Football Lads Alliance Demonstration in Birmingham – 24 March 2018

   Anne Marie Waters

I recently had the privilege of attending the Football Lads Alliance demonstration in Birmingham where several distinguished speakers were present, including Anne Marie Waters of the political party “For Britain”.

The event attracted around 5000 people and went off completely peacefully, despite the best efforts of a small group of so-called “Anti-Fascists” to disrupt proceedings by shouting and screaming obscenities.

There was a very impassioned speech by a young activist called Alena who was representing the 120dB movement from Germany. She spoke of the fear, violence, intimidation and terror that “Merkel’s Mobile Muslim Mayhem” has brought to Germany including an epidemic of sexual assault, rape and murder that the German authorities seem to have no idea how to contain. She described in great detail from first hand experience the detrimental effect that large numbers of barbaric, rape-addicted savages can have on a formerly civilised country. You can watch and listen to Alena’s speech here.

The speech by Anne Marie Waters was also very powerful and her main message was that we are at a crossroads. We can either submit to Islam or Sharia or we can fight back and regain control of our country. The future of Britain is in the hands of all of us , she said- we have the power to vote these weasels and mountebanks out of power and restore sanity to Great Britain. She also made the very good point that it is not enough for us to leave the EU via Brexit – the entire rotten structure of the EU needs to be dismantled, lock ,stock and barrel, if we are to stop its increasing totalitarian tendencies from ruining the lives of hundreds of millions of civilised people. You can watch and listen to Anne Marie’s speech here.

There was also a speech from Luke Nash-Jones of Make Britain Great Again.

The speeches were followed by a march into Birmingham City Centre, which also went off completely peacefully. There was a very heavy police presence, but the atmosphere was completely non-threatening and there were no arrests during either the demonstration or the march.

Interestingly, the local and national mainstream media deigned to report on the march, which was a completely different situation from the almost complete media blackout imposed on the previous Football Lads Alliance marches in London, although the emphasis (as might be expected) was on trying to paint the participants as racist, bigoted and undeserving of any sympathy.

The overall impression was that we are seeing a long-overdue start of a movement comprising large numbers of peaceful non-Muslims who are just waking up to the threat of Islam in this country. Given that Muslims are increasing their number in the civilised world day by day, and given that the anti-social, the criminal and the terrorist tendencies of a significant proportion of their community are unlikely to improve of their own accord – that is to say, as the problems caused by the political ideology of Islam are not going to go away anytime soon – the likelihood is that more and more non-Muslims will continue to awaken and to become more vocal in their opposition to what is happening to their country.

One of the best the best memories I have was of a banner that read ‘I’m here so that I can tell my children that I did not stay silent’. I hope that there will be many more such banners at many more such marches in the future, and that together we will eventually be successful in stopping and reversing the catastrophic effects of Islamisation not only in this country, but throughout the entire Western world.

As I have said many times before, we owe it to our children and grandchildren not to squander their inheritance – of what is arguably the best civilisation ever devised by mankind – by allowing its destruction by a barbaric, misogynistic, totalitarian seventh-century political ideology.

Tim Burton


Pigeon on the Wing – Chapter 4 – The Pigeon has Landed

     The Pigeon has Landed

Foreword: All chapters of Pigeon on the Wing published on this website are in draft form only. The final version may include grammatical, syntax and content changes, as well as sidebars and illustrations to maintain a level of interest and to stop readers’ eyes from glazing over. All comments and / or criticisms of content or writing style would be most welcome. Masterpieces like this don’t just write themselves, you know.

Seriously, though – this is your book just as much as it is mine. I couldn’t have even begun to write it without all of your help and support. Thank you so much for everything you have done for me, and I hope you enjoy reading the book as much as I have enjoyed writing it.

Tim Burton

Pigeon on the Wing – Chapter 4 – The Pigeon has Landed

As the door was locked behind me, I looked around. There was no other person in the cell at that moment, but there were all the tell-tale signs of current occupation. On one side of the cell were two hard plastic bunk beds, affixed to the cell wall. The lower of the two bunk beds contained a dark blue mattress, a sheet, a pillow and a duvet, although the bed appeared unmade, with a hard-cover book lying face-down on it.

There was a door-less cupboard affixed to the opposite side of the cell that contained several shelves with a handful of toiletries including shampoo and toothpaste scattered on one of the hard plastic surfaces. On the top shelf were some tea-bags and several small cartons of milk. A pile of clothes occupied one of the other shelves and a pencil and some scribbled notes lay on the desk next to the cupboard.

Also on the desk was a computer screen and keyboard, with some wires leading to a locked box secured to the wall underneath the desk. There was also a hard plastic chair and a free-standing plastic wastebasket underneath the desk. It wasn’t exactly top-of-the-range furniture from IKEA, but it was functional and presumably likely to survive with minimal damage any sustained and frenzied assault from residents who might become annoyed from time to time.

The cell also contained an “en-suite” facility. A concrete partition in one corner partially enclosed a space containing a shower, toilet and hand-basin. I was impressed. It could be said that I am easily impressed, but years of watching prison dramas and documentaries on TV had left me with the impression that the undignified practice of “slopping out” was still the preferred method for keeping one’s cell relatively uncontaminated, even in modern prisons, so this was a welcome surprise. Although any privacy one might have wished for was negated by the angle of the partition affording a clear view into the en-suite from the observation hatch set into the door. I could see that this might take some getting used to.

There was also a window, set into the far wall of the cell. It was barred (no surprises there) and the glass seemed to be at least half an inch thick. I looked out of the window into the early evening gloom and saw a heavy-duty mesh fence, topped with razor wire, security lights and cameras, running parallel with and about ten metres away from the outside wall of the cell. Beyond that was a tarmac strip wide enough for two lanes of traffic, another heavy-duty mesh fence, and then there was a perimeter wall some ten metres beyond that.

I could see that the Birdman of HMP Thameside was likely to have his work cut out in trying to get past that lot.

From what I could see, this was a two-person cell, and given that the bottom bunk was in use, it seemed to be a reasonable assumption that the top bunk would be allocated to me. Having only just arrived, I didn’t want to cause any offence. I had no idea about cell etiquette, apart from the stories I had heard and read about cellmates being violently set upon and beaten for minor infringements such as inadvertently taking the wrong bunk, or accidentally using someone else’s toothpaste or deodorant.

On that thought, I suddenly realised that I hadn’t been issued with any toiletries of my own, apart from my own comb and nail clippers, and I wondered if perhaps this was a devilish prank by the prison officers to get my cellmate and I to fight to the death over a tube of Colgate’s finest. No doubt they were taking bets on the outcome at that very moment.

I climbed gingerly up to the top bunk – via a steep set of hard plastic steps – and sat down on the dark blue plastic mattress. That way, I thought, if my cellmate should unexpectedly enter at this moment and instantly fly into a rage, perhaps because of an earlier intention to switch bunks that very evening, I would at least have the advantage of height from which to fight him off.

I unpacked my kitbag containing the sheets, pillows, pillowcases and duvet, and set about making at least some semblance of a bed. The first thing I noticed was that the mattress was very hard. In fact, it was extremely hard. On a scale of mattress-related hardness, I put it at somewhere between the level that starts to induce serious discomfort in those of a sensitive disposition, and the level that one might feel when faced with the prospect of bedding down on a set of cobblestones for the night after having been thrown out of the house for coming home drunk at three in the morning.

Still, there was nothing else for it, and I stretched out on the mattress with my head on the pillow, and began to study the ceiling over my bunk bed.

The ceiling was about eighteen inches above my bunk bed, and was covered in elaborate graffiti. It wasn’t exactly on a par with Michelangelo’s work at the Sistine Chapel, but after a few moments I could make out messages to the effect that “Jesus Saves”, “The Devil Finds Work for Idle Hands” and “Arsenal are a Bunch of Self-Abusing Onanists.” OK, I might have been paraphrasing with that last one, but the messages appeared to offer some insight into the mindset of previous residents. Religion and football featured strongly, and there were two or three anatomically correct drawings of the female form, complete with detailed explanatory wording which wouldn’t have looked out of place in a medical lecture or a student gynaecologist’s notebook.

As I reflected upon the extent of this wondrous variety of artwork inscribed on the ceiling, the observation hatch slid open briefly and the face of a prison officer appeared. He scanned the interior of the cell briefly, and then unlocked the door. A man dressed in prison greens walked in, carrying a plastic bag of what looked very much like toiletries. This turned out to be my new cell-mate. He proffered the bag up to me with a wide smile.

“Hello,” he said, with a thick Nigerian accent. “I think these might be for you. They should have given them to you earlier, but you know what they’re like.”

At this point of course, I didn’t actually know what “they” were like at all, or even who “they” were, but not wanting to appear ungrateful, I took the bag with my left hand, extended my right hand and said “Thanks. By the way, I’m Tim.”

“No worries,” he said, shaking my hand. “My name is” – and here he gave a name that to me was completely unpronounceable, but obviously sensing my consternation, he said “But you can call me John.”

The prison officer placed two cardboard cartons – similar in size and shape to McDonald’s food boxes – on the top of the cupboard. “You missed dinnertime,” he said to me, “but we didn’t want you to starve.” An aroma of roasted chicken and chips filled the cell. I hadn’t realised that I was so hungry. Throwing caution to the wind, and completely forgetting about my defensive tactics in the face of a possibly deranged cell-mate, I clambered down from the top bunk to investigate. The prison officer left, and once again the door was locked.

It was indeed roast chicken and chips, complimented by a sizeable portion of baked beans, together with an apple and a carton of fruit juice. There was a plastic knife and fork in my bag of toiletries – and once again it was impressed upon me that I had to take care of them, because no others would be forthcoming in the event of my losing them, even in the event of encountering a freak cutlery-annihilation-related accident. I ate standing up, using the top of the cupboard as a table, as John was by now seated at the desk on the only chair in the cell, and I didn’t want to inconvenience him. He was reading through the scribbles on the sheet of paper I had seen on the desk when I first walked in.

He glanced up at me. “We’ll have to find you another chair,” he said. “I am just trying to write this letter to my brother. He has no idea I am in here. I expect he thinks I have just gone down to the shop for some cigarettes. I didn’t tell him I was going to court. I thought I would be back home by now.”

You and me both, I thought.

