Tuesday, 12 June 2007

Campaign against amnesty for illegal immigrants

Recently I described a rally in London calling for an amnesty to be granted to illegal immigrants who had not committed further crimes. I said this was a good thing and that it would be met with some predictable arguments. This has come to pass.

A petition has been started up calling on the govenment to reject the idea of such an amnesty - though at this stage there is no legislation proposing one, just a suggestion from some quarters that it is an idea worth talking about.

You can view the petition here (1). At the time of writing it has amassed a whopping 184 signitures, inspite of it being spammed onto news groups and discussion forums, which was how I first became aware of it.

The petition "was created by and written by Charlotte Lewis." I'm all for citizen activism, but I'm also all for transparency and honesty. I ran the name Charlotte Lewis through google and discoovered two very interesting things. First, there is a British actress called Charlotte Lewis, who is very beautiful and has a penchant for taking her clothes off in films. She starred in Eddie Murphy's The Golden Child, and not much else of note.

Second, there is a Charlotte Lewis who stood in the British council elections in 2006. The party she represented was the BNP - the British National Party, a collection of thugs and morons who are trying to gain mainstream credibility.

Better yet, Charlotte bent the rules in her bid to get elected. In fact, she broke them:

Charlotte Lewis of the BNP is standing in the St Helier ward in the local elections due to take place on May 4 ...

On her nomination papers, Ms Lewis claimed to live in Lind Road, Sutton, but a recent report by the Evening Standard newspaper claimed she actually lived in Thornton Heath in Croydon.

Sutton Council has since confirmed the BNP's candidate for St Helier ward is not on the borough's electoral roll.

Source: Sutton Guardian (2)

This raises questions about Ms Lewis's suitability as a guardian of democracy.

According to her comments made on the Telegraph website (3) it was"Four years ago I took the plunge & joined the BNP, & I definately do not regret it." It seems Ms. Lewis seems to have found something in her life that legitimises her sense of powerlessness and victimization. Why else would someone turn on the most helpless and powerless people in Britian - the shadow workforce of the black economy, denied civil rights and access to the amenities of mainstream society, often living in fear of both the criminal gangs that brought them here and the authorities.

It's time the British political parties addressed this issue head on. Yes, there are problems with immigration and illegal immigration. It is rediculuous that we don't know if immigrants have left the country, for example. But it is pointless wasting more money and time trying to track down illegal immigrants and deport them. Give them a chance to legalise their status, tighten up controls and then try tobreak the gangs that are bringing these people into the country and the people who exploit them.

1 - http://www.petitiononline.com/orc21416/petition.html

2 - http://www.suttonguardian.co.uk/display.var.737134.0.bnp_probed_over_false_addresses.php

3 - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml;jsessionid=GC4DUTALG01A3QFIQMGSFF4AVCBQWIV0?xml=/opinion/2007/06/01/do0101.xml&posted=true&_requestid=6551

Friday, 8 June 2007

CIA ran secret prisons in Europe

The Gaurdian has seen a report from the Council of Europe that claims the CIA ran secret detention centres in Europe where they could employ "enhanced" interrogation techniques against terrorism suspects:

The CIA operated secret prisons in Europe where terrorism suspects could be interrogated and were allegedly tortured, an official inquiry will conclude today.

Despite denials by their governments, senior Polish and Romanian security officials have confirmed to the Council of Europe that their countries were used to hold some of America's most important prisoners captured after 9/11 in secret.

(http://www.guardian.co.uk/usa/story/0,,2098266,00.html)


These European detention centres were operated "directly and exclusively" by the CIA, according to the inquiry's head, not proxies in far off places. Detainees in these secret camps were denied "access to the Red Cross [protected under the Geneva conventions] and many were subject to what George Bush has called the CIA's "enhanced" interrogation, which critics have condemned as torture." The American government is again directly implicated in torture. But the shame doesn't stop there.

NATO states also formally agreed to allow planes carrying suspects to cross airspace, as part of the "extraordinary" rendition programme, which is the clever idea of out sourcing torture to other states which aren't as scrupulous as our leaders like to claim they are:
The council has also established that within weeks of the 9/11 attacks, Nato signed an agreement with the US that allowed civilian jets used by the CIA during its so-called extraordinary rendition programme to move across member states' airspace. Its report states: "We have sufficient grounds to declare that the highest state authorities were aware of the CIA's illegal activities on their territories." The council's investigators believe that agreement may have been illegal.

If the report is accurate, then European political leaders been complicit in torture and perhaps murder, and made their citizens unwitting accomplices. The consequences of this will be borne by the long sufferring people of Europe, who will find themselves the targets of yet more rage and hatred. As a Brit, I was disgusted to hear that the government of my country has been helping the USA run its illegal detention and torture program. Those who were involved in this, or merely complicit, need to be named - people have the right to know what is being done in their name. But the whole thing is carried out in secret - the governments of Poland and Roumania still deny that this happened. We know our leaders lie and cheat, but there has to be an understanding that there are some things they don't do in our name - and massive violations of human rights are one of them. Why are people surprised that the West is hated? Reading things like this, I hate us, too.

Theresa May: Going, Going ...

So, Theresa May is in a bit of trouble.  Tories are scheming and plotting - which they do on any day that ends in a 'Y' - and rumour...