The affinity between the far right and the Islamists

Read my first response to questions/comments made on the One Law for All campaign and November 21 rally. It is about racist parties and their affinity with the Islamists.

You will need to go to the link to see the comment I am responding to:

Here it my response:

Thank you for your comments and questions. I have received a large number of emails too and will try and respond briefly to one every day until our rally on November 21.

Let me begin by responding to the one from the Stop Islamisation Of Europe (SIOE).

Of course there is much to say about them and their racist politics – and don’t worry – I will.

For now, however, suffice it to say that I find it comic how they – and the likes of the English Defence League or the British National Party – don’t see their affinity with the Islamists and the political Islamic movement.

Stephen Gash’ statement is a great case in point.

The Islamists blame Westerners for Western government policies – no matter how many of them come out and say ‘not in our name.’ For the Islamists, all Israelis are fair game; so is every single man, woman and child in America and so on and so forth. That’s why they target buses and discothèques. They too say that the people in the West elected those governments and therefore must be held accountable. In the world according to them, the people in America elected Bush so they deserved September 11; the people in Britain elected Blair so 7/7 was fair game.

And in the world according to the likes of Stephen Gash, the millions languishing under and resisting Sharia law deserve what they get no matter how many are killed, tortured, burnt, stoned and hung from city squares…

****

As an aside, that is also why Geert Wilders will never be invited to speak at our rallies; he represents that very way of thinking that scapegoats and blames millions for a regressive right wing political Islamic movement that was actually brought to centre stage by Western government policy during the Cold War. For an analysis on his film, Fitna, see this. You can also see Fitna Remade by Reza Moradi here.

BTW if you want to read on, here is a good interview I did with Bahram Soroush and Fariborz Pooya on racist parties and racism.

Until tomorrow then

Maryam

Why November 21 is an important day for you

The One Law for All campaign is organising a rally against Sharia and all religious-based laws in Britain and across the world and in defence of human rights and secularism on November 21 in London. Rally organisers are calling upon those who cannot get to London to organise rallies or acts of solidarity in various cities across the globe.

A public show of opposition is crucial at a time when Sharia law is on the rise in many places and is being touted as a ‘right’ and a ‘choice’ when it is anything but these things.

Contrary to the misinformation peddled by their proponents and the far Right, Sharia courts are the demand of the political Islamic movement. They are not the demand of ordinary Muslims or those labelled as Muslims (since there are just as many differences of opinion and belief in all so-called Muslim communities as among others). Do not forget that these very “Muslims” are the first victims of and dissenters against Sharia law.

If it were really the desire of “Muslims” to be stoned to death for sex outside of marriage, hanged for being gay, executed for being apostates, flogged for eating during Ramadan, forcibly veiled and segregated from childhood, Islamic states and the regressive Islamic movement would not need to resort to such indiscriminate violence and brutality.

Only recently, this ‘cuddly’ Sharia law convicted Lubna Hussein of ‘indecency’ for wearing trousers in the Sudan, sentenced a man to be flogged for drinking alcohol in Malaysia, and sentenced a 75 year-old woman, Khamisa Sawadi to four months in prison, 40 lashes and deportation in Saudi Arabia for meeting with two young men who were not relatives who brought her bread. Just today, on October 11, 2009 – a day after the International Day against the Death Penalty – the Islamic regime of Iran executed juvenile offender Behnoud Shojaee; there are at least 160 juveniles on death row in Iran, including for homosexuality, apostasy, sex outside of marriage and involvement in school or street fights that have resulted in murder.

In this year alone, MPs in the Indonesian province of Aceh unanimously passed a law which stones adulterers to death and Sharia was introduced across the country in Somalia and in Pakistan’s Swat region. And as if Sharia law were not enough for ‘liberated’ Afghanistan, its parliament recently passed a new “rape law” for ‘Shias’ which requires, among other things, that women submit to sex with their husbands at least every four days, with few exemptions.

