Oh Manchester …

Written By: - Date published: 2:19 pm, May 23rd, 2017 - 242 comments
Categories: democracy under attack, International, uk politics - Tags:

Terrible news from Manchester where it appears an explosion may have killed at least 19 people and injured many more.

The Guardian’s live feed is here.  The assailants or their motivation are not known.

This post will be updated as more news comes in.

Update:

Police have confirmed that 22 are dead and at least 60 injured.

The explosion was the work they believe of a single suicide bomber who used bolts and nuts as shrapnel.

The major parties have suspended campaigning.

Update2:

Salman Abedi was named by police as the suspected suicide bomber who killed 22 people and injured 59 at Manchester Arena on Monday night.  He was born in Manchester from a family of Libyan origin.

So far three victims have been named, Saffie Rose Roussos aged 8, Georgina Callander and John Atkinson, 28.

Update3:

A beautiful response from a local.

242 comments on “Oh Manchester …”

  1. Carolyn_nth 1

    Heartbreaking. I’ve had short stays in Manchester a few times. Liked the vibe there.

  2. ianmac 2

    The flow-on effect will be a great reluctance for people to meet in stadiums for concerts or for sport. Bugger!

  3. Glenn 3

    The flow on effect may make undecided voters vote for “Strong and Stable” rather than “For the many not the few” which would be a great shame.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.1

      Unfortunately true.

      Thing is that having a Left government is likely to make such attacks happen less because they’re less likely to be imperialistic.

      • This may seem like common sense to left secularists like ourselves. However you’d have to agree that Sweden and Denmark are two of the least imperialistic countries in the entire world, and certainly among the most generous in their treatment of refugees. And yet…

      • Richard McGrath 3.1.2

        You mean that like Obama, leftist governments are more likely to suck up to the despotic regimes such as Saudi Arabia and Iran, that sponsor terrorism?

        • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.2.1

          🙄

          As has been pointed out elsewhere on this page, the British government negotiates with terrorists. That isn’t “sucking up”, it’s the fact that “jaw-jaw is better than war-war”.

          You want an example of sucking up? Try offering multi-million-dollar bribes in the form of sheep.

    • Carolyn_nth 3.2

      Actually. A vigil in Manchester was represented last night with this statement:

      “We are the many, they are the few.”

      As reported in an RNZ article:

      A minute’s silence was held as crowds spilled out on to nearby roads.

      Lord mayor of Manchester Eddy Newman began the vigil by thanking emergency services, prompting huge applause.

      “The people of Manchester will remember the victims forever and we will defy the terrorists by working together to create cohesive, diverse communities that are stronger together,” he said.

      “We are the many, they are the few.”

  4. The Fairy Godmother 4

    Is it just a coincidence that the media were misrepresenting Jeremy Corban as supporting the IRA yesterday and now this happens. Hopefully it was.

    • TootingPopularFront 4.1

      I hope that this is a coincidence too, Jeremy Corbyn was campaigning in the North West, I saw crowd photos from Tranmere Rovers’ ground a few days ago…cui bono?

  5. millsy 5

    Starting to wonder if this was a false flag bombing. Now May can looking all defiant and prime ministerial and Corbyn can be portrayed as soft and weak on security.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      That is the scary thought about this.

    • Wainwright 5.2

      Well it didn’t take too long for the baseless conspiracies to start. How about waiting for any shred of evidence for this instead of exploiting the deaths of young people to push your political barrow? It’s as disgusting when the right do it to advocate for ‘anti-terrorist’ repression as it is when ‘we’ do it to make ourselves feel clever.

      • Adrian 5.2.1

        In the highly unlikely scenario that it was a false flag event there would not be any evidence ” found”. The sort of people capable of such a cynical act are very skilful I imagine, very good at covering tracks etc. The Rainbow Warrior perpetrators unestimated ordinary NZers nosiness and eye for seeing something that’s not quite right or they would have all gotten away.
        But then again…May in disarray , lefty Corbyn getting traction…” I say old boy, what could one possibly do?”

      • Anne 5.2.2

        Wainwright… just because someone introduces an hypothesis that doesn’t make it a “conspiracy theory”. The police do it all the time when investigating crime. They look at all the hypothetical possibilities and eliminate them one by one until there’s only one left. Well, that’s the theory even if it doesn’t always work out in practice.

        The timing of this event – given that Labour and Corbyn appear to have suddenly started to surge in the polls – caused me to contemplate the same possibility as The Fairy Godmother. At this point in time it would seem implausible, but it’s not a crime to entertain such a scenario.

        • In Vino 5.2.2.1

          Well said, Anne.
          Some people are over-eagerly picking upon what they want to see as over-reactions. Their hidden agenda becomes overt.

          • Anne 5.2.2.1.1

            Thanks In Vino. I don’t think anyone here is seriously contemplating a Tory plot in order to gain more votes. But the possibility of some wrong headed right wing individuals – or an individual – trying to use the imminent election as a focal point for causing major upheavals in the name of some lunatic agenda is not an uncommon eventuality these days.

    • James 5.3

      Ffs. What the hell are you on. A false flag operation?

      Some people amaze me with their stupidity.

      • bwaghorn 5.3.1

        not often i agree with you james but some of the fools here need to give themselves a good uppercut

        • In Vino 5.3.1.1

          I also agree with James, with the proviso that he is one of the people who amaze me.

      • Draco T Bastard 5.3.2

        False flag operations have been done for centuries by governments. What makes you think that these things have changed?

        • Psycho Milt 5.3.2.1

          Hmm, well, let’s see – first up, finding a Tory supporter willing to be a suicide bomber for the sake of Teresa May’s election campaign. Next up, unlikelihood of being able to maintain secrecy followed by the complete and final destruction of the Conservative Party once it was revealed they’d set off a nail bomb at a concert and murdered a bunch of teenage girls and their parents in the interests of a bit of leverage in an election campaign, followed by the fact that it would be an incredibly stupid way of possibly gaining a slight propaganda advantage, no doubt followed by many others if someone was willing to put more than a couple of minutes thought into refuting obviously moronic conspiracy theories.

          • Draco T Bastard 5.3.2.1.1

            Hmm, well, let’s see – first up, finding a Tory supporter willing to be a suicide bomber for the sake of Teresa May’s election campaign.

            Why would they want to find a Tory per se?
            Much easier to find someone who’s already radicalised against the system.

            Next up, unlikelihood of being able to maintain secrecy followed by the complete and final destruction of the Conservative Party once it was revealed they’d set off a nail bomb…

            Doesn’t seem to have hurt them so far.

            (6) The British government admits that – between 1946 and 1948 – it bombed 5 ships carrying Jews attempting to flee the Holocaust to seek safety in Palestine, set up a fake group called “Defenders of Arab Palestine”, and then had the psuedo-group falsely claim responsibility for the bombings (and see this, this and this).

            no doubt followed by many others if someone was willing to put more than a couple of minutes thought into refuting obviously moronic conspiracy theories.

            And they’d find that really easy to do because everyone’s just going to believe that it’s all a ‘conspiracy theory.’ Probably why the CIA started using the term to discredit people who questioned them.

            • DoublePlusGood 5.3.2.1.1.1

              Even easier is using intelligence that suggests an attack on around day X and calling an early election for a few weeks after day X.

            • Psycho Milt 5.3.2.1.1.2

              Why would they want to find a Tory per se?
              Much easier to find someone who’s already radicalised against the system.

              A Muslim religious fascist, in other words. It’s pretty obvious why you hate people referring to Occam’s razor.

              • In Vino

                Get over yourself, PM. It was about 30 years I think before it was revealed how the USA staged the fake Tonkin Gulf incident. People have every right to be suspicious nowadays, so stop babbling about Occam. Occam is not always right.

                • Be as suspicious as you like, but have some rational basis for it.

                  Occam may not be always right, but if there are two theories and one of them is basically the first one but with a whole of speculation added to it, you should be demanding some pretty good reasons why the second one should be given credence over the first one.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Using Occam’s Razor as an argument is just as bad as using Godwin’s Law. It carries no inherent argument and is nothing more than a blase dismissal of valid concerns and observations.

                Do you think that the guy who carried out the attacks in Norway was a ‘Muslim religious fascist’ or just radicalised against the system?

                • See my comment at 10:22 immediately above. It’s wrong to say Occam’s Razor has no value in comparing competing explanations of an event.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    You still provided no argument – just more worthless speculation.

                    Just because it’s complicated doesn’t mean that someone won’t do it especially if that complication makes it less likely to be found.

                    As i said, Occam’s Razor and Gowins Law are nothing but blase dismissal of points which you don’t like.

            • Infused 5.3.2.1.1.3

              You’ve confirmed you’re retarded

              • Draco T Bastard

                No, I’ve placed history into the argument. Neither PM nor you nor anyone else can refute that False Flag operations happen and that questioning if this one is or not is valid.

      • reason 5.3.3

        They have peddled all sorts of lies…. and killed or ruined the lives of literally millions millions ….. on a near constant basis ….. and all on purpose.

        “the big powers which have driven a series of ‘regime change’ operations in the Middle East region, all on false pretexts, over the past 15 years”.http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-dirty-war-on-syria/5491859

        Only idiots would disregard that ……….. https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/dec/04/britain-up-to-neck-in-us-dirty-wars-on-terror

        And never mind the fact that Bush & Blair …… were the biggest recruiters to the cause of radical Islam ….

