Saturday, October 25, 2014
Canadians gathered along overpasses and on highway shoulders to say goodbye to Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, who was killed in front of the National War Memorial on Oct. 22
Posted by solsticewitch13 at 12:18 PM
Video: Barbara Winters heard gunshots and ran to the fallen soldier’s side
October 24, 2014
Barbara Winters, a government lawyer, was walking by the National War Memorial the morning of Oct. 22 when she heard gunshots. She ran to the scene and provided words of comfort in what may have been the last words heard by Cpl. Nathan Cirillo.
Q: Tell me about that morning.A: It was a beautiful, beautiful fall morning. It had finally stopped raining. I looked at the soldiers at the cenotaph and I thought, what a nice picture. I just happened to have my digital camera with me and I stopped and I took a few pictures, then I carried on. I was walking down Sparks Street. I had just passed the Canada Post building when I heard pop, pop, pop, the sound of gunfire. I turned and I saw people sort of ducking, more walking quickly than running. There didn’t seem to be a lot of panic. I turned around. I started to realize what it was that happened. And so I started running towards the cenotaph. I was looking for the soldiers because I had heard the news the day before—the two soldiers in Quebec who had been hit and how one of them had died. I immediately guessed that the soldiers I had just seen had been the targets. I knew if I saw them standing, it was something else. But I didn’t see them standing. So I just ran there.
Related link: ‘Without thought’ Margaret Lehre ran toward the shotsWhen I got to the scene, the soldier had fallen by the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, which has a deep meaning, I guess. He was lying there and there were already people helping them. There was the corporal who had been with the two honour guards, a nurse and another gentleman who had been passing by, and someone was at his head, another member of the military. He had fallen against the tomb and there wasn’t much room and so most of us were on one side of him. I went to that side and the nurse who was there had her hand on one wound and the corporal who had been with them had his hand on another wound. The gentleman who was at his head was talking to him and telling him he was doing a good job. The person at his feet was holding him.
I had a bit of first aid training. So I asked the gentleman at his feet to elevate his legs just to try to get the blood going to his heart because you could see the wounds were not superficial. I loosened his tie. The fellow at his head was talking to him so there was not much to do. So I started praying. But then the fellow at his head said, “I think he stopped breathing,” so we checked his pulse and we couldn’t find a pulse. So the fellow at his head immediately started doing CPR. He started the mouth-to-mouth and I started the chest compressions. The five of us were talking to each other, telling each other, “That’s good,” or someone might say, “Check this.” In some ways, it was miraculous because it was five complete strangers who worked in complete unison. Nobody was grandstanding. Nobody was taking charge. Everybody was focused on that soldier. Nobody was yelling. People on the team were asking for help. We were all asking, “Where is the ambulance?” The fellow at the head and myself, we were doing CPR. I did the chest compressions for a while and then I was relieved. I went to the other side of his head and tried to talk to him and comfort him. He wasn’t talking. His eyes were open.
Q: What did you say when you were talking to him?A: I told him that he was a good man and that he was a brave man and I told him that his family loved him and his military family—I meant his brothers-in-arms—loved him and that his military brothers were right there with him, and that they were working to help him, and all these strangers, “We’re just here trying to help you.”
I kept telling him his parents would be so proud of him and that he was a good man and to remember that he was standing guard, that he was at the War Memorial and he couldn’t have [been doing] a more distinguished thing when this happened. Mostly, I kept telling him he was loved that he was a good man and a brave man, and I just kept repeating that.
Q: What did you say in your prayers?A: I just recited the Lord’s Prayer. I am not even religious. That’s what came to mind.
Q: Do you think he was aware of the people helping him?A: I am sure he was, initially. I don’t know. He wasn’t moving but I had the sense he could hear. I hope he heard people helping him and praising him because anybody would need to hear that in that situation.
Q: Where were the two wounds?A: On his side. One was on his left side, one was on his right side.
Q: Did you have medical training?A: I was in the Naval Reserve, so I started as a medical assistant and we would get medical training. I had CPR and I had competed, when I was a medical assistant, in St. John Ambulance competitions.
I don’t want to use the word lucky. But he had a nurse there, he had military people who all know how to do CPR and first aid, and they would have all been very well trained on gunshot wounds and how to handle traumatic situations. I think that’s what contributed to everyone being calm and just working on him and focusing on just keeping him alive.
Q: What do you think compelled you to run there? A lot of people ran from the scene.A: I don’t know. Honestly, I don’t know. I ran to help. It wasn’t a conscious decision. I am sure that having been in the reserves and being a medical assistant kicked in. I think most people want to run to help. I just happened to be there.
Q: You are a lawyer, right?A: Yes, I am a lawyer with the Department of Justice. It’s been a long time since I was in the reserves.
Q: What was the feeling there that morning at the memorial? Were you in shock?A: I wasn’t in shock at the time. I don’t think any of the people who were working on him were. The people there weren’t thinking of anything else. I did not see any policeman. I did not see any crowd control because we were just looking at that soldier.
