|Country||Major Religion||Form of Government|
|Afghanistan||80% Sunni Muslim|
19% Shi'a Muslim
|Malaysia||60.4% Muslim||constitutional monarchy|
|Turkey||99.8% Muslim||republican parliamentary democracy|
- The Malaysian state of Kelantan is the only one run by the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party. As part of a policy to support Islamic values, the Islamic Party is strictly enforcing boy-girl segregation of checkout lines. That's "to safeguard the ladies," according to Chief Minister Nik Aziz Nik Mat.
- Meanwhile, Turkey has blocked YouTube. It seems that there's a video there that insults Turkey's founder, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. If that sounds familiar, you're paying attention. Last March, Greeks and Turks had been posting insults at each other on YouTube. These included videos insulting Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. It's a crime to insult Ataturk in Turkey. It's also criminal to insult "Turkishness:" and both offenses can lead to a prison sentence. So, the Turkish court was perfectly justified in shutting down access to YouTube in Turkey. Justified by Turkish standards, that is.
- More seriously, an Afghan court sentenced a journalism student, Sayad Parwez Kambaksh, to death. Due process (for Islamic Afghanistan) was followed by the three-judge panel in Balkh, a province in northern Afghanistan. They say that Mr. Kambaksh published a paper that "humiliated Islam," as the northern Afghan province's chief judge, Fazel Wahab, said.
It seems to me that nobody, journalism student or not, needs to humiliate Islam. Islam's defenders, and the leadership of Islamic countries, are doing that on their own.