        Telling lies of mass deception and speaking the language of bloodthirsty christian crusaders ……as they starved, bombed, poisoned invaded and generally ruined Iraq …… along with various levels of violence and destruction towards Libya, Afghanistan, Pakistan, yemen …… and of course Syria.

        “Britain is backing a Saudi invasion of Yemen that has cost thousands of innocent lives. It is providing advanced weaponry to the Saudis, training their military and has soldiers embedded with them, helping with targeting of air strikes.”http://www.middleeasteye.net/columns/britains-century-long-war-yemen-809826615

        Organic blow back ….. or a nutter helped with his powerful suicide bomb is a very valid question ……

        There are obvious motives for both……. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/the-dirty-war-torture-and-mutilation-used-on-iraqi-insurgents-328158.html

        Bad leaders ………………… bad world .

        Innocent people always pay

      • Tanz 5.3.4

        Yes, false flag, what utter nonsense. It’s radical Islam, in all its glory, the religion of
        ‘peace’, the elephant in the room. But of course, the left won’t call a spade a spade, even when innocent kids are now being killed. What will it actually take before the left drop their idiocy and PCness, and realise that radical Islam is at war with the West, it’s not about their rights to mosques and burkas, it’s about the right to life for innocent people of the West. FFS, wake up, or is it okay to kill and maim for the sake of a religion in such a late, so called civilized era. But the left defends eveyrthing Islam believes, even when it means the loss of woman’s and gay rights. How hypocritical is that? One leftie sacred cow trumps another. As long as the left is in charge in Western countries, we are in real danger. Trump is a gleaming hope in a dark horizon, he gets it.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 5.3.4.1

          Yawn. It isn’t left wingers who point out that your bullshit is bullshit: it’s criminologists, you know, the ones who actually do the hard work, rather than ignorantly running their mouths on blogs.

          Rhinocrates posted some information on the subject yesterday: don’t read it, you are incapable of grasping it anyway.

          Now go back to spewing your hatred all over yourself.

    • joe90 5.4

      Always the prick, millsy.

      Open mike 02/09/2014

    • DoublePlusGood 5.5

      This would be the exact time in which one would take place. Hopefully that can be ruled out as the investigation proceeds.

    • Starting to wonder if this was a false flag bombing.

      Starting to wonder if millsy can manage rational thought at any level.

      • In Vino 5.6.1

        Why, are you especially good at it, PM?

        • Psycho Milt 5.6.1.1

          How good at would do you have to be to notice how unlikely a false flag attack is in this case? Some people never met a conspiracy theory they didn’t like.

          • In Vino 5.6.1.1.1

            I bet that is what they said straight after Hitler’s team burnt the Reichstag.

            • Psycho Milt 5.6.1.1.1.1

              Hilarious you should call on the Reichstag fire as evidence.

              • In Vino

                No – the false flag accusation would have been catered for in advance and laughed to scorn. You always seem ill-disposed to false flag suggestions…

                • Muttonbird

                  Psycho Milt seems to be a solid socially conscious leftie like the rest of us but has a thing about muslims. Hates them, and feels further Western intervention in the region is the only way forward despite the spreading terrorism and violence suggesting otherwise.

                  • Wrong. Have lived among Muslims and never hated any of them. Certainly hate Muslim fascists though, not to mention Islam.

                    • Muttonbird

                      ‘Some of my best friends are muslims’. Is that the line you’re going to take?

                    • None of my best friends are Muslims. Your inability to grasp an argument isn’t my problem.

                    • Muttonbird

                      Yawn. I’ve grasped the argument alright after reading over the last couple of years your pro-interventionist view of the middle east. What I can’t work out is that it differs so much from your more socially conscious views.

                      I do understand your dislike of autocratic power in the middle east (even though you probably don’t have the same issue with China), but find your endorsement of US military action to smash it somewhat stupid. Particularly at it has shown to be more damaging than any other solution since the middle ages.

                    • See, there it is again. You fondly imagine you’ve read comments from me endorsing US military action to smash autocratic power in the Middle East, not that you’ll be able to find any since I can’t picture myself writing such comments (not least because the US government is actually very fond of autocratic power in the Middle East, as long as the autocrats back US interests). Your made-up assessments of what I think about anything are of consequence only to yourself.

                • You always seem ill-disposed to false flag suggestions…

                  I’m always ill-disposed to ludicrous bullshit false flag suggestions, yes.

                  And I called your reliance on the Reichstag fire as an example of a false flag attack “hilarious” because there’s a total of 0 evidence for it being a false flag attack, despite the fervent belief in it.

                  • In Vino

                    Guy Fawkes was set up too. Just adding fuel to fire..

                  • The evidence is that it was a genuine attempt not a false flag.

                    • In Vino

                      The evidence is not conclusive.
                      Nazis were good at false flag. (See invasion of Poland, Polish ‘provocation’.)

                    • Rubbish – you’ve just disrespected a brave person by saying they don’t exist look it up.

                    • In Vino

                      Did I say someone does not exist? Or are comments no longer in sequence?

                    • It wasn’t a false flag someone really did try to burn it down he wasn’t a natzzi he opposed them. Read up about it and learn.

                    • In Vino

                      Studied it all many years ago. As I remember, one of the theories was that the poor guy was not actually very bright, and had been put up to it. Funnily enough, I remember reading a similar theory about Guydo Fawkes.

                  • RedLogix

                    Still with the UK Police reporting that they are constantly investigating and watching a rather long list of ‘people of interest’ (apparently this Abed was already known to them), and arresting about one person a day in connection with one plot or another … you have to acknowledge just how easy it would be for someone senior to quietly arrange to ‘let one slip through’.

                    When your opponent always seems to get lucky at just the right moment it always does start raising suspicions. Most likely the Police just didn’t get to this guy in time; with a small non-zero chance someone slowed them up.

                    Chance of us ever knowing the truth … zero,

    • mauī 5.7

      Not outside the realms of possiblilty two weeks out from an election.

    • DS 5.8

      Oh good grief.

      I hate UK Tories as much as the next Lefty, but this sort of unfounded conspiracy nonsense gives us a bad name.

      If you absolutely have to drag politics into it, more likely is that this is an Islamic Terrorist who thinks a Tory Government would radicalise the moderates (cue Four Lions) more than Labour. Nothing to do with Establishment scheming.

  6. mary_a 6

    Very tragic. My thoughts are with the victims, their families and friends. They are what’s important at the moment. The time for questions will come later.

  7. Bearded Git 7

    22 dead now….police say just one man involved.

  8. David Mac 8

    12-16 year old girls, the centre of joy for Mums and Dads, Grandparents, Siblings and first boyfriends. I’m so very sad for these people, they all died a little bit today. I’m so very sorry. 50 injured! Many of these people will have lumps of hardware embedded in their bodies, limbs sliced off by spinning bolts etc.

    We’ve been doing things like this to each other since we started walking upright. Women should be the boss of everything. They don’t kill each other’s babies.

  9. feijoa 9

    Er-hem,, Margaret Thatcher…., went off to kill the Argies

    • David Mac 9.1

      I think the girls might still duke up with those that step into the ring, Maggie didn’t target a concert by a Disney star or collaterally damage the legs off a Syrian child.

      • David Mac 9.1.1

        Also, Maggie was one voice amongst a mass of blokes. The Generals, the advisors, they should all be women.

        Let the Sheilas have a go, us blokes have done a piss poor job.

        [Cutting out the infantile misogyny any time really soon would be a very good idea] – Bill

        • David Mac 9.1.1.1

          I’m sorry Bill, it wasn’t my intention to offend you.

          [Offending me is neither here nor there. Leave out the misogyny.] – Bill

        • weka 9.1.1.2

          where’s the misogyny?

          • David Mac 9.1.1.2.1

            I’m not sure, if I knew I’d pull my head in.

            I believe that we are genetically engineered differently. It worked ok 1000 years ago. Women made home, males hunted and gathered.

            Now, the earth is our home, I think women should be making home eg: running the planet.

            I don’t understand why this opinion is offensive Bill, could you clarify the situation for me please?

            • Draco T Bastard 9.1.1.2.1.1

              It worked ok 1000 years ago. Women made home, males hunted and gathered.

              Except that research is showing that to be a load of bollocks when we were actually hunter-gatherers, i.e, considerably more than 1000 years. Both men and women hunted.

              • David Mac

                Babies need breasts bro.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  1. As hunter-gatherers we actually worked a hell of a lot less than we do as farmers
                  2. They don’t need them 24/7

                  • weka

                    not all women in hunter gatherer tribes are breastfeeding either. The older the child the more able the woman to take part in hunting/gathering. Plus women sharing breastfeeding.

            • Bill 9.1.1.2.1.2

              Briefly.

              You ‘disappeared’ and/or diminished those you were speaking of in your original comment.

              Girls are pre-pubescent – are children. Young women as well as girls died. 16 year olds are not children – they are teenagers or young women. They also had their own sense of self and self worth – whereas your comment defined them solely through the lens of others (the grandparent, boyfriend etc).

              “Sheilas.” That meant to be a positive piece of terminology?

              Anyway. Didn’t notice your comment until now, and you asked.

              • David Mac

                Hi Bill, thanks for clearing that up, I’ll need to be more careful. I fear I might be bumbling through every day offending every person I meet.

    • [deleted]

      [Any more unwarranted comments like that one and you’re off nursing a ban.] – Bill

      • Psycho Milt 9.2.1

        The unrelenting what-aboutery of “This government fought some military campaign I disagreed with, therefore I’m going to bring it up on this thread about some fascist nutcase murdering a bunch of people” tends to get quite annoying, particularly when it’s done as fascist apologia. Apologies for the lack of context in the original comment.

