View across the Outer Harbour of Stornoway

Monday, 12 July 2010

Cordoba House

That is the name of a mosque, which could be built in the proximity of Ground Zero, the site where the World Trade Center stood in New York until 11 September 2001. It appears to have divided New Yorkers down the middle and has even led to a Facebook page with more than 44,000 followers. An article on the Voice of America news-site gives a balanced view of the issues at play. Cordoba, a city in Spain, was once a centre of Islamic learning. A lot of that culture is still on display in the Spain of the 21st century.

I will restate my oft repeated opinion on the issue of Al Qa'eda, Islam and 9/11. Al Qa'eda abuses Islam to justifies its political and terrorist campaign. It uses brainwashing techniques, playing on frustrations and anger amidst disaffected Muslims, to recruit new operatives. It has nothing to do with Islam.

I totally understand the pain, anguish and anger that was brought about by the horrendous events of 9/11, and condemn in the strongest possible terms anyone who seeks to justify mass murder by whichever means. And on whichever pretext. I deplore the confusion of issues, as outlined in the VOA piece, and hope that folk in NYC will see the Cordoba Initiative as a start of reconciliation, to show that Muslim culture is not about violence. And in fact condemns it.

Monday 12 July

A changeable day weatherwise; the intermittent light rain that dogged the morning and afternoon has now given way to a flat calm and bright skies. The sun is setting in about 10 minutes' time, with the cloudscapes and the reflections on the sea making it quite a spectacle. The current temperature of 12C is not warm, but quite acceptable in the calm conditions at the moment. We never made it above 15C today.

Roadworks will be affecting traffic in Stornoway in the coming weeks. The traffic lights on Matheson Road will be out of action, meaning that traffic coming out of Church Street and Goathill Road will have to give way to traffic on Matheson Road itself.

Similarly, the pedestrian crossing on Cromwell Street is to be restored following the upheaval on the adjacent Perceval Square. Trying to cross Cromwell Street without the lights is like taking your life into your own hands. This image dates back to July 2005 and shows a bit of street theatre in progress.

I'll make a separate posting of today's pictures tomorrow.