November 29, 2004


surfing through god fearin' republican blogs I found 2 slick which has claims reportedly from an American soldier that the Islamists they fought used speed, crack and heroin.

Of course these reports are not supported by the official military and 2 slick features an advert for an "ultra-realistic" wargame all these republican geeks can play along with at home- without getting into any trouble themselves of course.


Before the channel 4 news comes out, Jon Snow, or whoever is at the desk of channel 4 news write a quick report online. Todays shows a little bit of what soldiers go through before being sent to "fight for this country"


Deep shock over Deepcut barracks where four suicides by young soldiers
provoked a major police inquiry. Its report has been leaked and it is
unimaginably awful. Initiation rites that involved a young woman recruit
swimming across a septic tank full of excrement, hanging another
recruit upside down outside a window and gang-raping another. We are on the

sign up for snowmails


Maybe being evicted again is making me a bit morbid. I'm sort of staring into an abyss at the moment at the thought that my documentary may never actually happen.
I thought I had a meeting with Mr.Abdullah and co on sunday, set in stone. All week I prepared for it, I didn't go to the mosque on friday because I didn't want to hassle them, I came home early on saturday night. Because I never phoned to confirm it was off again. My fault.

With everything skywards again, being evicted over and over, this doc has often been the only thing my life has focussed around. I've dedicated two years of my life to this because I believed that Mr. Abdullah and co were NOT the terrorists the press described them to be. I still hold that view.

You would have thought with all the adverse publicity around them that they would be pleased to find a non-muslim willing to take up their story. But its been dawning on me that a few people in the mosque treat me like I have leprosy. I can't for the life of me understand why.

If it wasn't for Hajj and Jamal and a couple of the Algerians I would walk away now.
Their spiritual leader, Mr.Hamza is in Belmarsh prison. They are being sold as terrorists by the media worldwide. If they are all innocent, a film depicting their views would have more influence with the British people than shouting through a megaphone in front of Big Ben (see PARLIAMENT SQUARE TERRORISED)

What do I have to do? If they didn't want to do this they could have told me a year ago and I could have been a qualified teacher by now.

I've kept as many fridays free as possible. What more can I do?

November 28, 2004


I am not sure exactly what i wrote to Abu Abdullah when he pulled out of our meeting this time but it went something like this.

I am sorry that our meeting has again not taken place and as you say it is my fault for not confirming. I'm afraid that I do not understand how you think that I would arrange a meeting with you and someone who has to come all the way from Oxford and not turn up. What on earth do you think I have been doing for the last year and a half? If you didn't want to do this you could have told me over a year ago and I might be a qualified teacher, or in Africa by now.

Another thing I do not understand is the fact that you are shy about cooperating with me yet you have totally cooperated with BBC and ITV news every time they come to Finsbury park when you know that all they will put on the TV is close up of your masked friends and anything you say which may be construed as threatening. If you worked for MI5 yourself you couldn't have engineered things better.

As I have said, if I was going to stitch you up with my footage I'd have done it by now, instead I am being evicted over and over again, I have no idea where I will be living at Christmas. I live below the poverty line. What do you want me to do?

November 22, 2004


Because Mr. Abdulah has never told me

“Definitely no. Go away you stinking infidel bastard.”

I have had to keep on this one. His best mate is the most famous Islamic hate figure in the country. There has to be a fair chance that people will be interested in this around the world when his trial eventually starts so my window must still be open.

Whenever the idea of TV looms he quite understandably freaks out a bit because he does not believe for a minute that the “Evil Zionist media” would allow his views to be presented on TV without some evil person re editing it to make him look like a threat to British society. I don't know. He has never said anything to me I couldn't concievably see on TV.

This has recently become frustrating to the point where I have raised my voice, though I feel totally stupid doing so. What am I going to say?

“ I am making a documentary on you whether you like it or not and you will all co operate?”

On Friday we had an excellent chat. I was trying to get another younger Muslim there who used to be a big fan of Rage against the Machine to write something for Socialist Wanker

Mr. Abdullah had found out and thought I was going behind his back. Apparently Islamic law is such that when a leader is chosen by a committee everyone has to do what that person says. He objected to something Islamic being on my website because there is swearing on it. He is in a strange position he cannot have forseen, in that the only serious attempt to get to the truth of what has been happening in Finsbury Park is on a website covered with swearing, squatting and blatant drug use.

I want Jamal to stick up what he likes on my site and I’m looking for a Republican to do the same. Though I have serious misgivings about Islam, I definitely don’t about Jamal, who I would consider to be more of a friend nowadays.

At these points it is actually fun being me. If you had told me even two and a half years ago that I would be having such a conversation with Abu Hamza’s best pal I wouldn’t have believed it.

I had written a frantic email to Mr. Abdullah the previous night outlining the subjects I intended to cover in this obsessive documentary journey. At one point I stated that when he had said to me on camera:

“ You and the rest of the media who come here- you’re not exactly like those”

it was one of the best moments in my tiny cinematic career.

On Friday he asked me why I wasn’t like the rest of the media. Sitting in the doorway of Finsbury Park mosque, skint, in the only pair of shoes I own I only had one answer.

“ I don’t know. Why do you think? Because I’m not a sheep!” I shouted angrily.

We left on good terms and I think I’ve resurrected my chances a bit.


I recently saw Nigel Wingrove on the BBC’s vaguely religious Heaven and Earth show. Because he had been the only person to ever successfully get his film banned under British blasphemy laws I set about trying to track him down for an article. I wrote to the Heaven and earth show and got this from the series producer:

Obviously, I can't just give out Nigel Wingrove's contact details, but you might find something of interest on the attached site.

I wrote back asking if they wanted a sort of “mosque in the street” story for their vaguely religious show and got this back:

David - Thanks for you email. I don't think your footage would be quite right for us - but I'll pass this on to Liz - our development Exec who might be interested. I'll leave it to her to email you back if she thinks it could be useful for any of her slots.


I wasn’t surprised. Can you imagine all these cosy “Vaguely Buddhists” and “Vaguely Christians” and “Vaguely Middle class New Ageists” and “Vaguely Cliff Richard fans” sitting down to a cosy Sunday mornings viewing and then Mr.Abdullah comes on:


November 15, 2004


I went up to the Neasden Mandir for Diwali this year, for the third year in a row. I have been for the fireworks before but had never realised there were further celebrations the next day. These celebrations involved cueing for about and hour and a half to get into the actual temple. I was one of three white faces in a sea of middle class Indian people. Men and women were separated.

I am more at ease with Hinduism that Islam, though I have enjoyed filming with the guys in Finsbury Park. Hinduism is not a converting religion, and so people gave us the feeling that they were pleased that we were interested, happy to answer questions and proud of their temple rather than trying to convince us that their way was superior to anyone elses.

No one spoke to me at first, but after I broke the ice a bit we were soon laughing at the difference between Diwali here and in India where people are more likely to aim fireworks at each other and joyful pandemonium reigns.

I remember once coming out of the Parvati valley with friends who were moving charas over Diwali. They thought that during the festivities the Police were more likely to be caught up with other things.(When we got on the bus we found every other passenger was moving charas with the same idea.)

I was coming up on acid as we waited for the bus. Within minutes we had to run for cover as fireworks came at us from across the river. We managed to duck into a nearby shop and buy handfuls of rockets which we were soon lining up along the rocks and firing back. As dusk was falling we went back to the shop to reload twice. The shopkeeper was very happy. As we left, we waved goodbye to our opponents across the river. There had been no casualties though the roof of one of our opponents shops had briefly caught fire.

Hindu's are justly proud of Neasden Mandir. The interior is without doubt the most amazing structure in London. It was carved piece by piece in Mahabalapurum, the stone carving capital of South India in stone shipped from Bulgaria and Italy. I always have an amazing feeling of peacefulness take over when I am inside.

As there were so many people we were politely herded through and into a room where a guiness world record number of sweets had been accumulated. Someone gave a talk in Hindi and a candle was passed around. As we were herded out I went past a large door which a vision of beautiful Indian women were pouring out of in their best saris. Wow.

Happy Diwali!

November 12, 2004

November 06, 2004

Michael Palin

This is well late, Things are going on behind the scenes in documentaryville which I can't surmise in words yet so meanwhile:

I am sad to see the end of Palin's journey through the Himalaya on TV this Sunday. A couple of weeks back I watched him do almost exactly the same trip I did in 1999. I cried when I saw the kallash tribe a few of whom I recognised.

He did the same English lesson in the same school that every westerner who visits does (hand,finger,leg,foot etc.)only when I did it, as soon as the teacher left the room they all started attacking each other really violently. The teacher came back in and hit one of them with a thin branch.

This saddened me, but when he left they ignored me and started hitting each other again. Amazing, almost ferral kids with thick hard dead skin on the front of their feet from long, cold winters sitting by the fire.

Muslims gave me such a hard time in Pakistan these guys were like an oasis to me. I remember meeting a few Pakistani, Afghan and British Taliban who were passing through the valley at the time. I wonder if the change in political climate has affected the Kallash. What a beautiful people.

entertaining fellow kaffirs in northern pakistan