Tuesday, January 15, 2008

An interesting article from abroad with some poor word uses

Usually the old gnome either lets the item
stand on its own or comments after the end.
This time I felt the need to insert some

1) I had not thought that being white and
being Muslim were mutually exclusive.

2) Perhaps the central idea of this article
from "The Scotsman" will help explain
to some Americans why "racial profiling"
is not a valid or desirable tool in looking
for terrorists.

That said, here is the lead and the link:

Al-Qaeda's white army of terror

Wednesday, 16th January 2008

HUNDREDS of British non-Muslims have been
recruited by al-Qaeda to wage war against the
West, senior security sources warned last night.
As many as 1,500 white Britons are believed to
have converted to Islam for the purpose of funding,
planning and carrying out surprise terror attacks
inside the UK, according to one MI5 source.

Lord Carlile, the Government's independent reviewer
of anti-terrorism legislation, said many of the converts
had been targeted by radical Muslims while
serving prison terms.

Security experts say the growing secret army of
white terrorists poses a particularly serious threat
as they are far less likely to be detected than
members of the Asian community.

Since the 7/7 and 21/7 London bombings, police
and intelligence services have had considerable
success in identifying, disrupting and stopping
extremist plots. As a result, groups such as al-Qaeda,
Lashkar-e-Taiba and Harkat-ul-Mujahideen
have been forced to change tack. Converting
white non-Muslims has been one response.

The trend is well established in the United States.
American-born Adam Gadahn is one of the FBI's
top 10 most-wanted terrorists after converting to
Islam and rising through al-Qaeda's ranks to
become a prominent spokesman.

One British security source last night told Scotland
on Sunday: "There could be anything up to 1,500
converts to the fundamentalist cause across Britain.
They pose a real potential danger to our domestic
security because, obviously, these people blend in
and do not raise any flags.

"The exact figure of those who have converted to
Islam and turned to terror is not precisely known.
Not everyone who converts becomes radicalised
and it may be that just two-fifths go down that path,
but it remains a significant and dangerous problem."

Carlile said he was not aware of specific numbers,
but confirmed to Scotland on Sunday that Whitehall
was aware of the new threat and was actively tackling
it. He said: "These people are an issue and are
potentially very dangerous. There have been cases
of non-Muslims converting before, and of these,
Richard Reid, the so-called Shoebomber, is the most
obvious example. Read more at The Scotsman

Comments by the Desert Gnome:

I'm not known for being overly "politically correct"
(hell, I'm not known at all!) but something about the
headline and the wording of this article seemed

Upon reflection, I think it might be that Scotland
probably is racially more homogeneous than
southern Nevada and maybe the writer equates
Scottish nationality with being white.

In the U.S. most of us are of mixed race or are
non-white anyway so we probably would have
been inclined toward expressing the idea more
directly in terms of nationality as opposed to race.

As he was writing of Brits converting to Islam
he asserted the idea that perhaps "only" forty
percent of converts became "radicalized" and
therefore potentially a threat to security, and
that amounted to a total of 1500 people joining
the other side.

I looked at several sites for statistical information
on Muslims in the USA and the best estimates are
between 7 and 10 million Americans are of the
Muslim faith. We know of two American Muslims
(both converts from other backgrounds) who
were, or are, involved in al-Quaida
. Of course
there have been other unsubstantiated
reports floating about.

The next is from Scotland.com:

The population of Scotland is on the
according to latest records and is now
5,094,800. The reasons are slightly more births,
slightly fewer deaths and more people coming to
Scotland than leaving.The main reason for the
increase in population is the net gain in migration.
More people come into Scotland from other countries,
mostly the rest of the UK as compared to the
number of people leaving Scotland. According to
latest reports this gain is 19000 with almost 45000
leaving Scotland and over 55000 coming in.
Gnome here, I have just spent a ridiculous
amount of time reading statistics concerning
the population of Scotland (or as the Scots
would have it: the population for Scotland).

I have come up with both official estimates
and non-official estimates of number of
people broken down into every demographic
division of which one could conceive.

Oops, not quite... The missing breakdown
was? You guessed it: race, ethnicity,
derivation... call it what you will: the Scots
apparently either don't have it or don't
acknowledge its existence.

I'm guessing that they're almost (as 99.995%)
totally native Scottish people whose ancestors
were native Scottish people descended from
native Scottish people.

Their national net in-migration of 19,000 people
per year is about a quarter of the in-migration
to the Las Vegas Valley or Phoenix area.

There was also no breakdown by religion,
whether professed, suspected or reported,
in the official demographic breakdowns nor

Given the lack of data it is difficult to estimate
the Muslim population of Scotland although
we do know that there were two Muslim
doctors there a few months ago...

For another British input check out this
England's Population Changes Will
Make Whites A Minority Group


England's population has been overwhelmingly
Caucasian throughout its history. The shift began
shortly after World War II, when the government
encouraged men from the former colonies to fill
factory posts left empty by the casualties of war.

Although Wales and Scotland remain largely
homogeneous, (emphasis by Gnome) a 2001 census
found that England's white, native-born population
had dropped to 87 percent.

Simpson predicts that the white population of England
will plateau at around 75-80 percent in a couple of
decades, depending on the vagaries of future immigration
and the social dynamics of the individual groups...

As is obvious from this link, headline writing in
the UK needs more study...

Given that, we do learn from the English that
Scotland is still lily-white and so the Scotland.com
writer might be forgiven for writing such seemingly
insensitive (or even racist) copy.

Still, his figures (estimates, guesses) give one
a thought to consider: if hundreds of British white
young people are becoming radicalized to the
point of being willing to become suicidal mass
murderers on behalf of a perceived Muslim
cause, what the hell is going on in British society
which could create so much alienation among so
many of your young people?

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