Talk about Newsnight

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Monday, 11 June, 2007

  • Newsnight
  • 11 Jun 07, 05:53 PM

By Kavita Puri, programme producer

Newsnight exclusive
We have an incredible interview with the former wife of a British Muslim extremist. She tells us how her husband tried to persuade her to carry out a suicide attack in the UK. She explains in detail how her husband showed her how to wear an explosive belt. We'll be discussing how such extremism can be tackled. Read more and watch a preview of the interview here.

Gordon Brown in IraqIraq Inquiry
The Conservatives are calling for a full inquiry into the war in Iraq. Gordon Brown, visiting Baghdad today, said it would be wrong to hold an inquiry now while British troops are still serving in Iraq. We'll be debating the issue.

Iranian Influence in Afghanistan
A high tech "shaped" bomb has been found in Kabul today. These are similar to the ones used in Iraq against Allied vehicles, and the military say could come from Iran. Alastair Leithead reports from Afghanistan on the extent of Iran's influence in the country.

Dog Eat Dog World
How many dogs should you be allowed to walk on the pavement at one time? Kensington and Chelsea have issued a by-law saying no more than two. That's just barking mad say some residents. We visit some of the richest streets in the country and meet Tory activists who are furious at the dogmatic approach taken by their Conservative council.

Comments  Post your comment

  • 1.
  • At 06:13 PM on 11 Jun 2007,
  • Mike Speason wrote:

Looks like a great night for the propaganda. I'll have my popcorn ready.

  • 2.
  • At 07:41 PM on 11 Jun 2007,
  • Maurice - Northumberland wrote:

Before the Interview with the wife of the so-called Muslim Extremist - please explain in light of the contents of the Koran (any Koran translation) and:-

Tell us what is an extremist and a so-called Moderate.
Due to the content of the Koran I cannot identify any differences, assuming all Muslims live their lives in-line with the teachings of the 'Perfect Book'. their objectives must remain the same, so there are no differences!

  • 3.
  • At 08:12 PM on 11 Jun 2007,
  • H Roth wrote:

Congratulations to Kensington Council on their decision to limit the number of dogs permitted to walk together.

I can never understand why the dog licence was rescinded. Surely most dog owners could afford to pay, say £25 per year per pet to help with the cost of cleaning up dog-soiled streets.

  • 4.
  • At 09:26 PM on 11 Jun 2007,
  • judith wrote:

once again dog owners are in trouble.surly they all shouldn't be branded the same catch the once who don't clear up after there dogs and also the people who throw litter and food on our streets and may be a few more dog bins would help.sure a dog licence may help but are you going to licence people as well

  • 5.
  • At 09:29 PM on 11 Jun 2007,
  • judith wrote:

once again dog owners are in trouble.surly they all shouldn't be branded the same catch the once who don't clear up after there dogs and also the people who throw litter and food on our streets and may be a few more dog bins would help.sure a dog licence may help but are you going to licence people as well

  • 6.
  • At 09:50 PM on 11 Jun 2007,
  • Mahmud Ibrahim wrote:

Mike Speason - 1,

You are damn right!
Just more and more propaganda.

What baffles me is why didn't this 'former wife' report this to the Police at the time as a matter of urgency since lives were at risk - and why now?

I suspect this may be being 'stage-managed' to demonise Muslims even further.

Just see the response from pro-Israeli Zionist zealots like Maurice - Northumberland - 2 above, leads credence to my suspicion.

  • 7.
  • At 10:26 PM on 11 Jun 2007,
  • Law Abiding wrote:

If this womans story about her extremist husband is true she has committed a criminal offence outlined in the Terrorism Act 2000 Section 19 by not disclosing the information in timely manner -

While the BBC have said they did report it to the police, and no charges have yet been brought, the reporting of the story if true might endanger any future prosecution.

This is of course predicated on the story being true, which given that there have been no charges, or it seems even a warrent issued for the arrest of this woman would suggest this story is false, and if false then I hope the woman is charged with wasting police time and making false statements.

  • 8.
  • At 10:44 PM on 11 Jun 2007,
  • Jon wrote:

Nick griffin from the BNP ended up in court for warning the british about islamic extremism well before 7/7 and 9/11, I have just watched the interview with the extremists wife and she said that her husband wants all whites kicked out of Britain. UNBELIEVABLE!

  • 9.
  • At 11:04 PM on 11 Jun 2007,
  • Charles E. Munroe wrote:

"A high tech "shaped" bomb" discovered in 1888-

see also -

And of course no evidence other than that word of some talking heads exists that Persian Shia Iran is helping Arab Sunni Al Qaeda, and all the evidence that Iran, like Saddams Iraq is dead set against AQ, even more so as there have been Sunni extremist bomb attacks inside Iran.

  • 10.
  • At 11:52 PM on 11 Jun 2007,
  • Maurice - Northumberland wrote:

How Mahmud can Muslims be demonised by what you describe as Propaganda when it is in fact the truth?
The Koranic Islamic Structure surely does that on it's own, without any help from any infidel from anywhere.
Which translation do you personally prefer?
e.g. Sura 3:151
"We will put terror into the hearts of the unbelievers. They serve other deities besides God for whom He has revealed no sanction. The fire shall be their home; evil indeed is the dwelling of the evil doers." (Dawood).

