Immigration and related issues, mainly in the United Kingdom.

Details of other pages are at the end of this page


Extracts in date order, except latest additions first. Updated 24 March 2018

Population pressure – traffic speed
Cars to travel slower than bicycles on England's clogged-up roads within a decade
Christopher Hope and Patrick Scott
Daily Telegraph, 24 March 2018.

Cars will travel slower than bicycles on England's congested roads within a decade, according to official figures.

The Department for Transport said the average vehicle speed of cars on A roads in towns and cities in 2017 was just 18.4mph, down from 19.3mph in 2014.

If this decline continues at the same rate, cars will be travelling slower than cyclists by 2027.

The average speed of a male cyclist is around 16mph, according to activity website Strava. ...

Traffic speeds have been in steady decline across England's A road network over the past three years, with average speeds at morning rush hour now down to 23.7mph across both rural and urban roads.

During the evening rush hour this figure is even slower at 22.2mph.
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Illegal immigration – Albanians
Five steps to reach Britain (for a £10,000 fee): Route revealed as police smash the people-smuggling gang that sneaked 750 Albanians into the UK
Tom Kelly
Daily Mail, 24 March 2018.

An international police operation has smashed a network smuggling Albanians into Britain.

The operation unearthed more than 50 people making millions by sneaking migrants across 17 countries to reach the UK, US and Canada.

Thirty-nine suspects operating in ten countries including Britain are accused of smuggling around 1,500 illegal migrants who each paid up to £20,000 to escape Albania. Another 12 remain on the run. ...

Half of the migrants smuggled by the criminal network – around 750 – ended up in Britain, with henchmen here helping to arrange each trafficking operation. ...

Initially the route to the UK went through Italy and France, but after crackdowns by police in these countries they started to take a circuitous route through Montenegro, Serbia, Germany and northern Spain, from where they would be helped on to ships heading to the south coast.

The police operation was launched after the Daily Mail revealed last year the shocking scale of Albanian illegal immigration to the UK, with many young migrants openly taking 'stowaway selfies' of themselves laughing and joking while hiding in British-bound lorries. ...

Albanian national police chief Ardi Veliu said seven criminal groups were involved in the human trafficking ring, operating in Albania, Bulgaria, Spain, France, the Dominican Republic, Italy, Britain, Ireland and the US.
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Terrorism – child refugees
Parsons Green terrorist is jailed for at least 34 years after the judge rules he lied about only being 18
Martin Evans
Daily Telegraph, 24 March 2018.

The Parsons Green bomber lied about his age in order to remain in the UK sparking renewed questions over the screening of child migrants.

Iraqi born, Ahmed Hassan, entered Britain illegally three years ago and then applied for asylum, claiming to be a 16-year orphan, who had keen kidnapped by Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (Isil). ...

But the case raises serious questions over the ability of officials to weed out asylum seekers who try to take advantage of the system by claiming to be children. ...

Mr Justice Haddon-Cave told Hassan: "I note that your tutor at college thought you were physically and mentally older than you claimed to be. I am satisfied that that you lied about your date of birth on arrival in order to glean the special privileges accorded to children entering the UK."
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Immigration – numbers, East Europeans
The migrant map of Britain: Figures reveal where more than 2million former Eastern Europeans have settled in the UK
Ed Riley
MailOnline, 24 March 2018.

Towns and regions with the highest influx of Eastern European migrants have been identified in government figures.

Data from the Office for National Statistics has shown the areas in the UK with the biggest proportion of settlers from the Eastern bloc.

In total there are now an estimated 2.03 million people now living in the UK who are nationals of the ten Eastern European EU nations.

By far the biggest number of settlers come from Poland, with the ONS statistics showing 1 million from that nation now living amongst the 65 million population of the entire UK. ...

The next biggest group of Eastern Europeans are Romanians, who along with Bulgarians, were first allowed free access to the UK to live and work in 2014.

Some 358,000 have settled in the UK since then. ...

Lithuanians are the next largest group to have settled in the UK, with 212,000 making the trip here.
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Emigration – Europe
European Union – the biggest people-trafficking scam in history
Moshe Forman
The Times of Israel, 24 March 2018.

Unrestricted immigration is a disaster for the poorer countries of Europe; it arrests their development and, not surprisingly, has the most detrimental effect on the poorest. It's great for the British that they have all these people to staff the NHS, but does anyone give a damn that in Bulgaria, Romania, Moldova and elsewhere, their health services are collapsing form a shortage of doctors and nurses? I would argue that the EU policy of free migration has become the biggest people-trafficking scam in history.

This is how this new imperialism works; the poor countries of the Balkans spend their scarce resources on training health and other professionals, who then leave, tempted by the salaries of the more developed nations of Europe. The UK gets ready-trained health staff on the cheap, and the Bulgarian health service, for example, already struggling to overcome the devastation of the communist years, suffers from ever dropping ratio of medical staff to patients.

There are several academic investigations into the effect of this economic migration from the poorer to the rich countries. ...

Families are split apart and the negative impact on children means the damage will be carried over to the next generation. ...

The elderly are particularly vulnerable: ...
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Politics – intolerance
Hope Not Hate: anti-fascist authoritarianism
Patrick West
Spiked, 23 March 2018.

There has always been something paradoxical, even ironic, about so-called anti-fascist and anti-racist groups. While ostensibly promoting peace, understanding and tolerance in the face of nasty and intolerant far-right groups, they have always seemed to contain an essence of authoritarianism and intolerance themselves – and even an undercurrent of menace.

This was most obvious in Germany and Italy in the 1970s with the Red Army Faction and the Red Brigades. /.../ In Britain in the 1990s, we had the stupid and conceited Anti-Nazi League – and we still have the Socialist Workers Party – who were always spoiling for a fight and forever spoke of 'fighting' and 'smashing' the opposition. ...

And so on to the latest anti-fascist group, Hope Not Hate, which sounds caring and innocent enough. Its latest campaign has been to urge major booksellers Waterstones, WHSmith and Foyles to stop profiting from selling 'dangerous books' with 'extreme hate content'. ...

It should strike us as ironic that anti-fascists are seeking to ban books in the name of promoting tolerance. What next? Burning books? But this shouldn't surprise us. Paternal, power-crazy, anti-fascists have a long track record of self-righteous censoriousness.
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Racism – golliwogs
Councillor ordered to apologise for calling for return of golliwogs
Daily Express, 23 March 2018.

A councillor who was condemned for calling for the return of golliwogs has been ordered to issue an official apology and attend 21 days of training by a Council monitoring officer.

Cllr Lynne Sterry appeared before the Standards Committee at Forest of Dean District Council after she twice shared a Facebook post supporting the comeback of the toys.

Cllr Sterry (Labour, Cinderford West) stepped down as both chairman of the council's Standards Committee and of Cinderford Town Council after sharing the posts about golliwogs. ...

Speaking at the meeting on Thursday, Cllr Sterry told the standards committee: "I wanted to say to you that nothing you could do to me today would make me feel any worse than I already do. ...

"It really was personal to me but of course I wasn't thinking outside the box, I was thinking about me and my childhood at the time. ..."

Cllr Paul Hiett (Forest First, Bream) said: "I've known Lynne for 20 years, she's not a racist. There is not a racist bone in her body."
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Racism – censorship
Hate-speech laws help only the powerful
Alexander Adams
Spiked, 22 March 2018.

Offensive behaviour is one of the crimes of immorality, such as offence against public morality, action against the state, counter-revolutionary activity and other catch-all terms, that have always been used to suppress dissent (reasonable and unreasonable). ...

Laws against speech which are advanced under the guise of defending the weak are actually designed to protect the dominant elite. Laws against harassment, threats of violence, incitement to commit crime, and so forth, are all already on the statute. They protect all people equally. Hate crimes are different. They are crimes against public morality, as defined by lawmakers. The offences are crafted not to protect 'marginalised groups' but to demonstrate the virtue of the ruling class and to demonstrate its power. They use minorities as shields to protect their own interests.

Christianity, patriotism, monarchy and the family were once society-wide emblems of the moral consensus. But as they were diminished by a new multiculturalism, a crisis of values developed. With so many differing perspectives and traditions at play in society, it became hard to find moral totems around which the nation could gather. One unifying idea today is that racism is wrong. It is a moral value that appeals broadly to liberals and conservatives, relying on the innate human moral values of fairness, and individuals being treated according to their actions.

The problem is that racism can be manifest both in action and thought. Racial discrimination of action can be limited through legislation that bans racially determined pay, employment, accommodation and so on. It is largely a transparent, fair and workable system. The problem is that racist beliefs, casual prejudices and in-group preferences – what we might call racial discrimination of thought, mild or extreme – have become the focus of legislation to prevent even offensive (but non-racist) speech in order to eradicate racist thought.

What we see now in British hate-crime legislation is an attempt to control speech and thought. The existence of 'offensive thought', which finds expression in a joke, offhand slur or a casual slip, is now something for which our moral superiors can prosecute us. This is a profoundly troubling situation. What is more troubling is that no major British political party has opposed the spread of hate-crime legislation. ...

... We must begin to treat all people fairly, and according to their actions. We must abolish hate-speech laws, and stop travelling down the road to censorship.
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Crime – drug gangs, Albanians
Surge in drug gangs triples number of Albanians in our jails with 726 offenders from the Balkan state behind bars last year
Ian Drury
Daily Mail, 23 March 2018.

Drugs gangs from Albania have fuelled a tripling in the number of criminals from the country in British prisons.

Ministry of Justice figures reveal there were 726 offenders from the Balkan state behind bars last year – up from 267 in 2013.

Many have been convicted of murder, drug dealing, sex offences, money laundering, people smuggling and death threats. ...

The National Crime Agency (NCA) has warned that gangs of Albanian drug dealers are now 'a significant threat', using increasingly ruthless tactics to protect their business.

Organised crime groups from the country, which has a population of just 2.9 million, now have huge influence on supplying cocaine around the UK. ...

But thousands of Albanians allowed into the UK are suspected of adopting bogus identities from neighbouring Kosovo, claiming persecution during the regional conflict 18 years ago. Imposters are suspected to be fronting drugs and prostitution rings.
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TERROR WARNING: 30,000 people in Europe may be in terrorist networks, Europol chief warns
Harvey Gavin
Daily Express, 22 March 2018.

Tens of thousands of people living in Europe could be part of terrorist networks, the European Union's law enforcement boss has warned on the eve of the one-year anniversary of the Westminster terror attack.

Up to 30,000 people have been radicalised and are part of terror cells or communities which could be inspired by groups such as Islamic State (ISIS), Europol director Rob Wainwright said.

In an interview with Bulgarian television, the Briton warned of an "explosion of terrorist activity in recent years", adding there is "very complex" range of threats facing the EU. ...

Mr Wainwright also warned Europe was facing a new generation of threats, including cyber attacks and danger posed by "many groups that resemble mafias in many countries". ...

In a separate report by Bulgarian media, a study was presented to the country's parliament today which revealed 800 people had travelled from the Western Balkans to Syria and Iraq to fight for ISIS.

The Western Balkans include several nations being considered for European Union membership, such as Albania, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – crime, Germany
Asylum seeker who claimed to be a child refugee jailed for rape and murder
Richard Hartley-Parkinson
Metro, 22 March 2018.

An asylum seeker claiming to be from Afghanistan was Thursday sentenced to life in jail in Germany for the rape and murder of a student that stoked a public backlash against a mass influx of migrants.

Hussein Khavari, of uncertain age and origin, was found guilty of the deadly night-time attack on medical student Maria Ladenburger, 19, in October 2016 in the university town of Freiburg.

Khavari pushed her off her bicycle as she was riding home alone from a party, then bit, choked and repeatedly raped her and left her on the bank of a river where she drowned. ...

Khavari arrived in Germany, without identity papers, in November 2015, near the peak of the refugee influx, as an unaccompanied minor claiming to be 16 or 17 years old and hailing from Afghanistan. ...

It emerged only after his arrest that he had already committed a violent crime in May 2013 in Greece, where he pushed a woman off a cliff on the island of Corfu, leaving her badly injured.

He was sentenced there in February 2014 to 10 years jail for attempted murder but was granted a conditional release from Greece's overcrowded jails in October 2015.
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Immigration – sub-Saharan Africans
At Least a Million Sub-Saharan Africans Moved to Europe Since 2010
Phillip Connor
Pew Research Center, 22 March 2018.

International migration from countries in sub-Saharan Africa has grown dramatically over the past decade, including to Europe and the United States. Indeed, most years since 2010 have witnessed a rising inflow of sub-Saharan asylum applicants in Europe, and lawful permanent residents and refugees in the U.S.

... In the case of Europe, the population of sub-Saharan migrants has been boosted by the influx of nearly 1 million asylum applicants (970,000) between 2010 and 2017, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of data from Eurostat, Europe's statistical agency. Sub-Saharan Africans also moved to European Union countries, Norway and Switzerland as international students and resettled refugees, through family reunification and by other means.

In the U.S., those fleeing conflict also make up a portion of the more than 400,000 sub-Saharan migrants who moved to the States between 2010 and 2016. According to data from U.S. Department of Homeland Security and U.S. State Department, 110,000 individuals from sub-Saharan countries were resettled as refugees over this seven-year period. An additional 190,000 were granted lawful permanent residence by virtue of family ties; nearly 110,000 more entered the U.S. through the diversity visa program.

... According to a 2017 Pew Research Center survey in six sub-Saharan countries that have supplied many of the region's migrants to the U.S. and Europe, many say they would move to another country if the means and opportunity presented themselves. And in Senegal, Ghana and Nigeria, more than a third say they actually plan to migrate in the next five years. ...

In terms of destinations, as of 2017, nearly three-quarters (72%) of Europe's sub-Saharan immigrant population was concentrated in just four countries: the UK (1.27 million), France (980,000), Italy (370,000) and Portugal (360,000). ...

Between February and April 2017, Pew Research Center surveyed in six of the 10 countries that have supplied many of the sub-Saharan immigrants now living in the U.S. ...

