Monday, January 30, 2023

One Wednesday in Spain and Germany

This article first appeared in New English Review. 

Wednesday, January 25th, was a really dark day in Europe, specifically in Spain and Germany. In Spain, the secretary general of the conservative VOX party (which opposes unrestricted migration into the country), Ignacio Garriga, was speaking in the Catalonian legislature, of which he is a member. He was repeatedly interrupted by the lady presiding over the session for reportedly correlating immigration with crime. She repeatedly demanded that he retract his words.

Another example of free speech in "democratic" Europe!

The lady may well want to retract her own words. That same evening, in the southern Spanish town of Algeciras, a 25-year-Moroccan man, armed with a machete, attacked 2 churches, killing a sexton in one and gravely injuring a priest in another before being arrested by police. As you can well imagine, the attacker, who was verbally admonishing bystanders to convert to Islam, was in the country illegally and was under a deportation order Why was this man even in the country to begin with? 

The same day, a stateless Palestinian "refugee" attacked passengers on a train between Kiel and Hamburg, killing two, a 17-year-old girl and a 19-year-old male, and injuring seven others. The man was arrested when the train stopped at a small community along the route. The man had been in Germany since 2014, living on government assistance since 2016, and had an extensive record of assaults and sexual offenses. In fact, he had just been released from custody days before the attack. Why was this man still in Germany? The official explanation is that there was no country to send him to.

And don't think that these were the only two violent incidents in Europe committed by these so-called "refugees" and "asylum-seekers", overwhelmingly young men who arrived unaccompanied from the Middle East, North Africa, Somalia, and Afghanistan. The nations of France, Sweden, Belgium, Italy, and the Netherlands have all been hit hard by this wave of migrant crime. For years, mostly Pakistani grooming and rape gangs have been operating in the UK for years, protected by police who were too afraid to arrest them lest they be accused of racism and Islamophobia. In the Netherlands, it's the Moroccan Maffia (with two f's) who control the drug trade and carry out assassinations. In Sweden, rival immigrant gangs shoot and bomb each other on a daily basis. The country is the virtual European capital when it comes to shootings, bombings, and rapes. Jews are emigrating in droves due to the anti-Semitic violence committed against them not by native Swedes, but by Muslim immigrants. Jews in France are also emigrating for the same reason as that country also deals with some type of murderous attack almost on a weekly basis. That includes attacks on churches and killings of priests and parishioners, much like what occurred this week in Algeciras. Tiny Belgium is the home of the Brussels neighborhood of Molenbeek, a nest of radicals and terrorists who not only carried out the deadly Brussels attacks on March 22, 2016, but the Paris attacks on November 13, 2015, at multiple sites that left 130 dead. 

I could go on and on, but what stands out about January 25, is the irony, not just the deadly attacks in two different countries, but coupled with the admonition in the Catalonian legislature the same day not to link immigration in Europe with crime.

As an American married to an immigrant, I should add that we have our own problems with an immigration system that has gone off the rails, a problem our current government-like Western European governments- refuses to confront. While our southwestern border is a dangerous mess, now controlled by cartels instead of our Border Patrol, thousands more keep pouring into Europe every day from the above-mentioned regions. People are dying at the hands of too many of these young men. Make no mistake: It is the European political leadership, including the EU, that has blood on its hands. The fact of the matter is that in Western Europe, there is a definite correlation between immigration (which is actually an invasion) and crime. I know from my own experience of having lived in Europe (Italy and Germany) that there are many decent immigrants in Europe. They have to pay the price for those who have arrived more recently, refused to assimilate, and have nothing but contempt for the societies that have taken them in. Europe could have had its workforce and its diversity had they simply chosen wisely and controlled who they would admit and who would assimilate and contribute. Instead, they chose this.

Sweden: Stockholm is Called to Prayer

 Hat tip Samnytt

"Allahu Akhbar"

According to the conservative Swedish news outlet, Samnytt, only three mosques in all of Sweden are authorized to broadcast the call to prayer.  This occurs five times a day beginning in the early morning (when most people in Sweden are fast asleep or trying to sleep). Yet, residents in one area of Stockholm-where no such permission has been issued by police- have been awakened by the Muslim call to prayer on repeated occasions. The below report from Samnytt is translated by Fousesquawk.

Video: Call to prayer in Stockholm night: "Allahu Akhbar"

Posted 0900 am

In a video clip posted by a resident in Hendriksdal in Nacka, a sound is heard that sounds suspiciously like a call to prayer. The prank was recorded during early Sunday morning-but it isn't the first time such sound is heard at the location.

In Sweden, there are three mosques that have received permission from the police to put out a  call to prayer by loudspeaker. They are the mosques in Fittja in Botkyrka, Kungsmarken in Karlskrona, and Araby in Växjö.

But in the Stockholm area of Hendriksdal in Nacka, there is no permission issued for a Muslim call to prayer. In spite of this, residents in Hendriksdal on repeated occasions, have witnessed what appears to be some type of Muslim call to prayer.

"Hendriksdal, today at 4:47 am, This howling in the early mornings is recurring. The sound seems to come from the station or its vicinity. As far as I know, this began last year. Today was the first time I was able to capture it on video," one witness writes in a posting on Twitter. (See below )

Unclear sender

In the video clip, a man's voice is heard singing in what seems to be a Muslim call to prayer, that "Allah is greatest". The phase, called takbir, is used daily as an introduction to the call to prayer from the mosque at prayer times, which occur five times a day and is also part of the scheduled prayer. 

The time of the recording of the (video) clips corresponds to the time of the day's first Muslim prayer, the morning prayer, which is called "Fajr".

"I don't know who is playing the sound. The nearest mosque is Södermalm mosque, but this sound must be coming from someplace else," the witness writes in a comment to Samnytt.

The witness later realized on Sunday morning that he had managed to capture all of it on video once previously, one August morning in 2022, but somewhat less clear. Samnytt has had access to the clip where at the beginning, you can hear a similar sound as the current clip.

Sunday, January 29, 2023

Forced Marriages in France

The below article concerns the problem of forced marriages in France. Forced marriage is illegal in France, but according to this article, there are some 200,000 forced marriages in the country. The problem is largely among the immigrant community, people who come from countries where the practice is common.

The below article from Revue de Presse Police et Realites (an outlet of the National Police) is translated by Fousesquawk.

200,000 forced marriages in France "My father told me if I protested, or I spoke out, he would kill me."

According to a recent report, there are reportedly 200,000 forced marriages in France. The victims of these marriages are often immigrant women and girls who are forced to marry against their will. often for cultural or religious reasons.

In a poignant testimony, a young woman tells how she was forced to marry at the age of 18 being threatened by her father. "My father told me if I protested, or I spoke out, he would kill me," she stated.

These forced marriages can have devastating consequences on the victims, who may incur physical and psychological violence, as well as sexual abuse. Moreover, they may be cut off from their family and community, and often have difficulty integrating into French society.

It is important to note that forced marriages are illegal in France, and laws exist to protect the victims. However, it is often difficult for the victims to speak about their situation and ask for help.