Q: Did you see the gunman?A: No.
Q: Did it ever occur to you that you could be in danger?A: It didn’t. That thought didn’t enter my head.
Q: It was a very emotional scene. Did you and the other bystander—the other woman, Margaret Lehre—speak afterwards?A: Yes, we actually held hands afterwards. There was also a colonel on his way to DND who stopped to help. We spoke to each other and certainly we talked to each other and comforted each other on the way to the police station. I have spoken to Margaret on the phone and the colonel was nice enough to call me. I feel bad because the corporal who was there with [Nathan], he was there for the whole thing. He heard the shots, he went to help his comrade and I haven’t been able to speak to him.
Q: The funeral is on Tuesday. Are you planning on attending?A: I will be going to the funeral if I can. I would like to attend. If I could, I would talk to the family beforehand. If I went, it would be to show respect and to remember him.
Q: What will you be thinking about that day?A: His family. And him. I will never forget him. But mostly just his family, his siblings, if he has any, and his parents, but also his military family who must be missing him terribly, his comrades, his fellow soldiers. That’s what I will be thinking of.
Posted by solsticewitch13 at 11:18 AM
October 25, 2014
So, what is this “Golden Age”? In essence, the Islamic kingdom from the beginning of 8th century to the middle of 13th century is assigned as the glorious period when science and technology, art and culture, music and medicine and so forth all flourished under the patronage of the state. The Arab kingdom, under the Umayyad Caliphate from 661AD to 750AD having Damascus as the capital and then the Abbasid Caliphate from 751AD to 1258AD having Baghdad as the capital, was the melting pot of all human knowledge. The reason for such an epoch rise in human culture and knowledge within just a few decades of the establishment of Islam was that the kingdom that encompassed Persia on the East to Lebanon on the West, Egypt and North Africa on the South to the steeps of Asia Minor on the North brought together the talents from all corners of the kingdom and beyond. Greek science and technology, arts and literature were all translated into Arabic and ilm or knowledge was actively encouraged by the state. All great minds of the kingdom were given all the accumulated knowledge – translated from Greek, Latin etc. – and encouraged to pursue knowledge unencumbered by theological constraints. “Go even unto China to seek knowledge” was the guiding philosophy of that period.
Tremendous progress was made in many scientific fields, many new disciplines had been invented. Algebra was invented by Muhammad al-Khwarizmi (780 – 850AD) – a Persian working in Baghdad, who not only introduced Indian decimal concept and numeral system but also put forward logical thinking in a form which came to be known as Algorithm. This algorithm is used even now as the starting point of computer programming. Another Persian, Muhammad al-Farabi (872 – 950AD) was the most prominent scientist and philosopher of the day and wrote on physics, cosmology,
psychology, philosophy and on many more. Yet another Persian scholar Abu Rayhan al-Biruni (973 – 1048AD) was regarded as one of the greatest scholars of the medieval Islamic era and was well versed in physics, mathematics and other natural sciences. He was a prolific scientific writer and wrote 146 treatises. His major accomplishment was that he calculated the circumference of the earth using his trigonometric methods and that calculation came within 200 miles of the actual circumference of 24,900 miles! He was a great linguist too – he could converse in Persian, Arabic and Sanskrit, and knew Greek, Hebrew and Syriac. Muhammad Zakariya al-Razi (854 – 925AD) of Persia was the pioneer in medical sciences who invented distillation of alcohol and its use in medicine, identified measles and small pox and wrote a treatise on them which remained the guiding light for centuries. He was the author of the encyclopaedia of medicine spanning over twenty three volumes. Abu al-Husayn ibn-Sina was a philosopher and the most authoritative physician of the day (980 -1037 AD) and produced multi-volume medical survey which was translated into Latin. There were many more physicists, mathematicians, astronomers and medical professionals who contributed to the great achievements of that “Golden Age”.
Now, did that great assimilation of knowledge in the “Golden Age” disappear almost all of a sudden following the collapse of Abbasid Caliphate as a result of Mongol invasion in 1258? Can an empire as well as the human achievement and intellect disappear overnight? Admittedly, other civilisations of the past such as the Greek Civilisation, Indian Civilisation, Chinese Civilisation etc. all came and gone, but none did disappear without a trace of intellectual heritage for future generations to follow as in the case of Islamic “Golden Age”.
To seek out the answer one has to look back at what was happening at the dying days or years of the Abbasid Caliphate. Like any great empire in decline, Abbasid Caliphate was disintegrating for quite some time. In Spain, Christians reconquered Cordoba in 1236 and then Seville in 1248. But the last nail in the coffin was the siege and occupation of Baghdad by Mongols in 1258, thereby bringing an end to the dying empire. For decades or even a century or over, there were internal tension and conflict between the Mu’tazilites who embraced rational thinking and inquisitiveness and the Ash’arités who were anti rationalists. This Ash’arités movement was dogmatic Sunni Muslim movement which held the view that rationalist view was anti-Islamic. Things do happen as God wishes to happen, not as a priori or a posteriori.
