Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Armenians, Kurds to protest Erdoğan visit to Germany

PanARMENIAN.Net - A large group of Kurds, Ezidis, Armenians, Alawites and Syriacs from Europe are planning to hold a protest against Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s visit to Germany, Hurriyet Daily News reported. Around 10,000 people from almost 50 organizations are expected to attend the rally in Berlin. Ezidis in particular are angry with Erdoğan’s recent remarks in which he used the term “Yezidi” instead of “Ezidi.” They believe that the word “Yezidi” holds negative connotation in Turkey. Aziz Alkış, head of the Ezidi Associations Federation in Berlin said the “Prime Minister looked down on Ezidi citizens” with his remarks. He said they would call on Erdoğan to end his policy in Syria, as well as end pressure on minorities and ethnic groups in Turkey. Noting that the Ezidi religion is not recognized on national ID cards and signified by an “X,” Alkış said it made their faith seem anti-Islamic. Azad Ordughanyan, head of the Germany Armenians Center, said they would call on Turkey to recognize the Armenian Genocide. “Turkey is still denying the genocide. We will renew our call for its recognition.” The head of the Alawite Unions Federation in Cologne, Hüseyin Mat, said the Turkish government pursues a policy of assimilation rather than accepting all differences. “Erdoğan will tell Europe that Turkey is a democratic country here. We will tell that this is not true.”

Police arrest French terror suspect in Munich

A Frenchman wanted over the 2003 suicide attacks in Casablanca that killed 33 people plus the bombers has been arrested at Munich airport, German police said Tuesday. Authorities in Morocco had issued an international arrest warrant for the 37-year-old French national of Moroccan origin, who was arrested while in transit in Munich with his family on Monday, police said in a statement. The suspect is being held in custody ahead of his eventual extradition, German police said, adding that he had arrived in Munich en route from France to Dubai. A Moroccan security source and French police later named the suspect as Fouad Charouali. A French police source also noted that he had already been sentenced by a French court in July 2007 to eight years in prison for his participation in a cell that provided support to Casablanca suicide bombers. According to the charges laid against him then, Charouali had housed members of a Moroccan Islamist group which is suspected of having masterminded the Casablanca attacks. It is unclear when he was released from prison. Asked why he was not detained in Paris as he was leaving for Munich, the French police source noted that there were no police checks in place for flights from France to Germany due to their passport-free travel agreement under the Schengen border-free zone. The May 2003 suicide bombings in the coastal city of Casablanca were the deadliest ever in Morocco. Forty-five people died including 12 suicide bombers, and dozens more were wounded. The north African kingdom was hit by another bombing in April last year when 17 people were killed in an attack on a Marrakesh café, dealing a heavy blow to the tourist industry.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Pro-Serb Czech Director Shoots His Foot and Ours

By Julia Gorin
People of conscience, meaning people who care about what the world did to the Serbs, are applauding a group of Czech activists who confronted the female war criminal Madeleine Albright at a book signing in Prague last week. As is widely known, Not-at-albright is prone to exploiting her nation of birth and inverting the lessons of Munich, not least so she could continue Hitler’s work in the 90s.
The protestors, Friends of Kosovo Serbs, returned from Kosovo a couple weeks ago, where they delivered humanitarian aid and raised awareness about the plight of non-Albanian minorities. Last Wednesday, the group’s understated approach was enough for Albright — who has probably caused her Czech-diplomat father to turn in his grave enough times to have died twice — to show her true colors, and Clinton-like temper. Within moments, the 75-year-old lost her cool and commanded, as demons and angry spirits will often do, “Get out!”

Monday, October 29, 2012

A German Victory for Free Speech

In a letter dated October 10, 2012, and received by its addressee four days later, the Marburg, Germany state prosecutor announced a suspension in the prosecution of medical historian Dr. Armin Geus. As discussed in my recent FrontPage Magazine article, Geus had run afoul of German authorities because of his book Die Krankheit des Propheten (The Sickness of the Prophet), in which Geus had argued that Islam's prophet Muhammad was not divinely led, but rather psychologically disturbed. Despite this victory for free speech with respect to Islam, briefs submitted by Geus' defense lawyers and a public declaration by a German Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) highlight various long-term issues still seeking ultimate resolution. One such brief from September 8, 2012, requesting document review, petitioned for an immediate end to the prosecution, as "indices for a possible criminal liability are far and wide not recognizable and therefore a criminal procedure should not have even been initiated." Geus' "unjustly incriminated Work" was rather a "strictly scientific examination, which rests upon facts and the methodical research and presentation of facts." In fact, Germany's "most respected" top ten non-fiction book list compiled by the Süddeutsche Zeitung and Norddeutscher Rundfunk (NDR) selected Die Krankheit des Propheten for the month of June 2011. Serving on the selection committee were twenty jurors, almost all with doctoral degrees and including many professors. Geus' book "therefore falls under scientific freedom and simply cannot be a charge under criminal law." Along with a reference to Germany's constitutionally anchored freedom of science in Article 5(3) of the Basic Law or Grundgesetz, the brief noted that: ... in states ruled by law there is no forbidden science and there are no intrusions into the freedom of science as an intrusion into a basic right on the basis of ideological and/or religious reasons, but rather only in ideology directed states like national-socialist Germany, the Stalinist Soviet Union, or the Wahabi Saudi Arabia. Geus' case elicited from his lawyers the "greatest of concern" about German "rule of law." It was "precisely" the King Fahd Academy (König Fahd Akademie) in Bad Godesberg-Lannesdorf, a Saudi-founded and funded secondary school, that "was able to unleash a criminal prosecution evidently not grounded in the criminal code by a German state prosecutor." "Indeed," conceded Geus' lawyers, "Saudi Aramco sits upon 40 billion tons of crude oil and is therefore presumably the greatest existing world power." Likewise, "Sama Foreign Holdings sits upon at least half a trillion dollars [sic] investment capital and is therefore one of the most important investors for the struggling German economy." German firms were also about to deliver "at least" 800 Leopard 2A7+ main battle tanks to Saudi Arabia "in order to secure long term places of work in the German armaments industry." "Nonetheless, this may not lead to the introduction of sharia here."

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Historian slams Germany for ignoring anti-semitism

Dr. Julius H. Schoeps, a distinguished German- Jewish historian and a member of the Interior Ministry’s commission to fight anti-Semitism, accused last week the majority of Bundestag deputies of not understanding Jew-hatred and the importance of a regular legislative report on German anti-Semitism. “Cluelessness” ran the headline of Schoeps’s essay about the German deputies attitudes toward dealing with anti-Semitism on the front page of the main German Jewish newspaper Jüdische Allgemeine. “There are anti-Semites” among the legislators, he said, citing anti-Jewish comments from parliamentarians in connection with the recent public debate about whether circumcision should be legal in the country. Marlene Rupprecht, a Social Democratic deputy and chairwoman of the party’s children’s platform, said about the anti-circumcision movement in Germany, “It can’t be dealt with by saying, ‘We had the Holocaust and therefore we are not allowed to criticize [Jews] for centuries.’” Lala Süsskind, a former head of Berlin’s Jewish community, slammed Rupprecht for “dumb” comments. Bundestag deputies debated earlier this month the findings of the Interior Ministry report “Anti-Semitism in Germany,” and whether the commission should continue to function and additional reports should be prepared. In 2008, the Bundestag approved a resolution to establish the nine-member commission, which went into effect in 2009. The panel of experts falls under the umbrella of the Interior Ministry. Sacha Stawski, who heads the pro-Israel NGO Honestly Concerned in Frankfurt, told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday, “The criticism voiced by Julius Schoeps is right on point.” “When we – a network of NGOs – fought for the first report, we never expected that a report would be the ultimate solution to combatting anti-Semitism in Germany,” Stawski said. “We intended to create a tool by which we could hold the Bundestag accountable for documenting this terrible phenomenon in all its different forms – no matter whether from the Right, the Left, Islamist or anti-Zionist; a phenomenon unfortunately prevalent among all levels of society,” he said. The report found that 15 percent of the German population is anti-Semitic and more than 20 percent express “latent anti-Semitism,” according to Schoeps. Critics, however, see major gaps in the document, including playing down the severity of contemporary German anti-Semitism. Dr. Clemens Heni, who is not a member of the commission and has published several books on modern German anti-Semitism, criticized sections of the report for failing to examine “anti-Israel media coverage in Spiegel-Online or on the television news show Tagesschau.” The report failed to cite the “anti-Israel Bundestag resolution from July 1, 2010” singling out Israel’s seizure of the Turkish-owned vessel Mavi Marmara, and the ship’s attempt to break the naval blockade of the Hamas-controlled Gaza strip,” Heni wrote. Two current Bundestag deputies from the Left Party, Annette Groth and Inge Höger, were aboard the Mavi Marmara. The Bundestag voted unanimously to blame Israel for the Gaza flotilla events. Stawski said that “while most Bundestag members have an easy time decrying concrete anti-Semitic attacks, few understand or want to understand the depth of the problem and thus the importance of going beyond empty, meaningless declarations decrying anti-Semitism. This task needs financing, manpower and a lot of hard work in close cooperation with civil society/NGOs, who understand the problems.” Schoeps cited three deputies of the 620 in the Bundestag in his essay as having grasped the importance of the commission’s work: Wolfgang Thierse from the Social Democrats, Petra Pau of the Left Party, and Voker Beck who represents the Green Party. The Bundestag debate about the report and the commission suggested that the vast majority of deputies believe the fight against anti-Semitism should be the job of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, Schoeps wrote. He sees the political view in the Bundestag as the main problem, saying anti-Semitism is a societal problem affecting non-Jews – with grave implications for Jews — and needs to be tackled by Germany’s non-Jewish civil society.

