Thursday, June 30, 2016

Amichai Ariel on His Daughter's Murderer: " evil person, one of 1.5 billion Muslims who just want to drown the world in rivers of blood. That's what they live for."

Earlier, the State Department announced that Hallel Yaffa Ariel, the murdered 13-year-old Jewish settler, was in fact an American citizen. In a presentation lasting less than a minute, a spokesman condemned the murder as an "outrageous terrorist attack." He didn't mention anything else about the perpetrator. For all we knew he could have been a homophobic Floridian.

Of course, he was a Muslim "Palestinian" from the Arab village next-door.

These sorts of incidents, which in one form or another happen every few days, are embarrassing to the Obama Administration. The inciter and presider in-chief over them is Mahmoud Abbas--the head of the Palestinian Authority--who also happens to be one of Obama's best Muslim thug friends.

As we reported a few hours ago, Abbas was given a standing ovation at the EU after he accused Jews of poisoning the water supply. His organization has praised his murderer and will pay a bounty to his family.

I'm writing on this for the third time today because it tragically expresses and clarifies many things.
  • The horror of Islamic terrorism not merely in terms of numbers - 10 killed, 28 killed, 50 killed, etc. - but for one young woman and her family.
  • The added horror that the terrorist entered her home and stabbed her in her bedroom. By now, we are almost enured to the fact that there's a 1 in 100,000 chance (or whatever) that we'll be blown up by some Mohammedan in the subway or at airport or even inside a dance club. But who imagined that a Muslim suicide killer would mount a home invasion and murder a sleeping teenager in her bed.
  • The fact that the murderer was quickly pursued, confronted and shot by a mixture of armed-civilians, armed-quasi-civilians and armed-guards. In the United States a SWAT team would have surrounded the village while hostages held to death.
  • The frequency of these sorts of attacks. Only hours later, another "Palestinian" stabbed two Israelis in the coastal tone of Netanya. He was then shot to death by a civilian. 
  • The perfidy of Obama and his cast of collaborators who cheerfully hobnob with the Big Boss of the Palestinians.
  • The contrast between how the Israeli government reports terrorism and how the Obama Administration dissembles and covers up. Among other things, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) almost immediately "tweeted" a picture of the the victim's bloody bedroom. Obama would have never released this (where are the photos of the aftermath inside of Pulse?) and would still be wondering aloud what the "motivations" of the killer were.  
  • The perfidy of the EU bureaucrats who applauded Abbas (while booing and hissing at Nigel Farage just a few days later).
  • The barbarity and hatred of West Bank Muslims, who inhabit a culture where the cold-blooded murder of innocents is encouraged and celebrated.
  • The perfidy of the mainstream media, who downplay this sort of incident and often lie about the facts. Earlier today the New York Times was caught changing the translation of an interview with the murderer's mother. The mother called her son a "hero" and a "martyr." America's newspaper of record scrubbed those words from their translation of the interview.
  • The utter lie that Islam is a "religion of peace."
"All she wanted was to be a dancer."
Amichai Ariel, the father of the murdered teenager, gave a heart wrenching interview a few hours after his daughter was killed. His wife sobs next to him. As Facebook hosted eulogies to her killer, her father made statements that in most normal circumstances would have gotten him banned from Facebook. I honestly wouldn't be surprised if Facebook bans the video of the interview or suspends those who share it. After all, he just slandered 1.5 billion Muslims, didn't he? How dare he?
Last night she came back from a dance performance. She was an amazing girl. She worked very hard for years to become a dancer. She put so much effort into everything she did. God gave her a great mind, lots of wisdom. She was so bright. This morning at 9:30 we were supposed to work together filling bottles with wine. Hallel loved living here, loved the place. She wasn't afraid of anyone. She never imagined - nor did anyone else - that an evil person, one of 1.5 billion Muslims who just want to drown the world in rivers of blood. That's what they live for. It's terrible, just think about it: a little girl who did nothing.

Animals: Fatah Glorifies Murderer of Teenage Girl on Its Facebook Page

For anyone who follows these things, this isn't really a surprise. It's the norm.

Fatah is the largest political faction and is headed by Mahmoud Abbas.

A week ago, Abbas received a standing ovation when speaking in front of the European Parliament.

Today, the Facebook page of his party eulogized the depraved Muslim punk who did this to an innocent 13-year-old Israeli girl.

As in all similar cases, the family of the "martyr" will now receive a reward stipend from the Palestinian Authority.

In turn, the murderer's mother had this to say:
My son is a hero. He made me proud. My son died as a Martyr defending Jerusalem and the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds.
Her son broke into a Jewish family's house and stabbed Hallel Yaffa Ariel to death in her bedroom.

This is how Muslims defend Jerusalem and the Al-Aqsa Mosque.

I didn't say it. The mother did.

Animals is too kind.     

Palestinian Terrorist Stabs 13-Year-Old Israeli Girl to Death in Her Bedroom

Her name was Hallel Yaffa Ariel.

The attack occurred Thursday morning in the West Bank settlement of Kiryat Arba. A man responding to her screams was also stabbed and then mistakenly shot by other responders. The assailant--a 17-year-old boy--was killed.

