This blog initially set out to focus primarily on Islam and the Islamisation of the UK. However, since that time the subjects covered have broadened. They now include (amongst other things): IQ tests, Jean Baudrillard, global warming, sociobiology, Marxism, Trotskyism, David Cameron, Foucault, Nazism, Ralph Miliband, economics, statistics and so on. - Paul Austin Murphy
I've had articles published in The Conservative Online, American Thinker, Intellectual Conservative, Human Events, Faith Freedom, Brenner Brief (Broadside News), New English Review, etc... (Paul Austin Murphy's Philosophy can be found here.)

Saturday, 5 July 2014

It's not all about the Iraqi government fighting ISIS


 

Mosul_Grand_Mosque
Mosul, Grand Mosque|PHOTO CREDIT: Wiki Commons


One thing that must be noted is that what’s happening in Iraq isn’t simply a war between the Iraqi government and ISIS. It’s also a war between Shia and Sunni Muslims.




Yes, there are a small number of Sunni Muslims in the Iraq government, and even fewer in the army; though those numbers are simply not enough to change the central reality of this conflict.




800px-Al-Qaida_In_Iraq_Mosul_Network_2008
Al-Qaeda in Iraq, Mosul, 2008|IMAGE CREDIT: Wiki Commons




Sunni “insurrections” began in 2003 and has been ongoing (if on and off) ever since. In other words, what ISIS is doing is not entirely new.




And before Saddam Hussein was toppled and then executed, the Shia-Sunni war was only kept under raps precisely because of Saddam Hussein Ba’athist/socialist totalitarian regime. And even then there was periodic sectarian violence as well as Ba’athist state violence against its perceived enemies (such as the chemical and biological attacks on the Shia in 1991).




Another basic point is that virtually all the northern and western parts of Iraq have large Sunni populations. So it’s not surprising that ISIS has had successes in that general area; just as Sunni fighters - completely unconnected to ISIS or al-Qaeda - previously had (if sometimes short-lived) victories in Falluja, Tikrit, Mosul and other parts of that general area.

ISIS

Flag_of_Islamic_State_of_Iraq_svg
Flag of ISIS|IMAGE CREDIT: Wiki Commons




One advantage ISIS has over its many Sunni rivals is that it appears to have more money than they have. It’s widely believed that much of that money is coming from Saudi Arabia (as well as other Sunni states, groups and individuals). Saudi Arabia, of course, has denied these allegations.




One reason to suspect the claim that Saudi Arabia is financing ISIS is that this tribal and aristocratic state is – or could be – under threat from ISIS if it continues with its successes. ISIS would almost certainly attempt to topple the Saudi regimes because it is seen as “unIslamic”, “corrupt” and too friendly with the United States by virtually all Salafists.




Then again, Saudi Arabia has its own Shia problem (primarily in the south); so it may well be the case that the Saudis are playing a dangerous game here in that if the Sunnis (including ISIS) destroy Shia power in Iraq, then that will also prove beneficial to Saudi Arabia.




According to its “city charter”, ISIS wants to make Mosul the capital of its caliphate. On the other hand, because ISIS hasn’t achieved complete control of Falluja, it has been more lenient when it comes to sharia law in that city. ISIS, in fact, shares control (within a military council) in Falluja with various other Sunni groups as well as with Arab tribes.




One further point is that virtually every news piece about ISIS gives a different account of its precise numbers. In the early days, most reports mentioned the number of 5,000 fighters. Then I began to see the number 15,000. And the last report I read (yesterday) put the number at between 2,000 and 10,000.




Other Sunni Factions





Jamaat Ansar al-Islam



Jamaat Ansar a-Islam (JAI) is a direct rival of ISIS; though some members have recently pledged allegiance to the latter group.




The JAI is a rival due a dispute which goes back to the time ISIS was called the Islamic State in Iraq (ISI). And partly because of that former dispute, it has been reported that ISIS arrested and then murdered many JAI members in Mosul and Tikrit.


It’s also been said that this may be the reason why JAI members have decided to ally themselves with ISIS.


Jaysh al-Mujahideen (JAM)



As stated earlier, Sunni “insurrections” date back to 2003. And just as ISIS can trace itself back to Al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) in 2004, so the Islamist JAM also dates back to 2003.




It has been reported that JAM has collaborated with the previously-mention JAI is order to forge a more coherent and stronger counter to ISIS, which is deemed to be too extreme by JAM.




JAM is also much more tribal-based than ISIS in that it has forged various links with Sunni tribes in places like Karma and Tikrit.


The Naqshbandi Order



The Army of the Men of the Naqshbandi Order (JRTN) is said to be the second largest (after ISIS) group of Sunni fighters in Iraq. It’s also a primarily Ba’athist outfit. In fact it’s actually led by Saddam Hussein’s former second-in command, Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri.




