What on EARTH happened in Kenya :-(??

(199 Posts)

Save us all from fanatics sadangry.

I am quite fanatically against extremists of all colours/faiths/nationalities.

What can go on in their heads when they plan an attack like this? Are they hoping to win support? Do they truly believe that atrocious acts like this wins a place in paradise?? Really?

I despair sometimes sad.

caramelwaffle Sat 21-Sep-13 14:16:35

What happened?!

Trouble has been brewing there for a while being exported from nearby countries.

nancy75 Sat 21-Sep-13 14:18:59

News I read this morning said ir was a jewellery shop robbery gone wrong?

ImTooHecsyForYourParty Sat 21-Sep-13 14:20:35

Ive got family there, ill see if they know whats going on

WafflyVersatile Sat 21-Sep-13 14:21:27

Extremists? confused Paradise?

What are you on about?

YoureBeingADick Sat 21-Sep-13 14:27:14

Link? Or at least tell us what you are talking about?

meditrina Sat 21-Sep-13 14:28:35

No-one yet knows of this was a terrorist incident or a violent robbery spinning out of control.

Forthose who haven't seen the news, there's been a mass shooting in a shopping mall in Nairobi - gunmen still in the building, as are an unknown number of staff and customers.

meditrina Sat 21-Sep-13 14:29:39
SilverApples Sat 21-Sep-13 14:29:54


It seems to be a robbery, but do you have additional information about the group that carried out the attack, linked to religious groups?

nancy75 Sat 21-Sep-13 14:30:39

Op is talking about an attack in a shopping centre in Kenya, the news earlier said it was a robbery gone wrong, it has turned in to a hostage situation which sky are now reporting as being motivated by religion rather than robbery. I believe they are saying 15 people have been killed.

partybags Sat 21-Sep-13 14:34:13

For those with friends/family there, it is a raid on the Westgate shopping centre on Westlands, Nairobi.

Grenades were thrown in at around 12 noon local time, and then gunfire broke out. Police are there, and it is now a siege/hostage situation.

Sorry, I lost our WiFi just as I was about to post the link

I may have posted a bit off the cuff and made assumptions re religious motivation, so sorry about that.

This is not an anti-any-religious thread; this is an anti-extremism thread.
And a rant, I suppose.... blush

SilverApples Sat 21-Sep-13 14:36:23

American news say that the attackers have been tentatively identified as Somalian.
Land Pirates?

meditrina Sat 21-Sep-13 14:39:33

The Kenyan Army has conducted operations against al-Shabab across the border into Somalia. So if the attackers are Somali, it doesn't rule in or out either possibility.

ImTooHecsyForYourParty Sat 21-Sep-13 14:39:44

My nephew says people are saying it is al sahbaab

ImTooHecsyForYourParty Sat 21-Sep-13 14:40:09

Typo. Sha not sah

So, was it actually a robbery gone wrong?
Who takes grenades on a robbery??

Why rob a busy shopping centre on a Saturday afternoon? Presumably a particularly populated time?

Xiaoxiong Sat 21-Sep-13 14:44:29

My aunt was on her way there to go shopping this morning. We're still trying to get through to her or anyone else who might know what's going on.

deepfriedsage Sat 21-Sep-13 14:46:55

BBC had nonsense about a castle and sky not worked round to it yet and sport next.

meditrina Sat 21-Sep-13 14:49:11

This report from Reuters has more detail than the BBC. Al-Shabab have threatened to attack this shopping centre, which does make reprisals/terrorism seem likely, but no-one has (yet?) claimed responsibility.

BoreOfWhabylon Sat 21-Sep-13 15:05:45

Watching on Sky now - oh those poor terrified people.

Xiaoxiong I do hope your aunt is safe and that you hear from her soon.

BBC update

I hope you aunt is ok, Xiao

My thoughts are with everybody affected

Xiaoxiong Sat 21-Sep-13 15:11:42

We've just had a missed call from her, but when we try and ring back it won't go through. Hoping this means she's ok and not stuck inside or something. She's going to have about 800 missed calls from all of us when she gets back into range!

My grandfather's in Nairobi too, but I doubt he'd be anywhere near Westgate on a Saturday.

AboutTimeForAChange Sat 21-Sep-13 15:12:24
mummylin Sat 21-Sep-13 15:36:22

My nephews in laws are Kenyan I think they live about an hour from Nairobi , I have just text them to see that they and their family are ok

magimedi Sat 21-Sep-13 15:41:36

Have just had a very anxious half hour after reading this as DH's brother is in Nairobi. Just had an email from him - he's fine.

My thoughts go out to those who are affected by this.

originalpiratematerial Sat 21-Sep-13 15:43:33

Oh no, just seen this, my DB and his wife and two children are in Nairobi. What's happened?

originalpiratematerial Sat 21-Sep-13 16:02:10

Just spoken to DB on Skype, they are all ok thank goodness. He also says Al-Shabab, because of Kenya's actions in Somalia. I hope that all your friends and families are similarly ok, everyone.

Xiaoxiong Sat 21-Sep-13 16:09:43

Still haven't heard anything. And there is a shaky video on the Guardian website that appears to show a friend of my aunt's and her two kids, thankfully being evacuated in one piece but looking utterly distraught sad I really hope they weren't all shopping together with my aunt, we're getting really worried now.

magimedi Sat 21-Sep-13 16:13:34

Xiao - email from DH's bro said that things were very chaotic & difficult to get any concrete news & that phones & internet connection had been difficult at times. He's in Nairobi, about 10 miles from Westgate. Email was sent at about 3.30pm UK time.

Hope you hear something soon. flowers

The Huffington Post talks about terrorist attacks.

Do you know, I'd been hoping that I'd posted too quickly and that my assumptions were all wrong.

Here's thinking of all of you who are waiting to hear from loved ones.

Secretswitch Sat 21-Sep-13 16:48:03

The New York Daily News is reporting this is a very serious situation. I don't want to say anymore as sometimes early accounts are often inaccurate.
My prayers are with everyone involved.

mummylin Sat 21-Sep-13 16:48:48

Just heard back from nephews in law family. Father in law said " once again we are thrown into international glare " and that's it's still not over there.

Xiaoxiong Sat 21-Sep-13 17:08:24

Phew just heard from my aunt - she was actually on her way to Westgate because apparently there was a kid's fun day on at the mall sad but someone called her to tell her to turn back. She says everyone there thinks it's Al-Shabab too.