Abu Hamid al-Ghazali (1058 – 1111AD) argued that rationalism was incompatible with Islamic teaching. As God’s will is completely free and unencumbered, His wishes are supreme and could not be compromised by rationalisation of causes and effects. A storm takes place because God wishes it that way to punish the affected people for their misdeeds, not as a result of meteorological condition. Rain falls not as a result of precipitation and condensation of cloud, but by sheer God’s will. By his dogmatic interpretation of Islam he gave a philosophical underpinning of religion and brought Sunni Islam very close to Sufi philosophy.
Following the collapse of Abbasid Caliphate, Ash’arités movement supported by Ghazalites took hold in the Islamic world. From that time on, Islam had been going on the opposite direction to the Western Christianity which embraced Renaissance and Age of Enlightenment. Admittedly, Christianity had its turbulent periods when different theological strands vied against each other and did everything to eliminate each other, but eventually rationality prevailed over darkness. Christianity came out of the dark ages bruised and battered, but with its theology intact as long as its boundary is properly demarcated and ring fenced. In other words, in Christianity theology is numinous undertaking segregated from the workings of the nation state.
Islam does not want to accept such segregation of duties and responsibilities. It wants to encroach on the state responsibilities covering politics, economics, education and every other field of human endeavour. How could a state function when religion tells that there is no rationality, no cause and effect; everything moves as God desires? How could state develop economically or intellectually when religion puts a stopper over its advancement? One simple event will expose this disconnect.
Some years ago, when I went from Britain to Saudi Arabia as a Consultant on Radiological Protection, I was invited to present a paper on ‘Effects of radiation on human beings’ at an international seminar in Riyadh. The seminar was very well attended with many British, American, German, Swedish and Finnish experts. There were high level Saudi presence too including the Saudi Interior Minister, Health Minister and Saudi Atomic Energy Commission’s chairman and so forth. As I presented my paper in English, it had to be translated into Arabic as I spoke. During the presentation, I said that there was a contemporary scientific view that radiation might have caused mutation in human genes that helped the process of evolution. My translator, a clever Egyptian man, stopped at that point and then came over to me to say, “Sir, I cannot translate this line. If I do, not only I but also you would be arrested for blasphemy.” Then it dawned on me that this is the fundamentalist country where there is no evolution, God made everything. We proceeded without this sentence and any other reference to Darwinism.
In most of the fundamentalist Muslim countries, education at schools, colleges and universities proceed without any reference to evolution, natural selection etc. Islamic teaching takes precedence over scientific developments – God created earth, sun, moon and everything some 10,000 years ago; everything happens as God desires; human beings must pray to God to please Him and He will give things as He pleases. With such blockheadedness, it is no wonder that science and technology have disappeared from the Islamic world.
Physics Nobel Laureate Steven Weinberg (who shared the prize with Abdus Salam and Sheldon Glashow in 1979) said, “Though there are talented scientists of Muslim origin working productively in the West, for forty years I have not seen a single paper by a physicist or an astronomer working in a Muslim country that was worth reading.”
Even Prof Abdus Salam, a Muslim of Pakistani origin, who carried out his groundbreaking research in the UK, had to suffer the ignominy of being declared a non-Muslim by the Pakistani authorities as he was of the Shia Ahmadi sect. Before his death in 1996, he wished to be buried at his home country, Pakistan. After the burial, he was declared non-Muslim and his graveyard was desecrated by Muslim zealots!
From time to time, Western leaders patronisingly speak about Muslim heritage and scientific and intellectual contributions to civilisations, but the fact remains that those contributions were nearly 1,000 or more years ago and mostly by people (Shias) who are now considered either non-Muslims or renegade Muslims by Wahhabi Sunnis.
Now, going back to the fundamental question, what caused the catastrophic collapse of “Golden Age” of Islam after the fall of Abbasid Caliphate? Why it could not have been revived in any of the 56 Muslim majority states of the world? The answer is quite simple. Islam, or its fundamental version of it, is not compatible with science and technology. Prof. Steven Weinberg claimed that after Ghazali there was no more science worth mentioning in Islamic countries. Only way Islamic countries can revive the culture of scientific studies is to relegate Islam to back burners, far away from the state functions. In other words, there should be strict enforcement of secularism and that should be institutionalised. Otherwise, Islam will keep creeping back to damage scientific disciplines.
Posted by solsticewitch13 at 11:12 AM
by Burak Bekdil
October 25, 2014 at 5:00 am
October 25, 2014 at 5:00 am
Where Turkey stands today is a perfect example of how, when Islamists -- mild or otherwise -- rule a county, even the most basic liberties are systematically suppressed."We have made the conservative, pious [Muslim] masses not just a part, but a major actor of the political system." Thus said Turkey's Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, not even trying to hide his pride.
