and that he did not have "an ounce of hatred in his bones".

Mr Robinson said that it was a duty of any preacher to denounce what he described as "false prophesy", before going on to say that he would not trust Muslims either, particularly those who had been involved in violence, or those "fully devoted to Sharia law".

He did, however, say that he would trust Muslims to "go down to the shops" for him or to deal with a number of other "day to day issues".

The remarks sparked outrage, international headlines and led to the cancellation of a trade mission to the Middle East.

Mr Robinson was forced to make a public apology to representatives of the Muslim community at Belfast Islamic Centre.

"I apologised face to face, personally, man to man, the way it should be done," he said afterwards.

Subsequent to the remarks, Mr Robinson declined all further requests for an interview with The Irish News.
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Belfast Islamic Centre unhappy at McConnell verdict

Belfast Islamic Centre unhappy at McConnell verdict | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
BELFAST Islamic Centre said last night it disagreed with the not guilty verdict against Pastor James McConnell.

In a statement, the centre said: "We Muslims believe in the freedom of expression. However freedom of expression doesn't justify offending and insulting others’ faith and beliefs that in its turn leads to unhealthy atmosphere of disunity and mistrust.

"We Muslims, as part of the NI wider society, are looking forward to achieving and maintaining the values of coexistence and diversity. In doing so we are mindful of some voices trying to push towards disintegration and isolation of some religious and ethnic minorities.

"Although we disagree with the verdict description of Pastor McConnell remarks as 'not grossly offensive', nevertheless we have always been ready to implement the values of forgiveness and pardon as a way forward to continue building our relations with different communities based on mutual love and respect."
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McConnell warns of ‘uprising’ if Islam sermon leads to jail term

McConnell warns of ‘uprising’ if Islam sermon leads to jail term | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
The Belfast preacher due back in court next week over a controversial sermon on Islam, has said a guilty verdict would spark an “uprising”.

Pastor James McConnell was charged following the broadcasting of remarks he made from the pulpit of the Whitewell Tabernacle last May.

When a video of the sermon was uploaded to the Newtownabbey church’s website, it showed the 78-year-old describing the Islamic faith as “heathen” and “satanic”.

Mr McConnell was subsequently prosecuted with the three-day trial held at Belfast Magistrates’ Court last month.

Judgment has been reserved and will be delivered on Tuesday.

Speaking to the News Letter on Friday, Mr McConnell said he shared his legal team’s optimism that the verdict will go in his favour, but warned of widespread anger if he is jailed.

“I am willing to go to jail and I am going to stand for what I believe in. If the verdict goes against me – and they do put me in jail – there will be such an uprising in this country.”

However, Mr McConnell said imprisonment was a price he was willing to pay rather than renounce his beliefs.

“I can honestly say I haven’t had one sleepless night over this court case.

“It’s not that I’m an iron man or anything like that, I just have other concerns in my heart,” he said.

“I am concerned about this country and about the way it is going politically, spiritually, every way I am really concerned about it.

“The country is a bigger issue than me – I am just praying for the Lord to guide me at this particular time.

“I have had thousands of emails, over 20,000 of them, plus cards, letters and phone calls. It has been amazing.”

The controversial preacher faced two charges – improper use of a public electronic communications network and causing a grossly offensive message to be sent by means of a public electronic communications network – after the sermon was streamed online. He denied both charges.

During the three-day hearing, Mr McConnell’s barrister said his client was was “not stereotyping a whole religion” but was “talking about cells of people”.

Phillip Mateer QC said: “If the pastor was more astute to the watery words to be used to weave our way through difficult areas ... it would have put it beyond doubt if he had said there are ‘cells’ of jihadists.

“It would have put it beyond doubt if he said ‘cells’ of Islamists.”

On day one of the trial, the court was shown an hour-long DVD recording of the service during which the controversial sermon was made. The judge also heard television and radio broadcasts in which Mr McConnell defended his comments.

The veteran preacher has received backing from First Minister Peter Robinson and a number of other prominent Executive ministers and political leaders.

Mr McConnell said he was prepared for whatever judgment is handed down, and that he felt sorry for District Judge Liam McNally who is hearing the case.

“The judge is in such a difficult situation here and has got to please so many people.

“We will just see what happens on Tuesday. I am on a level keel and I will just take what comes to me.

“My family will be there with me to hear what is going to take place. We are in the 100-seater court and the Whitewellers filled it every day.”
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UK Cardinal Decries Lack of Support for Christian Refugees

UK Cardinal Decries Lack of Support for Christian Refugees | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
Cdl. Vincent Nichols: "[T]here will be few, if any, Christians coming to this country"
WESTMINSTER (ChurchMilitant.com) - The leader of the Catholic Church in England and Wales is publicly decrying the lack of concern shown to Christians involved in the Syrian refugee crisis. 

Cardinal Vincent Nichols, archbishop of Westminster and president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales, claims that while Christians are facing the most persecution in Syria, they are receiving the least amount of assistance. 

In an interview last week with BBC Radio, the cardinal pointed out that around 20,000 refugees are scheduled to be shipped into Britain straight from refugee camps in Syria, but the camps they will be drawn from do not hold any Christians.

Nichols said that he can "see the point in going directly to the refugee camps" to bring in refugees — but "because for the most part Christian refugees do not go into the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) camps" and are instead sent to Christian organizations, there will be "few, if any, Christians" coming into Britain. 

Cardinal Nichols said if Britain is going to "deal purely with UNHCR, according to their rules, there can be no preference given to anybody on behalf of their faith and we will simply bypass the Christian refugees, not intentionally, but in fact."

The cardinal is not alone in voicing this concern. The Anglican bishop of Leeds, Nick Baines, notes in an editorial that "Christians represent the most persecuted people on earth in the 21st century."

"[W]e are not talking here of a bit of ridicule or silly marginalization," wrote Baines. "We are talking about men, women and children being singled out because of their Christian faith or identity and put to an unimaginably cruel death. Or being driven out of home, away from livelihood, deprived of identity and dignity."

Baines highlighted growing hostility toward Christians around the world, including bans on Christmas celebrations in both Somalia and Brunei — both Muslim-majority countries — as Muslim leaders have said the festivities run "contrary to Islamic culture, which could damage the faith of the Muslim community." 

Britain's foremost rabbi, Ephraim Mirvis, also said the bans are emblematic of "an intolerance that, as Jews, we simply cannot countenance." 

In his annual Christmas message, British prime minister David Cameron claimed that as a Christian country Britain should "reflect on the fact that it is because of these important religious roots and Christian values that Britain has been such a successful home to people of all faiths and none." 

He also noted that "Christians from Africa to Asia will go to church on Christmas morning full of joy, but many in fear of persecution."

Cardinal Nichols has previously berated the U.K. government for its slow reaction toward the refugee crisis, stating in November that "so much more needs to be done." He has also supported the use of force in combating the growing threat of ISIS. 

Despite his strong stance on the refugee crisis and ISIS, Cdl. Nichols has previously come under fire for his controversial actions in expanding the Church's ministry toward the LGBT community, including presiding over a Mass specifically geared toward "LGBT Catholics." He has also presented controversial views on extending Communion to the divorced and civilly remarried. 

To date, Britain has resettled 1,000 Syrian refugees, anticipating up to 20,000 over the next five years. 

To learn more on Christian persecution in the Middle East, please see our Special Report "Cold as ISIS."
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Two arrested in Belgium over suspected New Year's Eve attack plot

Two arrested in Belgium over suspected New Year's Eve attack plot | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
Two people were arrested in Belgium on Sunday and Monday, both suspected of plotting an attack in Brussels on New Year's Eve, federal prosecutors said.

Police found military clothing and Islamic State propaganda material but no weapons or explosives, prosecutors said on Tuesday.

"Our investigation revealed serious threats of an attack on symbolic places in Brussels during the celebrations for New Year's Eve," the prosecutors said in a statement.

