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Shammu
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« on: March 19, 2006, 04:15:08 AM »

'Al Qaeda' in Commons

By MICHAEL LEA

A TERROR suspect allegedly linked to al Qaeda has visited the Houses of Parliament — as the guest of a Labour peer.

Former detainee Mahmoud Suliman Ahmed Abu Rideh even sat in the Commons public gallery for a debate.

He was invited to Westminster on Tuesday by Lord Ahmed, who met him at Regent’s Park mosque three weeks ago.

The father of five — suspected of being a money man for terror groups — was given a SECURITY sticker for his Parliamentary visit.

And he boasted yesterday of sitting in the Commons gallery, adding: “It was very interesting.”

Shadow Home Secretary David Davis last night said Abu Rideh had been able to “walk around one of the UK’s biggest terror targets”.

Lord Ahmed confirmed he invited Abu Rideh, 34, to see him — and said he QUIZZED him over the suspected al Qaeda link.

He said: “I gave an appointment to see him this week. He came to see me as a Parliamentarian. It was my duty to hear what he had to say.

“He came through the peers’ entrance. He went through the security check and I met him at security. He did not leave me for one second.

“I did not take him into any public gallery.

“I asked him, ‘Have you ever been linked with al Qaeda?’ and he denied it.”

Lord Ahmed said he escorted Abu Rideh from the building after the interview in his office.

It is not known when the suspect got into the Commons gallery.

Abu Rideh explained the visit by saying: “I was meeting some people to help me with my problem.”

The Palestinian suspect came to Britain in 1995 and was given permission to remain permanently in 1998.

He was detained as a terror suspect in December 2001, accused of fundraising for groups linked to al Qaeda.

David Blunkett directly accused him of the link to Osama bin Laden’s organisation when Home Secretary.

Abu Rideh has admitted to officials in a statement that he “used to travel around Afghanistan, disguised as a beggar, with large sums of money hidden in a plaster cast on his leg”.

Another document from the Special Immigration Appeals Commission said he admitted fundraising for a school which had “some of the world’s most wanted men” among its parents.

He was first held in London’s Belmarsh jail. But he was then moved to Broadmoor secure hospital in Berkshire after he slashed his arms and wrists.

The SIAC bailed him in 2003 and gave him a Control Order, which places restrictions on his freedom outside.

Abu Rideh returned to his three-bedroom council home in West London — but now wears a tag and must be there from 7pm until dawn.

Lord Ahmed, 48, comes from a working-class background in Rotherham, South Yorks, where he used to run a chip shop.

He entered the House of Lords in 1998, becoming the first Muslim to receive a life peerage.

In November he spoke out against parts of the the Government’s Terrorism Bill, which he said restricted political views.

He has previously called for jailed cleric Abu Hamza to be stripped of his citizenship and deported.
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« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2006, 04:19:49 AM »

Media shockingly ignorant of Muslims among us

March 12, 2006

BY MARK STEYN SUN-TIMES COLUMNIST
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This week's Voldemort Award goes to the New York Times for their account of a curious case of road rage in North Carolina:

"The man charged with nine counts of attempted murder for driving a Jeep through a crowd at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill last Friday told the police that he deliberately rented a four-wheel-drive vehicle so he could 'run over things and keep going.' "

The driver in question was Mohammed Reza Taheri-azar.

Whoa, don't jump to conclusions. The Times certainly didn't. As the report continued:

"According to statements taken by the police, Mr. Taheri-azar, 22, an Iranian-born graduate of the university, felt that the United States government had been 'killing his people across the sea' and that his actions reflected 'an eye for an eye.'"

"His people"? And who exactly would that be? Taheri-azar is admirably upfront about his actions. As he told police, he wanted to "avenge the deaths or murders of Muslims around the world."

And yet the M-word appears nowhere in the Times report. Whether intentionally or not, they seem to be channeling the great Sufi theologian and jurist al-Ghazali, who died a millennium ago but whose first rule on the conduct of dhimmis -- non-Muslims in Muslim society -- seem to have been taken on board by the Western media:

The dhimmi is obliged not to mention Allah or His Apostle. . . .

Are they teaching that at Columbia Journalism School yet?

A fellow called Mohammed mows down a bunch of students? Just one of those things -- like a gran'ma in my neck of the woods a couple of years back who hit the wrong pedal in the parking lot and ploughed through a McDonald's, leaving the place a hideous tangle of crumbled drywall, splattered patties and incendiary hot apple-pie filling. Yet, according to his own statements, Taheri-azar committed an act of ideological domestic terrorism, which he'd planned for two months. He told police he was more disappointed more students in his path weren't struck and that he'd rented the biggest vehicle the agency had in order to do as much damage to as many people as possible. The Persian car pet may have been flooring it, but the media are idling in neutral, if not actively reversing away from the story as fast as they can. Taheri-azar informed the judge he was "thankful for the opportunity to spread the will of Allah," and it was apparently the will of Allah that he get behind the wheel of Allah.

Meanwhile, a new Washington Post/ABC poll finds that, in the words of the Post, "nearly half of Americans -- 46 percent -- have a negative view of Islam, seven percentage points higher than in the tense months after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, when Muslims were often targeted for violence."