From the Times of Israel:
Local officials said the home lies on the edge in the Ramat Mamre neighborhood, adjacent to a fence surrounding the settlement. A picture released by the IDF showed the bedroom with blood smeared on beds and the floor.
According to an initial account, the attacker jumped the fence — a breach that sent an alert to the IDF and civilian security guards in the area — and broke into the girl’s bedroom, where she was sleeping. 
Forces searching for the cause of the breach heard screams coming from the house and raced in to find the girl with multiple stab wounds in her bed, according to Channel 10. One of the guards hurried to her to provide first aid and was jumped by the attacker who managed to stab him. 
The girl’s father and other guards fired shots at the attacker, killing him, and also wounding the responding guard. 
“The girl was unconscious, without a pulse and not breathing. She had a number of penetrating wounds on her upper body. We loaded her onto the ambulance while performing CPR. Her condition was very serious. The second victim we loaded into the ambulance and gave him life-saving first aid. He was fully conscious, speaking with us throughout the ride [to the hospital],” said Magen David Adom medic Devora Aviad.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Guilt by Association? Cupich Celebrates Iftar with Charity Group Associated with "Death to Apostates" Islamist, Yusuf al-Qaradawi

Archbishop Cupich and Dr. Mohammed Kaiseruddin, Chair of the Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago and keynote speaker at the 19th Annual Catholic-Muslim Iftar Dinner
I put a question mark next to "Guilt by Association." That's because I assume that Archbishop Blase Cupich has no idea who Yusuf al-Qaradawi is. In that sense Cupich is no different than many non-Muslims who rush to embrace prominent and "respectable" Muslim organizations, following the mantra that the "vast majority" of Muslims are "moderates" and Islam is on the whole a "religion of peace," etc.

Last night, Cupich attended and gave the welcoming address at the 19th Annual Catholic-Muslim Iftar Dinner--Iftar being the meal where Muslims celebrate the end of their daily fast. The event was held at the Zakat Foundation of America headquarters in Bridgeview, Illinois. The Foundation is a well-known Islamic non-profit that distributes aid to Muslim communities all over the world in fulfillment of the religious zakat or charity obligation.

The theme of the event was Islamophobia.

The Zakat Foundation publishes The Zakat Handbook: A Practical Guide for Muslims in the West, which it prominently features on its website--you are invited to download the PDF for free--as an essential guide to Zakat. It has no credited author but the Foreword was written by Khalil Demir, the longtime Executive Director of the organization. In the Foreword, Demir prominently notes the Handbook's primary source:
A noted source for contemporary cases is the celebrated Dr. Yusuf al-Qardawi’s Fiqh az-Zakat (a book translated into English under the same name (with the subtitle: A Comparative Study, published by Dar al-Taqwa, London, UK, 1999). This book relies heavily on Shaykh Yusuf’s monumental service to contemporary Muslims in Fiqh az-Zakat.
Who is Yusuf al-Qardawi?

Al-Qardawi is an Egyptian-born Muslim scholar currently residing in Qatar. At the age of 89, he is one of the world's most well know Muslim public intellectuals, with a popular and long-running program on sharia on the Al Jazeera network.

That doesn't prevent him from being as much of an "extremist" as any fictional caricature dreamed up by an Islamophobe.

Al-Qardawi is currently barred from entering the United States and a number of other Western countries due to his advocacy of terrorism and links with Muslim supremacist groups. He was sentenced to death in absentia by the Egyptian government due to his prominent association with the Muslim Brotherhood over many years.

According to Wikipedia, some of his more notable publicly expressed views include:
  • Advocating the death penalty for apostates from Islam
    If they had gotten rid of the apostasy punishment Islam wouldn't exist today...The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His apostle is that they should be murdered or crucified... many hadiths, not only one or two, but many, narrated by a number of Muhammad's companions state that any apostate should be killed. Ibn 'Abbas's hadith: 'Kill whoever changes his faith [from Islam].'
  • Advocating the arrest and public torture of homosexuals
    The same punishment as any sexual pervert – the same as the fornicator (the punishment for fornication is whipping.)
  • Approval of Hitler and the Holocaust and a call for a second Holocaust at the hands of Muslims
    Throughout history, Allah has imposed upon the Jews people who would punish them for their corruption ... The last punishment was carried out by Hitler. By means of all the things he did to them – even though they exaggerated this issue – he managed to put them in their place. This was divine punishment for them.... Allah Willing, the next time will be at the hand of the believers.
  • Murderous hatred against Jews in general
    O Allah, take your enemies, the enemies of Islam. O Allah, take the Jews, the treacherous aggressors. O Allah, take this profligate, cunning, arrogant band of people. O Allah, they have spread much tyranny and corruption in the land. Pour Your wrath upon them, O our God. Lie in wait for them. O Allah, You annihilated the people of Thamoud (An early pagan Arab tribe) with an overpowering blast, and You annihilated the people of 'Aad with a fierce, icy gale, and You destroyed the pharaoh [of Exodus] and his soldiers – O Allah, take this oppressive, tyrannical band of people. O Allah, take this oppressive, Jewish Zionist band of people. O Allah, do not spare a single one of them. O Allah, count their numbers, and kill them, down to the very last one (from a prayer read by Al-Qaradawi on Al Jazeera during the 2009 Gaza war).
  • Support for Palestinian suicide bombing
  • Support for "resistance" against allied forces in Iraq
Now, it is true that for many of his "extreme" statements there are also moderating ones. For example, he apparently believes that only apostates who go public with anti-Islam views should be executed. He once told Rabbis from a dissident Jewish sect that "there is no enmity between Jews and Muslims." And so on.

This has on occasion even earned him the label of being a "liberal." Yes, that's correct, in international Islamic intellectual circles, only being in favor of executing apostates in some cases, often makes one a liberal.