A total of six people had been taken in for questioning during house searches in Brussels, a neighboring province and Liege, but four of them had since been released, the prosecutors added.

Belgium has been at the heart of investigations into the Paris attacks on Nov. 13 that left 130 people dead after links with Brussels emerged. Two of the Paris suicide bombers, Brahim Abdeslam and Bilal Hadfi, had been living in Belgium.

Belgian police have arrested nine people in connection with the Paris attacks. But the prosecutors said Tuesday's announcement was not linked to that investigation.

(Reporting by Robert-Jan Bartunek; Editing by Andrew Heavens)
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EXCLUSIVE: First Translation of Khameini's New Book on the Destruction of America, Israel

EXCLUSIVE: First Translation of Khameini's New Book on the Destruction of America, Israel | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
NOTE: What follows is the first significant translation of the newly-released book, ‘Palestine’ by Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khameini. The page numbers below refer to the original PDF in Farsi (available here). This page will be updated as more of the book is available in translation.
As Jonathan Tobin writes at Commentary:
The Khamenei Palestine book is important not in and of itself but because the regime’s obsession with Israel is a key to its foreign policy. Iran constitutes a grave threat to Neighboring Arab countries that are at least as angry about the president’s embrace of Tehran as the Israelis since their nuclear status would undermine their security. But as much as Iran is focused on regional hegemony in which Sunni states would be brought to heel, as Khamenei’s Palestine illustrates, it is the fixation on Israel and Zionism that really animates their expansionism and aid for terror groups.
As Taheri notes in his article on the book, Khamenei distinguishes his idée fixe about destroying Israel from European anti-Semitism. Rather, he insists, that his policy derives from “well established Islamic principles.” Chief among them is the idea that any land that was once ruled by Muslims cannot be conceded to non-believers no matter who lives there now. While the Muslim world seems to understand that they’re not getting Spain back, the territory that constitutes the state of Israel is something else. Its central location in the middle of the Muslim and Arab worlds and the fact that Jews, a despised minority people, now rule it makes its existence particularly objectionable to Islamists like Khamenei.
Khameini: ‘Palestine’ (2015)
Introduction by Dr. Ali Akbar Velayati
The role of Shia Ulama [Islamic leaders] in the complicated issue of Palestine has steadily moved toward reaching its goal. The issue of Palestine has had many extensive, large-scale reflections all around the world. The way Shia Ulamas, [scholars] including Motaharri, dealt with the issue of Palestine was to rely on Allah internally and on Muslims externally, which enabled them to fight against the oppressors with all their might. Having this in mind, it is worth it to know how this class of Muslim scholars approached the issue of Palestine and Zionism.
Mohammd Hasan Ibn Mohammad Ibrahim Gilani, one of these scholars, who in his own time had experienced an issue of occupation, as the Israeli-Palestine issue, emphasizes Jihad as a mandatory Islamic duty on Muslims’ shoulders. He states, “If the people of darkness and blasphemy attack Muslims’ lands and try to establish a non-Islamic political system in that land, jihad becomes a compulsory religious duty for all Muslims who are able to use a weapon. Sheikh Mohammad Reza Hamedani, who lived in 19th century, in his book, Trqib Ul Musliemin Ela Difa Ul Moshrekin [Encouraging Muslims to resist non-Muslims] expressly writes, “ The purpose of jihad is to preserve the seed of Islam and granting Islam prosperity and superiority. Until reaching that goal, the duty of jihad is compulsory.”
By studying the contemporary history of Shia movements, we see how this class of Muslim scholars, even in difficult situations when the foundation of Islamic society was under attack from everywhere, led Muslims in waging jihad. They meticulously analyzed the situation and recognized the colonists’ long-term plan. In various circumstances, these scholars created obstacles in the way of the colonists and prevented them from reaching their ultimate goal. For example, in Iraq, the British Army tried to subjugate Iraqis, suppress their uprisings, and divert Iraqis’ attention from revolting against them. They created an atmosphere of fear among Iraqis, not knowing that the Iraqi Shia Ulama [Muslim religious leaders] would disappoint them. An Iraqi Muslim scholar who lived during World War I recorded his observations of Najaf Shia uprising and its causes. He wrote,
Some people believe that only because of Islam and Islamic honor the crusaders could not dominate Najaf and rule over this city, which is the center of religion and the apple of the eye of Shia Muslims. Islamic honor prevented the crusaders from placing the flag of trinity over monotheism.
Islamic sources and faith enabled the Ulama to fulfill their Islamic duty regarding the issue of Palestine. Examining the movement that Shia religious leaders initiated and comparing it with their current day position toward the issue of Palestine proves that Shia Ulamas are among the most persistent and non-compromising Islamic leaders who have shown resistance to the danger of Zionism. In response to a question from Mohammad Sabri Abedin, Agha Mohammad Hossain aul Kashif al-Quta, who was the highest-ranking Muslim scholar in Najaf, wrote, “The worst type of oppression is forgetting about Islamic duties and disrespecting the Quran by disobeying its commands.”
Regarding selling Palestine land to Jews and its Islamic ruling about these types of transactions, Kashif al Quta states, “Don’t you even realize that selling land to the Jews in general and being involved in the transaction as agents or the like is tantamount to fighting against Allah and his prophet and destroying the religion of Islam? Those who participate in such transaction are out of the religion and consequently infidels. Do not do business with those who are involved in such transactions. Do not marry them. When they die, do not let them to be buried in Muslims’ cemeteries. You should make a list of apostates, mention their names in there, and publicize it.” [Note: Being recognized apostate allows Muslim to kill the person, make his wives and children slave, and appropriate his property.]
The Ulama’s objection to the two-state Solution in the United Nations was the first formal confrontation between the Islamic scholars [Ulama] and the West, which highlighted the role of Iraqi scholars in resisting against the West. Shia leaders like, Hebbat Ul Din Shahrestani, Sayyed Mehdi Sadr, Sayyed Mohammad Mehdi Isfahani, Sheikh Razi Aul Yassin, Yusuf Ata, Habib al Ubaidi, and Ibrahim Ravi, sent a telegraph to both the United Nations and the United Kingdom Department of State, expressing,
Hereby, we the delegates of Islamic legal schools announce our dissatisfaction to the two-state solution, which is aiming to strike at the heart of Arabs and Muslims.
Ayatollah Sayyed Abul Hasan Isfahani, another high-ranking Muslim scholar, wrote a note to the Iranian Embassy in Baghdad asking Iranians to double their efforts in the United Nations for Palestinian rights. Accordingly, Kashi al-Quta wrote a letter to Malik Ghazi, the king of Iraq, encouraging him to adopt the same tactic in the United Nations and support Palestinians. He warned the king and the British officials that the only choice they have is to issue a fatwa for Jihad.
Al-Nahar, a Baghdad newspaper, reported that [in the 1950s] Muslim scholars gathered around Imam Ali’s Shrine in Najaf and discussed the possibility of issuing the fatwa of jihad. Ulama from Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Yemen, Turkey, Afghanistan, and Arab Gulf countries were invited and Kashif al Quta issued the fatwa for jihad. The issued fatwa stated,
O, Muslims, Arabs, brothers, and human beings! A situation in which the beheaded Palestine is trapped, is obvious. As I have said before, the issue of Palestine is not just an Arab-Muslim issue. Every human being has to wage jihad. Hereby I send a public invitation to Arabs and Muslims. Allah is my witness that if I were not old and sick, I would be the first person to make jihad against Israel.
In another fatwa, Kashif al Quta, classified the Islamic world and assigned each one of them to perform their duty of jihad regarding Palestine. The first country he addressed was Jordan. He believed, since the Hashemite family runs Jordan and they are decedents of the prophet, they are the ones who need to initiate jihad. After Jordan, he addressed Hijaz [Saudi Arabia]. He said, “Since Islam shone in that land, Saudis also should be a part of the jihad.” Kashif al Quta also assigned Syria and Egypt for the reason that they are Palestine’s neighbor.
In the 1960s, Imam Khomeini started his transparent and relentless movement, which played a pivotal role in the realm of politics and the establishment of a new wave called “Islamic Awakening.” Islamic awakening in Iran and in the Islamic world aimed to first topple the Pahlavi regime and replace it with an Islamic republic system and second, to wage Jihad in the region against Zionism in an effort to emancipate Palestine. Globally, the movement is going to confront the United States as the symbol of injustice. In one sentence, Imam Khomeini’s purpose of struggle is to emancipate Iran and the Islamic world from the superpowers’ bondage, restore honor to Islam, and establish an Islamic government based on Islamic principles.
