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  1. #1
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    Default Pregnant Muslim woman stabbed to death in german courtroom

    Woman killed in courtroom bloodbath was pregnant

    3 Jul 09
    A woman stabbed to death in a Dresden courtroom was three months pregnant, reported German newspaper Bild on Friday.
    According to Egyptian newspapers, the woman was Marwa al-Sherbini, a 32-year-old Egyptian national who was suing her attacker after he insulted her for wearing the Islamic headscarf. The attacker, identified only as Alex W., was appealing the €780 fine he was ordered to pay in the libel suit.

    Al-Sherbini was the wife of Egyptian academic Elwi Ali-Okaz. He was also hurt in the incident after he tried to help his wife and is in critical condition in hospital. Police are now investigating Alex W. for manslaughter.

    “The investigation into this bloody crime is bound to show there are some indications the suspect was hostile toward foreigners – the signs are there,” said Saxony police chief Bernd Merbitz told Bild.

    Magdi al-Sayed, press officer at the German embassy in Cairo, said the case was isolated and did not reflect German attitude towards Muslims.

    "It is a criminal act. It has nothing to do with persecution against Muslims," Sayed told the Egyptian state newspaper The Gazette.

    The stabbing happened July 1, just before al-Sherbini was to give her evidence. During the struggle, other bystanders were also injured and police fired a shot. Al-Sherbini died in the courtroom.

    The 28-year-old attacker was overpowered and is now under investigation for manslaughter, a spokesman for the Dresden prosecutor's office said.

    Chairman of the German judge federation Christoph Frank is now demanding that safety and security measures must be brought up to standard.

    “Each individual law court must be examined and security infrastructure put in place to better protect citizens,” he said to the Bild.

    The incident recalled a similar scene of courtroom violence in the Bavarian town of Landshut in April, when a 60-year-old man shot his sister-in-law before turning the gun on himself, following an inheritance ruling.
    What kind of a court system is this that criminals can stab people to death? why did the moron cop fire a warning shot instead of shooting the killer?! They are quick to shoot a Muslim under suspicion.

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    Why isn't there International outrage for this incident?

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    Only if she had been Jewish......
    It’s immoral and wrong to demand from the victims not to resist the oppressors

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    I see it's been posted.

    I've only seen it on the arabian channel. And my husband told me what happened.

    One of my friends did mention that Muslims get killed in Europe. That's why I told her that Muslims in America have it better. Here you can be charged with "hate crimes". She also told me that you killed in the mideast for being "black".

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    Mourners angry over murder of German Egyptian

    Egyptians cried racism in the face of Marwa Sherbini's killing



    Sherbini's funeral drew thousands as the govt is called on to take a firm stand on the murder

    CAIRO (Al Arabiya)
    Outrage over the murder of a pregnant Muslim woman in Germany who has become known as the “hijab martyr” mounted Tuesday following her funeral and protests in her native Egypt over what Muslims see as European Islamaphobia and western media double standards.

    Marwa al-Sherbini, a 32-year-old Egyptian-German, was buried in her coastal hometown of Alexandria, Egypt Monday amid demonstrations by Egyptians mourning her senseless death and calling for retribution.



    Marwa Sherbini and her three year old son who witnessed her stabbing at Dresden court


    Sherbini was stabbed to death 18 times Wednesday as she prepared to testify against her assailant, who was in court to appeal a previous defamation conviction against her.

    The assailant, knonw only as Alex W., had been convicted and fined €750 ($1,050) last year for calling Sherbini a "terrorist," "b*tch" and "Islamist" after she asked him to leave a swing for her three-year-old son Mustafa.

    Her funeral drew thousands of angry mourners and Egyptian officials who called on the government to seriously deal with the tragic killing and take immediate action.

    " What we demand is just some attention to be given to the killing of a young innocent mother on the hands of fanatic extremist "
    Abdel Azim Hamad, al Shuruq
    "There is no god but God and the Germans are the enemies of God," they chanted.

    Ramzi Ezz, Egypt's ambassador in Germany told Al Arabiya the results of the investigations could be released in a few days, but noted that Egyptian law calls for life imprisonment of the murderer.

    Sherbini's brother Tarek al-Sherbini vowed to avenge her killing. "We believe in an eye for an eye," he told Egyptian national television.

    Dubbed the "martyr of the head scarf," Sherbini was three months pregnant when her 28-year-old attacker stabbed her countless times in front of her two-year-old son.




    Commentators said the hushed Western media response proved European bias against Muslims


    "The killer is a terrorist who should receive severe punishment for what he has done, something that contradicts all the values of humanity, decency and religion," Grand Imam Sheikh Mohammed Sayyed Tantawi told Egypt’s official MENA news agency.

    Alex also stabbed Sherbini's husband, Elwi Ali Okaz while he was trying to save his wife. And adding further insult to injury, a security guard shot Okaz in the leg because he mistook the husband for the attacker because of his ethnic looks according to German prosecutors.

    "The guards thought that as long as he wasn't blond, he must be the attacker so they shot him," Sherbini told an Egyptian television station.
    Alex W. remained in detention and prosecutors have begun investigating the murder but have downplayed it as a lone incident.

    Christian Avenarius, the prosecutor in Dresden where the incident took place, said the killer was driven by a deep hatred of Muslims. "It was very clearly a xenophobic attack of a fanatical lone wolf."

    A German government spokesperson condemned the attack and said Berlin "naturally condemns this in the strongest terms."

    A martyr for Islam




    Marwa Sherbini and her husband Elwi Ali Okaz


    Sherbini's shocking death ignited angry protests on the ground and online as shocked mourners held her murder up as proof of the xenophobia gripping European politics.

    "This isolated incident is a foreseen consequence of the kind of anti-burqa and anti-niqab rhetoric Sarkozy has engaged in France," one user said on a Muslim listserv.

