Guardian fails to reveal that Brit arrested for terror is ‘Comment is Free’ contributor

As we first learned from Guido Fawkes, Moazzam Begg, a former Guantanamo Bay prisoner who became a spokesman for the “human rights” group Cageprisoners, was arrested by British police on Tuesday morning for terror offences which he is alleged to have committed in Syria.

Begg is widely believed by American intelligence officials to have been a jihadist involved with Al-Qaida and reportedly attended terrorist training camps in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and the UK “so he could assist in waging jihad against enemies of Islam.”  Begg reportedly assisted several prominent terrorists, recruited young operatives for jihad and provided financial support for terror camps.

AdditionallyBegg is believed to have been associated with the radical cleric Anwar al Awlaki, the senior al Qaeda recruiter who was involved with planning operations for the group, and later killed by U.S. forces.  Al Awlaki helped motivate at least three terrorist attacks inside the U.S. (Begg’s group actually lobbied to free Al Awlaki from Yemeni custody after he was detained in 2006, broadcast his live messages and reproduced his propaganda on their website.) 

Begg – who, you may recall, was promoted by the NGO Amnesty International - is also a frequent contributor to the Guardian’s blog ‘Comment is Free’, having penned 20 essays at the site since 2006, most of which were aimed at casting himself as an innocent victim of US and British intolerance and Islamophobia. 

profile

Interestingly, the Guardian’s report on Begg’s arrest by  (Moazzam Begg among four arrested in Birmingham terror raids, Feb. 25) didn’t even note this extremely inconvenient relationship.

While we don’t yet know the details of Begg’s alleged terror activity in Syria, if it turns out that he was fighting for jihadists it wouldn’t be at all surprising.  

As we’ve demonstrated previously, the Guardian is a media group which often promotes and defends Islamist extremists, and frequently welcomes into their ‘ ‘liberal’ salon ‘demopaths‘ such as Begg – those who cynically exploit the language of democracy when it serves their interests, and demand stringent levels of human “rights” of the West yet don’t apply these basic standards to their own behavior.

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Benghazi to Boston: Glenn Greenwald’s hypocrisy in condemning ‘rush to judgement’ over marathon attack

In response to the bomb attack at the Boston Marathon on Monday which killed three people and injured more than 175, Glenn Greenwald did what he does best: vilifying America and warning about racist-inspired assumptions regarding the religious identity of terrorist perpetrators.  

In his CiF commentary, ‘The Boston bombing produces familiar and revealing reactions’, April 16, Greenwald lectures Americans outraged by the assault that they are in no position to make judgements in light of the “horrific, civilian-slaughtering attacks that the US has been bringing to countries in the Muslim world over and over and over again for the last decade

Greenwald is of course largely referring to the US military’s drone campaign against Islamist terrorists - in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and elsewhere - who plot attacks against innocent American civilians.  (The use of such unmanned aerial assaults against enemy combatants is supported by most Americans, but has become something of a negative obsession for Greenwald and other Guardian commentators.)

Additionally, Greenwald spends a large percentage of his column condemning those on Twitter and elsewhere in the traditional and social media for their alleged ‘rush to judgment’ over the suspected perpetrator(s) of the Boston attack:

The rush, one might say the eagerness, to conclude that the attackers were Muslim was palpable and unseemly, even without any real evidence. The New York Post quickly claimed that the prime suspect was a Saudi national (while also inaccurately reporting that 12 people had been confirmed dead). The Post’s insinuation of responsibility was also suggested on CNN by Former Bush Homeland Security Adviser Fran Townsend (“We know that there is one Saudi national who was wounded in the leg who is being spoken to”). Former Democratic Rep. Jane Harman went on CNN to grossly speculate that Muslim groups were behind the attack. 

Wild, unverified accusations with “zero evidence” singling out a minority group for responsibility over a deadly act of violence?  That sounds familiar.

Indeed, the day after the September 11, 2012 attack on the U.S. consulate compound in Benghazi which killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans, Greenwald, in a post titled The tragic consulate killings in Lybia and America’s hierarchy of human life‘, wrote the following:

Protesters attacked the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya on Tuesday night and killed four Americans, including the US ambassador, Chris Stevens. The attacks were triggered by rage over an amateurish and deeply hateful film about Islam that depicted the Prophet Muhammad as, among other things, a child molester advocate, a bloodthirsty goon, a bumbling idiot, and a promiscuous, philandering leech. A 13-minute trailer was uploaded to YouTube and then quickly circulated in the Muslim world, sparking widespread anger (the US embassy in Cairo was also attacked).

Further, Greenwald repeated completely unverified (and ultimately false) claims that the film-maker (Sam Bacile) was “an Israeli real estate developer living in California” and that he had made the film with “the help of 100 Jewish donors.”

Greenwald’s wild speculation about the cause of the attack, and the putative Israeli and Jewish connection (also parroted by the Guardian’s Julian Borger and Caroline Davies), however, was completely unfounded.