It is important to sensitize the communities to these problems and to support the victims. Charity organizations and associations can offer assistance services and support people who have been forced to marry. The authorities should also take measures to fight this scourge and protect the victims.

In summary, forced marriages remain an important problem in France, affecting numerous people each year. It is crucial to sensitize the communities to this problem, to support the victims, and to put measures in place to fight against this scourge.

Spain: Update on Algeciras

Spanish police in Algeciras are searching for the cell phone of the Moroccan suspect in the machete attack Wednesday, January 25th, in which a church sexton was murdered and a priest gravely injured. The perpetrator attacked two different churches on a major plaza in the city.

The below article from today's Algeciras al Minuto is translated by Fousesquawk.

*Note: In this article, the suspect's name is given as Yassin Kanza. There are different spellings of his name going around. Previous articles we have translated have given his name as Yasine Kanjaa.

Secondly, the article refers to a police search of the suspect's apartment in the early morning of Wednesday. This is misleading for an English-language reader since the attacks on the churches occurred in the early evening of Wednesday. I have noted over the years that some languages have different ways of expressing the transition from night into the morning of the following day. The search clearly took place early Thursday morning.

The police searching for the cell phone of the Moroccan killer of Algeciras

According to El Confidencial, the police do not yet have the phone.

January 29, 2023 16:48-Editorial staff

Caption: State (condition)  of the house

The officers investigating the attack in Algeciras last Wednesday, where the sexton of the La Palma parish was assassinated and the priest of San Isidro (church) was wounded, are intensively searching for the cell phone of the perpetrator of the acts because it may contain key information on the origin of the incident.

According to El Confidencial Digital, although it had been published that the police seized the device, apparently, the cell phone is still not in their possession because Yassin Kanza would have taken care to get rid of it since in the search of the apartment on Ruiz Tagle Street, flash drives were found with extremist Islamist contents, but no cell phone.

The police investigations suggest that in the telephone of the perpetrator of the machete attacks upon the priest and sexton, there would be conversations with jihadist suspects in Tangiers and Ceuta, (which) stick out in the digital media, where in spite of the search conducted the early morning of Wednesday, no electronic device was found.

The discovery of the cell phone would make it possible to discover who could have helped the Moroccan individual in his process of rapid radicalization.

Saturday, January 28, 2023

As Expected. Palestinians Celebrate Synagogue Massacre

As expected, Palestinians across the West Bank and Gaza celebrated this week's deadly massacre in a Jerusalem synagogue, carried out by one of their own.

The above Times of Israel article has several videos of Palestinians dancing in the streets, setting off fireworks, and passing out candy (a traditional Palestinian way of celebrating the murders of Jews). The last video features people chanting, "Allahu Akhbar".

This is the result of decades of instilling Jew hatred into the Palestinian populace. For several decades, Palestinians have embraced murder and terrorism in their efforts to destroy the Jewish state of Israel. This is the result of UN-financed schools when Palestinian children are given textbooks that feature cartoon characters expressing the desire to kill Jews. American money actually goes to the UN agency that finances these schools, United Nations Relief Works Agency for Palestinians (UNRWA).

And how timely that this vile synagogue attack came on January 27, the day designated as International Holocaust Remembrance Day. And how timely also that the attack came just days after US Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib proudly posted a Palestinian flag outside her Capitol Hill office. Shameful!

Disgrace in Memphis

 As a retired law enforcement officer, I cannot let this day pass without commenting on the dreadful news out of Memphis this week. A young black man, Tyre Nichols, was savagely beaten by five Memphis police officers (who were also black). Nichols died of his injuries three days later. After reviewing videotapes of the incident, the police chief, (also black) fired the five officers. They have now been charged with second-degree murder, among other charges. 

As much as I want to find some legitimate reason for their actions and support cops, after watching the videos that were released last night, I find no words to express the disgust I feel. That young man was beaten to death by cops who conducted themselves like thugs. Nichols, who was initially dragged out of his car at gunpoint, as if this were a felony car stop (for reckless driving), was assaulted by the cops, managed to break free, and run a few blocks before being captured and savagely beaten. He was kicked in the head while he was on the ground, hit with a billy club, and while being held upright by officers, was slugged in the face by another. 

This is not what any American law enforcement agency trains its people to do. I saw no resistance from Nichols other than trying to shield himself from the blows and kicks. There are certainly times when officers have to defend themselves when a suspect is actively fighting or assaulting them. This was not such a case. There is ongoing now a careful dissecting of the videos to determine exactly what each officer did during the course of this incident. 

This is a stain on all law enforcement, and I am sure that cops in Memphis and all over the country feel the same disgust as I do. Yet, they will still pay the price. No doubt there will be more demands to "defund the police". Their job has once again become even harder.

I want to say this as carefully as I can lest it be misunderstood. In the first paragraph, I pointed out that Nichols, the five cops involved, and the police chief are black. Why? Because had any of those officers been white, we would likely be seeing a repeat of the George Floyd tragedy. The issue of "racist cops" would be front and center, as it was in the George Floyd case. There is no-or at least there should not be, in my opinion, racial aspect to this incident. Unfortunately, many on the left will still say race is a factor as to how police treat black suspects regardless of the race of the officers. This leads to another debate entirely. In the course of my own career as a military policeman, Customs agent, and DEA agent (1966-1995), I heard several references by colleagues to the effect that many black law enforcement officers seemed to come down especially hard on black suspects. If true, I think this was more true early in my career than in later years. Over the years, I think, black police and black federal law enforcement agents have become more sensitive to how black suspects were treated and more willing to speak out when they saw or perceived abuses. I want to stress here that this is all purely anecdotal on my part, and other law enforcement veterans may have a different perspective. 

At any rate, I have no idea what was going through the minds of these Memphis (ex) cops as they were beating this man to death. As I write this, Memphis is calm though there are naturally protests going on-protests quite justified in my view. The family of Tyre Nichols is pleading for calm, to their great credit. The system by all appearances is working. There will be justice.

Friday, January 27, 2023

The Terrorist Attack in Algeciras (Cont)

 Hat tip Vlad Tepes, RAIR Foundation, and Gates of Vienna. Translation by Fousesquawk.


 Here is more Spanish news video from El Pais on the deadly Islamist terror attack in Algeciras, Spain on Wednesday. This was the pending video we referenced in Wednesday's initial post. The voice you will hear is a woman who was witnessing the event apparently from her window.

Terror Attack in Israeli Synagogue

 Today is International Holocaust Remembrance Day. News is just breaking that at least 7 people have been killed in a shooting attack on a synagogue in Jerusalem. The reported shooter is a 21-year-old Palestinian who was shot dead by police.

This is how the Palestinians celebrate International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

I wonder what Rashida Tlaib is thinking after this week putting up a Palestinian flag outside her office in the US Capitol.

Is this what you are so proud of, Ms. Tlaib?

"Free Speech" in Catalonian Legislature

 Hat tip RAIR Foundation, Gates of Vienna, and Vlad Tepes. Translation by He Ha.