  10. mac1 10

    I heard on the radio an English voice saying that he could not understand how one human being could do this to another. That’s a question that needs answering.

    From this side of the world we know that human beings are blowing innocent civilians to bits with his and allied governments ‘ direct involvement and this is very possibly the reason why such an event took place in Manchester.

    Poor Manchester, a town with a proud history of opposition to the oppression of slavery, in England and in America.

    • …this is very possibly the reason why such an event took place in Manchester.

      Could you explain the reasoning by which someone who isn’t a murderous religious fascist gets from your hand-wringing about military conflicts to “So this means I have to make a home-made shrapnel bomb and kill the maximum number of teenage girls possible?” Because I’m not seeing it.

      • Bill 10.1.1

        Comment deleted because I can’t be bothered engaging with your hatred and bigotry.

        Replacement comment.

        Suffice to say that there are many reasons an individual could get it into their head to kill a lot of people.

        • mac1 10.1.1.1

          “Hand-wringing about military conflicts”. Actually, you understate my feelings on this subject. Which is what I suspect others at the receiving end of the violence of military conflicts have also had happen to them.

          Psycho Milt, I did say that this is a question that needs answering, and there is more than ‘murderous religious fascist’ to meet that as an answer, though that is one possibility.

          We’ll never see an end to this until we have an answer why……. and maybe not even then.

        • Psycho Milt 10.1.1.2

          As witnessed by the many deliberate massacres of crowds of ordinary people going about their business that aren’t carried out by religious fascists, maybe?

          • One Anonymous Bloke 10.1.1.2.1

            A list of recent mass shootings in the USA perhaps?

            • Psycho Milt 10.1.1.2.1.1

              The USA is a very, very odd country.

              EDIT: and it’s not obvious that any of its mass murderers followed a process of reasoning from hand-wringing about military conflicts to deciding lots of random passers-by needed to snuff it.

            • Muttonbird 10.1.1.2.1.2

              And Breivik of course. That was purely political. A RWNJ against innocent kids.

          • In Vino 10.1.1.2.2

            Um, try Drone attacks in Yemen, Afghanistan, Pakistan, on wedding crowds, etc…

            Oh, sorry – maybe the guiders of those drones are in fact Christian religious fanatics. The USA seems to have plenty of them. In which case you are right. Religious fanatics are the problem…

            • Psycho Milt 10.1.1.2.2.1

              You really need to look up the term “false equivalence.”

              • Ed

                Why?
                Both sets of killings seem utterly atrocious.

                • In Vino

                  I looked up the term many years ago, and concluded that it is a term used by people who find comparisons odious. The sort of people who arrogantly tell other people that they need to look things up.

                  • In Vino

                    Another way you annoy me, PM. At this appropriate moment you make a big thing about the killing of innocent teenage girls. Do you think that no innocent teenage girls have ever been killed off or badly hurt by all the drone strikes, cluster bombs and depleted uranium stuff with which we afflict certain countries? You either ignore them, or quietly dismiss them as collateral damage, even though it is undeniable than their numbers hugely exceed the number of teenage girls you rush to lament so loudly at this moment. Numbers lost to terrorism in the West are peanuts to the numbers lost to our military exploits elsewhere over the years.

                    • And there’s the false equivalence writ large. Forget drone strikes – the biggest targeting of civilians by western democracies took place in WW2 and killed upwards of half a million of them in Germany alone, of which the majority were women, children and the elderly, for obvious reasons. And yet, even in that worst-case scenario of wholesale mass slaughter of innocent civilians, pretty much none of the people involved stooped to the level of these religious fascists, ie it’s not known that any of them sat down to consider how they could best kill the maximum number of civilians at once. That’s the basic tactical consideration of the fascists carrying out these attacks, and your attempts to equate them with people who end up kiling civilians while trying to fight fascism are gratuitously offensive.

                    • In Vino

                      Bollocks. They knew bloody well who would die when they dropped those bombs on Cologne, Hamburg, Berlin, and Dresden. The false equivalence is you pretending that a modern religious zealot suicide bomber is worse. Totaler Krieg!

                    • It’s much worse. The guys dropping bombs on Germany didn’t get much choice about fighting in a war, it was imposed on them. Fascist fuckwit who killed all these people had nothing imposed on him, he just decided his ideology meant he had to go out and kill as many innocent civilians as he could. That’s so much worse it’s not funny – your approach equates Les Munro and Heinrich Himmler, both of whom were responsible for killing civilians but who have a moral gulf between them.

                    • Bill

                      You’re obviously privy to some info or evidence that no-one else is, PM. Care to share?

                    • In Vino

                      Total war is an absolute, PM. We committed to it back in WW2 as you quoted. Suicide bombers commit to it now. For a reason or two. I reject your pompous talk of gratuitous offence. You are so keen to look for it…

                    • You’re obviously privy to some info or evidence that no-one else is, PM. Care to share?

                      All I’m privy to is the ability to distinguish between “highly likely” and “vanishingly unlikely.” I wasn’t expecting to have to back down and apologise in this case, and that expectation’s been met: the bomber was Salman Ramadan Albedi, a Muslim religious fascist.

                    • Sanctuary

                      *sigh*

                      Area bombing of German cities came about because it was (in 1940-41) the only available achievable method we had of shortening the war and hastening the defeat of Nazi Germany. As such, it was a legitimate military tactic because it was primarily aimed at the defeat of the enemy militarily and helping an allied victory. Area bombing significantly dislocated the German economy and diverted huge resources into the aerial defense of the Reich, all of which aided the final United Nations victory. Yes, many tens of thousands of civilians died but the use of bombers as a form of aerial terrorism for killing civilians was never the purpose of area bombing.

                      If the UK were to respond to the Manchester attack by ordering the RAF to carpet bomb residential areas of Tripoli (the attacker’s family is from Libya) with the sole intention of inflicting huge numbers of civilian casualties as a savage revenge, that would be a war crime. If the UK were to respond to the Manchester attack by ordering drone strikes on an ISIS compound where the attacker was trained and killed dozens of ISIS fighters and also, sadly, dozens of civilians this would not be a war crime, since the purpose of the attack would be to destroy an identified and legitimate military target.

                      Hence, detonating a suicide bomb with the sole intention of slaughtering innocent tween girls is a heinous crime since it seeks no wider political goal than to inflict pain and, to the bombers twisted “reasoning”, some kind of “revenge” on “the west”.

                      No amount of drawing false equivalence can get around the fundamental guilt of the terrorist attacker in targeting innocent people for no reason.

                    • Spikeyboy []

                      What a load of old bollocks. Please show me where “shortening the war and hastening the defeat of Nazi Germany” makes carpet bombing civilian poulatuons not a war crime? I suspect that this only occurs in your pea sized brain.
                      Similarly with drone attacks “to destroy an identified and legitimate military target” when no target is legitimate in counry that the usa is not at war with and no war is legitimate if you have not been attacked by that country or been asked to help defend a country that has been attacked.
                      The main reasons why usa is not prosecuted for these war crimes is 1 they were the victors in ww2 and 2 Bush unsigned them from the ICC

                    • In Vino

                      The terrorist’s idea of total war is precisely to target innocent people. I thought that had become obvious by now.

            • David Mac 10.1.1.2.2.2

              Hopefully one day allied forces, Russia and others with arms in the game will withdraw from the war-torn Middle East nations.

              If events like Manchester cease, I think we can surmise ‘Yep, Retaliation, people pissed off because their sons and daughters were blown to bits before their eyes.’

              If the Manchesters carry on, then I think we can surmise. These jokers are keen to spread their dodgy ideals all over the world.

              I suspect when we learn to leave them to their own devices, the Manchesters will cease.

              Is it really all over oil? Lets ride horses, it’s fun.

          • Bill 10.1.1.2.3

            Maybe the tweet Joe 90 has linked to in Open Mike points to something worth considering, eh?

            Or are you just bloody mindedly going to run with your hatred and bigotry regardless PM?

            • Psycho Milt 10.1.1.2.3.1

              Maybe if we were discussing this somewhere where I got to call your opinions stuff like “bloody-minded hatred and bigotry” without copping a ban.

              • Bill

                So the suggestion that it may not have anything to do with “these religious fascists”and whatever other terms you’re using, isn’t worth considering as far as your concerned because…why?

                Because you think such suggestions constitute a form of “bloody-minded hatred and bigotry”, but you won’t say that lest you get a ban?

                • The suggestion itself isn’t significant, because the idea that the attack was a misogynist one is entirely compatible with the attacker being a Muslim religious fascist.

                  It’s more that there’s no point in arguing with someone who gets to give you home-made personality assessments while threatening to ban you for anything he doesn’t like – that’s not conducive to honest discussion.

                  [moderators don’t ban for their dislikes on the politics. But now you have the attention of this moderator, who doesn’t like shit being made up about moderation. I suggest you stick to the politics and drop the personal stuff. I’d also suggest dropping the stuff about moderation, because (a) you’re wrong, and (b) nothing pisses off moderators faster than having their times wasted having to explain this shit yet again – weka]

                  • Bill

                    At the time of posting, it was also compatible with other possibilities.

                    And I’m aware that was running into an atmosphere rank with you running up and down a thread smearing yourself with phobic shit.

                    I don’t ban for “anything he doesn’t like” btw, but I do ban for people making shit up about me. Just saying.

                    • Making shit up about people is pretty annoying, sure. Declaring they’ve “smear[ed] themselves with phobic shit” or expressed “hatred and bigotry” when they haven’t, for example.