Vienna: Why Hezbollah is Europe's problem too

The global footprint of Iran's most dangerous ally

Lecture with
Matthew Levitt (Washington Institute for Near East Policy)
Chair: Simone Dinah Hartmann (STOP THE BOMB)

November 5th 2012, 07:00 PM 
Presseclub Concordia, Bankgasse 8, 1010 Vienna
The lecture will be held in English.

Hezbollah, whose yellow banners can be seen regularly in Vienna waving over Islamist rallies which are orchestrated by the Iranian regime, like the annual Al Quds march, is responsible for numerous terrorist attacks around the world. Although Hezbollah's cadres are active within all important European countries, its name is not even mentioned in the annual report of Austria's intelligence service. In July 2012, the EU rejected to add the Lebanese jihadists to the list of terrorist organizations. Yet, since then voices were being raised to revise the decision.

Hezbollah, which was established, and up to the present day is being armed and financed by the Iranian regime, is a terrorist organization that is active worldwide. It advocates a clearly anti-Semitic ideology, aiming at the extermination of Israel, and propagates the sociopolitical ideas of Islamism: The systematic discrimination of woman, persecution of homosexuals, violence against dissenters and the establishment of a Shiite theocracy. At the moment, Hezbollah actively partakes in the suppression of the revolt against its longstanding ally, Assad's Baathist dictatorship in Syria.

The lecture will outline how European countries serve Hezbollah as an area of retreat and operation, and discuss the alarming amount of donations that are being collected by Hezbollah in this area. It will also be pointed out how Vienna, too, has been utilized for the preparation of terrorist attacks and why a ban of the Lebanese Islamists would be a decisive blow to the Iranian regime.

Dr. Matthew Levitt is senior fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and heads the Stein Program on Counterterrorism and Intelligence. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Intelligence and Analysis at the U.S. Departments of the Treasury. His teaching activities include appointments at the John Hopkins University and his book "Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon's Party of God" will be published by Georgetown University Press in 2013.

Islamophobic Cow Kills Devout Muslim During Religious Ritual


Every weekend the New York Times warns us about the rising peril of Islamophobia in between the fashion section and their special report on sewer architecture in Queens, and the Islamophobia menace has become so severe that it is spreading to the animal kingdom.
We don’t entirely know why a cow was so filled with hate that it chose to murder an innocent Muslim trying to slaughter it, rather than allow itself to be slaughtered by it. Like many Islamophobic human bigots it may have gotten the false idea that it had the right to defend itself from being killed in an Islamic religious ritual.
What we do know is that this hateful animal has set back relations between Bovines and Muslims by 400 years. Maybe 800 years. Worse it has encouraged a cycle of violence in which cows resist being killed by Muslims and create Muslim martyrs who begin blowing themselves up in fields and ranches. The only way for the violence to stop is for cows to begin showing more respect for Islam and submitting to the slaughter as a lesson to the rest of us.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Outrage over German delegation visit to Iran

German politicians are due to arrive in Iran on Saturday for a controversial visit that has prompted outrage from Israeli and US politicians as well as the German Jewish community, who fear Tehran will exploit the trip for propaganda purposes. The politicians, members of the German-Iranian parliamentary group, claim they will use the visit to address human rights violations, but critics say this is a cover to strengthen trade links between the two countries. "For us it is important to make our position very clear once again, especially in regard to the striking human rights abuses in Iran," head of the delegation Bijan Djir-Sarai, an Iranian-born member of the German pro-business Free Democratic Party (FDP), told Associated Press news agency on Tuesday. Djir-Sarai will be accompanied by Thomas Feist from German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU), Angelika Graf of the Social Democrats (SPD) and a five-member delegation from the European Parliament. The German politicians have outraged Jewish groups by agreeing to meet the head of the Iranian human-rights council Mohammad Javad Larijani, a known holocaust denier who has called for Israel's destruction, according to a report by Israel's Jerusalem Post on Wednesday. Head of the Central Council of Jews in Germany Dieter Graumann described the move as “a brazen piece of being on the wrong political and moral way, that of all things to visit a regime that continues to build its nuclear programme and threatens the destruction of Israel and continues to deny the Holocaust,” wrote the Israeli newspaper. One critic, Wahied Wahdat-Hagh, described by the paper as an expert on German-Iranian relations, said the Germans - who are also due to meet with the German-Iranian chamber of commerce - were using statements on human rights as a cover for advancing economic ties between the two countries. "While the German-Iranian FDP politician speaks about human rights intentions, there are reports of Iran's state news agency that clearly articulate economic objectives,” Wahdat-Hagh told the paper. The unusual diplomatic move, which the European Parliament has said is designed to “build bridges,” has also caused a stir in the US, despite receiving little coverage by the German press. Earlier this month US Senators Jeanne Shaheen and Ben Cardin sent a letter to Martin Schulz, President of the European Parliament, urging him to reconsider the trip “given Iran’s continued human-rights offenses and failure to suspend its nuclear programme,” according to the report. "The decision to go ahead is unfortunate," Cardin told the Jerusalem Post.
The Local

Friday, October 26, 2012

Fox News: Diplomats Were Denied Help From CIA And Pentagon During Benghazi Attack


Allah made me visible: Women stage topless protest in a German Ikea

Pic: femen
A group of young female activists staged a topless protest in the living room department of a Hamburg Ikea on Wednesday evening, in a stand against the company's use of “discriminatory advertising.” The three women, aged 32, 23 and 22, entered the furniture store fully clothed. In the toilets, they removed their tops and painted German flags over their breasts and daubed feminist messages across their torsos, before taking to the shop floor. Staff and shoppers at the Hamburg branch watched for ten minutes before security ushered the protesters out, the Bild daily reported. Taking a stand against Ikea cutting women out of its Saudi Arabian catalogue, the trio belonged to the German branch of feminist movement Femen. “You can remove us from the catalogue but you cannot remove us from reality,” said a placards. “Allah made me visible,” said another. “We painted our breasts in Germany's colours because we are protesting for women,” graphic designer Irina, 32, told the paper. “Our bodies are painted like posters, but they cannot be ripped up,” she added. Femen began in Ukraine, where women have regularly staged nude protests against repression and violence. "Islamist dollars are more important than human principles of liberty and equality for Ikea," said a statement on the Femen website. It added that activists were calling for the world community to boycott the company's products.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Germany: Judgment in Parallel

The following TV news report from Germany serves as a video follow-up to the five-part series about Neukölln mayor Heinz Buschkowsky and his new book (see: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5). It discusses the evolution of a parallel sharia legal system in the Muslim ghettos of major German cities.