Here is another example how free speech works in Europe. On Wednesday, January 25, Ignacio Garriga, Secretary General of the conservative Vox party, which opposes unrestricted immigration, was speaking before the Catalonian legislature this week. In referring to the government's immigration policies, he was repeatedly interrupted by the speaker of the legislature, who demanded he retract his statements. The below video is cross-posted from RAIR Foundation and Gates of Vienna. Of course, Madame Speaker had no way of knowing of the horrific act that was played out Wednesday evening in Algeciras. She might want to retract her statements.


Thursday, January 26, 2023

Spain: The Horror in Algeciras

Video translated by Fousesquawk. Hat tip Vlad Tepes and Gates of Vienna. Viewer warning.

The victim lies under the blanket

Yesterday, we reported on the murder of a Catholic church official and the wounding of a priest in Algeciras, Spain by a machete-wielding Moroccan man who was clearly on a mission of jihad. Today, El Pais is showing another video of the moments just after the one victim was killed and the killer is walking around the square waving the machete and bowing to passersby (Viewer warning).

Below is the written part of the El Pais article as translated by Fousesquawk. The translation of the video is in the works. (Update: The video may be viewed above.)

Attack in Algeciras

Video: The moment of the deadly attack against Diego Valencia in Algeciras

The sacristan (sexton) of the Church of Alta Square tried to flee from Yasine Kanjaa, who attacked him on the street causing death

Caption below video:

The moment in which Yasine Kanjaa addresses passersby just after murdering Diego Valencia

El Pais 26 January 2023-14:57, updated 26 January 2023-15:12 EST

The video images show the exact moment in which Yasine Kanjaa, a 25-year-old man of Moroccan nationality, chases the sexton, Diego Valencia, to strike the mortal blow. Between shouts, the neighbors attend a scene that plays out in very few seconds and ends with the sexton lying on the ground in the square. The images have been edited to preserve the identity of the dead person. After killing him, Kanjaa leaves the victim, walking slowly, and bowing to the neighbors who have been present at the crime. The attacker continued his walk and tried to commit a new attack in the chapel of the Virgin of Europe, although he gave up seeing it was closed. The journey ended a few meters further, right at the square facing the building known as the Escalinata building, where the local police located him. "He got on his knees and offered no resistance," stated one of the officers of the (local police) while they set up a guard around Alta Square.


The US Capitol is no Place for the Palestinian Flag, Rashida Tlaib

Hat tip Jewish News Syndicate

The news that Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib has hung a Palestinian flag in front of her Capitol office this week has, of course, caused reactions from various folks. Here is my reaction.

No matter how one feels about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict or any other conflict around the world, there is only one flag that belongs in our nation's Capitol. That is the Stars and Stripes. I know that Tlaib, an American-born woman of Palestinian parentage, is hostile to Israel and a big supporter of the Palestinian cause. That is her right. It is also her right to hang another flag outside her office. By that, I mean that nobody is going to arrest her and haul her away (as they have when she disrupts events). But I still feel that her action-as is usually the case- is offensive. The Palestinian flag does not represent any entity that is friendly to the US. In my view, it represents people who celebrated on 9-11. It represents terrorists who wantonly kill Jews. It represents people like Hamas, a terrorist organization that runs Gaza. 

Now I know some wise guy reading this is going to point out that on this site, I have an Israeli flag together with an American flag in showing my support for Israel. The distinction is that I am a private citizen running a blog. I am not a US Congressperson working in the Capitol building in Washington DC. Rashida Tlaib is not a representative of the mythical state of Palestine (which has never existed as a nation at any time in history). She is a representative of the United States of America.

If Rashida Tlaib is so proud of that flag and what it represents, maybe she should move to the West Bank or Gaza.  She is a poor representative for the American government.

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Spain: Deadly Knife Attack at Church in Algeciras

Hat tip Vlad Tepes, Gates of Vienna, and HeHa.

Church of La Palma, Algeciras

This evening in Algeciras, Spain, there has been a horrific attack against at least two churches in the center of the city. One man, a Moroccan, aged 25, is in custody accused of entering a church armed with a  machete and attacking a priest, who is in grave condition. The suspect then reportedly went to another church and attacked and fatally wounded a sexton. 

This is being treated as a jihadist terrorist attack. In one church, the suspect reportedly told parishioners they should convert to Islam.

The below article from El Pais is translated by Fousesquawk. Please note that the article has been updated and there may be differences in comparing the Spanish and English versions. In addition, the article identified the deceased victim first as David Valencia, then as Diego Valencia.

A subtitled video is pending.

*Update: El Pais has identified the suspect as Yasine Kanjaa.

A man kills one person and leaves at least four injured in an attack against two churches in Algeciras

The National Police arrested the attacker shortly after the incident. The National Court Prosecutor believes this to be an alleged terrorist attack of an Islamic nature.

Caption: A person under a thermal blanket in Alta Square in Algeciras Wednesday. On the right is the attacker.

By Patricia Ortega Dolz, Oscar Lopez-Fonseca, Jesus A. Canas

Madrid, Cadiz 25 January 2023, 14:48, updated 25 January 2023 14:53 

At least one person has died and four others have been injured in a machete attack carried out in various churches and parishes in the center of Algeciras (Cadiz) on Wednesday afternoon. According to sources in the Ministry of Interior, one person carried out an attack with a knife killing one person and wounding others. The man, a Moroccan aged 25, according to sources within the investigation and statements of witnesses who were present, entered the church of San Isidro in the center of the city, at 7 pm and "began to argue with the parishioners there, telling them that they should follow the Islamic religion."

After that, he left the location but returned around 7:20 with "a machete and attacked the priest, causing serious wounds". Then he proceeded to the church of La Palma, only 200 meters from the first, where, after causing various destruction, he attacked the sacristan (sexton), who managed to get out of the church, but he was caught by the attacker outside where he (the attacker) inflicted fatal wounds. Then, after leaving this location, "he tried to hide in a hermitage where he was (caught) by local police. The arrestee has no police record and is being held by the National Police in Algeciras.

Agents of the General Intelligence Commissariat, specialized in the anti-terrorist fight, have taken charge of the investigation, without having determined for the time being the nature of the attack beyond the fact that the attacks have jihadist overtones. The National Court Prosecutor has assumed the case as a presumed terrorist attack, according to the public ministry. Police sources warn, however, of the existing confusion at this time, and point out that there have been attacks "in at least two churches". Police reports will eventually clear up the nature of the attack. The city council has decreed an official day of mourning for the death of the sexton, David Valencia. The gravely wounded priest, who is in a coma, is Antonio Rodriguez.

Caption: The arrestee after being detained.

An Algeciras priest has described the events as follows: "The attacker first went to the parish of San Isidro, where he attacked a person. Then, after that, he approached the church in La Palma Square, where he encountered a sexton in the street and attacked him leaving him on the ground. After that, he appeared to go to the Church of the Virgin of Europe, but I don't know if he got there." All of the churches are located in the center of the city of 122,000 residents. The Civil Guard is setting up security barriers in the houses of worship in the area, confirms Miguel Alconchel, mayor of Los Barrios (neighboring municipality).

