The last thing we need is to import sectarianism into our country. Al-Arifi may have done us all a favour by coming to the UK since it has focussed on the need for better due diligence to be undertaken and to make us all wake up to the fact that whilst Syria may seem a long way away, its impacts can so easily affect our community relations in our small island.
An anonymous source has finally stepped forward and offered an unmarked grave in Virginia so that Tamerlan Tsarnaev's body could be put to rest. But the entire episode is a powerful reminder of the importance of ritual and gestures, even in an era where we'd like to think that cold facts, data, and rationality always carry the day.
Long before the first female Oscar-winning director was anywhere near shouting "action", it was clear Kathyn Bigelow's Zero Dark Thirty was going to be one of those films that set fire to the torch paper of ever-strong feeling about America's position on the global moral maze, and thus it has proved.
Zero Dark Thirty is a well-made and entertaining film but its entire plotline is built on a lie: that the torture of detainees by the CIA produced the intelligence which led the US to Osama Bin Laden's hideout in Pakistan. The movie effectively excuses and implicitly condones the torture that was done.
I have known for years, of course, that eleven of the men I currently represent have long been cleared for release. But the list of detainees cleared in 2009 by the Obama Administration after an "exhaustive" review was "protected" information that I was not permitted to disclose. How was the security of the United States threatened by this information?