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January 30th, 2012
01:30 PM ET

Islam doesn't justify 'honor murders,' experts insist

By Richard Allen Greene, CNN

(CNN) - Zainab Shafia's crime was to run off to marry a man her parents hated. Middle sister Sahar's crime was to wear revealing clothes and have secret boyfriends. Youngest sister Geeti's crime was to do badly in school and call social workers for help dealing with a family home in turmoil.

The punishment for all three teenage Canadian sisters was the same: death.

Their executioner: their brother, acting on instructions from the father to run their car off the road.

Another family member, their father's first wife in a polygamous marriage, was also killed.

Hamed Shafia, his father, Mohammed, and his mother, Tooba Mohammed Yahya, were sentenced to life in prison for murder, with Judge Robert Maranger excoriating their "twisted notion of honor, a notion of honor that is founded upon the domination and control of women, a sick notion of honor that has absolutely no place in any civilized society."

Leading Muslim thinkers wholeheartedly endorsed the Canadian judge's verdict, insisting that "honor murders" had no place and no support in Islam.

"There is nothing in the Quran that justifies honor killings. There is nothing that says you should kill for the honor of the family," said Taj Hargey, director of the Muslim Educational Centre of Oxford in England.

"This idea that 'somehow a girl has besmirched our honor and therefore the thing to do is kill her' is bizarre, and Muslims should stop using this defense," he said, arguing that the practice is cultural, not religious in origin.

"You cannot say this is what Islam approves of. You can say this is what their culture approves of," he said.

The Shafia family is originally from Afghanistan.

Experts say honor murders take place in many parts of the world.

"It's definitely a problem that happens in many different places: the Middle East, Pakistan, Bangladesh and among immigrant communities in North America," said Nadya Khalife, a researcher on women's rights in the Arab world for Human Rights Watch.

Several Arab countries and territories, including Iraq, Kuwait, Syria, Yemen and the Palestinian territories, have laws providing lesser sentences for honor murders than for other murders, Human Rights Watch says.

Egypt and Jordan also have laws that have been interpreted to allow reduced sentences for honor crimes, the group says.

Reliable figures of the number of honor murders are hard to come by, Khalife said, but she pointed to a United Nations Population Fund estimate of 5,000 per year.

Khalife agreed that the practice should not be blamed on Islam.

"It's not linked to religion; it's more cultural," she said. "There have been several Islamic scholars who have issued fatwas against honor killing."

Mohammed Shafia, who denied murder, said himself in court that Islam did not justify honor murders.

"In our religion, a person who kills his wife or daughter, there is nothing more dishonorable," he testified.

But Shafia was heard condemning his dead children in wiretapped conversations played in court.

"May the devil defecate on their graves! This is what a daughter should be? Would a daughter be such a whore?" he said.

Hargey, the director of the Muslim Educational Centre, said violence was sometimes the result of painful transition.

"Muslims are in a state of flux," he said.

"They are between two worlds: the ancient world and the new technological age," he said. "Women are getting rights and the ability to choose their own spouses. The family in Canada didn't know how to respond to this: the conflict between the discipline of children and the new reality."

Irshad Manji, the author of "Allah, Liberty and Love: Courage to Reconcile Faith and Freedom," said there was another conflict at work in honor murders, a term CNN uses in preference to "honor killings" because the latter phrase does not properly describe the crime.

It is "a tribal tradition that emphasizes the family or the tribe or the community over the individual," she said.

Although the practice may not be Islamic, she said, not all Muslims understand the distinction.

"It is a problem within Islam because of how Muslims often confuse culture and religion," she said. "It's Muslims who have to learn to separate culture and religion. If we don't, Islam will continue to get the bad name that it gets."

But one vocal British campaigner against honor violence points out that not all the crimes are perpetrated by Muslims.

Jasvinder Sanghera, who was the victim of a forced marriage, is not Muslim; she is Sikh.

"Significant cases are happening within South Asian communities, be it Pakistani, Indian, Sikh, Muslim, Kurdish, Iranian, Middle Eastern communities," she said.

"And we have to recognize that because the statistics don't lie. I am not standing here trying to embarrass those communities. But equally, those communities should be ashamed because this is happening in their community and they are not taking a stand," she said.

