Archive for October, 2012

Hello everyone!

Just a quick notice to let you know that i am currently on holidays and i wont be updating my blog for a good fortnight to a month. I am off work and have been in Dubai and currently am in the beautiful part of the Earth called Oman. Thus far i am having an amazing time and really taking in this experience and making an adventure of it. It is so good to immerse myself within this culture and it’s people and to have a true taste of Arab life and hospitality, i have so much to share and soon enough i will post all about my travel journey in this region- raw,uncut and as always honest :).

Eid Mubarak to all my fellow Muslims out there and happy halloween to all others. In the meanwhile so much is happening in the world around us, but i’m sure others from the blogosphere are more than capable to fill you in with regards to the crazy world that we live in.

Take care, signing off and checking out. See you soon 🙂

-Ramey

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Malala Yousafzai is making a gradual recovery at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Britain, where she is under treatment for a brain injury that she sustained after the Taliban shot her in the head for many reasons, all of which are unacceptable. This is indeed great news to see this 15 year old making a recovery and miraculously surviving a close up gun shot to the head by the cowardly Taliban. Malala has been an open activist especially for the role of female education in Pakistan, she lived in the Swat valley and lived in daily fear with her father – knowing that the Taliban were always within close reach in their battle to overtake the region with their draconian laws.

Within the last 2 years Malalas open commitment to protecting the rights of women in Pakistan and their rights to education has encouraged western media to infiltrate her region and get to know her and her father who is supportive of his daughters stern warning that she will “never stop“. Yet to me Malala is being torn from every direction, as the “hero’s” and “villains” run around her in circles whilst she lay in a fragile condition in a British hospital, i feel it is time for us to maintain an honest narrative on what happened to her and why- not to mention why it is important that her mission continues.

Malala recovering in hospital (20/10/12)

First thing is first. Malala was not shot because she supports education, at least not according to the Taliban. They had sent official warnings to her family saying that their lives were in danger if they were to continue their glorification of their Western Enemies and their culture. The Taliban hated Malala because she was the epitome of a “modern movement” in the backwaters of Pakistan, a place where people are used to standing down and being overrun by militants who silence the majority of its dwellers. They hated that she gave the world an insight into a day in the life of a Pakistani girl and the fear instigated by the Taliban. They hated that she accepted fragments of the west whilst retaining what is acceptable of her own culture, a mixture of both Eastern and Western thinking is “corrupt” in the eyes of the Taliban– who after the third warning decided to act upon their threats by sending men to the school bus she was traveling in, summoning her by name until he friends pointed her out, before she could speak she was shot- so was the girl that “reported” her- in case it was a ploy. Sick? Beyond words.! There is no strong evidence to suggest that the Taliban shot her strictly for supporting education of any sort, though that may be one of many reasons, it is surely not the sole purpose that the Media is trying to portray.

One of the most impressive things to me was that once Malala was shot, the outcry from the general Pakistani population was huge, regardless of their creed or location- they stood up for this young girl, praying for her recovery, cursing her attempted assassins and with fists in their air promising to never let her legacy die, whether she lives or dies. Day after day the Pakistani people gathered in many sized crowds- both men and women to support Malala and worldwide the outcry was huge, so much so that it’d make the Taliban scurry back to their caves from fear.  These images gave me so much hope, and it squashed the rumors that “typically” people are silent about the extremists within their own faith and region, hence they too are part of the problem. The fact is the majority of every day people in Pakistan contest to the Taliban, just like every day westerners do. Even more promising was the fact that a Fatwa was issued against the Taliban by over 50 Muslim clerics within the region to condemn the Taliban and their actions.

20-40,000 people protest in Karachi, Pakistan over Malalas shooting by the Taliban.

Clerics on Friday declared the attempt on her life, made by Pakistani Taliban gunmen while the 14-year-old girl was on her way home from school in the Swat valley, to be “un-Islamic”.The joint fatwa, or religious edict, was issued by at least 50 scholars associated with the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC), and appealed to worshippers to observe a “day of condemnation” on Friday.

Islam holds the killing of one innocent person as killing the entirety of humanity” said Hamid Saeed Kazmi, a former religious affairs minister in Pakistan, told reporters.

In light of all this, some people and governments have allowed this event and the suffering of the Pakistanis under the rule of the Taliban to support the use of drone attacks in the region, which to me is an ugly guise at allowing further innocents to die. There is no justification to drone attacks, such attacks that do not differentiate between innocent civilians and militants, whilst the sad fact remains that the media always somehow claims that drones “kill militants” whilst they are absolutely silent about the innocent lives that are taken in the interim. A new study from Columbia Law School’s Human Rights Institute finds that the number of Pakistani civilians killed in drone strikes are “significantly and consistently underestimated” by tracking organizations which are trying to take the place of government estimates on casualties. In fact latest studies note that the ratio of civilians killed to militants in these drone attacks are 50:1.

