The only thing I can say right now is ROT IN JAIL

(trigger warning, ladies and lads)

By now, many of your heard about the death of Aqsa Parvez. My sentiments in regards to the people who who did this to her are in the title of this post.

My sentiments to the author of the following post on a Facebook group created in memory of Parvez cannot be expressed in human language. A screencap for your reading displeasure:

“ho bag” screencap

“Ho bag” (a hoe is a tool used commonly in gardening)? Really? So let me get this straight, you’re smart enough to breathe in and out by yourself… You’re smart enough to use a computer, even. And yet here you are, justifying a parent’s murder of a child. And invoking God in the same breath. I… I… Like I said, human language is failing me.

Further down, the poster claims to be a 16-year old Muslim girl on a “shared account” (is that even permitted?). “Oh but Natalia,” you’re going to say. “She’s just a kid. She’s probably brainwashed herself.” Probably. But 16 is old enough to know right from wrong.

Speaking of acquired wisdom, anyone out here know what it’s like to be violently choked? I do.

Wonder if our 16-year old pal knows what it’s like. Perhaps she might change her mind if she ever experiences it.

But daddy didn’t meant to kill her. She was still alive when she was found! That’s right! Daddy probably stopped when her eyes rolled back and her limbs no longer moved. So Daddy is a hero! He was just a wee wittle upset about his daughter becoming a gardening tool and all. Anyway, this sort of thing only happens to bad girls! I might have been a bad girl once, but I repented [let’s lay aside the notion of Aqsa as “bad girl” – a notion problematic in and of itself – and just feast our eyes on the irony of someone who was given the chance to “repent” for “bad” behaviour, and whose head does not, somehow, manage to explode from the cognitive dissonance of it all] ! So *I* know what I’m talking about and you don’t!

I’m glad to see that other people are calling the poster out on his or her behaviour. However, having read further, I also see more and more justifications and excuses for this act.

God help us all, really.

And God help those who will, once again, suffer – because the media is going to use this as another bludgeoning tool against normal Muslims who are just trying to live their life in Canada, and beyond (I mean, would Catholicism be to blame if her family were Catholic? Somehow, I doubt the mainstream media would forge that link). “Serene Silence” though? Part of the problem. Wish she’d stay true to her nickname and remain freaking silent, especially on a board dedicated to preserving the memory of the victim.

33 thoughts on “The only thing I can say right now is ROT IN JAIL

  1. Nat,

    sharing your feelings all the way, I can’t stop thinking that at a certain moment you made something of a logical jump into nothingness of logic. “Would Catholicism be to blame if her family were Catholic?” you say. No, of course not. Partly because you don’t see Catholic dads and male relatives engaging in “honor killings” all over the map. But you do see dads and male relatives claiming their “muslimness” that do. The most a Catholic (that has no mental illness, I mean) parent would do nowadays is to kick her out (not that this is totally acceptable, but still…)

    All this being said, I do not believe Islam as a faith has anything to do with this horror. I guess this behavior comes mostly from a kind of tribal “culture of shame” that, while seemingly widespread among Muslims, isn’t confined to this cultural space.

  2. Catholicism does have a history of violence toward “the infidel,” (and the “bad girl” = usually in the form of a temptress “witch” and so on) which is why I brought it up. Although, to be specific, I believe that every religion in the world is tainted with the human propensity for violence. Sometimes the taint isn’t clearly expressed – but it’s there alright. I mean, I’m religious – but admit it, religion is broken. Because we are human. I sort of take a mystical approach to these things… It’s hard to articulate… But there it is.

    And you’re right – the real problem here is two-fold. On one hand, there are non-Muslims screaming “blame Islam!” On the other hand, you see Muslims (“Serene” claims to be Muslim, after all) taking this incident, and basically saying that it’s actually sorta Ok, considering there was “ho-baggery” or something involved.

    There were even worse comments in that Facebook book. One person went as far as saying that the father did “nothing wrong.” The comment was left on a picture of Aqsa that a friend had uploaded. That just made me sick.