On the other hand, honor murders are not a problem in Indonesia, which has the world's largest Muslim population.

"No such a practice can be found among Indonesian Muslims," said Azyumardi Azra, the director of the graduate school at the State Islamic University in Jakarta, Indonesia.

" 'Honor killing' is, I believe, a cultural problem among Arab and South Asian Muslims. I don't think that kind of practice has an Islamic basis," he said.

Although women and girls make up the overwhelming number of victims, there have been at least some male victims, including Ahmet Yildiz, a gay Turkish man whose fugitive father is the main suspect in his 2008 shooting death.

Britain has had about a dozen honor murders per year for the past several years, said Ghayasuddin Siddiqui of the Muslim Parliament of Great Britain.

He, too, said the crimes were not justified by Islam.

"This comes from tribal customs where the father - not both parents - see children as their property. A girl decides to marry somebody of whom their parents do not approve, and they conspire and find some way to kill and dispose of this body," he said. "This is a kind of misplaced shame that parents feel that their daughter has decided to marry somebody of her choosing, not theirs."

Britain's Crown Prosecution Service has an expert devoted to prosecuting honor-based violence, Nazir Afzal.

Convicting perpetrators can be difficult, he said.

"There is a wall of silence around this, and people are not prepared to talk," he said.

But Afzal insisted that it was "absolutely important that you bring every single person to justice because you want to deter other people from doing it."

And along with the Islamic scholars and human rights advocates, he rejected out of hand the idea that religion justified it.

"At the end of the day, murder is murder. There is no faith on Earth, no community on Earth that justifies this," he said.

"Abrahamic faiths say 'Thou shalt not kill,' " he pointed out. "At the end of the day, nobody should die for this."

CNN's Paula Newton, Atika Shubert, Bharati Naik, Ashley Hayes, Ivan Watson and Becky Anderson contributed to this report.

- Newsdesk editor, The CNN Wire

Filed under: Canada • Islam • Violence

soundoff (2,115 Responses)
  1. Aristocles

    So, if Islam has "nothing to do with it", where are all the Christian, Hindu, and Buddhist honor killings?

    January 30, 2012 at 9:01 pm |
    • Muneef

      If you browse the Internet in google search you will find it but if you mean in the west well then they like to pick on Muslims only...if a Muslim farts you will find it spoken of in all Westren news channels...

      January 30, 2012 at 9:18 pm |
    • Fr33th1nk3r

      Do you think Muneef, that the actions of Muslims around the globe, has anything to do with that perception?

      January 30, 2012 at 9:43 pm |
  2. JT

    For you most rabid of Christians, who is most evil and deserving of hell, Jews, Atheists or Muslims?

    January 30, 2012 at 8:58 pm |
    • George

      Every single human being deserves hell. It is only through our Lord Jesus Christ who paid the price so that we can be saved and enter the Kingdom of God.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:05 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      Jesus died for his own sins, not mine.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:23 pm |
    • Fr33th1nk3r

      Wow, George. Your mentality is alarmingly similar to the family in this article. If someone does not accept your Lord Jesus Christ, are they also next in line to have their car shoved into a canal?

      You know, that very same thinking of yours formed the whole basis for the Inquisitions of the medieval times. The Inquisitors felt that since non-believers were "doomed" in the afterlife anyhow, they were justified in using any manner of cruelty or barbarism to enforce their belief system at sword-point. When you find ways to make the lives of others unimportant, all manner of atrocities now become accessible....

      January 30, 2012 at 9:39 pm |
  3. Bing

    Trying to whitewash the issue.

    January 30, 2012 at 8:57 pm |
    • Fr33th1nk3r

      CNN typically does. I think they have the best reporting and coverage of any news network, but unfortunately, you also have to put up with the overtly left-wing bias in all of their reporting.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:45 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      Apparently, simply not having a right-wing bias is considered a left-wing bias.

      January 30, 2012 at 10:04 pm |
  4. guest

    Of course Islam has something to do with it! Religion influences people's actions and thoughts. Islam shows that it is a religion of darkness. The true Light comes from Christianity.