Despite being Ba’athist, the JRTN still stresses it allegiance to Sufi (Sunni) Islam and frequently refers to “jihad” in its pronouncements. (As Saddam Hussein himself did all the way back to 1979 – i.e., before the first Gulf War in 1990/1.) Nonetheless, the JRTN also stresses the now unfashionable notion (amongst many Muslims) of pan-Arabism, which itself goes alongside Arab/Iraqi nationalism.




Despite its ideological and political distance from ISIS, the JRTN has collaborated with ISIS in Mosul, Tikrit and in the Diyala province of Iraq. That collaboration is an example of Realpolitik as well as a clever military strategy in that it has been said that through such political and military collaborations, the JRTN thinks that it can eventually get the upper hand against ISIS and thus restore Iraq to totalitarian-socialist Ba’athism.


Islamic Army of Iraq (IAI)



The IAI faction army demobilised after the US army withdrawal from Iraq in 2011. It then set up the Sunni Popular Movement, whose primary aim was to create a Sunni Arab federal region within Iraq. (Many Shia Muslims attempted - or wanted – to do the same thing in the period 2003 to 2005/6 and beyond.) The IAI still offers the mainly Shia Iraqi government one of two options. Either it allows a Sunni federal region within Iraq or it will take military control of Baghdad.




Despite the Islamic Army of Iraq (IAI) not being a jihadist or Islamist group (at least officially), it is still collaborating with ISIS.

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Why shouldn't Israel carry out retribution against Hamas?


467px-Gilad_Shalit_on_Hamas_poster
Gilad Shalit on a Hamas poster| IMAGE CREDIT: Wiki Commons


Israel has said that it will carry acts of retribution against the Islamic group Hamas for its kidnapping and murder of three Israelis teenagers.


Predictably, Palestinian authorities and Western Leftists/liberals are saying that Israel shouldn’t do anything of the sort. Israel should, instead, carry on carrying on with the “peace process”.


Every state on the planet would do exactly the same thing as Israel. Indeed many states – especially Muslim and communist/socialist states – have carried out far more extreme kinds of retribution than Israel has ever done. Then again, as ever, Israel is held to very different and very high standards. And it’s held to different standards because most of the people who do so don’t want Israel to exist in the first place. And the best way of destroying Israel is by demanding that it use kid gloves against all those forces which want to annihilate it.


Obviously, if Israel were to adopt the kid-glove policies demanded by Western Leftists, and even by Western states, its shelf-life would become shorter and shorter and shorter. Then again, it’s easy for some people in the UK and US to talk of “peace”, “peace processes” and kid-glove policies because they aren’t surrounded by Britain- or America-annihilationists.


We must face facts.


There has never been a peace process with Hamas and there never will be one. Now Western Leftists/liberals may kid themselves that there is – or could be – such a peace process (either for reasons of grandstanding piety or sympathy for Hamas).


Alternatively, more radical Leftists – the ones who want to see Israel destroyed – know full well that Hamas doesn’t want peace: it wants the annihilation of Israel.


Am I being an Islamophobic conspiratorialist when I say all this? Am I being – to use that omnipresent teenage Leftist/Nazi soundbite – a “Zionist”? No; because Hamas has itself said that it doesn’t want peace and it has said that countless times. In its founding document, the Hamas Charter (or Covenant), Hamas made it plain that it doesn’t want peace with Israel. And it has said that again and again over the years. Indeed the Hamas motto includes the words:
“Allah is our goal, the prophet is our model, the Koran is our constitution, jihad is our path and death for the sake of Allah is our most coveted desire.”
Above and beyond all that, the Islamic imperative – which Hamas upholds to a stronger degree than many other Muslim groups - is to make not only ‘Palestine’ Judenrein, but the entire Muslim world: from Morocco to the Indonesian sea (to paraphrase) Indeed Saudi Arabia and Libya are already Judenrein. In Iran - which Muslims and Leftists keep telling me has Jews in its Parliament - the Jewish population has shrunk from 120, 000 in 1948 to 10, 200 today. (Iran has the highest number of Jews in the Middle East after Israel!)


The problem is that many left-liberals, Western states and even some conservatives offer what amounts to a Marxist analysis of Hamas. What I mean by that is that that they say (or think) that everything Hamas says and does is simply a response to socio-economic and political conditions; such as poverty, and lack of democracy and a Palestinian state. They don’t think it has anything at all to do with Islam and Islamist ideology. Thus Islamic ideology and the violent pronouncements of Hamas are mere “epiphenomena of socio-economic conditions”.


