People of all faiths across the world are witnessing the reappearance of events many hoped and believed belonged only to the pages of Islamic history. Shrieking mobs in Afghanistan spend hours, day after day, calling for blood because prison officials disposed of illicit detainee communications that happened to be scrawled on the pages of some Qur’ans. An Iranian pastor awaits hanging on death row after being convicted of apostasy by converting to Christianity from Islam.
Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani with his family
A young Saudi blogger has been extradited from Malaysia with the assistance of Interpol to face a likely death penalty because comments he made on Twitter are considered blasphemous to Islam. Even in the United States of America, a Pennsylvania judge ruled against the victim of a public physical assault because the assailant is a Muslim who claimed to be defending Islam.
These incidents, shocking as they may seem to those who have no knowledge of Islamic law (shariah), in general actually accord with authoritative doctrine, law and scriptures as well as the history of Islam. While it’s to be expected that most prominent Muslim leadership figures will either remain mute or express support for what is happening in these cases, it’s still startling and frankly depressing to see Western leaders fail to speak out forthrightly in defense of those Judeo-Christian principles upon which our legal systems are founded. This is what Islamic law looks like when permitted full latitude of enforcement. This is Islam unplugged.
In Afghanistan, prison officials discovered inmates had defaced their own copies of the Qur’an for the purpose of illicit communications among themselves. Those officials quite properly confiscated the books that had such writing in them and sent them to be burned, which is the method of disposal recommended by the Armed Forces Chaplaincy Center, modern Islamic scholars and also as commanded by the Caliph Uthman, according to the authoritative hadith of Sahih Bukhari.
Pathetic, groveling apologies by the American president, top Pentagon officials as well as field commanders are not only inappropriate, they are dangerous in time of war because they encourage perceptions of the U.S. as too weak to stand in defense of its own convictions. It should be noted that the February 24, 2012, point-blank shooting inside the ostensibly secure spaces of the Interior Ministry in Kabul of two senior American NATO officials by an Afghan gunman followed after the Islamic world took the measure of America’s piteous response to mob violence in the streets. Careless handling of the Qur’an by kuffar (infidels) is an offense against Islamic law, which is enshrined in the Afghan constitution. American troops are not in Afghanistan, fighting, dying and coming home grievously injured to uphold shariah: They are there to defend the U.S. Constitution and American national security – and it is time that our senior leaders understood that.
In Iran, a 34-year old father of two has been sentenced to death for apostasy after he refused to recant his conversion from Islam to Christianity. An Iranian trial court issued its final order of execution in mid-February, 2012. The case of Youcef Nadarkhani, who’s been held in Evin Prison for two years, has received widespread publicity, mostly because so few Westerners understand that apostasy is and always has been a capital crime under Islamic law. Iranian intransigence over its nuclear weapons program and belligerence over international efforts aimed at obtaining its compliance with United Nations Resolutions have ratcheted up tensions with the Tehran regime.
This case has outraged Christians and other faithful across the world who believe that freedom of belief is a universal right. Most, unfortunately, have no concept of Islamic law, which exists entirely outside of the UN Universal Declaration on Human Rights, since all Muslim countries of the world (members of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation—OIC) explicitly renounced it in the 1990 Cairo Declaration.
The OIC Cairo Declaration essentially defined Islamic human rights as only those which comport with shariah; it was presented formally to the UN in 1993. Shariah not only mandates amputation, crucifixion and flogging for some crimes, but also stipulates that adultery, apostasy, blasphemy/slander, homosexuality and “making mischief in the land” can all be punished by death.
Iranian courts are in full compliance with Islamic law and their own constitution. Instead of blaming the Iranian judges for this obscene death sentence, it is Islamic law itself that must be recognized as hostile and incompatible with any modern conception of human rights. Anyplace where shariah is allowed to be fully implemented and enforced, this is the result. This is Islam unplugged.
Hamza Kashgari is a young Saudi who showed an appalling disregard for his own life by posting some comments on Twitter that the Saudi legal system decided were blasphemous against the Muslim prophet Muhammad. Kashgari formerly was a columnist for Saudi Arabia’s Al-Bilad newspaper when he tweeted an imaginary conversation he was having with Muhammad. In short order, he was fleeing his homeland for his life; unfortunately, his itinerary included a plane change in Malaysia, another Islamic country where shariah is enforced. Thanks to INTERPOL cooperation with Saudi Arabia, Kashgari was arrested there and returned to Saudi Arabia, where he faces trial on blasphemy charges that could result in the death penalty. This is all perfectly legal under shariah. This, too, is Islam unplugged.
Here is a good place to note that on December 16, 2009, President Barack Obama signed an Executive Order that grants the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) rights on American soil that place it beyond the reach of our own law enforcement agencies, such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Obama’s order removed important restrictions placed on INTERPOL by President Reagan in 1983 and gave this foreign law enforcement organization the authority to avoid Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, which is an important safeguard for American citizens against government abuse. This means that American citizens now lack the ability to hold INTERPOL accountable under the FOIA for potentially the same kind of arrest action that snatched Kashgari back from the brink of freedom and sent him to a possible death sentence in Saudi Arabia.
And finally, there is the mid-February, 2012, case of the Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania man who was physically assaulted on the street for wearing a Halloween costume depicting the Muslim prophet Muhammad as a Zombie. There is no question about the assault, as it was captured on video. There is no question about the guilt of the Muslim immigrant who attacked him or why: He candidly admitted his guilt in a court of law and explained that he did it because the costume offended him as a Muslim. The astonishing thing is that Pennsylvania Magistrate Judge Mark Martin agreed with the Muslim assailant that he had the right and even obligation to physically bludgeon someone he perceived as insulting Muhammad.
The victim in this case, one Ernest Perce, is the PA head of American Atheists, and at the time of the attack, was walking next to another individual wearing a costume depicting the Catholic Pope as a Zombie. The Pope Zombie was not attacked.
Judge Martin’s shameful commentary from the bench was recorded on tape by the victim and provides a frightening glimpse of Islamic law being practiced in an American court of law. Judge Martin not only dismissed the charges against the Muslim assailant, but actually lectured the victim of the assault on the limits of free speech and expression under shariah.
Martin apparently served in the U.S. military in Iraq and may have converted to Islam while there (although the audio recording of his claim to being “a Muslim” is a bit indistinct). In any case, this is an American judge who is sworn under oath to uphold the Constitution of the USA and yet deliberately abrogated that solemn responsibility in order to set free a Muslim who acted in accordance with shariah in a way that would be legal in a Muslim country subjugated to Islamic law—but not in America. In Pennsylvania and the rest of these United States, Article VI of the U.S. Constitution still rules. Judge Martin acted as an Islamic qadi instead of an American judge and should be dismissed and disbarred immediately.
Clare M. Lopez is a senior fellow at the Clarion Fund and writes regularly for RadicalIslam.org. Lopez is a strategic policy and intelligence expert with a focus on the Middle East, national defense and counterterrorism issues. Lopez began her career as an operations officer with the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).