And of course, Al-Qardawi is absolutely correct that everything he says has explicit foundation in the Koran and/or Hadith (the canonical sayings of Muhammed), the same sources that Muslims use to deduce, say, one's charity obligations

Where does this leave the Zakat Foundation?

Is guilt by association in this case, fair? I'm not alleging that, say, every member of Zakat approves of all of the views of Yusef Al-Qardawi. Indeed, it's almost certain that they would publicly deny agreeing with any off them. But then why enthusiastically cite him in their main publication? Arguably, it would be as if a prominent Catholic charity cited David Duke as their main inspiration. Then again, as far as I know, David Duke has never advocated the execution of Christian apostates or the arrest and public torture of homosexuals.

One answer of course is that they can't really avoid it. The Muslim intellectual milieux isn't 95% inhabited by "moderates." It is dominated by people like Al-Qardawi. If you want to write a handbook on the Zakat obligation, you cannot help but make use of the work of these people.

At the very minimum, Muslims such as the Executive Director of Zakat know this but do not reveal it. Indeed, they lie about it.

At anti-Islamophobia dinners.

More to the point, I have no doubt that many Muslims, including many at that dinner, at least passively approve of many of the horribles associated with Al-Qardawi. One could cite polling that shows this. More to the point, where is the prominent Muslim non-profit actively working to abolish the most illiberal elements of sharia in the countries where it is most in force? Where is the Zakat Foundation on that one?

No doubt, many Muslims are passive out of fear. That at least partially absolves them. It does not absolve Islam.    

Where does that leave Cupich?

Archbishop Cupich doesn't want to know that Islam is shot through with hatred and barbarism. Or more probably he knows it, at least on some level or in some vague sense, but doesn't really care. For the moment, it doesn't fit the narrative he wants to exploit. For all his bragging about "accompanying" his LGBT brothers and sisters, he's supping with those who shrug at having homosexuals publicly flogged. But no worries, that inconvenient fact won't be reported in the next Catholic New World.

And, of course, Cupich is not alone by any means, among Catholics or others, in being an apologist for Islam. But here's the thing, Cupich has himself decided to make much of his job about the advocacy of minority rights or what he would no doubt claim are human rights in general. Being a shill for Islam makes this aspect of his ministry a joke.   

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Pope Emeritus Benedict to Pope Francis: "Your goodness has struck me; it truly carries me. Your goodness is the place where I live."

"My protector"

Earlier this morning, Pope Emeritus Benedict went out of his way to praise his apparent successor Francis, on the occasion of the 65th anniversary of Benedict's ordination:  
“Eucharistomen” says a human thanks, thank you to everyone. Thank you especially, Holy Father! Your goodness, from the first moment of the election, at every moment of my life here, has struck me; it truly carries me, interiorly. More than in the Vatican Gardens with their beauty, your goodness is the place where I live: I feel protected. Thank you also for your word of thanks, for everything. And let us hope that you will be able to go forward with all of us on this way of Divine Mercy, showing the path of Jesus, toward Jesus, toward God.
Who is Benedict? Take your pick:
  • The Pope Emeritus
  • An ex-Pope
  • The true Pope
  • A co-Pope
  • Half a pope, though at the same time fully Pope
  • Quity Quiterson
As Frank Walker of Canon 212 and The Stumbling Block recently asked (though in this case he was referring to the status of Francis), at this point, does it really matter?  

One of the most interesting parts of that rambling Francis plane interview a few days ago, was Francis publicly bragging about people coming to Benedict to complain about him. In response (according to Francis), Benedict had "sent them packing." This raises obvious questions: Who were these people? What precisely were they complaining about? What are they up to now, after Benedict allegedly rejected their entreaties? How does Francis know what happened? And so on.

Francis once implied that his pontificate might only last "two or three years" and that like his predecessor, he might voluntarily step down. More than three years in, it seems increasingly unlikely that this will happen. Though Francis is not in the best of health, Benedict appears far weaker. It seems probable he will die first.

Regardless, if anyone ever thought that Good Pope Benedict would be triumphantly carried back to the Chair of St. Peter by some Catholic traditionalist mob after the election of Francis was thrown out on a technicality or whatever, the chances of that or anything remotely like it happening would now appear to be zero.

Unless it's all an act on Benedict's part (he's waiting for the right time to declare himself), or he's a sedated prisoner, or the true Pope is really John Paul I who didn't really die suddenly in 1978 and has actually been living all this time in a Vatican attic...


Christ will strengthen us and has offered to save us. But in terms of earthly help, right now, we appear to be on our own. And as a good priest says to me on a regular basis, "it's going to get worse before it gets better."

Then again, look on the bright side. At least Ramadan is almost over.

[Written immediately before the Istanbul Airport terror attack that now looks to have killed 50 innocents. No doubt Francis is about to blame international finance and admonish Christians to apologize for child labor. Benedict is in his study practicing calligraphy.]  

BREAKING: Up to 50 Dead in Istanbul Airport Terror Attack

A Turkish official just told the AP that there are "nearly 50" dead.  

The attack occurred at 10:25 PM Istanbul time (2:25 PM CST).

Ataturk Airport is the third busiest airport on the European continent.

It appears that there were at least three attackers. At least one opened fire after being confronted by security at the x-ray machines. A witness claims he saw a police officer wrestle one to the ground before all three set off suicide bombs.

See the Daily Mirror live stream here.

This video appears to record one of the gunmen pursuing fleeing civilians, and then being shot by police. He writhes on the ground. Someone (a policeman?) runs up to him and then appears to decide that he should get as far away as possible. The terrorist sets off his bomb and we see his Kalashnikov spin across the floor.

This security camera footage also appears to capture one of the explosions.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Advisor: Trump would Support Israel Rejecting Palestinian State, Annexing Parts of West Bank

Here's another reason for anti-Israel people of all stripes to hate Donald Trump. He appears to be more pro-Israel than either Barack Obama (obviously) or George W. Bush. Indeed, he may be the most pro-Israel candidate of modern times.

This didn't stop George Will - one of Israel's staunchest defenders among the establishment pundiratti - of recently all but saying he would vote for Hillary Clinton, apparently largely on the grounds that Trump has not yet released his tax returns.

We all have our priorities.

In an interview with Israel's oldest daily newspaper on Friday, David Friedman, Trumps's "co-advisor" on Israel, gave this perspective on the views of his boss:

From Haaretz interview with Barak Ravid (via Bare Naked Islam): 
Trump would support Israeli annexation of parts of West Bank, says adviser 
In interview with Haaretz, David Friedman, candidate’s co-adviser on Israeli affairs, says Trump doesn't believe Palestinian state is 'an American imperative.' He's also not concerned over possibility of binational state: 'Nobody really knows how many Palestinians live there.' 
If elected U.S. president in November, Donald Trump would support Israel’s annexing parts of the West Bank, a senior official in the Trump campaign told Haaretz in an interview this week. 
Trump is not worried about the possibility of a binational state, said David Friedman, the candidate’s adviser on Israel. “Nobody really knows how many Palestinians live there,” he said. 
As president, Trump would be unlikely to adopt the policies of President Barack Obama and his predecessor, George W. Bush, that a Palestinian state is a U.S. security interest, the adviser said. A 57-year-old lawyer specializing in real estate and bankruptcies, Friedman has worked with Trump as an attorney for 15 years. 
A few months ago during the election campaign, Trump announced that Friedman, along with Trump Industries legal adviser Jason Greenblatt, would both serve as his advisers on Israeli affairs. 
The telephone interview on Tuesday evening took place as polls showed Trump sliding and his campaign seemed racked by crisis. Friedman predicted that despite criticism of Trump’s reaction to the Orlando attack, once the dust settled, his public support would grow. 
“Things are not going downhill. Everything is fine,” Friedman said. “The polls are extremely fluid. They don’t mean much at this point. People who study the polls tell us it is pretty even right now. There is a lot of work to do but nobody is discouraged by the polling.” 
Trump's ambassador to Israel? 
A profile of Friedman published a few weeks ago by Makor Rishon describes him as the lead candidate for the job of ambassador to Israel if Trump wins the election. Friedman is involved in philanthropic activities for Israel, a large part of which has to do with settlements in the West Bank. He is president of an organization of American friends of the Beit El settlement, who have sent millions of dollars to the settlement in recent years. 
Since the start of his campaign, Trump has said that if elected he would try to achieve an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal. But the candidate has also told the British Daily Mail that he supports unlimited expansion of Israeli settlements. 
Friedman said that in recent months he has given Trump a few briefings about the Israeli-Palestinian issue and that Trump is knowledgeable about the details of the long-standing conflict. 
Trump’s positions on the Israeli-Palestinian issue, as his close aide sees it, will be welcomed by the right and the Israeli settlements lobby. If Trump wins the election, Friedman said he would carry out the policy as he, Friedman, presented it. He would in effect retreat from a policy in place under Republican and Democratic presidents alike for the past five decades. In such a situation, Trump would even be further to the right than his apparent supporter, Benjamin Netanyahu. 
Does Mr. Trump support the creation of an independent Palestinian state? 
“The answer is – not without the approval of the Israelis,” said Friedman. “This is an issue that Israel has to deal with on its own because it will have to deal with the consequences. His feeling about Israel is that it is a robust democracy. The Israelis have to make the decision on whether or not to give up land to create a Palestinian state. If the Israelis don’t want to do it, so he doesn’t think they should do it. It is their choice. ... He does not think it is an American imperative for it to be an independent Palestinian state. “ 
Friedman explains that the reasons for Trump’s positions about the creation of a Palestinian state are due first and foremost to what he described as “the Gaza experiment” and the way that ended. The second reason is that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has no domestic political legitimacy in the Palestinian Authority, and therefore he has no mandate to sign a peace agreement. Finally, Friedman explains, the American interest is that Israel will live in security and therefore any step that may weaken it should be avoided. 
“If the Israelis conclude that they need to do this [establish a Palestinian state] in order to enhance their long-term security – which I think we are very skeptical about – but if this is what they conclude they want to do, we will respect this decision. ... If the circumstances change ... and there is a reason to be optimistic, then great, but the current facts don’t make that [Palestinian state] an American imperative at all.” 
'Committed to settlers' 
Friedman said Trump’s support for building settlements stemmed from his understanding that the Israeli government “has a commitment to its citizens in Judea and Samaria” who moved out there with its agreement. Trump, according to Friedman, said Israel has to continue to build in the settlements because there is no reason not to do so. 
Israelis “don’t have to wait another generation for the Palestinians to hold more realistic expectations and show less hostile motivation,” Friedman said. “Trump’s position is that we have to deal with reality and not hopes and wishes.” 
Trump’s aide said the possibility of a binational state emerging between the Jordan River and Mediterranean Sea doesn’t worry Trump. Listening to the policy Friedman talks reminds one more than a little of the positions of Habayit Hayehudi and the YESHA council of settlements. 
“There are always creative ways to allow people to live in peace. It is not always about the land. We don’t accept the idea it is only about land. Nobody really knows how many Palestinians actually live there,” Friedman said. 
Does he think Trump would object to Israel annexing parts of the West Bank?
“I think there are parts of the West Bank that will stay part of Israel in any peace deal. I am sure he wouldn’t have any problem with that at all. Regarding the entire West Bank I think that’s a legal issue. I don’t think he will have a problem with that but he would expect Israel to continue seeking peace. He has no doubt that Israel wants peace,” Friedman replied. 
Many ministers in the Israeli government support the annexation of at least parts of the West Bank to Israel – would Trump support that? 
“I would expect that he would,” said the adviser. “I haven’t had this discussion with him but I expect he would. “
Read the rest here.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

