Sunday, February 06, 2005

 

COUNTER TERRORISM TALK FEST, LOSING FAITH, THE UN AGAIN! & A THANK YOU

COUNTER TERRORISM INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE
In early February, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is hosting the Counter Terrorism International Conference.

The Conference is an important development for the Kingdom, if in fact it is serious in managing its internal security fears concerning Al Qaeda and related groups operating in the Kingdom.

The issue for the Kingdom is that not only must it come to grips with its internal situation, but it must also show to the international community that it is in fact taking control, and minimizing the threat, not only to its own governance structure, but as a platform (financial, resources, philosophical) for the rest of the region.

As reported (see http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?pagename=JPost/JPArticle/ShowFull&cid=1107575179114) the Saudis have particular governance problems to overcome such as the lack of participatory democracy and transparency in decision making, coupled to particular people movement problems which make the issue of counter terrorism command and control increasingly difficult. In 2004 a report found that: “…Saudi border guards have detained nearly 1 million people attempting to enter illegally into the kingdom and seized more than 10 tons of drugs and 2,000 weapons. Some 30,000 men were detained in the Yemeni border area in July 2004 alone, the report said. In all, 19,000 smuggling attempts were foiled and 8,000 smugglers arrested, it said.”

LOSING FAITH
The London The Times reported about the fate of British Muslims converting to other faiths, in particular to Christianity. The Times wrote gravely that: “While Christians who turn to Islam are feted, the 200,000 Muslims who turn away are faced with abuse, violence and even murder.” (see: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2-1470584,00.html)
The article goes on further: “While those who convert to Islam, such as Cat Stevens, Jemima Khan, and the sons of the Frank Dobson, the former Health Secretary, and Lord Birt, the former BBC Director-General, can publicly celebrate their new religion, those whose faith goes in the other direction face persecution. Mr Hussein, a 39-year-old hospital nurse in Bradford, is one of a growing number of former Muslims in Britain who face not just being shunned by family and community, but attacked, kidnapped, and in some cases killed. There is even a secret underground network to support and protect those who leave Islam. One estimate suggests that as many as 15 per cent of Muslims in Western societies have lost their faith, which would mean that in Britain there are about 200,000 apostates. … Muslims who lose their faith face execution or imprisonment, in line with traditional Muslim teaching, in many Islamic countries, including Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Egypt and Yemen. In the Netherlands, the former Muslim MP Ayan Hirsi Ali had to go into hiding after renouncing her faith on television.”
The particular dilemma that this raises is that in Western multicultural nations, such as Britain, the US, Australia, Canada, the provision by the general community to enable minority groups to practice (in real estate speak) in ‘quiet enjoyment’, is one of the great achievements of Western political, democratic philosophy. However, if minority groups in their practical operations fly in the face of that philosophy and do not in turn allow their community members to make their own cultural and religious choices, places incredible pressures and strains on multicultural practice. In the end, the general community is faced with increasing and unavoidable choices: either ignore the ‘prejudice’ or ‘counter it’. By delaying the choice for action, to make it clear and plain that multiculturalism must be cherished and practiced by all society members, leaves dramatic positive change much more painful and antagonistic and leading to sectional resentment. In other words – don’t leave it too late!

THE UN AGAIN!
If the future of the UN has been predetermined by Islamist terrorists, it was certainly confirmed by the comments in a speech by bin Laden, citing the UN as "...an organization of infidel [countries] that shapes the nature of the relations between the lords of the veto, headed by America, and the slaves of the General Assembly, and then speaks mendaciously and distortingly of justice, equality, and freedom." (see: http://memri.org/bin/articles.cgi?Page=subjects&Area=jihad&ID=SP83704)

What more can be said!

THANK YOU
Thank you for all the people who have read and of course continue to read this web blog.

In addition, a number have forwarded on their email address in order to receive notification of updates to the blog.

The response to the blog has been much appreciated, and continues to grow. In the next few weeks, we will publish our web metrics outlining readership levels.

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