For his part, the parish priest of the Church of La Palma, Juan Jose Marina, who was outside the church at that moment, adds: According to what I was told, a Muslim entered and began throwing things from the altar. Then the sexton tried to stop him, and the first knife attack was inside the church. The poor man went out onto the street asking for help, and there he was again attacked in the square. The attacker came from the Church of San Isidro, and there he attacked a Salesian, also a comrade, who was at that moment giving a mass. The parish priest Marina also told Cadena SER: "Possibly, this death was meant for me, and it found him."

Caption: The parish of the church in Algeciras where a sexton was murdered: "Possibly, this death was...."

The emergency service 119 Andalucia received numerous reports with details of the incident, but the rescue personnel could do nothing to save the life of the victim. The mayor of Algeciras, Jose Ignacio Landluce, has sent his condolences, both for himself and in the name of the municipal government, for the death of Diego Valencia. For his part, the president (of Spain), Pedro Sanchez, has expressed sorrow over the events on Twitter. "I want to send my most sincere condolences to the relatives of the sexton killed in the terrible attack in Algeciras. I wish for a speedy recovery for the wounded. All of our support to the work being done by the forces and entities of security of the State". The president of the Andalucia Assembly, Juan Manuel Moreno, also expressed himself on social media: "Terrible and heart-breaking. They have murdered a sexton and wounded at least another priest in an attack carried out in Algeciras. Prudence-the facts are being investigated". The secretary general of the Spanish Episcopal Conference (CEE), Francisco Cesar Garcia Magan, has also expressed his pain on social media. "With pain, I have received the news of the happenings in Algeciras. In these sad moments of suffering, we join in the pain of the family of the victims and the  Cadiz Diocese and pray to God of life and peace for the speedy recovery of the wounded". The Muslim Community, for its part, issued a statement of rejection.

Thus far in 2023, security forces have arrested 4 alleged jihadists. Last year, 53 arrests of persons connected with those terrorist groups were recorded, 46 of whom were made in Spain and 7 in other countries, principally Morocco. The most important in the number of arrests was in October, also in an operation in conjunction with the Maghrebian country (Morocco). Then, there were 13 arrestees, 11 of them in Spain, for indoctrinating minors in Melilla. Since 2020, 131 arrested have been recorded for jihadism, according to official statistics from the Ministry of Interior.

Germany: Two Dead in Stabbing Attack on German Train

"Wir schaffen dass" (We can do this)

Once again, it has happened somewhere in Europe. Today, on a train between the German cities of Kiel and Hamburg, a stateless Palestinian man went on a stabbing rampage. As a result, two people are dead and seven others injured. The man has reportedly been in Germany since 2014 and living on government assistance. He has a record of sexual and violent assaults and had been in police custody up until a week ago. This is another example of how former Chancellor Angela Merkel and the German government have the blood of innocents on their hands.

In the interest of time, we have translated the first four paragraphs of today's article from WELT. This will be updated.

*Update: (Jan 26) The two deceased victims are identified only as a 17-year-old girl and a 19-year-old male. Two young lives cut short. Two victims sacrificed on the altar of Angela Merkel's insane asylum policy, which is being continued by her successor as chancellor, Olaf Scholz, with the assistance of all the liberals in the German government. And make no mistake, more will die, not just in Germany, but all the other Western European nations whose governments pursue the same policies.


Two dead in knife attack- Suspect had been in custody week before

Posted 18:41

A man has attacked passengers on a train with a knife. Two people have been killed and there are several injured. The suspect was arrested. According to WELT's information, he had just been released from custody a week ago.

In a knife attack on a regional train from Kiel to Hamburg Wednesday, two people have been killed and seven others injured. The alleged perpetrator was arrested. He was taken to a hospital with medium-level injuries, a spokesperson of the Federal Police told WELT. Three people were seriously injured, four others lightly injured.

According to Schleswig-Holstein's Interior Minister, Sabine Suetterlin-Waack (CDU), he is a stateless Palestinian man. According to WELT's information, the man is 33 years old. Ibrahim A. reportedly came to Germany in 2014, living first in North Rhine-Westphalia, then in Schleswig-Holstein, and received subsidiary protection in 2016. The man reportedly has come into contact with police on several occasions due to sexual and violent crimes, and until a week ago was in police custody.

After an initial assessment by security officials, there appears to be no (further) threat. He reportedly appeared very confused when arrested.


*Update: Here is the remainder of our translation of the WELT article.

What is known about the course of events

The suspect reportedly attacked travelers with a knife shortly before 3 pm before the arrival at the Brokstedt train station (Steinburg district). It is also reported that the police received several calls from passengers. Upon notification, the train was stopped.

The incident then shifted to the platform, the Federal Police reported to WELT. The State Police, with the assistance of courageous first responders, arrested (the suspect).

A woman from Bad Bramstedt was waiting for her daughter a few meters from the train station. The 18-year-old student was on the train returning from the university in Kiel. "She saw a man four rows in front of her stabbing someone," said the mother to the news agency DPA. At the time, she still could not speak to her daughter, only (text), the woman said. She was still waiting to give a statement to the police. The young woman was not injured. "But I believe, she is doing badly. What kind of people do this?" said the mother.

The train station was closed for police measures. Brokstedt is a small community on the train line between Elmshorn and Neumeunster.

Schleswig-Holstein's interior minister: "Appalling act"

Federal Interior Minister Nancy Fraser (SPD) called the knife attack "shocking news". "All of our thoughts are with the victims of this terrible act and their families," she wrote on Twitter. "The background of the crime is now being (investigated at the highest priority)".

"We are completely shocked and appalled that this happened," said Schleswig-Holstein's interior minister, Suetterlin-Waack. The minister got the news in the state parliament and consulted with State President Daniel Guenther (also CDU). "For me, it is clear that this appalling act is directed against all humanity," she added.

Her thoughts "are with the families and relatives of the victims," explained Suetterlin-Waack. She wishes the injured a speedy recovery. She thanked the police, who arrested the perpetrator, and all the rescue personnel.

State President Guenther spoke of a terrible and senseless act. "Schleswig-Holstein mourns- this is a terrible day," said Guenther. He is thinking of everyone who mourns and fears for the injured. "With deep sadness and shock, I myself received this news this afternoon." His thoughts and prayers are for the people and the relatives. Guenther thanked the operational personnel for their work and also those who cared for the passengers and witnesses on the train, as well as the injured.

According to the transportation minister, Claus Ruhe Madsen (no party affiliation), there has never been a similar serious, crime of violence on a train in Schleswig-Holstein. Madsen and the managing director of the transportation association, Nah. SH, Arne Beck, stated that their thoughts are with those impacted and their relatives. They wished the injured a speedy recovery. "Now we hope for a quick resolution by the police," Beck said according to the announcement.

As the German Railways announced, there are cancellations between Flensburg and Hamburg, as well as Kiel and Hamburg. The route between Wrist and Brokstedt is currently closed. The German Railways announced this evening, "To the relatives of the victims, our deepest condolences. To the injured, we wish a quick and complete recovery".