"Often" targeted? Want to put some hard numbers on that? Like to compare the "violence" Americans perpetrated on Muslims after the slaughter of thousands of their fellow citizens in the name of Allah with, say, the death toll perpetrated by Muslims annoyed over some itsy-bitsy cartoons in an obscure Danish newspaper? In September 2001, 99.99999 percent of Americans behaved with remarkable forbearance. If they're less inclined to give the benefit of the doubt these days, perhaps it's because of casual slurs like the Post's or the no-jihad-to-see-here-folks tone of the Times.

Ronald Stockton of the University of Michigan doesn't see it that way: "You're getting a constant drumbeat of negative information about Islam," he told the Post. By "negative information," Professor Stockton presumably means the London bombings, and the Bali bombings, and the Madrid bombings and the Istanbul bombings. But surely it's worth asking why in 2006 the Washington Post needs a man with a name like "Ronald Stockton" to explain Islam to us? The diversity bores in the media go out of their way to hire writers of color, writers of gender, writers of orientation. Yet, five years after 9/11, where's the New York Times' Muslim columnist? Where's the ''Today Show's'' Islamic weather girl? Why, indeed, are all the Muslim voices in the press broadly on the right -- Amir Taheri in the New York Post, Stephen Schwartz in the Weekly Standard, Fouad Ajami in the Wall Street Journal?

If Mohammed Reza Taheri-azar is not a free-lance terrorist, then what is he? Who is he? What's he thinking? In the absence of any explanatory voices from the Muslim community, all we have are the bare bones of his resume: He's a 22-year old UNC psychology major who graduated in December. And what's revealing is the link between Taheri-azar's grievance and his action.

Take him at his word: He's upset about "the treatment of Muslims around the world" -- presumably at the hands of Israelis on the West Bank, of the Russians in Chechnya, the Indians in Kashmir, the Americans in the Sunni Triangle and the Danes in the funny pages. So what does he do to avenge Islam? He goes to the rental agency, takes out the biggest car on the lot, drives it to UNC and rams it into the men and women he's spent the last few years studying with and socializing with -- the one group of infidels he knows really well.

How many Muslims feel similarly? Not many in America, perhaps -- if only when compared to Europe: For all the multiculti blather, the United States still does a better job assimilating immigrants than France or Germany. A recent poll found that 40 percent of British Muslims want sharia introduced in the United Kingdom and 20 percent sympathized with the "feelings and motives" of the July 7 London Tube bombers. Or, more accurately, 20 percent were prepared to admit to a pollster they felt sympathy, which suggests the real figure might be somewhat higher. Huge numbers of Muslims -- many of them British subjects born and bred -- see their fellow Britons blown apart on trains and buses and are willing to rationalize the actions of mass murderers.

"East is east and west is west/And ne'er the twain shall meet," wrote Kipling. Obviously, they meet every moment of the day -- the cabbie driving you to your appointment in Washington, the affable fellow at the corner store. But proximity isn't the same as understanding: Taheri-azar and that 20 percent of British Muslims think they know "the west" and they don't like it. By contrast, the New York Times and Co. insist they like "the east" but go to an awful lot of trouble to avoid finding out anything that would ruffle their illusions. The twain would never meet, said Kipling, "till Earth and Sky meet presently/At God's great judgment seat."
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« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2006, 07:27:22 AM »

A more correct statement would be "Media shockingly ignorant".

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« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2006, 12:43:52 PM »

A more correct statement would be "Media shockingly ignorant".


I know that but how many newspapers will say that, brother? Least this one admitted the problem.
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« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2006, 02:25:33 AM »

Child Bride
Posted by Kevin Sites
on Mon, Mar 20 2006, 4:55 PM ET

Married at the age of four, an Afghan girl was subjected to years of beatings and torture, finally escaping to discover that within all the world's cruelty, there is also some kindness.

KABUL, Afghanistan - Eleven-year old Gulsoma lay in a heap on the ground in front of her father-in-law. He told her that if she didn't find a missing watch by the next morning he would kill her. He almost had already.

Enraged about the missing watch, Gulsoma's father-in-law had beaten her repeatedly with a stick. She was bleeding from wounds all over her body and her right arm and right foot had been broken.

She knew at that moment that if she didn't get away, he would make good on his promise to kill her.

When I meet her at the Ministry of Women's Affairs I'm surprised that the little girl, now 12, is the same one that had endured such horrible suffering. She is wearing a red baseball cap and an orange scarf. She has beautiful brown eyes and a full and animated smile. She takes one of my hands in both of hers and greets me warmly, without any hint of shyness.

"She looks healthy," says Haroon, my friend and translator. I nod. But she looks older than her years, we both agree. In orphanages — first in Kandahar, then in Kabul — she has had a year to recover from a lifetime's worth of unimaginable imprisonment, deprivation and torture.

In one of the ministry's offices she sits in a straight-backed wooden chair and tells us the story of her life so far. She is stoic for the most part, pausing only a few times to wipe her eyes and nose with her scarf.

Her story begins in the village of Mullah Allam Akhound, near Kandahar.

"When I was three years old my father died, and after a year my mother married again, but her second husband didn't want me," says Gulsoma. "So my mother gave me away in a promise of marriage to our neighbor's oldest son, who was thirty."

"They had a ceremony in which I was placed on a horse [which is traditional in Afghanistan] and given to the man."