Wednesday, October 24, 2012

US Senators, German Jews slam politicians' Iran trip

Two democratic US Senators and the head of the Germany’s 105,000 member Jewish community urged German deputies, from the Bundestag’s German-Iranian parliamentary group, to pull the plug on their slated trip to the Islamic Republic on October 27. "At this particularly sensitive juncture in diplomatic relations, the international community needs to continue to send a clear, unified message to Tehran as we pressure the regime to come to the negotiating table. A formal visit at this time - no matter how well-intentioned - is counterproductive and undermines our joint efforts to put an end to Iran's nuclear ambitions," wrote Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-New Hampshire) in an email to the Jerusalem Post on Tuesday. Dieter Graumann, from Germany’s Jewish community, blasted the group of deputies. He said the trip to Iran is "horribly false“ and added that trip "is a brazen piece of being on the wrong political and moral way, that of all things to visit a regime that continues to build its nuclear program and threatens the destruction of Israel and continues to deny the Holocaust." Senator Ben Cardin (D-Maryland) wrote the Post on Tuesday that he believes “that the decision to go ahead is unfortunate” and “that sending a delegation to Iran sends the wrong message." The head of the delegation, Bijan Djir-Sarai, from the pro-business Free Democratic party, told the Post the deputies will meet with the German-Iranian chamber of commerce and Mohammad Javad Larijani, the head of the Iranian human-rights council. Asked if he was aware that Larijani denied the Holocaust and called for Israel's destruction during a 2008, German Foreign Ministry-sponsored event close to Berlin's Holocaust memorial , he said no. He stressed that the group will “point out the disgusting human rights violations” in Iran. Critics of the trip such as Dr. Wahied Wahdat-Hagh see the human rights argument as a mere cover for the German deputies to advance economic interests. Germany is Iran’s largest trade partner, with bilateral trade hovering around 4 billion euros each year, and the members of the FDP have strong business ties with Iranian companies. Wahdat-Hagh, a leading expert on German-Iranian relations, told the Post, "While the German-Iranian FDP politician speaks about human rights intentions, there are reports of Iran's state news agency that clearly articulate economic objectives. Wahdat-Hagh first uncovered the report in the state-controlled news outlet The Young Journalists Club, which said that German deputies would meet with the chamber of commerce and Iran’s auto industry. Djir-Sarai denied a planned meeting with the auto industry, but confirmed the chamber of commerce event. Wahdat-Hagh added: “Knowing that normally it is the role of such parliamentary groups to open the doors for the German entrepreneurs to invest in Iranian markets, it is clear that visiting the Iranian Chamber of Commerce has not the goal to discuss human rights abuses, or the problem of state anti-Semitism in Iran.” The two other members of the German-Iranian group are Thomas Feist from German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union party and Angelika Graf of the Social Democrats. The trip is slated to take place between October 27 and November 2. Feist told the Post that he seeks to "maintain communication channels" with Iran. He added that the delegation plans to visit the Jewish community in Iran. He stressed that “human rights violations” will be the central point of the trip. Additional, wrote Graumann, the regime in Tehran "brutally represses and murders opposition" in Iran and supports the butcher regime in Damascus, as well as functioning as the main financier of international terrorism. "The parties in the Bundestag should set the deputies straight," noted Grauman, adding that it is "sad and incomprehensible that is even necessary." A spokesman for the German foreign ministry wrote the Post: "The deputies of the Bundestag decide for themselves about their trip. The Iran policy of the Federal Government toward Iran’s nuclear program remains well-known and unchanged.“ Tina Wender, a spokeswoman for the FDP fraction in the Bundestag, declined to comment on the role of Djir-Sarai in Iran and whether the party supports his trip.

Iranian money laundering network in Vienna

STOP THE BOMB demands clarification and travel ban on Iranian regime representatives

According to reports in the Austrian news magazine "Profil" and the British newspaper "The Telegraph", the Iranian regime uses Austrian banks to launder money in order to circumvent the sanctions and to provide technology for its nuclear program. A representative of the Iranian Center for Innovation and Technology Cooperation (CITC) has been in Vienna as recently as September. CITC is closely related to the office of President Ahmadinejad and has been sanctioned by the US due to its direct involvement in Iran's nuclear and missile program. The coalition STOP THE BOMB criticizes the lack of action by the Austrian authorities: "Apparently, the authorities knew about the years of excessive traveling of a representative of the CITC, without taking an interest," says Simone Dinah Hartmann, spokesperson of STOP THE BOMB. "We demand that this case and the involvement of Austrian banks will be fully investigated and conclusions be drawn. The latest reports prove that only a solid EU travel ban for all representatives of the Iranian regime can prevent Iran from continuing to procure critical components for its nuclear program and launder money in Europe", Hartmann added.

The laxity of the Austrian authorities and the suspected involvement of Austrian banks in the circumvention of the sanctions stand in the tradition of Austria's previous policy on Iran. Back in 2006, the president of the Iranian Chamber of Commerce, Ali-Naqi Khamoushi, named Austria the "gateway to the European Union" for Iran. The recently passed EU sanctions that were supported by Austria, in particular the prohibition of the import Iranian natural gas, are steps in the right direction. But these sanctions are hardly enough to stop the regime in Tehran from continuing its nuclear weapons program and the brutal repression of the Iranian people. Austrian companies - in spite of all previous sanctions resolutions - continue doing business with Iran in the hundreds of millions. While exports are declining slightly, imports have exploded in the first half of 2012 and several hundred of Austrian companies are still active in Iran.

Despite of the massive criticism, which has been voiced by STOP THE BOMB and numerous Members of the European parliament, including its Vice-president, as well as two democratic members of the US senate, the Austrian MEP Josef Weidenholzer (SPÖ) will still partake in a trip to Iran planned by the "Delegation for relations with Iran" of the European Parliament. Simone Dinah Hartmann: "We continue to call for the cancellation of this courting of the Iranian regime. Dialogue, as being preached by politicians like Weidenholzer, buys the Iranian regime only more time to work on its nuclear program and undermine the efforts of the Iranian opposition. Weidenholzer should follow the example set by Belgian social democrat Kathleen van Bremt who has withdrawn her participation from the Iran trip publicly."

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

STOP THE BOMB: Cancel Iran Trip of German MP's

After the scandal about EU delegation's visit to Iran, travel plans of German MPs emerged

After an Iran trip of an EU delegation sparked protests worldwide (1), news of German Parliament members travelling to Iran in October became known. The trip is scheduled from October 27th to November 2nd. Bijan Djir-Sarai, a member of Merkel’s coalition partner FDP and chairman of the German-Iranian Parliamentary Group is heading the delegation during the Iran trip. On the itinerary are meetings with members of the Majlis, the Iranian pseudo parliament. The coalition STOP THE BOMB, an NGO demanding strong economic and political sanctions against the Iranian regime, calls for the cancellation of the trip. The planned visit would undermine the pressure of international sanctions against Iran. Last week, many protested against an Iran trip of members of the European parliament. Among them were two U.S. Senators (2), the Vice-President of the European Parliament, Philipp Missfelder, spokesman for foreign affairs of the CDU/CSU and the President of the German-Israeli Society, Reinhold Robbe (3). The spokesperson of STOP THE BOMB, Michael Spaney explains: "Given the dictatorial conditions in Iran, contacts to representatives of the Majlis cannot change the situation in the country. The Guardian Council selects the candidates for the Iranian Majles. The mass protests in 2009 showed the world that the Iranian people do not want to be represented by this regime." "As long as the Iranian regime gets the message by German and European travel diplomacy that it is not politically isolated, it will push its nuclear program and play for time. Political isolation must be enforced along with economic sanctions. Each official trip to Iran sends the message to the Islamist rulers in Tehran that the West is not serious", says Michael Spaney.

Israeli Embassy in Berlin: End Germany-Iran programs

German-Iranian academic programs that seek to circumvent the EU and US consensus to isolate Tehran’s clerical leadership sparked criticism on Monday from the Israeli Embassy in Berlin. “Israel sees the diplomatic effort, with decisive and effective sanctions as its key component, as the main tool to stop Iran’s military nuclear program. Iran, as a country that persistently strives to eliminate the State of Israel, should not expect to enjoy the benefits of normal cooperation between civilized countries,” wrote a spokesman at the Israeli Embassy in an email to The Jerusalem Post. The embassy statement came as a response to the decision of the German Academic Exchange Program (DAAD) to commence exchange programs with Iran’s education ministry that involve hundreds of German students in Iran. The DAAD — a German organization funded by the government — confirmed to the Post that a memorandum of agreement was signed on September 5 with the Iranian government. Alexandra Schäfer, a spokeswoman for the DAAD, sent the Post a statement noting that “the official policy of the the land [Iran] is highly problematic,” but it is vital to keep channels of communication open. Dr. Wahied Wahdat-Hagh, an expert on Iran’s educational system, told the Post that the “German universities do not understand that with their projects they will not really reach Iranian society and the people who are thirsty for freedom...rather the opposite – making the totalitarian dictator respectable – and that is the real problem.” Deidre Berger, the head of the American Jewish Committee office in Berlin, said the DAAD program is “counterproductive and naïve.” Adding that an exchange dealing with “selected participants from the Iranian regime will not lead to more democratic structures in Iran.” Meanwhile, the German Free Democratic Party (FDP) deputy Bijan Djir-Sarai, who heads the German-Iranian parliamentary group, is slated to travel to Iran with a number of his fellow deputies. A spokesman for Djir-Sarai’s office in Berlin confirmed to the Post a news report in the Iranian Mehr news outlet stating that a German delegation was planning to visit Iran. Saba Farzan, a German-Iranian member of the FDP and expert on the human rights situation in Iran, wrote the Post, saying that “Mr. Djir-Sarai hasn’t learned the lesson of history very well. In this crucial time of preventing a nuclear weapon in the hands of this regime and to fully support democracy for Iranians, there is nothing to debate with this cruel and illegitimate dictatorship.” “Mr. Djir-Sarai should know better than to organize such a devastating trip as his personal life story is a tragic example of how inhumane the Islamic Republic is. Thankfully, Mr. Djir-Sarai has found many opportunities in Germany to prosper and live freely. Iranians inside the country longing for liberty deserve nothing less than that. It requires moral clarity to stand on the right historic side and to isolate this dictatorship,” Farzan continued. Several Post calls and email queries to Djir-Sarai were not immediately returned. A spokeswoman for Green Party deputy Kerstin Müller told the Post by email that she had canceled her participation in the trip because of “personal reasons.” It is unclear if Djir-Sarai is using the trip to advance his party’s business interests in Iran. Many members of the FDP have contracts with Iranian companies . In a separate Iran visit, a spokeswoman for the European Union parliament told the Post that it is still “unclear” if the EU plans to send deputies from Brussels to visit Iran later this week.

