Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Pakistan: Taliban behead 3 Sikhs for refusing to convert to Islam

From Jihad Watch (in case you missed it in the Indian newspapers)

"A sizeable number of Sikhs lived in the tribal belt, particularly Aurakzai Agency, till the Taliban imposed jiziya or religious tax on them in 2009," in accordance with Qur'an 9:29. "Three Sikhs beheaded by Taliban in Pak," from the Economic Times, February 22 (thanks to all who sent this in):

NEW DELHI: In what threatens to cast a shadow on the upcoming Indo-Pakistan talks scheduled for February 25, three Sikh youths were beheaded by the Taliban in Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Area (FATA) region after they allegedly refused to convert to Islam. Their severed heads were dumped at a gurudwara in Peshawar.

The Sikh youths -- identified as Jaspal Singh, Sarabjit Singh and Baronat Singh -- had gone to realise the money owed to them by some people in the FATA region adjoining Afghanistan, when they were abducted by the Taliban militia. They were allegedly told by the Taliban to embrace Islam or face death. When the Sikh youth refused, their heads were chopped and sent to the Bhai Joga Singh Gurudwara in Peshawar.

A sizeable number of Sikhs lived in the tribal belt, particularly Aurakzai Agency, till the Taliban imposed jiziya or religious tax on them in 2009. Most members of the community, faced with increasing pressure from the Taliban to convert to Islam, have since fled to cities across Pakistan.

Posted by Marisol on February 21, 2010 8:00 PM 127 Comments (three are reprinted below).

by Hugh (Fitzgerald) February 21, 2010 8:29 PM Reply

We are all waiting expectantly, waiting for the anguished outcry, and fierce denunciation of this, from Pakistan, from CAIR, from the O.I.C.

And how curious it is to note how the report in the Indian paper matter-of-factly mentions the Jizyah: "till the Taliban imposed jiziya or religious tax on them in 2009." Yet, it appears not to make much of a difference in the behavior of the Indian government, surprisingly supine at times about the menace that Islam so clearly poses to all non-Muslims -- Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Buddhists, Christians, and even the handful of Jews -- in India, as it does everywhere else.

Still, it's better than no mention of the Jizyah, which is what you get in the American and other Western coverage of how the Taliban treated Hindus and Sikhs. Mention was made, fleeting mention, of Hindus being required to wear yellow identifying dress, but I do not recall ever seeing anything in the mainstream press about the imposition of the Jizyah.

In fact, I don't recall seeing the word "Jizyah" ever in any of the thousands of stories about Muslim-non-Muslim conflict, not once, in the New York Times, or the Washington Post, or any British publications. Why not? Why is it so impossible to inform non-Muslim readers about the legal status of non-Muslims under Muslim rule? Antoine Fattal, a Lebanese Christian, wrote a whole book about it. The American government has yet to see fit to have that book translated from the French. Why? What is it spending its hundreds of billions in that "war on terror" on? More cash for Muslims, so as to keeep them happy so they won't join the Taliban, or Al Qaeda, or a thousand other groups? Nothing left over to pay for a translation or two?

AJ February 21, 2010 9:15 PM Reply

Hugh says

"And how curious it is to note how the report in the Indian paper matter-of-factly mentions the Jizyah: "till the Taliban imposed jiziya or religious tax on them in 2009." Yet, it appears not to make much of a difference in the behavior of the Indian government, surprisingly supine at times about the menace that Islam so clearly poses to all non-Muslims"

Many in India are aware of jizya, and also the treatment meted out to hindus/sikhs under Islamic rule. These things were part of our high school history, so it is common knowledge.

Despite this awareness, most hindus attribute these things to some kind of radical Islam or fanaticism. The devout, religious Islamic rulers who imposed Jizya, in accordance with Islamic laws, are deviled as fanatics and misunderstanders of Islam. Whereas one tolerant 'muslim' ruler, Akbar, who ignored Islamic rules and was almost an apostate, is revered as an example of 'true muslim'.