Because she was still a child, the marriage was not expected to be sexually consummated. But within a year, Gulsoma learned that so much else would be required of her that she would become a virtual slave in the household.

At the age of five, she was forced to take care of not only her "husband" but also his parents and all 12 of their other children as well.

Though nearly the entire family participated in the abuse, her father-in-law, she says, was the cruelest.

"My father-in-law asked me to do everything — laundry, the household chores — and the only time I was able to sleep in the house was when they had guests over," she says. "Other than that I would have to sleep outside on a piece of carpet without even any blankets. In the summer it was okay. But in the winter a neighbor would come over and give me a blanket, and sometimes some food."

When she couldn't keep up with the workload, Gulsoma says, she was beaten constantly.

Gulsoma's scars

"They beat me with electric wires," she says, "mostly on the legs. My father-in-law told his other children to do it that way so the injuries would be hidden. He said to them, 'break her bones, but don't hit her on the face.'"

There were even times when the family's abuse of Gulsoma transcended the bounds of the most wanton, sadistic cruelty, as on the occasions when they used her as a human tabletop, forcing her to lie on her stomach then cutting their food on her bare back.

Gulsoma says the family had one boy her age, named Atiqullah, who refused to take part in her torture.

"He would sneak me food sometimes and when my mother-in-law told him to find a stick to beat me, he would come back say he couldn't find one," she says. "He would try to stop the others sometimes. He would say 'she is my sister, and this is sinful.' Sometimes I think about him and wish he could be here and I wish I could have him as my brother."

One evening, Gulsoma says, when her father-in-law saw the neighbor giving her food and a blanket, he took them away and beat her mercilessly. Then, she says, he locked her in a shed for two months.

"I would be kept there all day," she says, "then at night they would let me go the bathroom and I would be fed one time each day. Most of the time it was only bread and sometimes some beans."

She says every day she was locked in the shed, she wished and prayed that her parents would come and take her away. Then she would remember that her father was dead and her mother was gone.

But Gulsoma had an inner strength even her father-in-law couldn't comprehend.

"When he came to the shed he kept asking me, 'Why don't you die? I imprisoned you, I give you less food, but still you don't die.'"

But it wasn't for lack of trying. Gulsoma said when her father-in-law finally let her out of the shed, he bound her hands behind her back and beat her unconscious. She says he revived her by pouring a tea thermos filling with scalding water over her head and her back.

"It was so painful," she says, dabbing her eyes with her scarf and sniffling for a moment. "I was crying and screaming the entire time."

Five days later, she says, her father in law gave her a vicious beating when his daughter's wristwatch went missing.

"He thought I stole it," she says, "and he beat me all over my body with his stick. He broke my arm and my foot. He said if I didn't find it by the next day, he would kill me."

Gulsoma found hope after escaping

She crawled away that night and hid under a rickshaw.  When the rickshaw driver found Gulsoma, broken and bleeding, he listened to her story and took her to the police. She was hospitalized immediately.

"The doctor at the hospital who treated me said, 'I wish I could take you to the village square and show all the people what happened to you, so no one would ever do something like this again,'" Gulsoma says.

It took her a full month to recover from her last beating. But the fear and psychological trauma may never go away.

"I was happy to have a bed and food at the hospital," she says. "But I was thinking that when I get better they will give me back to the family."

However, Gulsoma says when the police questioned the family, the father-in-law lied and tried to tell them she had epilepsy and had fallen down and hurt herself. But the neighbor who had helped Gulsoma confirmed the story of her beatings and torture.

The police arrested her father-in-law and "husband." They told her, she says, they would keep them in jail unless she asked for their release.

"Everyone was crying when they heard my story," Gulsoma says.

Gulsoma says she stayed at an orphanage in Kandahar, but was the only girl in the facility. Eventually, her story was brought to the attention of the Ministry of Women's Affairs.

The toll of torture

Gulsoma was then brought to a Kabul orphanage, where she lives today. She takes off her baseball cap and shows us a bald spot, almost like a medieval monk's tonsure, on the crown of her head where she was scalded.

She then turns her back and raises her shirt to reveal a sad map of scar tissue and keloids from cuts, bruises and the boiling water.

Haroon and I look at each other with disbelief. Her life's tragic story is etched upon her back.

Yet she continues to smile. She doesn't ask for pity. She seems more concerned about us as she reads the shock on our faces.

"I feel better now," she says. "I have friends at the orphanage. But every night I'm still afraid the family will come here and pick me up."

Gulsoma also says that when the sun goes down, she sometimes begins to shiver involuntarily — a reaction to the seven years of sleeping outdoors, sometimes in the bitter cold of the desert night.

She says she believes there are other girls like her in Kandahar, maybe elsewhere in Afghanistan, and that she wants to study human rights and one day go back to help them.

As we walk outside to take some pictures, I ask her if, after all she's been through, she thinks it will be harder to trust, to believe that there are actually good people in the world.

"No," she says, quickly.

"I didn't expect anyone would help me but God. I was really surprised that there were also nice people: the neighbor, the rickshaw driver, the police," she says. "I pray for those who helped release me."

Looking directly into the camera, she smiles as if nothing bad had ever happened to her in her entire life.

"I think that all people are good people," she says, "except for those that hurt me."