Thanks for well wishes all flowers Really really hope no more casualties.

magimedi Sat 21-Sep-13 17:12:13

So pleased to hear that, Xiao

Xiaoxiong Sat 21-Sep-13 19:19:54

Yep - Al-Shabab have just taken responsibility for the attack. Awful.

nowwhat Sat 21-Sep-13 19:40:59

I normally live in Uganda and have so many friends in Kenya, especially Nairobi... awful. Soon as I heard I said Al Shabaab, now I see they have taken responsibility.

We're due to go back to Uganda soon, makes you nervous.

I lived and worked in Uganda 20 years ago and passed through Nairobi a few times. It was such an eye opener, my first visit to Africa, in so many ways.

Coming back to my original question: what do extremists hope to achieve with violent action like this? It won't win supporters to their cause, will it?

Growing up in Germany in a time when the Red Army Faction was active, I never understood their methods - their goals I understood, but not how they went about them.

I hope everybody is out now.

meditrina Sat 21-Sep-13 20:15:19

Unfortunately, it seems the incident is ongoing.

Are you sure it won't win supporters? Their target audience, such as they have one, is in Somalia where it might seem like a successful retaliation strike.

nowwhat Sat 21-Sep-13 20:49:58

Unfortunately there is an element of East African society, mostly Somalia but not only there, that these attacks target, and they do win supporters.

Overwhelmingly though most people are just afraid of Al-Shabaab, especially in Uganda after the world cup attacks in 2010 where so many people died. Security is very tight nowadays all over the EAC.

meditrina Sat 21-Sep-13 22:12:33

The death toll is now reported to be at least 39, with c.150 injured, and the gunmen are still holed up somewhere inside and it is believed they do have hostages.

difficultpickle Sat 21-Sep-13 22:15:52

Al-Shabaab want Kenya to pull their troops out of Somalia. Dreadful situation with unknown number of people still trapped there.

AnyaKnowIt Sat 21-Sep-13 22:50:23

can't believe its still on going sad

difficultpickle Sat 21-Sep-13 22:52:29

One report I heard is the gunmen shot into a tent that was hosting a children's cookery party and several were killed. Just horrendous.

meditrina Sat 21-Sep-13 22:57:18

I'd heard reports there was a children's event going on at the Mall today, but nothing to say that there were casualties among the participants. I really hope the report you heard bisjo isn't correct. Though given all ages could be out shopping or whatever, there may well be children amongst the dead and injured.

Wolfiefan Sat 21-Sep-13 22:58:26

Our thoughts must be with all those (and their families and friends) affected.
Xiaox good news. You must be so relieved.
What is it with people? I honestly couldn't give a monkeys what race, colour, religion, sexual orientation, nationality (or anything else I've not thought to put on this random list) someone is. We are all sons/daughters, friends, mothers/fathers, loved and loving. Just people.
Or am I stupidly naive?!

nowwhat Sat 21-Sep-13 23:19:43

I just think if people put as much effort into being good as they can put into doing evil things like this how much nicer the world would be.

difficultpickle Sat 21-Sep-13 23:22:21

CNN have reported 39 confirmed dead, 36 held hostage, 293 injured.

This is horrendous. I agree OP. This has nothing to do with faith. This is about anger and power and cruelty.

Mmmnotsure Sat 21-Sep-13 23:48:27

This is about anger and power and cruelty.

^^Yes, this.

measuringcup Sun 22-Sep-13 01:15:46

Reports have said that the injured range from 2 years old. I hope that is misinformation, some of the pictures that have been on the news sites are horrific.

measuringcup Sun 22-Sep-13 01:19:02

The group claiming to be responsible were tweeting live during the attack, about the attack, thankfully its been suspended.

marcopront Sun 22-Sep-13 03:54:15

The updates on Facebook from friends in Kenya this morning are so sad. The niece of a friend was there and got out, a friend of another friend was killed. Another one refers to a pregnant woman who was killed.
I suspect a friend is there with the KDF.
Horrible situation. Kenya doesn't need this.

I am so sorry for everybody who may have lost a loved on ein this attack.

Yy it is the last thing Kenya needed and I fear will have repercussions.
Which will lead to repoercussions.
And so on and so forth sad.

I can see how angry, disinfranchised people's support who sympathise with the cause may be won with violent action like this, but surely the wider community/world just get alienated from whatever the 'cause' may be, non?

Just like during the Third Reich official church codemnation of what went on in Germany was thunderingly loud in its absence, I miss prominent Muslim leaders speaking out against atrocities.
Apparently the shopping centre is "at least past Israeli owned' - well, that explains it then hmm.

meditrina Sun 22-Sep-13 09:37:59

The news this morning says that the attackers are still in the Mall (holed up in a supermarket?) with an unknown number of hostages, and that security forces are planning a "major" operation to deal with it. Very worrying.

AnyaKnowIt Sun 22-Sep-13 12:23:07

15 gunmen still inside sad

bemybebe Sun 22-Sep-13 12:37:06

SKY is reporting a rescue operation being under way with the help of Israeli forces.

measuringcup Sun 22-Sep-13 12:43:55

The pregnant lady killed was a radio celebrity there to judge the kids cooking contest so it sound like what bisjo mentioned might be correct. sad

AboutTimeForAChange Sun 22-Sep-13 13:00:30

The pictures were dreadful, I got very upset, poor souls running for their lives.

measuringcup Sun 22-Sep-13 13:28:07

There's a picture really upsetting me abouttime, its a little girl around three or four without any adults, a man is reaching out to her to get her to come to him so he can get her out but she's just wide eyed and scared. No parents with her. I can't get her out of my mind.

AboutTimeForAChange Sun 22-Sep-13 13:39:11

I think it is the one where there is a group of other children hiding under a table behind her? I also felt ill with what must be a dead body behind a wall and people running crouched down, ignoring the body.

Worriedformyfriend Sun 22-Sep-13 15:32:06

Yes, her mum and sibling are hiding under the table behind. Can you imagine having to push your child out to run. I can barely even think it. Utter, utter cunts. I have family there and grew up there, just down the road from Westlands. Seeing everyone helping each other and the blood just made me far too emotional. I hope the hostages are safe and the worst is over. Is that too much to ask for.

Fucking bastards, targeting somewhere where there would be young families, though anyone who plans this sort of atrocity are fucking bastards and no-one should be their targets.

Worriedformyfriend Sun 22-Sep-13 15:39:58

Where is the international outrage from the Middle East, condemning and distancing themselves from these arseholes?

QueOnda Sun 22-Sep-13 15:46:09

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BBC are saying at least 59 dead
I will never understand people

Worriedformyfriend Sun 22-Sep-13 15:54:14


QueOnda Sun 22-Sep-13 16:17:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

marcopront Sun 22-Sep-13 16:19:10

The president of Somalia has condemned them.

The feeling of unity coming through is amazing though, so many people are posting about Kenyans being one people.