Hence when people cheer for nations to nuke Pakistan with further drone strikes- essentially they are supporting the death of civilians; men,women and children– who knows how many other Malalas have had to die in such a way. So no, do not take advantage of this situation to further support the concept of drone strikes, a terrifying and terrible use of force by unmanned aircraft that cause major turmoil on the ground.

Members of the EDL (English Defense League) call Malala a “Piece Of Shit” for recovering in Britain.

Another ugly side that has emerged from the case of Malala is the thriving racism in the United Kingdom by the EDL (English Defence League). A “Party” that ensure it must keep and fight for Britains identity- an identity that is being stolen and taken over by immigrants and Muslims who want to impose “Shariah Law”. These people have been well known to cause havoc, violent protests and grotesque threats- nothing short but a menace to a society they claim to “protect”. When members of the EDL heard that Malala who was 14 at the time and had just been shot in the head in defiance to the Taliban mind you- was going to get medical treatment in the UK they went absolutely ape about it and vocalized an intense hatred for this young girl, calling her the most hideous names including a “Piece of shit– concluding that her and her family were “using their resources” and that they were spending their tax payers money on helping a “free loader“.

Funnily enough the Pakistani government were paying for her visit, treatment and recovery entirely. Hence these “extremists” are attacking a girl who openly fought the “extremists” – does that make sense to you? Of course not, they were the English Defect League.

Now comes the other side of the spectrum, some Muslims are trying to claim that Malala is simply a coverup and that she was not shot, or that she works for American Propaganda agents and that the Taliban do not attack children and would not do such a thing. Let us get one thing straight, if you deny that what happened to Malala was true; that she was in fact NOT shot by the Taliban then you are calling her entire narrative falsehood. You are basically implying that this young girl took a bullet to the head for no reason, her testimonies are false and the struggle of her people and their society under the grips of the Taliban are not true- technically you are calling Malala a liar. Which is ridiculous ; children are honest and Malala is honest in what her and her people must face, that these Taliban are militia-men who enforce rules upon people and who have OPENLY threatened Malala and her family, and continue to do so even when she was on her deathbed. The fact is by standing up for the Taliban, you are spitting on the face of the reality that Malala and her people face on a daily basis, you are calling her life story a lie and that all that she fought for and will Inshallah continue to fight for is nothing but mere fabrication– pathetic, to say the least.

Grief hits the heart of Malalas nation of Pakistan.

Finally there are the people that suddenly have the urge to insult Islam as a faith and somehow hold the Taliban to be a pedestal to Islamic teachings, one thing that is absolutely ironic about such criticism is that Malala herself IS a Muslim. So inform me oh bigots, why isn’t Malala the face of Islam? Instead you choose the Taliban? Cute. Not to mention when Malala was asked in an interview in 2011 how she would combat the Taliban she said she would speak to them first and ask them what do they desire and demand, then she said she’d show them the Qur’an and prove to them nowhere does it mention women cannot get educated.

Case closed. Stop using the tragic situation of Malala to promote your own agenda, take the story for what it is.

Peace, Salam Alaykum.

Ahhh the wonderful sound of the statement “Freedom Of Speech”. It is as pleasing to the ear as the opening of a coke bottle on a hot summers day...TSSSSSSS – then gulp away at the quenching taste. For a while now i have always been curious about the terminology of “Freedom Of Speech” because to me freedom is absolute; it is limitless; unrestricted and unchallenged. The fact is even a child will come to realize that “freedom of speech” is not necessarily free and in fact is subject to so many terms and conditions that the meaning is deteriorated almost immediately.

As with the latest major protests around the world because of the film “Innocence of Muslims” we saw riots across the Muslim world where almost 20 people died as a result. The United States insisted it would protect freedom of speech, which is fair enough but is consistency not to be expected? It is not only the United States but many liberal “freedom” loving nations have a hard time grasping the meaning of Freedom. Recently when France agreed to publish derogatory paintings of the Prophet Muhammad in a magazine with him bent down on all fours the government then initiated a law making it ILLEGAL to protest this action, yes even a peaceful protest is forbidden!

This must then beg the question- is freedom of expression not a natural response to freedom of speech? We express ourselves in many ways and not always is it true that we respond a word for a word. People who have not been exposed to the sweetness of “Freedom of Speech” cannot be expected to grasp it, nor adapt to it- not overnight at least. Hence when we see angry Muslims in third world countries shout and riot at the mockery of their faith we see their expression is free and history tells us they react to such degradation with violence, it’s not an ideal expression, it’s not speech but it is how some limited people react.

