May 31, 2006

'Moderate' Muslim Country Jails Two for Publishing Mohammed Cartoons

Two editors of a Jordanian newspaper have been sentenced to jail for publishing cartoons depicting Mohammed, the man Muslims claim was a "Prophet".

Remember, Jordan is held up as a model moderate Islamic country. In fact, Jordan is moderate....but isn't it sad that this is what passes for moderate in the Islamic world? Nowhere in the Islamic world is there anything that passes for freedom of speech. Nowhere.

Khaleej Times:

A Jordanian court Tuesday sentenced to prison two newspaper editors for “attacking religious sentiment” by reprinting cartoons deemed offensive to Prophet Mohammad (PBUH), their lawyer said.

Jihad Momani, former editor of the weekly Shihane tabloid, and Hisham Al Khalidi, editor-in-chief of the tabloid Al Mehwar, “were each sentenced to two months in prison,” attorney Mohammed Kteishat told AFP.

Reporters Without Borders had this tepid reaction:
Reporters Without Borders protested today against two-month jail sentences imposed yesterday by a Jordanian court on two journalists, Jihad Momani and Hisham Al-Khalidi, for reprinting cartoons of the prophet Mohammed that appeared in a Danish paper last year and expressed concern about journalists being harshly punished for doing so.

“This is the first time journalists have been given prison sentences for reproducing the cartoons,” the worldwide press freedom organisation said. “The sentences are totally out of proportion. We hope they will be reduced on appeal. We urge other Muslim countries where journalists are being prosecuted for this not to follow Jordan’s example. Journalists must not be punished for their editorial decisions. The two journalists in this case were simply doing their job by choosing to reproduce the cartoons, like dozens of other media outlets around the world.” [emphasis mine]

Hopefully, this is just a translation error. Does the group wish their sentences to be reduced or overturned?

If the former, then Reporters Without Borders is agreeing to the notion that states have the right to censor that which offends our religious sensibilities--just not harshly. Perhaps a one-week sentence would seem appropriate?

If the latter, then I fully agree. Freedom of religion must include the right to criticize religion--even if that criticism is deemed offensive. If I do not have the right to criticize your religion, then I am not fully free.

In my opinion, Muhammed was a pedophile and a pervert. Worse, he started a religion which rejects the concept of separating church and state and which--from it's founding--condoned the use of military conquest for spreading faith. Next to Communism, political Islam has contributed to more deaths than any other ideology in history---perhaps even more.

Please indict me. I dare you.

Unfortunately, there is not a single Muslim country where I am fully free to say the above.

Hat tip to Robert Spencer who has more.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:23 AM | Comments |