Worriedformyfriend Sun 22-Sep-13 16:27:38

All my relatives and friends are standing united.

Que, don't be disingenuous. I would like to see some wealthy respected Arabic states making it clear that this is unacceptable behaviour, so as not to encourage others. Same as western governments speak out about how horrendous these acts are.

Just FYI, funeral tents in Iraq were bombed by Sunnis yesterday, killing over 90 Shi'ites. I want to hear some condemnation about that too.

duchesse Sun 22-Sep-13 17:07:59

I'm really worried at the moment as DSis and her DP went for about 10 days on the 12th September. I've tried texting them but no answer and none of my family knows or has got back to me yet. The Foreign Office have their details now and my contact phone number so I'm just hoping for the best.

caramelwaffle Sun 22-Sep-13 17:34:43

A Christian church full of worshippers in Northern Pakistan was also attacked yesterday : 25 people murdered. So sad.

RIP to all these people, and condolences to their families.

duchesse Sun 22-Sep-13 17:40:09

Just trying to work out a few things from my 15 yo nephew without freaking him out. I doubt he's seen the news so it's probably safe.

QueOnda Sun 22-Sep-13 18:24:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

duchesse Sun 22-Sep-13 18:28:48

All I've managed to work out so far is that they are definitely still there and not due back till tomorrow. DN did not know the name of the hotel either. My mum hasn't got back to me yet.

Worriedformyfriend Sun 22-Sep-13 19:40:01

duchesse, i hope your family turn up really quickly. Would they think to send an email, do you know who they booked their holiday with? Any clues on FB or the like? Or if you found a hotel they stayed at, someone there might know their travel plans.

Que, thanks for the insult. Frankly don't care about your massive assumption.

expatinscotland Sun 22-Sep-13 19:43:55

There are reports of explosions in the mall now.

meditrina Sun 22-Sep-13 19:50:03

Well, reading between the lines of news reports toady, there are various international special forces ready to go. I suspect this may not end well, unfortunately. I hope at as many of the civilians as at all possibke, whether hostages or just hiding, make it out alive.

Worriedformyfriend Sun 22-Sep-13 19:53:30

Waiting for the dust to clear. Please let there be more people found safe.

duchesse Sun 22-Sep-13 20:28:08

We think they are OK. My mother sent me a text saying they are flying back this evening but tbh I won't believe it until I see a communication from my sister herself.

duchesse, how incredibly scary for you - I do hope you'll see them safe and sound with your own eyes v soon.

The political situation there and in so many places on this planet is rather fucked-up. I still don't see how that leads to violent acts of terrorrism on people not directly involved in whatever conflict you care to mention.

funeral tents in Iraq were bombed by Sunnis yesterday, killing over 90 Shi'ites. I want to hear some condemnation about that too.
Yes, me too. And where is the reporting on that event? And I am sure many others that happen but you don't hear about - either not at all, or only if you are really listening/seeking out more buried reports.

The mother lying on the ground with her arms around her 2 kids got to me - I thought they were all dead until the little girl moved her head a bit. I cannot imagine the terror sad.

Here's hoping for a quick resolution - I don't think that an overall resolution of the many conflict in that area is at all in sight, sadly.

meditrina Sun 22-Sep-13 20:49:07

I saw an article on the Iraq bombing on the BBC website, when the death toll was approx 50. It didn't stay on their front page for long.

So many horrible events.

AnyaKnowIt Mon 23-Sep-13 09:05:37

reports of gun fire coming from the building this morning

Worriedformyfriend Mon 23-Sep-13 10:15:56

A few more hostages have been rescued. Think there are around 65 missing.

duchesse Mon 23-Sep-13 10:16:04

We know they're safe! Thank goodness. They were on the other side of Nairobi. My sister said it's far worse than is being reported but I'm not sure how it could be...

Worriedformyfriend Mon 23-Sep-13 10:17:01

Hands being cut off the dead and faces being burnt to stop identification.

magimedi Mon 23-Sep-13 10:24:07

So pleased for you, duchesse

duchesse Mon 23-Sep-13 10:25:19

Have found some articles online suggesting that one of the ring-leaders is Samantha Lewthwaite, the self styled "White Widow" of one of the 7/7 bombers. Apparently she is one of the leaders of this terror group in Somalia.

meditrina Mon 23-Sep-13 10:29:47

According to SKY, she's not a "leader" and there is no evidence (yet?) to show she is in any way associated with this attack.

There is a military operation under way, but no indication of how long it might take. Nor whether there is any prospect of negotiations to free the hostages (number still not known) or if it'll be a case of an assault in a hope some can be freed before all are executed.

AnyaKnowIt Mon 23-Sep-13 11:33:59

my god its getting worse sad

Worriedformyfriend Mon 23-Sep-13 11:49:22

The Daily Nation are doing live updates.

Xiaoxiong Mon 23-Sep-13 12:08:07

Spoke to my aunt yesterday. She was in the car 400m from the carpark on her way into the mall when another friend called who was just in the carpark saying explosions had happened, they both turned around and escaped. A third friend was inside already, hid all night and was thankfully rescued in the early hours by the head of UN Security who went in alone(!!!) and extracted her and a number of other people who were hiding with her. Apparently she was terrified her mobile would go off as she was hiding inside a cardboard box. She had left her two kids at home that day and said thinking about them got her through.

Anyway they still have another friend who is missing who is 9 months pregnant sad They are all frantic.

And luckily my aunt had just done a shop as everything is closed now, no milk or bread but she has a lot of pasta(!) She has shared what she bought with neighbours who didn't manage to get fresh food before they were put on lockdown.

measuringcup Mon 23-Sep-13 12:09:36

They have said that they will kill hostages in their if military go in, surely they will kill them anyway sad

AboutTimeForAChange Mon 23-Sep-13 12:16:12

I am beyond shocked that they think the Widow of the 77 bomber a lone Mother of four children has been organising, funding and training this group.

meditrina Mon 23-Sep-13 12:16:22

There's a huge plume of smoke rising from the building now.

It's a nightmare situation, and if there is a fire taking hold then speed must surely be vital now.

twistyfeet Mon 23-Sep-13 12:20:16

watching the Beeb now sad

Yes if the place is on fire I suspect they'll go for it quickly to make the place safe for those hiding to escape. Very sadly I think any hostages they have will lose their lives.
Whichever way it goes I don't think it's going to be a good ending.

AboutTimeForAChange Mon 23-Sep-13 12:28:29

Cameron, is leaving the Queen in Scotland, to chair a COBRA meeting now apparently.

measuringcup Mon 23-Sep-13 12:29:37

I'm impressed with Kenyan red cross, they were pulling people out unarmed and there in minutes!

