“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Islamenoma News

From The Gathering Storm, here's a fascinating 120 minute podcast featuring interviews with Walid Shoebatt and an Englishman, Mark Alexander, author of "The Dawning of a New Age." Both say that Islam is not a religion but rather a geo-political movement wrapped in a diety.


Purported new Osama bin Laden audio tape urges holy war to liberate Palestinian territories

Associated Press Writers

CAIRO, Egypt — Osama bin Laden lashed out Thursday at Palestinian peace negotiations with Israel and called for a holy war to liberate the Palestinian lands.

A day after a bin Laden audio on a militant Web site threatened Europeans, Al-Jazeera TV broadcast audio excerpts attributed to the al-Qaida leader that urge Palestinians to ignore political parties "mired in trickery of the blasphemous democracy" and to rely on armed might.

"Palestine cannot be retaken by negotiations and dialogue, but with fire and iron," he said.

It was the first time bin Laden spoke of the Palestinian question at length since the deteriorating situation in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, where the Israeli military has been fighting with militants who fire rockets into southern Israel.

Bin Laden added that Palestinians who are unable to fight in the "land of Al-Quds" — a Muslim reference to Jerusalem — should join the al-Qaida fight in Iraq.

"The nearest field of jihad today to support our people in Palestine is the Iraqi field," he said.

He also called on the people of Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Saudi Arabia to "help in support of their mujahedeen brothers in Iraq, which is the greatest opportunity and the biggest task."

Al-Jazeera did not say how it obtained the recording, which was broadcast with an old photograph of bin Laden in a white headscarf and traditional Arab dress.

There was no indication how recently the recording was made, or if it was an unreleased part of the audio posted late Wednesday on an extremist Web site that has carried al-Qaida statements in the past. The two messages were bin Laden's first this year.

In the first recording, bin Laden accused Pope Benedict XVI of helping in a "new Crusade" against Muslims and warned of a "severe" reaction for Europeans' publication of cartoons seen by Muslims as insulting Islam's prophet.

In the audio on Al-Jazeera, bin Laden said the sufferings of Palestinians in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip began when Arab leaders supported the U.S.-hosted Mideast peace conference in Annapolis, Md., and the "Zionist entity," the militant name for Israel

The mention of the Annapolis summit in November was the only time reference given in the audio.

"By their support, they are considered partners to this horrible crime," bin Laden said of Arab leaders who are backing the Mideast peace talks.

He appeared to be seeking to merge the Palestinian cause into the wider al-Qaida struggle. There have been concerns al-Qaida would try to increase its influence in Palestinian territories, with supporters of the terror network calling for such action on Web sites.

Israel has been battling Hamas in Gaza since the Islamic militant group took control of the strip last June from followers of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Israeli air raids are common in Gaza and militants fire rockets into Israeli towns near the strip.

"Palestine will not return to us with the negotiations by the submissive rulers, their conferences, nor by demonstrations and elections," bin Laden said. "Palestine will come back to us if we awaken from our ignorance and adhere to our religion and sacrifice our lives and means to it."

Although al-Qaida has previously released two messages in as many days — most recently by bin Laden's top deputy Ayman al-Zawahri in December — the latest two appeared to be the closest by bin Laden, said Ben Venzke, head of IntelCenter, a U.S. group that monitors militant messages.

"Al-Qaida has been making a concerted effort to be responsive to developments in news cycle and to respond to current events with their perspective on it," Venzke said. "The situation in Gaza and the reprinting of cartoons was something bin Laden felt was important to address."

A militant Web site that frequently carries al-Qaida postings, said later Thursday that it expected bin Laden's new audio on "The Way to Salvage Palestine" soon.

In Israel, Foreign Ministry spokesman Arye Mekel told The Associated Press that Israel does not comment on bin Laden's statements.

Saeb Erekat, a negotiator for Abbas' Palestinian administration, said it was up to all parties in the talks to show that bin Laden's path isn't the way.

"We and the international community must prove him wrong, because we have been pursuing peace through negotiations, and I believe the parties involved must make every effort to make the year 2008 a year of peace," Erekat said.

The audio released Wednesday raised concerns al-Qaida was plotting attacks in Europe. Some experts said bin Laden, believed to be hiding along the Afghan-Pakistan area, might be unable to organize attacks himself and was trying to fan anger over the cartoons to inspire violence by supporters.

