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February 07, 2006

Cartoon Violence, Not The Fun Kind, Goes Global

It's amazing, isn't it, what unexpected and trivial things cause such massive disruptions.

They cannot be appeased:

The United Nations evacuated staff and NATO peacekeepers rushed reinforcements to a northwest Afghan town after deadly fighting erupted during a protest against cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad, officials said.

At least one person was killed and dozens injured in the latest Afghan violence, which came as angry protests spread across Asia and as Denmark urged its citizens to leave Indonesia, The Associated Press reported.

...

Tuesday's rioting in the remote town of Maymana was one of about a half-dozen flashpoints that erupted across Afghanistan.

Protesters armed with assault rifles and grenades attacked the NATO base in Maymana, burning an armored vehicle, a U.N. car and guard posts, a doctor at Maymana Hospital told AP.
...

Also Monday, a stampede during a protest in the east African nation of Somalia killed a teenager, AP reported.

Other protests Monday took place in Amman, Tel Aviv, Gaza, Indian-controlled Kashmir, the Indian capital of New Delhi and Kut, a city in southern Iraq where about 5,000 people congregated, burned flags and burned an effigy of the Danish prime minister.

On Tuesday, in the northern Pakistani city of Peshawar, more than 6,000 people demonstrated, chanting slogans against European nations and demanding justice, police said.

The protest was led by the Chief Minister of North West Frontier Province, Mohammad Akram Khan Durani, and several other provincial ministers.

"Hang the man who insulted the prophet," some Pakistani protesters shouted.

Pakistani Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz has issued a statement condemning the publication of the cartoons and expressing concern about controversy.

In Srinagar in Indian-controlled Kashmir, police fired tear gas Tuesday to disperse hundreds of Shiite Muslim protesters. At least six protesters and two police officers were injured, police told AP.

In the southern Philippines, hundreds of Muslims burned a Danish flag.

And in Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim nation, rallies were held in at least four cities Tuesday. Rock-throwing demonstrators have attacked Denmark's diplomatic missions in the sprawling country on a near daily basis.

"The Foreign Ministry recommends that Danes already in Indonesia leave and that those interested in coming postpone their plans," said Niels Erik Anderson, Denmark's ambassador to Indonesia.

Malaysia's prime minister slammed the foreign media and a local daily on Tuesday for running the drawings, one of which shows Mohammed wearing a turban shaped as a bomb.

Iran said it was cutting off all trade with Denmark, and Tehran withdrew its ambassador to Denmark in response.

Demonstrators in the Iranian capital protested outside the Danish Consulate and the Austrian Embassy, tossing Molotov cocktails at the buildings. Austria currently serves as president of the European Union.

Bush is such a dunderhead for repeatedly claiming "they hate our freedoms." Nothing, obviously, could be further from the truth.

Can we now officially retire the lie that this sort of totalitarian theocratic violence is due to poverty or our policy on Israel or our presence in the Gulf or the War in Iraq? Remember, it was a series of cartoons originally intended for a children's book that set off the latest butchery in the name of Peace. (TM) Apparently it doesn't really take all that much to cause "outrage" or freshly-minted "historical grievances."

Coming soon: Lucy is stoned as a whore for both touching a pigskin and then repeatedly embarrassing a man by pulling it away at the last moment.

Correction: As several protestors correct me, the cartoons were not intended for a children's book. They were drawn after a man found himself unable to find a cartoonist willing to provide drawings of Mohammad for a children's book.


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posted by Ace at 11:05 AM

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