Thursday, 20 July 2017

Many Muslims and mosques victims of attacks in the West | South China Morning Post

Below link is to yesterday's letter in the South China Morning Post by Adeel Malik, chairman of the Muslim Council of Hong Kong, that I referred to in the post immediately below. 
The Post is definitely "breaking bad" in favour of islam apologists. It "owes" us on the other side of the issue rather more space!
http://m.scmp.com/comment/letters/article/2103123/many-muslims-and-mosques-victims-attacks-west

MALIK's LETTER:

In her letter ("Why Muslims must speak out against attacks", July 11) Marian Schneps says, "Muslims bear the brunt of terror in Muslim-majority countries in the Middle East, not in France, Britain or America", but conveniently leaves out important facts.

The terror visited upon Muslims in the Middle East is a result of the mismanaged and illegal invasion of Iraq, jointly led by Britain and America, a war that spawned Islamic State (IS). Also, all three countries cited above have for decades sold weapons to dictators in the Middle East, including Bashar al-Assad, who will probably have a stronger grip on power with the impending collapse of IS.

What citizens in the West (including Muslims citizens there) are currently dealing with are sparks from the bonfire the West is no doubt responsible for igniting. Meanwhile, in France, Britain and America ,where Ms Schneps claims Muslim citizens "do not bear the brunt of terror", Muslims have to live with a different kind of terrifying fear.

The Muslim headscarf acts as a lightning rod for attacking Muslim women, and well over 1,000 mosques across the West have experienced at least one incident of vandalism. These have included – Molotov cocktails and small explosive devices being thrown within the mosque's compound; arson attacks resulting in mosques being burned to the ground; and armed demonstrators picketing mosques as well as threatening letters and phone calls. There have also been threats of violence against Muslims in the West, who are loyal citizens of the countries where they live. These attacks have happened – according to statistics compiled by Tell MAMA (Measuring Anti-Muslim Attacks) and other civil rights groups – due to unabated one-sided rhetoric exacerbating Islamophobia.

Your correspondent points out there is a "distinct trend of terror committed in the name of Islam in countries that are majority Christian". However, she overlooks how the key proponents in the invasions of Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and in the war on terror are the US, Britain and France. They are also the primary supply source of weapons for the conflicts in Syria and Yemen. The US, Britain and France are predominantly Christian countries.

Therefore, it would be dishonest to claim this is a war between Islam and Christianity. Instead, it is very much about dirty politics and power, with religion used as a front.

Adeel Malik, chairman, Muslim Council of Hong Kong

Migrant Maids and Nannies for Jihad - NYTimes.com

Jihadi maids in our Hong Kong!
Note the reasons they give for turning jihadi -- alienation and feelings of emptiness. Why, one wonders, don't the Filipina maids here in Hong Kong also turn violent? They have the same pressures after all. Could it be he ideology of Islam gives the Indonesian hijabi maids that little extra fillip? That little extra Koranic push to incite the killing of infidels? To suggest this is, of course, Islamophobic.
Letter to that imam who wrote in to the South China Morning Post yesterday comin' up!
https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/07/18/opinion/isis-jihad-indonesia-migrant-workers.html

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Carrie = Maggie? Probably not, more’s the pity

