This is what Ramadan looks like around the world


BuzzFeed produced an excellent, graphically pleasing look at Ramadan at places around the world.  I wish they had posted a picture of American Muslims celebrating Ramadan, but nevertheless here’s their piece

TURKEY

Thousands of Turkish people break their fasting at the Blue Mosque square in Istanbul, during the first day of the holy month of Ramadan. Ramadan is sacred to Muslims because it is during that month that tradition says the Qur’an was revealed to the Prophet Mohammed. The fast is one of the five main religious obligations under Islam. Ozan Kose / Getty Images

Thousands of Turkish people break their fasting at the Blue Mosque square in Istanbul, during the first day of the holy month of Ramadan. Ramadan is sacred to Muslims because it is during that month that tradition says the Qur’an was revealed to the Prophet Mohammed. The fast is one of the five main religious obligations under Islam. Ozan Kose / Getty Images

INDONESIA

Indonesians Muslims pray in the first Tarawih as Muslims begin fasting for Ramadan at Al-Akbar Mosque in Surabaya, Indonesia Robertus Pudyanto / Getty Images

Indonesians Muslims pray in the first Tarawih as Muslims begin fasting for Ramadan at Al-Akbar Mosque in Surabaya, Indonesia Robertus Pudyanto / Getty Images

CHINA

Muslims pray after breaking their fast on the first day of Ramadan, the muslim holy month, at a mosque in Beijing. China has banned civil servants, students and teachers in its mainly Muslim Xinjiang region from fasting during Ramadan and ordered restaurants to stay open. Greg Baker / AFP / Getty Images

Muslims pray after breaking their fast on the first day of Ramadan, the muslim holy month, at a mosque in Beijing. China has banned civil servants, students and teachers in its mainly Muslim Xinjiang region from fasting during Ramadan and ordered restaurants to stay open. Greg Baker / AFP / Getty Images

ENGLAND

Men carry out Wudu, a washing procedure in preparation for prayer, at the East London Mosque before the first Friday prayers of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan in London, England. Rob Stothard / Getty Images

Men carry out Wudu, a washing procedure in preparation for prayer, at the East London Mosque before the first Friday prayers of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan in London, England.  Rob Stothard / Getty Images

JERUSALEM

Palestinian Muslim worshipers pray outside the Dome of the Rock at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem during the first Friday prayer of the holy month of Ramadan. Israel announced it was relaxing restrictions on the movement of Palestinians to and from the West Bank and Gaza Strip, ahead of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Men aged over 40 and women of all ages from the West Bank will be able to pray at the Israeli-controlled holy site, and 800 people from the Gaza Strip will be allowed to attend Friday prayers.  Ahmad Gharabli / AFP / Getty Images

Palestinian Muslim worshipers pray outside the Dome of the Rock at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem during the first Friday prayer of the holy month of Ramadan. Israel announced it was relaxing restrictions on the movement of Palestinians to and from the West Bank and Gaza Strip, ahead of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Men aged over 40 and women of all ages from the West Bank will be able to pray at the Israeli-controlled holy site, and 800 people from the Gaza Strip will be allowed to attend Friday prayers. Ahmad Gharabli / AFP / Getty Images

KENYA

Kenyan Muslim men pray on the first Friday of Ramadan, at Jamia mosque in Nairobi, Kenya.  Khalil Senosi / AP

Kenyan Muslim men pray on the first Friday of Ramadan, at Jamia mosque in Nairobi, Kenya. Khalil Senosi / AP

PATTANI

Thai Muslim women pray at the Pattani Central Mosque to mark the holy month of Ramadan in Pattani. Tuwaedaniya Meringing / Getty Images

Thai Muslim women pray at the Pattani Central Mosque to mark the holy month of Ramadan in Pattani. Tuwaedaniya Meringing / Getty Images

PAKISTAN

Pakistani Muslims perform a special “Taraweeh” evening prayer on the first day of Ramadan at a mosque in Lahore. Arif Ali / AFP / Getty Images

Pakistani Muslims perform a special “Taraweeh” evening prayer on the first day of Ramadan at a mosque in Lahore.
Arif Ali / AFP / Getty Images