Knife attacks  on trains and in train stations

Already on some occasions, armed and violent perpetrators have attacked people on trains or in German train stations. In a knife attack near Herzogenrath (North Rhein-Westfalen) in May 2022, on a regional train, four passengers suffered non-life-threatening injuries. Several passengers overpowered the perpetrator from Iraq. There were no indications of terrorism or radicalization. In January 2023, the State Court in Aachen ordered the 35-year-old to be placed in a psychiatric hospital.

On an ICE train between Regensburg and Nuremberg, in November 2021, a 27-year-old injured 4 men with a knife, some seriously. In December 2022 the Syrian-raised, Palestinian perpetrator was sentenced to 14 years in prison. The court found a radical-Islamist background. The defense lodged an appeal.

On an ICE train near Aschaffenburg, a 43-year-old injured a fellow passenger with a knife to the throat. Police and army soldiers overpowered the heavily drunk attacker. In November 2017, the State Court in Aschaffenburg sentenced the Dutch citizen to 8 years in prison. There were no indications of a terrorist background.

On a regional train near Wurzburg in 2016, a 17-year-old attacked passengers with an ax and a knife and injured four of them. While fleeing, he further attacked a passerby. Police shot the Afghan refugee, who in a video, had described himself as a fighter for the Islamic State terror militia.

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

Hamline University Controversy: Faculty Votes Calls for University President to Resign

Hat tip Volokh Conspiracy

We have been following the controversy at Hamline University in Minnesota, the state's oldest university. An adjunct professor of art history,  Erika Lopez-Prater, was terminated by the university after complaints from Muslim students that she showed an example of Islamic art that actually featured an image of the Prophet Mohammad, something that goes against Islamic teaching and doctrine. University administrators labeled the teacher's actions as "Islamophobic.

This led to a nationwide firestorm against Hamline on grounds of academic freedom and freedom of speech. Hamline's president, Fayneese Miller, had issued a statement that academic freedom should have been superseded by respect for the Muslim students in the class. The university was flooded with letters, articles were written by academics supportive of Lopez-Prater, and a petition letter gathered over 18,000 signatures (including mine). The American Association of University Professors also came to her defense.

Last week, the university retracted its charges of Islamophobia against Lopez-Prater and admitted they had overreacted. That came on the same day Lopez-Prater filed a lawsuit against Hamline.

Not surprisingly, there isn't much else the student newspaper, The Oracle, has to write about these days. It has been revealed that they first published, then took down a letter to the editor in defense of Lopez-Prater from Mark Berkson, professor and chair of the Department of Religion. The letter has now been re-published.

Now the latest shoe has fallen. The Hamline faculty has voted overwhelmingly for Miller to resign saying she badly mishandled the crisis. This is reported in an article by David Perry in The Nation, a major liberal news/opinion organ.

Let's be honest: If a university professor or secondary school teacher cannot show a benign image of the Prophet Mohammad in a classroom, how do you think there can be any honest and open discussion about Islam at all in any classroom? It shows once again that our educators really have no clue about how to handle this super-sensitive topic. It would be much more comfortable if they could simply present Islam as a peaceful religion and talk about Islamophobia.

Euthanasia in the Third Reich

This article first appeared in New English Review.

Heil und Pflegeanstalt, Erlangen in 1890

Amid all the horrors of the Third Reich, including World War 2 and the Holocaust, one atrocity that is often overlooked (at least outside of Germany) was the program of euthanasia of mentally and physically handicapped people instituted by Hitler in 1939 when the war broke out. In Hitler's own terminology, these people were classified as "useless eaters". This program was referred to as "T4", named after the address of the office set up to oversee the program nationally (Tiergartenstrasse 4 in Berlin).

Under this program, patients in nursing care facilities around the country (Heil und Pflegenanstalten) were identified and their cases reviewed by doctors indoctrinated in Nazi philosophy. Once approved, these unfortunates (regardless of age) were transported to centers set up for the purpose of killing them by gas. It was sort of a dress rehearsal for the eventual gassing centers such as Auschwitz. This program also included children.

This went on without consultation with relatives of the patients, and these families were eventually notified by mail that their loved one had died in the nursing care facility of various natural causes or illnesses. The remains were generally cremated.

Yet, the public gradually became aware, and curiously enough, as complaints mounted, the Nazi government discontinued the program in 1941, but then reduced the patients' diets to the point that they gradually died of malnutrition.

While researching my book on the history of the German town of Erlangen (Erlangen: An American's History of a German Town), I became aware of the tragic history of their own Heil und Pflegeanstalt   This information was included in the chapter on the years 1933-1945.

With all that as a background, I happened to find a 2019 German YouTube documentary on the topic of the Heil und Pflegenanstalten of Ansbach and Neuendettelsau, two towns near Erlangen in Middle Franconia (Bavaria). In watching the video, I learned that many, if not most of the doomed patients in these two clinics were transferred to the facility at Erlangen before being shipped on to the infamous Hartheim Castle in Austria, which had been transformed into a euthanasia center. It is estimated that over 900 patients from Erlangen were euthanized in killing centers such as Hartheim and another 1,500 were allowed to starve to death.

Hartheim Castle in Austria

In the video, Als hätte es sie nie gegeben (As if they had never existed)there were clips of an interview with medical historian, Hans-Ludwig Siemen, as well as clips from his presentation on the topic, which took place in Erlangen. Siemen and Christine-Ruth Müller are co-authors of a book entitled, "Warum sie sterben mussten: Leidensweg und Vernichtung von Behinderten aus den Neuendettelsauer Pflegeanstalten im "Dritten Reich" (Why they had to die: Suffering and extermination of the disabled in the Neuendettelsau nursing homes in the Third Reich), published in 1991.

While watching the video, I happened to see a good friend of mine in Erlangen in the audience attending Siemen's presentation. I contacted him by email this week, and he quickly replied that indeed, it was him in the audience. With his permission, I am reposting what he emailed me:

Yes, that's me in the audience, Gary! Amazing coincidence! An act of providence really. I was there when Dr. Siemen spoke about the matter in the Volkshochschule Erlangen some years ago (before Corona). The reason is that in my mother's family, there were two physically (deaf and mute by birth) and finally probably mentally handicapped elderly women who died in the Bezirksklinikum Ansbach in the 1940s after they had been transferred from Neuendettelsau (Lutheran homes for the handicapped) to Ansbach where the Nazi physicians had total control. One of them died presumably due to the scanty "Hungerkost" diet, and the other one died in 1946, i.e. after the Nazi regime.

 I have been researching about their case in archives for years and will definitely write something about them because I feel they belong to our family although they have been more or less forgotten over the decades. Thank God both my grandmother and my mother told me frankly about them during their lifetime. I'll watch the video tomorrow in quiet. I'll touch base again with you afterward. Thanks a lot, Gary! Again I needed you to show me this. Wonderful connection!