And even when Western leaders actually get round to reading the Hamas Charter (as well as the many other violent assertions of Hamas), they say it’s all “rhetoric” and “hyperbole” with no real import. That’s right: it’s all rhetoric and hyperbole because, deep down, Hamas is full of people “just like us”. Yes, just like the public schoolboys in the Foreign Office and Cabinet who had never really thought that much about Hamas until its file was put on their desks.


405px-Flickr_-_Israel_Defense_Forces_-_Infographic,_Hamas_Rocket_Ranges
IMAGE CREDIT: Wiki Commons


As a consequence of all that, perhaps we should more or less ignore the “peace process”. We certainly shouldn’t take a single world that Hamas says as truth. Now that may be deemed heartless, warmongering and even immature. However, if Western Leftists and left-liberals hold on to all this talk of “peace”, “peace processes” and “peace talks” simply to feel pious and humane, then that’s their prerogative. Similarly, as I said earlier, militant Leftists (i.e., Trotskyists and communists) know that there is no peace process with Hamas. They also know that such talk works to the Muslim Brotherhood organisation’s advantage.


No: talk of “peace” works against peace; just as it would do with al-Qaeda and as it did do with Hitler and the Nazis in the 1930s. So if all that’s immaturity and “warmongering”: then so be it. We should believe in immaturity and warmongering when it comes to Hamas; just as Winston Churchill believed in warmongering when it came to the Nazis.

Monday, 30 June 2014

Nick Clegg and the Hoax Moderates of the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB)


 



It's hard to understand why almost every time a British national newspaper (especially The Independent and The Guardian) publishes an article about some Muslim-related issue (say, the Islamisation of schools or, way back, the Danish cartoons) it either quotes the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) or formally interviews one of its spokesmen.



This happened just a couple of days ago on the issue of why so many British Muslims have travelled to Iraq and Syria to join ISIS and other jihadist groups. It also happened even more recently in the case of the Government's comments about Muslims being taught about 'British values' in schools.


Now is this a consequence of journalistic laziness or is it that some journalists are actually ideologically/ politically sympathetic to the MCB?


All this is also very strange if you consider the MCB's well-documented and extensive extremism; as well as its ambivalent relationship to both the Conservative Party and the Labour Party.



For example, in 2009, Hazel Blears (then Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government) published an open letter saying that her government should have no further dealings with the MCB.


However, the Labour Party restored its links to the MCB in January 2010. That was no surprise because for over ten years the Labour Party seems to have had a thing about using Britain's Islamic extremists to fight, well, Britain's Islamic extremists. And the MCB is perhaps one of the best examples of this phenomenon.


When it comes to the Conservative Party: in 2007 David Cameron himself condemned the "hardline members" of the MCB and claimed that it was so often listened to simply because it had the "loudest voice". It therefore has the canny ability of "crowding out other, genuinely moderate, voices".


Consequently, the Conservative Party decided to cut all links with the MCB in 2010.
So it's not so much that the MCB makes the most noise in Muslim communities. It's more that the MCB (just like CAIR in the US) shouts the loudest at governments, British journalists, the BBC, local councils, etc. And, obediently, they all take the MCB to be the 'community leader' it claims to be. Indeed, even the Wikipedia article on the MCB uses the term "self-appointed" to describe the MCB's role as an "umbrella body for 500 mosques [of which there are over 1600], schools and associations in Britain". (That ambivalent statement means that this number – 500 – actually includes schools and associations; not only mosques.)

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg's Letter to the MCB



Despite all the above, Nick Clegg has just sent an open letter to the MCB voicing his concerns about the Government's suggestions that Muslims be taught 'British values' in our schools. Mr Clegg received an immoderate reply to his question. The MCB said that teaching such values will alienate (moderate?) Muslims.


Didn't they teach Nick Clegg anything at Westminster public school and Cambridge University? Didn't they teach him that extremists aren't the best people to consult about the nature of moderation?


I mentioned the Islamic jihadist group ISIS earlier. Here again the Muslim Council of Britain has recently displayed its ambivalent (to say the least) attitude towards Islamic extremism and Islamic terrorism.


This time it was The Independent which felt a pressing need to seek out the MCB's view on why so many British Muslims are travelling to Iraq and Syria to fight with ISIS.


As you'd expect, the MCB has criticised ISIS and said that British Muslims shouldn't be going over there to kill Shia Muslims and other infidels. The MCB is obliged to say these things. It has to make such duplicitous statements simply because they know that gullible non-Muslim journalists will ask them questions about ISIS and Islamic terrorism generally.


To state the obvious: the MCB simply can't explicitly align itself with jihad/ terrorism against 'oppressors' of Muslims, because clearly if it did so its role as the Official Organisation of All British Muslims would be destroyed overnight. Similarly with Salma Yaqoob and other such media-Muslims. An outright endorsement of terrorism or jihad would result in immediate professional suicide. It's as simple as that.
Better to obfuscate instead.