"We will cast into the hearts of the unbelievers terror, for that they have associated with God that for which He send down never authority; their lodging shall be the Fire; evil is the lodging of the evildoers." (Arberry)

" We shall cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve because they ascribe unto Allah partners, for which no warrant hath been revealed. Their habitation is the Fire, and hapless the abode of the wrong-doers." (Pickthall)

Sura 2:216
"Fighting is obligatory for you, much as you dislike it. But you may hate a thing although it is good for you, and love a thing although it is bad for you. God knows, but you know not." (Dawood)

"Prescribed for you is fighting, though it be hateful to you. Yet it may happen that you will hate a thing which is better for you; and it may happen that you will love a thing which is worse for you; God knows, and you know not." (Arberry)

"Warfare is ordained for you, though it is hateful unto you; but it may happen that ye hate a thing which is good for you, and it may happen that ye love a thing which is bad for you. Allah knoweth, ye know not." (Pickthall)

Or, are all wrong - if so which versus are wrong?
Which versus are ignored by Muslims?
Which parts of the Koran are not followed by some Muslims?
What makes a good Muslim in the words of the Koran?

Whilst you make silly remarks in the eyes of None Believers, I ask questions, such as above and 'which none Muslim Country with large numbers of Muslims does NOT have problems/troubles with Muslims'?

  • 11.
  • At 12:06 AM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Lionel Tiger wrote:

The fascism, flawed political ideology and genocide aside, the Nazi's knew how to fight a war and win. With modern technology, the battlefield has forgotten the basics of battle. Question : How do you deal with an enemy that lays mines and lies to it's citizens with propaganda ?
Answer : Avoid the perilous traps the enemy lays and prove the errors of the enemy by catching them in the act for the world to see.
Solution : Build military watchtowers to prevent the enemy from laying mines, and to secure the area, providing security. These should resemble German Flaktowers. This will also catch who is laying the mines, with yet more undeniable reason to take action against a dangerous regime. It is still uncertain at the moment as to the perpetrators of the advanced equipment being used.
Solution 2 : Provide better technology to avoid tanks from being blown up by advanced mines. Do this by putting inexpensive metal wheels in front of the tanks, so the mines are blown up in front of the tanks instead of under them. When your enemy adapts, so do you. The military R&D development budgets presumably go somewhere. Has the human race learnt anything from history ?
The watchtowers built by the Nazi's are still there now. Now that's German engineering. Afghanistan an Iraq need the security of Flaktowers.

I thought the ex-wife of the extremist was incredibly brave for coming forward - excellent report from Richard Watson. Brilliant interview by Jeremy (21/10) with Ed Husain (a former extremist, now reformed) pointed out, that it took him 6 years to come out of the cult, and another extremist who'd been indoctrinating others for years until he left the organisation who was stabbed and now living in fear, and called for support groups to be formed. If anything, this programme should help bring others out and stop terrorism in its tracks. Loved the dog report by Madeline Holt – good on her for re-uniting a family (the family of 3 dogs had been torn apart because of a new by-law which forbade taking more than 2 dogs out at a time). Also loved the poem by Michael Rosen about the bagels in the socks :-)

Also wanted to add that, referring to Law Abiding's point above, the section states:

"Disclosure of information: duty. 19. - (1) This section applies where a person-

(a) believes or suspects that another person has committed an offence under any of sections 15 to 18, and
(b) bases his belief or suspicion on information which comes to his attention in the course of a trade, profession, business or employment.
(2) The person commits an offence if he does not disclose to a constable as soon as is reasonably practicable-

(a) his belief or suspicion, and
(b) the information on which it is based."

The term "reasonably practicable" does not stipulate a time limit. We do not know what the poor woman had to go through to get a divorce and to come out of her community to speak out.

  • 14.
  • At 01:24 AM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Law Abiding wrote:

Re: Mistress76uk post

Do you think a terrorist is going to allow his wife to divorce him and spill the beans a few years later? Rule 1 of terrorism is information secrecy and security. This "poor woman" if her story is true could have stopped 52 murders on the Tube, and divorce is no excuse in the eyes of the law, I am informed from a family member in the Judiciary that about the only mitigation for not reporting this for several years would be physical or mental incapacity to do so e.g. a coma or kidnapping. As I said if true, if on the other hand it's Black Propaganda, like WMD in Iraq, the "Ricin Plot", Iraq/Iran helping Al Qaeda or any of the other myriad of fabrications peddled by "The Establishment" aka UK Governmant, media etc. then you've just been duped.

  • 15.
  • At 03:50 AM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • ronnie shakespeare wrote:

I have worked with muslims for over 20 years,I have one close muslim frend who is not extremist we get on very well,I am not a muslim,I am a christian, while working with muslims in 1991 when the gulf war was on sadam hussain was calling all muslims in england to start holy war this was on tv I was manger of snooker club it was allways full of muslims a muslim owned it,some of the muslims wanted to do what sadam husssain wanted, at the time one muslim who i worked with with told me we will take this country over even if it takes us 50 years when we are 50% we will kill everybody who will no convert to Islam we will out breed you, flood your country with heroin to make it cheap to destroy young people we will bomb you.

I said to him what gives you the right to come to my country to do this he said it was not my country it was Gods country and we are Gods people thats what gives us the right.
once one muslim wanted to kill me because i would not convert to islam telling his frends working them up to do it my close muslim frend stoped it.

