Muslim woman first to be convicted under Terrorism Act: Now find the other 1,999...

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by Cobalt Blue, Nov 8, 2007.

  1. Cobalt Blue

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    Today, a 23-year-old who called herself the "Lyrical Terrorist" has become the first woman in the UK to be convicted under the Terrorism Act. Only minutes ago, Samina Malik was found guilty at the Old Bailey.

    Malik was born in Britain and grew up in the west London borough of Southall. Like many from the area, she found work at Heathrow Airport where she was a shop assistant at WH Smith.

    The jury heard she had written extremist poems praising Osama Bin Laden, supporting martyrdom and discussing beheading. Malik was deeply involved with terrorist related groups, but the astonishing thing about her, the court heard, was that she worked as a shop assistant at the airside branch of WH Smith at Heathrow Airport, which meant she had total security clearance to all areas of the airport, including aircraft. This made a mockery of security vetting, the prosecution said, as Malik wore a hijab and made no secret of her Islamic faith. "It all adds up to Samina Malik being a dangerous extremist" said Mr Jonathan Sharp, the prosecutor.

    It was not known how many other potential Islamic terrorists worked in similar sensitive locations. Police said they had found a "library" of Islamist literature in her bedroom including The Al-Qaeda Manual and The Mujahideen Poisons Handbook. The court also heard that she wrote about terrorism on the back of WH Smith receipts. One note read to the jury said: "The desire within me increases every day to go for martyrdom."

    The head of MI5 has said there were at least 2,000 people in the UK who pose a threat to national security because of their support for terrorism. Jonathan Evans said attacks on the UK were "not simply random plots by disparate and fragmented groups", but part of a "deliberate campaign" by al-Qaeda. MI5 knows of 80 terror plots currently threatening the UK and is keeping 2,000 individuals under surveillance. He warned the threat was "serious" and "growing" and said future attacks could be chemical or nuclear.

    In the past 12 months, MI5 had found links between an increasing range of countries and terror plots in the UK, he said. The "al-Qaeda brand" had expanded and now posed a threat to the UK. The most urgent danger came from "home-grown" terrorists, Muslims born within the UK.

    "We will do our utmost to hold back the physical threat of attacks, but alone, this is merely containment. Mr Evans said he did not think the level of terror threat against the UK had "reached its peak". Shiraz Maher, a former member of radical Muslim group Hizb ut-Tahrir, said the recruitment of young people by militant groups was a reality.
     
  2. SpoiledPrincess

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    In the UK we all have to walk a fine line not to offend Muslims who are very vocal when they feel slighted, we're not allowed to say Islam is a problem, however any religion which, in modern times, has caused the whole world to alter it's behaviour is a problem.
     
  3. B_Swimming Lad

    B_Swimming Lad New Member

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    I wish a speedy and umpleasant death to all terrorists.
     
  4. SteveHd

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    I don't have the motivation to read the entire piece, so could someone post: what exactly was she convicted of? And based on what evidence?
     
  5. nicenycdick

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    The only thing that disturbs me is that it seems she was prosecuted only because she WROTE about extreme Islamic issues. Was she accused of inciting terrorism? or aiding and abetting terrorists? I know that many people believe that such writings should be punished, but is that what is happening here? I know, I know...we Americans are so snotty about civil rights and the freedom to express ourselves, yet we are involved in an internationally unpopular war in Iraq. But...was this woman really prosecuted simply for what she said...or worse, for what she believed?!
     
  6. B_cigarbabe

    B_cigarbabe New Member

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  7. nicenycdick

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    Yes?! For what she wrote?!! Does anybody here think that is right?
     
  8. ClaireTalon

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    Security vetting is a joke unless you're working for either a governmental organization, which is security-related, or you're applying for a company or organization that has none but the best relations to these organizations, and every stone in your past life will be turned and investigated. Security checks for many other private companies are being done by more or less efficient subcontractors, and so are the results: Sometimes useful, often mediocre, sometimes useless. For my employment with *...*, I needed a SSBI.

