The Unbearable Lightness of Baroness Sayeeda Warsi

copyright-parsons-media-15th-febJuicy Ecumenism, By  (@AEHarrod)

“You are a sushi,” Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, the United Kingdom’s Minister for Faith and Communities, recounted friends describing her mixed Sunni-Shia Pakistani-Muslim ancestry during a November 15, 2013, Washington, DC, address.  Warsi’s delectable presentation of her Muslim heritage, however, was part of a junk food understanding of different belief systems having no irreconcilable differences hindering harmony, all past and present evidence notwithstanding.

“Conflict has taken many forms” throughout history, Warsi began her remarks at Georgetown University’s Alumni House.  Today, though, a “dangerous and rising phenomenon” of “religion turning on religion…is forming the fault lines.”  Among the “people…singled out and hounded out simply for…faith” globally were “Baha’is, Shias, Sunnis, and Alawites, Hindus, Sikhs, atheists—I could go on.”

Warsi, though, placed a “focus on a religion which is suffering particularly in the wake of changes to the Middle East.”  Christian “minority populations have co-existed with the [Muslim] majority for generations,” she claimed, but now they are “increasingly treated as outsiders.”  Religious oppressors “range from states to militant groups, and even to a person’s own family.”  The “countless causes” include “[t]urf wars, social unrest and corruption…[p]olitical transition, authoritarianism and terrorism.”  Thereby “faith is used as a proxy for other divisions.”  Somewhat contradicting her modern focus, Warsi noted that, “of course, this isn’t to say the persecution of religious minorities is new” but “is woven into the history of most of our faiths.”

In the United Kingdom, Warsi presented a counterexample of coexistence between vibrant faiths.  She “grew up practicing a minority religion, Islam, in a majority-Christian country” with a sense, to cite Hillary Clinton, that “one’s faith is unshakeable” irrespective of hostility.  Enrollment of her daughter, meanwhile, in a “Christian convent school didn’t make her less of a Muslim.”  Here she “adapted the Lord’s prayer and made it her own by ending it ameen, instead of amen.”  Warsi thus expressed opposition to a “worrying phenomenon” of “societies being told they needed to dilute their faith in order to accommodate others.”  In fact, Warsi had “called on Europe to become stronger and more confident in its Christianity” during a February 14, 2012, Vatican visit.

Internationally as well, Warsi called “freedom of religion and belief a key priority for the British government.”  Here Warsi called the Saudi Arabia-headquartered Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), a grouping of 57-Muslim-majority states (including “Palestine”) with some of the world’s worst religious freedom abusers, a “key partner in our quest to promote religious freedom.”  The OIC-supported United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) Resolution 16/18 also “lays the foundations for combating discrimination against people based on their religion.”

Lurking at home for Warsi, though, is the danger of “Islamophobia,” something that “had passed the dinner table test…it could be found in the most civilized of settings.”  Warsi likewise condemned in the United States “individuals like Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer denying the place of Muslims in society.”  Such “so-called patriots ignore the founding tenets of their nation, of freedom and equality.”

Warsi demanded to “expose those who seek to twist history, who are neither true to the roots of their faiths or the founding principles of their nations” such as Spencer and Geller. Warsi therefore reiterated President Barack Obama’s twisted politically correct history that “America’s founding father, Thomas Jefferson, over 200 years ago hosted an iftar at the White House and had a Quran on his bookshelf.”  Unmentioned by Obama or Warsi,President Jefferson merely shifted the usual afternoon dinner hour on December 9, 1805, to after sunset in order to accommodate a fasting Tunisian envoy, Sidi Soliman Mellimelli. Mellimelli was negotiating restitution for Tunisian vessels seized by the USS Constitution while running a blockade to the Barbary Pirates of Tripoli.  Their depredations against American merchantmen had caused Jefferson to acquire a Quran in order to better understand his Muslim enemies.

“Spain’s Islamic Golden Age was a period of harmony and progress,” Warsi similarly superficially asserted, invoking an oft-critiqued cliché in order to demonstrate that “history shows that it is possible for these religions to live together.”  “The fundamental tenets of the major faiths…are not intrinsically on some collision course.”  Reiterating a quotation in her Vatican address from Islam’s fourth caliph, Ali ibn Abu Talib, Warsi drew inspiration from “the teachings of Islam, which tell us your fellow man is your brother—either your brother in faith, or your brother in humanity.”

