Nous Sommes Charlie

Is this a key moment in history as a massive crowd gathers in Paris? Nous sommes Charlie? What does it all mean, why are we feeling the way we do?

Underpinning all sentient beings behaviour is the tacit understanding that it is fundamentally wrong for a group of people to kill and terrorise others because they think writings and drawings about their religion are blasphemous or however they term it. Thing is this has been around for a while, at least since the fatwa on Salman Rushdie and there has been no concerted, fully thought through response since. Yes we have increased ‘security’, continuing western military aggression and slaughter in the Middle East, the ongoing Israel/Palestine ‘problem’, and continued acts of islamofascist aggression and slaughter. We, the people, cannot continue to allow this situation to continue to be framed by our politicians and the various factions. There needs to be a supra-national forum, the United Nations with agreed powers to punish individuals and states who contravene basic human rights.

It is a little sad that worldwide media missed the glaring opportunity to simply publish Charlie Hebdo’s stuff and simply ask the question is it right to kill, maim and terrorise for this? Nick Cohen calls the BBC, Channel 4 and others cowards for not doing this, it is as if there is a blasphemy law that exists but has never been discussed or approved by any body. There has been no proper mainstream questioning of islamofascism yet. They, the islamofascists, should be acutely made aware that every other religion and faith has been questioned, ridiculed and made fun of, what is unique about Islam? As Martin Amis wrote: ” They hate us for letting our children have sex and take drugs—well, they’ve got to stop their children killing people.”

Saudi Arabia needs to be seriously questioned, a state where someone can be murdered by the state for apostasy, are they so unsure of themselves? And I haven’t even begun to discuss their misogyny, homophobia, and support of the islamofascist thugs.

Nick Cohen writes an article about the situation in today’s Observer, many consider it brave. Interesting that they feel this, the same would not be written if it had been about any other religion. If it is a key moment then we all, especially our politicians, media, and UN need to say loud and clear that the behaviour of these islamofascists is absolutely wrong and cowardice is no longer an option.

Chris Riddell 11/01/2015

There, that’s sorted that out.

Meanwhile on the crabby front, although if i am to be consistent then I shouldn’t use front as I’m against battle terminology and it has battle connotations, the three of us went out last night. We went to a rather splendid Georgian pile called Smedmore House to celebrate Kerry the hairdresser’s birthday. Kate looked gorgeous and I had glitter in my dyed hair (Kerry wanted people to dress in purple and glitter and as is sadly too often the case too few people bothered, too self-conscious).

It was very different for the likes of us pitchforkers to be in such sumptuous surroundings. Drank some fizz, spoke with some folk including Cal and her credit of a daughter Chani (hope that’s correct spelling). Haven’t lost my propensity to tease as when Cal noticed glitter on my jacket I said it was a radiotherapy side effect – glittery dandruff. Probably because of all the talking my throat very sore on return home, or maybe karma for teasing.

Playing Silver Machine very loud right now, sadly no hair to headbang with.

Kate very pleased with our new look kitchen, she feels it’s more ‘grown up’.

Yes Martin, happiness is a state of mind but one that can be brought about by things both external and internal, were not those 3 girls already in a heightened state because of circumstance and environment then augmented by communal sharing of joint something, or maybe something of joint sharing?

Manifesto 58:

  • share the love with everyone. even the islamofascists. As well as satirising their actions lovebomb them to try and replace the misguided hatred in their misguided heads.

Keep on keeping on, love Duncan.


7 thoughts on “Nous Sommes Charlie

  1. We are Charlie, Jew, Police, Muslim………I simply don’t concur with the cowardice accusation at all. It is one thing to defend Charlie’s right to publish cartoons that are extremely offensive to a lot of people, it is quite another to endorse the content, to join in the offense…… is one thing to condemn violence and the murder of unarmed innocents, it is quite another to encourage further violence. No what the media should have done is big front page the two great Muslim stories that have emerged – the brother and wife of the murdered Muslim policeman who reminded us that Islam is a religion of love, that the slayers were not ‘real Muslims’ ….and the guy in the jewish supermarket who smuggled Jewish customers into the freezer,turned it off and saved their lives. This is what the media should have done, changed the public discourse about Islam by giving publicity to stories that represent the vast majority of compassionate caring Muslims worldwide and denied publicity to the extremists and what provokes them.


