turkish-assassin-berlin-attack
Meditation and Reflection

You will hear of wars, assassinations and terrorist atrocities… Joy to the world

Christmas carnage in Berlin as Islamic State manage to get someone to plough a 27-ton HGV into a market, killing 12 and injuring 50. Weeping and wailing; mulled wine all over the floor.

Joy to the world.

Russian ambassador to Turkey Andrei Karlov has been shot dead in Ankara, as the Turkish-policeman assassin shouts ‘Allahu Akbar’. Presidents Erdoğan and Putin agreed it was an act of “provocation”.

Joy to the world.

The war for Aleppo between Assad/Russia and sundry ‘rebels’ continues apace as civilians are summarily slaughtered, and evacuation buses packed with sick and injured are bombed and burned. The children have stopped crying, and tourists find time to pose for selfies.

Joy to the world.

Our allies and friends in Saudi Arabia have been dropping cluster bombs on the starving and suffering people of Yemen. The Saudis have promised not to do it again.

Joy to the world.

The abortion rate in England and Wales has hit a five-year high. That’s 185,824 babies terminated in the womb, never given a chance to breathe. But the Royal College of Midwives say it’s good that women have the choice.

Joy to the world.

God is in the wastelands of the world: He wasn’t manufactured in America. Outside in and upside down, He became a baby and was born in Bethlehem. All the holiness of infinite space crammed into a perfect baby boy: the promise of ages; a prophecy fulfilled. Awesome. An awesomeness buried beneath the church’s preference for all that is comfortable and consumable. The One who is yet to come has already come. As sure as God is in Gloucestershire, He is in Berlin, Ankara, Aleppo, Yemen, and the womb.

We hear of wars and rumours of wars, assassinations and terrorist atrocities, for these things must be. But the end is not yet: the day of His coming will be a day like no other. It will be the last day. No more night, no more suffering, no more tears, no more pain. Just wonder, love, and dews of peace. Awesome. Like a baby. Joy to the world.

  • The Explorer

    “as the Turkish-policeman assassin shouts ‘Allahu Akbar’.”

    I wonder what his motive can have been? Of one thing we can be sure: it had nothing to do with Islam.

    • Ivan M

      I distinctly heard: ‘All to the snack bar at Aleppo’. As you say nothing to do Islam. As we all know its just a bunch of Jeffersonian Democrats and future Nobelists that the Russians have holed up Aleppo. Anything else is just RT propaganda according to a know all.

      • Dominic Stockford

        I expect he was a bit disappointed that his favourite caff in Aleppo had closed…

      • Anton

        RT? The Radio Times?

        • CliveM

          On the off chance you really don’t know Russia Today. I suspect you do however!

          • Anton

            Truth be told, Clive, I had often idly wondered and didn’t know until I saw the above use of the acronym and finally googled it. Couldn’t resist a bit of fun at the BBC’s expense. (That’s short for Better Be Careful.)

        • Ivan M

          Russia Today as CliveM wrote below. It’s odd for the US Democrats to be up in arms about Russian propaganda emanating from RT since their coverage of US affairs has a left wing slant. On BLM, GM foods or the South Dakota Pipeline they hew to the Left.

          • Anton

            It’s amusing that more Democrats in the US Electoral College refused to vote for Hillary than Republicans refused to vote for Trump.

            I’ve also heard it said that the Democrats abandoned their calls for recounts after the scale of their own frauds began to become clear to them…

          • Ivan M

            Frankly if I were Putin, I’d prefer Mr Sanders to Trump. Sanders has a soft touch. Trump is a hard man to cross

    • Coniston

      Of course not. Didn’t Cameron assure us many times that ‘Islam is a religion of peace’?

      • Bernard from Bucks

        And he assured us that we were better off in the EU.
        And look where that got him.

    • len

      ‘Mental health issues’ is the usual report given out.

  • Anton

    Yet with the woes of sin and strife
    The world has suffered long;
    Beneath the angel-strain have rolled
    Two thousand years of wrong;
    And man, at war with man, hears not
    The love-song which they bring;
    O hush the noise, ye men of strife,
    And hear the angels sing.

    • chefofsinners

      The very words I chose to finish our church’s carol service on Sunday.

  • Royinsouthwest

    Just a month ago Merkel and Obama agreed that it was very important to stop the spread of “fake news.”

    Obama, With Angela Merkel in Berlin, Assails Spread of Fake News
    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/18/world/europe/obama-angela-merkel-donald-trump.html?_r=0

    Donald Trump, although he is not yet the US president, has reacted to the events in Berlin

    Trump blames ‘Islamist terrorists’ for Berlin attack
    http://nypost.com/2016/12/19/trump-blames-islamist-terrorists-for-berlin-attack/

    President Obama has also been busy.

    Obama Hits The Golf Course After Learning About Turkey, Berlin Attacks
    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-12-19/obama-hits-golf-course-after-learning-about-turkey-berlin-attacks

    • Ivan M

      For a right-on Black Power guy, Obama loves the patrician game, It figures, socialism for thee but not for me. He and Michelle are desperately seeking out holiday destinations before the clock runs out.

      • Merchantman

        As so called Leader of the Free World I wonder how history will view Obama?

    • Anton

      Best place for Obama. He can’t do much damage there.

  • len

    It seems incongruous, hideous even, in this time of almost universal conflict for people to be wishing ‘peace and goodwill’ to each other?.It seems that there are almost parallel realities existing alongside each other.?
    Of course the Christmas message of ‘peace and goodwil’l has been misinterpreted( like so may other religious matters) the’ peace and goodwill’ was from God towards humanity that the angels sang about.This was looked forward into time, post the crucifixion of Christ when all judgement fell on the shoulders of Christ and made way the possibility of the salvation of humanity
    But there will be no peace between man until the Prince of Peace rules and reigns in the hearts and minds of men.
    Until then the violence ,the brutality of mankind will run riot.

    • Ivan M

      That’s easy for you to say since you are still alive. Fortunately of course,

      • Dominic Stockford

        Len will always be alive – and most of it in a far better place than this world – which is, I think, what ABC is trying to point out. We are transformed by Christ in us, and our future is filled with hope by our faith in Him.

