Archive | February, 2017

Two Tier Justice: White Terrorist Versus Muslim Terrorist and Institutional Racism

21 Feb

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In mid-2016, a 17-year-old male from the City of Bradford in the North of England was arrested on terrorism charges after being reported by a suspicious neighbour.

What ever we say about curtain-twitchers in our local communities, sometimes they can be lifesavers, hey?

The young male’s identity has been protected because he is considered a minor under British Law; and so, he is protected under various legal instruments including the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Yes, you may laugh at this; but this is one of the tenets that are supposed to make the British judicial system unique and to be envied as a beacon, is it not?

Many would disagree with this, and suggest that such protections; particularly in this instance, are ‘nannyish’ in the extreme, arguing that the seriousness of the matter (had an act of terrorism been carried out) would warrant removal of anonymity. 

Hold that thought for a moment! 

The police are quoted in the mainstream media; and subsequently by his prosecution, that he became ‘radicalised’ by social media and events happening in the UK and events portrayed in World news.

The 17-year-old had posted images of homemade incendiary devices and made comments on social media, praising the murder of the Labour MP, Jo Cox, who was shot dead in the street of her constituency by a member of the public with Far Right connections.

When West Yorkshire police raided the young male’s family home, they found various extremist paraphernalia and incriminating content on his personal computer, including messages and communications posted on chat forums, that he had shared with others with similar views to his own.

He was apparently planning an attack on a local mosque.

Incidentally, the young male in question, also had links to the same extremist group, National Action, as did Jo Cox’s murderer. Rightly so, National Action has since been proscribed as a terrorist organisation.

In January 2017, the male was found guilty of making ‘viable’ explosive devices, but acquitted of intent to carry out an act of terror. His defence team successfully argued that he was only ‘experimenting’, and had no intention of carrying out any kind of attack.

He was sentenced by Mr Justice Goss, rather leniently, to just a supervision and rehabilitation order.

But what if he had been a 17-year-old Muslim, ‘messing’ around with explosives and posting extremist content on social media, not intending to act out his desires to commit a terrorist act?

Let’s look, shall we?

In March 2015, a 15-year-old male from Lancashire was convicted on terrorism charges, after pleading guilty to inciting a person to commit an act of terrorism.

In May 2015, a teenager from Newham, London, was convicted of grooming a “vulnerable” young man, to kill UK soldiers, and sentenced to 8-years in a young offenders institution and placed on a 15-year prevention and supervision order.

In October 2016, in Paris, France, a teenager was charged with criminal association with a terrorist group. Again, in Paris, in 2017, a 16-year-old female was arrested on suspicion of planning a future attack.

Only within the last couple of days, five teenagers, between the ages of 17 – 19, have been arrested in London, on suspicion of planning a terrorist attack.

In 2014/ 5, two teenage males in the North East of England were arrested by Northumbria police, on suspicion of planning a terrorist attack. Again, the defence team argued that the two males involved were not serious and had no intention of carrying out an act of terror. They were also given anonymity and let off the supervision orders.

In the case of the 17-year-old from Bradford and the two teenagers from the North East of England, all three were young White males.

In all other cases referred to, the teenagers involved are Muslim and have all been sentenced to detention, or are waiting to be given detention orders.

In the case of the 15-year-old, from Bolton, in Lancashire, convicted of terrorism charges, for inciting a person to commit an act of terrorism in Australia, his rights as a minor and to anonymity were removed by the British courts.

Anonymity if you are a White teenage terrorist suspect but not if you a Muslim teenage terrorist suspect, you query? 

Does this mean that the British media and judicial system only say ‘terrorism’, when the person involved is Muslim? Can we say that the ‘system’ looks on White teenage terror suspects and treats them more favourably and with more leniencies?

In short, the answer is yes!

In comparing each of these circumstances, all those involved were/ considered minors under the British legal system; only those who are Muslim have received a custodial sentence. Only those who are White have been afforded the right to anonymity. 

Perhaps the British Judicial System is not an enviable beacon after-all?

Indeed, it’s the same outcome when we look at arrests and sentencing rates, of other minority groups. Only in the last week, the Guardian and Voice Newspaper journalist, Leah Sinclair, revealed that Black and other minority groups in the UK are 40% more likely to be tasered by the Metropolitan police.

