Police In Indonesia Capture Dozens of “Punks” For “Spiritual Cleansing” In The Name Of Islam

My last column discussed how the Obama Administration is continuing its dangerous effort to appease Muslim allies in establishing limitations on free speech to combat “intolerance” for religion. Yesterday, there was an interesting article from Indonesia where police raided punk parties and took kids into custody to be “spiritually cleansed” in the name of Sharia law. Police insisted that the shaving of their heads and other abuses were perfectly consistent with human rights law because it was benefiting the subjects.


The youths were shaved and stripped of necklaces and other items before being thrown into their “spiritual” cleansing baths to promote strict moral values in Aceh. Aceh has seen a long line of such religious crackdowns since it embraced Sharia law (here and here and here).

Many youths came far distances for the show only to be thrown into vans to be abused by police.
While Nur Kholis, a national human commissioner, deplored the detentions. Police chief Iskandar Hasan insisted “We’re not violating human rights. We’re just trying to put them back on the right moral path.” That statement captures the problem faced by civil libertarians in many Muslim countries. Police and government officials disregard human rights objections because any compelled adherence to Islam is by definition beneficial to the individual. This warped view of human rights was embraced in 1990 by the members of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation when they adopted the Cairo Declaration, which rejected core provisions of the U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights and affirmed that free speech and other rights must be consistent with “the principles of the sharia,” or Islamic law.

Source: Telegraph

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13 thoughts on “Police In Indonesia Capture Dozens of “Punks” For “Spiritual Cleansing” In The Name Of Islam

  1. It’s hilarious to read all the self-righteous leftists here spouting off about the “fundie right” – you’re all just about a millimeter from saying

    “If there’s one thing I HATE, it’s intolerance!”

    Which, of course, is what our esteemed President is saying, but with 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition in the hands of the Homeland Security department. During the sequester. When we can’t afford to run the traffic control towers. And the Justice Department is revoking the probation of guys who post rotten movies about Islam on YouTube – but not before their boss claims a dumb YouTube video caused riots which had obviously been planned weeks before the movie was posted.

    Sleep, two, three, four… was the title of a ‘young adult’ novel by John Neufeld (1971, 191pp, Avon Books, USA) in which he had America dozing off while Nixon’s high priests turned America into Nazi Germany.with better oral hygiene.

    I wonder if Neufeld would have had the intellectual honesty to recognize that his novel’s plot is just now being realized… of course, all in the name of tolerance and unity – as we all get behind the President… or else.

  2. Correction of 3:43 post:

    “I tend to think the US should NOT meddle in the affairs of other nations generally, ; )

  3. ” establishing limitations on free speech to combat “intolerance” for religion. ”

    I was going to comment about this on yesterdays post about Obama going down this tricky and dangerous path . . .

    to wit: there is no simple way to characterize this abomination. A war against ‘intolerance’. Sounds great until you get down into the weeds and examine what is behind the verbiage. Fine for us legal types that love to parse awkward, arcane and complex construction. But not so good for the public at large.

    I hesitated to post yesterday because I really haven’t come up with some succinct construction that gives an affirmative impression of why what the administration is pushing is bad, and does so on one level — and so can grab the attention.

    Maybe something like: “Obama siding with religious despots against free speech and freedom of religion” Naaah. Not much better.

    Anyway, it would be great to find a simple and clear way to express this important idea because Obama, intentionally or not, is using the confusion of language to pursue ideas that have no place in American foreign policy. I tend to think the US should meddle in the affairs of other nations generally, but certainly not in a way that does a doublethink and doublespeak on it’s own citizens.

    Of course, maybe he’s just practicing to gear up for more pandering to the fundie right in this country.

  4. I want to know if the police offered to furnish them with suspenders. I was behind a fellow as he went into a store yesterday, and as I walked across the parking lot, I would not have wagered he could make it all the way to the door before his pants fell down around his ankles. They were a substantial percentage of the way that direction as he walked.

  5. AY,

    As usual your comment is intriguing and thoght provoking. I agree with you completely that there is scant difference between this case and many of the ways that we deal with what we consider problems. I think I just foun d a new subject. I want to explore this more.
    I did fail to get the connection between this issue and the selling of e-mail cloning technology. Fill me in if you’ve got a minute.

  6. On this Blawg….I have learned more about some of the more stupid way people interact in the world….It is not just limited to Muslims….They are just the target at present because they are the largest of religions….

    This type of behavior is frightening if you think of it…and what are we Americans being told about others…The GOP about the Dems….Our Privacy vs the Governments intrusion on the same…..We are no angles…

    But when we do it it is ok….because we do it….I was hearing “Clean Air” last evening about our companies selling technology to other country’s that has the ability to clone email sent….store it and then it is searchable in any form you want…by date…keyword…sender….something tells me…it is already in use here….I wonder who J. Edgar would have become if he had had this technology….. I think I know what he was…

  7. Remind me to stay out of Aceh. I didn’t realize that shaving my head, against my will will cleanse my soul. Forced religion is so much more enlightening!

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