Archive for the ‘terrorism’ Category

 

#ConfessTheBand #Blasphemy #Islamism

Iranian Metal Band ‘Confess’ Arrested for Blasphemy.

confess iranian metalband

Being a bit of a Paul Simon, Gilbert O’Sullivan, Clive Dunn sort of a chap, I’ve often joked about how purveyors of Heavy Metal, Thrash Metal, Punk Thrash Metal, Goat Metal – and the many other divisions of the genre – should be arrested, tortured and put to death. I don’t really mean it. It’s a joke. A little harsh perhaps, but a joke.

My many friends who listen to and play this kind of

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crap – in bedrooms and in bands – like to think of themselves as subversive. It’s something I’ve always chuckled at as an extension – possibly life-long – of teenage rebellion. Okay, you’ve got a job, kids and a mortgage now, so the Goth/Metal look just had to go, but hey, you’ve still got that air-guitar, right!

Now imagine living in a society where my harsh joke actually happens – arrest, torture, murder – at the hands of the state for simply expressing oneself through shit music. For writing bad lyrics – simple words – that seemingly threaten the powers that be.

How can this be?

Totalitarian states will always seek to control both free speech and freedom of association. It is in their nature to attack these twin pillars of liberty. Yet it is never sufficient to silence and isolate the intellectuals, the pamphleteers, the political opponents: to impose the will of the state it has to control popular culture, too, for it is freedom of expression through popular culture that will transform and encapsulate a complaint, a message, an ideology or even a revolution into a word, an image, a phrase, a lyric – a meme.

Strange Fruit, Solidarity, Che, Free Nelson Mandela, Pride, ‘V’, Nic Ut’s shot of Kim Phuc, naked and burning with napalm, Grandad by Clive Dunn.

Controlling the extremities of popular culture is essential to controlling the middle ground. With Lemmy in a prison cell, it forces Adele to be at least cautious with lyrics the state may deem offensive, off-message, or taboo. It was part and parcel of the targeting in the Sunni Islamist attacks on Parisians in January and November of 2015 – free speech, freedom of association, popular culture.

Here we see it expressed in the Shia Islamism of Iran with the arrest of two members of the metal band ‘Confess‘ [link to full story below]. It reminds us that the extremities of popular culture are a litmus test as to the condition of liberty in any given state. It needs to be cherished and protected – even if the music is shite.

My many friends who listen to and play this kind of shit – in bedrooms and in bands – like to think of themselves as subversive – it’s because they are.

Anvil Springstien.

Source: Article/Track/Interview @ Loudwire Magazine.

http://loudwire.com/iranian-metal-band-confess-arrested-blasphemy-face-execution/?trackback=twitter_mobile_top

Note: Big thanks to the many emails pointing to the misspelling of the word ‘Shiite‘ in the title of this piece. In the UK, Shite is a form of shit (pronounced shyte).

 

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#JeSuisCharlie

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A Hard Lesson to Learn

‘One year on and they still haven’t learned their lesson.’ This is the message being sent by religious leaders to the survivors of the Charlie Hebdo attacks of last year.

Henry Samuel, writing in the Telegraph informs us that:Charlie Anniversary Edition

Anouar Kbibech, head of the French Council of the Muslim Faith, CFCM, said he was “hurt” by the [anniversary] issue while Abdallah Zekri of the Watchdog against Islamophobia group said it was “very violent and insulting towards religions”. Catholic leaders also expressed shock. Abbot Pierre Amar of Versailles said: “Among the dead were believers who were buried in churches. Victims’ families will be insulted when they see this caricature. I don’t understand, I’m speechless.

Hurt? Violent? Insulting? Speechless? Hardly. This lack of understanding regarding freedom of speech, freedom of expression, the freedom to mock ideas that others see as both harmful and beyond reason (or not) is merely an echo of last year’s papal forthcomings which informed the survivors of the cowardly attack that one should expect to be hurt if you go around insulting religion. Any religion.

Must Try Harder

Of course, for the fundamentalist the ability to take offence doesn’t stop at ink. Is that hair you are showing? Did you just smile? What was that you just thought? Come November’s other grim Paris anniversary will they be saying ‘Look, there they are, still laughing and drinking and joking and singing and playing music and prostituting themselves on the filthy streets of Paris. One year on and they still haven’t learned their lesson.’

Just how much more insulting to religion could these disgusting Parisians have been?

Oddly enough there doesn’t yet appear to be people dying in the streets following Charlie Hebdo’s portrayal of God as a killer, still at large. Perhaps attacking all Abrahamic religions in one go was a wise decision by the satirical publication, perhaps not – either way I need not wonder what would be happening this week had they portrayed the prophet Mohammed in such a way?

