Wednesday, October 31, 2007

AP/Fox News, Cleric: Women's Sexy Clothing Distracting Muslim Men From Sleep, Prayers, 31 Oct 07, "Nik Abdul Aziz's fundamentalist party has about 800,000 members. He is also the chief minister of northeastern Kelantan, the only one of Malaysia's 13 states that is not ruled by the moderate National Front governing coalition.

"His party's Web site published an illustration Wednesday of how women should dress — in long, flowing headscarves covering their hair and chests and "baggy and loose" long-sleeved, floor-length dresses.", 'I felt dirty about it', 29 Oct 07 interview with journalist Asra Nomani, about her role in the production of 'A Mighty Heart'. Some net refs.
DEBKAfile, Al Qaeda declares Cyber Jihad on the West, 30 Oct 07, "In a special Internet announcement in Arabic, picked up DEBKAfile’s counter-terror sources, Osama bin Laden’s followers announced Monday, Oct. 29, the launching of Electronic Jihad. On Sunday, Nov. 11, al Qaeda’s electronic experts will start attacking Western, Jewish, Israeli, Muslim apostate and Shiite Web sites. On Day One, they will test their skills against 15 targeted sites expand the operation from day to day thereafter until hundreds of thousands of Islamist hackers are in action against untold numbers of anti-Muslim sites." No particular sources on this are cited.
BBC News, Blears targets Islamic extremism, 30 Oct 07, "New measures will include training imams to communicate more effectively, teaching citizenship in mosque schools and funding internet projects."
Guardian, 21 guilty, seven cleared over Madrid train bombings, 31 Oct 07 "The group was accused of masterminding, carrying out or helping prepare the attacks on four packed commuter trains heading into Madrid from working-class neighbourhoods during the morning rush hour of March 11 2004."
Yahya Birt, Roll up, roll up! Vote for the best of the British Muslim blogosphere, 30 Oct 07

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

MSNBC, Was Bin Laden's last video faked?, 29 Oct 07 "“Here is Bin Laden in the same clothing, same studio, same studio setup, and same desk THREE YEARS LATER,” wrote Krawetz in his blog,, and in an interview with NBC News. “In fact, his stack of papers that he reads are moved between the exact same stacks. If you overlay the 2007 video with the 2004 video, his face has not changed in three years -- only his beard is darker.”" Interesting article and theories, including various clips.
IHT, Survey finds radical literature in UK mosques, much of it linked to Saudi Arabia, 30 Oct 07 "The Policy Exchange, timing its report to Saudi King Abdullah's state visit, said the material expressed a deep-rooted antipathy toward Western society, calling for violence against enemies of Islam, including women and gays who demand equal rights." The full report is here. Also see Independent, Malise Ruthven: How the Saudis used oil money to export a hardline ideology that fuels Islamist terror, 30 Oct 07 Opinion and comment relating to the state visit of King Abdullah to the UK
Blogger News Network, Bin Laden’s Infiltration Of Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, 29 Oct 07 Rather a long post, which contains several net references, centred on Ali Al-Timimi. I've yet to fully read this, or explore the related refs.
Gulf News, We must embrace knowledge if Arab world is to progress, 28 Oct 07 Op-ed: "Otherwise, is it reasonable that in the Arab world today, there are no less than 65 million illiterates, two-thirds of whom are women? Is it reasonable that no less than 10 million children between the ages of 6 to 15-years-old are out of school? Is it reasonable that a bare 0.6 per cent of the population uses the internet? And is it reasonable that the vast majority of the Muslim world still lives in poverty?"
AKI, Spain: Islamic terrorist cell members sentenced, 29 Oct 07 "Abdelkader Ayachine and Wissam Lofti, two of the six alleged terrorists belonging to an Islamist cell in the northern Spanish city of Burgos, have been convicted of inciting Jihad (holy war) through the Internet, and to have provided financial support to jailed Islamists."
Times, Internet dating ticks all boxes for Muslims, 29 Oct 07
Guardian, Disquiet on the North-West Frontier, 30 Oct 07 Jason Burke's report contains an interesting net reference.
Telegraph, Terror student Siddique jailed for eight years, 24 Oct 07 "Mohammed Atif Siddique, 21, a shopkeeper's son who has been described as Scotland's first homegrown terrorist, was convicted last month of possessing and distributing terrorist material via websites."