Carrie Lam
So now we have our new CEO, Carrie Lam, and while she's a woman, she's probably not a Margaret Thatcher, which was the fear of the likes of Keith McNab.
Below is my correspondence with said McNab, via the pages of the South China Morning Post:
Letter to South China Morning Post:
************
Dear SCMP:
Keith McNab is “filled with horror” that a leader in the style of the late Margaret Thatcher might become CEO of Hong Kong. (“City does not need divisive Thatcher clone”, Letters, 3 February 2017)*.
As an Australian who spent three years in Britain in the seventies please allow me to comment on his criticism of Thatcher.
First, he says she was the “worst or most hated prime minister in the last 100 years”. 
Not true. In 2004 the most extensive survey of previous UK prime ministers placed Thatcher at 4th out of 20 as the most effective, after Clement Atlee, Winston Churchill and David Lloyd George. [Reference]
Second, he says her policies led to “mass unemployment”.  Indeed her shake up of the economy led to immediate unemployment, but by the end of her term, unemployment was back to normal levels.  And these were employed in better jobs than lung choking coal mining.
Perhaps McNab forgets that in the seventies’ Britain the union stranglehold on the workforce, especially of the miners, led to regular strikes, high unemployment and crippling inflation. [After: and the Three Day Work Week]. 
Third, he says selling of council housing led to a “social housing crisis”.  In fact, the sale of council houses to tenants (“the right to buy”), had been Labour Party policy.  Thatcher took up the policy and accelerated it.  It was hugely popular. Michael Heseltine said: "no single piece of legislation has enabled the transfer of so much capital wealth from the state to the people." [Reference]. The “crisis” McNab refers to is that there was not as much council housing built to replace that sold.  But that was due to Labour Party insistence that proceeds from sales not be used for building new public housing.  Thatcher had wanted more built.
Fourth: the poll tax.  I agree with McNab.  This was certainly an own goal by Thatcher.  It was late in her stewardship, a clear misjudgment which she quickly corrected. It doesn’t detract from her overall legacy.
Finally: McNab calls for a leader that can “unite the people”. This may seem to be unarguable.  But it’s part of human nature and the nature of politics that division is the norm.  Mao Tse-tung said “one divides into two”.  That’s why we have Conservative-Labour,  Republican-Democrat,  Liberal-Labor (in my own country).  A call for “unity” sounds nice and uncontroversial, but is impossible.
Maggie Thatcher’s speechwriter said that she carried the following quote from President Lincoln in her handbag:
·      You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
·      You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.
·      You cannot help the wage-earner by pulling down the wage-payer.
I would certainly be happy to have a CEO of Hong Kong that hewed to those principles.

PF
 McNab's letter:

Mark Peaker wants to see Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor or John Tsang Chun-wah govern Hong Kong with the passion of Margaret Thatcher, and describes her as the UK’s greatest post-war leader (“Thatcher took a broken UK and fixed it”, January 20).
Such an outlandish statement cannot go unanswered. Thatcher is regularly voted as either the worst or the most-hated prime minister of the last 100 years and she divided the nation as never before nor since.
Her economic policies cost two million jobs and resulted in mass unemployment. Her housing policies, including selling off council houses, precipitated a social housing crisis from which the UK has never recovered. Her introduction of the poll tax resulted in some of the worst rioting ever seen in ­England. It was withdrawn by the next Conservative prime minister after Thatcher was forced out by her own party.
The idea that Hong Kong should have a leader in the style of Thatcher fills me with horror. More than anything, Hong Kong needs a leader who will unite the people, not divide them in the way that Thatcher did in the UK.
Keith McNab, Sai Kung






Monday, 17 July 2017

I've Worked with Refugees for Decades. Europe's Afghan Crime Wave Is Mind-Boggling. | The National Interest

Goodness me. A long, thoughtful and frankly alarming article, from a woman who knows whereof she speaks. Well worth the close read, and then wonder how Europe can continue on its current path or try to avert its own decline.
http://nationalinterest.org/feature/ive-worked-refugees-decades-europes-afghan-crime-wave-mind-21506?page=show


Sent from my iPhone

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Believe me, terrorism is more than a ‘nuisance’

They haven't -- or haven't yet-- run my letter, but did one similar:


Sent from my iPhone

Israel’s Secret Arab Allies - NYTimes.com


Hmmm. Interesting summary of the good trends for Israel, the only truly democratic country in the region. Note especially the increasingly close links with the Palestinian Authority. Could this be a de facto solution, slowly slowly towards true independence and self rule by the West Bank?
TEL AVIV — United States and Israeli officials seem convinced that a regional peace agreement between Israel and the Arab world may be in the offing. On his recent trip to the Middle East, President Trump said that a "new level of partnership is possible and will happen — one that will bring greater safety to this region, greater security to the United States and greater prosperity to the world." The main stumbling block remains the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, an emotive issue that still carries strategic weight in Arab capitals. Yet the president isn't completely wrong. Across the Middle East these days, often away from the headlines, Israel finds itself deeply involved in Arab wars.

Friday, 14 July 2017

This law might explain why a Russian lawyer wanted to meet with Trump - The Washington Post

Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya Moscow, Russia November 8
Of all the hoopla about the Russian lawyer Ms Veselnitskaya -- was she or wasn't she a rep of the Russian government -- this article by Ann Applebaum gives a new and interesting perspective.
There's a bunch of oligarchs in Russia that are really, really pissed off with the Obama sanctions.

