February 24th, 2012
11:12 AM ET

Obama apologizes to Afghanistan for Quran burning

From Masoud Popalzai and Nick Paton Walsh, CNN

Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN) - Afghan rage over the burning of Qurans by NATO troops continued Thursday even after a President Barack Obama apologized for the "error."

Afghanistan erupted in violent demonstrations after the troops burned the Islamic religious material at the beginning of the week.

Two American troops were killed Thursday by a man wearing an Afghan National Army uniform, a U.S. official said, asking not to be named discussing casualties. The gunman is thought to have been acting in conjunction with a protest outside the base, the official said.

In a letter delivered to Afghan President Hamid Karzai, Obama called the act "inadvertent," Karzai's office and National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor said Thursday.


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- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Afghanistan • Islam • Quran • TV-The Situation Room

soundoff (93 Responses)
  1. knowledgesoul

    obama should apologizes for that because he is the president of that country and he need to punished them if not the we can also insulting other religions and we know the will lose in it http://www.quraninenglish.com . regard aleena batul

    August 28, 2012 at 7:24 am |
  2. Iqbal Khan

    Who was behind Nine Eleven ?
    We all need a new enquiry......


    March 15, 2012 at 7:59 pm |
  3. stupid11111111103dccc

    Sand Nigs. Great

    February 28, 2012 at 12:38 am |
    • hottoddy12345

      perpetuate racial discrimination!

      February 28, 2012 at 12:46 am |
    • stupid11111111103dccc

      This has nothing to do with racial discrimination! It's about a cultural gap that will not close because these people are so inept to anything other than their tribes. Afghanistan is not a nation. It's a group of tribal areas. Once US pulls out and stops payment to the Afghani government, how will the government pay to maintain their "loyal followers"? Because they are only as loyal as the money they are paid. Don't let the shroud of the US BS get pulled over your eyes

      February 28, 2012 at 12:50 am |
  4. HotAirAce

    Obama should apologize for not throwing in a few Babbles and some Torahs, and for the USA being in Afganistan at all. If the world's most powerful country can't defeat a rag-tag army in 10 years, how powerful is it really? Bush, too stupid not to create his own Vietnam – Obama, too stupid to get out immediately.

    February 27, 2012 at 2:44 pm |
    • FlaPete

      That was done per Bush,not Obama.Russia was over there 10 years or more with more men ,more machinery and chemical weapons.They went home with their tails tucked between their legs,remember.They got nothing,no oil,nothin...read your history,they've been fighting the Turks and everyone else for thousands of years,natural born fighters,hard to beat in their backyard,remember Vietnam,same game diffrent place....

      February 27, 2012 at 9:24 pm |
    • Muneef

      Worse yet they want to open a new war with Iran...! Man what a mess they got them selves into...

      February 27, 2012 at 10:00 pm |
  5. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    February 27, 2012 at 8:24 am |
    • Nope

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs.

      February 27, 2012 at 10:54 am |
  6. AmericanTruth

    Books really? Are we talking about just books, really? Books? I believe God is accepted through faith within the heart! Books?
    People who fight overbooks, probably do not read or write...go figure.

    February 27, 2012 at 12:12 am |
  7. Keith

    In a shocking case out of Pennsylvania, an American judge has thrown out an assault charge against a Muslim immigrant based on Sharia law.

    The assault victim was the head of the Pennsylvania chapter of American Atheists, Ernest Perce V, who was marching in a Halloween parade as “Zombie Mohammed” next to a fellow atheist dressed as “Zombie Pope.” The former depiction didn’t sit well with Muslim onlooker Talag Elbayomy, who then attacked Mr. Perce. And with an admission of guilt by the assailant and video of the incident, it should have been an open-and-shut case.

    But that’s not how it turned out.

    As Andrew McCarthy at National Review reports:

    Magistrate Judge Mark Martin, a veteran of the war in Iraq, ruled that Talag Elbayomy's sharia defense — what he claimed was his obligation to strike out against any insult against the prophet Mohammed — trumped the First Amendment free speech rights of the victim.

    Yes, you read that correctly.

    Al Stefanelli of American Atheists provides some more information, writing:

    The defendant is an immigrant and claims he did not know his actions were illegal, or that it was legal in this country to represent Muhammad in any form. To add insult to injury, he also testified that his 9 year old son was present, and the man said he felt he needed to show his young son that he was willing to fight for his Prophet....