Bloody brave

measuringcup Mon 23-Sep-13 12:31:18

This doesn't make me scared, doesn't make me sympathise with them, just makes me angry tbh, nothing more.

Worriedformyfriend Mon 23-Sep-13 13:49:57

Yy about the Kenyan red cross, they have been impressive.

The news looks horrific sad.

This is quite an interesting summary of what's going on in Africa and beyond wrt what makes extremist groups attractive to some.

I hope Kenya will continue to pull together as a country.

measuringcup Mon 23-Sep-13 15:06:28

Duchesse I've read some awful articles which makes things much much worse than reported but some of it is written like a story and I hope to god its not true.

marcopront Mon 23-Sep-13 19:10:59

Unless you are there at Westgate, how can you know how bad it is, and if the reporting is accurate.
During the post election violence in Kenya, many people said it was not as bad as the media portrayed. A friend in the KDF said it was much worse. He was at Westgate on Saturday and I am sure is there again, I will be interested to hear his opinion on the media coverage.

marcopront Mon 23-Sep-13 19:13:28

I'm sorry Duchesse, I have just reread your post, I thought you said your sister had said it was not as bad. I have now realised you said it was worse.

marcopront Mon 23-Sep-13 19:17:50

I am finding two facebook groups quite informative.
Westgate Attacks and Moll News.
I used to teach the people behind Moll News, so am biased about them.

MmeLindor Mon 23-Sep-13 20:16:32

It is horrific. I have been following on Twitter, where there is a lot of disinformation and panic but also some truth - you have to search a bit when info is posted to see if it is being confirmed elsewhere.

It doesn't bear thinking about, what these poor people have gone through, and are still going through.

It was such a soft target - we were in a mall like this one in summer in Nairobi, and there were guards on the doors, but they would have been helpless against this kind of attack.

There are ?armed guards in uniform in some American shopping malls, but like you say, I am not sure they would be much good against an organised and determined, well armed attack - I suspect anybody who looks like they might have a gun would be the first targets.

I am getting to the point where I now want to stop reading/hearing about it <coward> sad. I don't like it when my usual ability to live in blissful denial about what goes on in the world gets abruptly torn away... Humans have the capacity to be beasts. Or saints. But the beasts have more fire power usually.

expatinscotland Mon 23-Sep-13 20:55:59

I can't watch that anymore.

nowwhat Mon 23-Sep-13 20:57:06

Im assuming its similar in Kenya but most shops and especially banks in Uganda have a guard with an AK47 outside, they are often poorly trained and would be sitting ducks against the likes of these people. My partner has armed guards at night at his home and I wouldn't put money on them being much use with the guns if it came to it. These terrorists know this and what is terrifying is that it could have happened anywhere, we're going back in 3 weeks and this mall is identical to the one we go to for our food shopping in Kampala, owned by the same people, it brings it home to me how normal a day it was. I have lots of friends in Nairobi and still waiting to hear from them all.

The love that is being shown for Kenya at the moment is wonderful, it's a pity it takes events like these to remind us all that we're all one huge family.

I can't watch anymore either sad
I just want to know when it's over
Those poor innocent people

MmeLindor Mon 23-Sep-13 21:21:31

Yes, Nowwhat - the hotel was the same. One guy who sat around the entrance. tbh, it made me more nervous than anything else, because it was quite obvious that he would be able to do much if the hotel was attacked.

I hope your friends get in touch soon.

nowwhat Mon 23-Sep-13 21:47:13

Just realised the lady who was 8 and a half months pregnant killed along with her husband is a friend of a friend, I didn't recognise her until I saw the photo of her with Bill Clinton on Sky News. Didn't know her personally but feel desperately sad for her friends and family.

The whole situation is heartbreaking but murdering a pregnant woman, I don't have words for that.

And the children...
No words.

There is just no possible justification for acts like this.

expatinscotland Mon 23-Sep-13 21:56:58

The bastards also murdered another woman who was 6 months pregnant with her first child in the carpark.


MmeLindor Mon 23-Sep-13 21:59:55

I read a heartbreaking blog post about that couple. Will see if I can find it

MmeLindor Mon 23-Sep-13 22:01:34

here - someone linked to it on Twitter earlier today.

difficultpickle Mon 23-Sep-13 22:11:20

I can't believe it is still going on. I wonder whether the Kenyan government will ask for outside assistance - SAS, Mossad etc?

The writer of that blog is so right (not that I knew them or even off them until they became victims of this crime): the loss of involved people like they seem to have been goes way beyond the tragically sad personal gap their deaths must leave with those who love them.
RIP both of them. And their child sad.

expatinscotland Mon 23-Sep-13 22:37:20

'the loss of involved people like they seem to have been goes way beyond the tragically sad personal gap their deaths must leave with those who love them.
RIP both of them. And their child '

That is true of everyone. sad Those parents will grieve until they die. They have been handed a life sentence and their children a death sentence. For no crime.

meditrina Mon 23-Sep-13 22:58:17

"I can't believe it is still going on. I wonder whether the Kenyan government will ask for outside assistance - SAS, Mossad etc?"

It's been quite widely reported today that UK, US and Israeli special forces are already assisting.

difficultpickle Mon 23-Sep-13 23:07:17

That's interesting. I heard on Saturday that Israeli special forces were advising because the shopping centre is part-Israeli owned. I wasn't aware they had troops on the ground though and haven't heard any reports about UK and US special forces being there too. I'm really surprised that it is still going on if that is the case.

meditrina Mon 23-Sep-13 23:13:06

There isn't (and won't be) much said. The existence of long-standing co-operation and joint training is however known. It doesn't take long to fly in.

difficultpickle Mon 23-Sep-13 23:33:08

Who with? Do you mean UK or Israel?

edam Mon 23-Sep-13 23:36:05

I think it was the same bunch of saddo terrorists, al-Shabab who were behind an appalling massacre at a school not long ago. There was a thread about it a few months ago - apparently they disapprove of education. Despicable gutless bastards.

Worriedformyfriend Tue 24-Sep-13 07:09:11

American, israeli and British special forces have all been with the kenyans, they all have very close links with the country.

farawaytreee Tue 24-Sep-13 09:20:55

I just can't get my head around the type of people who gun down children and pregnant women. To be eaten up by so much hatred and spurred by so much self entitlement. How has our evolution created such monsters.

topicofaffairs Tue 24-Sep-13 09:24:06

Some of the stories coming through about the bravery of children standing up to these bastards is inspiring, I hope when the dust settles it will be these children and the good people did donating blood, helping people escape etc which is remembered in Kenya not these gutless bastards.

TheArticFunky Tue 24-Sep-13 10:19:07

I find it alarming that Samantha Lewthwaite is thought to be behind this. She has been on the wanted list for years and yet somehow managed to give birth at Stoke Mandeville in 2009. How can British citizens disappear to run terrorist training camps and then return to Buckinghamshire and give birth? How has she escaped capture for so long?

MmeLindor Tue 24-Sep-13 11:01:47

There seems to be a lot of misinformation going around about this woman - first it is said that she is involved, then denied.

And fighting has been going on long past the time when Kenyan authorities said the siege was ended.

Apparently the authorities are well aware of Samantha Lewthwaite's links to Somalia and terrorist organisations, however there is no solid evidence she has committed a crime. It is absolutely astonishing how she can come and go as she pleases.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 24-Sep-13 12:55:39

All those calling for condemnation from Muslims,

You do realise that:

1)There are 1 billion Muslims worldwide, so why should someone living in Indonesia feel the need to be in any way implicated or involved in the horrific events in Kenya? Do you not understand that Islam is not a centralised religion, so some Muslim saying something in <insert country here> would have absolutely nil impact on someone in Somalia?

2)Muslims, like most human beings do not support terrorism. The idea that they need to come out and make special condemnations every time someone who happens to be Muslim does something terrible is extremely dubious. Do you honestly think we all sit in our houses being secretly pleased at such atrocities?

Do you ask all men to condemn any bad act a man does? Do prominent people of a certain race have to condemn something when someone of a similar race does something abhorrent?

3)Religion is generally window dressing for these conflicts, which usually have roots in long-term societal instability and violence, socio-economic poverty and inequality.

4)By saying Muslims have a special duty to condemn these acts, you are implicating us as being in some way responsible. I refuse to apologise for something I did not do. What happened, in Kenya, Pakistan and Iraq is horrific, I condemn it as a human being, I feel no need to make extra condemnations, just because I happen to share a religion with the perpetrators.

However, because my google is special, I managed to find this rather comprehensive list of official Muslim condemnations of terrorism: www.muhajabah.com/otherscondemn.php

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 24-Sep-13 13:00:11

I also managed to find this from the UK's largest Muslim organisation, the Muslim Council of Britain:


SilverApples Tue 24-Sep-13 13:21:50

I wasn't asking or expecting condemnations from Muslims, as you say, it's a widespread faith and Muslims have been killing Muslims for generations.without much notice being taken of the conflicts. Likewise in Asia and Africa, with the various Christian and Muslim conflicts.
It's one of the possible reasons why there has been little progress made in Syria over the last few years, it's not seen as something that needs to involve the West. Someone Else's Problem.
But as long as Islam and indiscriminate terrorism continue to be linked in the minds of many in Europe and elsewhere, there will be a climate of mistrust, hostility and suspicion which does no good for anyone.
Like in England in the 70s where being Southern Irish and in possession of an accent made you automatically suspect as a member or supporter of the IRA.

SilverApples Tue 24-Sep-13 13:24:33

' Do you honestly think we all sit in our houses being secretly pleased at such atrocities? '

However erroneous, I think a large number of ordinary people do. That's the point of terrorism, to breed terror.
Did you see this article?

SilverApples Tue 24-Sep-13 13:33:34

Apologies, that online article is a different one to the one I was looking for.
Rosie Kinchen wrote an article for the ST news review about the responses of the public when she wore a niqab in London, and again when she visited a village in Sussex.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 24-Sep-13 14:04:05

Silver Apples -Isn't then the problem with the minds making the erroneous linking and a media which feeds those erroneous links? Wouldn't you think that European minds should be a bit more cautious about erroneous ideas about religious minorities fueled by media propaganda?

SilverApples Tue 24-Sep-13 14:27:02

I agree that it would be an excellent way forwards, but there is no historical evidence that this is the case, or will be in the future.
When people are frightened, the instinct always seems to be to huddle with like types, and to alienate and blame 'the other' The more alien an individual seems, the less likely to be accepted as safe.
My grandmother, born 1904 was a woman with strong racist opinions. Except for her lovely doctor, and her neighbour across the way who was so nice, and the binman.. and...people she saw as part of her life and whom she liked.
If Muslims within a Western community are perceived to be a threat, the consequences are always much worse for the minority. Every one home-grown terrorist is infinitely more terrifying than a hundred Muslim terrorists elsewhere.
I used to walk under a bridge to my place of work, with a huge piece of graffiti saying 'WHITES ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK'
The fact that it had been painted by a group of teenage arseholes from the Bengali community, none of whom were over 16 was irrelevant to the town, it was seen as evidence by many of the white community as proof that there were 'no-go areas' and that the area I worked in was rife with terrorists. Assaults, vandalism and riots instigated by different groups within the town were common.
So, the situation/incident/act of terrorism in Kenya will have enormous ramifications for Muslim communities in areas around the world, and staying silent on the issue will be seen as complicity by many.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 24-Sep-13 14:39:06

Silver - It would appear that prominent Muslims haven't stayed silent, see links upthead.

If Kenya does have "enormous ramifications" - by this rather passive phrasing I take it you mean hateful individuals attacking Muslims, that is absolutely not the fault of the Muslim community, but of those bigots.

To state otherwise is victim blaming.

SilverApples Tue 24-Sep-13 14:46:50

No disagreement from me about attacks by bigots being entirely their responsibility and hateful. I still have a scar from a bottle that was thrown at my class when we were heading up to the library. What provocation 9 year olds offered to the group that yelled racist insults at them I have no idea.

Nor am I expecting European minds to be 'a bit more cautious about erroneous ideas about religious minorities fueled by media propaganda'
I'm expecting a number of Daily Mail type knee jerk responses by frightened and aggressive non-Muslims and an increase in race hate attacks on individuals and buildings. Which we went through during the first and second Gulf wars.
Hopefully the legal response will be equal to the demand, and we can create a better society.

bemybebe Tue 24-Sep-13 15:24:24

If something is done in the name of Allah, it makes sense that those, who share the same religion make it clear that this is not part of their own belief. Being of the same race/gender, basically sharing something that is not chosen, is not the same.

I think it will help the way islam is viewed by others and that is a good thing.

Gosh, thank you for those links - I will read them in peace when DS4 is in bed a bit later.
I fully appreciate that Islam is not a centralised religion and I in no way expect that whatever somebody in world ways to have an immediate effect on, say, Somalian terrorists/extremists. I am more concerned about how islamophobia is affecting to many scared people and is turning them rather horribly racist.

I feel that the Catholic church committed a terrible sin of omission by not being more outspoken against fascism in Germany in the '30s, for instance. It may not have been able to stop the holocaust from happening, but apart from some brave individuals there was thundering silence.
Equally Jewish settlers and the army that supports them (officially and inofficially) have committed atrocities. Anybody trying to be critical of some of their acts is easily accused of antisemitism.
In the same vein I think it is fair to hope for those Muslims who are just as appalled about recent attacks (and previous ones) to speak out about them - where ever they are in the world.

For the record, I in no way believe that Europeans are any more rathional, less fanatical or prone to violence than any other peoples in the world.

SilverApples Tue 24-Sep-13 16:03:30

Be aware Pacific, most of those links are over a decade old and many no longer link to a relevant article.

SilverApples Tue 24-Sep-13 16:18:01

This interesting article was hidden in the links GAG provided.

Worriedformyfriend Tue 24-Sep-13 16:22:26

Robert Salaam is an impressive man.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 24-Sep-13 16:37:37

Pacific - those are false equivalences. The Catholic Church was an large and powerful organisation within Germany with massive influence, who could have made a direct stand.

As to your other example, you don't meant Jewish, you mean Israeli. All Jews are not Israeli. I don't assume that Jews in other countries are in any way responsible for the actions of the Israeli state.

All Muslims are not living in Pakistan, Somalia or Iraq and do not have links to that place, hence them speaking out would have nil impact except to appease bigots who think all Muslims are bad/responsible for bad things anyway.

Bemybebe - To many people their religious affliation isn't a choice, it's part of their culture and heritage, anyway you've missed my point about holding a group of people collectively responsible for the actions of a distant minority. It makes as much sense to view Muslims in Kazakhstan (to give an example) as somehow culpable and thus needing to apologise/explain, for the atrocities in Kenya as it does to blame men in Australia for the hideous rates of femicide in El Salvador.

Also, the Somali conflict goes far, far deeper then "people doing things in the name of Allah". It is a broken society and there are many factors behind this. To paint it as a situation that is "All about the Islam", is facile and pointless.

SilverApples Tue 24-Sep-13 16:45:15

You are right G, we are never going to understand the complexities of the various situations in different countries around the world where Muslims are killing indiscriminately in the name of God.
Best stay out of it, our ignorance will only cause more damage.
Concentrate on building an inclusive, rational and compassionate society in our own back yard, with human rights given legal protection.

Worriedformyfriend Tue 24-Sep-13 16:45:50

Gosh. Where do you think the money comes from for these attacks?

duchesse Tue 24-Sep-13 16:55:55

Did any of you know about Nairobi airport having burned down last month? My sister said the airport is currently operating out of tents and that security is therefore not great there... I wonder if the two incidents are related?

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 24-Sep-13 16:58:02

Silver -That is such an ignorant comment. So, so ignorant. Are you unable to read to gain a better understand behind conflicts? Or are you just being sarcastic?

Worried - Piracy is a sizeable money spinner for Al Shabab. But such attacks are not very expensive anyway. Somalia is a warzone and has been for decades, so guns and explosives are freely available.

SilverApples Tue 24-Sep-13 17:08:06

'Silver -That is such an ignorant comment. So, so ignorant. '

Worthy of The Daily Mail, The Sun, The Express, The Mirror etc and their millions of readers wasn't it?
Let alone what the tabloid equivalent in dozens of other western countries and Australia are printing. Do you see the chasm opening?

duchesse Tue 24-Sep-13 17:18:33

FGS Silver, lay off! There are millions of honest, upright, law-abiding, peace-loving, gentle Muslims going about their daily life every single day of the week eating, drinking, going to school and work, to the shops, visiting elderly parents, just like anybody else. All they want is what most people want- a peaceful life. These are a few dozen nutters who do not in any way represent their "fellow" muslims- do you feel you need to reject in the name of Christianity the atrocities committed by Christians through the ages- have you apologised for the Crusades recently?

Just because a bunch of bigoted people believes something doesn't mean it's a reasonable thing to believe. You may have the safety of numbers but you are trading in independent rational thought to gain a ready-made belief.

Worriedformyfriend Tue 24-Sep-13 17:19:55

Gosh, a very good school friend of mine, Dan Eldon, was killed in Somalia nearly 20 years ago. I was, and remain, very well versed in the area, the conflicts and the people. Piracy may be one income stream.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 24-Sep-13 17:24:23

Worried - there will be lots of income streams for all sorts of dubious reasons and purposes. But the point remains that the Kenyan attack will not have required much money at all, the main thing is manpower, which a place like Somalia has a great deal of. That is what is so disturbing.

Well, I apologise for my nomenclature not being quite clear (and yes, I am aware that the mention of the Catholic church's role in the Third Reich was at best tenous).
This is NOT a Muslim/Islam bashing thread, nor am I having a go at any other religion.

I am fully aware that none of the terror attacks, going back as far as 9/11, are simply explained. Neither by religious affiliation, nor by pure political goals. It is of course much more messy than that.
Added factors, to name but a few and in no particular order, are: tribal associations, past confrontations or perceived wrongs, financial gain, power trip, disenfranchisement, anger - oftern quite undirected, but gets expressed towards seemingly random goals.

I thought it was interesting that the BBC link I posted earlier suggested that a significant number of the 'soldiers' in some of the militant extremeist groups where basically in it for the money/food/to have a goal in life and fought quite far away from home. Some of them were muslim but not of particularly fervent faith or actually religously extreme.

I am in no doubt that the vast majority of Muslims/Jews/Christian/Those that Worship the Golden Calf/add any religion you fancy want peace and gainful employment, health and happiness for themselves and those they love.
IMO the scrapping even on this thread is indicative of where things go wrong: too much arguing about semantics and concentrating on the minutiae of who said what and in what way, rather than focussing on the many ways in that we are all the same and really want the same things.
Them again my 4 boys can't get on, so how on earth I am expecting anything else from the rest of the world, I really don't know...

MariaLuna Tue 24-Sep-13 22:47:29

No point in bringing in history, Crusades, Third Reich and all that.

That was then, this is now.

I am always saying "What the fuck is wrong with these people?" when I see another terrorist outrage.

How can you justify murdering people, whether they are pregnant women, children, men...

What happened to someone like Samantha Wheteverhername is. She has 4 children FFS!

It is scary cos it can happen to any of us any time. But that is their goal...

in my country, if you fight for a foreign cause/army, you lose your passport

"That was then, this is now."

I just have the sneaky suspicion that humankind does not reallty move on, sadly.

MmeLindor Tue 24-Sep-13 23:06:02

Getting back to the topic at hand - I read today that this terror group is involved in ivory trafficking, especially in Kenya. For all the abhor the Kenyans 'attacking' their country, they conveniently forget that they have been bombing and attacking the Kenyans over the Somalia border.