                  • weka

                    see moderator note above.

                • You are slipping you forgot to add in your favorite headchopper line Mr pot.

                  • Bill

                    Idiot. If you want to accuse me of hypocrisy, then make the case instead of just going off in your own pants.

                    • You are wrong a lot imo. Maybe you need to reevaluate your thinking cos saying it on high rotation isn’t changing reality.

                    • Bill

                      Of course I’m wrong “a lot”. Most people are to one degree or another, and opinions or thoughts shift over time in response to that.

                      In terms of the discussion that has gone on here, saying what on high rotation isn’t changing what reality?

                      And again, if you’re going to accuse me of hypocrisy, you’re going to have to do more than just make the accusation from behind a pointy finger.

      • mordecai 10.1.2

        The other question we could ask is why said “murderous religious fascists” have existed within Islam since the 7th century, if it is simply a response to “human beings are blowing innocent civilians to bits with his and allied governments ‘ direct involvement “.
        This is a bs argument, posited by apologists for oppression.

        • mac1 10.1.2.1

          Mordecai, since you have quoted what I wrote I have to assume that you are addressing me, but you are misrepresenting what I wrote. Your logic is flawed anyway.

          Thirdly, if you think I am an apologist for oppression, that too is a misrepresentation. I asked for an answer to the question as to why this happened. Apologists have answers, not questions, I believe.

          • mordecai 10.1.2.1.1

            Hi Mac1.
            Your comment (in full) was:
            “From this side of the world we know that human beings are blowing innocent civilians to bits with his and allied governments ‘ direct involvement and this is very possibly the reason why such an event took place in Manchester.”
            I took that to mean you were explaining Manchester away with reference to recent (relatively) actions by western nations in the middle east. If my interpretation of your comments was incorrect, I apologise. If I was correct, then you are spreading dangerous lies. Islamic extremists has been engaging in terror since the 7th century. It appears to be in their DNA…it certainly was in the DNA of their founder.
            If you want to know why Manchester happened, the answer is found in the deranged minds of a significant number of followers of a religion founded by a raging sociopath.

            https://atheistpapers.com/2014/01/21/the-prophet-muhammad-was-a-raging-sociopath/

    • Draco T Bastard 10.2

      I heard on the radio an English voice saying that he could not understand how one human being could do this to another.?

      Are you talking about Bill English who was one of the people who wanted us to support the US going in and bombing an innocent country.

      If so then perhaps he should ask himself why he wanted to kill people.

      • mosa 10.2.1

        Well put Draco.

      • Richard McGrath 10.2.2

        Yep, Assad is innocent of any wrongdoing. Of course he is.

        • Draco T Bastard 10.2.2.1

          And you’re innocent of any thought that may break through your ideology.

          I don’t think that Assad is innocent. I do think that the US and the UK shouldn’t have funded and encouraged rebellion in the region.

  11. stunned mullet 11

    The apologist drivel in this thread is more sickening than the usual fare at The Standard.

    • In Vino 11.1

      Sorry about that.

    • Muttonbird 11.2

      What’s your suggestion then?

      I thought about the sectarian violence in NI in the 70s. When I was a child then, the UK was as fearful (if not more fearful) of terrorism as they are today. I thought about how sectarian violence and IRA bombings in the UK and NI are now firmly a thing of the past. I’m not sure of the details but for all the rhetoric by hegemonic western governments when they say they will not talk to terrorists, the NI troubles were ended by talking to terrorists.

      Why couldn’t the same work with Sunni and other hard right muslim extremists? I’d say the first step would be to force Israel to either cede Palestine or give all occupied peoples the same rights as Israeli citizens. Then, end US military and economic designs across the whole region.

      • Stunned mullet 11.2.1

        I’m not convinced that a policy of appeasement of Islam fundamentalism would serve to solve the problem, as Churchill said over a century ago..

        ‘Individual Muslims may show splendid qualities, but the influence of the religion paralyses the social development of those who follow it. No stronger retrograde force exists in the world. Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith. It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step; and were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science, the science against which it had vainly struggled, the civilization of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilization of ancient Rome.’

        • One Anonymous Bloke 11.2.1.1

          Whereas people who actually know what they’re talking about discount extreme ideology as a motivator.

        • marty mars 11.2.1.2

          You and milt can set up a killalot page to get rid of those you say want to kill you.

          • Stunned Mullet 11.2.1.2.1

            @MM Where have I stated that I want to kill anyone ?

            • marty mars 11.2.1.2.1.1

              What is your alternative to appeasement then? You think they want to kill you don’t you? What you gonna do about it?

              • Stunned Mullet

                @MM – IMO the key is in the last part of the quote..’..were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science, the science against which it had vainly struggled, the civilization of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilization of ancient Rome.’

      • Irish 11.2.2

        You obviously do not understand political Islam . The extremists are not hard right – they are following exactly the tenets of the Qur’an, ahadith and Sira. The only way to bring peace to the Levant is to stop the billions of aid which enables the Palestinians to continue their infinite war of hate on all infidels, especially the Jews.

        Their noble book and prophet has commanded them to ensure that there will be no peace in the world until we all live under the laws of Allah.

        Suggest you look up the three “NO’s” of Khartoum and the Islamic conquest of the nonmuslim ME in the7thcentury. The prophet ethnically cleansed the Jewish clans of Arabia – 800 men of one clan beheaded in Medina in one day, the women and children sold into slavery. It is a supremacist ideology, much like the Nazis in a way.

  12. Skyler 12

    This is the primary reason I cannot vote Left. Liberals are destroying previously safe Western countries and they just don’t seem to get it. Labour and the Greens want to increase our refugee numbers. I would not have a problem with this if they were persecuted Christians, Buddhists, etc but they won’t be. Perhaps the Left need to actually start schooling themselves on the Quranic texts and accept that we cannot co exist together. This will happen here at some stage. Are leaders of the Left prepared to take full responsibility of blood on their hands if this in the future is to occur here by new refugees pushed for by Labour/Greens or as seems to be frequent, their children? Would you look into the eyes of the parents and take responsibility?

    • mickysavage 12.1

      I bet you have never voted left although you will no doubt come back and say you did.

      We can live together. Head out to Avondale Market any Sunday morning and realise how.

      The biggest problems are the bigots who for political reasons ferment race hatred.

      • mordecai 12.1.1

        Since when was Islam a race? If it is, it is extremely intolerant of other ‘races’.

        • Tanz 12.1.1.1

          Agreed, and Islam is also intolerant of other religions. It makes me laugh though, the left defends Islam to the end, no matter what, whilst Christianity gets a thorough caning, yet there are no radical Christians out there killing innocents nor spitting in the face of their host nations. No wonder the West is collapsing, but then that is the end goal. Go Trump, the Churchill of our era, and the one bright hope the West has. Might be too late, but at least there is a hope. How suicidal the left is though, they seem to hate their own culture and history, especially if its white.

          • mordecai 12.1.1.1.1

            The left will do very well under the Caliphate. (Snort).

            • One Anonymous Bloke 12.1.1.1.1.1

              Yes, you’re right: people who stand up for human rights and the rule of law would indeed get a miserable time in a caliphate.

              You, on the other hand, would quickly rise through the ranks.

              • mordecai

                I’m a white, heterosexual male. On that basis I’d be fine. I’m also a Christian, so I’d be dead before lunchtime.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  You’d embrace the Caliphate’s distortion of Islam by lunchtime, and then you’d start looking forward to owning slaves.

      • Tanz 12.1.2

        Yes, what a difference, handing out balloons and posting lots of photos to social media. So, it’s okay for people to kill in the name of Islam is it, as long as we call it something else and defend it to the end. FFS, the West is in trouble, but thank goodness, unlike with the Auckland councils, especially out West, we have sensible, right thinking people in charge, who do not excuse any behaviour in the name of tolerance!! Madness that way lies. I mean, innocent kids have been killed, at a pop concert, and people here are talking about false flags or stoop to name calling. Call me racist, I don’t care, I am sick of seeing religious zealots blow up and maim innocents. This is not the middle ages, how regressive can you get. Not progressive, regressive, we are going back to the brutality of the dark ages, all in the name of radical Islam. Talk about blind.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 12.1.2.1

          Yes, you are. People don’t become terrorists because of ideology. That’s a fact. Ignore it and do some more dribbling.

          • Tanz 12.1.2.1.1

            So why do they become terrorists then, OAB? Because they want to maim and kill for no reason? But there you are, defending their ideology and religion, as the left are so famous for doing. Would you be so tolerant if it was your own family affected by these poor old terrorists?

            • RedLogix 12.1.2.1.1.1

              I’ve zero sympathy with the aims, values or actions of radical Islam. This isn’t some idle intellectualisation on my part; like Psycho Milt I’ve lived and been exposed personally to fundamentalist Islam in the past and emphatically I do not like it. (Nor any form of fundamentalism for that matter.)

              But equally there are around 1.5 billion Muslims and I strongly suggest we need a smarter path to resolving the tension between the West and Islam than simply more of the hatred you are spewing right now.

              • Tanz

                Trouble is, I hate people who kill others. Cut off their lives and kill them. I mean, what is to like. So, not all Muslims are radical, but the ones that are are giving the whole of Islam a terrible name. I wouldn’t want to be a part of any religion where some people killed in its name. If some Christians killed in the name of Christianity the world would cry foul, as would the media and Western govts. How come Islam gets a free pass? The pen is far far mightier than the sword, words do not maim nor kill, and I do not hate Muslims, I hate people who blow up innocents. Big difference, if you can grasp that?