With persistence and honesty, Imam Khomeini raised the flag of the emancipation of Quds and Palestine. The chain of resistance against Zionists is currently more evolved. Today, the resistance line starts from Iran and covers Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Gaza, West Bank, Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Sudan, Yemen, Bahrain, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. This new wave of Islamic awakening, which was initiated by Imam Khomeini, is now stronger than ever. Cutting the hand of the United States from Islamic countries, establishing Islamic government and restoring Islamic values, and emancipating the whole of Palestine are our objectives.
Dr. Ali Akbar Velayati
[Biographical Note on Ali Akbar Velayati: Velayati was born in Rostamabad village in Shemiran, Tehran, on 24 June 1945. He was admitted to Tehran University of medical sciences in 1964. Velayati finished his studies in pediatrics and moved to Johns Hopkins University for a fellowship in infectious diseases. Velayati taught at a university and was an active member of the Supreme Council of Cultural Revolution, Expediency Council and Islamic Encyclopedia Foundation. During the rule of Mohammad Reza Shah, Velayati was arrested by the intelligence service when he was only seventeen. After the Islamic Revolution, and under Mousavi, the former Iranian prime minister, Velayati served as the minister of foreign affairs. After Hashemi Rafsanjani became the president of Iran, he retained his position until 1997. Since then he has been an advisor on international affairs to the Supreme Leader of Iran. In November 2006, Argentine Judge Rodolfo Canicoba Corra issued an international arrest warrants for Velayati and six other Iranians and one Lebanese in connection with the AMIA terror attack in Buenos Aires, Argentina, which killed 85 people and seriously injured151. The attack on the Jewish Cultural Center came two years after the 1992 terrorist bombing of the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires. Velayati has been on the official Wanted list of Interpol since March 2007 charged with “Aggravated Murder and Damages” related to the 1994 AMIA bombing case. The arrest warrant is based on the allegation that senior Iranian officials planned the attack in an August 1993 meeting, including Khamenei, the Supreme Leader, Mohammad Hejazi, Khamanei’s intelligence and security advisor, Rafsanjani, then president, Ali Fallahian, then intelligence minister, and Velayati, then foreign minister.]
Quds Day: The Day of Breaking the Back of Oppressive Americans and its Zionists Servants [p.40]
In 1960s, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini started his transparent and relentless movement, which played a pivotal role in the realm of politics and the establishment of a new wave called, “the Islamic Awakening.” The Islamic Awakening in Iran and in the Islamic world aimed to first topple the Pahlavi regime and replace it with an Islamic Republic system and, second, to wage Jihad in the region against Zionism in an effort to emancipate Palestine. Globally, the movement is going to confront the United States as the symbol of injustice. In one sentence, Imam Khomeini’s purpose of struggle is to emancipate Iran and the Islamic world from the superpowers’ bondage; to restore the honor to Islam; and to establish an Islamic government based on Islamic principles.
With persistence and honesty, Imam Khomeini raised the flag of the emancipation of Quds [Jerusalem] and Palestine. The chain of resistance against Zionists is currently more evolved. Today, the resistance line starts from Iran and covers Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Gaza, West Bank, Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Sudan, Yemen, Bahrein, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. This new wave of Islamic Awakening, which was initiated by Imam Khomeini, is now stronger than ever. Cutting the hand of the United States from Islamic countries, establishing Islamic governments and restoring Islamic values, and emancipating the whole Palestine are our objectives.
For us, [the liberation of Jerusalem] Quds and Palestine are very significant and splendid issues. Today [Quds Day] is when all the oppressed people armed with the spirit of faith and reliance on Allah would break the back of all unjust superpowers, the Imperialism of the United States and its Zionist servants. We should not be satisfied with what we have [the Islamic Revolution] within our borders; we should not think we are done. Until this stinky wound and infected gland called “the Israeli Government” is in the heart of Islamic territories, we cannot feel we have won.
From the beginning of the Islamic Revolution in Iran to the present time, Palestine remains a burning issue for the Muslims of the world. The centrality of Palestine for the leadership of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Muslim world is undeniable. Even before to the Islamic Revolution, Palestine, the Palestinian people, and the injustice they were experiencing were important issues for Imam Khomeini and the movement he led. We cannot observe and tolerate the existence and presence of the enemy who has occupied the land.
Palestine is the most important issue of the Islamic world. Palestine is the most important issue of the world of Islam. There is not any other international issue in the world of Islam more important than the issue of Palestine. The reason is that the domination of the occupiers of Palestine and Quds is the source other weaknesses and problems in the Islamic world. One might ask about the future of Palestine and Quds. Let me educate you and give you some information: As we broke down and destroyed the robust, undefeatable gates of the imperialist regime of the Shah, we can defeat the legendary power of the superpowers.
Allah’s Promise: Defeating Bani Israel [the Jewish People] Again [p.41]
We should learn from the Quran in which Allah addresses Israel saying:
“O children of Israel! Indeed, you would do mischief in land twice and you will become tyrants and extremely arrogant.” [Surah Al-Isra’ 17:4-8]
Allah’s soldiers will come to punish you for the corruption you did on Earth. Any nation that walks on the path of Allah—with the weapon of truth and justice—Allah will help him. But any nation that makes mischief, oppresses the people, and ignores humanity will be destroyed and perished.
An Infected Cancer Called “Israel,” Cause of Division Among Muslims [p.42]
Imperialists, the enemy of human beings, planted this infected cancer gland within Islamic-Arabic territory. Today this gland has grown and become the cause of division among Muslim governments. You see how the leaders of Islamic countries who call themselves Muslims do not perform their Islamic duty about the issue of Palestine. Why? Because they have been busied with internal problems. Where their problems have come from? From this infected gland named “Israel” that was created by the superpowers.
Defeating Israel by Muslims is Pivotal for Muslims’ Salvation is the World [p.43]
Today, Palestinians have risen up. The Quran in Surah 17:7 has addressed Palestinians saying, “If you do good. You have done this to yourself.” If you do jihad in the cause of Allah, if you obey Allah’s command and fight against the enemy of humanity and the religion of truth, O Palestinian Muslims, you have done a good thing that benefits you. When we create a glorious Islamic power in the region, this power can punch superpowers in the mouth. Then, the Muslim nations will never suffer from hunger, poverty, and oppression.
Supporting Palestinians is an Islamic Duty [p.44]
We, the revolutionary Muslim people of Iran—after successfully getting the attention of the entire world by punching the American imperialists in the mouth—should take another big step: We should teach Arab nations how to fight for Palestine and Palestinians rights sacrificially. As I said before, the issue of Palestine is an Islamic humanitarian issue. It is humanitarian because group of anti-human criminals, who know nothing but hegemony and trespassing, have gathered to plot against other nations and governments. Today, they help our enemies, some of whom share borders with us. Palestine is also an Islamic issue for us: Islam has obligated us to defend other Muslims and their lands; it has obligated us to fight for the rights of oppressed peoples; it has obligated us to answer to our Muslim brothers and sisters call for help with our property and lives.
Muslim Governments Ignore Palestine [p.45]
Palestinians have been calling for help from other Muslims for decades. Which one of these Arab governments has answered the call for help from their Palestinian Muslim brothers? They just used the issue of Palestine for their political advertisements, just to attract their people for political purposes. I address North African and Middle Eastern governments. I address the Gulf States. Which one of you all has done the Islamic duty of helping your Palestinian brothers?
The Possibility of Annihilation of Israel through Nations’ Determination and Resolve [p.46]
Take the issue of Quds and Palestine seriously. Bayt Ul Moqaddas was Muslims’ first Qibla [the direction that should be faced when a Muslim prays]. This [holy place] is under the control of antihuman Zionist occupiers, and needs to be emancipated. The land of Palestine has to be freed and returned to its own people. They might ask, “How would you wipe a country, which is under the protection of the superpowers, off the map?” A resolve that comes from faith eases any difficulty; it makes every miracle possible.
Islamic Revolution: A Role Model for all Islamic Revolutions [p.47]
The Islamic Revolution of Iran would become the mother of all other Islamic revolutions throughout the region. After your triumphant Revolution, the passion for Islamic values is boiling in the region. Today, many movements based on Islamic ideology are seeking freedom. This fire continues to give off flames. You should continue. You should know that those you inspire, other Revolutions, would come to your help whenever you need them. That the Islamic Revolution continues to live disappoints the United States, and has done so thusfar.
