Writer Charged With Insulting Islam Is Killed as Extremism Boils Over in Jordan

Sep 26, 2016

By Rana F. Sweis and Peter Baker

AMMAN, Jordan — Some of the most extreme elements in Jordan made clear in recent weeks that Nahed Hattar should pay for a provocative cartoon he posted online depicting a bearded man in bed with two women ordering God to bring him cashews and wine.

So when Mr. Hattar, 56, a prominent writer from a Christian family, showed up at a court on Sunday to face criminal charges of insulting Islam, at least one man with a gun decided a trial was not enough. As three bullets ripped through the writer in front of the courthouse, Jordan’s simmering tensions boiled over.

The brazen daylight killing of Mr. Hattar in front of his horrified family was not only the latest example of violence tied to cartoon renderings of Muslim figures, it was also the sort of manifestation of extremism that Jordan’s government has struggled to contain in a nation that finds itself under pressure from multiple directions.


Continue reading by clicking the name of the source below.

16 comments on “Writer Charged With Insulting Islam Is Killed as Extremism Boils Over in Jordan

  • There are some other details in the BBC report.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-37465656

    A Jordanian writer charged with offending Islam after allegedly sharing a satirical cartoon on his Facebook page has been killed.

    Nahid Hattar was hit by three bullets outside the court in the capital Amman where he was standing trial.

    Police have arrested the suspected shooter, Riad Abdullah. Jordanian media said he was local imam who had been upset by the cartoon.

    But security sources told the Jordan Times he was a known extremist.

    A witness told the Associate Press news agency that Mr Abdullah had a long beard and was wearing a long robe, common among conservative Muslims.

    Nahid Hattar was detained in August for 15 days on charges of insulting God after he published a cartoon depicting a bearded man lying in bed with two women and smoking, asking God to bring him a drink.

    Mr Hattar was born a Christian, but considered himself an atheist. He was attacked on social media for being anti-Islam.

    He said he had not meant to cause offence and wanted to expose radical Islamists’ view of heaven.

    Authorities said he had broken the law by sharing the cartoon.

    Mr Hattar’s supporters say they hold the government responsible for his death.

    “The prime minister was the first one who incited against Nahid when he ordered his arrest and put him on trial for sharing the cartoon, and that ignited the public against him and led to his killing,” the writer’s cousin, Saad Hattar said.



    Report abuse

  • ‘Radical’, ‘Extreme’ & such are weasel words, IMO.
    Those grouped under such headings are FUNDAMENTALISTS, that is they practice the
    fundamentals of Islam. They know all about abrogation, which renders almost all
    ‘tolerant’ verses of the Meccan koran null and void, replaced by the later Medina
    verses of hatred, violence and murder.
    They follow the ‘perfect example’ of mohammad to the letter.



    Report abuse

  • The problem is the dogged defence of the entrenched medieval mindset!

    Also illustrated here:-

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-37469860

    A petition signed by more than 14,000 Saudi women calling for an end to the country’s male guardianship system is being handed to the government.
    Women must have the consent of a male guardian to travel abroad, and often need permission to work or study.

    Support for the first large-scale campaign on the issue grew online in response to a trending Twitter hashtag.

    Activist Aziza Al-Yousef told the BBC she felt “very proud” of the campaign, but now needed a response.

    In the deeply conservative Islamic kingdom, a woman must have permission from her father, brother or other male relative – in the case of a widow, sometimes her son – to obtain a passport, marry or leave the country.

    Many workplaces and universities also demand a guardian’s consent for female employees and students, although it is not legally required.

    Renting a flat, undergoing hospital treatment or filing a legal claim often also require a male guardian’s permission, and there is very little recourse for women whose guardians abuse them or severely limit their freedom.

    “I was flabbergasted – not only by the scale, but the creativity with which they’ve been doing it,” she said. “They’ve made undeniably clear they won’t stand to be treated as second-class citizens any longer, and it’s high time their government listened.”

    However, there has been opposition from some Saudi women, with an alternative Arabic hashtag, which translates as #TheGuardianshipIsForHerNotAgainstHer, gaining some traction, and opinion articles, like this one on the Gulf News website, arguing that the system should be reformed and applied better.

    Stockholm syndrome again from those women who prefer to remain mental infants, and do not want to take personal responsibility???



    Report abuse

  • Reason has such a small voice when confronted with someone who clearly thinks that a cartoon, a fucking cartoon, is equal to (or greater than) a life. All the debate in the world, all the words and lessons, all the tears and emotion are nothing when there is a twisted madman with a weapon in your midst. So sad. I just don’t understand violence over disagreements about “beliefs”. Again, shut the fuck up and keep your shit to yourself.