                • Bill

                  Just a thought. But maybe robbing these people of this (arguably) respectable veneer of Islam would be a way to go?

                  I could be wrong, but I think the term ‘daesh’ as used in the Middle East is one example of an attempt to do that…though that particular term doesn’t work in English because it loses its power and meaning in translation.

                  Regardless, undermine their (arguably) aberrant mythology by speaking past or through the front they want to put up. Viewing them through any lens of Islam is really unhelpful on a number of fronts.

                  • Tanz

                    Good point, Bill. It’s a waste of time anyway, they’ll never see the light of day, they just refuse. Better things to do right now, such as morning coffee and the walk to work. I take your point though, not many dissenters actually last here for long..especially on this topic, if you don’t toe the leftie group think.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 12.1.2.1.1.2

              Fuck off, trash: I haven’t defended anything of the sort.

              As I said, you are incapable of grasping the facts, even when I rub your face in them. See comment 11.2.1.1 for a link.

              [Three comments read and all three containing pointless personal abuse. Stop. Now.]- bill

        • RedLogix 12.1.2.2

          The technical term for what you are doing right now Tanz is ‘co-radicalisation’.

          In other words you are spreading the same hate as the people you claim to despise so much. Whereas in reality you are one with them.

          • Tanz 12.1.2.2.1

            Whatever, I don’t care. Call me what you will, I have had enough of seeing radical Islam’s hatred for the West. They are out there, blowing up people, children included, and still it’s somehow nothing to do with radical Islam.
            How can so many people be so very brainwashed? So radical Islam trumps the right to life it seems. Frigging unreal.

            • RedLogix 12.1.2.2.1.1

              So radical Islam trumps the right to life it seems.

              No. But what do you have in mind to ‘un-trump’ it? What do you think would make a positive difference?

              • Tanz

                Trump, Trump and Trump. He gets it, he is fighting it, and the way its going, he is ever popular. People get blown up and he alone seems to think its not acceptable of the Western leaders. For the moment, ban Muslim immigrants, as one cannot tell the innocents from the radicals. Lives would then be saved, but then that wouldn’t be ‘tolerant’ would it, how many more innocent lives are going to be lost before war on Islam is actually declared by the West, whose people are being blown up by radical
                Islam and its followers? Sigh…

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Trump and people like him, including you. are making it worse you moron.

                  If the West goes round bombing Muslim states, which we do, then they’re going bomb us back.

                  • Tanz

                    When Hitler invaded countries, no one did anything about it. He slowly but surely started to take over and dictate to all of Europe. England and America ignored him for a long time. Radical Islam is like that, creeping up on the West, nation by nation. Or do you want us to be taken over by radical Islam? It would seem so. Instead of fighting back, fighting for our nation and our much-won freedoms, you seem to support the do nothing approach…as did the enemies of Hitler, and look how that ended. At the end of the day, it is radical Islamist followers who are waging the war, actually waging war on their very host nations. Is that meant to just be brushed away and ignored?

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      And would Hitler have got anywhere if the West hadn’t been so punitive after WWI and thus pushing so many Germans into poverty?

                      These people aren’t operating in a vacuum and we really do need to ask just what we’re doing that makes them want to blow us up.

                • RedLogix

                  Ah yes … a ‘war of civilisations’. How many innocents do you imagine might die in such an endeavour?

                  It’s my observation that total war ends when one side loses about 20% of it’s population. That’s about the point where it runs out of able bodied males capable of fighting. So if we declare war on Islam that’s in very rough terms 300m lost on their side before you get to a strategic victory. Allow another say 100m dead in Western countries and … well you need to contemplate this sort of thing if you are proposing total war.

                  And that’s before you allow for complications from Russia, China and every other nuclear armed nation.

                  As for banning immigrants … maybe, but then many terrorists are first generation children of immigrants who are citizens. Deporting them en-mass is of course an option, but that too comes with some pretty big real world consequences. Again you need to understand these before you get too excited.

            • lprent 12.1.2.2.1.2

              Personally I don’t see whole lot of difference between any religious community and I include any community that just requires belief rather than evidence in that.

              Most individuals are easy enough to live with. Some are dangerous idiots with prescriptive obsessions about how others should live, are dangerous, and wrap their dogma around them to excuse.

              I see that just as much with Christians as I do with Islam when I look through history and in my view for exactly the same reasons.

              At present I tend to view wannabe Cursader nutters waving the banner of defending against Islam (which is what you and others a like mind appear to be to me) as being just as dangerous to everyone as the young fools with a green jihad flag.

              Being disparaging about the people getting as worried about the idiot fuckwits who blow up abortion clinics and who attempt to harass people using them when you are considering relative danger levels, is just dumb. I’d suggest that you stop and look at the actual death and injury rates from various things and start worrying about real issues like death from vehicle accidents, alcohol, drugs, poverty, lack of medical attention, and even down to deaths from bee stings or falling off horses. All of those are far more dangerous than some fantasy world panicking about terrorist attacks in the real world.

              With any kind of terrorism, as the IRA and ETA proved long ago, the actual threat isn’t from the attacks. The security systems will rapidly constrain that to a level that reduces the issue. It is mostly from panicked idiots listening to manipulative arseholes exploiting their panic.

              • Tanz

                Cursader? i knew that would come up sooner or later, Those Crusaders are blamed for much, whilst of course, the Radical Islamists of the era were innocent…

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  No, they weren’t, you fool. Extremists like you and Daesh were guilty then and you’re guilty now.

                  • In Vino

                    +1. Tanz – have you read much history? You don’t seem to have. You want to prolong the vicious circle thing that has got us where we are.

    • mauī 12.2

      Next you’ll be wanting to deport all New Zealand born white males as these are the people actually responsible for most of our previous mass murders. But hey lets blames it all on the refugees you so despise instead.

    • adam 12.3

      Skyler, If you can’t bring Christian love into your argument, then you have no right to mention Christians who are being prosecuted.

      Time to remember Matthew 26:52

  13. One Two 13

    22 May

  14. adam 14

    “Hate begets hate; violence begets violence; toughness begets a greater toughness. We must meet the forces of hate with the power of love.”

    Martin Luther King 1958.

    And just as importantly,

    “If we do not learn to live together as friends, we will die apart as fools.”

    Martin Luther King 1963.

  15. Richard McGrath 15

    Couldn’t be linked to the death cult whose followers execute gay people, kill those who leave it, genitally mutilate and oppress women, and whose prophet was a paedophile, could it?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 15.1

      David Cameron made the same stupid mistake as you.

      The weight of the science suggests that most people become involved in terrorism as a result of relatively ordinary pro-social factors.

    • Sabine 15.2

      well how about the death cult whose followers would electrocute the gay away, stone people for having sex out side of the marriage or with someone not their married partner, consider women the source of all evil and temptations only worthy of childbirth (to wash away the ulitmative sin with pain) and submission to a husband – all others who are not heterosexual norm be damned.

      that would be the christians.

      All abrahamic religions are vile and murderous. And at the time it might worked, you know when they were all nomadic sheepherders who had multiple wifes and hand maidens, when girls were given away in marriage to form good business relations and who very often were betrothed well before puberty to be married by the sign of the first menses. Cause when it bleeds it breeds.

      nah, whoever did this is and was a coward. Attacking little girls at an Ariana Grande concert, mind in no way is what this suicide bomber did any more cruel than what is done with our taxpayers money in the name of advancing ‘liberty’ and ‘freedom’ to the countries that are often inhabited by a majority of Muslims.

      I remember a few years ago, the most dangerous place to be in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, and even Pakistan for a child was at a Wedding. They were always bombed by drones cause ‘faulty’ or ‘incorrect’ intel showed that a super duper heavy hitter terrorist was there, and his three wifes and his fifteen children, and nana and poppa and such. But i guess tat would have just been a very nasty case of being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

      • RedLogix 15.2.1

        Just a few days ago this item was in the Australian press:

        http://www.smh.com.au/victoria/imam-in-court-over-forced-marriage-charges-20170517-gw6sdt.html

        This is not a one off, it was just highly unusual that there was video evidence to proceed with. Police say that they are aware of many hundreds of similar forced marriages/rapes but getting evidence is extremely rare.

        Essentially the community always covers them up and rarely reports them.

        • Sabine 15.2.1.1

          We have no issue to bond a girl to some bloke in order to prevent shame on the family or to help tie two families together. That is not an islamic thing that does not happen in our white christian world. IT does.
          As long as parents sign off, all over the white christian world girls that are not fully legally autonom (18 years or older) are being handed of in marriage and in many many states in the US it is perfectly legal to marry of your daughter as young as twelve as long as they have ‘parental consent’.

          NZ: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marriage_in_New_Zealand

          quote: There has been a steady reduction in the number of registered marriages since the 1970s and there has been a shift in the age of those who get married. Teenage brides made up 32 percent of all brides in 1971, compared with just 3 percent in 1999.[1] quote end

          that drop in teenage brides coincidences with the wider availablilty of the birth controll pill in the seventies. (the pill was available since 1961 to married women – most likely only with spousal consent).

          http://www.familyplanning.org.nz/news/2013/the-pill
          Oh noes,….the feminist and liberal words……:)
          quote : Thankfully, the feminist movement in New Zealand and the work of a few liberal doctors in the 1970s led to the Pill becoming more accessible for all women, married and unmarried Quote end.

