Monday, July 06, 2009

Neda Soltan

This from Robert Spencer at Jihad Watch:
This is the poor young woman who was shot dead by Iranian security forces, and whose bleeding face became an image of the brutality and humanity of the mullahs. Now it turns out the Neda Soltani was a Christian -- a telling indication that the analysts who dismissed the protesters as simply wanting more Sharia, or better Sharia, or Sharia with a different face, were wrong: it just wasn't that simple.

It is also telling that the cross around her neck was cropped out when this photo circulated around the world.
For example:
How important is it that this young woman was a Christian? At one level, of course, it isn't important. Whatever her religion or lack of religion, her life was precious, and it was savagely taken from her. But neither can the fact that her Christian faith has quietly emerged subsequently be regarded as insignificant. Who can doubt that she would have wanted her crucifix to be recognized by those who mourn her murder and honor her memory? Even beyond that, however, we cannot know how this seemingly little footnote to a heartless killing might, in C. S. Lewis' words, cause death to start working backward.

God works in mysterious ways.



30 comments:

Gil Bailie said...

Kevin posted a comment, which I tried to publish from my cell phone, but I accidentally hit the reject link. I don't know how to reverse that, so I've copied Kevin's comment. Here it is:

Gil,
Indeed this is something to ask. Did anyone notice the crucifix before printing her photo or was it cropped simply for space?
I'm wondering if she was listed anywhere as a Muslim because she was wearing a head-scarf? I'll have to look through some sources and see if this came up anywhere else.
Thanks Gil.
Ad Astra Per Aspera,
Kevin

Dean said...

All I know for certain is that I hate the bastards that did this to her. So much for my Christian charity. Assuming that is a crucifix she was wearing, it is not the only jewelry she wore. She also dyed her hair and loved western style clothes like many young women in Iran. And, to complicate things further, there is a second woman, Neda Soltani, who is very much alive, and looks enough like Soltan to be confused with her. Soltani.

The question is: was she wearing a cross at the time she was shot? Or was she wearing any jewelry at all? Would she have been shot in either case? The argument that she was shot for wearing a Christian crucifix seems weak. The footage doesn't reveal any. There were two different films, shot at two different angles. Her boyfriend believes she was picked out in advance by paramilitary marksmen before being shot; others suggest a plot by hezbollah and Hamas snipers who trained in the Bekaa valley. As soon as these conspiratorial webs start being spun, my B.S. detector goes into full operational mode. If she was shot by a member of the Basij because someone noticed a crucifix around her neck in an Islamic environment roiling with hatred, suspicion, repression and political and religious warfare, converting her death into a tableaux of Christian martyrdom may be premature, and even (as you've suggested) irrelevant. No one could have anticipated her being there. She simply got stuck in traffic on a hot day. She got out of the car to see what was going on, and was shot almost immediately. She had no interest in politics, and though she was upset about the obvious vote theft, she did not show up in the area to protest; she merely got stuck in the crowd.

It's enough to me that her name means "divine calling" in Persian. The name Neda means "The Call" in Farsi. She was studying Islamic philosophy at a branch of Tehran’s Azad University, so if she harbored a yearning for Christian study, she was wise not to show it. In any case, it's a mute point. She was a daughter, sister and friend, a music and travel lover, a beautiful young woman in the prime of her life. She is dead. Her death means the same whether she was a Christian, a Muslim or a non-believer. It's a tragedy in either case.

I've written to Snopes.com in the hope they can shed further light on the subject.

Li said...

The photo of Neda doesn't show clearly if it is a cross, crucifix or other thing, it might be some other shapes because only part of it is shown behind her shirt. It seems like cross but we can not confirm that because the whole shape is not shown and not clear in this photo. I doubt that she was Christian but as you all said, no matter what she was, she is a human and I am really sad for her death in such a cruel way.

Mike O'Malley said...

Yankel, a commenter over at Jihad Watch asks, For me the question is: Was she wearing a crucifix that was visible (from say, a sniper's telescope) on the day she was shot?

She was shot right through the heart.


