The diary of a Saudi man, currently living in the United Kingdom, where the Religious Police no longer trouble him for the moment.

In Memory of the lives of 15 Makkah Schoolgirls, lost when their school burnt down on Monday, 11th March, 2002. The Religious Police would not allow them to leave the building, nor allow the Firemen to enter.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Terrorist sympathizers and Dissidents... 

...are not necessarily the same thing.

Omar Bakri Mohammed is a terrorist sympathizer. He is quoted as saying that "he would never warn police if he learned of an impending suicide bomber attack by fellow Muslims". Personally, I'd handcuff him to a seat on a Circle Line underground train, travelling round and round for 18 hours a day, and then see how he felt about the issue. The ever-tolerant Brits are now discussing whether they they can stop him returning to the UK from Lebanon. It seems he has heart problems.....

Bakri to have heart op on NHS

.....and would prefer to have his heart surgery in St Thomas's Hospital, London. I don't blame him. The heart surgeons at St Thom's may be Godless infidels, but they do a neat angioplasty, they're certainly better than the Muslim guys in Beirut, and they don't take a prayer break in the middle, leaving your chest cavity open to the elements. Not only that, but it's free, on the National Health Service. And even better, depending on where your bed is, you get a great view of The London Eye / Houses of Parliament / Lambeth Palace (home of the head of the Church of England) so you can dream about a really cool terrorist outrage.
But wait; there's more. It seems that the British Welfare State has been subsidizing him all along. I know the Brits pay a retainer to the "Poet Laureate" and the "Master of the Queen's Music", but I didn't realize there was an official "Jihadi.to the Court of St. James".

He receives £331.28 a month in incapacity benefit and £183.30 a month in disability living allowance because of a leg injury he suffered in his teens.
Both payments will continue for at least six months while he is abroad, as long as he plans to return, as will the housing benefit on his home in Edmonton, north London, and his council tax benefit.
His wife, who remains in Britain with their seven children, can also continue to claim a benefits package thought to be worth at least £1,300 a month. Bakri drives a Toyota people carrier worth £30,000, paid for under a scheme called Motability.

Beats the heck out of passing the skullcap round for alms in some rat-infested mosque in a war-ravaged suburb of Beirut. He'll be back, if they let him.

Meanwhile, the case of Mohammad Al-Masari is different. In 1996 he was one of a number of academics who set up an opposition movement, certainly peaceful at the time, within Saudi Arabia. Some of them were imprisoned, whilst he managed to escape to Britain, where he has remained ever since. However to the best of my knowledge he has not broken any laws in Britain, and is not thought to be among the 10 "undesirable foreigners" detained by the British Government today.

The Saudi Government has been moving heaven and earth to get him repatriated ever since 1996. They've made various murky allegations against him, including terrorism. Four Saudis who confessed on TV to a Riyadh car-bomb attack in 1996 said that they were "influenced" by Mr Al-Masari, whatever that is supposed to mean. Now anyone familiar with the saga of the so-called "booze-bombers" will know how much reliance to place on a Saudi TV confession. In that case, the alleged "booze-bombers"'s said in an insincere monotone that they planted the various car bombs, which was patent nonsense, and that their "controllers" were two highly respected British Embassy diplomats, which was completely ridiculous. So the only people who believe Saudi "TV Confessions" are the same people who believe that Soap Operas are real.

The Saudi Government won't let this one go, and the London Bombings is a perfect opportunity to smear Mr Al-Masari by association.

Turki Blasts Britain on Saudi Dissidents Issue

Prince Turki Al-Faisal, a former chief of Saudi intelligence, told The Times he had been “going round in circles” with British authorities over the threat posed by Saudi dissidents in Britain.

The reason he's been "going round in circles" is that the British Government has no trust in the Saudi legal system or their assertion that he is a terrorist, and know exactly how he would be treated if he were returned. (The Saudi legal system is completely secret, and does not meet Western standard of human rights or legal practice in virtually any respect).

There is a world of difference between a "dissident" and a terrorist. Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Ghandi were very renowned "dissidents" but they were certainly not terrorists. Now I have no knowledge of what Mr Al-Masari has been up to since he came to London, but for me it would take more than the word of someone like Prince Turki to convince me that he had any terror connection. I do have enough faith in the British legal sytem to believe that if he were were a threat, then they would have prosecuted him through due process of law. And if Saudi Arabia had a proper legal system, and had evidence against him, then they could have presented that evidence in the UK and had him extradited to face a fair and open trial in Riyadh. However the first didn't happen and the second is very unlikely.

It therefore appears to me that the Saudi Government's constant whining about this subject is just a cynical use of the "terrorism" label to attempt to get hold of, and quietly dispose of, a constant thorn in their side.

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