  3. Natalia, great post and interesting analysis of the disgusting comment by Serene.

    I see cottonbud’s point about why Catholicism shouldn’t be blamed (at least, for this kind of killing), but a religion/culture in which killing “bad girls” is approved of should be at least partially to blame, with the father of course shouldering a ton of blame himself. And I agree with your about religion being broken.

  4. Actually, Christians in Africa routinely carry out honor killings (as well as FGM), and extra-legal murders such as an honor killing is prohibited by Islam.

  5. Thinking about it more, I’m an atheist, but honestly, I really think parts of the world would see some improvement if they *actually* followed *all* of their religion, not just the parts that suit those in power.

  6. You don’t hear about honor killings in the west because we call them by more literary names to make ourselves feel better. In France, if a man finds his wife in bed with another man and kills her in the heat of rage, he has committed a ‘crime de passion’ and is subject to more lenient sentencing than if he had committed premeditated murder. In the US, without the excuse of the Napoleonic Code, it’s not uncommon to hear about husbands and boyfriends attacking unfaithful wives and girlfriends “out of jealousy”; in fact, the leading cause of injury-related deaths among pregnant women in America is murder.
    (See http://crime.about.com/b/2005/02/24/us-pregnant-women-face-murder-risk.htm)

    So in fact, we do have an honor killing problem in the West. But it’s got much better spin.

  7. Oui… ?

    I’m reminded of the Virginia Tech massacre, and how some tabloids initially tried to pin the blame on the gunman’s first victim – since she was a young female, perhaps she had spurned him, and “caused” the carnage.

    It’s amazing how some people’s minds work.

  8. Exactly. Ever watch Le Divorce? It’s a great film and doesn’t pretend to any kind of political agenda, but it illustrates perfectly our refusal to deal with our own sexual baggage: it centers on a woman whose French husband cheats on her, and as a result she tries to kill herself. There’s a parallel storyline about the American husband of the woman with whom the French husband cheats, who kills both his unfaithful wife and her lover.

    So in the event of adultery, the woman must end up dead: if she cheats, she must be killed; if he cheats, she must kill herself. A tale ripped from rural Pakistan? Mais non. It’s une histoire classique of love in Paris.

    Oh yeah, and it’s a comedy.

  9. Umm, I work in Africa, all over and have done a lot of work against FGM and the idea of honor killings in these areas cannot be atributed to “christians” (although I think they are crazy too) but to tribal life. Many rural Africans who call themselves Christians only say so because they think that is what you want to hear, or they take from the myriad of religious traditions they often get exposed to what they want to take. Most are animists of one kind or another. This business of honor killings only happens when the young lady runs away with a man without going through the normal negotiations between the families. It is very rare though and her death is usually the result of inter clan fighting that erupts when women are “stolen.” This is quite a complex social discussion though and this is not the place. Rest assured that the honor killings that do occur are not considered as such in the same way as this incident occured. Also, this behavior is more prevelent in East Africa than in West and most commonly found in Somalia and parts of Ethiopia.

  10. Willow,
    with all due respect, but it seems to me you took the same logical jump Nat did. At least to the extent of my knowledge, the bulk of this kind of crime perpetrated by (Westerners/Christians/Whateverers) is not motivated by the reaction of the society to the cheating situation, but to the hurt feelings of the cheated spouse (and, at least in my country, society tends not to shame, but to pity the cheated party). So I feel you can’t say with a clean conscience that “honor” is the driving force behind this kind of killing (as in “an individual’s reaction to the percieved shame placed on him by the society”), but “hurt feelings” (as in “my life is pointless from now on”) or “gonflated ego” (as in “I’m so freakin’ fantastic you can’t really leave me”); those last two driving forces being much less linked to the individual-social environment relationship and the social pressure than the first one.

  11. the idea of honor killings in these areas cannot be atributed to “christians” (although I think they are crazy too) but to tribal life.