This is the manner in which history is presented, and was written by our colonial era leaders, to foster an artificial sense of Hindu-Muslim unity.

sean February 22, 2010 12:47 AM Reply

Sikhs have suffered and continue to suffer from Muslim persecution, not only in South Asia, but also where they have settled in Europe. If the 'European' Muslims can't find any Jews to attack, they'll have a go at the local Sikhs:
For more Comments click "127 Comments"

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Understanding What the United States Wants from Pakistan

. . . the Pakistani military is organized for warfare against its arch-nemesis India, and many of its mid-level officers are sympathetic to the Taliban and, at best, wary of the United States. When the United States argues that smashing militants along Pakistan’s northwest border will improve the security of both countries, officials in Islamabad are often skeptical.

[Excerpts--in not the original order--from "Islamabad Boys" at The New Republic]


"The United States need[s] Pakistan’s army to take on the militants flourishing along the border . . . . The days of Pakistan looking the other way--cutting deals and playing double games with the radicals--ha[s] to end."


". . . anti-Americanism is rife in Pakistan, where the continued campaign of U.S. drone strikes against militants has driven Barack Obama’s approval ratings to an abysmal 13 percent."


"Many Pakistanis fail to understand why their army is fighting its own people--and incurring severe casualties (2,400 dead so far, more than double the U.S. toll in Afghanistan)--when they consider India their true enemy and an existential threat to their nation. The perception that Washington is forcing Pakistan’s government to do its bidding doesn’t help."


"'We have to get at the Haqqani [al Qaeda ally*] network . . . . we have to get at the Al Qaeda safe havens.'. . . Ultimately, however, that step serves America’s interests far more than those of Pakistan. Haqqani targets Americans, not Pakistanis. With their past ties to him, the Pakistanis also see Haqqani as a useful ally against possible Indian influence in Afghanistan, should the United States abandon the country as it did after the 1989 Soviet withdrawal."
*Haqqani has longstanding ties to the Pakistani military, which supported him during the Soviet era in Afghanistan


“Pakistan will drive the hardest bargain they can” . . . . If this sounds familiar, it’s because it was the same dynamic that defined the relationship between Musharraf and George W. Bush, who sold Pakistan 36 F-16s in 2005--only to find that Pakistan was again cutting deals with the tribal-area radicals. “We have been telling ourselves for years that the Pakistanis are finally coming around. The hard truth is that the Pakistani army has played us very well,” says a U.S. government official who focuses on the region.


[The U.S.] Congress severed all military ties to Pakistan in 1990 to punish the country for its pursuit of nuclear weapons . . . Those ties were restored when the United States re-embraced Pakistan after September 11 . . . . many American officials fret that a “lost generation” of mid-level Pakistani military officers has been created, one whose members loathe the United States


Musharraf . . . . . placed Kayani** in charge of Pakistan’s Directorate for Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) in 2004, then named him his successor as army chief three years later. Kayani’s term expires in October, but American officials don’t rule out the possibility that he will be granted an extension or another top military job.

Though he holds no political rank, Kayani** may be Pakistan’s most powerful man--perhaps more so than the country’s embattled president, Asif Ali Zardari. After the November 2008 terror attacks in Mumbai, for instance, Zardari promised India that he would send the current ISI chief, Ahmed Shuja Pasha, to New Delhi to cooperate with the investigation, according to Daniel Markey, a former Bush State Department official and Pakistan specialist. Kayani objected and, Markey says, “That [promise] had to be walked back.”
**Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, Pakistan’s army chief of staff,and Pakistan’s most important general, commanding its 550,000-man army

[bold emphasis mine. lw]

Foregoing rearranged excerpts from Islamabad Boys - An American admiral, a Pakistani general, and he ultimate anti-terror adventure.
Are the Pakistanis on Our Side? The Tale of Admiral Mullen. at The New Republic

Read the whole article . . .


Pakistan: Conspiracy talk stokes anti-American Sentiment

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Why is India Left Out of the Afghanistan Problem?

Should India play a part in Afghanistan? The U.S. considers Pakistan its ally in the fight against the Taliban. Is this a mistaken reliance on a shaky entity (Pakistan)?

