Thursday, 31 March 2016

Stop the Genocide: Write to your MP today!

Cross-post from Stop the Genocide

Time to Act.

Since mid-2014 ISIS has been conducting a well-documented campaign of terror across Syria and Iraq against minority groups such as Christians, Yazidis and Shias.

The scale and horror of these atrocities clearly meets the United Nations definition of genocide but neither the UN or UK Government has yet to accept this fact.

With your help the Stop the Genocide campaign will change this.

For the international community to adequately respond to the tragedy unfolding in the Middle East it must first accept the reality of what is taking place.

That is why your support for the Stop the Genocide campaign is so important. Stand up for those without a voice by completing the petition form today.

Send a letter to your MP here:

Further reading:


"The so-called Islamic State abducted an estimated 5800 women and children. They have killed many in Iraq and Syria and millions of people have been displaced. They slaughtered Yazidi men and kidnapped the women and children, taking them to camps and sex slave markets in Syria and Iraq. This genocide, rape and forced displacement is all being done in the name of Islam."

Full article at: Kurdish

Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Epilogue: 1984 (John Cleese)

Describing this post as an "Epilogue" shows I'm getting old since most TV channels are 24 hour operations these days. But back in my youth there was such a thing, played just before the National Anthem and then we'd watch that little spot of light disappear on the TV and well, usually went to bed or read a book or something.

Certainly political correctness wasn't around in those days and though some things have obviously changed for the better, it's now going too far.

So here's John Cleese, being serious for a change.


Tuesday, 29 March 2016

United Nations of dictators?

Following the end of the second world war great hope was given to setting up a body that would bring together nations to try and sort out the world's problems and possibly, just possibly do something for human rights given the savagery that had just engulfed the world.

That was then.

These days the United Nations is nothing more than a talking shop to cover the backsides of dictatorships and clerical fascists.

The so-called Human Rights commission is led by none other than the gender apartheid state of Saudi Arabia, where women are not allowed to drive. In fact they are hardly able to do anything without their husband or male guardians permission and to enforce this the Saudi's have their own religious Gestapo or "police" as they are laughingly called.

Other nations such as Cuba, Russia, Venezuela lock up their critics or "quietly disappear" them.

What happens when someone tries to raise the question of Human Rights in countries that don't have them?

This video from UN Watch shows you what a farcical body the United Nations is.

Monday, 28 March 2016

Labour: Another so-called "anti-Zionist" crosses the line

More trouble for the Labour Party as they are forced to suspend Bob Campbell for suggesting "that Mossad the Israeli intelligence runs ISIS and was behind the Brussels bombings". This is a conspiracy theory that simply goes too far and yet he found some supporters.

On Facebook a typical response of the anti-Israel brigade came from John McAuliffe who defended Campbell and accused Zionists in the Labour Party of witch-hunting him for his "anti-Zionist views".

When challenged by a comment which simply read "Blatantly daft idea anyway that Israel runs ISIS he ran this disingenuous and rather telling reply:

It isn't daft. There's just no proof. We all know countries back rebel and terror groups all the time. It's a fact. 

Typical of the anti-Zionist brigade. An assertion without proof can be true.

This is when anti-Zionism crosses the line of no return.

With a leader like Corbyn who courts Hamas as "friends" despite their genocidal aim of wiping out the Jews (note not Israeli's) using a quote from the Koran to justify their racism then it is no surprise that these unsavoury types have found a home in Labour.

Even John McDonnell has been forced to condemn anti-Semites saying they have no place in Labour.

There seems to be some confusion over whether Campbell has been suspended. The Sunday Times reported he was but in the Independent he denies it.

However there is no doubt that Campbell should be suspended and booted out like Downing and Kirby before him.

Anti-Zionism IS the new anti-Semitism. 

The time to pretend it isn't is now over. Along with anti-imperialism, the so called anti-war movement and the safe spacers anti-Zionism is part and parcel of the new left wing fascism polluting our politics.

The time for a new rational and secular left defending human rights and free speech has never been greater.

Sunday, 27 March 2016

On choosing a religion or none

Around the world millions of Christians are celebrating Easter an important date in their religious calendar. More than a few Jews have been celebrating Purim. Others like me are simply having a holiday. And yet as we are are seemingly able to live with each other in the West, problems are arising that will cause problems for the future if not tackled head on.

My own background is that of someone from a mixed religion family. A Christian father and a Jewish mother. Caused no problems for me when growing up in the sixties and seventies when like many of my generation I chose simply not to believe.

Nobody I knew was that bothered at my choice, except my (Christian) religious studies teacher at school who kicked me out of the classroom on one occasion for raising Eric Von Danekin's theories from Chariot of the Gods.

My first taste of religious intolerance, but sadly not the last.

The news this weekend has been pretty dire considering the supposed increase of secularisation of British society.

First we heard of the tragic murder of a Glaswegian shopkeeper. The Daily Record reports:

POLICE have arrested a 32-year-old man in connection with the death of Glasgow shopkeeper Asad Shah.

And they say they are treating the popular shopkeeper's death as "religiously prejudiced"....

This has been further exacerbated today in the follow up to the story:

DETECTIVES probing Asad Shah’s murder believe his killer may have travelled from Bradford to launch a premeditated attack.

They are investigating the theory the attacker became enraged over faith-related posts the 40-year-old had made on social media.

Asad was a member of the ­Ahmadiyya sect of Islam, who preach a message of peace and tolerance to other religions under the motto Love for All, Hatred for None.

The shopkeeper made regular posts online promoting his faith.

The most recent was wishing his Christian customers and friends a Happy Easter on Thursday a few hours before he was attacked.

Police believe the killer had already travelled to Glasgow.

They have already confirmed the murder was “religiously prejudiced” and that both men were Muslim.

A source said: “The police are ­looking at claims that this man has taken offence to religious posts that Asad made.

“The theory is that he saw what Asad was saying on Youtube and Facebook and drove up to track him down. The hardline Sunni Muslims call Ahmadiyya Muslims kafir. They say they are non-believers.

“It’s not unusual in other countries to see them killed just for their beliefs, it’s been going on for years.

And now it's happened here.
At the same time I read with complete disbelief at the judgement of a British Court. The Daily Mail tells us:
A British father has been banned from taking his son to a church after the boy's Muslim mother won a controversial court order preventing the boy from attending.

