Friday, February 01, 2008

IRI Uses SOAS as a Propaganda Platform Again

Last year the SOAS Administration claimed they were unknowingly duped by the Islamic Republic embassy in London, who used the university facilities as a platform for their propaganda and disinformation, by holding a "symposium" as a pretext for an official celebration of the Islamic Revolution in a British university.

Well if you could give the SOAS Administration the benefit of the doubt last year, a repeat of the same "symposium" makes it impossible and cretinous to do so this year. For once again, an invitation by the Cultural Centre of the Embassy of the I.R. of Iran, accompanied by a poster with the heading "In Praise of the 29th Anniversary of the Victory of the Islamic Revolution", has been sent out to embassy staff and associates for a 3 day event, 6-8th February at the Brunei Gallery, SOAS, with the usual reception starting at 6:30 pm.

At a time when only recently, 43 Iranian students, across Iranian universities, have either been arrested or abducted by the Islamic Republic agents, it is a travesty of common decency and human values for the SOAS university to allow this cultural facade by the Islamic Republic to be held in a British university.

I shall be ringing SOAS on Monday to make sure they are aware that the Islamic Republic embassy is behind this "symposium". If so, I believe the (ab)use of university facilities for a foreign embassy's propaganda activities is in fact illegal as I was told by the SOAS administration last year.

The event will be attended by three turncoat Iranian actors who have continously served and praised the Islamic Republic, but in no way do they represent the decent mainstream Iranian artists who only recently, during the Fajr film festival, protested at even more increasing government control and censorship by Ahmadi-Nejad's government.

For further information to enquire as to why a British university is allowing its facilities to be used by representatives of a religious dictatorship that has for three decades repressed students, academics and artists in Iran, refer to the following:

SOAS Principal Paul Webley:

email: pw2@soas.ac.uk
Tel 0207 898 4014
Fax 0207 898 4019

SOAS Conference Office:
020 7898 4918

24 comments:

Bahramerad said...

This calls for action.
anybody listening?

Winston said...

One more reason why I am not really upset that Sharia law is taking place in UK simply because these Brits welcome it and don't mind having it. They ruined Iran in 1979 and now it is payback time.

اینها در استین خودشون در سال 57 مار افعی پرورش دادند و حالا دارند جوابش رو پس میدن. من شخصا زیاد ناراحت نیستم که انگلستان توسط همین مسلمین تسخیر شده و اینده اشون هم سیاه سیاه هست مثل ذغال. بهرحال از هر دست بدی از همون دست هم میگیری

barmakid said...

That doesn't nettle you Azarmehr? The fact that Winston doesn't care about the country you live in and sees it as an island that deserves revenge? You obviously care about the UK or you wouldn't have taken the time to write this post. I care about the UK too.

In fact, I have a special affinity for the UK's political process. I love watching Gordon Brown and David Cameron go at it.

It's funny, if I were to guess Winston's age (judging by the way and what he writes), I would say early twenties, maybe even the teens. Grow up Winny boy.

Azarmehr said...

Of course I care, how can I not care about a country and a community who has provided me with all the opportunities I have had and treated me as one of their own. But Winston has a point, the Brits [not the people, those who have governed Britain] have promoted Islamic fundamentalism for the last couple of centuries, and now they are bending over backwards to appease them and that can only mean doom and gloom.

Already Gordon Brown's government is preparing to accept polygamy and Sahria Law marriages, the Home Secretary wants to refer to Islamic terrorism as anti-Islamic activities, the UK universities are infested with radical Islam apologists a nd promoters, and you can carry on to even silly things like the children's story - three little pigs - being banned because iot offends Muslims.

Winston does not live in UK so he can only despair, I on the other hand can not let my second home be run over by Islamists as well.

barmakid said...

Azarmehr,

To think that the UK is going to being overtaken by Islam is absurd. I repeat: ABSURD. I have lived in the UK and have many friends and family in London. And quite frankly, you are starting to sound like an Anglo xenophobe.

And if the Home Sercetary wants to refer to Islamic terrorism as anti-Islamic activities, then more power to him! Because that is exactly what they are! Suicide bombings are indeed anti-Islamic. To have the intention of killing yourself is explicitly denounced in the Quran. It sounds like Jacqui Smith is a very, very smart Home Secretary (I guess it takes a woman to be that smart:). And the fact that Labour is still in power, even after Toni Blair supported George Bush's failed policies, is testament to the fact the Brits are smarter than Americans. I mean that in the sense that they are not emotional voters, but principled ones.