In looking at who should be involved in Afghanistan--especially in the long run, we read an article in India's The Sunday Pioneer, excerpts from which are as follows:

India must seek Army role in Afghanistan
by Swapan Dasgupta
Sunday, February 14, 2010
Sunday Pioneer


There was a time when the US and Britain, the two main contributors to the military operations, were hesitant to admit the loss of political will in Afghanistan. These days, any high-ranking official or even those on the periphery of the power structure in Washington and London will readily admit that the goal in Afghanistan is the orderly management of disengagement. The reason is only partly financial. Far more compelling is the push from a large section of those who voted for President Barack Obama in 2008 and those who are willing to support Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s re-election bid this summer. They are unequivocal in their belief that Afghanistan is “not our war”.

The angst-ridden liberals who are so terribly indignant over last year’s flawed election in Afghanistan, have no problems nurturing the belief that the Taliban are merely ultra-conservative Afghan nationalists who should be left alone to get on with their archaic way of life without interference. Of course, there is a feeble recognition that there are the ‘bad’ Taliban, the ones who extended hospitality to Osama bin Laden and plotted the international jihad to establish another Caliphate. But that problem is sought to be covered up by falling back on Pakistani guarantees

If the future of Afghanistan unravels in the way the London conference envisaged, there are likely to be profound consequences for the sub-continent. First, Pakistan, the country which provided sanctuary and a lifeline to Mullah Omar and his henchmen after 2001, is going to be gifted Afghanistan on a platter by a disoriented West. Pakistan has claimed that it alone has the commitment and expertise to manage things in such a way that the Al Qaeda doesn’t return to Afghanistan — even if Mullah Omar does. The West is inclined to believe Islamabad and outsource what seems an ‘unwinnable’ war.

Second, the recovery of Pakistan’s ‘strategic depth’ in Afghanistan will lead to an immediate escalation of tensions in Jammu & Kashmir. The Pakistani military is aware that jihadi energies will need to find a focus once Western soldiers are out of Afghanistan, Hamid Karzai’s Government toppled and the Afghan Constitution replaced by sharia’h rule. The jihadis will have two clear options: To either aim for a capture of power in Islamabad or resume the battle to ‘liberate’ Kashmir. It may safely be assumed that the Pakistani military will do its utmost to ensure that the latter option prevails.

Finally, regardless of Pakistan’s projection of itself as a modern Islamic nation, a Taliban victory in Afghanistan will tilt the balance of power in the Muslim world in favour of the Islamists. The sheer exhilaration of holy warriors having defeated two superpowers in just three decades will result in an immediate radicalisation of Muslims which won’t remain confined to Afghanistan, or even Pakistan. This time it is certain to create tremors all over West, South and South-East Asia, not least India. The West hopes that from threatening the heartlands of the West, jihad will become a purely Asian problem which, at best, touches North Africa. This optimism is based on Pakistani assurances, hardly something a prudent banker will accept.
The belief that preachy Indians are piggy-backing on the lives of Western soldiers and are unwilling to get their hands dirty is widespread.
Read the whole article at

Pune Attack originated in Pakistan, Carried Out by Indian Mujahiddin

Gopinath Munde, a senior Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party leader, asserted: "This again is an attack from Pakistan."

India had warned of a possible new attack in recent weeks and put its airports on alert for a possible hijacking attempt.

High alert across India

Mumbai and other parts of Maharashtra state were put on high alert after the explosion, said Chhagan Bhujbal, the state deputy chief minister.

Pillai noted during the news conference that the ashram had been visited by David Headley*, an American facing charges in Chicago aiding the Mumbai attackers.

IBN-CNN, quoting Indian intelligence officials, said Headley visited the Osho Ashram twice in 2008-2009. Officials initially believed he wanted to target foreigners visiting the ashram although they later concluded he was scouting the nearby Chabad House, a Jewish prayer center.