Thursday, 13 July 2017

"A clash of civilisations or community". Martin Wolf | Financial Times, 12 July 2017

Letter to the Financial Times:
Martin Wolf says "Terrorism is just a nuisance". In contrast, Soviet Communism was "an existential threat". ("A clash of civilisations or community", 12 July 2017)
Certainly the Soviet Union was a clear and present danger. In the Cold War it was a clearly defined entity within clearly defined borders with a clearly defined government and nuclear-armed forces. Nothing like today's terrorists, in other words. We should note however that there were no terrorist acts on the West by Soviet forces, so the degree of threat is not necessarily defined by its terrorist acts. 
Thus the Islamist threat to the West now is not -- or not just -- from terrorist acts. There I agree with Mr. Wolf.  But I don't agree that that makes the threat simply "a nuisance". The real threat is from those in Islam who want to impose its ideology on the world. The Islamic threat may not be a monolith. But it does have cross-border organisations. The Organisation of the Islamic Conference, for example, brings together 57 Islamic countries, a formidable group within the United Nations, promoting inter alia Islamic blasphemy laws. The Islamic Declaration on Human Rights was specifically formulated to counter the UN's Universal Declaration and states explicitly that human rights must be subservient to Sharia law. 
And let's not forget the many polls of Muslim attitudes, in Islamic countries and in the West alike, that reveal troubling levels of intolerance across the board from the treatment of sexual minorities and women to punishments for blasphemy and apostasy. 
It may be that we don't have a single monolithic enemy like the Soviet Union of yore. But this threat to the West may be all the more dangerous for that. Its very disparity may fool many in the West to discount it as being "just a nuisance", like the Martin Wolfs of the world. 
It's not just a nuisance. It's just that it's not clear and present.  Present, yes, but strategically unclear.
Peter Forsythe
etc

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Robert Spencer: Pope Francis, Defender of Islam

The Marxist Pope
I've written before about Bergoglio, the crypto-Marxist apologist for Islamic mass murder.
What a shocking pope to have in these dangerous times. 
Jihadwatch has a good summary of his crimes and misdemeanors. 
Pope Francis received a noteworthy honor last week when Ahmed al-Tayeb, the Grand Imam of Cairo's al-Azhar, thanked him for his "defense of Islam against the accusation of violence and terrorism."
Has any other Pope of Rome in the history of Christianity ever been heralded as a "defender of Islam"?
Of course not. But the Catholic Church has come a long way since the days of Pope Callixtus III, who vowed in 1455 to "exalt the true Faith, and to extirpate the diabolical sect of the reprobate and faithless Mahomet in the East."

Friday, 7 July 2017

Trump l'oeil


How delicious.
This is a 1989 Doonesbury cartoon.  Note the "Trump l'oeil" in the last panel.  I'm guessing that this is the first use of this clever play on words  - referencing of course the term trompe l'oeil.  Things that seem to be things, but are not. For example, murals that fool us into thinking that there's a window there, when it's just the painting of a window.
Banksy does many clever trompe l'oeils (trompes l'oeil?)
Thus Trump l'oeil.  Trump has fooled us -- or fooled enough Americans -- into thinking he is things that he's not.  For example:
  • That he's a great businessman when he's not.
  • That he's a great negotiator when he's not.
  • That he's a great philanthropist when he's not.
  • That he had the largest inauguration crowds when he didn't.
  • That he "tells it like it is" when he doesn't.
  • That he loves women when he's a misogynist.
  • That he can "repeal and replace Obamacare", when he doesn't know the first thing about Health Care.
  • That he made great achievements in his first 100 days when they were the "worst on record".
  • That he's the president of the United States when he's not.  Scrub that one -- Trump l'oily one is, he really is, the President of the United States.  The ultimate trick on all of us from the tsunami of all that slickery from the oleaginous Donald.