    Others said the incident showed the extent to which hate crimes against Muslims are ignored while those of Muslims against westerners are over-hyped.

    Abdel Azeem Hamad, chief editor of the independent Egyptian daily al-Shorouk, said that if the victim had been a Jew, there would have been an uproar.

    "Had it been an 'honor' killing, we would already have several NGO's condemn it and experts on Muslim issues speaking on why these terrible Muslims do these terrible things "

    Nagihan, user on Muslim listserv, "What we demand is just some attention to be given to the killing of a young innocent mother on the hands of fanatic extremist," he wrote in his column.

    Many in Sherbini’s homeland were outraged by the attack and saw the low key response in Germany as an example of racism and anti-Muslim sentiment.

    An Egyptian blogger Hicham Maged wrote that it simply proved anti-Muslim sentiment in Europe "Just imagine if the situation was reversed and the victim was a Westerner who was stabbed anywhere in the world or — God forbid — in any Middle Eastern country by Muslim extremists," he said.


    Western media muted

    " May God forgive this woman and give her eternal paradise for literally being killed for her beliefs "
    - Facebook fan

    One commentator pointed to muted response by Western media as proof of double standards against Muslims as Sherbini's murder comes as western media continued to reference the 2004 murder of filmmaker Theo van Gogh for his controversial film on Muslim women but meanwhile ignoring the-week-old death of a Muslim German woman by a European fundamentalist.

    "I can't believe it took so long for this news to reach me/us. Had it been an 'honor' killing, we would already have several NGO's condemn it and experts on Muslim issues speaking on why these terrible Muslims do these terrible things," Nagihan, a user on a Muslim list serve wrote. "I am shocked and awed at this double standard."

    A Facebook fan page created recently drew a whooping 300,000 fans in less than a week, with many mourning Sherbini as a martyr and calling for spiritual purification.

    "May God forgive this woman and give her eternal paradise for literally being killed for her beliefs," said one Facebook fan.

    The Local Council of Alexandria governorate said it would name a street after Sherbini to commemorate her senseless killing.

    Video of Marwa Sherbini's Monday funeral in Alexandria - YouTube - Marwa El sherbieny funeral in Alexandria 3

    source: http://www.alarabiya.net/articles/2009/07/07/78067.html#000


    Comment:

    18 stabs and the police shot her husband rather than the killer, and no media coverage?... typical western kuffar double standards!

    ------------------------

    Learn to Fight Back

    Muslims, especially sisters, need to learn to defend themselves. The kuffar have waged a war on the Muslims and attack us where ever they get a chance, so it is obligatory on us to learn to protect ourselves. See the link below and see how these sisters are learning to fight back!

    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Khabr/message/10

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    18 stabs and the police shot her husband rather than the killer, and no media coverage?... typical western kuffar double standards!
    See what I'm saying? it's just like I said. I didn't see it on CNN, World News, BBC. They may have shown it on World Link TV's Mosaic, but I don't watch it that much because they hardly show the lastest news

    Any way, our sister was beautiful masha'Allah. I liked her wedding gown. I wish other women learn that they don't have to be half naked on their wedding day No hijab, nothing.

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    A Muslim sister was killed in a German courtroom on July 5. Her attacker stabbed her 18 times whilst her 3 year old son watched. Her husband tried to stop him but was shot by German police. How did he get the knife into the courtroom? Why did they shoot the husband? How did he manage to stab her 18 times? She experienced a series of verbal and physical attacks from this man her neighbour and so took him to court for racism. The judge responded with a 750 euro fine. The attacker on numerous occasions called her a terrorist, you tell me who is the real terrorist??? ???

    May Allah accept our beautiful sister as shaheed. Ameen. Our dead are in jannah and theirs are in jahannum....



    Please let others know, seems like media is trying to keep this under wraps. If it was a Muslim who had attacked someone do you think it would have stayed this quiet by now, we would all be under persecution as muslim terrorists by now! There would be midnight vigils calling for an end to extremism and the family of the killer would be harassed day and night. So where is the justice in this world???

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    Rest in Peace Marwa al-Sherbini - Facebook

    The tragic events in Dresden last week have left several unanswered questions: How can a defendant stab a witness 18 times in a courtroom without anyone stopping him? How can the only person apparently able to intervene – her husband – end up seriously injured? And how is it that the police officer coming to the scene ends up shoot directly at the Egyptian husband and not the attacker?

    But there’s possibly already answers to two important questions: Why does the death of a woman wearing a headscarf – who wasn’t the victim of a so-called “honour killing” – spark so little interest in Germany? And why did the country’s politicians merely to shrug their shoulders for an entire week after the heinous deed?

    Could it be that this death – which is now a murder investigation – did not fit the preconceived notions most Germans have of Muslims?

    A young woman Muslim, an educated and employed pharmacist, refuses to accept outrageous insult such as “slut,” Islamist,” and “terrorist” from a xenophobic man and decides to defend herself in a court of law. After suing her tormentor he is convicted, but at a retrial he kills her.

    Maybe most people simply chose to ignore this incident because it counters too many of our popular dogmas. For example, that education is the key to integration. In this case, a well-educated young woman, married to man working at the esteemed Max Planck Institute, died. Who knows, perhaps that enraged the unemployed racist murderer even more?

    Or what about the claim that Islam and Western society simply don’t fit? Marwa al-Sherbini tried to defend herself not only in an extremely rational and civil way, but chose to do it in an extremely German fashion: instead of screaming back at the man she decided to sue him in court.

    Another truth also hurts: the frequent German association that “Islam” means “Islamist” and “terrorist” only because someone has darker skin or wears a headscarf. Those are sentiments not only held by extremists, even if the murderer apparently sympathised with the far-right NPD party.

