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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Witchcraft: No Defense for It in Saudi Arabia

Do you remember Obama's infamous bow to Saudi Arabia? Going much further back in time, do you recall the Frank Sinatra 1957 hit "Witchcraft," which begins:

Those fingers in my hair
That sly come-hither stare
That strips my conscience bare
It's witchcraft

And I've got no defense for it
The heat is too intense for it
What good would common sense for it do?

Well, there is also "no defense for it" in Saudi Arabia. Although many in the West posit that all religions promote tolerance, love and understanding, consider the following item from Reuters published yesterday by The Jerusalem Post (

"Rights group Amnesty International has described as "deeply shocking" Saudi Arabia's beheading of a woman convicted on charges of "sorcery and witchcraft", saying it underlined the urgent need to end executions in the kingdom.

Saudi national Amina bint Abdul Halim bin Salem Nasser was executed on Monday in the northern province of al-Jawf after being tried and convicted for practicing sorcery, the interior ministry said, without giving details of the charges."

Just an isolated instance of injustice in the desert kingdom? Yeah, right. As reported by the Saudi Gazette less than three months ago (

"A Sudanese man was beheaded Monday in Madina after he was convicted of practicing sorcery, the Interior Ministry announced. Abdul Hamid Al-Fakki “practiced witchcraft and sorcery,” which are illegal under the Shariah law, said a ministry statement. Rape, murder, apostasy, armed robbery and drug trafficking are all punishable by death under the Shariah law enforced strictly in the Kingdom."

Now consider that Harold Koh, the Legal Adviser of the Department of State, is alleged to have said, while addressing the Yale Club of Greenwich in 2007, that "in an appropriate case, he didn't see any reason why sharia law would not be applied to govern a case in the United States" (see:;jsessionid=B3AF1EE6089A1D7DC426F0892160E371). It would be interesting to know what Koh regards as an "appropriate case."

In any event, as aptly suggested by the Sinatra lyrics, there is no defense for witchcraft in Saudi Arabia, and "common sense for it" in that country would indeed do no good.

1 comment:

  1. No outcry? I would expect (OK, not really). A certain "left" likes witches. I have (sorry, had) a friend who likes Hugo Chavez, Ron Paul, Islam (a religion of peace - she's an atheist of Protestant background), witches, Chris Hedges, etc.
    Don't tell me that something is wrong there. I know that. But sadly typical.