Arab TV host cheers secular writer’s assassination on television

Sep 30, 2016

By Ishaan Tharoor

On Sunday, a prominent Jordanian writer was assassinated on the steps of an Amman courthouse, where he was to face charges for having shared a supposedly blasphemous cartoon on social media. Nahed Hattar’s accused killer, it later emerged, was a 49-year-old former imam from an impoverished neighborhood in the Jordanian capital. The offending image, which had prompted his arrest and myriad death threats, depicted God checking in on an extremist militant in heaven.

The killing of Hattar unleashed a wave of understandable angst in Jordan, a country that is buffeted by the tumult of a wider region in conflict. It led to the now-familiar hand-wringing over the limits of free speech in Arab societies. And it shined a spotlight once more on the perils of extremism in a nation that has seen the resurgence of the Muslim Brotherhood, a party that embraces political Islam, in elections last week.


Continue reading by clicking the name of the source below.

10 comments on “Arab TV host cheers secular writer’s assassination on television

  • @OP – On Sunday, a prominent Jordanian writer was assassinated on the steps of an Amman courthouse, where he was to face charges for having shared a supposedly blasphemous cartoon on social media. Nahed Hattar’s accused killer, it later emerged, was a 49-year-old former imam from an impoverished neighborhood in the Jordanian capital.

    This clearly illustrates a total disregard of secular law, which is inculcated in the delusional leaders and congregations!

    No only was the blogger being taken to court on a theocratic charge of blasphemy, which most rational people would regard as the grossly disproportionate handling of a trivial matter, but even that was not enough for the murderous ranting preachers!



    Report abuse

  • said that Hattar’s “blasphemy” did not count as free speech and that he deserved to “now stand trial in God’s court.”

    How does one address such insanity? First, a moronic explanation about free speech from someone that has no idea about freedom, followed by utter delusion that can mask his inhumanity by having all the humans in that area (save some, we hope) ready to agree with him because he invokes this widespread delusion. How can a person in any civilized country say as this man has said?



    Report abuse

  • How does one address such insanity?

    “How?” indeed. That is the question.

    No one ever said that the world is, or must be, a good place. There is a tremendous amount of injustice, stupidity, cruelty, and madness out there. There always has been and there always will be. The good people do what they can, but we need to accept the fact that in this world, pervasive ignorance is a reality, a fact of life, and that whatever it is – and it is not merely ignorance – that drives people to be cruel, inhumane, and brutal is an extremely powerful (and seemingly indestructible) force – and that is just the way it is. This is the world we live in. It is not “the best of all possible worlds”, as Leibniz said. Not by a long shot. Can we make it better? We can try. (But nothing is permanent. Even Utopia would eventually be disrupted.) We can try to make things better to the best of our abilities. We (humans) should try – but at a certain point we might not want to try.

    Resignation and Acceptance has its place too. Resignation may be, in the end, the only thing left for the good among us when all else fails; the futility of trying (that Sisyphean labor) may someday give birth to the humility of not trying anymore, will engender acceptance and, ultimately, resignation. Or, we will continue to try and never quite succeed; that will always be our choice and our right – but it is not necessarily a rational choice.



    Report abuse

  • “You have the right to criticize a president, a prince, or a king, but you do not have the right to draw, to affront or to humiliate the Lord.”

    The key difference being that the first three can and will defend themselves if they are sufficiently insulted, the latter does not, will not or cannot. Any being that can defend itself, but needs to be defended by others because they do not defend themselves, is not sufficiently insulted to bother. The same could be said for any being who will not: they either don’t care or don’t have the time to defend themselves. Any being who cannot do so themselves is either too young to defend themselves or mentally incapable of doing so, or they are an animal. Which one best describes your god, Hani Nahhas?



    Report abuse

  • Ben Jackson #4
    Oct 2, 2016 at 1:18 am

    “You have the right to criticize a president, a prince, or a king, but you do not have the right to draw, to affront or to humiliate the Lord.”

    The key difference being that the first three can and will defend themselves if they are sufficiently insulted, the latter does not, will not or cannot.

    Of course if an all-seeing, all-knowing, omnipotent, being, with all the powers in the Universe, needs some geriatric preacher with a gun to defend it, or does not care to defend itself, that does raise embarrassing questions about its actual existence, claimed properties, or asserted requirements!



    Report abuse

  • This imam who would be so bold as to take a human life over a drawing, he is the insult ti his pretend god. He has insulted his deity and shown how truly weak both his belief and his construction of “god” is. What a shit fest these “believers” have evolved in “the holy land”…. I wish they could understand what a farce they are. The only reason I can’t laugh is that so many of them are so dangerous and so flippant with and dismissive of human life.



    Report abuse

  • Alan;

    some geriatric preacher with a gun

    …who was, according to the Washington Times, :-

    “Nahed Hattar’s accused killer, it later emerged, was a 49-year-old former imam ”

    This 65 year-old does…errr… what was I saying?



    Report abuse

  • Ivor #8
    Oct 3, 2016 at 7:09 am

    “Nahed Hattar’s accused killer, it later emerged, was a 49-year-old former imam ”

    Sorry – I should have read the link – I must have missed that, having read the story from a different source before this was posted.
    It can be a bit difficult to estimate levels of mental maturity or retirement ages at times for imams.



    Report abuse

  • That “religion of peace” is at it again!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-37571205

    Militant Islamist group al-Shabab says it has killed six Christians in north-eastern Kenya in an attack aimed at forcing them out of the region.

    The grenade and gun attack was launched on a residential block in Mandera town when people were sleeping, police said.

    It was the latest in a spate of deadly attacks targeting Christians in the mainly Muslim region.

    In December 2014, al-Shabab killed 38 non-Muslims at a quarry after separating them from Muslim workers.

    A few months earlier, 28 people were killed after Muslim passengers were split up from the other passengers.

    The attack happened as “planned” and was aimed at Christians in Mandera town, a radio station run by al-Shabab has reported.

    The group wanted non-Muslims to leave what it regarded as Muslim areas, a spokesman told the BBC.

    Mandera County commissioner Fredrick Shiswa said the militants had also targeted a telecommunication site, but this was done to divert the attention of the security forces from the “actual attack”.

    “This must have been planned over a long period… It was executed with a lot efficiency,” Mr Shiswa said in a BBC interview.

    Sadiq Sharif, who was among 27 survivors, said al-Shabab raided the compound despite the fact that it was close to a police station in the middle of the town.

    “However, I would like to thank the four local police reservists who rescued us. If it were not for them, no-one would have survived,” he told the BBC

    In 2015, Kenya’s government announced that it would build a security wall along parts of the border to keep the militants out. But it is likely to abandon the plan because of strong resistance from Somalia’s government and border communities.

    Its current focus is on recruiting more local Muslim police reservists and the strategy has had some success in curbing attacks. Muslims in the north-east increasingly see al-Shabab as a threat to their own interests, and are making a concerted effort to improve relations with Christians living there.

    Many of the Christians are skilled workers from other parts of Kenya, making a vital contribution to hospitals and schools. The north-east is one of Kenya’s poorest areas and if they are driven out public services will worsen.



    Report abuse

Leave a Reply

View our comment policy.