Saturday, October 01, 2011
Hate preacher wins human rights payout... even though he shouldn't be in Britain at all
A banned extremist who made a mockery of Britain’s border controls is now likely to pocket £5,000 in compensation because immigration officials could not speak his language.
The High Court ruled yesterday that Sheikh Raed Salah, described as a ‘virulent anti-Semite’ in the Commons, could claim compensation for unlawful detention by immigration officers.
They had seized the pro-Palestine hardliner – who should never have been allowed into Britain in the first place – to have him deported. But immigration staff failed to explain to him ‘in a language he could understand’ precisely why he was being detained – a technical breach of the rules. The preacher cannot speak English and officials failed properly to translate what was happening, the court ruled.
As a result – even though the Home Secretary had legal powers to hold him – he was unlawfully detained for 34.5 hours, until proper explanations were given to him about what was happening in Arabic.
At one stage, an immigration officer had tried to use an ‘app’ on his iPhone to give instructions to the extremist. But he did not give Salah, 52, all the information required to make his detention lawful, Mr Justice Nicol decided. Salah can now formally apply for taxpayer-funded compensation. The likely pay-out is between £4,000 and £5,000 – or about £150 for every hour he was held.
Michael Weiss, of the Henry Jackson Society think-tank, said the case was an ‘embarrassment’ for UK Border Agency officials. ‘I find it scandalous that someone like this is getting damages and is being paid with British taxpayers’ money,’ he said.
Tory MP Patrick Mercer said he was shocked by news of the ruling. ‘We speak English in this country and anybody that wants to come here and preach hate is going to do so in English as well,’ he added. ‘I fail to see the logic of what has happened. Yet again some form of craziness is making Britain look ridiculous.’
Salah, leader of the Islamic Movement in Israel, managed to walk through immigration checks at Heathrow Airport on June 25 despite being barred from the UK by the Home Secretary. Immigration officials had failed to inform him of the ban – and he was unaware that he should not travel here.
He was finally detained three days later on the direct orders of Theresa May, but only after addressing meetings in London and Leicester. The Home Secretary ordered that Salah be removed on the grounds that his presence was not ‘conducive to the public good’.
Court papers say Mrs May has alleged that Salah has ‘publicly expressed views that fostered hatred which might lead to inter-community violence in the UK’. He denies being an anti-Semite and is challenging his removal.
Lawyers claim his treatment was a breach of Article 10 of the Human Rights Act – the right to ‘freedom of expression’. A separate court appeal on this row is due to take place next week.
In the meantime, Salah has been released on bail and is staying at a five-bedroom detached house in a leafy suburb in North London while his case is processed.
He is credited with a string of outrageous statements, although he denies being an extremist. He is said to have claimed that the 9/11 plot was carried out by Israelis and that Jews were warned not to go to the World Trade Centre before the murderous attack in New York on September 11, 2001.
He was released from prison in 2005 after serving two years for fundraising for the Palestinian terror group Hamas and for having contact with an Iranian spy.
It is understood that Government solicitors will fight the claim for compensation on the grounds that it is a minor point and his overall detention was lawful. A Home Office spokesman said: ‘The decision the Home Secretary took was the right one. The court decided there was a technical problem when he was detained.'
After girls gunned down by street gang Britain's Tories pledge U.S.-style shock tactics to put youngsters off a life of crime
Children as young as ten are being sucked into a dangerous gang culture, Iain Duncan Smith warns today.
The Work and Pensions Secretary says a ‘collapse’ in traditional fatherhood is driving youngsters into the arms of gang leaders, who offer them a ‘perverse’ sense of structure and belonging.
Of those aged between ten and 19, a startling six per cent – 450,000 – now report belonging to a gang, with as many as 200 rival groups operating in London.
In an interview with the Daily Mail on the eve of the Conservative Party conference, Mr Duncan Smith revealed radical plans to use U.S.-style ‘shock therapy’ to try to reverse the trend.
A Government blueprint to tackle gang culture, to be unveiled by the Home Office and the Work and Pensions department this month, will include controversial ‘call-ins’ for gang members who have not yet committed any crime.
They are taken into a courtroom where a judge warns them about potential penalties, the families of victims of gang-related violence describe their experiences and surgeons confront them with images of shootings and stabbings.