Wednesday, October 24, 2007, The offer of GPRS, 24 Oct 07"The tender for the GPRS, wireless system providing Internet access, of the first operator will be carried out again if we do not get any definite conclusion from SA Iran, the chairman of the Transaction Commission of Telecommunication Company of Iran said."

Monday, October 22, 2007

Following yesterday's concert for Darfur, here are a few related links (there didn't seem to be an official concert site):

Guardian, Muslim Live8 brings home Darfur crisis, 22 Oct 07 Concert review.

Sami Yusuf includes a recent interview, and links to videos. His most recent track "Asma Allah" is below:

Outlandish takes you through to their videos and biodata, including "Try not to cry" (with Sami Yusuf):

The Sound of Reason are on MySpace, where their top-rated track is 'Palestine'. They seem to have taken on Gil Scott-Heron's tag "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised".

Finally, Kareem Salama (right) is currently promoting his latest release, "This Life of Mine". File under Country & Western/Americana. You can listen to his new album on the page.
Al Jazeera, Manila blast death toll rises, 20 Oct 07, "Norberto Gonzales, the president's security adviser, said they had received an intelligence report that Abu Sayyaf was trying to raise funds abroad using the internet site YouTube and the blast could be used as part of this campaign."
The People, I'll be Bak-ri, 21 Oct 07 "Outlawed Islamic fanatic Omar Bakri Mohammed has vowed to defy a ban on him returning to Britain - and challenged anti-terror cops to charge him or leave him alone."
MSNBC, Militants hail Bhutto attack on web site, 19 Oct 07 commentary
Yemen Times, Yemen Mocha: The Song of Yemen, Issue: (1096), Volume 15 , From 22 October 2007 to 24 October 2007 non-tech, except that coffee is a vital component of web culture ...
Arabic Network for Human Rights Information, A decisive week for the freedom of expression in Egypt: A verdict will be delivered in the case of banned websites and blogs on December 8. The judge of appeal dropped the Huwaida Taha's case, 21 Oct 07

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Non tech, but reflecting online discussions Pajamas Media, Mullahs vs. Mullahs (Part 2), 19 Oct 07 opinion piece by Banafsheh Zand-Bonazzi and Elio Bonazzi. Part 1 is here

Friday, October 19, 2007

Dawn, Benazir survives midnight carnage: Twin blasts cast shadow over homecoming •At least 125 dead, 19 Oct 07 "The former FIA chief Rahman Malik alleged that no cellphone jammers had been provided by the government as protection against suicide attacks – a charge stoutly denied by Interior Minister Aftab Sherpao."

Also see The News, 138 dead as blasts hit Benazir Bhutto�s rally in Karachi, 19 Oct 07

Al Jazeera, Pakistan ambassador to US condemns Karachi blast, 19 Oct 2007

Fox News, 2 Bomb Blasts Hit Near Bhutto in Pakistan, 19 Oct 07
A bunch of tech stories, with relevance in a lateral way to this blog: Giga OM, New Flickr UI with GeoTagging is Very Impressive, 19 Oct 07 I was interested in this, in terms of regional application, but it is not out yet. While I was at Giga OM, I found this too, which I thought was useful: Giga OM, Big Internet is Web 2.0’s OS — so Who Owns the Apps?, 18 Oct 07. I was on a roll by then with the RSS, which I check regularly, because this also cropped up: Giga OM, Who Will Own the Search Experience?, 18 Oct 07.
asharq alawsat, Saudi Arabia: Blogging Continues to Gain Momentum, 19 Oct 07 "Despite the fact that blogging remains relatively new to the kingdom, the number of weblogs based out of Saudi Arabia is estimated to be over 1,000, launched by both men and women, according to members of The Official Community for Saudi Bloggers (OCSAB)."
Russia Profile, The Jihadization of the North Caucasus, 17 Oct 07 "A contributor to one Internet site appeals to the authority of Sheikh Al Islam Ibn Taymia, who, together with Qutb, is one of the most quoted authorities for present-day Islamists. The contributor argued that the Taliban has become tainted by compromise with the non-Islamic world and has tried to create a peculiar, but still democratic, state." Opinion piece by Dmitry Shlapentokh.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

All Things Pakistan, Would you like to buy my Kidney please?, 17 Oct 07
Coverage of Benazir Bhutto's return is extensive. Reports can be found in Dawn, Daily Times, The Guardian, and AFP/asharq alawsat. Expect coverage on the Pakistan Peoples Party site, which has a listing of external headlines.
Al-Ahram Weekly, Native scene, 18 - 24 October 2007 Arabic rock: "Cairokee have built their understanding of sound on satellite channels, the Internet and sheer practise. What is truly remarkable is that they have their own distinct formula, independently conceived and profoundly in touch with young people's concerns." You can sample Cairokee here.

