We offer peace and amity to all the neighbouring states and their peoples, and invite them to cooperate with the independent Jewish nation for the common good of all. The State of Israel is ready to contribute its full share to the peaceful progress and development of the Middle East. (From Proclamation of the State of Israel, 5 Iyar 5708; 14 May 1948)

Sunday, 4 October 2015

David Singer Exposes Abu Mazen's Porkies

A few hours ago I posted an item regarding mendacious Palestinian propaganda and later added a video which perfectly illustrates one of the key contentions made: please take a look.  Meanwhile, in this new article, entitled "United Nations Bedazzled By Abbas Word Wizardry," Sydney lawyer and international affairs analyst David Singer continues the theme of propagandistic Palestinian falsehoods, focusing on the United Nations' willing beguilement by Mahmoud Abbas.

Writes David Singer:

PLO Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s speech to the UN General Assembly last week contained a concoction of half-truths and outright lies that everyone listening to him should question.

Here are some prize porkies:
1. “The question of Palestine was one of the first just issues brought before the United Nations from the time of its inception, and yet it remains unresolved until this moment”
17 May 1948; Photo: Detroit Jewish News
Abbas failed to mention that it has remained unresolved since then because:
(i) The Arabs did not accept the 1947 UN Partition Plan to partition western Palestine into a Jewish State and an Arab State – whilst the Jews did.
(ii) The Arabs – instead - unsuccessfully sent six Arab armies to invade Palestine in May 1948 to rout the newly declared Jewish State – Israel – and drive its Jewish population into the sea
(iii) Jordan and Egypt successfully drove out and permanently expelled the Jewish population living in the Gaza Strip, East Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria (later termed “the West Bank”) – keeping those areas Jew-free from 1948 until 1967
(iv) No attempt was made between 1948 and 1967 to create the Palestinian state Abbas says he will now accept. That opportunity has been well and truly missed.
2. Abbas described the Palestinian Arabs as “a people that had lived peacefully in their land and made genuine intellectual, cultural and humanitarian contributions to mankind”.
Abbas was gilding the lily.
(i) The Arab riots in Jerusalem in 1920, the Hebron massacre of the Jewish community in 1929 and the Arab riots between 1936 and 1939 give the lie to his claims.
(ii) No genuine intellectual, cultural and humanitarian contributions have been made to mankind by the Palestinian Arabs – unless airline hijackings, suicide vests, and indiscriminate targeting of Jews is what Abbas had in mind
3. “While Palestine was partitioned into two states – according to which Israel was established 67 years ago – the second part of that resolution still awaits implementation.”
Abbas suffers from a selective memory.
(i) Palestine was effectively divided 92 years ago in 1923 – when 78 per cent – originally designated for the Jewish National Home by the 1920 San Remo conference and the Treaty of Sevres – was denied to Jewish settlement by Article 25 of the Palestine Mandate.
(ii) This area subsequently became the Jew-free independent Hashemite Kingdom of Transjordan in 1946 – renamed Jordan in 1950 after being unified with Judea and Samaria.
 4. 'We recall here the words of the late Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in 1976, when he stated that Israel will become an apartheid state if it continues its occupation of the Palestinian territory and described the Israeli settlements on Palestinian land as “cancer”.'
Abbas misleadingly failed to tell the General Assembly that Rabin’s view had changed markedly just before his assassination in 1995 – after experiencing 19 years of unremitting terrorism and rejectionism by the PLO – telling the Knesset:
(i) The borders of the State of Israel would be beyond the lines which existed before the Six Day War. Israel would not return to the 4 June 1967 lines.
(ii) Jerusalem would be united and would include both Maale Adumim and Givat Zeev as the capital of Israel under Israeli sovereignty
(iii) The security border of Israel would be located in the Jordan Valley, in the broadest meaning of that term
(iv) Gush Etzion, Efrat, Beitar and other communities in the area east of what was the "Green Line" prior to the Six Day War would be included in the State of Israel;
(v) Blocs of settlements would be established in Judea and Samaria like the one in Gush Katif
(vi) No single settlement would be uprooted in the framework of the Interim Agreement, nor building hindered for natural growth
5. “Palestine is a country of holiness and peace. It is the birthplace of Christ, the messenger of love and peace, and the Isra’ and Mi’raj [ascension to heaven and night journey] of Mohammed”
Abbas omitted any mention of the Jews – the forebears of the Christians.
6. “It is no longer useful to waste time in negotiations for the sake of negotiations; what is required is to mobilize international efforts to oversee an end to the occupation in line with the resolutions of international legitimacy.”
Abbas supposedly supports “resolutions of international legitimacy” – yet the PLO he heads has declared that the Balfour Declaration, the Mandate for Palestine, and everything that has been based upon them, are deemed null and void.
The League of Nations Mandate for Palestine and Article 80 of the United Nations Charter are resolutions of international legitimacy that cannot be swept away because Abbas does not like them.
7. "The state of Palestine, based on the 4th of June 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital, is a state under occupation, as was the case for many countries during World War II.”
(i) “The state of Palestine” does not meet the legal requirements of customary international law as encapsulated in the 1933 Montevideo Convention.
(ii) There were no borders – only armistice lines.
(iii) How can “Palestine” be a state under occupation since there was no such State in existence prior to 1967?
The applause accorded Abbas in the UN General Assembly indicates how his deceptively misleading word wizardry continues to confound attempts to end the 100 years old Jewish-Arab conflict.
Exposing its false peddlers must never cease.

