Peter Foster, Delhi - June 20, 2007
A senior minister in the Pakistani Government has urged Muslim countries to break diplomatic relations with London and claimed a suicide bomb attack would be a justified response to author Salman Rushdie's knighthood.
The Pakistan Parliament called on the British Government to reverse the decision to award the knighthood or face further protests from Muslim nations.
"If someone commits suicide bombing to protect the honour of the Prophet Muhammad, his act is justified," the Minister for Religious Affairs, Ijaz ul-Haq, told Pakistan's national assembly.
"This is an occasion for the (world's) 1.5 billion Muslims to look at the seriousness of this decision," Mr ul-Haq said. "If Muslims do not unite, the situation will get
worse and Salman Rushdie may get a seat in the British Parliament."
His comments provoked an angry response around the world. Effigies of the Queen and Rushdie were burned in the eastern Pakistan city of Multan as students chanted: "Kill him! Kill him!"
But Mr ul-Haq said his main intention had been to examine the root causes of terrorism; he denied he was encouraging suicide bombing. The Foreign Office is seeking a full transcript of his remarks before making an official response.
Sher Afgan Khan Niazi, the Minister for Parliamentary Affairs who tabled the motion, said the knighthood was "a source of hurt for Muslims" and would encourage people to "commit blasphemy against the Prophet Muhammad."
Now, wait - think about this for a second. Seriously think about it. Replace all the Islamic references to any other religion you can think of.
OK. Now what do you think the reaction would be? Would it be the same regardless of religion. I say no. I think the reaction would differ greatly.
This story has barely gotten play in our area. Chances are you weren't even aware of it. It's been going on for days now, and you haven't heard of it. I say that's because it's the typical crazy Muslim garbage that happens every time someone even breathes the wrong way near anything Islamic.
And it won't get play because if it did, too many people might realize that Islamic states seem to be terrifyingly censored, closed-minded, racist, barbaric and generally ignorant places, and the people who say they follow it are really violent people that make populations that have absolutely nothing to offer - no cultural, scientific or academic contributions to the world - other than death, destruction and chaos.
Too many people in this country might see that it's not the U.S. that is to blame for it, that it seems to be bred into these people.
Before the fall of Saddam, you were told that the people were hungry for peace and love, and that they were held down by an evil dictator.
And they were. The Shiite majority certainly was held down by Saddam and the Sunnis. And for good reason - because this is what they do when you try to give them freedom. It truly is barbaric.
If you don't think so, think about the fact that every time there's an incident like this - the cartoons of Muhammad, for example - the Muslim fanatics don't just pull this Jihad-call-for-death garbage in the Islamic states, they do it in London, in Pakistan, in India ... places that are allegedly civilized!
So it's not even the Islamic states that are worrisome, it's the Muslims.
If you read this and you're Muslim, then don't get mad at me, get mad at them. You think I'm happy when ultra-right Christian freaks protest at military funerals, or the KKK has a rally?
But you can bet when those things happen and it's Jews, or Catholics or Baptists, the news organizations cover it like it's an inaugural ball. And we hear all about the racist bigots in this country and blah blah blah.
But for some reason, a society that does nothing but oppress speech, thought, word and deed; that harms and kills it's own people for breaking religious code; that vows to kill everyone in the world who does not agree with them or slights them in the least ... a society like that is somehow sacred to some people in this country who allegedly despise all those things.