You Go, Baby! Britain Out! Cameron Set to Resign!

The Daily Mail Reports:
The day the world changed: Britain WILL leave the EU after voters trigger a political earthquake by backing Brexit - sparking panic in the markets and effectively ending David Cameron's time as PM
  • Massive 22-point win for Leave in Sunderland signalled the direction of the battle in dramatic night of results
  • Brexit camp also turned the tables in Swansea, where Remain had been expected to romp home by 10 points
  • Vote in favour of EU membership was very strong in Scotland and big cities including London
  • But experts say impossible for In to triumph after losing Birmingham, Southampton, and much of North of England
  • The value of Pound has slumped to a 31-year low against US dollar as markets take fright at looming result
  • Ukip leader Nigel Farage has hailed a 'victory for real people' and said it is Britain's 'Independence Day' 
  • David Cameron will give his response to the result within hours and could declare he will quit 
  • Brexit supporting MPs have delivered a letter to PM urging him to stay on whatever the outcome

Britain has been hit by a political earthquake after the historic EU referendum delivered clear backing for Brexit - and effectively ended David Cameron's career. 
The Leave campaign triumphed after stacking up votes across England and Wales - despite massive support for Remain in Scotland and major cities including London. 
The Prime Minister is expected to give his response to the dramatic verdict shortly, with speculation that he will herald the end of his tenure in Downing Street. Ukip leader Nigel Farage has hailed a 'victory for real people' and declared June 23 the country's 'Independence Day'. 
The Pound nose-dived to its lowest level against the US dollar for 31 years as traders took fright at the news, and the stock market is likely to be suspended to avoid a crash. SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon has already raised the prospect of a second independence referendum in Scotland. 
The dramatic developments overnight include:
  • Sunderland voted by a massive 61 per cent to 39 per cent for Brexit - far higher than expected. In Swansea, where Remain had been forecast to win by 10 percentage points, Leave ended up by 52 per cent to 48 per cent. 
  • Among a slew of poor results, Remain also only won by 51 per cent to 49 per cent in Newcastle, less than many had anticipated. 
  • Experts now say there is no chance of Remain emerging victorious overall, with the final outcome expected to be 52-48.
  • The news sent the Pound plunging against the US dollar, losing around 20 cents to hit its lowest level since 1985.
  • The Brexit victory came despite Mr Farage admitted seconds after polls closed that Remain looked to have 'edged' the referendum. Boris Johnson reportedly told a passenger on the Tube that his side had lost the referendum battle.
  • Final polls had also predicted a Remain victory by up to 54-46.
  • More than 80 Tory Brexit backers have written to David Cameron urging him to stay on in Downing Street whatever the outcome.

The direction of the battle started to become clear with a shock result in Sunderland which saw the Out camp win by 61 per cent to 39 per cent. Analysis before the referendum had suggested Leave could be on track to win if they were more than six percentage points ahead. 
A surprise victory for Brexit in Swansea, where the pro-EU side had been expecting to romp home, signposted a disastrous showing for Remain across Wales. Areas like Carmarthenshire decisively turned their back on Brussels. 
Newcastle was less clear cut for the pro-EU side than they had hoped, seeing them sneak home by just 51 per cent to 49 per cent. 
Remain had some bright spots, with chunky wins in London, Scotland and Oxford. Wandsworth in particular piled in with a massive 77 per cent in favour of staying. 
However, the English cities and Scotland were not enough to offset the will of the rest of the country, and Leave passed the finishing post at 6am. 
Speaking at a jubilant Leave.EU rally in central London, Mr Farage said June 23 would go down in history as 'our independence day'. 
In a remark that could prove controversial after Labour MP Jo Cox was shot dead last week, Mr Farage said the country was separating from the EU 'without a single bullet being fired' . 
'Dare to dream that the dawn is breaking on an independent United Kingdom,' he said. 
This, if the predictions now are right, this will be a victory for real people, a victory for ordinary people, a victory for decent people. 
'We have fought against the multinationals, we have fought against the big merchant banks, we have fought against big politics, we have fought against lies, corruption and deceit. 
'And today honesty, decency and belief in nation, I think now is going to win.
'And we will have done it without having to fight, without a single bullet being fired, we'd have done it by damned hard work on the ground.' 
Mr Farage praised Ukip donor Arron Banks along with Labour and Tory MPs and those of 'no party' who have taken part in the Leave campaign. 
He went on: 'And we'll have done it not just for ourselves, we'll have done it for the whole of Europe. 
'I hope this victory brings down this failed project and leads us to a Europe of sovereign nation states, trading together, being friends together, cooperating together, and let's get rid of the flag, the anthem, Brussels, and all that has gone wrong. 
'Let June 23 go down in our history as our independence day.' 
Setting the stage for another independence referendum north of the border, Scottish First minister Nicola Sturgeon said: 'Scotland has delivered a strong, unequivocal vote to remain in the EU, and I welcome that endorsement of our European status. 
'And while the overall result remains to be declared, the vote here makes clear that the people of Scotland see their future as part of the European Union.' 
The SNP leader added: 'Scotland has contributed significantly to the Remain vote across the UK. That reflects the positive campaign the SNP fought, which highlighted the gains and benefits of our EU membership, and people across Scotland have responded to that positive message. 
'We await the final UK-wide result, but Scotland has spoken - and spoken decisively.' 
Former first minister Alex Salmond told the BBC: 'Scotland looks like it is going to vote solidly Remain. If there was a Leave vote in England, dragging us out the EU, I'm quite certain Nicola Sturgeon would implement the SNP manifesto.' 
Shadow foreign secretary Hilary Benn told the BBC he did not think the PM was 'going to remain in his job for very long at all'. 
'If you are the Prime Minister, you've called this referendum, you've laid your reputation on the line and your arguments, I think it's going to be very hard.' 
Former Europe minister and Labour MP Keith Vaz told the BBC the outcome would be a 'catastrophe'. 'Frankly, in a thousand years I would never have believed that the British people would have voted this way,' he said. 
'And they have done so and I think that they voted emotionally rather than looking at the facts. 
'It'll be catastrophic for our country, for the rest of Europe and indeed the world.' 
He added: 'The issues of immigration are extremely important, if you look at the campaign I think that there needed to be a much stronger campaign to stay in.' 
Labour's Jonathan Ashworth said the Conservative Party was 'utterly preoccupied with leadership infighting rather than the future of the country', adding: 'This letter cannot unsay what senior Tory politicians have been telling us for weeks - that the British people simply cannot trust David Cameron.' 
Lib Dem former Cabinet minister Sir Vince Cable said Mr Cameron's authority would be 'completely gone' in the event of a Leave win and he would have to stand down. 
He described holding the referendum as a 'very bad call' by the Prime Minister, who failed to understand what happens 'when you just throw the cards in the air'. 
But senior Tories rallied round to try to protect the PM. Cabinet minister Chris Grayling - a Brexit backer - said: 'It would be an absolute nonsense if David Cameron felt, having given the country that choice, if they take the decision he couldn't carry on the job. We are completely behind him staying, we want him to stay and that letter is a statement of commitment to his leadership.' 
Work and Pensions Secretary Stephen Crabb said he did not think the Prime Minister 'could have done any more' and it was 'absolutely essential' that he remains in No 10. 
He said: 'There isn't anybody else around the Cabinet table or outside the Cabinet, for that matter, or in any of the other political parties who can give this country the kind of leadership skills and abilities that David Cameron can at this, what is going to be very challenging weeks and months for the country.' 
He added: 'I just think there is a disconnect with the white working class. We didn't get our core messages across to them. 
'When we tried to explain to them just how important the European Single Market was to their jobs, their livelihoods, we didn't quite land those messages successfully. 
'And I think that is one of the themes that is emerging this evening is that old industrial white working class areas clearly haven't bought the message that we have tried hard to communicate. 
'In those areas which are strongly perhaps white working class there will be a strong vote for Out and that's something as a Government we need to respond to. 
'Clearly, I think one of the features of this referendum are some of those social divisions and clearly as a Government, as a political class, all parties, we need to show that we're responding to that.' 
Pro-Brexit former defence secretary Liam Fox called for a 'period of calm' and urged the Government not to invoke article 50 straight away while insisting Mr Cameron must stay on as PM. 
Dr Fox told BBC News: 'A lot of things were said in advance of this referendum that we might want to think about again and that (invoking article 50) is one of them. 
'I think that it doesn't make any sense to trigger article 50 without having a period of reflection first, for the Cabinet to determine exactly what it is that we're going to be seeking and in what timescale. 
'And then you have to also consider what is happening with the French elections and the German elections next year and the implications that that might have for them. 
'So a period of calm, a period of reflection, to let it all sink in and to work through what the actual technicalities are.' 
Business Minister Anna Soubry said: 'I will respect the result. It's a dreadful decision. We have to make the best of it.' 
Former cabinet minister Sir Eric Pickles said: 'Very sad at the decision #EUref , but that is how democracy works, so we better get on with it.' 
Shadow chancellor John McDonnell said he believed around two-thirds of Labour voters backed Remain. 
'A lot of Conservative voters have gone for out. There's a solid base on the Tory party for out that have gone against their own Prime Minister,' he told Sky News. 
'Within the Labour vote I think it looks as though two-thirds one-third split, might be less than that, we'll see.' 
Ex Labour leader Ed Miliband said a Remain majority would be 'a vote for staying in the EU, but not a vote for the status quo in this country'. 
'Whatever happens, the country will need to come together, there will need to be healing,' he said. 
'It's a nation divided and the PM will have a big responsibility - particularly if it's a Remain win - to show he understands what people are saying on the Leave side of the argument. 
'Labour faces that responsibility too. As far as Labour voters are concerned, there are two issues. There is obviously immigration, but beneath that there is a whole set of issues about people's lives and the fact that they don't feel politics is listening to them.' 
Ukip MEP Diane James said the large win for Leave in Sunderland could be down to anger over the local Nissan car plant writing to employees to make clear the company would prefer Britain to stay in the EU. 
She told BBC News: 'Nissan, I believe, was one of those companies that was effectively asked by the Prime Minister to write a letter to the employees and I think what you're seeing here is the reaction to that, which I understand has been quite widespread across the country where people have actually taken offence at being directed to do something and then seemingly that whole message has been undermined in the later stage.' 
The turnout in parts of Scotland were lower than the rest of the country, with Glasgow at 56.3%. In Glasgow 253,000 ballot papers were verified out of a total electorate of 449,806. 
Moments after the polls closed at 10pm last night Mr Farage appeared to concede defeat. 
'It's been an extraordinary referendum campaign, turnout looks to be exceptionally high and it looks like Remain will edge it,' he said. 
'Ukip and I are going nowhere and the party will only continue to grow stronger in the future.' 
But speaking at a Leave.EU referendum night party later as results started to flow in, Mr Farage stressed he was not ruling out a Leave victory and 'hoped and prayed' his sense defeat was wrong. 
'The Eurosceptic genie is out of the bottle. And it will now not be put back,' he said.

Highlighting the government's controversial decision to extend voter registration deadline by two days to make up for the website going down for just a couple of hours, Mr Farage said: 'My sense of this is the government's registration scheme, getting two million voters on in the 48 hour extension maybe what tips the balance. I hope I'm wrong. I hope I am made a fool of. 
'But either way, whether I am right or wrong, if we do stay part of this union it is doomed, it is finished anyway. 
'If we fail tonight, it will not be us that kicks out the first brick from the wall but somebody else.' 
He added: 'We are running them close, they have been scared, they have behaved pretty appallingly. 
'Win or lose this battle tonight, we will win this war, we will get our country back, we will get our independence back and we will get our borders back.' 
Early in the night Education Secretary Nicky Morgan was among senior Remain figures who voiced confidence they were on track for victory. 
She told BBC News: 'Obviously we've got a long night ahead of us. We are confident and hopeful that there will be a victory for the Remain campaign but we'll obviously have to see.' 
If there is a Remain victory the Government will go on seeking reform in the EU, she added. 
'I think if there's been a clear win then that's sending a message,' Mrs Morgan said. 
'One of the things obviously is going to be implementing the reform deal the Prime Minister secured back in February.' 
Labour's Chuka Umunna said he still believed the outcome would be 'close'. 'If I was forced to call it I am reasonably confident that Remain gets a result.' 
Northern Ireland secretary Theresa Villiers, another supporter of Brexit, said her instinct was that Remain would win the vote. 
But high-profile Leave campaigner Iain Duncan Smith cast doubt on Mr Farage's suggestion that Remain is set for victory. 
'I never quite follow what Nigel Farage says,' the former work and pensions secretary told the BBC. 'Quite often he says two different things at the same time. 
'I genuinely do not have a sense of how this has gone.' 
A Vote Leave source stressed that no-one could know the results yet, and suggested Mr Farage had been 'unhelpful' throughout the campaign. 
Lord Ashdown said the result was 'too close to call' and insisted he had learnt not to make predictions following his promise at the general election to eat his hat after declaring the exit polls were wrong. 
He said: 'Once bittten, twice shy. I suspect eat my hat has gone down into the political lexicon against my name forever. 
'I don't think anybody can make a prediction, this is far too close. We are in the margin of error.' 
The Liberal Democrat former leader added: 'I think there has been a bit too much hyperbole. I'm not sure the political class has covered itself in glory in this and I suspect we have an electorate that is more confused than it needs to be.' 
Brendan Chilton, general secretary of Labour Leave, said: 'Nigel may have said that but until the votes are counted we don't really know what's happened. 
'It's a bit concerning if that is the case. I obviously hope we have won.' 
Mr Chilton said his gut feeling at 10pm was that Leave would 'win, just'. He added: 'Even if we don't win, if it's close, that is a magnificent achievement.' 
Conservative former justice minister Damian Green said the result should 'settle it for a generation'. 
'A win is a win so it should put an end to it,' he added. 
In Gibraltar, which is taking part in the referendum as a British overseas territory within the EU, turnout was a healthy 84 per cent. 
But torrential rain and flooding in the South East caused transport disruption which may have prevented some voters from reaching the ballot box in time. 
Some polling stations were forced to close, and two in Kingston-upon-Thames had to be relocated after becoming inundated. 
As the polls closed, more than 80 Brexit rebels in David Cameron's Tory party sent a letter to Downing Street urging him to stay on as PM. 
With Mr Cameron's Remain campaign appearing on course for victory in the referendum, the group led by Boris Johnson and Michael Gove reached out an olive branch. 
The intention of the letter - made public as soon as polls closed in the referendum - is to begin the process of healing wounds in the Tory Party. 
Some 84 Tories signed the letter to tell Mr Cameron: 'We believe whatever the British people decide you have both a mandate and a duty to continue leading the nation implementing our policies.' 
As well as Mr Johnson and Mr Gove, the signatories included Cabinet-level Brexit backers Chris Grayling and John Whittingdale, but not Iain Duncan Smith, who quit as work and pensions secretary shortly before the referendum. 
Tory MP Robert Syms said that two-thirds of Conservative MPs who broke with the PM to back Leave had signed the letter, but said it had not been possible to reach all of them to ask them to sign. 
Mr Duncan Smith said he was not asked to sign the letter but insisted Mr Cameron should stay on as PM. 
Mr Duncan Smith told BBC News: 'Actually I wasn't asked to sign the letter but I've been very public all along to say that I think he has a duty to stay. 
'I'm not in government any longer so I assume that's why I wasn't asked - I'm just a backbencher.' 
Mr Farage's early pessimism about the prospects for Brexit triggered a rise in the value of Sterling by almost a cent against the dollar as the markets breathed a sigh of relief. 
Boris Johnson hijacked his own daughter's graduation earlier today by unveiling a Brexit banner with just hours to go until polls close in the historic EU referendum. 
As his 22-year-old daughter Lara was enjoying her big day at St Andrews University in Fife, Scotland, the leading Vote Leave campaigner waved a poster with the words: 'Last chance to vote'. 