    That was the point I was trying to make (it’s not any one religion, it’s something in the culture that existed before the religion came along). Sorry if I came off unclear.

  12. as in “I’m so freakin’ fantastic you can’t really leave me”

    I think what Willow is saying is that a variety of cultures have certain handicaps.

    In a family oriented, tribal culture – you’re worried about what the aunties or whatever are going to say if your daughter “rebels.”

    In an community more centered on individualism, people can become so self-absorbed that they’ll kill because they are, as you put it, “fantastic,” and how could possibly anyone leave them?

    Underneath the issues with “honour” or the issues with the self-absorption is a common denominator – ego. No?

    Where I would disagree with Willow, perhaps, is as to the extent to which this sort of violence permeates different cultures. There are places that are worse for women in terms of violence – and places that are better. Russia, for example, is statistically bad. Palestine is statistically bad. Iceland? I hear Iceland is better. And so on.

    Also, access to help services and shelters is low to non-existent in certain places.

  13. Nat,
    “Underneath the issues with “honour” or the issues with the self-absorption is a common denominator – ego. No?”

    I’m not that sure. I think that the “honor” issue is to blame mainly on the social environment. Should you be able to pick, say, Aqsa Parvez’s father from the middle of the tribe, let him with the same personality but wipe all knowledge of tribal rules, you’d end up probably with a “next-door” type of guy who would do many things to keep Aqsa in line, but would never think of murder (okay, maybe he’d spank her).

    In the “ego” type of issues, murder would be the outcome no matter the environment, since the roots are inside the individual, and the outside pressure simply doesn’t count.

    I do hope I’ve made myself clear.

  14. CB, I would argue that the reasons you’ve presented–‘hurt feelings’, or put more simply, betrayal and rage–are exactly the reasons that honor killings occur in the Middle East. It’s just dressed up differently. Think very hard about what would drive a man to murder…do you really believe the men who perpetrate these crimes think “Gosh, the honor of my tribe has really been offended by my adulterous wife, guess I better do her in. Maybe after the cricket match”? Of course it’s rage. There’s nothing rational about it–these crimes are not endorsed by religion. Tribalism, belief, culture–all these things are simply the window dressing for fundamental human feelings of extreme jealousy, despair, anger and possessiveness.

    Let’s not forget that less than a century ago in this very country, when a man beat the crap out of his sexually unchaste wife or daughter, it was considered a private matter (just as it is in the ME) and the authorities were rarely involved (just as it is in the ME). The ‘guy next door’ that you believe exists under every “tribal” nonwhite man is both very western and very recent, and to assume that this is the prototype for all human emotion and behavior is, if you’ll pardon words of strong disagreement, incredibly misguided.

  15. And in the media vein–CB or Nat, do you watch Mad Men? It’s an AMC series about a big advertising firm in early 1960’s New York. In the episode that aired last night, there was a scene in which a housewife let an airconditioner salesman into her home while her husband was away. Her husband yelled at her for letting a stranger in while he wasn’t home, and when the woman related the incident to a female friend, the friend was shocked, and said her husband “would have broken her arm” if she had done the same.

    I wasn’t around in the 50’s and 60’s so I can’t say how historically accurate this kind of occurrence was, but clearly at some level we are aware (or at least we perceive) that the behaviors we condemn in the third world were once part of our culture–what’s more, I think the reason these behaviors make us so angry is because they remind us of what we still fear in ourselves.

  16. I want to reiterate, from a slightly different perspective, one of the points made by Willow and I think by Octogalore above (re: father shouldering the blame himself). Willow has stated that the state of mind that drove the father, Mohammed Parvaez, to kill his daughter is a psychological state that is inherent in human nature itself, and, as mentioned, Octogalore targeted the father for blame.

    I would simply add that it is misleading to see Mohammed Parvaez first as a die-cut representative of a larger “culture,” be that “Islam” or anything else, and then only secondarily as an individual human being who is motivated primarily by his own personality (including personality disorders) and life experience.

