Politics - Islam(ic) Archives

September 09, 2009

A really queer article on Maghreb and Terror

I am unfamiliar with the site, this popped up on one of my news robots, but Algeria: The Message Has Backfired I dearly hope it is not a serious site and article on terrorism....

But an amusing set of quotes

... This was finally done, at the same time there was a year of good rains. Thus the spectacular growth in cereal production. Lots of happy farmers out in the countryside, which is bad news for terrorists trying to survive among "the people." Neighboring Morocco is having a peculiar problem with Islamic radicalism. Iran has been sending missionaries, armed with lots of cash, to Morocco, and engaged in aggressive attempts to convert Sunnis there, to the militant brand of Shia Islam favored in Iran. This has so angered Morocco, that diplomatic relations with Iran were cut earlier this year. Morocco has also cracked down on Wahabi missionaries (Sunni radicals) from Saudi Arabia, and Islamic radicals in general. The king has an advantage in that he is a direct descendent of the Prophet Mohammed, and is generally popular. The Moroccan government is not as corrupt and inept as the one in Algeria, but is not a whole lot better either.
The Shia missionary angle is just... bizarre. But I did find the bolded line funny.

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April 14, 2009

Observation: Any Blog with the title "Watch" in it has a high liklihood of being a hysteric conspiracy mongering nutjob site

Case in point: Shariah Finance Watch

Terribly deranged by the concept of needlessly complex financial transactions which pious but economically naive Muslims use to pay more money for the exact same economic transaction one can do straight.

This is somehow a threat to the writer of the blog, whose weak-minded panic is possibly slightly more droolingly idiotic than declarations that Islamic Finance (sic) will replace conventional finance.

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July 13, 2008

Islamic Finance in Maghreb bis

An unsurprising arty on Islamic finance from Khaleej Times: Islamic finance makes slow start in N.Africa (or rather the Maghreb):

As I have noted previously the hype about a big 'Islamic' finance market englobing the poorer sections of the Islamic world, extrapolating off of the habits of the more conservative (or I would say, narrow minded) Gulf with its luxury orientation is not well placed. The article from last week makes the point.

Some comments:

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July 12, 2008

Al Qaeda fil Maghreb Al Islami: The Franchising Concept Gains new ground....

This recent arty in The New York Times and the accompanying interview with Abdelmalek Droukdal , who besides being terribly charming (ahem), was also sporting enough to chat with the NYT.

Although the translation of the interview feels a bit awkward it is a moderately interesting read.

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February 17, 2008

The Bloody Cartoons: Danes & Muhammed

It is at once boring and frustrating to see Danish cartoons in the news again and worse the same idiotic posturing all around being repeated.

I had the occasion to watch on TV the Danish Muslims marching (I presume in Copenhagen, caught my attention too late), it was the perfect image for the Islamophobic portion of Danemark - lots of Islamic banners written in Arabic, not a many (none perhaps) Danish flags and precious little Danish spoken at all - lots of stereotypical chanting of Allah Akbar and similar typical sloganeering appropriate if they were in Baghdad, Beirut or ... well not in Denmark.

Bloody own goals, really the demos (led it must be said by a radical group it appears) merely advanced the interests of... the people who argue the Muslims are and can not properly integrate into Denmark. Pure idiocy.

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December 11, 2007

Alger la Blanche: Takfiri Nihilism & Murder

The takfiri nihilists, mutaslimine, have struck again in Algiers, I was just in those neighbourhoods on business a day or so ago, and at present can only hope my dear Algerian friends were not by chance caught in this bestial bloody mindedness. (English reporting here).

The report indicates that the nihilists of "Al Qaeda in the Maghreb" claimed responsibility this evening.
(Ce double attentat suicide a été revendiqué sur un site internet islamiste par Al Qaïda au Maghreb islamique, l'ex-Groupe salafiste pour la prédication et le combat (GSPC).)

Sadly these scum make the Algerian government look preferable, which is a real achievement in a negative sense.

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September 22, 2007


I confess some puzzlement at the new angle taken by the al Qaeda lunatic murderous scum with respect to blithering on about Andalous and taking back the Mediterranean. The bloody clods can't overturn a single Arab dictator of moderate incompetence, what the bloody hell is the angle on Andalous.

Yes, yes, I know the history, and can see some vague logic in the rhetorical flourish, but directing bombing attacks against the Spanish and French - as well as other Euros - strikes me as a real strategic mistake, on several levels. First, blowing up engineers working on such public works of clear public interest as dams I do not think is going to win over any Maghrebine sympathisers, rather I think it plays into the counter argument of the moderates that the entire Al Qaeda movement is a bunch of shaggy nihilistic lunatics that have as much to do with Islamic theology proper as my dear corner madman....

