Third Secular Writer Hacked To Death By Islamic Extremists In Bangladesh

Ananta-Bijoy-Das_3300494iWe have been covering the attacks on secular writers and bloggers by Islamic extremists in Bangladesh. Now a third blogger and secular writer has been murdered by Islamic extremists . The latest victim is Ananta Bijoy Das, a blogger who advocated secularism, was attacked by four masked assailants wielding machetes. The rise of Islamic extremism has alarmed the free speech community in Bangladesh, which sees increasing Islamic orthodoxy in society and intolerance for non-Islamic views.


Das was a 33-year-old banker who wrote about the need for tolerance and the values of a secular state. He was also editor of science magazine “Jukti”, which means “logic”, and on the advisory board of “Mukto Mona” (Free Mind), a website propagating rationalism and opposing fundamentalism that was founded by U.S.-based blogger Avijit Roy. Roy was hacked to death in February and his wife seriously injured by Islamic extremists.

The Islamist group Ansar al-Islam Bangladesh said al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) claimed responsibility for the attack. Das won the annual rationalist award in 2006 for his “deep and courageous interest in spreading secular and humanist ideals and messages.”

Islamic groups have been pushing to make Bangladesh (with 160 million people) the next Sharia-based state imposing Islamic law on everyone regarding of their beliefs. Another Islamic group, Hefazat-e-Islam, has publicly sought the execution of atheists who organized protests against the rise of political Islam. This group led by Islamic seminary teachers led protests against the bloggers in May 2013 that left nearly 50 people dead.

The bravery and sacrifice of men like Das are hard to put into words. In the face of the rising violence and calls for Sharia law, these writers continue to put themselves at risk for their country and the universal right to free speech and free exercise. The hatred of these Islamic extremists are only surpassed by the towering courage of writers like Das.

36 thoughts on “Third Secular Writer Hacked To Death By Islamic Extremists In Bangladesh”

  1. Karen

    You have a habit of distorting what is written by me and others to make a point. It’s the old cow is brown, car is brown, car is cow routine. Read more carefully and balance the meaning with your response. To do this you must rid yourself of preconceived and/or assumed positions of what you are reading as well as any responses waiting in your wings.

  2. Well, I think you have to ask yourself why the murderers are so afraid of “secularism.” I guess you say they are just religious primitives, or maybe they are really smart and realize where all the tolerance and warm fuzziness ends up. Because the West is a pretty good bad example of what comes from all that stuff..

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

  3. Isaac – I am curious why you appear to believe that refusing to participate in a religious ceremony against your will is akin to hacking someone to death. One is not getting involved. The other is murder.

    My own personal guidelines for when a fanatic becomes dangerous is when they try to impose their own beliefs on others, using violence or intimidation. For example, the Spanish Inquisition in which people could be tortured and killed for heresy. Another example is this mob justice when people believe others have insulted their religion or broken Sharia Law. It is the opposite of live and let live.

    People can become dangerous fanatics about anything from politics to sports to religion. When Dodgers fans Sanches and Norwood beat Giants fan Bryan Stow, causing permanent brain damage, for no other reason than the fact that he wore a Giants jersey, they were dangerous sports fanatics.

    And I think that is a good point that emotion divorced from logic or reasoning is also a deciding factor in fanatic violence.

  4. David

    You missed the use of think and feel that was purposefully inserted for your and Nick’s discussion on semantics. The fact that you missed it and went straight to your archaic argument proves my point. We live in the now, not the fairy tale world of the past, Christian and Sharia tailored and perverted for power, and in some cases perverted interpretations of the Constitution.

  5. So Nick and David,

    How do you feel/think about Muslims in America refusing to design a wedding cake for American gays? It’s their extreme Sharia law that promotes the hacking to death of gays. Perhaps they would if they could here. Perhaps if they establish their beliefs with precedents in bakery shops the next move will be, well you get the picture. Which right do ya’ll support first? What if I wanted a cake celebrating the birthday of my pet pig?