    Mohammed Parvaez, like any other individual, was probably motivated almost overwhelmingly by his own individual personality/memories/life experience (from which could have arisen personality disorders), and then only to a much lesser degree by his larger “culture.”

    To me, Mohammed Parvaez sounds like a classic example of what in the U.S. is called a “malignant narcissist” (i.e., out-of-control narcissist), who was furious that his youngest daughter would not publicly adhere to the externals of conservative Islam regardless of her own private convictions, and he felt so powerless before her assertion of autonomy that he felt he could assert his own power only by physically coercing her to the point of killing her.

    The article linked by Natalia tells us little about Mohammed Parvaez himself beyond his occupation, number of children, religion, and country of origin, and also reports of fits of rage over his youngest daughter’s assertion of autonomy. But Mohammed Parvaez’s enraged insistence that his youngest daughter, while in public, OUTWARDLY conform to the markers of a an externally-imposed value system regardless of her own private convictions, is the classic behavior of an out-of-control narcissistic parent. In other words, Mohammed Parvaez wanted his daughter to be a public performer (probably like himself), and his supposedly Islamic value-system was only a platform for his own public performance.

    In the U.S., in Appalachia or the Deep South, narcissistic parents like Mohammed Parvaez are frequently fundamentalist Protestants who are very vocal about their supposed beliefs and are eager to be perceived in public as fervently adhering to an externally-imposed value system. But inwardly, narcissistic parents feel powerless and ashamed of themselves (in a strictly personal sense), and they hide what they think is a shameful “self” by publicly adhering to externally-imposed rules, which is why they are such rigid performers in public and why they demand the same inflexible public performance of their children. When their children eventually assert their own autonomy, narcissistic parents either implode, or violently explode in fits of rage or even violence.

    Sorry for this long-winded post filled with psychobabble, but Mohammed Parvaez’s behavior was probably motivated more by his own personality disorder than by the directives of any larger “culture.” From the Facebook posting cited by Natalia, we know more about the blanket endorsement provided by Serene Silence and by other posters than we do about Mohammed Parvaez himself. In the case of Serene Silence, she herself might be an example of a child of narcissistic parents who endorses the idea of children being performers who must please their parents — which endorsement is all too typical of the children of narcissistic parents (something like Stockholm syndrome) until such children eventually do assert their own autonomy (if they ever do).

  17. Correction: The father’s name “Mohammed Parvaez” should be spelled “Muhammad Parvez,” in my post above.

  18. Sorry, but I need to vent or pour my soul out or whatever one says when frustration, anger and utter disappointment overrun me as it has when I contemplate this story.

    I hope there is something to explore and keep my interest forever if there is a “next place” after having to live on this earth, in this time and in this space. I am sick and tired to the point of perpetual tears when I think of the lives snuffed out by such stupidity. I am going to hate this world and it is getting harder and harder for me to see the overall good that I KNOW exists. I have had to witness fellow humans who don’t have enough water left in their bodies to shed tears over the deaths of their children after walking incredible distances to get those same kids to what little help I could provide only to have them perish. When I put this next to the story above, I have to ask myself if all the modern “stuff” we have just allows us too much time and too much self indulgence? Why is it that some belief would actually overide a parent’s concern for their “issue?” Ugh, I’m glad my kids are grown and gone out on their own, but I have to say to myself on occasion that maybe having them was not such a good thing given the awfulness I am seeing more of. As a young man I served in the military, carried a gun and had to use it in places I would rather not have been, against people I didn’t know. Even with that, I never felt any undue hatred against the “opposing” force, in fact I felt hurt in the end that what could have been between us would never be all for some grand misunderstanding, someone’s ego or profit! What the hades! What is it about us humans that make us so ready to slaughter one another at the seeming drop of a hat? Think I’ll go get some good Barbados rum and anethestize myself tonight for a little while because I’m really quite tired of it all! Oh well, I figure since I’m here and can, I’ll go on taking care of the patients in front of me and let things sort themselves out in whatever manner they will, but still, I’m bugged by this kind of thing. Stupid world.