The Al-Ahram article also reviews some hip-hop from Native Deen, who have a new release out. I guess we shouldn't call it a CD anymore, presumably available for download, etc. Here's a video from it:

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Gulf News, Official iPhone launch in UAE unlikely anytime soon, 16 Oct 07 "UAE consumers may not be able to purchase the officially-released iPhone, as the UAE regulator would bar Apple from establishing any exclusive network services within the UAE market." Kind of a non-headline. Other products are available (with touch phone clones on the way)., Internet scam targets users of social networking website, 16 Oct 07 "Users of social networking websites are being warned to be on the lookout for internet scams, after reports of 'phishing' attempts on UAE based Facebook accounts."
BBC News, Report highlights blog censorship, 16 Oct 07 "Bloggers are now finding themselves prey to censorship from repressive governments as much as journalists in traditional media, a report says." Now see the original report:, Eritrea ranked last for first time while G8 members, except Russia, recover lost ground, 16 Oct 07
AFP, Piety, defiance and bloodshed mark Middle East Eid, 13 Oct 07 "Away from the graves, Islamic internet sites were filled with congratulations to the "holy warriors" in Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan, Kashmir and elsewhere.

"In particular "special congratulations" were paid to the "emirs of Jihad", notably (Taliban chief) Mullah Omar, Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and Omar al-Baghdadi, head of the Iraqi branch of the terror network."
NYT, The Internet Jihadi "An interview with Samir Khan, a North Carolina blogger, investigating how militant Islamists use the Internet to spread their appeal to the West." The video of the NYT interview. Seems that Khan's site is down today - there's reference to it in my next book. Also see:, Editorial: News from another front in the terror war, 17 Oct 07 further response to the NYT piece earlier this week. There's also this response: Jawa Report, Inshallashshaheed Outted: North Carolina Jihadi in the News (UPDATED), 15 Oct 07 "While we appreciate Moss's commitment to spreading the word about the Internet Jihad, we really wish he would have consulted with us on the matter. He has a right to out Inshallahshaheed as Samir Khan, but doing so has jeopardized an ongoing investigation into a terror ring which begins in the US and ends in Somalia.", Security forces declare electronic war on Al-Qaeda in Algeria, 16 Oct 07 "Algerian security forces pay careful attention to Internet websites used by the so-called Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (formerly the Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat) especially after the adoption of suicide bombs strategy."
MEMRI, Jihadist/Islamist Websites and Their Hosts (List III): Websites Supporting Jihad in Iraq – Hosted in the West, 16 Oct 07 "On August 10, 2007, MEMRI posted a list of Islamist websites, forums, and blogs which support warfare against Coalition forces in Iraq and promote jihadist incitement and propaganda. [1] This report presents additional websites which promote a similar anti-Coalition agenda, and a list of websites from the previous list that are still hosted by ISPs in the West."

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

AKI, Malaysia: Sex offenders 'to be publicly shamed', 16 Oct 07 "Malaysian police have announced a plan to name sex offenders in newspapers and internet sites. A registry is planned for all types of sex offenders, including pedophiles, and will include the offenders’ photographs."

Monday, October 15, 2007, Salafism growing, but preaches no violence, 10 Oct 07 "The AIVD has also adopted a new term for the most recent developments: "Islamic neoradicalism". According to the Service, there are now Dawa preachers active who are not, or only slightly, dependent on support from abroad; they operate using a "smart marketing strategy" which consciously avoids straying too close to the margins of Dutch law. The Internet is no longer a primary communications channel: it's now mosques and meeting halls, where priests are not interrupted by all the 'noise' of critical voices such as those in Internet forums and chat rooms." The report can be found here: Dutch General Intelligence and Security Service (AIVD), The radical dawa in transition [PDF, 813kb]. I have yet to read this, but it certainly looks interesting. There is also an earlier report: AIVD, From Dawa to Jihad. [PDF]
AP, Islamic Jihad: No Peace for Israelis, 12 Oct 07 "The militant known as Abu Hamza is constantly on the run from Israel, and his hideout today is a dank room at the back of a nondescript house filled with adults and frolicking children.

