Friday, March 17, 2006

Voice of moderation?

Iraqi cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani has been hailed as a steadying force in his war-torn country. But let's hold off on that Nobel Peace Prize. Sistani's views on homosexuality make Jerry Falwell look like Harvey Fierstein in comparison:

The country's most influential Shiite has issued a violent death order against gays and lesbians on his Web site, according to London-based LGBT human rights groups OutRage.

Written in Arabic, the fatwa comes from a press conference with the powerful religious cleric, where he was asked about the judgment on sodomy and lesbianism. "Forbidden," Sistani answered, according to OutRage, "Punished, in fact, killed. The people involved should be killed in the worst, most severe way of killing."

As Andrew Sullivan points out on his blog: "Er, thanks for letting us know more about this great religion of peace and tolerance."

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