The father – a non-practising Muslim who has forged close connections to his local Christian community and is divorced from the boy's mother – has been warned that he could be denied access to the nine-year-old if he attempts to take him to church or to a leisure centre it runs.

Now the father, who was born in the UK to Pakistani parents, is challenging the ruling made by District Judge Williscroft at Derby County Court earlier this month.

Last week, he lodged an appeal with the High Court to have the order overturned. 'This judge is simply scared of being branded Islamophobic,' he said. 'I want my son to have a balanced life in which he is exposed to different faiths and can make up his own mind about which, if any, religion he follows.'

The father, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said his ex-wife insisted their son, whom she is bringing up in the Muslim faith, could 'become confused' if he is subjected to other religions.

'My son is being indoctrinated and the only way I can show him other things is to take him to other places,' said the father.

'If I don't show him other types of life he will become just like a dumb sheep. I want him to see and learn about different cultures.

The father's point of view is one that should be supported in this case. An ex-Muslim who has chosen to follow Christianity has just as much right to teach his son as the mother.

But Islam it seems has been given an unacceptable precedent in law by this Judge.

Imagine the furore if it had been the other way round.

No religion should have sole rights to any education or otherwise in our society. There must be equality in all things before the law. No religion should be given precedence over another.

That's why we need to fight for a secular society where religion and the state are separate.

Only this way will tolerance be learnt. There can be no privileges for religion. In my view all are equally wrong, but some practitioners seek to impose their views on the rest of us.

The struggle against all forms of religious supremacism and fundamentalism has to start now.

Saturday, 26 March 2016

Holiday Interlude #2: Steptoe & Son at the Royal Variety (1963)

Continuing a short holiday break from politics, here's a performance by Harry H Corbett and Wilfred Bramble better known as Steptoe and Son at the Royal Variety Show way back in 1963. I'd have been 7!

Friday, 25 March 2016

Holiday Interlude #1: Classic American Comedy TV Shows

Whether you are celebrating Purim, Easter or just enjoying the long weekend I thought it time for a quick break from the ever nasty world of politics and take a trip down memory lane. Last week I posted an article about Get Smart over at my other blog Howie's World of Comics and that got me thinking about other old classic US comedy shows that I used to watch when I was..... err, much younger.

First of all here's a clip from Get Smart itself which was a spoof on all the secret agents that were the rage back in the sixties.

Next up is The Dick Van Dyke Show co-starring the wonderful Marty Tyler Moore who went on to have a very similar show of her own.

And who can forget Hogan's Heroes! Particularly loved this show. Remember Sergeant Schultz?

John Banner as Schultz.jpg
By Source, Fair use

And last but by no means least was I Dream of Jeannie featuring the late great Larry Hagman in his pre-Dallas days starring with the gorgeous Barbara Eden.

Hagman wearing a cowboy hat 
CC Wikipedia

Why he never chose Jeannie was beyond me..

Hope these short clips brought back some memories or if you are too young to have seen these on the telly it's encouraged you to see some of these episodes on You Tube!


Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Labour and the "Jewish Question"

Yellowbadge logo.svg

Labours problems with deranged extremists, anti-Semites and other assorted oddballs continues unabated as Corbyn faced challenges over the growth of anti-Semitism in the Labour Party in Parliamentary Question Time today.

A whole number of stories have emerged in the media.

Obsessive "anti-Zionist" Tony Greenstein has been suspended from Brighton Labour Party. All the fault of the party not having "recovered from the shock of Jeremy Corbyn's election" apparently, but then Greenstein was always a bit of a rumbustious chap. Fallen out with everybody on the left in his time. Resigned from Left Unity not long after it was established because the organisation wasn't to his liking.

Another refugee from Left Unity now in the Labour Party is a certain John Tummon who shocked his fellow lefties with his views on ISIS:

"ISIL did begin an insurrection against the post-WW1 imperialist settlement in the Middle East and I advocated critical support for the development ISIL was and still is trying to provide – a new, overarching settlement in the northern Middle East.."

Proved too much for even a far left group even if he did say he "didn't agree with the way they went about it" 

Speechless. Me to.

But there's more. Jewish News reports:

A Labour councillor and former Lord mayor has appeared to link Israel to Islamic State and promoted a Facebook message saying Hitler killed “six million Zionists”, Jewish News can reveal.

Labour has suspended suspend Khadim Hussain, who served as the Lord mayor of Bradford from 2013-4, after he became the latest Labour party member embroiled in controversy over offensive posts on social media.

The district councillor for Keighley Central, who is believed to be a candidate in May’s elections, shared one post which featured an image of the Nazi leader and decries the fact the deaths of millions of Africans are not taught in schools. “Your school education system only tells you about Anne Frank and the six million Zionists that were killed by Hitler,” it said.

There's worse:

Jewish News also discovered a link on his Facebook page to an article entitled ‘Greater Israel courtesy of Israel’.

It contains the line : “We’re told these terrorists, who incidentally sprang out of nowhere (nothing to do with Israeli, US and UK foreign policy), just happened to stumble upon a ****load of state of the art firepower. These terrorists simply picked it up off the floor. How convenient is that..but let’s quickly drop the notion anyone was criminally negligent because the Zionist propaganda tool known as the media could have its hands full when it comes to explaining how the entire US military is unable to stop these murderous maniacs.”

Above the post, the councillor wrote: “There is no doubyt who created the so called ISIS and who is arming those vile terrorists!”

Hussain is not alone. There's confusion over the re-admission or not of Big Brother wannabe Beinazir Lasharie. The Jewish Chronicle explains:

The Labour Party has denied that a local councillor who said Jews carried out the 9/11 attacks and created Daesh has had her suspension from the party lifted.

Beinazir Lasharie was suspended from her position as a councillor in west London in October after posting a video on Facebook called “ISIS: Israeli Secret Intelligence Service.”

On the post, she wrote: “Many people know about who was behind 9/11 and also who is behind ISIS. I’ve nothing against Jews . . . just sharing it!” Later, she added: “I’ve heard some compelling evidence about ISIS being originated from Zionists!”

This morning, Ms Lasharie, a former contestant on the TV reality show Big Brother, wrote on Facebook that “the haters discovered that I'm still a Labour Party Councillor and are upset that they're [sic] smear campaign against me didn't work.”