All the best,


The site of the Erlangen Heil und Pflegeanstalt is now part of the University of Erlangen Psychiatric Clinic. Recently, the city of Erlangen tore down some of the old buildings, but some of it has been left standing as part of a memorial to the victims. It is one of many examples of sites related to the Nazi years that have become the subject of debate. Should they be torn down, erased, or preserved in an appropriate context so as to remind future generations of a time that must never be repeated. Just a few miles south of Erlangen, the city of Nuremberg is wrestling with what to do with the surviving (but crumbling) relics of the Nazi Party Rally grounds.

As a side note, when Erlangen fell to the US Army in 1945, a World War 1 memorial to Germany's fallen was partially torn down by the Americans. While they left standing concrete blocks with the names of Erlangen's war dead, a huge statue of a seated soldier, shirtless, with a helmet, was removed as being overly militaristic.

My personal opinion is that in the case of Germany, these sites should be preserved in some manner as a memorial to the victims. In the US, we are having a somewhat similar debate over the preservation of Civil War memorials. History, good or bad, cannot be erased. It is there. All we can try to do is put it in an appropriate context and learn from it.

Sunday, January 22, 2023

Anti-Swedish Protests Continue in Turkey

-Svenska Dagbladet

Anti-Swedish protests are continuing in Turkey over the weekend in response to yesterday's Koran-burning by Danish-Swedish activist Rasmus Paludan as well as the anti-Erdogan demonstrations in Stockholm by Kurdish protesters. Even though the Koran-burning by Paludan drew few spectators, it appears that the reaction in Turkey is mostly over this particular act (which took place near the Turkish embassy in Stockholm).

Thus far, there has been no real violence reported either in Turkey or Sweden, but that could change quickly. It is a delicate diplomatic situation, and perhaps a decisive blow against Sweden's hopes to gain a Turkish yes vote for admittance into NATO.

The below article from SVT (Swedish State TV) is translated by Fousesquawk.

Caption: Large protests in the Turkish town of Batman after Koran burning in Stockholm

New protests in Turkey after Koran burning in Stockholm

Updated today 08:26. Posted today at 07:59

For the second day in a row, there were protests outside the Swedish consulate in Istanbul. The protesters are in reaction to Saturday's Koran burning near Turkey's embassy in Stockholm. Demonstrations are now happening in other locations in Turkey.

Protests outside Sweden's consulate in Istanbul began Saturday evening when hundreds of people gathered to express anger over the Koran burning outside Turkey's embassy earlier on Saturday. There were also protests held outside the embassy in Ankara.

The protests continued Sunday. About 250 people were gathered outside the Swedish consulate in Istanbul, the news bureau AP is reporting. From pictures from the location, police are seen guarding the consulate's entrance, and riot barriers are set up on the sidewalk outside the consulate.

"It was Islamist organizations that have organized the protests. It is primarily religious conservative, believing Muslims who are taking part in the protests," says SVT's Turkey correspondent Thomas Thoren.

"An attack against all Muslims"

In the city of Batman in southeast Turkey, the protests are considerably more extensive. Thousands of persons, many carrying Korans have gathered in the city's streets. 

"We strongly condemn this action. It is impossible for any Muslim to accept, it is an attack against all Muslims," says one demonstrator in the city to the Reuters news bureau.

Many Arab nations, including Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Kuwait, have also condemned the Koran burning, Al Jazeera reports.

Another demonstrator in the city of Batman tells Reuters that it is obvious that people in Turkey and other nations are reacting to Rasmus Paludan's act.

Compared to Kristallnacht

President Erdogan's communications chief, Fahrettin Altun, is comparing the weekend's Koran burning to Kristallnacht in 1938.

"Would Swedish authorities excuse such terrible actions as freedom of expression, in this situation?" he says to Dagens Nyheter.

Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson (M) has expressed sympathy for Muslims who have been offended by Saturday's demonstrations in Stockholm. Foreign Minister Tobias Billström (M) has expressed the government's distancing from Paludan's action.

Expect continued protests

The Swedish embassy writes in Sweden Abroad that continuing demonstrations can be expected outside the embassy in Ankara and the general consulate in Istanbul in the coming days.

Saturday, January 21, 2023

Sweden: Protests Against Erdogan and NATO- Paludan Burns Koran in Front of Turkish Embassy

-Dagens Nyheter

 Several demonstrations have been held today in Stockholm revolving around the NATO membership issue and relations with Turkey. Some of the protesters were Kurdish groups demonstrating against Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan, some pro-Turkish groups, and others against Sweden's efforts to join NATO.

In the midst of it all, anti-Islam activist, Rasmus Paludan, burned a Koran near the Turkish embassy. That did not draw a large crowd.

As of now, everything has gone on peacefully.

The below article from Dagens Nyheter is translated by Fousesquawk.

Demonstrations for and against NATO- application and Turkey

Updated 18:13, posted 15:29

Caption: Demonstration procession through Stockholm

Several demonstrations connected to Turley and Sweden's NATO application are being held in Stockholm on Saturday afternoon. Police have many people out in the town, but so far no reports of disturbances.

At North Ban Square, hundreds of demonstrators gathered to protest against the Swedish application to NATO.  The demonstration was organized by the Kurdish Democratic Community Center, and among the participants was the Rojava Committee, the group that hung an effigy of Erdogan at Stockholm's city hall last week.

Caption: Demonstration against NATO application

The atmosphere was calm, and many demonstrators waved red-green-yellow flags of Kurdish organizations, such as YPG and YPJ. Slogans were both critical of Turkey and Recep Tayyip Erdogan and against NATO. Those who gathered chanted, among other things, "Erdogan upside down-No to NATO, yes to peace."

"To join NATO is a big and destructive step. I think it's a little funny that the government wants the gangs to lay down their weapons and not escalate, at the same time the government wants to join the world's largest armed gang," says Lena Bjärskog

Caption: Lena Bjärskog

"There are a few different reasons why people are here, but I am here to show displeasure with the NATO application. I think it is unfortunate that there is too much focus on Erdogan because this issue is much bigger than that," she says.

Nawzar Jabbar is on the scene with his family. He says he is taking part in the demonstration to show solidarity with Kurds in Syria and to show displeasure with the handling of the NATO application. He thinks that Sweden is conceding too much to Turkey and that it was wrong to lift the weapons embargo against the country.

"Non-alignment has benefitted Sweden, and we should not join NATO. It is not just democracies that are in NATO, but also dictatorships and rogue states, not the least of which is Turkey," says Nawzar Jabbar.

Caption: Nawzar Jabbar

When the demonstrators left North Ban Square to go to Citizens' Square, they all steeped on a large picture of Turkey's president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Earlier, the right-wing extremist provocateur, Rasmus Paludan, held a demonstration near the Turkish embassy in Diplomatstaden (Stockholm's diplomatic quarter). Interest was cool, and when Paludan burned a copy of the Koran, it was mostly police and journalists watching.

In the same quarter, the pro-Turksih organization, Union of Turkish Democrats (UETD), held a demonstration in support of Turkey and President Erdogan.

The demonstrations have gone on peacefully, according to police.

