Pakistani Politician Salman Taseer – assassinated for supporting Christian woman

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    6th January 2011

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    The moderate Governor of Punjab, now assassinated, of the governing PPP, tweeted this on New Year’s Eve:

    “I was under huge pressure sure 2 cow down b4 rightest pressure on blasphemy. Refused. Even if I’m the last man standing”

    We should ALL mourn for this man.

    The body of Salman Taseer, the Punjab Governor and a leading moderate Pakistani politician, is removed from the scene of his murder.

    What do the loony left, those who still proclaim moral equivalence of all religions, have to say about the horrific murder of one of Pakistan’s few moderate and liberal-minded political leaders? If they are what they say they are – moderate, liberal and freedom-loving – he should be their new hero. A man standing up for women’s rights, even Christian women’s rights in a deeply patriarchal and conservative Muslim country. A man opposed to Pakistan’s extreme blasphemy laws. Laws which say that execution is the penalty for insulting the name of Mohammed.

    I await with bated breath their discourse on this cold-blooded murder. I don’t expect it’ll be long before we have half of them yelling in their inimitable and ignorant way that it was Bush & Blair wot dunnit.


    Pakistan is also a nuclear power, and it could be about to explode.

    Mr Taseer’s killer was one of his own trusted bodyguards. Not content with using one or two bullets, this man pumped  27 bullets into the politician’s body. One is usually enough to kill. Even a hard-nosed politician!

    Malik Mumtaz Hussain Qadri, a man identified as a guard of governor of Punjab province Salman Taseer, smiles after being detained at the site of Taseer's shooting in Islamabad January 4, 2011. The slain politician's guard, identified as Malik Mumtaz Hussain Qadri, confessed and had been arrested but investigations would determine if others were involved. (REUTERS/Saaf-ur-Rahman.)

    Mumtaz Qadri was arrested at the scene after killing the Punjab Governor in broad daylight in full view of others. No-one tried to prevent the murder.


    No-one, it seems, tried to stop Mumtaz Qadri from his spraying of bullets for Islam. No-one even took a defensive shot at him.  Even in the time it took him to re-load his gun, not one other bodyguard was sufficiently affronted by this abhorrent act to attempt to defend Mr Taseer, or to stop Qadri’s onslaught – a hail of a dozen bullets – into the body of  this brave politician.

    Mumtaz Qadri, foreground, "alleged" killer of Punjab's governor Salman Taseer, leaves a court in Islamabad, Pakistan on Wednesday, Jan 5, 2011. Taseer was killed on Tuesday by his bodyguard commando reportedly enraged by his opposition to laws decreeing death for insulting Islam. (AP Photo/Mohammad Riazur Rehman)


    When this murderer – hardly “alleged” since he was caught red-handed – appeared in court today he was showered with rose petals by LAWYERS present!

    Pakistani lawyers chant slogans in support of arrested Pakistani bodyguard Malik Mumtaz Hussain Qadri, during his appearance in court in Islamabad on January 5, 2011. Pakistani police charged the police commando with murder and terrorism. over the killing. Mumtaz Hussain Qadri, who was part of Taseer's security detail, will appear in an anti-terrorism court on January 6. (Photo credit - AAMIR QURESHI/AFP/Getty Images)

    Pakistan’s Young Lawyers have already decided to offer their service in defense of Qadri FREE.  He has been hailed by many university students as a hero for killing a liberal-minded politician.

    QADRI IS  A NAZI sorry – GHAZI (Islamic Warrior)

    Interesting word that – Ghazi. Don’t you think? Wonder when it was coined?

    Qadri is one of them, it seems. So says a  statement issued by the Jamaat-e-Ahl-e-Sunnat Pakistan. It was endorsed by the grouping’s ‘ameer’ or chief Syed Mazhar Saeed Shah Kazmi and over 500 scholars and clerics like Allama Syed Riaz Hussain Shah, Shah Turab-ul-Haq Qadri and Pir Ghulam Siddiq Naqshbandi.

