News and Analysis (2/27/15)

Mostly unidentified sources claim to know who is the brutal and barbaric voice of IS with the British accent, but there is disagreement as to whether the well-to do Kuwaiti was radicalized by sympathy for Somalia militants or by harassment by MI5:

“Cage has caused controversy by suggesting that MI5 harassment could have contributed to the radicalisation of the Kuwaiti-born computer graduate who grew up in west London. Human rights groups say they are doing ‘vital work’ but critics have called the organisation ‘apologists for terror’”:

“Earlier … Isis targeted the tomb of Nabi Yunus (the prophet Jonah), and the grave of Abu al-Hassan al-Jazari, a 12th- and 13th-century historiographer known as ibn al-Athir…. Destruction of monuments that have been preserved through 14 centuries of Islam in Iraq is widely abhorred” …

…  “Unesco stressed that under the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC), the deliberate destruction of cultural heritage is a war crime”:

The “Law on Islam” singles out the “large Muslim minority for treatment not applied to any other religious group.” It “bans foreign funding for Islamic organizations and requires any group claiming to represent Austrian Muslims to submit and use a standardized German translation of the Koran”:

“Roy’s family said he had received threats in recent weeks because he maintained a blog, Mukto-Mona (‘Free mind’), that highlighted humanist and rationalist ideas and condemned religious intolerance”:

“Imad Enchassi, senior imam at the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City, said, ‘As people of faith, we’re never discouraged. It was very refreshing to see our interfaith allies outnumbered the protesters’”

“Mr. Kurt had declared that he respected all holy books and wanted to swear on the holy book of the country in which he was residing”:

“More than 1,200 Assyrian families have fled the area in fear of IS, the majority of them finding shelter in the Kurdish-held cities of Qamishli and Hassakeh, according to the Assyrian Monitor for Human Rights”:

“The trip was not approved by the French parliament’s foreign affairs committee, and the Foreign Ministry said it did not support the mission. Many European diplomats are saying privately it is time for communication with Damascus after a four-year revolt failed to overthrow Assad”:







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