It transpired that John had been sentenced earlier that day as well, but at a different court. He had been sentenced for stealing bicycles. Not just one or two, but dozens of them. And not just the type of bicycle that your maiden aunt would have ridden to church on a Sunday morning with a wicker basket on the front, but top-of-the-range titanium and carbon-fibre framed bicycles with Shimano hydraulic disc brakes and Vittoria Rubino Pro tyres, worth around £3000 each.

What John didn’t know about titanium and carbon-framed bicycles wasn’t worth knowing, as I was to find out over time. It turned out that yuppies in the areas around the City of London and Canary Wharf would flock to work on these state-of-the-art machines and leave them locked up with chains and padlocks that had a surprising array of weaknesses. A vast criminal network had grown up around the combination of irresistible goodies and inadequate security, and John had seen his opportunity.

Unfortunately the City of London Police were not stupid, and had set up a sting operation, leaving an unattended Boardman Elite SLR bicycle just where John might see it. He was caught red-handed cycling away from the scene by a team of undercover officers, and just as he thought he had got away from the hue and cry of the pursuit, a burly policeman about 7 feet tall and with biceps the size of Bournemouth stepped out in front of him, stopped him in his tracks by grabbing the handlebars in a vice-like grip, and uttered the immortal words – “You’re nicked, sunshine.”

John had refused to give up the names of anyone else involved in the network, and as it wasn’t his first offence, he had been sentenced to two years imprisonment.

“So,” said John, “what are you in for?”

I had known this question was coming, and so I had tried to prepare myself for it. I was a little reluctant to disclose the real reason behind my arriving at HMP Thameside, and whilst I knew that the prison staff would have access to my records, I had to trust that data protection laws applied and that details of my conviction would not be inappropriately divulged.

I was apprehensive for a number of reasons – one reason was that I knew that certain offences are looked on as being more objectionable than others, such as offences against women and children – and while that wasn’t specifically the case with me, if it were to come out that I had been sentenced for Religiously Aggravated Harassment against someone of the Mohammedan persuasion, then word might reach any number of Moslem inmates with unpredictable and possibly violent consequences.

This concerned me because it was only a few months previously that a man called Kevin Crehan – who was sentenced to 12 months prison in Bristol for the heinous crime of tying bacon to a mosque door handle – was found dead in his cell under circumstances that at the time of writing (March 2018) are still unexplained.

Therefore I had decided to take the course of admitting to something less controversial. I could hardly admit to bicycle theft, as my lack of knowledge in bicycle technology and the various criminal networks involved would have led the other prisoners to smell a rat. However, it had to be something of sufficient gravity to warrant a custodial sentence, especially given that I was a 64-year-old man with a serious heart condition, and would under normal circumstances have had leniency shown to him by the court.

So I had to think of something else. But I should provide you with some relevant background information before I come to the point.

When I was a gangly 15-year-old teenager I used to own an air rifle, and I spent many happy hours perfecting my shooting skills in the back garden, firing pellet after pellet into a paper target pinned against a large slab of wood. I had reached the point where, with a carefully adjusted telescopic sight, I could continuously fire pellets at will into a two-centimetre diameter centre of a target over 30 metres distance. That may not sound like much of an achievement, but it is harder than it looks.

Fast forward nearly fifty years to January 2016, and I was faced with a dilemma. We had recently had solar panels installed on the roof of our house, courtesy of a Government energy-saving initiative, and the local pigeons had decided that these panels made the perfect spot for roosting. Day after day, especially in the early morning, we could hear the patter of pigeons’ feet on the roof, the smell of pigeon droppings permeated the loft space, and the incessant “coo, coo” of the pigeons was driving myself and June (my other half) insane.

So I said to June, “I’ll get an air rifle. Give me ten days staked out in the caravan on the front drive and I’ll give those pigeons a good old-fashioned seeing-to, pour decourager les autres. The pigeons will find somewhere else to roost and the problem will be solved.”

“You can’t do that!” she said. “It’s cruel. Not to mention somebody might see you.”

“It’s not cruel at all,” I said. “I’ll aim just close enough to frighten them off. I promise I won’t touch a hair on their little feathered chests. And I’ll wear my ex-military camouflage outfit and balaclava to render myself inconspicuous to the neighbours.” But she wouldn’t have it.

The next day I came home to find she had purchased an enormous, lifelike plastic owl from the Internet. It arrived complete with a nodding, swivelling head on a spring, and I had to admit it did look quite impressive. “I’ll put this owl on the bird table in the back garden,” she said, “and the pigeons will be so petrified at seeing such an intimidating predator, they will fly off and never come back.”

Dear reader, the owl was not quite the success we had hoped for. Quite apart from the fact that the regular visitors to our bird table, such as the little finches, sparrows and robins who frequented our back garden, decided that they did not want to share their bird-table with a one-metre high, lifelike plastic owl – day after day, the pigeons would swoop down from their vantage point on the roof of our house, settle on the bird-table, and try to engage the owl in conversation.

After a few days of this, June handed me a lump hammer and an old metal plate on a leather strap that had once served as a dinner gong. “Get up in the loft and make as much noise as you can to scare them off.” I dutifully complied, and spent the rest of the day giving myself a severe case of tinnitus as the sounds of the dinner gong rattled the tiles on the roof and dust started to drift down from the seams in the roofing felt. No luck. The pigeons continued to go about their business, as pigeons do, completely unruffled, which was more than could be said for me. I defy anyone to spend half-hour sessions knocking seven bells out of a dinner gong in a confined space and emerge without any hallucinatory side effects.

The following day, I came home to find that the owl had been strapped to the television aerial on the roof by the handyman we had been employing to install our kitchen. “Andy said he would do it for nothing as long as we promised to look after his wife and children if he fell off the ladder,” said June, whose negotiating skills have become legendary throughout our neighbourhood. “They’ll be too scared to land on our roof now.”

Still we had no success. The owl gazed balefully down at us from the TV aerial, gently nodding and swivelling its head as the wind changed, and the pigeons continued to roost as if nothing had happened.

A day or two later I found June downloading what I thought was music from the Internet. “How nice,” I said, “not another Beethoven sonata to add to your collection of classical music?” June scowled at me. “No,” she said, “this is a recording of a peregrine falcon screeching as it searches for prey. Just go and set up the hi-fi system in the loft, will you? You have to do it by nightfall as the pigeons know that the peregrine falcon is a nocturnal hunter.”

I assumed that the pigeons probably had a better Internet connection than I did, because I didn’t know anything about the predatory habits of peregrine falcons at all, and I consider myself to be fairly well-read. Still, I did as I had been instructed, and soon the screeches of a peregrine falcon were echoing around the loft. “We’ll have to leave it on all night,” said June, “but the pigeons will be gone by morning, just you see.”

After the worst night’s sleep of my entire life, with dreams of enormous owls rampaging around the garden and terrorising the neighbourhood, punctuated by the intermittent screeches of a predatory peregrine falcon, I awoke to the pitter-patter of pigeon feet still running up and down the roof as the pigeons continued to take off and land at regular intervals. By now there were broken egg casings dropping regularly from the roof into the front garden as the pigeons had obviously decided that this was the perfect place to raise a family, and the soft squeaks of baby pigeons could be heard from the loft.

We had several more nights of sleeplessness as June was determined to give the peregrine falcon recordings another chance, but after three days it was obvious that the pigeons weren’t going anywhere. “That’s it,” said June as she slammed another slice of bread into the toaster at breakfast-time, “this calls for drastic measures.”

“So I’ll get the air-rifle then?”

“Not on your life. I’m going to ask Andy to get up on the roof again and deploy anti-pigeon spikes around the solar panels. I’ve already ordered the spikes overnight from the Internet, so there’s no point arguing.”

The spikes arrived the next day, and I came home to see Andy securing the last few rows of spikes into place. The end result looked as though a giant square hedgehog had been first run over by a steam-roller, and then nailed to the roof as a warning message in order to discourage other low-flying giant square hedgehogs. I watched as Andy descended the ladder cautiously. I could tell that he wasn’t really comfortable with heights, possibly because there were not many people in our part of Birmingham who wanted a fitted kitchen installed on their roof.

The three of us stood on the front drive and looked up at the roof. “I’d like to see the pigeon that could get under the solar panels through those spikes,” asserted June, confidently. As the words left her mouth, a pigeon landed on the roof, regarded the spikes for a moment, flattened himself against the roof like an avian limbo-dancer, scuttled between the spikes and disappeared under the solar panels.

The next day I bought myself an air-rifle, complete with high-resolution telescopic sight. Suffice it to say that I was as good as my word, and after spending ten days staked out in the caravan on the front drive, the pigeons had obviously got together and decided that the houses in the surrounding streets presented better opportunities and one morning they vanished, never to be seen again.

“So,” said John, “what are you in for?”

I studied my fingernails nonchalantly. “Oh,” I said, “discharging a firearm and shooting pigeons within fifteen metres of the Queen’s Highway.”

John considered this for a few moments. “Pigeons?” he said, incredulously. “Is that actually a crime?”

“Oh yes,” I said, “and an extremely serious one as well. If it hadn’t been for my dodgy ticker they would likely have thrown away the key, and I would never have seen the smiling faces of my dear grandchildren ever again.”

John looked a bit dubious, but said no more, and soon afterwards the call “Lights out!” reverberated around the wing. The cell was plunged into darkness and I settled back on my mattress for my first night in captivity.

End of Chapter 4

Please donate – whatever you can – to the Tim Burton Legal Defence Fund

Help to overturn an unjust conviction and strike a blow for justice.

Five Minutes to Midnight – The Counter Jihad Warrior Radio Show – 15 March 2018

      Be there or be square

The latest Counter Jihad Warrior Radio Show – Five Minutes to Midnight – from 15 March 2018 is available now to listen in archive. Don’t miss it.

It includes an audio reading from my new book – Pigeon on the Wing.

Pigeon on the Wing – Chapter 1 – Judgment Day.

Tim Burton (with acknowledgements to Kel Fritzi – the beautiful Red Fox from Red Fox RFB Radio and Infidels are Watching on Global Patriot Radio)

Pigeon on the Wing – Chapter 2 – Ground Zero

Chapter 2 – Ground Zero

Foreword: All chapters of Pigeon on the Wing published on this website are in draft form only. The final version may include grammatical, syntax and content changes, as well as sidebars and illustrations to maintain a level of interest and to stop readers’ eyes from glazing over. All comments and / or criticisms of content or writing style would be most welcome. Masterpieces like this don’t just write themselves, you know.

