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Attacks on Wafa Sultan

Andy Bostom blogged that Wafa Sultan is what a real Arab reformer should sound like.  MEMRI is reporting on  her payback for being so open-minded.  Once labeled a heretic or infidel, Islam prescibes death as the remedy.

Following the release of this clip, Bassam Darwish, editor of the reformist website www.annaqed.com, posted a February 28, 2006 report by AFP stating that a Friday sermon in Damascus had harshly criticized her appearance on Al-Jazeera: "[Syrian human rights activist Anwar] Al-Bouni reports that one of the sheikhs described Wafa Sultan as 'an infidel,' accusing her of 'harming Islam more than it was harmed by the cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad, recently published in European newspapers.'

"According to Al-Bouni, 'the Syrian authorities began to use the weapon of the official religion as a new tool to oppress society... It is no longer enough for them to arrest activists, to terrorize them, and to prevent them from traveling, but now they recruit against them the pulpits of takfir [accusing other Muslims of heresy] and takhwin [accusing Muslims of treachery].' He described this policy as dangerous and destructive." [1]

The following are excerpts from an interview with Wafa Sultan that aired on Al-Jazeera TV on February 21, 2006. It is followed by excerpts from a debate in which she participated, in a talk show that aired on Al-Jazeera TV on July 26, 2005.

In the past, MEMRI has reported on Islamist threats to reformists, see for example:

Saudi Doctorate Encourages the Murder of Arab Intellectuals, January 12, 2006, Special Dispatch Series - No. 1070, http://memri.org/bin/articles.cgi?Page=subjects&Area=reform&ID=SP107006 .

Arab Intellectuals: Under Threat by Islamists, November, 23, 2005, Inquiry and Analysis Series - No. 254,

http://memri.org/bin/articles.cgi?Page=subjects&Area=reform&ID=IA25405.

Accusing Muslim Intellectuals of Apostasy, February 18, 2005, Inquiry and Analysis - No. 208,

http://memri.org/bin/articles.cgi?Page=archives&Area=ia&ID=IA20805.