kiss Quran

ISIS and Grooming gangs: Don’t blame Islam

The UK is in the grip of an appalling scandal involving tens, maybe hundreds of thousands of vast-majority white girls – teen girls and child girls – abused by gangs of Pakistani Muslim men. The abuse is nationwide through the Midlands to the North, almost always in Labour controlled areas, and often involving criminal conspiracy to cover it up by corrupt and colluding police officers, council workers, care system workers, and elected councillors.

In rare cases parts of the establishment, rather than criminally conspiring – and here I name the Guardian newspaper – simply colluded in the abuse by refusing to comment on the race and religion of the perpetrators and victims. They would seize on the small, but significant number of P-M victims too or the occasional white male friend who joined the P-M gang and say “Look! See! It’s not about race or religious hate!’

But for these men it was, and by refusing to acknowledge that we turn away from a pattern of abuse and abusers that can help us catch more offenders. You might as well say that the Catholic priest scandal had nothing to do with the Catholic community because most child rapists are not Catholic priests. The latter is true but it is also irrelevant.

Equally, #ISIS is burying children alive, forcing other children to become soldier killers, raping and enslaving Yazidi women and children, and cutting the heads off journalists, including pro-Arab world journalists like Steven Sotloff. And all of this is done in the name of Islam.

It comes after many other horrors done in the same name. Our “ally” Saudi Arabia just beheaded 19 men and flogs women for driving, for example. 

Yet when I go on Twitter and both insist on addressing the crucial fact that the organized gang-rape gangs of Labour towns are Pakistani Muslim males, and at the same time defend Islam, the faith, and the vastly peaceable and law-abiding Muslim majority, people often accuse me of being inconsistent or not being plain-spoken enough. ‘The Religion of Peace’ said sarcastically is the contemptuous thing many tweeters say. Then they insist that #SCIS (So-Called Islamic State) are “ordinary Muslims” because the Quran says (cite controversial verse that read out of context looks hate-mongering). “Say what you like, Christianity doesn’t do that.” “Judaism doesn’t do that.” 

But the fact is, this is not true. Both our faiths DID do that. ALL major faiths have self-identifying adherents who justify torture and death in the name of their religion. I am a Catholic. In the 1400s-1600s, my church’s hierarchy was a morass of vile sin as well as housing saints and good people beyond telling. We tortured Jews in the Inquisition. We tied Protestants to the stake and burned them alive as they did to us. The tortures and deaths we meted out were as bad or worse as anything ISIS is doing now, in the name of Allah (SWT) the Compassionate, the Merciful – only we meted them out in the name of Christ Jesus, who told us “Love one another, as I have loved you.”

This Catholicism was not a different faith to the one practiced by Pope Francis or Pope St. John Paul II. It was the same faith, interpreted badly to the point of being totally the opposite to what God intended, to enable the work of the devil. It is #SCIS and rape gangs twisted view of Islam that has led them to see other faiths and races as less than themselves; to rape women and children, when the prophet Muhammed (pbuh) said “Women and men are like the teeth of a comb” and orders that men be kind to women, and have sex only with their wives. All the negative traits ascribed to Islam can be found to exactly the same degree in the Holy Bible. 

And if you be apprehensive that you will not be able to do justice to the orphans, you may marry two or three or four women whom you choose. But if you apprehend that you might not be able to do justice to them, then marry only one wife, or marry those who have fallen in your possession. Surah 4:3

Now, you can say this allows polygamy if you like. But a liberal interpretation of the verse would be that it forbids polygamy since no man can do justice to two wives at once. Compare to Judeo-Xtn Deuteronomy, 21:15-16

If a man has two wives-one beloved and the other despised-and they bear him sons, the beloved one and the despised one, and the firstborn son is from the despised one. Then it will be, on the day he [the husband] bequeaths his property to his sons, that he will not be able to give the son of the beloved [wife] birthright precedence over the son of the despised [wife]-the [real] firstborn son.

Again, this shows only the protection, or advancement, of human rights from the status quo at the time. The Islamophobes like to quote Quran verses about beating wives, or stoning to death, or attacking Jews. But let us compare: as #SCIS buries children alive, let me quote the Holy Bible, 1 Samuel 15:3

“Now go and attack Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have; do not spare them, but kill both man and woman, child and infant, ox and sheep, camel and donkey.”

