Another Religiously-Motivated Bombing

July 11, 2006

I’ll pop out of retirement for a moment to make sure that more people see this story.

Who’s the conflict between? Hindus and Muslims. Tell me, without religion, would these train bombings have occurred?


More on Protests, Cartoons, and Censorship (Weekend Roundup)

March 13, 2006

I sorted through nearly 600 feed entries this weekend, several of which contained more news about the cartoons and Islam-inspired censorship. Here’s a list (numbered for reference — no particular order):

  1. Catallaxy quotes a story on the debates now taking place among moderate Muslims as a result of the cartoon insanity. The Democratic Muslims want to make sure it’s clear that not every Muslim shares the same views,

    “I have been in Denmark for 17 years but I was not part of the integration debate because I just thought that everything would work out,” says Mr. El-Abed, who is of Palestinian origin. “But since this crisis came, I decided that I can no longer allow others to speak on my behalf … many others are in the same position.”

  2. Sandmonkey talks about a response to his question — which was which book the world Muslim population should ban next. Surprise! It’s Don Quixote.
  3. A recent conference in Denmark geared toward easing tensions had disappointing results, including (probably unintentionally) veiled blackmail (emph mine)

    Khaled sought to emphasize that “we are here to build bridges for dialogue” and suggested that a continuing boycott of Danish goods in Arab countries could stop if Danes and their government reach out with initiatives such as health care or help for small businesses. [Though a boycott is the right way to go about this, compared with violence –RR]

    and outright expression of anger and demands for apology:

    “We are here today because we want to tell you that every Muslim in the world is very angry,” said Tareq Alsuwaidan, general manager of the Kuwaiti satellite channel Al Resalah.

    “We request an official apology from your government to the Muslim nation. Your government has done a very bad job and you have to do something about it.” [Still better than violence and threats thereof –RR]

    and out come the demands for censorship again:

    He demanded that the European Union enact a law that forbids insulting religious figures. [This is not how it works… –RR]

    Europe’s existing issues with freedom of expression are giving them leverage:

    “Freedom of speech shouldn’t be absolute,” said Al Habib Ali Aljifri, an Islamic scholar from Yemen, noting that many European countries do not allow anti-Semitic speech. “We must come to an understanding of rules governing freedom of expression.”

  4. Sugiero compiles an interesting review of the provocation within the Muslim world that resulted in the widespread outrage, including the fabrication of additional images that supposedly “give an insight in how hateful the atmosphere in Denmark is towards Muslims.”
  5. A newspaper editor in Yemen is under threat of the death penalty for publishing Danish caricatures of Muhammad. Sandmonkey comments on how great this is for the image of Islam. A story of the Prophet’s endorsement of killing is being used to encourage the dismantling of the accused newspaper and the execution of its editor. Apparently, obscuring the (shrunken) images and actually condemning the cartoons was not a sufficient counterweight to publishing them.
  6. French philosopher Glucksmann seems to argue that it’s okay to censor holocaust denial but not cartoons of Muhammed because one is based on faith and the other on fact. This is the sort of thing that’s referred to above about conflicting rules, and if we are going to have our freedom of expression and really mean it, we can’t tolerate either camp.
  7. Nigerian playwright Wole Soyinka points out the folly of Islamic censorship and the Western voices that support it.

    Who is it that really defiles the name of the Prophet Mohammed? Those who butcher innocents in the name of that Prophet, innocents who have never tasted Danish butter in all their lives, who do not even know of the existence of a nation called Denmark, or some cartoon editor who, for all we know, has never related spiritually to Jesus Christ or Mohammed, to the Buddha or Orisa-nla?

    The Danish government, thank goodness, declined to assume the burden of guilt by succumbing to the call to apologize for the conduct of one of its citizens, an individual who at no time was accused of being its official, representative or spokesman, but a free agent in his own cause, however censurable. The proposition that a government should act as monitor for individual choice within a free society is repugnant. [It’d be nice if some other Western governments would back them up –RR]

I can’t believe this is still going on. How long ago were these cartoons published?

Fallas self-censored for fear of Muslim violence

March 13, 2006

The fact that world leaders have been urging people to give in to the demands of violent protestors probably hasn’t helped to shore up people’s confidence when satirizing Islam. Note that Fallas mocks other religious and authority figures with abandon, but this year mum’s the word on Islam and anything that might be related.

In the Fallas festival, giant sculptures of the high and mighty are placed in the streets for the public to mock before being destroyed in an orgy of gunpowder and flames. It has survived attacks by the Roman Catholic church, various puritanical rulers and the Franco dictatorship.

This year’s figures will include President George W Bush, several of the Spanish prime minister, José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, and the Prince of Wales dancing, in Highland dress, with the Duchess of Cornwall. But self-censorship has seen Muslim and Arab figures modified to avoid offence.

The Spanish appear to be exercising particular restraint, given their history with the Moors and traditions

involving mock battles between “Moors and Christians”, in an ancient recreation of the Catholic reconquest of Spain from Arab rule.

What’s worse — the protests and threats of voilence, or the way that Western leadership has been bending over for it?

Breaking taboos a death sentence, despite claims of Dutch Immigration Minister

March 12, 2006

Sandmonkey gives his candid opinion on the Dutch Immigration Minister’s plans to send Iranian gays, Christians, and other asylum seekrs back to Iran:

Ehh, strong societal disapproval doesn’t begin to describe it. They will get killed. They will die. Islam is clear. Any muslim who converts to another religion is ok to kill. End of story. She is sending them back to certain death.

Egypt arrests man for eating Danish cheese

March 12, 2006

It’s here (in arabic), but Big Pharaoh elaborates in English.

First it’s freedom of expression. Then, they come after your food!

Jimmy concludes that everyone’s a traitor

March 12, 2006

From Jimmy’s Corner:

According to the radical criteria of judging political actions, we are all traitors. To the radicals if a Muslim co-operates with those who oppress, or even have conflict with, other Muslims then it is an act of treason.

the conclusion?

The conclusion is: WE ARE ALL TRAITORS… But if we are all traitors, then against whom do we commit this act of treason???

Death to the infidels!

Hamas steeps children in Jihad

March 11, 2006

The actual site, which the article does not link to ( appears to be down for now. The Internet Archive has an outdated version, but someone got a screenshot before it was taken down. There’s some more analysis on a Jerusalem-related site here.

(Via Sandmonkey)
Ynetnews – News – Hamas website: Kids, die for Allah

In one instance, a caption that appears next to a picture of an animated girl throwing stones at IDF soldiers, reads: “Death for Allah is victory, the victory of the glorified heroes whose names will forever remain in the hearts of millions of Muslims across the world.” The animated figure calls on children surfing the web to enter the site and learn about the lives of “shahids” (martyrs) who “died a hero’s death,” after massacring Jews.