Freedom Of Speech- Fact Or Farce?

When someone attacks your mother and insults you to your face; people practice their expression/reaction in many ways. A person might turn away and invite more bullying. Another person might return the scathing words with more scathing words (leaving an endless cycle of division) and others would knock the lights out of that person (some would say the offender had it coming).

The fact is Freedom of speech is severely limited and i will not stand up for it, not until it loses itself from the shackles of hypocrisy. Let me give you some wonderful examples of how “Freedom Of Speech” is a failure in our society and is often used as a tool to provoke, insult, attack and degrade people and the protection is limited to only certain people, for one group expressing your speech against them is fine (Some minorities) whilst for another group it is forbidden and tabboo (Other minorities/ Governments).

Alan Jones- Abandoned and shunned.

Let me start locally here in Australia- last month radio personality Alan Jones (a controversial man) recently made a jab at the deceased father of Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard. Alan Jones stated that her father died “due to shame” – alluding to the lies, deceit and misconduct of her government and policies. An absolutely stupid and shocking thing to say without a shadow of a doubt, but indeed it is his right. No? After this occurred many companies boycotted Alan Jones and his radio station, people disappeared from around him, he was shunned all over the media and was forced to apologize. He now lives life as a shunned man, gifts taken away from him, sponsors disbanding from any association he may have and an embarrassing position all came from his supposed “Freedom Of Speech”. So attacking the Prime Minister and speaking ill of the dead is a no go zone. Fair enough.

NBA’s Abare Stoudemire fined $50,000 for “Gay Slur”.

Next case in point is NBA player Amare Stoudemire who plays for the NY Knicks. In June 2012 he was fined by the NBA for stating something on his personal twitter. What did he do? He had a fight with a supposed “fan”. The fan made a statement that he should lift his game and make up for his bad season. Amare then personal messaged this “fan” inciting him with gay slurs.  This “offensive” and “derogatory” language cost him $50,000 USD as he was fined for his misconduct. It is unknown if this fan was homosexual or not, but from this drastic example we see a man that used his PERSONAL twitter and sent a PERSONAL message still managed to be fined for “hate speech” even online. So attacking homosexuals is a no go zone. Fair enough.

Julian Assange: Ambushed & Wanted.

Moving forward we have the world famous case of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange. This man has been responsible for shedding so much light on how politics works and how governments run. Indicating their hypocritical nature and deceit amongst their neighbors. He released information that was true, accurate and direct sources from the offenders themselves. He revealed to the world the ugly side of politics that we all know exists, yet we never wanted to admit or own up to. This has led to a bounty on his head, quiet literally. If Assange is extradited to the United States he could face the death penalty for Espionage and treason. This Hero to the people has become a wicked villain to the governments, from the British police surrounding and attempting to storm the embassy he is held in, to the re-emerging of “rape” accusations coming from Sweden this man has been tormented and continues to be tormented for expression his freedom of speech with these leaks. So attacking the government and politics is a no go zone. Fair enough.

Teacher Patricia. M fired for “Anti Semetic” statement in Protest.

 

Finally we have the case of a substitute teacher in an L.A school in October of 2011. Patricia McAllister was fired for making “Anti-Semetic” remarks even though what she said was no anti-semetic but anti ANTI-semetic. During an OCCUPY LA protest Patricia said:

“I think that the Zionist Jews who are running these big banks and our federal reserve, which is not run by the federal government – they need to be run out of this country”.

Please note that Patricia made this statement in her own time, in her own company and not within school grounds or anywhere near students. The Los Angeles Unifed School District confirmed that Ms. McAllister was fired as they don’t stand for “Disrespectful, intolerant or discriminatory behaviour”– all in the while they confirm this was her own “private opinion”. Why was her comment Anti-Semetic? We know the Zionists she talk about are condemned by most Orthodox Jews.  So attacking Zionists is a no go zone. Fair enough.

Is it fair enough? Or do these examples show the clear crack on the windscreen of “Freedom Of Speech?“. It is so inconsistent within itself. It is so broad in it’s terminology but so limited in it’s capability. It is so selective on who can say what. I do not support “Freedom Of Speech” because it is a system that is flawed. It is a product of the Western Liberal world that we love and desire so much, yet there is so little that we understand. We staunchly stand up and defend something we have not grasped nor really thought about. If freedom of speech is a right and if it is actually free- then the above examples would not exist. Either speech is free and unrestricted for all humans, or this is simply a banner that we wave around for convenience, a flag that we use to insult others, then hide behind. Let’s face is folks, freedom of speech is not a fact, it’s a farce!

Peace, Salam Alaykum.