"A climate of fear has emerged in Turkey." — Hasam Kilic, President, Turkey's Constitutional Court.
The prosecutor demanded a heavier penalty for the victim than for her torturers.
The European Commission identified government interference in the judiciary and bans imposed on social media as the major sources of concern regarding Turkey's candidacy for full membership.
Where Turkey stands today is a perfect example of how, when Islamists -- mild or otherwise -- rule a country, even the most basic liberties are systematically suppressed. The seal of approval for the terrible failure of what U.S. President Barack Obama once called a "successful Muslim democracy" came from the country's top judge.
Hasim Kilic, President of Turkey's Constitutional Court, and himself a conservative, recently said that, "A climate of fear has emerged in Turkey;" and he called on the Turks "to resist [it], and not give up." It is not always easy to do so.
When angry Turks took to the streets to protest the Justice and Development Party [AKP] and faced brutal police violence last year, Mehmet Ali Sahin, Deputy Chairman of the AKP (and former Justice Minister and Speaker of the Parliament) suggested that millions of protestors should be given life sentences under Article 312 of the Turkish Penal Code -- which states that "anyone trying to destroy the government or to prevent it from partially or fully performing its duties shall be punished by aggravated life imprisonment."
Mehmet Ali Sahin, Deputy Chairman of Turkey's ruling Justice and Development Party, suggested that millions of peaceful protestors should be given life sentences.
After a public outcry and further protests, the authorities agreed to bring the police officer to justice. At a recent hearing, the officer was given a 7.5-year sentence for unpremeditatedly killing a protester. The Sarisuluk family, disappointed, will appeal the verdict. But apparently losing a son to a police bullet was not the end of the family's misfortunes.
During one of the always tense hearings, Sarisuluk's parents and brothers shouted cries and curses and, according to the defendant, "threatened and injured him slightly during a brawl." The police officer filed a complaint at the prosecutor's office, and demanded the Sarisuluk family be brought to justice. The police officer filed that complaint before a verdict in his own case was announced. Recently, the Sarisuluks had to appear before a judge as defendants themselves.
A prosecutor is demanding up to 10 years and five months for them, for "insulting and premeditatedly injuring a police officer." Funny, the officer had not even gone through medical treatment after the courtroom brawl. If the judges agree with the prosecutor, the Sarisuluks will probably be the first people in the world to get a heavier prison sentence for "insult and minor injury" than the man who had killed their son. Insane? Not in Turkey.
In 2012, a video clip was leaked, showing half-a-dozen police officers beating a woman in the waiting room of a police station, and causing another public outcry. The video had been recorded by the station's own security cameras. Like every other similar case, it went to court. Finally, the court sentenced the officers to various jail terms ranging from six months to a couple of years. The woman, however, was sentenced to five years for "insulting and resisting police officers." But that was not the only "Turkish black humor." As more details of the case became public, Turks recently learned that the prosecutor had found yet another criminal.
That criminal was Kemal Goktas, a reporter for the daily newspaper Vatan. After the prosecutor demanded a heavier penalty for the victim than for her torturers, and his final indictment fell into the public domain, Goktas ran a story in his newspaper, and in his headline, described the prosecutor's final assessment as "scandalous." The prosecutor thinks that the headline was "an insult to a member of the judiciary," and has opened legal proceedings against the reporter. The prosecutor is asking for a prison sentence of up to three-and-a half-years.
But not all tales from Islamist-ruled Turkey are ridiculous and dark. Some are just ridiculous. Last week, a young peace activist staged a solo demonstration on Istanbul's busy Istiklal Street. He was apparently aiming to "promote love and peace all around the world." As curious passers-by were watching him, he stood on one corner of the pedestrian street, put out a placard that read "Hug me – for love," blindfolded himself, stretched his arms for "hugs," and stood there for an hour or so.
The passers-by first watched him in suspicion. Then a few, giggling, hugged him. The psychological barrier had been broken. He was then "hugged" by hundreds of smiling people, of all ages and colors. His demonstration ended as it would end in Turkey. A couple of municipal policemen ordered him to stop "being hugged by people." Then they gave him a ticket. The hugs cost him 91 Turkish liras (nearly $40). His offense? Causing public disturbance.
It is not a coincidence that Turkey, where, in the prime minister's words, the pious Muslims are the main actor of the political system, ranks 154th in the prestigious Reporters Without Borders global press freedoms index. And it was not a coincidence that, despite too much political euphemism, the European Commission, in its annual progress report on Turkey, identified government interference in the judiciary and bans imposed on social media as major sources of concern regarding Turkey's candidacy for full membership.
"The adoption of legislation undermining the independence of the judiciary, massive reassignments and dismissal of judges and prosecutors and even detention of a high number of police officers, as well as blanket bans imposed on social media" are among the findings of the report.