That’s a good question. It is pretty clear from the photo available at Jihad Watch that this young woman was wearing some kind of cross. I’ve heard for years that many young Iranians have had their fill of Islamic brutality and idiocy and that many have converted to Christianity. Obtaining hard information about the extent of such conversions seems impossible as one might expect in a country where conversion out of Islam can earn one the death penalty.
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Say Gil, I just finished reading what might be an important essay by Dr. Girard in the August/September issue of First Things. This is the lead essay in the issue. It is entitled “On War and Apocalypse” and focuses on the 19th century work, “On War” by Carl von Clausewitz. Girard discusses a law of “escalation to extremes”. In which of Girard’s earlier works in this concept introduced and developed.

Thank you

Mike

Mike O'Malley said...

Yankel, a commenter over at Jihad Watch asks, For me the question is: Was she wearing a crucifix that was visible (from say, a sniper's telescope) on the day she was shot?

She was shot right through the heart.


That’s a good question. It is pretty clear from the photo available at Jihad Watch that this young woman was wearing some kind of cross. I’ve heard for years that many young Iranians have had their fill of Islamic brutality and idiocy and that many have converted to Christianity. Obtaining hard information about the extent of such conversions seems impossible as one might expect in a country where conversion out of Islam can earn one the death penalty.
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Say Gil, I just finished reading what might be an important essay by Dr. Girard in the August/September issue of First Things. This is the lead essay in the issue. It is entitled “On War and Apocalypse” and focuses on the 19th century work, “On War” by Carl von Clausewitz. Girard discusses a law of “escalation to extremes”. In which of Girard’s earlier works in this concept introduced and developed.

Thank you

Mike

Li said...

Comment on mike's opinion,

There is no brutality or idiocy in Islam, the Arabic word "Islam" came from "salam" which means “peace” and only individuals who act in wrong way give the wrong image to Muslims not to Islam but the close minded think it is Islam
in addition to that, when violence and terrorism occurred from any other non Muslim, most of non Muslims say it is violence and terrorism but when it happens from Muslim, most of non Muslims say it is Islam!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You first read the right books about the correct Islam from the right sources then give your comments.

Mike O'Malley said...

I’m sorry Li.. I do not wish to offend, but you are wrong and your error is quite meaningful. Let’s go to Wikipedia, which appears to be monitored by Islamic activists to insure that it presents positive view of the religion of Islam.

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Wikipedia:
Etymology and meaning
The word Islam is a verbal noun originating from the triliteral root s-l-m, and is derived from the Arabic verb Aslama, which means "to accept, surrender or submit."
&

Islam "piety, faith"
The word إسلام Islām is a verbal noun derived from s-l-m, meaning "submission" (i.e. entrusting one's wholeness to another) "One who submits" is signified by the participle مسلم, Muslim (fem. مسلمة, muslimah).\ as an action of returning to God—more than just a verbal affirmation of faith.

*

Islam means submission.


Moreover, Li you seem to be acting in an over defensive way. This is what I actually wrote: ”many young Iranians have had their fill of Islamic brutality and idiocy”. This is a true statement. It is a matter of fact and akin to my pastor’s internal critique of the “corruption” and “stupidity” in that “we all observe in the Catholic Church”. We get that particular critique in the homily several times a year … every year.

As for brutality, what Li, do you think lapidation is if not brutal? See The Stoning of Soraya M. This religious practice was common in Judaism at a time and it is practiced in Iran today as is the practice of public execution by hanging of young males accused of homosexuality.

Mike O'Malley said...

BTW Li you instruct me and say (I) should “first read the right books about the correct Islam from the right sources then give your comments”.

I read translations of primary Islamic historical documents as time allows.

On occasion, Li, I have had the opportunity to have listened in on notable Iman trained in Saudi Arabia lecturing about “correct Islam” to closed Muslim’s only audiences.

Can you list for me your opinion of the:

1)- the right books about the correct Islam,

2)- the right sources (for study of Islam)

LINA said...

I will get back to you Mike shortly.
and remember that you discribed Islam as it has idiocy and brutality which are not true.

Mike O'Malley said...

LINA said...
I will get back to you Mike shortly.
and remember that you discribed Islam as it has idiocy and brutality which are not true.


No I did not. I described what I’ve heard. Recall this is what I wrote, “I’ve heard for years that many young Iranians have had their fill of Islamic brutality and idiocy and that many have converted to Christianity.” Please read with more care. Otherwise you may come across as over defensive or as argumentative. I try to be succinct when I write so as not to make what I write unreadable with many qualifiers and caveats.

