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Shariah & Freedom of Speech/Lawfare Jihad

Nigeria Sharia Court Confirms Twitter Debate Ban

In Nigeria, discussing Shariah’s amputation law is legally banned on Twitter and Facebook. Nigeria has imposed Shariah Law in 12 of its 36 states.

March 30, 2010
Kaduna, Nigeria

An Islamic court in Nigeria has permanently banned a rights group from holding an internet debate about amputation as a form of punishment.

This follows a temporary order made last week by a court in northern Nigeria preventing Facebook and Twitter being used to discuss the issue.

The ban was initially sought by a pro-Sharia group which said internet sites would be used to mock Islamic law.

The Sharia code runs alongside secular law in 12 of Nigeria's 36 states.


Muslims Confront Islamism, Get Targeted By Islamists

French imam Hassen Chalghoumi spoke out against face-covering veils, echoing the sentiment of President Nicolas Sarkozy as he described them as a "prison for women, a tool of sexist domination and Islamist indoctrination" that "has no place in France." As a result, Chalghoumi’s mosque was stormed by an angry mob who threatened him with "liquidation, this imam of the Jews." Other individuals such as rapper Abadirh Abdi Hussein and groups such as the Muslim Canadian Conference have spoken out against radical Islam, which is very good news. However, they often endure violence and death threats from the Shariah-faithful.

Islamist Watch
February 14, 2010
Paris, France

French imam Hassen Chalghoumi recently learned firsthand that Islamists despise non-Islamist Muslims as much as they do anyone else. Chalghoumi attracted their ire by coming out strongly in favor of a ban on face-covering veils, a prohibition that is moving closer to reality. Echoing President Nicolas Sarkozy, he described the niqab as a "prison for women, a tool of sexist domination and Islamist indoctrination" that "has no place in France." Moreover, he explained:

Having French nationality means wanting to take part in society, at school, at work. But with a bit of cloth over their faces, what can these women share with us? If they want to wear the veil, they can go to a country where it's the tradition, like Saudi Arabia.

Islamist reaction to his comments was swift and fierce, with a gang of nearly a hundred men storming his Paris mosque during a meeting of an organization focused on interfaith relations:


The Chilling Effect of 'Lawfare' Litigation

Journalists are being scared into silence as more and more lawsuits are brought forth by organizations like CAIR. This is lawfare jihad and it is rapidly obstructing our right to Freedom of Speech.

The Guardian
February 9, 2010
London, England

Recognising that British courts have become a prime destination for "libel tourists", the House of Lords has recently established a government panel to look into the possibility of amending its laws to make it tougher for foreigners to bring defamation suits in Britain. The UK is notorious for its plaintiff-friendly libel laws which have been accused of being "contemptuous of free speech" and making a "mockery of British justice" and because they silence writers through expensive litigation.

But even as Britain attempts to prevent frivolous libel suits, the battle continues in the US. American courts are being utilised by radical Islamic groups to stifle writers through "lawfare" – the use of law as a weapon of warfare – a tactic that has had a "chilling effect" on free speech. In contrast to the British laws, American libel law favours defendants. However, plaintiffs in the US have learned to sue their critics for defamation, not with the intent to win the case, but with the hope of imposing an unaffordably high cost on criticism of their actions.

A recent case is most instructive: the American Civil Liberties Union sued the government-funded Tarek ibn Ziyad academy for allegedly promoting Islam – a violation of church-state separation. TIZA counter-sued for libel over the ACLU's statement that it is a "theocratic school". On 9 December 2009 the court dismissed TIZA's counterclaim because, as a public school, it is required to show that the ACLU's statement was false and that it was also made with actual malice or a reckless disregard for the truth, which it was unable to do.


Saudi Billionaire Eyes New Links with News Corp.

Saudi Billionaire Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal seeks to partner with Rubert Mudoch in order to expand his ownership of global media. Prince Bin Talal already owns a 5.7% stake in News Corp. which owns Fox News, Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones. The willingness of these media outlets (including Fox News) to report on Islamic extremism around the world is weakening daily, attributed to the Prince's ownership pressure. Greater ownership by the Saudi prince will hamper free media.

Yahoo! News
January 17, 2010
New York, NY

The Saudi billionaire whose investment firm is one of the biggest stakeholders in Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. said he is looking to expand his alliances with the media giant, in the latest indication that his appetite for growth remains robust even as his company retrenches.

Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, a nephew of the Saudi king and who was listed last year by Forbes as the world's 22nd richest person, met with News Corp.'s chief executive Rupert Murdoch on Jan. 14 in a meeting that "touched upon future potential alliances with News Corp.," according to a statement released by his Kingdom Holding Co. late Saturday.

Media reports have indicated that News Corp, parent to Fox News and Dow Jones & Co., among others, may be thinking of buying a stake in Alwaleed's Rotana Media Group, which includes a number of satellite channels that air in the Middle East.

Neither company has commented publicly on the possible deal, but the talks offer an indication yet that such an agreement may yet be in the offing.


UK Muslim TV Channel Linked to Terrorism

The Islam Channel, a London-based satellite network, has given a platform to Anwar al-Awlaki, an extremist cleric who may have been in direct contact with Umar Abdulmutallab. Says John Brennan, the US deputy national security adviser, "Mr. Awlaki is a problem. He's clearly a part of al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula. He's not just a cleric. He is trying to instigate terrorism."

Police Oracle
January 10, 2010
London, England

A London-based satellite broadcaster that describes itself as "the voice of authority for Muslims in the UK" has been accused of giving a platform to Anwar al-Awlaki, the extremist cleric with alleged links to al-Qaida and to the man charged with trying to blow up a transatlantic jet on Christmas Day.

The Islam Channel, a free-to-air English-language channel that claims to be "a trustworthy source to the two million-plus population of Muslims in the UK", last year carried adverts for a box set of DVDs of Awlaki's sermons and for at least two events at which the cleric was due to be the star speaker via a video link.

The channel's website has allowed visitors to click through to a pooled archive of Islamic scholars, from which they can download sermons by Awlaki, including "Stop Police Terror", "Brutality Towards Muslims" and "It's a War against Islam".

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