In response to the news - originally revealed by the Guido Fawkes blog - Paddy Hennessy, Labour’s deputy director of communications, said: “She was suspended while investigations took place into her case and those investigations are still ongoing.

“She is definitely still suspended.”

According to the party's general secretary, Iain McNicol, this confusion can be explained by the fact that Labour rules "require that whilst a Labour Councillor is suspended they remain registered as a Labour Councillor under the Local Government Act."

And Corbyn thinks Cameron's disgraceful for raising the question. I'm certainly no fan of the Prime Minister or his Government, but sometimes your opponent does have a point.

But Corbyn is in denial.

For us Jews that is a problem. Are we safe with Labour?

Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Stand by Belgium! Stand up to terrorism!

Flag of Belgium.svg

There can be no one who was not shocked when they turned on their televisions this morning to see the terrorist attacks carried out on Brussels Airport and one their Metro stations. Dozens killed and more injured.

Islamist fascism at work again.

The BBC reports:

The Islamic State (IS) group said it was behind the attacks in a statement issued on the IS-linked Amaq agency.

Belgium has raised its terrorism alert to its highest level. Three days of national mourning have been declared.

Prime Minister Charles Michel called the latest attacks "blind, violent and cowardly", adding: "This is a day of tragedy, a black day... I would like to call on everyone to show calmness and solidarity".

Whilst most people will have been thinking of the victims and their families there was the inevitable disgraceful comments from sections of the pro-Islamic left.

The reaction of George Galloway was reported by the London Evening Standard:

Mr Galloway tweeted within minutes of the explosions that the “monstrous extremism” was a creation of western interventions in Afghanistan and the Middle East.

“The monster which has slain and maimed so many innocent people today was created by us as surely as Dr Frankenstein created his,” alleged the former MP who is now standing for Mayor of London under the Respect banner.

This is absolute nonsense. Islamic Jihadism was created under the so-called "Prophet" himself, a warlord who imposed his twisted faith on others by the sword as did his followers over the centuries.

The problem is religious extremism, with a huge pool of sympathetic intolerance and fanaticism held by a far from small proportion of the followers of the "religion of war".

Fanatics exist within  every religion, but for the most other religions have grown up and adapted to the modern age. Islam remains medieval in it's outlook and practices.

Just look at Saudi Arabia and Iran, two competing wings of Islam. They are both murderous and oppressive regimes. ISIS and their ilk are just an extension of this barbarity.

Just ask the Yazadi's, the Kurds, women, gays and others who have to live daily under Sharia, most of which is made up to suit their various leaders interests.

Time for the world, especially the West to wake up.

There IS an enemy within.

Monday, 21 March 2016

Socialist Fight: Leaving reality behind

The minuscule organisation Socialist Fight (membership 3) has never had so much publicity in it's existence following Gerry Downing's record double expulsion from the Labour Party.

And guess what? It's all the Jews Zionists fault...

Ian Donovan writes:

The witchhunt against Socialist Fight, orchestrated by the Tories, the Labour Friends of Israel and other Zionists and warmongers or capitulators to such, is quite a compliment to our politics.

Err actually it's not. Everyone thinks you are stark raving mad.

Donovan continues:

The re-expulsion of Gerry Downing from Labour has brought out the latent Islamophobia, pro-imperialism and softness on Zionism and other forms of imperialist racism of some on the left in Labour.

This apparently includes the new darling of the left Owen Jones:

Owen Jones’ attribution of ‘anti-Semitism’ to us stems in fact from his own opportunism towards chauvinist and racist sentiments, not his antipathy to them.

Oh well Owen probably won't lose any sleep over that assertion.

Meanwhile Donovan turns his attention to Andrew Coates and Jim Denham who produce two excellent albeit left-wing blogs that actually take anti-Semitism seriously, don't capitulate to the clerical fascism that the majority of the left does and campaign for Kurdish Freedom, women's rights and defence of the Yazadi's against genocide.

Makes them OK in my book, but for Donovan and his Socialist Fight triumvirate they become:

..cynics and delusional Zionist right-wingers. Denham defines anti-Semites as those who do not defend Israel within its 1967 ‘borders’.

Crikey! Condemned for saying Israel has a right to exist.

And finally for some reason even I have attracted Donovan's ire:

...Denham and Coates, not to mention Owen Jones, are too blinded by their softness on Zionism to even endorse that. They simply side with Cameron, the CFI, LFI and the entire racist Zionist establishment. In the case of Coates and Denham, their political future is shown by a welcome guest on their blogs, one Howard Fuller, who claims to be a ‘progressive’ but in fact is a right-wing, pro-war enemy of Labour democracy, who openly advocates the expulsion of all leftists, including the AWL, from the Labour Party! By your friends we shall know you!

Hopefully the Labour Party compliance unit has Mr Donovan in their sights. He's in Croydon Labour Party by the way.

Where there be witches!!

Which reminds me it appears a certain little oik from Brighton has just been suspended from Labour. Expect a rant from a certain Mr Tony Greenstein sometime soon......

Sunday, 20 March 2016

Prospect: Time to get active

Prospect: Union for professionals

It's been over a year since I was last active as a trade union representative and times are getting difficult in the workplace. There is a need for an active and responsible trade union in the civil service. There is such a union, that being Prospect, smaller than it's main "rival" but one that is entirely focused on essential trade union issues.

In many parts of the civil service including the two largest departments the situation has become dire, not helped by the antics of one of the other unions whose focus seems to be entirely political and has lost substantial ground as a result,

With changes to terms and conditions of service looming on the horizon in the DWP  including evening and weekend working infringing on the work/life balance there is a need to rebuild the trade union movement.

Prsopect is one of the unions placed to do this and at last weeks Prospect DWP Branch AGM I became a representative and will be once again focusing activity on representing and defending members.

I have to say a break has done me good on a personal level and I feel both refreshed and ready to take on trade union duties once again. I have been active in the unions since the early eighties and recognise that without these organisations operating on our behalf things would be a lot worse.

With the resignation of Ian Duncan Smith and his replacement by Stephen Crabb there has never been a better time to return to the fold. Oddly the new Minister seems to be a wee bit of a religious fundamentalist. The Guardian:

A Tory cabinet minister has said that Britain’s increasingly secular society risks “pushing more young Muslims into the arms of Isis”.