    Should these Muslims be thinking about what the Constitution says and the recent laws of America, or feeling like hacking someone to death.

    1. issac wrote: “Should these Muslims be thinking about what the Constitution says and the recent laws of America, or feeling like hacking someone to death.”

      Here we go with the word “feeling” again. Nick addressed this word previously.

      Our Constitution does not protect the act of sodomy anymore than it protects the act of adultery or pederasty. In its original form, it did not protect people from slavery without a constitutional amendment, nor did it protect a woman’s privilege to vote, yet we have Justices on the Supreme Court who think they can find constitutional justification to defend the behavior of sodomy without the need for constitutional amendment.

      Recognizing a business owner’s prerogative not to encourage and celebrate behavior that he considers a capital crime against humanity is not the same thing as allowing him to hack someone to death when he feels like it. Of course that person should recognize the laws of the country he lives within and moderate his behavior accordingly. The power to punish crime resides in the governmental authority not in the individual. But that is the rub. What happens when governmental authority loses its way and creates capricious laws that do not line up with natural law? What happens with the Judiciary charged with interpreting laws overturns laws rightly enacted by the legislative process and thereby creates new law never mentioned in the Constitution? Creating law is a civil duty for which the Judiciary lacks authority. Is that not overstepping their authority? What happens when governmental authority violates laws that the people consider sacred and made by God? For the Muslim, Sharia are complete laws from God that never change. They are eternal and supercede all laws of man. They believe that man’s laws change due to popular opinion and lack the wisdom found in the divinely inspired laws of Sharia. Therefore, when the governmental authority contradicts Sharia, the Muslims lose respect for that government. That is what leads to revolution and the effort to replace that government with one that will respect Sharia.

      The interesting thing here with the so-called “gay rights” issue is that all the major religions of the world have traditionally condemned sodomy. Judaism, Christianity, and Islam originally have been in agreement that fornication, adultery, and sodomy are crimes against one’s own soul. Traditionally, they have prohibited such behavior. The gay activists in front of the U.S. Supreme Court last month took special care to invite speakers from religion. Most of the speakers in support of homosexual marriage were religious, not secular. They paraded out religious leaders from Judaism, Christianity, and Islam to speak in support of homosexuality as being a legitimate expression of love and therefore worthy of being recognized as sacred by the institution of marriage. The more man’s laws contradict God’s laws in the opinion of significant number of the population, the greater will be the push for a new governmental system.

  6. keep telling yourself that islam is a religion of peace and pretty soon they’ll be cutting your throat too

  7. David, thanks. I see how emotion has become elevated in all cultures. You hear so many people start sentences w/ “I feel” instead of “I think.” Now, sometimes “I feel” is the appropriate expression. But, many times they follow “I feel” w/ something that is not about emotion but about facts and logic. It is like saying “I feel 2 plus 2 is really 5..it just feels like 5; not the 4 the white male dominated world has said it is.” Can’t you just picture some folks saying that?

    1. Yes, Nick, I can picture that. Liberals excel with examining issues by how they feel about it. The more I think about what you have said, the more I realize how much emotions dominate over logic in the way people analyze issues. So often it is the emotions that lead them to error. And then when you try to bring them to the logic side, they accuse you of being an insensitive brute, unworthy of their attention.

  8. Here’s a shining example of violence in the name of the world’s greatest Christian nation, USA, USA, USA:

    “It’s been four years since a group of US Navy Seals assassinated Osama bin Laden in a night raid on a high-walled compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan. The killing was the high point of Obama’s first term, and a major factor in his re-election. The White House still maintains that the mission was an all-American affair, and that the senior generals of Pakistan’s army and Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) were not told of the raid in advance. This is false, as are many other elements of the Obama administration’s account. The White House’s story might have been written by Lewis Carroll: would bin Laden, target of a massive international manhunt, really decide that a resort town forty miles from Islamabad would be the safest place to live and command al-Qaida’s operations? He was hiding in the open. So America said.”

    http://www.lrb.co.uk/v37/n10/seymour-m-hersh/the-killing-of-osama-bin-laden

  9. There is a new blog photo up there at the top of the screen. Who are all those fruits with wigs?

  10. Mark another country off the list of places to visit unless you have our military watching your back.

  11. Oh, look, another shining moment for the violence done in the name of extremist Islam.

  12. These people are murderers. Their emotions should not matter anymore. Any act of murder by them should be tantamount to suicide. When a country of 160 million can’t or won’t deal with these people, it is time to worry. I am now seeing the value of religions that teach human dignity, peace and enlightenment.