If I may direct you to what I wrote on Sohrab's blog, it pertains to what we are talking about.

http://iranianfreedom.wordpress.com/2008/01/25/the-slovenian-psychoanalytic-philosopher-slavoj-zizek/#comment-22

Calling it "radical Islam" or "Islamic terrorism" only does a disservice to peaceful Muslims; of which many live in England.

And why shouldn't Muslims be allowed to practice their religion in a country that allows freedom of religion. Who cares if they want to be polygamists; it's not as if the UK doesn't protect women's rights. If a woman doesn't want to be a second wife, or a third, she has the right to say no and British law will buttress her decision. Stop concerning yourself with demagogic issues that the conservative party promulgates.

I think you interpret Labour's and the Liberal Democrats' support for universal rights to all people, regardless of religion, as somehow supporting or "bending backwards to appease Islamists." Such a view is utter chimera.

Cheers,
barmakid

And please, I have expressed my religious views already and I hope you keep them in mind when you respond. In other words, you should know I'm not an Islamic "apologist," so please don't imply such.

Azarmehr said...

I recall a conversation I had with a colleague of mine in 2000 in which I expressed my fear that teh Islamists were getting too powerful in UK and their activities in UK are unchecked. He replied something similar to what you just said that my experience in Iran has made me paranoid and it will never become a problem in UK. Shame I have lost touch with him, I wonder what he thinks about his statement after the 7/7 bombings.

The problem with Jaqui Smith and the likes of you is that you actually think Muslims listen to you non-Muslims and seculars. You think you impress them when you say Islam is a religion of peace etc. The truth however is a Muslim does not give two monkeys about what you or Jaqui Smith says. He or She will go and read the Koran and realise that you and Jaqui Smith are talking bollocks.

As for suicide being haram in Islam, this is not how suicide bombers interpret it, they see themselves being killed in battle and no matter how much you try to paint a rosey picture of Islam they will not listen to you.

By the way a friend of mine sent this to me today:

"The English translation is not as eloquent as the original Arabic, but let me quote from the Koran, itself: In the long run, evil in the extreme will be the end of those who do evil. For that they rejected the signs of Allah and held them up to ridicule.

The face of terror is not the true faith of Islam. That's not what Islam is all about. Islam is peace. These terrorists don't represent peace. They represent evil and war.

When we think of Islam we think of a faith that brings comfort to a billion people around the world. Billions of people find comfort and solace and peace. And that's made brothers and sisters out of every race -- out of every race !! "

Do you know who said it?

By the way this post is not about how Islam should be interpretted to the faithful by the non-faithful its about SOAS allowing its facilities to be used by the Embassy of Islamic Republic.

I wonder what you or your ME expert friend, Tritta anti-Parsi have done for the imprisoned students? Have you emailed the university, have you asked them to show solidarity with Iranian students and academics and cancel the event or were you too busy telling Muslims about Islam??

barmakid said...

Azarmehr,

I think you have a valid point about how the Muslim extremists "don't give two monkeys" about our view of Islam - although I wouldn't have put it quite like that.

I never thought that they would, I have a different intention in saying what I say - it is intended for western Muslims who find their faith to be besieged by a radical few in another part of the world. And in that sense, I commend Mrs. Smith. There are a lot of British born Muslims, surely you know a few.

And about my own views; I was raised Muslim, which gives me a special ability, I think, to communicate with devout Muslims in a way that can persuade them. But believe me, I understand where you're coming from.

But I don't like wedge issues, as John Kerry called them, like the ones you brought up (polygamy etc.). They only serve to divide people who have much more in common than they might perceive.

Cheers,
Barmakid

p.s.

As I know you probably didn't read my post on sohrab's blog, so I'll post it on yours. It might be a little irrelevant to this thread because it is a response to someone else's post, but I think you will get a better understanding of where I'm coming from. BTW, we talked about your ancestry, check out mine. Just wiki barmakid.

barmakid said...

Though I am not Islamic, I take academic exception to the term “radical Islam.” It’s a term that doesn’t accurately denote the actions it is trying to describe. Not to mention that the term is a western creation that, in effect, indirectly expedites the implementation of western policies via what the term connotes and how that shapes the false perception in their citizens’ minds.

A more accurate term would be “reactionary Islam.” There is nothing radical, i.e. extreme, about how the Muslim Brotherhood, Hezbollah, the IRI, Hamas, and Palestinians in general act. It is not radical to Muslims to follow the Qur’an. Let me qualify this:

Sura 2: Aya 191-193; Fight in the cause of God those who fight you, but do not transgress limits; for god loveth not transgressors.