Today we face two factors to deal with. One problem is the Imperialism of the United States and its agent and proxy in the region, the Occupier Government of Israel—on which we should put pressure, and seek its destruction. This government is the expression and visualization [the agent and proxy] of the American hegemony. Another factor is the issue of inviting oppressed Arab nations to rise up against their oppressors.
Like Pebbles and Buckets of Water  [p.48]
Today—on behalf of you the people of Tehran who have gathered here in the Day of Quds [Jerusalem Day]—I tell the other nations to learn from our experience. Look at the miracle Allah has done through the Iranian people, and encourage others to move [in this direction]. As our Imam and leader mentioned, there are more than one billion Muslims around the world. This is a huge and marvelous power. If every one of us through a pebble toward Israel, this nation would be buried under a pile of pebbles.
O Muslim nations, [Quds Day] belongs to you as well. We should get ready and arm ourselves with military weapons and equipment. Improve the quality of your weapons. We have the issue of Palestine, the concern of the Imperialism of the United States, and plots and conspiracies. As Imam Khomeini said, “If Muslims were united and each one had poured a bucket of water on Israel, a flood would have taken Israel away. ”
The Importance of Palestine [p.51] [
From a speech given at Imam Khomeini’s Shrine, May 21- 2002.
Palestine is the most important Issue in the Islamic World. No other international issue is more important than Palestine in the World of Islam. The reason is that the occupation of Palestine and Quds, which are parts of the body of Islam, is the source of all the weaknesses and problems in the Islamic World. This painful wound on the body of Islamic society is annoying the heart of the Prophet. The heart and soul of the Prophet in paradise is full of sadness. What is the solution, then? Jihad is the answer.
See how the oppressive countries without any sympathy toward the Islamic nations are smashing [the Palestinians] underfoot. Palestine is, and will continue to be, the most important issue of the Islamic nations. This is not a joke; some occupiers have come to remove others from their homes and country and replace them with those whose hands are soaked to their elbows in blood. Palestine is the worst misery the Islamic nation has ever experienced. Those who claim the importance of human rights should be on the vanguard of this struggle and lead others.
Besides Palestine, Beit Ul Moqadas [Jerusalem] is also important. Today, Zionists wage a spectrum of plots and conspiracies aimed at the destruction of this Holy City. But Muslims never allow Zionists to carry out their plots: this city belongs to all Muslims, and is the capital of Palestine. They will resist. Palestine is an issue for the Islamic world for two reasons: One reason is that Palestine is a part of Islamic territory. All Islamic schools of thoughts agree over this. All Muslim scholars have consensus over this claim that Palestine is a part of Islamic land that has been occupied by our enemies. Everybody is religiously obligated to wage jihad to return this part of Islamic land back.
Another reason is that the establishment of this Jewish government, in other words, Zionist government, in this region was to fulfill the first stage of a bigger plan. Palestine links three continents of Asia, Africa, and Europe. The United Kingdom created this mess to prevent the emergence of another Islamic power like Ottoman Empire. Even though the Americans pushed the British away and inherited its colonialism. Therefore, the liberation of Palestine and destruction of the occupier Zionist regime is an issue that has close relationship with the security and existence of Iran and all other countries in the region. Those Muslim intellectuals who have not become puppets in the hands of the oppressive United States believe that we should fight against Israel and resist American’s hegemony.
The Islamic Republic and the Issue of Palestine [p.63]
Adapted from a seminar given to a group of Palestinian Jihad groups (February 27, 201); a a speech before a group of Ardabili Youth (July 26, 2000); and an address to a group of pilgrims in Mashhad (March 21, 2011).
Palestine is not a strategic but a belief issue. It is about a heart connection. It is a religious issue. For these reasons, there is an agreement between Iranian people and us over the issue of Palestine. The majority of our people care about Palestine and this motivates millions of them to come out for demonstration in the Quds Day regardless of the climate condition. The view, perspective, and analysis of our decisionmaking officials toward Palestine is religious not political, per se. We are asked why we support the people of Bahrein. We support all oppressed who rise up against their oppressors. We have been supporting Palestinians for decades. Which Islamic country has done such thing? Are the Palestinians Shia? No. How many times have our youth rushed to airports to fly to Gaza to fight against Israel? They did it many times. But we stopped them. We told them the roads to Gaza are blocked. Our people care about Palestine regardless of sectarian differences. We care about Egypt and Tunisia as well. Are they Shia? No. Enemies try to misinform others that our support of oppressed people is a sectarian issue.
Supporting Oppressed Nations, Especially Palestine, is a Part of the Islamic System’s General Policies [p.64]
Announcement of the Five Year-Period General Policy by the Supreme Leader (January 10, 2009).
Improving the place, situation, power, and role of the Islamic Republic of Iran at the regional and international level in order to bolster our national security and national interest, and also supporting Muslims and oppressed nations, especially the nation of Palestine, are important parts of our general policies.
Without Destroying Israel, Our Victory is Incomplete [p.65]
A message to the pilgrims on Hajj (June 3, 1989).  
We do not follow the dictated solutions offered by the superpowers regarding the Palestine issue. The only accepted treatment for the wound of Palestine is to cut and remove the cancer gland of the Zionist government, and this is possible. In the process of pilgrimage, Muslims should chant concerted slogans in support of Palestinians. Iranian people should always take side with Palestinian fighters. Without winning the battle of Palestine, our victory is incomplete. Since the first days of his mission and struggle in Iran, our deceased great Imam [Khomeini] gave the first priority to the issue of Palestine. He continued the same mission even after he defeated the Shah and established the Islamic Republic. In his political and spiritual will, Imam Khomeini talked about Palestine to Muslims all around the world and highlighted the religious obligation facet of it.
Universality of Imam Khomeini’s Movement [p.67]
Tehran Friday Prayer at Imam Khomeini’s Shrine (June 3, 2010).
Another facet of the Imam’s movement was its universality. Imam [Khomeini] believed that his mission is universal. It belongs to the Muslims around the globe; even oppressed non-Muslims could use it. Imam did not pay any attention to the critics, who said his statements were, “interfering in other independent countries’ affairs.” Our method of exporting our revolution is different from the colonialists’ method. We do not use colonialism. We are not such people. Our method is to spread the scent of this merciful phenomenon to the world. Therefore, other nations come to recognize their responsibilities. Muslim nations should know their identity, to learn how to find it. One example of this universal view was the Imam’s position regarding Palestine. He directly said, “Israel is a cancer gland.” What do people do with a cancer gland? Aside from cutting and removing it, what other treatments are available? This was his rationale, and he did not care about the criticism. This is not a slogan; it is logic.
The Iranian Revolution Created Hope for Palestinians  [p.67]
Tehran Friday Prayer (February 12, 2004).
This [Iranian] Revolution in the Islamic and Arabic worlds revived hopes. Before we successfully toppled the Shah’s regime, the Islamic world was in a hopeless, passive situation. The Zionists had successfully intimidated the Muslim Nations. No nation could even imagine a feeling of hope. Suddenly, the gates of hope opened and nations woke up. Zionists wrongfully thought that they have swallowed Palestine and everything is in control. You see how the Palestinians are resisting, even under tremendous pressure. This resistance is not only a defeat for Israelites, but also for Americans. All the Zionist superpowers that control the world are defeated, as a poor, unarmed nation has brought them all to their knees.
The spirit of hope also awakened in the Lebanese. In the aftermath of the revolution, Lebanon was a mess. Zionists did whatever they wished to that country. They attacked and killed people. Their warplanes were flying over Lebanon whenever they wanted, as if it was their own territory. Instead of focusing on the [Israeli] enemy, Lebanese groups were fighting against one another. Shaheed Chamran was there at that time. He was reporting whatever he was observing. He reported, “Now, Lebanese are going to become a power. They are striking Zionists unprecedentedly. The Zionists are retreating.”
Our Position [Against Israel & the United States] [p.68]
Speech to the Iranian Military’s Joint Chiefs of Staff (June 30, 1991).
Our position against Israel is, as always: Israel is a malignant cancer gland that needs to be uprooted. In contrast to what shallow people believe, it is not impossible to defeat Israel and the United States. Superpowers have come and gone throughout history. Materialistic powers are neither everlasting nor infinite. Yesterday, there was a power called the Soviet Union. It was one of the superpowers, but it no longer exists. A similar historical contemporary change is still before us.
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Revealed: Extent of police time spent on Pastor McConnell case

