Shari'a making inroads in the West
Where has all the sanity gone?
Pakistan recently gave in to the pressure of Islamist militants. Indeed to buy off peace, Pakistani authorities allowed the imposition of Shari'a (Islamic law) in the Swat Valley.
How long the cease-fire will last is anyone's guess. But in any case, Pakistan has allowed a precedent that could extend to other provinces; in fact the Swat Valley is only about 160 kilometers from Islamabad, the capital. But Shari'a is not making inroads only in Pakistan - it is creeping into the West.
One area particularly touched by this phenomenon is the judicial system in Europe. Two recent cases in Italy and France are particularly troublesome.
In Italy, three members of a Brescia-based Maghrebi family (father, mother and eldest son) were accused of beating and sequestering their daughter/sister Fatima because she had wanted to live a "Western" life.
In the first trial, the three were sentenced for sequestration and abuse. The court acknowledged that the teenager had been "brutally beaten up" for having "dated" a non-Muslim and, in general, for "living a life not conforming with the culture" of her family. But on appeal, the family was acquitted because the court deemed that the young woman had been beaten for "her own good."
The Bologna public prosecutor's office then disputed the acquittal of the three accused parties, but the Italian Supreme Court of Cassation dismissed it and ruled in favor of the charged parties.