Yet all of Warsi’s examples of religious repression involve various Muslim oppressors, with the exception of Burma’s Muslim Rohingha population and “attacks against Christians” in “in some parts of India.”  The mass exodus of Jews from Arab countries following Israel’s establishment in 1948 also belies Warsi’s assertion of past coexistence between religious minorities and Muslim majorities.  Hardly any objective observer would share Warsi’s view that the “Arab Spring” manifested no Muslim “sectarian tension” but merely a “mutual desire for democracy, freedom, and equality.”  Warsi’s controversial claim of a “moderate Syrian opposition” with a “strong commitments to protecting minorities” has additionally failed to win public support around the world for intervention in Syria’s civil war.

Seemingly some examination of aggressive and authoritarian teachings of Islam such as sharia and militant jihad would be in order.  Appropriate as well would be explanation by Warsi concerning how her Shiite and Sunni relatives avoided conflict while these two branches of Islam have battled each other up to the present day.  Warsi would not lack for material on these issues; whole books have appeared on dhimmitude, for example, such as Mark Durie’s The Third Choice:  Islam, Dhimmitude, and Freedom and Bat Ye’or’s Islam and Dhimmitude:  Where Civilizations Collide.  Yet Warsi apparently denies any actual Islamic motive in the numerous international security issues that have vexed the world since Al Qaeda’s 9/11 attacks.  Islam merely serves as a “proxy” in the persecution of Christians in places like Nigeria, Pakistan, the Middle East, Muslim terrorist attacks, or the Islamic Republic of Iran’s nuclear weapons program.

Warsi’s behavior following her return to the United Kingdom suggests that her superficiality has not improved.  Her fellow peer, Lord Pearson, expressed on November 19 in the House of Lords his “fear that the dark side is moving strongly within Islam” and considered “part of Islam’s problem” that the Quran “commands the faithful to kill the unbelievers.”  Warsi responded with a West Wing segment criticizing various archaic Old Testament passages to argue that “[t]hese texts from the Old Testament could so easily be manipulated to cause mischief and indeed have been manipulated in the past.”

As Warsi’s bête noir Spencer noted at his website Jihadwatch, Warsi’s “argument is “extremely common and extremely disingenuous.”  While there are “armed jihad groups justifying violence by referring to the Qur’an and Sunnah all over the world,” both Judaism and Christianity distinguish between various forms of law in the Old Testament.  Judaism sees the religious laws of the Old Testament, in contrast to moral laws, as applicable only to Jews and has interpretations defining various brutal practices in the Old Testament as no longer applicable (see here and here).  Christianity, meanwhile, sees Old Testament religious law’s completion in Jesus Christ’s life (see here and here).

Warsi’s approval of UNHRC Resolution 16/18 indicates that she is not terribly interested in rebuttal.  The resolution references “derogatory stereotyping, negative profiling and stigmatization of persons based on their religion” and “denigration.”  Hidden behind such words is the OIC’s long term goal of criminalizing Islamic blasphemy, something even more evident in earlier OIC resolution drafts abandoned in the face of Western resistance.

Speaking on February 7 to the 2013 OIC summit in Cairo, Warsi evinced no opposition to this agenda.  Using the OIC’s favored propagandistic terminology, Warsi argued that the “OIC has for many years been concerned about the scourge of Islamophobia, or anti-Muslim hatred, and other hate speech.”  Warsi noted that “incitement to religious hatred remains an offence in Britain” under the Racial and Religious Hatred Act, such that speech like Quran burning is illegal.  Opposition to “Islamophobia” has similarly barred Geller and Spencer from entering the United Kingdom.

A Muslim version of Obama, Warsi believes that belief systems like religions are equivalent to ice cream flavors, tasting different but having the same basic ingredients.  Yet Islam’s core canonical teachings do indeed claim in various ways the propriety of using force in the name of faith.  Like the communist regimes discussed by Warsi, orthodox Muslims want “to remove all ideological opposition.”  Warsi’s assertion following her address that religious fanaticism comes from “not too much religion, but from too little” is thus hardly accurate.  Warsi’s support of “Gay rights,” meanwhile, risks infringing a religious “freedom to manifest…beliefs” as shown in the United States and the United Kingdom.