"The room is barren except for a computer hooked up to the Internet, which the Islamic Jihad commander said is used to plan rocket attacks on southern Israel. He pledged to keep up the violence despite the growing likelihood of a major Israeli military offensive in the Gaza Strip."
LA Times/, European militants now get training in Pakistan, 15 Oct 07"In Spain, radical Pakistani Imams and recruiters are muscling into predominantly North African mosques, a senior Spanish anti-terror official said.

"In Italy, Moroccan and Tunisian extremists communicate by Internet with extremists in Pakistan, an Italian anti-terrorism official said."
VOA, Last Year's Violence Hangs Over Eid Celebrations in Egypt, 12 Oct 07, "The events became public only after several eyewitnesses posted photos, videos and their own accounts of the violence on the Internet. The disclosures were met at first with disbelief, then with outrage. The government initially denied anything had happened, and accused one of the bloggers of lying. But the sheer number of eyewitness, some of whom shared their stories with a local television station, supported the blogger's account. Nobody denies it anymore", Algeria: army fights off 50 terrorists in Tizi Ouzou, 14 Oct 07 "A total of 300 cell phones chips were found with a terrorist who was among three ones killed by army forces in Tizi Ouzou on Monday, said the same source.", NEFA: Iraqi Insurgents Blame Online Antics by Al-Qaida Supporters for Harming "Obelisk" Network, 15 Oct 07 "Over the past year, prominent Internet chat forums which underpin the terrorist communications network known as "Obelisk" have increasingly become the stage for bitter infighting between Al-Qaida and other competing Islamic extremist groups, including the Palestinian Hamas movement, the Islamic Army in Iraq (IAI), the Mujahideen Army, the 1920 Revolution Brigades, "Iraqi Hamas" and--most recently--Asaeb al-Iraq al-Jihadiya." Commentary by Evan Kohlmann
NY Times/SF Gate, An Internet Jihad Sells Extremism to Viewers in the U.S., 15 Oct 07 "Mr. Khan, who was born in Saudi Arabia and grew up in Queens, is an unlikely foot soldier in what Al Qaeda calls the “Islamic jihadi media.” He has grown up in middle-class America and wrestles with his worried parents about his religious fervor. Yet he is stubborn. "I will do my best to speak the truth, and even if it annoys the disbelievers, the truth must be preached,2 Mr. Khan said in an interview." An interesting piece, with an overview of jihadi activities online to date. The focus is on Samir Khan, who is producing a blog from North Carolina. The article is not explicit as to which blog this is.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Guardian, Islamophonic, October 'Podcast of the year' according to the Association of Online Publishers: "This month we look at hojabis. How fine is the line between a woman wanting to look her best and wanting to arouse attention? Writer and agent provocateur Ali Eteraz has explored the allure of the hijab wearing woman and we have him on the line from Las Vegas.

"Model Mosque 2007 has been making headlines around the world for trying to find Britain's best mosque. Repeat after me: "I have eight beautiful mosques before me...but only one of you will become Britain's Next Top Mosque.""

Friday, October 12, 2007

Cairo Freeze, 12 Oct 07 Cartoon on the differences relating to the conclusion of Eid. Eid Mubarek to readers! [hat tip: Sandmonkey]
asharq alawsat, Al Qaeda’s Secret Correspondence, Part 2, 11 Oct 07 "Letters between members of Al Qaeda intercepted by the US Army and published on a website affiliated to the US Department of Defense shows a rare glimpse into the inner workings of the terrorist organization."
Guardian, World's future hinges on peace between faiths, Islamic scholars tell Pope, 12 Oct 07 "The letter, which is entitled A Common Word between Us and You, says: "Muslims and Christians together make up well over half of the world's population. Without peace and justice between these two religious communities, there can be no meaningful peace in the world. The future of the world depends on peace between Muslims and Christians.""
Press TV, Violence mars Iraq Eid celebration, 12 Oct 07 "In Baghdad, a suicide car bomb blast ripped through an internet cafe on Friday, killing eight innocent civilians and injuring another 25."
Telegraph, Terror suspect 'taunted police', 12 Oct 07 IT link to this story