    The Judge not only ruled in favor of the defendant, but called Mr. Perce a name and told him that if he were in a Muslim country, he'd be put to death.

    I wonder, if Elbayomy had put Perce “to death” not knowing that such an action in response to an insult to Mohammed was illegal in America, would Judge Martin have thrown out the murder charge?

    Stefanelli also reports, “Judge Martin's comments included, ‘Having had the benefit of having spent over 2 and a half years in predominantly Muslim countries I think I know a little bit about the faith of Islam.’ ”

    I’m sure. But it appears Judge Martin knows only a little bit — at most — about American law. Perhaps he should consider the benefit of spending time in a Muslim country permanently.

    February 26, 2012 at 10:26 pm |
    • Keith

      What it shows is that Sharia law, whether you like it or not, whether it is consti-tutional or not, is HERE. Thanks to cnn and others for promoting it. The law was broken. Justice was not served. I'm a Christian and I support the right of the atheist to do what he did. God gives us free will. If he wants to reject the forgiveness of sins and the grace of our Lord, he's free to do so, albeit to his detriment. I hope he'll reconsider. What I'm afraid of is the support the US is giving in the UN in terms of blashemy laws on an international scale. This is happening. If it continues, no one-atheists included, will be able to speak out against islam in the US. Therefore, this case is extremely relevant. Why does cnn refuse to report on it? This judge needs to be removed. Cnn ignores this because their "pet religion" is exposed for the ugly, horrible religion that it really is.

      February 27, 2012 at 8:54 am |
    • Muneef


      You say: (Christian and I support the right of the atheist to do what he did. God gives us free will.)...
      My say: Do you support them to be disrespectful to your beliefs and call names insulting your prophet whom you call GOD? Do you consider the doing of that to be freedom and freewill ? Well we do not allow that believe what you want to believe but do not go on cursing and throwing names of insults to GOD, Prophets ,Holy Books in a way of hurting others beliefs..since that is not a freedom...!

      February 27, 2012 at 10:11 pm |
  8. Keith

    An Iranian general says the White House should be burned in response to American soldiers’ burning Korans in Afghanistan.

    "Nothing but burning the White House can relieve the wound [inflicted on] us, the Muslims, by the Burning of Quran in the United States," said Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Naqdi, volunteer Commander of Iran's Basij force.

    "The United States has committed such an ugly action and burnt [the] Koran because of the heavy slap it has been given by Islam," he told the country’s official Fars News Agency Saturday.

    February 26, 2012 at 8:42 pm |
    • Keith

      Screw this guy, too. You want a holy war? Bring it!

      February 26, 2012 at 8:43 pm |
    • Muneef

      The issue has been politicalized now and Iran is taking advantage of that since she is officially in cold war with the US and Israel... So what am saying whom ever suggested the burning of the Quran was the real enemy and was serving to declare a Holy War rather than a political war...

      February 26, 2012 at 8:54 pm |
  9. Keith

    Did the Taliban apologize for killing those Western doctors who had Bibles in their vehicles? Didn't think so. Screw them.

    February 26, 2012 at 8:13 pm |
    • Muneef

      Why were they those western doctors carrying a full truck load of Bibles in their vehicles into an Islamic country ?? Were they there only to convert people? Well such act is not at all welcomed in Islamic countries... Try taking and doing that in Saudi Arabia if you can...!

      February 26, 2012 at 8:28 pm |
    • Muneef


      February 26, 2012 at 8:30 pm |
    • Keith

      Islam hides in the darkness. The Bible is light. Islam hates the light.

      February 26, 2012 at 8:45 pm |
    • Muneef

      Keep on your state of Denial;

      Secret £14million Bible in which 'Jesus predicts coming of Prophet Muhammad' unearthed in Turkey

      Vatican 'wants to see' 1,500-year-old ancient script
      Has been hidden by Turkish state for 12 years
      Handwritten in gold-lettered Aramaic
      By Daily Mail Reporter

      Last updated at 5:14 PM on 24th February 2012

      A secret Bible in which Jesus is believed to predict the coming of the Prophet Muhammad to Earth has sparked serious interest from the Vatican.

      Pope Benedict XVI is claimed to want to see the 1,500-year-old book, which many say is the Gospel of Barnabas, that has been hidden by the Turkish state for the last 12 years.

      The £14million handwritten gold lettered tome, penned in Jesus' native Aramaic language, is said to contain his early teachings and a prediction of the Prophet's coming.