Did President Obama read the EU's assessment of the "great Muslim democracy?"
Burak Bekdil, based in Ankara, is a Turkish columnist for the Hürriyet Daily and a Fellow at the Middle East Forum.
Posted by solsticewitch13 at 10:52 AM
Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.
I hope Kathleen Rice is a moderate Democrat and not one of that tiny minority of radical extremist Dems we keep hearing about. But her behavior suggests otherwise.
On November 23, 2014, the Islamic Center of Long Island is hosting its annual fundraiser at the Garden City Hotel in Garden City, New York. Under the topic: “Islam in America: Roots & Beyond,” there are a few high-profile speakers who will be helping to raise money.Wahhaj got started in Islam under Calypso Louie Farakhan. He then got a Saudi makeover and expresses such cheerful views as…
Among the speakers is Kathleen Rice, who is currently the Nassau County District attorney, and is a Long Island Congressional candidate…
…Ms. Rice is speaking alongside Imam Siraj Wahhaj of the Muslim Alliance of North America. Mr. Wahhaj was named in court papers as an unindicted co-conspirator of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.
A number of members of Wahhaj’s mosque were indicted for the bombing – and he testified in support of each of them. Similarly, he referred to an imprisoned terrorist, Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman – the notorious anti-American blind sheikh as “a respected scholar.”
In a 1992 sermon, Wahhaj emphasized the importance of jihad to his Al-Taqwa mosque congregation: “I will never ever tell people, ‘don’t be violent, that is not the Islamic way.’ The violence has to be selected…. Islam is the only answer because it is only Islam that we do it for Allah…. [We are] commanded to do jihad…. [W]hen Allah commands us to fight we are not stopping, no one will stop us.”Also he would totally cut off his daughter’s hand. He would.
In an autumn 1992 address to an Islamic gathering in New Jersey, Wahhaj expressed his desire to have Muslims seize control of the United States and replace the country’s constitutional government with an Islamic caliphate. “If we were united and strong,” Wahhaj said, “we’d elect our own emir [leader] and give allegiance to him…. [T]ake my word, if 6-8 million Muslims unite in America, the country will come to us.”
As he proclaimed in a May 1992 sermon: “I would cut off the hands of my own daughter [if she stole] because Allah stands for Justice.”Someone should ask Kathleen Rice what she thinks of Allah’s hand-cutting justice. Maybe she can include it in her political platform.
About Daniel GreenfieldDaniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.
Posted by solsticewitch13 at 10:48 AM
The group's newest publication talks about attacking U.S. supertankers and screwing up the oil supply chain
The extremists have recently taken a back seat in western media to their more evil counterparts, ISIS, but they are still plotting the destruction of America. In an article called, “On Targeting the Achilles Heel of Western Economies,” Hamza Khalid writes that the way for al Qaeda to weaken the U.S. is to carry out a “multi-pronged strategy that focuses not only on attacking American military presence in the Muslim world, but also targeting the super-extended energy supply line that fuels their economies and helps to sustain their military strength.” al Qaeda is going straight for American oil chokepoints, like the Straits of Gibraltar, the Straits of Hormuz, the Suez canal, or the Bab El Mendeb Strait at the mouth of the Persian Gulf. Some spots are narrow enough for insurgents to lurk in the bushes and launch RPG attacks on passing ships.
Countries in which al Qaeda says it has soldiers for potential attacks are the Atlas Mountains in northern Algeria, Sinai, Syria, the Philippines, Indonesia and Somalia. According to the article, al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula also “has the operational ability to attack western targets in the Gulf.”
Khalid goes on to list other targets besides chokepoints: “Western workers working in oil companies in the Muslim World,” “Oil facilities, including terminals and pipelines, which export oil to western countries,” and “attacks on the U.S. Navy.”
America’s energy independence (read: independence from relying on unpredictable middle east sources of oil) has been a major priority for President Obama, and even got a subtle mention in his first, long-awaited speech on ISIS. Nonetheless, an attack on the U.S. oil system would be devastating–even though the U.S. is set to surpass Saudi Arabia this month as the world’s top producer of oil America remains the world’s largest consumer of oil, and like any developed economy, is susceptible to price changes. ISIS now controls oil fields in much of northern Iraq, adding to the disruption–the Islamic extremist group is making millions per day selling oil on the black market.
Al Qaeda are just as keen to heap economic woe on the U.S., and not just by causing big, showy explosions or stealing their military hardware, but by hitting their insurance bills and the petrol pump at the same time. “In 2002,” says Khalid, “the Mujahideen attacked a French oil tanker, the Limburg, off the coast of Yemen in the Bab El Mendeb Strait. The attack caused a short-term collapse of international shipping in the Strait. The insurance premium for a single supertanker carrying two million barrels of oil tripled from $150,000 to $450,000 per trip, adding 15 cents a barrel to the delivered cost of oil.”