Canada Passes 'Blasphemy' Bill To Silence Critics Of Islam | Zero Hedge


Wow; somehow I missed this on my travels. ("Canada passes "blasphemy" bill to silence critics of Islam" from ZeroHedge.com)
Canada has passed a motion for legislation to outlaw "Islamophobia" a bogus term coined by Islamists to silence critics and nowhere defined in the legislation.
This is where Australia's controversial 18C hate speech legislation could head if we're not careful.
Shame on Trudeau. Shame on their Liberal party, which is clearly not small-L liberal at all.
This law will render mute any criticism of an *idea*, that of Islam. What of the many clear and present shortcomings of that idea? Its misogyny, its homophobia, its sectarianism, its anti-semitism, its supremacism? These now can't be addressed and criticised for fear of being tossed in jail.
Shame on Canada.
Meantime Trudeau's government has given a huge financial gift to Ohmar Kadri, a Muslim boy fighter who was jailed for having killed a Canadian soldier: a killing that was proven and never denied by Kadri.
It's all a bit murky, but one can't help feeling his pay-off is because of Trudeau's leftie western guilt and its flip side: obeisance to Islam, the same obeisance shown in his latest Islamophobia legislation.
Shame shame on Canada.

City Slicker vs. Country Bumpkin: Who Has a Smaller Carbon Footprint?

Remember I said that I thought studies showed the greenhouse gas emissions per capita of people in cities were less than those of people in the country? But I couldn't remember the study.
Here is one, reported in LiveScience, that was done in 2009 and backed up by 20 or 30 follow-up studies, so says the article.
In short, and on average, city dwellers do indeed emit fewer carbon dioxide emissions per person than country folk.

Monday, 3 July 2017

Recipe for Disaster: Immigration Without Assimilation | Clarion Project

From Shabnam Assadolahi, who fled the theocracy in Iran and wonders why the West is following Islamist lines. ("Recipe for Disaster", Clarion Project)
Many countries in the West are seeking to accommodate radical Islamism following the flow of Middle Eastern immigrants to Europe and the North America in the name of multiculturalism and cultural relativism.This sentiment is expressed, for example, in events such as Hijab Solidarity Day , celebrated widely in the West, attempts to enshrine Islamic (sharia) law into the British legal system and passing what almost amounts to a blasphemy law in Canada (Motion M-103).This trend in the West is problematic. Under Islamic law, in some countries, thieves face the punishment of having their hand and leg severed; females who commit "adultery" face death by stoning, beheading or hanging. Homosexuality is a crime punishable by death.Are these cultural values morally equivalent to Western values? In Islamic countries ruled by sharia law, limits are placed on equality of women, such as prohibitions against driving, employment and education.Is female genital mutilation, which is practiced bymany Muslim-majority countries — a morally equivalent value? We will soon see when the FGM case in Michigan goes to trial. Lawyers in the case have said that the doctor accused of cutting girls will claim freedom of religion as her defense.In Iran, the country from which I escaped, women have resisted over the past 39 years this barbaric legal framework that is incompatible with modern values and basic human rights. Yet, some of these very same sharia laws are slowly being incorporated in the West in the name of multiculturalism.

Thursday, 29 June 2017

What Might be Missing in the Muslim World?

I've written before about so-called "Islamic science" especially pathetic attempt to claim various historical inventions as "Islamic". As Trump would say, Sad! Do we bother to claim the myriad inventions of the West as Christian?
Here's a revealing article about the reality of Islamic science: "What might be missing in the Muslim World?", Gatestone Institute.
In short: it's poor.
The article quotes Pakistani nuclear physicist Pervez Hoodbhoy:
In the 1980s an imagined "Islamic science" was posed as an alternative to "Western science." The notion was widely propagated and received support from governments in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and elsewhere. Muslim ideologues in the US, such as Ismail Faruqi and Syed Hossein Nasr, announced that a new science was about to be built on lofty moral principles such as tawheed (unity of God), ibadah (worship), khilafah (trusteeship), and rejection of zulm (tyranny), and that revelation rather than reason would be the ultimate guide to valid knowledge. Others took as literal statements of scientific fact verses from the Qur'an that related to descriptions of the physical world. Those attempts led to many elaborate and expensive Islamic science conferences around the world. Some scholars calculated the temperature of Hell, others the chemical composition of heavenly djinnis. None produced a new machine or instrument, conducted an experiment, or even formulated a single testable hypothesis. A more pragmatic approach, which seeks promotion of regular science rather than Islamic science, is pursued by institutional bodies such as COMSTECH (Committee on Scientific and Technological Cooperation), which was established by the OIC's Islamic Summit in 1981. It joined the IAS (Islamic Academy of Sciences) and ISESCO (Islamic Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization) in serving the "ummah" (the global Muslim community). But a visit to the websites of those organizations reveals that over two decades, the combined sum of their activities amounts to sporadically held conferences on disparate subjects, a handful of research and travel grants, and small sums for repair of equipment and spare parts.