Revealed: Extent of police time spent on Pastor McConnell case | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
A PSNI team spent a minimum of 163 hours on the Pastor James McConnell case, figures obtained by the News Letter reveal.

The police investigation led to the prosecution of the elderly evangelical leader on two charges, both centring on the allegedly “grossly offensive” nature of an anti-Islamic sermon he had given.

Since his acquittal on January 5, the News Letter has attempted to tot up the total cost to the public purse in bringing the case.

It had previously been disclosed that the cost which the failed three-day magistrates’ court trial had placed upon the Courts Service and the Public Prosecution Service (PPS) was equivalent to a minimum of £8,491.

Now the PSNI has revealed that “a total of 163 duty time hours worked by the Crime Support Team (one constable, one sergeant) in relation to the Pastor James McConnell case”.

It said that the estimated cost of this equates to £4,485.

When added to the existing estimates concerning PPS spending and the use of court facilities, it means the official estimate of the cost of the case has now climbed to £12,976.

The 163 hours of police time amounts to almost exactly a full week’s work, covering 24 hours for seven solid days.

David McIlveen, DUP member of the Policing Board and the son of traditionalist clergyman Rev David McIlveen, said: “Of course it is a matter of concern about how much PSNI time was wasted on this case, however to be fair to them they had an obligation to investigate a complaint that was made.

“What I believe should be of more concern to us is that we seem to live in a society were a Christian preacher makes sincerely held views, and finds himself the victim of a spurious complaint that is grossly exagerrated by the usual politically correct media hysteria that many of us have now come to expect.”

The MLA for North Antrim said the blame lies principally with those who took offence at the sermon and sought a police probe in the first place, and with the public body which plumped for prosecution.

He added: “This complaint against Pastor McConnell should never have been taken in the first place, the waste of police time and subsequesnt cost in my view rests with those who misread and mishandled this case, namely the complainants and the PPS.”

However, even now the figures do not tell the whole story.

As previously reported, whilst the Courts Service had estimated that the use of court facilities and staff time amounted to £4,473, the PPS had said that it could only give a figure for how much the outside help it had hired for the case had cost.

This sum – £4,018 – did not take into account how much time had been spent on the case by the PPS’ own in-house employees.

And the PSNI said that other police staff beside the two identified may have worked on the case but that this was not recorded, and that the £4,485 total which they had provided “does not include additional costs i.e. officers checking notebooks, overtime claims/hours etc”.

The police added: “Therefore the estimated 163 time hours would materially understate the real PSNI costs incurred in respect of the Pastor McConnell case.”

The figures were obtained by the News Letter thanks to a request made under the Freedom of Information Act.

The UK government last year signalled its intention to reduce access to information via the act, even though departments often rebuff requests for information under the law, or flout the existing rules by failing to answer requests on time.
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Ofsted chief backs schools that restrict 'inappropriate wearing of veil'

Ofsted chief backs schools that restrict 'inappropriate wearing of veil' | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
School inspectors will be allowed to rate schools as “inadequate” if they let pupils or staff wear full-face veils such as niqabs in their classrooms, according to a policy announced by the chief inspector of schools.

Sir Michael Wilshaw said Ofsted would support heads and principals banning what was described as the “inappropriate wearing” of the veil, in an intervention that was supported by ministers but criticised by Muslim leaders and teaching unions for polarising the issue.

“I am concerned that some heads and principals who are trying to restrict the wearing of the full veil in certain circumstances are coming under pressure from others to relax their policy. I want to assure these leaders that they can rely on my full backing for the stance they are taking,” Wilshaw said.

Sir Michael Wilshaw. Photograph: Joe Giddens/PA
“Where leaders are condoning the wearing of the face veil by staff members or by pupils when this is clearly hindering communication and effective teaching, they should give consideration to judging the school as inadequate.”

The Muslim Council of Britain accused Wilshaw of being heavy handed in his approach, saying: “Ofsted need not have resorted to the megaphone of the media to show that it is flexing its muscles.

“We are a country that prides itself in accommodation and fair play. It is a shame that the niqab – the full-face veil that a minority of Muslim women wear – has become a polarising issue when it need not be.”

The Ofsted intervention comes after David Cameron said last week that he would back institutions with “sensible rules” regarding Muslims wearing full-face veils. Promoting plans to encourage greater integration of Muslim women in the UK, Cameron said he would support public bodies such as courts that needed to “see someone’s face” in order to function.

Nicky Morgan, the education secretary, said last week: “It very much is up to the schools, schools will have a uniform policy. But there are certain things, particularly in relation to teachers who are teaching young children, particularly learning to read and to speak, where actually seeing the teacher’s mouth is very important in understanding them.”

On Tuesday, however, the Department for Education indicated that it supported Wilshaw’s revised stance. “We are pleased that heads and school leaders who choose to implement policies which restrict the wearing of the veil to support effective teaching and learning will receive Ofsted’s backing,” the DfE said.

The wearing of the niqab has been an occasional flashpoint in schools and colleges.

Schools can decide whether to ban full-face veils, says Morgan
Read more
Camden School for Girls hit the headlines in 2014 after it banned a student from wearing a niqab in sixth form. The 16-year-old had been a student at the school for five years, but wanted to start wearing the full-face veil when she began her A-level studies.

The school refused her permission on the grounds that teachers need to see a student’s face to read the visual cues it provides. The school said it was important for the safety and security of the school community to know who is on site and to be able to identify individuals.

In a separate incident, Birmingham Metropolitan College was forced to drop a ban in 2013 after students protested. The college had said students must remove hoodies, hats, caps and veils while on the premises so that they were easily identifiable, but was forced to change this after thousands signed an online petition opposing the move.

The college subsequently issued a statement saying it had decided to allow individuals to wear “specific items of personal clothing to reflect their cultural values”.

The niqab can be worn by observant Muslims after puberty. Those schools that allow it to be worn are independent Muslim faith schools, but in the majority of cases they are also single-sex schools, meaning that girls are able to discard it in the classroom or indoors.