    And, just to straighten our sweet little heads on why Taseen was killed for “blasphemy”, is added for the flavour, that those “favouring the person who indulged in blasphemy are themselves blasphemous.”

    Paying tribute to Taseer’s assassin and his courage, the statement described Qadri as a lover of the prophet Mohammed and a ‘Ghazi’ or Islamic warrior. (sourced from Jihad Watch)

    If this isn’t a basket case of a country, Benazir Bhutto still walks the streets.

    Pakistani policemen secure the site of a fatal attack on Salman Taseer, the governor of Pakistan's most politically important province Punjab, by his bodyguard in Islamabad on January 4, 2011. Salman Taseer, outspoken against the Taliban and other Islamist militants was assassinated apparently for opposing blasphemy laws. Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani appealed for calm after the assassination of Punjab governor and political ally. (Photo credit - AAMIR QURESHI/AFP/Getty Images)

    And even after he was dead these Pakistanis felt compelled to defame his picture and his memory with spray and primitive shoe-hammering.

    After learning that Taseer has been killed, Pakistanis abuse his picture. Do YOU reckon this is civilised behaviour? After anyone has been assassinated?

    Before Mr Taseer’s funeral yesterday 500 Islamic scholars also praised his killer and told Muslims not to mourn for him.  According to reports not everyone was listening. But one day soon, given proper investigative journalism, we might get a better idea of how many mourned and how many cheered. That’s important in that country of 170 million people. On that answer depends its future.

    A girl holds a placard as she stands next to an image of the governor of Punjab Taseer during a candlelight vigil in Islamabad

    Picture above from DayLife

    This video was posted at the AlJazeeraEnglish YouTube channel, and the reporter was Al Jazeera’s Kamal Hyder.

    So let me get this straight.

    Did Mr Taseer blaspheme against Mohammed, Allah, Islam? No.

    But was he standing up in support of a Christian woman who has been sentenced to death for insulting Mohammed, a charge she denied. Yes.

    So for that he had to die? Yes.  So it seems, given the support his killer is receiving in that blighted land.

    I realise that my attempt to get it straight will mean little to those who see guilt by association. But perhaps now, or some time soon, the Guardianistos of this world, the lefty broadcasters, the so-called feminists and the so-called freedom-lovers will start to re-think their position on Islam as a concept – even as a “religion”. Even questioning it, as do I, would be a start.


    And he paid the ultimate price for his principles.

    Mr Taseer was a man standing up in support of a Christian woman. Standing against sharia law. He knew the risks he was taking and had spoken about them recently. He said he’d fight on if he was the last man standing. Unfortunately he wasn’t the last man standing. He is unlikely to be the last man dying for freedom, justice and civilised behaviour.

    Sadly his murder is likely to intimidate many other political voices from speaking out in Pakistan. Perhaps not only in Pakistan.

    Salam Taseer supported Asia Bibi, a Christian woman who was sentenced to death for blasphemy, a charge she denied.

    If only this extremely secular, non-murdering agnostic was sure that God exists, I’d say God rest your good, good soul, Mr Taseer. I’ll say it anyway, in case.

    You are a martyr to the cause of freedom from oppression, and in particular freedom from oppression for women.

    Rest in peace.

    The Guardian reported on this murder, excerpt follows:

    “… there should be no expression of grief or sympathy on the death of the governor, as those who support blasphemy of the prophet are themselves indulging in blasphemy.”

    In Islamabad, police and intelligence officials continued to question Mumtaz Qadri, the police guard who shot Taseer as he stepped into his car outside a shopping market in central Islamabad on Tuesday.