Bold Christian witness simply does not always bring forth a benign response from ideological competitors like Muslims and homosexuals.  Warsi apparently has forgotten what Christian confidence entailed in the Roman Empire.  Christians and others seeking to advocate conflicting ideas peacefully should remember this, Warsi’s well-meant but shallow appeals for interfaith harmony notwithstanding.

Thousands of bikers roar through Washington DC to protest Muslim 9/11 rally but police prevent angry clashes between the two

By RYAN GORMAN:

  • Thousands of bikers choked highways and local roads, but did not make it to the Muslim rally
  • Christian protestors shouted down MAMF at every turn
  • None of the movements turnouts matched their names, but the Muslims were significantly outnumbered

Bikers opposing a Muslim rally took over Washington DC Wednesday morning.

Thousands of motorcyclists roared into the nation’s capital for the Two Million Bikers rally – as the nation observed moments of silence to honor the victims of the 9/11 terror attacks – intent on drowning out an event originally titled the Million Muslim March.

The Million Muslim March changed its name to the Million American March Against Fear (MAMF), but that did not change the bikers’ minds.

Flags hang from bikes as motorcyclists gather to mark the 12th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks

Flags hang from bikes as motorcyclists gather to mark the 12th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks

Denied a police escort, the group took more than an hour to move through Washington DC

Denied a police escort, the group took more than an hour to move through Washington DC

Denied a police escort, the group took more than an hour to move through Washington DC

Denied a police escort, the group took more than an hour to move through Washington DC

Starting from a Harley Davidson store just outside the city at 11am, groups of 50 motorcycles made their way into the capital, according to the Washington Times.

Denied the necessary permits to have a police escort through traffic and stopping for traffic lights, the massive assembly took just over an hour to move out. Aerial footage showed bikers choking traffic on both highways and local roads.

The bikes rolled through the city for 50 minutes for heading to the Beltway.

Riders told the Washington Times they believed the denial was for political reasons.

‘We’re here for 9-11,’ national ride coordinator Belinda Bee told the paper. ‘We are going to have a peaceful ride… but there are people who are sick and tired of their rights and liberties being taken away.’

With no definitive route, the groups spun around the city, flying their flags and calling out tributes

With no definitive route, the groups spun around the city, flying their flags and calling out tributes

The event was designed to drown out another titled the Million Muslim March. Although this was later changed to Million American March Against Fear (MAMF), the bikers were undeterred

The event was designed to drown out another titled the Million Muslim March. Although this was later changed to Million American March Against Fear (MAMF), the bikers were undeterred

Their patriotic duty: Bikers ride on Constitution Avenue on the National Mall as they participate in the 2 Million Bikers to DC rally, many called it their patriotic duty

Their patriotic duty: Bikers ride on Constitution Avenue on the National Mall as they participate in the 2 Million Bikers to DC rally, many called it their patriotic duty

The thousands of participants roared through the city in their own tribute as the nation held minutes of silence

The thousands of participants roared through the city in their own tribute as the nation held minutes of silence

Authorities denied the accusations, noting that permits are not needed to rally in the capital.

‘This is a God event,’ a commenter said on the motorcycle rally’s Facebook page.

‘I believe America has been in a 12-year funeral. But I’m a Christian man and not a Muslim. I believe in the resurrection! God bless America!’ The commenter added.

Read more at Daily Mail with video

The Counter Jihad Report comment: I am proud to say that my husband took part in this ride. He has this to say:

Well the ride was a great success. I rode into DC from Springfield with a group of about 700 bikers. The main group rode in from Maryland and they numbered in the thousands. We had to split up once we got into DC because of traffic, stop lights, etc. But even that worked out fine as you had groups of 10 – 20 bikers buzzing in all different directions, through the District.  In my opinion, for our first ride which was organized in just two and half weeks by two kickass gals, Belinda Bee and Dana Gay, accomplished the objective of drawing attention and getting people to focus on 9/11 again.