  19. Stupid world indeed, Pat. I wish I could give you comfort, but here it is. Stupid world is what it’s all about.

    CB,

    In the “ego” type of issues, murder would be the outcome no matter the environment, since the roots are inside the individual, and the outside pressure simply doesn’t count.

    Well, like Willow, I think that ego is, of course, on the inside, and that this violence is personal (well, I think that all violence is personal, to some degree, but that’s just me). But it is also how we are raised and how we are taught to treat ourselves and others that either greatly aggravates or diffuses some of our most selfish impulses (and this type of violence is, I believe, selfish). There was a woman in Alabama a few years back ago, who poured bleach down her daughter’s throat and killed her, because of some supposed sexual indiscretion or other… I think the violent impulse was there to begin with, but I also bet that it was greatly aided by the woman’s environment.

    When I see the sheer amount of violence embedded in world culture in general (and James brought up Appalachia – territory I’m familiar with as well), I have to ask myself, what’s really going on here?

    Joss Whedon wrote about this very well in relation to the movie “Captivity.” You should Google his essay/blog-post.

    I think people are going to blame Islam or whatever for this particular crime, because it makes them feel better. This sort of violence is extremely unsettling – but if it can be shifted onto “them” vs. “us,” well, it does help us sleep better at night.

  20. When people start excusing Islam of these killings they really should read up on some principle concepts of the religion.
    For one look up the islamic concept of Ghira.

    It’s described this way in the traditions:

    Narrated by Al-Mughira: Sa’d bin ‘Ubada said,
    “I will not hesitate killing my wife with a
    sword if I see her with another man” This
    news reached Allah’s Apostle who then said,
    “You people are astonished at Sa’d’s Ghira
    (self-respect, honor). By Allah, I have more Ghira
    than he, and Allah has more Ghira than I, and
    because of Allah’s Ghira, He has made unlawful
    shameful deeds and sins done in open and in
    secret. And there is none who likes that the
    people should repent to Him and beg His pardon
    than Allah, and for this reason He sent the
    warners and the givers of good news. And there is
    none who likes to be praised more than Allah does,
    and for this reason, Allah promised to grant
    Paradise (to the doers of good).” ‘Abdul
    Malik said, “No person has more Ghira than
    Allah.” (Sahih Bukhari)

  21. Also reading the Qu’ran chapter 18 sura 65-81
    It tells the story of Musa the Islamic Moses who travels around with this man who at one point kills a boy.
    It says:

    So they went on until, when they met a boy, he slew him. (Musa) said: Have you slain an innocent person otherwise than for manslaughter? Certainly you have done an evil thing.

    In aya 80 and 81 of the same sura we get the answer as to why he was slain:

    “And as for the boy, his parents were believers and we feared lest he should make disobedience and ingratitude to come upon them:
    So we desired that their Lord might give them in his place one better than him in purity and nearer to having compassion. ”

    Also look up the tafsir of these verses by Ibn Kathir and others.
    Which justifies honor killings.

  22. I am amazed.

    Amazed and shocked, really, that any Westerner would defend the murderous father and the system which enabled and encouraged him to murder his own daughter. I am disgusted at the attempt at moral equivalence, the pathetic and vile comparison between outcast bastards of the West and the mainstream normal family men of the Islamic world.

    Is it self-hatred? Is it some strange form of cultural suicide? Or maybe it’s just an inability to understand that some cultures are different, that people with radically different ways of thinking will have, well, different thinking?

    I don’t care. But I am disgusted at what I see in the comments here as much as I am disgusted with the standard Islamic reaction to “honor killings”. Truly, the degenerate West deserves the barbaric East.