    Ever since Germany joined the war on terror after September 11, 2001 by profiling anyone appearing to be a devout Muslim with a beard or headscarf, it’s not only extremists linking Islam directly with terrorism.

    Anti-Semitism against Jews is at last widely condemned Germany, but now hatred of Islam is on the verge of becoming an acceptable form of racism. Fortunately the German Jewish Council has long made a point of trying to stem the rising tide.

    But Chancellor Angela Merkel has remained silent and Geert Mackenroth, Saxony’s justice minister, apparently only wants to use the incident to push for closed courtrooms in the state – even though public access to trials is one of the most important pillars of a modern legal system.

    Mackenroth, the former head of the German Association of Judges, once tried to justify police torture in Frankfurt. Perhaps proponents of the West’s liberal legal traditions have as much to fear from German justice ministers as they do from Islamic law dictated by sharia.


    comments:


    The kuffar want Muslims to be secularist and live like them, so what happens when she did (by taking the racist pig to court)? She got stabbed to death, 18 times, in the courtroom.

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    La hawla quwata illah billah.

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    Default Bigotry and Intolerance Towards Muslim Women

    THE TURBAN EFFECT:

    THE INFLUENCE OF MUSLIM HEADGEAR AND INDUCED AFFECT ON AGGRESSIVE RESPONSES IN THE SHOOTER BIAS PARADIGM
    -

    Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, September 2008

    Does Islamic appearance increase aggressive tendencies, and what role does affect play in such responses? In a computer game, participants made rapid decisions to shoot at armed people, some of whom wore Islamic head dress.

    We predicted and found a significant bias for participants to shoot more at Muslim targets. We also predicted and found that positive mood selectively increased aggressive tendencies towards Muslims, consistent with affect-cognition theories that predict a more top-down, stereotypical processing style in positive mood.

    In contrast, induced anger increased the propensity to shoot at all targets. The relevance of these results for our understanding of real-life negative reactions towards Muslims is discussed, and the influence of affective states on rapid aggressive responses is considered.




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    TWO RECENT STUDIES CONDUCTED IN TWO VERY DIFFERENT SETTINGS REVEAL
    A DISTURBING ANTI-MUSLIM BIAS AMONG STUDENTS -


    Tom Jacobs, Miller-McCune.com, 11/17/08

    The election of the United States' first African American president has been welcomed as evidence the nation is belatedly moving beyond bigotry. But two new studies suggest that at least one unconscious prejudice -- a fear or dislike of Muslims -- remains very much alive.

    "Islamophobia," U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon said Wednesday at a two-day United Nations interfaith dialogue, "has emerged as a new term for an old and terrible form of prejudice."

    When rumors began circulating during the recent presidential election that Barack Obama was a Muslim, observers from former Secretary of State Colin Powell to comedian Jon Stewart responded by asking, "Why would it matter if he was?" But whoever was circulating that misinformation was playing into a widely held prejudice -- one that has infected even the minds of sophisticated, educated Westerners. At least, that's the conclusion of two recently published studies, which detected anti-Muslim bias in two very different settings.

    The first is "The Turban Effect," published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology by a team from the University of New South Wales in Sydney. It suggests that simply noticing someone is a Muslim increases aggressive tendencies on the part of non-Muslim Westerners.

    Psychologists Christian Unkelbach, Joseph Forgas and Tom Denson modified a pre-existing computer game in which participants are instructed to shoot at subjects carrying weapons, but hold their fire when they spot someone who is unarmed. The target subjects were of both genders and a variety of races, but, most importantly for this study, some were given a Muslim appearance -- that is, they wore a turban or the hijab.

    The 66 university students who played the game -- 35 of them female -- were significantly more likely to shoot at Muslim targets. The targets who received the highest number of hits were Muslim-looking, non-Caucasian males; the fewest hits were for non-Muslim, Caucasian females.

    "Interestingly, this effect could be demonstrated with otherwise liberal and tolerant Australian undergraduates, who would be most unlikely to espouse negative stereotypes about Muslims," the authors conclude.

    The mood of the participants did influence the outcome, but not in the way you might expect. For students who felt angry, there was "an overall increase in shooting responses but not any selective increase in shooting at Muslims." However, those reporting a positive mood exhibited "a significant selective bias against Muslims."

    This seemingly odd result confirms recent theories that positive affect tends to trigger a more spontaneous style of processing information, which in turn increases the influence of stereotypes. In other words, if you're happy and you know it, it's more likely your latent bigoted beliefs will rise to the surface.

    The second study, just published in the journal Medical Decision Making, looked at American medical students and how prejudice plays into the way they evaluate patients.

    A University of Missouri research team led by psychologist Jamie Arndt divided the doctors-in-training into two groups. Members of the first group were asked to answer questions about their own mortality.
    All the medical students -- 29 women and 18 men -- were then asked to inspect fictitious emergency room admittance forms for patients complaining of chest pains. The forms included the subject's name, race and religion -- either Christian or Muslim -- along with a rundown of symptoms, including the level of pain they reported feeling. The students then assessed the heart-attack risk of each patient.

    "The results indicate that when medical students are reminded of their own mortality, they render higher cardiac risk assessments for a Christian patient and lower risk assessments for a Muslim patient," the researchers concluded. In other words, the Christian patients on average were judged to be in more serious risk of heart attack despite the reported symptoms being identical.

    "These patterns are in accord with many previous findings that concerns with death motivate people to cling more tenaciously to their cultural beliefs, to like people who support those beliefs and to disparage those who even subtly threaten such beliefs," the authors write.

    Given the fact that "medical providers may frequently be confronted with explicit reminders of death," the study has "potentially grave implications," the researchers add. It is, in any event, another reminder that people are often ignorant of their own biases.

    http://www.alternet.org/rights/107384/is_the_%22turban_effect%22_the_new_bradley_effect/








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    No burkas in Netherlands
    By: Floris Blom

    Since 2000, the loathing of Islam has grown alarmingly in the Netherlands. We suspected it, but it is now shown in a report that the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) published Tuesday.



    According to the ECRI, which performs research for the Council of Europe, Muslims in the Netherlands is increasingly the victim of racist violence and discrimination. This would be the result of 09/11 and the attack on Theo van Gogh. The commission speaks of an alarming polarization between the majority and Muslim minorities. The Moroccan and Turkish communities would be particularly badly affected by stigma and prejudice.

    And right now, the government last Friday decided that the wearing of burkas (as well as a niqaab, I suppose) is prohibited for civil servants and in schools. Minister Ter Horst hoping that municipalities and provinces will also ban burkas for their officials. A wear burkas in the streets continue to be permitted, there is no general ban on face covering clothing. This is not feasible, it is inconsistent with the Constitution and with European rules on freedom of religion.

    Should we even this partial ban burkas as a manifestation of xenophobia rooted discrimination? The government has not answered the call for a total ban burkas in public space. Such a ban demanded the Lower House in December 2005, at the initiative of Geert Wilders. That Wilders has unmasked himself as a fighter for freedom, despite the name of his party.

    With such discrimination has partially ban burkas my opinion, nothing to do. Therefore surprised me the face of Minister Vogelaar (PvdA), following the Cabinet decision. She said: "Boerkaverbod's call for people to fear. For many people it's become a symbol of radicalization."


    Comment:

    The minister says that for people it has become a symbol of radicalization. Someone should ask this dimwit who made the people think like that? It was their own media that used (and uses) words like 'radical, fundamentalist, militant, hard-liner when talking about any Muslim but uses the words like "orthodox" or "ultra-orthodox" for Israeli Jews who are abusing the local citizens for not following their version of Judaism.

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    Wearing of burkha banned in rural college
    Sudipto Mondal

    If we step into college with the burkha on, they start scolding us: student


    PANJA VILLAGE/SULLIA TALUK: Muslim girls of the Government Composite Pre-University College here have been banned from wearing the burkha by local Hindutva outfits and the Bharatiya Janata Party-affiliated Akhil Bharathiya Vidyarthi Parishad.

    According to Lakshmisha Gobbalathadka, the self-proclaimed architect of the ban, the idea was first proposed to the college authorities at his behest by a few students affiliated to the ABVP in early January this year.

    First step

    “Four of my boys spoke to the college principal and demanded that Muslim girls should be banned from wearing burkhas in classrooms,” said Mr. Gobbalathadka, who is also the district convener of a fringe outfit called Hindu Jagarana Vedike.

    Avoiding trouble

    “We agreed immediately. We did not want any trouble,” said a college official. But soon the demands began to grow.

    Emboldened by the support the boys of his group received from a section of students, they went on to extend the burkha ban across the entire 28-acre campus.

    Formalised

    Once the ban was formalised by the college authorities, groups of boys took it upon themselves to impose it. “Every day, the boys sit at the tea stall near the college gate. If we take even one step into the college gate with the burkha on, they start scolding us,” said a 16-year-old class 10 student.

    Violence on campus

    Meanwhile, another controversy broke out on the campus after the ABVP alleged that a Muslim boy had made a proposal of marriage to a Hindu girl.

    Beaten up

    “Our boys beat up the Muslim boy on February 28,” claimed Mr. Gobbalathadka.

    At the college’s development committee meeting on January 29, a large group of students, led by Mr. Gobbalathadka, barged in demanding that Muslim girls should stop wearing the burkha even on their way to and from the college.

    The demand created a furore dividing committee members, according to college principal, Balasubramaniam. Soon, hundreds of activists entered the venue and physically attacked Muslim committee members and Hindus who opposed their demands. Following the incident, Mr. Gobbalathadka and his followers were arrested and remanded in judicial custody.

    Growing support

    “Many others have been inspired by the success we have had here. Soon, this campaign will spread to all government colleges in the region,” Mr. Gobbalathadka told The Hindu.

    He added that the garment would soon be banned from public spaces in the entire village of Panja.

    ‘How can they?’

    Said Panja gram panchayat president Rafique, who sustained injuries during the January 29 violence, said: “Some may feel that the burkha is a symbol of oppression of women. Even if that is true, a resistance to the garment should come from within the community. How can we tolerate somebody using force to ban the burkha?”

    Reacting to the issue, Deputy Director of Public Instruction C. Chame Gowda told The Hindu, “The college authorities might have agreed to the ban under pressure. But there is no law that prevents the burkha. Everybody has the right to practice their religious beliefs as long as it does not inconvenience others.”

    Concerned

    Deputy Commissioner V. Ponnuraj expressed concern over the developments and said he was still inquiring into the issue. “The rule of law and the Constitution will prevail,” he said.



    Comments:

    You find all these made up stories about Muslims (Talibans) forcing women to wear the burkha and taking the law in their own hand, yet here this news of Hindu extremists is ignored by the media. These Hindu extremists have taken the law in their own hand forced a ban on the burkha. They banned in the class, then on campus, then going to and from the campus, and next they will bann it anywhere in the public place.

    Where is the news on these Hindua fundamentalist radical millitant extremists?!!!

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    Hijab debate lifts veil on limits of Norway's tolerance

    By Valeria Criscione Valeria CriscioneFri Mar 20

    OSLO – Norway's biggest headache right now is not the financial crisis. Rather, the predominantly Christian nation is plagued by a religious dilemma over the right of a Muslim woman to wear a hijab as part of her police uniform.

    As the controversy has escalated, the country has seen the physical collapse of the justice minister, the public burning of a hijab, and a substantial rise in the popularity of Norway's anti-immigrant opposition party just six months before general elections.

    This is odd for a country known for religious tolerance, generous international development aid, and peace efforts worldwide. But the controversy highlights the latent fears of a nonpluralistic society, where 91 percent belong to the Evangelical-Lutheran Church of Norway.

    The dilemma began last fall when a Norwegian Muslim woman petitioned for permission to wear her hijab, the traditional head covering for Muslim women, as part of her police uniform. Norway's justice ministry originally decided in February to allow it, but revoked the permission a few weeks later after loud criticism from the police union, which argued it breached the neutrality of the uniform.

    "A change of uniform regulations, with an allowance for covering hair, has never been a goal in itself. It has always been thought of as a possible means to increase the recruitment of police from minority groups in society," said Justice Minister Knut Storberget, in defense of his decision to revoke the initial permission.

    Amid the heightened media attention and political backlash from his flip-flopping, the minister collapsed and subsequently announced a two-week sick leave, which was then extended.

    The hijab debacle comes on the back of the minister's other religious-related political defeat over a now-defunct blasphemy law. Mr. Storberget initially tried to replace the law with a new paragraph that would have protected individuals from defamatory religious statements. But after much political opposition, the law was repealed and no paragraph introduced.

    This has provided political fodder for the opposition Progress Party, which has stoked fears among Norwegians over "sneak Islamization." Progress Party leader Siv Jensen spoke out strongly at the party's national meeting last month against granting special permission for special groups. She pointed specifically to the case of a largely Muslim neighborhood in Malmö, which she claimed had been partly overrun by Islamic law.

    A March poll by Norstat for Norway's national broadcasting station NRK showed that Progress Party soared 8.5 percentage points to 30.1 percent in the polls from a month earlier. Three government coalition partners, Labor, Socialist Left, and Center Party, all lost ground.

    The center-left coalition holds 87 out of 169 parliamentary seats, while the Progress party holds 38 seats, the second largest after Labor. A continuing shift to the right could pose a threat to reelection chances in September for Jens Stoltenberg, Norway's Labor prime minister.

    "If they continue to spin these irrational fears, I'm afraid it could lead to a lot of commotion," said Thorbjørn Jagland, Norway's parliamentary leader and former Labor prime minister, during a highly-attended religious debate in Oslo this week.

    Some 500 people lined up around the block to hear Mr. Jagland, religious professor Torkel Brekke, the bishop of the Church of Norway, and leader of Norway's Muslim Student Society discuss why religion is suddenly a hot topic.

    The panelists discussed the recent media focus surrounding the hijab debate and blasphemy paragraph, the provocation caused by the burning of a hijab on International Women's Day on March 8 by a Norwegian Muslim woman in protest of the garment, and fears among "religious nationalists" and "secular intellectuals" toward Norway's Muslim minority.

    "We could very well live with the mosques because they stayed in them. But when this began to affect our cultural values, then it became a conflict, and then it became politicized," Jagland told the crowd. "But Islam is not a threat to Norway."

    "I don't see Norway as a tolerant society at all, partly based on these debates and how they react to people coming to Norway," said Professor Brekke, from the University of Oslo. "It's tolerant in that you can practice any religion, but you have large sections of Norwegian society that react strongly to alien cultures."

    Immigrants make up 9.7 percent of Norway's 4.8 million inhabitants. Norway has granted permission to about one-fourth of the 328,000 immigrants who arrived from non-Nordic countries between 1990 and 2007 to stay as refugees. The largest immigrant population is Polish, who are traditionally Catholic, followed by Pakistani. Islam accounts for 20 percent of the 9 percent of the population belonging to religious communities outside the Church of Norway.

    Sweden has a more liberal policy in accepting refugees than Norway and allows hijabs in its police uniform, as does Britain. France has banned the use of hijabs and other ostensible religious items in its state schools since 2004.

    The religious debate has overshadowed the economic one in Norway, which has been relatively shielded from the financial crisis thanks to its vast petroleum resources as the world's third largest gas exporter.

    Norway has a large budget surplus to help fund its financial stimulus packages and relatively mild unemployment – 3 percent, compared to 8.1 percent in the US. Moreover, it has invested its oil revenues in a $329 billion Government Pension Fund.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/csm/20090320/wl_csm/onorway_1

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    So they only support "freedom of speech" when they are expressing their hatred for Islam?

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    The Fear of Hijab: Nothing strikes fear in the Western psyche like a piece of cloth on a woman's head
    by Naheed Mustafa

    In September 1994, 13-year-old Emilie Ouimet was sent home from Montreal (Quebec, Canada)'s Louis Riel High School because her Hijab did not conform to the school's dress code.

    Two months later, a second Quebec girl, 15-year-old Dania Baali, was told she would have to transfer to another school from College Regina Assumpta if she wanted to observe Hijab.

    It is incredible to know nothing strikes fear in the hearts of Western man like a piece of cloth on a woman's head.

    THE HIJAB IS PERCEIVED AS A RADICAL STATEMENT

    To some, she is making a radical statement about her violent political ideas.

    To others, she is the symbol of absolute subjugation and is in dire need of rescue.

    For them, having such women as part of the North American landscape is frightening.

    She is “the veiled woman,” belonging in a foreign place, an actor on an exotic stage.

    We are seen as poisoning this “free and democratic” culture with our “weak and submissive ways.”

    Thus, various school boards in Quebec have decided that rooting out the unwanted influence at the earliest point possible is the best way to avoid contaminating their haute culture.

    THE FEAR OF HIJAB IS LEGITIMATE

    I have often wondered why a woman in Hijab participating freely in this society is perceived as so threatening.

    I have always thought that fear of such women was unfounded. After all, her wearing Hijab has nothing to do with anyone else-it only has to do with her commitment to Allah.
    But now I realize the fear is legitimate.

    Muslim women are a threat.