      February 26, 2012 at 8:49 pm |
  10. Muneef

    Guess Pres.Obama should ask who's interest was to spark such a riot...knowingly that is inexcusable act for some pretending to bring peace in to the area...! If Taliban had shot individuals then such an act has shot a whole nation...!

    Any way as it seems this will be the beginning of the end for Foreign troops in Afghanistan since now it is becoming more like a Holy War were every one there will be glad to give his life and die as a martyr. For the sake of his religion & beliefs..!

    Who ever ordered the burning was either trying to speed up the withdrawals of the foreign troops from Afghanistan or some one who wanted the wars there to be heated up and extended heavily as with ((Wars means good business for some))...!

    It was intended to humiliate beliefs of those and all Muslims while to find excuse to commit mass murders of angry Afghan Muslims...! If that act was of the supposedly friends then who needs enemies...? Obviously those Afghan soliders will have no alternative now but to fight foreign troops rather than their own people who are angry out of a religious prospective and not politics...! What a shame...

    February 25, 2012 at 9:53 pm |
    • Muneef

      Surveillance of Muslims is only an introduced advanced precaution to an act of burning of Quran in Afghanistan which of course is not an insult or humiliation to Afghans only but to the whole Islamic nation...! Them lunatics do all such ignorant and arrogant acts and then complain that Muslims are being violent....?! just wonder who are behind all these plans bringing up Islamic rage to boil up...?!

      February 25, 2012 at 10:06 pm |
    • Reality

      Obviously Muneef missed the following:

      Google "Muslims bible burning" to get all said references about Muslims burning the bible but note that once the "bowers" of Islam see how they have been conned by their imams and ayatollahs for the last 1400 years, they too will burn their copies of the koran i.e. the angel Gabriel never existed so there is no way that the warmongering, womanizing, and hallucinating Mohammed got any koranic passages from some god.

      Tis the great angelic con game. Joe Smith was the latest to pull it off with his "angelic" Moroni. The significant stupidity and gullibility of it all!!!!!

      And ditto when the "pew peasants" of Christianity finally realize the con that has been pulled on them, as they too will burn their bibles. I have not burned my copy but have relegated it to the mostly fictional section of my reference library.

      February 25, 2012 at 11:18 pm |
    • Muneef

      Obviously Reality missed a point...
      Google Atheists burning all Holy Books...? 🙂

      February 26, 2012 at 8:21 pm |
    • Reality

      Dear Sisters and Brothers of Islam (including Muneef),

      –from the studies of Armstrong, Rushdie, Hirsi Ali, Richardson and Bayhaqi-

      The Five Steps To Deprogram 1400 Years of Islamic Myths:
      ( –The Steps take less than two minutes to finish- simply amazing, two minutes to bring peace and rationality to over one billion lost souls- Priceless!!!)

      Are you ready?

      Using "The 77 Branches of Islamic "faith" a collection compiled by Imam Bayhaqi as a starting point. In it, he explains the essential virtues that reflect true "faith" (iman) through related Qur’anic verses and Prophetic sayings." i.e. a nice summary of the Koran and Islamic beliefs.

      The First Five of the 77 Branches:

      "1. Belief in Allah"

      aka as God, Yahweh, Zeus, Jehovah, Mother Nature, etc. should be added to your self-cleansing neurons.

      "2. To believe that everything other than Allah was non-existent. Thereafter, Allah Most High created these things and subsequently they came into existence."

      Evolution and the Big Bang or the "Gi-b G-nab" (when the universe starts to recycle) are more plausible and the "akas" for Allah should be included if you continue to be a "crea-tionist".

      "3. To believe in the existence of angels."

      A major item for neuron cleansing. Angels/de-vils are the mythical creations of ancient civilizations, e.g. Hitt-ites, to explain/define natural events, contacts with their gods, big birds, sudden winds, protectors during the dark nights, etc. No "pretty/ug-ly wingy thingies" ever visited or talked to Mohammed, Jesus, Mary or Joseph or Joe Smith. Today we would classify angels as f–airies and "tin–ker be-lls". Modern de-vils are classified as the de-mons of the de-mented.

      "4. To believe that all the heavenly books that were sent to the different prophets are true. However, apart from the Quran, all other books are not valid anymore."

      Another major item to delete. There are no books written in the spirit state of Heaven (if there is one) just as there are no angels to write/publish/distribute them. The Koran, OT, NT etc. are simply books written by humans for humans.

