A few moths ago I wrote here about Mumtaz Qadri, he of the beatific smile, happy at a job well done. The rewarding task in this instance being the killing of the guy he was supposed to be guarding, Punjabi Governor Salman Taseer. The reason? Salman had supported the repeal of Pakistan’s blasphemy law. In that post I wrote 'I'd love to show you a picture I saw in the Irish Times (print edition), which showed Mumdaz just after his ‘capture’ - beaming, and in what seems to be the relaxed and smiling company of his fellow 'bodyguards'.
Well now, I have an update on that comment, courtesy of the ‘anti-Imperialist’ writer Tariq Ali. Writing in January’s London Review of Books he reveals that he had been a close childhood friend of Taseer and had traveled back to Pakistan to attend his funeral. Using his many high level connections he brought us the following insights.
It seems Qadri had previously been kicked out of another army unit, being deemed a ‘security risk’ but had then, mysteriously, been recruited as a personal bodyguard for Taseer. Geo TV revealed that ‘he had requested that he not be fired on after killing Taseer but arrested alive’. Not exactly a glowing testimonial to his bodyguarding skills, or those of his fellow 'bodyguards'. But he held onto his job, duly killed Taseer, and duly was not fired on, but arrested by his smiling comrades.
Ali tells us that ‘Qadri is on his way to becoming a national here. On his first appearance in court he was showered with flowers by admiring lawyers (sic) who offered to defend him free of charge.’ After the first hearing the police allowed him to interact on national TV with his host of admiring supporters. For good measure, the Interior (i.e. police) Minister warned subsequently that he himself would personally shoot dead any blasphemer.
Hardly surprising then that the victim’s funeral was sparsely attended, with not a single Ministerial colleague showing up. Nor that earlier this month Shahbaz Bhatti, the only other Minister opposed to the blasphemy law, was assassinated on his way to work. To loud national acclaim.
All of which leads me wearily to ask, once again, what the hell is the West doing in those Islamic hell-holes, and why do we lavish billions of aid on them? And of course, why do we encourage millions of them into the West? The Muslim population in the UK is about 80% Pakistani in origin. Think about that.
However, I’ll end on a bright note. Here’s one of the comments from the Guardian blog, from someone called Mohammed (!)
"If anybody insults the Prophet he looses (sic) the right to live.
Priceless, isn't it?