Time the United Nations woke up and restored its own credibility.

Professorial Truths Regarding Palestinian Propaganda (updated: relevant video)

Well said, that wag!
In July this year, in a predictably vain attempt to dissuade the ALP (Australian Labor Party) conference from adopting such a motion, the ABC's Religion and Ethics website carried this article by Professor Alan Johnson of BICOM arguing against unilateral recognition of a Palestinian state.

Among the professor's many excellent points were these simple truthes:
'The inconvenient truth is that Israel accepted the case for Palestinian statehood long ago, but it refuses to commit national suicide. So it insists on negotiating three things with the Palestinians:
 genuine mutual recognition - the deal must create two states for two peoples, with Israel recognised as the homeland of the Jewish people, and Palestine as the homeland of the Palestinian people;
security guarantees - so the West Bank does not become a launching pad for a continued terror war on Israel; and
a commitment by the Palestinians that the deal is a final status agreement, or what is called the "end of conflict."
The Palestinians have so far refused to negotiate recognition. They will not accept that Israel is the homeland of the Jewish people. They demand the full and untrammelled "right of return" for millions of Palestinian refugees, and their children and later descendants ad infinitum, which would mean the end of Israel and the creation of yet another Arab state, in which the Jews would have to take their chances as a minority. This is not an especially attractive prospect given the treatment of minorities throughout the Middle East.
Nor have the Palestinians negotiated Israel's legitimate security needs. Instead, the Palestinian Authority has entered a unity agreement with an unreformed and fascistic Hamas, which is committed to Israel's destruction. It is not enough to agree to demilitarization, as the proposers argue. In a collapsing Middle East, with Islamic State taking over in failed states, the ongoing security of the West Bank - the high ground that sits above Israel's population centres - is what must be negotiated.'
In response, the longtime Palestinian lobbyist in Australia, Ali Kazak, wrote this outrageous screed.

Its tone and thrust is exemplified by this despicable allegation: "[T]he aim of Zionism has been to colonise all of Palestine and parts of the neighbouring Arab states, and ethnically cleanse the Palestinian people".