Monday, October 22, 2012

"I Will Answer Only to Allah"

By Soeren Kern
"It was not possible for him to show remorse," Murat's defense attorney said; "he believes he is right."
An Islamist radical convicted of stabbing two German police officers during a protest against cartoons that were perceived as "offensive," and has been sentenced to six years in prison.
Murat K, a 26-year-old German-born Salafist of Turkish heritage from the western state of Hessen, openly admitted that he had attacked and wounded the two police officers with a kitchen knife during the cartoon riots in May. He showed no remorse, however, during his trial at the district court in the city of Bonn; he said he had been morally obligated to follow Islamic Sharia law.
Murat, whose last name has not been made known to the general public due to German privacy laws, claimed that the attacks on the police officers were justified because the German state had allowed offensive images of the Prophet Mohammed to be shown in public. Many Muslims believe that according to Islamic law, it is forbidden to depict Mohammed in images.
During his trial, the judge -- who allowed Murat to wear a black jihadist headband in court -- asked the defendant whether it was necessary "to use violence to defend Islamic values." Murat, who was born in the German town of Eschwege, and whose family has been living in Germany for decades, replied: "Yes, of course."
The judge then asked him to "imagine you are a policeman and it is your job to ensure order. In your view, would you be a justified target?" Murat replied: "Yes. The German state allows caricatures of Mohammed to be shown, so the police are automatically involved."
The judge continued: "What if a court said it was all right for the caricatures to be shown?" Murat replied: "Your values make it possible to insult the prophet. Islam prohibits that. The price for doing that in Islam is the death sentence. You have your freedom of opinion, but as a Muslim, a believer, Islam must be my opinion." Murat added: "One cannot expect from a Muslim that he remain calm when the prophet is being insulted."
On October 19, the district court in Bonn found Murat -- who is unemployed and lives on state welfare benefits -- guilty on charges of causing grievous bodily harm, disturbing the peace, and resisting a law enforcement officer. The court sentenced him to six years in prison, in line with demands by state prosecutors, who had asked the court to sentence Murat to at least five years and nine months.
The Interior Minister of the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, Ralf Jäger, applauded the conviction. "The verdict is a clear signal that in our constitutional state, brutal attacks against our police officers will be consistently punished."
Murat's defense attorney, Johannes Pausch, said he had asked his client if he would at least be willing to apologize to the policemen, not as state employees but as human beings. Murat refused. "It was not possible for him to show remorse," Pausch said; "he believes he is right."
Murat responded to the verdict by declaring German courts to be illegitimate. He said: "I do not accept this court as legitimate. I am not sitting here voluntarily. Only Allah alone has the right to decide what is right and what is wrong, what is good and what is evil, what is moral and what is immoral." Murat added: "I will answer only to Allah."
The stabbings occurred on May 5, when more than 500 radical Muslims attacked German police with bottles, clubs, stones and other weapons in Bonn, the former capital of West Germany, to protest cartoons they said were "offensive."
The clashes erupted when around 30 supporters of a conservative political party, PRO NRW, which is opposed to the further spread of Islam in Germany, participated in a campaign rally ahead of regional elections in North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW).
Some of those participating in the rally, which was held near the Saudi-run King Fahd Academy in the Mehlem district of Bonn, had been waving banners depicting Mohammed (see photo here), to protest the Islamization of Germany.
The rally swiftly disintegrated into violence (photos here and here) when hundreds of angry Salafists, who are opposed to any depiction of their prophet, began attacking the police, whose job it was to keep the two groups apart.
In the final tally of the melee, 29 police officers were injured and more than 100 Salafists were arrested, although most were later released. Murat is the first Salafist to be tried for the violence; 22 other Salafists are still waiting for their trials to begin.
According to German Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich, "Salafism is currently the most dynamic Islamist movement in Germany as well as internationally. Its fanatic followers represent a particular danger for Germany's security. The Salafists provide the ideological foundation for those who then turn violent."
Friedrich has been leading a multifaceted nationwide crackdown on Salafism and other radical Muslim groups in Germany (see here, here, here and here).
The Secretary General of the ruling Christian Democratic Party (CDU), Hermann Gröhe, in an October 19 interview with the German newsmagazine FOCUS, said the conviction of Murat makes it clear that Germany will not allow radical Muslims to "lead a religious war on German streets."
Gröhe was also asked if he could "understand that many people in Germany have concern for the Christian character of the culture, not least because of the growing number of Muslims in the country?"
Gröhe responded: "The Christian character of our country is not at risk just because a religious minority goes to the mosque, the synagogue or to another place of worship. A far more important factor is when a significant number of church members only remember their Christian roots on Christmas Eve. I am less concerned about full mosques than I am about far too many empty churches."

Sunday, October 21, 2012

FlashBACK: Eyewitness to Genocide in Kosovo – the Albanian Skenderbeg Division

During WWII, Kosovo Albanians formed a volunteer Nazi army called Skenderbeg whose gunmen and officials engaged in large-scale arrests, deportations, rapes, looting and murders of Serbs, Jews, Gypsies, and other non-Albanians. This historical study originally appeared on Serbianna October 23, 2000.
by Carl Savich
The historical and political precedent for the creation of a Greater Albania was set during World War II when the Kosovo-Metohija region, along with territory in southwest Montenegro and western Macedonia (then Southern Serbia, now part of Macedonia, but a part of Stara Srbija in the medieval period), were annexed to Albania by the Axis powers, fascist Italy and Nazi Germany under a plan by Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini to dismember Yugoslavia.
The Kosovska Mitrovica region was retained under German occupation because of the Trepca mines. The districts of Vucitrn, Lab, and Dezevo or Novi Pazar were made part of the Kosovo Department. The Tetovo, Debar, Struga, Gostivar regions of western Macedonia were ceded to a Greater Albania under Italian administration. The Gnjilane, Vitin, and Kacanik districts were ceded by Germany to Bulgaria to administer.
In the initial stages of the occupation of Kosovo-Metohija, Germany organized a police force of approximately 1,000 Kosovar Albanians and Albanian paramilitary forces of the same number known as Vulnetara. During the Italian administration from 1941-1943, Kosovo Serbs, Jews, Gypsies, and other non-Albanians were arrested, interned, deported, or murdered. Serbian houses were burned and Serbian inhabitants were driven out of Kosovo. Dozens of Serbian Orthodox churches were demolished and looted. Over 10,000 Kosovo Serb and Montenegrin families were driven out of Kosovo by Albanians who were put in charge of Kosovo-Metohija by the Italian and German forces.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

“Electric Poverty” and Germany’s Green Energy Disaster

Germany is one of Europe’s most reliable economies and yet its bungled attempts at switching from reliable nuclear power to “Green Energy” has led to a complete disaster. And it’s something that we should be paying attention to because Barack Obama and his band of Goreites have taken us down the same road to ruin.
The environment ministers, first Norbert Röttgen and then Peter Altmaier, behaved as if Germany’s phase-out of nuclear energy was not going to cost anything, even as they handed out billions in subsidies to owners of homes with solar panels and wind-farm operators.
And the impact on German businesses has been staggering.

Jewish People, See if This Doesn’t Sound Familiar

‘Serbs are the source of all problems in Croatia…control media and money’
– Mayor of Split
Maybe there’s a reason that Jews and Serbs were supposed to stick together.
Croatian mayor “could be investigated” for hate speech (B92, Večernji list, Sept. 19)
ZAGREB — The police and the public prosecution in Croatia “are considering” launching procedures against Split Mayor and Croatian parliament member Željko Kerum.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Austrian Muslims: "Hitler was a Muslim Who Secretly Prayed to Allah"

Have you read “Mein Kampf”? I have! Have you read the Koran? I have! If you look at both of them, it’s clear that Hitler was a Muslim. He examined Islam, he had the same ideas about society, struggle (“Kampf”) and family as Muslims. Hitler was one of us,” says Tarik S. The 20-year-old Turk is a Hitler fan and Jew hater. For him it is clear that Adolf Hitler was a Muslim. “What do you think, why didn’t Hitler do anything to a single Muslim? Because he loved Muslims, he wanted to be one of them, and thought it was a shame that he was born a Christian and so he converted later to Islam,” agrees Tarik’s Bosnian friend Mirza. What they are chatting about in a Bosnian café [in Vienna] and what has been spread about for years by Muslim firebrands, is also a big hit on the internet.