MCB obfuscation often works like this:


"We are against terrorism, but ... ."


Which is just like the well-known:


"I'm not a racist, but..."


And then comes a long list of rationalisations, justifications and explications (from the MCB) as to why Islamic terrorists are doing what they're doing. In this latest case, almost before the MCB spokesman had got his very short and vague criticism of ISIS out of his mouth, he began to rant about Britain "supporting dictators and despots throughout the Muslim world". (That's funny really because the intervention in Iraq in 2003 got rid of a Muslim despot – Saddam Hussein – and guess what: the MCB was very vocally against it.)

Three Islamophile Clichés From Nick Clegg



One: Fighting Islamic extremism causes Islamic extremism




Mr Clegg hit upon the cliché which has it that taking action against Islamic extremism actually causes Islamic extremism.


The problem with that – usually Muslim or Leftist – soundbite is that a lack of action against Islamic extremism evidently causes – or allows – Islamic extremism. That is, Salma Yaqoob's much desired complete inaction will certainly allow Islamic extremism to grow in the UK. How do I know that? I know that because previous inaction has allowed Islamic extremists to thrive. (As in the Islamisation of schools case.)


This seems to mean that many Muslim community leaders, the MCB, Salma Yaqoob, etc. are happy with the rise of Islamic extremism quite simply because they don't really see it as extremism in the first place. For example, they've all denied that there is any problem whatsoever with the Islamisation of British schools. And before that, these very same people said exactly the same things about Muslim grooming gangs and Islamic terrorism in the UK.


Thus this action-against-Islamic-extremism-causes-Islamic-extremism mantra is an endorsement of such extremism for three reasons:


i) Those who say such a thing don't want anything to be done about such Islamic extremism;
ii) Many Muslims don't even take most – or any – examples of Islamic extremism to be extremism in the first place;
iii) Islamic extremism can then be blamed – yes, you guessed it – on non-Muslims.




Two: A hardline approach endorses the view of all Muslims as (potential) terrorists




Mr Clegg also came out with another cliché when he said that Mr Gove's "hardline approach" could be seen as endorsing the view that "all Muslims are potential terrorists".


Let me just put that old chestnut to sleep.


No one has ever said that every Muslim is a terrorist. And not many people have even said that every Muslim is a potential terrorist.


All political and religious movements – even the good ones – are led by small numbers of people (i.e., the activists). That's just the way it goes. So it is irrelevant that the Muslims on EastEnders are 'nice'; or that Mr X knows a nice Muslim who supports the English football team; or Mrs Y knows a Muslim "who likes to have a laugh". None of that matters. There are at least 300 million Muslims – probably many more – who want to destroy the West. It doesn't matter one iota if not all Muslims are terrorists. Not all Russians were Bolsheviks in 1917. Not all Germans were Nazis in 1933. Nonetheless, these people gained control of their countries and we know what happened next.


Thus in order for Islam to be a threat, not every Muslim needs to be a terrorist or even a potential terrorist.


Three: Being a Muslim doesn't contradict being British




Nick Clegg's third cliché is not so much a cliché as just plain wrong. In his letter to the MCB, he says:


"Being Muslim does not contradict being British, nor is it in tension with it. A person can uphold their religious and cultural identity as well as British identity."


Being a Muslim does contradict being British; or at least what a Muslim must, as a Muslim, believe contradicts many British values and traditions.


Nonetheless, let's rephrase that statement:


Being a tribal or nominal Muslim doesn't contradict being British.


True. In other words, such Muslims are only Muslim in name. Either that or they are only Muslim in the tribal sense of being a Muslim for family or ethnic reasons.
Now genuine Muslims – by definition! – must desire to live according to sharia law and the dictates of Islam. Now it just so happens that sharia law – in many and various ways – does contradict many British values and traditions. That is just a mind-blowingly obvious fact that only a cretin, a taqiyya-merchant or a leftist would deny.


The fact that Nick Clegg seems to be denying all this is staggering.


One further blatantly-obvious point should be stated here: if Islam were not at odds with secular, Christian and all non-Islamic cultures/ societies it would render itself (as it were) un-Islamic.


Being against what is secular, Christian and non-Islamic is the very essence of Islam. Muhammed himself based his entire theology on trumping what had gone before him in polytheistic Arabia, as well as in Judaism and Christianity. Without that endless Islamic oneupmanship towards all that is non-Islamic, Islam would cease to have a point.



Conclusion




The worst of all Clegg's Islamophile stupidities is the self-contradictory view that moderate Muslims will be alienated by the promotion of British values. Now being alienated by the promotion of British values seems to me to be ... well, immoderate.


Thus you can only conclude, as ever, that Muslim moderation is often counterfeit moderation. And that's certainly the case when it comes to the Muslim Council of Britain.