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It’s hardly a ‘Storm Over The Nile’.

Posted by Big John on November 28, 2007

I see that the Muslims of Sudan are supposed to have ‘got their knickers in a twist’ (that’s if they wear any), over a teacher allowing one of her young pupils to call a teddy bear Muhammad, which just also happens to be the kid’s own name.

According to press reports Gillian Gibbons, the teacher in question, faces all sorts of punishments including flogging, despite there being no apparent intention to offend Islamic sensibilities or defame the honour and name of the Prophet Muhammad.

What amazes me is that Google is showing over 1,000 news items on this, to quote The Sudanese Embassy in London, “storm in a teacup”. Blimey, I shouldn’t think that Khartoum has had such attention since poor old General Gordon came to a sticky end there in 1885 at the hands of fanatical Islamic rebels led by the ‘The Mad Mahdi’.

Despite Ms. Gibbons being charged under Article 125 of the criminal code, spokesman for the Sudanese embassy in London, Khalid al-Mubarak, said … “I am pretty certain that this minute incident will be clarified very quickly and that this venerable teacher who has been helping us teach our children will be safe and will be cleared”. 

Well let’s hope that he is right, but let us also not forget that al-Mahdi said

…     that nothing would happen to Gordon.  

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7 Responses to “It’s hardly a ‘Storm Over The Nile’.”

  1. ferouzeh said

    “fanatical Islamic rebels led by the ’The Mad Mahdi’”
    uhm….I don’t mean to re-write history … but… don’t you think that the Mad Mahdi and the fanatical Islamic rebels were trying to defend their country?
    Just a thought
    Feruz :-)

  2. Maria said

    Don’t know about “The Mad Mahdi” but I do think much to much is being made about the naming of this Teddy Bear. Whatever happened to a gentle reprimand or a letter in the teacher’s file? From where I sit, this is nothing more than a good example of laws gone wrong. Good lawd, I fear America’s Religious Right may be cooking up similar punishments for teacher’s whose views are not theirs. Fanaticism wears many cloaks, but underneath is the same need to hate and to control.

  3. gawilli said

    Well said, Maria.

  4. Big John said

    Sorry Ferouzh old mate, I got carried away. I was brought up on all those stirring stories of the heroes of the ‘jolly old’ British Empire fighting those ‘damn Fuzzy Wuzzies’ and the like. :-) Except that most of ‘em were not heroes and there wasn’t much to be ‘jolly’ about if your country was occupied by a bunch of plundering bastards. However in this case the colonists (mostly Egyptian) were already in the process of leaving Sudan when Khartoum was besieged by the Mahdi’s ‘mujahideen’. ;-)

    America’s ‘religious right’ frightens the life out of me Maria.

  5. ferouzeh said

    Well John I must admit that I was brought up likewise admiring the British to distraction
    In certain ways you had so many good qualities which is a pity have been lost
    By the way I am a “matess”
    Ferouzeh, Sherazade ‘s little sister who spent 35 years in Exeter and is part British

  6. gawilli said

    John, America’s religious right scare me to death also. I really don’t know what we are coming to.

  7. Big John said

    Oops ! Ferouzeh. :-) I’ll have to brush up on my Arabian Nights.

    The female for ‘mate’ would be ‘luv’ where I come from, but in this ‘PC’ world this is now frowned on, so I’ll make you an ‘honoury mate’ if you like ? ;-)

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