“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Archive for September 2010

The Tale Of Two EDL Supporters.

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The English Defence League is trying to be media savvy and downplay the involvement of Extreme Right activists in its activities.

Unfortunately for the EDL, the video and photographic evidence contradicts their PR offensive, as these two EDL supporters show:

Wayne Baldwin, member of the EDL’s Birmingham Division.

Abdul Hussein/Salaam. Bizarrely, he’s an EDL supporter too.

Kirklees Unity has more on him:

“EDL poster-boy Abdul Hussain is a Glasgow Rangers fan, filmed here at an EDL demo, singing sectarian hate songs which celebrate knee-capping and beating Taigs (meaning Catholics). Just as Islamophobic bigotry assumes all Muslims are terrorists, sectarian bigotry assumes all Catholics are Fenians and Provos (pro-IRA), and both are as stupid as black-power bigots who assume all white people must be racist because a few nutters join groups like the BNP and KKK. I despise the IRA, but sectarian hatred is disgusting, no matter where or who it comes from.

The EDL has over 25,000 supporters on Facebook, but only THREE non-white people regularly attend EDL protests. The 1st (Guramit Singh) is a proven racist. The 2nd (Joel Titus) says he’s anti-BNP but has been filmed travelling to EDL demos with BNP activist Chris Renton (let’s just say Joel seems VERY confused). The 3rd (Abdul Hussain) is a vicious bigot. In contrast, hundreds of EDL supporters show themselves on You Tube and Facebook to be BNP supporters and/or either Nazis or friends of Nazis.”

This is Wayne and Abdul together.

Here’s Wayne Baldwin with some of his real friends, giving a Nazi salute:
Wayne Baldwin and friends

I think it is very clear that the EDL merely use idiots like Abdul Hussein/Salaam to provide them with a veneer of respectability and plausible denial, but the reality is that Wayne Baldwin is more typical of their supporters. The swastika tattooed on Baldwin’s chest explains what his true views are.

[H/T: I hate the BNP group on Facebook.]

Update 1: If you have any doubts about the nature of the EDL look out for those giving the Nazi salute, here’s another lot of EDLers in Bradford 2010.

And one more below of EDLers in Bradford, saluting again:

[Thanks to Kirklees Unity for their diligence.]

Update 1: Thanks to Expose Tweets, an off shoot of Exposing intolerance and racism online XVI at Facebook.

They have identified one of those below giving the Nazi salute as Mike Bayliss from Bristol EDL.

From Expose Tweets.

Another EDL supporter.

Written by modernityblog

30/09/2010 at 02:07

19 And A Half Years.

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Blogging has been criminalised by the Iranian State.

Hossein Derakhshan has been jailed on spurious charges, which is intended to send a message to Iranian bloggers, “follow the State’s line or you’ll be locked up”.

Reporters without Borders has more:

“Reporters Without Borders is outraged by the extremely long jail sentence that has just been passed on Iranian blogger and journalist Hossein Derakhshan. He has been sentenced to 19 and a half years in prison followed by a five-year ban on political and journalistic activities. He has also been fined the equivalent of more than 30,000 euros.

“Such a long jail term has never before been imposed on a blogger in Iran and is indicative of a desire to make an example out of Derakhshan,” Reporters Without Borders said. “He is the victim of political rivalry within the government and the case against him was fabricated. We urge President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to intercede personally in order to obtain his release without delay.”

The press freedom organisation added: “Derakhshan defended the Islamic Revolution’s principles, supported Ahmadinejad’s policies and returned to Iran from Canada after being assured by people close to the president that he would not be arrested. Canada and the rest of the international community must press for this harsh sentence to be quashed and for Derakhshan to be freed at once.”

Derakhshan’s partner, Sandrine Murcia, said the judge in charge of the case telephoned the family today to confirm the verdict and sentence, details of which had been published on the pro-government website Asriran.

Derakhshan was convicted of collaborating with enemy states, propaganda against the Islamic Republic, propaganda in support of counter-revolutionary groups, “insulting what is holy” and creating immoral websites. He can appeal against the verdict.

