Ex-Marxist enthusiast for imperialist war Norman Geras has posted a message from journalist Andrew Anthony, who tries to justify his Guardian article from a couple of months back attacking Yusuf al-Qaradawi.
Note that Anthony makes no attempt to defend his article’s claim that Qaradawi says it is a duty for Muslims to become suicide bombers in Iraq – a story originating with MEMRI, who produced the “evidence” for it by splicing together various sections of a speech made by Qaradawi … at a conference called to oppose terrorism. Nor does Anthony try to back up his assertion that Dr Q has “argued that it is OK to kill Jewish foetuses because they would grow up to be Israeli soldiers”.
However, he does stand by the following statement from his Guardian article:
“In 2003, Al-Qaradawi dealt with the punishment for the sin of homosexuality on the website Islamonline. ‘Should it be the same as the punishment for fornication, or should both the active and passive participants be put to death?’ he asked with theological dispassion, before concluding: ‘While such punishments may seem cruel, they have been suggested to maintain the purity of the Islamic society and to keep it clean of perverted elements’.”
Andrew Anthony obviously thinks he’s on solid ground with this one. Qaradawi’s statement was an “official religious judgment”, apparently – an “official fatwa”.
Actually, the Islam Online piece that Anthony cites is an anonymously compiled selection of quotations from various Islamic sources on the subect of homosexuality. The quote from Qaradawi – in which he summarises the views of other scholars but does not give his own opinion – is taken from a book called “The Lawful and Prohibited in Islam” which was published … back in 1960!
As we’ve pointed out a number of times before, if Qaradawi does indeed hold that gay men should be put to death, then a statement to that effect can presumably be found among his voluminous writings and statements over the subsequent forty-five years. A journalist with Andrew Anthony’s evident talent for detailed and reliable research should have no problem finding one, surely?