Sunday, December 25, 2011

The Maldives; thousands rally and demand sharia law

I have posted about the problems in the Maldives here many times, this is but the latest escalation from the hardliners.  300,000 people, all Muslim (all other religions are banned) and a good portion of them demanding sharia.  No more alcohol, the shuttering of brothels/massage parlors and the stopping of all flights to Israel.  These measures would be just the beginning, a little sharia begets more sharia, until you have full-blown stonings and amputations.

It can be stopped.  Read this post from back in April on why sharia in the Maldives, or for that matter anywhere it is practiced is ultimately a bad idea.  The author is a Muslim, so the perspective is one from the inside.

From AP/Yahoo December 23

Thousands demonstrate in Maldives over Islamic law

MALE, Maldives (AP) — Thousands in the Maldives protested Friday, calling on the government to halt what they called "anti-Islamic" activities, including a plan to allow direct flights to Israel. More moderate supporters of the president rallied as well as debate swells over the future of the state's religion.

The Indian Ocean archipelago of 300,000 Muslims prohibits practicing any other faith.
Islam as a belief system must be very weak and fragile if others are seen as a threat and must be banned.
The protesters want authorities to stop the sale of alcohol in the islands, shut down brothels operating in the guise of massage parlors and demolish monuments gifted by other countries marking a South Asian summit last month because they see them as idols.
More than 3,000 people heeded a protest call by the opposition Adhaalat, or Justice, Party and several other groups that accuse President Mohammed Nasheed's government of compromising principles of Islam and call for strict Islamic law.
"Islamic Shariah is equal to peace," read some placards carried by protesters.
Though the country is known more for its exquisite island resorts and does not allow stoning or executions, it is under scrutiny for its absence of religious freedom and for punishments such as public flogging.
Flogging is just a little sharia.  Someone will want more sharia, and the stonings will then commence.  There is no such thing as some sharia.  Ultimately the whole package will be the law of the land.
Debates on religious issues have emerged since a group vandalized a monument gifted by Pakistan marking a South Asian summit last month with the image of Buddha. Buddhism was part of the present Islamic republic's history. An angry protest last month followed a call by United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay for the Maldives to end the punishment by flogging of women who are found to have had sex outside marriage.
Other residents also rallied Friday in support of the president, who said he stands for a brand of moderate Islam traditionally practiced in the country and that it is vital to preserve the country's economic lifeline, tourism.
"To build our economy we need foreign investments and we need to create an environment in which foreigners can invest," Nasheed said.
"We can't achieve development by going backwards to the stone age or being ignorant," he added.
What are you doing to combat the slide to the rear, Nasheed?  Anything meaningful?
Read it all


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