Now, another pro-Israel professor, the peerless Denis MacEoin, has written in characteristic fashion a masterly piece which demolishes Ali Kazak's structure to its very foundations.  Inter alia, he notes:
'As far back as 1906, the young Ben Gurion wrote that "The Jewish settlement is not designed to undermine the position of the Arab community; on the contrary, it will salvage it from its economic misery, lift it from its social decline, and rescue it from physical and moral degeneration. Our renaissance in Palestine will come through the country's regeneration, that is: the renaissance of its Arab inhabitants."
Throughout his life, Ben Gurion made many such comments, constantly pleading with the Arabs to live and work alongside the Jews to create a flourishing state. Why does Kazak mention none of these, but substitutes a falsified, mistranslated, and deceitful quotation to "prove" that the Jews were intent from the beginning on expelling the Arabs?
Written while a civil war launched by the Arabs still raged, and as five Arab nations prepared to invade the new state, Israel's Declaration of Independence reads in part:
We appeal - in the very midst of the onslaught launched against us now for months - to the Arab inhabitants of the State of Israel to preserve peace and participate in the upbuilding of the State on the basis of full and equal citizenship and due representation in all its provisional and permanent institutions.
We extend our hand to all neighbouring states and their peoples in an offer of peace and good neighbourliness, and appeal to them to establish bonds of cooperation and mutual help with the sovereign Jewish people settled in its own land. The State of Israel is prepared to do its share in a common effort for the advancement of the entire Middle East. 
.... In truth, there has been and still is a tiny minority of Zionists who cling to the fantasy of a Jewish state embracing the Biblical region from eastern Egypt to northern Arabia. But to present this as evidence that Zionists as a whole hold such views is deeply misleading. When I say "a minority," I really mean it. After 1967, a movement and political party named The Movement for Greater Israel emerged, and in 1969 it stood in a general election. It received 0.6% of the vote, below the electoral threshold of 1%, and collapsed.
Kazak weaves a fiction of malign Zionist aims to take over territories beyond the borders of Israel, when all the Jewish people as a whole ever wanted to do was have a state of their own.
By 2008, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert made the country's position clear when speaking to his cabinet: "Greater Israel is over. There is no such thing. Anyone who talks that way is deluding themselves." It is not hard to conclude that Ali Kazak is one of the deluded.
Kazak's fantasy about a Greater Israel is false, yet he does not so much as breathe a word about the most popular slogan used by Palestinians and their supporters abroad: "Palestine will be free From the river to the Sea." All Palestinian maps show this same thing: a Palestine stretching from the River Jordan to the Mediterranean. The slogan and the maps show one thing: no Israel. To call for the extinction of a people and country is a threat of genocide, something the Jews of all people have never called for and will never urge.
The notion that all Zionists and Jews want to build a Greater Israel has disturbing echoes of one of the hoariest and most frequently dismissed myths of anti-Semitism: that the Jews control everything and have taken over everything from banking to the film industry, to all the wars and revolutions, even entire governments. This was an evil conspiracy theory constructed by the Russian secret police to justify their pogroms and later promulgated by the Nazis to explain their extermination of six million human beings. It is shameful even to hint at it.'
Update: This video of raucous Israel-haters outside the Egyptian Embassy in London yesterday deliciously proves the professor's point about the true aims of the "Free Palestine" crowd:

See what I mean?

Video credit: Seymour Alexander
Read Denis MacEoin's entire article here

Hat tip: Ian G.

Meanwhile, in Australia more pro-Palestinian state recognition propaganda afoot. Better have the corn plasters ready.

An absent-minded dictionary?

Friday, 2 October 2015

"The UK May Have Done A Vote Trade": Saudi Arabia & the UN Human Rights Council (video)

My previous post shows Netanyahu's marvellous speech to the UN.  Here, Hillel Neuer of UN Watch talks to the ABC's Fran Kelly about the latest bizarre and despicable antics connected with the UN:

Hat tip: the encyclopedic Ian

Incidentally, Australia's most-read columnist, the conservative Andrew Bolt wrote yesterday a  blistering article regarding Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop (mentioned in the above video, and also mentioned in my previous post):
'.... Just two weeks as Prime Minister and Malcolm Turnbull is already promising to lick the boots of the tyrants who infest the United Nations.
Yes, the Turnbull Government is asking for the tremendous honour of joining the UN’s Human Rights Commission.
And if we’re really good, Australia may join some of the moral paragons on that body supervising our human rights — China, Congo, Cuba, Kazakhstan, Pakistan, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Vietnam.
No, that’s not a joke. These countries really are judges on a UN body meant to save us from exactly such thugs, thieves, theocrats and dictators. We will legitimise a pack of hypocrites we should shun and, in joining, will put ourselves at their level.
Sure, the Left is cheering, but check the company we’ll keep. Across the table will be Russia, which has stolen Crimea, invaded Ukraine and supplied to rebels the missile and the men that shot down the MH17 jet carrying Australian citizens.
Also rubbing shoulders with us will be the Saudi autocrats, about to behead and crucify Ali Mohammed al-Nimr, who protested for democracy in 2012, when he was only 17. And we’ll nod thoughtfully as the communist autocrats ruling China, Cuba and Vietnam define for us what should be meant by “human rights”.
I hope the UN’s showers are industrial strength.
Don’t believe the sanctimonious drivel about how joining such bodies does not compromise our beliefs. Horse manure....'

"Ladies & Gentlemen, Leave Your Enthusiasm At The Door" (video)

Obeisance unbecoming

 That includes you, Aussie Foreign Minister Julie Bishop.

"Israel will not permit any force on earth to threaten its future".  See the transcript of this marvellous speech (which also covers prospects for peace with the Palestinian Arabs) here

A taste:
'Thirty one years after I stood here for the first time, I'm still asking:
When will the UN finally check its anti-Israel fanaticism at the door?
When will the UN finally stop slandering Israel as a threat to peace and actually start helping Israel advance peace?  
And the same question should be posed to Palestinian leaders.  
When will you start working with Israel to advance peace and reconciliation and stop libeling Israel, stop inciting hatred and violence?
President Abbas, here’s a good place to begin: 
Stop spreading lies about Israel’s alleged intentions on the Temple Mount. 
Israel is fully committed to maintaining the status quo there.
What President Abbas should be speaking out against are the actions of militant Islamists who are smuggling explosives into the al-Aqsa mosque and who are trying to prevent Jews and Christians from visiting the holy sites.
That’s the real threat to these sacred sites.
A thousand years before the birth of Christianity, more than 1,500 years before the birth of Islam, King David made Jerusalem our capital, and King Solomon built the Temple on that mount.
Yet Israel, Israel will always respect the sacred shrines of all.  
In a region plagued by violence and by unimaginable intolerance, in which Islamic fanatics are destroying the ancient treasures of civilization, Israel stands out as a towering beacon of enlightenment and tolerance. 
Far from endangering the holy sites, it is Israel that ensures their safety.
Because unlike the powers who have ruled Jerusalem in the past, Israel respects the holy sites and freedom of worship of all – Jews, Muslims, Christians, everyone.
And that, ladies and gentlemen, will never change. 
Because Israel will always stay true to its values.
These values are on display each and every day:
When Israel’s feisty parliament vigorously debates every issue under the sun,
When Israel’s Chief Justice sits in her chair at our fiercely independent Supreme Court,
When our Christian community continues to grow and thrive from year to year, as Christian communities are decimated elsewhere in the Middle East,
When a brilliant young Israeli Muslim student gives her valedictorian address at one of our finest universities,
And when Israeli doctors and nurses – doctors and nurses from the Israeli military – treat thousands of wounded from the killing fields of Syria and thousands more in the wake of natural disasters from Haiti to Nepal.
This is the true face of Israel. 
These are the values of Israel.
And in the Middle East, these values are under savage assault by militant Islamists who are forcing millions of terrified people to flee to distant shores.
Ten miles from ISIS, a few hundred yards from Iran’s murderous proxies, Israel stands in the breach – proudly and courageously, defending freedom and progress.
Israel is civilization's front line in the battle against barbarism.
So here’s a novel idea for the United Nations:
Instead of continuing the shameful routine of bashing Israel, stand with Israel.
Stand with Israel as we check the fanaticism at our door.
Stand with Israel as we prevent that fanaticism from reaching your door.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Stand with Israel because Israel is not just defending itself. 
More than ever, Israel is defending you.'
 More regarding Israel's attitude to the Iran Deal here

Simply the best, icy stare and all:

Good on yah, Aussie MP Michael Danby, for strictures against Julie Bishop, as I've outlined here

Thursday, 1 October 2015

David Singer: Syrian Sinkhole Swallowing Obama and Putin’s Credibility and Political Judgement

From today's London Times
The last of my September posts concerns Jeremy Corbyn's curiously Israelrein address to the Labour Friends of Israel (shame on the sycophants who applauded and cheered him, and well done Michael Foster!); the first of my October posts concerns the wider Middle East, and is the latest article by Sydney lawyer and international affairs analyst David Singer.