Wilshaw’s announcement was criticised across the spectrum of teaching unions, including the more moderate unions representing headteachers, as an assault on school autonomy.

Leora Cruddas of the Association of School and College Leaders, which represents many secondary school heads, said: “We do not think that it is the role of Ofsted inspectors to judge schools on uniform policies and dress codes. Inspectors should focus on what schools achieve, rather than what people wear.

— Mike Cameron (@mikercameron)
January 26, 2016
One would assume there are lots of examples in Ofsted reports of the veil causing problems. You'd be wrong. https://t.co/qsqNxn5ZGU

“Schools make decisions on uniform policies and dress codes with the needs of their staff and pupils in mind and take into consideration relevant educational, welfare and equalities issues.”

Kevin Courtney, the deputy general secretary of the National Union of Teachers, called the move a “punitive dictat”.

“Rather than assisting school leaders, this will have the effect of alienating many staff and pupils,” he said.

Following Cameron’s remarks, Wilshaw said the veil was possibly stopping teachers and pupils from communicating effectively and that he supported any schools which prevented Muslim girls from wearing the veil “if it is stopping good communication in the classroom”. “My inspectors say on occasions they go into classrooms where they see there are problems about communications,” Wilshaw told the BBC.

Andrew Clapham, an expert on school inspection at the Nottingham Trent University school of education, said Wilshaw’s position was not supported by any research.

“There is no credible evidence base to suggest that wearing a piece of clothing on one’s head has an impact on intellectual or academic ability,” he said.

“Penalising an institution because of a piece of clothing raises a whole range of questions, which appear beyond the remit of the school inspectorate. If Ofsted is to pursue this initiative, then empirical evidence should be analysed prior to making such a policy decision.”
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Denmark: Local governmant rules that kindergartens must serve pork to Muslim children

Denmark: Local governmant rules that kindergartens must serve pork to Muslim children | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
The employees of day care centers in Randers can not in the future choose to not buy pork in the supermarket when shopping for the children’s dinner.

This is what a majority in Randers City Council Monday night decided by a vote of 16 against 15th.

Local politicians have voted for a proposal from the Danish People’s Party and Venstre (Liberals) that it is a requirement of all municipal institutions that pork should be part of the meal plan. …

The proposal to serve pork for both Muslim and non-Muslim children were put forth after several of the city’s institutions had decided to stop serving pork for the children.”
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Bill banning child marriage in Pakistan falls at first hurdle after Sharia council rules it 'un-Islamic'

Bill banning child marriage in Pakistan falls at first hurdle after Sharia council rules it 'un-Islamic' | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
A proposed bill in Pakistan banning child marriages has fallen at the first hurdle. The bill was blocked by the Council of Islamic Ideology (CII), which declared it un-Islamic.

The bill proposed by ruling PML-N party MP Marvi Memon was withdrawn Thursday, 14 January, after the influential council, which advises the legislature on whether bills comply with Sharia law, declared it "un-Islamic" and "blasphemous", Express Tribune reported.

The bill proposed harsher punishments for those entering marriage with minors, including prison terms of up to two years, and raising the minimum age of marriage to 18. Under Pakistan's constitution, the council's advice is not legally binding, but should be taken into consideration when considering new bills.

In May, 2014, the CII ruled that Pakistan's current laws stipulating 16 as the minimum age for marriage were un-Islamic, and girls as young as nine could be married "if signs of puberty are visible".

Pakistan is one of a number of states to have pledged to end child marriage by 2030, under the UN's Sustainable Development goals. The charity Girls not Brides estimates that about 20% of girls in Pakistan are married before the age of 18.
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French Jews' fears 'intolerable' - Francois Hollande - BBC News

French Jews' fears 'intolerable' - Francois Hollande - BBC News | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
Francois Hollande has called the idea French Jews would hide their religion out of fear "intolerable", after an anti-Semitic attack in Marseille.
The French president's comments come after a Jewish leader in the city urged men to stop wearing their skullcaps or other religious symbols.
The victim of the attack, a Jewish teacher, was stabbed by a boy who pledged allegiance to Islamic State.
Jews were targeted in January last year during the Charlie Hebdo Paris attacks.
Mr Hollande said: "It is intolerable that in our country citizens should feel so upset and under assault because of their religious choice that they would conclude that they have to hide."
But Zvi Ammar, head of Marseille's Israelite Consistory, said the "exceptional measure" was needed.
Speaking to La Provence newspaper (in French), Mr Ammar called on Jews "not to wear the kippa [skullcap] in the street to avoid being identified as Jewish".
"It is sad to find ourselves in this position in 2016, in a great democratic country like France," he said.
France's Jewish community fears further attacks
French Jews question their future
Monday's machete attack left the teacher, Benjamin Amsellem, 35, who was wearing a skullcap at the time, with an injured shoulder and hand.
The teenage assailant was charged on Wednesday evening with "attempted assassination linked to a terrorist organization", authorities said.
The youth, described as a self-radicalised ethnic Kurd from Turkey, reportedly told police he was "ashamed" he did not manage to kill Mr Amsellem.
It was the third such attack on Jews in recent months in Marseille, which has the third-largest urban population of Jews in Europe after Paris and London
In November, a teacher at a Jewish school in Marseille was stabbed by three people who shouted anti-Semitic insults at him
Three Jews were assaulted in the city in October, one with a knife near a synagogue, by a drunken assailant, AFP news agency reports
A 15-year-old Turkish Kurd was arrested after attacking Mr Amsellem, 35, in a Marseille street in broad daylight.
Jewish men often wear a skullcap, also known in Hebrew as a kippa or in Yiddish as a yarmulke, as an outward sign of their religion.
The latest stabbing in Marseille came just days after France held memorial events for those killed in the Paris attacks last January.
Four Jewish shoppers were killed by an IS supporter at a kosher supermarket, shortly after the deadly assault on the office of Charlie Hebdo magazine.
Since then, more than 700 synagogues, Jewish schools and community centres have been protected by police or soldiers.
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Security experts fear 'European 9/11' in 2016

Security experts fear 'European 9/11' in 2016 | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
PARIS: Just a week into the year, France has already been rattled by an attempted attack on a police station, but counter-terrorism officials have far graver fears for Europe in 2016.

November's attacks in Paris, in which 130 people were killed by Daesh group terroists, showed the trauma that could be caused by a group of men with Kalashnikov rifles, but experts fear it could be just the start.

"Unfortunately, I think 2015 was nothing," a counter-terrorism official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

"We are moving towards a European 9/11: simultaneous attacks on the same day in several countries, several places. A very coordinated thing. We know the terrorists are working on this," he added.

He said the Daesh was recruiting and training Europeans "with the goal of sending them back to hit their countries of origin".

"They have the necessary false documents, the mastery of the language, the sites, the weapons. We stop a lot of them, but it must be recognised that we are overwhelmed. Some will get through - some already have."

Recent arrests of terrorists returning from Syria and Iraq have added to concerns, he said.

"The profiles are changing. We are seeing ultra-radical guys return, very battle-hardened, who should have stayed over there.

"Before we mostly had guys returning who had made a mistake, who didn't realise that war can be painful. But now, we are seeing guys return who are sticking to their chosen path."

Rapid response needed

Faced with an enemy that is happy to die and maximise civilian casualties, the challenge for France's security forces is to massively speed up response times.

"There will always be a delay for intervention forces that we have to reduce as much as possible," Colonel Hubert Bonneau, head of the elite GIGN police, told AFP.

"In the Bataclan, the killing of 90 people took 20 minutes. It stops when there is the opposition of security forces," he said, referring to the attack on a Paris concert hall on November 13.
It took two-and-a-half hours for police to storm the concert hall as they tried to gather information on the layout of the building and position of the Islamist terrorists.

Bonneau said this new type of threat meant there were no classic hostage situations such as in the past.