INDIA

Indian Muslim boys offer prayers prior to breaking their fast on the first day of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan at Mecca Masjid in Hyderabad.  Noah Seelam / AFP / Getty Images

Indian Muslim boys offer prayers prior to breaking their fast on the first day of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan at Mecca Masjid in Hyderabad. Noah Seelam / AFP / Getty Images

AFGHANISTAN

Afghan children study the Quran during first day of the month of Ramadan at a mosque in Jalalabad. Noorullah Shirzada / AFP / Getty Images

Afghan children study the Quran during first day of the month of Ramadan at a mosque in Jalalabad.
Noorullah Shirzada / AFP / Getty Images

MALAYSIA

A Malaysian Muslim arrives to offer prayers on the first Friday of the holy Islamic month of Ramadan in Kuala Lumpur. Manan Vatsyayana / AFP / Getty Images

A Malaysian Muslim arrives to offer prayers on the first Friday of the holy Islamic month of Ramadan in Kuala Lumpur.
Manan Vatsyayana / AFP / Getty Images

BANGLADESH

Bangladeshi street vendors prepare Iftar food for breaking the daytime fast on the first day of Ramadan, the holy fasting month of Islam, at a traditional bazaar in the old part of Dhaka. Munir Uz Zaman / Getty Images

Bangladeshi street vendors prepare Iftar food for breaking the daytime fast on the first day of Ramadan, the holy fasting month of Islam, at a traditional bazaar in the old part of Dhaka.
Munir Uz Zaman / Getty Images

SRINAGAR

Kashmiri Muslim women are accompanied by a child as they pray during the first day of the month of Ramadan, at the Shah-i-Hamdaan shrine in Srinagar. Tauseef Mustafa / AFP / Getty Images

Kashmiri Muslim women are accompanied by a child as they pray during the first day of the month of Ramadan, at the Shah-i-Hamdaan shrine in Srinagar.
Tauseef Mustafa / AFP / Getty Images

PHILLIPINES

Filipino Muslims take part in prayers at the Golden Mosque in Manila. Jay Directo / AFP / Getty Images

Filipino Muslims take part in prayers at the Golden Mosque in Manila.
Jay Directo / AFP / Getty Images

LEBANON

A vendor carries traditional sweets called ‘Qatayef’ during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan in Sidon’s Old City in southern Lebanon. Ali Hashisho / Reuters

A vendor carries traditional sweets called ‘Qatayef’ during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan in Sidon’s Old City in southern Lebanon.
Ali Hashisho / Reuters

GAZA

Blind and visually impaired Palestinian girls read the Braille version of the Qur’an during a Qur’an memorization class at the main center of Dar al-Quran Society, on the first day of the holy month of Ramadan in Gaza City. Thousands of Palestinians, among them blind and visually impaired students, are taking lessons which are sponsored by the Muslim organization Dar al-Quran Society. The society teaches people the right recitation of the Muslim holy book and helps them memorize the whole Qur’an, directors in the organization said. Suhaib Salem / Reuters

Blind and visually impaired Palestinian girls read the Braille version of the Qur’an during a Qur’an memorization class at the main center of Dar al-Quran Society, on the first day of the holy month of Ramadan in Gaza City. Thousands of Palestinians, among them blind and visually impaired students, are taking lessons which are sponsored by the Muslim organization Dar al-Quran Society. The society teaches people the right recitation of the Muslim holy book and helps them memorize the whole Qur’an, directors in the organization said.
Suhaib Salem / Reuters

IRAQ

Iraqi Muslim men gather, on the roof of Imam Ali Mosque, waiting to see the crescent moon marking the beginning of Ramadan, at sunset in Basra, Iraq. Nabil Al-jurani / AP

Iraqi Muslim men gather, on the roof of Imam Ali Mosque, waiting to see the crescent moon marking the beginning of Ramadan, at sunset in Basra, Iraq.
Nabil Al-jurani / AP

BOSNIA

Bosnian Muslims offer a prayer during late night prayer for upcoming holy month of Ramadan, inside memorial room for Srebrenica massacre victims, at the memorial center Potocari, northeast of the Bosnian capital of Sarajevo. Family members of the Srebrenica victims killed in July, 1995, will mark the first night of Ramadan at the memorial center Potocari, in front of the graves of killed Muslims from this small Bosnian town. Amel Emric / AP