  • Dominic Stockford

    Yes, ABC, yes. An unequivocally excellent post. Filled with the hope we have through Jesus Christ, and him alone.

  • bluedog

    “Far right & Islamist extremists share same hate driven psychology, intolerance towards difference & tendency to violence. We must defeat both.”

    Comment by Brendan Cox, widower of the late Jo, making a careful conflation. At least, he was careful not to say, ‘We must Unite to defeat both’.

    • Anton

      Whereas the Left loves absolutely everybody, of course. Which is why the communists have killed more than anybody else in the name of ideology since 1900.

    • It’s a failure to recognise that while politics and religion (and race, tribe, gender, taste, sport, etc etc) are catalysts and conduits for unrighteousness hate (for there is righteous hatred) they are not its source. The source, of course, is fallen human nature and in a sinful world there is no escaping this. Everything changes, everything remains the same.

      We wait for Shiloh.

  • Theresa May, lying to the nation in 2014: ‘Let the message go out that we know Islam is a religion of peace and it has nothing to do with the ideology of our enemies.’

    Douglas Murray tears ‘Imam May’ to shreds here.

    • Anton

      Where is our Geert Wilders?

    • dannybhoy

      I like this guy..
      He speaks well. This clip is well worth watching.

  • preacher

    When the Lord came it was not to a peaceful country with a benevolent religious system, a holy & good king with peace & goodwill spread throughout the land. Read it all in the scriptures !.
    The light that Jesus brought with Him & shed abroad, drew the righteous & holy to Him, the rest rejected because ” Their deeds were evil ” & they preferred the darkness of them to the light of the World. They scourged Him & killed Him on a cross. But even this did not stop Him – He rose from death to confirm His power & identity – plus His willingness to forgive & give a fresh start to those that chose to follow Him.
    So what has changed ? – Nothing ! except the perpetrators of evil now have the choice to continue in their own self destruction & prolong their misery eternally, or to repent & accept the Mercy, love & salvation provided by God. Then we will live in the World that God loves & wants.
    Until then, the spiritual warfare between light & dark will continue – as it has from the beginning.

    • Dominic Stockford

      Within weeks of His birth many (unknown numbers) children were murdered most horrifically, BECAUSE of His birth.

      • preacher

        Exactly my point Dominic, evil doesn’t change, nor those that commit it. Herod is now dead & so are those that were ” Just following orders “.
        Just as the Lord prophesied, if anything the World has got worse as technology & knowledge has increased humanity turned from God & invented more effective ways of killing & maiming than before.
        Just think of the progress that could have been achieved if the money spent on death had been used to cure & heal.
        I always remember the famous epitaph left on a tombstone.
        ” Remember me as you pass by
        as you are now, so once was I.
        As I am now, so you must be,
        so as you pass, remember me. “.
        A sobering statement, but one that if pondered on could have saved a lot of pain & heartache about the futility of it all. ” What does it profit a man to gain the world, but lose his soul ? “. Plain, simple & logically put.

  • Irene’s Daughter

    Luke 19
    41 ¶ When the city came into view, he wept over it.
    42 “If you had only recognized this day, and everything that was good for you! But now it’s too late.
    43 In the days ahead your enemies are going to bring up their heavy artillery and surround you, pressing in from every side.
    44 They’ll smash you and your babies on the pavement. Not one stone will be left intact. All this because you didn’t recognize and welcome God’s personal visit.”

    Jesus still weeps.

  • Mike Stallard

    What we need now is a Muslim of the stature of Antony Bloom or Jonathan Sacks to put the true Muslim faith out in a form which everyone can respect.
    For example, in the Koran, the Virgin Birth is quite clearly displayed and presented.
    For example, although public assassinations were later very common, during the time of the Prophet, they were not.
    For example, just killing innocent people, including Muslims, in the sure hope of jannah is not in the koran or, as far as I know, in the haddiths either.
    So where is the Muslim saying all that please?

    PS Joy to the world is a co-operative effort, surely. Not a miracle.

    • Anton

      I suggest you read the Quran a little more closely, especially suras (chapters) 8 and 9. Here are several English translations side by side:

      http://prophetofdoom.net/Qurans.Islam

      • Mike Stallard

        Yup – agreed. I am not going to wade through loads of proof texts for you.
        The main difference between Islam and Christianity is that Islam does not accept suffering. Blessings are the result of being good. Therefore Jesus could not have suffered death because, as a prophet, he was good. Mohammed escaped from Mecca when things got tough. Jesus went forward to death and torture and several show trials with violence and, worse, humiliation.
        Once in Medina, when Mohammed and his straggling Ansari were fighting for their lives and for the survival of monotheism among the Arabs, survival depended on coming to terms with desert violence.
        Which is why I am a Catholic not a Muslim.
        But, as Rabbi Jonathan Sacks insists, we are three brother religions.

        • Look what happened to Abel.

          • Mike Stallard

            Rabbi Jonathan Sacks book “Not in God’s Name” rather covers this – and very readable it is too. Super devotional stuff!

        • Dominic Stockford

          I am a Christian because the Holy Spirit did a work in my heart, transforming me, and enabling me to know and accept Jesus Christ as sole Saviour.

        • Anton

          Judaism and Christianity have 2/3 of their scriptures in common and all three accept a supreme Creator God, but if you think these are brother religions then try insisting to Jews and Muslims that Jesus of Nazareth was God incarnate – which is the core of the earliest summary creeds.

          What counts when people of irreconcilable scriptures meet is how those scriptures instruct their adherents to treat persons of other faiths.

    • Dreadnaught

      This is what Islam is about since conception. ‘Radicalisation’ is the cop out for reasons to murder. The islamic text needs no additional assistance to transmit its message of world domination.

      • Mike Stallard

        Please do remember (I am a Catholic) that Christianity and Judaism both make the same claim.

        • Anton

          Not about the identity and goodness of Jesus.

    • The Explorer

      “For example, in the Koran, the Virgin Birth is quite clearly displayed and presented.”