Seriously, though – this is your book just as much as it is mine. I couldn’t have even begun to write it without all of your help and support. Thank you so much for everything you have done for me, and I hope you enjoy reading the book as much as I have enjoyed writing it.

Tim Burton

Pigeon on the Wing – Chapter 2 – Ground Zero

I am often asked how it was that I first became interested in Islam, and what it was that led me to develop the views that I hold on the subject. At the time of writing in early 2018, the majority of non-Muslims living in the United Kingdom, and indeed in most Western countries, are still unaware of – and unawakened to – the true nature of Islam, and on the date of September 10, 2001, the day before 9/11, I was one of those unaware and unawakened.

The events of September 11, 2001 had a profound effect on me, as I am sure it did on many others. I was working as a service contractor at the time – as a computer consultant in a large office where the TV news channel was on in the background. It was around a quarter to two in the afternoon (UK time), and I heard a series of exclamations from several employees present in the office as the news of the attack on the first tower filtered through to the main news networks.

I glanced up at the screen, to be presented with the most horrific video footage, including graphic scenes of people jumping from the North Tower of the World Trade Centre as the upper stories were engulfed in flame. I saw the second attack on the South Tower happen live, with the plane slicing into the building and exploding in a huge ball of fire, as the media news team cameras were by then already focused on the unfolding events.

For the rest of the afternoon, we all watched the TV in stunned disbelief as people continued to jump from the upper floors of the Twin Towers, until the buildings themselves finally collapsed, falling down one after the other, imploding and disintegrating as if in slow motion, with enormous clouds of debris billowing out across Manhattan.

I remember that for days afterwards, it was the main topic of conversation wherever I went, but nobody I knew seemed to be making the connection between the attack and the ideology of Islam itself. The US President at the time, George W Bush, had made a point of emphasising that Islam was a “religion of peace”, and I remember wondering why he had gone to the trouble of saying that, given that most people I knew seemed to have no opinion of the matter one way or another on the subject of Islam, and most of us assumed that 9/11 (as it became known) was most likely the work of a bunch of fundamentalist nutters (Al-Qa’eda?) or possibly a shadowy character by the name of Osama Bin Laden. The ideology of Islam itself was not even on most people’s radar, and it certainly was not on my radar at all.

But something was niggling away at the back of my mind. This was such a terrible event, the lives of almost three thousand people snuffed out in an instant, a terrorist atrocity, if not the worst then one of the worst in modern times, and I found myself thinking that there must be some more profound meaning behind this catastrophic destruction, that three thousand people should not – must not – have died for nothing.

And so I started my research.

I started by trying to find out as much as I could about Osama Bin Laden – who was born to the family of a billionaire in Saudi Arabia. He studied at university in the country until 1979, when he joined Mujahideen forces in Pakistan fighting against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan. He helped to fund the Mujahideen by funneling arms, money and fighters from the Arab world into Afghanistan, and gained popularity among many Arabs. In 1988, he formed Al-Qa’eda. He was banished from Saudi Arabia in 1992, and shifted his base to Sudan until U.S. pressure forced him to leave Sudan in 1996. After establishing a new base in Afghanistan, he declared a war against the United States, initiating a series of bombings and related attacks. He was on the American (FBI) lists of Ten Most Wanted Fugitives and Most Wanted Terrorists for his involvement in the 1998 US Embassy bombings in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania and Nairobi, Kenya.

One thing that jumped out at me was the emphasis that just about every media outlet in the world at that time was focused on – that these terrible atrocities were responsibility of one particular group – Al-Qa’eda – and the implication was that if only we in the West could destroy the leadership of that organisation, the problem of global terrorism would simply disappear.

However, this wasn’t what Osama Bin Laden himself was saying, as this excerpt from an October 2001 interview with Tayseer Allouni of the Al-Jazeera news channel shows:

… this matter isn’t about any specific person and… is not about the Al-Qa’eda Organization. We are the children of an Islamic Nation, with Prophet Muhammad as its leader, our Lord is one… and all the true believers are brothers. So the situation isn’t like the West portrays it, that there is an ‘organization’ with a specific name (such as ‘al-Qa’eda’) and so on. [One of our brothers] created a military base to train the young men to fight against the vicious, arrogant, brutal, terrorizing Soviet empire… this place was called ‘The Base’ [‘Al-Qa’eda’], as in a training base, so this name grew and became. We aren’t separated from this nation. We are the children of a nation, and we are an inseparable part of it, from the far east, from the Philippines, to Indonesia, to Malaysia, to India, to Pakistan, reaching Mauritania… 

So there were at least two narratives, each conflicting strongly with the other. Was it a “fundamentalist” entity? – the translation from the Arabic “Al-Qa’eda” translates not only to “The Base” but also “The Foundation” or “The Fundament.” Or was it that because all believers (Muslims) were brothers, that Al-Qa’eda was simply one manifestation of an Islamic Nation following the leadership of a long-dead seventh-century religious figure? Surely it couldn’t be that? The implications would be huge – and scary.

By this time I had expanded my research to include some of the basics of Islam, including the life of Islam’s Prophet Muhammad. What I had found out was not terribly encouraging – far from being a spiritual leader in the footsteps of (say) Jesus and Buddha, he was a pirate, a warlord, a ruthless murderer, a paedophile and a terrorist. And this information came not from his enemies, but from the accounts of his own contemporaries and friends.

(You might say – with friends like that, who needs enemies?)

It was around 2003 – I had been researching the basics of Islam for about eighteen months, trying to glean as much as I could from different sources from books and on the Internet – when I was introduced to the work of Robert Spencer, who had recently founded Jihad Watch, and Bill Warner from the Centre for the Study of Political Islam. All of a sudden, things started to fall into place, and I realised that everything that we were being told about the nature of Islam by our church leaders, our politicians and our mainstream media- that it was a “religion of peace” for example – was completely and utterly false.

Not only that, but it was a falsehood on such an enormous scale as to be worthy of the term “The Big Lie.” This was a term coined by Adolf Hitler in his book “Mein Kampf” in 1925, and expanded upon by Joseph Goebbles, Germany’s Minister of Propaganda, 16 years later in 1941.

Essentially, the concept of “The Big Lie” is that if you make the lie big enough, and tell it often enough, then people will come to believe it. The realisation that this was what was happening with Islam, that far from being a “religion of peace”, this was a global ideology, followed by one and a half billion people, that was implacably at war with the West, and that there was essentially nothing that we could say or do in relation to our domestic and foreign policy to appease it, shocked me to the core.

I realised that Islam propounded an unremitting, uncompromising doctrine of hatred towards us in the West, not for what we say or do, but for who we are. Non-Muslims, according to the Qur’an, are “the worst of created beings” and must be fought until Islam becomes the only religion on Earth.

I was reminded of the scene in the “Terminator” film, where Kyle Reese explains to Sarah Connor exactly what it is they are dealing with, and the parallel with Islam is chilling:

“Listen! And understand! That terminator is out there. It can’t be bargained with! It can’t be reasoned with! It doesn’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead!”

Also around this time I came across an extremely well-researched work by Craig Winn called “Prophet of Doom.” I started to see that if one looked at the Islamic scriptures in context, the narrative that emerged was a world away from what we were being told by most Muslims whenever they appeared on TV or other mainstream media outlets.

Worse still, I discovered that there is an Islamic doctrine of deceit towards non-believers that requires every single devout Muslim to lie about Islam to non-Muslims – that is, if a good impression of Islam cannot be given to non-Muslims by telling the truth. And this is true even under oath in a court of law, as our secular laws are subservient to Sharia in the eyes of a devout Muslim. His obligation to Allah supersedes any loyalty to non-Muslims or their legal institutions. If he doesn’t believe this, then he is not a Muslim.

The most common word used by non-Muslims to describe this divinely-sanctioned deceit is “taqiyya” (saying something that is not true), but depending on the context, “tawriya” (giving a false impression), “kitman” (lying by omission), “muruna” (blending in by discarding some aspects of Islam in order to advance others), and “darura” (a state of necessity on account of which one may omit doing something required by law or may do something illegal), are all types of divinely-sanctioned lying and deceit.

It is what we would perhaps call anti-social behaviour if we were feeling particularly magnanimous – although it could be more accurately described as hateful, mean-spirited, and quite frankly, disgustingly offensive behaviour that should be unacceptable in any civilised society. The fact that it is used by Muslims on a daily basis to pull the wool over the eyes of non-Muslims without a second thought or any accompanying feelings of guilt, means that it represents an enormous problem for any open, trusting and tolerant Western society that is foolish enough to admit large numbers of Muslims and to treat them as equals.

This is not simply permission to lie. It was, and still is divinely commanded by Allah himself – an obligation, mandated as an eternal doctrine, valid for all times and all places up to the Day of Judgment. It has grave implications for the innocent trust that is so often given to Muslims by non-Muslims unaware of the true nature of Islam – the same trust that is so often abused by Muslims themselves to gain an unfair advantage at the expense of non-Muslims everywhere and at every opportunity.

I will have more to say on the subject of “taqiyya” and other reprehensible aspects of divinely-sanctioned Islamic behaviour later in this book.

Before I conclude this chapter, I would like to quote here from Craig Winn’s “Letter to the Reader” which succinctly summarises the contents of his book “Prophet of Doom”

Islam is a caustic blend of regurgitated paganism and twisted Bible stories.
Muhammad, its lone prophet, conceived his religion solely to satiate his lust
for power, sex, and money. He was a terrorist. If you think these conclusions
are shocking, wait until you see the evidence.

The critics of this work will claim that Prophet of Doom is offensive, racist,
hatemongering, intolerant, and unnecessarily violent. I agree—but I didn’t
write those parts. They came directly from Islam’s scriptures. If you don’t like
what Muhammad and Allah said, don’t blame me. I’m just the messenger.

Others will say that I cherry-picked the worst of Islam to render an unfair
verdict. They will charge that I took the Islamic scriptures out of context to
smear Muhammad and Allah. But none of that is true. Over the course of
these pages, I quote from almost every surah in the Qur’an—many are presented
in their entirety. But more than that, I put each verse in the context of
Muhammad’s life, quoting vociferously from the Sunnah as recorded by
Bukhari, Muslim, Ishaq, and Tabari—Islam’s earliest and more trusted sources.
I even arrange all of this material chronologically, from creation to terror.