Continue reading "Andalucia?"

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April 17, 2007

Reflexions on Casablanca

It remains difficult to get business done here, the city being on edge, Moroccans and Casaouine being most unused to this kind of mindless violence. The anger is palpable across social classes, it seems to me, but frankly I have a lot of work to get done in a short time, so one must allow that my impressions are superficial, for all that they seem to match Ibn Kafka's.

Further, what everyone is saying - and I hear this from people who rarely speak well of the government, so I am inclined to say it is not mere government agitprop although that is present - is the population is actively helping the security forces.

Nevertheless, I am largely in conference rooms working on producing some financing documentation, which is rather different from being out on the street - that is doing a reporters job. Something facile whanking by bloggers oft forgets.

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April 15, 2007

Dar Fur: Finally a decent article in the US press

I do not have much comment, other than to say that this is easily one of the more well-informed articles published in English (although the faux racialisation of Arab versus non-Arab remains in the background) on Dar Fur. In reading this, I should think it clear wny I take a dim view indeed of Western intervention in such conflicts, givent he penchant for White Hat Black Hat thinking, and the utter ignorance that comes with it. Like the Tuareg - Mali Bambara conflict of the early 90s, this is something best left to the locals to settle. Foreign intervention by gullible dupes rarely goes well. And yes, I do not exclude Rwanda from this. The best resolution for Rwanda was not foreign intervention, but rather what occured, except earlier.

[16 April 9:00 GMT: Link fixed]

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April 13, 2007

Terror & Opposition: Mohammed Faiz - Casablanca Bombing encores

Returning to a proposition I raised a month ago, but have sadly been too busy to act on, that of Mohammed Faiz, I noted that the weekly MarocHebdo International has a cover story on the man, the leader is Mohamed Faïz, héros de l'attentat terroriste du cybercafé de Sidi Moumen, se dit abandonné à son sort or "heros of the terrorist attack on the Sidi Moumen internet cafe, thinks he's been left to his own devices."

I picked up the hard copy in the airport today, (3 euro is really an absurd price I may add), and in reading I have to say obviously my proposition for a fund to support him and the victims is more necessary than I though.

However, one has to find the vehicle to do so. Obviously I have to try to move ahead on this. I would hope that any Maghrebine readers who might be able to facilitate actions might email the collounsbury yahoo address with thoughts.

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March 13, 2007

Euro & Islamophobia all in a charming package

Without terribly much comment, a bit of hysteria, repackaged and sent on down the line

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February 18, 2007

Hirsi Ali Autobiography: Inconsistencies, an Economist review

A brief note calling attention to The Economist review of Hirsi Ali's autobio: I believe my Aqoul colleagues should enjoy reading both the review and perhaps eventually the book.

I have to say the notes in the review rather confirm some observations and speculation on the part of Eerie.

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December 05, 2006

Flocking to Sukuk... well, maybe

The Financial Times has a moderately interesting article on the supposed flocking of Western investors to the sukuk market.

I am skeptical that the end buyers are in fact 'Western' but I was amused by the framing at the opening, with its perhaps unintentional, but certainly very clever accuracy as to reality, if adopting the double-language of the Islamist take:

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October 07, 2006

Mr Straw & The Niqab

It appears that For. Sec. Straw's comments on the Niqab, the face veil, have set off a bit of a storm. From The Financial Times to The Times coverage of his original comments regarding prefering women not wear the face veil as divisive through to coverage of The Poodle's craven and inconsistent pandering and on to coverage (the sooner he is gone the better, I await with impatience The New York Times (but British official, I am come on, how about Brit For. Sec.?).

I am not sure if that is good or bad, but it bears some commenting on. First, when I first saw the comments I wasn't sure if he meant the hijab, which would have been annoyingly tedious, or the niqab, which I agree with. I am pleased to see it is about the covering of the face. There is a vast and important difference between the ninja get-ups that are so very Saudi Wahhabite neo-Islamic rot, and a woman covering her hair with a scarf.

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June 04, 2006

Deserving Further Comment: Muslim Women as Victims - Lalami's "Missionary Position"

In a rather longish piece in the American Leftist dinosaur paper, The Nation, expatriate Moroccan author Laila Lalami takes a whack at one of eerie's favourite topics, Muslim Victim Women Reformers in an arty entitled "The Missionary Position".

While I am not normally inclined to read such things as The Nation, the highlighting by The Arabist were enough to induce a read.

I cannot say that I am a fan of such hackneyed phrases as "supporters of empire", above when used seriously, but what can I expect out of literary types?

