As many of you are aware the situation in Gaza is escalating. I'm sure you'll agree with me when I say that the people of Gaza need urgent medical attention, food and resources through these difficult times. However it seems that certain people would like to restrict this.
HSBC bank has decided to issue a two month notice to Ummah Welfare Trust to close down its bank accounts. This is similar to what Barclays did to Ummah Welfare Trust back in 2008. For those of you concerned, be reassured that there are other bank accounts that UWT use and will continue all their efforts.
Here is a list of things that YOU can do:
Educate yourself with this easy to understand and historically accurate video on why Israelis and Palestinians are fighting, why the US-backed peace process has been an impediment to peace, and what you can do to make a difference. This conflict is essentially about land and human rights, not religion and culture. Endorsed by Palestinian, Israeli and American scholars and peace activists.
New leaks in the Guardian suggest that 6 schools in Birmingham will face censure, and two previously considered to be outstanding schools will be rated as "inadequate" - a rating that allowed the government to place the schools under special measures and force changes including replacing of school governors.
These schools were among 21 investigated as part of a "Trojan Horse" plot, where the leaks suggest that nothing has been found:
Ofsted's inspectors appear to have been unable to find much evidence of claims of homophobia or gender discrimination, which have been alleged by anonymous former teachers at some of the schools.
On Friday, a teenager named Michael Piggin walked free from court when the jury at a second trial failed to reach a verdict. The prosecutors have stated they will not seek a retrial.
You can read more about it in this article which gives further details of the trial and what Michael Piggin was accused of:
...planning to carry out a murderous attack on his former school, a cinema, a mosque and a council office near his home in the Midlands.
Piggin had earlier pleaded guilty to stockpiling weapons, including petrol bombs and component parts of pipe bombs, but consistently denied he intended to carry out an attack.
Today news arrives that the 31 year old father of two Mr Mashudur Choudhry has been convicted of terrorism related offences for going to fight in Syria.
Syria is currently a mess and going to fight there may be a bad idea especially as allegiances of different groups are murky and chances are people you consider on your own side will be trying to kill you for fighting with another group. Or worse you will be forced to work with groups carrying out attrocities and other crime.
However I do not think that it should be a criminal offence for people to go to Syria, even if to fight and any anti terrorism laws that make this a criminal offence are wrong.
There is an article in the Guardian today about Park View academy in Birmingham where there are allegations of a "Muslim plot" to take over schools.
To me this story seems to be just another in the line of trying to muddy the waters about Muslims and to tarnish out collective reputations.
The real story? Park View Academy has managed to turn itself from a failing school where single digit figures were passing their GCSE's into a school which has become a beacon of achievement, where others want to emulate this success.