Europe

In Great Britain, in the days prior to the invasion of Iraq, government ministers and oil industry executives spoke about how best to exploit the rich oil reserves in that country, according to an article in the UK newspaper The Independent.

The paper reports that there were at least five meetings among representatives of BP, Shell, and the British government, taking place near the end of 2002. The invasion of Iraq began on March 20, 2003.

The so-called London Taliban is attempting to impose Sharia law by threatening homosexuals and women who don’t know wear Muslim garb with violence.

The city’s Daily Mail newspaper, in yet another installment of its episodic chronicle of Islam’s march through Britain and its institutions, reports that Muslims are harassing women who refuse to wear Islamic headgear, the hijab, or even worse, the suffocating burqa. Neighborhoods are being declared “gay free” zones.

Finland is a curious blend of statist socialism and national independence. Its politics do not always fit easily into American thinking. No one would call the small country a socially conservative nation. Religious belief is weak, and vices such as illegitimacy, alcoholism, and pornography are shockingly more prevalent than in its cousins — Sweden, Denmark, Norway, and Iceland.

CrossAre Easter observances a threat to public safety? The Council for the London Borough of Brent apparently thinks so, and has refused permission to church leaders who were planning their annual 400-yard Good Friday parade.

Most Americans — blessed with an inimitable Constitution written by men of great character and wisdom who understood the profound importance of human liberty — take freedom of expression for granted. So it sometimes surprises them to learn that their notion of free speech and free press is exceptional in the world.

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