In the U.S., similar ‘tough love’ schemes are credited with reducing gang-related deaths by 60 per cent in some cities.
Mr Duncan Smith said the latest statistics showed that in both Manchester and Liverpool around 60 per cent of shootings are gang-related and there has been a 75 per cent increase in serious stab wounds amongst older teenagers.
Effective action to tackle ‘social breakdown’ would mean starting with gang culture, which is blighting entire communities.
‘We have a growing gangs problem. There are between 100 and 200 gangs in London alone. ‘They are getting younger and younger. It is down to about ten years old in some cases.
‘These gangs end up having a massive disproportionate effect on the community. There’s a shock wave around them. They are a massive driver of further social breakdown. In an area dominated by gangs it’s almost impossible to improve people’s quality of life. ‘So it is a critical element in tackling social breakdown.’
Mr Duncan Smith said as many as one in five of those convicted of taking part in rioting and looting this summer were gang members, adding: ‘There’s no question that there was a lot of targeting, a lot of high-level criminal activity and organising going on that the gangs were involved in. Were gangs responsible for the rioting? Clearly not. But there are wider groups of dysfunctional families who aren’t necessarily in gangs but whose children will end up being signed up by them.
‘Social breakdown means there are fathers completely missing. Constructive fatherhood has gone in many of these communities. ‘Often for these boys a gang does provide a kind of structure, it gives a sense of belonging, it gives a perverse sense of purpose. And criminal activity sometimes gives them an income too.
‘Mothers are struggling with poor education, very few skills, have had children early, often in their teens. If they are in relationships they’re often violent, abusive ones.
‘That’s the picture we see in these areas – a value set that has completely collapsed. We are arresting now the great-grandkids of the first members of the families who were arrested.'
Mr Duncan Smith said gangs were ‘at the tip of a growing, violent culture’. ‘Almost all are made up of people that come from broken and difficult backgrounds.
‘They’re also sometimes the drivers of social breakdown, because communities become blighted by their behaviour. No shopkeeper will want to invest money in a community that’s going to be dangerous and difficult.’
Mr Duncan Smith said gang culture was also fuelling welfare dependency, since in many towns and cities members refused to look for work or even travel through areas controlled by rival groups.
He said that gang members could be forced to attend the new ‘call-ins’, even where there is no evidence that they have committed a crime, though pilot schemes have shown that around 75 per cent come voluntarily.
‘It will be possible to compel people who are known for their gang activity to attend,’ the Work and Pensions Secretary said.
Sessions will be held in court and opened by a judge or magistrate. Chief constables will tell gang members: ‘We know who you are, where you live and what you’re doing, and we’ll do everything possible to make your lives hell.’
Individuals are also confronted by mothers whose children have been killed because of their membership of gangs and surgeons who show them horrifying real-life images of victims of gang-related knife and gun crime. Former prisoners who have served time for gang activity also speak to gang members.
Mr Duncan Smith said evidence from the U.S. and pilot projects in Scotland suggested the shock therapy could have ‘phenomenal’ results.
In the interview, he also backed an extension of more conditionality in the welfare system – pointing out the Tories had been championing the idea of a ‘something for something’ principle, adopted by Labour at its conference last week, for many years.
Mr Duncan Smith promised help for middle-aged women unduly affected by increases in the state pension age would be unveiled ‘before the end of the year’.
Iraqi immigrant who publicly supports Israel and the Jewish people attacked by fellow Muslims, and carved on his back
One Iraqi immigrant living in St. Louis, Missouri might have learned the hard way what happens to Muslims who publicly support Israel and the Jewish people, when he allegedly suffered a heinous attack in August — where, in addition to being stabbed and held at gunpoint, assailants carved a Star of David into his back.
Alaa Alsaegh, a writer whose Arabic language poem, “Tears at the Heart of the Holocaust,” was featured on Nonie Darwish’s website, ArabsForIsrael.com, reported the incident to local authorities and was later taken to a hospital where his wounds were photographed. The Egyptian-born Darwish is a former Muslim who converted to Christianity and has been one of the most prominent and outspoken critics of Islam since the September 11 attacks.
According to Darwish’s article in FrontPage Magazine on Wednesday, Alsaegh‘s poem expressed the author’s affinity for Israel, the Jewish people and his mourning over the grim fate of the six million Jews who perished in the Holocaust.