Arrested by Revolutionary Guards on 1 November 2008, Derakhshan was given a trial without due process and had remained in detention even since awaiting the court’s verdict. He is a collateral victim of in-fighting between the Revolutionary Guards and the Iranian intelligence services.”

The Globe and Mail has background:

“Mr. Derakhshan, 35, is widely known by his online name “Hoder.” He was born in Iran, but moved to Canada and became a Canadian citizen in early adulthood. He is a staunch advocate of free expression in Iran, and became known as the “blogfather” of Iran’s on-line community for training pro-democracy advocates to blog and podcast in the late nineties. Later, he apologized for his dissenting views, and emerged as an unlikely supporter of the regime, at one point comparing Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to a modern-day Che Guevara.

So when the Iranian government invited him to travel to Iran in 2008, he accepted, thinking he would help his country reach out to the world, according to friends and family. Upon his arrival, however, another branch of the government arrested him.

On Tuesday, he was convicted of insulting Islamic thought and religious figures, managing obscene websites and co-operating with “enemy states” because he visited Israel five years ago. He was also ordered to pay the equivalent of approximately $45,000 in fines.

“It’s not as bad as a death sentence, but it’s an awful and really bad sentence for someone that’s only writing,” Mr. Derakhshan’s former wife, Marjan Alemi told CBC’s The Current.

“He went back thinking he could go back to Iran and help,” she added.

Ms. Alemi said Mr. Derakhshan has spent most of the two years preceding his trial in solitary confinement.

He can’t exercise. He can’t have books. He can see his family for only five or 10 minutes a week,” Ms. Alemi said. Neither the family’s lawyer, nor any representative from the Canadian government were present at his trial.”

Update 1: has a piece on him.

These are clips from Hossein Derakhshan before his return to Iran and arrest. He answered questions from his blog visitors.

Update 2: Free the blog father has a petition.

Update 3: I missed Terry Glavin’s earlier piece on this issue.

Plus the Free Hoder blog.

And the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran too.

Written by modernityblog

29/09/2010 at 21:44

Respect And Racism.

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I don’t much followed the antics of the Respect political party in Britain, but even I was surprised that one of its senior members would indulge in such conspicuous racism, anti-Jewish racism that is.

Respect had no choice but to expel him, I imagine his views are only the tip of the iceberg as Dave Hill reports:

“On Monday he re-published some banter that took place on Facebook between a senior figure in Respect called Abul Hussain and others. Respect’s leadership responded by expelling Hussain. Their grounds?

We are extremely upset to discover that recently published comments from one of our party members are indicative of anti-Semitism. The National Officers have conducted an investigation and met on Monday evening (27 September) to consider the matter. We have decided that such views are demonstrably incompatible with party membership.

Respect has done the right thing, but the episode is an indication of the part Jew-mocking and hating plays in Tower Hamlets politics. Ted Jeory’s reports are here and here. Will Lutfur Rahman disassociate himself from such attitudes, whether expressed by Abul Hussain or anyone else? If not, why not?

Ted Jeory’s blog has more details:

  • 2 people like this.
  • Abul ‘Abz’ Hussain I should have put u on that convoy to Gaza, could have traded the Jew with the Israelis to let the aid through, but then again they’d probably reject u as ur too much of a jew by their standards!
  • As Jeory argues: “Silly kids messing around is one thing, but Abul Hussain is a national council member and policy maker for Respect, whose founding principles include anti-racism.”

    Update 1: Jeory has Respect’s statement on the matter.

    Written by modernityblog

    29/09/2010 at 12:24

    EDL Organisers Are Proven Neo-Nazis.

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    The YouTube video clip below dispels the myth that neo-Nazis are not at the heart of the English Defence League.

    In the video clip you will see Luke Pippen, EDL’s Welsh Division organiser, in front of a house with his friends, tattooed skinheads giving the Nazi salute.

    You can also see how Pippen is mentioned on the Casuals’ United blog [here’s a link to a Google cached copy.]

    Readers will remember that Casuals United is a close affiliate of the English Defence League. A screen shot of that page is at the bottom:

    Later on in the video another EDL organiser Steven White is caught wearing a Blood and Honour shirt, as Wiki relates:

    “Blood & Honour is a neo-Nazi music promotion network and political group founded in 1987 with links to Combat 18 and composed of white power skinheads and other white nationalists. “

    Once more Steven White is found amongst his friends giving the Nazi salute, the video finishes with a shaven White displaying a large swastika tattooed on his chest.