    If your god was all powerful, these things would not/ could not exist. People simply could NOT draw a cartoon against the god thing. The same way you cannot hold your breath until you die. It would be impossible if your god wanted it that way. That fact that you feel you have to act on your deity’s behalf clearly demonstrates to everyone, everywhere that your claims of power are bullshit. You’ve made an abomination of your own design of you god. Piece of shit no good asswipe who should be the exception instead of the rule and would be, if religion and religious weren’t steadfastly standing in the way of human-ness.



    Report abuse

  • Fair enough, Phil! I’m on thin ice, English being so flexible, all-encompassing.
    Radical, for some reason I had always thought of as ‘extreme’ whereas fundamental
    seemed to imply a more serious, credible quality.

    fundamental–
    1. serving as, or being an essential part of, a foundation or basis; basic; underlying:
    fundamental principles; the fundamental structure.
    2. of, relating to, or affecting the foundation or basis: a fundamental revision.
    3. being an original or primary source: a fundamental idea.

    radical–
    1. of or going to the root or origin; fundamental: a radical difference.
    2. thoroughgoing or extreme, especially as regards change from accepted
    or traditional forms: a radical change in the policy of a company.
    3. favoring drastic political, economic, or social reforms:
    radical ideas; radical and anarchistic ideologues.
    4. favoring, supporting, or representing extreme forms of religious
    fundamentalism: radical Muslims.
    5. forming a basis or foundation.

    Anyway, they are virtually interchangeable it seems. So my contention
    unsupportable!



    Report abuse

  • Fair enough, Phil! I’m on thin ice, English being so flexible, all-encompassing.
    Radical, for some reason I had always thought of as ‘extreme’ whereas fundamental
    seemed to imply a more serious, credible quality.

    fundamental–
    1. serving as, or being an essential part of, a foundation or basis; basic; underlying:
    fundamental principles; the fundamental structure.
    2. of, relating to, or affecting the foundation or basis: a fundamental revision.
    3. being an original or primary source: a fundamental idea.

    radical–
    1. of or going to the root or origin; fundamental: a radical difference.
    2. thoroughgoing or extreme, especially as regards change from accepted
    or traditional forms: a radical change in the policy of a company.
    3. favoring drastic political, economic, or social reforms:
    radical ideas; radical and anarchistic ideologues.
    4. favoring, supporting, or representing extreme forms of religious
    fundamentalism: radical Muslims.
    5. forming a basis or foundation.

    Anyway, they are virtually interchangeable it seems. So my contention
    is unsupportable!



    Report abuse

  • A witness told the Associate Press news agency that Mr Abdullah had a long beard and was wearing a long robe, common among conservative Muslims.

    oh really , who would have guessed that?



    Report abuse

  • Meanwhile, those fragile religious feelings are being forcefully defended in Singapore!

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/reuters/article-3813089/Singapore-court-sends-teen-blogger-jail-criticising-religion.html

    Singapore court sends teen blogger back to jail for criticising religion

    SINGAPORE, Sept 29 (Reuters) – A Singapore court sentenced 17-year-old blogger Amos Yee to six weeks in jail on Thursday for “wounding religious feelings”, his second prison term in a year, reigniting concerns about social controls and censorship in the conservative city-state.

    Yee pleaded guilty to six charges of deliberately posting comments on the internet in videos, blog posts and a picture that were critical of Christianity and Islam.

    Judge Ong Hian Sun told the district court that Yee’s actions could “generate social unrest” and should not be condoned.



    Report abuse

  • 15
    bonnie2 says:

    @ #14

    By coincidence, tomorrow is International Blasphemy Rights Day, by goD.

    I watched two of Yee’s videos; his delivery reminds me of Pat Condell.

    Is he yelling “fire!”, or truly passionate – contrite and sincere with his apology, or strong-armed to do it – or somewhere in the middle? I don’t pretend to know the mind of a 16-17 year old male; he does make good points.



    Report abuse

  • It seems to me that those who are offended so easily by anti religious cartoons or even blasphemous statements are insecure about what they believe. They understand that their beliefs may be based on a delusion, nothing more than a delusion all concocted by imagination. So for them it makes sense to to them to kill those who reject their deluded ideas than to even consider the possibility that those favorite ideas are simply wrong or even crazy. Their entire life is dedicated to getting to heaven so they feel seriously endangered by someone who dares to doubt their delusions because that makes them begin to doubt their own beliefs.



    Report abuse

Leave a Reply

View our comment policy.