As we know, it’s even worse in countries like France; and particularly, in draconian countries like the United States.

Whilst the term ‘racism’ is used as a blanket or catchall description; for all forms of prejudice and discrimination, it seems that wherever we are, our criminal and public institutions remain inherently and systemically racist and biased.

Until we remove this double standard of cultural bias and privilege and difference of ‘Other’; true equality under the law (and in society as whole) is, but an aspiration and an everyday reality of inequality to us non-White folk.

Don’t be surprised if we refuse to sit for it much longer!

 

 

Author: Jason Schumann

 

 

 

 

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The Future of UK Labour: Why Jeremy Corbyn Must Go

14 Feb

labourFar from being a hypocrite, I have always stated that Corbyn is an interim party leader.

Despite protestations from anti Corbynista or Corbynite naysayers, I have never believed that he has either the gravitas or image to be a world leader.

He appeals to my values, but I consider him to be simply too bland and aloof and never quite on the ball or in the loop. If not also too harsh, Corbyn reminds me of the person who arrives at the party when it’s just finished and everyone is leaving.

I am certain, however, that he is thoroughly principled and humanitarian, in his values and politics, and that is what attracts me to him. But in the politics of today, being principled will never be enough to win hearts and minds, without presence and some charisma.

It is with sadness that his convictions and principles just aren’t enough to sate today’s often ill-informed, MSM-influenced, and style-over-substance electorate. I also do not believe he is capable of winning over new voters. He is viewed as too left-wing, which is why he is bête noire to many on the right.

Rather like an obese father, too lazy to fetch his own slippers, Corbyn must go; first, because he did very little or nothing to support the remain campaign in the Brexit vote. In fact, he was hardly anywhere to be seen.

It’s true that politics are also fickle; but also, that Corbyn genuinely seems to shy away from the public eye, and he most certainly does not like journalists, TV cameras and MSM.

But can we blame him when more than 70% of the coverage they print and report about him is all negative?

No, of course not!

In Corbyn’s favour on Brexit, there are some suggestions his own party supporters conspired against him to ensure he couldn’t campaign. If so, we can also blame the lack of positive media coverage by Murdoch’s imposed blackout on him and the factory of negative briefings churned out against him by the Number 10 press office, as they did with his predecessor, Ed Miliband.

Just as they did with Ed in 2015, Labour supporters turned their back on Corbyn and the remain campaign, largely due to orchestrated fears, played out by leave campaigners around ‘foreigners invading our country and taking our jobs’ and ‘an unelected EU taking our money, and making our laws.’

Corbyn failed to do a single thing to enlighten, inform, or change the minds of those even from within his own party wanting to leave the European Union.

Neither was he, or those close to him, it appears, aware of just how big the swell to vote leave would turn out to be.

Rightly, Corbyn recognised the benefits of EU membership (to protect trade, investment, the environment, farming, our freedoms and rights), but he failed to convey this to supporters, and seemed completely unconcerned about the potential outcomes of not doing so.

Importantly, it goes to show just how out of touch he is; with the values, and expectations, of young people, traditional Labour voters, & his own grass roots supporters. It was as if he was either purposely asleep at the wheel, or derelict in his duty. That, or his chauffeur drove him in the wrong direction.

It is also clear to me that his deliberate, almost conceited unwillingness to engage in public debate, has helped in his undoing. He also now appears to be proving himself to be an autocratic leader, who is dismissive of the valid criticisms of his failure to lead, rightly laid at his feet.

At the start of his leadership of the party, he had already removed several of his detractors from their shadow leadership roles, informing the press that he isn’t going anywhere. This is arrogant and dictatorial of him. Perhaps also a red rag to bull. You don’t remove someone just because you don’t get on with him or her, or they don’t like you, especially if they are good and effective at what they do.

Corbyn should have been more diplomatic, statesman-like, and proactively sought to galvanise and inspire his party and supporters. In sum, well below the expectations of an effective opposition leader and he has shown neither foresight nor strategy. All of these have served to harm Labour’s future and counter the destructive efforts to diminish rights and privatise everything, as is the current course of the incumbent party.

As Brexit unfolds and becomes more clear, right-wing supporters in the Tory party will slowly repeal the laws that were agreed by all EU member states and designed and enacted, primarily to protect citizens from exploitation and and greater inequality. Without a doubt, things will become worse for the majority, but minorities in particular. We can see the beginnings of this already being evident in the resurgence of the Far Right and increases racism.