Indeed, read the whole of 1 Samuel 15 if you want to see why I could never be a born-again Christian, who takes each verse in the Bible literally. It is impossible to take the Bible literally as it contradicts itself, often. 1 Samuel 15 is not compatible with a loving God, who does not desire the slaughter of infants, and who punishes Saul because he did not destroy everything but left a few cattle alive. 

And as to the verses regularly trotted out as to the inferior status of women in Islam, there are just as many in my Catholic Bible. Yet although I believe the Bible to be the inspired Word of God it does not mean that I need regard it all as literally true. One has to do a lot of dancing around to make 1:Samuel 15 fit with the vision of a loving God. This blog does a nice job of that

(in sum, he argues that the human author mistakenly makes the point ‘man must obey God’ by using a wrong story where Amalek is not not real, historical people, but  symbol of whatever might stand in the way of the people of God.)

To take one small example of how interpretation of holy texts is needed to get to the truth: St. John Paul II revolutionized millennia of Catholic teaching on the role of wives in marriage “Wives, be subject to your husbands as to the Lord” – like in the Quran, a verse than puts women beneath men – not by overturning Catholic teaching (which can never happen) but by adding to the context so that the meaning is completely reversed. This verse can only be understood, he said, in light of the preceding one “Be subject to another out of reverence for Christ.” And thus, taught the Holy Father to the whole Church from the Throne of Peter (technical language meaning this is binding) YES, a wife must submit to her husband but a husband must also submit to his wife. And so they are equal.

So – like the Saint, Pope John Paul II, I honour Islam, and the Quran, and the Hadiths. I see all the references to stoning to death, offering daughters for rape, and the like, within my own Bible. It is understanding and context, and interpretation, that takes us to a place where we can see more clearly what God intended for us. 

 

On marriage:

Be subject to one another, out of reverence for Christ – Ephesians 5:21

They (your wives) are your garment and you are a garment for them. – Quran 2:187

 

On the equal creation of men and women

 

So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. – Genesis 1:27

 

“O mankind! Reverence your Guardian-Lord, who created you from a single person, created, of like nature, his mate, and from this pair scattered (like seeds) countless men and women. Reverence Allah, through Whom you demand your mutual (rights), and reverence the wombs (that bore you); for Allah ever watches over you.” – Quran 4:1

 

And on the true teaching of Islam on women, against which all other verses must be interpreted:

And for women are rights over men similar to those of men over women. – Quran 2:228

 

Finally, if #SCIS and the rape gangs truly followed Islam – and if the Catholic, Protestant, and Jewish killers of centuries past had truly followed our own faiths, we would have been bound by this one, overarching truth, repeated throughout every major faith’s scriptures:

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; – Lamentations 3:22

In the name of Allah, the entirely merciful, the especially merciful. – Quran 1:1

 

Amen and Ameen, and so God have mercy on us all.  

 

 

 

Assange turns Snowden into a traitor

assange esthr

How do I loathe thee? Let me count the ways.

Truly, Julian Assange is one of the most awful people in the world. A rabid egomaniac with a contempt for women and for the lives of others, he is stinking up the Ecuadorean Embassy while refusing to stand trial for rape in Sweden. His speeches full of self-puffery from the balcony never mention the women who are waiting for justice; women his groupies have been keen to name and slander on the internet.

The guy who put the Ass in Assange has voluntarily jailed himself in a small room, to avoid the possibility of jail in a humane and airy Swedish prison.

How I laughed when hearing that Ecuador, having privately peacocked all over Britain, Sweden and the USA through its grandiloquent offer of asylum, is now desperate to get rid of him, so desperate it’s recalling its ambassador. Hahhahahaha. Excuse me. Laughter break. Hahahahahahaaa. I don’t recall a more satisfying moment in news this year than reading the account of the new consul talking desperately to minister Hugo Swire MP: “What do we do about the stone in the shoe?” Swire (magnificently) “Not our stone. Not our shoe.”