      Maybe. But look at what it says about the Crucifixion.

  • Dreadnaught

    There is great danger for Christians to believe that there is goodness in all religions and the humanity of their followers.
    Time for a reality check and less cheek turning.

    • The Explorer

      The belief that everybody’s basically good, just spoiled by civilisation, comes from Rousseau. Real Christianity believes in Original Sin. Atrocities are more puzzling for liberals than they are for Christians.

      • Dreadnaught

        This sounds like classic double-speak to me.

        • The Explorer

          Don’t don’t understand understand.

        • The Explorer

          Nietzsche said you should wear kid gloves when reading the New Testament to avoid contamination; although its violence and hatred made the Old Testament simply splendid. Allowing for satire, he had a point: wuss Christianity as infiltrated by liberalism has something contemptible and Uriah-Heepish about it. I would say the impulse in liberal Christianity to give parity to Islam (and everything else) owes far more to liberalism than it does to Christianity.

          • dannybhoy

            Amen!

          • David

            To that last sentence, Amen !

    • dannybhoy

      It tends to be the wishy washy liberals, Universalists and atheists who believe this, Mr Dreadders. Most Christians have a fair grasp of human nature and the evil that men do, but our Lord told us to love our enemies..
      Mind you, He also said we should be as wise as serpents and harmless as doves..

    • Perhaps. However, we can acknowledge there is good and bad in all peoples regardless of their faith. Those under the influence of evil can find justification for their actions in the sacred texts of all religions.

      • Martin

        HJ

        And Jesus said to him, Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone. (Mark 10:18 [ESV])

        Funny that, Jesus didn’t think there was good in all peoples, quite the opposite.

        • I think Jesus was quite right too.

        • (Luke 6:45)
          “The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart.

          • Martin

            HJ

            And there has only ever been one good man.

          • Only one perfectly good and sinless man.

          • Martin

            QED

          • We’re not born perfect, full of grace, unlike the Mother of God. The rest of us rely on cooperating with the grace of God and using our God given sense of right and wrong, whether we be Christian or not.

          • Martin

            HJ

            God has no mother, and Mary wasn’t born perfect, she was a sinner like all. As sinners we cannot cooperate with the grace of God, it must take us and raise us from the dead, giving us the New Birth. God doesn’t give a choice when He saves those who He has chosen to save.

  • magnolia

    The terrorist attack in Berlin is the horrific result of wrongheaded thinking.

    It is blowback from wars of aggression which made those inclined to violence more violent. It is a result of mass migration caused by those unnecessary wars,and of the refusal of those in authority to agree to some very simple truths.

    You cannot assimilate large quantities of different cultures, especially those who find the host culture degraded, disgusting and contemptible, into a host culture without trouble. You can assimilate low numbers, gradually. It is unfair to indigenous women in particular suddenly to have to accommodate habits and dress code to large amounts of people who interpret their habitual ones as akin to prostitution. (Oddly similar PC people push an increasingly immodest dress code on young girls as encourage mass influx.)

    Furthermore the genuine migrant would have preferred to stay in their own country with their own friends, relations, and known surroundings, without war, and without losing friends and relations to death, so the proud assumption that they pick up from the west that they have upgraded, and must be impressed by our magnitude probably sticks in the craw no end.

    As for the non-genuine…. .

  • IanCad

    Amidst the horror there is hope, as this beautiful OP shows.
    The four videos are a testimony to the enduring message of salvation and hope. Not to single anyone out but the Rev. Matt Woodcock gives the best reason for the season I’ve come across:
    “—because of the baby Jesus, and for me He transformed my life, and He brings me more love, and hope, and joy, and peace than you could possibly imagine.”
    God bless All.

  • chefofsinners

    When you think of Simeon holding Jesus in his arms, remember that at the same time Christ was upholding all things by His powerful word, and that ‘underneath are the everlasting arms.’ Then we will be able to face this world’s sorrows like Simeon: ‘Now let your servant depart in peace, for my eyes have seen your salvation’.

    • Dominic Stockford

      Preaching on that at our Carol service on Friday evening.

    • David

      The Song of Simeon – that wonderful passage from Luke.

  • David

    Western political leaders, manipulated by a few, deliberately cause wars.
    The same leaders, foolishly encourage mass migrations from alien cultures with values opposed to western ones, inevitably leading to tensions and violence.
    All of this reflects the pattern of human rebellion against God’s wisdom.
    But in all this human created misery, Christmas represents the one source of hope. For in Christ, born on Christmas Day, we are all offered forgiveness and salvation.
    Let us thank God for Christ and pray that more accept Him as their Saviour.

    • Anton

      Yes, let us. By definition Christmas Day is when Christ was born, although Sunday’s date is questionable, to put it charitably.

      • Dominic Stockford

        Good Friday would be a better day to rejoice in.

  • saintmark

    I don’t recall the ‘Last Day’ in the Bible described in the same terms as this article

    • Dominic Stockford

      It will be for Christians. The others will be trying to hide under stones and in caves, because they will finally, and too late, get it.

  • dannybhoy

    Great post YG.

    • Dominic Stockford

      I thought there were 191,000 abortions in 2015 – but I guess the last few days of 2016 are plenty enough for them to overtake that particular massacre.

      • dannybhoy

        I’m quotin’, not assertin;.
        Any case it’s absolutely evil.

        • Dominic Stockford

          Yes sir, indeed sir. I was merely trying to publicise my surprise at the claim (by some in the media) that this year saw a record high, which at the moment of reporting was still lower than last year. Herod had nothing on Stopes et al.

        • Merchantman

          Murder most foul.

    • DP111

      The BBC though edited the “Allahu Ackbar” bit out, as “it had nothing to with Islam” @TM..

      • dannybhoy

        Didn’t know that, I tend to other sources for more impartial news..

        • John

          Unfortunately, the BBC’s website is specifically designed to avoid exposing the Corporation to the nuisance of public accountability.

          • dannybhoy

            Do you know that’s exactly what I thought was behind it, and that’s another reason to worry about a publicly funded public service which doesn’t seem to care about the public. They have their own agenda I fear.