Idolators!

Interesting, then, isn’t it, that an image of Allah doesn’t stoke the ire in quite the same way that an image of a mere prophet does. Surely, in Islam, this behaviour would be classed as idolatry or shirk – an unforgivable sin in Islam if it remains unpardoned before death.

Still, idolatry, like all forms of blasphemy, are victimless crimes, aren’t they? Oh, wait…

Thus endeth today’s lesson.

Vive Charlie Hebdo! Vive la liberté

Anvil Springstien.

https://www.facebook.com/anvil.springstien

Share the fear – it dilutes it… No, really, it does [above images are facebook banner size]. Oh, and below, one of the best bits of satire you’re ever likely to see: “The Idiots Killed Me…” [by Dilem. Algerian Cartoonist. Credit: @DilemAli] Share this image at your leisure – no,  no, wait, sorry, no, don’t wait… share it now, make it viral. It’ll take ten seconds to put it on your facebook page or place it in a blog post. Do it. Let’s make people bored shitless by this image! “The Idiots Killed Me“:

The Idiots Killed Me

#DontBombSyria #Daesh #SimonDanczuk #Bullying

 

What’s in a Word

daeshWe have been told that in future we should call our naughty neighbours in Islamic State by the Arabic acronym, Daesh, (pronounced Day-esh, Die-esh, Dee-ish, Dish, Daysh or Dash) which, apparently translates to ‘Islamic State’.

I initially thought that this was by way of our politicians trying to sound cool, hip and down with the kids in that embarrassing way your father might use the phrase Bro’, or the dreaded ‘Hey, my Nigga!’ upon being introduced to a friend of yours. I was wrong. It would appear that this is simply because the Arab acronym sounds similar to the abusive Arabic term, ‘Daes’, meaning ‘one who crushes something underfoot’, or even the unbelievably more derogatory, ‘Dahes’, which translates as ‘one who sows discord’.

Sticks and Stones…

Seemingly, this word is absolutely hated by IS in the same way that a past classmate of mine, Jimmy Tusser, hated the mean-spirited pronunciation of his surname. It must drive them mad – it certainly drove young Jimmy mad: he became a loner and a compulsive eater. Selling his mother’s house in Anfield, Liverpool 4, he emigrated to New Zealand along with the final insult of having to pay for two seats due to his obese size.

No doubt the Kiwi’s at immigration – known for their wit – immediately added insult to injury upon his landing.

Sometimes, sadly, shit sticks and you never hear the last of it – how long has it been since Mohammed looked lovingly into Aisha’s dreamy little eye’s?

He was a touchy kid – Jimmy, that is, not Mohammed – and I feel an element of guilt in the abuse he received. Words, after all, hold considerable power. It was bullying, pure and simple. There is no other description for it.

Terrible Suffering

Still, it is with this in mind that I hold some considerable sympathy with the government in its attempts to upset or hurt ISIS by calling them names. Let’s face it, as Fat Jimmy Tosser has shown, it works. One only has to look at the pain and hurt sustained by poor Simon Danczuk, Labour MP for Rochdale, who, I imagine, has suffered terribly over the last few days following his voting record on the precision bombing of people standing next to Syrian children. How hard must it be to be the constant target of words such as wanker, twat, arsehole, gobshite, loser and cunt, particularly when they’re true?

Bullying can be a powerful weapon in the hands of the righteous, especially when we see just how touchy our ISIL opponents seem to be. This sensitivity, in my opinion, shows a real weakness in their armour – let’s face it, it’s hardly wounding to be called ‘one who crushes something underfoot’, is it? I could do better than that without a moment’s thought – how about ‘one who wears little girls pink knickers’? See how easy this is.

Victory Imminent

This weaponisation of bullying – something that the Tory party are supposedly particularly adept at – needs to be given a bit more thought if it’s to help in the now nearly almost imminent victory in the War on Terror. The good thing is we don’t have to rely on the Old Etoninians, here – with the power of the internet and social media we can all do our bit, even in the most critical of Terror alerts: I’ve just thrown ‘Pack of fucking Kiddie Fiddlers’ into my online Arabic translation app’ and have come up with a surefire Brimstone missile for our War of the Words:  “الاستغلال الجنسي للأطفال”. Yeah, see, take that, Islamic State/ISIS/ISIL/Daesh/IS.

Admittedly I’m still struggling with the pronunciation.

We really ought to let these Jihadis know that once the Forces of Light have gathered, and the ground war starts, prisoners can expect to be given wedgies, Chinese burns, held against hot radiators, and to be picked last for the footie during P.E. – only to end up in goal.

The gloves are finally off.

Anvil Springstien.