Stephen Crabb, the Welsh secretary, used a speech to claim that a “hard-edged” secularism in Britain was partly to blame for “aiding and abetting” extremism, as mainstream religion is marginalised in public life.

Crabb is a committed Christian who voted against gay marriage and is one of at least two prominent members of the Conservative Christian Fellowship in the cabinet, alongside the education secretary, Nicky Morgan.

There are also concerns about his attitudes to equality as the Independent reports:

The newly appointed Work and Pensions Secretary Stephen Crabb has previously been the subject of criticism for appearing to have links to a ‘gay cure’ organisation.

Prime Minister David Cameron announced today that Mr Crabb will replace Iain Duncan Smith in the senior cabinet role. In 2012, claims emerged that Mr Crabb was employing interns through a homophobic religious fundamentalist organisation and had begun his political career through involvement in the same scheme when he was young.

It seems that the defence of secularism may need to go hand in hand with the building of trade unionism in the civil service. 

This blog will become more focused on trade union issues in the coming months but will also continue to campaign for secularism and the separation of religion and the state.

In the mean time readers who work in the civil service are cordially invited to join Prospect, a growing modern union.

Please go to:

Don't Delay. Join Today and build a better future.

Saturday, 19 March 2016

Tories in crisis?

Like most people I was caught by surprise at the resignation of Ian Duncan Smith as Works and pensions minister last night. It comes just a day after the Chancellors budget in which £4 Billion was cut from the budget for the disabled. There had been rumours of a growing rebellion amongst Tory MPs but this was certainly quite unexpected.

Duncan Smith's resignation also comes at a time when he lost a court case to keep Universal Credit problems a secret. reports:

A spokesperson for the DWP responded at the time by saying: "Universal Credit is on track and on budget. To suggest anything else is incorrect."

This information is highlighted by Judge Ryan in his final decision, and for good reason. We know now, of course, that the statements coming out of the DWP back then told quite a different story to what actually happened with the programme. Their own figures show that at the last count just little more than 200,000 people are now on the new benefit and recent estimates suggest it's unlikely to be fully implemented until 2021, some four years later than first planned.

So perhaps it's not surprising that IDS is desperate to keep the papers out of the public domain. His legal argument is that publication of the documents would have a "chilling effect" on the working of the department. This term may sound like some sort of threat to national security but it's actually a fairly standard defence against disclosure. Witnesses for the DWP argued that if staff knew that everything they wrote internally was likely to be made public they would be less candid and forthcoming in their opinions.

The civil service unions, Prospect, the FDA and PCS have been warning about growing problems to little effect.

However much is being made of an internal struggle within the Conservative party itself since this is widely seen as an attempt to directly undermine George Osborne as he and Boris continue to battle it out for future leadership and the European referendum campaign.

Meanwhile Stephen Crabb has been made his replacement but all indication is that will not be much of a change.

Jamie Szymkowiak tweeted:

Earlier this week Stephen Crabb's own constituents sprayed "Why do you hate the sick" on the facade of his office. 

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Notes and Updates

Sylvia Anderson

A sad day for Thunderbirds fans as Sylvia Anderson, voice of Lady Penelope passed away at the age 88 today. You can find my tribute over at my other blog:

Sylvia Anderson Voice of Lady Penelope Remembered

I also thought it would be useful to catch up on a couple stories covered on Howie's Corner recently.

Gerry Downing

First up Gerry Downing who was expelled from the Labour Party for his disgusting views on, well just about everything. His car crash of an interview with Andrew Neil was not enough it seems. The egotistical little man has published his "letter of appeal" to the Labour Party demanding his reinstatement.

Here's a few samples:

ISIS, no matter how reactionary they are, should be supported.... against imperialist attack.

This is why Palestinian solidarity activity is being incrementally banned in a number of Western countries, including many US states, the UK, and most notoriously France. This is the material basis of Zionist power in Western societies. (my emphasis)

Israel is considerably worse than apartheid South Africa, though obviously so far less severe than Nazi Germany itself (though it should be noted that Hitler’s regime lasted only 12 years – Israeli terror continues unabated after 70 years).

And he wonders why people find his views abhorrent.

Read his full (rather over-long piece) here:

Mark Serwotka

Whilst the General Secretary of the PCS union enters the Labour Party to "help" Jeremy Corbyn (a) get rid of "Blairite MPs" and (b) to campaign against austerity and government cuts his own organisation is in serious difficulties.

The Times (no link£) reports:

His union's annual accounts reveal that reserves fell by half to £6 million in a year, forcing it to seek extra loans. Auditors warned of a "material uncertainty which may cast doubt about the union's ability to continue as a going concern".

Mr Serwotka who earns £92,000 a year has been a critic of austerity, attacking George Osborne for failing to eradicate the deficit, but his union has suffered a financial crisis of it's own"

People in glass houses....

Jerry Lewis

Finally to end with a good piece of news, veteran comedian Jerry Lewis is 90 today! Here's a short clip to remind you all of the comedy genius he is!


Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Feminists ask students not to sponsor extremist speakers

Student politics has become a baffling world of obvious contradictions. The safe spaces/politically correct movement has banned so many speakers for views that most ordinary people would not find either offencive or out of the ordinary and yet it seems that when it comes to Islamist extremists none of the usual suspects seem to head for a room showing puppy videos.

Cage is an organisation that gained notoriety over it's description of mass murderer "Jihadi John" as being a "nice man". You'd think this groups view of ISIS would threaten everyones "safe space" and yet student lefties seem to have no problems not just letting these extremists speak at their universities but some very misguided "feminists" actually sponsor the event.

A number of real feminists have taken up the issue. Here is their letter:

Dear Exeter Feminist Society,

We are dismayed but not surprised to hear that Moazzam Begg has been invited to speak at Exeter University at a meeting sponsored by the Feminist Society along with the Socialist Society, the Islamic Society and Friends of Palestine. We understand from comments on Facebook and from your response to our tweets that he is due to address issues on the Prevent agenda; and that you were not responsible for choosing speakers. You say that he has denied the allegations against him and that there is no credible evidence to support such allegations.