Thursday, 22 June 2017

Immoral Equivalence | commentary

The deception that runs throughout the text will bewitch the average reader into believing that the Israelis are usually bad, usually wrong, usually to blame; that the Palestinians are usually good, usually right, usually blameless. And that's what makes this book both shameful and dangerous. For in truth there is no moral equivalence between an army that warns its enemy of an impending attack so that people might have a chance to steer civilians to safety and a terrorist entity that targets unarmed men, women, and children. There can be no rational comparisons between a nation that collectively shuns and condemns those among them who have resorted to violence, and a people that celebrates murderers as martyrs, names town squares in their honor, and pays surviving family members for the barbarity, inciting and incentivizing even more bloodshed.
https://www.commentarymagazine.com/articles/immoral-equivalence/


Sent from my iPad

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

"Minister puts brakes on Uber in city road map", 7 June

UPDATE: Printed 26th June, see at bottom.
LETTER TO THE EDITOR, SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST

I was very disappointed to read that the government plans to squeeze Uber out of Hong Kong (Minister puts brakes on Uber in city road map, 7 June). I'm sure this disappointment will be shared not only by Uber drivers, but also by the many tens of thousands of satisfied customers they have served in recent years. There was an almost unprecedented number of online comments on your article, the vast majority of which were in favour of Uber and calling on the government to find away to make it to work. 
Sadly it looks like the government will ignore the public in favour of the small coterie of taxi owners.
I fear the real reason is not the regulatory one, but the political one pointed out by Jake van der Kamp (Uber issue is about politics, not about defying regulation, 10 June).  
To add insult to injury, the Minister for Transport, Anthony Cheung smeared Uber by saying "They hope they can run their businesses and not come under any regulation".  Uber says it has repeatedly offered to discuss regulating its operations.  Only one is telling the truth and I know who I believe.  Cheung also said "I believe that no country and no government wold allow that".  That's plainly untrue, as there are many countries where Uber operates perfectly well and legally, including nearby Singapore and my own Australia.
By giving in to the rotten borough transport lobby within Legco, the minister is putting the interests of a few taxi owners above tens of thousands of ordinary citizens. He is putting the interests of taxi owners above this interests of Hong Kong itself. The effect of his ridiculous suggestion that Uber operate "like taxi companies" would be to bring Uber down to the level of taxi service, rather than to improve taxi service through competition. 
This is all a great shame.  It makes a joke of the government's alleged aim to encourage hi-tech, as you argue in today's leader, (Invest in hi-tech to remain competitive, 13 June).
We must hope this is not the end, that common sense prevails and some way is found to allow innovative, effective and popular ride-hailing services into our city's transport mix.
Peter Forsythe.
******************
UPDATE: 
The South China ran myletter on 26th June, as the featured letter.  Click to enlarge:





Sunday, 11 June 2017

Muslims Demand Infidel Owner Remove 'Perfect Man' Sign — He Has Brilliant Counter-Offer


First time I've seen this site and it looks to be rather of the right. But so what? I decided to post the article because it's 100% spot on. Even down to the quibble over how many Jews were killed in one day.
The owner of the sign,  Don Woodsmall's "brilliant counter-offer"? He will take down the sign if any one of its statements is shown to be false.  So far, no Muslim, including noone from CAIR, has managed to do that.
Interesting that Muslims immediately know who he was talking about, even though the sign doesn't mention Islam or Muslims!  Now how did they do that, if it weren't for the fact that the statements are recorded in Islam's core documents, the Koran, Hadith and Sirah?
And remember that Muhammad is known by Muslims as the "Perfect Man".
How dare the representatives of Islam, http://www.danielpipes.org/biblio_cair.phpCAIR and the like, demand this be pulled down when every one of these statements is in Islamic source documents: the Koran, Hadith and Sirah. All quoted in the article.
No one would make the same demands of any other religion. Not that you could make anything like the same declarations about Jesus. Or Buddha. Or Ganesh. Or The Great Spaghetti Monster.
Read all about it here.