In front of Kilroy's

In front of Kilroy’s

R. Burt

R. Burt

windshield banner

windshield banner

Greg Gutfeld on Fox’s “The Five” was irritated that the bikers bugged him on twitter to cover their ride. He said that they seemed to be more interested in publicity than remembering the victims of 9/11:

Yes, Greg Gutfeld, they did ride to honor the victims of 9/11. The reason they bugged you to cover it was to remind everyone else of who the real victims are. And we do not want the fact that Muslims committed this act of terror to be whitewashed by turning the memorial events into “a day of service” or penance for “Islamophobia”. The bikers were not seeking out the Muslim rally. They were just making their presence known and showing their patriotism.

Also see:

Bikers to Counter Million Muslim March on 9/11

2 million bikers to DCBy Bob Unruh:

Muslims who have begun promoting a 9/11 march in Washington that originally was to protest “anti-Islamic bigotry in the U.S.” and then turned into a “March Against Fear” may have some competition.

Loud competition. Very loud. And lots of it.

In what was a virtual impossibility before the Internet, a Facebook page has been created in which many individuals are coordinating what they have dubbed “2 Million Bikers to DC.”

At the Mr. Conservative blog, the author said: “The best way to counter bad speech is to oppose it with good speech. Sometimes ‘speech’ can be expressed simply by the number of people who are willing to show up to support a principle. That’s the view that hundreds of bikers (so far) across American have as they prepare to join a ’2 Million Biker Ride to DC’ to counter the planned Sept. 11 ‘Million Muslim March.’”

On the Facebook page, the community purpose is described as: “To honor those who were killed on 911 and our armed forces who fought those who precipitated this attack!”

More than 16,000 “likes” had been generated in just a short time.

“We have now created the final phase for states to coordinate! All riders need to look at the state list, choose your state and request to be added! Several states still need coordinators,” is included in the instructions.

Four dozen pages to coordinate delegations from individuals states already exist.

A Ronald Curaba said: “Who ever comments I would like to do this … should shut up and show up! Im a retired FDN Lt. I should be at my old firehouse where I was on that ill fated day …. but I will be in DC riding! God willing!”

1175033_570457703017080_1915577640_nAdded Bryan Short: “How appropriate. A million muslims surrounded by 2 million hogs!”

Organizers of the page added: “Folks, just wanted to say thank you for your support. This event has been a lot of work. But for our country it is worth it. As with any event such as this we are being attacked from every angle. But we will not allow those distractions to deter us from our goal nor the goal of the originator of this event Mr. Bill Williamson.”

“God Bless Ride Safe,” added Tammy Bowman.

“Ride on brothers,” said Bob Halley.

“Don’t forget ya’ll don’t need a bike to participate. Support vehicles will be needed. I suppose most of the U.S. will be there in spirit. Those of us who are lucky to still have employment still need to work their knickers off to survive these days. Perhaps red/white/blue boys can adorn people’s homes in support?” suggested Trish Zysk.

Options for those who cannot make the trek to D.C.?

“Organize a ride to your own state Capitol! Get with like-mined folks and get started planning! Someone take a lead in your state and get the event in motion.”

Also, get with your ‘Impeach Obama Overpass’ organization.

“Whatever you decide please do something to support America on 911!”

Read more at WND with video

Pakistan Running Influence Operations in the U.S.

Ghulam Nabi Fai

Ghulam Nabi Fai

BY RYAN MAURO:

You can say that the Russians, Saudis and Chinese run influence operations in the U.S. You can also say it about Pakistan—but if you [say] it about the Muslim Brotherhood, then you’re an “Islamophobe.” The nonsense of this is illuminated when you look at Pakistan’s massive influence campaign; a campaign that grew out of the Muslim Brotherhood’s own campaign and remains intertwined with it.

The Pakistani press recently erupted when author Ayesha Siddiqa tweeted that a Pakistani diplomat told her in 2007 that the Pakistani ISI intelligence service had “finally” infiltrated think-tanks in Washington D.C. to influence U.S. policy.

One of the errors the ISI was making, according to Siddiqa, is that its agents lacked doctorates and credentials to compete with Indians. As evidence of the campaign’s success, she pointed to Moeed Yusuf, an expert on Pakistan at the U.S.Institute of Peace and Arif Rafique, adjunct scholar at the Middle East Institute.

Another Pakistani pointed out by the Times of India is Shuja Nawaz, the director of the Atlantic Council’s South Asia Center. His brother is a former chief of the Pakistani army.