Corbyn’s inaction has effectively given the likes of Gove, Hunt, May et al, carte blanche, to repeal the HRA, DPA, FoIA, worker’s rights, privatise the National Health Service & more.

Perhaps more worrying, is that Theresa May is worse. Well, of course she is, especially as it is her clear intention to carry on where Margaret Thatcher left off. But what she lacks in ability and confidence as a sheepish head of state, is masked by her image and taste for designer clothing. More importantly, her longer term aims to diminish what few rights we have remaining. 

As little thanks, we can take small comfort in the fact that the UK Independence Party that began much of this is now disintegrating from within. 

 

 

Author: Jason Schumann

 

 

 

A Prediction: Trump, the Muslim Ban and an Imminent Attack 

12 Feb

 

 
[Updated 07 April, 2017] 

When I blogged ‘Trump: A Walking Disaster’ after his election win, I made some pretty bold but clear comments about things that would happen during his presidency, including several catastrophic predictions in the likely fallout that may follow for the rest of us.

Already, we are less than a month into this ‘Mad Hatter’s tea-party’ state of affairs, and the signs are showing that my predictions are beginning to bear out in what may well become a global nightmare.

I ask you, 20 executive orders in his first 10-days in public office?

This man isn’t a world leader interested in diplomacy, peace, and global stability.

He’s a self-interested, narcissist, autocrat, and dictator. It is no exaggeration to state, that every single one of these 20 diktats signed by Trump, either benefits him personally – or is intended to undo peace, equity, and stability – whether domestically, or globally.

One of these orders was to place a blanket ban on the citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries travelling or emigrating to the United States. This was on the cards as one of his election promises, so it isn’t really a prediction, at all.

What is a prediction, however, is what may well come next; and I am not the only one saying or thinking it may actually happen!

And no, I am not talking about any diplomatic, tit-for-tat, spats or sanctions being imposed on US exports or markets, or condemnation by world leaders. This type of response was always a given in such circumstances — no matter who the president, or the country!

In response to his defeat; first, in the lower, district court and subsequent defeat in the federal circuit appeals court, Trump took it personally and let his own prediction be known (of the possible outcome) of the Court’s ‘defiance’ of his ‘authoriteh’, in its refusal to uphold and reinstate the ban.

In a rather prophetic and his usual manner of ill-concerned twattering, Trump tweeted, that the ruling is ‘bad’ and that ‘the United States security is at stake’.

He followed this up with another tweet, stating that if an event was to occur – by which he means a terrorist attack – it should be the Courts and the Judiciary that are held accountable for such a travesty.

Trump’s prediction here – if, indeed, there is one – is whether or not there will be an imminent attack on US soil.

Has an attack been pre-planned? Has it already been set in motion? Does Trump have any knowledge of such an attack? If it were to happen imminently, who planned it? What will be the repercussions?

Had the ban remained in place and there been an attack at some point in the immediate future, you could have blamed Trump, himself. Now you can’t, because he’s shifted the blame and responsibility if it does.

So, who benefits and who loses if his apparent prophecy occurs?

As the most unpopular president of all time, how timely (and how much of a coincidence) would it be, if there were an imminent major terrorist attack in the US?

The outcome (of such an act) would see sweeping and fundamental changes across the whole of America, including wholesale reform of the legal system and judiciary and a reintroduction of the ban.

As Trump, and his inner circle, have already sounded out and made mutterings regarding sanctions against Iran and Yemen, it would likely mean these two countries get the blame, which would give Trump the reason to justify another prolonged US-led, engineered invasion and murderous war.

Only time will tell if Trump’s and my predictions become a reality, but it’s food for thought!

You can bet if they do, that it will not be a coincidence.

As if by magic my predictions come true! Trump is bombing Syria after a chemical attack orchestrated by the White House. 

The article below has since been removed from the paper’s website. 

Trump is doing exactly what he once advised Obama specifically not to do. Who benefits? Yes, you guessed it! 

As I write this update, news has just come in that Russia has sent a war ship to confront two US destroyers in the Mediterranean. 

Author: Jason Schumann
Note:

I remove the word ‘attack’ from the headline. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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