Questions of civil liberties including the Prevent agenda are clearly of concern to students. We are mystified as to how a student response to Prevent grounded in feminist ideas or support for civil liberties could be developed by accepting the word of a man who has a long record of supporting murderous groups and individuals and treating them as heroes.

We do not accept that inviting a speaker does not mean endorsing their views. This can only hold true if the views that are abhorrent are challenged through debate. Others before you have made this mistake too. Human rights organisations have sullied their reputation for unbiased, well -researched information by working closely with Cage. In doing so, they risked amplifying the Cage narrative and helping to make their views attractive to potential recruits to al Qaeda and their related groups.

We are groups and individuals who work against all forms of religious fundamentalism. We have examined the work of Cage over a number of years. Unfortunately your argument that there is no credible evidence against Begg and Cage does not hold up. There is plenty of evidence and it comes from their own website and interviews. It is clear that Moazzam Begg and Cage have served as amplifiers of the ideology of al Qaeda through their promotion of key ideologues as respected scholars. They are not so much a prisoners rights group as a ‘Free the prisoners’ group’, as the article” Dissent v Incitement?’ written some years ago (page 29) explains.…/Infochange_Agenda_on_Censorship_22_Ju….

On March 17th, we will be demonstrating in front of the NUS calling for revision of their no platforming and safe space policies. We would like to know whether you are prepared to clarify your views on Begg and Cage in an open debate with other feminists? We are also perfectly prepared to debate Moazzam Begg and challenge his tendentious narratives and abhorrent views. Are you prepared to organise a debate, at a suitable time, rather than simply act as amplifiers of his message? As a first step, are you prepared to demonstrate your solidarity with resistance to terrorism and with victims of terrorism by withdrawing your sponsorship of the meeting?

Gita Sahgal and Yasmin Rehman, Centre for Secular Space
Pragna Patel, Southall Black Sisters
Maryam Namazie, One Law for All and Council for Ex-Muslims
Haydar Zaki, Quilliam Foundation and Right2Debate

Monday, 14 March 2016

The birth of a "New Party"?

       Logo of the Fourth International

The Labour Party has begun to reach a crisis point in credibility. Not long after kicking out far-left Trotskyist Gerry Downing for anti-Semitism then another one is discovered.

Guido Fawkes reports:

A Labour parliamentary candidate who was suspended for suggesting ISIS should attack Israel has been readmitted to the party. In 2014 Vicki Kirby, then Labour’s candidate in Woking, was exposed by the Sunday Times for writing that Hitler was the “Zionist God” in a string of insane tweets, even asking why ISIS isn’t attacking Israel, who she described as “the real oppressors”:

“We invented Israel when saving them from Hitler, who now seems to be their teacher.”

“I will never forget and I will make sure my kids teach their children how evil Israel is!”

“Apparently you can ask IS/ISIS/ISIL questions on Anyone thought of asking them why they’re not attacking the real oppressors #Israel?”

Woking Labour Party report that:

Woking Labour Chair Barry Faulkner and newly elected vice chair Vicki Kirby....

have been attending meetings of the group in a personal capacity with a view towards building broad-based campaigns against austerity and attacks on council services.

And guess who else was there?

Momentum.... the Socialist Party, the Greens....

The Chair of Woking Labour also happens to be Kirby's boyfriend. 

Labour keeping it all in the family.

The far-left are the new fascists. 

With an appeaser at the head of Labour and a deputy who thinks "joining Labour is just a tactic" shows the party is on the edge of the precipice. Resignations continue unabated. 

The "new politics" is fast becoming the New Party. Just like Mosley, history is repeating itself.

And first they will come for the Jews....

Sunday, 13 March 2016

Serwotka follows Lenin's dictum for Labour


After decades of undermining the Labour Party at every turn Mark Serwotka, the vainglorious General Secretary of the PCS has joined the party to assist in helping the Corbynistas to "deselect" (purge in plain English) what he describes as "Blairite" MPs. In other words those with whom he and his fellow Trots do not agree with.

It's no wonder sitting MPs and long term activists were appalled by the remarks of this "johnny Serwotka-come-lately". The Daily Mirror reported:

Labour MP John Woodcock said they were a “slap in the face” to everyone who had fought so hard for a Labour government.

Serwotka claims that "there is no point in joining a political party unless you can change it's representatives" . Possibly true but after just a few days? Get a grip "comrade".

Whilst the existing Labour Party membership has been campaigning on the doorstep to actually get the Tories out, Mar Serwotka has spent his time calling for and helping to build an alternative party to Labour. Variously Respect (with George Galloway & the Socialist Workers Party), a short lived SWP breakaway from Respect whose name escapes me and more recently the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) run by the Socialist Party who just happen to control the PCS union in alliance with the SWP.

None of these organisations represent the aspirations of British workers. Far from it. Both Respect and the SWP follow a pro-Islamist agenda. The Socialist Party was formerly inside the Labour Party and called itself the Militant Tendency. It's activities along with the fore-runners of today's Corbynistas made labour unelectable.

Now all these people are trying to get in on the act.

The Trots like McDonnell who according the Sunday Times "joined Labour as a tactic" have their own political agendas. Serwotka certainly has. It was interesting to note his recent BBC interview took place in a bookshop in Bloomsbury.

That would be Bookmarks owned by the Socialist Workers Party. 

Or what's left of it following their disastrous splits over the "comrade delta" scandal. Frankly I'm astonished anyone would allow themselves to be associated in any shape or form with Alex Callincos's "lynch mob".

Let alone the leader of Britain's fifth largest union.

But then Lenin had words for his followers in Britain when he sought to affiliate his Communists to Labour. They should support Labour "like a rope supports a hanged man".

Victims of communist purges

Says it all really and why the McDonnells, Downings and Serwotkas of this world cannot and should never be trusted.

His own union has declined in size and influence in recent years including not just members leaving but organised splits resulting in the creation of two new unions, one of which represented a whole department.

Serwotka has nothing to bring to the table except further division. His blinkered fundamentalism is as shallow as those who once treated him as the trade union movements "new messiah".

Serwotka has proved to be a very false "messiah" indeed.

Saturday, 12 March 2016

Prospect Union: NEC Elections 2016

Prospect: Union for professionals

The election for the National Executive Committee of Prospect has just opened and my ballot paper arrived this morning in the post. There are 27 candidates for 23 positions, so it's time for me to cast my vote. Unlike my previous union which was factional beyond belief there appear to be no such problems here. Prospect is after all a more stable and rational organisation.