    1. FogdogSF wrote: “These people are murderers. Their emotions should not matter anymore.”

      What about the others who have not yet murdered? There were no doubt a lot of people patting these killers on the back and telling them, yes, do it, that infidel does not deserve to live. He has murdered many already with his lies, and he will murder many more if he is not stopped. The emotional feedback fuels these things and affects the logic used in justifying their actions.

      A lot of people turn to religion for the emotional feedback the social context provides to them. I think Nick is right on track when he points out that the root of this problem is putting emotions above logic. If it were possible to convince them that logic should rule emotions, then perhaps dialogue could be opened up to convey the value of the free speech principle and reconsider the role of blasphemy laws. It is going to be hard when they are emotionally bound to sacred Scripture like the following passage:

      “Truly, if the Hypocrites, and those in whose hearts is a disease, and those who stir up sedition in the City, desist not, We shall certainly stir thee up against them: Then will they not be able to stay in it as thy neighbours for any length of time: They shall have a curse on them: whenever they are found, they shall be seized and slain (without mercy)” Quran 33:60-61.

  13. Containment? Has anyone ever read ‘The Mote In God’s Eye’, or it’s sequel, “The Gripping Hand”?. I’m in the sequel now, and I’ll be danged if the allegory didn’t just leap to me as I read TinEar’s commment.

    The alien life form is intelligent, and in endless cycles of destruction. Due to their rapid procreation, they spread quickly. The first book deals with contact, and the subsequent adventure that entails. The second, takes place after 25 years of blockade duty to keep the aliens inside their sector. It is inevitable they will get out, and must be dealt with.

    One of the main characters- Horace Bury- a Moslem, is scared to death of them- having seen first hand their abilities; He wants them totally destroyed.

    Really good story… like reading a movie. Good distraction from the news…

  14. Davidm2575: I would hardly call hacking someone to death with a machete “civil unrest”. This type of complacency and naïveté towards these violent savages is why they have gained a strong foothold in the West, which will continue to grow and imperil our future, as well as that of our children and grandchildren. The only sensible policy towards Islam is containment. It should have been sealed off in the 3d world, where they could destroy one another to their heart’s content. We have wasted the lives of our military personnel in those wretched countries for absolutely nothing. And western civilization and democracy is threatened as politically correct liberal apologists wring their hands and seek understanding and “conversations” with these barbarians. It makes about as much sense as trying to reason with a rabid dog.

  15. This was a direct assault on logic as well as free speech. We see that everywhere nowadays. Emotion over logic is dangerous, and even deadly. Emotions are important. They serve a valuable purpose. But logic is what gives the world order. Common sense is a form of logic, and it is being drowned out by emotion. So, take the religious fanaticism out of this equation. It is emotion severing the head of logic. With normal people, logic and religion can coexist well. The west does it daily w/ few problems and no machete attacks.

  16. David

    Your other conspiracy theory, women undermining the dominion of the masculine heterosexual. Of course, some backward people are pissed at having a woman Prime Minister, but she was elected, or rather her party was elected. So, there is a majority of sane and progressive people there along with that unfortunate group in every society that has to be dragged kicking and screaming along. Luckily for us we don’t do as much damage to each other when disagreeing. They are going in the right direction, most of them.

  17. I wonder what role having a woman Prime Minister plays in Bangladesh. We know how Muslims feel about women leaders. Civil unrest usually is a result of a significant number of people not feeling properly represented by their government.

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