Now let us also be clear that I do find brutality in Islam. Idiocy is another matter. I’d probably labor to find different terms for what many young Iranians may view as idiocy. But then I might well instead post about al-Ghazālī, occassionalism and the Islamic rejection of Classical Greek philosophy on the grounds that Aristotle, Socrates and other Greek writers were non-believers and thus those who employed their methods and ideas were corrupters of the Islamic faith.

LINA said...

Right The word Islam means submission to God but also has the meaning of peace that you are submitted to God feeling peace not feeling that you are forced.

I want first to clarify something
Lapidation which is used in Islam is a kind of punishment against the man/woman who is married and has a sexual relation with another woman/man not his/her wife/husband but this punishment takes place under the following conditions:
- that four trustful adults should not be having mental problem saw them (this is to make sure that it happened and not to be unfair with him/her)
- or his/her wife/husband saw her/him unless the other one swear to God that he/she did not have such relation.
- it should be complete sexual process.
when the conditions are complete in this case the lapidation should take place,
the reason for this kind of punishment that this act destroys the trust between the couple who are married which means destroying the family
and when having this act in the society this affect the kinship not only when it happens between married person and other person not his wife/husband but also when happens between non married couples because this causes children with unidentified fathers
but lapidation is only when the person is married
you may feel it is brutality but when you think that this punishment will stop some persons of doing this act the result will be a great benefit to all people including those persons then a great benefit to all society. Islam is for all not only some individuals who want to do what they want to do without thinking of others
the punishment is Islam is according to how bad the wrong action is.
Many people will never do this even if no punishment because they are good but other people are bad in this situation this punishment for them to let them think before they do it not after they do. If they think that they will be stoned to death they will stop doing it.
Why in Saudi Araibia (where you stayed for a while) the steeling is very very little, because bad people who do not have fear from God and only have fear from punishment know very well that they will lose their hands for good if they steel
This kind of punishment for bad people who do not have fear from God and when someone has no fear from God he can do any thing bad if there is no deterrent punishment.

I will get the books names and get back to you.

Doughlas Remy said...

Lina, thanks for sharing your thoughts about the meaning of “Islam” and the stoning of adulteresses.

“Submission” is clearly the primary meaning of “Islam,” and peace is a derivative meaning. (Peace is derivative from submission, presumably...) This concept is not unfamiliar to Christianity.

I dislike the word “lapidation.” It makes a brutal sacrificial ritual sound like a jewelry-making technique. “Stoning” is much more honest; it at least reminds us that the human victim is repeatedly struck with heavy stones (usually about the size of paving stones) until she is dead.

Your use of pronouns (his/her, he/she, etc.) in this context gave the impression that both of the adulterous parties are stoned. Is this true? Are both the man and the woman always stoned?

I have read about the punishments for homosexual acts in many Islamic countries. Is it true that homosexuals are also stoned or that they have their anuses glued shut?

I would be interested in knowing if you have ever witnessed a stoning ritual, and what your thoughts about it were. And what are your opinions about the criminalization of homosexuality?

Thank you.

Doughlas Remy
Member, COV&R

Mike O'Malley said...

You’ve a good point Mr. Remy. I should have used the term “stoning”. “Lapidation” is just too bloodless. I'll keep that in mind.

Have you seen The Stoning of Soraya M.?

Doughlas Remy said...

Mr. O'Malley: Yes, I have seen that film, and that's why I knew the approximate size of the stones used to kill the victim. A single one of them, properly aimed, could do the job. I lived in Saudi Arabia for 11 years and could have actually witnessed such events, which were regularly performed in the courtyard of the mosque in Dammam. The Saudis were not at all ashamed of these practices and did not care if Westerners saw them. And, as you have probably noticed, Lina does not seem at all apologetic about them, though I think I sensed a little defensiveness on her part. I hope she will continue to discuss these practices with non-Muslims.

Mike O'Malley said...

Yes Mr. Remy, Lina doesn't seem at all apologetic about stoning or amputation. She defends both as being good social policy. I too sense defensiveness. Is this because she is uneasy about the brutality? Or is she defensive because she is shamed that others might think that Islam is brutal, or primative? Guilt or shame? One also wonders whether Lina wants me to think well of Islam or simply to speak well of Islam.

In any case I'm going to try to get to see The Stoning of Soraya M. this weekend if time permits

LINA said...

