From CNN.com today:
“Shivering in pain and calling for her mother, Shamsia’s hands shake uncontrollably, her eyes swollen shut and her skin peeling from terrible acid burns.The 19-year-old was heading to school along with her 16-year-old sister, Atifa, in Kandahar, Afghanistan. We saw two men up ahead staring at us. One was standing off and the other one was on their motorcycle. I wanted to go but there was a black object in his hand and he took it out,” Atifa says.
The girls thought it was a water pistol. “He grabbed my arm and asked, ‘Will you be going to school anymore?’ He then threw acid on my sister and threw acid on me,” Shamsia says. Atifa was burned so badly that her red scarf melted onto her dark brown hair. Parents were so frightened that many students were kept at home for weeks afterward.
It’s not the first time girls in Afghanistan have been targeted for attending school. The Taliban have been responsible for dozens of attacks on girls’ schools and female teachers, but even they condemned this attack.”
What kind of creature is so detached from his humanity that he can throw acid onto the face of a young child and believe that he is doing a blessed act? While much of this has to do with the cultural dysfunction of Afghanistan and the decidedly unspiritual agenda of the Taliban, the roots of this barbaric behavior is found within the confused and vague scriptures of the Qur’an. It is this same fanatical confusion that enables honor killings in Pakistan and suicide bombings in London, Madrid, Indonesia and many other parts of the world. The word “martyr” has become the most abused word in the English language, as it now implies that a Muslim’s death is a good thing, especially if it was caused by a personal act which took the lives of innocent women and children who were not Muslims. Most Muslims will argue vehemently that their holy book is a guide to living a peaceful, tolerant and compassionate life. The problem is, of course, that an increasing number of Muslims have a found a lot of wiggle room in the passages dealing with martydom and when it is acceptable to kill. These ambiguities have opened the door to fanatics and murderers who harbor nostalgic dreams about a return to the Dark Ages. One has to wonder how many children have to be disfigured and how many young women will have to be stoned to death before the Islamic world unites itself and condemns these horrific religious traditions. As Edmund Burke once stated so eloquently, “All that is necessary for evil to succeed is that good men do nothing.” Right now, the vast majority of Muslims are remaining quiet, probably out of fear of reprisal. Until they find the necessary courage to face the demons that are being produced by their religion, we will continue to read these terrible stories.