          Thankfully, the feminist movement in New Zealand and the work of a few liberal doctors in the 1970s led to the Pill becoming more accessible for all women, married and unmarried.

          In the US of today, but don’t call it Sharia Law, call it “parental consent’

          https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2017/02/10/why-does-the-united-states-still-let-12-year-old-girls-get-married/

          quote: Ending child marriage should be simple. Every state can pass the legislation I’ve helped write to eliminate exceptions that allow marriage before age 18 — or set the marriage age higher than 18, in states where the age of majority is higher. New Jersey is the closest state to doing this, with a bill advancing in the legislature that would end all marriage before 18. Massachusetts recently introduced a similar bill.

          But when Virginia passed a bill last year to end child marriage, legislators added an exception for emancipated minors as young as 16, even though the devastating effects of marriage before 18 do not disappear when a girl is emancipated. Bills introduced last year in New York and Maryland languished and eventually died, though Maryland’s was just reintroduced. Other states have not acted at all. “Some of my colleagues were stuck in an old-school way of thinking: A girl gets pregnant, she needs to get married,” said Maryland Del. Vanessa Atterbeary, who introduced the bill to end child marriage in her state.

          Only nine states still allow pregnancy exceptions to the marriage age, as such exceptions have been used to cover up rape and to force girls to marry their rapists. Consider Sherry Johnson of Florida, who said she was raped repeatedly as a child and was pregnant by 11, at which time her mother forced her to marry her 20-year-old rapist under Florida’s pregnancy exception in the 1970s.” Quote end.

          So to summarize, until the arrival of the pill in the western world it was common to marry pregnant girls, or girls that ‘fooled’ around of, with parental consent – to save her ‘honour’ the ‘honour’ of the family. But that is ok.

          To today, in many places of the western world we still have laws that allow us to marry of our female children (and it is the girls that get married of, its never the 12 year old boys that will be married of to their rapists) at well below 18 so as long as Daddy and Momma sign the paper work.

          And its always covered up by the community, especially if they are very religious ( i hear Gloriavale just had some issues with alleged sexual offending and girls being married to breed as many children as possible without actually having a right to say yay or nay cause girls) (roman catholic church – abuse of boys/girls, magdalene washeries).

          so maybe it is not something that is true to one religion or another, but rather a disregard for the well being of female children, a disregard for their bodily autonomy, a disregard for the dreams and aspirtions of females that we seem to have in all societies, and that can be found accross all three of the Abrahamic Cults.

          • Tinfoilhat 15.2.1.1.1

            Interest read Sabine.

            As a grandmother I can only say that from a personal perspective I would prefer living in a secular modern democracy to a non-secular authoritarian non modern state for me and mine.

            Certainly I can think of many worse countries to be born female than the USA.

          • RedLogix 15.2.1.1.2

            Interesting and complex read Sabine. The entire topic (as with anything to do with sexuality and gender) is a minefield I agree, but yes the core issue is the question of bodily autonomy.

            But the context of the article above is clear; the Australian Islamic community continues to marry underage girls in total defiance of Australian law.

  16. One Two 16

    Multiple comments have raised the question regarding a false flag, which is a distinct possibility

    As the established frameworks come under ever mounting pressure, these such events will continue to increase in frequency of occurance

    It’s not new, but will be to many people, especially those who now consider FF’s as a possibility, when previously they would not have

    That is by itself very telling in the comments

    Feb 22 March 22, May 22 ….

  17. Wayne 17

    If I go by the majority of the comments, the solution to all terrorism is to completely pull out the Middle East and then everything is solved.

    However, even if this worked there will be echo effects for many years. That will mean some pretty thorough intelligence and surveillance work, especially of those who are returning from ISIS, but not just them. There are radicalised people in the community.

    Also in the meantime ISIS has to be defeated in the Middle East, and that clearly needs some assistance from Western forces. That is going to take three or four more years.

    And if there is another Syria (not hard to imagine) which is very much an indigenous revolution/uprising, when the dictator uses gas against the insurrectionists, do we just ignore that.

    And finally Israel and Palestine, should they be left to just sort it out themselves. To be fair the era of Palestinian terrorism occurring in the West seems to be long over. All the incidents, going both ways, occurs in Israel, Palestine and Gaza.

    • marty mars 17.1

      The discussion is nuanced but good to see you want to slow it all down to fit within your plodding analysis.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 17.2

      If I go by the majority of the comments, the solution to all terrorism is to completely pull out the Middle East and then everything is solved.

      So you didn’t actually read the comments, then, or you’re having English comprehension difficulties. There are a wide range of views on display here, and the idea of military disengagement has hardly been discussed.

      If you want a “typical” Left wing perspective you could do worse to recall that some of us, among other things, are internationalists. You could also recall that eg: Labour and the Greens are committed to following UN resolutions, which often involve sending troops to other countries.

      So the rest of your comment is moot.

      Try harder, Wayne.

  18. Adrian Thornton 18

    So I assume next time there is a terrible suicide bombing in a non western country, The Standard are going to dedicate a post to keep us all updated on the unfolding news from that act of terror?

    Can’t remember that happening in the past, but I assume this must be a new policy, (special posts and on going updates on terrorist bombings) otherwise one would have to assume that whomever is making these decisions thinks British lives have more value, or at lest should be given more thought and discussion, than those of other countries where these atrocities take place.

    I know this can’t be the case, as I am sure the individuals making these decisions on the Standard fully understand that it is exactly this kind of inherently deep seated wrong thinking, that is a large part of the problems that lead to these abhorrent taking place acts to begin with.
    This is not Whaleoil…this is The Standard, where I come to read and discuss the possibilities of a better country and a better world for ALL citizens, and not just some.

    A place where the writing, discussions and debates are pushing thinking higher and clearer…not lower.

    [it’s clearly against the Policy to tell authors what to do or how to run the site. All work done here is voluntary. There is a Trust that has ultimate responsibility for the site, but the day to day running, including putting up posts, is entirely up to individual authors, what they are interested in and mostly what they have time for.

    What you just suggested is that the existing authors do *additional work on top of an already hefty workload to suit your personal needs about how TS should be run. Personally I find that more offensive than how NZers focus on Anglo-centric disasters (about which I have my own misgivings), simply because running TS happens in the real world, by real people, not in the abstract of political discourse that you just presented.

    If you want TS to be run differently, then start submitting guest posts. Otherwise, please stop telling us what to do and how to do it. And count yourself lucky that I saw this before Lynn did (who does a huge amount of work to keep this place even existing).

    If you want to understand how TS works, then ask. Making inaccurate and made up assumptions like you just did is just going to irk the moderators – weka]

    • marty mars 18.1

      You can put up guest posts after each killing – that should help with your moaning anyway. And will provide a forum for you to talk about what you want to talk about – problem solved no thanks necessary ☺

      • Adrian Thornton 18.1.1

        @ marty mars, I wasn’t moaning, I was stating my opinion. if you can’t comment to me without insulting me, then please don’t in future, thank you.

        • marty mars 18.1.1.1

          You moan about the standard and when I offer you the solution you go all hurty. Do the guest posts and make a difference.

          • Adrian Thornton 18.1.1.1.1

            Marty, it would take a lot more than you to make me all ‘hurty’, I can assure you of that, I will repeat, what I am saying is, if you cannot comment to me without throwing in some random insult, then don’t bother.

    • gsays 18.2

      Here, here, Adrian.
      Well said.

  19. Adrian 19

    A few points.
    This was a suicide attack by a 22 yr old male. Unfortunately in some suicides there are revenge ( for want of a better word ) deaths involved, for instance when a vehicle is crashed into another , it happens here quite often. Young men suicide for many reasons, desperation and anger among them so it’s no surprise that there is an element of revenge in them. The causes are many of course but the failure of mental health funding and financial inequality are at the top of the list.

    Reading the UK papers this morning the Police say that their second initial scenario was a ” right wing ” motivation so a false flag possibility is also in their thinking.

    Hitler may well have bombed British airfields and ports but Churchill was the first to bomb civilian areas of Germany in retaliation, it was only after that that the Luftwaffe bombed London etc indiscrimatly.

    • marty mars 19.1

      You are just speculating as to motive not sure what the benefit of that is.

      • weka 19.1.1

        people like to talk through issues to make sense of senseless things.

        • RedLogix 19.1.1.1

          True …. and as long as we can accept that there is no way for any of us to know the absolute truth of these matters, then I for one am prepared to listen to other’s ideas and feelings with respect.

  20. One Two 20

    22 May
    22 Killed
    22 year old ‘suspect’

  21. Sabine 21

    in the meantime we don’t speak about these

    ‘terrorists’ – the white christian ones.

    http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/florida-keys/article151953257.html

    ” He had just returned from U.S. Army National Guard duty May 19 to discover that his roommate, Devon Arthurs, 18, murdered two people in the apartment they shared in in the Hamptons at Tampa Palms complex. Both deceased were found in the apartment by the Tampa Police Department with multiple gunshots to the upper body and head.

    Arthurs confessed to the killings and said the victims were also white supremacists, according to the arrest report.

    Arthurs told police he was a white supremacist until his recent conversion to Islam, according to the arrest affidavit. He said that in “some time” before the murders, Russell participated in no-Nazi online chat rooms where he “threatened to kill people and bomb infrastructure,” according to the FBI report.

    Inside Russell’s bedroom, they found a framed photograph of Timothy McVeigh, who was convicted and put to death for bombing the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City on April 19, 1995. They also found Nazi/white supremacist propaganda, according to the FBI complaint. While in his bedroom, devices used by police bomb technicians alerted to the presence of radiation sources — thorium and americium.

    Before asking for an attorney, Russel told FBI agents he was a “national socialist,” according to the complaint, and a member of a group called the “Atom Waffen,” or “atomic weapon” in German.

    He said the explosives were manufactured in 2013 for a rocket-making project he was working on for the engineering club at the University of South Florida to send balloons into the atmosphere. But FBI Agent Timothy Swanson wrote in his report that HMTD is “too energetic and volatile for these types of uses.””

    • in the meantime we don’t speak about these

      ‘terrorists’ – the white christian ones.

      And yet you link to a media report which seems to speak about it fairly extensively, and the only actual murders mentioned in the story were carried out by a Muslim.

      [Had the story not existed, then the opinion that we “don’t speak about these…” couldn’t have been sensibly expressed. One story does not equate to mainstream or widespread discussion. Also. The opinion was clearly about terrorists (not terrorist acts) and clearly not about murderers. And now The Standard is going to free of your blind bigotry and bullshit for a while. 2 weeks.] – Bill

      • Tinfoilhat 21.1.1

        Bill can you clarify why PM has been banned, I was on the point of posting exactly what PM had before I went to lunch and don’t see why I should’ve been subjected to such a sanction.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 21.1.1.1

          I agree, and I reckon saying why I agree will probably get me banned too.

          • weka 21.1.1.1.1

            Why would that get you a ban? I’ve been commenting on moderation on TS for years and never had a ban.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 21.1.1.1.1.1

              My criticism would be spun as an attack on an author.

              • weka

                It’s all in how you do it. But sure, some people don’t know how to talk about moderation without telling authors what to do or hassling them about their decisions. Want to know why moderators might be touchy about this? Go back and look at what happened to Stephanie when she moderated. It was disgusting, and disrespectful, and imo is part of why she doesn’t write here anymore. Authors are more important than commenters for obvious reasons and have a much higher degree of protection. I don’t know why this still has to be explained to people who have been here a long time.

        • weka 21.1.1.2

          I would guess it’s because PM pushed his Islamophobia just one step too far, or too often. And did so with a fairly disingenuous comment designed to make Sabine or someone else come back and defend something going on in PM’s head (i.e. trolling). One or other of those things he could probably get away with, but I have to say I find the degree of bigotry too much at times too. Read the Policy, the bit about tone and language that excludes others and then look at PM’s pattern of behaviour.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 21.1.1.2.1

            Well that’s as clear as mud.

            I have no problem following PM’s arguments. Too much “reading between the lines” going on if you ask me.

            • marty mars 21.1.1.2.1.1

              + 1 – except the first sentence.

            • Bill 21.1.1.2.1.2

              I’ll make it abundantly fucking clear for you OAB.

              PM, and not for the first time, was spinning hate filled doggerel that essentially just mirrors that of these “Muslim fascist terrorists” of his that he hates.

              He was also deliberately misconstruing comments in order to peddle that hatred. (Not just the one I picked up on)

              He lucky it’s only two weeks. Next time will be far longer.

              You and/or tinfoilhat really want to throw in your respective tuppenceworth in support of allowing hateful, bigoted commentary? Feel free. But be careful. Do not question the actual ban.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                I think where Milt goes wrong is his focus on ideology as the driver of terrorism. As we’ve seen on the ‘What Now’ post it’s a red herring.

                It’s a compelling and ubiquitous red herring though, just as are equally wrong-headed opinions about eg: poor people that are expressed without sanction on a daily basis.

                Milt argues his corner far better than the purveyors of most of this nonsense though, and in doing so provides plenty of opportunities for substantive rebuttal.

                • Bill

                  No. Where Milt goes wrong is when he expresses overt hatred of Islam and for Muslims.

                  • Muttonbird

                    This. I said it earlier and used the ‘some of my best friends are muslims’ line.

                    Oh, and when PM comes back no-one mention Anders Breivik who perpetrated one of the very worst attacks in the name of Islamophobes the world over.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    His criticisms of Islam are substantive, equivalent to Lao Tsu’s observation that “when justice is lost, there is religion”.

                    Can you link to an example of his hatred for Muslims so that I can understand your position more clearly please?

                    [how about we all leave off talking about PM’s views until he gets back? Then he will be able to speak for himself as well as clarify what he believes. thanks – weka]

                    • Bill

                      The reason for the ban was clearly stated and is easy to understand. You know better than this idiotically transparent attempt to set yourself up as some kind of Grand Inquisitor OAB.

                      Don’t do it again.

            • weka 21.1.1.2.1.3

              I also have no problem following his argument and his Islamophobia is blatant.

              • Andre

                It appears that Psycho Milt has lived for a while in an Islamic country, from comments he’s made and what can be gleaned from a bit of cyberstalking. So his views are apparently informed by direct personal experience.

                Personally, my direct experience of Islamic countries is limited to a few months travelling in them. So I don’t rate my opinion as worth much more than a total ignorant’s. Nevertheless, what little I learned and experienced pushed my views about Islam a long way towards PM’s views and a long way away from his critics.

                • weka

                  Sure, and it’s not like he’s been banned permanently. There are limits however, and he just pushed them too far.

                  As far as I can tell PM’s views aren’t limited to people in Islamic countries, they apply to all people who follow the Islam religion, including people in NZ, and including people who might be reading here on TS.

          • Tinfoilhat 21.1.1.2.2

            So PMs comments are classed as over the top crass islamophobia but Bill’s ‘headchopper’ comments are OK ?

            I’m confused, actually I’m not, rank hypocrisy is rank hypocrisy.

            • Bill 21.1.1.2.2.1

              Ah, I see!

              So expressing overt hatred of Islam and bigotry towards Muslims is to be seen in the same light as ascribing a label to gangs of paid foreigners who have invaded a country with the express intention of setting up a Caliphate that would entail the murder of countless Christians and Muslims?

              Fuck, you’re an idiot.

              • Your headchopper descriptor lets you down. Somehow this particular band of murderers is so much worse that they get a special name. You’ll run out of names if you actually did name them all that be killing in the name of out there. You let yourself down by dropping to their depersonalising level. No need they are already bad enough.

                • weka

                  Who are the headchoppers?

                  • Isis or whatnot

                    • weka

                      Ok, so not really getting it. The comparison is between PM hating Muslims and Bill calling a terrorist organisation ‘headchoppers’?

                      Not saying I don’t have a problem with the term headchopper, but I don’t see the comparison as valid.

                    • both use dehumanising techniques to create an other. Both are on a spectrum. They are different as well and that is important.

                    • weka

                      that’s a good point marty, and helps explain my discomfit with the term too. Thanks.

                    • Bill

                      I’ll just say here – Jones the postman was called that because of what he did and it differentiated him from Jones the milkman (N. Wales was like that – lots and lots of people with the surname Jones.)

                      The surname Smith is because….yeah, I shouldn’t need to explain this. The butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker – we ascribe labels to people based on what they do which, to a large extent determines what they are in our eyes.

                      In relation to Syria, some people might refer to salafists or to ISIL or to Al Nusra or ISIS or to any in a long shopping list of shifting names and acronyms with allusions to some God stuff.

                      But you know what? They all have a defining thing in common, and it isn’t that they like fine patisseries (though they might have that in common too).

                      No-one has to like the term ‘headchopper’, but it’s accurate and leaves no room for doubt about who’s being referred to. It also leaves no wriggle room for anyone who might be tempted to argue that there are good headchoppers and bad headchoppers (as some try to do when organisational acronyms are used).

                    • weka

                      “and leaves no room for doubt about who’s being referred to.”

                      Except it does leave doubt. I had to ask. And even know I know it’s a name for ISIL etc, I’m still unclear whether that’s all those people or just the ones involved (directly or indirectly) in beheadings. e.g. would it be applied to ISIL operating in the UK?

                      I’m sure you have a clear definition in your own mind, and it might even be possible to parse it from reading all the threads where you use the terms, but in general it’s actually a vague reference to terrorists who behead. Or maybe not even terrorists but cultures that do that.

                      Which also doesn’t address marty’s point about othering and violence (so it’s not really like calling Jones a milkman).

                    • Bill

                      Headchopping is condoned and carried out by Nour al-Din al-Zenki, ISIL, ISIS, AL Nusra Front and a plethora of other groups, gangs or orgs in Syria.

                      Some of those groups, gangs or orgs are receiving or have received military and financial support from western governments – y’know this weeks “good guys”.

                      They change their names and allegiances on (it seems) a weekly basis. You want to pin them down? Then what better way than by a shared and defining characteristic? Any better defining characteristics come to anyone’s mind, and I’m all ears.

                      As an aside, ISIL arguably cannot operate in the UK because anyone leaving the caliphate would be viewed as apostate.

                      Obviously, the term does not cover the likes of the Peoples Projection Units (YPG) because they do not condone or promote chopping off people’s heads.

                      And it was Jones the Milkman btw – ie, a way that specific people with the surname Jones were differentiated and identified in day to day conversations.

                    • Cv was the first to use the term – did you copy it from him? Why don’t you name other groups? Your disingenous argument is weak imo.

                    • Bill

                      CV wasn’t the source of the label for me, no. I wasn’t aware he’d used it.

                      Other groups? You wanna pick out your favourite one marty? 🙄

                    • I’ve explained where I’m coming from. All good.

                • Bill

                  What do these gangs of foreigners in Syria routinely do?

                  They chop off people’s heads. Didn’t you know that marty? Try youtube or even newspaper reports. They. chop. off. people’s. heads.