The Times of India buttresses Siddiqa’s claim, observing the “perceptible increase in Pakistani experts in U.S. think tanks and universities over the past decade.” The experts include several former Pakistani diplomats. The Pakistani consulate is also helping to raise money for the Charlie Wilson Chair in Pakistan Studies at the University of Texas in Austin.

The Pakistani government is spending a fortune on lobbyists and is deploying the ISI to influence U.S. policy and public opinion. Siddiqa’s report is just a reiteration of what is already known.

The smoking gun is the case of Ghulam Nabi Fai, leader of the Kashmiri-American Council, as best detailed by Patrick Poole. Fai was also secretly directing the Justice Foundation Kashmir Centre in the United Kingdom and the Kashmir Centre-European Union in Brussels, Belgium.

Read more at The Clarion Project

 

 

Broken Immigration System Allowed Boston Bombers into US

Legacy_INS_-_Front__78327.1281402469.1280.1280Act For America:

They shouldn’t have even been here. Michael Cutler, a 30 year veteran of the Immigration and Naturalization Service explains the broken immigration system that failed to scrutinize the Boston Terror Attack suspects’ student visas and citizenship applications. Michael Cutler will be a featured speaker at ACT! for America’s National Conference & Legislative Briefing held June 19-21 in Washington DC.

Egyptian scholar: US pushing for Brotherhood victory

OBy David Reaboi:

Middle East analyst Walid Phares sends along the translation of an Arabic aricle in el Watan, in which Egyptian scholar Ahmad Abed Rabbo has some provocative comments:

An el Watan article reported that US ambassador to Egypt Ann Paterson is meeting all political parties in Egypt to convince them to accept the coming legislative elections rushed by the Muslim Brotherhood. Ahmad Abed Rabbo, an Egyptian scholar said the US wants the Brotherhood to win the coming elections. They want to consolidate the Ikhwan’s rule

ومن جانبه، اعتبر أستاذ العلوم السياسية الدكتور أحمد عبدربه، أن اللقاءات التي تجريها السفيرة الأمريكية نوعا من جمع المعلومات من ناحية ومن ناحية أخرى فهم كافة الأطراف السياسية. وأضاف أنه من صالح الولايات المتحدة إجراء الانتخابات البرلمانية وعدم المقاطعة لأنها تراهن على دعم نظام الإخوان لأخرة قطرة ونجاحه في العملية الديمقراطية.

An observer in Washington DC said “the Obama Administration is pressuring the seculars in Egypt to accept the early elections as devised by Morsi, so that the Brotherhood would win them. The Administration is now meddling in Egyptian politics on the side of the Islamists, using its political influence, its foriegn aid and the fact that there is no one in Washington opposing the Administration in its pro-Ikhwan stance, so far.”

The Obama administration’s view of the Middle East can certainly be considered pro-Muslim Brotherhood– and it hasn’t been the first time Egyptians themselves have noticed. Maybe the New York Times will, once again, blame Frank Gaffney for anti-Obama sentiment by Copts and moderate Muslims in Egypt.

Barry Rubin this week wrote the must-read piece on how their view of the region (and of potential ‘moderation’ of Islamist forces more generally) couldn’t be more disastrously wrong. He points out that, in order to arrive at the conclusion that Islamist groups will moderate once they’ve taken hold of the levers of power,  the administration– from the president to highly influential advisers like John Brennan– have had to ignore the most crucial facts about these groups:

Here is an important principle in studying the politics of this contemporary era: violence (including terrorism) is not the main measure of radicalism. Instead, the way to judge the extremism of a group is the organization’s ideology, goals, and seriousness in seeking total victory. Strategic and tactical flexibility should be taken into account, but do not mitigate the threat posed by the objective toward which any political force is striving.

Must-See Videos from the ‘Investigate Al Jazeera Now’ National Press Conference

imagesCA9KZ10GWalid Shoebat:

Some might remember a letter sent by Cliff Kincaid of America’s Survival to the new House Homeland Security Committee chairman, Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX), demanding an investigation into the sale of CURRENT TV to Al-Jazeera by Al Gore and his partners. Walid was also a signatory to that letter. McCaul failed to respond to the letter prior to the Investigate Al Jazeera Now Press Conference, held at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. on February 5th.

Here are videos of speakers at the event – Kincaid, Pamela Geller, and Jerry Kenney: