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Royal wedding


So Wills and Kate are getting hitched next April at Westminster Abbey, where Princess Diana’s funeral was held and where a number of royal weddings have taken place in recent years:

Several members of his family have wed there, including the Queen’s sister. Princess Margaret in 1960, William’s aunt Princess Anne in 1973 and his uncle Prince Andrew in 1986. All three marriages ended in divorce.

Hmmm. I wonder if the happy couple believes in omens.


Islamist group Islam4UK, expressing outrage over their recent ban by the British government:

Bakri said that the ban was ”the gravest mistake,” describing his group was peaceful think-tank whose younger members would be pushed toward violence if it were driven underground.

[ . . . ]

”We (were) never involved with any violence, yet,” he said.

Yet, eh? Sounds awfully close to a threat, there.

Now, normally I would be inclined to agree that banning any group for holding views, however offensive or despicable, is a violation of freedom of speech as long as no other laws are being transgressed. But in this case, we’re not just talking about pissing people off by marching:

Bakri’s group argues that, as Muslims, they’re not bound by British law and has expressed support for bin Laden and al-Qaida. In its previous incarnation as al-Muhajiroun, the group was linked to several terror suspects and was accused of recruiting British Muslims to fight in Afghanistan and Chechnya. Bakri has acknowledged that some of al-Muhajiroun members have engaged in militant attacks but says the group can’t be held responsible for their actions.

Bakri, who was deported from Britain in 2005, added that, whatever happened, his followers could regroup under a different name.

”Tomorrow we can call ourselves whatever we think is suitable for us,” he said.

He’s right, of course. Banning the groups won’t erase the sentiment. But allowing them to openly collect funds and organise isn’t the answer either. The British government might have reacted to the wrong thing – moral outrage at the group’s planned (and cancelled) protest march through Wootton Bassett – when they implemented the ban. But it’s clear that we’re not just talking about distasteful speech here, but illegal actions. And that’s where the line gets drawn.

And they can always ban whatever the group decides to call itself tomorrow, too.


UK to eliminate cheques


Cheque’s in the mail? Not after 2018 in the UK, it seems: Cheques will disappear within eight years after the Payments Council decided today to abolish the 350-year-old payment method by October 2018. [. . . ] The decision will save banks hundreds of millions of pounds a year, as each cheque costs banks about [...]

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Flying with British Airways for the holidays?


Maybe not. If you’ve got an airline ticket with British Airways this Christmas season, you may be SOL, as BA employees are threatening to strike: “We are absolutely determined to do whatever we can to protect our customers from this appalling, unjustified decision from Unite,” BA Chief Executive Willie Walsh said in a statement. “We do not [...]

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London in the snow


This is what happens when it snows in England.

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Hockey in London?


With soccer on the rise in North America, I guess the NHL feels that it may be time for another sporting cultural exchange attempt with Europe, and has announced that the Ducks and Kings will open next season with two games in London. That’s London England, not London Ontario. (I had to read it twice, [...]

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British claim to have foiled bomb plot


British authorities claim that they have foiled a terrorist plot to blow up major transatlantic airlines: The threat level to the UK has been raised by MI5 to critical after the arrests in London, High Wycombe and Birmingham. Critical threat level – the highest – means “an attack is expected imminently and indicates an extremely [...]

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Leadership battle in Britain


Pieter at Peaktalk links to the latest news from the UK, where Tony Blair is fending off the leadership challenge from Gordon Brown as long as he can manage it. Pieter’s not impressed and, as he rightly points out, the situation mirrors that of the Canadian Liberals a little too closely: Many have pointed to [...]

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July 7, 2005, this was the scene in London. Less than 24 hours after the city jubilantly celebrated being awarded the 2012 Olympics, terror struck on the London public transport network, claiming 57 lives and shaking the city, country and world to the core. There was little evidence of the scene a year ago as [...]

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Galloway’s idea of a “good cause”


British MP and general wackjob George Galloway has come under fire from Israel for promising to donate any money he wins from his participation on the reality show “Big Brother” to a terrorist front organization: The Israeli embassy last night became the latest critic of George Galloway after it denounced him for choosing Interpal as [...]

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