Mad Mel soundbite (and book hold-up)

Melanie Phillips has latched onto the Inayat Bunglawala / Little Green Footballs controversy in her usual way, with a reference to “the truly demented ‘Zionist conspiracy’ theory emanating from Londonistan (Charles isn’t even a Jew)”. Talking of strange ideas, why does Charles Johnson think it suspicious that someone from Reuters, using the same IP address that was used to send the threatening email, keeps visiting the LGF site? (Also: see this post about a debate between Phillips and Gautam Malkani, who recently launched a novel called Londonistani.)

Does Charles Johnson really expect that, in a news agency, someone won’t be checking the LGF website for updates on the situation concerning that site and one of his or her colleagues? Perhaps Reuters assigns IP addresses using DHCP (that is, assigning an IP address every time a computer connects to the network, not on a permanent basis), as with a lot of networks (which is why IP banning almost never works)? And perhaps it wasn’t Inayat who sent the death threat, but some malicious individual while he left his computer to go and relieve himself?

Phillips calls LGF a website “which campaigns against Islamist fascism”. Hardly. The site is basically a hate blog which attributes every terrorist hit by a small Muslim group to Islam itself. It sneers at every attempt to accommodate Muslims and to build bridges with ordinary (not sold out) Muslims, and cheers on attacks on Muslim rights and freedoms.

By the way, can anyone explain why Melanie Phillips’s new book Londonistan has been held back until (at least) 15th June - and according to staff at Foyle’s of London I asked today, it won’t be out until the 31st? Come to think of it, why has this book been released a month in the USA before people in the country it’s about - this country - can see it, enabling it to receive glowing reviews from the usual suspects? Notably this editorial written by a total ignoramus in the New York Sun, linked off Phillips’s blog, which makes this ridiculous claim:

According to Ms. Phillips, the London bombings in July disclosed the extent of Islamist penetration of British society, with extremist preachers in British mosques indoctrinating young Muslims, training them for jihad, and despatching them to attacks America, Israel and other targets. Several of the most infamous terrorists, including Zacarias Moussaoui, were recruited in London by such figures as Abu Qatada, Abu Hamza and Omar Bakri Mohammad.

Actually, anyone who has been living in London for the last ten years knows that these radicals have been allowed to rant and rave as long as they are not known to be involved in crime (such as terrorism) or to have incited violence. It’s called free speech. The “extent of Islamist penetration” betrayed by these bombs amounts to two tiny cells, one of them consisting of incompetent Somalis. One of the young men who did the attack in Tel Aviv was known to have had only the most minimal contact with “radicals” in London, and to have detested them, to the extent that many thought he had been set up until they saw the video.

Need I go on?

The question must be asked: why has Mel allowed her American neo-con buddies to get their hands on her book at least five weeks before people in the UK, when it’s about the UK?

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