      Prophets were invented by ancient scribes typically to keep the un-educated masses in line. Today we call them for-tune tellers.

      Prophecies are also invali-dated by the natural/God/Allah gifts of Free Will and Future.

      "5. To believe that all the prophets are true. However, we are commanded to follow the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) alone."

      Mohammed spent thirty days "fasting" (the Ramadan legend) in a hot cave before his first contact with Allah aka God etc. via a "pretty wingy thingy". Common sense demands a neuron deletion of #5. #5 is also the major source of Islamic vi-olence i.e. turning Mohammed's "fast, hunger-driven" hallu-cinations into horrible reality for unbelievers.

      Walk these Five Steps and we guarantee a complete recovery from your Islamic ways!!!!

      Unfortunately, there are not many Muslim commentators/readers on this blog so the "two-minute" cure is not getting to those who need it. If you have a Muslim friend, send him a copy and help save the world.

      Analogous steps are available at your request for deprogramming the myths of Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism and Paganism..

      February 27, 2012 at 8:15 am |


    February 25, 2012 at 9:08 pm |
  12. Keith

    What Obama should do is apologize to the Christians of Eygpt(some of whom are now dead) who lost their lives and churches-that were burned by the Muslim Brotherhood whom Obama put in place of Mubarrak. That's what Obama should do.

    February 25, 2012 at 12:44 pm |
    • AGuest9

      Obama needs to shift his focus to THIS country and let the rest of the world go where it's going. We wouldn't be this far in debt to China if Bush didn't get us deeper into the Middle Eastern quagmire.

      February 25, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
  13. Reality

    Google "Muslims bible burning" to get all said references about Muslims burning the bible but note that once the "bowers" of Islam see how they have been conned by their imams and ayatollahs for the last 1400 years, they too will burn their copies of the koran i.e. the angel Gabriel never existed so there is no way that the warmongering, womanizing, and hallucinating Mohammed got any koranic passages from some god.

    Tis the great angelic con game. Joe Smith was the latest to pull it off with his "angelic" Moroni. The significant stupidity and gullibility of it all!!!!!

    And ditto when the "pew peasants" of Christianity finally realize the con that has been pulled on them, as they too will burn their bibles. I have not burned my copy but have relegated it to the mostly fictional section of my reference library.

    February 25, 2012 at 11:22 am |
  14. Frightened American

    I pray for these poor Muslim souls because they will never enter the kingdom of heaven. I guess they'll have fun partying with Mohammed in hell though.

    February 25, 2012 at 11:17 am |
    • Keith

      What if it's solitary confinenment.

      February 25, 2012 at 12:12 pm |
    • What IF

      Frightened American,

      Neither you nor anyone else knows what (if anything) happens after death. Stop saying that you do.

      February 25, 2012 at 12:15 pm |
    • Keith

      What if, Here's one thing that happens:
      Hbr 9:27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:

      February 25, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • AGuest9

      There is no such place. Quit deluding yourselves, and remember what FDR said about fear.

      February 25, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
    • What IF

      Keith, "Hbr 9:27"

      There is no evidence that Paul of Tarsus knew anything factual about any afterlife.

      February 25, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
  15. Prayer is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
    Prayer prevents you from getting badly needed exercise.
    Prayer makes you fat.
    Prayer wears out your clothes prematurely.
    Prayer contributes to global warming through excess CO2 emissions.
    Prayer fucks up your knees and your neck and your back.
    Prayer can cause heart attacks, especially among the elderly.
    Prayer reveals how stupid you are to the world.
    Prayer exposes your backside to pervert priests.
    Prayer makes you think doilies are exciting.
    Prayer makes you secretively flatulent and embarrassed about it.
    Prayer makes your kids avoid spending time with you.
    Prayer has been shown to have no discernible effect towards what was prayed for.
    Prayer gives you knobbly knees.
    Prayer makes you frothy like Rick Santorum. Just google him to find out.
    Prayer dulls your senses.
    Prayer makes you post really stupid shit.
    Prayer makes you hoard cats.
    Prayer makes you smell like shitty kitty litter and leads you on to harder drugs.
    Prayer wastes time.

    February 25, 2012 at 10:25 am |
    • William Wilberforce

      This is very true if you're praying to Allah, or the dead, or the saints, or the virgin,.

      February 25, 2012 at 2:24 pm |
    • JohnR

      Or anyone else, Wilberforce.

      February 25, 2012 at 7:46 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.