And slay them wherever ye catch them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out; for tumult and oppression are worse than slaughter…

But if they cease, God is oft-forgiving, most merciful.

And fight them on until there is no more tumult and oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in God; but if they cease, let there be no hostility except to those who practice oppression.

So when we use a term like “radical Islam” it fails to encapsulate the root cause of their “radicalness;” that is to say, what are they reacting to?

The Islamic Revolution in Iran, though it was not inspired by Islam, was a direct consequence of the 1953 CIA/MI6 overthrowing Mossadeq and reinstating the Shah. They reacted to policies of oppression, which unfortunately at the time, the ulamma were more prepared, i.e. organized, to counteract. The MEK was also prepared and organized, but they lost the struggle.

Palestinians are reacting to a half a century of brutal Israeli oppression. If you study the history, the Jewish people were the first to terrorize that piece of land; (the Irgun and the bombing of the King David Hotel, and the systematic assassination of British soldiers).

Arabs in general are reacting to nearly a century of oppression, i.e. colonialism. I’m writing too much, but if your interested, wikipedia the Sykes-Picot agreement, the San Remo conference.

In conclusion, if you are interested in preventing the spread of “radical” Islam, it begins with changing the policies, i.e. the policies they are reacting to, of the country we live in (I’m assuming you live in the States). And that is exactly what Ron Paul is saying! That’s what he meant when he chided Giuliani and McCain and lectured them about the CIA’s own term: Blowback (the reaction to American policies in the region).

Blah! (sorry for writing so much)

Cheers,
barmakid

saggezard said...

To care for ones host country does not have anything to do with being critical of a long history of colonial behaviour. UK's foreign policy does not seem to change with change of Prime Ministers, so being a logical voter has little effect on international relations the British governemt espouses. On the otherhand I also do not see any problem with Barmakid being an Anglophile but it would be worthwhile to have a critical eye on the policies rather than simple personal and cultural experiences. Hey, once in awhile I also enjoy a nice conversation with all sorts of British people over a beer. But most Iranian I doubt seek enjoyment about the policies of Great Britain in relation to Iran.

barmakid said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Azarmehr said...

Barmakid,

I may not be a history scholar like yourself but I don't need to wiki Barmakid. I wasn't sure if this was your real name or not but in any case, just as Tritta Parsi is the Salman Farsi of this age, you seem to be following the footsteps of your ancestors or the people you have assumed their name.
Didn't Barmakids all get killed after selling out and serving the Khalifs for so many years?! I think they were the Jebhe Melis of those days :)

By the way have you ever been to Syria? Do you know what they use the word Barmakid for?

You also didn't tell me if you know who that nice quote about Islam is by?

Lastly can I please ask you to save these discussions for another post unless you have anything to say about the use of a British university facilities by IR at a time when Iranian students are being kidnapped, detained and killed in detention.

barmakid said...

So I take it you're not going to delete the rude post of mine I requested for you to delete.

And if you want me to stop posting, don't instigate by talking about polygamy and Gordon Brown's government. And don't ask me about Islamic quotes.

Either way, I'm sure you will be happy to know that I will no longer be posting on your blog (or any blog where I am not wanted)and will leave you winston and saggezard to reaffirm each others views.

Goodbye,
barmakid

Azarmehr said...

Sorry which one did I miss? I am in middle of something and I am just publishing the comments as they come without reading them thoroughly.

sdcltd said...

an open letter to the SOAS' Principal

Mr. Paul Webley:

Dear sir

I would like to draw your attention to the following article at the bottom of my e-mail to you.

SOAS has become a source of great disappointment and worry to all of us freedom loving British - Iranians - living and working for many years in England.

We hate to see one of our esteemed universities being used and abused for political purposes and deadly propaganda by a Fascist Regime like IRI, and to be a place for them to propagate their odious policies and ideologies.

They are implicit in facilitating and have been implicated for many years on direct attacks and killings of our British and Nato forces.

We urge you to reconsider allowing them to use your premises for any kind of function.

Please remember how they took our soldiers hostage — how they stoned and burned our embassy in Tehran and how on a daily bases they chant - Death to England and death to The Queen of England.

These people will not hesitate to kill you or your students or more of our soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan if people like you show them weakness — let alone have mercy on thousands of underage kids, women and old men that they hang and stone and cut their limbs off, or show any kind of civilised behaviour to the thousands of university students that they beat and jail in order to stay in power for just a few more days.