I wish I could post the link, due to advertisment I can't.
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« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2006, 03:22:12 PM »

A Birth-Based Recipe for Australia Becoming a Muslim Nation

by Chad Groening
March 22, 2006

(ChristiansUnite.com) - - A pro-family organization dedicated to ending the overpopulation myth says falling birth rates in Australia could dramatically change the long-term future of that country.

Recently an Australian-based Muslim imam bragged that with that nation's low birth rates, the continent could become Muslim-dominated with the next 50 years. Muslims currently make up between 1.5 and 3 percent of the Australian population, and average a birth rate of 2.7 children per woman -- considerably higher than the nationwide average of 1.7. While those statistics somewhat mirror the increasing Muslim population in Europe, Joseph D'Agostino of the Population Research Institute says Australia is not yet Europe.

"The danger that Europe is facing is all these unassimilated Muslims who could easily be in the majority in some of these countries in 50 years or so," says D'Agostino. "Australia's situation is the immigrants could be in the majority in 50 years or so, but most of those people will not be Muslim."

But PRI's vice president for communications says while most Australian immigrants come from non-Islamic countries like China, the immigration patterns could change. He sees that as the only way the imam's prediction could come to pass.

"[Nearby] countries like Malaysia and Indonesia, which are [predominantly] Muslim, still have relatively high birth rates -- and those countries could, in the future, become greater sources of immigrants for Australia, which is going to need laborers," he observes. According to D'Agostino, countries from which Australia receives many of its immigrants now have very low birth rates, resulting in a labor shortage in those countries over the next couple of decades.

"So the immigration from those countries may really drop," he says. "And therefore, if the immigration patterns change, it is possible for Australia to become a Muslim nation much faster."

In a recent column for Human Events Online, D'Agostino says that regardless how "Islamic" Australia should become, the character of the country will change due to factors such as high rates of immigration and low birth rates among the native population. "Those who value Australia's Western, English, ordered, and Christian-influenced culture should be concerned," he writes. "Unfortunately, Australians aren't concerned enough to produce their future generations."

A Birth-Based Recipe for Australia Becoming a Muslim Nation

Additional information on ChristiansUnite.com is available on the Internet at http://www.christiansunite.com/
Copyright © 2003 ChristiansUnite.com. All rights reserved.
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« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2006, 01:07:31 AM »

Official: 7 arrested in Sears Tower plot

By KELLI KENNEDY, Associated Press Writer 1 hour, 3 minutes ago

MIAMI - Seven people were arrested Thursday in connection with the early stages of a plot to attack Chicago's Sears Tower and other buildings in the U.S., including the FBI office here, a federal law enforcement official said.

As part of the raids tied to the arrests, FBI agents swarmed a warehouse in Miami's Liberty City area, using a blowtorch to take off a metal door. One neighbor said the suspects had been sleeping in the warehouse while running what seemed to be a "military boot camp."

The official told The Associated Press the alleged plotters were mainly Americans with no apparent ties to al-Qaida or other foreign terrorist organizations. He spoke on condition of anonymity so as not to pre-empt news conferences planned for Friday in Washington and Miami.

Miami U.S. Attorney R. Alexander Acosta said in a statement that the investigation was an ongoing operation and that more details would be released Friday.

"There is no imminent threat to Miami or any other area because of these operations," said Richard Kolko, spokesman for FBI headquarters in Washington. He declined further comment.

FBI Director Robert Mueller, questioned about the case during an appearance on CNN's "Larry King Live," said he couldn't offer many details because "it's an ongoing operation."

"We are conducting a number of arrests and searches" in Miami, Mueller said, which were expected to be wrapped up Friday morning.

Managers of the Sears Tower, the nation's tallest building, said in a statement that they speak regularly with the FBI and local law enforcement about terror threats and that Thursday "was no exception."

"Law enforcement continues to tell us that they have never found evidence of a credible terrorism threat against Sears Tower that has gone beyond criminal discussions," the statement said.

Residents living near the warehouse said the men taken into custody described themselves as Muslims and had tried to recruit young people to join their apparently militaristic group.

The residents said FBI agents spent several hours in the neighborhood showing photos of the suspects and seeking information. They said the men, who appeared to be in their teens or 20s, had lived in the area about a year.

The men slept in the warehouse, said Tashawn Rose, 29. "They would come out late at night and exercise. It seemed like a military boot camp that they were working on there. They would come out and stand guard."

She talked to one of the men about a month ago: "They seemed brainwashed. They said they had given their lives to Allah."

Rose said the men tried to recruit her younger brother and nephew for a karate class. "It was weird," she said.

Benjamin Williams, 17, said the group had young children with them sometimes. Sometimes, he added, the men "would cover their faces. Sometimes they would wear things on their heads, like turbans."

Xavier Smith, who attends the nearby United Christian Outreach, said the men would often come by the church and ask for water.

"They were very private," said Smith, 33. "The spoke with like an accent, sort of a Jamaican accent."

The warehouse owner declined comment. "I heard the news just like you guys," George F. Mobassaleh told the AP. "I can't talk to you."

Gov. Jeb Bush was briefed on the situation Thursday, according to his spokeswoman, Alia Faraj.

"We have great confidence in the federal, state and local law enforcement agencies who are committed to keeping our country safe," Faraj said.

She added that there has been greater communication between state and federal agencies since the 2001 terror attacks.

Security at the 110-floor Sears Tower, a Chicago landmark, was ramped up after the Sept. 11 attacks, and the 103rd-floor skydeck was closed for about a month and a half.