 

 

 

Added Bonus Content:

Free MI5 ‘Terror Alert’ Status as of 23.47 05/11/2015

  • LOW: An attack is unlikely.
  • MODERATE: An attack is possible, but not likely
  • SUBSTANTIAL: An attack is a strong possibility
  • SEVERE: An attack is highly likely
  • CRITICAL: An attack is expected imminently 

#Syria #Isis #StopTheWar #TheGodThatWasntThere #Voltaire

Doubting Justin

The Archbishop of Canterbury, the right reverend Justin Welby, speaking in an interview for a BBC religious programme, has said that the despicable and religiously inspired attacks on the citizens of Paris had made him ‘doubt’ the presence of God.

JustinWelby

Really, Justin? One wonders how you managed to get by with your faith intact upon hearing of the 17 million dead of World War 1, the 60 million dead of World War 2, the 500,000 dead from the illegal Iraqi War, the 250,000 dead – and counting – from the Syrian War, the 7,600,000 annual death toll from cancer, the 5,000 deaths from Ebola, the 21,000 men, women and children who die every day from hunger-related causes, the 20 million murdered by Stalin, The millions more by Mao, Pol Pot, Kim Jong Il and his bastard offspring, the bombings of thousands of civilians in Korea and Vietnam by Johnston and Nixon, then there’s Id Amin, Titi, Suharto… the list is endless, much of it inspired, indeed demanded by the texts of the two main religions of the world – the Bible and the Qu’ran, and watched, one can only assume, pitilessly by their deities.

When will the penny drop, Justin? How long will it take to erode the delusion you carry in your head?

Perhaps, given the geographic and religiously inspired nature of last week’s attacks I should Voltaireend this brief missive with the words of one of the greatest ever Parisians, Voltaire (it was his birthday yesterday, by the way, Justin. You may wish to pay your respects at his home of exile in Maiden Lane, Covent Garden – there’s a commemorative plaque you can look for).

Ever a wag of wit and concision, Voltaire hits the nail on the head every time. Hope you’ve got your pen ready, Justin.

“It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere.”

“Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.”

Both of the above are for you, but perhaps we can add one more from the great man in case you bump into David Cameron:

“It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.”

Anvil Springstien.

NoteThe title of the piece, ‘The God Who Wasn’t There’ is taken/borrowed/filched from the 2005 independent documentary written and directed by Brian Flemming. The film examines the existence of Jesus and takes a look at the evidence for the Christ myth – well worth a watch. AS

The God That Wasn’t There – Wikipedia Link

#SnoopersCharter #Playboy #ToryTown

To Err is Human, To Forgive Divine

Sometimes you read the market right, sometimes wrong. Mostly the business decisions you make, for good or ill, will never go much beyond your immediate friends and family – destined to be told, retold and possibly chuckled at over the odd sherry at Christmas gatherings. Yes, we’ve all got a yarn about Uncle Jimmy’s costly attempts at claiming his Nigerian lottery win. Other times, though, you fuck up big style – and the sheer grandeur of the error ensures that you will be destined never to hear the last of it.

History is littered with such fuck ups: Decca Records turning down a small band called The Beatles; Western Electric saying ‘thanks, but no thanks’ to Alexander Graham Bell’s little ‘toy’; Gerald Ratner inadvertently telling the world his jewellery group products were ‘total crap’.

We all make mistakes, though. After all, to err is simply human. All the more reason, then, to employ a shred of divinity when judging even the Ratner’s of this world.

More forgivable still, when it’s the course of future events that slams a seemingly logical decision into the solid wall of misfortune. Let’s face it, how many of us have decided to buy a cheap steelworks, for example, only to be jiggered by an incompetent government and an influx of still cheaper Chinese imports.

Cigar Smoke & Poo

Yes, sometimes things happen which are simply beyond our control. Take your traditional analysis of the porn consumption habits of the Average Joe in the street: On a hunch based on raw business acumen and multiple focus groups, you conclude that grown men will buy pictures of naked women wearing bunny rabbit’s ears. A quick visit to the bank manager and you’ve got the market cornered. Your punters don’t even have to frequent the grubby sex shops in the seedier parts of town to purchase your product – it’s available in grocery stores, corner shops and petrol forecourts. It’s stylish. Classy. A top-shelf product in so many ways. You quickly become a multi-billionaire, grow old and surround yourself with hordes of very young and beautiful women even though you now smell of cigar smoke and poo.