"Hostages are just a buffer to slow the progress of security forces. If we don't intervene as quickly as possible there will be more victims. That's the lesson to draw from the attacks of November 13, that will change our mode of intervention.

"We need to have surgical action, as forceful as possible and as quickly as possible," he said.

'Just a rehearsal' 

Multiple, pan-European plots are not new and have been disrupted on several occasions, including one in late August 2010, said Yves Trotignon, a former analyst for France's DGSE intelligence service.

"At that time, it was still Al Qieda," he said.

"The teams were due to arrive in western Europe, recover pre-placed material - handguns and assault rifles. It was disrupted by the Americans, who carried out a series of preventative drone strikes in Afghanistan and Pakistan against the guys thought to be mounting the operation.

"This type of multiple attack is part of the worst-case scenarios for 2016," said Trotignon.

"I know that in European capitals, particularly London, specialised services are working on this theory."

Police, military and intelligence services are constantly adapting to the shape-shifting threat, but so are the other side and often more quickly and effectively, the specialists said.

"It's not just us that learn the lessons, it's the Daesh as well," said the counter-terrorism official.

He said a key lesson was to stay away from telephones, which have often been a key way to monitor potential attackers.
"They take lessons from the press investigations, read everything on the subject. They saw that it took two-and-a-half hours to launch the police raid at the Bataclan," said Trotignon.

They also saw that "the explosives weren't good, that they must be changed, that the guys left too many traces. They learn fast."

"If the quality of the attackers improves, we will have a problem," he said, adding that there was a "terrible pessimism" among security service professionals for 2016.

"Maybe we will say that 2015 was just a rehearsal," he added.
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Pastor's remarks offensive but not criminal

Pastor's remarks offensive but not criminal | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
When Pastor James McConnell made his offensive, sweeping and ill-judged comments about Muslims in a sermon delivered at the Whitewell Metropolitan Tabernacle in north Belfast in May 2014, he could not have known the far-reaching repercussions of his remarks.

If he had confined his sermon to within the walls of his church it is unlikely it would have come to wider public attention.

As it was, his remarks were streamed online to a potentially global audience and sparked widespread outrage.

The pastor's reputation was severely damaged and his subsequent television appearances suggested an elderly man struggling to deal with the enormity of the situation.

It was an issue which reached the highest levels of government with Peter Robinson speaking out in defence of the pastor and managing to create an even bigger storm when he told the Irish News he would trust a Muslim to go the shops for him.

After several days of pressure, which included headlines around the world, the First Minister was eventually forced to apologise to Muslims.

But that was not the end of the matter.

The Public Prosecution Service (PPS) decided to prosecute Pastor McConnell under the 2003 Communications Act in relation to the sermon which had been broadcast online.

The subsequent court case became something of a cause celebre with supporters of the preacher turning out in numbers and presenting the issue as one of free speech.

Judge Liam McNally agreed, up to a point, concluding that while the words used by Mr McConnell were offensive they did not meet the high threshold of being ``grossly offensive.''

It is perhaps a fine distinction but it meant the pastor was found not guilty.

The judge pointed out that if the preacher had qualified his remarks, as he did in subsequent media interviews, he could have been spared the legal battle.

For his part, the 78-year-old pastor said if he was to give the sermon again he would word it differently, so perhaps some lesson has been learned in what has been a bruising experience.

Judge McNally also issued a firm endorsement of the right to express opinions which may cause shock or outrage.

``The courts need to be very careful not to criminalise speech which, however contemptible, is no more than offensive. It is not the task of the criminal law to censor offensive utterances,'' he said.

There is, of course, a clear distinction between the criminal court and the court of public opinion.

People are entitled to hold a particular view but those in positions of influence need to take care in choosing their words to ensure their meaning is not open to misinterpretation.

Pastor McConnell has been cleared of a criminal offence but that does not make his insulting and hurtful comments about the followers of an entire religion any more acceptable.
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Fr Patrick McCafferty: McConnell case 'waste of money'

Fr Patrick McCafferty: McConnell case 'waste of money' | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
A priest has criticised the case against Pastor James McConnell as a "waste of public resources".

Fr Patrick McCafferty, who is based in Crossgar, Co Down, acted as a character witness for the preacher during his trial.

He said while he strongly disagreed with Mr McConnell's remarks, the case should never have been brought to court, particularly given the pastor's age.

"I am glad that it's over for him. It was a waste of time and a waste of public resources that it went as far as it did," he told The Irish News.

"When it comes to religion, often there are polemics used. They have been part of inter-religious debates for centuries. Things do get heated."

Fr McCafferty said he first met Mr McConnell when he challenged him about offensive comments he made about the Catholic Church several years ago.

"I took him on, I didn't take him to court," he said. "Engagement and dialogue with people is a much more mature approach.

"I am just glad it ended successfully in his favour."

He said Mr McConnell had not expressed himself well during his contentious sermon in May 2014, but it was a case of freedom of expression and freedom of speech.

"He did qualify during the case that he was thinking of extremists and radicalised people within Islam, who are a threat, those who have no qualms about walking into a public place and setting off a bomb or firing a gun and killing people.

"But he didn't particularly put it well at the time."
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British MP Goading UK Govt Into Banning Donald Trump Is Muslim Socialist Who Campaigned For Obama

British MP Goading UK Govt Into Banning Donald Trump Is Muslim Socialist Who Campaigned For Obama | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
Tulip Siddiq – the Labour Party MP who is at the forefront of goading the British government into banning U.S. Presidential Candidate Donald Trump from the United Kingdom – is one of her party’s members who helped the hard-left, anti-Israel Jeremy Corbyn become its leader. She also claims in a 2014 biography to have campaigned for U.S. President Barack Obama in 2008.

Ms. Siddiq, whose job is to represent the interests of her constituents, has called Mr. Trump “corrosive” in a statement to the Telegraph newspaper, following the news that Mr. Trump would pull over £700m in investment in Scotland if UK MPs recommended to ban him from the country.

She said yesterday: “The United Kingdom should not be held to ransom by corrosive billionaire politicians. In our country, money doesn’t buy the right to sew discord and hatred in our communities.

“Donald Trump’s threats about withholding investment from the UK is another desperate attempt to get in the headlines and anyone seeing his comments should reject his bigotry.”

She hasn’t yet commented on how much foreign funding is ploughed into UK academic institutions, mosques, and communities by the likes of Saudi Arabia – with the express intent to “sew discord and hatred” in Britain.

Ms. Siddiq was elected to Parliament to represent the Hampstead and Kilburn constituency in May 2015. She beat her Liberal Democrat opponent, and radical Islam critic Maajid Nawaz, who has spent the better part of his life campaigning against Islamic extremism.

The ‘British Bangladeshi Who’s Who’ magazine listed Ms. Siddiq on page 110 of 120, stating: “She has campaigned for political parties internationally and in 2008, she campaigned for Barack Obama in the United States.”

The magazine also notes her involvement with Labour politicians Oona King and Sadiq Khan – the latter of whom is running for Mayor of London, and has been the lawyer for Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam, and former Guantanamo Bay detainees.

She was one of five out of nine Muslim, Labour Members of Parliament who helped elect Jeremy Corbyn to the leadership of the Labour Party by sponsoring his initial candidacy within the party.

