A State Of Freedom


The Echo Chamber podcast.

Tony Groves (right) and Martin McMahon (left) welcome Ibrahim Halawa into the ‘tortoise shack’ for a wide ranging chat.

Martin writes:

Ibrahim Halawa has experienced more in the last five years than most will (or want to) in their life, and while he has lost some of his youth, based on his work with human rights organisations and homelessness charities, he has lost none of his humanity

We discuss: Missing out on Dublin GAA and real chipper chips!; His work since he’s come home; The very surprising career turn he’s about to embark on; The haters and the conspiracy nutters. What is an Irish person in 2018.

We were genuinely blown away by the humility and drive of this young Irish man.

This is recorded in a public area and there’s plenty of background noise, but that is part of the craic, trust us.

The Echo Chamber

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40 thoughts on “A State Of Freedom

  1. Biddy

    Watch as the racists dive on this to spread their message of hate. Welcome back Ibrahim, great interview.

    1. Anomanomanom

      Well that’s a stupid comment. Your the type of person, like the other morons on here, that shout racist because someone disagrees with. When I pointed out, or actually asked why someone who’s Irish would go to Egypt and protest illegally, regardless of right or wrong, then moan he did nothing wrong. Even though we’ve all seen videos of him at the protests.

      1. Biddy

        right on cue. Ibrahim is not guilty of any crime, here or in Egypt, but don’t let that prevent your hate filled fake fact diatribe.

        1. A person

          Surely any objective observer should question his and his family’s links to the Muslim Brotherhood. Nowt to do they being Muslim, but linked to extreme Muslim.

        2. Anomanomanom

          Your correct, you are right on cue to spout your bile. Nothing I said was racist, I simply asked why would someone irish go to protest in Egypt. I never said he wasn’t irish, never mentioned his religion, I never mentioned any racist remarks. I’d ask the same question about my friends or family…What the hell were you doing protesting.

      2. Daisy Chainsaw

        Please take your evidence to the Egyptian courts who couldn’t pin a thing on him, despite trying for 4 years.

      3. ahjayzis

        I came home to vote illegally :o)

        You’ve just conceded that it is right and proper for a dictator in the middle of removing a democratic government and ushering in an autocracy to remove the right to peaceful protest.

        You’re that type of person – and no one owes your sort of person an explanation in a democratic society.

        1. GiggidyGoo

          You’ve just basically said that he went ‘home’ to protest. Is Egypt or Ireland his home?

          1. ahjayzis

            London and Dublin are my homes.

            Sure there’s plenty of Irish in Australia who consider Ireland and Oz home.

            What’s your point? Is it cos e iz brown? Muslamic?

          2. Anomanomanom

            Your proving my point about morons shouting racism. I never mentioned his religion,colour or anything remotely racist. In fact I called him Irish when I said, what was an irish person doing……. my point was why go there and protest and then act like it wasn’t your own fault. I wouldn’t go to Saudi Arabia and kiss a bikini clad girl on the beach, I should be allowed but im not, so I won’t. So your point about dictators is pointless.

          3. GiggidyGoo

            I was just wondering. But as you want to know what my point was. I was questioning whether you are speaking on behalf of him – officially like?
            Look up the Oxford Dictionary of ‘home’. Somewhere you live permanently.

    2. Jim Bob Julius

      My issue with him has to do with his and his fathers involvement with the Muslim Brotherhood, a quasi terrorist group eager to renew mutilating childrens genitals.

      But sure call us racist for having the temerity to question his version of events, its handy to let us know how unimaginative you are.

        1. Jim Bob Julius

          can you please demonstrate this proof you have?

          My comment sits in its original format and I give you complete permission to reproduce it.

          Take your time now.

        2. Ron Dolan

          Do you think throwing around accustations of racism helps debate? Can you demonstrate what was racist?

        3. Junkface

          You can’t call somebody racist for criticising a religion. Any religion! As an Atheist I think its hugely important to be free to criticise Religion. If you stand on the side of Human Rights, or read anything on the subject of Conservative Islam, from the point of view of Muslim critics of their own religion, you will see that there are massive problems with the treatment of Gays as well as Atheists and Christians.

        4. Tony

          Would criticising ‘a religion’ not be a very ignorant and bigoted thing to do? ‘Attitudes or aspects of teaching within a religion’ or ‘elements purporting to represent a religion’ maybe. But not an entire religion

          1. Junkface

            Not at all! If a Religion allows people to push Gay people off roofs, or allows mobs to murder a former Muslim who became Atheist, then that is breaking crucial Human Rights. Do you not think that ALL religions should obey Human Rights first?