Germany: Salafist jailed for only six years in prison for stabbing police officers

A radical Islamist was jailed for only six years in prison in Bonn on Friday for stabbing two police officers during a demonstration in May. The 26-year-old Turkish-German was convicted of grievous bodily harm, breaching the peace, and resisting a law enforcement officer. A member of the fundamentalist Salafist branch of Islam, the man, named only as Murat K., by German media, he confessed to stabbing two police officers, which he justified with his religious beliefs. Murat K. said during his trial, "one cannot expect from a Muslim that he remain calm when the prophet is being insulted." He declared the Bonn district court as illegitimate and said he only answered to Allah. The man stabbed the officers in the thigh when a demonstration turned violent after members of the right-wing group Pro-NRW publicly displayed cartoon depictions of the Prophet Muhammad. One of the cartoons showed Muhammad with a bomb in his turban, Focus magazine reported. Twenty-nine police officers were injured and more than 100 people were arrested during the demonstration in front of the King Fahd Academy in Bonn, held in the run-up to the state elections in North Rhine-Westphalia. The man's attack on the police officers was caught on video tape, and both officers later required operations for their injuries.
the local/AWE

Vienna Jewish community denies losing case

Oskar Deutsch, head of Vienna’s Jewish community, denied on Wednesday that the community has lost its court case to retrieve archive documents. He said that the dispute is slated to be litigated on November 1 in the Jerusalem District Court. According to Deutsch’s statement to the media, “The Jewish Community in Vienna [IKG] filed a lawsuit with the Jerusalem District Court demanding to receive back to its possession historical documents which it has loaned to the Central Archives for the History of the Jewish People.” He continued that “In the lawsuit, the IKG claims that it is the sole owner of the documents/ archive and that it has, and has always had, the right to terminate the loan and to receive the documents back to Vienna, as it is the owners’ right, and his right alone, to decide what happens with his property.” In the course of the preliminary proceedings in the case, it has been suggested by the Central Archive that the standpoint of Israel’s State Archive on this matter be heard. “Israel’s state archivist issued a decision on Monday rejecting a legal challenge from Austria’s Jewish community to transfer the archives of Vienna’s Jews from Israel to the Austrian capital.” Dr. Ariel Muzicant, the former head of the 7,500-member Vienna Jewish community, filed a lawsuit last year in the Jerusalem District Court against the Central Archives for the History of the Jewish People in Jerusalem, demanding that collection of Vienna Jewish documents between the 17th and 20th centuries to be returned to the community’s headquarters. The Jerusalem Post reported on Tuesday that the court deferred to the state archive for a legal opinion on the dispute. The English-language blog of the Israel State Archives wrote on Monday that, “the main findings of the decision [state archivist] are that the collection was originally transferred as a permanent loan.” Deutsch, from Vienna’s community, shot back that “Unsurprisingly, and due to its interest in keeping the documents in Israel, the archive has issued an opinion which ignores the substantiated evidence provided by the IKG and wishes to grant the Central Archive the authority to keep documents which it does not legally possess. He added that, “Luckily, this matter will not, and was never intended to, be resolved by the non-binding standpoint of the State Archive, which is an interested party in this matter, but rather by the district court. The IKG believes that the State Archive’s position serves to demonstrate how various organs of the State of Israel are working together to illegally expropriate the documents from the IKG, and, in accordance with the instructions of the court, will revert to the court with its response to the State Archive’s standpoint.”

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Berlin goes Jihadistan: Court rules woman can wear headscarf at work

A German dental practice which refused to hire a young Muslim woman because she insisted on wearing a headscarf at work broke the law, it was reported on Thursday. The court ruling is the first of its kind for the country. A young Berlin woman applied last summer for a traineeship to become a dental assistant. Despite being qualified and getting along with staff, she was told that she could not have the position unless she removed her headscarf, the Tagesspiegel newspaper said. This was religious discrimination, the city's labour court ruled. A headscarf was not an “arbitrary piece of clothing” but an expression of her beliefs and wearing it was part of her right to religious freedom. Refusing to employ because of her headscarf was in breach of the Equal Treatment Act, the judge said. The court also rejected the suggestion that headscarves could pose a hygiene risk to patients. There was no more chance of transferring bacteria with a scarf than there was via human hair, the judge said. The Spandau-based dental surgery argued that they had a right to religious neutrality in the clinic. But the judge said that as “it was in no way a religious institution,” this was not valid. Other women who had appealed for the right to wear a headscarf at work have lost in the past, generally because they had taken church-related employers to court. The woman applied for the position in the summer of 2011. When she was rejected she decided, with help from the Turkish Association of Berlin and Brandenburg, to take the practice to court.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Vienna’s Jewish archives to remain in Israel’s hands

Israel’s state archivist issued a decision on Monday rejecting a legal challenge from Austria’s Jewish community to transfer the archives of Vienna’s Jews from Israel to the Austrian capital.

In May 2011, Dr. Ariel Muzicant, the former head of the 7,500-member Vienna Jewish community, filed a lawsuit in the Jerusalem District Court against the Central Archives for the History of the Jewish People in Jerusalem, calling for the collection of Vienna Jewish documents between the 17th and 20th centuries to be returned to the community’s headquarters.

Earlier this year, the Jerusalem court deferred the legal authority of the case to the state archivist.

According to a Monday entry from the English-language blog of the Israel State Archives (ISA), “the main findings of the decision are that the collection was originally transferred as a permanent loan (permanente Leihgabe). A permanent loan is not an oxymoron, but rather a procedure used rather often by museums and sometimes by archives when the owner of an important cultural artifact wishes to transfer it forever to a cultural institution, while retaining some connection to it.”

The ISA blog added that according to the documentation on the Vienna collection, “the depositors felt they were strengthening the cultural importance of the young State of Israel as the center of the Jewish people; they were proud about their contribution; and they had no intention of the collection ever returning.”

The blog concluded that because the collection’s current location in Israel “offers adequate access to researchers, such as the present Jewish community in Vienna cannot immediately offer, there is no justification for the removal of the collection.”

The row between Israel and Vienna’s tiny Jewish community created friction last year.

Muzicant stressed to The Jerusalem Post at the time that the items in the disputed collection “are ours.”

“They belong to us, and when times were difficult, we sent them to Israel as a loan,” he said. “Now we are trying to retrieve documents from six different countries and build a Jewish archive for them in Austria, and the archive in Jerusalem is ignoring us.”

In response to a Post query, Muzicant’s successor, Oskar Deutsch, wrote on Tuesday that “we have not been informed about the decision, and because of this reason we cannot comment.”

According to the ISA blog, the Vienna Jewish community was Europe’s second-largest before the Holocaust.

“After the Shoah only a small remnant remained. The leaders of the remnant decided, in the early 1950s, to transfer their library, the archives of the community, and various other cultural possessions, to the newly founded State of Israel,” it said.

Austria’s pre-Holocaust population numbered 200,000. The Nazis eliminated Austrian Jewry between 1938 and 1945.

Samuel Laster, an Israeli-born journalist living in Vienna, told the Post on Tuesday that it was “good and important” that the archives remain in Israel. “Israel remains the advocate of Jews around the world,” he said.

Laster said there was a “lively Jewish community with a future” in Vienna. He said the community was better off devoting its efforts to the “living Jews in an ambivalent environment” there.

“The life of Jews in Austria is also a permanent loan,” he said.

The ISA blog links to the archivist decision, which is written in Hebrew, denying the Vienna community’s claim to the material.

Meanwhile, the Austrian media reported Tuesday that Arab artists boycotted a music event in Vienna and Graz because of an Israeli logo.

According to an Austria Presse Agentur article, the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) initiated a boycott of the “Salam.Orient” event because the Israeli embassy was listed as a sponsor. The Israeli Embassy financed the appearance of a Tajikistan Israeli music group at the festival. The protest resulted in the cancellation of three concerts.

The organizer of the festival, Vienna Acts, expressed “incomprehension” over the boycott.