A spokesman for Gov. Rod Blagojevich said Illinois officials had been in contact with the FBI about the arrests. He would not comment further, referring additional questions to the FBI.

The FBI's headquarters in Miami sits near a residential neighborhood just east of Interstate 95.

A huge crowd — up to 250,000 people — was expected downtown Friday for a parade to honor the NBA champion Miami Heat. Security measures consistent with such an event were in place, city officials said, and the raids were not expected to affect it.

Several terrorism investigations have had south Florida links. Several of the Sept. 11 hijackers lived and trained in the area, including ringleader Mohamed Atta, and several plots by Cuban-Americans against Fidel Castro's government have been based in Miami.

Jose Padilla, a former resident once accused of plotting to detonate a radioactive bomb in the U.S., is charged in Miami with being part of a support cell for Islamic extremists. Padilla's trial is set for this fall.

Official: 7 arrested in Sears Tower plot
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« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2006, 04:53:07 PM »

Hamas: Islam will conquer US and Britain

By Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook, June 22, 2006

Hamas Video
A Hamas video just released on their web site focuses on the broader Palestinian Islamic ideology, promising the eventual conquering and subjugation of Christian countries under Islam. The way Israel "ran" from Gaza after terror is presented as the prototype for future Israeli and Western behavior in the face of Islamic force.

The video is a collection of statements by Hamas terrorist leader, Yasser Ghalban, killed last week by Palestinians, in the ongoing internal fighting.


The following is the transcript of selections from the Hamas video:

"We will rule the nations, by Allah's will, the USA will be conquered, Israel will be conquered, Rome and Britain will be conquered…
The Jihad for Allah... is the way of Truth and the way for Salvation and the way which will lead us to crush the Jews and expel them from our country Palestine. Just as the Jews ran from Gaza, the Americans will run from Iraq and Afghanistan and the Russians will run from Chechnya, and the Indian will run from Kashmir, and our children will be released from Guantanamo. The prisoners will be released by Allah's will, not by peaceful means and not by agreements, but they will be released by the sword, they will be released by the gun".

The video identifies itself as from the "Al-Qassam Brigades Media Office." "Al-Qassam Brigades" is the name the Hamas calls its military wing.

Al-Qaeda Video
The ideology is similar to the Al-Qaeda ideology, and this can be seen by viewing an Al-Qaeda video seen now on many sites on the Internet, likewise anticipating battles with other religions throughout the world. "They Are Coming" is 12 minute collection of scenes of Al-Qaeda's training around the world: Afghanistan, Iraq, Chechnya, Eritrea, Indonesia, Kashmir, Somalia, Philippines, UK, Algeria and Pakistan. This propaganda video addresses the American public with captions in English, images of dead and injured American soldiers, and threats such as: "They Are Coming", "Start digging your graves", and ends with a burning US flag.


Taking credit for the video is: "Al-Qaeda's 'Jihad Media Battalion'
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« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2006, 05:45:29 PM »

And God will conquer them.

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« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2006, 06:29:44 PM »

And God will conquer them.


You know it brother, God always wins hands down!!
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« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2006, 01:43:12 AM »

Officials say terror suspects lacked the means to match ambitions

Robert Nolin, Vanessa Blum and Madeline Baro Diaz
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Posted June 24 2006
 
Miami--Seven South Floridians accused of domestic terrorism were long on ambition, according to prosecutors, but they were far short on substance, according to neighbors and relatives.

A federal indictment unsealed Friday said the seven young men arrested for attempting to establish an al-Qaida terrorist cell harbored dreams of forming an "Islamic Army" in Liberty City to unleash a "full ground war" against targets in the United States.



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But the alleged plot didn't get far. The men acquired combat boots, photographed targets and recited a loyalty pledge, or "bayat" to al-Qaida -- then told a government informant their organization was having "various problems."

"They certainly had the will," Miami U.S. Attorney R. Alexander Acosta said Friday. "They were searching for the way."

Those arrested are: Patrick "Brother Pat" Abraham, 26, North Miami; Burson "Brother B" Augustin, 21, Miami; Rotschild "Brother Rot" Augustine, 22, Miami-Dade County; Narseal "Prince Manna" Batiste, 32, Miami; Naudimar "Brother Naudy" Herrera, 22, Miami; LyglensonÖ "Brother Levi" Lemorin, 31, Miami; and Stanley Grant "Brother Sunni" Phanor, 31, Miami.

Each was indicted on two counts of conspiring to support a foreign terrorist organization, one count of conspiring to destroy buildings by use of explosives, and one count of conspiring to levy war against the government. Each, if convicted, faces a maximum sentence of 70 years.

The men's families, however, insisted the group was more humanitarian than military, and incapable of what they are accused of plotting.

"This is a very spiritual thing. It has nothing to do with terrorism," said Sylvain Plantin, cousin of one of the defendants.

Leo Casino, a musician who lives near the Liberty City warehouse where some of the men were arrested Thursday, agreed. He said the suspects were vegetarians who fed the homeless.

The group didn't carry guns, Casino said, and "the neighbors weren't afraid of them."

The case may be a tough one for the government to prove because it weighs heavily on an informant's involvement, said Jeffrey Harris, president of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.

"If the authorities created the crime, that's classic entrapment," he added.