          • bluedog

            Without question. The BBC is a tax-payer funded political party with its own post-modern and secularist agenda. Why this truth isn’t broadly accepted is not clear to this communicant.

  • Merchantman

    Despite the mess which is almost too grievous to comprehend; Thanks your Grace for the news that we can go out in Joy and Hope because we go with Jesus.

  • The Explorer

    At the time of the London bombings, the Government hoped desperately that the perpetrators were outsiders rather than home-grown Brits.

    There appears to be uncertainty about the identity of the Berlin perpetrator. There must be a similar desperate hope in the Merkel camp that he will be an an outsider, rather than an asylum seeker allowed in as a result of Merkel’s policies.

    • DP111

      We have to wait for the security services to do their jobs. Its likely that Putin hacked into the lorry’s control and navigation system.

    • Royinsouthwest

      Many recent terrorists in western European countries have been “home grown” and the left have used that as an argument that immigration is nothing to worry about.

      • The Explorer

        I recall Government relief in July 2007 that the perpetrators of the Glasgow Airport/London nightclub (failed) attacks were external.

  • weirdvisions

    This latest nail in Merkel’s political coffin has been driven in a dozen murders deep. Yet it isn’t her fault?

    • Royinsouthwest

      The 6 o’clock news on BBC1 this evening described the terrorist act as a threat to “Merkel’s vision of a tolerant and open Germany.”

      • Inspector General

        Main, and only suspect, released. That should finish her off…

        • bluedog

          Indeed, a very good point. Politically the release of the suspect is a disaster for Merkel. There are still a few days to go before Christmas, and then there is New Years Eve to look forward to…

          One senses that an important tipping point is at hand and that European electorates will shortly move even further to the right. Certainly well to the right of the political elites, as Farage clearly understands.

          With elections in France and Germany, 2017 is shaping up as a politically explosive year.

          • Anton

            Will there even be an EU to Brexit from by the time the interval stipulated in Article 50 is up? That would be such a shame…

          • bluedog

            Hehehe!

      • Anton

        I have had enough of the BBC. I want to see leftie reporters selling the Big Issue in the streets of west London.

        • chefofsinners

          There was a long article on the BBC news channel yesterday bemoaning the new world in which everyone can choose what to believe and what to think. Bad for democracy, it is, because the Beeb don’t get to decide what news we hear any more. Apparently it’s like Putin, who keeps people so confused they don’t know what to believe. It was much better in the old days, because everyone knew what to believe: exactly what the BBC told them.

        • weirdvisions

          Or better still the streets of Ramallah. After all, isn’t it Beeboid ME reporter Jezza Bowen who thinks it is the cradle of peaceful, hug-an-Israeli civilisation?

      • chefofsinners

        I see Farage is getting a kicking from the establishment again, for saying what a lot of people are thinking. You’d think they would have learned by now.

        • bluedog

          Farage implicitly assigns collective guilt to all Muslim migrants and their sponsors, and we can’t have that, can we? Any word from Le Pen and Wilders?

      • weirdvisions

        What the leftard Beeboids consider to be “tolerant” and “open” isn’t a vision, it’s the destruction of western civilisation as we know it.

  • Inspector General

    Ask any mullah about his thoughts on the recent, and he’ll shrug his shoulders and say “it’s the will of Allah”

    That’s it. The end of this asylum debacle in sight. No doubt the Germans with their renowned efficiency will eventually repatriate every single one of them. Or at least move them out of Germany. Ooops, sorry Austria, didn’t mean to miss you out, that would be Greater Germany then. What a vote winner that would be – and remember, we have entered the era of populism. Everything is up for question now, you understand. Nothing is sacred anymore (thanks, secularists, you sort of achieved what you are about). Is populism going to have a good run for its money? You’re damn right it is! You see, it’s untried. It’s never been done before. It isn’t tainted by past involvement with nationalism or fascism or any other ism. It’s brand new!

    Now, ask any mullah what he thinks of THAT and he’ll say “that’s not what Allah wants”, and go on to spout rot about asylum seekers human rights. The chance of these ‘victims’ to live their lives in peace well away from lands that they themselves have blighted. To arrive elsewhere, and to bring their ways with them, including a good share of said blight…but that’s rights for you. A one way street, with markets alongside…

    • Merchantman

      The first thing is to permit the youthful and dangerous to be sent home. The newest suspect was deemed to be at risk if sent back whence he came. But why not? If you were caught cycling on the pavement you used to be told ‘now runalong home sonny and don’t let me catch you again’.
      Now ‘PC Plod’ doesn’t dare stop them and the blighters just mow you down.

  • Considering the man arrested yesterday has been released, you might want to edit your first paragraph.

    • bluedog

      The German police are still over-compensating for previous excesses.

      • Inspector General

        “Good luck, Herr Bluedog”

        • bluedog

          It’s confusing, Inspector. There was a time when a suspect would have been ‘shot while trying to escape custody’. But no more, it seems.

          • No concealed or open-carry in Germany, bluedog. Most of the victims were near food kiosks and all they had as weapons were paper cups of mulled wine and roasted bratwurst.

          • Inspector General

            Think Bluedog means that if this Pakistani national is as innocent as any Islamic Pakistani refugee can be, which he isn’t as it appears he is an experienced criminal, then his somewhat ’embarrassing’ detention would never have to be explained…they have ways you know. Or they did have…

          • bluedog

            Well said Inspector, you get it, to use the modern idiom. One concludes that the German police have never heard of ‘taqqiya’.

          • Inspector General

            The astonishing truth looks to be that they asked him if he did it. He said no, so off he went. One doubts you’ll be able to find the fellow again for love nor money…

          • bluedog

            If that’s the case the police are either incompetent fools or completely crippled by PC. One suspects the later.

            Indeed, one suspects that the Muslim suspect may have been released on orders to prevent an uncontrollable outbreak of anti-Muslim vigilantism. In which case an even more dangerous situation will result – the complete break-down of trust between the native German electorate and the German leadership. Has Merkel completely lost it?