In order to vote it is actually necessary to read through the candidates statements, most of whom seem pretty reasonable individuals and only one is known to me, Davey Hunter (Scottish Government) a fellow "refugee" from PCS. I've known and worked with him for years so he's got my vote.

As for the others?

Unlike in previous years I am not going to list "recommendations" as is the practice in not just PCS, but a host of other unions where slates, particularly those of the far left vie for control. In many unions this has led to disaster so it's a refreshing change to have to consider candidates on their individual merits.

Strong, rational and representative unions are absolutely necessary, especially under the current government which is hostile to working peoples rights. The line has to be held.

So the only recommendation I will make (other than for Davey Hunter) is that all members do use their vote.

If you haven't joined up yet, there is an alternative:

Join Prospect today:

Friday, 11 March 2016

Student Union bans "Around the World in 80 Days" Party

 Verne Tour du Monde.jpg

It must be a very oppressive atmosphere in some colleges and universities these days. Speakers banned, publications banned, even sombrero's from a local Mexican restaurant banned. Cultural appropriation we are told...whatever the hell that's supposed to mean.

A sombrero. It's a hat kids.

Get over yourselves.

Used to sing a rugby club song about a sombrero when I was a student. My Sister Belinda...  can't remember all the words but needless to say they wouldn't pass today's censorious lot on the Student Union Committees that are hell bent on suppressing free speech, learning and now even fun.

Yes, fun has come under attack at Pembrooke College, Cambridge. The comrades of the Student Union Politburo have banned a party themed on Around the World in 80 Days as it could cause offence through people wearing costumes which were deemed to be cultural appropriation.

This was apparently discussed at some length. I would love to see a video of this debate. Must be deliriously hilarious as the various navel gazers outmanoeuvre each other to say how bad and oppressive fancy dress costumes are.

At the end of the day that's all this really was. A fancy dress party.

Have these people nothing better to do? Like actually learn something?

These over-privileged brats are ruining student life.

Isn't it about time students, most of whom must be "normal" stood up and told these jumped up thought police where to go.

And to think I was worried about my old Poly's Student Union being controlled by Maoists.

Dark days indeed.

Thursday, 10 March 2016

Expelled from Labour: Gerry Downing on BBC's Daily Politics!

For those of you (like me) that didn't see this when it was broadcast by the BBC, here is the car crash of an interview by Andrew Neil on the Daily Politics Show with the obviously squirming Gerry downing.

Dreadful and totally inarticulate man.

Easily torn apart by a very polite Mr Neil.

Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Expel Gerry Downing from the Labour Party

There is growing concern about the presence of Gerry Downing a member of the tiny Socialist Fight organisation inside the Labour Party. Socialist Fight is the British section of one of the several organisations that describe themselves as the Fourth International. In this case the Liaison Committee for the Fourth International (LCFI).

Apparently Labour's National Executive Committee has allowed him to be re-instated as a party member despite being openly a member of a rival political party (for constitutional purposes it's minute size is not relevant).

Downing's political views are not only questionable but unsavoury to say the least. His obsession with the "Jewish question" particularly disturbing and more so since Ian Donovan joined his little coterie.

Donovan was expelled from the Communist Party of Great Britain (Weekly Worker) as they considered "anti-Semitism" incompatible with party membership. He wrote:

For without the Zionist project, the Jewish-Zionist bourgeoisie, which is a key component of the vanguard of world capital, would have no unifying ethos to hold it together. This may be a vanguard, class conscious formation, but it is fragile. Without the Zionist project as a unifying focus, it would over time dissolve through assimilation into the various imperialist bourgeoisies.

International Jewish-Zionist conspiracy anyone?

Where have we heard that one before.......

Socialist Fight/LCFI (proprietor Gerry Downing) also has made the following remark about ISIS, that genocidal clerical-fascist movement currently murdering and enslaving women across Syria and Iraq:

We defend the ‘Islamic State’ in Syria and Iraq against the bombing of US imperialism....

Jeremy Corbyn remains silent despite Downings tweet (pictured at the top of this post) which includes the following:

The role Zionists have played in the attempted witch-hunt against Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour leadership campaign is glaringly obvious… Since the dawning of the period of neo-liberal capitalism in the 1970s, elements of the Jewish-Zionist bourgeoisie, from Milton Friedman to Henry Kissinger to the pro-Israel ideologues of the War on Terror, have played a vanguard role for the capitalist offensive against the workers.”

Obsessed with Jews this man/group seem to be. There's more:

I invited Ian Donovan to join Socialist Fight because I studied the dispute he had with Weekly Worker and Jack Comrade and Moshe Macover in particular and concluded the Ian was correct in that and they were wrong and were distorting his views. In fact he was talking a very courageous stance against the liberal Zionism of the soft left in Britain and globally.

Labour needs to act against the influx of these dodgy far-left activists now. They have no place in the Labour and trade union movement.

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

International Women's Day: Support Muslim women against oppression

As we celebrate International Women's Day I commend this rational and well thought out programme from Bread and Roses TV with Maryam Namazie.

The message needs to go out to the Western feminists who on the whole tend to forget their "brown sisters" due to their misplaced notion of "anti-imperialism".

The need to liberate women from the backward misogynist religion of Islam so that they have equal rights has never been more urgent as the treatment of women in Iran, Saudi Arabia and of course under ISIS is appalling.

Seems to me so many Western feminists hide from reality in "safe spaces" and "triggering" and refuse to face up to the real suffering of others. rather than just protecting their overblown sense of self importance.

There is a long way to go.

Stand up for Women's rights everywhere. Religion, especially Islam, cannot be used as an excuse!

Monday, 7 March 2016

Comedy Interlude: Mike & Bernie Winters

No time for a blog tonight so since Gotham is just starting on Channel 5 I thought I'd share this little tune from Mike & Bernie Winters from way back in the sixties when Adam West ruled the airwaves.

Will appeal to a (cough) certain generation......

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Now students ban even ideas from being debated

The thing about University is that you go there to learn. Part of the learning process is to encounter ideas and concepts from across the academic and political divide. Not everything learnt will be pleasant or acceptable, especially if you are learning about history or politics.