Predicting what he called the “Day of Doom” was Muhammad’s most
often repeated prophecy. While it did not occur as he foretold in 1110 A.D., it
nonetheless came true. Muslims and infidels alike have been doomed by Islam.
To discover why, we shall delve into the oldest surviving written evidence.
These official works include the Sira, Ta’rikh, Hadith, and Qur’an. Ishaq’s
Sira, or biography, called Sirat Rasul Allah, provides the sole account of
Muhammad’s life and the formation of Islam written within 200 years of the
prophet’s death.

While the character, message, and deeds portrayed within its pages are the antithesis of Christ’s and his disciples, the Sira’s chronological
presentation is similar in style to the Christian Gospels. The Ta’rikh is the
oldest, most trusted, and comprehensive history of Islam’s formation and
Muhammad’s example, called Sunnah. It was written by Tabari. His History
of al-Tabari is formatted like the Bible. It begins with Islamic creation and
ends with the acts of Muhammad’s companions. Tabari is a compilation of
Hadith quotes and Qur’an passages. As such, it provides the best skeleton
upon which to flesh out the character of Muhammad and the nature of fundamental Islam.

A Hadith is an oral report from Muhammad or his companions. Muslims believe that Hadith were inspired by Allah, making them scripture. The most revered Collection was compiled in a topical arrangement by Bukhari. Allah’s Book, the Qur’an, lacks context and chronology, so to understand it, readers are dependent upon the Sira, Ta’rikh, and Hadith.

All that can be known about Muhammad’s deeds, means, motives, god,
and scripture is enshrined in these books. In their pages you will see them as
they saw themselves. My only point of departure from Ishaq and Tabari will
be the comprehensive review of the early Meccan surahs, a period in which
they had very little to say. Our paths will join again as we approach Islam’s
midlife crisis: the Quraysh Bargain, Satanic Verses, Night’s Journey, and
Pledge of Aqaba—a declaration of war against all mankind.

At this point, the Sira, Ta’rikh, and Hadith speak more clearly than the Qur’an.
So that there will be no confusion, I have set passages from Islam’s scriptures
in bold-faced type. When quoting from the Qur’an and Hadith, I have
elected to use a blended translation. No language transfers perfectly—one
word to another. Five of my twelve translations of the Qur’an were combined
to create the most accurate conveyance of the message possible.

However, the writing quality is so poor, the proofreaders of this manuscript suggested that I help Allah and Muhammad out by cleaning up their grammar, punctuation, and verbosity. So for clarity and readability, I have trimmed their unruly word patterns and meaningless repetitions, being careful not to alter the meaning or message of any passage. Insertions within parenthesis (like this) were added by the Arabic translators to fill in missing words or to clarify the text. Insertions within brackets [like this] represent my observations.

I have elected to present Islam’s original source material in juxtaposition
to my evaluation of its veracity. This format is similar to that used by the first
English translators of Mein Kampf as they attempted to warn America about
the dangers lurking in Hitler’s manifesto. They, as I, found it necessary to hold
the author accountable. A great deal was at stake then, as it is today. The last
time the world was ignorant of such a hateful and violent doctrine, 55 million
people died. If we don’t shed our ignorance of Islam, many more will perish.

My quest to understand Islam began on the morning of September 11th
2001. I wanted to know why Muslim militants were killing us. So I went to
Ground Zero for Islamic terror—Israel. The West Bank is home to more suicide
bombers per capita than anywhere else on earth. I arranged to meet with
the terrorists themselves. I asked members of al-Qaeda, Islamic Jihad, al-Aqsa
Martyrs’ Brigade, and Hamas why they were killing us. They said,
“Islam. We’re following Muhammad’s orders.” That adventure is recounted in
Tea With Terrorists. It covers a wide range of material and serves as a companion
volume, connecting fundamental Islam to terrorism.

Prophet of Doom focuses strictly on what the Islamic scriptures have to say.
So, could it be? Could a prophet and a religion be responsible for today’s
terrorist attacks? I invested 10,000 hours in pursuit of that answer. I wish
everyone had. But knowing that most are unable, I have distilled what I discovered into these pages.

Now for a word of caution: this journey of discovery is ordered chronologically.
It is not prioritized by relevance. Explaining the root cause of Islamic
terror is the biggest priority; yet it is not exposed until the last half of the book.
I want you to know Muhammad, Allah, and Islam before you judge their
legacy. While Prophet of Doom is meticulously researched, documented, and
accurate, it’s written as if you and I were old friends having a lively chat about
the most important and lethal issue of our day.

One last thought before you head down this perilous path. I pray that
when you have reached the journey’s end, you will share my heart for the
plight of Muslims. I want nothing more than to free them from Islam, and in
so doing, free us from the terror their doctrine inspires.

I was to spend the next ten years (between 2003-2013) developing my knowledge of Islam before my grandchildren came along. I decided at that time that it was my duty as a father and a grandfather to stand up and be counted. For the sake of future generations, I had to do whatever I could to make people aware of the true nature of Islam, no matter the cost.

This is because one has to understand the true nature of an enemy before one can hope to defeat him. In the words of the great Chinese general, Sun Tzu – from his book, “The Art of War“, written around 500 BC –

 …If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.

And without a doubt – let’s be clear here – Islam is the enemy of freedom, democracy and everything that we hold dear in a civilised Western society. We have two choices – we can continue to do nothing, in which case Islam will steamroller over everything that our forefathers and ancestors have bequeathed to us, or we can fight back to defend our Judaeo-Christian values and traditions that have served us so well over the last two millenia and which are light years ahead – in virtually every physical, moral and philosophical measurement – of anything the Islamic world has to offer.

End of Chapter 2

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Help to overturn an unjust conviction and restore justice.

Pat Condell – Progressive Feminism and International Women’s Day

 You know he’s right

Pat Condell is one of my favourite vloggers, mostly because he does not mince words, and he is not afraid to tell it how it is when standing up to the evils of political correctness and the purveyors of the “multicultural / diversity” bullshit currently peddled to the rest of us by our political elites and the terminally deluded “great and good” – who for the most part don’t have a clue about what is being done to systematically destroy our formerly peaceful, democratic societies based on Judaeo-Christian ethics, morals and values.

This week he takes aim at so-called “Progressive Feminists” and their contribution – or lack of it – to the International Women’s Day that took place on Thursday 08 March 2018.

I have taken the liberty of transcribing the narrative onto this web page as I think it is too important to be overlooked, and the YouTube Closed Caption feature doesn’t always capture the subtle grammatical nuances .

Pat Condell’s words are in italics. View the YouTube video here.

Pat Condell – Progressive Feminism

When it comes to the ongoing wave of migrant rape and sexual assault in Europe, the people I feel most sorry for are the refugee friendly progressive feminists, because when they get raped they won’t even know who to blame without being a racist.

What am I saying – of course they will – they’ll blame all men as usual while telling everybody else not to generalise. I hadn’t intended to talk about this subject again for a while, but it’s International Women’s Day, so how could I resist. You may know that a couple of my recent videos on this subject have been censored by YouTube because it seems that the progressive feminists at YouTube really don’t like to be ridiculed – which is good to know.

Progressive feminism differs from real feminism of course, in that it’s a lot more about appearance and public posture than it is about substance. It certainly has nothing to do with the welfare of women, and everything to do with the petty bigotries and personal neuroses of the stupid progressive feminists. All other women, especially women who are oppressed by other cultures – if  you’ll pardon the euphemism – can go hang themselves, because progressive feminism subscribes to a toxic identity grievance hierarchy that puts black and brown skinned men above all women.

White men of course are right at the bottom, especially white heterosexual men because they are responsible for all the bad things in the world and there’s nothing good to be said about them, which is why you’ll find that progressive feminists will often have more of a problem with white men who don’t rape than they do with black or brown men who do.

The black and brown rapists are clearly driven to it by white racism. We shouldn’t demonise and other-ise people from disadvantaged backgrounds just because they happen to be violent rapists when we could be putting the blame where it really belongs on white men and their racism – isn’t that right, girls.

Now obviously, to those of us outside the progressive bubble – that sounds totally idiotic – but we have to try and understand the kind of pressure these women are under from the other progressive dimwits around them, especially in a place like Google which is notoriously a safe space environment and this means of course that many of its employees are certifiably insane and they know better than anyone the kind of hysterical reaction they’ll be faced with if they ever stepped out of line because they hear it whenever they open their mouths, and they see it whenever they look in the mirror, and they know that if they were ever crazy enough to unequivocally condemn a brown-skinned rapist they would be immediately be smeared as a racist by a rabid mob of empty-headed sloganeering bimbos just like themselves and that’s what they fear more than anything because they’re too stupid to know any better.

I do hope that doesn’t offend.

Meanwhile Europe is being invaded by a violent third-world Muslim rape culture. Have I mentioned this before, well let me mention it again just for International Women’s Day. If the invasion is allowed to continue and thanks to our politicians, many of them female, it looks as if it will, rape is going to evolve in Europe from a disgusting horrific crime to an unfortunate cultural difference and women are going to learn, often the hard way to keep themselves covered and to spend less time in the public space and this is the society that we will leave to our grandchildren.

We can already see it taking shape, as a society significantly less safe and significantly less free for women than the society we were lucky enough to be born into. We are the most pampered generation in human history. We’ve never had to defend anything or fight for anything; consequently we don’t know the value of anything, which is why we’re such a pushover.

So you women in Europe need to wake up to the imminent threat you face because it’s clear now that the people in Europe who call themselves men are not going to help you. If you don’t wake up now and start voting – yes, voting seriously – against the politicians who are enabling this invasion, your daughters and granddaughters will pay a very heavy price indeed.

It would be so wonderful if you women at Google could help them in that by just getting out of the way. We’re not asking you girls to leave your safe space because you’d be like a crab without a shell, we understand that, but if you could just not hinder the people who are trying to make the difference that you could be making it would be really great.

If any of you are curious about what Europe is inflicting on its female population just visit any Muslim country, walk down the street in a short skirt and see for yourself, but a little tip – if you do happen to get raped by one or more of the locals, whatever you do, don’t report it to the police or you will be the criminal and you might even get raped again.

It’s a cultural difference and here in the progressive West you know we love to celebrate difference and what could be more different than getting punished for being raped, plus learning about other cultures broadens the mind so it’s actually quite educational. It all depends on how you look at it, it always does when everything is relative.