                  Given that’s what they do, why not a name that fits…that encapsulates them and what they do?

                  You’d prefer them to be called by their 1001 self-ascribed and grand sounding names that make reference to God and being in his service?

                  Nah. Headchoppers works just fine.

              • reason

                ‘Paid coalition mercenarys’ would probably be a more accurate description than ‘head choppers’…. which describes but a small part of their methodology.http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3090600/The-fall-Palmyra-ISIS-control-ancient-Syrian-city-seizing-air-base-prison-spy-HQ.html

                • Bill

                  I hear you, but people can wriggle around proof of payment, who or what is the coalition, wank on definitions of ‘mercenary’….

                  A head-chopper’s a head-chopper’s a head-chopper. Not defensible. (Or so I’d think)

                  • reason

                    To true ……….. I use the description myself.

                    To be accurate my suggestion should have been for ‘Head-chopping coalition mercenary s’.

                    or western supported ‘Head-chopping mercenary s’

                    Mainly Because the pscycho milts and other racists get to call Head chopping or suicide bombings a Muslim or Islamic thing …. ignoring who empowers and enables the very worst fanatical murderous extremists in their culture or religions.

                    The head chopping part of their ‘brand’ is well established ….. It’s the ‘proudly supported by’ part of their story ….where the credit/blame gets misappropriated …………

                    Its easy to see why confusion exists ….. when their air wings battle support …. in attacking and destroying soldiers who oppose them, is called ‘Humanitarian intervention’ or ‘no fly zones’ by their air-force battle commanders …. being Nato in Libya …..and the coalition for proxies in Syria.

                    The sponsors also provide weapons, vehicles, training, medical and air support …. and huge amounts of propaganda.

                    Without the propaganda they could not pretend shock and anger …. when their mad dogs slip the leash and kill the ‘wrong’ people

            • weka 21.1.1.2.2.2

              So this is a good example. I would have been really happy to explain why as a moderator I think there are differences, but you are not actually here to learn about moderation and instead want to have go at a moderator. That’s exactly the shit not to do if you want to avoid a ban. TS isn’t a free for all.

              • tinfoilhat

                “TS isn’t a free for all.”

                Agreed. [deleted]

                All the best I’m sure I won’t be missed.

                [banned until 1 month after the election for blatant author attack and self-martyrdom. Will just say again, it is entirely possible to talk about moderation on TS within bounds, but it’s not ok to harass authors. That’s a long standing principle that existed well before Bill and I became authors – weka]

                [just looked at your last ban in October. Same stuff. It looks to me like you basically have no respect for TS, the rules, or the authors. Ban extended to 1 year from today because I can’t be bothered dealing with this shit every six months, and because I don’t want that level of disrespect showing up here post-election – weka]

                • In Vino

                  For Bill’s info, I now have a much better understanding of ‘Headchoppers’ Otherwise – no complaints!

      • Adrian 21.1.2

        What about the New York pedestrians rundown last week. If the murderer had been Islamic it would have been a Funfamentalist Islamic attack.
        But he said God talked to him, so why wasn’t it Christian Terrorism?
        Depends on whose God I suppose.

      • Sabine 21.1.3

        no we don’t discuss ‘white christian terrorism’ – not the state sanctioned, not the one that are white, middle class kid building nuclear bombs in university dorms, not the ‘white is might’ attitude towards others, government and corporate sanctioned terrorism by which we (‘1st world’) are trying to hang on to a standard of life that has been obsolete since at least the 80’s.

        Unless we start discussing our part and involvement in terrorism around the world we will never change anything.

        • Tinfoilhat 21.1.3.1

          Hi Sabine

          In my opinion you are incorrect.

          I can clearly recall the reporting of the IRA and UDA atrocities and those in Georgia and the Bosnia. Perhaps the terrorist acts associated with Islam are more frequent at present which is why they are more prominently reported in the MSM.

          I am also fairly certain if there were middle class kids building nuclear bombs in university dorms it would knock the current atrocity off the front pages and would be the first item on the news in the evening.

      • Wow 21.1.4

        And there I was thinking The Standard is just a machine. PM argues circles around almost everyone here and the place will be poorer without him, but I doubt I’ll be reading it much anymore so whatevs

        • One Anonymous Bloke 21.1.4.1

          PM argues circles around almost everyone here and the place will be poorer without him

          +1

          • Muttonbird 21.1.4.1.1

            Rubbish. Psycho Milt argued longer than anyone else but that’s about it. Eventually he just screamed ‘false equivalence’ when he got backed into a corner.

          • weka 21.1.4.1.2

            “PM argues circles around almost everyone here and the place will be poorer without him”

            Yes it will, but not as poor if TS loses more authors.

            • weka 21.1.4.1.2.1

              And just to put that in context, it’s really hard to get ongoing authors to write for TS. There are reasons for that.

  22. mauī 22

    Ok so Britain is in a state of emergency basically. But shouldnt one of the most important things be carrying on with the election campaign asap. A free democracy depends on politics to carry on as normal and not be swayed by outside events.

    • In Vino 22.1

      May wanted an early election, and time out for this will stop her opposition from pushing their gain in momentum. Time out gives her an even earlier election without changing the actual date.

  23. Red 23

    [deleted]

    [you’re on a ban currently. Extended a week for having a go at authors. I’m guessing bans will get longer after that. – weka]

    New Zealand’s Neoliberal Drift

  24. Poission 24

    US Intelligence leaks like a sieve.

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DAny0DxXUAAZBdf.jpg:large

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  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    6 days ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    6 days ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    6 days ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Government says it will now build just one really nice home
    Following publication of this article, the Ministry has requested it to be noted that this supplied image is not necessarily representative of what the final house will look like, and it “probably won’t be that nice.” As part of today’s long-anticipated reset of the Government’s flagship KiwiBuild policy, Housing Minister ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and your cup of coffee
    Over the next week or two we will be running three synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016).  The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Marx began Capital not with a sweeping historical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Still juking the stats
    The State Services Commission and Ombudsman have released another batch of OIA statistics, covering the last six months. Request volumes are up, and the core public service is generally handling them within the legal timeframe, though this may be because they've learned to extend rather than just ignore things. And ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Time for a New Deal: 25 years on
    In 1994, I was editing an ambitious street mag called Planet, from a fabled office at at 309 Karangahape Road. The thirteenth issue of the magazine was published in the winter of that year and its cover embodied a particularly ambitious goal: the end of cannabis prohibition.I wanted to do ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not impressed
    KiwiBuild was one of the Ardern government's core policies. The government would end the housing crisis and make housing affordable again by building 100,000 new homes. Of course, it didn't work out like that: targets weren't met, the houses they did build were in the wrong place, and the whole ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Solar beats coal
    As the climate crisis escalates, it is now obvious that we need to radically decarbonise our economy. The good news is that its looking easy and profitable for the energy sector. Wind is already cheaper than fossil fuels, and now solar is too:The levellised cost of solar PV has fallen ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A Step Too Far.
    A Crown Asset? For reasons relating to its own political convenience, the Crown pretends to believe that “No one owns the water.” To say otherwise would re-vivify the promises contained in the Treaty of Waitangi – most particularly those pertaining to the power of the chiefs and their proprietary rights ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where Money Comes From
    Most people would say, no doubt, that they have a pretty good idea of what money is. They live with the reality of money every day. It is what is needed to buy the necessities of life and to maintain a decent standard of living. You get money, they would ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Banned by the Green Party leadership: Jill Abigail on women’s rights and trans rights
    The article below was an opinion piece that appeared in the Spring 2019 issue of Te Awa (the NZ Green Party’s newsletter) and on the Greens website.  In keeping with their policy of hostility to women defending women’s right to female-only spaces, Green bureaucrats have since removed the opinion piece.  ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The fallacy of the proximity argument.
    Longer term readers may remember my complaining that, as a political scientist, it is burdensome to have non-political scientists wanting to engage me about politics. No layperson would think to approach an astrophysicist and lecture him/her on the finer details of quarks and black holes, but everybody with an opinion ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Where We Stood: Chris Trotter Replies To Stevan Eldred-Grigg.
    Joining The Fight: Stevan Eldred-Grigg's argument for New Zealand staying out of the Second World War fails not only on the hard-headed grounds of preserving the country’s strategic and economic interests; and not just on the soft-hearted grounds of duty and loyalty to the nation that had given New Zealand ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Universities back the climate strike
    On September 27, School Strike 4 Climate will be striking for a future to pressure the government for meaningful climate action. This time, they've asked adults to join them. And now, Lincoln University and Victoria University of Wellington have signed on:Victoria University of Wellington has joined Lincoln University in endorsing ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Another constitutional outrage
    Another day, another constitutional outrage in the UK. This time, the government is saying that if parliament passes a law to stop Brexit before being prorogued, they may just ignore it:A senior cabinet minister has suggested Boris Johnson could defy legislation to prevent a no-deal Brexit if it is forced ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ending dairy in Canterbury
    Environment Canterbury has finally proposed nitrogen limits to stop dairy farmers from poisoning Christchurch's water supply. And naturally, farmers are whining about it:A proposed move by Environment Canterbury (ECan) to protect Christchurch's drinking water by setting tough – some would say, draconian – nitrate reductions in the decades ahead and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Is National the party of climate arson?
    The Zero Carbon Bill is currently before select committee. While its targets are weak, its a generally sensible bill that promises to establish a long-term framework to guide emissions reductions. But National hasn't made up its mind on whether it will support it - and according to Andrea Vance in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

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