I hope there are more moderate muslims then extremist muslims i seem to see more extremist muslims then moderate muslims.

I hope Iran don,t make NUCLEAR BOMBS because we will lose this war on terror.

  • 16.
  • At 08:59 AM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Adrienne wrote:

'Maurice - Northumberland': You scepticaly ask how it can be so, but what is the truth here? Are *you* absolutely sure of your translations?

I remind you that it is well known from mathematical logic and Philosophy of Language that translation is treacherous and indeterminate. Jihad can mean struggle, i.e. battling or fighting jahiliyya or pre-enlightened ignorance (which can mean self-struggle, fighting the devil within, i.e. temptation, impulsivity/lack of self-control, i.e. sin.

It can also, understandably, mean fighting those who imperlialistically inflict any of the above upon you and your people. All relgions preach this.

The Soviets felt much the same way. They still do in fact:

Is there not more to all this than meets the eye? Or are Mr Paxman and his Newsnight team (and guests) omniscient?

  • 17.
  • At 10:40 AM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Alan C wrote:

The story about the Jihadist’s wife shouldn’t surprise anyone. It is only surprising because evidence of this type has been suppressed or downplayed by the media. Ed Hussein mentioned a brave Muslim who was stabbed and now lives in fear because he blew the whistle on this kind of activity. Hussein said that the press was silent on this incident. Press silence arises out of a misguided fear of stoking an imaginary pathology known as “Islamophobia”. This fear was clearly demonstrated by the Newsnight panellists when everyone made a song and dance of declaring that ‘not all Muslims are terrorists’ (Duh).

For people like Mahmud Ibrahim ( #6 ) who seem to be ‘baffled’ by this I would say that this problem is not new, and it is serious and deep. This nihilistic mindset is a worldwide phenomenon and it is not just men who harbour these sentiments (see story about Canadian Jihadists below).

Congratulations to Newsnight on this story, and I am so glad to see Ed Hussein on the panel instead of that silver-tongued Islamist Inayat Bunglawala. Like the Jihadist in the story, Bunglawala also longs for an Islamic Caliphate in Britain but by ‘peaceful’ means. Again, the misguided fears of the media have compelled them to give an almost permanent platform to Bunglawala. More Ed Hussein please, less Bunglawala.

From the Canadian June 29th 2006

An excerpt from this story:

‘When it came time to write up the premarital agreement between Zakaria Amara and Nada Farooq, Ms. Farooq briefly considered adding a clause that would allow her to ask for a divorce. She said that Mr. Amara (now accused of being a leader of the alleged terror plot that led to the arrests of 17 Muslim men early this month) had to aspire to take part in jihad. "[And] if he ever refuses a clear opportunity to leave for jihad, then i want the choice of divorce," she wrote in one of more than 6,000 Internet postings uncovered by The Globe and Mail.’

  • 18.
  • At 10:45 AM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Maurice - Northumberland wrote:

"Am I sure of my translations"?
They aren't 'My Translations'!
They are the accepted translations to English. Picktall one was recommended by a Muslim.

On this thread I have provide web links - please access them, then come back!

The Religion of Peace web site I have accessed since 9/11 atleast once a week - in an effort to get a handle on what 9/11 was all about.
Since when of course many more incidents have occured as to what Islam is about today, let alone 1300 years ago.
1300 years ago all the way to today nothing has changed, the objectives and Koranic obligations have not changed, merely the methods in establishing an Islamic World.
These might also help you deal with the reality and not that presented by the likes of Ed Husain:-

I have obviously come to my own conclusions, and deny no one the right to come to their's, if it differs they should be able to explain why.
If anyone can show anywhere, any how Islam and the rest are compatable - then go ahead, with supporting references.

  • 19.
  • At 11:19 AM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Louis Cabrera wrote:

The Religion of Peace web site I have accessed since 9/11 atleast once a week - in an effort to get a handle on what 9/11 was all about.

Try looking at US (and UK) foreign policy over the past century, and you might start to come up with some answers. The double-crossing of the Palestinians after WWII, The imposing of The Shah (overthrowing the democratically elected Mossadegh, The US bases in Saudi - the Muslim holyland and the support for it's anti-islamic regime, sanctions imposed on Iraq (coupled with a steady bombing campaign) and so on.
All this creates an attitude of anti-Americanism, culminating in 9/11

  • 20.
  • At 11:28 AM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Louis Cabrera wrote:

Furthermore, I don't think that you couls classify the coke-snorting, pork-eating, prostitute-visiting perpetraitors of 9/11 as muslim fundamentalists - that might be the spin, but their actions, no to mention their daily lives, were anything but adhering to The Koran.

  • 21.
  • At 11:42 AM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Louis Cabrera wrote:

My original comment wasn't posted, for some reason. I'll try again.

'The Religion of Peace web site I have accessed since 9/11 atleast once a week - in an effort to get a handle on what 9/11 was all about.'

Try having a look at US (and UK) policies in the middle east over the past century and you might start to have an answer - the double-crossing of the Palestians after WWI and WWII, the huge military bases in Saudi (the holyland) and unequivical support for it;s anti-islam regime, the overtrowing of the democratically elected and hugely popular Mossadegh in favour of the dictator Sha, The sanctions imposed on Iraq for ten years coupled with a sready bombing campaign.

All the above, amongst other policies, helped create a fervant anti-US feeling, which just possibly led to the attacks of 9/11.