    I know I don’t have much good to say about The Guardian these days. But this report by Declan Walsh in Lahore is an exception:  Guardian: ‘A divided Pakistan buries Salman Taseer and a liberal dream’

    Liberals have long been a minority force in Pakistan, reviled for importing ‘western’ ideas and culture; now they are virtually an endangered species

    Prime minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani at the funeral of assasinated Punjab governor Salman Taseer. Photograph: Ilyas J Dean/Rex Features

    Taseer’s crime, in Qadri’s eyes, was to advocate reform of Pakistan’s blasphemy law. Few other Pakistani politicians dared to speak against the law, which prescribes the death penalty for offenders yet is widely misused. Those who did now live in fear.

    Since Taseer’s death party supporters have burned tyres and chanted the old slogans: “Jiye Bhutto!” and “If you kill one Bhutto another will rise!” Party leaders painted Taseer’s death as part of a “conspiracy”. “We need to find out if this is an attempt to destabilise Pakistan,” said law minister Babar Awan, announcing the inevitable judicial enquiry.

    But the tired rhetoric masked a less palatable truth: that Taseer had been abandoned by his own leadership. After Aasia Bibi, a Christian woman, was sentenced to death under the blasphemy laws on 8 November, Taseer visited her in jail with his wife and daughter to show his support.

    Shortly after, an Islamic mob rioted outside the governor’s house in Lahore, burning his effigy and calling for his death. On television prominent media commentators joined the chorus of criticism.

    Senior figures in his own party turned tail. Awan, the law minister, said there was no question of reforming the blasphemy law. “As long as I am law minister no one should think of finishing this law,” he said on 26 November. Another minister confirmed that position one week ago.

    The U-turn was the product of a huge miscalculation. At the start of the Aasia Bibi affair on 8 November, President Asif Ali Zardari suggested he might pardon the Christian woman if she was convicted. But he stalled, apparently hoping to extract political mileage from the affair.

    Then on 29 November the Lahore high court, which had a history of antagonism with Zardari, issued an order forbidding him from issuing a pardon. The issue became a political football, a struggle between the government, the courts and the mullahs. Zardari was powerless to act.

    And the Punjab governor was left swinging in a lonely wind.

    In his last television interview, on 1 January, Taseer said it had been his “personal decision” to support Aasia Bibi. “I went to see her with my wife and daughter. Some have supported me; other are against me […] but if I do not stand by my conscience, then who will?”


    Yesterday on Twitter, the medium beloved of Salman Taseer, liberal Pakistanis bemoaned the disappearance of “Jinnah’s Pakistan” – the tolerant, pluralistic country envisioned by its founder, the lawyer Muhammad ali Jinnah, in 1947. Others tried to remember if it had ever existed.

    And in the streets outside Pakistan’s silent majority – the ordinary, moderate people who do not favour extremism or violence, and only want their society to thrive – were saying nothing. But in Pakistan, that is no longer good enough. Silence kills.

    A very human view

    Salman Taseer was one of Pakistan’s most prolific and popular tweeters, on everything from politics to cricket, revealing a very human view of the country’s troubles. Here are some of his more recent tweets:

    31 December: Peace prosperity & happiness for new year ( 1 1 11 ) i’m full of optimism

    31 December: I was under huge pressure sure 2 cow down b4 rightest pressure on blasphemy. Refused. Even if I’m the last man standing

    26 December: Religous right trying 2 pressurise from the street their support of blasphemy laws. Point is it must be decided in Parlaiment not on the road

    24 December: Covered in the righteous cloak of religon and even a puny dwarf imagines himself a monster . Important to face. And call their bluff

    24 December: My observation on minorities: A man/nation is judged by how they support those weaker than them not how they lean on those stronger

    19 December: So Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook fame has been chosen 4 Time Magazine man of the Year. Hmm . Guess I’ll have to wait till next year



    Blasphemy Law in “the Islamic Republic of Pakistani”

    Excerpt – In November 2010, Asia Bibi was sentenced to death by hanging on a charge of blasphemy; the case that has yet to be upheld by the Lahore High Court has sparked international reactions.