The survey asked respondents whether they would go to live in another country, if they had the means and opportunity. At least four-in-ten in each sub-Saharan country surveyed answered yes, including roughly three-quarters of those surveyed in Ghana (75%) and Nigeria (74%). ...

... People planning to migrate in the next five years tended to identify destinations where they already had friends or family. This finding is generally consistent with studies showing that personal connections influence the decision and likelihood of migrating.


About 420,000 more sub-Saharan African migrants lived in Europe in 2017 (4.15 million) than in 2010 (3.73 million). And an estimated 1.55 million sub-Saharan African migrants lived in the U.S in 2017, an increase of about a 325,000 from 2010, when an estimated 1.22 million sub-Saharan African migrants lived in the country, according to the United Nations.
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Emigration – Romania
Exodus from Romania: How free movement looks at the other end of the EU
Stephen McGrath
Prospect, April 2018.

Between 2007, when the country joined the EU, and 2017 around 3.4m Romanians emigrated, two-thirds of them aged 18-39. ...

Poverty in rural Romania can be striking. On the fringes are scores of Roma families living in tiny makeshift houses. Many are collapsing. According to the World Bank, 70 per cent of Romania's rural population – which makes up almost half of the country's roughly 19m people – live below the poverty line. ...

... An estimated 350,000 economic orphans have parents who live abroad. There are far-reaching implications. Doctors, nurses and teachers have left in droves which has dramatically lowered the quality of education and healthcare. ...

Corruption in Romania is rife but the left-wing Social Democrat (PSD) government is hell-bent on reversing hard-won measures that would undermine the country's longstanding crackdown on graft.
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Extremism – political correctness
Our lawmakers' fear of 'racism' has put the rights of terrorists before the lives of innocents
Allison Pearson
Daily Telegraph, 21 March 2018.

If Ahmed Hassan had got his way, September 15 2017 would be the date of one of the worst massacres in British history. About 50 people sustained burns or minor injuries ...

An asylum seeker who actually told Home Office officials he had been "trained to kill" by Islamic State in Iraq was not only allowed to enter our country. He was given generous financial aid and a foster place ...

You will have to forgive my tone of mild incredulity, but there has been ample evidence in the past fortnight that the Home Office is perfectly capable of keeping out undesirables. Lauren Southern, a far-right Canadian journalist, was detained in Calais and banned from entering the UK. /.../ A Home Office spokesman said: "Border Force has the power to refuse entry to an individual if it is considered that his or her presence in the UK is not conducive to the public good." ...

Personally, I wouldn't choose to have Ms Southern round for Easter lunch, but at least nothing in her history suggests she might try to detonate a bomb on a train carrying children to school. The same goes for Martin Sellner, the Austrian leader of the Generation Identity white nationalist movement, and his girlfriend, Brittany Pettibone, an American writer who calls immigration "white genocide", who were also denied entry. ...

Are we to deduce that our government believes ultra-conservative provocateurs are "not conducive to the public good" whilst Islamist asylum seekers are perfectly fine? ...

After the grotesque revelations last week from Telford of yet more mass rape, even murder, committed by men of mainly Pakistani origin, are the authorities perhaps scared they are losing control of the multicultural "narrative"? Do they privately fear that the views of Sellner and his ilk might chime with members of the population who have lost faith in a liberal elite that appears to put political correctness and enforced "tolerance" before the safety of white working-class girls? ...

And what if our instincts tell us it's wrong to keep out far-Right speakers, who can do us no physical harm, while admitting aggrieved Muslim teenagers from war-torn areas who well might?

Let me tell you what is "not conducive to the public good". It's having a Home Office whose moral sense is so perverted that it puts the human rights of jihadist Hassan before the right to life of British men, women and children on the District Line.
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Extremism – politics
Britain's flawed definition of extremism is storing up trouble
Douglas Murray
Spectator blog, 21 March 2018.

Can anyone else see the problem here? The British state currently has to find a reason to explain why saying 'Allah is gay' is a fundamental assault on British values, but admitting to being a trained member of Isis is not. It has to explain why approaching the borders legally can lead to expulsion but breaking into the country illegally cannot.

Of course what this is is the enforcement of what one might call 'Rowley-ism', after the Metropolitan Police's former assistant commissioner Mark Rowley. It was he who last month embedded the idea that the UK faces an equally balanced challenge: Islamist extremism on the one side, far-right extremism on the other. In order to sustain this equation it appears that for the time-being one must draw a moral equivalence between Muslims who blow things up and non-Muslims who do not, but have mean views. And an equivalence between Muslims who call for murder and non-Muslims who do not. Officials (retired and serving) at the borders, in the police force or in Parliament, who think that this will prove a formula for societal security and harmony can have no idea of the trouble they are storing up for some later date.
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Soros's HOPE Not Hate Sees Massive Backlash over Book Ban List
Chris Tomlinson
Breitbart, 21 March 2018.

The far-left activist group HOPE not Hate (HnH) received a widespread backlash on social media, including from prominent anti-extremism campaigner Maajid Nawaz, after they released a list of books they campaigned to get banned from UK retailers.

The group unveiled a new campaign earlier this week to pressure book retailers, including Amazon and WH Smith, to remove a list of books deemed "Nazi" and "far-right" by the organisation. HnH tweeted out a link to the campaign and within 24 hours saw an overwhelmingly negative response from users equating the group to promoting book burnings.

The tweet garnered a mere 87 likes but more than a thousand comments, the vast majority of which were highly critical of the far-left organisation.

One reply, which has over 1,000 likes on the platform, saw user Bil Irving write: "Cannot support this. There is nothing good to be had from banning books, no matter how much you disagree with them. Quite frankly, it's a Nazi tactic, and I'm genuinely surprised at HNH for even suggesting this."
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Immigration – 15-year-olds
Almost 29 per cent of 15-year-olds in Britain now come from immigrant backgrounds, international think tank reveals
Tim Sculthorpe
MailOnline, 20 March 2018.

Almost 29 per cent of 15-year-olds in Britain now come from an immigrant background, new data from an international think tank reveals today.

The figure is higher than the EU average of 21 per cent but similar to both France, at 26 per cent, and Germany, at 28 per cent. The figure is higher in Ireland and Belgium.

It includes second generation immigrants, natives of mixed heritage, first generation immigrants and people returning after being born abroad.

The study, by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), also shows immigrant children who arrive in the UK aged 12 or older are less likely to do well at school and to feel like they belong, according to a study. ...

The study is based on an analysis of the OECD's 2015 PISA tests which are taken by 15-year-olds across 35 nations and economies.

Compared with PISA tests taken in 2003, the percentage of immigrant students in the UK rose by nine percentage points, compared with an OECD average of around six percentage points and an EU average of around seven percentage points.
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Immigration abroad – sexual crimes, Germany
Germany: Migrant Rape Crisis Still Sowing Terror and Destruction
Soeren Kern
Gatestone Institute, 20 March 2018.

Germany's migrant rape crisis continues unabated. Preliminary statistics show that migrants committed more than a dozen rapes or sexual assaults every day in 2017, a four-fold increase since 2014, the year before Chancellor Angela Merkel allowed into Germany more than a million mostly Muslim male migrants from Africa, Asia and the Middle East. ...

The actual number of migrant-related sex crimes in Germany, however, is believed to be far higher than the official number. ...

The director of the Criminal Police Association /.../ estimates that up to 90% of the sex crimes committed in Germany do not appear in the official statistics. ...

"There is a strict order by the authorities to not report on crimes committed by refugees," a high-ranking police official in Frankfurt told Bild. "Only specific requests from media representatives about such acts are to be answered." ...

Germany's migrant sex-crime problem is being exacerbated by its lenient legal system, in which offenders receive relatively light sentences, even for serious crimes. In many instances, individuals who are arrested for sex crimes are immediately released after questioning from police.
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Immigration abroad – Israel
Netanyahu says African migrants worse threat than jihadists
France 24, 20 March 2018.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Tuesday that an electronic fence along the Israel-Egypt border has saved the Jewish state from jihadist attacks or what he believes would be worse – a tide of African migrants.

"Were it not for the fence, we would be faced with... severe attacks by Sinai terrorists, and something much worse, a flood of illegal migrants from Africa," Netanyahu's office quoted him as telling a development conference in the southern Israel desert town of Dimona. ...

Netanyahu said a tide of non-Jewish immigration would threaten the very fabric of Israel.

"We are talking about a Jewish and democratic state, but how could we assure a Jewish and democratic state with 50,000 and then 100,000 and 150,000 migrants a year," Netanyahu said.

"After a million, 1.5 million, we might as well shut up shop," he added. "We did not close down, we built a fence."
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Politics – hate incident, thought crime, free speech
London Police Edit 'Thought Crime' Threat After Ridicule Online
Liam Deacon
Breitbart, 20 March 2018.

People can be "charged" with an "offence" if their actions are within the law but their "reasons for doing it" are perceived as illegal hate by others, London police have said, before withdrawing the claim.

Social media users began drawing attention to the Metropolitan force's new, and highly unusual, definition of a 'hate crime' on the 16th of this month. It remained like that until the 18th, according to Google cache, before the police edited it again on Monday.

The definition did not match that given by the College of Policing or Crown Prosecution Service, and critics online claimed it could be read as a threat against "thought crimes". ...

"The Met seems to imply that a person can face two charges, one for the assault, and another for 'their reasons for doing it.' That is not true," added criminal barrister Matthew Scott in an extensive blog post.

He explained that "although there are some cases where doing an act is illegal irrespective of your state of mind, there are no cases where your state of mind can make you guilty of an offence if you don't actually do anything capable of amounting to a crime". ...

The earlier section of the Met's hate crime definition might also seem alarming, insisting that people only need to "believe" a crime is motivated by hate for it to be recorded as such; however, this is a common definition used by police tracing back to recommendations of the 1999 MacPherson inquiry.

The Crown Prosecution Service confirmed last year that a "hate incident" only needs to be "perceived" with "no evidence needed", and many UK forces include "dislike" and "unfriendliness" as evidence of a hate crime.
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Politics – Conservative Party, public opinion
The curious case of the missing immigration debate
Ken Crawford
Conservative Woman, 19 March 2018.

The latest survey from YouGov places Brexit (60 per cent), health (42 per cent) and immigration (31 per cent) above the economy (29 per cent). Housing sits just behind at 25 per cent. The respective percentages have moved up and down through 2017/18 but these same issues nearly always top the economy as a concern, while housing has been rising as an issue.

Immigration is the most interesting since it receives relatively little political attention in comparison to the other issues. ...

This mismatch is especially interesting because immigration connects with the other issues. ...

This interconnection explains why immigration matters to so many different voter categories. Ipsos MORI's latest headline data and supporting tables break these down by sex, age, social class, geographic region and voter base. In every category Immigration rates above the economy – male/female, young/old, rich/poor. ...

Labour's position is the more understandable. The 2017 General Election data /.../ shows that Labour took 73 per cent of the ethnic minority vote, compared with only 47 per cent of the lowest socio-economic class. It is becoming more appropriate to regard Labour as the party of the ethnic minority, not of the working class. It is not difficult to see why Labour would have a vested interest in not engaging in an immigration debate that would antagonise the BME voter category, or else in framing the debate in terms of 'racism' such that it may appeal to the BME voter. Note to the Tories – the working class vote is very much up for grabs. Instead, the Conservatives appear fixated on erasing the 'nasty party' image. ...

Yet the Conservative position on immigration and asylum is still puzzling because it seems so obviously self-defeating, given that the Tory voter base is much more concerned about immigration ...
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Immigration abroad – Canada
How Trump's policies made Canada spend $131 million more on border patrols after its refugee system was inundated
Anna Mehler Paperny
Business Insider, 19 March 2018.

So few asylum seekers crossed the U.S. border illegally over the years that Canada didn't consistently track the numbers.

That has changed dramatically over the past 14 months. ...

More than 20,000 people, including thousands of Haitians and Nigerians and hundreds of Turks, Syrians and Eritreans, have crossed the border into Canada illegally over the past year in search of asylum, many fleeing in fear that Trump would deport them to their home countries.

This unexpected northward migration has overwhelmed Canada's system for processing asylum claims, leading to the worst delays in years. ...

The Canadian government was forced to set aside C$173 million in its latest budget to pay for extra patrols at border crossings to cope with the influx, as well as security screening and processing of refugee applications. ...

Aid agencies who are at the forefront of dealing with the influx say they are struggling and need more funding, a comprehensive long-term plan and better coordination with Ottawa. ...

The influx shows no signs of abating. More than 1,500 asylum seekers walked across the border in January. Those working with refugee claimants say this is no blip: It's the new normal. ...

All refugee claims are supposed to be processed within 60 days. Increasingly, the board has failed to meet those targets. ...

Asylum seekers are walking across the border into some of the tightest housing markets on the continent. ...

The federal government says it won't give cities more money for asylum seekers, who are barred from accessing a C$762 million federal fund that is for permanent residents or people who have already been granted refugee status. ...

"There is an expectation the numbers will go up ... as the weather gets better," said a source familiar with the Canadian government's thinking.
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Multiculturalism – Islam
Kurdish Afrin Falls to Turkey
Uzay Bulut
Gatestone Institute, 19 March 2018.
[Uzay Bulut is a Turkish journalist born and raised in Turkey. She is presently based in Washington D.C.]

Yesterday, while many Europeans are still pilloried for viewing mass migration from Muslim-majority countries as a threat to Western culture – and are still accused of "xenophobia," "Islamophobia" and "fear-mongering" – the city of Afrin, in the Kurdish area of Syria, fell to Turkey.

At the same time, a prominent Turkish government official has been openly and proudly declaring that the demography of Europe is changing in favor of Muslims.