Thursday, October 11, 2007, Internet bandits exploit Middle East themes in Ramadan attacks "Trend Micro's TrendLabs detected the novel use of local news and current affairs to undermine computer security during the Holy Month of Ramadan, it was announced today." Seems the Syrian Embassy in London was one of the targets.
ISN, US grapples with cybersecurity,10 Oct 07 "A cybersecurity conference in Washington discusses the latest intrusions into US government information systems as a key security official works to make the US 'the most dangerous' place for cyber criminals."
ISN, Combating al-Qaida, 10 Oct 07, "According to reports, the US lost a significant window on al-Qaida activities last month with the precipitous leak to the media of a 20-minute Osama Bin Laden video passed on to the US government by the private intelligence firm SITE, which has been monitoring jihadi media traffic.

"Firm founder Rita Katz told the Washington Post this week that the "[t]echniques that took years to develop are now ineffective and worthless." The video had yet to be loaded onto al-Qaida-linked sites when it appeared on Fox News, alerting the group that its internet network had been compromised." Also see Daily Kos, Who Leaked The bin Laden Tape?, 10 Oct 07
ITN, Muslim Barbie doll unveiled, 10 Oct 07 Well, hardly an appropriate headline for this news piece. There is an internet link to this, as the product is sold online (according to Reuters, Barbie inspires modest, Muslim alternative, 10 Oct 07), and there are apparently some competitors in the market too. The story has been released elsewhere, but this one comes with a video clip.

One of a number of Ramadan sites that have caught my attention this year is Ramadan Kareem (above). It's got some interesting resources on, and links to other materials - a real international flavour. I have also been visiting the Islam Online tent in Second Life, although it was rather quiet the other day when I flew in ... I also like listening to the Radio Ramadhan site (below), which is based in Glasgow, and has some lively programming, especially early evening.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Jawa Report, Wanted Terrorist Has California Website + E-mail the head of Ansar al Islam! (Bumped/Sticky), 10 Oct 07
AKI, Turkey: Fatwa allows Muslims to pray just three times a day, 10 Oct 07 "Jamal al-Banna, brother of the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, Hasan al-Banna, endorsed the Turkish move.

""Merging prayers has become a modern necessity," he told the al-Arabiya website. "In most cases, people do not always perform the five prayers on time due to the pressures of modern life.""
Guardian, Islamic scholars produce guide to praying at 17,000mph, 10 Oct 07 Also see, Live from space "Radio Televisyen Malaysia (RTM) will broadcast live, starting from today, an exclusive programme – Malaysia ke ISS – in conjunction with the National Space Mission.

"The 10-day special programme will be aired daily and will give viewers the latest news and live footage of the country's pioneer astronaut conducting research and experiments at the International Space Station (ISS)." Radio Televisyen Malaysia's website will probably be streaming this, although I couldn't find it on the main page.
AP, Iraqi Mullah Appeals Norway Deportation, 9 Oct 07, Net's latest celebrity — God 2.0, n.d., "Muxlim's founder, Mohamed El-Fatatry is the Muslim equivalent of Mark Zuckerberg, a fast-talking 22-year-old based in Finland with visions of tapping a largely untouched Muslim user base around the world. "If I wasn't a Mohamed, I would still want to target this market," he says. "There are 150 million Web-using Muslims that have yet to be unpacked. And the fact that I am a Muslim means I know what they need, that I have an edge."", Public Executions Signal New Wave of Suppression, 9 Oct 07, "Almost all of the executions have been carried out through public hangings. Videos of the whole process are then broadcast over the Internet for those who might have missed the show. The quality of many of these videos, and the restricted areas that they have been shot from, leaves almost no doubt that they have been filmed by state-authorized cameramen and released intentionally."

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

NRK/Norway Post, Mullah Krekar edits propaganda Web sites, 9 Oct 07 "Krekar refuses to comment on the web pages, but NRK claims to be able to document his involvement.", Egypt Islamic body okays "traveler's" marriage, 8 Oct 07 no doubt this discussion will run on the net. "Egypt's government body that oversees religious affairs has declared that mesyar marriage – a type of convenience marriage practiced in many Islamic countries – is legitimate, and can only be overruled by a country's head of state."
Piece by Robert Baer, whose film Cult of the Suicide Bomber was on Channel 4 (didn't see it, unfortunately). Times Online, There is no defence against these children of death, 8 Oct 07, "Across the Islamic world, even through the internet in some British Asian teenager’s bedroom, it is all too easy to join the cult of the bomber. You don’t need a gun or an RPG, just a keyboard and an ISP connection."