Writes David Singer:

President Obama’s continuing focus on removing Syria’s President Assad to secure America’s co-operation with Russia to destroy Islamic State – whilst President Putin has now independently commenced Russian air strikes in Syria – supposedly on Islamic State forces – exposes both leaders lack of credibility and political judgement.

Obama addressing the United Nations General Assembly on 28 September asserted:
“The United States is prepared to work with any nation, including Russia and Iran, to resolve the conflict. But we must recognize that there cannot be, after so much bloodshed, so much carnage, a return to the pre-war status quo…
… Yes, realism dictates that compromise will be required to end the fighting and ultimately stamp out ISIL. But realism also requires a managed transition away from Assad and to a new leader, and an inclusive government that recognizes there must be an end to this chaos so that the Syrian people can begin to rebuild."
Obama’s acceptance of Russia and Iran as acceptable partners – but not Syria – makes no sense. Russia and Iran have propped up Assad’s hold on power in Syria for the last five years enabling the bloodshed and carnage in Syria to continue unabated.

Putin however argues for co-operation with Syria’s armed forces:
“We think it is an enormous mistake to refuse to cooperate with the Syrian government and its armed forces, who are valiantly fighting terrorism face to face. We should finally acknowledge that no one but President Assad's armed forces and Kurds militias are truly fighting the Islamic State and other terrorist organizations in Syria.”
Putin’s undisguised contempt for the American-led coalition’s efforts to degrade and destroy Islamic State is a harsh – and arguably unfair – indictment.

Nevertheless both Presidents differing viewpoints and responses are now on the public record - and need to be reconciled before any Security Council resolution creating a UN armed force to destroy Islamic State can emerge.

Obama’s preference for a Security Council Resolution can be gleaned from his comments made at a press conference in Russia on 6 September 2013 – shortly after chemical weapons had been used in Syria to gas 1400 people including 400 children. America took the view that Assad was the culprit – whilst Russia considered that the rebel forces battling Assad was the aggressor. President Obama reasoned:
“You know, there are number a of countries that just as a matter of principle believe that if military action is to be taken, it needs to go through the U.N. Security Council…
… It is my view … that given Security Council paralysis on this issue, if we are serious about upholding a ban on chemical weapons use, then an international response is required and that will not come through Security Council action.
And I respect those who are concerned about setting precedents of action outside of a U.N. Security Council resolution. I would greatly prefer working through multilateral channels and through the United Nations to get this done”
Eight days later – after three days of negotiations between America and Russia – the Security Council in fact adopted a resolution – jointly sponsored by America and Russia - on destroying chemical weapons in Syria - contrary to Obama’s belief that such co-operation was not possible.

Concentrating on their commonly agreed problem – destroying chemical weapons – and not who fired them – averted any possible Security Council paralysis.

Similarly Russia and America need to concentrate on jointly destroying their common agreed enemy – Islamic State – under a UN mandated Security Council Resolution – rather than acting independently – and dangerously – of each other whilst arguing about Assad’s fate as President or Syria’s inclusion in any proposed UN force.