  • 22.
  • At 11:51 AM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Maurice - Northumberland wrote:

"19. At 11:28 AM on 12 Jun 2007, Louis Cabrera wrote:
Furthermore, I don't think that you couls classify the coke-snorting, pork-eating, prostitute-visiting perpetraitors of 9/11 as muslim fundamentalists - that might be the spin, but their actions, no to mention their daily lives, were anything but adhering to The Koran"

But, the results can!
And here are the opt-outs to achieve the Koranic aims:-

  • 23.
  • At 11:58 AM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Abu Muthana wrote:

Funny that nobody has thought that its a woman scorned by her husband and has just thought of a way to get back at him?

Sometimes the answers are looking you right in the eye, you just cant see them.

  • 24.
  • At 12:24 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Adrienne wrote:

'Maurice - Northumberland': OK, I've had a look.

My longer comment (posted before the one that you responded to, hasn't, been published by the moderator(s) yet. I hope they publish it. I think it provides a wider context for the battle between the pro and anti-Israel lobbies (both here and across the pond).,,2099045,00.html

I've seen other sites like the ones you list. Some of no doubt set up by Zionists (some amateur, some professional). The idea presumably being to vilify Muslims in the eyes of the West and so solicit public support for the Israeli (and US?) crusade against the Palestinians in the Middle East which also vilifies the axis of 'Stalinist' evil (Russia, 'Borat's CIS', China, Iran, N Korea etc) who don't take to the export of McJobs and 'liberal democracy'?

I'm just recommending a little healthy scepticism, all things considered.

Trivers is a good scientist. Be sure to see the comments off some of the links above.

For a lighter side of this, maybe the 6 episodes of "The IT Crowd" should be made prescribed viewing for Zionists and their more butch opponents ;-) ?

  • 25.
  • At 12:49 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • S Madge wrote:

The sherrif of nottingham (Gordon Brown)does it again, sow the seed
a little spin and the masses will get sucked in, mainly because he thinks they are thick.He has just made a statement with better intelligents maybe we should not have entered Iraq, trying to distance himself from the events that took place, making Blair look the villian, Sorry Gordon it does,nt work,you are guilty as hell mainly for the fact that you taxed everyone to the hilt to fund this venture.So do'nt shy away Gordon be proud of what you have achieved and don't let Blair take all the blame.

  • 26.
  • At 01:40 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Maurice - Northumberland wrote:

Louis Cabrera wrote:-
"Try having a look at US (and UK) policies in the middle east over the past century and you might start to have an answer - the double-crossing of the Palestians after WWI and WWII, the huge military bases in Saudi (the holyland) and unequivical support for it;s anti-islam regime, the overtrowing of the democratically elected and hugely popular Mossadegh in favour of the dictator Sha, The sanctions imposed on Iraq for ten years coupled with a sready bombing campaign.

All the above, amongst other policies, helped create a fervant anti-US feeling, which just possibly led to the attacks of 9/11."

What caused:-

Nothing has changed has it - nor will it!
Qur'an:9:88 "The Messenger and those who believe with him, strive hard and fight with their wealth and lives in Allah's Cause."

Qur'an:9:5 "Fight and kill the disbelievers wherever you find them, take them captive, harass them, lie in wait and ambush them using every stratagem of war."

Qur'an:9:112 "The Believers fight in Allah's Cause, they slay and are slain, kill and are killed."

Qur'an:9:29 "Fight those who do not believe until they all surrender, paying the protective tax in submission."

Ishaq:325 "Muslims, fight in Allah's Cause. Stand firm and you will prosper. Help the Prophet, obey him, give him your allegiance, and your religion will be victorious."

Qur'an:8:39 "Fight them until all opposition ends and all submit to Allah."

Qur'an:8:39 "So fight them until there is no more Fitnah (disbelief [non-Muslims]) and all submit to the religion of Allah alone (in the whole world)."

Ishaq:324 "He said, ‘Fight them so that there is no more rebellion, and religion, all of it, is for Allah only. Allah must have no rivals.'"

Qur'an:9:14 "Fight them and Allah will punish them by your hands, lay them low, and cover them with shame. He will help you over them."

Ishaq:300 "I am fighting in Allah's service. This is piety and a good deed. In Allah's war I do not fear as others should. For this fighting is righteous, true, and good."

Ishaq:587 "Our onslaught will not be a weak faltering affair. We shall fight as long as we live. We will fight until you turn to Islam, humbly seeking refuge. We will fight not caring whom we meet. We will fight whether we destroy ancient holdings or newly gotten gains. We have mutilated every opponent. We have driven them violently before us at the command of Allah and Islam. We will fight until our religion is established. And we will plunder them, for they must suffer disgrace."

And as anyone knows - there is very much more!

ADREINNE, if you like video's you should try this:-
it is better than the student academic stuff you pointed me to!
As for the Religion Of Peace web site being setup by whoever, it is irrelevent who set it up. All down the right hand side are current News Reports from the Worlds media.
Then for some reason you brought Israel into the equation, so this might also help you:-

When you say you have looked at the links, for how long? Try Masada again, pick holes in it.

  • 27.
  • At 01:45 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Alfie wrote:

With regards to the woman who braved the frosty conditions of this supposed hell of a marriage i wonder if she has any proof of these accusations? I mean if this had been going on for years then its a wonder nobody else noticed?