State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said the contents of bin Laden's message "are filled with hate and encouraging people to murder innocents in the name of a perverted and depraved cause."

A Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, said Thursday that bin Laden's accusation about the pope was baseless. He said Benedict repeatedly criticized the Muhammad cartoons, first published in some European newspapers in 2006 and republished by Danish papers in February.


  1. If they want war, they war they will get.

    What will happen to the arab world when food, water, medicine are all denied it?

    What will happen to the hoards of people of gaza when they unleash war on israel?

    I predict it will be ugly. Israel and the west will not concern themselves with the millions of palestinians that will flood sinai & jordan

    When Hezbollah opens up the northern front on Israel with 40,000 rockets, Israel will destroy much of Lebanon and in the end, the world will shrug it's shoulders, too busy fighting the ghettos of moslem hoards inside their own borders...

    the cancer is growing, and the entire world will have to fight the islamists....

    including mexico, china and AZ

  2. Mark Alexander:
    The term "moderate Muslim" is a misnomer. The correct term should be "nominal muslim."

    I've said before that a difference between Chrisitianity and Islam is that when Muslims turn to their book, all hell breaks out. For Christians, all hell breaks out when they turn away from their book.

  3. "He appeared to be seeking to merge the Palestinian cause into the wider al-Qaida struggle."

    Well, yeah. He's been doing so since the foundation of al Qaeda. The Palestinians have yet to bite on that one.

  4. "For Christians, all hell breaks out when..."

    ...they go all Cotton Mather on us.

  5. Little noticed news back in the States today was the "Peru said, Venezuela said" dust up.

  6. Bin laden is like Bill Clinton. He loves the spotlight.

    Maybe he senses something in the works for the Levant and wishes to share in the coming Glory.

  7. Maybe he should slither out of his cave and grab a rifle.

    Oh, wait; . . that's right, he always has that cute, little, yet-to-be-fired AK47 next to his desk, doesn't he?

    Must be out of Ammo, I guess.

  8. Bin Laden's a true believer. About as true as they come. IOW, there's really no politician in him, though there was a speech awhile back that sounded hired out. Just before our Congressional elections.

    Makes it harder for a lot of people in the West to get a handle on him, the fact that he's perfectly genuine.

    Bill Clinton's more like Chavez, neither being anything like bin Laden. Vain, dirty, opportunistic blowhards. In fact, if that doesn't cover about three quarters of our political class, I don't know what does.

  9. On our way back from McCall, Idaho today, we saw twelve of THESE BEAUTIES resting on Tolo Lake, Idaho which is a little southwest of Grangeville, Idaho, on the Camus Prairie. Once near extinction, they are making a comeback. At Tolo Lake have been discovered the remains of Mammoths. The dig there was directed by a professor from Idaho State University, whose daughter was a tenant of mine.

  10. Have forwarded your recommended book to my wife, Trish, and she'll get it if it is here. Thanks.

  11. Kissinger said a 'moderate muslim' was one out of ammunition. Maybe then a 'nominal muslim' would be one ready to chuck the whole non-sense, like the one the Pope baptised today, PBUH.

  12. Obama says he wasn't in church the day the Hamas Manifesto was published in the Pastor's Page in the church bulletin.

    This stuff is getting sticky.

  13. Winning isn’t everything; it’s the only thing, Rev. Federico Lombardi said Thursday.

  14. Mikhail Gorbachev admits he is a Christian

    Mikhail Gorbachev, the last Communist leader of the Soviet Union, (!) has acknowledged his Christian faith for the first time, paying a surprise visit to pray at the tomb of St Francis of Assisi.

    Accompanied by his daughter Irina, Mr Gorbachev spent half an hour on his knees in silent prayer at the tomb.
    His arrival in Assisi was described as "spiritual perestroika" by La Stampa, the Italian newspaper.

    "St Francis is, for me, the alter Christus, the other Christ," said Mr Gorbachev. "His story fascinates me and has played a fundamental role in my life," he added.
    Mr Gorbachev's surprise visit confirmed decades of rumours that, although he was forced to publicly pronounce himself an atheist, he was in fact a Christian, and casts a meeting with Pope John Paul II in 1989 in a new light.

    Mr Gorbachev, 77, was baptised into the Russian Orthodox Church and his parents were Christians.