President Putin warned that the stakes of operating outside a UN Security Council resolution are high:
“Russia stands ready to work together with its partners on the basis of full consensus, but we consider the attempts to undermine the legitimacy of the United Nations as extremely dangerous. They could lead to a collapse of the entire architecture of international organizations, and then indeed there would be no other rules left but the rule of force.
 We would get a world dominated by selfishness rather than collective work, a world increasingly characterized by dictate rather than equality. There would be less of a chain of democracy and freedom, and that would be a world where true independent states would be replaced by an ever-growing number of de facto protectorates and externally controlled territories.
On the basis of international law, we must join efforts to address the problems that all of us are facing and create a genuinely broad international coalition against terrorism.
Similar to the anti-Hitler coalition, it could unite a broad range of forces that are resolutely resisting those who, just like the Nazis, sow evil and hatred of humankind. And, naturally, the Muslim countries are to play a key role in the coalition, even more so because the Islamic State does not only pose a direct threat to them, but also desecrates one of the greatest world religions by its bloody crimes.” 
President Obama also understands the risks of acting unilaterally:
“No matter how powerful our military, how strong our economy, we understand the United States cannot solve the world’s problems alone.”
With Russian airstrikes seriously escalating the conflict in Syria, Obama and Putin need to urgently sponsor that Security Council resolution before the Syrian sinkhole opens even wider. 

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

"Say The Word Israel!": Jeremy Corbyn's elephant in the room (includes video)

An Israel-demoniser reacts...
"Who had the dishonour of welcoming Jeremy Corbyn at the Labour Friends of Israel meeting tonight Not sure who are the worst hypocrites, Labour Friends for inviting him or him for accepting Just what do LFI think they have gained from this farce. Maybe just to expose that nothing has changed and he is as anti Israel as ever with no compromise or effort to tone down now he is leader of the Party"

'His words were political "double speak" he muttered platitudes about peace but it was clear that he doesn't want a 2 state solution, what he envisages is the mistaken utopia of one state where Jews and Arabs live together in peace.'

"Awful ! Can't bring himself to mention Israel !!! Or rocket attacks from gaza !!! And the people who applauded him !!! ???? Makes me sick"

Those are just three of the responses from British Jews on Facebook sharing their impressions of Jeremy Corbyn's speech to a meeting of Labour Friends of Israel during the Labour Party Conference at Brighton on 29 September.

At the end of the speech, a heckler (reportedly Michael Foster, Labour Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Falmouth and Camborne, I've been told) demanded of the new Labour leader "Say the word Israel!" – and got bundled out by security men for his pains.

London academic David Hirsh, a staunch and active Zionist but certainly not a rightwing one, writes, inter alia:
'He refused to utter the word “Israel”.  He refused to say that he was for the right of Israel to exist, even within the ’67 borders.
He said:  “I want us as a party, to be a party for peace and progress in the Middle East in the best way that we can, by linking up with all those groups in the Middle East that want peace and progress.”  But he also said that he wants to “talk to everybody”.  In this way he avoided saying anything about his previous stated support for Hamas and Hezbollah, both antisemitic, both terroristic, both annihilationist of Israel.
Corbyn said that the “situation is dire in many ways”, he talked about the “siege of Gaza”, he talked about the plight of refugees “across the region”.  He veered from talking about Palestine to talking about the region, maybe Syria, maybe Iraq – there was, more than once, a studied ambivalence; some of what he said could be interpreted to relate to Israel and Palestine, or it could be interpreted to relate to anywhere else in the Middle East.
He articulated his clear opposition to Antisemitism.  But:
1.he couldn’t utter the word without first mentioning all racisms and Islamophobia
2.he illustrated his opposition to antisemitism only by talking about the threat of the far-right
3.he failed to concede the existence of antisemitism on the left or in the world of Palestine solidarity; he failed to oppose it.
Corbyn did not show that he understands why the campaign to boycott Israel is so menacing to Jews in the UK; he did not reassure us that he understands the, albeit complex, relationship between campaigning to boycott Israel and antisemitism.'
 Read all of David Hirsh's analysis here

And, if you've never seen them before, please take a look also at some of Hirsh's previous posts on that site, some of which are about Corbyn.

How Corbyn treated Jewish MP Ivan Lewis, rightly concerned about antisemites:




Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Europe: The Big Issue

The Big Issue, which draws attention to homelessness, unemployment, and related social issues, is a social initiative magazine in the UK that's sold on busy street corners and other well-populated hotspots up and down the country by and on behalf of "homeless and other socially vulnerable people".

In a small town in the UK that I livd in prior to returning to Australia, (drum roll: politically incorrect statements coming up) the magazine's sturdy young vendor, stationed a couple of days a week outside the local bank, was the very same  chap with the dyed yellow ponytail who'd often sit in the bank's doorway asking everyone who passed to spare him some change.  (Funnily enough, he always had money for hair bleach, liquor, and cigarettes.) 