Report: Hezbollah drone made in Germany

Lebanese newspaper Al-Jumhuriyah reported Wednesday that the equipment onboard the Hezbollah drone that infiltrated Israeli airspace was manufactured in Germany. It was reportedly purchased by a dummy Iranian corporation which arms the Revolutionary Guards. The Lebanese newspaper named Germany's Siemens and Bockstiegel as the companies from which the equipment was acquired. According to the report, Hezbollah owns many drones similar to the one infiltrated Israel which are used for spy missions only. "The aircraft can carry 3 kg of explosives only," sources told the paper. Previous reports suggested the drone was able to carry dozens of kilograms of explosives. Meanwhile, a State Department source denied that Iran had extracted information from the US drone that crashed in its territory earlier this year.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Berlin: German-Vietnamese man dies after men of Turkish and Arab origin beat him up

Police are appealing for witnesses after a young man was beaten to death by men of Turkish and Arab origin in the centre of Berlin early on Sunday morning, in what appears to have been a completely unprovoked attack. The capital’s interior minister Frank Henkel said he was deeply shocked, and called for an honest debate about violence in Germany. “We cannot close our eyes to this problem and silently look on as brutalisation and coldness spread through our centre, and reduce inhibitions,” he said. Although he said he wanted to increase security in the central area of the city where the attack took place, he also said the problem began in the heads of the attackers. “Some have obviously lost all civilised standards. That is a challenge for all of us,” he said. The 20-year-old German-Vietnamese man had left a bar on Alexanderplatz with two friends at around 4 am on Sunday after a heavy night out. All three were very drunk, the Die Welt newspaper said on Monday. Because their friend was too intoxicated to walk, his two companions sat him down on a chair in a closed beer garden and went off to find a taxi. Within minutes the helpless man was targeted by a man who kicked the chair away from under him, the paper said. He tried to stand up but the man punched him in the face. The police said that by the time his friends realised what was happening, seven men were attacking the prone victim, stamping on his head, inflicting serious injury and leaving him in a life-threatening condition. He was so badly hurt that paramedics had to resuscitate him at the scene, but doctors at the hospital where he was taken said he had only a slim chance of surviving his injuries. Police confirmed to the Tagesspiegel newspaper on Monday afternoon that the young man had died. Initial investigations suggest the attack was unprovoked and police believe it happened out of “nothing more than pure bloodlust.” “It appears that the attackers just wanted to kill someone,” an officer told Die Welt. “When someone is stamping on someone else’s head, as they lie on the floor, the life of another human does not matter.” One of the victim’s friends who returned to the scene as the attack was underway tried to break it up, and was beaten up in the process, incurring minor injuries but causing the group to flee. The Tagesspiegel newspaper said the group of attackers were thought to have come out of a Turkish party at a nearby bar. Police are appealing for anyone with information to come forward. One of the victim’s friends told Die Welt that they did not understand why the attack happened. “He has never caused harm to anyone,” he said.

STOP THE BOMB demands cancellation of EU trip to Iran

EU delegation's visit to Iran thwarts sanctions

The European coalition STOP THE BOMB, which campaigns for tough economic and political sanctions against the Iranian regime, demands the cancellation of the trip by a delegation of the European parliament to Iran, scheduled for October 27th.
Considering the given situation, in which the Iranian regime unwaveringly cherishes its nuclear program, continuously repeats its threats of annihilation towards Israel, represses by brute force every movement of the opposition in Iran and directly participates in quelling the protests in Syria, this visit would set the worst signal possible and subvert the Iranian opposition.

STOP THE BOMB's spokesperson for Europe, Simone Dinah Hartmann, directly addresses the President of the EU Parliament, Martin Schulz: "We urge the conference of Presidents to prohibit courting the Iranian Regime as they did in 2011. This trip entirely contradicts the spirit of the EU's sanctions and it thwarts the recent decisions by the EU member states. Instead of increasing pressure on Tehran, this trip offers the regime the possibility to celebrate yet another propaganda success."
You can find a draft list of the participants here, and a draft programme for the trip here.

Germany: “You Have to Use Violence to Defend Islamic Values?” “Yes Of Course,” He Replies

The clash of civilizations comes down to a conflict of laws. Islam is its own legal and political system and it is incompatible with the existing legal and political systems of the countries that it is invading.
There is no understanding Muslim violence without understanding that simple point. Making concessions on depictions of Mohammed will not solve anything. There are too many points of incompatibility and too many of them involve issues of basic civil rights.

Turkish jihadists eulogize slain German al Qaeda leader

A Turkish jihadist magazine eulogized a German who served as both a senior member of al Qaeda's external operations branch and as a leader in the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan before his death in an assault on a US air base in Afghanistan in 2010.
Islamic World, a Turkish jihadist magazine, published an article about Bekkay Harrach, a German national who operated along the Afghan-Pakistani border, more than four months ago. The magazine is available "for purchase" and was published on a jihadist forums on Sept. 2, according to the SITE Intelligence Group, which obtained and translated the article.
Harrach, who was known as Al Hafidh Abu Talha al Almani, was killed while leading the assault on Bagram Airfield in Parwan province, Afghanistan, on May 19, 2010. The attack was a joint operation between al Qaeda, the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, and the Taliban. Twenty fighters were involved in the assault, which was repelled by US troops manning the security perimeter. The attack shocked NATO commanders in Afghanistan, as Parwan province and the area around Bagram Airfield were considered devoid of Taliban influence.
In January 2011, the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan released a statement announcing Harrach's death, and confirmed that al Qaeda, the IMU, and the Taliban participated in the assault [see LWJ report, Senior German al Qaeda leader killed in Afghanistan].
Harrach's eulogy in Islamic World was written by a jihadist who identified himself as Audrick Krüger.
According to Krüger, Harrach "first immigrated to Iraq and Palestine and pursued jihad there." Harrach was then "arrested" after being shot and "spent a couple of months in the prisons of Syria."
Krüger did not say when Harrach was "arrested," nor did he explain the circumstances of his release by Syrian authorities. Krüger only said that "the brothers helped him and
he returned to Germany where he married a widowed mujahida," or the wife of a slain jihadist.
Harrach "could not get his mind off the jihadi battlefields," according to Krüger, but found it difficult to travel to the fronts as he was monitored by German intelligence. But Harrach somehow left Germany and traveled to Pakistan, where he "was a guest in Sheikh Mahmud Atiyetullah's house with his family." Sheikh Mahmud Atiyetullah is another name for Atiyah Abd al Rahman, the former chief of staff for al Qaeda who was killed in a US drone strike in Pakistan in August 2011.
Harrach "constantly spoke about his desire to become a martyr," and was finally granted approval by Atiyah to lead an assault.
Background on Bekkay Harrach
Harrach was born in Morocco in 1977 and his family moved to Germany in 1981. He became a German citizen in 1997. He was reportedly wounded while fighting Israeli soldiers in the West Bank, traveled to Iraq in 2004, and then returned to Germany. Harrach worked part time at the Muhadshirin Mosque in Bonn, where he was recruited by al Qaeda scout Aleem Nasir, and received a letter of recommendation that opened doors to the terror network's training camps.
He then traveled to Pakistan. According to the German Federal Public Prosecutor, Harrach had been a member of al Qaeda since March of 2007. He is known to have received military training in an al Qaeda camp in Pakistan's tribal areas.
Abu Ubaidah al Masri, al Qaeda's external operations chief until his death in early 2008, assigned Harrach to his branch, which is tasked with striking at the West. Harrach quickly rose through the ranks and became a member of the external operations council, a senior US military intelligence official told The Long War Journal in October 2009.
Harrach was also a senior propagandist for al Qaeda. In September 2009, Harrach released several propaganda videos that focused on the German elections. In one video, Harrach threatened to conduct attacks in German cities.
In October 2009, the US added Harrach to its list of specially designated global terrorists "for acting for or on behalf of al Qaeda." He was also added to the UN's terrorist watch list in 2009.
Harrach was rumored to have been killed in one of four US Predator airstrikes in August 2010 in Pakistan's Taliban-controlled tribal agency of North Waziristan, but was actually killed three month earlier while attacking Bagram Air Base.
In addition to his al Qaeda and IMU roles, Harrach was a close confidant of the Haqqani Network, the Taliban subgroup that operates on both sides of the border and is closely tied to both al Qaeda and Pakistan's military and intelligence service. He was under the direct protection of Siraj Haqqani, the military commander of the family network and a member of al Qaeda's ruling council. Haqqani Network commanders are said to have sought Harrach's advice on the planning and execution of major attacks.
"If we want to do something, we always ask the German [Harrach] for his opinion," a source in the Haqqani Network told Spiegel in January 2009.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Defending Islam, with violence: Trial of Salafist man rivets Germany

"You have to use violence to defend Islamic values?" asks the judge.
"Yes, of course," Murat K. replies. Five months after he attacked police officers with a knife, the 26-year-old Salafist came clean in the courtroom: it was his duty, he said, to wound the police officers.
The officers in question are veterans, used to dealing with hooligans and rioting demonstrators, also very aggressive ones. They are not prone to being easily riled. That they should be the ones involved makes Murat K.’s case all the more unusual.
The wiry 49-year-old commander has been with the police’s operational readiness squad since 1998. Murat K. went for him with a knife, but missed.
The policeman whose job it was to get into the thick of the action with a camera and document what happened had 12 years of police experience. He received a knife wound.
Then there was the group leader: a self-possessed woman of 30 with a clear and precise way of speaking. She had been through May 1 demonstrations in Berlin several times. She describes what happened this way: "This was different from everything else. Here, it was a matter of life or death." She also received multiple stab wounds.
Her camera-wielding colleague says: "Imagine being attacked by a swarm of birds. That’s how the stones were coming at us." And the commander adds: "In all my years in the force, I have never experienced violence this extreme."
The violence exploded in front of the King Fahd Academy in Bonn on May 5, 2012, when several hundred Muslims were demonstrating against the far-right populist Pro NRW splinter party’s use of some caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad. The police were trying to keep the populists and the Muslims separated, but a riot ensued, with militants throwing stones and bottles, even a manhole cover, at the police.