"Everything has proceeded in accordance with the permissions granted," says police press spokesperson for the Stockholm region, Ola Österling.

Friday, January 20, 2023

The Penn-Biden Issue and China: Are There Wider Implications for Academia?

 We are now witnessing the latest Joe/Hunter Biden scandal. This one involves the recent discovery of classified documents at the president's home in Delaware as well as his office in the Penn-Biden Center  in Washington DC. These documents were transferred from Biden's office as vice president when he left office as VP under the Obama administration. Biden has been in possession of these documents for approximately 6 years now.

But what about this Penn-Biden Center, which was set up in 2018 after Joe Biden left the vice presidency? It is now reported that this center has received millions of dollars from China.

The center is operated under the auspices of the University of Pennsylvania though it is located in Washington DC as opposed to the university campus in Philadelphia. This week, the university has made the following statement in the wake of an inquiry from the House of Representatives, now under majority Republican control. The statement is reported this week in the university campus newspaper, the Daily Pennsylvanian.

"The University has never solicited any gifts for the Center. Since its inception in 2017 there have been three unsolicited gifts, from two donors, which combined [to a total of]  $1,100. Both donors are Americans. One hundred percent of the budget for the Penn Biden Center comes from university funds," the spokesperson wrote. "Any foreign gifts received by the university are all properly reported to the U.S. Department of Education as required by Section 117 of the Higher Education Act. Penn is fully compliant with federal law regarding the reporting of foreign gifts and contracts."

No doubt we will be learning more about the Penn-Biden Center in the coming weeks and months. There is lots of speculation about what the documents may contain and whether they have anything to do with Hunter Biden and his business dealings with China. This week it is being reported by Fox News that a former office staffer of then-Vice President Biden, who was reportedly recommended for the position by Hunter Biden, has come forward and expressed concern that she may have been one of those who were tasked with transferring documents from the vice president's office. All this is yet to be sorted out.

But while we await the ultimate findings of this investigation, I would like to draw attention to a related problem, which is the influence of foreign money in our universities. After my retirement from DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration), I spent two decades teaching part-time at three colleges and universities, including 18 years at the University of California at Irvine.

We are learning more and more these days about the efforts of the Chinese government to make inroads in our universities, including through the use of financial donations. That is one problem that deserves our attention. The Chinese government is not doing this purely for altruistic reasons in the interest of the pursuit of knowledge, etc. They are obviously trying to gain influence. What kind of influence can a country buy from a university? Of course, there are legitimate reasons, such as joint ventures between friendly academic entities, such as between universities, academies of science, and NGOs. In the case of China, the main goal is to steal American technology, much of which is developed within academia. This is achieved through the use of students and researchers sent to study and /or work on university campuses.

Aside from China, there are other countries donating to American universities for questionable motives. I am thinking primarily here of Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Both of these countries have donated tens of millions of dollars to US universities. In many cases, this money has been used to establish Middle East Studies departments. It goes without saying that aside from their pan-Arab, pro-Islam outlook, Middle East studies centers in US universities are uniformly hostile to Israel. They bear partial responsibility for much of the anti-Israel agitation on campuses and the resultant anti-Semitism directed at Jewish students, especially if they defend the Jewish state. Of course, the spokespeople for these centers ritually maintain that they are not anti-Semitic, just anti-Zionist.

Taking one such center as an example, look at Georgetown University's Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding. Sounds harmless enough. In 2005, the above Saudi prince, for whom the center is named, donated 20 million dollars to Georgetown for the center. This was the same individual who had offered 10 million dollars to the city of New York to help rebuild after 9-11, but whose offer was rejected by then-Mayor Rudy Giuliani because the prince wanted the US to change his stance in regard to the Middle East and the Israel / Palestinian conflict. Here is what the Investigative Project on Terrorism has to say about the center. Georgetown University even has a campus located in Qatar. As with the  Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding, their focus is in the field of foreign service.

It should also be known that the center's most prominent professor, aside from activist professor John  Esposito, is Jonathan Brown, a convert to Islam who happens to be the son-in-law of Sami al-Arian, the disgraced former professor at the University of South Florida. Al-Arian was charged with financially assisting Middle East terror groups, and after a long judicial process, was finally deported to Turkey. Brown himself gained notoriety a few years ago when he implied that slavery practiced by Muslims was justified.

On a more general note, our universities today are multi-billion dollar enterprises as anyone paying for a college tuition today is well aware. Wealthy donors and alumni pay big bucks just to get their name on a university building or library. When so much money starts to influence what our children are taught about controversial or sensitive topics (like the Israel-Palestinian conflict, for example), truth sometimes is sacrificed. When that kind of financial influence is coming from overseas, especially countries like China, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar, it is even more alarming.

Thursday, January 19, 2023

Two Dutch Citizens Sentenced to Death in Morocco

Over the years, we have been posting and translating articles relative to the Moroccan Mafia in the Netherlands. The head of the Moroccan Mafia, Ridouan Taghi, is currently under trial in the Netherlands since his capture in Dubai in 2019. Taghi has also been linked to the 2021  murder of prominent Dutch crime journalist, Peter R. de Vries.

This week in Marrakech, Morocco, two men who hold Dutch passports were sentenced to death for a murder carried out in that city in 2017. That murder is also linked back to Taghi.

The below article from today's Telegraaf (Netherlands) is translated by Fousesquawk.

Two Dutch citizens sentenced to death in Morocco

by John Van Den Heuvel

Posted today 14:10 Updated today 15:00 in Domestic

Marrakech- The criminal court in Morocco has sentenced two Dutch citizens to death for a mistaken murder in the La Creme cafe in Marrakech in November 2017. The two, Shardyone S. (31) and Edwin R. M. (27), were hired to murder an arch-rival of Ridouan Taghi in Marrakech, but accidentally shot the son of a high-ranking Moroccan lawyer dead.

Caption: Police conducting investigation at La Creme cafe in Marrakech

The intended victim was the Moroccan-Dutchman, Mustapha el F., alias Moes, who shortly before the attack, changed seats and thus, escaped death. The Moroccan court also sentenced a number of other Moroccans with Dutch passports to long prison terms from 6-20 years.

A cousin of Taghi, Jouad F., was sentenced to 6 years for his involvement in the murder, and two of Taghi's brothers have received long prison terms for their role in the mistaken killing.

Death sentence

Shardyone S. and Edwin R.M. were sentenced to death in the first instance (initial trial). The evidence against them is strong. Due to their striking Rastafarian hairstyles, they were under surveillance by Moroccan security police since their arrival and arrested shortly after the attack. 

Although they denied everything in the trial they decided after the conviction to cooperate with the Moroccan police and share information about the background of the attacks.

Edwin R.M. said that Taghi was behind the attack and was also involved in the murder of a younger brother of R.M. The two Dutch perpetrators of the mistaken murder hoped through their cooperation to get a lighter sentence. After their arrest, they said they knew of a hitlist where the name of Peter R. de Vries came up.