    HIJAB SENDS A MESSAGE OF ACCEPTANCE AND REJECTION

    A woman who covers herself out of the love of Allah is not just stating something about what she accepts but she is also saying something about what she rejects.

    Any woman who refuses to play the gender games that are so basic to all societies is going to be pushed out.

    Women have always been expected to play some kind of role in every society.

    In North America, a great part of this role revolves around sex and the aura of sexuality. Any relationship involving men and women has some kind of sexual undertone.

    When a woman covers herself she is rejecting that role, she is saying sex will have nothing to do with her public life. It is the fact that she has taken out of the discussion her physical self that people find so upsetting.

    A WOMAN IN HIJAB: MORE THAN “JUST A WOMAN”

    A female doctor, writer, electrician or plumber may be appreciated in the work environment for her skill, but is still basically seen as “just a woman.”

    But put her in Hijab so that what makes her a woman cannot be appraised and all of a sudden you are dealing with a person.

    It is a radical idea not liked by many.

    SHE IS REJECTING THE POLITICS OF GENDER

    This person is not only rejecting preset gender roles but also the associated politics of gender.

    She is therefore rejecting the basic social structure which also means she is seen to be rejecting the political system and its tied economic setup.

    So educators in Quebec should feel threatened.
    Emilie and Dania are more than just two girls whose headgear does not conform to school dress code. They are representatives of something bigger, of a different way of life and of living.

    It took me some time to come to this conclusion.

    HIJAB: AN ACT OF FAITH

    I had always seen Hijab as a private matter between myself and Allah.

    I chose to wear Hijab because I felt my Iman (faith) had to be translated into action and if Allah asks me to cover, then I should.

    If I could not act out my faith then what was the point of saying I had any faith?

    But, unfortunately, those around me did not see my wearing Hijab as a personal act of worship.

    Rather, they saw it as a personal attack on them. I wore Hijab and that automatically meant I disapproved of everything they did.

    I found the hostility difficult to understand. Just because my head was covered, people were unable to relate to me.

    I had a newfound freedom and a greater sense of confidence in myself as a Muslim but most others saw me as a throwback.

    WOMEN'S PROGRESS STILL TIED TO APPEARANCE


    Progressiveness for women is unfortunately still defined by how much they are willing to reveal.

    The more power women seem to gain, the more compelled they are to take off their clothes.

    This paradox is at the root of the confusion faced by North American women.

    They are supposed to be strong, independent and assertive yet, at the same time, they are made slaves to an ideal physical image which cannot be achieved by the vast majority of women.
    This duality is a marketable commodity.

    Take the fashion industry for example; the latest from Paris says “glamor” is the hottest look of the season with its glossy lipsticks, slip dresses, and spiked heels.

    Women object saying that fashion designers are expecting them to dress like prostitutes at the office.

    They loathe the fact that the female body is used for selling everything from cosmetics to clothing to cars.

    Yet when Muslim women cover themselves up and protest the very same thing, they are conversely regarded as being oppressed.

    TERMINAL CONFUSION ABOUT WOMEN'S FREEDOM

    The confusion is terminal. While some fight against what they see as objectifying women, others feel the ideal way to ultimate freedom for women is the right to got barechested in public.

    The rationale seems to be that once our bodies are desexualized then it will be safer for us to go out on the streets.

    We just have to give up our dignity, our modesty and our privacy.

    And it is in the midst of all this confusion that women in Hijab have arrived. Their unwillingness to play into the hands of either side has earned them scorn.

    HIJAB HAS BECOME A POLITICAL STATEMENT

    Hijab is fundamentally part of worship but, right or wrong, it has become a political statement as well.

    We may only be expressing our commitment to our Deen (religion) but Hijab is seen to symbolize a rejection of the West.

    THE MISTAKE OF THE SECULARISTS

    This perceived rejection has affected liberal secularists so profoundly that they are willing to push aside their own basic principle of individual freedom to stave of the “oppressive” influences of Islam.

    It would be a wise person indeed who would realize that it is the very culture secularists are trying to preserve that has led people to search for something else.

    And for those who are truthful to themselves, they will see that Emilie and Dania have it figured out.

    This article was originally published in The Message-Canada in January 1995 and has been reprinted with the permission of the author.

  17. #17
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    Behind Burqa, Student Gets An Education In Bigotry [at Bacon Academy]

    Comments Directed At Muslims


    by Tracy Gordon Fox
    The Hartford Courant
    March 12, 2007


    COLCHESTER -- Caitlin Dean was raised not to discriminate against others because of their race or religion. But as a white suburban teen of Italian and Irish descent, she often wondered what it would be like to be the target of such abuse.

    She found out "behind the burqa."

    The 15-year-old freshman volunteered with a few other students to wear traditional Muslim clothing to school for an entire day in February after a Middle Eastern Studies teacher at Bacon Academy announced that she was looking for students to promote her class by wearing the garb. Caitlin covered her slender frame and short brown hair with a periwinkle burqa, which concealed her face.

    The hateful and abusive comments she endured that day horrified teachers, the teen and many of her classmates. The remarks underscored a persistent animosity toward American Muslims
    that is driven largely by the terrorist attacks of 9/11 and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. But they also opened up an important dialogue that could help teenagers in Colchester and across the state view the Muslim culture differently.

    "Hey, we rape your women!" one upperclassman said as he passed Caitlin in the hallway.

    "I hope all of your people die," another sniped.

    "You're probably going to kill us all" and "Why do they let people like this in the country?" were other remarks she heard on Feb. 1.

    Caitlin's observations that day did not surprise those who work for the Connecticut chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, which arrived in the state about three years ago in response to hate crimes and prejudice against Muslims.

    Caitlin wrote down 50 comments and names she was called. She did not respond because "I am a freshman. I like to avoid making waves."

    But when she saw a friend and a teacher who knew that Caitlin was the person under the burqa, she broke down in a classroom.