    That’s the type of people drawn to the English Defence League, those interested in racial conflict, violence and neofascism.

    Luke Pippen at Casuals United:

    [Thanks to FightbackUK]

    Update 1: The Centre for Social Cohesion produced a rather good report on the Blood and Honour by Alexander Meleagrou-Hitchens and Edmund Standing.

    This is an extract:

    “The B&H organisation in the UK constitutes an undeniable threat to both security and community relations within the UK. Its propaganda is centred on an apocalyptic vision of racial conflict, and unambiguously encourages respect for, and glorification of, terrorist actions carried out in the name of furthering the cause of neo-Nazism. The B&H National Socialist Political Soldiers Handbook, in particular, provides information and advice that would clearly be useful in the commission or preparation of an act of terrorism.

    B&H is ostensibly a ‘political’ movement; but arguably it has far more in common with other violent ideological forms of extremism than it does with what is generally understood as ‘politics’, even of a nationalist variety. Certainly, as an explicitly anti-democratic, anti-liberal, fascist organisation, B&H constitutes an atavistic manifestation of the same venomous mix of racial hatred and a cult of violence that came to prominence in the original Nazi movement. B&H takes its name, its imagery and indeed much of its ideology from the Third Reich, which is exalted as the apotheosis of white European achievement.

    As fervent followers of Nazism in a world that has, in the wake of World War II and the Holocaust, so clearly rejected this ideology, B&H supporters exist outside the bounds of normal social and political interaction. The group, therefore, acts as a magnet to those who feel disenfranchised and, in more extreme cases, to the pathological, who find in its message and its embrace of neo-Nazism as an ‘identity’, a vehicle by which to indulge their extreme prejudice and nihilistic hatred of the modern world. As such, B&H is less a genuine ‘political’ threat than it is an incubator for racially motivated violence, which has already spilled over on a number of occasions into outright terrorism. ”

    Blood & Honour: Britain’s Far-Right Militants, Alexander Meleagrou-Hitchens and Edmund Standing is available as a PDF.

    Written by modernityblog

    28/09/2010 at 02:05

    Blue Plaque for Peter Tatchell.

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    A well earned Blue Plaque is going to Peter Tatchell, and I can think of no better living human rights activist that deserves one, the Pink Paper has more:

    “Hollywood actor Sir Ian McKellen will unveil a blue plaque honouring Peter Tatchell, campaigner for human rights, gay freedom and social justice, this month.

    The ceremony takes place on Wednesday 29 September at 11am outside 62 Arrol House, Rockingham Street, London.

    For over 40 years, Peter Tatchell has spearheaded campaigns for gay rights and human rights in Britain and across the globe. In 1983 he was the defeated Labour candidate in the Bermondsey by-election – the dirtiest, most violent election in Britain in the twentieth century. He co-founded OutRage! in 1990 and he twice attempted a citizen’s arrest of President Mugabe of Zimbabwe on charges of human rights abuses.

    Last year he was named Campaigner of the Year at The Observer Ethical Awards.”

    Written by modernityblog

    27/09/2010 at 15:24

    The Draw Of Power.

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    According to Henry Kissinger, power is the ultimate aphrodisiac.

    I am not sure if that is true but I am trying to work out why anyone would want to meet President Ahmadinejad?

    Unless it is to be close to his power, to be able to say they have actually met a President, even if his election win was fiddled and anti-Ahmadinejad protesters killed as a result.

    Why would supposed radicals in North America wish to meet Ahmadinejad after he’s just given a conspiratorial speech on 9/11?

    Why would anyone, with any sense, want to meet this certifiable racist?

    Apparently, over a hundred people, including some radical political leaders met him recently, Fightback News covers it:

    “New York, NY – Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad met here, September 21, with 100 leaders and representatives of anti-war, labor, alternative media and Iranian and Palestinian solidarity organizations. Among the participants were Sarah Martin, Freedom Road Socialist Organization, Margaret Sarfehjooy, board member of the Minneapolis-based Women Against Military Madness, former attorney general Ramsey Clark, former Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, Sara Flounders from the International Action Center, Brian Becker of the ANSWER coalition, Ramona Africa of the Free Mumia Coalition and Amiri Baraka, poet and activist.