  23. This is a quick response to Raccoon’s characterization of “mainstream normal family men of the Islamic world.”

    First, Muhammad Parvez, the Canadian citizen whose assault on his daughter resulted in her dying in the hospital, would not be regarded as “normal” in any of the Muslim communities in Canada or the U.S. Most Muslims in Canada and the U.S. are as grounded in modernity as, say, conservative Protestants (excluding fundamentalists). Just like many Protestant communities, Muslim communities include marginal, infantile, and/or disturbed individuals who will interpret their religion as enabling them to act out their worst impulses. But infantile or disturbed behavior, no matter what its Koranic pretext, is not regarded as “normal” or “mainstream” by most Muslims in North America.

    Second, Raccoon is recycling the misinformation that there is an “Islamic world” that mass-produces identical human products. The “Islamic world” is, in fact, a collection of individual believers who have embraced an individualistic religious experience and, at least as I understand it, rely on the Koran as the most authoritative description of their theological beliefs and moral outlook. Each individual Muslim’s understanding of the Koran is ultimately idiosyncratic even though guided/influenced by historical schools of interpretation and jurisprudence (as I understand it). In other words, there is no universal Muslim “church” that has a rigidly uniform interpretation of the Koran to which all Muslims, without exception, must adhere or risk excommunication.

    Precisely because Islam is an individualistic religion, immature believers do have at least the intellectual license to interpret the Koran as encouraging their own worst impulses. Certain fundamentalist Protestants (Calvinists) do exactly the same thing with the Christian Bible — because Calvinism, too, is an ultimately individualistic religion whose adherents are in fact required to constantly interpret the Bible according to their individual lights, as guided/influenced by theologians and teachers. For each Calvinist believer, there is only the believer, the Bible, and God; that’s all. There is no mediating “church” or infallible earthly authority, any more than there is for Muslims. I grew up in Appalachia as a Presbyterian, and there was never any shortage of self-described Calvinists who would read the more violent or phobic passages of the Bible as justifying their purely personal violence and phobias. Raccoon calls such Calvinists “outcast bastards,” but there are Protestants in Appalachia and elsewhere in the U.S. who regard the “bastards” as heroic (compare Ulster Protestantism). But those Protestants are, in fact, a very vocal and energetic minority.

    Similarly, most Muslims in North America probably regard Muhammad Parvez as criminal or deranged. But the Muslims who think him heroic are a very vocal and energetic minority who attract the attention of the Western media. Westerners who know little about actual, real-life Muslims can easily be led to believe that the Muslim minority actually represents the mainstream, just as people who little about Protestants might think that the late Jerry Falwell represented “mainstream” conservative Protestantism.

    As far as Muhammad Parvez himself is concerned, it should be noted that he voluntarily called 911 when his daughter stopped breathing (I think), even though he must have known that the Canadian justice system would hold him accountable for his daughter’s condition. That suggests that he himself does not endorse child-murder as punishment for “dishonor,” since remorseless murderers don’t risk arrest in order to save the lives of their victims.

    Sorry for this long post.

  24. Addendum to Muhammad Parvez’s call to 911: Not did he voluntarily call 911, on that call he voluntarily told emergency room officials that “he just killed his daughter.” Remorseless killers don’t seek care for their victims and then voluntarily confess their crime to ER personnel. Muhammad Parvez is probably an emotionally and mentally unstable individual who, I suspect, felt immediate, intense remorse for his act, or otherwise he wouldn’t have made a point of confessing over the phone. If Muhammad Parvez’s assault on his daughter is connected to Islam, then so is his immediate voluntary call to 911 with his deliberate confession. Hopefully, the report of Muhammad Parvez’s insane assault on his daughter will motivate Canadian Muslim communities to pay more attention to the psychological and social state of their congregants, so Muslims can intervene before another father goes bezerk.

  25. Correction to my post dated December 19 at 7:39 p.m., fifth paragraph: The phrase “people who little about Protestants” should read “people who KNOW little about Protestants.”

