In a new piece at the Daily Beast, moderate Muslim Maajid Nawaz has sorrows. Why? Because members of his very own branch of Islami, the Barelwi sect of Pakistani Sufi Islam, are not behaving moderately.
The backstory is this: a Christian woman in Pakistan, Asia Bibi, was sentenced to death for blasphemy, apparently a charge cooked up by local Muslims who could not forgive her for drinking from the cup they used. (She’s still in jail.)
Then, a “flamboyant secular Muslim,” Salmaan Taseer, governor of Punjab province, defended Asia Bibi in public and lobbied for a lightening of Pakistan’s odious laws against blasphemy. That itself was considered blasphemy, and so, in January, 2011 Taseer was gunned down iwith an AK47 by his bodyguard, Mumtaz Quadri. Predictably, thousands of Pakistanis considered Quadri to have done a heroic thing, and protested in his favor. Nevertheless, he was arrested and hanged for murder on February…
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