According to the indictment, the seven men plotted to "kill all the devils we can" by blowing up FBI buildings in downtown Miami and four other cities, as well as Chicago's 110-story tall Sears Tower.

"They hoped for their attacks to be, quote, 'just as good or greater than 9-11,'." U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales said in Washington, D.C.

But the planned attacks, deputy FBI dDirector John Pistole said from Washington, were "more aspirational than operational."

The group never attained any bombs or weapons, but Acosta said the government decided to act before the plot developed further.

"I don't think anyone would want us to wait until they had acquired the capability to execute their plan," Acosta said.

Batiste first came to the attention of law enforcement in October 2005, when, according to court documents, he asked an individual who was traveling to the Middle East to help him find foreign Islamic extremists to fund his mission. Instead, court documents say, the person alerted the FBI, which in turn infiltrated the group.

By then, the men had caught the attention of many of their neighbors in Liberty City, a predominantly black Miami area indelibly scarred by the city's worst race riots in 1980.

The charging document said that starting in November, the men met with the informant and pledged an oath to al-Qaida in hopes of obtaining uniforms, cash, guns, radios and vehicles. In December, the informant produced eight pairs of military boots, a cell phone, $3,500 and a digital camera to photograph targets.

 Batiste, a construction worker who once lived in Chicago, spoke about taking down the Sears Tower. "If I can put up a building, I should definitely know how to take one down," the brief quoted him as saying.

Batiste also said he wanted to use land he owned in Louisiana to set up an al-Qaida-style training camp, according to the brief.



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Though the government said the defendants dreamed grand schemes, they actually had a hard time maintaining their warehouse headquarters. A neighbor said the structure, near Northwest 15th Avenue and 62nd Street, had no water or electricity, and was lit by candles.

The seven apparently lived at the warehouse and variously told neighbors they were building a temple or starting a karate school. The warehouse's interior resembled a living room, with chairs and tables, said Marilyn Rose, who lives across the street. During the day, the men dressed normally, Rose said. Her daughter, Latia Williams, 14, said at night they wore black and exercised behind the warehouse. "They looked like a cult," Rose said.

Though the government called the defendants a "radical Islamic group," Casino said that may be innacurate. "I think it was a hodgepodge of religions -- Muslim, Christian, even Hebrew Israelite," he said.

Each defendant except Phanor and Lemorin appeared in Miami federal court Friday. Batiste, the alleged ringleader, spoke softly and displayed little emotion as he answered questions.

Batiste said he was self-employed, earning roughly $30,000 annually. He said he had four children and owns no property worth more than $5,000.

Magistrate Patrick White ruled all were entitled to be represented at no cost. The defendants are scheduled to be back in court June 30 for a bond hearing.

The U.S. Attorney's Office said Abraham was here illegally from Haiti. Others were native-born or had attained citizenship.

Lemorin and Phanor grew up on the same street in a working class neighborhood in northwest Miami, family members said. Both were Haitian-American.

Lemorin was arrested in Atlanta, where his mother, Julian Olibrice, said he had been living for the past few months.

She sobbed outside her Miami home Friday, and denied any wrongdoing by her son. "My son never go to jail. My son never had problem," Olibrice said. "My son did nothing."

Phanor and Lemorin, a single father of two, were intrigued by Batiste's view of the Bible and his martial arts skills, said Lemorin's cousin Plantin. The men were in a Bible study group with Batiste, who also got them construction jobs.

Phanor's mother, Elizene Phanor, said her son helped support her, a sister and nieces and nephews. "He don't have the heart to kill people," she said.

Officials say terror suspects lacked the means to match ambitions
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« Reply #11 on: June 24, 2006, 11:38:24 AM »

You know it brother, God always wins hands down!!

              Those of us "in Christ" already know the ending to this story!!

        "Victory in JESUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!


                  Prasing HIM...Tina
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« Reply #12 on: September 26, 2007, 02:50:06 PM »

British history 'needs rewrite' to include muslims
By Brian Wheeler
Political reporter, BBC News, at the Labour conference

British history should be rewritten to make it "more inclusive", says Trevor Phillips, the head of the new human rights and equality commission.

He said Muslims were also part of the national story and "sometimes we have to go back into the tapestry and insert some threads that were lost".

He quoted the example of the Spanish Armada, which was held up by the Turks at the request of Queen Elizabeth I.

"It was the Turks who saved us," Mr Phillips told a Labour fringe meeting.

Mr Phillips said he had also been persuaded of the need for a written constitution, saying the UK needed to be "more explicit in our understanding about how we treat each other".

He said population changes and immigration were happening at unprecedented rate and there was "no going back".

So it was no longer enough to assume people would inherit the values which bound the country together.

Speaking at an event organised by The Smith Institute, the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Young Foundation, he said it was important that new arrivals learned English.

Must be 'native' and 'right for us'

But he also stressed the importance of celebrating Britain's "human rights culture" and said the government had to be more specific about what it meant to be British - rather than simply stressing values such as "freedom" which were universal.

"We have to have a more explicit set of understandings which we can all share about how we treat each other and we talk to each other and they have to be based on real values.

"I think the prime minister is right to talk about values but I think what is important is not the abstract values. Freedom is shared by all sorts of people."

If there was a written constitution it would have to be "an expression which is native and right for us".

