Abdullah Goes OTD!

Posted: November 16, 2010 in Brainwashing, Religion
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

I’ve pasted an article from the NY times.

I guess Muslims, like Jews refuse to believe that one who leaves religion is a rational person. I’ve put that which I thought important or similar to the Jewish OTD, in blue.

QALQILYA, West Bank — It is hard to imagine that a dingy Internet cafe buzzing with flies in this provincial Palestinian town could have spawned a blogger who has angered the Muslim cyberworld by promoting atheism, composing spoofs of Koranic verses, skewering the lifestyle of the Prophet Muhammad and chatting online using the sarcastic Web name God Almighty.

But many people in Qalqilya seem convinced that this Facebook apostate is none other than a secretive young man who spent seven hours a day in the corner booth of a back-street hole-in-the-wall here. Until recently the man, Waleed Hasayin, in his mid-20s, led a relatively anonymous existence as an unemployed graduate in computer science who helped out a few hours a day at his father’s one-chair barber shop. Several acquaintances described him as an “ordinary guy” who prayed at the mosque on Fridays.

But since the end of October Mr. Hasayin has been detained at the local Palestinian Authority intelligence headquarters, suspected of being the blasphemous blogger who goes by the name Waleed al-Husseini. The case has drawn attention to thorny issues like freedom of expression in the Palestinian Authority, for which insulting religion is considered illegal, and the cultural collision between a conservative society and the Internet.

While Mr. Hasayin has won some admiration and support abroad — a Facebook group has formed in solidarity, along with several online petitions — others on Facebook are calling for his execution.

In his hometown, the reaction seems to be one of uniform fury. Many here say that if he does not repent, he should spend the rest of his life in jail.

“Everyone is a Muslim here, so everyone is against what he did,” said Alaa Jarar, 20, who described himself as not particularly pious. “People are mad at him and will not respect the Palestinian Authority if he is released. Maybe he is a Mossad agent working for Israel.”

Aside from his Facebook pages, which have now been deleted, Mr. Husseini, the online persona, also posted essays in Arabic on a blog called Noor al-Aqel (Enlightenment of Reason) and in English translation on Proud Atheist, identifying himself as “an atheist from Jerusalem — Palestine.”

The essays offer some relatively sophisticated arguments in a blunt and racy style. In one, titled “Why I left Islam,” Mr. Husseini wrote that Muslims “believe anyone who leaves Islam is an agent or a spy for a Western State, namely the Jewish State.”

He added, “They actually don’t get that people are free to think and believe in whatever suits them.”

He went on to describe the Islamic God as “a primitive, Bedouin and anthropomorphic God,” and Muhammad as “a sex maniac” who bent his own rules “to appease his voracious desire.”

It all seems a far cry from Qalqilya, a conservative low-rise town of more than 40,000 people where horse-drawn wagons plied the streets this week and the market was bustling ahead of the Muslim holiday marking the end of the annual pilgrimage in Mecca, Saudi Arabia.

The arrest of Mr. Hasayin has caused a sensation since it was first reported by the independent Palestinian news agency Maan. But there are also some who question whether he could have written all this material alone.

Mr. Hasayin’s father, Khaled, was reluctant to talk. Clearly upset and ashamed, he said that his son was in treatment and had been “bewitched” by a Tunisian woman he had met via Facebook.

Before shooing reporters out of his barber shop, where a framed Koranic verse hung on the wall above tubs of hair gel, he said that his son’s literary Arabic was not at a level where he could compose fake Koranic verses.

One relative of Mr. Hasayin said, “It is true he studied computers, but he is not a philosopher.”

At the local intelligence headquarters, officials seemed to be treading carefully. Speaking on the condition of anonymity because of the case’s potentially explosive nature — Salman Rushdie’s “Satanic Verses” led to riots and death threats in the 1980s, as did cartoons of Muhammad in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten in 2005 — the officials said they could not release any details since Mr. Hasayin was still under interrogation. They said they had to act fairly and with sensitivity in case the suspicions proved false or exaggerated.

They said Mr. Hasayin had not been allowed any visitors and told them that he did not need a lawyer. Mr. Hasayin, they added, was being detained partly for his own protection.

Palestinian human rights groups in the West Bank have so far remained silent about Mr. Hasayin’s arrest. But Majed Arouri, a human rights expert in Ramallah, said he believed that the way in which Mr. Hasayin had been detained and his correspondence recorded “contradicts human rights principles and existing Palestinian laws” regarding individual privacy.

If Mr. Hasayin is to be tried, Mr. Arouri said, it would be according to a 1960 Jordanian law against defaming religion, still valid in the West Bank.

Some bloggers are already comparing Mr. Hasayin, or Mr. Husseini, to Kareem Amer, an Egyptian blogger who was sentenced in 2007 to four years’ imprisonment for insulting Islam and the Egyptian president.

At the Internet cafe that Mr. Hasayin frequented, youths played online billiards and looked at pictures of girls on a recent afternoon. The owner, Ahmed Abu Asab, said that six weeks ago he discovered that Mr. Hasayin was “not a regular client.”

Mr. Abu Asab had grown suspicious because Mr. Hasayin would not let anybody come close and see what he was working on. Mr. Abu Asab said: “At first I thought he was looking at pornographic sites and chatting with girls. That would be normal and none of my business.”

But Mr. Abu Asab said he used software that allowed him to check what the client was up to, and among other things, he came across the Facebook page on which Mr. Hasayin appeared to be speaking in the name of God. Mr. Abu Asab said that he and three friends knew what was going on and that “maybe somebody” informed the authorities.

Mr. Abu Asab kept copies of the pages, and Palestinian Authority officials came and downloaded the material. Next, they came for Mr. Hasayin, who asked for a moment to close what was on his screen.

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Comments
  1. rick says:

    no frum jew wants to execute or put anyone otd in jail. and we actually do belive in everyones ability to think freely its called bechira

  2. believe in theory, but when it comes down to it, religious people dont accept that there is another logical way to live as a jew other than an orthodox way of life. And someone who leaves orthodoxy “knows what’s right” but is going through a “tough time”.

  3. rick says:

    you may be right. i dont know that anyone who leaves orthodxy for sure “know what’s right”, but i’m curious as to the logic behind your “logical way” to live. i’m open to hear it

    • there are 8 billion free people in the western world. Have you ever thought to ask one of them? God wants us to be good to others and be happy. Simple. Why are we created? No idea. But certainly not so parents can threaten to disown children who don’t study the goddamn bible all day, or their girl who walks out in pants, or brings home an irreligious boy.

      • rick says:

        according to the rules of logic, the fact that many people do or believe something has no bearing on its veracity; it must be proven. so i’m still not sure as to the logic you spoke of.

        How do you know what god wants? has he spoken to you? what makes your idea of what god wants any more true that the next guy’s? cuz it feels right to you? then that ain’t what god necessarily wants; it’s what YOU want. recognize the difference

        “But certainly not so parents can threaten to disown children who don’t study the goddamn bible all day, or their girl who walks out in pants, or brings home an irreligious boy.”
        nobody would claim that”s why god created the world. don’t be ridiculous

  4. dave says:

    well actualy dats y he created the world now if u fell everything needs 2 make sense thats stupid if u belive in gd bec gds infinitly smarter than u so even if it makes no sense 2 u dosent mean it makes no sense 2 gd

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