We were sitting on the shores of Lake Victoria last year, when a sailboat glided past. Amid the oooh, and aaaahs, and isn't it pretty, one of our group asked the guide about the boat, and he said it would be smugglers going to Uganda. Not quite so scenic and pretty then.

The borders are impossible to control.

yes, I heard that the airport burnt down - or at least that there had been a fire there.

MangoTiramisu Wed 25-Sep-13 00:30:35

Quite frankly I think that we, or more precisely, our government should be very embarrassed if Samantha Lewthwaite or any other British national was heading up or involved in this massacre. Also if this is the case I think the Kenyan government should be putting a lot of pressure on our government and shaming them into getting off their arse and ridding the UK of homegrown terrorists.

We condone Syria for using chemical on it's people, then remain silent when our own citizens go abroad and kill innocent people. I am willing to bet that if and when it comes out that it was Sam L involved, there will be no apology from our Government when they are guilty of letting these terrorist cells breed here.

MangoTiramisu Wed 25-Sep-13 00:54:44

Sorry, condemn Syria ..certainly not condone shock

AdventureTed Wed 25-Sep-13 11:46:52

Mango - terrorists and hate preachers are ruining our international reputation. In the past we were seen as simply being too soft on terrorists, but soon each and every one of us will be seen as potential terrorists abroad if our government don't start getting tough.

MangoTiramisu Wed 25-Sep-13 12:19:12

I totally agree with you AdventureTed. No one else would and does put up with this shit, believe me.

SilverApples Wed 25-Sep-13 13:08:45

'Silver Apples -Isn't then the problem with the minds making the erroneous linking and a media which feeds those erroneous links? Wouldn't you think that European minds should be a bit more cautious about erroneous ideas about religious minorities fueled by media propaganda?'

Let's hope that the 75% influence the 25% positively and actively, rather than the other way around.

GoshAnneGorilla Wed 25-Sep-13 13:21:02

Adventure and Mango - what are you actually on about? Are you seriously saying the UK has massively more lax laws then every country on earth?

Do you honestly think our reputation is worse then when we did have a decades long terrorist conflict taking place on our soil?

What has happened in Kenya is an overspill from decades of conflict in Somalia.

AdventureTed Wed 25-Sep-13 13:30:30

Gosh - so it has nothing to do with trying to establish a worldwide islamic caliphate?

MmeLindor Wed 25-Sep-13 17:30:06

Why do these threads get diverted by those with an agenda?

I found it interesting to chat about what happened in Nairobi, and to find out more about the group responsible, but this is just silly now.

SilverApples Wed 25-Sep-13 17:37:37

Well, the latest seems to be that there are 5 dead terrorists, 10 in custody and an unknown number of bodies yet to be retrieved from the building and the rubble.
The authorities are trying to work out the identities and origins of all the attackers, and whether they were all male or if the 'White Widow' was part of the attack as some claim.
So it is going to be a while before further facts are established as true, and if the terrorists were all Somalians, or whether they had direct support from terrorists from other countries that have a similar agenda.
Let's hope they succeed in keeping the peace.

GoshAnneGorilla Wed 25-Sep-13 17:40:30

Adventure - back in the 60's-80's many nationalist terrorist groups were very fond of trumpeting various Marxist rhetoric and talking about creating a workers state and inter atonal solidarity. It was all window dressing for the main aim, which is power and money.

Al Shabab is much the same, only they coat their intentions in religious language. So they want to elimante any threats to their domination. Kenya have intervened in Somalia, this attack is a way of warning Kenya to stay out.

So, the mall attack has far more to do with national power struggles then worldwide religious rule.

However, such actions require lots and lots of expendable manpower, so they have no qualms about appealing to gullible foreigners to do their donkey work, but all the Al Shabab big cheeses are and will always be Somali.

AdventureTed Wed 25-Sep-13 17:57:14

Gosh - So the "gullible foreigners" are doing it thinking they are helping to establish a worldwide islamic caliphate?

GoshAnneGorilla Wed 25-Sep-13 18:27:33

Possibly, or because they think it's some great adventure, feel they don't have any opportunities in their own country, some will be from other conflict zones.

However, the fact remains that that they are mere cogs, with little to no influence on what actions Al Shabab chooses to do. The attack will be seen as a suicide mission, so if thOse on it will be people viewed as expendable.

LoveSewingBee Wed 25-Sep-13 20:50:14

Those youths may have been under the influence of fanatic Islamic preachers in the UK. They wouldn't have been the first or the last for that matter.

crescentmoon Wed 25-Sep-13 20:54:29

i am as perplexed as to Anjem Choudhary's freedom to radicalise as any right thinking Daily Mail reader.

GoshAnneGorilla Wed 25-Sep-13 21:10:50

Yep. Just to be clear, I think religious leaders should face the same scrutiny and hate speech legislation as anyone else.

Although I think the amount of attention Anjem Choudary gets goes not help. He is one oxygen thief who should be denied publicity.

Here is another religious leader speaking out publicly against the attack.

"In Kaduna, northern Nigeria, one 32-year-old who did not want to be named, suggested that the lure of financial rewards rather than political ideology make it tempting to join Boko Haram." (from BBC - I linked to this upthread)

Personally, I think power and money and having a goal in life are very imortant things that attract disenfranchised, often young people to join extremist groups.
I agree, incendary speech should not be allowed to have a platform - I don't even see how that interferes with Freedom of Speech: you can say what you want in private, but not on a public stage.

I am confused as to the number of victims or bodies still missing: has everybody now been accounted for or not? Where do the 50 bodies presumed under the rubble of the mall fit in??

boschy Wed 25-Sep-13 22:00:23

re Samantha Lewthwaite. Sky News had an interview today with a woman, wearing a headscarf, who was apparently wrongly identified as SL because she had a slightly similar appearance. This from a photo of her helping a woman covered in blood...

MmeLindor Wed 25-Sep-13 22:15:43

Is that the woman who was all over Twitter? I saw that, and thought that the woman was clearly not Caucasian.

It is very confusing. I though that there were thought to be more people trapped or held as hostages.

boschy Wed 25-Sep-13 22:19:22

yes mme same woman, but a slight similarity I thought.

MmeLindor Wed 25-Sep-13 22:26:53

I found the pic

Here is a pic With Samantha superimposed on it.

I don't think they look alike. Other than they are both wearing a veil.

Those 2 are not the same woman! No way.

MmeLindor Wed 25-Sep-13 22:59:18

I was saying that as soon as it appeared on Twitter.