    That aside, I am not sure whether her poetic take on martyrdom and jihad makes a planned attack, acted out by her, more likely. She appears to me more like a dreamer, less like an actual perpetrator. But she had useful goods for other terrorists: Security clearance, knowledge of the premises, ideologic pervasion. Also, she appears unobtrusive, despite her obvious religiousity, after having worked there for long. A preemptive conviction, if legally backed, would be justified in this case.
     
  9. B_cigarbabe

    B_cigarbabe New Member

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    I didn't realize that you could be convicted of a crime,in the U.K.,for writing poems. I'm not making light of the situation,but it seems a little odd,to me.
    It may well also be true here,but I don't really know that.
    I understand it's against the laws,of the U.K. but,not acting act out,can get you jail time?
    Incredible!
    cigarbabe:saevil:
     
  10. SteveHd

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    I did a search and found a BBC piece which states she was convicted of: collecting articles "likely to be useful to a person committing or preparing an act of terrorism". It didn't say what those articles are. If she possessed ammonium nitrate then it would be plausible.

    It all looks specious to me.
     
  11. SpoiledPrincess

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    You can be sent to jail for inciting racial hatred cb, in her case she was convicted of 'possessing documents likely to be used for terrorism'.
     
  12. nicenycdick

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    "A preemptive conviction, if legally backed, would be justified in this case."

    Preemptive conviction? In the US, the only kinds of "preemptive convictions" involve conspiracy charges...if you take some operative steps involving another person in a plan to commit a crime, then you can be charged and convicted of a crime. But you can never be charged or convicted of a crime simply because of what you say, what you write or how you believe (there are some exceptions, including crying "fire" in a crowded theatre or inciting to riot, but these are not relevant here). I can't image that British law (from which most of American flows) can be that much different!
     
  13. SpoiledPrincess

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    In the USA freedom of speech is a right, in the UK it isn't.
     
  14. ClaireTalon

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    Since I am no expert on legal matters, and don't even know the characteristics and criteriums this special law prescribes for a conviction, PLUS the UK legal system is based on precedence, I was deliberately formulating in a vague way. Her possessing terrorism-related writings, in combination with her occupation in a security area, seems to have tipped the balance. But you are right, I miss the objective evidence for a planned crime or conspiration here, too.

    The other option might be that she came very convenient to make an example of her and use this case to build further, future cases.
     
  15. nicenycdick

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    Ya know, SP, you are absolutely correct! Our right to Freedom of Speech is contained in the first amendments to the Constitution of the United States, the Bill of Rights! It was not even an original part of the Constitution because the drafters were all originally, of course, British lawyers! It was crafted, as were most of those first ten amendments to the Constitution, as a response to King George's treatment of the American colonists under valid British law at the time. So this seems to be a particularly American thing.
     
  16. sortofbigthen

    sortofbigthen New Member

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    Actually, it is and has been since long before the US was born.

    Pretty much all of the freedoms Americans rightly value have been inshrined in British laws for centuries.

    Of course, the level to which they are adhered to has, as in the US, varied over the years.
     
  17. SpoiledPrincess

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    We don't have freedom of speech, there have been laws enacted to prevent the freedom to say anything which may incite racial hatred.
     
  18. frizzle

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    The same is applied in every country, there is no such thing as freedom of speech as all actions must face the consequences. It's true the US aswell and in all countries there are limits, the only difference is the US's constituion is written and ours isn't.

    Personally I feel all anti-British and pro-terrorism incidents should be dealt with swiftly and harshly. Deportation and execution.
     
  19. odd_fish_9

    odd_fish_9 New Member

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    The signers of the Constitution were almost all local boys - born, raised, and educated in the Americas.

    The exceptions were one, a native of Liverpool, and another from St Croix; both emigrated as children. A third had been an officer in the British army, and a fourth was born and educated in Scotland.

    In my book that makes the Constitution an almost entirely, and uniquely, American creation.
     
  20. nicenycdick

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    My statement was based on the position that "American Law" didn't exist until after the Declaration of Independence. The framers were all trained and practiced under the laws of Great Britain until America's separation from England...no?
     
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