    January 30, 2012 at 8:55 pm |
    • Kat

      yea because Christians prefer to sleep with kids inside churches, cheat on their wives, vote for warmongers, support Armgeddon, and wars all over the Middle East to bring about the Messiah.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:58 pm |
    • Tachoman

      Kat, Christians are also human so we are flawed as anyone else and prone to sin.
      It is sad that such crimes happen within the church but now that they have been exposed the society as a whole can prevent it from ever happening again.
      Christianity has left behind those dark times by effectively spliting from the estate and fully dedicating itself to the matters of the soul.
      Islam on the other hand is probably worse than it was during the medieval times as they at least allowed jews and christians to live peacefully under their rule.
      As to reply for the comment on the child molesters. Anyone who loses his faith over the actions of another man, never had a real faith to begin with.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:04 pm |
    • Fr33th1nk3r

      You must have had your fingers crossed while you typed that one or something....Christians have been responsible for more than their own fair share of bloodshed throughout history. Heck, one can argue our current conflict with the middle east is partially a result of Christian sentiments in our government and an unhealthy obsession with Israel.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:05 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      As long a millions of Christians support forcing women to have the children of any man the can force his semen into her uterus then I have no respect for that religion.

      Christian morals = Accessory to ra.pe.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:29 pm |
  5. Keith Judd 4 President

    Say no to honor killings, say no to Obama
    Say yes to Keith Judd for the Democratic nomination for President
    He is a politician you can trust because he is right where we can keep an eye on him

    January 30, 2012 at 8:55 pm |
  6. adam

    This is not Islam! This is culture. This doesnt happen all the time in Muslim countries. Islam is against this.. Why is everyone so igornant?? You people are BRAINWASHED BY THE MEDIA!

    January 30, 2012 at 8:54 pm |
  7. Aezel

    "Islam doesn't justify honor murders....."

    Oh except, it's 100% muslims that commit honor murders, but yeah, Islam doesn't have anything to do with it. If you believe that I'll sell you some magic beans for only 1 million dollars.

    January 30, 2012 at 8:53 pm |
    • Kat

      Untrue. Honor killing exists in Jewish, Christian, Sikhs, Baha'i and other non-Muslim communities in some parts of the world.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:55 pm |
    • adam

      those CULTURES happen to be people that are Muslim. Read a book.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:55 pm |
    • NTI

      @Kat said: Honor killing exists in Jewish, Christian, Sikhs, Baha'i and other non-Muslim communities in some parts of the world.

      HA HA HA over 90% of honor killings are Muslim in origin. The other 10% are mostly Sikh and Hindu. Note that both Sikhs and Hindus have been governed by Muslim emporors for centuries and therefore influenced by the Islamic culture. Honor killings did not exist in India before advent of Islam!

      January 30, 2012 at 9:04 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      NTI,
      Indonesia. Largest Muslim country in the world. Where are the honor killings?

      January 30, 2012 at 9:31 pm |
  8. The Phist

    It does condone murder. That is all.

    January 30, 2012 at 8:48 pm |
  9. ﺶCHEﺶ

    Why wouldn't these evil monsters stay in their own country but instead; try to immigrate to another country completely different from their evil barbaric culture (Islamic or otherwise) and religious faith?
    Not only that; why don't they understand that a child born in to western culture will have a different mind-set, culture (different from your primitive barbaric ways of the past), beliefs? If you don't like western culture; take your stupid, primitive, barbaric ways of the past BACK to your home country of birth and leave these kids behind. What the heck is happening to this evil faith and what the F********K'G heck are they doing here anyways?

    January 30, 2012 at 8:46 pm |
    • Binyamin

      Muslims can't think, they're animals!

      January 30, 2012 at 8:48 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      And if they would take the fundie Christians with them the world would be perfect.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:32 pm |
  10. JT

    This is nothing. Just try drawing a cartoon of the prophet Mohammed.

    January 30, 2012 at 8:38 pm |
    • Staring Horse with Tongue Sticking Out

      ~ ~
      |
      O

      January 30, 2012 at 8:40 pm |
    • JT

      Ok...you've just earned a fatwa against you.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:41 pm |
    • JT

      One other thing.... Allah Akbar!!

      January 30, 2012 at 8:42 pm |
  11. skarphace

    4 questions:

    1) How many murders were there in the US in 2011?
    2) How many of these murders were committed by Christians?
    3) How many of these murders were committed by Muslims?
    4) See where I am going with this?