And in line with what was written before this makes her guilty of knowing and not doing anything about it and only now when there is money to be made she decides to come foward.

  • 28.
  • At 02:43 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Mr Wallace wrote:

Did my original post jump right over the framework of exceptability? hence its ommision, was my Steven Hawkings joke really that shocking?

The question should not be about how we help Muslims to expose Islamic extremist in their families or community and avert potential terrorist attacks, the question is why we have allowed a medieval religion, culture and its followers to flourish in a western modern democracy in the first place, i am still waiting for that question to be asked, i will be waiting some time more because to ask that kind of question implies that the political left may have sold the public a pup and its grown big and vicious and we don't know what to do with i, woof woof, get down shep, your scaring me...
Thanks to the enlightenment, the emergence of the sciences some centuries ago, Christianity has become a benign force and for many is no longer relevant(except for the southern Christian belt of the USA ).We have matured and grown up; sadly Islam is stuck with it's indoctrinated religion not unlike 13th century Europe and its presence here is becoming troublesome. Not a week goes by without newsnight mentionioning the words, Islam, muslims, terrorism and all the othe words associated with this carpet munching religion. Why are we so afraid to critizise this religion and its inherently flawed culture of the covering of women and the barbaric stoning of women, and all in the name of religion? well i suppose we remember the book burnings and ranting bullying behaviour of the immams and clerics who grace our TV screens, quite often shown on newsnight as well as all the other news outlets ,it leaves us cold and wondering what to do with it. I think its time to stop tinkering around the edges of this problem don't you and having a real debate about the ramifacations of its presence in this country, Europe and beyond...

good to see Patrick Mercer in the discussion on this subject, a thoroughly decent chap who lost his front bench job in the Camoron project for calling a spade a spade, no pun intended...

  • 29.
  • At 03:01 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Adrienne wrote:

I'll try again:

Deception and self-deception is all part of kin protection and group competition, at root it's genetic. It doesn't require the participants to be conscious of what they are doing which is why it's worth listening to Skinner more than Chomsky (or even Trivers).

Listen to Skinner (and Quine here, especially 'On Having A Poem' as it was his criticism of Chomsky):

The 'Muslim belt-bomber wife' piece and the high tech 'shaped charge' pieces came across as a little naive last night I thought (or was it all tongue in cheek meant for the cognoscenti?). The in-car 'deep throat' interview of an anonymous Muslim woman, Richard Watson's phone call theatrics, and the po-faced panel's earnest discussion afterwards all came across as propaganda regardless of the truth of the matter. What was missing was any hint of healthy scepticism from anyone. The Newsnight team has frequently taken the moral high ground viz anti-semitism and never a thought is given to whether it could all just be Mossad, MI5 or CIA black propaganda (they will all recruit Muslims of course - just think about Osama Bin Laden and friends fighting the Soviets in the 80s with CIA backing).

Or perhaps it's just a group of enthusiastic 'Friends of Israel' from North London worried that rrecent events might take our eyes off the 'war on terror', or make us focus on their antics on the West Bank and Gaza etc? If the Newsnight team really wants us to believe they're a balanced groups of journalists (especially after Mr Paxman's jibe at the end of the programme last night), perhaps they should try a little more healthy scepticism? Or did I miss it?

What were all the pictures of shaped charges for? It's not clever technology, as all advanced counties make and sell them. We do, the Americans do, the Israelis do, the Russians do, so why can't Iran? Where's the balanced reporting? We were ferrying US cluster munitions to Israel from the USA last year whilst sending Tony Blair and his envoy Lord Levy as mediators to the Middle East.

How about critically reviewing like this in Newsnight's book review for a sense of balance?
Perhaps see comments #126 onwards for one take on why things may be getting so bad.

Finally, advice to Mr Blair and his backers: "Those who live by the sword, die by the sword"?:

  • 30.
  • At 03:08 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • keith fleming wrote:


It would, of course, be easy to pick choice passages from the Old and New Testament to indict Judaism and Christianity in much the same way (easy targets tend to include Exodus and Leviticus, and also Revelations).

Naturally, then, it could be said to be unfair to assume that the adherents of a given religion ought to be judged solely on excerpts from their holy books, rather than on their day-to-day behaviour.

(And my thanks to Louis Carbrera, above, for pointing out that one can't really state that the 7/7 bombers seem to have been particularly devout Muslims themselves, given their supposed proclivities).

Might we rather look at the many, many thousands of perfectly decent, law-abiding, hard-working Muslims abiding in this country and others as evidence of what might constitute a Moderate Muslim?

(Of course, there's something to be said here about *all* religious faiths - myself a militant athiest, I'd rather see all such claptrap rejected forthwith, but let's not get in to that here. If anyone *does* want to get involved in that issue, try here for some forthright 'discussion' that paints us here on the regular Newsnight forum as temperate in the extreme:

We're talking about a complicated issue here (stating the obvious, I suppose) and reducing a geo-political/religious/economic,etc complex through a single lens does little to advance understanding. Unless, of course, that is your intention...



  • 31.
  • At 03:28 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Adrienne wrote:


Have you considered whether the seclular West might be in terminal decline in more ways than one, and that Islam (like the USSR) is trying to a) protect itself and b) help us mend our 'wicked' ways?

Just as an exercise, try taking a few leaves out of the academics' books (if only as counterfactuals). How much do you think is spent on intelligence and counter-intelligence? Read the PNAC document. What did the authors plan to control?

Of course it matters who creates the sites. What's presented assumes that one accepts what's shown as accurate and representative. It works on the logic that IF x is so THEN y so so. But the problem is one of affirming the antecedent. Read the Trivers interview. We all believe what we believe, the key thing to see is that belief is intensional, it is radically unsound, as it resists reliable logical quantification (i.e. with operators like ALL and SOME).

That's why propaganda works. Listen to Pinter's Nobel lecture, and Kahneman's.

  • 32.
  • At 03:41 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Neil Rose wrote:

To Peter Barron,

The Newsnight programme this evening, Monday 11th June, was so excruciatingly biased and filled with propaganda that I am writing to convey to you my dissatisfaction with the reporting in three of reports in tonight’s programme.

Firstly, you show a report from Richard Watson who interviewed a Muslim woman who spoke about her husband’s attempts to encourage her to become a suicide bomber. Whilst the veracity of her claims cannot be easily tested, and certainly the cross referencing from British intelligence should carry little weight these days, one assumes we are indeed dealing with a brave individual in a difficult position. After Richard Watson’s rather melodramatic phone call to British intelligence to report his findings, you then moved to a studio debate where there was no discussion regarding the background and reasons for alleged Muslim extremism generally and in the UK specifically. This was a one-sided debate which covered no background issues regarding UK or US foreign policy, or the attacks that many Muslims encounter on a daily basis as a source of outrage and frustration. I am not fooled for one minute by the standard words about the majority of Muslims not being terrorists from the studio panel. This report was biased and one-sided and worked to demonise the Muslim community. I can only conclude that this was your intention and it was, in the current climate, quite a disgraceful performance.

The next report moved directly to Iraq. It is certainly an adept piece of journalism to run through an entire report about Iraq portraying the UK role in the human catastrophe there as an unfortunate mistake, whilst managing not to mention the extent of the Iraqi civilian graveyard resulting from the decision to invade the country in 2003. With this carnage of Iraqi civilians a daily fact of life, your news anchor, Jeremy Paxman, tackled William Hague on the calls for an enquiry into the decisions that led to the invasion. And the key issue was not even mistakes that have led to the carnage of Iraqi civilians, now estimated to be over a million, but rather how an investigation into alleged mistakes would affect the morale of British troops. I found this concern, in the light of the utter human catastrophe for which the UK is responsible to be immoral and offensive. How dare the BBC overlook the devastation wrought upon Iraqi society by the UK and attend your concern to the morale of our troops. I consider any report on Iraq by the BBC that does not always clearly state the estimated numbers killed since the invasion in 2003 to be continuing to act as a media accomplice to an enormous war crime which in any sane world would see high government and military officers of the US and UK governments brought before the ICC for prosecution. There is absolutely no mitigation or excuses for these oversights.

Jeremy Paxman then failed to challenge William Hague when he stated he agreed with the decision to invade Iraq, an invasion that the former UN secretary general, Kofi Annan, has said was illegal. Paxman further failed to challenge Hague over his statement suggesting the Conservatives in 2003 raised humanitarian concerns for the Iraqi population post invasion? I recall no such concerns. I do however recall the biggest issue raised by then opposition leader Iain Duncan-Smith, and through the media, that Blair was actually failing to persuade the British public to support the war, because he wasn’t banging the war drum hard enough; that he wasn’t providing the US president with enough support. That was the extent of her majesty’s loyal opposition at the time and which is indeed on record in Hansard, and more importantly across the pages of the media at the time, and which Hague knows full well and Paxman refused pursue. Hague has actually backed an illegal invasion for which, according to Geneva conventions, Hague could be tried as a war criminal. Why did Paxman’s often bitingly acidic questioning fail to provide any bitingly acidic questions of this character?

Hague then finishes with the almost trite response to Paxman’s mild hectoring that we won’t make the same mistake again, and that next time one hopes he, and the BBC alike, will ask tough questions before we demonise another state and invade and kill lots of their citizens. One does hope this is the case, and then almost beyond parody if not belief, you turn to Afghanistan where you report that this time Iran, in the devious guise of Persia described as such by your rather exuberantly polemical journalist, Alastair Leithead, is playing the great game of influence in Afghanistan by supporting the Taleban insurgents against NATO troops led by the UK and the US. You provide no evidence for this other than the assumptions of one Afghan policeman. You do provide a very short response from the Iranian ambassador to Afghanistan, where he was asked very few questions, was portrayed as shifty, and with such a knowing expression on the face of his BBC interlocutor, that I felt your man should have satirically held up a sign saying, “Don’t believe a word this shifty looking foreigner is saying”.

Your journalist then goes into a long and abject polemic about Afghanistan as the seat of the great game where empires vie for influence with vague mentions about some British and American influence here and there over the years, but outrageously stating quite clearly that Iran was unable to invade Afghanistan, which left unsaid, the obviously unstated view, that clearly they would if only they could. This shoddy little vignette, piled on top of an uninformed polemical report, overlooked the obvious fact, that Iran has invaded no other country for over 500 years. The UK and the US record in this department of state is rather poorer. It would have perhaps been appropriate to mention this, particularly given that it is the UK and the US that invaded and destroyed Iraq and Afghanistan so recently, and actually occupy both countries.