After all, who are we in privileged Europe to tell disadvantaged third-world men that they shouldn’t abuse and rape women. If that’s their culture and if they want to come here to Europe illegally in unsustainably massive numbers and rape women and children here, what moral right do we have to object, all cultures being equal and all.

If we’re arrogant enough to try and educate them out of it they might become traumatised, marginalised and vulnerable. No it’s clearly up to you women in Europe to take some responsibility here and keep yourselves hidden if you don’t want to be raped.

It’s not as if you don’t know what’s coming by now unless you’ve been living in a cave. Look at the countries these people are coming from – the very worst countries on earth for women where thousands of women and girls are forced into violent marriages and lives of misery every day – including International Women’s Day – and where they have no rights worthy of the name and the men, if you can call them that, who are doing it to them are being allowed to flood into Europe en masse and to bring that vile mentality here completely unfiltered and unchallenged – what did anyone think was going to happen?

Well it is happening – again and again – and as this invasion is allowed to continue it will get worse and worse and worse until we are faced with a crime against humanity when you purposely flood an emancipated liberal society like ours with overwhelming numbers of fighting age men from a violent misogynistic rape culture, you don’t need to be a genius to predict what will happen.

But you do need to be a special kind of rotten in the head to pretend that it won’t happen when you know it will. Morally it’s on a par with leaving a baby alone with a vicious dog – you’ve got no excuse, and you’ve got less than no excuse for censoring information about it, if you call yourself a feminist.

Peace – and – Happy International Women’s Day to everyone, but especially to the progressive bimbos, male and female, at Google and YouTube.

For those of you who are not sufficiently outraged to get out there with your torches and pitchforks, I suggest that you read, watch, learn and commit to memory each and every one of Pat Condell’s videos as he dissects every politically correct platitude – all of which are specifically designed to keep us sedated and unwary until our heads are on the butcher’s block.

I’ve decided that on my gravestone I’m going to have written the following:

“Don’t say I didn’t try to warn you.”

Tim Burton

Please donate – if you can – to the Tim Burton Legal Defence Fund

Help to overturn an unjust conviction and restore justice.

Pigeon on the Wing – Chapter 3 – The Lions’ Den

  Chapter 3 – The Lions’ Den

Foreword: All chapters of Pigeon on the Wing published on this website are in draft form only. The final version may include grammatical, syntax and content changes, as well as sidebars and illustrations to maintain a level of interest and to stop readers’ eyes from glazing over. All comments and / or criticisms of content or writing style would be most welcome. Masterpieces like this don’t just write themselves, you know.

Seriously, though – this is your book just as much as it is mine. I couldn’t have even begun to write it without all of your help and support. Thank you so much for everything you have done for me, and I hope you enjoy reading the book as much as I have enjoyed writing it.

Tim Burton

Pigeon on the Wing – Chapter 3 – The Lions’ Den

The two genial prison officers from the corridor entered the holding cell. They were almost apologetic. “Rules,” said the first officer. We have to cuff you. You don’t mind, do you? We’re going to be entering a double cuff area.”

I was about to leave the confines of the holding cells for the journey in a prison van from Inner London Crown Court to HMP Thameside. Words seemed superfluous, so I extended my wrists and submitted to the adorning of heavy metal in the manner of one who actually had a choice in the matter. A “Double Cuff” area meant that not only did you have to have your own wrists hand-cuffed; you had to have a wrist cuffed to the wrist of a prison officer as well.

I looked at the cuffs. They were not exactly the style I would have chosen had I been in the Sado-Masochistic section of the Ann Summers retail outlet, which would have been with a soft and furry covering of faux leopard skin (not to mention a separate set of keys that I could have used to unlock the cuffs if things got a bit too – intense – shall we say) but at least my blood supply was unrestricted and the officers seemed genuinely concerned for my well being. We exited the holding cell in a semi-dignified manner with me being concerned mostly with not tripping over my own feet after six hours of inactivity.

The second officer draped my jacket over my wrists, which I thought was a touching gesture in the unlikely event of us running into a sizable collection of paparazzi en route to the van destined to transport me to my new home at HMP Thameside. I would not have wanted the impression to be given that I was accompanying these genial souls for any other reason than of my own volition.

I was led through the labyrinthine corridors of the Inner London Crown Court and up several flights of concrete steps to a courtyard in which three or four white prison vans were standing. For those of you who are unfamiliar with prison vans – probably most of you – imagine a large horse-box with individual compartments for up to six prisoners, three on each side, each with just enough room to sit down, each securely locked with an armour-plated door and a heavily smoked, armour-plated glass window to the outside world. The driver and an auxiliary prison officer are in the front of the van, which is totally isolated from the rear of the van containing the prisoners, save for radio communication between them and a third prison officer supervising the human cargo.

There were five of us scheduled for HMP Thameside. I surveyed my fellow passengers. There were two gangly teenagers who seemed to immediately recognise each other – “Hey! Weren’t you at Chelmsford nick in 2014? Do you remember Old Smokey? And what he used to get up to with the screws? He really taught them a thing or two!” – and there was a down-trodden-looking white-haired gentleman, who must have been in his seventies, and who didn’t seem to inclined to communicate with the rest of us at all – and finally a dignified black gentleman who was about the same age as myself, who regarded me gravely as we boarded the van, and gave me a slight nod as if to say – “You and I, we are not so very different, we are on the same path together, and we had better make the most of it.” It was the unspoken bond between two fellow travellers whose lives happen to cross – as ships pass in the night.

(At this point I should say that if I refer to individuals during the course of this book as black or white, or indeed of any other colour or hue, it is not because of racism. It is not because I wish to make a point about some races having characteristics that are positive or negative in respect to other races. I subscribe to the notion that we are all equal in the sight of God, even if our idea of God may vary from person to person, and indeed, some of us might say that there is no God at all. However, when one is introduced to someone for the first time, one makes an instant assessment or judgment based on observations made at that time. Such observations may include body language, manner of speech and facial expression as well as the colour of their skin and complexion.

Such assessments and judgments are made during the course of a split second, and are usually entirely outside of one’s conscious control at that time. It is a fact that most people, including myself, make irrational judgments from time to time, and wherever possible I try to seek out the causes of irrationality and to address them in a logical and consistent manner.

I am sure that most people do this, which is why it annoys me so much that people like myself are frequently accused of racism when all we are trying to do is to acknowledge that there are differences, as well as similarities between individuals.

Sometimes the first thing that one notices in a person may be useful in terms of telling a story or outlining a narrative of some sort, and sometimes it may or may not be a characteristic based on their race or the colour of their skin, but in no way does it sum up their entire personality by any stretch of the imagination, nor should it, despite what those on the left of the political spectrum may tell you as they indulge in their truly racist narratives of identity politics.)

We were locked into our individual compartments, un-cuffed, and left to our own devices as the van started up and we began our journey across London, exiting through the gates of the Inner London Crown Court and travelling along the A2 to HMP Thameside, which was apparently located in West Thamesmead, just across the River Thames from London City Airport. I could hear the two teenagers in the back of the van still swapping war stories through the armour-plated glass from their time in Chelmsford prison in 2014. From the other two prisoners there was silence.

I looked out of the window to my left at the outside world and regarded the cars, buses, cycles and motorcycles keeping pace with us along the London roads. Every now and again I attempted to make eye contact with someone on the outside who was still free, only to realise that they couldn’t possibly see me behind the heavily smoked, armour-plated glass.

I imagined them going about their daily lives, having breakfast with their partners, going to work, having lunch, coming home to their families, having dinner, perhaps going out to the pictures, to the theatre, to a night-club, meeting friends with never a thought as to how they might react if they had their liberty taken away from them. As the prison van trundled along, we passed people sitting in small, friendly groups at tables in outside pavement cafes, sometimes friends chatting quietly on the street, sometimes lovers walking hand-in-hand without a care in the world.

And there was I, locked in a claustrophobic space in a converted horsebox without even the possibility of reaching out to another human being and exchanging conversation or pleasantries, let alone my innermost thoughts.

I could feel that this line of thought was not going to lead me to a “happy place”, and so I turned my attention away from the outside world and started to think about what it would be like to arrive at a prison like HMP Thameside. All I knew about it was that it was an “OK nick” according to the petite blonde I had met earlier that morning in the maze of corridors underneath the Inner London Crown Court. From that simple phrase I imagined that it could be anything between a Geoffrey Archer-style open prison where prisoners could come and go as they please, to an Evin-style prison in Tehran, where it would be touch-and-go as to whether you would come out alive with your testicles still attached to your body and all your fingernails still attached to your fingers, rather than being given to you at the end of your stay in a plastic bag marked “assorted testicles and fingernails – not for human consumption.”

Strangely enough, this line of thought was not leading me to a “happy place” either.

I looked through the other window leading to the inside of the van, where a lady prison officer whom I judged to be in her late thirties was listening to what seemed to be the afternoon play on Radio 4 while simultaneously working her way through what looked like to be – could it be? – Yes, a Sun crossword. I was intrigued. This was the second Sun crossword I had seen that day being filled in by a prison officer. Could this be significant? I imagined myself conducting a nationwide survey of prison officers to discern their reading and crossword habits.

Suppose that 80 per cent of prison officers confessed to completing at least one Sun crossword per week. What conclusions might one draw? Discarding the obvious conclusion that they would be mostly racist right-wing fascist throwbacks for reading the Sun newspaper in the first place, their propensity for crosswords could only be explained by the fact that the recruiting procedure for the UK Prison Service places great emphasis on the ability of prison officers to devise constructive means of whiling away the interminable hours of boredom that must ensue as a result of their employment.

Obviously they would need to maintain the appropriate degree of alertness in the event of an enterprising prisoner like myself attempting his escape from the confines of the converted horsebox that apparently passes for an acceptable means of human transportation for prisoners in the 21st century. Although I had already discarded the notion of bribing a prison officer and passing myself off as a washerwoman in the manner of Toad of Toad Hall, I was not above utilising the old grey matter in order to evaluate some alternative possibilities of escape.

I wondered how long it might take to tunnel through the wall of my cell with a teaspoon, like Andy Dufresne in The Shawshank Redemption. It might very well depend on the teaspoon, as I imagined that our all-pervasive Health and Safety regulations would have most likely decreed that a metal teaspoon posed an unacceptable risk to the well-being of vulnerable prisoners due its potential for being transformed into a weapon of mass destruction.