  26. Correction to my post dated December 19 at 9:10 p.m., first line: The phrase that reads “Not did he” should read “Not ONLY did he”.

    Sorry about these corrections. I have trouble concentrating today.

  27. James –

    The Ummah exists. And the Ummah has its common traits, learned from parents, in the mosque and from the environment. It’s not something people choose – the punishment for apostasy in Islam is death, as agreed upon by the Ulema throughout the ages – other than converts.

    And being part of the Ummah is an important identity component for most Muslims. Not the only one – but certainly an important one. Moreover, Islam is more than a spiritual system of beliefs. It is a complete system governing thought, action, belief, identity, relationships… and with Islamic conquests, certain cultural practices were spread all over Dar-al-Islam. Among these is enslavement of women – they are largely viewed as property, for various social and religious reasons (I could quote suras for you… but I am sure that if it’s of sufficient interest, you can find a Koran).

    This tends to create several problems. One of them is “honor killings”, which are socially acceptable throughout Dar-al-Islam. I wish it wasn’t so…but wishing changes nothing.

    About the individual interpretation of Islam… there is a bit of a problem there. Fiqh is a massive and fairly rigid thing, locked tight by the ban of Ijtihad. There is some wiggle room there, true – but then again, social pressure tends to take huge bites out of this wiggle room. There is no excommunication in Islam… but there certainly is a whole lot of killing, maiming and no less brutal but more subtle ways of punishing the wayward.

    What this leads to is a violent culture of dogma, bigotry, misogyny and honor that is completely alien to a Westerner.

    Islam, therefore, is not the problem by itself. It is, rather, the melange of religion, culture and social norms that is the problem. It has no official name, but it is something that unites Arabs, Muslim Desis, Pashtun, Persians, Azeris and many others… who proudly call themselves the Ummah. There are, of course, dhimmis and even mushrikun who suffer from the same cultural and social afflictions… so let us just call this melange the East, for the sake of giving it a name.

    By the way, I am neither Western nor Eastern – but well-positioned to observe both. I have lived among Westerners, and I found your culture degenerate and self-destructive – and insult to the feats and sacrifices of your forefathers. I have lived among Easterners, and found their culture barbaric and violent. And looking at both, I can tell you than on average, there is very little understanding of either side by the other. But you’re different. Very, very different. And engaged in a war the West seems reluctant to acknowledge.

    Oh well. I reckon my words will change little, if anything at all. Best of luck to you and may you die last on the battlefield.

  28. I live among “Easterners” right now (who are “Easterners” anyway? To a Brit, they may as well be Moldovans, wrong-side-of-the-Iron-Curtain and all – and where does, say, the Far East fit into all this, huh? Or is it that the dichotomy is crap? ). I like it. There’s bad and good here. I wouldn’t move to Saudi or Yemen or something – I have demands for my lifestyle that obviously wouldn’t be accommodated there, but the Muslim world, as James rightfully pointed out, is not a monolith. And I’ve seen enough barbarism to last me a lifetime. In a variety of settings.

    I furthermore think you’re looking at fiqh from a very strange perspective. It’s true that the Saudis have financed a vast network of fundamentalism, all around the world (not just in Canada and the U.S.) – but from where I stand, there’s quite a bit of wiggle room. Ask a Sufi. Hell, ask Tariq Ramadan. Amina Wadud.

    I’m not Muslim – I can’t speak for Muslims. But these are my observations and no, I’m not defending murderers here. The fact that an honest discussion about a particular person’s motivation can be labelled as a “defense” is pretty prejudiced in itself, if you ask me.

    I’ve dissected the possible motivations of a man who abused and abandonded his daughter following her gang-rape ordeal – and I didn’t see anyone freaking at that… Wonder if that has to do with the fact that the man in question was non-Muslim.

  29. And it’s not just in Canada that they as in Muslim families do this.
    It’s all across the world.
    This is not a isolated incident.
    And it’s linked to the Islamic teachings.
    Ignore it at your own risk.

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