Bosnian Muslims offer a prayer during late night prayer for upcoming holy month of Ramadan, inside memorial room for Srebrenica massacre victims, at the memorial center Potocari, northeast of the Bosnian capital of Sarajevo. Family members of the Srebrenica victims killed in July, 1995, will mark the first night of Ramadan at the memorial center Potocari, in front of the graves of killed Muslims from this small Bosnian town.
Amel Emric / AP 

MYANMAR

Muslims pray on the first day of Ramadan at a mosque in Taunggyi capital city of Shan State, Myanmar. Soe Zeya Tun / Reuters

Muslims pray on the first day of Ramadan at a mosque in Taunggyi capital city of Shan State, Myanmar.
Soe Zeya Tun / Reuters

SINGAPORE

Bangladeshi workers prepare to break fast during the holy month of Ramadan at a makeshift mosque near their dormitory in Singapore. Edgar Su / Reuters

Bangladeshi workers prepare to break fast during the holy month of Ramadan at a makeshift mosque near their dormitory in Singapore. Edgar Su / Reuters

GAZA

A family shares in a pre-dawn Suhoor meal in Gaza City. Facebook: ShehabAgency.MainPage

A family shares in a pre-dawn Suhoor meal in Gaza City.
Facebook: ShehabAgency.MainPage

TUNISIA

A vendor displays his dates on the first day of the Muslim holy fasting month of Ramadan, in a market downtown in Tunis, Tunisia. Zoubeir Souissi / Reuters

A vendor displays his dates on the first day of the Muslim holy fasting month of Ramadan, in a market downtown in Tunis, Tunisia.
Zoubeir Souissi / Reuters

ITALY

Migrants pray for the start of Ramadan as they gather at the French border hoping to enter the country in Ventimiglia, Italy. A group of around 200 migrants, mostly from Libya, Sudan and Eritrea, were left stranded at the border after French police refused them entry to the country. Patrick Aventurier / Getty Images

Migrants pray for the start of Ramadan as they gather at the French border hoping to enter the country in Ventimiglia, Italy. A group of around 200 migrants, mostly from Libya, Sudan and Eritrea, were left stranded at the border after French police refused them entry to the country. Patrick Aventurier / Getty Images

PAKISTAN

Pakistani Muslims perform a special “Taraweeh” evening prayer on the first day of Ramadan at the grand Faisal Mosque in Islamabad. Aamir Qureshi / AFP / Getty Images

Pakistani Muslims perform a special “Taraweeh” evening prayer on the first day of Ramadan at the grand Faisal Mosque in Islamabad.
Aamir Qureshi / AFP / Getty Images

NEPAL

Nepalese Muslims offer the first Friday prayers of Ramadan at The Kashmiri Mosque in Kathmandu. Prakash Mathema / Getty Images

Nepalese Muslims offer the first Friday prayers of Ramadan at The Kashmiri Mosque in Kathmandu.
Prakash Mathema / Getty Images

EGYPT

People read the Qur’an at a mosque during the first day of Ramadan in Cairo, Egypt. Asmaa Waguih / Reuters

People read the Qur’an at a mosque during the first day of Ramadan in Cairo, Egypt.
Asmaa Waguih / Reuters

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The Rethuglicans caught lying again


But not before enough people have believed them.  Racism is insane, inhumane and should be a war crime, and I say that being a racist.  I have to deal with my irrational hatred of groups of people on a regular daily basis where I am, but having said that there isn’t even the slightest bit of empathy from me for people who were stupid enough to believe this bit of thuggery from the right.

Even Andrew Card formerly of  the Bush White House said, the rumors proclaimed by the wingnut audio/video philes don’t pass the ‘sniff test’ unless what you want to smell is the odor of bigotry.  The opposition towards Obama is not principled, please don’t believe that lie either….  It is grounded in hatred for a black president with a strange sounding name whose father was African and possibly Muslim and a white mother who was a “n” lover and procreated with him…something “white America” and especially white males have feared and tried to stop since the beginning of time….if time for you revolves around the beginning of this Republic.