          • Inspector General

            Too much diversity training, Bluedog. Never bothered the Inspector, he didn’t have time to listen to the words of fools, instead choosing to hold everyone in equal contempt, irrespective of race, colour or creed. In fact, he stores his fiercest criticism for whitey, the source of most of our ills, and he should damn well know better…

          • What’s happened natural justice, to the presumption of innocence, the collection of evidence, trial by jury and satisfaction of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt?

          • CliveM

            There was also no explosive residue (remember he shot the Polish driver) no glass, no blood, on any of his clothes or person.

            Nothing indeed to indicate he had fired a shot and driven a vehicle onto the middle of a crowd.

          • bluedog

            So, he had a shower and changed his clothes. Next?

          • CliveM

            A shower won’t rid you of explosive residue.

          • Hard to shower and change while running down a street.

          • bluedog

            Perhaps it was raining, the Douche Ecossaise.

          • Well, I said it was hard, not impossible. Btw, the Balkans often get these “Scottish showers,” sometimes with not a cloud in sight…which can make one wonder.

          • bluedog

            Exactly. This attack was not done in isolation or without planning. Evidence would have been concealed and somehow removed. If the Polish driver was indeed shot and killed, there is clearly a weapon somewhere that was cheap, and bought for single use and subsequent disposal. Unlikely to be found either.

          • The Inspector’s suggestion, the use of a decoy who gets captured to misdirect the search, is far easier to pull. “Enhanced interrogation” might have helped in this matter.

          • CliveM

            Grasping at straws?

          • bluedog

            Yes. But see below.

          • CliveM

            So he massacred 12 people, had a shower, changed his clothes then went for an evening stroll?

          • bluedog

            Why not? Look at the Turkish assassin who killed the Russian kuffar. Could be a mild-mannered insurance clerk from his appearance.

          • CliveM

            Isn’t it more likely that in light of all the evidence that it was A.N. Other?

          • Not by his physique and the way he stood and held the pistol. When he lowered the gun, his finger automatically stretched over the finger guard, which shows training.

          • bluedog

            Skills used in an extra-judicial killing.

          • Extra-judicial usually means illegal executions by law enforcement or judicial authorities, often once the victim is in custody.

          • chefofsinners

            Only tackier. Or as they say, mehr kitsch.

          • You’re right, Inspector; I missed the escape bit! Still, better for democracies to have responsible armed citizens than an expanded police force or weak laws and penalties which would justify extra-judicial killings.

          • bluedog

            ‘better for democracies to have responsible armed citizens’

            No, no, a thousand times, no. This opens the way for an armed Muslim militia. We have equality now, and all citizens are innocent until proven guilty, meaning that there can be no restrictions on arming the migrants under your proposal.

          • Armed Muslim militias have armed quite effectively even under the strictest gun laws and will do so quite easily in the future. With about a $20 dollars in materials (if you are too lazy to recycle from high carbon steel engine parts),increasingly cheaper 3D printers, it’s already easy to manufacture many a weapon in a descrete corner of one’s garage. I prefer the open-carry model, as in many states of the US, where properly registered, vetted, trained and safetied individuals can carry only if the weapon is clearly visible. Those are the states with the lowest numbers of shootings and violent crimes. Of course, if you allow your country to be flooded with hostile immigrants, nothing will help you.

          • bluedog

            ‘Of course, if you allow your country to be flooded with hostile immigrants, nothing will help you.’

            And that’s the dilemma. The underlying assumption of the western liberal democracy is that all citizens are benign and committed to the commonwealth. Enter the Muslim, who only seeks sharia as commanded, and all the freedoms work in reverse for their own destruction. The German elites clearly haven’t reached this conclusion and naively assume that Muslims will become Germans once within the BundesRepublik.

            You may be right about the deterrent effect of open carry. But look at the US gun death statistics, orders of magnitude greater per 100,000 than in less weaponised societies. Is this a cost worth paying? I think not.

          • Stats counting only “gun deaths” in the US are misleading. Intentionally so. Many countries with strict gun laws have higher murder rates per capita and the UK beats the US in violent crimes. By far. Locations in the US where gun ownership is high or even mandated (yes, mandated) have seen drastic declines in violent crimes. See: http://americangunfacts.com/

            Regarding immigration, the problem is that we haven’t worked out optimal numbers and methods for integrating immigrants for the benefit of the host nation. This doesn’t mean that even questioning limits is bigotry, nor that popular conservative ideas about what’s best are necessarily useful. Fat chance for a rational discussion on this anytime soon, though, mostly because we are unlikely to agree on desired outcomes.

          • bluedog

            ‘Many countries with strict gun laws have higher murder rates per capita and the UK beats the US in violent crimes.’ Possibly. But are the stats on death by firearm really falsified? The difference between the US and the UK is very significant indeed. All the evidence suggests that if you give people a lethal weapon, however mature, responsible and respectable they are, at some point they will succumb to the temptation to use it. This line of thinking does not apply to long-arms, which are hard to carry, but to short-arms like pistols and revolvers. A seventeen shot Glock at close range can kill how many?

            In a post above you warn against the risk of extra-judicial killings, by the police. Yet your advocacy of open carry permits this at the hands of the responsible citizen. Conflicting advice?

          • Not at all. An armed citizenry reduces the need for ever-growing police forces and strong laws with meaningful penalties reduce the need for police or citizens to take the law into their own hands. Anything extra-judicial ultimately endangers the very citizens it seems to at first protect.

          • bluedog

            ‘Anything extra-judicial ultimately endangers the very citizens it seems to at first protect.’

            Agreed. But does this mean that the armed citizen is given a piece of paper to accompany their fire-arms licence that says ‘Licenced to Kill’? Kinda Deputy Dawg?

            How does the armed citizen kill judicially? In ‘self-defence’?

          • No, an armed citizen is bound to all state and federal laws, which distinguish between reasonable self-defense (applicable everywhere to armed or not armed persons), the various manslaughter categories and murder. You get drunk, or stupid and screw up, or otherwise wrongfully kill someone, and you are in big trouble, just as any criminal would be.

          • Anton

            See my gun comment to bluedog, Avi. We might agree about this one!

          • Anton

            If you look at the US stats for gun violence within communities who migrated there from Europe, I think it is comparable to the stats for Switzerland, Europe’s gun-carrying country, about which nobody complains.

          • Well, yes, Mexican and Jamaican gangs have skewed the stats a bit. But they get fajitas, beef patties and cheap grass.

          • Anton

            We do not have equality now. Some minorities are more equal than others. But arms make men equal.

          • bluedog

            Wrong. Information collected by the US Army during and after WW2 showed that in a firefight as few as 20% of highly trained troops were actually shooting to kill. The rest were just going through the motions. It follows that the average civilian, even when equipped with a lethal weapon, may not be prepared to use it. Most women will not even touch a firearm.

            Jihadis brainwashed to kill the kuffar will show no such inhibitions.

          • Anton

            Then we deserve what we get.

            I too have read Grossman’s “On Killing”!

          • Far fewer jihadis than law-abiding citizens. Even if you reduce the number to 5% of effective shooters, you have a huge numerical advantage. Keep in mind that most of the folks here in North America who arm ourselves are either former military or take the responsibility…not to mention the pleasure…to improve marksmanship and even get tactical training. It’s a very different world from the voluntary defenselessness mind-set of Europe.

          • bluedog

            It’s not a mindset of voluntary defencelessness. It’s a conscious decision to put communal safety into the hands of the police force. The alternative is armed lawlessness in which every misfit bluffs the authorities that they are responsible, gets a Glock and then settles old scores in ‘self-defence’.

          • Per capita stats for UK vs US violent crimes shows that this supposedly conscious decision (by whom?) doesn’t produce results you think it does. The alternative is more robust civil rights and freedoms, as the US has shown. A disarmed pacified citizenry invites authoritarianism…aren’t you just trying to extricate yourself from parochialism gone-mad in the form of the EU?

          • CliveM

            Avi

            Stats also need to be interpreted. Urban areas also have higher rates of violence then rural areas. The U.K. is a more urban country then the US.

          • Won’t make a big difference. You can then adjust for per-capita rates in urban areas and you’ll likely find similar ratios. This is why gun scare mongering sticks to the clever deception of quoting death by gun violence, rather than just deaths by violence.

          • CliveM
          • Unclear ranking. Look at total crimes per 1000 persons per country in the same site: http://www.nationmaster.com/country-info/stats/Crime/Total-crimes-per-1000. Iceland ranks 1st, UK 4th, US 22nd.

          • CliveM

            Whilst all violence is a crime, not all crime is violent. We are talking violent crime.

          • IanCad

            Tried to give you two but it cancelled the first.

          • Consider it accomplished…you can spare more than two, I’m sure.

          • Dominic Stockford

            And it hasn’t prevented massacre after massacre in the US.

          • All of the massacres took place in states and districts with strict gun control, where help is slow in coming and not always effictive. The perps know very well where they can execute an operation at leisure, such as at universities and at clubs, and where they would be likely converted to colanders within seconds of their attack by an unknown number of conceal or open-carry citizens.

          • Anton

            The time will come when we envy the US gun laws.

          • IanCad

            The Lanchester Equation Avi. Prior to then few military leaders grasped the concept. Nathan Bedford Forrest was a notable exception:
            “Get there fustest with the mostest”
            Military efficacy is not as important as numbers. I do hope Israel takes note.

          • That may have been true in WWII with technological parity between combattants and when manpower projected most of the force. The Germans skewed the model with panzer and airborne tactics. Today technoogy further erases the troop numbers advantage with drones, better fire power, field communication networks, etc.

            Israel has been aware of its numerical disadvantage since before its inception. It compensates by better training, tactical superiority, special units, high tech and very importantly, excellent troop support and logistics.

          • IanCad

            I have to disagree with you here bluedog. A rare thing, and sad to do; But we, the public, are at the mercy of whatever authority is in power. Sure, we are currently ruled by benign, pansyfied weaklings – a situation that will not last. Given a government that tolerates no dissent, conflates opposition with treason, appeals to the citizenry to inform, assist, and advocate for the status quo, then soon tyranny will rule again.
            Every so often on this blog the cry goes up for another Cromwell. Where would he have got if provision of arms equal to that of the King’s not been to hand?
            The US Second Amendment was adopted for a purpose. It has served them well.

          • bluedog

            Thank you for your considered response, IC. We will indeed have to have a good disagreement on this topic, and it does seem that those in favour of an armed citizenry are those with North American experience.

            It may well be that in the context of North American society with its frontier ethos an armed citizenry is culturally accepted. But this is a development in which the state effectively privatises its internal security, and as such, a radical step for the UK and any similar societies. Avi Barzel makes a good case that the armed citizen ensures the democratic rights that have been fought for so hard, but their origin is different in the UK. British democracy is a top down grant from the absolute monarch whose power was progressively eroded and transferred to the Parliament. In the case of North America, democracy was always individual and therefore, bottom up, phenomenon wherein free settlers created colonies down the eastern seaboard and eventually rejected the reach of the British state. The DNA is different despite the shared values.

            I ask you to imagine how the idea of an armed citizenry would be accepted and implemented in Northern Ireland, or at a Rangers vs Celtic match. Who would you arm in Bradford or Tower Hamlets? How would armed citizens react on the Southern Railway? In a sink estate with a high Afro-Caribbean demographic?

            I don’t believe that the idea is practical in a closely settled and now very diverse society like the UK. It also seems highly unlikely that the very political police chiefs would ever agree, and nor would the Home Office easily concede failure. Because that is what an armed citizenry implicitly infers. After the revolution maybe, but not now.

          • IanCad

            Only Me and Thee left on this topic bd, thus, having digested your excellent post, will merely continue to heartily disagree.
            A full blown debate is needed on this subject.

          • bluedog

            Doubtful that a public debate on this topic would ever get off the ground, IC. Ever heard a politician promote the idea? Nope, it would be a career death-wish. The problem is that the armed citizens you would want won’t sign up, and only the posing wannabes would apply. Never in a million years would you see this communicant wearing an automatic pistol in either open carry or concealed carry. The idea appalls, don’t want to be part of that sort of society.

