Feminists dispute “honor killing”

Update 2/25/09: Phyllis Chesler has a great article at FrontPage Magazine summarizing reactions from Muslims and feminists about the beheading and the controversy over whether it was an honor killing or not. It is so packed with information that I can’t summarize it; read the whole thing.

My post on honor killing has attracted some notice from a feminist blog. Apparently some feminists are debunking the notion that there is any connection whatsoever between the beheading of a Muslim wife who filed for divorce against her husband, and Islam itself with its primitive notions of honor, while other feminists are using this beheading to draw attention to honor killings. I think Phyllis Chesler’s scholarly article, from which I took the chart in my honor killing post, is especially valuable in distinguishing honor killing from the usual domestic abuse. (This is not to minimize the problem of domestic abuse, which the feminists claim we are doing when we draw attention to honor killings.)  

The same division is seen among Muslims. Many are shocked that anyone would link this beheading to Islam. Others are speaking out about the problem, as I wrote here.

This particular beheading case shares many characteristics with regular domestic violence — abusive men of many ethnic groups seem to feel their honor threatened when their mate leaves, or threatens to leave. The fact that the husband turned himself in to the police is interesting — he seems to have been remorseful, something that is not characteristic of honor killings, which are sanctioned by the community.

It is that sanctioning by the community — the Islamic community — that has caused some Muslims to speak out. There is no sanction for domestic violence in mainstream American culture (despite the strenuous efforts of some feminists to claim otherwise). There will, unfortunately, always be abusive men, and they need to be stopped both by law and by culture. It appears that in some cases Islamic culture overrules American law, and changing that has to be initiated by Muslims themselves.

Update 2/27/09: See my post, Beheader says headless wife can’t reach paradise for evidence linking the killing to Islam and honor killing.

Vermont man charged with hate crime for something the reporter can’t specify

Maybe I’m dense, but what the heck does this story from Vermont TV station WCAX mean?

A Burlington [man] is charged with a hate crime for using racial epithets to insult people of color. It’s the first case involving interracial hatred in Chittenden County since Vermont’s hate crime law took effect.

The suspect is charged with disorderly conduct as a hate crime for allegedly targeting his African-born neighbors– especially a 9-year-old girl– with death threats and racial insults.

But the suspect claims there was no crime at all because his speech is protected by the First Amendment.

Is he charged for the racial epithets? That’s free speech. Or is he charged for death threats? That may or may not be free speech.

Police records show the Somalis had complained for several years that he targeted them with hateful name-calling but no criminal charges were filed until last fall.

That’s when police say Cannon targeted 9-year-old Nahima Sheck Mohammed and her family with an intensified series of death threats and racial slurs. The prosecutor says it’s a hate crime.

WHAT is a hate crime? The death threats or the racial slurs? Does Vermont’s hate crime law include speech? If so, and if this disgusting low-life guy is being prosecuted for his speech, then he’s right to challenge the law and I hope it goes all the way to the Supreme Court. Even convicted felons (this guy is one) are not deprived of their speech rights.

As for the death threats, the law varies from state to state. Some consider death threats protected speech, others a crime under various statutes.

But the whole idea of hate crime laws is wrong. These laws always specify privileged groups, and those who commit a crime against them can be prosecuted on two counts — the crime itself, and the motive of hate. A very bad thing. I’d rather see an upstanding citizen be the one to challenge such a law, but then upstanding citizens rarely issue death threats.



Obama sending almost a billion dollars to Hamas via the UN

Not content with the $20 million he ordered sent to Gaza, President Obama is now going for aid in a big way. The New York Times reports:

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration intends to provide some $900 million to help rebuild Gaza after the Israeli incursion that ended last month, administration officials said Monday.

In an early sign of how the administration plans to deal with Hamas, the militant Islamist group that controls Gaza, an official said that the aid would not go to Hamas but that it would be funneled through nongovernmental organizations.

Andy McCarthy at National Review has a comprehensive smackdown of the idea the money won’t go to Hamas, beginning with this excellent paragraph:

Various la-la land conservatives and moderates assured us that Obama, despite a career spent in the Left’s fever swamps, is really a “pragmatist” who would govern from the center.  They pooh-poohed us knuckle-draggers who doggedly pointed to his radical intimates, like Hamas-apologist Rashid Khalidi.  I wonder what they’re thinking today as Obama takes time out from destroying the economy to send $900M from the mint’s busy printing press to Hamas.

Despite disclaimers in the New York Times, yes, the money is going to Hamas, via the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, UNRWA.

The UNRWA is effectively an arm of Hamas in Gaza (and elsewhere).  In its second term, the Bush State Department was reckless in enabling Palestinian terrorists on its utopian quest for Middle East peace.  As in so much else, Obama is taking that parlous policy and multiplying it by a hundred.

After going through the many ways UNRWA aids Hamas, McCarthy concludes:

The game here is obvious.  UNRWA takes in hundreds of millions (indeed, billions) in aid.  Some is directly funnelled to Hamas in cash or in kind.  But for the most part, UNRWA performs social welfare services quite consciously to free Hamas — the Palestinians’ chosen government — to divert its limited resources to wage a terrorist war (“the resistance”) against Israel.

And here’s the nub of it:

If an organization comprised of American citizens attempted to do this, they could be prosecuted and imprisoned for decades on charges of providing material support to a terrorist organization.  (I would say “would be prosecuted,” but with this administration, who knows?)  Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (an old hand at empowering Palestinian terrorists) are now proposing to give nearly a billion dollars to a Hamas subsidiary — knowing full well that this funding must inevitably result in the murder of innocent people.

McCarthy points out that Congress could stop this expenditure. Fat chance. All we can hope for is that a few principled Republicans will raise the alarm, so at least some citizens will realize how closely the Obama administration is aligning itself with terrorists.

I highly recommend you read McCarthy’s whole post.




FBI director Mueller: “…a perversion of the immigrant story”

This is why I love the Washington Times and hope it will survive as papers big and small crash and burn!   Judy told you in the previous post that the New York Times is reporting (3 months after the fact) that Somali “youths” are leaving the US and assumed to be traveling to Somalia to join the Jihad.  The Washington Times had reported the story on the front page on December 29, 2008 here.

The Washington Times is reporting that news again, and adding so much more to the story today.   This excellent reporting by Ben Conery  takes the speech yesterday that FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III gave to the Council on Foreign Relations and gets out and finds more information.

A monthly conference call with Homeland Security:

Ahmed Elmi, chairman of the Somali-American Community Association in the Washington area, said Somali community leaders throughout the U.S. are concerned about what happened in Minnesota and are eager to help the FBI and other law-enforcement agencies deal with the issue.

“We tell Somalis: ‘If you know something, you should report it immediately. It’s a crime if you don’t. If you don’t know the language or feel uncomfortable, go to Somali community agencies for help,’ ” Mr. Elmi said.

On the first Tuesday of each month, a half-dozen Somali community leaders from throughout the U.S., including from Minnesota, have a one-hour teleconference with the Department of Homeland Security, Mr. Elmi said.

“We’ve spoken with FBI agents in Virginia, and we are hoping to do something similar with the FBI,” he said.

Back to Mueller:

Mr. Mueller pointed to the costs of the present situation in human terms.

“The prospect of young men, indoctrinated and radicalized within their own communities, and induced to travel to such countries to take up arms – and to kill themselves and perhaps many others – is a perversion of the immigrant story,” Mr. Mueller said.

It’s not so perverse Mr. Mueller if you guys knew anything about Islam!

Now, just in case my theory is correct and that all these radicalized Somali youths  have not gone back to Somalia, this Washington Times article goes into a discussion about how the FBI was involved in helping India in the wake of the Mumbai attacks, concluding:

Though he declined to speculate about whether a similar attack [to the one in Mumbai] would take place in the U.S., Mr. Mueller said the Mumbai attacks, carried out by 10 terrorists, “reminds us that terrorists with large agendas and little money can use rudimentary weapons to maximize their impact.”

Note to readers (and the FBI):   If  Muellers (CYA) speech gives you comfort that the FBI is on top of the Somali radicalization issue in the US, think again.   They have missed some critical opportunities in one city I know of—Nashville, TN.  Could there be others?

FBI notices Somalis were radicalized in Minnesota; not sure if it’s a problem

Ann has posted numerous times on the radical American Somalis who went to join the jihad, and tonight I noticed this report in the New York Times, Militants Drew Recruit in U.S., F.B.I. Says.

WASHINGTON — The F.B.I. director, Robert S. Mueller III, said Monday that a Somali-American man who was one of several suicide bombers in a terrorist attack last October in Somalia had apparently been indoctrinated into his extremist beliefs while living in the United States.

The man, Shirwa Ahmed, was the first known suicide bomber with American citizenship. He immigrated with his family to the Minneapolis area in the mid-1990s, Mr. Mueller said, but he returned to Somalia after he was recruited by a militant group.

“It appears that this individual was radicalized in his hometown in Minnesota,” Mr. Mueller said, speaking at a meeting of the Council on Foreign Relations. Minneapolis claims the country’s largest Somali population.

Mr. Ahmed was driving a vehicle laden with explosives that blew up in northern Somalia in an attack that killed as many as 30 people, according to news reports. His body was returned to the United States with the help of the F.B.I.

Federal authorities have said that Mr. Ahmed was one of as many as two dozen young men of Somali descent who had disappeared in the past two years from their homes in the Minneapolis area after being recruited by the Shabab, a militia that is suspected of having ties to Al Qaeda and that has waged a war against the Somali government.

Mr. Mueller suggested that Somali recruiting posed a serious issue for the F.B.I., which has sought the cooperation of the Somali community to try to understand whether the recruiting represents a threat.

“It raises the question of whether these young men will one day come home, and, if so, what might they undertake here,” he said.

Thanks for noticing, Mr. Mueller.  But can the FBI really not figure out whether a terrorist organization recruiting young men in Minnesota represents a threat? I can save a lot of taxpayer money: Instead of seeking the cooperation of Somalis to find out, just ask me. I’ll tell you without all the bother: The answer is Yes. And the question is, What are you going to do about it?