Such sentiments purportedly did not sit well with certain members of St. Louis’ Islamic community, however, prompting a string of alleged threats directed at Alsaegh in which the poet was smeared an infidel and a traitor to Islam. But despite being accused of apostasy, the young man continued writing his poems — that is until the morning of August 14 when Alsaegh was reportedly attacked.
FrontPage provides an account of the incident:
"According to Mr. Alsaegh, as he was driving at 10:30 in the morning on Compton St. near Park Ave., a small white car cut him off and hit his car, while another car stopped behind him. The occupants of the cars, some of whom wore security guard-type uniforms, quickly entered Alsaegh’s car, pointing a gun at him. They pushed his upper body down against the steering wheel, stabbed him and pulled off his shirt to expose his back. Then, with a knife, they carved the Star of David on his back while laughing as they recited his pro-Jewish poem. Mr. Alsaegh believes that the attackers could be Somalis, but he was not sure. After the attackers fled the scene, Mr. Alsaegh was surrounded by witnesses to the crime and was taken to the hospital. The photo representing this story was taken at the hospital."
St. Louis Police confirm that officers responded to a call for help at approximately 10:45 a.m. on August 14 and Both Dariwsh’s article and a report from local KMOV state that the FBI has become involved in the investigation — though the agency has not yet made any official statements pertaining to the incident, nor has it labeled it a “hate crime.”
Thus far, no arrests have been made.
Australian depression charity finds high rate of depression and anxiety among homosexuals
Australia's depression charity restricted access to a key report into gay and lesbian mental health because staff were concerned about the views of the organisation's chairman Jeff Kennett, former employees - and the report's author - claim.
Former staff members at beyondblue have told The Saturday Age the report, Feeling Queer and Blue, was put "completely to the background" because "we knew that Jeff [Kennett] didn't want it in the foreground whatsoever".
Mr Kennett drew controversy in July 2008 for comments likening a bisexual football trainer to a paedophile working as a masseur for young boys. Last month, he said happy heterosexual marriages were the best environment for the mental health of children.
The La Trobe University report into depression among the gay, lesbian and bisexual community was withheld by beyondblue for six months after it was finished in December 2008. Unlike many other beyondblue research reports, it was not spruiked with a media campaign. There is no evidence this was because of a direction from Mr Kennett.
"We felt it sank like a stone," said its author, Associate Professor Anne Mitchell, director of La Trobe's Gay and Lesbian Health Victoria. "They had a summary on the website but it was impossible for the public to get access to it. There was a sense of 'now we've done it, shut up about it'."
Associate Professor Mitchell said beyondblue was now strongly supporting the gay and lesbian community - who, the report documented, suffer from much higher rates of anxiety and depression than heterosexuals - but it had treated the report like a "grubby little secret".
"It was such a low priority, we had a sense that maybe it was [Jeff] Kennett who was being pandered to," she said.
One former staff member said beyondblue used the research to put off working directly with the community.
Several former staff told The Saturday Age the depression initiative went into "damage control" following Mr Kennett's comments about the bisexual football trainer.
"There was a lot of dismay on that day in the building and senior management took us all to task for expressing concern about it," said one, adding that while they believed Mr Kennett did not have a personal issue with gays and lesbians, "on an institutional level there was something going on there".
Former beyondblue board member and Labor MP Caroline Hogg backed Mr Kennett. "Sometimes the things that he says sound a bit clumsy. But I don't believe him to be homophobic. I would not have worked on a board with a homophobic chair," said Ms Hogg, who oversaw the commissioning of the gay and lesbian research. "He has put in so much effort, you have to take the rough with the smooth."
Julie Foster, a spokeswoman for Mr Kennett, said beyondblue did not play down the report and did not go into damage control over the former premier's comments. "The report was available to be downloaded from the website and hard copies were distributed," she said.
Mr Kennett is the subject of an 836-member Facebook campaign - spearheaded by the gay community - that is calling for him to be "sacked" as chair of beyondblue.
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, DISSECTING LEFTISM, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN (Note that EYE ON BRITAIN has regular posts on the reality of socialized medicine). My Home Pages are here or here or here or Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when blogger.com is playing up, there is a mirror of this site here.