The man with the meat cleaver, who attacked and hacked to death British soldier Lee Rigby in south London last week, “was standing firm, courageous, brave,” said Omar Bakri, an Islamic imam who heads a militant group banned in England in 2010. Michael Adebolajo, the alleged killer, was a student of Bakri in London a decade ago. “May God reward [Adebolajo] for his actions. … I don’t see it as a crime as far as Islam is concerned,” said Bakri, now living in exile in Lebanon.
Bakri is notorious for once calling the 9/11 hijackers “the magnificent 19.” He acted at one time as a spokesman for al-Qaeda. We reported on Bakri in 2005, when he and other London clerics instigated the 7/7 bombings and later the violent riots over Danish cartoons depicting Muhammad. “Bring down their airliners. Prevent the safe passage of their ships. Occupy their embassies. Force the closure of their companies and banks,” he said.
Author and former Muslim parliamentarian Ayaan Hirsi comments: “Of course, the overwhelming majority of Muslims are not terrorists or sympathetic to terrorists. Equating all Muslims with terrorism is stupid and wrong. But acknowledging that there is a link between Islam and terror is appropriate and necessary.”
The Hillary Clinton-Barack Obama belief system defines “extremism” as believing that one’s religion is right and others are wrong, and sees that as the sort of “intolerance” that can lead to terrorism. Expert Mark Durie unpacks what’s historically and logically wrong with that approach, and its danger.
The Obama administration is lifting sanctions on selling to Iran smartphones, laptops, and other equipment in a bid to help Iranian dissenters. The move allows companies to sell to Iranian citizens, not to the government. “I think it really helps level the playing field with people who want to communicate on the internet and the Iranian government that wants to stifle that information,” said Jamal Abdi, policy director at the National Iranian American Council in Washington. Two cheers for this, coming four years after Iran’s ayatollahs quashed the “Twitter Revolution.”
“Moslems [sic] from 29 different countries have now come to Syria in order to participate in jihad,” said a Syrian Orthodox priest, whose name is given as Hieromonk N. in this interview. “Death is very close to each of us now. … The Lord guards us, and the day will come when He will call into account those who are now killing, slashing, and robbing.”
Here’s an aerial view of the Blue Nile merging with the White Nile in Khartoum, Sudan, forming the world’s longest river. Not hard to tell which one flows across desert flatlands and which emerges out of the Ethiopian highlands.