    If we are to blame everyone of a particular religion for the actions of a few who claim to be of that religion, you will find yourself on a very slippery slope indeed. Be careful what you wish for. You just might get it.

    January 30, 2012 at 8:35 pm |
    • SuZieCoyote

      Yes, people go nuts and kill other people and they are not all Muslims. But there is a difference here. This family plotted and carried out the murder of 4 of their own for the purposes of religious "honor." For these people, culture IS religion. There is no difference. This is the tip of the iceberg. There is always violence wherever Islam comes in contact with any other culture.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:47 pm |
    • Kevin

      MUSLIM COUGH COUGH

      January 30, 2012 at 8:47 pm |
    • skarphace

      SuZie: you are not paying attention to this case. The defendents have said that this is NOT an honor killing. This is called an 'honor killing' merely because they are Muslim, not because they are using such in their defense.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:50 pm |
    • bamaven

      I don't know where you are going with this – the 5th question you forgot to include : what percent of each religion (Islam and Christianity) in the US that committed murder in the name of religion or 'honor' ?

      January 30, 2012 at 8:52 pm |
    • SuZieCoyote

      Has it occurred, perhaps to you that the defendants are LYING?

      January 30, 2012 at 8:52 pm |
    • Fr33th1nk3r

      ** You forgot the most important question:

      5) How many of those killings in each country were religiously/culturally motivated?

      January 30, 2012 at 8:53 pm |
    • ﺶCHEﺶ

      Oh stop this nonsense. Why take the life of own fresh and blood?
      Are you another Midget, muslim, mohammed evil NUTS?
      Do us all a favor and head BACK to your stupid, primitive, barbaric country of birth.
      You prove that; the blood of Satan Lucifer runs deeply in your primitive, barbaric islamic faith through-and through. Screw Midget mohammed if you hate western culture and head back home to your primitive caves!

      January 30, 2012 at 8:55 pm |
    • scranton

      How many murders are done because of the religion? These honor killings are common throughout the Muslim world and they are committed because of their religious view. See where I am going with this?

      January 30, 2012 at 9:00 pm |
    • Mel

      skarphace,
      Your main point is correct; you cannot blame an entire religion for the actions of a few. But your supporting argument doesn't make any sense to your point. The main difference being that the actions a few usually are not supported by law here. For example, extreme Christians that bomb abortion clinics and kill abortion doctors. These wacko crazies are prosecuted to every extent of the law when they are caught. There are not special laws that allow the murder that they do be a lesser sentence than other murders just because they shield themselves with religion to excuse their acts. The point of the article was the cultural context that some countries use to excuse honor murders, and shield themselves with religion. (Of course, if you are Sarah Palin you will refuse to admit these bombers are terrorist in an interview....what the hell was that?)

      Also, of course the family is saying it's not an honor murder, because they are saying they didn't do it. If they admitted it was an honor murder, they would also be admitting to killing them. Listening the the tapes it is clear that this was indeed an honor murder.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:24 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      Its still a matter of culture. That is why those judicial systems look at it more lightly than other murders.

      Even in our country it used to very common that "crimes of passion" ( American honor killing?) were treated differently (and in some places still are, just look at the idiot governor and his pardons). Also, I can still remember when a husband could not be charged with ra.pe when he ra.ped his wife. Sounds barbaric? We are not so far from barbaric laws that we should cast so many stones. I agree those countries are wrong and need to change, we just should not be quite so high and mighty about it. Oh yeah, and millions of Christian extremists want to force women to have children with any man that can ra.pe her.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:49 pm |
  12. Binyamin

    The world needs to wake up and recognize how disgusting Muslims are. We need to destroy these vermin and I say vermn because there is no way you can call a Muslim a human. Let them go worship the pedophile Mohammed in hell!

    January 30, 2012 at 8:35 pm |
    • skarphace

      I say we kill all bigots first and then decide who to kill next.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:38 pm |
    • chuckmartel

      Only thing more disgusting than the muzzies are PC idiots like sharphy.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:43 pm |
    • Binyamin

      @skarphace you do realize these pest are a danger to you as well as the rest of us right?