To specifically address today, any of the points of contention, regarding the numbers in the Presidential entourage, ships protecting him and other issues of logistics  from the homophobes of the right is pathetic and laughable when such questions impact presidential security.  Let’s not forget such questions were an anathema during the Bush years when we were fighting the phony war on terror, and enough to get one called a traitor for potentially endangering the life of the president.  Yet today, these questions are the grist of today’s media stars.

The fact that such a bald faced lie comes so soon after Rethuglican victories in the House means the wish of Mitch O’Connell, making Obama a one term president no matter what the cost,  is indeed the agenda of that misdirected, racist and homophobic party.  However, the underlying question for me is can you trust your money, the future an commitment of your country,  to a Party that relies on rumor and innuendo from the Press Trust of India in their opposition to the commander and chief of the United States?  If you buy that then, caveat emptor.

Memory hole stuff about Mumbai


There’s been so much said about what happened in Mumbai, India and it’s constantly changing so I’m putting together a few, just a very few, links here to refer to in the future when the story has changed to fit the Islamist, jihadist theories which seem to predominate the news these days.

Let me begin by saying that some of the wildest conspiracy theories are those which have become accepted as fact, like OBL planning and directing 911 from Afghanistan or the lone gunman theory in the assassination of JFK, and so too, the Mumbai terrorist operation whereby 10 men are responsible for all the carnage that took place over a wide area of that city is highly implausible, especially when you look at what is reported to have happened.  This is my attempt to highlight some things that will most likely be forgotten when the official narrative is in place.

It appears the police were not too enthusiastic about engaging the terrorists.

The gunmen were terrifyingly professional, making sure at least one of them was able to fire their rifle while the other reloaded. By the time he managed to capture the killer on camera, Mr D’Souza had already seen two gunmen calmly stroll across the station concourse shooting both civilians and policemen, many of whom, he said, were armed but did not fire back.

But what angered Mr D’Souza almost as much were the masses of armed police hiding in the area who simply refused to shoot back. “There were armed policemen hiding all around the station but none of them did anything,” he said. “At one point, I ran up to them and told them to use their weapons. I said, ‘Shoot them, they’re sitting ducks!’ but they just didn’t shoot back.”

The identity of the terrorists, even the one alive is at best unknown.

The Faridkot link is a key element in the evidence cited by Indian officials that the attackers of Mumbai came from Pakistan.

The captured terror suspect was said to come from Faridkot. He was said to be 21 and to speak fluent English. A photograph of him shows a modern-looking young man swaggering in Western clothing, with an AK-47 in hand.

In Faridkot, no one appeared to be able to speak much English, and most could converse only in a dialect of the provincial language, Punjabi. None of the villagers recognized the face in the photograph, nor could they think of anyone mysteriously missing from the village.

They said the intelligence agents wanted to know if there was any presence of the radical Deobandi or Alhe Hadith religious movements in the village, to which the answer was a flat “no.”

*snip*

To add to the confusion, there are several other places called Faridkot in the Punjab, although this village seemed to be the most likely Faridkot, because it’s near Multan. There’s also a well-known Faridkot in India, just across the border in the Indian half of the Punjab province.

An exasperated local police chief, Kamran Khan, who sent his men twice to Faridkot (the one outside Kanewal), told McClatchy: “Whatever we’re doing to investigate, we’re doing off our own initiative. No definitive information has come to us from any official channel. We’re still not clear this is the right Faridkot.”

There have been conflicting eye witness accounts of what the gunman looked like which provide an interesting portal to conspiracy theories.

One police officer who encountered the gunmen as they entered the Jewish centre told the Guardian the attackers were “white”, although this could mean they were paler-skinned Indians from the country’s north.

“I went into the building late last night,” he said. “I got a shock because they were white. I was expecting them to look like us. They fired three shots. I fired 10 back.

Another account described two attackers thus:

Gaffar Abdul Amir, an Iraqi tourist from Baghdad, says he saw at least two men who started the firing outside the Leopold Cafe.