    An intriguing video interview with Taseer, where he alternates between Urdu and English.

    CS Monitor – What Salman Taseer’s assassination could mean for Pakistan

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    10 Responses to “Pakistani Politician Salman Taseer – assassinated for supporting Christian woman”

    1. Shehla Raza Says:

      Governor Taseer’s murder is a political murder, as this murder was carried out in the custody of Punjab government. There was a serious security lapse by the Punjab government, for which it should be held responsible. The PML-N does have a soft corner for the extremist forces and had no love lost for the late governor. The hobnobbing between PML-N and terrorist outfits is on surface and this murder, ostensibly carried out in the name of religion, is in essence political. This is a reality that discerning minds already accept and the country will have to acknowledge in the coming days. Religion and politics are intertwined and this evident truth can be seen in the way a section of our society reacted to Mr Taseer’s brutal murder. No one in a civilized society would ever celebrate the death of an innocent man. Secularism is the key to a democratic, progressive Pakistan that is the agenda of Pakistan Peoples Party.

      • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

        @ Shehla Raza,

        I wouldn’t know if this murder was political or not. Though they say that everything is political in Pakistan.

        Presumably, if it is not leant on, the inquiry will work out why this Qadri man was able to shoot 27 bullets into Mr Taseer’s body without anyone trying to stop him. He had to reload his weapon and STILL no-one tried to disarm him or even shoot him back! Unbelievable.

        Was Qadri the only bodyguard on duty? Were his views on extremism/liberalism known? Had he been vetted properly? Had he been vetted at all?

        Secularist democracies are the only way forward, as most of us realise. Sadly, even in secularist democracies like Britain’s there are still problems in some quarters viz-a-viz recognisng the problem – the worldwide problem. Fundamental/extremist Islamism. That’s clear to anyone with eyes to see.

        How to deal with it is another problem. But we cannot work out how to deal with it until we recognise it exists.

    2. Mughees Alam Says:

      Look at the life of Prophet Muhammad SAW and his companions. Was there ever a fatwa to kill some kafir of mekkah or to kill the jews when the Muslims were ruling in Madina? Did Muslims ever try to attack Abu jehal when he was alone or armless? Did they kill anybody from jews of madina for blasphemy? If not do these mullahs think that they have more love for Islam than the companions of prophet ( Naoozobillah )Arethey following the teachings of prophet saw or the way the enemies of islam used to follow. And if these mullahs are distorting teachings of Islam and associating with Islam what enemies of Islam used to do and Prophet saw and his companions always avoided such acts, are they not committing any blasphemy.Why the case under the blasphemy law is not registered against them? Why our intellectuals do not think about it. Why are we so much dependent on mullahs and do not use our brains to realize how can such teachings be associated with islam, which are against the sunnah of Prophet Muhammad saw.

      • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

        I don’t know the answers to your questions, Mughees Alam. I suppose I could search around to see if what you say about Muhammad is true. But to be blunt, I think it is up to Muslims to do this research and try to work out why fundamental Islam is a terror problem today.

        I DO think there is an issue because there is no overall authority structure within Islam. If no living human within Islam is permitted to lay down the TRUE law, and be respected, in case it offends Muhammad, thus Allah, how can anything be brought up-to-date?

      • Kics Says:

        @Mughees Alam
        Qadri in killing Taseer was only following Mohamed’s behaviour. When Asma bint Marwan wrote – wrote – a piece criticising Mohamed he did not reply by refuting her arguments in a letter. He had her assassinated. Thus Muslims today take the view that any criticism of Mohamed is utterly unacceptable. This is the sort of thinking that made Qadri feel comfortable in killing Taseer. If the prophet does it, then it is halal – permitted. This is the tragedy of Islam.

        • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

          @ Kics,

          Sadly, I have come to the same conclusion. None of this is to say that all Muslims agree with that medieval mindset. Far fom it. However, the progressive, civilised world’s concerns over these issues are compounded by several factors, including but not limited to –
          1. No-one in Islam, from most humble to most high, is permited to alter Koranic edicts, on pain of death.
          2. So-called “liberal” western opinion is in a PC “we’re all the same under the skin” mindset.
          3. The west and its politicians have not yet woken up to the long term consequences of the above two points.

    3. Kics Says:

      The fundamental problem is the notion of ‘freedom of religion’. This assumes that ‘religion’ is always benign. Anyone reading the koran dispassionately can only conclude that the Koran is fundamentally divisive, splitting the world into the blessed Muslims and cursed non-Muslims; based solely on belief in the unseen, rather than actions.

      We should not give blanket licence to practice a religion – or to make it ‘wrong’ to criticise it – if that religion espouses that which is immoral. Religion is simply an ideology – like Nazism, Socialism and Capitalism – and as such, subject to criticism, including it’s main protagonists, and that would be Mohamed when discussing Islam.

      • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

        @ Kics,

        Good analysis on the ‘fundamental problem’. Freedom is not free, as we all know, but a lot of us find it convenient to forget, from atop our “principled” high-horses.

        Suicidal and ridiculous position to be atop, actually, encouraging shrinkage of brain power and common sense. But I am afraid there is no politician or statesman up to challenging it right now.

        Even the man I regard as the most capable of this generation is fighting a losing battle, imho, given the fundamentalists inside Islam who would happily kill him as an infidel, given half a chance, despite his support of the principles of THEIR religion.

        All for Allah, you understand.

    4. Kics Says:

      TB has no business supporting Islamic principles.

      The highest praiseworthy action in Islam is submission to God’s will, this over ANYTHING else, including acting morally. At the root of Islam is the story of Abraham passing Allah’s test of submission. He passed by agreeing to slaughter an innocent man. So Muslims view Abraham’s attempt to kill an innocent as the most praiseworthy action as it proves Abrahams’ submission to Allah’s will. This is abhorrent. Abraham would have passed the test of Morality if he had said to Allah, “No, I will not kill an innocent for that is immoral”. But sadly, islamic ethics are twisted and view Abraham’s willingness to slaughter an innocent as a praiseworthy action. Muslims have a High celebration of this every year : Eid Al-adha (Festival of the Sacrifice), I kid you not.

      TB loses all credibility as an honest rationalist by supporting the twisted ethics of Islam. Islam is nothing more than an ideology. being ‘nice’ to Muslims by refraining from criticising their ideology is doing nothing less than treating them like children. Is TB nice to the Chinese by refraining from criticising their institutional censorship? TB needs to empower the rationalists within the ME by expressing rational concerns about Islam. Appeasing the religious irrationalists is a no win situation. Unfortunately as a card-carrying Catholic, he’s now not in a very powerful position to complain about irrationality.

      • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

        @ Kics,

        Easy for us to say, you and me both who (probably) have no religious leanings. But I think he is genuine in this reaching-out business. Since, I think, around 40% of the world’s population is Muslim, his political antennae says the alternative to understanding, working through and coming to terms is all-out war between Islam and the rest. Avoiding the clash of cultures/civilization is uppermost for him.

        But this made me waver for a bit in my support of him, I do admit – when he said that criticism of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s words on the inevitability of Sharia, was much ado about nothing.

        Having said that it surely can’t be the case that everyone who is a Muslim believes this fundamentalist stuff. I think if you are religious, and not Muslim, you must be expecting or hoping that in time moderation will spread its wings and today’s Islam will put the barbaric past and its nonsense behind them. Kind of tough while some of them are still doing the barbaric stuff.

        And today we have this stupid NONSENSE from the token Muslim inside the Tories’ cabinet – Baroness Warsi. (a cabinet minister after being rejected by the electorate!)

        We can’t say some Muslims are MODERATE now either!


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