PLEASE STOP SUPPORTING THEM.

and here is the result :

I write on behalf of Professor Paul Webley, Director and Principal of the School of Oriental and African Studies. Thank you for your email expressing concern over this week’s scheduled events.



I would like to inform you that the event has been cancelled on procedural grounds.



Please contact me with any further questions.



Best Regards,



Jamie Bruce







Jamie Lynne Bruce

Communications Manager

School of Oriental and African Studies

Office: +44 (0) 207 898 4005

Email: jamie.bruce@soas.ac.uk

City boy said...

I write on behalf of Professor Paul Webley, Director and Principal of the School of Oriental and African Studies. Thank you for your email expressing concern over this week's scheduled events.



I would like to inform you that the event has been cancelled on procedural grounds.



Please contact me with any further questions.



Best Regards,



Jamie Bruce







Jamie Lynne Bruce

Communications Manager

saggezard said...

What a shame, we were having a real conversation before it got ugly. Appologies to Barmakid, if he feels offended by me, I do not know where I used any offensive comment, I never mean to offend anyone and I did not use any unwholesome words in any part of my post. I suppose minds can be rigid to different ideas and when they do not want to see another person’s view they can feel offended, I never meant to push my opinions on anyone my opinion. Finally I think it Barmakid is trying to say I am a “Nafahm Besavaud”, that is what he means by writing “Besabaud”.

Azarmehr I am linking your SOAS post on my blog. The SOAS situation should get a lot more coverage. Thanks for facilitating the conversation, it is always enlightening.

barmakid said...

Please do not publish:

Yes, please delete the post where I insensitively call saggezard nafham. I would be greatful. and I just want to be clear, I meant I wouldn't post on this thread anyomre, not your blog. I realized that I might be misinterpreted after I wrote it.

But please delete my rude comment, its a stigma on my character.

mersee

Azarmehr said...

One of Barmakid's posts was deleted at his own request.

Bahramerad said...

SOAS Principal

An open letter to Mr. Paul Webley:

Dear sir

I would like to draw your attention to the following article at the bottom of my e-mail to you.
SOAS has become a source of great disappointment and worry to all of us freedom loving British - Iranians - living and working for many years in England.We hate to see one of our esteemed universities being used and abused for political purposes and deadly propaganda by a Fascist Regime like IRI, and to be a place for them to propagate their odious policies and ideologies.
They are implicit in facilitating and have been implicated for many years on direct attacks and killings of our British and Nato forces. We urge you to reconsider allowing them to use your premises for any kind of function.Please remember how they took our soldiers hostage — how they stoned and burned our embassy in Tehran and how on a daily bases they chant - Death to England and death to The Queen of England.These people will not hesitate to kill you or your students or more of our soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan if people like you show them weakness — let alone have mercy on thousands of underage kids, women and old men that they hang and stone and cut their limbs off, or show any kind of civilised behaviour to the thousands of university students that they beat and jail in order to stay in power for just a few more days.PLEASE STOP SUPPORTING THEM.

Reply from SOAS : I write on behalf of Professor Paul Webley, Director and Principal of the School of Oriental and African Studies. Thank you for your email expressing concern over this week’s scheduled events.I would like to inform you that the event has been cancelled on procedural grounds.Please contact me with any further questions. Best Regards, Jamie Bruce -Jamie Lynne Bruce -Communications Manager -School of Oriental and African Studies -Office: +44 (0) 207 898 4005 -Email: jamie.bruce@soas.ac.uk

Winston said...

This is not the first time this "kid" guy has made offensive comments. He made some of which he deserved himself on my blog and I had to reject them. If you can't be civil, then stay away.

Winston said...

I re-posted this on Little Green Footballs web site too

Winston said...

Sharia Law will take place in UK. Well, you see the Brits want it so let them have it.

Bahramerad said...

Winston
Don't worry much !
That WILL never happen in England.
This guy is crazy and does not know what the fuck he is talking about.
The Brown government has already said No to this diabolical suggestion.
FUCK Sharia Law. Fuck all the fanatics.
This country is a christian country.
If anybody does not like it they can get the fuck out of here and go back to their own barbarian societies.

barmakid said...

Don't get too excited Winston jon; I'm still here. Since you are Iranian and other Iranians read your ideas, my convictions won't allow me to let them go unchallenged.

Cheers,
barmakid

p.s. What's more offensive; me responding to your thoughts aggressively or you advocating the bombing of innocent people? You must have forgotten (or maybe you don't care) that some people have family in the country you wish to bomb.