The intelligence officials, cited by IBN, also said that main suspects in the blast was the Indian Mujahiddin. news services

Pune blast triggered by IED: Home Secy
Blast at popular Pune bakery

__^ a b Headley's ex-wife told reporters, "when he would go to Pakistan he would get all riled up again" and use words like "infidels" and "when he would see an Indian person in the street, he used to spit, spit in the street".Joseph Tanfani, John Shiffman, and Kathleen Brady Shea (2009-12-
*David Coleman Headley, formerly known as Daood Sayed Gilani, (born June 30, 1960) is a Pakistani-American businessman based in Chicago, accused of involvement with terrorism.[1][2] He changed his Muslim name to a Judaeo-Christian name to hide his Muslim identity [3]

Gilani was born in Washington, D. C., where his father, Sayed Salim Gilani, worked for the Voice of America, and his mother, Serrill Headley, was a secretary. Danyal Gilani, spokesman for the Prime Minister of Pakistan, Yousaf Raza Gillani, is Headley's half brother.[4] When his parents broke up their marriage, Sayed Gilani went back to Pakistan, taking Daood and his sister with him. There Daood attended the Cadet College Hasan Abdal, a preparatory boys' high school for the military. In 1977 his mother traveled to Pakistan and brought him to live with her in the United States, where he grew up.[5] Serril Headley owned Khyber Pass, a pub in Philadelphia, and died in 2008.[6] In 1985 he married a Pennsylvania State University student, but they divorced in 1987 due to cultural conflicts.[7]

Gilani ran a video store in Philadelphia. In 1998 he was convicted of conspiring to smuggle heroin into the country from Pakistan.[8] After his arrest, he provided much information about his Pakistani drug contacts and got less than two years in jail. He later went to Pakistan to conduct undercover surveillance operations for the Drug Enforcement Administration.[5] In 2002 and three times in 2003, he attended Lashkar-e-Taiba training camps in Pakistan.[7]

In 2006, he changed his name to David Headley so as to make border crossings between the United States and other countries easier. He moved his family to Chicago, where he claimed to work for Rana's immigration agency. Rana had been in the Cadet College Hasan Abdal with him.[5]
In relation to the 2010 Pune blast at the German bakery that killed eight or nine people and injured at least 33 people, Indian Home Secretary, G. K. Pillai[32] and the Hindustan Times[33] referred to Headley. The Hindustan Times stated that Headley had visited Pune in July 2008 and March 2009 and referred to him as a Lashkar-e-Taiba member.[33]

Pakistani American posed as Jew to case Mumbai Chabad
November 15, 2009

(JTA) -- A U.S. citizen of Pakistan origin allegedly posed as a Jew in order to enter the Mumbai Chabad center and prepare for last year's attack.

David Coleman Headley, 49, was arrested last month in Chicago as he tried to make his way to Pakistan via Philadelphia.

U.S. and Indian authorities have been investigating Headley. Over the weekend, the Indian Nation Investigating Agency raided several places in Mumbai in search of evidence.
Indian security sources believe Headley cased the Chabad center, known as the Nariman House, for the Pakistani terror group Lashkar-e-Taiba, which is believed to be responsible for the attacks.

Indian investigators found that Headley visited all 10 Mumbai locations that were attacked last November, according to the Chinese news agency Xinhua.
The news agency reported that Headley visited the Mumbai Chabad in July 2008. When he was arrested last month in the United States, he had a book in his possession titled "To Pray as a Jew," the Calcutta Telegraph reported.

Chabad Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg and his wife, Rivkah, were among the six victims killed at the Nariman House. A total of 179 people were killed in the Mumbai terror attacks, which occurred over a three-day period.

Headley Working for U.S. Agency (-cies)?

Why is the USA not allowing India to interrogate American national David Headley, the Mumbai 26/11 terror attack suspect of Pakistani origin. Is it because Headley is also an American spy? This has become a hot news topic in the Indian media. Headley, and accomplice Tahawwur Hussain Rana, was arrested by FBI in October for conspiring to bomb public places in India.