Hi Mike and Remy,

I will continue discussing this issue with you but I am little busy and have no enough time, but quickly now I want to confirm to Remy regarding his inquiry "Your use of pronouns (his/her, he/she, etc.) in this context gave the impression that both of the adulterous parties are stoned. Is this true? Are both the man and the woman always stoned?"

Yes true man and women should be stoned to death (if each of them is married) both did the crime and both are equal then they should be stoned to death, ofcourse under the conditions I mentioned before .

I’ve never witnessed a stoning, and frankly I do not want to, yes frankly I say I do not think I can do it.

For homosexual, I have to check first whether the punishment is stoning.

The homosexual is against the nature of the human and the negatives are many, and it is a big guilt in Islam maybe more than being committed adultery.


Regarding Mike comments that I am defensive, yes I am because you are attacking Islam in a very cool way and I am feeling that you want to do more damages to the image of Islam like others (Muslims and non Muslims) did and who are doing and who will do in the future.

I am not shame about any thing in Islam and not shame that other people say bad about Islam, Islam was, still, will always be targeted, and this is true, but Muslims are requested to explain the truth because this is their duty towards God.

I can speak about anything else in Islam not punishment for example (description of paradise in ISlam) and make you feel that Islam is easy, or at least I deny the truth of stoning to attract you to another issue in Islam but I want to say the truth even if t is punishment.

And you “Mike” spoke about Islam in its absence, Islam can not argue with you but Muslims should defend their religion and please note that Islam sent to Human from the creator of the Human (Allah) which means (GOD).

When I said remember that you described Islam that it has brutality and idiocy, I did not wish to warn or something like that but I really mean that you remember yourself that you said so and think deeply about it.

you want to think well or bad about Islam this is up to you.
If you speak bad also up to you but as long as I have read your comments about Islam and describing it as it has brutality, I must defend and explain.


Still not done but will get back to you.

Li said...

the shame is to have adulterer and adulteress in the society
shame when we have no morals in the society as morals are very important and essential in Islam
shame when the trust between the wife and husband is destroyed
shame when someone grow up and doesn’t know who is his/her father or even mother just because simply parents were selfish because they wanted to have fun!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

stoning is the fair treatment to this kind of crime, maybe you are thinking brutality because you maybe thinking that this action is not that much ugly as Islam consider it but you see the stoning very ugly and brutal although Islam consider this crime as ugly as murder and more than murder

I need you think why in the societies where no stoning applied; this kind of crime is happening every second?
No fear from God + no fear from punishment

Dean said...

Hello Lina,

First off, thank you for participating in this forum. I suspect it is difficult for you, but the additional perspective is welcomed. I have to tell you, it's not God I fear when I see human depravity at work. You say that you have never seen a stoning, Lina. May I ask why? Does the thought of watching someone die at the hands of your fellow human beings cause you distress? It should. What if someone were to accuse you of some violation of Islamic law? Take it a step further: What if the accusations against you were false but your pleadings of innocence fell on deaf ears? Would you have any reticence about the nature of public stoning then? I fear the reason I'm not a Vegan is because I've never had the courage to go to a slaughter house and watch the animals that provide my food being killed and expect it not to change me. There is something at the center of the whole business of killing that is indefensible, whether human or animal. But it's also almost intractable, which makes it all the more difficult but necessary that we learn how to repent of the violence of our justice. And please believe me, it's not because I think for a moment that Islam is more corrupt or less honorable than any other faith. But because fear, as the scriptures say is only the beginning of wisdom. A wisdom that is doomed to perish in its own grief if its not supplanted by charity and forgiveness.

Murder always takes place in the darkness. It's people blinding themselves to their own culpability for actions that they refuse to see clearly. We are all fallen creatures. All of us. We are also families of the Book. That's why it's always people acting in God or Allah or Jehovah or Yahweh's name and on his behalf that I truly fear. From the God of the Universe I expect mercy and forgiveness because he has proclaimed and promised it. In my tradition, he died on a cross to procure it while those who killed him attested to their innocence in the very act of murdering him. To expect less is to demand a small and cruel God which you can read about in the candid and brutally frank explorations of human cruelty depicted not only in the Bible, but in the Torah and the Koran as well. To act on behalf of that God is to elevate criminality and brutality to the level of blind worship. To never challenge that brutality is to live in fearful ignorance of its central truth: The cruelty originates with us, and we use God as a convenient handle to deflect our shame.