He also stressed the importance of a national story in forging a shared sense of identity.

"I think we have to rewrite, redevelop, our national story so that it is inclusive.

"And what I mean by that in practice is this: not that we have to re-write what we are but sometimes we have to go back into the tapestry and insert some threads that were lost."

'Stormy times'

He said the abolition of the slave trade, for example, could be retold as being part of the English radical tradition.

"Part of the job of heritage is to cognitize - give physical existence - to that national story.

"And if there is a practical thing, I would say it is that we need to revisit some parts of that national heritage. to rewrite some parts of that national story to tell the whole story.

"When we talk about the Armada it's only now that we are beginning to realise that part of it is Muslims," Mr Phillips told the meeting.

"It was the Turks who saved us, because they held up Armada at the request of Elizabeth I.

"Now let's rewrite that story, let's use our heritage to rewrite that story so it is truly inclusive.

"That's the reason for this so we have an identity which brings us together, which binds us in the stormy times that we are going to have in the next century."

British history 'needs rewrite' to include muslims
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« Reply #13 on: September 26, 2007, 02:51:49 PM »

Tension between Sunnis, Shiites emerging in USA
Growing diversity of Muslim community here challenges tradition of assimilation

By Cathy Lynn Grossman
USA TODAY

When Muslim journalist S. Hussain Zaidi toured the USA recently, he was stunned by what he saw: Shiite and Sunni Muslims, whose conflicts have fueled the war in Iraq and tension in the Middle East and beyond, were praying together in U.S. mosques.

"It is something we never see at home," says Zaidi, of India. "They want to kill each other everywhere except in the USA."

For years, Sunnis and Shiites in this country have worked together to build mosques, support charities, register voters and hold massive feasts for Eid al-Fitr (on Oct. 13 this year in the USA), the celebration at the end of the holy month of Ramadan.

Now there are small signs of tension emerging in America's Muslim community that are raising concerns among many of its leaders. They worry that the bitter divisions that have caused so much bloodshed abroad are beginning to have an impact here. Such concerns are rising at a time when the USA's Muslim population has grown from fewer than 1 million in 1990 to nearly 2.5 million today, with two of three Muslims born overseas, according to a survey by the Pew Research Center.

"You have people who recently arrived from other places where things may have gotten out of hand," says Sheik Hamza Yusuf, the U.S.-born co-founder of the nation's first Muslim seminary, the Zaytuna Institute, in Berkeley, Calif. "It takes just one deranged person with a cousin back home who died in a suicide bombing to create trouble here."

Several recent incidents pointing to rising tension among Sunnis and Shiites here have led Muslim leaders to call on their followers to reach out to those in other sects. None of the incidents has been violent, but Yusuf and other leaders worry that these could be signs of increasingly cool relations between Sunnis and Shiites here or undermine other Americans' views of a religion that has been under particular scrutiny since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Among the incidents:

•Shiite mosques and businesses in the Detroit area were vandalized in January, and a Shiite restaurant owner said he had received a threatening call mentioning his sect.

Authorities have yet to identify the vandals, but some Shiite Muslims told local news media they believe Sunnis were behind the broken windows and graffiti because Shiites had celebrated publicly when former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, a Sunni, was executed in December by Iraq's Shiite-led government.

•On several Muslim websites in recent months, Sunnis and Shiites from Seattle to Manhattan have traded accusations that they have been rebuffed from worshiping at each other's mosques.

Meanwhile, a small Sunni group known as the Islamic Thinkers Society, which has branded Shiites as heretics and is known for distributing provocative leaflets in New York's Times Square, has gone online to urge its followers to "avoid" contact with a range of Islamic studies scholars and theologians, several at U.S. colleges.

•Muslim Student Associations on a few campuses, such as Rutgers University in New Brunswick, N.J., and the University of Michigan at Dearborn, have disagreed so vehemently over which sect could lead prayers that students sometimes have refused to pray together.

The factionalism on those campuses has cooled recently, but many observers worry it could return. They say it's partly a reflection of the rising numbers of Muslim students. "If you have nine Muslims in one MSA, they have to get along," says Muslim sociologist Eboo Patel, 31, of Chicago. "If you have 90, there's enough to break into splinter groups."

Other Muslim activists, scholars and imams, who lead the important Friday communal prayers in the nation's 1,000 mosques, agree that the episodes partly reflect their community's growth and diversity in America.

They fear such incidents could fuel "Islamophobia" — their term for irrational prejudice against anyone Islamic.

"The sad reality is that there are extremists" who selectively misuse Islamic teachings to justify their violence, says Ingrid Mattson, a professor of Islamic Studies at Hartford Seminary in Hartford, Conn., and the president of the USA's largest Muslim civic and social group, the Islamic Society of North America.

At the society's annual Labor Day weekend gathering — an event in suburban Chicago that was part academic seminar, part community rally and part reunion for more than 30,000 families — Mattson's keynote speech urged Muslims to "look beyond the seventh-century tribal society into which Islam was first revealed."

Sunnis and Shiites share belief in the five pillars of Islam — submission to God, daily prayer, fasting, charity and a pilgrimage to Mecca at least once in any able Muslim's life. But they split over Islam's spiritual leadership.