  • On Sept. 12, reports already began to appear contradicting claims that Bacile was an Israeli Jew.  And, a day later it was confirmed that he was an Egyptian Christian. 
  • The Guardian was forced to correct Greenwald’s false claim about the Jewish identity of the film-maker

Reports regarding the importance of an obscure, low-budget anti-Muslim film represented merely a ruse, designed to divert the attention of those in the media already ideologically inclined to blame Jews, Israel and the West for deadly Islamist terror attacks. 

Greenwald’s ‘shock’ over the ‘racist’ rush to judgement of those who disseminated unconfirmed reports that the terrorist attack in Boston was committed by al-Qaeda (or other Islamist terror groups) again demonstrates the Guardian contributor’s stunning moral hypocrisy.

At the Guardian, the French kill Islamist militants, while Israelis kill children.

H/T Gilad

The contrasts in language, tone and narrative focus between a report by Harriet Sherwood on Israel’s November conflict with Hamas and a recent Guardian report on the French war against Islamists in Mali represent an exquisite illustration of the paper’s egregious double standards. 

Headlines:

Here’s the headline and strapline for the Nov.18 report (and the still shot from the accompanying video) by Sherwood about one day’s fighting in a 8 day Israeli war against a radical terrorist regime on its border who had fired thousands of missiles at Israeli civilians :

gaza

Now here’s the headline and strapline from a Jan. 14 Guardian report (and still shot from accompanying video) by Afua Hirsch and Nick Hopkins about the current French war in a former colony located thousands 0f miles from Paris – waged, in part, to prevent a terrorist state from forming “at the door of Europe“:

mali

In Sherwood’s report, the deaths of Palestinian children represent the overwhelming narrative focus.  The fact that the IDF was attempting to target Hamas terrorists is only mentioned in the strap line, and even then is qualified with the word “believed”.

In the report by Hirsch and Hopkins, on the other hand, we are informed via the headline that militants are killed, while the deaths of Mali children are only noted at the end of the strap line.

Videos:

Further, the contrast in videos used by Guardian editors to illustrate each story is also quite remarkable.

First, here’s the video used in Sherwood’s report: 

The emphasis is clearly on Palestinian civilian casualties.  Also, as you watch the last few seconds of the video note how the narrator explains the contrasting loss of life in Gaza and Israel: She explains that “fifty Palestinian civilians” had been “killed” in the war, while “three Israelis lost their lives“. 

Now, here’s the video used to illustrate the story about Mali.

The first thing we see is a French military aircraft.  And, throughout the film there is no mention of the loss of Mali civilian lives as the result of French bombing.

Text:

Additionally, the contrasting narrative focus of each story couldn’t be more stark.

Here are the first two paragraphs of Sherwood’s report:

“At least 11 members of one family, including five women and four children, were killed when Israel bombed a house in Gaza City on Sunday as the five-day-old war claimed more civilian lives with no sign of a let-up in the intense bombardment.

The air strike flattened the home of the Dalou family in the Sheikh Radwan district of Gaza City, causing the biggest death toll in a single incident since the offensive began last Wednesday.”

Now, here are the first two paragraphs of the report on Mali.

“Islamist militants are fleeing major towns in northern Mali after two days of air strikes by French troops, which sources say have left scores of rebels dead.

French fighter jets have pounded insurgent training camps, arms and oil depots as the French defence ministry confirmed reports of Islamist deaths, together with at least 11 civilians including three children.”

Consistent with the headlines and straplines, the text in the report on Gaza focuses on the death Palestinian children, while the report on Mali emphasizes the deaths of Islamist militants – and Mali civilian casualties are only mentioned at the very end of the last sentence.

Moreover, out of 28 total paragraphs in the report on the war in Mali, only 7 (25%) touch on the fate of Mali civilians.

In the report on the Gaza war, out of 24 paragraphs, 15 (63%) focus on the threat to Palestinian civilians.

Finally, while the Jan. 14 Guardian report is only one example of the paper’s coverage of the French war, is there even a possibility that the suffering of civilians in the West African nation will be a significant focus of their future coverage?

While unchallenged lethal narratives about Israel ensure that media groups like the Guardian will continue to meticulously report the details of every Palestinian civilian death as the result of IDF operations against Hamas, such selective humanitarianism will prevent readers from ever learning the names of African children killed by French airstrikes against Islamists in Mali, seeing heartbreaking photos of their bodies on Twitter, or reading tragic accounts of suffering by their grieving parents.

Islamists attack American diplomats. The Guardian’s Glenn Greenwald attacks moral sanity

The reaction by Glenn Greenwald to the despicable murder of U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens by Islamist terrorists in Libya represents a great indicator of just how low those schooled in the language of the anti-imperialist left will go to avoid even the most obvious conclusions about the motivations of our enemies.

Hours after Stevens and several others were killed – when the American embassy in Benghazi, Libya was rocked by grenades - the ‘Comment is Free’ correspondent implored his readers not to employ even the most intuitive moral reasoning and to remember who the real villains, as always, are in the story.

In ‘The tragic consulate killings in Libya and American hierarchy of human life‘, Greenwald reminds us early on who is to blame, basing his assertions on reports which have since been undermined.