      • Anton

        Don’t mention the

    • Inspector General

      Perhaps not…

      “”We have to entertain the theory that the detainee might possibly not have been the perpetrator,” federal prosecutor Peter Frank told reporters.”

      Strong stuff, no wonder they let him go…

      • If they bailed him to appear again you might have a case, but it seems clear they have nothing on him so they’re releasing him.

        • Inspector General

          We can’t at this stage rule out the classic decoy tactic. “When you see another Paki running past you, he’ll dive into a car, but you are to start running instead”

        • The Explorer

          Unless they released him in an act of extreme cynicism, because for an asylum seeker to be responsible would have been politically suicidal.

  • Martin

    So you have two women who are in rebellion against God as ‘ministers’.

    • Dominic Stockford

      And interesting that the hope that most offer is not Christ alone….

  • Andrew Holt

    Thank you your grace, for reminding me of the gracious love of God. It’s too easy to forget or lose sight of it amongst all the terrible suffering and hate to which the news media bears unrelenting witness daily, hourly and minute by minute

  • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

    The lights are going out all over Europe…

    • bluedog

      That’s what happens when you rely on intermittent power from renewable energy resources.

    • Anton

      Lamps, Mrs Proudie.

    • chefofsinners

      And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year:
      “Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.”
      And he replied:
      “Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God.
      That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way.”
      So I went forth, and finding the Hand of God, trod gladly into the night.
      And He led me towards the hills and the breaking of day in the lone East.

    • Inspector General

      They damn well are Mrs P if the German police let suspect number one go…and hopefully not to flee to the UK…

    • Roger Sponge

      Is it 1914? Or 1848?

      • betteroffoutofit

        Or circa AD33?

        • bluedog

          1984

          • betteroffoutofit

            AF632

          • bluedog

            Well, we need to find our Charles Martel who will secure a lasting victory in 732.

          • betteroffoutofit

            Sigh. And Mustapha Mond still has the support of Our Ford — to say nothing of how that helps re-distribute wreckage from MH370.

          • betteroffoutofit

            Mustapha Mond still has the support or Our Ford, though. Which leaves us still to consider the dark re-distribution of wreckage from MH370.

          • bluedog

            Is this post on the right thread?

          • betteroffoutofit

            I thought so: “. . . wars-assassinations-terrorist-atrocities-joy-to the world/”? Loss of light, and subsequent development of worldly utopias? One involves certain destructive ‘religionists’ — and our historical/fictional dates echo with a flight number that is not irrelevant to said characters?

            Sorry, I thought you’d sussed my admittedly arcane connection with “Brave New World,” AD2540 = year of Our Ford: AF 632.

    • Oisín mac Fionn

      Then stop turning them off.

      Anyone would think you like stumbling around in the dark.

  • not a machine

    Your grace makes an interesting contrast ,what does or should the celebration of the birth of Christ mean to Christians and non Christians alike ,there are perhaps many answers these days , people seem to have there own views ,indeed it has been one of the things I have been struggling with for quite a while ,that people find the Christian faith difficult, yet to me it is so precious, they of course throw the modern confident sound bites “oh as an atheist I don’t experience my life as a spirit from God” or “why all the suffering and evil” .I quite understand how some clergy can end up thinking God is capricious and remain stuck in that place.
    I have some theories about the theological poverty , but they are uncomfortable most of all perhaps to those who see atheism or perhaps non Christian beliefs as the true equality and benefit.We can for now take some joy in that we can give thanks to Christ ,my prayers today were for those people who are alone ,perhaps with a holy bible (kjv but I try not to let intellectual pride spoil the choice) ,people who are hoping for some light , some strengthening to their faith in Christ. I pray for good theology for all leaders of churches.We celebrate the birth , the arrival of Christ , we give thanks to Mary and to Joseph ,yet we know that even at the moment of Christs birth ,forces were forming to kill the new born ,to kill the light .That light has continued ,in places all over the world ,it may be in poverty it may be in riches ,but that light will be born into some people anew ,and change their life , to one of seeking the salvation that is Christ.

  • The Explorer

    If only the hijacker, or the killer of the ambassador, could have been a fundamentalist Christian! Why won’t Christians play ball? After all, according to the secular narrative, Christianity is just as violent as Islam.

    Interestingly, in the recent Swedish TV thriller ‘Modus’ the serial killer of gays IS a fundamentalist Christian. Although Islam has rather a bad recent record in relation to gays, the only Muslim to feature is himself gay, and himself a victim.

    This, it seems, is the Media’s solution. If Christians and Muslims will not follow the rules of the secular narrative in real life, at least they can be made to do so in TV drama.

    • David

      So true, so true !

  • maigemu

    ‘He came down’ video is my favourite for 2016.

    • Oisín mac Fionn

      ‘He went down’ is mine.

      • The Explorer

        Propelled by ISIS off the top of a high-rise building?

        • Oisín mac Fionn

          As much as it’s clear to me that you’d love to see that happen, the chances of your wish being fulfilled are slim.

          Isis is a few thousand miles away and when they manage to commit atrocities here, they target public spaces where you’re just as likely to be struck as me. So I’m no more vulnerable than you are.

          Shocking, isn’t it? People who openly flaunt your religious rules and regulations and who laugh at your bizarre stories about spooks and miracles are no more likely to be bumped off than you are. Where’s that vengeful god of yours when you need him? Doesn’t he realise how necessary it is for you to see vengeance being enacted? Waiting for the ifs and maybes of the afterlife just isn’t any fun, is it?

          • The Explorer

            “So I’m no more vulnerable than you are.” You were saying, ‘He went down’. Where do you or I come into it? And ISIS are inspired by their God. Their God is not mine.

          • Oisín mac Fionn

            Well, I can’t speak for you, but I know exactly where I come into it. And God has nothing to do with anything in the world I know, except the ravings of religious fanatics.

            Muslim or Christian, they all want one thing: to bend me (and everyone else) to their will.

            Muslims are honest enough to state their enmity openly. Christians witter on about love and respect and free will while clearly wanting every bit as much as any Muslim to see those who oppose them destroyed. The difference is one of honesty.

