Thursday, May 29, 2008

Nazism Redux in British Academia (Disturbingly Shocking)

Here's a snippet from the well-sourced article.

The universities' witch-hunt against the Jews | The Spectator

Today, the Universities and Colleges Union is discussing whether universities should single out Israeli and Jewish scholars for active discrimination.

Yes, you read that correctly. The UCU is debating a motion which not only raises the spectre yet again of an academic boycott of Israel but demands of Jewish and Israeli academics that they explain their politics as a pre-condition to normal academic contact.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Jenna's Wedding Pix


Super elegant and sweet. Congrats to the very happy-looking couple and family.

Friday, May 09, 2008

CRBs Of The Day: U.N. 'furious' as Myanmar aid 'seized'

It happened.

I'm on the side of the UN.

Of course it took a moronic depredating military junta to do it...

U.N. 'furious' as Myanmar aid 'seized' -


BANGKOK, Thailand (CNN) -- Aid agencies are furious over the Myanmar government's refusal to allow them to distribute food and supplies flown in for cyclone disaster victims.

The ruling military junta has been allowing planes to land, but is not letting the cargo be distributed by most foreign aid workers, especially those from Western nations.

The United Nations issued a "flash appeal" Friday to raise $187.3 million in cyclone relief for Myanmar based assessments by more than 20 organizations. It includes $56 million for food, nearly $50 million for logistics and about $20 million for shelter.

The Asia head of the U.N. World Food Program said Friday that the government had seized the contents of two flights that arrived in the morning at Yangon which carried enough food for 95,000 people. They contained 38 tons of high-energy biscuits, medical kits and other items.

"We off-loaded the food, and then the authorities refused us permission to take that food away," WFP director Tony Banbury said.

"We were told we needed a special letter from the Minister of Social Welfare. We hand-delivered a request to him. The answer back was 'No, you can't have the food.'

"That food is now sitting on the tarmac doing no good. I'm furious. This is unacceptable."

In response, the U.N. temporarily suspended its emergency airlifts.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Stopped Clock Award: Sam Harris at The Huffington Post

This is a great article by, of all people, Sam Harris, posted at, of all places, The Huffington Post.

Sam Harris: Losing Our Spines to Save Our Necks - Politics on The Huffington Post


Wilders, like Westergaard and the other Danish cartoonists, has been widely vilified for "seeking to inflame" the Muslim community. Even if this had been his intention, this criticism represents an almost supernatural coincidence of moral blindness and political imprudence. The point is not (and will never be) that some free person spoke, or wrote, or illustrated in such a manner as to inflame the Muslim community. The point is that only the Muslim community is combustible in this way. The controversy over Fitna, like all such controversies, renders one fact about our world especially salient: Muslims appear to be far more concerned about perceived slights to their religion than about the atrocities committed daily in its name. Our accommodation of this psychopathic skewing of priorities has, more and more, taken the form of craven and blinkered acquiescence.

There is an uncanny irony here that many have noticed. The position of the Muslim community in the face of all provocations seems to be: Islam is a religion of peace, and if you say that it isn't, we will kill you. Of course, the truth is often more nuanced, but this is about as nuanced as it ever gets: Islam is a religion of peace, and if you say that it isn't, we peaceful Muslims cannot be held responsible for what our less peaceful brothers and sisters do. When they burn your embassies or kidnap and slaughter your journalists, know that we will hold you primarily responsible and will spend the bulk of our energies criticizing you for "racism" and "Islamophobia."


In a thrillingly ironic turn of events, a shorter version of the very essay you are now reading was originally commissioned by the opinion page of Washington Post and then rejected because it was deemed too critical of Islam. Please note, this essay was destined for the opinion page of the paper, which had solicited my response to the controversy over Wilders' film. The irony of its rejection seemed entirely lost on the Post, which responded to my subsequent expression of amazement by offering to pay me a "kill fee." I declined.


The connection between the doctrine of Islam and Islamist violence is simply not open to dispute. It's not that critics of religion like myself speculate that such a connection might exist: the point is that Islamists themselves acknowledge and demonstrate this connection at every opportunity and to deny it is to retreat within a fantasy world of political correctness and religious apology. Many western scholars, like the much admired Karen Armstrong, appear to live in just such a place. All of their talk about how benign Islam "really" is, and about how the problem of fundamentalism exists in all religions, only obfuscates what may be the most pressing issue of our time: Islam, as it is currently understood and practiced by vast numbers of the world's Muslims, is antithetical to civil society. A recent poll showed that thirty-six percent of British Muslims (ages 16-24) believe that a person should be killed for leaving the faith. Sixty-eight percent of British Muslims feel that their neighbors who insult Islam should be arrested and prosecuted, and seventy-eight percent think that the Danish cartoonists should have been brought to justice. And these are British Muslims.


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