Gunter Grass Speaks Out On Israel Again

On Sunday, Nobel prize-winning German author Gunter Grass, 84, took another shot at Israel, saying it was "an unchecked nuclear power" and an "occupying force."
Speaking on the German radio station NDR, the poet – previously declared persona non grata in the Jewish state – said that "Israel is an unchecked nuclear power":
"Several United Nations resolutions go unheeded. Israel is an occupying force and for years has stolen land, evicted people and viewed them as second-class citizens. There are racist moments in Israel… That saddens me. And that should sadden every friend of Israel, as it saddens many Israelis. And one should be allowed to speak out about it….” he said on the radio.
Grass insisted against being anti-Jewish, saying that holding back from criticism of "Tel Aviv" was "for me a new form of anti-Semitism."
Earlier this year, Grass, 84, angered Israel after publishing a piece entitled "What Must Be Said", in which he expressed his repressed fears that Israel "could wipe out the Iranian people" with a "first strike."
The publication of the poem in a German newspaper set-off a wave of controversy both in Israel and abroad, and he has been barred from visiting Israel.
Grass achieved worldwide success with his debut novel, "The Tin Drum" in 1959, and has pressed his country for decades to face up its Nazi past. In 2006, he admitted publically he had been a member of Hitler's Waffen SS when he was 17-year-old.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Compensation sought for 1948 Holocaust survivors

The head of the Jerusalem based Victims of Nazi Persecution Organization called on Friday for the governments of Germany and Israel to compensate the siblings of more than 400 survivors of the Holocaust who fought and died during Israel’s War of Independence. In an interview with The Jerusalem Post Motke Wiesel, the group’s chairman, outlined the advocacy organization’s nearly yearlong campaign to raise awareness about the forgotten Shoah survivors. Wiesel, born in 1922 in Romania and survivor of several concentration camps, including Auschwitz, said if the survivors had “parents and wives they would have gotten pensions.” Wiesel, who experienced combat as a soldier in the 1948 War, sent letters to MK Zevulun Orlev (Habayit Hayehudi) and the head of the Conference of Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, urging both to create a payment plan “to these Holocaust victims through their living siblings.”

Germany: The Bitter Truth About Our Social System

By Heinz Buschkowsky
I am always surprised in conversations at how casually people assume that it is the natural task of the community to support them, and how they plan their lives and families around that. This perception is especially widespread among single parents.

That it is sufficient service to the community to give birth and nurture is an unshakable justification which rejects any doubt as morally bankrupt.

A considerable portion of the clientele (of Job Centers, etc.) are those who — in the lovely language of the employment agency — are not well-suited to the employment market.

Previously, they were called “people with multiple intervention secrets.” Since this designation seemed too discriminatory, the concept of the “complex profile situation” is used. In plain German, this means nothing more or less than insolvency, addiction problems, anti-social behavior.

Another group comprises the people who regard the social system as an egg-laying hen or, put more respectably, have accepted it as a general basis of life. Welfare benefits take care of the basic necessities of life like rent, food and drink, energy and health costs. And for fun extras, there can always be an opportunity for extra income.

Of course, there has always been what is known in bureaucratese as “benefits by fraud.” Even if it were not the case that people, for instance asylum-seekers, are made accustomed to social benefits and forbidden employment, you cannot complain if they achieve a polished professionalism and are in better command of the legal material than some specialists at the Job Center.

Official revenue cannot be the only source of income in many families. That would lead to many open parking areas in Neukölln which have not yet been occupied and further would be in stark contrast to the electronic entertainments and the vehicles that bring the children to school.

Again and again, the question is asked: how can parents, in spite of being on welfare, manage several jobs, or how do young, unemployed men acquire cars in the €100,000 price range?

The system of payment off-the-books is widespread. It is not the usual swindling and petty fraud that people in desperate situations try — getting a few benjamins past the authorities. It is a system.

Payments to the state are built in as indispensable (understandable) but then systematically circumvented. In these circles, there is no comprehension of the cohesion of community or of the principle: “Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s.”

This thicket is impenetrable. For one thing, our Job Center with 80,000 clients has a downright ridiculous armada of four fieldworkers, and therefore projects an absolutely amusing posture of intimidation. Besides, the familiar network of relationships makes looking in from the outside almost impossible.

Friday, October 12, 2012


Suspect wanted in the murder of a young woman in Germany, is a Finnish citizen- The district court (in Finland) held that the 51-year-old man may be transferred to Germany for a murder trial.
The family is standing firmly in support of the man suspected of murdering a young woman in Germany.
51-year-old Syrian born Finnish citizen has six children and eight grandchildren. Most of the children were with his wife today at the Helsinki District Court.
Family support was symbolic, as the District Court ruled that 51-year-old murder may be transferred to Germany for trial.
In its decision the district court, however, requires that, if the suspect is convicted of murder in Germany, he must immediately be returned to Finland for prison custody.
The 51-year-old denies the crime, and considers that the trial should be held in Finland. The suspect, according to the suspect, all of his close relatives and friends are living here, and is still suffering from health problems that prevent his extradition.
Court ruled, however, that all his children are of full age. Similarly, the Court viewed his back and leg ailments raised by the man’s defense, relatively normal health issues.
No prevention of transfer of the suspect.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Turkish Mega Mosque in Germany Sparks Controversy

COLOGNE, Germany -- There was a time when the Turkish-led Ottoman Empire ruled over a large chunk of Europe. Now some believe the Turks want to bring back those old glory days. The Turkish government has embarked on a mosque-building campaign throughout Germany. One new Turkish mega-mosque, the Cologne Central Mosque, has Germans on edge. When construction on the facility is completed, it will be Germany's largest Muslim house of worship - and one of the largest mosques in all of Europe. It's so big that it stops passersby in their tracks. The structure's 100-foot-high-plus minarets tower over the local landscape and can be seen from blocks away. The $40 million-plus facility will hold at least 1,200 worshippers and include a restaurant, a prayer room, a library, and more. Germany is home to some 4.3 million Muslims, including 125,000 who live in Cologne. The large majority are Turkish.

Germany’s Double-Dealing on Iran

The good folks at Germany’s Stop the Bomb campaign alerted me to this latest tidbit, which clearly shows what a double game Berlin now plays vis-à-vis Iran:
Last month, Iran’s Science, Research, and Technology ministry signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst (DAAD), the German Academic Exchange Service. When it comes to its dealings with Iran, DAAD acts with the blessing of Germany’s Foreign Ministry. The German agreement with Iran comes despite the fact that Kamran Daneshjoo, the Iranian Minister of Science, Research, and Technology, is on the European Union sanctions list because of his alleged involvement in Iranian nuclear warhead design and work. DAAD’s logic of academic engagement falls short when it fails to pay attention to the agenda and, in this case, expertise of its partners. Exchange in the humanities is one thing. Does DAAD really believe it is wise to provide Iranians pursuing nuclear and sensitive scientific studies with unprecedented access to German technology and instruction?
Sanctions against those involved in Iran’s nuclear program will not alone change the regime’s mind against the path it is pursuing. The logic of sanctions, however, is to isolate the regime and to demonstrate a united front. With DAAD’s latest agreement, however, the German government appears to be signaling Iran that nothing is beyond the pale, not even dabbling in nuclear weapons technology. As the Iranian regime doubles down on its genocidal rhetoric, it is unfortunate that Berlin pursues such an underhanded policy. It is embarrassing, as well, that the German government has concluded that the White House policy of leading from behind means that they need not worry about chastisement for their double-dealing.

Will Free Gaza implode due to anti-Semitism scandal?