Muslims are loudly condemning terror, but is the world listening? | South China Morning Post

These guys condemn ISIS then say "it's nothing to do with Islam".
What's the point, then?  Why even go through the motions of demonstratilng?
LETTER TO SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST:
Perhaps I can answer the question in the headline of Mr Bazarwala's recent article (Why must it fall to Muslims to decry terror? 10 June).

I acknowledge that many Muslims have indeed decried terror. A recent heartfelt letter from Hong Kong’s chief Imam Muhammad Arshad is an eloquent example (Terror attacks by deviant soldiers can never be justified, 9 June).

But very often these are "non-condemnation condemnations".

They condemn "terrorism", but then they say that "it is nothing to do with Islam". The perpetrators have "hijacked" or "warped" or "twisted" the "Religion of Peace”. They are “deviant foot soldiers”. [or, here]

No matter that the mass murderer is a hafiz who has learnt the Koran by heart. No matter that the mass murderer is a regular mosque goer who wears pious Islamic clothes and lives the modest Islamic life. Because he commits an act of terror he is not a "true Muslim", a classic of the "no true Scotsman" fallacy.  If it’s not denial, then it’s deflection, as Bazarwala himself does when he says most terrorism in the US originates in the alt-right.  This is a bogus statistic that has been comprehensibly debunked but is in any case irrelevant to the issue of Islamic terrorism. Or yet again, the blame is on western foreign policy.  Certainly that is a factor, but even without it there would be jihadi terrorism against the west.

The facts are that the foundational documents of Islam -- the Koran, Hadith and Sirah -- provide plenty to encourage a young jihadi, without any need to cherry pick or blame western foreign policy. This point is repeatedly made by the likes of ISIS, who are no less Muslims for deciding to follow the more warlike passages in the doctrines of Islam.

It may be difficult or "embarrassing" (to quote Mrs May) to acknowledge the connection between Islamic doctrine and terrorism. I understand this. But to ignore it because of this difficulty will only compound the problem of understanding motive. 

For sure it's difficult for Muslims to acknowledge that their core religious documents encourage terrorism. But they do. 

When that is admitted that's when we can acknowledge that Muslims really do decry Islamist terror.   

Zubin Madon has the perfect response to the Islamophilic truth haters « Why Evolution Is True

Zubin's T-shirt
Courtesy of Jerry Coyne's website, I come across for the first time the articles, blog and tweets of Zubin Madon. In this article Madon -- an ex Muslim atheist -- covers it all on the "nothing-to-do-with-Islam" theme. This is indeed a keeper.
Follow the internal link to go to Madon's article from 4 July 2016.
I share Jerry's surprise that it even appeared in the HuffPo, since HuffPo is usually a major islamapologist site.

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Why Jeremy Corbyn Will Be A Foreign Policy Disaster – Areo Magazine

Kisses for the boss. Note Koran. He was not secular, Saddam
There are far too many people who blame the whole of the disaster in the middle east on western intervention. It's a factor of course. But even in Iraq Saddam had a prototype of al Qaeda and ISIS going: his faith brigades as above.
The young fella writing this article is still at uni. He has his head screwed on, unlike all the snowflakes I keep reading about in America.
Very good article, spot on.
It is understandable for the British public to be sceptical of our role on the world stage, especially after our disastrous campaigns in both Iraq and Afghanistan. But the narrative which has increasingly gained momentum amongst the left, is that we went to war for the pure sake of wanting to exploit the people of Iraq. Many also argue that we toppled a secular leader and in turn destabilised the region. If using chemical weapons on the Kurds, annexing a sovereign Kuwait, and harbouring notorious terrorists is a sign of stability, then that shows how low our expectations are of what can be tolerated in the Middle East. Saddam had also encouraged the spread of Salafi ideology in Iraq during the faith campaign of the early 90's, which laid the groundwork for the jihadist insurgency of today, and thus it is absurd to call such a man "secular." This isn't justification for the war itself or the eight-year occupation which followed, but it is merely an attempt to contextualize Blair's decision.
https://areomagazine.com/2017/06/07/why-jeremy-corbyn-will-be-a-foreign-policy-disaster/