Christianity proclaims that murder is at the center of history, that it is the engine of cultural and historical life, that we mark our calendars by it, that we proclaim an oral and written history based on it. You can then see how the apparently trivial and mundane event of a single murder of an anonymous carpenter from a small village in Palestine is scapegoated by an angry mob of "righteous" people ready to heap their shame and guilt on another, and how this becomes central to the meaning of our lives. Especially when the victim, against all expectations and angry denials of the mob, proclaims that he is God and that he forgives them. How do we ever live that down? Except by being more like the one we killed.

May Allah embrace you always and cherish you.

Dean

Li said...

Lina & Li are the same person
I was waiting the question “You say that you have never seen a stoning, Lina. May I ask why?” which Dean asked me and I am really happy that I am asked this question.

First, I do not talk about the case when the person is innocent; I am talking about the judgment in Islam for adultery.

Simply I can not witness stoning because it is hard for me to see someone dying and hard for me to see someone dying in such way at the same time no one wish to be stoned but if someone is going to do the guilt and he doesn’t have fear from God, if he is sure that he definitely will be stoned because of this guilt, then he should stop.

This is the point I am trying to clarify.

God is the most Merciful and forgives human
God is the one who put this judgment to adultery not the Human
because God created Human and Knows how should the human act and how should be treated in all cases and for all times
but Human himself will never know all what God knows about the human.


I know this page is for Neda Soltan and (May God have mercy on her) I really do not want to be away from the main article.

But I spoke about this because while I was reading the article I found false image for Islam, that’s why I wanted to clarify and do my duty.

And I am not requesting any of you to agree with me or not, I am satisfied with what I said.

Thanks for all for reading my words and wish that no one is disturbed.

Dean said...

Hi Lina,
I guess at the heart of my question is why would justice be hard to look at if it were truly just? If you ask for perfect justice without mercy, you are asking for death, and that is never easy to look at. The religious leaders of Jesus' day also believed they were doing the will of God. They were prepared to stone a young woman to death who was caught in the act of adultery. Her guilt under the laws of Moses was established. She broke the law, and the penalty was death. If that same woman lived in Tehran today, she would be killed. If she were merely a thief, she would have her hand cut off or worse. Innocence or guilt has nothing to do with it. When Neda and others were shot to death in the street without even so much as the benefit of a trial by the Basij or the ruling clerics and authorities it was because they believed they were doing the will of Allah who rules in the heart of Islam. And yet others, who equally believe in the will of Allah consider that the death of these protesters was a great crime and injustice. How can there be justice when the people are divided about what justice means, and therefore what God means about justice? Is it truly Allah's will that anyone who disagrees with the leadership of the state be put to death for treason? Then there's only one conclusion: many millions should die. But then, that's the history of the human species, everywhere in every place and time. We make history by piling up corpses.

But there is a better way, and it has nothing to do with religious difference or dogma. When Jesus confronted the Basij and clerics of his day (the Pharisees and the high priests of the Sanhedrin) his response was to say, "let whoever is sinless stone her to death", and the young woman walked away forgiven, because the men all dropped their stones and walked away knowing that they themselves were guilty of violating their own laws in hundreds of different ways. There's the strong suggestion that some of her accusers may even have been with the woman sexually themselves, and sought to eliminate the one witness to their own crimes by killing her. So much for justice and equality under the law. They certainly didn't want to risk being caught in their own lies before this man who had a reputation for swaying crowds with his miracles and his wisdom. In doing this, Jesus was proclaiming that the heart of the law is mercy, that none of us can stand acquitted before our own conscience without the unearned love of the one who created love itself. In the Christian view, Christ has taken the impossible demands of the law away and replaced them with the mercy and grace bestowed by a loving God who desires faith rather than sacrifice and perfect obedience.

Neda Soltan wasn't even killed for adultery. She was killed for merely being in the wrong place at the wrong time, and standing on the street. She was murdered. In cold blood. By people who genuinely believed they were doing the will of Allah (otherwise they would have felt guilty about the very real consequences and would have been too frightened to pull the trigger) If Allah cannot convince people of the wrongness of their actions through threats of punishment, then how can the law alone hold them accountable for them, unless something greater is written on their hearts?

Mike O'Malley said...

