Update 12/15, 12:27 PM ET: The gunman has reportedly been killed during the shootout with Sydney police, national security source in the United States told CNN.
Gunshots were fired in the confrontation between the Sydney police force and the suspected gunman holding at least 15 people hostage in a cafe Monday, with multiple deaths and injuries. The suspected gunman has been identified as an Iranian sex offender and murder suspect.
Australian state broadcaster ABC reported that at least two people were killed and three seriously injured during the showdown. The condition of the suspected gunman Man Haron Monis is unknown. more >>
"When the sacred months are over slay the idolaters wherever you find them. Arrest them, besiege them, and lie in ambush everywhere for them." – The Quran, Surah 9:5
Islam is anything if not ironic.
"A teenaged bomber on Thursday targeted a Kabul auditorium packed with people watching a drama condemning suicide attacks," reports Reuters. "Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said the bomber targeted the event because it was staged 'to insult Islamic values and spread propaganda about our jihad operations, especially on suicide attacks.'" And so, in defense of "Islamic values" and to dispel "propaganda" about "suicide attacks," Muhammad Jr. blows himself into pork-sausage, killing one and wounding 16. more >>
An Islamic State militant, who is now imprisoned by the Kurds in Northern Iraq and claims to have killed over 70 people during his time fighting with the radical extremist group, is claiming to be another victim of Islamic State coercion.
A 25-year-old originally from the Iraqi village of Dor sal-Hadeen, going by the name of "Omar", told Fox News reporter Hollie McKay in an interview inside the prison that, unlike many of the ISIS fighters who have willingly joined the fight, he was forced into joining the group's military ranks when ISIS raided his village in June.
Omar said that when the militants took over his village, the ISIS commanders told him that they wanted him to join as an ISIS fighter. Omar said he wasn't given much choice because he could either join up as a militant or his life would be taken from him. He claims that the militants backed up their death threat by executing other people in front of him to show that they meant business. more >>
In a remarkable but thus-far unnoticed address on Dec. 5, Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa, the crown prince of Bahrain (an island kingdom in the Persian Gulf and home to the U.S. Navy's Fifth Fleet), candidly analyzed the Islamist enemy and suggested important ways to fight it.
He has much to teach Westerners (starting with his hapless UK counterpart, Crown Prince Charles), if only we would listen. Yes, some Western leaders speak about confronting the Islamist ideology, but the majority avoids this issue by resorting to euphemism, obfuscation, and cowardice. Most frustrating are those leaders (like Tony Blair) who deliver powerful speeches without follow-through.
Prince Salman, 45 and widely acknowledged to be the Bahraini royal family's principal reformer, opens his remarks by addressing the inaccuracy of the phrase, "War on Terror." The time has come, he says "for us to get rid of" a term that dates back to 9/11. "It is a bit misleading, it is not the entirety and the totality of our conflict" but merely a "tool" and a tactic. more >>
A new extremist group operating in Indonesia is going after women on the streets wearing tight pants and jeans and covering them in spray paint as a form of enforcement against violations of the Islamic law and the local law of the land.
The group, which calls itself Tadkiiratul Ummah and operates in the Indonesian province of Aceh, has recently began a new "moralization" campaign to make examples of women and men who are wearing what the group deems to be "too tight pants."
Asia News reports that the group is finding violators of the law and covering their pants in a permanent color spray. According to the group's spokesman, Teungku Nurdin Usman, the group's campaign of spray painting people wearing tight pants comes in response to local law enforcement failing to enforce the Iaw, which, among other things, prohibits women from wearing tight clothing. more >>
In a recent interview on CBN News, Andrew White, an Anglican priest known as the "Vicar of Baghdad," tried to recount the horrific atrocities Christians in Iraq are suffering at the hands of the Islamic State. After explaining how Christian minorities fled Baghdad to Ninevah when Islamic militants began terrorizing them and bombing their churches, White said:
Then one day, ISIS, the Islamic State, the Islamic caliphate came [to Ninevah] and they hounded all of them [Christians] out. Not some, all of them. And they killed huge numbers. They chopped their children in half; they chopped their heads off.
It should be noted that the targeting of Christian children in Iraq goes back years before the creation of ISIS. For example, in June 2008, a Canadian parliamentary committee heard about how "militant Muslims" were crucifying Christian children: "Since the war began in 2003, about 12 children, many as young as 10, have been kidnapped and killed, then nailed to makeshift crosses near their homes to terrify and torment their parents." more >>