Archive for Rally

European Far-right Stage anti-Islam Rally

Posted in Loon People with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 31, 2012 by loonwatch

Danish_Anti-Islam_Demo

The Israeli flag makes a regular appearance next to the flags of other European countries in such anti-Islam and anti-Muslim protests.

The above anti-Islam meeting organized by the Danish Defense League attracted 300 people.

Anti-Racists who protested the DDL attracted 5,000.

European far-right stage anti-Islam rally

Hundreds of far-right sympathisers are holding a rally in Denmark against what they call the Islamisation of Europe, starting with a moment of silence for the seven people who were killed by an al-Qaeda-inspired gunman in France.

Saturday’s “European Counter-Jihad Meeting” was organised by the Danish Defence League – an anti-Muslim movement claiming to have no neo-Nazis ties.

It has drawn participants from several European countries, including Britain, Germany, Poland and Sweden.

The rally is being held in Aarhus, Denmark’s second largest city, 200km northwest of Copenhagen, the capital. Police spokesman Georg Husted says 300 people are taking part.

Nearby, a much larger group – about 2,500 people – marched in a counter-demonstration, under the banner “Aarhus For Diversity”.

‘No Breivik ties’

The rally takes place a few weeks before the start of the trial of Anders Behring Breivik, the far-right extremist who murdered 77 people in Norway last July.

Breivik claimed to have had contact with the English Defence League (EDL) ahead of the attacks, adding that he had “spoken with tens of EDL members and leaders”.

In response to the killings, the league condemned the killings and added that it had no contact with Breivik.

In a statement on its website, the EDL said it would not associate with any individual or group who did not reject “extremism” and said “racists, neo-Nazis and any other extremists” were not welcome.

It said it had called on participating groups to sign a memorandum declaring that they were “anti-extremist, anti-fascist, and anti-racist”.

“We will protest peacefully, but we will defend ourselves if need be. We will be loud, and we will not back down,” the memorandum states.

EDL leader Stephen Lennon said: “We hope it [the rally] will be the start of a European movement that will continue to grow.”

Various far-right groups have been in Aarhus since Wednesday where they have had a chance to hold meetings and discuss ideas.

Counter-demonstration

Anti-racist groups are worried that hardline anti-Islamic groups are mobilising and gathering support in Europe.

Police in Aarhus said the rally would be kept apart from an expected counter-demonstration by anti-racism campaigners.

Projekt Antifa, a Danish coalition of anti-fascist groups, had booked coaches to take protesters from Copenhagen to Aarhus.

Police Superintendent Mogens Brondum said: “The police can and will handle this situation. We will be out massively.”

Last week, several thousands people turned out for an open-air concert organised to protest against the far-right rally.

A statement issued by city officials said the concert was organised because ”Aarhus does not want to be associated with extremist groups” that represent “everything we want to distance ourselves from”.

Ahmed Rehab: Passion and Peril at a Pro-Christian Rally

Posted in Anti-Loons with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on November 11, 2010 by loonwatch

Muslims in Chicago joined their Christian brethren in condemning and opposing the slaughter of Christians in Iraq. (hat tip: Robert Spencer)

Beyond the Comfort Zone: Passion and Peril at a Pro-Christian Rally

(ahmedrehab.com/blog)

by Ahmed Rehab

Yesterday, CAIR-Chicago staff and interns participated in a rally alongside the Assyrian community of Chicago to condemn violence against Iraqi Christians. The rally was organized in response to the massacre of dozens of Assyrian Christians in Baghdad on October 31st.

It was a tricky decision for us. We knew that there could be anti-Muslim sentiment at the rally that would put is in a precarious position, but we decided that our disdain for the heinous acts of Al Qaeda far exceeded our concern for personal inconvenience.

We decided that the right thing for us to do was to act on our values and our sincere feelings of camaraderie with our fellow human beings in times of anguish. We wanted to raise our voices as Muslims in support of the Assyrian community and against terrorists who purport to act in the name of our faith.

Al Qaeda does not have reverence for any innocent life, including those of Muslims. It is a fact that they have bombed many more Mosques in Iraq than churches.
While we were weary of the possibility that some people at the rally could lash out at us, Muslims-at-large who condemn terrorism, we were not interested in seeing ourselves as victims. The only victims we were prepared to recognize were the 52 innocent souls that were claimed by the recent church bombing, and the many others – Christian, Muslim, Jewish, and otherwise – claimed by terrorism.

And so we set out with signs including “An Attack on Your Church is an Attack on my Mosque,” “American Muslims, Iraqi Christians, One Blood,” “My Brother is an Assyrian,” “We Stand with Iraqi Christians,” and “Muslims for Peace.”

We held our signs up high and marched in solidarity with the predominantly Assyrian Christian crowd.

The reaction we got was mixed.

In an interesting scene that summed up my experience, I was asked by one man if I was a Muslim. I said “Yes, I am.” He then asked, “Am I impure?”

I joked, “I don’t know did you shower this morning?”

He dismissed the joke and asked me if I thought “his blood was impure.” I told him, “why would you expect that, you’ve never met me, I am here supporting you, what about me leads you to ask me such a question?” He told me, “You said you are a Muslim.” I told him, “so what?” He said that Muslims believe this sort of thing. I told him that he had been grossly misinformed, “you’re blood like all innocent blood is holy to me.”

Another man interjected and started yelling that I was “unwanted” there, motioning with his arms for me to leave. As he continued to yell at me, my attention was drawn to something that touched me. A young woman a few yards away leaned down on a stroller she was pushing and started to sob uncontrollably.

At first, I thought it had nothing to do with us but my intuition told me otherwise. I asked here, “what’s wrong, why are you crying?”

She said unable to hold back her tears, “I am so sorry you and your friends have to deal with idiots like that, this man does not represent us, I am so embarrassed. This is so wrong.”

Here I was standing before a stark display of contrasts, extreme animosity on one end and extreme compassion on the other.

In a single powerful moment, I was reminded yet again at the absurdity of those who generalize about any one group of people. Here were two people of the same religion, color, and ethnic background standing side by side rallying for the same cause — and yet they could not be any more different.

I hugged her and tried to comfort her, “Trust me, I know, we have our share of idiots too, everyone has them, most people here have been kind.”

And it was true. Many in the crowd were genuinely happy – almost relieved – to see Muslims standing with them at this rally. Some smiled, some nodded, others simply said “thank you!” It reinforced my feeling that our participation was extremely important.

While there were other incidents – one lady held a cross up to my face and told me I was a “bad Muslim” for condemning terrorism which is “in my Quran”, two people told us that we are going to hell for not accepting Jesus as our Saviour, some guy yelled profanities and was held back by a girl half his size, another called for reciprocal violence – in every single instance, someone else would take a strong stance, telling the others to back off and apologizing.

As we made our way back to the office, we were chased by two girls. “Can I ask you a question?” one of them said. “Can I just give each of you guys a hug?”

We met back in the office for an evaluation.

I learned that my colleagues’ experience mostly mirrored mine.

Despite the bigotry of some, we all felt strong solidarity with most people. We felt as if the Assyrian community, with its good and bad, was our own.

It is of no surprise to any of us that there are some negative feelings among some Arab and Assyrian Christian communities regarding Islam and Muslims. Part of it is understandable to us, given the ugly acts by saboteurs claiming to act in the name of Islam. Part of it is due to the opportunistic work of preachers like father Zakaria Boutros who make a living out of telling Arabic-speaking Christians that Islam is an evil religion. Part of it still is due to the lack of dialogue and engagement between our faith communities, and that was the part we resolved to try to change.

Assyrians have a long and proud history that goes back to one of the earliest civilizations in the world. They live as a religious minority in their indigenous homeland. For centuries, they have coexisted peacefully with their Muslim neighbors. But at other times, especially now, the instability and violence is leaving them feeling frightened for their loved ones and overall vulnerable. Some of them blame Al Qaeda, others demonize all Muslims, and others still blame the United States and its wars.

One thing we must never allow is for the bad amongst us – terrorists, extremists, ideologues of exclusion and hate – to succeed in turning the rest of us against each other. We must condemn them, ostracize them, and disempower them. The way to do that is to strengthen our relations, and stand with one another. That is the only way to spell defeat for the agents of hate.

We must emerge from our comfort zones and stand together as one against all forms of violence, ignorance, and intolerance.

When Christians are attacked, they should NOT have to rally alone. We must rally along with them. When Jews are attacked, they should NOT have to rally alone. When Muslims are attacked, we should NOT have to rally alone.

 

Spencer and Geller still Yapping about their “Historic” Rally

Posted in Feature, Loon Blogs, Loon Sites with tags , , , , , , , , , on September 17, 2010 by loonwatch

Robert Spencer and his goonish friend Pamela Geller, leaders of the hate group SIOA and FDI are claiming that the size of their rally on September 11th, which they billed as the biggest thing ever was huge.

The fact is that it was really not that big, let alone historic. It was definitely not in the 40,000 or more range as Geller and Spencer claim. In fact according to the AP it wasn’t larger than a thousand.

Charles Johnson sums it up well:

Anti-Mosque Rally Attendance: Less Than 1,000

According to the Associated Press, attendance at Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer’s international hate rally was less than 1,000: The Associated Press: Dueling demonstrations begin after 9/11 memorial.

After the ceremony, around 1,000 activists rallied about five blocks from the site of the 2001 attacks to support the proposed Islamic community center. A smaller group of opponents rallied nearby, chanting, “USA, USA.”

UPDATE at 9/11/10 6:27:36 pm:

Hilarious! Geller is claiming 40,000. Who could ever have predicted that?

UPDATE at 9/11/10 6:41:30 pm:

Pamela Geller’s closing words to the seething throng:

As the crowds dissipated, Geller warned them against talking to members of the media: “Do not give them any ammunition. You know who you are. You know that you’re righteous. Do not give them an opportunity to deride this fine and honorable effort. Remember what I’m saying. They’re looking to catch you. Don’t give it to them.”