And it is not just men, women and children who are targeted by Sharia; even mannequins (wax models) are. This week, again in Iran, the police warned shopkeepers that they should not display female mannequins without a hijab or showing bodily curves. The list goes on and on.

Of course, when it comes to Britain, Sharia councils and tribunals do not issue stoning sentences but that is not because they think it is wrong to do so – it is because this is the ‘duty’ of Islamic states. (Even here, though, Sharia judges have been known to advocate stoning.) And whilst there is a significant difference between letting Islamic courts and councils decide on civil matters and giving them jurisdiction in criminal cases, this difference is a matter of degree only; the fundamentals are the same. In fact, discriminatory family and personal status codes are important pillars in the oppression of women in Islamic states. Losing custody of your child at a pre-set age irrespective of the child’s welfare, being told to remain in an abusive relationship or having your forced marriage rubberstamped with the approval of these sham courts can be just as destructive.

Whether in Pakistan, Somalia, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan or Britain, Sharia law concerns us because we are concerned about human rights and peoples’ freedoms. Sharia and religious laws in general do not belong to the 21st century. We will not let the political Islamic movement drag us back to the Middle Ages.

So November 21 is an important day for all of us to oppose Sharia and all religious laws and defend human rights and secularism. Join us in London’s Hyde Park from 1200 until 1400 hours. If you can’t come to London, why not organise a rally or act of solidarity in the city centre where you live on the same day? If you coordinate it with us beforehand, we could upload photos and film footage of your acts on our website.

We will also respond every day beginning Monday 12 October to one question or comment emailed to us or posted on our website here: http://www.onelawforall.org.uk/universal-childrens-day-and-international-day-for-the-elimination-of-violence-against-women/ until November 20 so that we can help to draw attention to this important campaign.

And please don’t forget to donate to One Law for All. We urgently need money to do all that still needs to be done to get rid of Sharia. Every bit helps so please do take the time to send us a cheque made payable to One Law for All or by donating via Paypal by visiting http://www.onelawforall.org.uk/donate.html.

Thank you.

We look forward to a successful rally in London and elsewhere.

Warm wishes

Maryam

Maryam Namazie
Spokesperson
One Law for All
BM Box 2387
London WC1N 3XX, UK
Tel: +44 (0) 7719166731
[email protected]
www.onelawforall.org.uk

PS More details on the Nov 21 rally:

To mark Universal Children’s Day and International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women
ON NOVEMBER 21, 2009
Time: 1200hrs – 1400hrs
Place: North Carriage Drive, in-between Stanhope Place Gate and Albion Gate, Hyde Park (closest underground Marble Arch).

SHOW YOUR OPPOSITION TO SHARIA LAW AND ALL RELIGIOUS-BASED TRIBUNALS IN BRITAIN, IRAN, IRAQ, AFGHANISTAN, PAKISTAN, SOMALIA AND ELSEWHERE

DEMAND AN END TO CULTURAL RELATIVISM AND RACISM

DEMAND ONE SECULAR LAW FOR ALL AND UNIVERSAL RIGHTS

DEFEND THE RIGHT TO ASYLUM FOR THOSE WHO HAVE FLED SHARIA

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Behnoud Shojaie was executed at dawn today in Iran

Today, one day after the International Day against the Death Penalty, the Islamic Republic of Iran executed juvenile offender Behnoud at dawn despite the widespread international and national campaign to save his life. He was executed whilst hundreds had gathered in his defence outside Evin prison in Tehran, including his family and the mothers of those killed and disappeared.

The Islamic regime has stepped up its machinery of executions and stonings, including sentencing four protesters from the recent protests to death for fear of the unfolding revolutionary movement in Iran.

Its execution of Behnoud and the threat of execution of others must be met with worldwide outrage and condemnation.

Whilst expressing our condelences to Behnoud’s grieving family, Iran Solidarity calls on people everywhere to step up their campaigning against child executions and the death penalty in Iran.