David Headley was born in Washington, D. C., where his father, Sayed Salim Gilani, worked for the Voice of America, and his mother, Serrill Headley, was a secretary. Danyal Gilani, spokesman for the Prime Minister of Pakistan, Yousaf Raza Gillani, is Headley’s half brother. (See here…)
Top Indian official sources said that there is a strong suspicion that US agency CIA knew about David Headley’s (real name Daood Gilani) link with the Kashmiri separatist group Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) one year before Mumbai attack but did not convey it (to Indian officials) when he was freely travelling across India, reports The Times of India.

Mysteriously, the visa papers of Headley and Rana have gone missing from the Indian Consulate in Chicago. More here…

Such allegations would give credence to the suspicions in the Indian subcontinent that the US intelligence networks themselves are responsible for encouraging terrorist networks to destabilize those governments in the region who are not subservient to the American interests/orders. For long Kashmir has been cited as one important case where geo-political (not just religious) reasons prompt terrorism from afar.

In the murky world of Washington power-politics, and the CIA at Langley, American policy-makers had been using many notorious people, including Lee Harvey Oswald and Saddam Hussein, as “double agents”. Let us also not forget America’s current most hunted man, Osama bin-Laden, who was earlier their favourite fighter against the former Soviet Union’s empire building ambitions in Afghanistan.

The Times of India continues: “The investigators believe that the US agencies kept away the information from India and never allowed the Pakistani- origin Headley to get ‘exposed’.
“Headley, the 49-year old terror suspect, arrested by FBI for his role in Mumbai attacks, had visited India in March 2009 — four months after (an earlier) Mumbai attack carried out by LeT — but FBI still did not inform India that Headley is a LeT operative, apparently fearing he could be arrested in India.

“The sources said that they apprehended that if Headley got less punishment in court then India would have a reasonable ground to believe that Headley was a US agent and also working for LeT.

“It could also add credence to the belief that there was a plea bargain between Headley and US agencies.

“During his multiple visits to India, Headley had spent a lot of money running into lakhs of rupees through credit cards issued by American banks and in fake Indian currency, believed to have been brought from Pakistan.

“Indian investigators were now trying to find out who had paid his credit card bills in the American banks.”
More here…

The Washington-born son of a former Pakistani diplomat and American mother, Headley reportedly made a number of trips to India over the past few years visiting many places including Mumbai and befriending Bollywood stars, writes The Hindustan Times.“The Times suggested that Headley could have been a member of the US Drug Enforcement Agency which allowed him to make frequent trips to Pakistan and gain access to the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) militant group.

“Headley was arrested for heroin smuggling in 1998 in New York, according to reports, which was when he is alleged to have been recruited by the DEA.“India blames the LeT for planning and executing the Mumbai siege in November 2008 when 10 gunmen targeted multiple locations in the commercial capital, killing 166 people including six Americans…”More here…

Another report says that Headley posed as a Jew..Why should he pose as a Jew?….More here…

To burnish his fake Jewish credentials, Mr Headley even carried a book called How to Pray like a Jew, the FBI says. The FBI appears to have placed him under surveillance after noticing his frequent movements between India, Pakistan, the Gulf and Europe. (See here…)
Some in India are asking whether the US troops would have invaded India if an Indian national was suspected in a conspiracy to bomb places in America, and whose interrogation was to be refused by India. What is the Indian government going to do now?

Will the Indian Prime Minister be forced to bite the American president’s hand that he lovingly held in the White House recently (in the presence of the gate-crashers!!!)?

Headley aka Gilani


According to the New York Times, Headley went to Pakistan to conduct undercover surveillance operations for the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). (An Accused Plotter With Feet in East and West / Is Headley an American agent ? )David Coleman Headley 'was probably used by US intelligence to infiltrate Lashar-E-Toiba'. (Headley: Undercover agent?)

"The tantalising possibility that David Coleman Headley may have been a US undercover agent ... is vexing many here as American authorities keep the US-based Lashkar jihadi out of the reach of Indian investigators." (Is Headley an American agent? )According to The Times of India, Headley, while in India, 'frequently introduced himself as a CIA agent'. (Is Headley an American agent? )
More at

from The Pakistani Spectator

Public debate has focused on claims that Headley—who served as a Drug Enforcement Administration informant after being arrested with two kg of heroin in 1988—may have been planted by U.S. covert services inside Lashkar after his release in 2002.