The schism dates to the death of the prophet Mohammed in A.D. 632. Shiites believe that a relative, Ali ibn Abi Talib, had been named successor and that his son Ali, assassinated in 661, and grandson Hussein inherited the rightful imam's miraculous knowledge and powers.

Sunnis, however, believed the Muslim community should elect its leader based on scholarly merit, not heredity. They chose Abu Bakr, a companion of the prophet, instead.

By 680, the sects were at war. Hussein was killed at the battle of Karbala in modern-day Iraq that year, and to this day, Shiites mourn him and other martyred imams.

Since then, like Christians who waged religious wars across Europe for centuries over how to interpret the Bible or baptize a believer, Muslim sects and the legal schools within them have developed differing views on faith and practice, each certain that salvation is at stake.

Among the world's estimated 1.4 billion Muslims, about 85% are Sunni and about 15% are Shiite.

For all the conflicts among Muslims abroad, those in America historically not only have gotten along, but assimilated to the point that their sects have become secondary. In a 2006 survey of 1,000 Muslim registered voters, about 12% identified themselves as Shiite, 36% said they were Sunni, and 40% called themselves "just a Muslim," according to the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).

"America gives people the unique opportunity to leave cultural, historical baggage behind," CAIR spokesman Ibrahim Hooper says. "We can serve as a model to the world of an Islam that is clear, calm, articulate, forthright and civil."

Even so, it's an opportunity a few Muslims in the USA refuse.

"I've seen people fight over how close their toes can be when they kneel in prayer. It's got to stop," says Imam Mohamed Magid of the All Dulles Area Muslim Society (ADAMS), which has seven mosques in the Washington, D.C., area.

ADAMS is primarily Sunni, but Magid has his own way of quelling sectarianism.

"We teach all the scholars and traditions, and we invite Shia and Sunni imams to lead prayers," says the Sudanese-born Magid. "We don't have to fight."

He says he was heartened when 10,000 people at the Islamic Society event cheered for a new Muslim Code of Honor, pledging Sunni and Shiite respect and cooperation.

The code, drafted by the Muslim Public Affairs Council, a civil rights group, initially was circulated in Southern California after the Detroit vandalism incidents. It moved quickly to Michigan and then to the leadership of several major U.S. and Canadian Muslim political, social and religious groups.

In June, a half-dozen groups launched an "American Muslim Iraq Peace Initiative" intended to build harmony and make clear that "America cannot be a scene of conflict," says Nihad Awad, executive director of CAIR.

Besides the efforts to encourage dialogue, there's another phenomenon that could help ward off sectarian friction here: the inexorable force of assimilation.

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« Reply #14 on: September 26, 2007, 02:52:14 PM »

At a time when rising numbers of American Protestants are attending non-denominational community churches and referring to themselves simply as Christians rather than Baptists, Methodists or Lutherans, a similar thing is happening among Muslims in the USA.

"It's a whole new era," says Patel. "The bulk of the American Muslim community is overwhelmingly young, under age 40. And they are experiencing a huge momentum toward 'big-tent Islam.' "

"We don't want to be defined by the classifications of history and the Middle East. The Quran is our authority," says Salim Al-Marayati, executive director of the Muslim Public Affairs Council. Al-Marayati, a Shiite married to a Sunni, expects to see 10,000 Muslims of all sects celebrate the Eid with the Islamic Center of Southern California next month in Los Angeles.

He calls himself "Sushi," the popular term for a combination of Sunni and Shiite. Once the glib nickname for the children of intermarried couples, it has become shorthand for Muslims who blur sectarian lines.

All that mixing and melding comes to life at the Islamic Society gathering's annual bazaar and the matrimonial meet-up events — the Islamic equivalent of speed dating for singles whose religion bans Western-style dating.

The five-acre bazaar at a convention center in Rosemont, outside Chicago, is a cacophony of blaring music and kaleidoscopic colors, with booths featuring honey, saris, music, travel, bank services, real estate, silver, shampoo, funeral services — and ideas, as well.

There were Sunni and Shiite book stands, promotions for online education programs, and booths for major Muslim political and social groups. Several federal agencies had stands just aisles away from where entrepreneurs hawked T-shirts emblazoned with slogans such as "Frisk Me, I'm Muslim."

At the adjacent Hyatt Hotel grand ballroom, a more familiar form of unity is the focus: marriage.

At each of two "matrimonial events," 200 women, ages 18 and up, were seated at 40 tables, with an empty seat between each woman so 200 men could rotate around the room, chatting with each woman for a few minutes before jumping to the next chair.

Zipping from chair to chair in the ballroom, "I don't think I even had time to ask a girl whether she was Sunni or Shia," says Faizan Arshad, a 24-year-old medical student in Chicago who's discussing a future with a woman he met that day. "To split hairs about sect did not seem the best use of my time," he says in a later e-mail.

Arshad is typical, says Patel, author of Acts of Faith: The Story of an American Muslim. Patel, a Shiite, is married to a Sunni and says they want their "Sushi" child to grow up "fluent in all the multiple rituals and practices of Islam."

Or perhaps Patel's child will be more like Sarah Soliman, 17, of Cincinnati, daughter of Egyptian-born Sunni parents and a conference organizer for the Islamic Society's teen wing, Muslim Youth of North America.

"I didn't know until I was in middle school that there were any differences among us," Sarah says, "and I still don't get the split."

Tension between Sunnis, Shiites emerging in USA
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