  2. Richard, I don’t think that printing the cartoons is in any way an incitement for further violence, but hopefully a means of showing how irrational and obscene is the use of such to provide any sort of justification for their violence. There is a necessity for Islam in general to acknowledge and confront aspects of it’s interpretation and consequent actions and behaviours, if for no other reason, and whether we like it or not, that the ‘terrorists’ claim to be Muslim. There are aspects of Islam, such as the origins of the Koran, that do bear greater scholarly scrutiny.
    I agree greater publicity of the loving and caring aspects of Muslims would help as well. In no way do I wish for the likes of the various nationalist groups to be allowed to foment their ugly creeds. But I reiterate that I think there is a great need to confront Islam, remember back to what happened just after publication of the Satanic Verses.
    Yours in amicable discourse, Duncan x


  3. Agree with so much of what you’ve written.
    Most people have the impression that extremists are a tiny minority of British Muslims. If only that were true. An NOP survey in 2006 found that 68% of British Muslims thought that anyone insulting the prophet (praise be upon him) should be prosecuted. 28% wanted the UK to become an Islamic state. More than 30% of the young thought apostates should be put to death. More recently a survey for policy exchange found that 40% wanted Sharia law in the UK.
    I think the problem is that we thought that multiculturalism, ie areas effectively as outposts of Asian culture demonstrated tolerance and would thus ‘work’. It was assumed that western values and morals would blend in with all the best bits from the East. But what has happened is that Ghettos have been created of disaffected, unemployed youth, aggressively policed and denied the opportunities that their white neighbours have.
    I think we need to persuade them to integrate. Most of London has moved over the last 20 years toward being integrated and works well – racism is relatively low, it doesn’t mean people don’t show and enjoy their backgrounds – for example the annual Notting Hill event, but it’s inclusive instead of segregated. Leicester, Birmingham, Leeds etc need to change.


  4. He’s five foot-two, and he’s six feet-four,
    He fights with missiles and with spears.
    He’s all of thirty-one, and he’s only seventeen,
    Been a soldier for a thousand years.

    He’a a Catholic, a Hindu, an Atheist, a Jain,
    A Buddhist and a Baptist and a Jew.
    And he knows he shouldn’t kill,
    And he knows he always will,
    Kill you for me my friend and me for you.

    And he’s fighting for Canada,
    He’s fighting for France,
    He’s fighting for the USA,
    And he’s fighting for the Russians,
    And he’s fighting for Japan,
    And he thinks we’ll put an end to war this way.

    And he’s fighting for Democracy,
    He’s fighting for the Reds,
    He says it’s for the peace of all.
    He’s the one who must decide,
    Who’s to live and who’s to die,
    And he never sees the writing on the wall.

    But without him,
    How would Hitler have condemned them at Dachau?
    Without him Caesar would have stood alone,
    He’s the one who gives his body
    As a weapon of the war,
    And without him all this killing can’t go on.

    He’s the Universal Soldier and he really is to blame,
    His orders come from far away no more,
    They come from here and there and you and me,
    And brothers can’t you see,
    This is not the way we put the end to ………….terrorism.


    Keep on riding ..your silver machine


  5. Blasforme of course, for I’d be upset if others were attacked for what I’d written and if it were me attacked then I wouldn’t be around to get upset. Good to watch Eddie, hadn’t watched him for a while.


  6. News from the French front:
    I was at le grand manif (=manifestation=demo) in Place de Republique on Sunday with all the grieving families, Charlies, flics, juifs and musulmenandwomen. It was very sorrowful and very hopeful. Many including me were in tears at times, there was a fleet of ‘Je suis Charlie, Je Suis Kurd’ banners as one of the Charlie Hebdo dead had praised the Kurds’ historical resistance to laughingly called ‘religious’ sectarian hegemony and violation. There was inevitably a bit of ‘here for the beer’ feeling, but mostly that was simply high-energy teens climbing on La Liberte and keeping the Marseiilaise and applause going; couldn’t move for 3 hours. But really, Cameron and co as charlie???? Glad we the crowd wasn’t able to see the hypocritical grandstanding as we were too many. The most amazing thing was the flics (police) being applauded by the many, all cultures – these flics who are usually intensely unpopular in Paris.

    Much talk of which part of the state is to blame for ‘allowing’ this rage to turn into murder, many saying education= enlightenment so it must be the schools’ responsibility. So, (remembering that in France there are no state-funded faith schools in France) fascinating to hear on radio this morning a junior-equivalent school teacher (young female, if that matters) talking of her experiences in school on Friday, day after the murders. She teaches French in the banlieue (ie deprived area outside the peripherique road that divides haves from have-access-to-nothings) and said her classes are all either moslem or catholic. She tried to get them to talk, to express, to debate with each other. The young ones did to an extent, the older ones refused to speak much at all. She said that there were 3 or 4 in each class of older students who expressed support for the killers, and that they were, in every case, pupils who were ‘having difficulty studying’. She blames the education system for not teaching about faith and no-faith better – and was amazed that until this discussion, almost all of the pupils in the classes were not aware that atheism could exist. She wondered how a child could reach 14 or 15 in ‘officially’ secular France today without being aware of this.

    The interviewer then asked her whether there had been a meeting of teachers since Thursday to discuss approaches in class etc, and she said no – they had just been asked to discuss the issue with the children….. quelle responsibility and risk, The programme ended with a slow rap to acoustic guitar that she and a friend had written about the events, which was also very moving.
    So now we await global responses to this week’s cartoon – it’s a good one, reaching out even. Wonder what will be inside…
    As for me, I’m with Bob and Mike.
    Love the african keeping on Duncan; keep on getting better.

    Can we have purple glitter photos please? PS there’s a brilliant French all-music radio station called Fip: – check it out D. xxxxx


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