Iran was nicely demonised in your report, and is made out as the terrorist state that the UK and US governments keep telling us that it is, and no doubt with reporting like Newsnight this evening, when the time does come for military action against Iran we’ll find a nicely compliant public not too questioning and certainly with little idea other than Iran must be the bad guys so bombing is inevitable.

This is a catalogue of the most abject and appallingly biased and slanted journalism I have seen recently. I do not expect you to change or be in the slightest concerned by my letter. I do hope that other media channels will develop that will eventually allow the public to find accurate information from other sources and thereby reduce the time and attention that the public give to BBC news and current affairs. It is only this way that we will have a fully informed public who can hold the government to account. With journalism like this you are failing the British public so appallingly that I can only assume that this is intentional.

Yours Faithfully,

  • 33.
  • At 03:43 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Alan C wrote:

#22 Abu Muthana

You say “Funny that nobody has thought that its a woman scorned by her husband and has just thought of a way to get back at him? Sometimes the answers are looking you right in the eye, you just cant see them.”

If you believe that her testimony is true, but her motives are dubious then your statement is pointless; we don't care about her motives but we do care about the threat from Islamist extremists. If you believe that her testimony is false and her husband has been falsely accused then you need to explain yourself. For example, how could this possibly hurt her husband (who wasn’t named) and why would this woman endanger herself by offering false testimony? Why would Newsnight lie about corroborating evidence that the names she gave are known to security services?

Do you think we should ignore her testimony?

Do you think a Mulsim woman’s testimony counts for anything (1/2 a man’s perhaps)?

Do you think Muslim women threatened by cultural misogyny (like Banaz Mahmod) should be ignored by the police out of cultural sensitivity? – See below.

My guess is that you are part of the problem.

Extract from Telegraph report on hnour killing of Banaz Mahmod :

“Banaz Mahmod was killed by her father and Scotland Yard is facing severe criticism over its handling of an honour killing investigation after it emerged that the victim had warned officers four times that she feared that her father and uncle wanted to murder her.”

  • 34.
  • At 04:20 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Adrienne wrote:

Alan #32. A small point - if she was working for one of the security services she'd know names of 'known terrorists' would she not? Why did she go to Newsnight rather than to the police or security services if it wasn't propaganda?

The Newsnight team are just journalists (no disrespect). I know they think they see all and know all, but that's journalists for you ;-) Our Mr Paxman's over-confidence is legendary and wy so many of us watch the programme. It doesn't make him right of course. Most of what I see and hear looks silly especially when it's in my areas of expertise.

Furthermore, the only explanation I can come up with as to why do many people don't believe in conspiracies is that we have lots of naive people about these days. It's what the 30 year rule and Official Secrets Act protect is it not (except often, the plotting is not illegal, a critical element of the definition of conmspiracy being that the act is illegal).

Only those who have absolutely no grasp of how government employees work dismiss secrecy and believe all this talk of transparency and the power of the FOI etc.

See links above, but especially Meacher's interview on Dutch TV. How anyone can believe that we are not immersed in deception and self-deception is the dificult thing to explain as one just needs top watch a few TV adverts or read two newspaper's account of the same events to see how we self-decieve through failing to be omniscient.

But that doesn't teach our journalists humnility - they know what they are told....or do they?

  • 35.
  • At 04:24 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • rob wrote:

interesting idea about the poet at the end of the program. good program to the report from richard watson from the wife of a muslim extremist was very informative.

  • 36.
  • At 05:55 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Alan C wrote:

#34 Adrienne

You wrote “A small point - if she was working for one of the security services she'd know names of 'known terrorists' would she not?”

True, but she would also have known their names if they were friends of her Jihadist husband. I invoke Occam on this one

You wrote “Why did she go to Newsnight rather than to the police or security services if it wasn't propaganda?”

Well, she clearly felt it was important to get her story across and how better to do that than the news media. In this case the police were informed also. If you want to call this propaganda then fine, but when truth serve as propaganda it is no less true.

You wrote “Furthermore, the only explanation I can come up with as to why do many people don't believe in conspiracies is that we have lots of naive people about these days.”

With 9/11, 7/7, 21/7. Madrid, Fertiliser Plot and numerous foiled plots and conspiracies I wonder why people want to focus on the imagined and assumed conspiracies of our own government and ignore the evidence of real, massive and destructive conspiracies committed by Islamic fascists. Actually I don’t wonder; conspiracy theories are often a refuge for the dumb and bewildered. They also provide a nice little earner for some more cynical types (see the movie Loose Change for example).

  • 37.
  • At 07:01 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Adrienne wrote:

Alan C:

It wasn't kids I had in mind, it was Michael Meacher who was in the Cabinet at the time of 9/11:,12956,1036687,00.html

There have also been a long line of highly experienced military people on both sides of the Atlantic expressing their concerns about what we are doing in the Middle East too, and it's the fact that they have said anything at all which should be of great concern as these people are usually bound by honour codes as well as laws, yet they haven't been prosecuted. One should ask why.

