Wednesday, April 04, 2007

"firm but calm" - spins Blair

As ever Blair is ready to take credit for anything. On the public relations side the Iranians win nearly hands down ( their initial mistake on making up the kidnap coordinates spoils what would other wise have been a well executed bit of international one up man ship on Britain).

It will be interesting to hear what the crew say when they get back.

Incidentally watching The Falklands play on DVD this afternoon just brings to mind how different in terms of principals and capability the Conservative government of Margaret Thatcher and the shaming shower of a sofa cabinet that Blair tries to be leader of the band of.

The currency of Britain's reputation - won as great cost in the South Atlantic has been cheapened by the inadequate support of our armed forces in the gulf and the pathetic attempts at diplomacy by this government.

For "firm but calm" read "pathetic and supine".

One day, maybe soon, we will have to pay the price of all this...

Update: The BBC can't get the word Joy in enough on the news at 10pm tonight. Lots of rejoicing - the BBC's reporter smiling at the president of Iran like a giggling school girl.

The BBC should perhaps ask for direct funding from Tehran, given the services they provide.

They should hang their heads in shame.

Further: Talking of shame - see the Barnabus Fund's analysis of the treatment of Faye Turney here copied below:

Faye Turney and the Hijab

The parading of British Leading Seaman Faye Turney on Iranian TV, her head covered with an Islamic hijab, has caused great consternation and perplexity to many in the UK.

One of our indignant supporters wrote us the following:

"It is outrageous that the Iranians paraded a British service woman on TV dressed in enemy uniform (i.e. a hijab). It was a detestable policy to treat us with contempt and derision. Even the Germans in WW2 didn't make their prisoners wear Nazi Swastika armbands!"


It is clear that the Iranians consciously want to humiliate the UK and stress the superiority of Islamic Iran. Islam traditionally prizes power, domination and honour and the concept of Islamic superiority is central to its worldview. In a Hadith Muhammad is quoted as saying:

"Islam is always more excellent and never inferior." [1]

Feelings of humiliation at the hands of a superior West is one of the driving forces of the contemporary Islamic resurgence including the Islamic Revolution in Iran. As a result, one of the regime's main fixations is the display of Iranian Islamic superiority and the humiliation of Western nations at every opportunity.

The capture of a British woman serving in the armed forces has given them an opportunity to brazenly display their contempt for British (and Western) non-Muslim nations, cultures and values. It fits in with Muslim cultural practices of shaming opponents by abusing their womenfolk.

Forcing Faye to wear the Islamic head covering enforces the Iranian Mullah regime's Islamic ideology of male domination and female subordination in the face of Western values of gender equality. In most Muslim countries including Iran, women still suffer from second rate status, unfair treatment and legal handicaps. Muslim cultures are still predominantly patriarchal and misogynist, and family honour is still a burden mainly women have to bear. In Iran women are still forced to wear the all-covering black chador in public as a symbol of their inferiority.

Forcing Faye to wear the hijab also has a political aspect of humiliating Britain and asserting Iran's independence from any moral constrains in its fight against non-Muslim regimes. It also serves to identify and display the enemy as weak and subject to Islamic authority to Iran's own population.

This humiliation of prisoners of war, while in contradiction of international rules of treatment for POWs, is in accordance with Islamic rules of humiliating non-Muslims and forcing them to adopt Islamic Shari'a norms. Forcing Faye and other captured British service personnel to make public, obviously script written confessions of guilt over the TV and in letters further magnifies Iranian pride in their own power and the powerlessness of Britain to do anything about it.

Finally, this affair raises the issue of British Muslim women calling for the wearing of the hijab as a free choice for Muslim women in the UK to display their Islamic identity, stressing its supposedly liberating aspects. However this case shows that the core principle of the Islamic hijab is the enforcement of the Shari'a-sanctioned subordination of women to men.

[1] Sahih al-Bukhari, Vol. II, Funerals (al-Jana iz), No. 79, (Arabic-English, Tr. By Muhammad Matraji,New Delhi: Islamic Book Service, 2002, Vol. 2, pp. 310-311.

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