      January 30, 2012 at 8:45 pm |
    • skarphace

      chuckmartel: nothing PC about it. You have the right to say what you want, and I have the right to respond how I want. If you make a prejudicial remark expect someone to call you out on it.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:46 pm |
    • skarphace

      Binyamin: there are over 1 million Muslims in America today. I have had Muslims as neighbors. And no, I do not feel threatened by them in any way.

      To be honest, I feel more threatened by the Teavangelicals who want to turn our country into a Theocracy and base our civil laws on "God's Law". By the way, that last was a direct quote from Rick Santorum.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:48 pm |
    • Binyamin

      Well I'm Jewish so not a "Teavangelical" and I stand firm in the belief that Muslims are not peaceful and not to be trusted. Heck they can't even keep from blowing each other up regarding how they worship their pedophile "prophet".

      January 30, 2012 at 8:53 pm |
    • skarphace

      Binyamin: I was not labelling you a Teavangelical, merely using them as an example of religious extremists who are not Muslim.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:55 pm |
    • Binyamin

      skarphace I hope one day you wise up and realize how terrible these vermin are. It'll probably take one of them doing something to you or someone you live but it will happen. No matter how nice the Muslim vermin around you are they are just waiting for the chance to turn on you.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:02 pm |
    • pooh2

      This by itself to me does not present an evidence how disgusting *all* muslims are. While I am not a particular fan of the muslim religion (and since hijackers and terrorist are almost solely muslims, screening them at airports with greater scrutiny is justified by statistics) I see no support of the claim that the majority of the muslims were not decent or outright "disgusting." You are exaggerating.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:05 pm |
    • Fr33th1nk3r

      "I say we kill all bigots first and then decide who to kill next." I hope you realize that any credibility you may have had, you just threw it against the rocks in showing your true colors in your above statement. I love listening to the politically correct trying to sidestep their own hypocrisy....

      January 30, 2012 at 9:11 pm |
    • ﺶCHEﺶ

      At best western countries need to DEPORT ALL of them BACK to their primitive, backward, barbaric culture of their country of birth; than some imposed "honor killing(s)" in the name of some Midget evil mohammed.
      Screw Midget mohammed if you ask me! If muslims claims they have the birth right to kill their own fresh and blood; then the jews can claim similar or same birth right to wipe your Midget mohammed ASS out from the surface of the earth in the name civilized world since you don't even value the life of own fresh and blood. Heck, why should they?
      Those of us always in the forefront fighting the jews of their atrocities and murderous rampage against the Palestinians and here we are witnessing these evil murderous acts committed by muslims against their own.
      Will these evil islamic parents be outrage if a jew have murdered these defenseless muslim women? I bet they the parents will be all over CNN and every freaking TV station in every country of this civilized world blaming jews of these same barbaric murderous acts.
      I guess it’s time for those of us who have stood firm for the plight of Palestinians to abandon that noble cause. It ain’t worth our time.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:27 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      I love reading right-wing wickerheads try to turn a satirical comment into a policy statement.

      BTW, my Muslim neighbors have been far better than my Christian neighbors. At least they return what they borrow and offer to help when they see it might be useful.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:38 pm |
    • Binyamin

      Mark I highly doubt that. As a Jew I'm painfully aware of the threat that Muslims pose to this world. When they'd love to destroy a progressive democratic country like Israel to spawn their nasty towel headed babies who will send society into the past they need to be handled.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:46 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      Doubt what? It is simply true about my neighbors. The two Muslim families I've lived near were my best neighbors. My worst neighbors were fundie Christians that seemed to believe that the "Lord will provide" from my cupboard.
      Also my mother rented a room on an Indonesian student after my sister and I had both moved out. He eventually brought his wife and kids here and they all lived with my mom. They became permanent residents of this country and my mom became grandma to the two girls. 18 years after she took in that student boarder, my mom died in a car accident, my sister and I gave her house to them. I consider them family.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:57 pm |
    • Yoseph

      They're probably building bombs in the garage!

      January 30, 2012 at 10:00 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      No, they are intelligent and well educated productive citizens, unlike so many people posting on here.

      January 30, 2012 at 10:08 pm |
  13. Kat

    Funny how the media is calling it honor killing when the convicted insist they are innocent, do not believe in honor killing and plan to appeal the verdict. Even if they did it, it could be any number of motives. It is the sensational media that is calling it honor killing without proof to trash Islam and Muslim people.

