Christian Science Monitor on protests in Afghanistan

Another example of there being far more than meets the eye to violent protests over the cartoons. Mounting concern over Afghanistan | Cartoon protests are part of an impatience with the problems of drugs, jobs, corruption.[...]The cartoon protests of the past week - which have been the deadliest in the Islamic world - are largely a barometer of domestic frustrations. In the streets of Kabul, Laghman, Maimana, and Bagram, protesters turned their anger on the US, the West, and … [Read more...]

Malaysian Islamists using cartoon row to silence independent media

I've commented on how I believe that the riots...I mean "protests" Pakistan by hardline Islamists are more about their desire for political influence within Pakistan than piety.  (Zahir, who recently returned from Pakistan, told me how many of the Islamists he interviewed not only hadn't seen the infamous cartoons, but didn't even know they were from Denmark.  Some spoke about the "American cartoons"!) In a similiar vein, this report leaves the impression that … [Read more...]

Mob rule & what passes for piety among the mullahs

This article in IPS, "PAKISTAN: Cartoon Protests Cripple Local Trade", would make me laugh if it weren't so tragic and painfully familiar. More examples of the reduction of Islamic piety to nihilistic hooliganism: The once popular Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) outlet here, which was torched and looted on Feb. 15, during a massive rally joined by 75,000 protesters, now stands draped, incongruously, with banners carrying verses from the Quran. At least three persons were killed and … [Read more...]

Cartoon Body Count tracks deaths resulting from the Satanic scribblings.  Its list of violent incidents (with links to reports) is particularly helpful for getting an overview of how this mayhem has played out around the world. [Hat tip: Jeff Yang at, who was kind enough to mention Akram's Razor, as well.  I'm not exactly a regular topic of media discussions, anyway, but this is the first time I've found myself mentioned in a discussion of Asian-Americana (e.g., Margaret … [Read more...]

“Denmark’s Cartoon Blowback”

Professor As`ad Abu Khalil memorably named his blog, a refreshingly stimulating and bittersweet antidote to the mainstream American media's bland coverage of the Middle East and Islam, the "Angry Arab News Service".  Given how much of my blogging has been dedicated of late to this wacky cartoon crisis, I'm starting to wonder if I should follow suit and christen this blog "The Angry Danish American Muslim News Service".  (Finally, a niche where I'm the expert!)  … [Read more...]

Cat’s still got my tongue

Sometimes, life can be so cruel.  Am still sans a laptop or home desktop and work's keeping me hopping during the day, so it's a little difficult to blog at the moment.  I'm hoping to have this intolerable situation--my wings have truly been clipped--sorted out soon. Part of this delay stems from my pickiness about computers.   Don't want to waste money on something cheap that I'll just end up outgrowing in the near future. I could probably get a desktop for home pretty … [Read more...]

Is swinophobia Islamic?

Baraka got me waxing nostalgic for my Paris days when she wrote about "Of Piglets & Love Hounds".I've been an enthusiastic booster of the animated film "Babe" ever since I got dragged to see it over vigorous protestations during my student days in Paris a decade ago. (I spent a year at the Sorbonne.) When I instinctively objected  on religious grounds to the indecent proposal of a Muslim going to see a "pig movie", my friend, an Israeli art student, … [Read more...]

Mozaffar on “What is a Moderate Muslim?”

Touché, Monsieur le Pussycat!Mozaffar’s Moments » What is a Moderate Muslim? What is a Moderate Muslim? I’m sick of this question. The answer is simple. A “Moderate” Muslim is a Muslim who does one of two things, and only one of two things. 1- S/he supports the policies of his/her state’s government. 2- S/he is silent. That’s supposedly a Moderate Muslim. So, if you do not support a war in which the main casualties are innocent individuals, you are not a Moderate Muslim. … [Read more...]