“If this David Headley was working for the CIA all along, which is a very plausible conclusion,” says writer and journalist Webster Tarpley, “It means that the CIA implicated and was running and masterminding the Mumbai terror attack of 2008.”

David Headley of Chicago – aka Daood Gilani – was formally charged with involvement in planning last year’s terrorist attacks on 26/11/08 in Mumbai, India, says the US Justice Department.

Headley, who changed his name from Daood Gilani in 2006 and resides primarily in Chicago, was arrested on Oct. 3, 2009, by the Chicago FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) at O’Hare International Airport before boarding a flight to Philadelphia, intending to travel on to Pakistan.

Also, Tahawwur Hussain Rana – aka Tahawar Rana - a native of Pakistan and citizen of Canada who also resides in Chicago, was arrested on Oct. 18, 2009, at his home by federal agents. Rana is the owner of several businesses, including First World Immigration Services, which has offices in Chicago, New York and Toronto. He was charged with conspiracy to provide support to a foreign terrorism conspiracy that involved Headley and other individuals in Pakistan.

On Dec. 7, United States Attorney’s office unsealed additional charges, reading in parts:“New federal charges filed today allege that a Chicago man, who was arrested in October for planning terrorist attacks against a Danish newspaper and two of its employees, also conducted extensive surveillance of targets in Mumbai for more than two years preceding the November 2008 terrorist attack on India’s largest city that killed approximately 170 people, including six Americans, and injured hundreds more. The defendant, David Coleman Headley, a U.S. citizen, earlier this decade allegedly attended terrorism training camps in Pakistan maintained by Lashkar e Tayyiba (Lashkar), and conspired with its members and others in planning and executing the attacks in both Denmark and India…..”
More at David Headley: Terrorist or CIA agent? May be both?

Mumbai terror suspect David Headley was ‘rogue US secret agent’
Times London
Read the whole story: Times London
Rhys Blakely in Mumbai

A key terror suspect who allegedly helped to plan last year’s attacks in Mumbai and plotted to strike Europe was an American secret agent who went rogue, Indian officials believe.
David Headley, 49, who was born in Washington to a Pakistan diplomat father and an American mother, was arrested in Chicago in October. He is accused of reconnoitring targets in India and Europe for Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), the Pakistan-based terror group behind the Mumbai attacks and of having links to al-Qaeda. He has denied the charges.
He came to the attention of the US security services in 1997 when he was arrested in New York for heroin smuggling. He earned a reduced sentence by working for the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) infiltrating Pakistan-linked narcotics gangs.
Indian investigators, who have been denied access to Mr Headley, suspect that he remained on the payroll of the US security services — possibly working for the Central Intelligence Agency
Related Links
American pleads not guilty to Mumbai attacks
Quiet American 'planned another Mumbai attack'
Mumbai 'mastermind' preaches in mosque
“India is looking into whether Headley worked as a double agent,” an Indian Home Ministry official said yesterday.
Mr Headley, who changed his name from Daood Gilani, was in Mumbai until two weeks before the attacks on the city, which claimed 166 lives last November. It is alleged that he spent months checking targets in India’s commercial capital, using his Western looks and anglicised name to move in elite social circles, hobnob with Bollywood actors and even to pass himself off as Jewish.

Despite being firmly on the radar of the US intelligence agencies, he was allowed to return to India as recently as March. Indian officials are furious that their American counterparts did not share details of that visit at the time. The Indian media has raised the possibility that Mr Headley was being protected by his American handlers — a theory that experts say is credible.

“The feeling in India is that the US has not been transparent,” said B. Raman, a former counter-terrorism chief in the Indian foreign intelligence service, the Research and Analysis Wing.

“That Headley was an agent for the DEA is known. Whether he was being used by the CIA as well is a matter of speculation, but it is almost certain that the CIA was aware of him and his movements across the subcontinent.”

According to Mr Raman, it is probable that Mr Headley, who was arrested when the US authorities learned that he was about to fly to Pakistan, was listed on the main database of the

US National Counterterrorism Centre, a facility used by the CIA and several other American agencies to track terror suspects.

Indian officials suspect that US agencies declined to share intelligence to avoid compromising other secret operations and to to be able to deny any link with Mr Headley.

Analysts believe that the US may also have been anxious to avoid sharing information that could further raise tensions between India and Pakistan, nuclear-armed neighbours who have fought three wars.

According to documents put before a court in Chicago, Mr Headley had links with the Pakistan Army and, through it, with al-Qaeda.

As well as helping to co-ordinate the Mumbai atrocity, Mr Headley is accused of planning attacks on Mumbai’s Bollywood film industry, the Shiv Sena, a Hindu extremist group also based in Mumbai, a major Hindu temple, and a Danish newspaper that had published cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad.

The US authorities allege that he was close to Tahawwur Hussain Rana, a former Pakistani schoolmate and businessman who is also being charged with planning to attack the Danish newspaper, Jyllands-Posten. Mr Rana is accused of having known about the attack on Mumbai in advance.

The CIA denied that Headley had worked for the organisation.

“Any suggestion that Headley was working for the CIA is complete and utter nonsense. It’s flat-out false,” Paul Gimigliano, from the CIA’s Office of Public Affairs, said.

The Indian Home Secretary, Gopal Krishna Pillai, has said that his Government would seek the extradition of Mr Headley — a request that has so far been stonewalled by US officials.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Bombay [Mumbai] High Court says Islam can be criticized, but not "maliciously"

from Jihad Watch

The problem with this ought to be obvious: who decides what constitutes "malicious" criticism? Islamic spokesmen in non-Muslim countries routinely characterize any and every criticism of Islam, including any accurate depiction of the jihad doctrine and Islamic supremacism, as malicious. It is a central element of their playbook: characterize anyone who dares to speak the truth about these matters as driven by hate, as a profiteer, a liar, etc. etc. etc. They know that if they take that stance consistently -- and they are nothing if not consistent in this -- then they will be able to bamboozle many of the naive and unwary and turn them away from the truth and the truth-tellers.

But they also take this stance because they believe it. The idea that all critics of jihad and Islamic supremacism are evil people driven by hatred is also simply a Qur'anic principle -- which is a chief reason why Islamic spokesmen in the West so consistently take this line. The Qur'an assumes that anyone who opposes or rejects Islam is evil, malicious, and motivated by greed or envy or both. There is no notion of the dignity of the human person as regards the unbeliever, or any idea of the free conscience operating in good faith in rejecting Islam.

And so the problem with this court decision in India is that Muslims will use it to characterize any and all criticism of Islam as malicious, and to get it censored as a result.

"Islam Can be Criticised, But Not Maliciously: HC," from OutlookIndia, January 6 (thanks to Natassia):

Islam or any other religion can be criticised, but a malicious criticism aimed at promoting communal hatred and painting the whole community as villainous is not permissible, Bombay High Court held today.

Refusing to interpret Quranic verses, Court however advised that verses must be "correlated", and historical background must be kept in mind when interpreting.

I am all for that. The unfortunate truth of this, however, is that contrary to what this court clearly believes, and contrary to popular belief, the "historical background" of the various
Qur'anic teachings on jihad don't mitigate, but rather reinforce, Islamic doctrines involving violence against and the subjugation of unbelievers.

A full bench of the High Court upheld the ban on 'Islam - A concept of Political World Invasion By Muslims', written by advocate R V Bhasin. Bhasin had challenged the ban, saying that it violated right to freedom of speech.

The book was banned in state government in 2007, on the ground that it contained derogatory remarks about Islam and prophet Mohammad and insulted Muslim sentiments....

All right, but you'll notice that this article at least doesn't say anything about the book being banned because it contained false information about Islam or Muhammad. Islamic advocacy groups like CAIR have not hesitated to protest in the U.S. against material about Islam that was perfectly true, but which contained material they didn't like. See, for example, here.

Posted by Robert on February 9, 2010 9:05 AM
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