    January 30, 2012 at 8:35 pm |
    • Victor

      I'm in Montreal. Read the Montreal Gazette (I'll leave it to you to guess the website). There are details you should know about before giving an opinion.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:49 pm |
    • Edward

      Islam and muslim people do enough to trash themselves. They need no help from the media.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:57 pm |
    • Fr33th1nk3r

      Umm....the perps themselves are the ones who called it an honor-killing and themselves claimed the motive was the restoration of their slighted honor. Some of you silly lefties will defend people even when they themselves admit to the crime! Please apply some common sense....

      January 30, 2012 at 8:57 pm |
    • Kat

      oh yea the prosecution wanted to convict never lie or speculate.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:00 pm |
    • ﺶCHEﺶ

      @Kat, you wanna head to the play room.Will ya?
      For Heaven's sake; real adults are talking.
      You have the brain of a 3 yr. old girl. A daddy's silly pampered girl with pea size brain I might add!

      January 30, 2012 at 9:33 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      Actually, the perps did deny it was an "honor" killing. However, the evidence shows that it was.

      So everybody is wrong.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:40 pm |
  14. chuckmartel

    As if the west doesn't have enough of its own indigenous nutjobs, the west is now importing this dark age murderous disease. Terrorism aside, the last thing this country needs are a bunch of rag headed, religous fundamentalists who have to whip out rugs and pray 5 times a day. At least the bible bangers don't whip out crucifixes or tabernacles when they do their praying thing. Nice addidition to the quality of life from these muzzies, standing around shoeless at airports with 3 oz carry on, underwear and shoe bombers on Christmas day jet flights, exploding airline beverages, constant thwarted terrorist attacks and alerts, censoring cartoons under death threats, threatening to kill comics they don't like, jihadi muzzie soldier gunning down indidel fellow soldiers, etc. Honor killings, another muzzie tradition, fits in well. A way of life in muzzieland, coming to a neighborhood near you

    January 30, 2012 at 8:35 pm |
    • skarphace

      Who are you to tell someone how they should worship? You, sir, are very anti-American, anti-Freedom, and a bigot to boot.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:37 pm |
    • SuZieCoyote

      Sharkface, you apologize for the unforgivable.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:51 pm |
    • Harsh Reality

      @sharphace – He didn't. Not even once. He called islam out on it's recent "deeds" here and attempted deeds. islam is NOT for me.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:56 pm |
    • skarphace

      SuZie: if you think anything is truly 'unforgivable' then you are not truly a Christian.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:56 pm |
    • skarphace

      Harsh: yes, he did. Here is a direct quote: "the last thing this country needs are a bunch of rag headed, religous fundamentalists who have to whip out rugs and pray 5 times a day."

      January 30, 2012 at 8:57 pm |
  15. jimzcarz

    Humanity first before politics or religion.

    January 30, 2012 at 8:34 pm |
    • ﺶCHEﺶ

      To put it rightly and rightly so!
      Humanity FIRST before any stupid religion ………… Period!
      Politics don't even come close. Not only that; the intellectual calculus of reasoning don’t even jive. We don't need some politician to tell us what's humanely RIGHT and the BIRTH RIGHT of a woman to live her life as a human. Something that applied Zillion years ago has no freak*****G place in this civilized 21st. Century.
      You feel me?

      January 30, 2012 at 9:44 pm |
  16. Canadian Citizen

    Guys, No doubt what happened is very wrong and these people who killed innocent girls, should be punished very strictly.
    What ever they did is nothing to do with any religion. Please do not throw stones on each others religion.
    There are good people and bad people every where in the world. As all fingers are not equal.
    In Some countries people are more emotional than other because of lack of education, but hitting on others religion you are not doing any good either. Be smart do not do that. You want to convince some one convince with facts not with hate.
    Why you think that Western is better than Eastern or Eastern is better than Western?
    What is going on in Bosnia by United Nations. Watch the movie on true facts its called The Whistle Blower and then check on google. They are Western people (even worse they are police officers) and they are behaving worse than even animals.
    All I am saying you want to acknowledge that it wrong and you want to tell other people that this is wrong, then do in the way that people listen you. Other wise how you can say that you are better person?

