The Other McCain

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Pakistani Official Who Opposed Sharia Law Killed by His Own Bodyguard

Posted on | January 4, 2011 | 7 Comments

Not an encouraging development:

The governor of Pakistan’s most populous province was gunned down Tuesday at an upscale marketplace in Islamabad by a member of an elite police security contingent, officials said. The brazen killing threw an already teetering U.S.-backed government into even greater turmoil.
Salman Taseer, the governor of Punjab province and an avowed opponent of religious extremism, was shot to death at an open-air shopping center that is frequented by foreigners and the Pakistani elite. He was a prominent political ally of President Asif Ali Zardari.

Aaron Goldstein at The American Spectator:

Taseer’s assassination comes scarcely 48 hours after the liberal, secularist MQM (Muttahida Qaumi Movement) withdrew from the coalition government led by the Pakistan’s People Party (PPP).
Taseer was part of the PPP . . .
The PPP is trying to form an alliance with the main opposition party led by former Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. . . .
[W]hat happens in Pakistan has a direct bearing on the War in Afghanistan as well as on the broader War on Terror . . . Let’s also not forget they have nuclear weapons. As we all know, nukes and a jihadist ideology mixed together does not bode well.

UPDATE: Robert Spencer at Jihad Watch:

Why we don’t see more Islamic reformers, chapter 489. Taseer dared to oppose the blasphemy law that Muslims in Pakistan have used for years now to victimize Christians, and so he has been murdered.

UPDATE II: The BBC has video and reports:

Many were angered by [Tajeer’s] defence of a Christian woman sentenced to death. . . .
Mr Taseer made headlines recently by appealing for the pardon of a Christian woman, Asia Bibi, who had been sentenced to death for allegedly insulting the Prophet Muhammad.
Friends of the governor say he knew he was risking his life by speaking out.

Pamela Geller at Atlas Shrugs:

Consistent with Islam’s 1,400 year history, the moderate, reasoned voices are eliminated. Always. Moderates have no theological leg to stand on in Islam. Period.

This is exactly the problem, isn’t it? Anyone who takes the sacred texts of Islam seriously can see that Islam commands death for both Salmaan Taseer and Asia Bibi. And thus there is a Darwinian effect in Islamic socieities as the unbelievers and the moderates are slaughtered, those who perpetrate jihadist violence are celebrated as heroes, and doubters are intimidated into silence.

Yet anyone in the West who points out these disturbing truths about Islamic culture is denounced as an intolerant bigot, as if Islam’s peaceful critics were more dangerous than Islam’s murderously faithful practicioners.

UPDATE III: Reliapundit:

Is Pakistan collapsing in front of our eyes? Yes!

Now a Memeorandum thread, with further reports from the Associated Press and the New York Times.


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