Hello Lina!

Hello Dean!

I've been lurking on this thread for a few days because I didn't want to disrupt the excellent theme Dean had introduced.


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Dean said...
...to never challenge that brutality is to live in fearful ignorance of its central truth: The cruelty originates with us, and we use God as a convenient handle to deflect our shame.

Christianity proclaims that murder is at the center of history, that it is the engine of cultural and historical life, that we mark our calendars by it, that we proclaim an oral and written history based on it. You can then see how the apparently trivial and mundane event of a single murder of an anonymous carpenter from a small village in Palestine is scapegoated by an angry mob of "righteous" people ready to heap their shame and guilt on another, and how this becomes central to the meaning of our lives. Especially when the victim, against all expectations and angry denials of the mob, proclaims that he is God and that he forgives them. How do we ever live that down? Except by being more like the one we killed.


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Lina, I don't know to what extent you are familiar with either Gil Bailie and Rene Girard. But this should be a good place to discuss such themes.

It seems that ALL culture, ALL myth, ALL religion, ALL ritual and ALL prohibition-taboo is based upon a founding murder of a scapegoat/victim. In terms of the American experience this can be thought of as a lynching. With one notable historical exception the innocence and the humanity of the scapegoat/victim is effaced, hidden, omitted from the conscious memory of the lynching. For example in more contemporary terms, the KKK would justify the lynching of a Black American scapegoat-victim, no less than Mexican Communists would justify executing Catholic nuns by firing squad, no less than Uthman perhaps justified the mass execution of some hundreds of Jews, no less than the Jewish high priestly families justified the judicial lynching of itinerant rabbi from Galilee, no less than villagers justified the stoning of an adulteress. The community would then bond around a common sense of power and peace from the experience of a "righteous" killing of a purported dangerous bad person who threatened social unity. In each case, the innocence and the humanity of the victim was masked and hidden and omitted from the conscious public justification for the lynching except is one rather unique historical instance when the innocence of that itinerant rabbi was loudly and publicly proclaimed after the murder and the process of scapegoat/victimage began to breakdown;. We can now begin to see the innocence and the humanity of the victim as in each of the examples I've provided above.

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Written below is a follow up to an earlier post:
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~freindly tease~ It's been quite a while since anyone said I was "cool"! Thank you!~/friendly tease~ ;-)

LINA said...
Regarding Mike comments that I am defensive, yes I am because you are attacking Islam in a very cool way and I am feeling that you want to do more damages to the image of Islam like others (Muslims and non Muslims) did and who are doing and who will do in the future.


Without doubt I am analytical, rational and I synthesize. I'm intense, on occasion passionate and rarely if ever cold. I am unusually well informed on certain topics for a layman. If we discuss one of those topics feel free to ask questions and take what I say under advisement. Think about it perhaps ... and do your "homework". I do. If anything however, Ontology, the study of the origins and existence of things, has been my interest for many a year.
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LINA said...
And you "Mike" spoke about Islam in its absence, Islam can not argue with you but Muslims should defend their religion and please note that Islam sent to Human from the creator of the Human (Allah) which means (GOD).


Hmmm, yes "Islam" is an abstraction. It is a useful abstraction, but abstractions can't argue back. Only people can.

*

Thank you & be well

Mike O'Malley said...

Dean said...
Neda Soltan wasn't even killed for adultery. She was killed for merely being in the wrong place at the wrong time, and standing on the street. She was murdered. In cold blood.


That is not necessarily true Dean. If at the time of the shooting the Basij had reason to believe that Neda Soltan was Christian, she many well have been executed for violating the protocols of "Dhimmi contract". Under Sharia non-Muslims living in Muslim countries are forbidden to publicly criticize Islam, Muhammad, the Koran or Islamic governance in any way under penalty of death. They can't even complain or petition in protest about Islamic human and civil rights abuses against their persons or communities without risking the annihilation of their family or local community. If so the Basij gunman may have selectively targeted Miss Soltan because he was offended by a Christian's criticism of Islam and because Sharia gave him a "moral" license to kill a "kaffir" in such circumstances.

Dean said...

Hello Mike,
According to witnesses present at the time, she got out of her car because it was oppressively hot that day and because the crowds who were gathering in protest to the election blocked traffic by their heavy numbers. The idea that she was singled out from a crowd of thousands for special treatment is speculative at best. How would they know she was going to be there, when she herself didn't know she would be there? She was on her way to the main protest site, which was further along the route. Was the Marksman in radio contact with others along the street? "Here she comes! Get ready!!" Unlikely.