The Free Gaza Movement, a pro-Palestinian group that seeks to break Israel’s legal blockade of the Gaza Strip, is embroiled in an anti-Semitism scandal that has produced rifts within the group as well as intense criticism from Middle East experts. Greta Berlin, the US co-founder of FGM, posted on Twitter in late September that “Zionists operated the concentration camps and helped murder millions of innocent Jews.” Her tweet appeared on the Free Gaza Twitter account with a link to a video from Eustace Mullins, who declared that Adolf Hitler formed an alliance with Zionists “to force anti- Zionists to accept Zionism.” Avi Mayer, the head of social media for the Jewish Agency for Israel, first exposed Berlin’s tweet blaming Jews for the Holocaust and saved it as a screenshot. Berlin, a fiercely anti-Zionist activist, issued convoluted and rambling explanations about her tweet, including that the Mullins video was merely meant for a private Facebook discussion group. Berlin wrote, ”I am not a Holocaust denier. And I am not a supporter of the video that I posted, nor would I ever have been.” Critics argued that Free Gaza’s trafficking in Holocaust revisionism and Nazi propaganda shows the organization is neither interested in peace promotion nor the well-being of ordinary Palestinians in the radical Islamic enclave of Gaza. Speaking with The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday via telephone, US Middle East expert Daniel Pipes said he encountered Berlin in 2007 when she disrupted a talk he delivered with Wafa Sultan on “Totalitarian Islam’s Threat to the West” at the University of California at Los Angeles. He said he “found her maliciously deranged” and the “tweet confirms that sense I got from her in person.” In an email to the Post on Wednesday, Sam Schulman, a contributor to the Weekly Standard, wrote, “Avi Mayer’s work was helpful in revealing the mentality attracted to profoundly anti-Semitic enterprises like freegazaorg.“ Schulman added “ But some have allowed themselves to be drawn in to a charade in which freegaza ‘denazifies’ itself, and then presents itself as reformed. You don’t have to be pro-Hitler to be murderously and mendaciously anti-Semitic and pro-war.” Free Gaza Movement member and Canadian author Naomi Klein tweeted last week that “I have resigned from the Advisory Board of the Free Gaza Movement. Still support mission but leadership has changed since I signed up.” Gerald Steinberg, the head of the Jerusalem-based NGO Monitor, wrote in the Post on Wednesday that “The so-Free Gaza Movement, like other anarchist and radical political groups, tend to give platforms to individuals with intense personal agendas and issues. This magnetic attraction for fringe personalities like Greta Berlin is particularly acute in hard-core anti-Israel frameworks related to BDS and delegitimization.” He continued that “The FGM has lost any of their remaining credibility after the 2010 flotilla fiasco – and the same is true for the Jewish Voices for Peace (a fringe closely linked to FGM and BDS).” The growing assessments about the future of FGM suggest that the organization has experienced irreparable harm and is now viewed as a kind of left wing neo-Nazi group. The open questions are, will FGM’s supporters pull the plug on its fundraising streams and will additional FGM advisory board members–like the US linguist Noam Chomsky and Archbishop Theodosius (Atallah) Hanna from the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem–resign from the FGM?

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Jews, Leave Euraschwitz Now!

As comfortable as life can be in the arrondissements of Paris or in Berlin's cafes, the situation for the Jews will only worsen in Europe. Not only European taxes are used in several ways to fund anti-Semitism of an intensity unseen since Nazi Germany, but the democratic Western countries are surprisingly the ones, primarily France and England, which registered the highest numbers of attacks in 2012. If 90 incidents of anti-Semitic nature were recorded in Berlin since January, in the first eight months of 2012 UK registered 299 attacks deemed anti-Semitic so far. A few days ago Chabad rabbi Yisroel Lew was punched and struck in the ear during a scuffle with men who shouted anti-Semitic abuse in Baker Street, central London. A few days later, the French police discovered a Jihadi network in Strasbourg. The salafists had a list of Jewish institutions to be targeted by terror attacks. Sarcelles, once called the "French Jerusalem" and where most of Paris' Jews currently live, recently gave the nickname to the French aliyah to Israel: "Sarcelles d’abord". Here MP Jacques Myard was recently attacked by a mob yelling "this is Arab land, Zionists get out of it". Meanwhile, anti-Jewish hatred grows in Europe's chattering classes, embodied by Günter Grass's new collection of poems, which demonizes Israel as a threat to world peace and praises the Israeli who revealed Israel's nuclear programs, Mordechai Vanunu, hailed by Grass as a "hero of our times". Only naiveté or perversion can transform a traitor into a hero. "Grass is obsessed by the Jews as are the majority of Germans", says to me Henryk Broder, a columnist for Die Welt newspaper, who does not minimize the last poem of the Nobel Prize for literature, as the Israeli diplomats did (Jerusalem said that unfortunately for Grass, "he is not Schiller and Rilke"). "The Germans suffer from a kind of compulsive washing," says Broder. "Grass is a good example of two elements which produced a new type: guilt and shame. The famous 'special relationship' between Israel and Germany is based on the fact that Germany killed six million Jews, nothing else. It's a syndrome, Berlin sells submarines to Israel but on his own terms, supports Iran which wants to destroy Israel, as in the past it sold weapons of mass destruction to Iraq, but also gas masks in Israel. Thus, the memory of the Holocaust has become an excuse for not having to deal with the potential second Holocaust in the Middle East". Broder's last book is titled "Vergesst Auschwitz", Forget Auschwitz. "The Germans are anti-fascists and friends of peace and they don't miss a day of remembrance in Auschwitz, Dachau and Bergen-Belsen", Broder says to us. "Like the former Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, who called for a day of remembrance. Since '68, the old Federal Republic of Germany has discovered the Holocaust, 'Look, we have learned the lesson from history, unlike the Americans and the Jews who are still warmongers, while we good Germans are on the right path of peace'. "In Germany there are 120 memorials of the Holocaust and a school trip to the nearest concentration camp is now part of the repertoire. On the anniversary of the Holocaust Museum in Berlin, historian Eberhard Jackel said: 'Nations envy us this memorial.' I would have liked to go outside and cry to heaven, 'How lucky my parents were of being able to contribute.' "For the Germans as Grass, redemption passes through guilt. The town of Frankfurt has just awarded Judith Butler, a Jewish anti-Zionist militant, is there any better candidate? "The dead Jews are Germany's most favorite Jews, because they do not infer with the rites of memory unlike those stubborn Israelis who refuse to disappear from the pages of history. I find it absurd that every year thousands of students are brought to Auschwitz, when they should learn that Jews have a right to their own state. Since they forgot to do it seventy years ago, today I would bomb Auschwitz. Forget Auschwitz, think of Israel". That's why during the 2009 Gaza war, the American writer Cynthia Ozick proposed to abolish the memorial days in Europe, as the West is perverting the Shoah. The West tried to entrench the Holocaust in the consciousness of mankind and all our museums and memorials have educated people who otherwise might not have realized the enormity of the genocide. But the further the Holocaust recedes into time, the more detrimental our Western memorials have become. The mirror of the German’s rotten conscience is the Museum of the Holocaust built in Berlin by the postmodern architect Daniel Libeskind. Old suitcases, dishes, photographs, glasses, violins and postcards left by the dead Jews serve to transmit the impression of a lost history. An empty space in the basement at the end of a large, dark corridor, neither heated nor air- conditioned, lit only by a shaft of natural light at the top, produces the spectacularization of the Holocaust. The result is that the public is now completely desensitized to the unique catastrophe that was the destruction of European Jewry. The memory gets muddled, the facts become factoids and then falsified. Never before has knowledge of the Holocaust been disseminated all over the West as it is today. Yet never before has the anti-Jewish venom and the Nazi style monsterization of Israelis spread like a virus as it is today. That's why you find more sincerity about the Holocaust in the PLO charter, Hamas’ manifesto and Iranian speeches than in the Western lacrimose memorials with their dictatorship of a fetishizied, abstract and stereotyped memory. The day after a memorial pompose speech in Vichy, the French authorities can close their eyes on the anti-Jewish assaults in Sarcelles or Saint Denis. The Holocaust is going to be consigned to “the last century” due to the death of the last survivors. It will be the first step from history to story, from story to myth, from myth to dream and from dream to amnesia. In a few years, Europe will use Auschwitz against Israel, the living inheritance of the survivors and their descendants. As Grass has clearly shown, Europe made a mockery of memory and all her staid vigilance of the dead Jews is rendering indifferent to the genocidal violence against the living Jews. The latest Sanremo Music Festival in Italy, one of the most famous in Europe, honored Roberto Vecchioni. He wrote a song called “Marika,” a sort of love letter to Palestinian suicide bomber Hanadi Jaradat, who killed 20 Jews at the Maxim restaurant in Haifa. A Swedish museum displayed an artist work eulogizing the same female suicide bomber, with a small ship carrying a picture of Jaradat, sailing in a rectangular pool filled with red-colored water, and accompanied by a piece of Bach music. Vecchioni’s song says: “Sing Marika, sing, you are beautiful in time of destiny, gripping the dynamite as a daughter in your bosom.” Our Western cultural icons have much Israeli blood on their hands. Before it’s too late, Europe's Jews should leave for Israel. It’s a tragic but unavoidable process: the situation will only worsen in this “Eurauschwitz".