Monday, October 08, 2007

AFP/Times of India, Saudi Arabia sets up a fatwa site, 7 Oct 2007 "The highest religious authority in Saudi Arabia, where a strict version of sharia, or Islamic law, is applied, has launched an official website for fatwas, or religious edicts.

"The site ( aims at providing "quick access to fatwas on an official website," says a committee for research and edicts affiliated with the Council of Senior Ulema (Muslim scholars), which operates the site." There is a substantial archive of materials on this website, which will take some going through(!). The site content is alphabetized, searchable, and easy to navigate. There are colour scheme options too.
AFP, African readers get access to information via cellphones, 7 Oct 07
Daily Times, An end to military rule? —Ahmad Faruqui, 7 Oct 07"In many ways, the general’s dictatorship has been the wiliest in history. When he seized power, he figured it was best to dispense with the overt martial recipe that Generals Ayub, Yahya and Zia had dispensed. In the Internet Age, he preferred virtual martial law." Sun, Man convicted for a hoax in which he sent a fax warning of a terrorist attack, 6 Oct 07 "Lapoleon sent a fax via an e-mail provider on Feb. 16, 2006, to the Ottawa headquarters of Canada's anti-terrorism unit."
The Slate, Putting the Jew in Juneau, 5 Oct 07 "Bloggers respond to Al-Quds Day and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's call for a new Jewish state in Canada or Alaska."
YNet, We must get used to new reality where Google Earth uncovers our top secrets, 6 Oct 07 "From now on, when a member of the global Jihad network will be sent to gather intelligence information about a sensitive site in Israel, his masters would be able to provide him with exact coordinates to be entered into Google Earth's search window on his laptop – and that's it. The program will assist him in preparing the operation: It will show him the target from up close and enable him to identify a nearby building where he can observe the target, as well as escape routes." Opinion piece by Alex Fishman, Islam against citizenship in ‘hostile state’, 8 Oct 07 "Prominent Islamic cleric Dr Yusuf Al Qaradawi has said that Muslims accepting the nationality of non-Islamic countries in times of war is against the teachings and tenets of Islam." Also a brief reference to the issue of 'internet marriage'., Book Review: Islam and Gender Justice By Margot Badran, n.d. "Badran thus indicates the emergence of a growing breed of believing Muslim women scholar-activists in various countries today who envision Islam as a mandate for gender justice. She talks of how conferences, women's magazines and, especially the Internet, are helping to fashion this 'gender-talk' within the Islamic paradigm as a new global discourse, connecting such women in different parts of the world."
AP, Turkish Hackers Target Swedish Web Sites, 8 Oct 07 "Hackers in Turkey have attacked more than 5,000 Swedish Web sites in the past week, and at least some of the sabotage appears linked to Muslim anger over a Swedish newspaper drawing that depicted the Prophet Muhammad's head on a dog's body.

"Around 1,600 Web sites hosted by server-provider Proinet and 3,800 sites hosted by another company have been targeted, Proinet spokesman Kjetil Jensen said Sunday. Jensen said hackers, operating on a Turkish network, at times replaced files on the sites with messages."

Friday, October 05, 2007

Radio Netherlands, Salafism's simple message appeals to Muslim youth, 5 Oct 07 "Academic study of the subject, however, has developed rather slowly. Roel Meijer regards this as surprising, particularly since so much material about the movement can be accessed so easily on the Internet. Together with the Leiden Institute for the Study of Islam in the Modern World (ISIM), he organised a conference at which the leading international researchers into Salafism could exchange views."
Foroyaa Newspaper (Serrekunda)/All Africa, Gambia: Journalists Trained for Broader Scopes On Internet Use, 5 Oct 07 "Sukai Bojang, the Secretary General of Gambia National Commission for UNESCO (NATCOM), in her opening remarks stated that the training seminar is being funded by ISESCO and organised by the Gambia National Commission for UNESCO.

"She added that ISESCO is committed to supporting member countries in their capacity building programme in the fields of education, the sciences, culture and communication. She noted that the organisation has been especially supportive in the training of Arabic/Islamic teachers and the fight against illiteracy. She said ISESCO provided support to the television services of the Gambia Radio and Television Services (GRTS) in the procurement of equipment.