    "I started crying," Caitlin said. "There is way too much prejudice."

    The lack of understanding of Islam and of the many of the cultures that contribute to a worldwide population of more than 1 billion Muslims is something Rabia Chaudry, a spokeswoman for CAIR, planned to raise with the state Department of Education when she meets with officials in a few weeks.

    Now she plans to use Colchester as a positive example in terms of discussing prejudice and raising awareness of the Muslim culture.
    "I think what this teacher has done is exactly what schools should be doing," Chaudry said.

    None of the students were singled out for discipline because no formal complaints were made.

    "It's unacceptable," Superintendent Karen Loiselle said. "It's imperative students who are victims of those comments report them immediately and it will be taken very seriously.

    In this case, it has opened an important conversation."

    Chaudry agreed and said her group would like to send representatives to meet with students in Colchester and other communities, to hold town meetings to talk about their feelings about Muslims, the war and terrorism.

    At Bacon Academy, the experience has already made a difference. Teacher Angie Parkinson, who had only 12 students enrolled in her Middle Eastern Studies classes for next year, now has 48.

    A partial list of the comments to Caitlin - some were not printable - appeared in the student newspaper, the Bacon Courier, along with a front-page story headlined, "Some at Bacon Fail the Test of Tolerance."
    Caitlin called it "The Girl Behind the Burqa."

    In the days that followed, teachers and students at Bacon Academy discussed tolerance of other cultures. There was already a Gay-Straight Alliance at the school with some openly gay members, a save Darfur group and a diversity committee.

    Chris Anderson, a senior at Bacon who also wore some of the traditional Muslim clothing to school and also was the target of ethnic slurs, said educators are not trying hard enough to expose students to other cultures. He criticized school leaders for replacing world studies in middle school with more American history.

    "The prejudice displayed at Bacon Academy is proof enough that education about world cultures cannot be ignored," he said. "The misunderstood are feared and hated."

    CAIR is dedicated to promoting better understanding of Islam and Muslims through public education and interfaith cooperation and to defend American Muslims' civil and human rights, according to its website.

    Chaudry said she is not surprised to hear how some students reacted to the burqas and other Middle Eastern outfits.

    "I wear a regular head scarf and I get those reactions in public as well. I think people are confusing terrorists with Muslims," she said. "They don't understand the distinction because they don't understand the religion."

    Parkinson, who has traveled to the Middle East and wants to participate in a teacher exchange with Saudi Arabia, said she is on a mission to have other cultures, particularly those in the Middle East, better represented in school curriculums.

    "That happens to be my personal crusade," she said. "And I think we should start it sooner. It should be taught in elementary school.

    "My fear of this hatred of Islam is that it will become synonymous with patriotism," Parkinson said. "We are a nation of immigrants. Some of the most disturbing comments were, `This is America. Go home.'"

    In her class, Parkinson spends weeks explaining the history of the Middle East before she broaches the Iraq war.

    "It takes weeks and weeks to understand the background," Parkinson said.

    There are plenty of examples of other incidents around the state that have not led to productive discussions, including a Muslim boy in New Haven County who was beaten up and called Osama Bin Laden, Chaudry said.

    Many other incidents go unreported, she said. "I think a lot of times, [Muslims] just internalize it and go on."



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    Headscarf travel divides opinion

    03 April 2009

    Travelling on public transport in the capital with photo-ID requires officials to be able to see the passenger, but maybe not elsewhere in the country

    The case of a Muslim woman who was refused travel on a regional Funen bus multiple times because she was wearing a niqab has divided public opinion.

    Amina Farah Suleiman, 41, originally from Somalia, wears a traditional head covering, which only leaves her eyes visible.

    The most recent refusal to let her travel came last week, when, for the fourth time, a bus driver on regional transport company Fynbus stopped her from boarding.

    The driver had taken issue with the woman using a monthly travel pass which features a picture ID. As he could not see the woman’s face to confirm that she was the correct owner of the travel pass he refused her passage.

    While the 3F union has backed the driver’s actions, the head of Fynbus has said that the woman should have been allowed to travel.

    The Muslim Union, which represents 30 Muslim organisations and promotes integration, said that it was natural for the driver to want to confirm the identification of the passenger if she was using a photo travel pass.

    Meanwhile, DR News reports that different rules are adopted at Copenhagen bus company Movia. Claus Hermansen of Movia said that if passengers want to use photo ID travel passes, then they must be willing to show their face. Otherwise they must be willing to buy multi-tickets or pay cash.


    Comment:

    The head of the company says that she should have been allowed to travel yet you see these morons (3F union and Muslim Union) saying no. The bus company is in the business to make money and they got their money when the pass was bought, what does it matter who uses the pass as long as the pass is valid!


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    Muslim woman strip-searched at Chicago’s OHare airport

    By Lawrence Porter - 21 January 2002

    In another example of the growing attacks—ranging from blatant discrimination and state-sanctioned bigotry, to outright physical brutality—faced by people of Arab descent in America, the Chicago, Illinois chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has filed a lawsuit on behalf of an American Muslim student who was singled out and strip-searched at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport because of her ethnic background.

    Samar Kaukab, a 22-year-old Ohio State University student, who is an American citizen of Pakistani descent, charges in her lawsuit that an Illinois National Guardsman and three security personnel subjected her to a degrading, unnecessary and illegal search.

    The suit is believed to be the first in over 100 cases pending of airport discrimination against Muslims since the September 11 terrorist attacks. The lawsuit names the Illinois National Guard and Argenbright Security, Inc., as defendants.

    “We believe this case is about ethnic intimidation and discrimination and that she was searched based on her ethnicity and religion,” Edwin Yohnka of the Chicago office of the ACLU told the WSWS. “This is a violation of her civil rights and it also raises constitutional issues. We believe that when she was asked to take off her hijab it was a violation of her freedom of religious expression. And we believe that singling her out the line was a violation of her 14th amendment rights (the equal protection clause).”