Hhahahahaahaaaaa! Hilarious.

Not quite so funny is the unraveling tale and fate of Edward Snowden. In my opinion, he blew the whistle on something important and unconstitutional. An earlier article on this blog asked for a Presidential pardon for him. I believed it was warranted then. No longer.

Snowden was different from Assange. He revealed the existence of an appallingly widespread snooping programme and lies to Congress, but he released only selective data, taking care not to put American lives at risk. Julian Assange, who I believe is as good as a murderer, did not give a damn what happened to those who worked with American forces against the Taliban:

“Declan Walsh, the Guardian’s Islamabad correspondent, recalls one tense evening: “We went out to a Moorish restaurant, Moro, with the two German reporters. David Leigh broached the problem again with Julian. The response floored me. ‘Well, they’re informants,’ he said. ‘So, if they get killed, they’ve got it coming to them. They deserve it.’ There was, for a moment, silence around the table. I think everyone was struck by what a callous thing that was to say.”

What a guy.

However, the first alarm bells rung when from Hong Kong Snowden praised Assange. He should know better. But the Wikileaks cabal have money and power, enough to fly him out of the country. Julian Assange (dreadful personal hygiene along with the monomania) then totally overstepped his bounds, strong-arming the supine Ecuadorean staff at the London Embassy into offering him a travel document and giving interviews in which he, Assange, seemed to speak for Ecuador. Hahaha, Correa! You utter loser! You feel clever with all those big interviews now, don’t you? And that grant to the USA for education on human rights! Correa is paying a price for his peacock moment – Julian Assange as his house guest – and he can pay it for the next sixty years for all I care.  He slapped down Assange, did a screeching reverse on America after taking a call from Joe Biden, said his consul had overstepped her bounds, and now Snowden’s Wikileaks lawyer companion is a millstone around his neck.

Because Wikileaks are indisputably enemies of the United States. Assange is more spy than traitor, as he is not an American, but by associating himself with these people, Edward Snowden is betraying his country and becoming an international pariah. Worse than that, he has paid the price for Assange’s troops getting him out of Hong Kong – he has handed over to Wikileaks a complete data dump of all he stole. While he, Snowden, only revealed non-threatening evidence of the existence of the PRISM program, he has handed to a man with an utter contempt for American life all the data he stole. He must now bear responsibility for whatever that weak-willed trial dodger and misogynist Assange does with it.

And Assange, smarting from the slap from the hosts whose welcome he probably outstayed about six months ago, lost no time in threatening Ed Snowden and making it clear that he would dump all the files whether Snowden liked it or not.

There is no stopping the publishing process at this stage.  Great care has been taken to make sure that Mr. Snowden can’t be pressured by any state to stop the publication process.

You’re in trouble now, Edward.

There is only one answer for Edward Snowden. Dump Sarah Harrison, your Wikileaks lawyer. State publicly that Wikileaks is threatening you with a complete dump of materials you were careful to only partially release. Call upon Ecudorean President Correa to expel Julian Assange from its Embassy if Wikileaks publishes one line from the NSA dump (incidentally, Ecuador, this is your get-out-of-jail free card to kick Assange out of your London digs. Opportunity knocks, boys, you can turn a crisis into a drama if you move fast). And having done all that, and partially protected the American lives you have endangered by giving data to Wikileaks, come home to America and face the music and let the truth speak for itself.

After all, if what you have done is whistle blowing, it will stand up in the court of public opinion. But Russia? Ecuador? Assange? These are not good people for you to be associating with.

In the meantime, Snowden knocks around the international lounge at a Russian airport like Tom Hanks in The Terminal, which appropriately describes his chances of getting out of this situation with any credit.

PS: I think Assange should stand trial in Sweden for rape. Then he should be extradited back to the UK to stand trial for skipping his bail. Then he should be extradited to the US for trial for espionage, assurances having been given that the death penalty will not be applied. No European country can extradite to the US if the death penalty is a possibility. But Assange should get what’s coming to him. And like the UK, smiling down at Ecuador right now, the US can be very, very patient.

 

photo by Esthr

Asian Grooming Gangs – where are all the other men?