I can totally understand that viewpoint. My first wife used to use the same philosophical approach when making tea. Arguably the fact that she insisted upon employing a cauldron, rather than a teapot, couldn’t have helped matters very much.

(By now you will have determined that I was not above employing a certain amount of sarcasm when describing my current predicament. It could of course be argued that sarcasm was a contributory factor to my predicament in the first place. More on that later.)

After what must have been the best part of a two-hour drive, the prison van pulled up at the front of an extremely imposing structure which I was to later find out was HMP Thameside. The first impression of this “OK nick” was of dark-reddish sandy-coloured brick walls of at least 20 feet in height, topped with horizontal cylinders of at least ten feet in diameter, presumably to defeat enterprising inmates armed with grappling irons, or their accomplices on the outside armed with the same. This was obviously going to be more of a challenge than I anticipated. For the time being at least, I judged that it would be perhaps be prudent to shelve my plans for becoming the second “Birdman of Alcatraz”. Besides, “Birdman of HMP Thameside” doesn’t have quite the same ring to it, and if one aspires to escape the confinement of a high security prison and to make it into the history books, then one does at least need a cool nickname if nothing else.

HMP Thameside is (according to its website) a Category B private prison for adult males in the West Thamesmead area of the Royal Borough of Greenwich, South-East London. It currently has the capacity to hold 1232 convicted and remand prisoners. So far so good, you might think. You can almost sense the unspoken presence of the five-star Trip Advisor rating as you peruse the glossy holiday-brochure-style website.

(Category B is one step down from Category A, which is reserved for terrorists, murderers and serial rapists. Just the place for a decrepit old geezer like me with a dodgy ticker convicted of sending half a dozen jocular and non-threatening emails to a mendacious grievance-mongering taqiyya artist, you might say.)

The website goes on to say – The regime at Thameside Prison combines work, education, vocational training, accredited offending behaviour programmes, and prisoner health and other appropriate interventions. It doesn’t have any reference in its website to hard labour or even to sewing mailbags, which I was to later discover is nowadays generally frowned upon by most of the  more enlightened prison directors and senior prison staff (although I’m sure there are a few unreconstructed dinosaurs who hanker after the good old days.)

What it also doesn’t say on its website is that it also has, or at least had, a very bad reputation for prison violence, according to a BBC report from 2013. As you can imagine, this is not what you want to hear as you pass through the gates with the anticipation of an extended stay.

On the plus side, I was to later find out; HMP Thameside is literally within a stone’s throw of Belmarsh prison. I surmised that on a good day, one might be able to throw a stone right into Andy Choudary’s Chicken Tikka Masala if only our al-fresco lunch breaks could be synchronised. (Andy Choudary, the so-called firebrand preacher of Brick Lane, had been convicted some time previously for supporting and glorifying terrorism, and was currently residing in Belmarsh prison, surrounded and presumably lionised by similarly-minded jihadis intent on spreading the good news about Islam.) A stone landing slap-bang into the middle of his Chicken Tikka Masala would probably ruin his day.

Although the logistical and trigonometrical problems associated with calculating the trajectory required for successful stone-throwing in the general direction of Belmarsh were to be among a number of idle thoughts occupying my mind over the next few weeks, for now I was intent on absorbing as much as possible about this new environment, the better to be able to deal with situations as they arose, as I had no doubt they would.

A large solid gate set into the wall of this imposing structure slid open with a low rumbling sound to allow the prison van to drive into a “quarantine” area. The gate slid shut again behind us, once the van was within the quarantine area and had come to a halt. Once all the paperwork had been checked out between the driver and a uniformed prison guard on the entry gate, at least as far as I could see from my vantage point inside the van, a second gate in front of the van opened and the van passed through into the main reception area from which we were required to disembark. The van stopped in front of a set of double doors and we were led out, one by one, to be processed by what appeared to be the “welcoming committee” of HMP Thameside.

My eye was caught by a large notice affixed to the outside of the reception area, informing all and sundry that it was a very serious matter to assist a prisoner in escaping from lawful custody, and not only that, but woe betide anyone who was caught smuggling a mobile phone or any other illegal substance or contraband into the prison. Wrongdoers who were caught could expect a sentence of anything up to ten years. Probably nearer twenty years, I thought, if in the process of committing such a crime, one inadvertently caused offence to some passing Muslim or other.

As you may be able to tell, I was still smarting from the perceived injustice done to me through the handing down of a custodial sentence. Although, given the severe sentences subsequently meted out in March 2018 to Paul Golding and Jayda Fransen, the leaders of Britain First, for what was a very similar offence – demonstrating “hostility to Muslims” and “hostility to the Muslim faith” – it could be argued that I had got off lightly. I have to say that it didn’t feel like that at the time.

I was led through the double doors to what appeared to be a reception desk in front of a very busy area full of prison staff moving purposefully around. There was a mat about six feet square in front of the reception desk with two foot-shaped prints on it. “Stand there”, growled an HMP Thameside prison officer. I regarded him with some trepidation. Gone was the geniality of the officers at the Inner London Crown Court, to be replaced by something altogether less encouraging, if not outright sinister and intimidating. He had a badge on his chest proclaiming himself to be a Senior Custody Officer. I suppose it sounded better than Assistant Receptionist or General Dogsbody.

Once again I was subjected to a series of questions concerning my life since I was around five years old – was I allergic to anything, did I have any diagnosed or undiagnosed medical conditions, did I have any religious affiliations – and did I have any identifying tattoos?

Tattoos? Now that an was interesting question.

Dear reader, I did in fact have tattoos (solely on my upper arms at the time of writing.) Nothing in the way of Ludo / Llandudno tattooed on the more sensitive parts of my anatomy (an old schoolboy joke, if you don’t get it then ask your Dad.) Nothing terribly exotic, certainly compared to the numerous multicoloured tattoos of snakes, spiders’ webs and death’s heads over crossed motorcycle pistons that one sees all over the bodies of Birmingham citizens every day (and that’s just the women.)

These tattoos were from my Aikido days – one was on my left bicep, spelling out the word Aikido in Japanese script. The other was on my right bicep, with a far more esoteric meaning – “Mas-akatsu-akatsu” in Japanese script which translates as either “you cannot defeat your opponent until you first defeat yourself” or “the only victory is self-victory” – the calligraphic symbols for victory and defeat being the same in Japanese (in the same way that the symbols for “danger” and “opportunity” are the same in the Chinese calligraphic script.) This phrase echoes far beyond the confines of Japanese martial arts and with a certain amount of introspection could be construed as a metaphor for life.

How many times have you been asked whether you can do something, and have answered “No, I can’t do that.” Have you ever thought that perhaps your answer was dictated by the limits that you yourself imposed on your imagination? That perhaps you could do the thing that was asked of you, if only you freed your imagination? Such a simple concept, and yet it is so difficult for the average human being in the West to achieve. Defeating yourself in order to accomplish victory may seem very counter-intuitive, but in fact can lead to a profound and life-changing liberation of one’s inner self.

My explanation for these tattoos fell on deaf ears. Pearls before swine, I thought. Although of course, it was entirely possible that they had heard it all before. A filled-in form was placed in front of me. “All right, sunshine, sign here.” I signed.

Following this interrogation, I was directed to a cubicle for the exchange of my clothes for prison-issue socks, boxer shorts, white trainers and an ensemble of tracksuit bottoms, T-shirts and jersey in a very tasteful shade of “prison green.” It was a bit like what used to be called British Racing Green but without the accompanying aura of Formula One celebrity and the bevy of luscious bikini-clad chicks on the starting grid. All the same, the quality of the materials wasn’t bad, and the trainers in particular were definitely an improvement from the footwear I had been wearing earlier that day.

Things were looking up.

I was then taken through an inventory of my belongings, including the plastic bag of items taken from me at the Inner London Crown Court, which had miraculously turned up at the same prison that I had. I was impressed – this was better service than one might have expected from Terminal 5 at Heathrow – where some might point out that it is not unknown for British Airways baggage handlers to send half of your luggage to Bucharest and the other half to Bangkok, while you yourself languish for four days out of a five-day holiday on the tarmac, waiting for a flight to Torremolinos.

Having signed off on the inventory of belongings, with a cheery assurance that I was almost certain to get them back at the end of my stay, I was then presented with my own wristwatch, comb and nail clippers, which I presumed had been designated as sufficiently non-threatening for use on the prison wing. I was then taken to a desk with a camera mounted on it, for the obligatory photo shoot which would form the basis for the mugshot on my prison identity card.

It was impressed upon me that I had better take very good care of this identity card, as most of the prison services (including a regular supply of food) were going to be available only on the production of the card together with my fingerprint, which would be read into a fingerprint scanner at various stages and at various exit and entry points within the prison. The identity card also contained a smart chip, similar to that found in a credit or debit card, which could be used in each cell to operate a basic computer and a telephone, and to control one’s access to TV channels (providing your behaviour remained good enough to allow the continued use of a computer, telephone and TV in your cell. If you were a bad boy, as I was to find out, then all privileges such as a computer, telephone and TV in your cell would be summarily withdrawn.)

I was then escorted to the laundry room, where I was presented with a kitbag containing clean sheets, pillowcases, pillows and a duvet. I have to say that the duvet looked a little insubstantial, and I considered asking if they had one with a higher TOG rating as I occasionally find it difficult to sleep if the ambient temperature is too low and my feet get too cold, but once again I thought it might be more prudent to keep my mouth firmly shut, at least until I had an inkling of how things worked around here.

The prison officer escorted me out of the reception area into a large courtyard and from there to a separate building with a forbidding-looking metal door, which was locked and marked with a large letter “A.”

I was to find out that all the doors in the prison were kept locked unless there was a specific reason for opening, and while I knew on one level that it was bound to be the default position for a prison, given the obvious consequences of employing the liberal alternative of keeping all the doors open, I still found it somewhat unnerving to be faced with the implications, one of which was that this really did mean the loss of my liberty.

Behind the door marked with the letter “A” was (perhaps unsurprisingly) “A” wing, where all new arrivals spent the first few days for assessment by the prison staff. I was led past a common mixing and socialising area – not unlike a Macdonald’s or Kentucky Fried Chicken eating area, currently devoid of customers, not to mention devoid of the usual plethora of discarded chicken bones and plastic containers one comes to associate with such establishments – but filled with serried ranks of tables and chairs securely fixed to the ground (presumably to prevent unnecessary injuries in the event of unpleasant events such as a prison riot or other such violent disagreements.)

The officer stopped in front of a locked door marked A-17.

“Welcome to your new home,” he said, with a wolfish smile. “You’ll be sharing with one other prisoner for the time being.” He inserted a key from the substantial keychain on his belt into the lock and slowly turned it anti-clockwise with an ominous series of accompanying clicks.

I entered the cell through the unlocked door. Mas-akatsu-akatsu. I was in the lions’ den, and I had a feeling that over the coming weeks I would have to call on my deepest reserves in order to survive.

End of Chapter 3

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Britain First leaders jailed for “Religiously Aggravated Harassment”

   A travesty of justice

I’m not sure if I can add a great deal to this Jihad Watch article concerning the conviction and imprisonment of Paul Golding and Jayda Fransen for doing very little more than drawing attention to the continuing – and worsening – phenomenon of Islamic Rape Gangs in the United Kingdom.

The CPS guidelines on “demonstrating hostility towards Muslims and the Muslim faith” do not now require any actual evidence of hostility, which can include such things as “unfriendliness” towards, or “dislike” of the barbaric ideology of Islam which has underpinned the rape of tens of thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands of vulnerable young girls by predatory Muslim men.

I must declare an interest here, as regular readers will know that I myself was unjustly convicted of Religiously Aggravated Harassment in 2017, for merely calling out a mendacious grievance-mongering taqiyya-artist for being the pompous and arrogant fraud that he was.

My sympathies go out to both of these courageous people, who stand up against the ongoing Islamisation of our country when our craven and cowardly politicians, police forces and local authorities understand the consequences very well and still choose to do nothing about it.

Please support them if you can – I know from experience how challenging it can be in such an environment, and it is a real morale-booster to receive a letter of support or even a visit under such circumstances. Never forget what is at stake here – it’s not just the jailing of two courageous people, it’s the right to express ourselves freely in the face of the greatest threat to our civilisation that the country has ever seen, as well as the future of our children and grandchildren, and their right to live as free people – free from the barbarity of Islam and the depredations of Sharia and the Global Jihad.

Tim Burton


Sargon of Akkad and The Battle of King’s College London

     Oh, the irony…!

This post is not specifically to do with Islam, it is more to do with Free Speech, the cornerstone of our civilisation (which of course Islam vehemently opposes. In fact, if it wasn’t for the propensity that Islam has to pursue the violent destruction, rape and pillage of civilisations, humanity  and freedoms wherever it goes, I doubt if anyone would give a rat’s ass about such a backward ideology. But then that’s just my opinion.)

Some of you may recall that I recently referred to the work of Sargon of Akkad, a vlogger who it would be fair to regard as a classic liberal, and indeed he describes himself as such on his YouTube channel. His recent article on the tragedy of Venezuela highlighted the dangers of socialism.

These dangers take on a particularly ominous significance when socialism is faithfully implemented by those with a totalitarian outlook, such as Hugo Chavez and Nicholas Maduro in the case of Venezuela (and of course our very own Jeremy Corbyn in the UK, whose veiled and not-so-veiled threats on the curtailment of our freedoms should he ever come to power should forever disqualify him from holding the position of Prime Minister.)

In short, Sargon of Akkad (his real name, which is already in the public domain, is Carl Benjamin) is just the sort of advocate of free speech whose words we should be carefully considering when trying to find a way forward through the fog of totalitarianism that is gradually closing around us here in the so-called free world.

To that end, Carl Benjamin was invited to hold a discussion with author Yaron Brook, an Objectivist and chairman of the Ayn Rand Institute) held at that renowned bastion of free expression and free enquiry, King’s College London. One might have thought that an event on the subject of free speech would have taken place without any of the unpleasant scenes that have marred the appearances of such people as Robert Spencer, the director of Jihad Watch, and Milo Yiannopoulous, who describes himself as a “cultural libertarian” when they recently attempted to speak at universities and colleges in the United States.

However, the event at King’s College London was invaded by a large number of violent and masked students – self-described “anti-fascists” who beat up the security guards who were present, as well as some members of the audience, to the extent that a number of KCL security guards were hospitalised due to their injuries. This represents a severe escalation of the violence that the so-called “anti-fascists” are prepared to employ in the pursuit of their objectives in this country.

The most ironic aspect of the proceedings was the way in which the advocates of free speech were loudly and frequently referred to as “fascists” when of course it was the “anti-fascists” themselves that were exhibiting the true fascism and hatred that the Left has for our freedoms.

It remains to be seen whether any of the student “anti-fascists” will be reported to the police, or even disciplined for their activities, considering that some of them had their masks ripped off and their faces exposed to the myriad of smartphone cameras that are now ubiquitous and “de rigueur” at any public event. However, I for one will not be holding my breath. An increasing number of university and college authorities have no problem at all with violent and disruptive protests that are designed to shut down free speech and to “no-platform” anyone with views that are outside the permitted politically-correct limits that exist in such institutions today.

Tim Burton

PS – for those of you who are increasingly concerned about the censorship employed by the social media giants such as Facebook, Twitter, Google and YouTube, please take a look at BitChute . An increasing number of conservative vloggers and political commentators are moving to platforms such as BitChute for a relatively censorship-free media experience.

Pigeon on the Wing – Chapter 1 – Judgment Day

    Chapter 1 – Judgment Day

Foreword: All chapters of Pigeon on the Wing published on this website are in draft form only. The final version may include grammatical, syntax and content changes, as well as sidebars and illustrations to maintain a level of interest and to stop readers’ eyes from glazing over. All comments and / or criticisms of content or writing style would be most welcome. Masterpieces like this don’t just write themselves, you know.

Seriously, though – this is your book just as much as it is mine. I couldn’t have even begun to write it without all of your help and support. Thank you so much for everything you have done for me, and I hope you enjoy reading the book as much as I have enjoyed writing it.

Tim Burton

Pigeon on the Wing – Chapter 1 – Judgment Day

“Twelve weeks.”

The words hung in the air like a malevolent mist on a winter’s day. I looked up from my reverie – I had been contemplating my journey home from the cold, unforgiving atmosphere of the Sentencing Hearing at Courtroom 4 of the Inner London Crown Court later that morning, and in my mind I was halfway between London and my Birmingham home, relaxing with my feet up on a Virgin Inter-City train, enjoying (if such a word may be permitted under the circumstances) one of British Rail’s most refined and delicate cheese and onion sandwiches, washed down with one of their celebrated Earl Grey teas, albeit served up in a nondescript white polystyrene cup.

“Twelve weeks.”

I frowned slightly. Surely I had misheard the judge – His Honour (who shall remain nameless for the purpose of my story, although a diligent researcher might easily uncover his identity), was, after all, renowned throughout the land as a most fair-minded example of the new liberal judiciary – a far cry from the notorious Hanging Judge Jeffreys of 17th century Dorset, or so I had been told, and most unlikely to submit to the crushing political correctness which was reported to be so pervasive in the British legal system in the 21st century. There was no way he would sentence a 64-year-old man with a previously clean record and a serious heart condition to prison, merely for sending a well-deserved handful of jocular, non-threatening emails to a pompous, arrogant, mendacious, grievance-mongering member of the British Establishment. Perhaps I had indeed misheard.

“Twelve weeks.”

I looked around. The courtroom was brightly lit, richly empanelled with wood that had become polished with age, and divided into sections for the various interested groups. The low hum of an air conditioner could just be discerned in the background. At the far end of the court, in front of me, elevated on a platform, was the bench on which the judge sat, embellished with the logo of the Inner London Crown Court and plainly designed to intimidate all those unfortunate enough to find themselves in the dock. To my left, on a bench presumably reserved for the assorted conglomeration of singularly ill-favoured weasels currently representing the British mainstream media, were four or five hacks, who occasionally glanced at me as they busily scribbled away in their notebooks. To my right were a series of benches, presumably for members of the public, which appeared to be vacant. (I later found that a handful of my faithful supporters were in fact in attendance in the public gallery, but hidden from my view by a wooden panel at the side of the dock.)

In front of me, in the well of the court, bewigged and cloaked in black silk gowns, and with all the self-important airs that one comes to associate with such members of the legal profession, were the prosecution lawyer and the defence lawyer, together with the Clerk of the Court and several other court functionaries. I myself was in the dock, behind a series of overlapping sheets of armour-plated glass – they don’t leave anything to chance in a Crown Court, I can tell you – and I was accompanied by a bored-looking Dock Officer dressed in a crumpled and down-at-heel uniform, sitting at a wooden table on the right-hand side of the dock. Every now and again he would look up from his half-completed Sun newspaper crossword to take a cursory interest in the proceedings. He seemed friendly enough, having offered me a biscuit and a glass of water at the start of the sentencing hearing, but I wasn’t about to engage him in conversation, as by now I was listening intently to the words of the judge as I began to realise that perhaps I wasn’t going home later that morning after all.

“Twelve weeks. And there will be a victim surcharge of eighty pounds.”

Eighty pounds? Eighty POUNDS? What a cheek, I thought. Talk about adding insult to injury. And a “victim surcharge”? There hadn’t even been a victim; merely a mendacious grievance-monger milking the situation for all that it was worth. This particular grievance-monger (about whom I will have more to say later) had sought to paint himself as a model of rectitude and pillar of the community, cruelly maligned, distressed, alarmed, and unfairly harassed by a bigoted, racist, far-right extremist, good-for-nothing “Islamophobe” (that would be me, apparently) – and the Court had swallowed his version of events hook, line and sinker.

Beside me, the Dock Officer stirred slightly and regarded me with interest, with a look similar to that of a well-fed Labrador who perhaps would have been quite happy reclining in front of a coal fire but was now anticipating a run around the local park in pursuit of his favourite ball. He put aside his newspaper with the half-completed crossword and rose to his feet. Brushing the biscuit crumbs from the front of his uniform, he moved to the back of the dock and, examining a set of keys that hung from his belt on a steel chain, he selected one and opened the rightmost of two doors. The door on the left, I knew led to freedom (for that was the way I had come in), but the door on the right that I presumed led to the cells underneath the court might as well have had a sign on it reading “Abandon Hope, all ye who enter here.”