    At a press conference called by the ACLU and attended by Ms. Kaukab, they explained that on November 7, 2001, Kaukab was returning to her Columbus, Ohio home after attending a Volunteers in Service to America (VISA) conference. Kaukab works for VISA, a US government agency that helps low income students. Along with many other coworkers, she checked in her luggage at the airport and proceeded through the security metal detectors when the incident began.

    Despite the fact that the metal detectors did not go off, the ACLU reported, a member of the Illinois National Guard instructed a security guard to search Ms. Kaukab more carefully. The security employee then passed a metal detector over Ms. Kaukab’s body and inside her boots. He continued by patting her upper body and pulling at the straps and hook on her bra.

    At that point, the ACLU states, a crowd began to gather, watching the embarrassing examination by the security team. The guard then began to slowly pass the wand repeatedly around Ms. Kaukab’s head. At no point during this extensive search was there any indication of a metallic or any other prohibited item. Nevertheless, the security guard, abiding by the instruction of the National Guardsman, further demanded that Ms. Kaukab remove her hijab, the traditional headscarf of Muslim women.

    Ms. Kaukab told the press conference, “I explained that my reticence about removing the hijab was not an effort to be uncooperative. It simply reflected my own religious beliefs and practices...I offered to take the hijab off but only in a private area or behind a screen and only if it was in front of a woman.”

    Initially both the security guard and National Guardsman, who continued to demand that Kaukab remove the hijab, rejected the proposal.

    “The security personnel and the National Guardsman were completely insensitive to Ms. Kaukab’s religious beliefs,” stated Lorie Chaiten, a lawyer for the Illinois ACLU. “The search continued to escalate even though Ms. Kaukab passed through the metal detector without incident, and further searches produced no indication of anything being hidden beneath her hijab. The escalating nature of the search was completely unjustified.”

    Ms. Kaukab was then escorted to a small room where she was searched by two female security guards. During the inspection the male security guard walked in, prompting Kaukab to again protest the violation of her privacy and insensitivity to her religious beliefs. Only after her strenuous demands did he leave.

    The search, however, became even more humiliating after his departure. Kaukab removed her hijab, and the female guards combed their fingers through her head and scalp and began to strip the young woman unwillingly of her clothing.

    Yohnka said the two female guards’ search was invasive. “They open her sweater, feel her breasts, and one woman unbuckles her pants and unzips her. Then she sticks her hand down her pants, and padded down her lower abdomen and between her legs over her underwear.”

    “After the incident they just tell her that she can go,” continued Yohnka. “Throughout the ordeal they did not tell her anything, including what they were doing or what to expect.”

    Lorie Chaiten, another ACLU lawyer, emphasized, “Ms. Kaukab was identified and subjected to a humiliating search not because she posed any security threat, but only because her wearing a hijab identified her as a Muslim.” Chaiten said Kaukab was subjected to the subjected to the degrading treatment solely because of her “ethnicity and religion.”

    Ms. Kaukab told the local media in Columbus, “It’s not just a piece of cloth that I wear. It gives me control of the privacy of my body.” The 30-minute ordeal she said was “embarrassing, intrusive and humiliating.”

    The Illinois ACLU Legal Director Harvey Grossman pointed out that the agency is aware or at least 100 cases of Muslim Americans being harassed at airports since September 11. The lawsuit demands that the district court issue an injunction preventing any future unreasonable searches and seizures based on ethnic and religious discrimination.

    The web site of the American Arabic Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) has recorded 520 incidents of violence against Arab Americans since September 11. These cases do not include the hundreds of cases of employment discrimination, police searches, and a significant increase in tensions at schools where Arab students have had problems with students, teachers and school administrators.

    Referring to the Kaukab case, Yohnka told the WSWS, “When something like this happens, you always hope that this will bring about a change. You hope that it will lead to reforms and put in place the training needed in airports around the country.”

    “One of the reasons that case has developed,” continued Yohnka, “is because she had the courage to come forward and file this suit.”



    Comments:

    Thanks to the new scanners deployed at the airports everyone is automatically strip searched since the scanner itself is a strip search machine and shows everything clearly to the viewing people. Not only are you strip searched electronically but your scanned pictures could be end up on some websites!



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    Hijab Banned in Bulgaria Schools

    The Bulgarian government approved Thursday, March 26, a draft bill banning hijab and other religious symbols in schools.

    "We express our disagreement and bitterness with this decision," Hussein Hafazov of the Chief Mufti office told Reuters.

    "It completely damages the rights as well as the responsibilities of Muslim women."

    The bill calls for banning hijab and other religious symbols in schools. It still needs to be approved by parliament.

    Bulgaria is the latest European country to ban the Muslim headscarf.

    France banned the Muslim veil in public places in 2004, with several European countries following suit.

    Hijab is an obligatory code of dress for Muslim women, not a symbol that shows ones religious affiliation.

    Tension
    The Chief Mufti warned that the bill would increase community tensions in the Balkan country.

    He said there had been arson attacks on mosques and other Muslim buildings and girls had already been forbidden from wearing hijab in some schools.

    Bulgaria is the only EU state where Muslims are not recent immigrants but a centuries-old local community.

    Muslims, who make up 12 percent of Bulgaria's 7.8 million population, have lived with Christians in relative harmony for centuries.

    Mostly ethnic Turkish descendants of the Ottoman Empire's reach into Europe, they live beside Christians in a culture known as "komshuluk", or neighborly relations.

    Mosques and Islamic schools are common sights in Bulgaria.

    The ethnic-Turkish MRF party has also become a powerful political force, participating in the last two governments.

    End Item/ 129



 

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