According to the doctor who tried to save Neda's life, nearby members of the crowd pulled a man attempting to flee on his motorcycle and were shouting: "We got him, we got him," disarmed him, obtained his identity card and identified him as a member of the Basij militia. The militiaman was shouting, "I didn't want to kill her." The protesters let him go, but they kept the alleged killer's identity card and took many photographs of him.

Here's a word for word account from Dr. Arash Hejazi. He is now living in Britain, and is too fearful to return to Iran under the present circumstances. I have little doubt that he's a bigger target now than Neda Soltan ever was.

Dean said...

The Daily Dish has just published the personal I.D. card and photo of Neda's suspected Killer. Page link goes to Dr. Arash's page (written in Persian) You can translate the page using Google's Persian Alpha translation software here.

Dean said...

The Daily Dish has just published the personal I.D. card and photo of Neda's suspected Killer. Page link goes to Dr. Arash's page (written in Persian) You can translate the page using Google's Persian Alpha translation software here.

Mike O'Malley said...

Thanks for the additional information Dean. I had imagined a that Neda Soltan might have been killed by a sniper. You have persuaded me that is unlikely. If Dr. Arash Hejazi is correct, then I expect that Ms. Soltan was targeted among the demonstrators primarily because she was female and secondarily because she was young.

Mike O'Malley said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mike O'Malley said...

Lina:

I’m sorry that I have been too pressed for time to response at quickly as I’d wish to, but your response has been on my mind.

Lina you wrote: God is the most Merciful and forgives human
God is the one who put this judgment to adultery not the Human
because God created Human and Knows how should the human act and how should be treated in all cases and for all times
but Human himself will never know all what God knows about the human.


Help me understand. It seems that you are reasoning something like this:
• Allah is the most merciful and forgives humans
• Allah’s mercy and forgiveness are entirely good
• Brutality is bad and a negative attribute of any god
• Allah orders the stoning of adulterers
• Allah’s judgments are just and entirely good
Therefore:
• Stoning of adulterers in accordance with Sharia effects Allah’s mercy and forgiveness
• The act of stoning of adulterers in accordance with Sharia is not brutal because brutality is negative and such a stoning effects Allah’s mercy and forgiveness

Your reasoning would seem to extend as follows:
Since
• Allah is the most merciful and forgives humans
and since
• Allah’s mercy and forgiveness are entirely good
and since
• Brutality is bad and a negative attribute of any god
Therefore
If I think that stoning of adulterers in accordance with Sharia is a brutal act:
• It is my personal opinion, Allah is not brutal,
and
* I am wrong, Allah is not brutal but is most merciful,
and
• I am wrong, the act of stoning in accordance with Sharia is not brutal,
And perhaps:
• I offend Allah and Islam because I say that stoning in accordance with Sharia is a brutal act.

Do I have your reasoning right Lina? If not, can you show me how I’ve got it wrong?

.

This would seem to bring us back to a discussion of the Classical Greek heritage which the Nestorian Christians conveyed to Islam, to Ibn Rushd (Averroes), and to Al Ghazali.

This would also seem to bring us back to a discussion of the Classical Greek heritage, to Averroes (Ibn Rushd), to Moses Maimonides and Thomas Aquinas.

ali said...

Dear Friends,

Neda was shot by one of the security guards, not because she was wearing jewelry.

Her only crime was that she was in the street while there was a protest against the government. They shot her to make the others fear.
This is the action of the dictatorship regime that is ruling in Iran.
They arrest the students, kill them and now there are many reports that the boys and girls are raped in prison.

We have started a Charity in the name of Neda and we want to support the victims as much as we can.

Wish us luck.

ali said...

Dear Friends,

What the Mullahs doing in Iran has nothing to do with Islam.

these Mullahs are the first enemy of Islam and the Iranian people.
It is a grave mistake if anyone thinks the mullahs are representing Islam.

If you may know, the people in Iran are Chanting "Allah-Oh-Akbar". This is an Arabic expression of the God is the Greatest.

They are confronting the mullahs with their night chanting on the roofs, which means they clearly differentiate Islam from the Mullahs.