I realised that the time had come and gone for me to bribe the Dock Officer to let me escape from the court dressed as a washerwoman in the manner of Toad from Toad Hall, so I rose from my chair with as much dignity as I could muster and stoically resigned myself to my fate. I picked up my rucksack from the chair next to where I had been sitting, and made my way through the door on the right, down the thirty or forty concrete steps to the labyrinth underneath the court. Behind me, I could hear the Dock Officer locking the door with an air of finality, as I stepped off the bottom stair and into a brightly lit corridor stretching for at least fifty yards in each direction. Two burly, uniformed male prison officers were there to greet me.

“Well, well, what have we here?” said the first prison officer. He was a tall, well-built man in his forties, swarthy and dark-haired, and surprisingly genial in his manner. His words echoed off the walls of the corridor like those of an overly enthusiastic demon receptionist welcoming a newcomer to Hades.  It has to be said that I wasn’t really sure exactly what to expect at this point, perhaps a water-boarding session or a stretch on a medieval rack followed by the attachment of some electrical jump leads to the more sensitive parts of my anatomy, but his words alleviated my fears, at least to the extent that I could feel a sense of calm starting to descend upon me.

It’s an odd thing, but at times of extreme stress I sometimes find that I am almost able to detach myself from my body and view the situation as a dispassionate observer. It’s difficult to say where this ability came from – I certainly don’t remember being able to call on it when I was a child – but I don’t think it would be unreasonable to put this down to my training in martial arts and meditation over the last thirty years. The Japanese call this sensation “no-mind” and with extensive practice it allows one to accept what is inevitable and to make the most of one’s situation, without wasting mental energy on ineffective strategies such as panic and anxiety.

The second prison officer examined his clipboard. “Timothy Burton? Not Tim Burton the famous film director? What’s a toff like you doing here?” He was younger than the first man, with wispy hair, a light complexion and accompanied by a disposition that was at least as equally genial as his colleague. Hearing his words, I was rather taken aback. I checked myself to see whether, perhaps in a fit of absent-mindedness while getting dressed that morning, I had clothed myself in some accoutrements that would have justified such a description, perhaps a top hat, or a monocle, white spats and a mahogany cane, but no, I was simply dressed in my blue suit, dark shoes and matching tie which I had donned for the occasion in a gesture of respect for the Court.

(I was surprised to find out later that many defendants turned up for court somewhat less well-turned-out, if not downright scruffy and unkempt. Call me old-fashioned, but I can’t help but feel that such an approach to sartorial matters would minimise their chances of a favourable outcome.

Then again, I had just been given twelve weeks by the judge, so perhaps my theory concerning the appropriate dress to wear at Court was not altogether as infallible as I might have first thought.)

The first prison officer indicated that I should stretch my arms out so that I could be thoroughly searched, patted down and screened with a metal-detecting wand, which emitted an unnerving screech as it hovered over my jacket pocket. Busted! I thought, as I was relieved of my house keys, nail clippers, wallet, and mobile phone, which were placed in a large polythene bag which had (ominously) already been labelled with my name. That was odd, I thought. It was almost if they had been expecting me for the past few days.

The second prison officer spoke again. “Follow me and we’ll get you processed.” He turned and led the way down the corridor to a room on the left, where a petite blonde woman sat at a desk with a computer, intently tapping away on the keyboard as if her life depended on it.

“It’s Burton, miss.” He motioned to me that I should relinquish my rucksack. I sat down at the side of the desk as he started to unpack all my worldly possessions, or at least those I had brought with me that morning. Not that I had brought a great deal, anticipating as I had that I would by now be on my way home, but all the same, it was an odd feeling to see my rucksack being pulled apart in such a way by the hands of a stranger.

“Don’t worry, we’ll keep this safe for you,” he said. “Although we’ll have to confiscate these food items.” He pulled out a couple of chocolate bars (that I had kept in my rucksack in case of an emergency) and placed them on a shelf, no doubt in order to subject them to a detailed forensic examination later.

The petite blonde woman studied the computer screen and then turned to me. “You’ll be going to Thameside, Mr Burton. Don’t worry, it’s an OK nick. And you’ve been given twelve weeks, which means you’ll be out in six.” She made it sound like a walk in the park.

“I’ll need to confirm a few details,” she continued, and proceeded to question me about every aspect of my existence since I was about five years old. Was I allergic to anything? (No, unless you count my sporadic outbreaks of hay fever). Did I have an alcohol or drugs dependency? (No, unless you count my heart medications, on which I could be said to be rather dependent, on the grounds that if I didn’t take them every day then my forthcoming sojourn at Her Majesty’s pleasure might be unexpectedly curtailed, and not in a good way). Did I have any diagnosed mental illness? How about an undiagnosed mental illness? Was I a member of a particular religious affiliation? I fought back the urge to say that I was either a Satanist or a Jedi Knight – as I had sensed that this might not be the right time to reveal my religious affiliations. Being unfamiliar with the proper etiquette to be observed when in custody, I had no desire to draw undue attention to myself lest I be immediately consigned to a straitjacket.

After this initial interrogation I was led to a holding cell. For those of you unaccustomed to the delights of the subterranean residences of the Inner London Crown Court, this was an enclosed space of about 12 feet by 12 feet with a concrete floor, a ceiling with a fluorescent  light set into it under a vandal-proof cover, brick walls painted with a faded shade of duck egg blue, and a concrete bench along one wall. There were no windows. There was a sound of creaking hinges as the thick steel door slammed shut behind me, a series of clunks and clicks as the key turned in the lock, and for the first time since sentence had been passed earlier that morning, I was utterly alone.

At that time it must have been about half past eleven in the morning, and  I wondered whether I might be moved straight away to the “OK nick” that was HMP Thameside, or whether I was going to be in this cell for a long stay. I sat down on the hard concrete bench provided and contemplated the separation from the outside world, thinking that I might as well look on the bright side – I hadn’t as yet been handcuffed, and I hadn’t as yet been forced into one of those trendy bright orange jumpsuits which I understand are all the fashion with the inmates of Guantanamo Bay. (Orange is not at all my favourite colour.)

However, after around thirty minutes, the cell hatch snapped open and yet another cheerful face appeared. I swear that they must select prison officers for their cheerfulness. I suppose that the average prison officer must face the prospect of an awful lot of disgruntled convicts, a category that I was fast in danger of joining, insofar that I was now most definitely a convict and could be said to be in the initial stages of being somewhat disgruntled. An overweening abundance of cheerfulness could definitely be considered to be a huge asset for a prison officer under such circumstances.

It has to be said that even if I was not completely disgruntled at this time, I was certainly a long way from being gruntled.

“You want some lunch?” said Mr Cheerful. “Uh – yes please,” said I, not wanting to subject Mr Cheerful to too much trouble on my behalf. For all I knew, Mr Cheerful might hold the keys that would make a difference between a pleasant stay in the holding cells, or a one-way trip to the water-boarding suite complete with a set of electrically operated testicular agitation devices.

“What do you want?” Well, blow me down with a feather, I thought. I hadn’t realised there was a choice. For a moment I contemplated selecting the Duck a L’Orange followed by the Chateaubriand steak and a bottle of Pol Roger ’61, but in the end I said – “Uh – What have you got?”


“Is that it?”

“Yup. Although you can have two portions if you want.” Never having been one to look a gift horse in the mouth, I said “OK then – two portions would be great.” And to be fair, when it arrived in a micro-waved plastic dish, it was absolutely delicious. Not five-star Ritz hotel delicious maybe, but delicious enough for a starving, newly convicted reprobate like myself who has just seen his last chocolate bars for the next six weeks disappear in a metaphorical puff of smoke over the horizon.

The next few hours passed slowly, and I found myself engaging in any number of mentally distracting activities – counting the number of bricks in each wall of my cell, trying to gauge the length of the corridor outside by the footfall of the prison officers, listening to the incessant complaints of the man in the cell next to mine – “So why can’t I have a cigarette then? You bloody screws are all the same. You’re infringing my human rights!”

I was just starting to think that maybe they had forgotten about me and that I was destined to spend the next six weeks on a diet of truculent neighbours, lasagne and brick-counting, when there was the clunking of a key in the lock, the door opened and Mr Cheerful appeared again.

“Your brief’s here.”

Now, I can’t say that I was totally enamoured with my brief (defence lawyer). She had demonstrated remarkable incompetence during my trial, committing all sorts of cardinal errors that a barrister with 20 years experience should never have committed. (I later found out that the highlight of her career was defending the welfare of a bunch of scrofulous rabbits. (This is actually true, a factoid that I subsequently gleaned from the website of her Chambers in King’s Bench Walk). I don’t think she had prepared herself adequately for the defence of an actual human being, let alone a concerned patriot like myself. Prior to the trial, she hadn’t even read my defence notes properly, which had more than likely contributed to my current situation. Rest assured, dear reader, I will expand more on this later.

“How are you doing?” she said as she walked into my cell, motioning to Mr Cheerful that he should wait outside. She sat down on the concrete bench next to me. I could smell her perfume, straight out of Coco Chanel’s Come Hither Bunny Lover range of fragrances.

“I can’t complain,” I said, “the room service is very good, although I’m a little perplexed at why I’m down here in the first place. You assured me that there was no way the judge would hand down a custodial sentence given that I was of previous good character, that it was a non-violent offence and that I was suffering from a serious heart condition.”

“Yes, well, the judge wasn’t really in your corner from the start,” she breezed. (This was true enough. I have seen cornered rats that were more in my corner than that judge was.)

“But if you keep your head down and do what you’re told, you should be out in next to no time. In fact, if you volunteer for some of the prison jobs in the library, or the laundry room, or handing out meals in the canteen, you could be eligible for home detention with an ankle tag after as little as three days.”

This, dear reader, as I was to find out, was a fiction. A fiction, a lie, no doubt designed to distract my attention from the discussion of her dismal performance in court during my trial. I dare say that she had encountered several such tricky situations in her legal career, if her unprofessional and slapdash approach to my personal circumstances was anything to go by.

Oh, how easily are the newly convicted taken in by such falsehoods. Still, I felt I could do no more than to thank her for everything she had done, even though she was heading home to a life of comfort, luxury and presumably unrestricted no-holds-barred rabbit fondling, whilst I was to languish for the next six weeks in an environment that might hold no end of trials and tribulations. She exited the cell without a backward glance, and that was the last I saw of her. The cell door clicked shut behind her.

Two hours later, the door of the holding cell was unlocked again – and I was on my way to HMP Thameside, which was to be my home for the next six weeks.

End of Chapter 1

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Help to overturn an unjust conviction and strike a blow for justice.