Listen to Mommy,” she said.

Of course Spencer and company claim that it is a big old conspiracy against those who want to expose Islam, and that the numbers are under reported. Fact is that it isn’t under reported, it is just the their hate rally was “historically” underwhelming.

 

Feeling the Hate in New York

Posted in Loon Politics, Loon-at-large, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 29, 2010 by loonwatch

pro-israel-rally

Max Blumenthal writes:

On April 25, over 1000 New York-area Jewish extremists gathered in midtown Manhattan to rally against the Barack Obama administration’s call for a freeze on construction in occupied East Jerusalem and to demand unlimited rights to colonize the West Bank

He video taped this hate-filled rally, and we’ll embed the YouTube clip below.  But before we do that, it’s worthwhile to comment on the issue of Israeli settlements.  It never ceases to amaze me how many Americans are so profoundly ignorant on this topic, and have no clue that “the consensus view of the international community is that the building of Israeli settlements in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, is illegal under international law.”  Or as the BBC News puts it: “Settlement building in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, is illegal under international law.”  This is the view expressed by none other than the United Nations and its judicial arm, the International Court of Justice.  Numerous resolutions have been passed against the state of Israel, demanding that illegal settlement activity be ceased.

There’s a very good reason why these settlements are illegal.  According to international law, that land does not belong to Israel; it belong to the Palestinians, who have lived there for hundreds of years.  That’s why the region is called the “Israeli Occupied Territories”.  And that’s also why they’re called Israeli settlers, not unlike the white settlers who pushed the Native Americans off their land.  Yet, we have Zionist extremists claiming that the land belongs to Israel, because “God gave it to them”, as one crazed man claims in the video below.

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R611drTEHPA 300 250]

Blumenthal continues (emphasis is ours):

…The Republican Jewish Coalition was afforded a prominent role at the demonstration beside far-right groups like the Zionist Organization of America, Z Street, Americans for a Safe Israel, Christians United for Israel, and Manhigut Yehudit, an anti-democratic group that calls for theocratic rule over Israel.

Supporters of Manhigut leader and Likud politician Moshe Feiglin distributed fliers promoting Feiglin’s upcoming campaign for prime minister of Israel. An open advocate of ethnic cleansing who has proposed depriving the Palestinians of drinking water, Feiglin recently called Vice President Biden “a diseased leper.”

While the pro-settler elements rallied in Manhattan, their counterparts from the radical Kahanist movement in the Hebron-based settlement of Tel Rumeidarampaged through Palestinian neighborhood in East Jerusalem, inciting violent confrontations while announcing their intention to rid the area of its historical Arab presence…[There were] many hints that the events in Manhattan and Jerusalem were closely coordinated.

The Manhattan rally took on a distinctively Tea Party-flavor. Besides issuing maximalist calls for the expulsion of the Palestinians, demonstrators assailed Obama as a secret Muslim with no legitimate right to serve as President of the United States. When I was identified by a particularly ornery rally participant as “the self-hating asshole Max Blumenthal,” I decided it was time to make my exit.

However, as I walked down 44th Street towards the subway, an elderly man grabbed me and attempted to snatch my camera (I had seen the gun-toting Marzel use similar tactics on anti-settlement activists documenting his exploits in the West Bank). “You’re not a Jew! Give me the film!” the man exclaimed. A mob of demonstrators suddenly formed and began advancing towards me. Luckily, two NYPD officers were nearby. They pried the man off me and gave me enough time to escape. I paced for two blocks until I reached Grand Central Station then disappeared into the crowd.

Conservative blogger Matt Lewis; facts mean nothing to this guy!Conservative blogger Matt Lewis; facts mean nothing to this guy!

Such rhetoric is not limited to street level protests.  Following the Obama administration’s call for a freeze on settlement activity, Cenk Uygur of The Young Turks debated conservative blogger Matt Lewis on MSNBC; here’s what Lewis had to say about the Israeli Occupied Territories:

This is their territory.  They won it in 1967.  And essentially what we’re asking them to do is to turn over…part of their territory.  I think we should stand with Israel on this…You don’t get peace by giving away territory…Israel has continued to give away territory…You want them to give territory, [and] that’s not supporting them.

Mr. Lewis has the facts exactly wrong: it’s not their territory…at least not according to the consensus of the international community and international law.  Land acquired through conquest is illegal, and must be returned.  One can hardly imagine Lewis making the claim that the United States was forcing Saddam Hussein to “give away territory” when the demand was placed on the Iraqi military to leave Kuwait.  Israel has never given away any of its own territory, ever.  The West Bank and East Jerusalem belongs to the Palestinians.  It’s amazing that neither Cenk Uygur nor the host Dylan Ratigan thought it worthwhile to mention this key fact in the debate, which just shows how biased the mainstream media in this country is when it comes to the question of Israel.