    In addition, the parents of his wife Raisa were deeply religious and were killed during the Second World War for having religious icons in their home.

  15. Fred said...

    The Russian Orthodox Church is an intensely political institution, both under the Soviet regime and now especially so under the Putin regime. I have an uncle who is a Maryknoll priest who spent most of his career in Japan, and was briefly assigned to Russia - to Siberia at Irkutsk for language training and then on to Sakhalin Island for a few futile years dealing with the Russian bureaucracy. An entirely hostile country towards the Catholic Church. In disgust he got out of Russia and got re-assigned back to Japan, to Hokkaido. Loves it there on that northern island. Irony: he's not far from Sakhalin Island, scene of his deep frustration.

    I am still not entirely trusting of Gorbachev.

    Doug said...
    Haven't seen into his soul yet, eh?
    ...the eye test having been thoroughly discredited.

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  17. The Vatican has posted many beautiful liturgical hymns on its website. Check them out here.
    la gloria che risplende in me
    รจ frutto dell'Amore!

    E' questo il giorno nuovo
    che illumina il creato,
    il primo dopo il Sabato,
    Something about frutto al-Bob being primo dopo, far as I can tell.

  18. "Este es un hombre que nos entiende y que nos va a respetar!" (This is a man who understands us and who will respect us!)
    -- Gov. Bill Richardson, giving his endorsement to Barack Obama

  19. More Democrats, fewer Republicans in Pennsylvania
    By Angela Couloumbis and Amy Worden

    Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau

    HARRISBURG - It wasn't a light decision. But Debbie McKee had grown to believe that the Republican Party no longer represented her beliefs, and recently switched her registration to Democrat.

    "I'm so anti-Bush and Bush politics, I couldn't stand to be a member of that party anymore," said McKee, 57, a retired public school teacher from West Chester who switched just in time for Pennsylvania's April 22 primary.

    For state Republicans, voters like McKee could quickly become a problem.

    State registration numbers show that since last November, the Democratic Party has gained a whopping 111,227 new voters. In that same time frame, the Republican Party lost 13,391 people from its ranks.

    Perhaps even more alarming for the state GOP: Since the beginning of the year, 57,651 residents who were already registered voters - either Republicans, independents, or in any other party - switched to become Democrats. In contrast, only 10,754 already-registered voters filed party-change applications to become Republicans.

  20. That's interesting about Gorby. I remember the cover of a magazine, probably Time, back in the day, with Gorby on it, and the scar or birthmark or whatever on his head was in the form of a Cross. There was speculation in those days.

  21. le gloria risplenda en bobo
    no en dopo dug-o

  22. His arrival in Assisi was described as "spiritual perestroika" by La Stampa, the Italian newspaper.


    If you hadn't already.

  24. Obama Campaign Link to Passport SnoopingMarch 22, 2008Perhaps Mr. Obama is not so eager now to make this into a campaign issue.

    Obama Campaign Link to Passport Snooping
    The Washington Times is reporting that authorities are zeroing in on one of the contract employees who viewed both Obama's and McCain's passport records - a man who works for a company headed up by an advisor to the Obama campaign:

    Two of the three contract employees had been fired before The Washington Times first reported Thursday on security breaches involving Mr. Obama's passport records.

    The furor expanded yesterday to incidents involving the passport records of Mr. McCain and Mrs. Clinton. The third employee, who has not been fired, worked for The Analysis Corporation (TAC), which is headed by John O. Brennan, a former CIA agent who is an adviser to Mr. Obama's presidential campaign on intelligence and foreign policy.

    The TAC employee is the only individual to have accessed both Mr. Obama's and Mr. McCain's passport information without proper

  25. Professor Bogus is Worried

    A well educated public being necessary to a free state, the right of the people to keep and read books shall not be infringed.

  26. "You may find this strange but in 1998 I watched this film twice a day over month . "

  27. Where is he? We could have used him.

  28. The Right to Browning Arms

    ...the back one is a nice Belgian one worth a bit, the kid says, I think around 8
    Pardon his crappy cell phone cam.


  29. Used him for what, a doorstop?

  30. A doorstop. Goddamnit, no.

    What was the ratio, Doug. Theirs to ours?

  31. It's comparable in Afghanistan, you know.

  32. I thot you meant the person watching the movie 60 times.

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