Maidhc Ó Cathail
“The same ideology that brought carnage on Iraq and Palestine is the same ideology that makes you lose your home tomorrow.” --Gilad Atzmon
Comparisons are said to be invidious, but in the right hands they can be very illuminating.
The toxic dust from the economic 9/11 of 2008 hadn’t even begun to settle when a perceptive observer noticed an important connection to the geopolitical fallout from the more dramatic 9/11 seven years earlier.
On September 16, Gilad Atzmon, an Israeli expatriate, told the Cambridge Forum: “As the picture of the current economic disaster becomes ever more clear, it becomes rather obvious, to me at least, that the ideology and the people who are directly responsible for the mass killing of millions of Iraqis and the displacement of many other millions, the people who keep the Palestinians starved behind walls, are unfortunately very much the same people who are responsible for a class genocide of millions of disenfranchised Americans who are now on the brink of total dispossession.” 
President Obama is keen to make well with the Muslim world. While bringing peace in Palestine is arduous is politically costly, Obama could take an costless and sentimental step that would greatly benefit his and the United State’s image in the Muslim world: decry the Swiss Minaret ban.
Swiss recently voted for a bigoted referendum that bans all Minarets - tall structure on Mosques - in the country. Out of the 150 prayer halls, only four have Minarets and none even broadcast the call to prayer. Thus the Minaret - whatever one may say about it - is not a common feature in the Swiss skyline and cannot even be heard. The Swiss far-right picked a convenient target for their Crusader-like, anti-Islam campaign. They know that banning Mosques is unconstitutional (as the Minaret ban is as well), so they settled for the un-Swiss architectural Minaret in order to send their message of hostility toward the 400,000 Swiss Muslims (4% of the population). This is a shameful act that should be condemned by the international community. Switzerland’s community of Muslims is peaceful and native European - 90% are Kosovars and Turks.
OPEN LETTER to
The Most Rev. and the Rt. Hon. the Archbishop of Canterbury
Spiritual leader of the Anglican Church
Two years ago, on returning from Gaza and the West Bank, I wrote about the dire conditions and the British government's complicity in the crippling blockade, and reminded prime minister Gordon Brown that Gaza was formerly entrusted to Britain under mandate, which was reason for us to feel a special responsibility.
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