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May 27, 2006

Economic Progressivism: Left Things to Love in Islamic "Economics"

I ran across a press release from some US Uni by some anthro-sociology professors on 'progressive' features of Islam ironically pointed to by an 'Islamic Investing' website trumpeting it as Study Finds Muslim Scholars An Egalitarian Force For Economic Reforms, a fine illustration of the brainless lack of confidence among certain circles that they take anything with a remotely positive spin on anything "Islamic" and wave it around, saying "See Islam positive, Islam positive!!!!" like five year olds. Witless gits.

The site itself I came across from a decent arty on the diversity of fatwas and the general focus on small things in life although in fact although I am of the opinion that foolish fatwa shopping is a bad sign of a rather brainless 'islamisation' but that is probably my general snobbery and contempt for people running after ill-groomed 'religious men' for advice when half a brain and some reasonable reflexion would suffice.

However, let me get on to the silly stereotypically Left academics' silly PR note on "Progressivism" and Islam:

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May 24, 2006

Opinions and the Evils of Authoritarians

Inspired in part by the accidental reading (in between my suppressing a homocidal rage directed at the Pekinese, whose unbearable yapping today led me to be uncharacteristically mean) on "Islam and its need to reform" and the boldly stated opinions on the part of people who clearly know fuck all about the religion, on what it "needs," I am pondering writing about the need for reform in Confucian thought.

Or Reforming Confuciasim and Protecting The West

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May 07, 2006

Al Qaeda & Media, a quick reflexion on Bou Aardvark

Aqoul's fine friend, Bou Aardvark has some interesting reflexions on the recent blithering on about Al Qaeda, the recent tapes and like from Bin Laden and Zarqaouie and communication strategy that I thought I might make a superficial comment on.

Both Some jihadi perspectives on the al-Qaeda tapes (although after perusing the source material I realised why I don't amuse myself with Jihadi internet boards) and the more American domestically oriented AQ's media strategy: strength or weakness? are one of a piece in a sense, and I think together a necessary reminder for the sharp observer that one really knows very little about what is going on with the organisation, al Qaeda.

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March 14, 2006

Reproducing a comment at Reason: On Why one should not be impressed (per se) by the Wafa Sultans

From the thread Speaking the Truth to the Barbarians (nice sentiment)

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Islam & Moderation: Dimwits Missing the Point

Thanks to the fine services of Technorati, I ran across this post on our very own 'Aqoul and in particular The "moderate Muslims" strike back ... yeah, right. by Raf Bey. Unsurprisingly, the commentators did't get the fucking point. One in particular proved particularly dimwitted. I shall entertain myself explaning

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February 17, 2006

New Abu Ghraib Photos and Cartoons: Pakistan and Publications as well.

Seeing Kofi Annan's quote regarding the timing of the publication of the new Abu Ghraib photos, "unfortunate", I have to say I agree.

The publishers might have refrained for a bit, to allow the Cartoon passions to cool.

As an aside, it strikes me that what we are seeing in Pakistan is a test of wills between the Paki Islamist parties and the Moucharraf regime. It's sad and unfortunate. Of course, the dominance of the know-nothing neo-Deobandi hate mongers in Pakistan is also unfortunate, and a danger to Pakistan. The Gulf between Pakistan's urbane and rational elite, and the more economically stable areas, and the ever-more unstable, backward tribal areas is growing dangerous, as is the undigested urbanisation. More than any Arab country, Pakistan represents a globally dangerous time-bomb (of its own making) with nuclear weapons and a pack of seriously warped Talebanesque loons who really do want to "rewind the clock." A phrase even most ordinary Salafistes in the MENA region don't merit.

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November 13, 2005


Arabiyah and Jazeerah carrying the interview with the wife of one of muderous suicide bombers (what is that idiot phrase the US right was pimping a while ago?).

Interesting, very interesting. I predict her bloodless tale will have some impact, the wedding party angle alone being influential.

As for the lump herself, she can burn in hell.

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September 05, 2005

On Sex & MENA: The Local Porn Industry

I have a longish reflection on this very subject, and on the issue of prostitution, general dress and the like. It needs editing (and has for months), but this week's report in La Gazette, a mainstream weekly, and some observations I made this weekend while shopping in my tres chic office-shopping mall complex provoke me to a small interim observation:

7383_1.jpg First, of course, I am not surprised that the article I cited, entitled "L’industrie du film X au Maroc" was published, given recent scandals in Agadir and hints of the same in Marrakech. Poverty combined with lack of opportunity combined with vast wealth differences always produces these kinds of things (although that has nothing perhaps to do with the Euro porn stars cited as having come to Marrakech).

I should note that the physical version of this article is rather more graphic and rather longer.

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