He was returning to his hotel from the seaside with a friend when he saw two men carrying bags and brandishing AK-47s walking in front of them, shooting.

“They did not look Indian, they looked foreign. One of them, I thought, had blonde hair. The other had a punkish hairstyle. They were neatly dressed,” says Mr Amir.

It doesn’t help that several news reports are claiming that terrorists and many hostages’ remains were unrecognizable, some due to mutilation, thereby making identification even more difficult.  How one can say that the identity of the attackers is a sure thing doesn’t seem to fit the news coming from India.

It’s clear the evil-doers want to make this a religious war, a clash of civilizations between Islam and the rest of the world.  At one point the allegation was even made that Israelis were tortured and mutilated more than other victims of this brutal act, but that was quickly denied.

The Jewish victims from the Mumbai Chabad House siege showed no indications of torture, a Mumbai doctor said.

Dr. Ganjanan Chawan saw the bodies when they arrived at JJ Hospital in Mumbai.

His statements in Wednesday’s edition of the Jerusalem Post contradicted an interview with a morgue employee of the hospital printed the previous day by the newspaper. The  morgue employee had said the Jewish victims had more injuries than the other victims in last week’s terrorist attacks on the Indian city. More than 180 people were killed.

A hospital doctor was quoted Sunday on the Rediff Indian news site as saying that the bodies of the Jewish victims bore torture marks.

There were suggestions that people were killed because of their religious persuasion, but judging by the indiscriminate firing of the terrorists most eye-witness accounts suggest they didn’t care who they were shooting, and a country with the largest Muslim population in the world is sure to have had Muslim victims of this rampage. An interesting sidebar to this aspect of the attacks is despite the claim certain faiths were singled out, it could be that the ineptness of the Indian military led to many of the fatalities.

A private rescue group from Israel has claimed that Indian commandos inadvertently killed some of the hostages in the terror attacks in Mumbai, and the claim has evidently embarrassed both governments, news reports said on Tuesday.

“Based on what I saw, (although) I can’t identify the type of bullets in the bodies (of the victims), I don’t think the terrorists killed all the hostages, to put it gently,” Mr Haim Weingarten, head of the six-member team of Zaka voluntary organisation dealing with rescue and recovery, told The Jerusalem Post.

Terrorism is used by states and groups to influence policy and the policy which some are hoping comes out of the Mumbai attacks is the expansion of the WOT into Pakistan, directly or indirectly with India as a surrogate partner.  The “evil-doers” who want this expansion are the same ones who manufactured the manufactured the 911 inspired war on terrorism and Mumbai was their last dying act before the coming to power of the Obama Administration.  It’ll be interesting to see if Obama takes the bait or calls the war party out for what it truly is.

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downwiterrorism

Mumbai’s tragedy: Good news


Terrorism in all its forms is an unacceptable ideology which should be dealt with by the full force of the international community.  The Muslim community of India has gotten off to an excellent start.

Indian Muslims say they do not want the gunmen killed by the security forces during the attacks in Mumbai to be buried in Muslim graveyards.

Community leaders believe the militants cannot be called Muslims because they went against the teachings of Islam and killed innocent civilians.

One leader said the militants had “defamed” the religion.

*snip*

…they could not believe that the assailants, who they said had “killed innocent civilians unprovoked”, were true followers of Islam.

Ibrahim Tai, the president of the Indian Muslim Council, which looks after the social and religious affairs of the Muslim community in India, said that they had “defamed” his religion.

“They are not Muslims as they have not followed our religion which teaches us to live in peace.

“If the government does not respect our demands we will take up extreme steps. We do not want the bodies of people who have committed an act of terrorism to be buried in our cemeteries.

“These terrorists are a black spot on our religion, we will very sternly protest the burial of these terrorists in our cemetery,” he said.

Other Muslim groups have written to their local assembly representatives to say that if the authorities force the militants to be buried in a Muslim graveyard, they too will come out on the streets in protest.

Having thrown down the gauntlet it will be interesting to see how the Indian government responds to its Muslim citizens’ demands that terrorists not be interred in Muslim cemeteries and who among the “evil doers” will insist upon it given a clear expression by Muslims that that not be the case.