I am in the process of reading The Romanovs 1613-1918 by Simon Sebag Montefore, an excellent book well researched and highly readable, but the punishments meted out to those who fell foul of the Tsars (particularly in the opening chapters) are somewhat unpleasant.

But they happened and we need to learn from history and in order to do so the material must be as accurate as possible and cannot be redacted, censored or in anyway altered to play to the perceived sensitivities of students who feel they might have bad dreams.

When it comes to politics the views of movements and ideologies across the spectrum then students will have to encounter some very unsavoury people and ideas.. How can you study fascism without referring to Mein Kampf or learning about the Holocaust? Even on a more mundane level then the views of current Conservative politicians have to be discussed and debated. Otherwise how will anyone be able to develop criticisms and counter the reactionary propositions of the likes of George Osborne?

Debate and discussion is central not just to learning but also to putting into practice that which we should all hold as a fundamental proposition, the concept of democracy.

And democracy means tolerating those with ideas we fundamentally disagree with.

Yet the current intake of student activists seeks to ban everything that they don't want to hear and more to the point prevent others from hearing ideas that differ from their own. The new"left" has become the new Stalinism.

Some might even call it a new kind of fascism.

Doesn't matter really the censors no matter what their intentions simply seek to impose their world outlook on everyone whilst encouraging the weak minded and fools on campus to run to so-called "safe spaces" to keep their fragile egos from discovering that there are other ways of looking at the world around us.

It would be sad if it wasn't so dangerous.

The latest example of this campaign of censorship took place at the London School of Economics and for once wasn't around one of those sexual identity issues that student activists are uber-obsessed about.

This time an appearance by Adam Perkins author of The Welfare Trait who fell foul of the NUS censors. His book apparently talks about the problems around the welfare state creating a "production line" of damaged children" who have developed those who have become "employment resistant" and are "hard-wired to failure".

Now not having read the book (and I may do so if I can find the time) this is only the briefest of outlines. According to the Times (no link £) he himself admits he became a loafer in his early years. His basic argument appears to be that personality is shaped around being within a permanently welfare orientated family/background.

Uncomfortable reading, but I do believe environment does have considerable influence over personal development and would like to hear his argument in full.

But these "students" don't even wish to allow those that do to hear him. The LSE cancelled his visit due to security fears.


Our seats of learning are under the dual threat of activist censorship and bad governance that allows this to happen.

The point is guys and girls be careful for what you wish for. You actually may be next. These "students" threaten my "safe space". That being democracy and free speech. Thing is I don't expect it to be a safe space.

There will be many who disagree with me and I have to live with that.

It's called free speech.

Saturday, 5 March 2016

Gambia: Union leader dies in prison - demand justice for Sheriff Diba

A LabourStart appeal from Eric lee

Early this month road transport unions in Senegal launched a border blockade of Gambia, whose president has unilaterally increased the customs tax on lorries entering the nation a hundredfold. At the same time the drivers' colleagues in Gambia asked their government to lower fuel retail prices in line with the fall in wholesale prices. 

The result? 

The president banned union activities and arrested three union leaders. Shockingly, one of them, Sheriff Diba, of the GNTCA (Gambian National Transport Control Association) died in prison - reportedly after receiving brutal treatment at the hands of the National Intelligence Agency. 

We want justice for Sheriff and for his Gambian and Senegalese colleagues.

Please support it by clicking here:

Friday, 4 March 2016

Musical Interlude: AC/DC

OK it's Friday night and the weekends here so lets put the politics aside tonight and....ROCK!

AC/DC perform Hells Bells. Great track!

Thursday, 3 March 2016

Time to stand up for women's rights. Say no to Sharia

The following news report from Canada is a disturbing example of the misogynist streak in Islam which needs to be tackled without all the false accusations of "islamophobia" thrown around by the so-called lefties who don't seem to care a jot about the rights of non-white women in the distorted name of "anti-imperialism"

I have included the video description below which includes transcripts of the parents testimonies.

Muslim Dad Muhammad Parvez dialled 911. He explained what he had done. "I killed my daughter. . . with my hands," he told the operator. "She wanted to take her stuff out."

The Muslim Dad and the Daughter had been in a dispute over not wearing the Hijab and the girl wanted to run away.

Before the Murder, the victim Aqsa Parvez tried to talk to her friends about her life Aqsa began to cry, as she tried to convince her disbelieving friends that her father would kill her, "No, he swore on the Qur'an," Aqsa said. "He said he'd kill me if I ever ran away again."

In a police interview on the day 16-year old Aqsa was murdered, her mother whose name is Anwar Jan Parvez, crying and talking out loud to herself, was recorded as saying she thought her husband was only going to "break legs and arms," but instead "killed her straight away."

The mother was also audio-recorded as saying "Oh God, Oh God. . . Oh my Aqsa, you should have listened," said in a police interview room. "Everyone tried to make you understand. Everyone begged you, but you did not listen. . .", as if it was the victim's brought this fate onto herself.

When she asked her husband why he killed her, he told her: "This is my insult. My community will say you have not been able to control your daughter. This is my insult. She is making me naked."

Muhhamad Parvez, the Muslim Dad, was also worried about Aqsa's future. All of his children had married their first cousins through arranged marriages. And the plan was for Aqsa to be married in the same way when she was old enough, to a boy in her brother's wife's family.

Day Conference on Sharia Law, Legal Pluralism and Access to Justice

30 April 2016  11:30am-5:30pm  Central London, near Kings Cross Station

30 April: Day Conference on Sharia Law, Legal Pluralism and Access to Justice

Elham Manea will present the findings of her new book Women And Sharia Law: The Impact Of Legal Pluralism In The UK. Women’s rights groups that led successful campaigns preventing public authorities such as the governing body of UK Universities and the Law Society from incorporating aspects of Sharia laws into their public policies will further present their case against Sharia courts and the Beth Din, legal aid cuts, and the denial of access to equality and human rights.