“Resurgence” is just the latest installment in glossy English-language publications produced by Middle Eastern terrorist groups. ISIS produced a similarly fancy magazine called Dabiq starting in July, mostly focused on the group’s caliphate in Iraq and Syria.
Posted by solsticewitch13 at 10:41 AM
We sat around the living room of Sheikh Husam Atrash, commander of the Jaish al-Mujahideen brigade of the Free Syrian Army, interviewing him by the light of some LEDs powered by a car battery. The power was off in the Western countryside of Aleppo, Syria, as has usually been the case since the civil war began.
“Do you have any ISIS prisoners right now?” I asked.
The sheikh nodded.
“Can I interview one?”
The sheikh nodded again. “Yes. I give my hearty consent. We have nothing to hide.”
The next morning, we were ushered into one of the brigades bases—a grand vacation mansion abandoned by it’s wealthy inhabitants at the start of the war. An FSA fighter sporting a mullet and an AK-47 led in the prisoner—a young man who looked more like a Brooklyn hipster than a murderous jihadi. He was sheepish, fidgeting as he waited for us to set up.
The fighters wouldn’t let us roll the camera until the prisoner’s face was covered and would give us only an alias for him: “Abu Abdullah.” We were told he was from Saudi Arabia, and when an Arabic expert reviewed our footage, he confirmed that the man was speaking in a Saudi dialect.
Abdullah told us his story. He landed in Antakya, Turkey, at night. An ISIS member met him and smuggled him across the border into Syria. He spent 30 days in a training camp, and then spent time in Raqqah, ISIS’ main stronghold in Syria.
He talked about all the foreigners in ISIS. Lots of Saudis, Tunisians, Libyans. Lots of Europeans. Lots of Americans, and he shockingly claimed there were twice the number of American women as men. Lured by the lofty goals of the Islamic State, they come to marry the fighters.
The Saudis, Europeans and Americans have money, he told us. ISIS would pay $100 a month to each fighter; Abdullah would spend five times that.
Abdullah’s final stop with ISIS was in the western countryside of Aleppo. In a battle against Jaish al-Mujahideen, he was captured. When the FSA talked to him, he realized that ISIS had essentially sent him on a suicide mission. “I was a victim,” he said.
“How do you feel about America now?” I asked.
“I have a lot of relatives who study in America,” he said. “Some have lived there eight years. I have no problem with the American people. My problem is with American politics…because they have made some mistakes.”Vocativ producer Lindsey Snell reported extensively from Syria while embedded with the Free Syrian Army, also known as the FSA, as they fight against both ISIS and the Syrian regime. She got a ride in their DIY tank that’s made out of an old truck and controlled by a repurposed video game controller. She also met with workers at a health clinic still operating in Syria that treats anyone who is in need of help, whether they are civilians, FSA members, ISIS members, or members of Bashar’s forces.
Once back in the United State Lindsey got word from a contact on the ground in Syria that American air strikes were hitting the wrong targets. We were able to talk with an FSA media director on Skype who told us that bombs intended to hit ISIS targets were hitting FSA and civilian controlled buildings.
Posted by solsticewitch13 at 9:39 AM
Women are joining ISIS at an ever-growing rate. Could online recruitment by current jihadi wives be a factor?
Author: Ruth Michaelson
Posted: 10/24/14 15:29 EDT
“You can find shampoos soaps and other female necessities here, so do not stress if you think you will be experiencing some cavewomen life here. …And lastly for the married sisters or soon to be married, bring makeup and jewellery from the West because trust me there is absolutely nothing here. …Unless you plan on looking like a clown ting.”
Sometimes Umm Layth’s posts are more philosophical:
“We are created to be mothers and wives—as much as the western society has warped your views on this with a hidden feminist mentality.”
| |Another woman, who goes by the name of Umm Muawiyah, arrived in the area controlled by ISIS on Oct. 8, tweeting:
“Alhamdulillah [thank God]. I have made it to Dar al-Islam and am finally living under the shade of the Sharia. Join me my brothers and sisters.”
“Psychology a2 is so buff, guys.”
A closer look, however, shows a cadre of real ISIS followers who have made the hijrah and are leaving an online account of the day-to-day workings of life under ISIS. By adopting more everyday, accessible approach to their posts, the women have carved out a social media niche, composing listicles like “10 Marriage Facts From the Islamic State,” which was published by a blogger who goes by “Bird of Jannah,” referring to the Islamic name for heaven. The list includes details such as how the Euphrates is every newlywed’s favorite date spot, how every ISIS fighter gets seven days off and how ISIS gives newly married couples a gift of $700. Well, that last one was later changed to the more general:
“Dawlah will give money or gifts to every newly-married couple.”
Posted by solsticewitch13 at 9:36 AM
http://animalpetitions.org/23979/reject-park-that-allows-visitors-to-eat-and-watch-dolphins-simultaneously/Posted by Megan Eimers Target: Masaki Wada, Japanese Official
Goal: Reject plans to build a water park that allows visitors to eat and watch dolphins simultaneously
Taiji, Japan has had a long history of eating dolphins that many have voiced outrage over, but recently Japanese official Masaki Wada took things to a new level when he said that he plans to build a water park that allows people to eat dolphin meat while watching dolphins in the park.