“The attacks were triggered by rage over an amateurish and deeply hateful film about Islam…quickly circulated in the Muslim world, sparking widespread anger (the US embassy in Cairo was also attacked).

The anti-Islam film was written, directed and produced by an Israeli real estate developer living in California, Sam Bacile. He claimed, in an interview with Haaretz, that the film “cost $5m to make and was financed with the help of more than 100 Jewish donors”…

the intent seems clear: to provoke Muslims into exactly the sort of violent rage that we are now witnessing.

Sam Bacile and his cowardly anonymous donors are repellent cretins for producing this bottom-feeding, bigoted, hateful “film” that has no apparent purpose but to spread anti-Islamic hatred and provoke violent reactions.

All the rage and denunciations of these murders in Benghazi are fully justified, but one wishes that even a fraction of that rage would be expressed when the US kills innocent men, women and children in the Muslim world, as it frequently does.”

However, the initial reports about the attack are beginning to fall apart.  

In addition to the fact that the U.S. is investigating the possibility that the attacks were coordinated by either al-Qaeda or another Islamist group to coincide with the anniversary of 9/11, and were not motivated by the film, reports now indicate that the film maker isn’t Israeli or Jewish but an American Coptic Christian, (a fact Greenwald acknowledged in an update).

Greenwald, well-schooled in the anti-imperialist cant of Noam Chomsky, then offers the following:

“Just compare the way in which the deaths of Americans on 9/11, even more than a decade later, are commemorated with borderline religious solemnity, as opposed to the deaths of the hundreds of thousands of foreign Muslims caused by the US, which are barely ever acknowledged. There is a clear hierarchy of human life being constantly reinforced by this mentality, and it is deeply consequential.”

Actually, there seems to be no basis whatsoever for the claim that “hundreds of thousands of foreign Muslims caused by the US.”

While the number of civilian deaths in Iraq (a nation which has suffered the largest casualty count where Coalition forces have been stationed) is often cited as over 160,000 since the start of hostilities in 2003, those citing this figure rarely note that the majority of deaths weren’t caused by American or Coalition forces.  

In fact, only 12% of civilian deaths in Iraq are directly attributable to actions by U.S./Coalition forces, based on a comprehensive study of casualties during the height of the insurgency 2003-2008.  Out of the remaining casualties, the perpetrators were soldiers in the Iraqi army and, mostly, homegrown, foreign (or unknown) terrorists.  So, the overwhelming majority of Muslim civilian casualties in Iraq have been caused by other Muslims.

Further, in addition to the unserious moral comparison between the intentional mass murder of American civilians by Islamist extremists and the unintentional killing of civilians by U.S. forces, even if the original reports were correct, the fact that a 13 minute video demonizing Islam could inspire some in the Muslim world to murder innocent Americans is a commentary on their culture, not ours.

If Jews where to riot and engage in murder every time a video was aired on YouTube containing vile antisemitism, the staggering volume of such hatred produced in the Arab and Muslim world would provide more than enough incitement for Jews to engage in such violence 24/7.

The stereotypical image of Jews as a “treacherous people” plotting to undermine the world of Islam is pervasive, and represents a narrative which the initial commentary by Greenwald and other leftist commentators – by evoking the specter of wealthy Jews undermining Islam and “provoking” the Muslim world by making a hateful documentary – only serves to reinforce.

The only ones who we should impute guilt to after the attack on U.S. embassy personnel are the cowardly “repellent cretins” who committed the act, and their apologists and enablers throughout the world.   

The ideals of the Arab Spring will never truly be realized until their culture begins to encourage the same kind of reflection and self-criticism that leftists in the West are always demanding of their own societies. 

New Year slaughter of Christians in Egypt shows we’re all in it together against Islamism

Robin Shepherd, once again, cuts to the heart of the matter, and pulls no punches with his spot-on analysis of the news regarding 21 Christians who were murdered by Islamists outside a Church in Alexandria, Egypt last night.

It will be interesting to observe the international response following last night’s slaughter of at least 21 Christians by Islamists outside a Church in Alexandria, Egypt. If it had been the other way around (heaven forfend that it had been carried out by Jews) there would have been mass protests around the world, condemnations from leading politicians and, given that this comes on the heels of other such massacres, could well have ended up with a resolution at the United Nations.

But don’t hold your breath. The politically correct multi-culturalism that holds sway across Europe and increasing sections of the United States (I hardly need mention the UN) dictates that we must always beware of enflaming Muslim sensitivities. The great diversionary spectre of “Islamophobia” silences all that go before it.

But last night’s bomb attack in Egypt is no isolated event. During a Christmas Day mass in the Philippines 11 were injured in a bombing in a Christian chapel. Also in December 38 Christians were slaughtered by Muslim extremists in Nigeria, a country where church burnings are starting to become commonplace. In Iraq last Autumn 68 Christians were massacred in the Our Lady of Salvation church in Baghdad by a group threatening that Christians will be “exterminated”. Across the Middle East, Christians increasingly live in fear of their Muslim neighbours, and the region’s Christian population is diminishing fast. So at what point does a series of “isolated events” start to form a pattern?

Read the rest of the post, here.