Lal Masjid Issues Death Fatwah Against OCTANE Staff

octane-december-cover.jpgA Death Fatwah has been issued by the insane mullah of Lal Masjid against the staff of Octane. What’s Octane? It’s a progressive, modern fashion magazine in Pakistan. The only issue I could find online is the December ’06 one, which was a special issue on Women’s Rights. It’s no wonder that the miscreant, medieval, mullah from Lal Masjid would want to repress this magazine. It represents the modern world, carrying as it does slick ads for DSL, Bollywood movie ads, and mobile phone ads. What was their great Sin?

octane-toc.jpgThey carried an advertisement with clothed models holding an apple titled “Adam and Eve, the bone of contention” which in the dim mind of the Taliban inspired madrassah is certain blasphemy. So now everyone who works for the magazine is under death-threat, just like Salman Rushdie, just like Theo Van Gogh was, just like Hirsi Ali.

Because of the charge of blasphemy, the government had to confiscate all issues and launch an investigation, as the law declares.  Story at The International News:

ISLAMABAD: The Khateeb of Lal Masjid, Maulana Abdul Aziz, has issued a death decree against staff at a magazine for publishing a fashion-shoot advertisement entitled “Adam and Eve”.

The fatwa against the chief editor, publisher and other staffers of an English-language magazine called Octane is the latest challenge by the Lal Masjid clerics to President Pervez Musharraf’s government.

“In the magazine’s June edition blasphemy was committed against Hazrat Adam (AS) and Eve… Those responsible for the magazine are liable to death,” Maulana Aziz said in a statement.

The offending photographs were titled “Adam and Eve — Apple the Bone of Contention”, and showed two models in scanty designer-wear costumes holding an apple.

Octane’s editor, Zubair Kasuri, said it was just a commercial advertisement and contained nothing blasphemous, and had been published before by other magazines.

“But even then if it creates any misunderstanding or conveys any wrong perception, we are ready to apologise.”

The Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) administration, meanwhile, confiscated the June 2007 edition of the Octane magazine for publishing “obscene pictures” and all the shopkeepers have been prohibited from selling it.

The staffers of the magazine do not deserve this, they are doing a pretty good job of presenting thoughtful articles about the state of women in Pakistan, and extending the dialogue. More at Gulf Times More at AAJ News.

9 Replies to “Lal Masjid Issues Death Fatwah Against OCTANE Staff”

  1. This certainly is blasphemy if our father Adam and our mother Eve are being used commercially in scanty clothes. They are the prophets of Allah and do not deserve the treatment they are being given. They owners of the magazine need to understand that they do not need to be asked to apologize. They should really apologize unconditionally and refrain from playing with the prophets character in this way. This is certainly inflammatory and condemnable and disturbs the peace in our country.

  2. to who it may conern what were you think this is one of the sadest this i have ever heard of to disrespect our Profhets in this manner may Allah have mercey on you Ameen . next time think first befor you act .

  3. If you believe it insults your prophets, then *you* should refrain from it, but you have no right to impose your religious beliefs on someone else, no right to codemn to death what another person does.

    What another person does is between them and G-d, what right do you have to condemn them? Let G-d worry about what another person is doing, you should be more worried about yourself.

    Next time, keep your religious outrage confined to those who actually confess to practice your religion, like Bin Laden.

    If Muslims were as outraged at what Muslims did in the name of Islam as they are with what non-muslims do *outside* of Islam, then maybe the world would have a lot more resepct for Muslims in general.

  4. Charles,

    The only prophet of Allah I’ve ever heard of is Mohammed. You know, the prophet with the 9 yr old wife?

    Adam and Eve were created in God’s image, not Allah’s. If you need a reference point for that, go to : Genesis 2:7

    If you’d like to know more, just post your interest here – I’d be more than happy to tell you more about the one true God, The Father of Jesus of Nazareth, The Father of all that is, all that ever was and all that ever will be.

  5. While it is controversial, there are many sects and beliefs in Islam, some would not find this to be blasphemy. I would say that if you believe in Allah, and all is Allah’s will, then perhaps you should leave decisions on blasphemy to Allah. (will one PBUH do for all the mentions? )
    To call for someone’s death for something that some Imams and Mullahs are against is to to ignore G-d’s will if you so believe. We have already seen how faulty Fatwahs can be, and in past articles I’ve pointed out how Fatwahs can be purchased. Since you know that the Madrassa in question is politically driven more than by arrow true Faith, why would you follow their Fatwah, or give it any credence at all? (I make the charge that this is a political institution rather than religious after observing them triangulate on every political fault in Pakistan over the past few months. They are clearly hard-core Qutbists, and you see over the past years how many tens of thousands of Muslims have died at the hands of the followers of the Qutbists.

  6. Thanks all for your comments here. I notice that some of you guys are writing God as G_d as if its an obscene word and should not be spelled correctly. Pakistan was created for Muslims and there is no law there against Islam under the constitution. Under this law, Adam, peace be upon him is a prophet, and so is Jesus, and many others. Scantly clothed men and women are an afront to anyone but to do that with Adam and Eve is an insult to all humanity. I think the magazine should apologize to all humanity for what it did.

  7. Charles, the magazine already did apologize. To some G-D is never spelled out, and they find it offensive if you do spell it fully out. Another belief, but the people who would prefer that G-D never be profaned by spelling out his name on something that is temporary or which might become destroyed do not issue death threats over it.

  8. “I think the magazine should apologize to all humanity for what it did.”

    I am a member of humanity and a Christian and I am not THE LEAST offended because I am also an adult and capable of allowing other adults the freedom to believe whatever they wish.

    Besides, it’s not like they used “Adam and Eve” in those pictures since we have no idea what either of them looked like! That picture clearly has both of them with belly buttons and if you think really hard about it, Adam and Eve probably didn’t have them.

    What about the “No compulsion in Islam” that is so highly touted by most muslims? If you can’t force someone to be muslim, you can’t force them to appease your ‘sensabilities’ either.

    If they don’t believe as you, then they will not hold as sacred what you do.

    Point in fact, the above comment about how we spell G-d. You write it out entirely. I find that offensive, yah? So you should be forced now to write G-d because you are breaking something I hold sacred. In fact, if you don’t write G-d as I do, I’m going to call for your death for insulting my beliefs and my religion.

    Now, …. does that sound AT ALL realistic or logical? Does that sound like someone who believes that all people have the right to chose what they believe and follow how they feel is right? Does that sound like a religion that encourages peace? love? No compulsion?

    Or does that sound like a little child who cries because it can’t get its way, who throws a tantrum because someone else gets to do something it can’t, who wants everyone to do exactly what it does and nothing more or less because it can’t stand to have another person not follow its own beliefs.

    When people are so determined that nothing exist that could possibly offend them in any way, it only proves just how thin and fragile their own beliefs are.

    I am a Chrisitan and I live in America, I am surrounded daily by things that either go against my faith or by people who belittle or distain my belief, by books that write “blasphemies” or by movies that praise sin.

    Yet I am still a Christian and I hold to my beliefs and what another person does or doesn’t do has no bearing on my faith or my relationship to G-d.

    So I’ll repeat, be more worried about what you are doing than what another is doing. Leave them in G-d’s hands. Be much more concerned about the bad name that fellow Muslims bring to Islam than about what non muslims do or don’t do.

  9. Elengil,

    Very well said! Kudos to you. I wanted to add more, but can’t …cuz you said all I would ever want to on the topic, and in a much better manner. : )

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