Death cells

Despite the cooperation of the two, the court ruled harshly this week as to the Dutch citizens and their fellow perpetrators. The death sentence has serious consequences. In the case of a life sentence, the convicted (men) could have appealed to a treaty that made it possible to serve the sentence in the Netherlands.

Now that the death sentence has been pronounced, that possibility is gone. S. and R.M. are sitting under poor conditions in death cells measuring less than two meters by two meters. They sleep on the floor, but the cell is so small, they have to lie down diagonally.

They have since appealed to a higher court, but according to a jurist familiar with Moroccan law, once a death sentence is pronounced, it is seldom reviewed. One bright spot is that since 1993, the (death) penalty has not been carried out. The (Dutch) Foreign Ministry has provided consular assistance to all the Dutch citizens concerned in this legal case.

Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Hamline University Retracts Charge of "Islamophobia" Against Professor it Terminated

Hamline University...............

sees the light.

Recently, we picked up on the story of a professor who was terminated by Hamline University (St, Paul, Minnesota) after a student complained about her showing an image of the Islamic prophet Mohammad in her class. The firing has led to an uproar and the university has been flooded with letters objecting to their move. Over 17,000 people signed a petition organized by Professor Christiane Gruber of the University of Michigan in Erika Lopez-Prater's defense.

Now, on the same day that Professor Lopez-Prater filed a lawsuit against Hamline, the university has retracted its condemnation of her action as being "Islamophobic". They have come to the realization of what free speech is all about.  

Daily Caller's update can be accessed here.

Muslim Brotherhood in Austria (5): Charges Thrown out in Operation Luxor

On November 9, 2020, Austrian police conducted a series of raids  (Operation Luxor) all over the country in a crackdown on suspected members of the Austrian-based Muslim Brotherhood. The raids took place one week after a deadly terrorist attack carried out in Vienna even though the raids had already been in the planning long before the Vienna attack.

Now it seems that the prosecution case is unraveling in the courts. A series of judicial defeats have brought severe criticism to the prosecution team as well as the current chancellor Karl Nehammer, who was interior minister at the time of the raids.

The Middle East Forum has an article on the case this week by Soeren Kern, which can be accessed here.

The below article from Der Standard (Austria) is translated by Fousesquawk. This is the 5th such article focused on the Muslim Brotherhood in Austria.

Operation Luxor

Proceedings against Austria's alleged Muslim Brotherhood leader dropped

In the operational search warrant, he was considered "the leader of the Muslim Brotherhood in Austria". More than two years later, the investigations against A.S. have been thrown out.

Jan Michael Marchart

January 6, 2023 at 10:00

On November 9, 2020, when hundreds of heavily-armed police officers stormed rows of apartments all over Austria, A.S. was surely the most prominent among the suspects. In the almost 200-page thick order for the raids in the so-called Operation Luxor against suspected members of the Muslim Brotherhood and the alleged leader of the Hamas terrorists, A.S. was considered the leader-literally as the "leading member of the Muslim Brotherhood in Austria". That was what the formerly anonymous informant whispered to investigators.

More than two years later, these accusations lie in ruins. The investigations of the Graz State Prosecutor's Office against A.S.- among others, terrorist association, terror finance, and money laundering- have been dropped. That comes from a ruling by the Higher State Court in Graz, which Der Standard has accessed. Once again, (lack of evidence). Up to now, more than 20 proceedings have been dropped-in all, almost 100 accused. "The rule of law has proven its worth," now says the lawyer of A.S., Andreas Rust.

The ruling also brings Chancellor Karl Nehammer (Austrian Peoples' Party) under pressure. The State Prosecutor's Office, indeed, is in charge of Operation Luxor. But as the Turkish Interior minister tried to make political capital of, Nehammer put himself in the media spotlight next to (armed) Cobra officers. After the investigative breakdowns surrounding the jihadist terror attack of November 2, Nehammer was criticized. Not the least of which, because of the long-planned Operation Luxor raids, an interview* with the later terrorist, K.F. ( Kujtim Fejzulai)  was postponed. 

"Narratives inhibited as much as possible"

In its decision, the Higher State Court is now systematically picking the investigators' work apart. Essential information in Operation Luxor goes back to an anonymous informant, who is himself accused. According to the files, he described the alleged leading circle of the Muslim Brotherhood in Austria to intelligence services in June 2020. And at its top, accordingly, was A.S.

For the court, it was "not clear" How the anonymous informant could know all this. "Because the foundation for any of his knowledge- sensory perception, assumption- was....not clarified, the decision states. On the contrary.  Since access to Operation Luxor was far off in the future at that time, the investigators asked their informant no questions as to how he himself came into contact with the Muslim Brotherhood.  That was recorded by the Intelligence service itself in an internal report. And: "Narratives from him on this topic were inhibited as much as possible."

Accordingly, the court also maintains that it is not clear where the informant got his information from or who gave it to him. In addition, based on his own statements (" I can't say exactly (because) when I came to Austria, I was told that by several people within the Muslim community."), it appears that some of his statements could be merely hearsay. It is (curious) also that the State Prosecutor's Office compromised their informant a year ago in their own files. A short time later, he was involved in a fight. 

Caption below photo:  Chancellor Karl Nehammer staged Operation Luxor on November 9, 2020, as stated publicly by the Turkish interior minister.

Three other informants who named A.S. as a member of the Muslim Brotherhood or placed him indirectly with the Brotherhood were not taken seriously by the court. The statements of one prosecution witness consisted "mostly of assessments", those of another "almost exclusively of assessments and conclusions," and the statements of the third in the group were  "only assessments and suppositions," the decision found.

"Collection of mere indications"

The court went into more detail as to Z. This (source) placed A.S. among others, close to the Muslim Brotherhood for investigators. Z. Claimed that A.S. told him that he had belonged to the Islamist movement of Egyptian origin for 16 years. In the ruling, there is now criticism that the (investigators) asked no "control questions" that could have verified the accuracy of this claim.

After Z. laid out his allegations publicly in an interview with Exxpress, since taken offline, he was convicted of defamation, at least in the first instance.

Roughly speaking, the court took these (statements) by the three witnesses to be "a collection of mere indications, whose accuracy is not verifiable due to a lack of more meaningful (corroboration), rumors and assumptions from sources that can no longer be corroborated, as well as their interpretation and further dissemination in the form of conclusions and suppositions that are not subject to testimony-either as to witnesses or co-accused."

Aside from that, two years after the Operation Luxor raids, the court found  "no underlying basis" in the investigative files that would fuel the suspicion that A.S. "took part as a member in a terrorist association (especially Hamas), criminal organization, or  subversive connection relative to Austria, otherwise supports such associations in any way, or finances terrorist activities."

Operation Luxor took place one week after the jihadist terror attack on November 2. The operation, however, had been already planned long before the attack. Of the almost 100 accused- naturally, partly individuals, partly organizations- nobody was imprisoned. As of now, nobody is charged either.

 (Jan Michael Marchart, January 6, 2023.)  

* The German term used, Gefährderansprache, refers to a police interview of a suspected dangerous person, as a form of warning. Kujtim Fejzulai was the author of the terror attack in Vienna in November 2020.