MP Alparslan Kavaklioglu, a member of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the head of the parliament's Security and Intelligence Commission, recently stated:

"/.../ But Europe has this problem. All of the newcomers are Muslim. From Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Iran, Syria, and Turkey. Those who come from these places are Muslim. It is now at such a level that the most popular name in Brussels, Belgium is Mohammed. The second most popular name is Melih [Malih] and the third one is Ayse [Aisha]."
According to Kavaklioglu, if this trend continues,
"the Muslim population will outnumber the Christian population in Europe. This... has increased the nationalistic, xenophobic and anti-Islam rhetoric there. Hence, marginal, small parties have started to get large numbers of votes... But there is no remedy for it. Europe will be Muslim. We will be effective there, Allah willing. I am sure of that."
Kavaklioglu is not the first Turkish official to stress the importance of population growth. ...

In 2017, Erdogan called on Turks residing in Europe to have even more children:
"/.../ Make five children – not just three. For you are the future of Europe."

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Illegal immigration
Albanian police arrests 39 suspected human traffickers for illegally smuggling 1,000 people into Britain and the United States
Charlie Bayliss
MailOnline, 18 March 2018.

Albanian police have arrested 39 people in a crackdown in crime rings illegally sending around 1,000 Albanians into the UK, the United States and Canada.

National police chief Ardi Veliu confirmed authorities had identified seven criminal rings in ten different countries which allowed Albanians to move illegally by 'falsifying travel and identity documents of European Union countries'. ...

Despite the 39 arrests, 12 wanted fugitives are still at large, including two Bulgarians.

'Every person paid at least 7,000 pounds ($9,764) to get to the United Kingdom and from $24,000 to $30,000 to reach the U.S. and Canada,' Veliu told reporters.

Each of the people smuggled paid between $9,750 to $30,000 for the forgeries.

He said the gang forged passports for those travelling and helped them reach their destinations travelling through other European countries, or through the Dominican Republic or other countries in South America.
[Site link]

Racism – school sports
Now PE is RACIST says taxpayer-funded study that claims that teaching children to play football, rugby, cricket and netball favours 'white privilege'
Jonathan Petre
Mail on Sunday, 18 March 2018.

School PE lessons are racist, according to an astonishing taxpayer-funded study.

Teaching children to play football, rugby, cricket, netball and rounders favours 'privileged' white students, the politically correct 20-page report claims.

The research, which was criticised last night as 'ludicrous' and 'patronising' by a top black footballer, says sports that have been taught in schools for generations hark back to Britain's colonial past and make 'whiteness' the norm.

Its authors, who were given a grant of nearly £10,000 to examine PE classes in England and Norway, suggest that learning dances from different cultures should be given greater prominence. ...

Lord Ouseley, who chairs the anti-racism football campaign Kick It Out, said it was 'crazy' to put such sports in 'a context of ethnicity and racism' as they were played all over the world.

He added: 'This research is an irrelevance and also patronising because people make their own decisions about their involvement in sport.'

The report – called A Whitewashed Curriculum? The Construction of Race in Contemporary PE Curriculum Policy – says traditional games were developed in the Victorian era by 'white privileged males' at elite public schools that often discriminated against minorities.

The study, written in often baffling jargon and published in the journal Sport, Education and Society, says the games have been used by the British as 'part of a civilising process' and transported around the world 'as an extension of nationalism and the Empire'. ...

The study was conducted by Anne Flintoff, Professor of Physical Education and Sport at Leeds Beckett University, and Fiona Dowling from the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences in Oslo. They received a grant of £9,940 from the largely taxpayer-funded British Academy to support their work. ...

Bizarrely, they say that by focusing on the need for 'healthy, active lives' there is 'a danger PE lessons can contribute to a recolonisation of ethnic minorities' physicality'. ...

The report also states that PE is 'constructed as a predominantly white, unmarked space'.
[Site link]

Extremism – nationalists, free speech
Even those with the vilest of views have the right to be heard
Kenan Malik
The Guardian, 18 March 2018.

Martin Sellner is a nasty piece of work. The Austrian is a leader of the Generation Identity white nationalist movement and of Defend Europe, an organisation that tries to stop NGO boats from saving migrants drowning in the Med. His partner, the American Brittany Pettibone, is a writer and vlogger who sees immigration as "white genocide". Lauren Southern is a Canadian journalist who moves in far-right circles. Hitler, according to Southern, "was just an SJW [social justice warrior] who happened to get freaky amounts of power".

Over the past two weeks, all three have been barred from entering Britain. Their views, they were told, were unacceptable and their presence in Britain not "conducive to the public good".

Sellner, Pettibone and Southern are all odious characters. I loathe their anti-immigrant rhetoric. I despair of their tirades against Muslims. But I also think that all three have the right to be as loathsome and obnoxious as they wish to be. Even scumbags should not be barred for thought crimes.

Anti-racists in particular should be wary of such bans. Censorious laws that some applaud when applied to the far right inevitably get turned on to the left and anti-racists. The 1965 Race Relations Act introduced Britain's first legal ban on the incitement of racial hatred. Among the first people convicted under its provisions was the black power activist Michael X.

The 1936 Public Order Act, brought in to control Oswald Mosley's fascists, became used after the war to target trade unionists – most notoriously during the miners' strike of 1984-85 – and anti-fascist demonstrations in the 1970s and 1980s.

If we allow the state to define the limits of acceptable speech, it will not just be speech to which we object that gets curtailed.
[Site link]

Extremism – free speech
The 'patriotic' thought police came for Corbyn. You are next
Peter Hitchens
Mail on Sunday, 18 March 2018.

Is THIS a warning? In the past few days I have begun to sense a dangerous and dark new intolerance in the air, which I have never experienced before. An unbidden instinct tells me to be careful what I say or write, in case it ends badly for me. How badly? That is the trouble. I am genuinely unsure.

I have been to many countries where free speech is dangerous. But I have always assumed that there was no real risk here.

Now, several nasty trends have come together. ...

I expect, as time goes by, I will be accused of being an 'appeaser' and of being against 'British values'. And then what? An apparatus of thought policing is already in place in this country. By foolishly accepting bans on Muslim 'extremists', we have licensed public bodies to decide that other views, too, are 'extremist'.

Because the authorities are terrified of upsetting Islam, nothing much will happen to Muslim militants. But conservative and Christian views such as mine will suffer.

Christian and Jewish schools, especially ones which have conservative views on marriage and sex education, increasingly find themselves in trouble. Even mainstream Catholic and C of E schools are under stealthy attack, with attempts made to stop them 'discriminating' in favour of pupils from Christian homes.

Ofsted now says that 'all schools' have a 'duty to actively promote fundamental British values', which sounds totalitarian to me. This includes so-called 'mutual respect and tolerance of values different from their own'. Actually, there is nothing mutual about it. The sexual revolution fanatics demand submission, and offer no tolerance in return. Now the freedom to educate children at home, always a barometer of liberty, is being seriously threatened for the first time in our history. ...

There's no real spirit of liberty left in this country.

Yes, I am scared, and I never have been before. And so should you be.
[Site link]

Crime – sexual abuse of children, Islam
As a Rotherham grooming gang survivor, I want people to know about the religious extremism which inspired my abusers
Ella Hill
Independent, 18 March 2018.
[Ella Hill is a pseudonym]

I'm a Rotherham grooming gang survivor. ...

As a teenager, I was taken to various houses and flats above takeaways in the north of England, to be beaten, tortured and raped over 100 times. ...

They made it clear that because I was a non-Muslim, and not a virgin, and because I didn't dress "modestly", that they believed I deserved to be "punished". They said I had to "obey" or be beaten.

Fear of being killed, and threats to my parents' lives, made it impossible for me to escape for about a year. The police didn't help me. ...

However big or small the problem of grooming gang crime is, it is big enough to warrant national concern, not only because of the severity of crimes, but because of the degree of terror and threats to life involved. This really does devastate lives, families and communities. ...

Religious indoctrination is a big part of the process of getting young men involved in grooming gang crime. Religious ideas about purity, virginity, modesty and obedience are taken to the extreme until horrific abuse becomes the norm. It was taught to me as a concept of "othering". ...

All the major world religions, including Hinduism and Buddhism, have also at some time been associated with extreme human rights abuses against men, women and children.

I experienced horrific, religiously sanctioned sexual violence and torture – so I definitely believe that we need to be aware of religious extremism as something potentially harmful, so that we can protect people from it.

But for Tommy Robinson and his followers to focus on an entire religion, based on the cruel interpretations of some scriptures by some people, is unhelpful, to say the least. ...

Most grooming gang survivors I know absolutely condemn anti-Islamic hate, and we're uncomfortable with English Defence League protests. We certainly don't want random attacks on "all Muslims".
[Site link]

Social cohesion – hormone treatment
Brave New Europe: German Professors Want to Drug Europeans so They'll be More "Accepting" of Muslim Migrants
Jake Wilson
Squaker, 18 March 2018.

Oxytocin, often called the "love drug," is a hormone produced by the pituitary gland, and released in response to physical affection and intimacy. University researchers in Germany think it should be used to coerce native Germans into being more friendly to Muslim migrants. ...

"The combined enhancement of oxytocin and peer influence could diminish selfish motives," said Professor Rene Hurlemann from the University of Bonn's department of psychiatry. He went on to add, "Given the right circumstances, oxytocin may help promote the acceptance and integration of migrants into Western cultures."

So, from an ethical standpoint, should oxytocin be used to alter Western European's attitudes and "persuade" them to be more accepting of their new neighbors? Yes, Hurlemann said. ...

When one takes into account the fact that oxytocin can be administered by spraying the substance into the air in an aerosol form, this paints a very disturbing picture.
[Site link]

Multiculturalism – segregation
Cambridge college holds dinner for 'self-defining black and ethnic minority students' to allow non-white people to 'reclaim space'
John Stevens
Daily Mail, 17 March 2018.

A Cambridge University college held a formal dinner for 'self-defining black and minority ethnic students' that excluded white people.

Trinity College Students' Union claimed the segregated dinner, which it boasted was 'the first ever held in the college', was a way for non-white people in the college to 'reclaim some space'.

But last night critics accused the students of imposing 'a new apartheid'.

This is the latest race row at the university, where activists have demanded that academics 'decolonise' courses by putting more ethnic minority authors on reading lists and a student play was cancelled after complaints about its lack of black actors. ...

Last night after the Daily Mail contacted the university, the Facebook page advertising the event was taken down.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Islam, Germany
Survey: Three Quarters of Germans Say Islam Does Not 'Belong' in Germany
Thomas D. Williams, Ph.D.
Breitbart, 17 March 2018.

Asked whether Islam belongs in Germany, some three quarters (74 percent) of Germans polled answered "absolutely not" or "probably not," in direct opposition to German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

In their responses to a poll by the Civey institute, published Friday by FOCUS, 54.6 percent of Germans said that Islam was "absolutely not" a part of Germany, with an additional 19.7 percent answering "probably not."

Only 6.4 percent responded that Islam "definitely" belongs in Germany and another 14.9 percent answered, "probably yes." Of those polled, 4.4 percent abstained.

Chancellor Merkel ignited a debate on the subject in August, 2016, when she emphatically declared that "Islam belongs to Germany," in the midst of Europe's migrant crisis. ...

As Robert D. Kaplan explained in his ground-breaking 2016 Atlantic article "How Islam Created Europe," Europe – unlike other continents – was ultimately defined by its Christian identity, in opposition to Islam. While other continents were defined by rivers, seas, oceans, and mountains, Europe's identity was essentially religious, determined by the borders of Christendom.

As the expression "Christian Europe" suggests, Europeans came to see themselves as part of an entity that was, like the Islamic world, defined in religious terms. Quoting the 1957 book, "Europe: The Emergence of an Idea," Kaplan noted that "European unity began with the concept ... of a Christendom in 'inevitable opposition' to Islam." ...

As FOCUS points out, however, the question "Does Islam belong to Germany?" is imprecise and leaves considerable room for personal interpretation.
[Site link]

Terrorism – illegal immigration, asylum
Ahmed Hassan found guilty of attempted murder on Parsons Green Tube
Mark White
Sky News, 16 March 2018.

A teenage asylum-seeker who set off a bomb on a rush hour Tube train is facing life in jail.

Iraqi-born Ahmed Hassan, 18, built a bomb in his bedroom at his foster parents' home over the summer holidays.

A jury found him guilty of the attempted murder of 93 people, who escaped with their lives when a fireball engulfed a Tube carriage at Parsons Green on 15 September last year. ...

The District Line train was packed with commuters when the bomb partially detonated at the height of the morning rush. ...

When he was searched, he was carrying £2,320 in cash and claimed to police that he was waiting for a friend.

The teenager arrived in Britain illegally in October 2015, in the back of a lorry from Calais.

He claimed asylum, telling officials that he was in fear of ISIS, who he said had kidnapped him and other youngsters and trained them to kill. ...

During his trial, he told the court he had made up the story, because he actually came from a safe area of northern Iraq and feared he would have been refused permission to stay.
[Site link]

Crime – sexual abuse of children, Telford
Telford abuse: MP 'inundated' with child grooming reports
BBC, 16 March 2018.

More victims of child grooming in Telford have been coming forward in the wake of reports about the scandal, an MP has said.

Conservative Lucy Allan said she had been "inundated" with reports since speaking about the issue in Parliament.

Police said they were currently working with about 46 people who were at risk.

One local project working with young abuse victims said it had received 2,000 calls for assistance in the past two years. ...

West Mercia's Police and Crime Commissioner said he had "sought clarification" on reports that a memo by the force in 2013 said some child sexual abuse victims had "consented". ...

Since her speech in Parliament, Ms Allan told the BBC she had been "inundated with e-mails saying, 'This has happened to me'".

She said: "I have also spoken to a consultant psychiatrist who has had many patients who have experienced this issue and are dealing with the mental health consequences of this terrible crime.

"It is clear this has been going on for many years and a significant number of girls have been affected."
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Germany
Islam doesn't belong to Germany, new interior minister says
Reuters, 16 March 2018.

New Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said Islam did not belong to Germany, in an interview published on Friday, setting him on a collision course with Chancellor Angela Merkel who has stressed the need to integrate Muslims. ...

"Islam does not belong to Germany," Seehofer told mass-selling Bild newspaper, contradicting former German president Christian Wulff who fuelled a debate over immigration in 2010 by saying Islam was part of Germany. ...

"Of course the Muslims living here do belong to Germany," Seehofer said before going on to say Germany should not give up its own traditions or customs, which had Christianity at their heart.

"My message is: Muslims need to live with us, not next to us or against us," said Seehofer, who was sworn in as interior minister on Wednesday.
[Site link]

Terrorism – Birmingham
Ross Kemp wore the same body armour from Syria 'on the streets of Birmingham'
Rebecca Lewis
Metro, 16 March 2018.

Ross Kemp has been all around the world looking at gang culture, discovering the effects of war in Afghanistan and searching for pirates.

But his new two-part documentary, filmed in Birmingham, may have been the biggest shock of all.

'I am making a documentary about our armed response units and counter terrorist units – armed police across the UK – [and asking] do we have enough to meet the threat that is now posed to us?,' revealed Ross.

'Not only by terrorists but also by the increase in the use of hand guns by drugs gangs.'

And then he admitted that he has to 'wear the same body armour that I wore in Syria on the streets of Birmingham'. ...

Ross has been working with the West Midlands police force on the documentary as well as the British Transport Police, Northumberland police and South Yorkshire police.
[Site link]

Asylum – families, risk
Tory MP blasted for claiming letting the families of child refugees come to the UK will put the country at risk of Cologne-style mass sexual assaults
Alain Tolhurst
The Sun, 16 March 2018.

A Tory MP has been blasted for claiming that letting the families of child refugees come to the UK will put the country at risk of Cologne-style mass sexual assaults.

Ranil Jayawardena faced cries of "shame" after he warned of the "potential to face similar issues'" that Germany had if they backed a so-called '="Good Samaritan Bill".

The draft legislation put forward by SNP backbencher Angus MacNeil would allow minors to sponsor their close relatives to join them in Britain. ...

The Conservative member for North East Hampshire referenced the shocking events in Cologne on New Year's Eve 2015 as he called on colleagues to "do what is best to keep control of our system" and protect the "silent majority" in the United Kingdom.

He said "up to a million refugees and migrants" entered Germany that year, and brought up the fact a "failed asylum seeker from Tunisia plough a truck into a Christmas market stand in Berlin, leaving 12 dead".

But to shouts of discontent from his fellow MPs, Mr Jayawardena said: "Perhaps no event was more disgusting, more disgraceful, than the events on New Year's Eve 2015 in Cologne where the BBC reported that more than 1,000 criminal complaints were filed, hundreds of them alleging a sexual assault.

"An officer with the federal police put in his report about that night saying that 'women, unaccompanied or not, had to run a literal gauntlet of heavily intoxicated masses of men of a kind that it is impossible to describe - the situation we were confronted with, chaos, could have led to serious injuries or death'." ...

He said: "The UK has the potential to face similar issues."

But the MP, who was speaking against the Refugees (Family Reunion) (No 2) Bill, was heckled by the SNP throughout his speech. ...

His attempt to get the bill thrown out failed however, after a vote to move it onto the committee stage was passed by 129 votes to 42.
[Site link]

Population pressure – secondary schools
Secondary school pupil numbers will rise by more than 600,000 by 2023 due to baby boom driven by migration
Eleanor Harding
Daily Mail, 16 March 2018.

Senior school pupil numbers will rise by more than 600,000 by 2023 following a baby boom fuelled by high migration.

The number of secondary-age pupils is expected to increase by 21 per cent in the next five years, a Government projection states.

The rise originates from a surge in births which began in the 2000s following a period of sustained high immigration under New Labour. ...

The bulge in the population has already created huge problems for primary schools, with many having to expand classes or add classrooms.

Now that problem is set to transfer to secondary schools as the children grow older. ...

The forecast was released by the Government yesterday.

It showed that in 2016/17, the last year for which figures are available, there were about 3.14 million pupils of secondary school age in England.

This is predicted to rise to 3.8 million by 2023/24 – meaning there will be about 660,000 extra secondary-age pupils. ...

Last week it was reported that almost two-thirds of secondary schools had increased class sizes in the last two years amid growing demand for places.
[Site link]

Politics – hate crime, hate incident, thought crime
London Police Issue 'Hate Crime' Guidelines. Think Twice Before You Open Your Mouth.
Hank Berrien
Dailywire, 16 March 2018.

The London Metropolitan Police have issued their guidelines for what constitutes a "hate crime," and the parameters they delineate are wide enough to cause real concern. ...

The guidelines get even dicier here:

If someone commits a criminal offence and the victim, or anyone else, believes it was motivated by prejudice or hate, we class this as a "hate crime." It means the offender can be charged for the crime itself and also their reasons for doing it. If someone does something that isn't a criminal offence but the victim, or anyone else, believes it was motivated by prejudice or hate, we would class this as a 'hate incident'. Though what the perpetrator has done may not be against the law, their reasons for doing it are. This means it may be possible to charge them with an offence.


In an age where the snowflake mentality is pervasive, does it help when the force of the law is brought to bear in such a heavy-handed way?

Doubtless the British think so.
[Site link]

Population pressure – housing
How mass immigration drives the housing crisis
Lionel Shriver
The Spectator, 17 March 2018.

It took half a century for the UK population to rise from 50.3 million in 1950 to 59.1 million in 2000. During that period, the foreign-born population rose from 4.3 per cent to 8.8 per cent – so a measure of that increase was already accounted for by newcomers. After an inflow historically unprecedented for this country, this brief century alone has seen the UK population shoot up to 65.6 million (as of January 2017), 14 per cent of whom were foreign-born as of 2016. ...

Oxford demographer David Coleman estimates that 85 per cent of the UK's population increase from 2000 to 2015 is explained by migrants and their children. All these new people have to live somewhere. The pressure on housing, among many other social provisions, is intensified by the fact that on average foreign-born mothers have more children (2.06 in 2016) than women born in Britain (only 1.75). ...

... As of 2011, mothers born in Poland averaged 2.1 children – while mothers born in Pakistan had 3.8, and mothers born in Somalia had 4.2. ...

The housing crunch is further complicated by the fact that so many immigrants settle in the southeast, where residential shortages are keenest. The population of Greater London in 2017 was 8.8 million, a rise of 400,000 over the previous five years. Greater London housed only 7.1 million people in 1997, when Blair opened the gates to permanent visitors. That's 1.7 million more residents in two decades – an increase of over a quarter, two-thirds of which occurred in only the last ten years.

As of 2016, only 45 per cent of the capital was white British. An astonishing 58.2 per cent of births in London were to foreign-born mothers. /.../ While over a third of the babies born in England and Wales had at least one parent born outside the UK, in London that figure was 66.6 per cent: two-thirds.

Indeed, most immigration statistics are untrustworthy – because they're too low. London Councils chairman Merrick Cockell told the BBC back in 2008, 'London's population is growing at an even faster rate than these figures suggest because official data has failed to properly account for the complexities of migration and population churn.' ...

... The UK's housing crisis rests hand-in-glove with mass immigration.
[Site link]

Crime – sexual abuse of children, Telford
Police 'victim blame' Telford sex abuse victims as young as 11 with internal memo telling officers 'in most cases the sex is consensual'
Anthony Joseph and Martin Robinson
MailOnline, 15 March 2018.

Police have been accused of 'victim blaming' the children who were abused by grooming gangs in Telford.

Officers investigating the Telford sex abuse scandal, in which some of the victims were just 11, were reportedly sent an internal message saying 'in most cases the sex is consensual'.

Child abuse lawyer Dino Nocivelli slammed West Mercia Police for the way they investigated the case. ...

Yesterday, West Mercia Police Supt Tom Harding has 'significantly disputed' claims that 1,000-plus children may have been groomed over four decades in the Shropshire town.

He said: 'I don't believe Telford is any worse than lots of places across England and Wales'. ...

According to Home Office figures, Telford, a town of 170,000 people, has the third highest number of child sexual offences recorded in the UK, after Blackpool and Rotherham.
[Site link]

Terrorism – Islam, Asia, Europe
Islamic radicalization in Pakistan poses threat to world, say experts
The Hans India, 15 March 2018.

Pakistan continues to remain an epicenter of Islamic radicalization, said a group of international experts while speaking on a side event titled "Growing Extremism in South Asia; Repercussions for the West" held during the 37th session of UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

Organised by Brussels based European Foundation for South Asian Studies (EFSAS), the event sheds light on the cross-over of extremist elements between South Asia and the West.

Prof. Paul Stott of University of Leicester said, "Historically, this unfortunately being a very strong cross over between the Indian sub-continent and the UK in terms of terrorism and certainly in the 1990s not enough attention was paid to the fact that so many young Britons were coming to Kashmir, for example them entering Pakistan and attending training camps and going to Afghanistan and joining Taliban there and getting involved in political and religious activities which proven to be very problematic indeed. People like Masood Azhar, some quite problematic clerical speakers, who were able to organize in the UK in the 1990s again in a way that authorities rather mix."

The experts laid emphasis on the growing nexus between Islamic fundamentalists and terrorists, based in Pakistan, with those settled in UK, Bosnia and other countries in the 1990s. Some of them, including Lashkar-e-Taiba Chief Hafiz Saeed are still remain powerful with support of the state. ...

Junaid Qureshi, Director of European Foundation for South Asian Studies said, "Radicalization and terrorism is growing in South Asia from the past so many years. If you look, for example, in Pakistan there is a movement going on to mainstream Hafiz Saeed, who actually has a 10 million bounty on him." ...

Maarten Bolhuis, a researcher and lecturer at the Criminal Law and Criminology Department of the UV University in Amsterdam spoke about the nexus between asylum, immigration and jihadism.
[Site link]

Multiculturalism – English language
Sajid Javid: 770,000 people in England unable to speak English well
Anushka Asthana
The Guardian, 14 March 2018.

Sajid Javid has revealed that 770,000 people living in England speak no English or hardly any, in a personal interview in which he described his own experience as a "six-year-old interpreter" for his Pakistani mother.

The communities secretary promised to expand the teaching of English for immigrants as he warned that up to 70% of those unable to speak the language were women, and most of them were from Pakistani or Bangladeshi communities. ...

He said the government wanted to use Wednesday's consultation document to tackle segregation by also: acting against cultural practices "not compatible with the British way of life" such as polygamy; tackling disproportionately low take-up rates of free childcare by Asian women; and using the roll-out of universal credit to help target ethnic minorities and help them to integrate better.

In the green paper, the government says that over three quarters of a million people in England speak the language poorly or not at all. ...

The paper is, in part, a response to the review of social integration by Dame Louise Casey. who criticised successive governments for failing to keep up with the "unprecedented pace and scale of immigration" that had left some communities increasingly divided.

She also highlighted "deeply regressive religious and cultural practices, especially when it comes to women".
[Site link]

Multiculturalism – segregation
We are sleepwalking into an increasingly segregated country – it's time to ignore 'racism' fears and act to stop Britain falling apart
Dame Louise Casey
The Sun, 14 March 2018.

It has been more than a year since I published my report on opportunity and integration, in which I warned the Government we were sleepwalking into an increasingly segregated country.

I was then the Integration Tsar and what my study – commissioned by David Cameron and Theresa May – discovered was a country drifting apart. ...

I told how attempts to tackle integration had been feeble – nothing more than "saris, samosas and steel drums for the already well-intentioned". ...

So it is welcome news the Government is finally taking this seriously, and will today publish its Integrated Communities Strategy green paper – partly in response to my review of 2016. ...

We must talk about Sharia law. It is a core British value that you are free to live how you choose as long as you respect our democracy and rule of law. But tiptoeing around issues or turning a blind eye to abuse gets us nowhere.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Australia
Australia's immigration jobs myth: Population expert says migrants aren't fixing skill shortages and are making it HARDER for people to get jobs – and he has the numbers to prove it
Stephen Johnson
Daily Mail Australia, 14 March 2018.

One of Australia's most respected population experts has busted the myth that immigrants are filling skills shortages.

Bob Birrell, who heads the Melbourne-based Australian Population Research Institute, said the nation was importing migrants who couldn't find work as engineers, accountants and IT technicians.

However, few skilled migrants with trades qualifications were moving to Australia despite the shortage of plumbers, builders and electricians.

'The claim that it is attracting scarce skills is a myth,' Dr Birrell said in a research paper published on Tuesday, called Scarce Skills Not Required. ...

The sociologist, who has researched population growth since the 1960s, said both sides of politics had relied on the flawed advice of big business and public service bureaucrats, who cared more about economic growth than social harmony.

'The Treasury, Reserve Bank and much of the big end of town understands that population growth is the most important overall factor in driving our GDP,' he said.

'The Coalition, Labor and Greens effectively have prioritised these ends above the concerns of Australians living in the metropolitan areas.

'They have been left to put up with the loss of urban amenity, high dwelling prices and the costs of providing the additional infrastructure needed to accommodate population growth in their cities.'
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – USA
The U.S. will become "minority white" in 2045, Census projects
William H. Frey
Bookings Institution, 14 March 2018.

New census population projections confirm the importance of racial minorities as the primary demographic engine of the nation's future growth, countering an aging, slow-growing and soon to be declining white population. The new statistics project that the nation will become "minority white" in 2045. During that year, whites will comprise 49.9 percent of the population in contrast to 24.6 percent for Hispanics, 13.1 percent for blacks, 7.8 percent for Asians, and 3.8 percent for multiracial populations. ...

Among the minority populations, the greatest growth is projected for multiracial populations, Asians and Hispanics with 2018-2060 growth rates of 175, 93, and 85 percent, respectively. The projected growth rate for blacks is 34 percent.* The demographic source of growth varies across groups. For example, immigration contributes to one-third of Hispanic growth over this time span, with the rest attributable to natural increase (the excess of births over deaths). Among Asians, immigration contributes to three quarters of the projected growth. ...

* Growth rates for multiracials, Asians and blacks pertain to non-Hispanic members of those groups.
[Site link]

Illegal immigration
Police smash human trafficking ring smuggling people into UK for £17,500 each: 155 arrests
Gerard Couzens
Daily Express, 13 March 2018.

Police in Spain have arrested 155 people and smashed an international Chinese human trafficking gang that smuggled people into Britain and Ireland. Officers say gang chiefs charged migrants a flat fee of £17,500 (€20,000) each for getting them to their final destination with fake passports. ...

The illegal operation was smashed after five migrants entered a witness protection programme in exchange for giving evidence against gang bosses. ...

A spokesman for Spain's National Police confirmed: "National Police officers have dismantled an international organisation specialising in the smuggling of people from China into the UK and Ireland. ...

"The operation has resulted in the arrest of 155 mostly Chinese people, including the four alleged leaders of the organisation. ...

"After reaching Schengen territory, the migrants were taken to different municipalities in the province of Barcelona and put up temporarily in safe flats where the travel documents they had used to get to Europe were taken from them while they waited for new documents to arrive.

"The passports were created in China and sent to Spain using courier firms. Once they arrived, the organisation bought air tickets with budget airlines the same day of the flight."
[Site link]

Emigration – Africa
Pew: Sub-Saharan Africa Is Fastest Growing Region for 'Exporting' Migrants
Thomas D. Williams, Ph.D.
Breitbart, 13 March 2018.

Emigration from countries of Sub-Saharan Africa has risen dramatically in recent years and the region currently accounts for eight of the 10 fastest growing international migrant populations, according to a new report by the Pew Research Center.

Analyzing the latest United Nations data on the number of people living outside their country of birth, Pew found that the rate of emigration from these eight African nations – South Sudan, Central African Republic, Sao Tome and Principe, Eritrea, Namibia, Rwanda, Botswana, and Burundi – grew by more than 50 percent, and in some cases as much as 200-300 percent. The number rises to 9 of the top 10 if Sudan – much of which is sub-Saharan – is included.
[Site link]

Crime – sexual abuse of children, hypocrisy
Telford girls: the wrong kind of victims
Joanna Williams
Spiked, 13 March 2018.

It's been six months since the #MeToo movement first took off. For half a year now we've had a regular drip-feed of stories drawing attention to the apparent suffering of women at the hands of men. So when this weekend's Sunday Mirror revealed the shocking abuse experienced by hundreds of women and girls in Telford we might have expected the outrage to find a new focus. The news that girls, some as young as 11, were drugged, beaten and raped by gangs of mainly Muslim, Asian-heritage men could have provided further fuel to campaigners. We might have expected shows of solidarity, reminders of the importance of believing the victim, and offers of financial support.

But no. The abuse in Telford is estimated to have involved over 1,000 girls stretching over 40 years. Young girls in the town were groomed, fed drugs and raped. They were passed between abusers like commodities. Some got pregnant, had abortions and were raped again on multiple occasions. Three women were murdered and two others died in tragedies linked to the abuse. Yet these shocking events have received relatively little coverage. ...

The very same newspapers that covered, at length and over many days, news that Kate Maltby's knee may or may not have been touched by Damian Green or that Michael Fallon attempted to kiss Jane Merrick, were unable to muster up the same level of outrage for young women in Telford.

The lack of comment on the Telford abuse scandal exposes the hypocrisy at the heart of the #MeToo movement. High-profile campaigners announce time and again that they are not driven by self-interest, but from a desire to help women less fortunate than themselves. ...

Time's Up, the celebrity #MeToo spin-off, launched a fundraiser to pay legal fees for victims of sexual harassment and assault seeking justice. /.../ More than $16.7 million was raised in less than a month. /.../ Only, it seems, some women are more deserving of solidarity than others; ...

So why have there been no outpourings of sympathy or expressions of outrage for the girls of Telford? ...

Or perhaps the Asian men accused of grooming, rape, drug-dealing, murder and paedophilia are simply the wrong kind of perpetrator. ...

Celebrities and journalists speaking for the #MeToo movement talk of believing the victim and helping other women find a voice. But, tragically, as far as working-class girls in Oxford, Rotherham, Newcastle and now Telford are concerned, not all women are equal. The #MeToo movement demonstrates a nauseating degree of hypocrisy. Worse, it distracts time and resources away from genuine victims of abuse. Last week the MP for Grimsby, Melanie Onn, led a debate in parliament calling for wolf-whistling and catcalling to be classified as misogyny and punished as hate crime. Crusaders like Onn prefer to focus on random whistlers than confront the more difficult issue of gangs of Muslim men targeting working-class girls.
[Site link]

Illegal immigration – Belgium, UK
Belgian citizens shelter 500 migrants each night. Police could soon start raiding their homes.
Quentin Ariès and Michael Birnbaum
Washington Post, 12 March 2018.

Every day, a massive effort to help migrants here starts with complex choreography at a park in the heart of the city.

... Migrants, almost all of them men, many of them from sub-Saharan Africa, chat with each other in a mixture of Arabic, Swahili, English, French and Italian. Organizers divide the men into loose lines and then pair them with people offering rides, who in turn shuttle them to additional volunteers who have pledged beds and food. ...

"We aim to create a model, a humanitarian hub that can be helpful for migrants," said Medhi Kassou, 34, who quit his job in marketing to coordinate the volunteer effort, which recalls an ant hive in its nightly routine.

Collectively, the group has provided 55,000 nights of accommodation for migrants since last summer. More than 36,000 people have joined its coordination group on Facebook. ...

Most of the migrants helped by the volunteers hope to continue to Britain, where they think they can find better-paying jobs and a more welcoming community. For that reason, few of them apply for asylum in Belgium; applying would limit their ability to move on.
[Site link]

Extremism – free speech
Britain Says 'Yes' to Jihadists, 'No' to Free Speech
James Delingpole
Breitbart, 12 March 2018.

This letter shames Britain.

It's illiterate ("Your boyfriend have in his possession" and "insight" where it means "incite"), it's at once pompously officious and sloppily amateurish, and it's written by someone who clearly has no grasp of basic details like when and when not to use capital letters ...

Yet on this barely educated jobsworth's say-so, author and activist Brittany Pettibone has – with her boyfriend, Austrian Identarian Martin Sellner, and, subsequently, Canadian citizen journalist Lauren Southern – been declared persona non grata in the U.K.

Clearly, this jobsworth was only obeying the orders of someone well above his pay grade. Presumably, responsibility for this decision goes right to the top – at least as far as Home Secretary Amber Rudd.

If so, Amber Rudd has some serious questions to answer. ...

Current U.K. immigration policy appears to work like this:

It's apparently okay to let an estimated 425 ISIS terrorists back into the country after their jaunts to the killing zones of Iraq and Syria.

But it's apparently not okay to let in three campaigners whose only crime is to speak out on behalf of the silent majority, which has had just about enough of all this cultural enrichment and who would like their governments to do more to protect them from it:

And isn't there something deeply sinister about that phrase claiming that Pettibone, Southern, and Co. "bear a serious threat to the fundamental interests of society"?

Not so long ago, it used to be considered "fundamental" to the "interests of society" that Britain was a country which defended freedom of speech and freedom of conscience. That's why, for example, we have this place mentioned in the letter called Speakers' Corner, where anyone can go to have their say, however "right" or "wrong" their opinions.

No more, apparently.
[Site link]

Crime – sexual abuse of children, Telford
Britain's 'worst ever' child grooming scandal exposed: Hundreds of young girls raped, beaten, sold for sex and some even KILLED
Nick Sommerlad and Geraldine McKelvie
Sunday Mirror, 11 March 2018.

Up to 1,000 children could have suffered in Britain's worst known abuse scandal - where sex gangs targeted girls as young as 11.

The rape hell of vulnerable young girls in one town - Telford - went on for a shocking 40 years, the Sunday Mirror can reveal. ...

Girls as young as 11 have been lured from their families to be drugged, beaten and raped in an epidemic that, say victims, is still ongoing.

THREE people were murdered and two others died in tragedies linked to the scandal. ...

The Mirror's 18-month investigation reveals abuse on unprecedented levels. We found:

• Social workers knew of abuse in the 1990s but police took a decade to launch a probe

• Council staff viewed abused and trafficked children as "prostitutes" instead of victims, according to previously unseen files

• Authorities failed to keep details of abusers from Asian communities for fear of "racism"

• Police failed to investigate one recent case five times until an MP intervened

• One victim said cops tried to stop her finding out why her abusers had not been prosecuted because they feared she would talk to us

The scale of the abuse uncovered in Telford – population 170,000 – is feared to be the most brutal and long-running of all. ...

Specialist child abuse solicitor Dino Nocivelli, of Bolt Burdon Kemp, said: "These children were treated as sexual commodities by men who inflicted despicable acts of abuse.

"The survivors deserve an inquiry. They need to know how abuse took place for so long and why so many perpetrators have never been brought to justice." ...

Documents which will be passed to the Home Office reveals authorities knew of the horrors a decade before investigating – and shows how they tried to hamper our probe.

We presented our findings to Professor Liz Kelly, from the Child and Woman Abuse Studies Unit at London Metropolitan University.

She helped estimate the number of victims based on figures gathered by our investigators.

Prof Kelly said: "We are acting as if we didn't know about child sex abuse rings. We have an unfortunate capacity to choose to forget."
[Site link]

Benefits and costs – EU migrants' benefits
Migrants claim £4bn a year in benefits, new report claims
Edward Malnick
Telegraph, 11 March 2018.

EU migrants claim more than £4 billion a year in benefits, according to a new report.

The amount, in a paper produced by former Conservative Party leader and Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith, came as Mr Duncan Smith set out proposals for post-Brexit rules preventing EU migrants from entering Britain unless they have already secured a job, and imposing a five-year delay before they are allowed to claim income, family or housing benefits.
[Site link]

Benefits and costs – EU migrants' benefits
EU migrants in Britain claimed more than £4bn a year in benefits
David Wooding
The Sun, 11 March 2018.

EU migrants in Britain claimed more than £4 billion a year in benefits.

Those from Eastern Europe received more in welfare than the average UK citizen – and paid less income tax.

In the run-up to the Brexit referendum, ministers had insisted the figures were not available.

But the cost of open doors migration has now been revealed.

Data from the Department for Work and Pensions, taxman and Treasury shows EU workers received more than £2.2 billion in tax credits and housing benefits, £1.1 billion in out-of-work payments and £700 million in child benefit.

There is a stark contrast between Western and Eastern Europeans.

Nearly half the personal taxes paid by migrants from countries such as Romania, Bulgaria and Poland went straight back in tax credits and child benefit.

DWP figures were not broken down by country.

But if they followed a similar distribution, then almost all of the taxes went back in working-age benefit.
[Site link]

Politics – Labour Party
Jeremy Corbyn likened to Nigel Farage by senior members of his own party after vow to curb foreign workers
Rob Merrick
Independent, 11 March 2018.

Jeremy Corbyn has been accused of echoing Nigel Farage after vowing to curb foreign workers, in extraordinary criticism from senior Scottish Labour colleagues.

Kezia Dugdale, the former Scottish Labour leader, said the party had "allowed the myths of EU immigration rules to be perpetuated" after Mr Corbyn called for post-Brexit curbs on low-paid immigration.

And Ian Murray, an ex-Shadow Scottish Secretary, warned "the only person smiling after that passage in Jeremy's speech would have been Nigel Farage".

SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon also accused Labour of sounding like Ukip after Mr Corbyn described foreign nationals as "cheap" workers. ...

The fierce criticism came after Mr Corbyn's speech to the Scottish Labour conference on Friday was viewed as a significant shift to a Eurosceptic stance.

The Labour leader claimed Brexit would deliver the benefit of preventing firms "importing cheap labour" to undercut the wages of UK workers.
[Site link]

Diversity – Scout Association
Scouts to rebrand because current fleur-de-lis logo is 'old-fashioned'
Olivia Rudgard
Daily Telegraph, 10 March 2018.

The Scout Association is to rebrand its old logo having decided that the current fleur-de-lis is "old-fashioned" and "means little" to a modern audience.

In a blog post published on Friday UK Chief Commissioner Tim Kidd said the "current, highly traditional Fleur-de-lis" is outdated and seems "from another time". ...

Mr Kidd added that its new look was particularly popular with mothers and with parents from black and minority ethnic communities, who said they would be 44 per cent more likely to volunteer and 69 per cent more likely to send their children to Scouts.

"That's potentially a huge step forward for us as a movement committed to inclusivity," he said.
[Site link]

Asylum – deportation
Just one in ten asylum seekers who come to Britain are sent back to the country they first arrived in due to 'completely useless' EU rules
Ian Drury
Daily Mail, 9 March 2018.

Britain is benefiting 'very little' from a Brussels deal to send asylum-seekers back to the country where they first set foot in Europe.

A damning report says the rules known as the Dublin Regulation are 'virtually useless' amid concerns that other members of the bloc are exploiting Britain.

Migrants are supposed to claim asylum in the first member state they arrive in. Those who fail to do so can be returned there if they later travel on to another EU country.

An analysis by the Migrationwatch think-tank shows Britain asked its European partners to take back 4,237 asylum-seekers in 2016 on the grounds they had arrived elsewhere in Europe. But just 355 were transferred that year – fewer than one in ten.

The figures also reveal that for the whole of 2016 and 2017, only 676 asylum-seekers were sent back to Europe under the rules, fewer than one a day.

This is despite thousands making their way here via Calais. Over the same period, the UK accepted 1,019 asylum-seekers from other countries under the Dublin Regulations.

Migrationwatch, which campaigns for tighter borders, says the UK is gaining little advantage from the agreement. ...

In the last year, 26,350 people claimed asylum in Britain while thousands a month are being detected at ports on both sides of the Channel, indicating that huge numbers are trying to sneak in. ...

These regulations have been especially exploited by France, which claims it is not responsible for migrants coming to the UK from Calais.

Home Office officials say their hands are tied if a country refuses to take back asylum-seekers as it is difficult to establish exactly where an individual first arrived in Europe. EU countries have also been accused of failing to fingerprint stowaways they seize at their border so the asylum problem passes onto other countries.

Under the convention, any country which fingerprints an immigrant has to take responsibility for them.
[Site link]

Politics – populism
Italy's election result shouldn't be a shock. The populist revolution has just begun
Rod Liddle
The Spectator, 9 March 2018.

But the Italians voted overwhelmingly for populists and, even more so, populists who are at best sceptical of the European Union. ...

These election results will have come as a grave shock to Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury. In his new book, Reimagining Britain, our spiritual guide and leader castigates populism: I hope the Italians feel suitably chastened. ...

... The liberals, with the idiotic Welby among them, were immensely cheered by 2017, primarily by the victory of Emmanuel Macron in the French presidential elections, but also by the failure of Geert Wilders to make much of a dent in the Dutch elections, as well as the bloody nose afforded to Theresa May in June of that year.

But this ignores the fact that three of the leading candidates who contested the French elections were avowedly populist, even if the eventual winner was merely faux-populist. It ignores the fact that in the Dutch elections the establishment liberals were once again annihilated. ...

An opinion poll back in October suggested that 60 per cent of Italians wanted very tough restrictions on immigration into their country. That is absolutely in line with other opinion polls across Europe. It is remarkable that Europe's liberal elite has not grasped this fact; even if Merkel has of late. The people of Europe do not want any more immigration on the scale we have seen in the past five years. That is the principal reason they are voting for populist leaders and why they will continue to do so.
[Site link]

Extremism – Islam
Christian refugee returns to Syria because Europe is flooded with ISIS supporters
Voice of Europe, 9 March 2018.

Spiro Haddad is a Christian refugee who returned to Syria from Austria. In an interview with a German TV broadcaster in Syria, he tells how his life was in danger in Austria and why he made the decision to return.

Haddad says he reached Austria by spending €3,000 on smugglers. At first he wanted to stay there, but he changed his mind after he saw how many refugees pledged to terrorist groups like Al-Nusra and ISIS.

As a Christian he didn't feel safe among them in Austria and he had to keep his faith a secret or it could cost him his life. Haddad says extremists wanted to change churches into mosques and he had to talk like them to survive.

After he contacted the Austrian authorities about it, they didn't take him seriously. That was the moment he decided to leave and now he lives in Syria again.

Haddad warns Europe and says "it's not good that Europe is open to all". "ISIS and Al-Nusra want to destroy everything, even with you. If you do not understand that, I'm pessimistic for the future of Europe," he says.
[Site link]

Population pressure – schools
Class sizes increase at nearly two thirds of secondary schools in the past two years as teachers feel the impact of a baby boom
Eleanor Harding
Daily Mail, 8 March 2018.

Almost two-thirds of secondary schools have increased their class sizes in the past two years amid a growing crisis over places, union leaders say today.

A survey by three major teaching unions suggests 62 per cent of schools have had to expand classes from 2014/15 to 2016/17. ...

Today's research was conducted by the National Education Union, National Association of Head Teachers, the schools leaders' union ASCL and three other non-teaching unions. ...

It is estimated there will be an extra 540,000 more secondary school pupils by 2025, up 19 per cent. Around 65,000 more youngsters are expected to join secondary schools this autumn alone.
[Site link]

Extremism – Islam
Parsons Green bomb suspect admitted being 'trained to kill' by Islamic State, court hears
Martin Evans
Daily Telegraph, 8 March 2018.

The man accused of planting the Parsons Green Tube bomb was "trained on how to kill" by Islamic State, a court has heard.

Iraqi asylum seeker Ahmed Hassan, 18, who came to Britain illegally in the back of lorry in 2015, told immigration officials that he had been forced to join IS after they threatened to kill members of his family.

Interviewed at an immigration centre in Croydon in January 2016, Mr Hassan, said: "They trained us how to kill. It was all religious based."

He said he had trained alongside around 1,000 other fighters in Iraq and would spend three or four hours a day in the mosque. ...

Hassan arrived in Britain in the back of a lorry via the Channel Tunnel in October 2015. He had no identity documents and claimed asylum, saying he was born in June 1999.
[Site link]

Crime – thoughtcrime
Is it now a thoughtcrime to hate Islam?
Brendan O'Neill
Spiked, 8 March 2018.

Is it a crime now to be hostile to the Muslim faith? Reading some of the media reporting of the jailing yesterday of Britain First leaders Jayda Fransen and Paul Golding for religiously aggravated harassment, it would seem so. Fransen and Golding were sentenced to 36 weeks and 18 weeks respectively at Folkestone Magistrates' Court for a leafleting and online-video campaign in which, among other things, they yelled at Muslims going about their daily business in Kent, wrongly accused some people of being suspects in a Kent gang-rape case involving Muslim migrants, and caused distress to young people, young Muslims, who witnessed their behaviour. Horrible. Media reports inform us that they have now been imprisoned because, in the words of the judge, 'they "demonstrated hostility" to Muslims and the Muslim faith'.

Demonstrated hostility to the Muslim faith? Our response to that should be: so what? In a free country, you should be perfectly at liberty to 'demonstrate hostility' to the Muslim faith. And any other religion, or creed, or god, or ideology. Indeed, the right not to believe, the right to blaspheme, the right to 'demonstrate hostility' to religion, are hard-won liberties. People died for this. The fact that the media this morning – including the Telegraph, the Guardian and the BBC – are all using the exact same formulation of 'demonstrated hostility to Muslims and the Muslim faith' to describe why Fransen and Golding are going to jail, and the fact that this isn't ringing any alarm bells in public discussion, is a terrifying indicator of how thoroughly we now accept that people's views on religion ought to be a matter for state control and possibly state repression.

The judge's actual words were that Fransen and Golding had 'demonstrated hostility' to 'people of the Muslim faith' in their harassing, obsessive campaign around that Kent rape case. That is, to Muslims. But it is not surprising in the least that the media have reported this as 'hostility to the Muslim faith', nor that much of the media think it is acceptable to punish people for demonstrating such hostility, because the trial absolutely was concerned with Fransen's and Golding's views on Islam. That is clear from the fact that they were convicted of 'religiously aggravated harassment'. That is, they weren't merely punished for harassing people. They were also punished for what they were thinking as they harassed these people, in essence for what they believe: that Islam is bad and Muslims are dangerous. They weren't only punished for what they did but also for what they thought. There's a word for that: thoughtcrime.
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Crime – EU citizens
EU citizens in Bristol will use 'tick-box' to say if they are criminals or not
Patrick Daly
Bristol Post, 7 March 2018.

Home Office officials have confirmed to a Bristol MP that EU citizens wanting to secure permanent status after Brexit will use a "self-declaratory tick-box" to state whether they are criminals.

As part of the divorce deal with Brussels, the Government will allow EU citizens who have lived in the UK for more than five years by the Brexit deadline to be able to register with the Home Office, giving them the same access rights as British citizens to healthcare, education and other services.

Those who have not lived in the country for five years will be able to register once they reach that milestone, as long as they moved to the UK before March 29, 2019.

But as part of the registration process, ministers confirmed to Bristol North West MP Darren Jones that no criminal record checks will be conducted into whether any of the three million EU citizens currently residing in the UK had previously committed crimes elsewhere. ...

EU nationals registering with the Home Office online will instead be asked to "make a declaration" about whether they have been convicted of a crime in the past, the European Scrutiny Committee was told last week.

... Glyn Williams, director general of the Border Immigration and Citizenship System at the Home Office, ...

Mr Williams confirmed full criminal record checks would not take place for every application.

"They will not have to go to the Disclosure and Barring Service," said the senior civil servant.

"They will be asked as part of the application process to make a declaration, and the Home Office will run checks against its own and police databases." ...

Tory minister Ms Nokes, answering a later question, said the Government was not ruling out including free movement of labour as part of a possible free trade with the EU.

She said the "movement of labour with EU countries" was "absolutely part of the negotiations".
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Employment – robots
The cauliflower-picking robot funded by the EU that is set to replace migrant workers for short-staffed farmers in Cornwall
Joe Pinkstone
MailOnline, 7 March 2018.

The vegetables you eat with your Sunday roast may soon be picked by a robot.

Farmers in Cornwall are testing a machine invented using European funding that picks cauliflowers from the field without bruising them. ...

The GummiArm robot is believed to be a answer to any migrant staff shortages that may arise when the UK leaves the EU.

The robotic cauliflower-picking arm is the work of Dr Martin Stoelen at the University of Plymouth. ...

Currently, farmers harvest fields all at once, in a practice known as slaughter harvesting.

But this method leads to up to 60 per cent of the crop being wasted, because it is either wonky or inedible. ...

Mr Simmons said: 'Harvesting costs can be up to 40 per cent of the costs of production of brassicas and skilled labour to do the harvesting is getting increasingly difficult to obtain, especially with Brexit fast approaching.

'In a very competitive market place where our customers demand cheap food, the cost of harvesting is continually rising.

'Robotic harvesting has the potential to increase productivity and control the costs.'
[Site link]

Immigration – politics
Immigration: Who should we let in after Brexit?
Nick Robinson
BBC, 7 March 2018.

Amidst all the talk about Brexit - about borders and about trade - ministers have said almost nothing about how immigration will be controlled after the UK leaves the EU. They have not yet come up with the answer to a fundamental question - who should we let in?

The promise to take back control of our borders was the headline of the leave campaign. Yet almost two years on, there has been little public debate about how that will be done, or what our immigration system should look like once free movement of EU citizens in and out of Britain has ended.

The Home Office originally promised to publish its plans for a new immigration policy before Christmas. Then it said the spring. Now ministers say it'll be in the autumn. ...

Why the delay? Very likely it's because they're caught in the middle, between the demands of British business and the expectations of many of the voters who backed Brexit.

Pressure is now mounting on Theresa May from a growing number of businesses who fear that they will not be able to find the workers they need after we leave the EU. ...

But the Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott told me that the government's target was "completely bogus". She says, "it's just a way of the Tories talking an anti-immigrant narrative".

When asked twice whether immigration could go up under Labour, she did not rule it out.

"We can't say what is going to happen to levels of migration, because migration flows are subject to all sorts of international pressures. With increased emphasis on training and skills, the need for people's specific skills from overseas may well decline." ...

It is thought the Cabinet has had only one high-level discussion about immigration recently, and it is said to have argued about whether preference should in future be given to workers from the EU - Poles, Spanish and French - or whether there should be a level playing field for immigrants wherever they come from.

Brexiteers like Jacob Rees Mogg back the latter approach.

"I can see no reason to give preference to people from the EU after we've left. Why should we discriminate against our Commonwealth friends, against our American friends, the very large Indian population in this country? Surely we should prioritise members of their family against people from the EU with whom we have no connection?"

But this is one more subject that looks set to get included in those endless complex Brexit negotiations. The more trade we want, the more open our borders may have to be.

One well-placed source told me that the first thing countries want to export is their people. That, incidentally, applies to India or China as well. ...

The truth is the debate on immigration has scarcely begun.
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Population pressure – housing
Hesitant housing reforms 'lack ambition'
David Coleman, Professor emeritus of demography, University of Oxford
The Times, 7 March 2018.
[Letter to the Editor]

It is certainly true that in the short and medium term many more homes must be built for those in need, and at a moderate price. But we will get nowhere until we consider where demand is coming from and do something about it.

More than three quarters of additional new households in recent years have been headed by people born abroad. Unless that inflow, which adds about a quarter of a million people to the population every year, is moderated we shall remain trapped on a housebuilding treadmill.

Perhaps those employers who press so hard for the freedom to recruit immigrant workers should be required to provide the housing for them.
[Site link]

Multiculturalism – diversity
Gorgeous Portraits Show Britain's Diverse Future
Kate Bubacz
Buzzfeed, 7 March 2018.

Photographer Olivia Arthur's newest series "Children of Europe" looks ahead to the future of Britain, beyond Brexit and through the current debates over identity and immigration. ...

"I see this as the beginning of something, looking at the way that our society is changing in the UK and our national identity crisis. This is part of a bigger picture and how the country is going to change. I'd love to follow up with these kids in 10 years' time and see how many are still in Glasgow."

"In the UK there are certain areas where people get sent, Glasgow is one of those. I was amazed by the huge range of nationalities that I met. I'd like to see what life is like for refugees living in rural areas where integration is even harder."

Arthur worked with a nongovernment organization out of Glasgow to connect with many of the families, and plans to continue the project in different areas around the UK.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Berlin, Germany
Hatred against Germans is increasing in Berlin, says city's interior minister
The Local [Germany], 7 March 2018.

Andreas Geisel, Berlin's interior minister, said on Wednesday that hatred towards Germans was on the rise in the capital, but cautioned that it was still far from the norm.

"I have heard that [reports of hatred against Germans]. It is not the norm but it is becoming more common - to keep quiet about it would be wrong," Geisel told daily newspaper Tagesspiegel.

"What can we do about it? It is clear that we need to intensify our efforts to integrate people. That includes German and ethics courses for refugees, optimally for all of them," the Social Democrat added.

The interior minister was responding to a long report published by Tagesspiegel on Tuesday which asked whether Berlin was becoming "a place of fear."

The newspaper reported on the individual experiences of various Berliners who had contacted the newspaper to argue that the city was becoming a place of "increased aggression and and an intensified feeling of fear. And this feeling has something to do with the arrival of refugees."

Tagesspiegel spoke to Berliners from several walks of life - including refugee helpers - who spoke of their growing sense of insecurity.
[Site link]

Racism – diversity
Munroe Bergdorf: L'Oreal model resigns from Labour party LGBT+ board
Maya Oppenheim
Independent, 6 March 2018.

A transgender former L'Oreal Paris model who was sacked by the cosmetics giant for her comments about systemic racism has stepped down from her position on a Labour advisory panel for LGBT+ issues.

Munroe Bergdorf was asked to sit on an LGBT+ advisory board by Labour frontbencher and shadow equalities minister Dawn Butler.

Bergdorf said "endless attacks" on her character by the "right wing press" and vitriolic abuse on social media had forced her to resign from the position.
[Site link]

Repatriation/deportation – criminals
Hundreds of foreign criminals waiting to be deported fall off the radar: Home Office loses track of 500 offenders after they are let out of prison
Ian Drury
Daily Mail, 5 March 2018.

The Home Office has lost track of hundreds of dangerous foreign criminals awaiting deportation from Britain.

Instead of being locked up until they are thrown out of the UK, the offenders, including rapists, robbers and paedophiles, vanished after being let out of prison.

Immigration chiefs lost track of the foreign national offenders (FNOs) after they completed their sentences and were released into the community – meaning they could still pose a threat.

Figures obtained using freedom of information laws revealed that 494 criminals absconded between January 2014 and March 2016.

As of last month, 211 were still missing – up to four years after contact with officials ceased.

However, the numbers could be even higher.

In November, a report by David Bolt, chief inspector of borders and immigration, found that in April last year 753 FNOs were missing after being freed from jail.

Guidelines say offenders who complete sentences should be detained only if there is a realistic prospect of deporting them immediately. ...

Offenders are recorded as absconders if their whereabouts are unknown and attempts to re-establish contact have failed.

Figures just released by the Home Office – after it spent nearly two years trying to wriggle out of publishing them – revealed that 169 FNOs absconded in 2014, followed by 250 in 2015, and 75 in the first three months of 2016.

Of the total, 196 men and at least 15 women had not been found by February 9 this year.

Foreign criminals with convictions for violence, rape and other sexual crimes, fraud, money laundering, possession of weapons, burglary and forgery were among those missing. ...

Mr Bolt's report warned that there was 'little evidence' effective action was being taken to find the vast bulk of absconders – FNOs can fail to attend meetings up to 19 times before the alarm is raised.

A third of planned removals of criminals failed – 7,772 out of 24,289 dating back to 2014-15. ...

The Home Office said more than 41,000 foreign offenders have been removed from the UK since 2010, including a record 6,346 in 2016-17.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Australia
Housing report says migration may need to be cut to preserve quality of life
Gareth Hutchens
The Guardian, 5 March 2018.

One of Australia's most respected thinktanks has weighed into the population growth debate, saying the federal government needs to develop an explicit population policy that defines the "appropriate" level of migration, and it may need to reduce the migrant intake to improve wellbeing. ...

But it says the Turnbull government needs to take seriously the degree to which major cities, particularly Sydney and Melbourne, are struggling to cope with high population growth.

It says if state governments continue to fail to increase the supply of housing and infrastructure necessary to keep pace with rapid population growth, then the federal government may have to reduce the migrant intake so the quality of life of residents in New South Wales and Victoria – and other states – does not get worse. ...

House prices have more than doubled in real terms over the past 20 years, with the strains most acute in Sydney and Melbourne. Since 2012, house prices have risen 50% in Melbourne and 70% in Sydney.
[Site link]

Politics – Liberal Democrats
Migration and the liberal dilemma
Lord William Wallace
Liberal Democrat Voice, 5 March 2018.
[Lord Wallace of Saltaire is a Liberal Democrat member of the House of Lords]

The Spring conference will be discussing migration policy in Southport, on the basis of a carefully-written consultation paper. This is a particularly difficult topic for Liberals. Almost all of us would prefer to live in a world in which borders were open, and immigrants and refugees were welcomed. But global population growth, combined with state collapse, civil conflict and climate change, are combining to create a rising flow of migrants – driven both by political disorder and economic deprivation – towards the safe and prosperous countries of Western Europe. Many of them are trafficked on their way, maltreated as they struggle to escape danger and better their lives. How can we respond without abandoning our liberal values? ...

What Migration Watch and Brexit Central don't say is that the longer-term challenge we face is from immigration from outside Europe – and that it's a challenge that we can only manage in collaboration with our continental neighbours. The population of Africa has doubled (to 1.2 billion) in the past 30 years, and continues to grow at over 30 million a year; weak states, conflict and drought all drive desperate efforts to escape across the Mediterranean. The Middle East and South Asia also have high rates of population increase, water shortages, and governments failing to provide stability and economic growth. ...

That level of pressure makes the consultation's objective of a 'fair and humane' response to migrants (many of whom will be refugees from intolerable local circumstances) almost impossible: numbers count, and large numbers of incomers are difficult to absorb without weakening social cohesion and straining resources. An enlightened response to this must include active support for women's rights and education in these regions – the surest way to slow population growth, amongst other advantages. Development policy, and defence policy, need to focus (with European partners) on the delicate tasks of building stable and effective governance, and sustainable economies, in Africa and West and South Asia, to enable their population to flourish there.

The consultation paper rightly notes the weaknesses of the UK Border Force – its numbers cut in recent years – and of Home Office management of immigration. It does not directly address the awkward question that the UK's lack of a population register – or some form of identity registration – makes the task of assuring that all those living within our borders are entitled to do so extremely difficult. That's another uncomfortable issue for Liberals (me included). ...

I don't have answers to these dilemmas. And I recognise that the British public, to whom we wish to appeal, are at best wavering liberals on this.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – multiculturalism, crime, Germany
Angela Merkel's real legacy is the lawless no-go areas that police fear to patrol where half of the locals have foreign roots and the German tongue is a rarity
Sue Reid
Daily Mail, 5 March 2018.

Half the 20,000 residents in this suburb have foreign roots, many arriving thanks to a border-free EU and German chancellor Angela Merkel's offer of welcome to the world's refugees.

The outcome of Europe's biggest migration crisis since the Second World war has been disastrous for Marxloh.

Many of the newcomers are jobless and so rely on state benefits, and hang around with nothing worthwhile to do.

A leaked police report says the streets are controlled by drug dealers and robbers who 'view crime as their leisure activity'.

As for the Germans who remain here, some are frightened to go out after dark because of 'conflicts between foreigners', claiming that tram journeys through the area in the evenings are 'nightmarish'. ...

'This is a dangerous place that Mrs Merkel has tried hard to forget.'

That was until last week, when she conceded for the first time that areas like Marxloh had become lawless no-go areas where locals, and even police, fear to tread.

Facing the end of her career if she failed to stitch together a loveless 'grand coalition' of political opposites, the 'no-go' admission was a dramatic climbdown for the German leader, who has welcomed more than a million new faces to her country in three years, while irritating an increasingly sceptical German public with the mantra 'We can do it'. ...

Loud Arabic music floats out into the air from shoddy apartment blocks, there are wild gatherings of Roma with cans of lager, and flash cars with young men at the wheel suddenly zoom into sight and roar away again.

Marxloh is one of 40 problem areas cited in the German media as struggling to cope with large migrant concentrations, urban decay, high unemployment and chronic welfare dependency, which have become, they claim, 'incubators for anarchy' as well as drug-dealing and crime.

In an article called 'Ghetto Report Germany' the respected newspaper Bild – which described those 40 areas – labelled them as parallel societies, no-go areas and 'burgeoning ghettos'.

Official police reports given to another respected newspaper, Der Spiegel, said spiralling levels of violence in Marxloh (and other places like it) show officers are losing control, and public order 'cannot be guaranteed over the long term'.

'There are districts where immigrant gangs are taking over streets for themselves,' said the resulting account in Der Spiegel.

'Native residents and business people are being intimidated and silenced. Policemen, and especially policewomen, are particular victims of a high level of aggression and disrespect.'

It doesn't sound like the Germany of old. Marxloh, a 20-minute tram ride away from central Duisburg in western Germany, used to be a place for German families to visit on a Saturday afternoon for shopping, a picnic in the park, or a coffee and beer at the pavement cafes.

Not many outsiders visit here now, or dare to. ...

According to the locals, Marxloh's streets serve as boundaries between ethnic gangs guarding their drug-dealing turf. One is called 'Kurdish road', another 'Romanian Road'.
[Site link]

Extremism – Islam
Praised asylum activist came face to face with Muslim behavior – wants to stop Islam
Free West Media, 5 March 2018.

After witnessing a female aid worker being dragged by her hair to a toilet by so-called refugees, and herself being attacked five times by Arab men, the celebrated asylum activist gave up. /.../ Filled with regret, she is now fighting for a Europe free from Islam. "I have been forced to realize that the Muslims despise us, and that is something that won't change. The hatred is too strong", she says.

It's not one isolated incident. It's not one rotten egg. It's time and again facing the same kind of contempt from Muslim asylum seekers, that made well-known asylum activist Rebecca Sommer understand that Islam is a political ideology for ruling nations. ...

Rebecca Sommer is a well-known German asylum activist, and a familiar face in German media. Among other actions, she created an organization with 300 members which welcomed asylum seekers during the migrant crisis in 2015-2016. She is also an artist and film-maker whose works were repeatedly praised in leftist media all over the world – until she recently shocked mainstream journalists across the globe. ...

It is her personal experience that has led to her political U-turn. After years of working with Muslim asylum seekers she has realized that their attitude is completely different from what she first thought. ...

... They view themselves as superior, they laugh at European men and think western women are whores. And the more we adapt to them, the more convinced they become that they are right.

However, she has not changed her opinions on human rights. She is still a deeply engaged activist, and considers herself a "world citizen". She has helped people in Central America and Asia, as well as tribes in Africa. But after meeting the Arab men, who during the migrant storm flooded Europe, claiming to be refugees fleeing for their lives, she has had to "make an exception in her humanism". She emphasizes that that she doesn't think that all Muslims are bad, only "most of them".

In this interview she tells about the painful awakening, the incidents that changed her mind, and her fight to warn Europe about islamization and mass-immigration – things she used to welcome. "We wanted to get to know them – and we did". ...

In what way is that a problem?

– I am a human rights activist and I still want to help refugees. My problem is Islam, and people who are brainwashed by this ideology. It is called a religion, but it is really a political ideology to rule over nations, in which they [Muslims] are seen as higher beings, and we as lower. I have always known that it's a different culture, but I thought that they, just like the rest of us, can change their values and ideas when met with hospitality. But through the years I've learned that apart from very few individuals, they're impossible to change. In most of them "the hijab in the head" is impossible to remove.

Integration is doing the exact opposite to what people imagine – Muslims are often open and humble in the beginning, but later turn dominant and arrogant when they start feeling safe and at home.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – illegal immigration, Italy
Italian election: Italy's Trump Matteo Salvini IS serious about migrant crackdown - expert
Ciaran McGrath
Sunday Express, 4 March 2018.

Matteo Salvini - regarded by many as Italy's answer to Donald Trump - is serious in his statement he wants to deport 500,000 immigrants living in the country illegally, a top expert in Italian politics has said in the run-up to Sunday's general election. ...

Loughborough University's Professor Nicola Chelotti said while it was difficult to put an accurate figure on the number of illegal immigrants living in Italy, the 500,000 figure was "roughly accurate", with another 5.4 million overseas nationals living there legally, plus 200,000 more who are classified as asylum seekers.

Deporting asylum seekers would be difficult for Mr Salvini, given Italy would need to tear up treaties with the EU in order to do so, said Mr Chelotti.

However, he suggested Mr Salvini might have more success when it came to the people living in the country illegally.

He said: "Italy has experienced in the last few years quite a dramatic increase of economic (or illegal) immigrants, especially from the sub-Saharan continent.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – violence, Sweden
Hand Grenades and Gang Violence Rattle Sweden's Middle Class
Ellen Barry and Christina Anderson
New York Times, 4 March 2018.

Manufactured in great numbers for the Yugoslav national army, and then seized by paramilitaries during the civil war in the 1990s, the grenades are packed with plastic explosives and 3,000 steel balls, well suited for attacks on enemy trenches and bunkers. ...

Weapons from a faraway, long-ago war are flowing into immigrant neighborhoods here, puncturing Swedes' sense of confidence and security. The country's murder rate remains low, by American standards, and violent crime is stable or dropping in many places. But gang-related assaults and shootings are becoming more frequent, and the number of neighborhoods categorized by the police as "marred by crime, social unrest and insecurity" is rising. ...

Part of the reason is that Sweden's gang violence, long contained within low-income suburbs, has begun to spill out. In large cities, hospitals report armed confrontations in emergency rooms, and school administrators say threats and weapons have become commonplace. Last week two men from Uppsala, both in their 20s, were arrested on charges of throwing grenades at the home of a bank employee who investigates fraud cases. ...

The influx of heavy weapons has caught Sweden's criminal justice systems unprepared.

... The police are struggling to gather information in immigrant neighborhoods, and clearance rates for gun homicide cases have fallen steadily since the 1990s. ...

"It's odd," said Manne Gerell, a lecturer in criminology at Malmo University. "I don't know of any Western country with a similar use of hand grenades. Our hypothesis is that they are used to send a message. Not so much as a weapon, as a tool for intimidation. You don't need perfect aim. You are not trying to kill a particular person." ...

"Crime is increasing and increasing, and they aren't doing anything about it," Mr. Garrido said. "It's denial. Swedes are very good people and they want to change the world. They want the rest of the world to be like Sweden. And the reality is that it's completely different."
[Site link]

Population pressure – housing
Councils warned to meet homes targets or lose planning powers
BBC, 4 March 2018.

Councils in England could be stripped of planning powers if not enough homes are being built in their areas, Housing Secretary Sajid Javid has warned.

Mr Javid told the Sunday Times he would be "breathing down" the necks of local authorities to ensure building targets, set by the government, are met.

Theresa May, who will unveil the plans on Monday, told the BBC the level of house building was a "real problem". ...

On Monday, the government will announce an overhaul of planning rules in an attempt to increase the rate of house building in England. ...

Mr Javid also revealed plans to build up to five new towns between Oxford and Cambridge.
[Site link]

Multiculturalism – university courses
University ditches course on the British countryside after claiming black and ethnic minority students are 'less likely to visit rural areas'
Jonathan Petre
Mail on Sunday, 4 March 2018.

A university has ditched a degree course on rural Britain because it says black and ethnic minority students are 'less likely' to visit the English countryside.

Academics feared their teaching 'normalised white experiences', while 'disadvantaged' undergraduates from other backgrounds struggled to grasp concepts such as the 'rural idyll' – so scored lower grades.

Undergraduates now study rural areas around the world, with an emphasis on Africa and Asia, so teenagers from ethnic minorities can 'more readily see themselves and their backgrounds' represented.

Kingston University is the latest institution to try to boost 'diversity' while 'decolonising' their degrees amid criticism they are too white and Western.

The Mail on Sunday last year revealed that activists at the School of Oriental and African Studies were calling for more African and Asian philosophers to be taught at the expense of white, European thinkers.

But critics said universities were pandering to 'political correctness' and were 'stupid' if they let down students by dumbing down degrees.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Italy
Former Minister: Italy Must Be Guided in Its 'Change of Population' Due to Immigration
Thomas D. Williams, Ph.D.
Breitbart, 3 March 2018.

Prior to Italian national elections, the country's first black cabinet minister told Swiss radio that due to massive immigration, Italy needs to be guided in "the change in the composition of the population" that is the fruit of immigration.

An immigrant herself from the African nation of Congo and Italy's former minister for integration, Cécile Kyenge said the present situation in Italy is "surreal" because of the level of hostility toward immigration found among several political parties. ...

She also said that "racism exists" and Italy needs to be "guided in this change, I can say, this change of population, the change in the composition of the population" brought about by immigration. ...

In 2017, Italy had more than five million foreigners living as residents, a growth of 25 percent above 2012 levels and a remarkable 270 percent above 2002. At that time, foreigners made up just 2.38 percent of the population, while fifteen years later, the figure has nearly trebled to 8.33 percent of the population.
[Site link]

Employment – wages, racism, politics
Memo to Jericho: Lower UK immigration boosts wages
Leith van Onselen
Macrobusiness, 2 March 2018.

Back in November, Robert Skidelsky, Professor Emeritus of Political Economy at Warwick University, penned an excellent article in Project Syndicate which, among other things, explained why never-ending mass immigration pushes down wages growth: ...

This analysis followed an empirical study by the Bank of England, which found that immigration into the UK had pulled down average wages: ...

With the above analysis in mind, The Telegraph in January reported that UK wages were expected to lift following curbs on immigration, which have tightened the labour market: ...

And now, the Financial Times has reported that UK wages are finally rising as employers try to fill so-called labour shortages ...

More from Bloomberg: ...

It is basic economics that if you stem the flow of foreign workers, then workers' bargaining power will increase. This was explained beautifully by The Australia Institute's chief economist, Richard Denniss, last year when he noted that the very purpose of foreign worker visas is to "suppress wage growth by allowing employers to recruit from a global pool of labour to compete with Australian workers". That is, in a normal functioning labour market, "when demand for workers rises, employers would need to bid against each other for the available scarce talent". But this mechanism has been bypassed by enabling employers to recruit labour globally. "It is only in recent years that the wage rises that accompany the normal functioning of the labour market have been rebranded as a 'skills shortage'".

Sadly, Australian economic commentators like The Guardian's Greg Jericho cannot bring themselves to even acknowledge these basic facts when discussing wages, because to do so would somehow be 'racist':

Immigration – because there are many desperate to hate – must be treated with extreme care by politicians and journalists, and certainly with more care than Abbott seems capable. The inherently racist parties will seek to use any discussion and any seeming evidence of the negative impact of migrants as fuel to burn their fires of hate.
When will the Fake Left (including Labor and The Greens) stand up for ordinary Australian workers and commit to lowering Australia's reckless 'Big Australia' immigration program, which is not only lowering workers' wages but also raising their cost of living via housing as well?

It's precisely because of the Fake Left's failure to rationally discuss immigration that ordinary Australians are being pushed to "the inherently racist parties" that Jericho hates so much.
[Site link]

Extremism – politics
The word 'extremist' has lost all meaning
Rod Liddle
The Spectator, 3 March 2018.

You might be said to have extremist views if you object to same sex marriages or gay adoptions, or if you think we should halt immigration. By the same token, an opinion poll published last year revealed that almost 40 per cent of the population think it is extremist to believe that global warming is happening and 36 per cent think it extremist to hope that Britain leaves the EU. In other words, 'extremism' has simply become one of those words which has lost almost all of its meaning and is used simply as an insult to hurl at one's opponents. /.../ We should be clear about the need to treat Islam as a singularity, given the very singular threat it poses both to our country and indeed to the rest of the world, a creed we have imported and with which we are not entirely comfortable, rather than packaging it up with stuff which deluded and self-flagellating white liberal bien-pensants can call 'extremist'.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – emigration, South Africa
Thousands Sign Petition Asking Trump to Let White Farmers in South Africa Migrate to U.S. After Country Votes to Force Them Off Land
Chantal Da Silva
Newsweek, 2 March 2018.

More than 10,500 people have signed a petition asking President Donald Trump to let white people in South Africa emigrate to the U.S. after the country voted to strip white farmers of their land without compensation.

The petition calls on the U.S. leader to "take the steps necessary to initiate an emergency immigration plan allowing white Boers to come to the United States." Boer is the term used to describe South Africans of Dutch, German or Huguenot descent, who are also commonly referred to as Afrikaners.

The petition suggests that Trump should stop admitting refugees from Somalia and the Middle East, claiming they "cannot be properly vetted," and allow white South Africans into the country instead. They "can be easily vetted and also possess skills that make them compatible with our culture and civilization," the petition says.

A similar petition, calling on European Union President Jean-Claude Juncker, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and British Prime Minister Theresa May to allow white South Africans into EU countries, has gained nearly 17,000 signatures.

South Africa's parliament voted to remove white South African farmers from their land in a landmark vote on Tuesday. In addition, the country's constitution could be amended to allow for the confiscation of white-owned land without any offer of compensation.

Lawmakers voted overwhelmingly in favor of seeing land stripped from white farm owners, with the motion passing 241-83, according to ...

Julius Malema, the leader of the Economic Freedom Fighters opposition party, introduced the motion. He said the time for reconciliation in South Africa "is over," reported. "Now is the time for justice," he said, adding, "We must ensure that we restore the dignity of our people without compensating the criminals who stole our land."

Malema has been a strong supporter of confiscating land from white farmers, saying in 2016 he was "not calling for the slaughter of white people – at least for now."

The creators of the petition demanding that Trump admit white South Africans into the U.S. as refugees claim that the "increasing murder rate, along with the campaign to dispossess whites of their history, culture, farms, property and jobs, will inevitably lead to a complete genocide of South Africa's white population" if the U.S. does not "intercede."
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Czech Republic
New Czech PM Stands Firm Against Migrant Quotas: No Way Will Brussels Dictate Who Lives Here
Virginia Hale
Breitbart, 2 March 2018.

Andrej Babiš has said there is 'no way' the Czech Republic will agree to Brussels' demand that the nation accept a quota of migrants from the third world.

Speaking in the country's parliament on Thursday, the recently elected Czech Prime Minister slammed the European Union's (EU) mandatory quota scheme as "ineffective" and divisive.

"It is certain that we will not accept anyone, and we are fundamentally against anyone dictating to us who should live and work in our country," local media reported him saying.

"We consider it absurd that the European Commission sues us for something that is nonsense," Babiš added, regarding the EU's decision to sue the Czech Republic alongside Poland and Hungary over their refusal to take part in the quota scheme.
[Site link]

Crime – fraud, medicine
Hospital trust which hired rogue surgeon in huge pay-out to families of five dead patients
Jeanette Oldham
Birmingham Mail, 2 March 2018.

A hospital trust which employed rogue surgeon Sudip Sarker has paid huge compensation settlements to families of FIVE of his patients who later died.

The crooked consultant was jailed for six years earlier this month for fabricating his surgical experience to land a key role at the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch.

Cash-strapped Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust previously confirmed to the Birmingham Mail that it had paid damages to 19 of his patients, totalling £1,970,574.

But the Mail has discovered that five of those patients had died after surgery involving Sudip Sarker – with their families understood to have received six-figure settlements for clinical negligence. ...

Sarker was convicted of fraud after a trial at Worcester Crown Court. A jury heard he had lied about his medical experience to land a £100,000-a-year job as a Consultant Colorectal Surgeon after being interviewed by a selection panel at the trust. ...

Yet the Trust only went public by launching a helpline for patients in June 2013 – after the Birmingham Mail exposed the scandal.
[Site link]

Immigration – EU citizens
EU nationals who arrive in Britain after Brexit are offered the chance to stay for good if they live here for five years, Home Office says despite May's promise to end free movement
Tim Sculthorpe
MailOnline, 1 March 2018.

EU nationals who move to Britain under after Brexit will be allowed to apply for permanent rights to stay, the Home Office proposed today.

Brussels has demanded free movement rules continue to apply in Britain during the transition period after Brexit takes place in March 2019, even after the EU laws implementing them are scrapped.

Britain has insisted those who arrive after Brexit will not be allowed to claim permanent 'settled status' in the same way as EU nationals who moved here before the UK leaves the EU.

But a Home Office policy statement today opened the door to those who arrive in transition getting 'permanent leave to remain' instead of settled status. The statement is a negotiating position from Britain and has not been agreed yet.

It means thousands of EU nationals could qualify for the permanent right to live in Britain even if they arrive after Brexit.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – politics, Italy
Italians aren't fascists. They're angry about immigration
Nicholas Farrell
The Spectator, 3 March 2018.

Amid relentless propaganda about Italy being in the grip of fascism, Italians go to the polls on Sunday. It will be an attempt to produce their first elected prime minister since 2008, when Silvio Berlusconi won. Since his resignation in 2011, Italy has had four unelected leaders.

Italy's migrant crisis has dominated these elections, especially after the discovery of the chopped-up remains of an 18-year-old Italian girl in two suitcases by the side of a road in the picturesque hilltop city of Macerata in Le Marche. ...

What happened in Macerata transformed Italy's migrant crisis, already a big factor, into la questione numero uno of the election campaign, despite massive efforts inside and outside Italy to use it instead to talk only about fascists.

The Italian left and a largely supportive global media are doing their best to brainwash Italians into thinking that a vote for the right is a vote for fascism. But neither Italy's right, nor the Italians, are fascists. What they are is fed up with the floods of illegal migrants coming into Italy, where they represent what Berlusconi has described as a 'social bomb about to explode'.

Italians are angry at the failure of successive governments and of the EU to stop NGOs and the navies of EU countries picking up migrants just off the Libyan coast and ferrying them 280 miles to Italy, where they claim asylum or disappear, and are virtually never deported. This is despite the fact that, as the UN admits, the overwhelming majority are not refugees but economic migrants. ...

To win a majority in parliament, a party or coalition must get at least 40 per cent of the vote. Only the coalition of the right looks to have any chance of doing so.

This, for a British newspaper like the Guardian, reeks of fascism. The paper has been running hysterical headlines such as 'Fascism is back in Italy' and 'Italy is being driven into the arms of fascists'. The New York Times and the BBC have done similar.

... The truth is that fascist parties in Italy attract minimal support. The most successful – CasaPound (named after the American poet Ezra Pound) – is polling at around 2 per cent.

... Yes, Fratelli d'Italia is post-fascist and with 5 per cent of the vote will win seats (in fact, it has them already), but if it is fascist then Tony Blair's a commie. Even Italy's left-wing Interior Minister, Marco Minniti, an ex-communist ergo professional anti-fascist, admitted in the wake of the Macerata shootings: 'Fascism in Italy is dead for ever.'
[Site link]

Multiculturalism – bias, language, courts of law
Guilty of PC waffle! Top judge tells colleagues to not say 'postman', 'lady' or 'immigrant' in court because it might upset defendants and witnesses
Steve Doughty
Daily Mail, 1 March 2018.

Judges have been told what they can and cannot say in an effort to make all those who come before their courts feel they have been treated fairly.

They have been banned from using phrases and words including 'ethnic minority'; 'afro-Caribbean' and 'transsexual' – while a postman should become a 'postal operative'.

The new guidance for judges and magistrates says real equality means favouring women and minorities to make up for the disadvantage they suffer.

Part of this equality drive includes a fresh list of terms and expressions that judges should no longer use. ...

The guidance – the 422-page Equal Treatment Bench Book – is published by the Judicial College, the body in charge of training judges, which is led by an Appeal judge, Dame Anne Rafferty.

It is the latest update to equality rules that were first produced under Tony Blair's Lord Chancellor Lord Irvine in 1999, and ran into controversy after recommending that the courts should show leniency to Rastafarians because they regard smoking cannabis as a religious rite.

'True equal treatment may not always mean treating everyone in the same way,' the new version says. Fair treatment, judges are told, means that 'steps can be taken, where appropriate, to redress any inequality arising from difference or disadvantage.' ...

It quoted a former liberal US Supreme Court judge, Justice Blackmun, on why people should be treated differently on race grounds. The US judge said: 'In order to get beyond racism, we must first take account of race. There is no other way. And in order to treat some persons equally, we must treat them differently.'
[Site link]

Diversity – Ofcom, BBC
BBC audit to ensure gay and black screen talent
Matthew Moore
The Times, 1 March 2018.

The proportion of gay, ethnic minority and disabled people appearing on BBC programmes will be assessed by the media regulator Ofcom for the first time as part of a diversity drive.

The analysis will cover all genres of programming including drama, comedy, news and current affairs, with a focus on primetime BBC One and BBC Two schedules. ...

The project represents the first official attempt to evaluate the on-screen diversity of the national broadcaster.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – repatriation, Germany
Voluntary Repatriation: 10,000 Migrants Joined German Subsidised Deportation Scheme in 2017
Chris Tomlinson
Breitbart, 1 March 2018.

Since February of last year, the German Federal government has allowed failed asylum seekers to voluntarily return to their countries and receive cash incentives with 10,000 migrants taking part in the scheme. ...

The scheme allows those who have failed in their asylum application to receive 800 euros per adult in two separate payments or 1,200 euros for those who chose to go back to their country before their asylum decision.

One of the stipulations to be eligible for the scheme requires migrants to renounce any claim to dispute their asylum decision. Legal cases against negative asylum decisions have put enormous strain on the German court system.

Around 100,000 court cases were decided last year out of the 273,000 that were filed. Among them, some 44 per cent of the cases were overturned and the migrants were given some form of asylum status.
[Site link]

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