She looks like she has Indian or Pakistani heritage to me, certainly not white British/Irish.

boschy Wed 25-Sep-13 23:06:05

must admit I only caught a quick glimpse as was doing other stuff; I thought they both had quite strong features. Henna is the lady's name, she was educated in UK; dont know if someone heard her speaking english, noticed a relatively pale complexion, put 2 and 2 together and made 5?

MmeLindor Wed 25-Sep-13 23:14:51

It actually made me wonder if Kenyans (or Africans in general) are as hopeless at placing white/pale skinned people, as many westerners are at working out whether a person is eg from Korea or Japan.

Completely OT but this is really interesting.

GoshAnneGorilla Wed 25-Sep-13 23:51:18

I think it's more about the media finding the "White widow" story juicier then people being killed. Particularly as they then get to print attractive photos of the aforementioned women. Grim.

boschy Thu 26-Sep-13 08:50:03

fair point gosh; but they have also covered the atrocity pretty widely.

MmeLindor Thu 26-Sep-13 09:21:24

Anyone else find it a bit disturbing that they publish the most glossy/seductive looking pics of the 'White Widow'?

Yes, v creepy.

I suppose The Meedja by their very nature do aim to Inform the General Public, but really remain Whores to Sales grin.
The creepy thing is that clearly the frisson people are feeling wrt a British shock white shock woman shock being even linked to this attach, IS in fact selling papers/making people click on websites etc.

Nought as weird as folk... hmm

MmeLindor Thu 26-Sep-13 10:26:46

Just seen on Twitter than the DM is reporting on the colourful underwear found at the house of the 'White Widow'

Yes, cause that is important news to report.

GoshAnneGorilla Thu 26-Sep-13 12:32:32

Mme Lindor - disturbing, but not even slightly surprising. Apparently the male gaze is like that plant in Little Shop of Horrors, it must be fed constantly.

Oh feck, now Newsnight is talking about SL too!
It is just so difficult for me to follow what possesses people who follow a militant path, but I appreciate that that is at least partially due to the wonderful life I have lead and lead [confuse]hmmsad

duchesse Thu 26-Sep-13 23:01:39

What I find remarkable if she really is involved is that she has apparently found it so easy to disappear from the radar. I wonder if the fact that she doesn't really fit the stereotypical profile of the Islamic militant that they didn't take her seriously enough to really focus on finding her? I mean she's been missing since 2005! They managed to find Osama Bin Laden in that time- imagine the security surrounding him! Although I imagine that Bin Laden had probably become an embarrassment and burden for the organisation and they shopped his whereabouts to the US security forces...

MariaLuna Thu 26-Sep-13 23:38:30

It actually made me wonder if Kenyans (or Africans in general) are as hopeless at placing white/pale skinned people, as many westerners are at working out whether a person is eg from Korea or Japan.

Oh, purlease.... talk for yourself.

You are insulting people all over the world. As well as being racist ("they can't tell the difference")

You should spend some time in Kenya..you'll soon know who comes from where. They know immediately where you are from anyway. Kenya has black, white, indian, mixed etc.
Whether you are in the country and are Sudanese, West or South African, African American, white or south American, they know...

Same in Asia. It's a continent.

And Europeans know too. I'm sure you can tell the difference between a Swede and a Greek?! ;-)
Hey! you have dark-haired Swedes and Blonde Turkish. (met both). And lots of mixed I'm sure.

I find your statement offensive and bigoted, sorry.

You should know better living in the country you do with 4 different languages anyway.

giveitago Fri 27-Sep-13 13:16:59

"It actually made me wonder if Kenyans (or Africans in general) are as hopeless at placing white/pale skinned people, as many westerners are at working out whether a person is eg from Korea or Japan.

Completely OT but this is really interesting."

Kenya, has been v. multicultural for many decades.

Well, I am rubbish in recognising people's ethnicity, that does not make me bigotted. Just crap at facial recognition.
Nor is MmeLindor wondering about whether that might be the case for Kenyans/Africans wrt of other peoples.

MangoTiramisu Sat 28-Sep-13 08:28:41

According to most Chinese people, we caucasians all look the same. I haven't a clue how this works because I think we all look very different. I have lived in Asia for 15 years and I still cannot place a few nationalities. I would probably correctly place most Japanese, Korean, Cantonese, mainland Chinese, Malaysian, Philippino and Indonesian but this would be assisted by their clothes and actions, just like I can tell where most western expats I see are from based on their clothes and mannerisms. I still can't place someone Cambodian or Vietnamese though and have a hard time between some Korean and Japanese. I have lived in Singapore for 10 years and I still cannot tell the difference between a Singaporean and a Malaysian who is of Chinese ethnicity. I don't think that is racist. I really do think some of them look very similar.

As for us, I've had loads of HK'ers and Singaporeans tell me that we all look alike. Personally I can't comprehend why I, a small dark haired person look like a 5ft 10 blond swede, but apparently we all have round eyes and look the same.

So calling MdmeLindor a racist is a bit uncalled for TBH.

omuwalamulungi Sun 29-Sep-13 00:30:31

Lots of my East African friends say that we (white people) all look the same.

I have a friend who is 5'10, dark hair, brown eyes, I'm 5ft, blonde hair, blue eyes and we are always asked if we are sisters. We always reply yeah, twins.

I've also been asked more than once if I am Japanese.

Not to be flippant, but that's absolutely true.

MasterOfTheYoniverse Mon 30-Sep-13 11:05:13

and what the f*** just happened in Nigeria and what's been going on for some time now. EVERYWHERE.

I, Arab, Muslim, naturalised british urge everyone to accept that we are in this day and age fighting a war against FASCISTS just as you Europeans did in 1939.
I, as an arab/asian, muslim born , "westernized" have no identity because I'm robbed of it by fascists who take over all our indigenous countries from the straights of Gibraltar all the way to Indonesia.
Not to mention all of us in the diaspora that live in Australia, the far east or America, etc…
So yes, for most its an imported problem… but so was nazism.

caramelwaffle Mon 30-Sep-13 11:39:36

"Boko Haram regards schools as a symbol of Western culture. The group's name translates as "Western education is forbidden"."

I abhor what is, and has been happening in Nigeria;
in this instance they have targeted agricultural students: they are wiping out a generation of young people who can bring growth and internal prosperity to the country.

They want a ruling religious elite and an uneducated slave class in the country.

Master, what a heartfelt post - thank you.
I trust that the overwhelming number of people of all faiths, colours and nationalities feel like you do and that those extreme minorities don't win just because they resort to violence.
Yes, Nazism may have been an import, but sadly a lot of people joined or supported it by omission of action against it...

There are so many deeply troubling things going on in various African states, but also in Asia and China sad.

katieperez Tue 01-Oct-13 12:24:28

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