    January 30, 2012 at 8:34 pm |
    • BldrRepublican

      I suppose you need to ask that of the Muslim scholars throughout the world – why are they not condemning this in the most public and vocal manner?

      The mosque at which this family attended – why are the elders not condemning this act? Speak up!!

      Or are they afraid? *THAT* is the problem.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:43 pm |
    • Lucy

      Canadian, to say that what happened had nothing to do with Religion is to dishonour the memory of the victimes. Do not swallow the myth of cultural relativisim. All religions and cultures are not created equal.

      Our forefathers were more honest and were not afraid to take action to make sure evil does not continue to reign, whether under the guise of religion or culture. In India, the practice of widow burning was outlawed by the British and when the Hindus told them, 'but it is our custom' the British replied, 'and it is also our custom to hang those that burn widows'. Same with the cult of Kali, the thugees, who waylaid travellers and strangled them as human sacrifices to their goddess. The British eradicated these too. Now, we are making excuses for the inexcusable. Why, my guess is we have been blinded by money, more precisely our leaders are blinged by the petro-dollars and cannot bear to have the truth about Islam told.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:49 pm |
    • Dane

      You do not speak for all Canadians, your name embarasses me. Give me the West any day. Just look an how much more organized and safe our societies are. Any one who thinks Yemen is just as safe as Antigonish Nova Scotia, or Islamabad is as clean as Hartford Conn. is delusional. Just because damger and filth exist in both does not make them equal. All are NOT created equal, thats just the truth.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:50 pm |
  17. greg

    the son looks like mr bean, you,sir,have no honour,and the world is disgusted with you,now ,all your money,you could have lived a good life,you messed up your whole family,what a honour to have bestowed on you,

    January 30, 2012 at 8:32 pm |
  18. NTI

    Hey everyone,

    Don't trust what anyone (including the deceiving 'experts') tells you about Islam. Go learn about Islam for yourself. The best way to learn about Islam and what it means to non-Muslims you need learn about Sharia. There is a great book, well written, well researched and easy to read book on Sharia – "Sharia for Non-Muslims". The cool thing is that they made this book available free of cost as an online pdf!!! Here is the link:

    http://www.politicalislam.com/pdf/WebSitePDF/ShariaNonMuslim.pdf

    January 30, 2012 at 8:29 pm |
    • skarphace

      Once again, a more objective source would be called for if you want an unbiased opinion of Islam. PoliticalIslam? Not very objective.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:32 pm |
    • Binyamin

      Islam is disgusting. The fact that people would look up to an illiterate pedophile speaks words about the religion.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:38 pm |
    • SuZieCoyote

      Everyone should read this. Islam is the biggest threat to the world today.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:43 pm |
    • NTI

      @sharphace Read the book before commenting from your own biased perspective. All the author does in the book is summarize the authoritative Sharia book "The Reliance of the Traveller" published by the most reputed Islamic school in Egypt.

      January 30, 2012 at 9:08 pm |
  19. marg

    Culture MAKES an individual and Religion SHAPES an individual. THERE IS THE COMMON INTEREST WHICH BINDS THEM BOTH.

    January 30, 2012 at 8:29 pm |
  20. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things
    Even a Muslim can repent and find God

    January 30, 2012 at 8:29 pm |
    • greg

      even an athiest? who are you,some spokesperson for god? news flash,you're not..

      January 30, 2012 at 8:33 pm |
    • Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

      Prayer changes things
      Even an atheist can repent and find God

      January 30, 2012 at 8:41 pm |
    • Victor

      Prayer is merely meditation that's been perverted to some idealogical purpose. The more you exhort people to pray, the further you divide people from their own truths. And this is the key – should we be allowed to decide for ourselves how to express our own spirituality, we would end up finally following the Christ in TRUTH. He was a Jew. On the cross he quoted scriptures. Yet he marked his own spiritual course, went east and studied in India and the Himalaya. It was about the Christ that the phrase "Go west young man" was said. When the Christ comes upon the Baptist at the River Jordan, he is coming from the east – heading west.

      I choose to truly follow the Christ and define my spirituality for myself – religion be DAMNED! 🙂

      January 30, 2012 at 8:54 pm |
    • JT

      And again we pray that you will stop posting this same comment over and over but it never stops. Thanks for the indisputible proof that prays does not work.

      January 30, 2012 at 8:55 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.