Enough is enough!

Stop killing our children

Iran Solidarity is outraged at the imminent executions of several other child offenders by the Islamic Republic of Iran. The Islamic Republic of Iran executes more per capita than any country in the world and is one of the few remaining states that continues to execute minors.

This Sunday, October 11, Behnoud Shojaee and Akram Mahdavi are scheduled to be executed in Evin prison in Iran.

On October 21, another juvenile, Safar Angooti is scheduled to be executed and the Islamic Supreme Court is also deciding the fate of another minor on death row, Ali Mahin Torabi.

At least 160 juveniles are on death row in Iran, including for homosexuality, apostasy, sex outside of marriage and involvement in school or street fights that have resulted in murder.

Iran Solidarity calls on all concerned groups and individuals to act urgently and demand that the Islamic regime of Iran stops killing our children.

For more information or to sign a petition to stop child executions and the death penalty, visit the following websites:
Iran Solidarity
Stop Child Executions
International Committee against Executions

To read an open letter by Mina Ahadi and Nazanin Afshin-Jam on the imminent executions with information on contact addresses where letters of protest to the Islamic regime of Iran can be sent, click here.

For more information, contact:
Maryam Namazie
Iran Solidarity
BM Box 2387
London WC1N 3XX, UK
Tel: +44 (0) 7719166731
[email protected]
www.iransolidarity.org.uk
iransolidarity.blogspot.com

Urgent Action: Juveniles to be executed on Oct 11 in Iran

Urgent letter from Mina Ahadi and Nazanin Afshin-Jam to save the lives of convicted juveniles who will be executed within the next three days
(Persian translation below)

Behnoud Shojaee and Akram Mahdavi are scheduled to be executed in Evin prison this Sunday October 11 which falls one day after the International Day Against Execution. Some reports say that they may be executed tomorrow. Another juvenile,Safar Angooti is scheduled to be executed on October 21st. The Supreme Court is also deciding the fate of another minor on death row, Ali Mahin Torabi. This sad news is worrying the families of these youngsters, NGO’s and human rights activists internationally.

We ask all human rights defenders, and international organizations to act immediately to stop child executions . We invite all Iranian freedom fighters to protest by showing their solidarity and showing their displeasure and disgust by pressuring the Iranian authorities for a stay of execution. . Hand in hand let’s do the right thing to save these young lives.

For more information about these children and 160 + other children on death row, please visit www.stopchildexecutions.com

PLEASE WRITE IMMEDIATELY in your own language:
* Expressing concern that Behnood Shojaee and Safar Angoti are at risk of execution for a crime committed when they were under 18;
* calling on the Iranian authorities to commute his death sentence;
* reminding the authorities that Iran is a state party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), both of which prohibit the use of the death penalty against people convicted of crimes committed when they were under 18.

PLEASE SEND APPEALS TO:

Leader of the Islamic Republic:
Ayatollah Sayed ‘Ali Khamenei
The Office of the Supreme Leader
Islamic Republic Street – End of Shahid Keshvar Doust Street,
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Email: via website: http://www.leader.ir/langs/en/index.php?p=letter (English)
http://www.leader.ir/langs/fa/index.php?p=letter (Persian)

Head of the Judiciary:
Ayatollah Sadeqh Larijani
Howzeh Riyasat-e Qoveh Qazaiyeh (Office of the Head of the Judiciary)
Pasteur St., Vali Asr Ave., south of Serah-e Jomhouri,
Tehran 1316814737,
Islamic Republic of Iran
Email: Via website: http://www.dadiran.ir/tabid/81/Default.aspx
First starred box: your given name; second starred box: your family name;
third: your email address

COPIES TO:

Director, Human Rights Headquarters of IranMohammad Javad Larijani
Howzeh Riassat-e Ghoveh Ghazaiyeh
Pasteur St, Vali Asr Ave., south of Serah-e Jomhuri,
Tehran 1316814737,
Islamic Republic of Iran
Fax 01198 21 3390 4986 (please keep trying)
Email: [email protected] This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or [email protected] This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it (In the subject line: FAO Mohammad Javad Larijani)

Mina Ahadi, Head of the “International Committee Against Execution” http://www.adpi.net/
Nazanin Afshin-Jam , President and Co-Founder “Stop Child Executions” www.stopchildexecutions.com
نامه مشترك مينا احدي و نازنين افشين براي نجات جان محكومين نوجواني كه سه روز ديگر اعدام ميشوند

بهنود شجاعي و اكرم مهدوي در روز يكشنبه 11 اكتبر يك روز بعد از روز جهاني عليه اعدام قرار است در زندان اوين اعدام شوند. خبر از اعدام تعداد بيشتري در اين روز و همچنين اعدام صفر انگوتي در 21 اكتبر است. دادگاه عالي رسيدگي به حكم اعدام علي مهين ترابي نيز دو هفته ديگر برگزار ميشود. همه اينها باعث نگراني بسيار زياد خانواده هاي اين محكومين به مرگ و همچنين نهادهاي عليه اعدام شده است.
ما از همه سازمانهاي مدافع حقوق انسان و از همه نهادهاي بين المللي خواهان اقدام عاجل و فوري براي جلوگيري از اعدام اين نوجوانان هستيم. از همه ايرانيان آزاده در سراسر دنيا دعوت ميكنيم كه فورا به حركات اعتراضي دست زده و با برگزاري تحصن و تظاهرات و پيكت هاي اعتراضي و از هرطريق ممكن فشار بياورند كه اين اعدامها ملغي شود.

ما ميتوانيم جان اين نوجوانان را نجات دهيم. دست به دست هم دهيم و كاري كنيم كه اين احكام اعدام فورا لغو شوند.

مينا احدي – كميته بين المللي عليه اعدام
نازنين افشين جم – نهاد اعدام كودكان ممنوع

50 Voices of Disbelief: Why We Are Atheists

Recent religious and philosophical debate from self-proclaimed “atheists” has challenged the ethical, scientific, and political implications behind belief and non-belief, and the potential damage that can be done in the crusade to promote a certain brand of faith. A handful of spokespeople have appeared on the mount in defense of their non-belief, including authors Richard Dawkins (The God Delusion), Christopher Hitchens (God is Not Great), and television host Bill Maher with his film Religulous.

The authors of this collection of original essays 50 VOICES OF DISBELIEF: Why We Are Atheists (Wiley-Blackwell, October 2009) come together from varied professions and perspectives to broaden the debate even further and present carefully considered statements on the nuances of personal belief. At this intersection is the overall consensus that religion cannot explain all, or offer a solution to all people, and that science and personal responsibility must play a central role in this discovery

The contributors do not simply defensively react to the bullying tactics from the religious camp with dogmatic and similar conversion-based tactics, but plainly state their case, revealing an essentially humanist philosophy. They effectively defend their right to proudly practice outside the sphere of organised faith and continue to question the authority presented by these long-standing faith-based institutions.

The internationally-based contributors work in the fields of science, academia, literature, media, and politics and include Julian Baggini (Atheist, Obviously), Susan Blackmore (Giving Up Ghosts and Gods), A.C. Grayling (Why I Am Not a Believer), Joe Haldeman (Atheist Out of the Foxhole), Maryam Namazie (When the Hezbollah came to my school), Peter Tatchell (My Nonreligious Life: A Journey from Superstition to Rationalism), and Peter Singer (Why Morality Doesn’t Need Religion).

50 Voices of Disbelief: Why We Are Atheists can be purchased here.

• October 2009 [UK] • November 2009 [U.S.] • Philosophy of Religion • Hardcover: 1-4051-9045-9, $89.95; £55 • Paperback: 1-4051-9046-6, $29.95; £16.99 • 360 pp.