First hijabi to pose for Playboy

Picture the scenario… In a town somewhere far away there lives a certain bibulous individual – an alcoholic if you will – who from dawn till dusk the only liquid he will consume is whiskey (or in its absence another spirit of similar strength). He continues in this way for a number of years never…

Burkinis, hijabs, niqabs and lip gloss

What’s with the lip gloss in the title? I just find it incredibly attractive on a woman, that’s all. I should, I suppose, qualify that by adding that it depends on the woman in question but as a (non-permanent) means of amplifying natural feminine charms nothing else comes close by comparison. Anyway, enough of my…

Racism is vile…regardless the victims…

  Given that voter concerns around immigration formed the pith of the Leave campaign’s argument it should come as no great surprise that their success in June’s EU referendum vote unleashed a tsunami of xenophobic hate. Media reporting has focussed largely on the experiences of the Polish community and Muslim women wearing the hijab –…

Comments rather than articles

Due to changed personal circumstances I shan’t have much free time over the coming six months to write full length articles. I shall instead intermittently publish short comments on topical subjects.  

Love

In the streaming of teardrops, in the mournful sighs of the bereaved, Therein resides the secret of eternal joy. Let the foolish proclaim themselves in love, To their own feebleness do they attest. Like the conjurer’s cheap illusions: transient, evanescent, A cruel hoax that beguiles the unwary. Is remedy sought from hemlock? Does the lamb seek…

Situation in Aleppo Q&A

I posed 12 questions to British aid worker Tauqir ‘Tox’ Sharif. Below are both the questions and his responses. You can follow his work on Twitter (@LiveUpdateSyria). Assalaam-alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatahu. 1. How long have you been in Syria? I have been to Syria for roughly 3 and a half years, coming up to…

Pakistan killed Fauzia Azeem aka Qandeel Baloch

Though the hands that snuffed out her young life belonged to her brother in some ways the culpability for her death is upon the heads of every Pakistani Muslim. Fauzia Azeem was the epitome of everything she was supposed not be: gamine, sassy and unflinchingly iconoclastic. Her behaviour simultaneously fascinated and horrified millions in that…

A short comment on the mindset of European terrorists

Much has been made of the dissolute lifestyles and paucity of religious knowledge of many of Europe’s current generation of terrorists. In my personal experience young Muslims who ostensibly live thoroughly Westernised lifestyles, indulging the same vices as their non-Muslim counterparts, tend to be beset by a deep sense of inner conflict, touching on depression….

A footnote on Chilcot

As I mentioned in my previous post I have no intention of poring over 2.6 million words of verbiage for the purpose of ascertaining what I already know with certitude. I have been asked in recent days why, despite its ‘vituperative language’, ‘damning indictments’ and myriad ‘lessons to be learnt’, I chose to label it…

The Chilcot report

I have neither the time nor the inclination to discuss in any great detail a long overdue 2.6 million word report that I haven’t read (nor am I likely ever to). Pundits are reporting that it is “far from a whitewash” and that it employs some “pretty damning” language. Which is all fine and dandy…

Brexit – a product of the information age

As storms go the one that arose from last Thursday’s referendum result will have to rank as the Hurricane Patricia of contemporary British political history. The trail of devastation it left in its wake included a Prime Ministerial resignation, an imploding Labour party and a paroxysm of racial/religious intolerance exceeding anything witnessed in recent decades….