She is the niece of Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
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UK Iraq veterans 'may face prosecution' - BBC News

UK Iraq veterans 'may face prosecution' - BBC News | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
UK soldiers who fought in the Iraq War may face prosecution for war crimes, according to the head of a unit investigating alleged abuses.
Mark Warwick said there were "lots of significant cases" and that discussions would be held over whether they met a war crimes threshold.
Lawyers are continuing to refer alleged abuse cases by soldiers to the Iraq Historic Allegations Team (Ihat).
The Ministry of Defence said it took such allegations "extremely seriously".
Two public inquiries have already looked at claims against UK troops in Iraq.
Mr Warwick, the former police detective in charge of Ihat, told the Independent the allegations being investigated included ones of murder.
He added: "Over the next 12 to 18 months, we will review all the caseload to better understand the picture and then I think we can say whether 2019 seems realistic."
The inquiry has considered at least 1,515 possible victims, of whom 280 are alleged to have been unlawfully killed.
He said: "We would look at the credibility of the allegation in the first instance and, when we've looked at a lot of these extra cases coming to us, some of them are duplicates of cases, some of them we've already identified as part of our own investigation process, and some are multiple allegations, where we would investigate as a single allegation."
'Slow pace'
Ihat's budget of £57.2m runs until the end of 2019 - 16 years after the invasion of Iraq began in 2003.
Carla Ferstman, director of the human rights charity Redress, also told the newspaper that the "incredibly slow pace" of Ihat's investigations was "wholly unacceptable".
He added: "Things seem to still be moving at a snail's pace. We call upon the government to ensure Ihat can, and does, do what it was set up to do, and to do it now. This cannot be a whitewash."
A spokeswoman for the Ministry of Defence said most members of the armed forces behaved correctly.
She added: "The vast majority of UK service personnel deployed on military operations conduct themselves professionally and in accordance with the law.
"Where there is sufficient evidence, members of HM Forces can be prosecuted. It is estimated that the Ihat's work will take until the end of 2019."
An inquiry into claims of abuse by UK troops in Iraq highlighted the death of 26-year-old hotel worker Baha Mousa, who died in UK military custody in September 2003.
It concluded in September 2011, with inquiry chairman Sir William Gage blaming "corporate failure" at the Ministry of Defence for the use of banned interrogation methods in Iraq.
The Al-Sweady Inquiry, set up in 2009, followed allegations made in judicial review proceedings at the High Court that the human rights of several Iraqis were abused by British troops in the aftermath of a firefight with insurgents near the town of Majar al Kabir.
Inquiry chairman Sir Thayne Forbes said allegations that troops murdered and mutilated Iraqis in custody were "wholly without foundation". But he did conclude that some of the detention techniques had amounted to mistreatment.
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Iraq, Syria, France deadliest places for reporters in 2015

Iraq, Syria, France deadliest places for reporters in 2015 | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
The Islamist attack on satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo made France the third deadliest country for journalists in 2015, just behind Syria and Iraq, media freedom organization Reporters Without Borders (RSF) said on Tuesday.

Sixty-seven journalists were killed globally this year, either targeted because of their work or dying while reporting, Paris-based RSF said in its annual report. Some 27 citizen (amateur)journalists and seven media workers were also killed.

"The majority aren't journalists in the wrong place at the wrong time during a bombing raid, they're journalists who are murdered to stop them from doing their jobs," RSF Secretary General Christophe Deloire told Reuters.

"Today if you're a journalist, even if your audience is just readers in your country... you're exposing yourself to nutcases on the other side of the world, groups of religious extremists, that could put you on a blacklist, and then other people take action and come and kill you."

Eight journalists died in Paris on Jan. 7 when Islamist gunmen attacked Charlie Hebdo's offices, the first such assault in a Western country. It meant that this year two-thirds of the reporters who died while working were killed in a country at peace, RSF said - the exact opposite of 2014.

Eleven journalists were killed in Iraq and 10 in Syria this year, the two most lethal countries for journalists. The fourth most deadly country was Yemen, followed by South Sudan, India, Mexico, the Philippines and Honduras.

The 2015 death toll is one more than in 2014 and slightly below the average of the past 10 years. Separately, RSF also compiled for the first time the number of journalists who died for unclear reasons - 43 in 2015.

The full report can be read online: here

(Reporting by Ingrid Melander and Johnny Cotton; Editing by Mark Heinrich)
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Exclusive: Islamic State ruling aims to settle who can have sex with female slaves

Exclusive: Islamic State ruling aims to settle who can have sex with female slaves | UNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST | Scoop.it
Islamic State theologians have issued an extremely detailed ruling on when "owners" of women enslaved by the extremist group can have sex with them, in an apparent bid to curb what they called violations in the treatment of captured females.

The ruling or fatwa has the force of law and appears to go beyond the Islamic State's previous known utterances on slavery, a leading Islamic State scholar said. It sheds new light on how the group is trying to reinterpret centuries-old teachings to justify the rape of women in the swaths of Syria and Iraq it controls.

For a U.S. government translation of the fatwa click here.

The fatwa was among a huge trove of documents captured by U.S. Special Operations Forces during a raid targeting a top Islamic State official in Syria in May. Reuters has reviewed the document, which has not been previously published, but couldn't independently confirm its authenticity.

Among the fatwa's injunctions are bans on a father and son having sex with the same female slave; and the owner of a mother and daughter having sex with both. Joint owners of a female captive are similarly enjoined from intercourse because she is viewed as "part of a joint ownership."

The United Nations and human rights groups have accused the Islamic State of the systematic abduction and rape of thousands of women and girls as young as 12, especially members of the Yazidi minority in northern Iraq. Many have been given to fighters as a reward or sold as sex slaves.

Far from trying to conceal the practice, Islamic State has boasted about it and established a department of "war spoils" to manage slavery. Reuters reported on the existence of the department on Monday.

In an April report, Human Rights Watch interviewed 20 female escapees who recounted how Islamic State fighters separated young women and girls from men and boys and older women. They were moved "in an organized and methodical fashion to various places in Iraq and Syria." They were then sold or given as gifts and repeatedly raped or subjected to sexual violence.


Fatwa No. 64, dated Jan. 29, 2015, and issued by Islamic State's Committee of Research and Fatwas, appears to codify sexual relations between IS fighters and their female captives for the first time, going further than a pamphlet issued by the group in 2014 on how to treat slaves.

The fatwa starts with a question: "Some of the brothers have committed violations in the matter of the treatment of the female slaves. These violations are not permitted by Sharia law because these rules have not been dealt with in ages. Are there any warnings pertaining to this matter?"

It then lists 15 injunctions, which in some instances go into explicit detail. For example:

"If the owner of a female captive, who has a daughter suitable for intercourse, has sexual relations with the latter, he is not permitted to have intercourse with her mother and she is permanently off limits to him. Should he have intercourse with her mother then he is not permitted to have intercourse with her daughter and she is to be off limits to him."

Islamic State's rape of female captives has been well documented, but a leading IS expert at Princeton University, Cole Bunzel, who has reviewed many of the group's writings, said the fatwa went beyond what has previously been published by the militants on how to treat female slaves.

"It reveals the actual concerns of IS slave owners," he said in an email.

Still, he cautioned that not "everything dealt with in the fatwa is indicative of a relevant violation. It doesn't mean father and son were necessarily sharing a girl. They're at least being 'warned' not to. But I bet some of these violations were being committed."

The fatwa also instructs owners of female slaves to "show compassion toward her, be kind to her, not humiliate her, and not assign her work she is unable to perform." An owner should also not sell her to an individual whom he knows will mistreat her.

Professor Abdel Fattah Alawari, dean of Islamic Theology at Al-Azhar University, a 1,000-year-old Egyptian center for Islamic learning, said Islamic State "has nothing to do with Islam" and was deliberately misreading centuries-old verses and sayings that were originally designed to end, rather than encourage, slavery.

"Islam preaches freedom to slaves, not slavery. Slavery was the status quo when Islam came around," he said. "Judaism, Christianity, Greek, Roman, and Persian civilizations all practiced it and took the females of their enemies as sex slaves. So Islam found this abhorrent practice and worked to gradually remove it.”

In September 2014 more than 120 Islamic scholars from around the world issued an open letter to IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi refuting the group's religious arguments to justify many of its actions. The scholars noted that the "reintroduction of slavery is forbidden in Islam."

(Additional reporting by Ahmed Aboulenein in Cairo and William Maclean in Dubai, editing by Ross Colvin)
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