Confirmed Speakers include:

Diana Nammi, Director of Iranian Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation
Elham Manea, Author of Women And Sharia Law: The Impact Of Legal Pluralism In The UK
Gita Sahgal, Director of Centre for Secular Space
Pragna Patel, Director of Southall Black Sisters
Maryam Namazie, Spokesperson of One Law for All and Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain
Nareen Rehman, Co-Founder and Chair of British Muslims for Secular Democracy
Yasmin Rehman, Women’s Rights Campaigner

Further details: One Law For All

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

Demonstrate: NUS: Revise Safe Space and No Platform Policies to Facilitate not Restrict Free Expression and Thought

On 17 March 2016 from 5-6pm, there will be a protest at the office of the NUS, Macadam House, 275 Gray’s Inn Road, London, WC1X 8QB. Join Us. Also Tweet “I call on @nusuk to revise safe space and no platform policies to facilitate not restrict free expression and thought” or email the NUS stating the same at

Press release from: Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain

We are deeply concerned by the increasing attempts by the National Union of Students (NUS) and its affiliated Student Unions to silence dissenters – including feminists, apostates, LGBTI rights campaigners, anti-racists, anti-fascists and anti-Islamists – through its use of No-Platform and Safe Space policies.

We stand against all prejudice and discrimination. We agree that free speech does not mean giving bigots a free pass. A defence of free speech includes the right and moral imperative to challenge, oppose and protest bigoted views.

Educational institutions must be a place for the exchange and criticism of all ideas – even those deemed unpalatable by some – providing they don’t incite violence against peoples or communities. Bigoted ideas are most effectively defeated by open debate, backed up by ethics, reason and evidence.

The student body is not homogeneous; there will be differences of opinion among students. The NUS’s restrictive policies infringe upon the right of students to hear and challenge dissenting and opposing views.

We, therefore, call on the NUS to revise its No-Platform and Safe Space policies to facilitate freedom of expression and thought, rather than restrict it.

Updated 2 March

(Students, Activists and Academics are welcome to sign on to the letter, which will be updated regularly. To sign on to the letter, please email below contact persons.)

Alicia McElhill, President City of Leicester NUT
Asher Fainman, President of Goldsmiths ASH society
Author, Jesus & Mo
Becky Lavelle, President, Hull University Secularist, Atheist, and Humanist Society
Benjamin David, President of Warwick Atheists, Secularists and Humanists
Bread and Roses TV
Brendan O’Neill, editor of Spiked
Chris Moos, secularist activist
Connor Naylor, External Outreach Officer of the LSESU Free Speech Society
Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain
David Browne, LLM Student in International Human Rights Law
Durham Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Society
Elham Manea, Academic and human Rights advocate
Emma Humphreys Memorial Prize
Fariborz Pooya, Host of Bread and Roses TV
Feminism in London
Fireproof Library
Frederick Money, Undergraduate, Merton College Oxford
Gita Sahgal, Centre for Secular Space
Gregory Kent, academic and journalist
Gush Bhumbra, President, Leicester Secular Society
Halima Begum, ExMuslim Researcher & Blogger
Helen Chamberlain, President, Durham Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Society
Houzan Mahmoud, Women’s Rights Activist, Kurdistan
Hull University Secularist, Atheist, and Humanist Society
Ian Leaver, Secretary City of Leicester NUT
Imad Iddine Habib, Spokesperson of Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain
Index on Censorship
James Burchett, Activist
Jodie Ginsberg, CEO, Index on Censorship
Josh Crossman, psychology graduate from Aberystwyth University, and a Health Psychology MSc student at Surrey University
Julie Bindel, Justice for Women and the Emma Humphreys Memorial Prize
Justice for Women
Kameron J. St. Clare, President of the Middle Common Room, St. Hilda’s College, Oxford
Kate Smurthwaite, Comedian and Activist
Kenan Malik, Author
Keziah Conroy, UCLU Atheist, Secularity and Humanist society President
Kojin Mirizayi, Law student, President of the Kurdish Society at the University of Kent
Lee Jones, Queen Mary, University of London
Leo Gibbons-Plowright, Blogger
Lisa-Marie Taylor, Chair of Feminism in London
Maajid Nawaz, Author and Counter-extremism Activist
Magi Gibson, Scottish poet and author
Maggie Hall, Chair, Brighton Secular Humanists
Maryam Namazie, Spokesperson of Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain, One Law for All and Host of Bread and Roses TV
Matt Corden, undergraduate at Newcastle University
Miranda Yardley, Writer, Publisher and Activist
Nahla Mahmoud, Spokesperson of Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain
Nick Cohen, Author
Nira Yuval-Davis, Director of the Research Centre on Migration, Refugees and Belonging (CMRB) at the University of East London
Ollie Burton, President, Newcastle University Atheists’ & Secular Humanists’ Society
One Law for All
Ophelia Benson, Writer
Peter Flack, Leicester Social Forum
Peter Tatchell, Human Rights Campaigner
Rayhan Rashid, Oxford
Rayhana Sultan, Spokesperson of Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain
Renas Siti, Student at the University of East Aglia
Rhys Morgan, undergraduate student at Oxford Brookes University
Richard Dawkins, Scientist and Author
Roy Brown, International Representative and former president of IHEU
Rumana Hashem, Founder of Community Women’s Blog and Adviser at Nari Diganta
Rumy Hasan, Senior Lecturer (SPRU – Science Policy Research Unit), University of Sussex
Salil Tripathi, Writer
Sarah Peace, Fireproof Library
Stephen Evans, Campaigns Manager, National Secular Society
Tehmina Kazi, Director of Media, Outreach and Lobbying, British Muslims for Secular Democracy
Tom Holland, Author and Historian
University of Leicester Atheist, Humanist and Secular Society

For more information, Contact
Maryam Namazie,
Benjamin David,

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Anarchist folly in Calais

"Circle-A" anarchy symbol

With the migrant crisis being at the forefront of so many peoples minds as we prepare for the referendum on membership of the European Union we could do without this:

Migrants and British Anarchists clashed with riot police in Calais yesterday as French officials prepared to evacuate part of the camp.

(The Times, no link£)

If anything this kind of action will turn many voters against the EU and only help in the rise of xenophobia that has grown across a wide spectrum of opinion in Europe, let alone Britain.

At the same time the sight of migrants attempting to smash through border fences on the Greek/Macedonian border will only assist those who wish to undermine Europe.

The migrant crisis has to be tackled urgently, but the infantile behaviour of the anarchists, who frankly act more like nihilists these days will not help anyone and is more likely to cause more ill-feeling than previously seen.

Way to go "comrades". Help the far-right won't you.