Anyway, not long after the admission of Romania into the European Community, a member of that country's Roma community, obviously newly arrived in Britain, muscled in his patch.

Within weeks the pony-tailed vendor was gone altogether, and then there were two Roma vendors, and finally three, two male and one female (well, two time-sharing females actually, the elder in an advanced state of pregnancy), stationed at key points in the High Street repeating mantra-like in fractured English: "Big Issue please".

Just round the corner, on the narrow pavement of  the street leading directly from the railway station, was the elderly matriarch of the group: partially blocking a shop window, she sat on a folding chair with a rug over her knees and a begging bowl at her feet, wishing everyone who passed an obviously insincere "Good morning."

Now, hawking a magazine critical of the socio-economic policy of a host country known for its generous welfare system as soon as you've reached its shores (and been granted accommodation in one of its council houses to boot) struck me as the height of chutzpah.  And the intimidating, intrusive presence of three Big Issue sellers where one had sufficed struck me as decidedly dodgy.

It evidently struck someone in authority as dodgy too, for one fine day all of them, plus their beggarly mother, were not in their accustomed spots, and were never seen again.

Still, I have nothing against the magazine itself, which undoubtedly performs a valuable social service, and whose contents are not without interest.  Indeed, one of its recent articles is very interesting indeed.   Written by Samira Ahmed, it observes inter alia:
'Polling here shows a large number of Britons, the majority even, are at best cautious about taking in refugees from Syria because of the fear of conservative Islamic attitudes. Some readers might want to dismiss this as a cover for racism, just as in the 1930s the Daily Mail warned of the “threat” of so many Jews coming from Hitler’s Germany.
But ... looking at gender opens up a legitimate question about how you build a strong and stable society. Where are all the women refugees? According to the latest UNHCR figures, 72 per cent of the numbers arriving in western Europe so far in 2015 are men, 15 per cent children and only 13 per cent women. A BBC World Service reporter a few days ago described on air the unease he and female colleagues felt when they tried to interview women refugees, only to be uniformly refused permission by their men.
So where ARE the women refugees? Some men will have planned to establish themselves and then bring families over safely. But talking to lawyers dealing with the influx of young male Afghan migrants here a decade earlier, it seems in many cases families spend money on the people they value most. And that’s not the women.
When we talk of compassion and doing the right thing in these humanitarian crises, perhaps we ignore gender at our peril.'
As the website Biased BBC points out, Ms Ahmed is a Muslim and a BBC broadcaster, yet the issues she raises do not appear to have been ventilated on the BBC.

This issue of gender is indeed a core one, but not the only example of the incompatibility of Islam with the essential core values of Western society, the values that make Europe what it is, values that, as this video shows, are scorned and spurned by a worrying part of the Islamic community in Germany.

In this video we meet Muslims who are in Germany but not of it, young Muslims who place sharia law above the German constitution.  We meet the school principal (Beate Altmann) who is exasperated with the situation, including the antisemitism voiced by Muslim children at her school.

There are children who justify the Charlie Hebdo murders, unapologetic upholders of male supremacy and the "honour" killings of women, youngsters of both sexes who cling to the Islamic belief that women are inferior to men, the property of their husbands, and obligated to obey the dictates of male family members..

We meet a third generation immigrant of Lebanese background who administers sharia law.  We meet followers of his who prefer his intervention in disputes to that of the police.

We meet a Christian refugee from Syria who has been threatened by Muslims in the very land in which he sought refuge and who is disgusted by the casual contempt for women shown.  And so on.

We meet a rabbi who despairs of Islamic antisemitism and, having experienced hate crime personally, as has his daughter, advises Jews in their best interests not to identify in public as such. 

Non-assimilation and all that it entails.    This is the big issue confronting the entire West. To whet your appetite, this post is peppered with screengrabs I've taken from it.

Update: Here's Douglas Murray, speaking in Copenhagen on an aspect of Europe's Big Issue: