Thursday, September 18, 2014

Islamic State and Rotherham abuse 'fuelling far right'

BBC News - Islamic State and Rotherham abuse 'fuelling far right': "Islamic State extremism and the Rotherham abuse scandal are fuelling a far-right backlash in the UK, one of the Home Office's most senior advisers on right-wing extremism has said.

"


Being Muslim: How Local Islam Overturns Narratives of Exceptionalism | Department of Religious Studies | Vanderbilt University

Being Muslim: How Local Islam Overturns Narratives of Exceptionalism | Department of Religious Studies | Vanderbilt University:  I am giving a paper for this workshop (poster screen grab below)






In search of a digital caliphate

Iason Athanasiadis, In search of a digital caliphate | Al Jazeera America: "This summer, when advances by the Islamic State (IS) through northwestern Iraq were beginning to earn the extremist Sunni group unprecedented notoriety, a large number of social media users switched their profile pictures to the Arabic letter nuun, for Nasrani (Nazarene, that is, Christian), in an echo of the symbol scrawled by IS fighters on the doors of Christian families in the cities they capture. IS supporters adopted the black flag of Islamic conquest, featuring the stamp of the Prophet Muhammad and the statement “There is no God but Allah.”"

'Flames of War'

Islamic State video threatens to target White House and US troops | World news | theguardian.com:




‘Daesh’

Middle East - France switches to Arabic ‘Daesh’ acronym for Islamic State - France 24: "The French government has come up with an answer to a point of persistent journalistic confusion – how exactly does one refer to the Islamic State organisation brutally carving out a self-declared "caliphate" in Syria and northern Iraq?"

Saudi Arabia's top clerics speak out against militancy

Saudi Arabia's top clerics speak out against militancy - Zawya: "Saudi Arabia's top clerical council, the only body in the country authorised to issue fatwas or Islamic legal opinions, declared on Wednesday that "terrorism is a heinous crime" under Sharia, and perpetrators should be made an example of."

iOS 8 review

iOS 8 review: the iPhone and iPad get customised, extended and deepened | Technology | theguardian.com:



new security adjustments in iOS 8 - although phones don't get any simpler ...

#NotInMyName

#NotInMyName: ISIS Do Not Represent British Muslims - YouTube:

Iran's 'Happy' dancers sentenced to 91 lashes

Iran's 'Happy' dancers sentenced to 91 lashes | SBS News "The group were arrested in May for their part in a YouTube video, which showed three men and three unveiled women dancing on the streets and rooftops of Tehran to the soundtrack of Pharrell Williams' song, 'Happy'."

Friday, September 12, 2014

Reading List - Reclaiming Jihad: A Qur'anic Critique of Terrorism

ISSUU - Reclaiming Jihad: A Qur'anic Critique of Terrorism by ElSayed Amin by Kube Publishing:



 new and noted (haven't read it yet)

What the ISIS Flag Says About the Militant Group

What the ISIS Flag Says About the Militant Group | TIME


Female ‘jihadist’ vows to raise ISIS flag over Britain

Female ‘jihadist’ vows to raise ISIS flag over Britain - Al Arabiya News:

"A 20-year-old Scotswoman who abandoned her family to join the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria has rejected pleas from her parents to return home, saying she would only come back to raise the ISIS flag over Britain."

UK female jihadists run ISIS sex-slave brothels

UK female jihadists run ISIS sex-slave brothels - Al Arabiya News, 12 Sept 2014:

"Startling details have surfaced of British female jihadists forcing captured Iraqi women into sexual slavery at brothels run by militants of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), British media reported Thursday."

Infographic: 5 things that make the Islamic State different from Al-Qaeda

Infographic: 5 things that make the Islamic State different from Al-Qaeda - Your Middle East:


Spy software helps wife prove hubby’s infidelity

Spy software helps wife prove hubby’s infidelity | Arab News: "Although spying is unlawful, it has become the newest way to catch a cheating spouse. Women these days claim it is their right to spy on their husbands so that they can have solid evidence of infidelity, including intercepting cell phone and e-mail messages and monitoring their activities.
"


Thieves caught on video stealing from pilgrims at Prophet’s Mosque

Thieves caught on video stealing from pilgrims at Prophet’s Mosque | Arab News "Despite the installation of CCTVs in many corners of the Prophet’s Mosque and the Grand Mosque in Makkah, as well as the often-publicized arrest of thieves caught in the act of stealing inside the two holy mosques, incidents of pilgrims losing their personal belongings to pickpockets continue."

Report: Citizen Engagement and Public Services in the Arab World

Report: Citizen Engagement and Public Services in the Arab World: The Potential of Social Media | Digital Islam 

"The Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government released the 6th edition of its Arab Social Media Report titled Citizen Engagement and Public Services in the Arab World: The Potential of Social Media, co-authored by Racha Mourtada, Fadi Salem and Sarah Alshaer."

Monday, September 08, 2014

Flooding tweet wars

Jammu and Kashmir floods: How Twitter started a Hindu vs Muslim war over them - Firstpost "As the hashtag #KashmirFloods continued to trend on Twitter India, it was hijacked by trolls, and eventually degenerated into familiar social media religious bickering."

Sunday, September 07, 2014

Dar al-Ifta in Egypt issues fatwas against "selfies" and online mixing

Dar al-Ifta in Egypt issues fatwas against "selfies" and online mixing | MuslimVillage.com: "Dar al-Ifta, which itself has 760,000 followers on Facebook, regularly uploads fatwas clarifying dietary and lifestyle queries from Muslims around the world, based on Qu’ranic and other religious literature, and the decisions of experts in Islamic law. Other recent edicts include guidance on searching for a husband online, petting cats and writing poetry."

60,000 Pro-IS Twitter Accounts Set Up Since May

Sky News, 60,000 Pro-IS Twitter Accounts Set Up Since May: "Some 60,000 Twitter accounts have been set up by IS sympathisers since May, a Sky News investigation has found.

And despite the site vowing to stamp them out in the wake of the murder of James Foley, 27,000 continue to express pro-jihadi views."
Also see the accompanying report 'Armchair Jihad'

Friday, September 05, 2014

#BurnISISFlagChallenge

Your Middle East, #BurnISISFlagChallenge trending, but controversial   "The Minister of Justice Ashraf Rifi has called for the “sternest punishments” of the people burning the ISIS flag, considering it an “insult” to Islam as the flag has the Muslim Shahada (the declaration of belief), “There is no god but God and Muhammad is his Prophet,” printed on it, reports Asharq al-Aswat. Rifi also warned that the act could stir sectarian violence."

Also see

IBT, 'Burn Isis Flag Challenge' Goes Viral in Arab World

Twitter - #BurnISISFlagChallenge

IS v aQ

J.M. Berger, Foreign Policy, The Islamic State vs. al Qaeda - Who’s winning the war to become the jihadi superpower? "The Islamic State has thrown down the gauntlet to al Qaeda and seeks to supplant its former ally as the symbol and leader of a global movement acting out a twisted definition of jihad. Its sweeping military campaign has captured a huge swath of Iraq, even as it fights both Bashar al-Assad's regime and rival jihadi groups in Syria, while its proclamation in June of an Islamic caliphate has sparked a furious debate about its legitimacy among global terrorists."

Jihadi Rap

The combination of jihad and rap do not represent a new combination - but this is a useful article: politico.com, Al Qaeda’s New Front: Jihadi Rap - The suspected killer of James Foley represents a new, dangerous merger of gangsta hip-hop and Islamism. "Abdel Majed Abdel Bary, the rapper suspected of murdering American journalist James Foley somewhere between Syria and Iraq, is the product of a British youth culture that has managed to merge two seemingly contradictory lifestyles: gangsta rap and jihad. Like Douglas McAuthur McCain—an American hip-hop fan who was recently killed fighting for the Islamic State—Abdel Bary represents a new and very scary evolution in modern jihadi history."

'Love jihad'

Reetu Sharma, OneIndia, Will love jihad be checked by banning mobile phones for girls? "It seems that now the idea of Love jihad is creating more and more fear amongst the people in Uttar Pradesh as a committee in the state has asked school girls from its community to stop using cell phones.

"As per a TOI report, "An influential committee of vaishyas (trader) in Uttar Pradesh has asked school girls from the community to stop using cell phones to save themselves from falling prey to love jihad."

I understand why Westerners are joining jihadi movements like ISIS

Michael Muhammad Knight, Washington Post, I understand why Westerners are joining jihadi movements like ISIS. I was almost one of them.

'Iran's Leaders Fight Over 'Immoral' Mobile Internet'

IB Times, Iran's Leaders Fight Over 'Immoral' Mobile Internet "Iran's President Hassan Rouhani has refuted claims from a prominent cleric that high-speed mobile internet is immoral and un-Islamic, urging religious leaders not to "close the gates to the world"."

Steven Sotloff video

Telegraph, Jihadists appear caught offguard by release of Steven Sotloff video, 2 Sep 2014 " The Twitter account @JihadWitness, which tweets in English in support of the IS and other jihadist groups, expressed surprise when the video began to appear online.

""How did this leak out to news before the publication?" one tweet read."

‘They can fly!’

alarabiya.net, ‘They can fly!’ Saudis mock religious police after attack on Briton "Saudis took to Twitter to mock the latest controversy clouding the kingdom’s religious police, after members of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice attacked a British man outside a crowded Riyadh mall earlier this week."

ISIS Sends a Message

Nathaniel Zelinsky, Foreign Policy, ISIS Sends a Message: What Gestures Say About Today’s Middle East "The curious thing was not the head [Abdel Majed Abdel] Bary held in his left hand -- however ghoulish the trophy -- but the gesture he made with his right. For followers of ISIS, a single raised index finger has become a sign of their cause, and it is increasingly common in photographs of militants. Some have even gone so far as to call the symbol “the jihadi equivalent of a gang sign.”"

Sotloff murder

Dan Murphy, CSM, Sotloff murder sparks outrage and condemnation, but should it drive policy? (+video) "A man with a British accent, hiding behind a mask, threatens his audience as he waves his knife around over the bound and defenseless hostage. The murderer is practically preening as he runs through his exhortations. In his mind, he's elevated himself to the level of the world's great powers. And then he beheads his victim."

ISIS vs. mainstream Muslims: The media war

Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog Editor, ISIS vs. mainstream Muslims: The media war "Quoting Islam's holiest text to make that point was smart, said Hussein Rashid, a religion scholar at Hofstra University in New York. "ISIS violates every single tenet of this verse, so Barfi shows them to be ignorant," he said."

Saudi court upholds 10-year term for blogger who insulted Islam

alarabiya.net, Saudi court upholds 10-year term for blogger who insulted Islam "Raef Badawi had been convicted of creating an anti-Islam website, criticizing senior scholars and mocking national symbols, Al-Madinah newspaper reported.

"He was accused of insulting Muslims as well as casting doubt on the existence of houris, the virgin companions of the faithful in Paradise, and the concept of torment in the grave."