          2. Tony

            But those things are not done by ‘a religion’. They are done by factions or individuals within a religion who do not necessarily represent the religion. I personally dont think it’s fair to blame – for example – all Islam for the actions of some hardliners or extremists. I think that is lazy and reductive of the wider culture and beliefs of Islam. Bigoted like

          3. Junkface

            Tony. Look up surveys online by British Muslims like Maajid Nawaz. He’s a critic of his own religion, Islam. He has written many books on the topics we’re talking about here. I heard him state in an interview that most conservative Islamists believe its okay to kill gays and atheists. I’m not talking about ISIS here, or fundamental extremists. I’m talking about in Muslim countries which are strictly conservative Islamic. People need to know the facts about the religion from former Muslims or moderate Muslims, or conservative Muslims who want to bring about change and more respect for human rights.

          4. Tony

            You keep missing the point I’m trying to make.

            I’m simply saying that the attitudes and actions of some people of a certain religion do not define the totality of that religion.

            You can cite all the examples of Muslims doing and saying bad things that you want but they do not represent the message or totality of Islam. To suggest otherwise in my opinion would be ignorant and bigoted.

          5. Junkface

            Tony, you’ll have to read some of that authors books or from his online articles. I understand your point of not wanting to tarnish all Muslims with the same brush, which I’m not, I’m saying there are far more conservative Muslims in the Middle East, and in Britain who believe its fine to persecute gays and kill Atheists by mob justice than most Westerners would be comfortable with. Moderate Muslims are far more lenient and are willing to modernise more.

      1. mkg985

        nice bit of unfounded and inaccurate waffle. If 4yrs in an Egyptian prison hasn’t beaten him, I doubt your attempts to link him to quasi terrorism won’t either. Welcome home, Ibrahim. Good work Martin.

    3. GiggidyGoo

      12:57 this was posted at. It lasts 43 odd minutes. So i can’t comment yet. It’s not over at this moment.

  2. Jim Bob Julius

    Great, now Broadsheet is moderating my comments.

    Good luck lads, censoring genuine debate is not what I came here for.

  3. Anomanomanom

    Id just like to thank the useless mouth pieces on here, you all proved me right. Anyone with any questions you shout racist, you don’t read the post because if you did you would see most people are just asking questions. Not accusing or using racist slurs or language.

    1. Biddy

      “Prove you are not a terrorist” is not just asking questions. It’s like me asking you to prove that you are not a racist. It’s a presumption of guilt.

      1. Cian

        I’m on the fence here.
        Yes, “Prove you are not a terrorist” has a presumption of guilt.

        “Prove you are not a terrorist” asked to a random punter is bizarre.
        “Prove you are not a terrorist” asked to a random (minority) punter could easily be construed as racist.

        But is “Prove you are not a terrorist” asked to a (minority) person who spoke at a large rally organised by a ‘terrorist organisation’ racist? I dunno.

        Is “Prove you are not a terrorist” asked to a (minority) person ‘bird-watching’ in Columbia, (on a false passport. which would bring them into areas controlled by FARC terrorists) racist? again I’m not sure.

        1. ahjayzis

          You’re a terrorist if you’ve planned or committed acts of terrorism.

          What you’re talking about thought-crime. The MB whatever you think of them were the legitimate government of Egypt. He was imprisoned by the dictator that overthrew that government.

          Fine Gael is awful, but I’d protest it’s removal by the army generals and that wouldn’t make me any less socialist.

          1. Cian

            What if FG issued a “temporary” declaration immunising their laws from challenge?
            What if FG started to pass a series of sectarian laws?
            What if FG became so unpopular that millions of us demonstrated for their removal?
            What if FG refused to hold new elections?
            What if the demonstrations ended up with multiple deaths?
            What if the army gave the government and the opposition a 48-hour ultimatum to resolve the political crisis and meet the people’s demands or it would intervene to restore order?

            What then? Would you support the “legitimate FG government”?? or the people/army?

      2. GiggidyGoo

        Biddy- I don’t believe you know the meaning of racism. I asked you above as to which race a poster was being racist to. Have You answered?

    2. ahjayzis

      Useless mouthpieces? You’re on the side of a dictator who locked up a 17 year old for four years without charge. You’ve castigated someone for peacefully protesting because some jumped up general banned peaceful protesting while bringing down a democratic government. You’re the antidemocratic fifth columnist in this society, Anom, not Ibrahim.

      I think we can all take comfort in being condemned by someone like you, pet.

  4. Tony Groves

    I was fortunate to sit and talk with Ibrahim Halawa. He has been through more than I can comprehend. His resolve and genuine desire to help others is humbling. He is going to be a great success in whatever he sets his mind to. I wish him only happiness, love and sincere support.

    1. italia'90

      Looking forward to listening to this, thanks Tony.
      Have listened to most of your podcasts and have found them to be highly informative, entertaining and well produced.
      Broadsheet on the telly would do well to compare and contrast their awful pub talk show.

Comments are closed.

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