Nobody doubts that dramatic events have occured, but truth be told, compared to the cost in lives and money in Iraq and elsewhere those loses have been tiny in comparison and yet they have served as good PR for the 'war on terror'. One of the first events was in Russia (1999) cf. "Blowing Up Russia", and just look at what "Bursting at the Seams" Reith Lecturing Jeffrey Sachs got up to in the early 90s with his "Shock Therapists". Ask yourself, how does a man like this gets away with telling Europe that it's "Bursting At The Seams"? Does he know nothing of our critical below replacement level TFRs? Note, there is no Jewish low TFR problem. 'Our' low TFR is why we have an open door immigration policy, which for people in Barking and Dagenham etc just makes their plight even worse. They are headed for extinction. Now, who is not? And who is protected from racial discrimination (see my comments and statistics here)? There is more to this than meets the eye I fear.;jsessionid=HEC0FSWBUTTQZQFIQMGSFFOAVCBQWIV0?xml=/news/2007/06/07/nbb107.xml&posted=true&_requestid=175512

The alleged evils of Islam are just a very convenient distraction from something which is far more worrying. If 'we' continue as 'we' are, there will be far less of some of 'us' in 40 years time. The real war is demographic, and it's being exacerbated by our having embraced sex equality legislation and much else besides.

Have a look at the logic and numbers in the other thread liked above. It may surprise you. If I'm wrong I'm happy to be corrected.

  • 38.
  • At 07:27 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Maurice - Northumberland wrote:

Keith - you're talking religion, in no way can Islam justifiably attract that description. There is no evidence to support such a term!
In fact take Fascism, Communism (Soviet or otherwise) both born out of Socialism.
Compare both with Islam, find the differences, check out Mien Kampf and compare with the Koran.
It can be done on the internet!
I do not recognise Islam as a Religion, it does masquerade as one, hence the obvious peoples reticence in condemning it.
Yep - the Muslims are shrewd!

As Adrienne has suggested 'the west is in terminal decline etc' in reality the West is committing suicide on the alter of Islam, due to not having the balls to stand upto the very clear threat Islam represents.

  • 39.
  • At 10:11 PM on 12 Jun 2007,
  • Adrienne wrote:

Maurice. Yes, the West is committing suicide, that's for sure, and it shows in the demographic trend, but it's been doing so for decades through its sex-equality and other legislation. The Muslims are here because we invited them to help fill the hole we created through our low indigenous birth rate. We should not vilify them for having family values (even if once in a while they go too far). They are protecting what we have given up on.

We should be looking to a white, protected, minority group which fights for hegemony and vilifies their rivals. That's an open secret. They are just doing what most able groups do. But in the process, they use some of the less able others, including the rest of the indigenous white population in their fight for hegemony, and usually without most even knowing it.

It's what groups/families/genes do. It's also very female and beguiling. We have only our poor vigilence to blame I suggest, that and our all too eager feminisation of Western culture in pursuit of greed.

It's time to stop vilifying Muslims and learn some of their Stalinist ways. They despise anarcho-capitalism, so should we if we knew what was good for us. The problem is, who is 'us' these days?

  • 40.
  • At 09:35 AM on 13 Jun 2007,
  • Trev Wardle wrote:


  • 41.
  • At 09:38 AM on 13 Jun 2007,
  • Mike Speason wrote:

Is there any chance that this story will get any airtime - to counter the propaganda that went out on Monday's show (not holding my breath though)?

Cheney's Iran-Arms-to-Taliban Gambit Rebuffed (by Defence Secretary Robert Gates and the commander of NATO forces in Afghanistan, Gen. Dan McNeil)

  • 42.
  • At 10:33 AM on 13 Jun 2007,
  • keith fleming wrote:


I am genuinely curious: what is your positive definition of a 'religion' from which Islam departs?



  • 43.
  • At 11:06 AM on 13 Jun 2007,
  • Adrienne wrote:

Trev Wardle wrote: "why?".

I'm not sure what that's apropos but one answer is: Family values and competition for resources. But basically, does 'why' matter? Isn't it more important to just look and see if it is true THAT it is happening?

Has everyone noticed how uniquely independent non-Muslim gentiles are? They seems to be just out for themselves, all competing, dog eat dog. Jews and Muslims are not, they're extended family people.

The 'individualism' sold by Thatcher many years ago seems to have been a kiss of death. We are social animals (we use language), yet Thatcher infamously said there was no society and went about tearing the welfare state apart and asset stripping and many welcomed this self-destruction. Why? Who was she talking about and what irony that Major later called for a return to traditional family values and lost power as a consequence.

Is it politically incorrect to ask for any account of the alleged high frequency of Jewish people in the House of Lords (some assert that it's nearly 10%, which given the Jews comprise less than 300,000 of the population (i.e. under 0.5%) seems a remarkable, admirable accomplishment does it not. Where are all the Chinese peers though (also 0.5% of the population)? Is it 'anti-semitic' to ask questions such questions? If so, why? Why is it fine to vilify Muslims but not Jews?

How many Muslims have dual nationality (like Jews do?), and is s it true that 2/3 of the white faces in NYC are Jewish? In which case, that would make gentile whites in NYC the minority (about the size of the East Asian population) would it not given that the black and Non White Hispanic populations are about the size of the Jewish population.

These questions and estimates are empirical matters which can be easily confirmed or refuted (some links have been provided bofore).

I'm puzzled. Where's the equality and justice? New Labour is about to embark on yet more Equality legislation (see Green Paper). Is asking such questions taboo? And what's all this talk of discrimination against 'minorities'. In some UK boroughs in London, it's the White English which is becoming the minority group yet we keep hearing them being accused of racism. Most confusing. What's a minority? Is it a national statistic or a local one?

but then:


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