 

don sutherland1In my Sun column yesterday I wrote in praise of Judge Peter Rook QC, a hero to women and children; a brave judge who ripped up the repellently low sentencing guidelines set by the Sentencing Council and threw them out.

Any serious advocate for sentences which reflect the real harm child abuse and gang rape does should read his sentencing remarks. I warn you now that they are unsparing in terms of detail on what was done to the victims, including when they were 12 and 13 years old.

http://www.judiciary.gov.uk/Resources/JCO/Documents/Judgments/sentencing-remarks-hhj-peter-rookqc-r-v-dogar-others.pdf

It takes a lot of guts for a judge to tear up the loathsomely small penalties that the Sentencing Council think should be paid for gang rape of children. Be in no doubt that there is tremendous pressure on judges to pass light sentences, because jail capacity is full to overflowing. (the political answer is twofold – to remove custodial sentences where they are not necessary and to build more prisons. This is a capital infrastructure project that Osborne could usefully spend on; it provides a great many jobs, it means humane modern prison conditions, and it reassures the public who are crying out at timid sentencing).

His Honour Peter Rook QC had the necessary guts. He jailed these inhuman beasts for life, with minimum terms of 20 and 17 years etc. At the end of the blog I will excerpt the legalese with which he did true justice from the bench – the first time I can ever remember that gang rape received an appropriate sentence. God bless this judge; he has struck a blow against rape and child rape and torture that Parliament did not want and the judicial establishment did not want.

But let’s turn away from the brave determination of the man on the bench and on to the shabby cowardice of local police, local social services, and Oxfordshire county council.

We know how these children were ignored. WARNING – I am about to quote from the sentencing remarks of Judge Peter Rook to ask this question:

Why are only seven men in court? Why do the police, and Oxfordshire social services and council, not hunt down the hundreds of men who raped these little girls? Why have the phones and computers not been seized, why are the phone bills not being handed over by the mobile phone providers and pored over by analysts and detectives? WHERE ARE THE OTHER RAPISTS?

If we say “we jailed the ringleaders, job done” are we saying it is OK for a rapist of a twelve year old to walk away? It’s OK to receive a video of a little girl being gang-raped, get in your car and drive hundreds of miles to rape her yourself?

Thames Valley Police, WHERE ARE THE OTHER RAPISTS?

Saying “you let these little girls down” doesn’t being to cover it. You essentially colluded in their rape, trafficking and torture.

Let us look at the judge’s remarks on the other rapists:

“From the time when EF was 13 you started selling her to other men for sex. To use her words this happened “loads of times” over the next few years. Sometimes you would take photos presumably to entice further customers. Clearly it was a commercial operation. You would actually ask customers whether they were satisfied.”

Photos of a 13 year old girl. These photos were emailed, were texted. The men had phones and computers. WHY ARE THE RECIPIENTS NOT BEING HUNTED DOWN?

“There came at time before she (GH) was 13 that both of you Mohammed and Bassam Karrar started to bring strangers to have sex with her…many times…she had to endure depraved sexual demands…you, Mohammed, made videos…”

To whom were these videos sent? WHERE ARE THE OTHER MEN, RAPING A TWELVE YEAR OLD GIRL, TORTURING HER AND FILMING IT?

“Sometimes there were three or four men…Sometimes as many as nine or ten. GH thought that Bassam was taking lots of phone calls in relation to the Wycombe trips”

WHERE ARE THE PHONE RECORDS? WHY ISN’T EVERY ONE OF THOSE BASTARD RAPISTS BEING INTERROGATED BY THE POLICE?

Two men were convicted at the same time as the five ringleaders who were jailed for life; just two. The names of the pigs are Assad Hussein and Zeeshan Ahmed. For their sexual offences against the victims they were jailed for seven years apiece.

Not one of the men who raped the children in High Wycombe. Paddington Station, Shotover Woods, etc, who paid money to torture and rape them, has been arrested.

No social worker has been sacked. The chief constable refuses to resign. So does the chief executive of Oxfordshire county council.

Where are the rapists? Where are the “customers”? Where is justice? WHEN WILL THE SYSTEM SAY EVERY RAPE COUNTS?