Passé

Then, out of the blue, along come a few geeks who invent the internet and whammo – your whole business model goes down the pan.  Average Joe doesn’t need to purchase your top-shelf item anymore. Why should he? He doesn’t even have to pluck up the courage to don a raincoat before visiting Sven’s Adult Books for his under-the-counter (and mildly illegal) Swedish porno video. He simply clicks off safe-browsing, hits the incognito button, and types in the word ‘Disney’ – milliseconds later Joe’s whacking off to pigs having hard-core sex with Nuns in all its high definition glory. You might have the world biggest brand recognition this side of Coca-Cola, but you’ve become an anachronism, old hat. In the words of your own chief executive, you’re now “passé”.

Time to rethink the business model. Time to take a risk, Mr Hefner. Time to make a big decision.

A New Deal

Perhaps the Average Joe might buy interesting articles peppered with photo-shoots of young lingerie-clad Hollywood stars such as Emma Watson instead of those busty babes with the airbrushed Columbian? Great. Brilliant. Make it so. Market share saved, you announce to the world that as from March 2016 you will no longer publish images of naked women in Playboy magazine.

Phew. Disaster averted. Good call, Hugh.

Every Waking Moment

No sooner said then along comes British Home Secretary, Theresa May, replete with her Snooper’s Charter that will effectively command internet providers to keep the browsing history (and phone data) of Average Joe for a minimum of twelve months. Average Joe is assured that this history will be safe from the prying eyes of, say, teenagers in Northern Ireland, companies in Bradford, or Delhi, or criminals in Kabul or Langley, and will only be available to the Police, or the Security Services, or anyone else, as and when it is needed. Honestly.

Average Joe begins to sweat.

Still, Joe understands that the ability to peek under the digital bed of everyone in the UK is a necessary loss of freedom and privacy. This need to be digitally followed every waking moment, in the way that Catholics are followed by their God, Joe knows, is as big a weapon in the War on Terror as the ability to bomb people of other countries or to maintain an effective nuclear deterrent. Joe also knows that the War on Terror must be won in order to protect our freedom and privacy.

Joe sweats a little more.

Thankfully, terrorists, being the stupid foreign people that they are, will not have heard of Theresa May’s machinations on behalf of democracy, and shall henceforth be instantly dragged before the Beak to be confronted by their browser breadcrumbs of guilt: “Fair cop, Guv’nor, you got me bang to rights, there, an‘ no mistake!

Nothing to Hide – Nothing to Fear

Of course, this will demand a certain degree of browser willpower and self-censorship on behalf of the non-terrorist, but Joe knows that foregoing whacking off to pigs and Nuns is a small price to pay for the ongoing security of the realm.

It won’t stop at the UK, of course – good ideas never do – and with only terrorists (a rather paltry market share) confidently visiting internet porn sites, it may well demand an editorial volte-face by Playboy in order to sate the needs of the likes of sweaty Joe and avoid this once great magazine joining the ranks of Decca, Western Electric and Ratner’s.

Porn aficionados and lovers of freedom and democracy the world over may never forgive Theresa May. Nevertheless, methinks it may be time to rethink that centre-spread, Mr Hefner, lest you be destined to be remembered as the man who dumped the soft-porn mag just as it came back into fashion.

Anvil Springstien.

Sources:

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/nov/04/theresa-may-surveillance-measures-edward-snowden

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/13/business/media/nudes-are-old-news-at-playboy.html?_r=0

Useful Paraphrase:

“Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.”

Ben Franklin

NB:

In line with the above privacy issues, I’ve just noticed that more and more job applications are demanding a thorough police check.

In the UK, this used to be called a CRB check (Criminal Records Bureau) but as successive governments like to change the name of something as they strip it of funding, this is now referred to as a DBS check (Disclosure and Barring Service).

Searching through a selection of available employment on this mornings Job Boards, it would appear that a DBS check is required for just about anything that involves: children; people; money; food; clothing; breathing air; or using abrasive cleaning materials?

There also appears to be an inverse relationship between having to pay for the check yourself (low-pay, minimum wage, zero-hours) and the employer covering this cost (salaried, medium to high pay).

One job gives me the option of clicking Yes or No to my agreement to such an intrusive check. This is, of course, no option at all as when No is clicked (I’ve just clicked it) it takes you to a ‘Thanks, But No Thanks’ page.

Apparently, even in the world of Peripatetic Supermarket Floor Cleaning, the mere desire for privacy is seen as suspicious.

Sorry, I’m rambling. The reason my interest in police checks has been piqued is that I’m presently volunteering with an Adult Learning agency and it’s taking forever for my own DBS check to come through.

I’m beginning to worry that they have discovered I hold politically errant views and are waiting to be able to download my browser history?

I predict that future job applications will require browser history to be made available to prospective employers – I also predict that, like police checks, you will have to pay for this – unless, of course, you can afford to.

A.S.

#TwatShaming

DylanRoof-Twat-Shaming#1

Dylan Roof. 21 Years Old – Twat.

Loosely Related: TwatShaming #2