"She told participants that ISESCO's action plan for 2007 to 2009, in addition to human resource development is to highlight the Islamic civilisation's active part in the knowledge fields. Adding that redressing the image of Islam and Muslims in the West and affording the member states access to the information and knowledge in our society are part of their focus."

BBC News, Hope flowers for West Bank school, 4 Oct 07 non-tech, but it does link to the Hope Flowers School website, Islamic Rage: Why a Cartoon in Bangladesh Leads to Killing of Christians in Nigeria, 3 Oct 07, "The General Secretary of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Mr Samuel Salifu, said:"…they (Muslims) saw a cartoon on the internet and they discovered that this cartoon was drawn by a 20-year-old Muslim boy from Bangladesh and they decided to visit their anger on innocent Christians and their churches." Salifu Continued: "They cannot control their anger, they take knives and slaughter. When you tell them what they are doing is wrong, they will turn round and start to kill."" Commentary by Alamgir Hussain. Also see the related discussion on:, Bangladesh: Yet another Muhammed cartoon controversy
Ha'aretz, Arab - Speak Arabic, 5 Oct 07 "Al-Qaida is now posing a challenge to the nation state - whether Syrian, Algerian or similar. Its slogan is wataniya = wathniya (nation state = paganism), and it expresses a vision in which the Islamic world returns to the way it was divided before the 20th century. Al-Qaida makes a point to refer to the area of Greater Syria (Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Palestine) as "al-Sham."" Includes reference to the internet in the article, in terms of how these ideas are being circulated.
Al-Ahram Weekly Online, Divergent voices, 4-10 October 2007 commentary by Seif Abdel-Fattah on fatwa/ijtihad issues, which have a great relevance when exploring Islaml in cyberspace. I am presently (re-)editing my chapter on this issue for the next book. Prof. Abdel-Fattah notes: "Questioning over issues, confusion over fatwas, and confusing fatwas have all led to the appearance of instant fatwas and fatwas on the Internet and satellite channels. The wide-scale formulation of fatwas has become a requisite of all communication channels. This has led to a chaos of fatwas, particularly with regard to the nation's issues. Instant fatwas are produced and simultaneously consumed, and fatwas are issued on everything. The arena of fatwas has become one of the most important means of observing the shortcomings of the Muslim mind in thinking, planning, influencing and educating." Well, I wouldn't have put it quite like that, but agree with the point about chaos ...

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Zone-H, Hands-on Hacking seminars in Arabic countries, 3 Oct 07 "Zone-H is developing it's activities to another milestone! On 3rd ICT Security forum in Damascus, where Zone-H founder Roberto Preatoni held a speech about future threats in the IT security field, he also announced a new Arabic edition of Zone-H."

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

BBC TV, Single British, 3 Oct 07, "In a documentary for Ramadan, Yara El-Sherbini investigates the new and growing trend of internet introduction agencies.

"Adeem Younis, a West Yorkshire Muslim businessman, started in the year 2000. His website is increasingly used by young British Muslim professionals keen to find a marriage partner of their own religious faith but, just as crucially, from their own Western culture." Sounds interesting. I am presently working on material this subject again for my next book.
asharq alawsat, The Killing of Abu al Qaqaa, 3 Oct 07 "It is most likely that those who met Abu al Qaqaa did not know that the Sheikh with the thick beard was just an intelligence officer who was sent to them, delivered sermons, pushed them towards jihad, and presented them to other departments responsible for training and sending them to war. Anyone who saw him give his sermons in the mosque thought that he was a real Islamist and believed that a network called Ghuraba al Sham is a jihadist movement. Thousands of young Arabs were deceived, who passed through Aleppo and elsewhere and were finally killed or arrested in Iraq and Lebanon. Everyone believed that Ghuraba al Sham and Abu al Qaqaa are associated with Al Qaeda, fighting in the name of Islam, whilst the recruits were unaware that they were mere soldiers of intelligence brigades." This is an interesting commentary by al-Arabiyya's Abdul Rahman Al-Rashed.
Washington Times, Pentagon observes Muslim holy month, 3 Oct 07
Washington Post, Fatah cops cruise Ramadan fast lane, 3 Oct 07 "A new Palestinian police unit is patrolling the streets of Ramallah to ensure Palestinians don't violate the Ramadan daily fast, an apparent bid by the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority to compete with Hamas Islamists in the Gaza Strip." Non-tech report on the shurtat el-adab or 'ethics police'