    The meeting was called by the president of Iran with the hope that a frank and honest exchange of views will help activists further the cause of peace between the people of Iran and the U.S.

    Specific demands raised include to oppose war, occupation and hostility worldwide; oppose interference in the internal affairs of other countries; support the right to nuclear energy for all, but nuclear weapons for none; and to support dialogue, justice and equality among all countries in the UN.

    After listening intently to the statements of 22 of the participants, President Ahmadinejad said, “We have a treasure chest full of views. I agree with everything you have said and therefore you have spoken from my heart also. Now I will speak in my own way.”

    He said that the source of war, capitalism, must be identified and pointed out. “Violent capitalism is based on superiority, hegemony and violation of rights.” He went on to say that one reason capitalists start wars is to fill up their pockets. They must empty their arsenals so they can build more weapons. As he said at a U.N. meeting earlier in the day, “Capitalism has come to an end. It has reached a deadlock. Its historical moment has ended and efforts to restore it won’t go very far.”

    Ahmadinejad spoke of the U.S. wars in Iraq and deaths of over 1 million people for oil . He pointed out that in an Afghan village over 100 innocent people were killed just to get a few terrorists. He expressed anger that even with the floods in Pakistan, the U.S continues to bomb Pakistani villages. He said it is hard to sleep at night after hearing the heart-wrenching stories of the Palestinians living under siege in Gaza with no medicines, no clean water and not enough food. He expressed solidarity with the activists’ goals of struggling for peace and justice at home and abroad and he pledged that Iran will stand strong to the end.

    “Speaking with Mrs. Ahmadinejad and hearing the president reinforced the importance of struggling against the U.S. campaign to isolate and demonize Iran,” said Sarah Martin. Margaret Sarfehjooy reported, “I think the meeting was important because we had the opportunity to meet with so many dedicated grassroots activists from all over the country and share our hopes for peace and justice with the Iranian people through their president and his wife.” “


    I wonder if President Ahmadinejad’s old friend, David Duke, will be joining them at the next meeting?

    (H/T: Contested Terrain)

    Eustace Mullins and Glenn Beck.

    with 6 comments

    Glenn Beck’s shift from being on the hard right to the almost barking mad right continues apace, as Mediamatters demonstrates:

    “On Fox News, Glenn Beck promoted Eustace Mullins’ book Secrets of the Federal Reserve. Mullins was a 9/11 truther who has been described as an “anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist” and a “nationally known white supremacist”; the Anti-Defamation League called the book Beck promoted “a re-hash of Mullins’ anti-Semitic theories about the origins of the Federal Reserve.”

    On-screen text identified Mullins book as source for quote Beck read. On the September 22 edition of his Fox News program, Beck attacked early 20th century diplomat Edward House for saying of the Federal Reserve, “I am suggesting that the Central Board be increased from four members to five and their terms lengthened from eight to ten years. This would give stability and would take away the power of a President to change the personnel of the board during a single term of office.” While Beck spoke, on-screen text indicated that the House comment was “Quoted In ‘Secrets of the Federal Reserve,’ ” which was authored by Eustace Mullins: “

    Here’s a snippet from nizkor on Mullins:

    “In a 1952 book, Mullins wrote a book blaming Paul Warburg, Bernard Baruch, and other U. S. Jews for drowning Americans in debt. According to Mullins, The Federal Reserve Act of 1913 put the nation’s banking reserves in the hands of the “Jewish International Bankers” for the purpose of carrying out a plan for world dictatorship.

    In a 1955 article entitled, “Jews mass poison American children”, Mullins claimed that the polio vaccine, invented by Jonas Salk, was a poison because it contains live polio germs. Other books depict Jews as parasites, living off their gentile hosts. In what has to be one of the most bizarre of Mullins’ beliefs, it has been reported by L. J. Davis that Mullins has claimed that the phrase “Have a nice day” is a code for Jews to begin killing Christians.”

    (H/T: Adam Holland)

    Written by modernityblog

    23/09/2010 at 15:16