But one student defied the ex-London Mayor by marching up to collect her degree with a Remain poster of her own as voters went to the polls across the country. 
Mr Johnson performed the stunt as he sat in the balcony of the Younger Hall alongside his wife Marina Wheeler QC, revealing the poster to the packed audience and causing mayhem as students then unveiled their own 'Remain' messages to the crowds. 
Lara Johnson was awarded a degree in Latin and Comparative Literature from the Scottish university. Her dad flew up to Scotland for the occasion, posing for selfies with excited students after four months of hard-fought campaigning to persuade voters to back Britain leaving the EU. 
Ali West said she could not pass up the opportunity to make the Remain case to Mr Johnson, insisting: 'Boris Johnson was in the audience at my graduation today, so naturally I had some thoughts.' 
Speaking this evening, the Leave champion said: 'From what I have heard and all the information is that turnout is good in areas where we need it to be.' 
A witness to Mr Johnson's final stunt of the referendum campaign at St Andrews today told the Daily Record: 'It was all done very much tongue in cheek. Both posters got a huge cheer and round of applause. 
'Boris wasn't telling people who to vote for, just for them to get out there and make the effort.' 
His controversial stunt came on a historic day in British politics as millions of Britons defied the wet weather to queue in torrential rain and even wade through deep water to vote in the EU referendum. 
Several polling stations were closed in London because of floods as Britain was finally having its say on whether to stay in the EU or cut our ties with Brussels after a gruelling 10-week campaign. 
Thundery showers caused chaos across London and the south of England overnight and could potentially push the result towards a Brexit because polling data is clear that Leave voters are less likely to be put off by the bad weather than Remain voters. 
Currency analysts expect volatility whichever way the vote goes. 
Joe Rundle, of ETX Capital, said: 'Markets have been betting heavily on a Remain vote all day, with the FTSE and sterling rising strongly as polls point to Britons giving Brexit the thumbs down. 
'For now markets are pretty calm but these are only forecasts - we're waiting for the first declarations from the first counts to get a clearer picture.' 
Sterling continued its recent revival yesterday, after weeks on the slide amid fears over polls showing a strengthening Leave vote. 
It initially rose by 0.4 per cent to $1.49 today - a 6 per cent rise since this time last week - but gave back some gains to trade at $1.48 towards the end of the day. Against the euro the pound is worth more than €1.30, up from €1.26 a week ago. 
Long queues snaked down the road from many polling stations as voters rushed to have their say when the polls opened at 7am. 
Mr Cameron voted in Westminster with his wife Samantha yesterday morning with the final EU referendum polls making the contest too close to call. 
The EU vote was only the third nationwide referendum ever to take place in the UK. A record 46.5million are registered to vote. 
With turnout key to the result, torrential rain storms in Remain stronghold London meant the unseasonally bad weather could deter voters casting their ballots. 
David Cameron ignored questions about the weather, saying only 'good morning' to the gathered media from across the world, as he and his wife Samantha cast their votes at Methodist Hall in Westminster. 
Jeremy Corbyn arrived in positive mood to cast his vote at Pakeman primary school in his Islington constituency. 
Asked if he was feeling confident the Labour leader smiled and said: 'Extremely, it's a very good day.' 
On the outcome of the referendum he joked: 'You could either check the wind or check the bookies,' adding, 'the bookies usually get it right'. 
Pollsters have been left licking their wounds after following up on their abject failure to predict last year's general election result by calling the referendum wrong. 
Last night a flurry of eve-of-referendum polls suggested the result is still too close to call. 
A YouGov poll for The Times gave Remain a lead of 51 to 49. FTI Consulting gave Remain the edge by 51.4 per cent to 48.6 per cent once 'don't knows' are taken out. 
YouGov chief Peter Kellner has admitted that the failure was 'embarrassing'. 
Two further polls by Opinium and TNS showed the reverse, with Leave on 51 per cent and Remain on 49 per cent. 
Opinium Research recorded a tiny lead for Brexit in its final survey of 3,000 voters this week as it found 45 per cent backed Leave and 44 per cent backed Remain. 
But after taking into account the margin of error in the study, the firm declared it impossible to predict a winner. 
A week ago, Opinium had the referendum tied at 44 per cent each while at the start of June the pollster had Remain ahead 43-41. 
The poll fits with the mixed found by all of the polling firms in the last week of the race, with some results showing small leads for either side while other showed a tie. 
By contrast, betting markets have continued to show Remain as the strong favourite as the race enters its final hours. 
Adam Drummond, of Opinium Research said: 'This really is ''too close to call'' territory with undecided voters holding the balance of the vote in their hands. 
'Although referendum campaigns normally see a move back to the status quo as we get closer to polling day, this hasn't yet shown up in our polls and the Remain camp will have to hope that it happens in the polling booth itself if Britain is to stay in the European Union.' 
In its latest poll, Opinium interviewed 3,011 voters between Monday and Wednesday.