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

asharq alawsat, Saudi Arabia: Calls Against Imams Politicizing Prayer, 2 Oct 07 "Clerics in Saudi Arabia have warned against the exploitation of Dua al Qunut (Prayer recited during Tarawih prayers in Ramadan) for political ends. Some sheikhs and imams in mosques are manipulating the platform provided by these prayers to launch political rants. The calls come as a reaction against the tremendous amount of attention afforded to political issues in the region by Saudi imams and preachers." Some of these sermons end up online..., Biggest Muslim congregation after Mecca and Medina in India, 2 Oct 07 "The organisers expect nearly 700,000 Muslims to attend the event known as 'Lailathul Qadr' in Swalath Nagar in Muslim dominated district of Malappuram.", Islamic rock star launches Darfur appeal "Sami Yusuf, who visited the war-torn region of western Sudan last week, said he wanted to highlight the human suffering he witnessed." More details at
UPI, Jihadis using Web-based traffic cameras, 2 Oct 07 "Jordanian analyst and observer of Islamic extremist cyber-tactics Abdul Hameed Bakier writes about the development in this week’s Jamestown Foundation’s Terrorism Monitor." This refers to GIMF Develops Defensive and Offensive Software for Jihadi Operations, in Jamestown Foundation’s Terrorism Monitor, Volume 5, Issue 18 (September 27, 2007)|
Canadian Press, Afghan women get education, still threatened with violence from Taliban, 2 October 2007 "The Canadian Provincial Reconstruction Team in Kandahar has donated computer equipment and the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology offers online courses via the Internet."

There's a new study of Arabic language e-media, in relation to human rights (info acquired via The English language report is available through, Electronic Media and Human Rights This links to a chapter listing. Background information is here

Also see the Arabic version:
الإعلام الإليكتروني وحقوق الإ

I plan to refer to this in future writings, as it appears to be extremely comprehensive. Unfortunately, there is no pdf available, apparently (at present). Nice cover ...
Telegraph, Islamists 'urge young Muslims to use violence', 2 Oct 07 discussion of, and link to, a BBC1 Panorama programme on Hizb ut-Tahrir.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Reuters Africa, Laughs, lectures and reflection--It's Ramadan TV, 1 Oct 07 "If you're seeing women drivers in a futuristic Riyadh, laughing at the antics of Saudi bumpkins abroad or being reprimanded for using English slang in Arabic then you must be watching Ramadan TV in Saudi Arabia."
AP/Time, U.S. Offers $200,000 to Catch Taliban, 1 Oct 07
Ha'aretz, Russian Neo-Nazis follow tactics of Al-Qaeda, 1 Oct 07 "The scene is depressingly familiar in the post-9/11 era. Two terrified victims kneeling with their hands tied behind their backs as a masked thug menaces them with a sword. The hostages are forced to spout propaganda, which in the end doesn't save them from a grisly, on-camera death. But in a video released last month, the killers are not the followers of Al-Qaida, but Russian neo-Nazis taking a page out of the terrorists' handbook."
Deutsche Welle, EU Takes Battle Against Terrorism Online, 1 Oct 07 "EU interior ministers are debating tools in the fight against terrorism with special emphasis on shoring up online security borders by monitoring and blocking Web sites to foil the planning of attacks on the Internet.", Jakarta to host blogger bash in October, 1 Oct 07 "A popular ustadz (Islamic preacher) got angry and threatened via email to report a blogger in Yogyakarta to police for defaming Islamic preachers.

"The blogger promptly retracted his article titled Ustadz Komersial (commercial preacher). Dozens of bloggers wrote in, mostly deploring the arrogance of the ustadz."
Middle East Times, Al Qaeda 'poet' jailed in Jordan, 1 Oct 07 " A military court Monday sentenced to 18 months in jail a Jordanian man dubbed the "poet of Al Qaeda" for libel against King Abdullah II on the Internet, a judicial source said.

""The accused, Mahmoud Zuhairi, who is known as the 'poet of Al Qaeda,' slandered the king in a poem posted on the Internet, in which he also showered Al Qaeda with praise," the source from the state security court said."