Taiji, Japan, home to the annual slaughter of thousands dolphins, is no stranger to controversy and continues its inhumane practices despite the negative responses throughout the world. The slaughter season is from September through March, and currently the ocean’s waters are stained red where pods of dolphins are corralled and killed. Two thousand dolphins and whales have been approved by Japan’s government for the annual slaughter, despite the mass protests that take place in response to the horrific practice.
With this history in mind, Masaki Wada is clearly pushing activists to become even more outraged. He has stated, “We already use dolphins and small whales as a source of tourism in the cove where dolphin-hunting takes place. In summer swimmers can enjoy watching the mammals that are released from a partitioned-off space. But we plan to do it on a larger scale.” This attitude is disgusting and this water park should under no circumstances be allowed to be built.
It’s bad enough that the dolphins are forced to do tricks for food, but to allow people to eat them while watching them for entertainment is vile. Dolphins are incredibly smart creatures that should not be hunted for food or spend their lives providing entertainment for humans. Please take a moment to sign the petition below to demand Mr. Masaki Wada to not build this horrible water park in Taiji.
Dear Mr. Masaki Wada,
Your recent statements regarding your plan to build a water park that allows people to eat dolphins while watching them is appalling. While I understand that Taiji has a history of hunting and eating dolphins, surely you must see how inhumane this practice is.
The annual dolphin hunt that occurs in Taiji is bad enough, but to now allow dolphins to be consumed while watching them for entertainment is vile. Please do not allow such atrocities to occur and do not build this water park. Water parks are terrible places for dolphins to live, and slaughtering them for consumption is repulsive.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: David Blaikie via Flickr
Posted by solsticewitch13 at 9:31 AM
صليل الصوارم لعبة إلكترونية لـ داعش .. تحتوي علي التكتيكات العسكرية للتنظيم
The video keeps playing the favorite chant of terrorists that we hear in many videos nowadays, the “Khutba El Jumua” by Abdullah Al Matroud. The mocked-up Grand Theft Auto-style trailer features virtual fighters shouting “Allahu Akbar!” as they attack U.S. troops.
Islamic State mocks up GTA game to recruit young fightersBy Leon Watson, Telegraph, 11:53AM BST 19 Sep 2014
Islamic State jihadists are believed to have released a new recruiting video based on a notoriously violent computer game.
The mocked-up Grand Theft Auto-style trailer is designed to attract younger members and features virtual fighters shouting “Allahu Akbar!” as they attack U.S. troops.
Throughout, the terror group’s logo is displayed at the top of the screen, alongside the apparent “GTA” styling.
According to Islamic State’s media wing, the video aims to “raise the morale of the mujahedin and to train children and youth how to battle the West and to strike terror into the hearts of those who oppose the Islamic State”.
The words “Flames of War” appear at the end of the trailer, with the tagline: “Fighting has just begun”.
The Grand Theft Auto series it appears to be based on is one of the world’s most popular video games.
Created by Scottish firm Rockstar Games, GTA’s fifth edition exceeded worldwide sales of £500 million ($800 million) on its first day of release last September.
The game involves characters stealing cars and driving at excessive speeds to evade police cars, with extra points for knocking over innocent bystanders or committing other crimes.
Posted by solsticewitch13 at 9:24 AM
October 24, 2014 6:07 PM
Emmy award winning journalist Ted Scouten has been the familiar ...Read More
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South Florida Crime
Cooper City (CBSMiami) – The Broward State Attorney’s Office has filed criminal charges against a teacher at a prestigious private Muslim K-12 school for his alleged sexual abuse and rape of two middle school students.
According to a statement by the victims’ attorneys, Tariq Ahmed is charged with six felony counts – including five first degree counts – for sexual abuse of one or more students, following an investigation by the Pembroke Pines Police Department.
“There was significant sexual abuse, intercourse and other inappropriate behavior such that one of the students had to have substantial surgical repair of that (private) area. It’s horrific,” said attorney Scott Mager.
Ahmed was a middle and high school teacher at Nur-Ul-Islam Academy.
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The attorneys said Ahmed would use text message, social media and even code in the classroom to set up meetings.
“He would use the chalk board to arraign for times and places to meet victims after school,” said attorney Michael Dolce.
The investigation started in May when the rape survivors came forward to disclose what Ahmed allegedly did to them.
The students said the abuse began in 2007, but didn’t come forward until now after years of therapy.