            Give me a declared enemy over a hidden one any day. Declared enemies can be resisted. Hidden ones sidle up to you and try to befriend you, the better to stick the knife in once they’ve won your confidence.

            Christians try to be hidden enemies even though they’re so inept at hiding their hatred that only the most naive can be taken in by them. It’s this duplicity that makes them so despised.

          • The Explorer

            Having said you can’t speak for me, you then proceed to do so.

            Translated, (and to return to the topic of the original post) you wish Christians would join Muslims in throwing gays off rooftops.

          • Oisín mac Fionn

            Of course Christians want to eliminate us. Their religion forbids direct murder, but throughout history they’ve been happy enough to let others act on their behalf.

            They shriek about Muslims attacking Christians in the Middle East, but when gays are thrown off buildings, it’s radio silence. Or a perfunctory tut-tutting at best. The only exception comes when they happen to be talking to a gay person. Then the fate of Middle Eastern gays will be trotted out as a warning and a threat.

            “You’d better support us or look what will happen to you” hardly drips with love,compassion and respect, does it?

            “Know your place or die” has never been the best way of persuading those you believe to be your inferiors to knuckle under and accept your domination. Quite the reverse.

          • The Explorer

            Anyway, for the benefit of those who may have lost the thread of this little exchange, you raised the issue of someone going down. I supplied an example of how this might happen, courtesy of ISIS.

          • Oisín mac Fionn

            Yes, but our definitions of the term “going down” may be slightly different…

            I was referring to this month’s hot new video on http://www.gayngaggin4it.com

            You were probably not.

            It’s heavy going trying to introduce humour into an exchange with a Christian. When god enters a conversation, all spontaneity and joy is driven out. Was there ever a bleaker religion than Christianity? And a more humourless and uptight bunch of American Gothic clones than its adherents? No wonder it attracts censorious and disapproving personality types.

            Your heaven must be the dullest place. One assumes the only jokes allowed would make even a notorious prude like Queen Victoria roll her eyes in exasperation at the fake decorum and goody two-shoes atmosphere.

            Knock, knock! Who’s there? It’s the Christians! Oh bugger, well that’s the party spoiled then, isn’t it?

          • The Explorer

            Those who go down in your sense will also go down in ISIS’ sense should ISIS (or whatever its future Western equivalent will call itself) be in a position to pass judgement on them.

          • Oisín mac Fionn

            An Islamified future exists only in your imagination. Even then I’m not sure it’s anything more than a bogeyman you trot out in the manner of all fascists to scare people into supporting you.

            Religion declines as education advances. Muslims are just as subject to this trend as anyone else. Islam, like Christianity, needs an atmosphere of obscurantism and ignorance in which to flourish. It finds this in the unstable countries of the Middle East, but in the West it withers and dies when exposed to the light of intellectual examination.

            The principal danger posed by Islam is the opportunity it gives to Christian fascists to whip up racist and exclusionist sentiment among the least educated layers of society. Extreme right wing parties may come to power on a wave of scaremongering and rabble-rousing lies, which for the LGBT community would indeed be a disaster.

            Christian fascists may not throw us off buildings, but if they ever gain any power, they’ll make our lives such a misery that many of us will want to jump off of our own accord. That’s how it used to be when they persecuted us and criminalised our relationships. That’s how they want it to be again. Having Muslims or Christians in power puts our necks on the line. That’s why all religions must be marginalised.

          • The Explorer

            “Religion declines as education advances.” Interestingly, the report just out from Baroness Deech claims that some leading British universities are becoming unsafe for Jews because of Muslim hostility. So are you right, or is she? Time will tell.

          • chefofsinners

            You are my favourite joke.

          • The Explorer

            ..

          • Pubcrawler

            “flout”

          • Oisín mac Fionn

            Hmmm, yes. Sorry my English isn’t quite what it should be. Foreign languages were never my forté.

          • Martin

            OMF

            The difference is that when you die you will be entering an eternity of paying for what you have done and omitted. The Christian will receive undeserved joy. Does that not indicate you have made the wrong choice.

  • michaelkx

    all I can say after looking back at this year, is come LORD Jesus come.

  • Dominic Stockford

    “Christmas carnage in Berlin as Islamic State manage to get someone to plough a 27-ton HGV into a market, killing 12 and injuring 50. Weeping and wailing; mulled wine all over the floor.”

    Fear not – Jesus Christ is Lord of all, and judge of all.

    “Peace on earth and good will to all men – except the sacked bell-ringers of York Minster”

    Fear not – Jesus Christ is Lord of all, and judge of all.

    “Parliament debates the liberation of Aleppo today. Marvellous. That’ll sort it all out.”

    Fear not – Jesus Christ is Lord of all, and judge of all.

    “Nurse sacked for offering to pray for her patients.”

    Fear not – Jesus Christ is Lord of all, and judge of all.

    “It seems there is an anti-populist cabal who believe they know what is best for the British public”

    Fear not – Jesus Christ is Lord of all, and judge of all.

    “the Home Office refused to grant visas to three persecuted bishops from Iraq and Syria”

    Fear not – Jesus Christ is Lord of all, and judge of all.

    “Will Theresa May restore religious liberty by adopting reasonable accommodation?”

    Fear not – Jesus Christ is Lord of all, and judge of all.

    “CofE’s agenda is set by academia, moneyed elites, and sections of the secular media”

    Fear not – Jesus Christ is Lord of all, and judge of all.

    “The Palace of Westminster, Westminster Abbey and Westminster Cathedral were all lit up red to remember those who are persecuted or killed for their beliefs.”

    Fear not – Jesus Christ is Lord of all, and judge of all. And He is coming. “And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory.”

  • len

    Quite remarkable the level of hate that is expressed through acts of terrorism.This is not just hate against a particular person, or even particular groups of people, but against humanity itself.
    I believe it is not possible for a human to generate these levels of hate for humanity(after all terrorists are human whatever you might think) but this hate emanates from a spiritual being and is transmitted to humans who are open to receiving it.
    The origin of hate is satanic.