The school’s board of directors put out a statement:
Recently, we have become aware of disturbing allegations regarding a former teacher of Nur-ul-Islam Academy, Inc. (the “Academy”). These allegations relate to alleged acts of the teacher 6 to 8 years ago, which did not occur on the school’s premise, concerning at least one former student of the Academy. Upon learning of these allegations, the Academy immediately suspended the teacher’s employment, barred him from any further contact with Academy students and has since terminated his employment with the Academy. Although none of the acts are alleged to have occurred on the Academy’s campus, such acts, if true, clearly violate the conduct policy of the Academy, along with being a gross dereliction of the high level of moral character the Academy expects from its faculty.The Academy’s primary concern is to foster a safe and caring environment for all of its students, in which they can flourish personally and academically. The Academy, therefore, has undertaken a full review of its policies to determine what, if anything, needs to be done to further ensure the safety of our students. In the spirit of Islamic teachings, we offer prayers for the well-being of all our students, current and former.
“The idea that they didn’t know about this is preposterous,” said Mager.
The attorneys allege Nur-Ul-Islam Academy officials knew of Ahmed’s illegal conduct for years and did nothing until now.
“They knew in 2008. What do they do? Absolutely nothing, expect accuse the kid of doing it. What do they do, they blame, they cover up, they don’t tell the parents,” Mager said.
Pembroke Pines Police are currently looking for Ahmed who allegedly fled the jurisdiction after he was made aware of his pending charges.
The attorneys for the two students are asking anyone who may have information as to where Ahmed might be to contact Pembroke Pines Police immediately.
Posted by solsticewitch13 at 9:21 AM
Iran News - Latest Updates and Breaking News from Iran | اخبار ايران
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Ms. Reyhaneh Jabbari, a decorator, was in prison for the past seven and a half years.
In a deceptive scheme, Morteza Abdulali Sarbandi, an agent of the Iranian regime's notorious Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) intended to abuse her. Reyhaneh was forced into defending herself by stabbing the agent.
The henchmen of the clerical regime placed Reyhaneh under savage tortures to extract forced confession.
Reyahneh's mother, Ms. Sholeh Pakravan was informed late on Friday that her daugther might be executed. She met with her dauther for one hour. Authorities at the prison refused to give any information to Reyhaneh's family about where she would be transferred for execution.
Finally, early morning on Saturday Reyhaneh was hanged as a nearly one hundred people including her mother and family friends were gathered outside Gohardasht prison in the city of Karaj.
Posted by solsticewitch13 at 9:15 AM
October 25, 2014
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Ikatan Guru Muslim Malaysia (IGMM) deputy president Mohd Azizee Hassan said that the Halloween celebration is inappropriate as it clashes with Malaysian culture and traditions.
Halloween has its origins in the ancient Celtic festival known as Samhain, and is celebrated every year on October 31, which is the eve of the Western Christian feast All Hallow’s Day or All Saints’ Day.
“I do not support such events because it could dilute the identities of the Muslim students in the said school,” Mohd Azizee was quoted saying in the Malay daily’s report today.
“Although the programme organisers have said that there are no religious elements in the event, it still shouldn’t be so heavily promoted as though we endorse such a festival.
Mohd Azizee also urged the state education department to look into the matter.
Right-wing Muslim group Ikatan Muslimin Malaysia (Isma) has also waded into the issue, urging the state authorities, including the Negeri Sembilan Islamic Religious Council (Mains), to monitor the event.
Sinar Harian Online cited Isma central committee member Mohd Hazizi Ab Rahman as saying that the Halloween event should be canned as it is not Islamic.
The daily also quoted him labelling the organisers bold for openly promoting the event in Bahasa Malaysia.
Malay rights groups like Isma and Perkasa have previously hit out at a number of events that they claimed could possibly ruin Malaysia’s image as an Islamic country and bring ruin to the nation.
One such event is the Oktoberfest beer festival, which was held at a shopping mall car park in Selangor.
Although the event was promoted to non-Muslims, the conservative Muslim groups urged their supporters to rally against the event and venues that serve alcohol as part of the festival.
Last Sunday, a young Malaysian Muslim invited flak when he organised the “I Want to Touch a Dog” event at the Central Park in Bandar Utama, an event he said was merely to offer Malay-Muslims here the opportunity to pet canines, an animal that many in the community regard as culturally taboo.
Muslim leaders from both sides of the political divide have since been up in arms over the event, claiming that it was deviant and could lead Muslims astray from the country’s accepted form of Sunni ideology.
There have since been allegations circulating online claiming that the organiser of the October 19 event, Syed Azmi Alhabshi, is Christian from a so-called Malay church based in Jalan Gasing in Petaling Jaya who was trying to convert Muslims.
Syed Azmi has received death threats for organising the event — which was approved by the Selangor Islamic Religious Council (MAIS), though the state body later claimed that the organisers had deviated from their proposed objective to enlighten and educate Muslims on the position of dogs in the faith.
Earlier today, Syed Azmi apologised over the furore caused by the event, saying he had not meant to hurt the sensitivities of his fellow Muslims.
Posted by solsticewitch13 at 9:12 AM