This is what we need to see. This is just the thing we need: a grand coalition. An international one. A coalition of all those whose lives and rights are threatened by the Sharia that jihadists want to impose. May it come to be. A welcome bit of anti-dhimmitude from Asia Times, with thanks to Fjordman:
KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysia’s minorities are banding together to put up a united front against what they fear is a steady encroachment of Sharia (Islamic law) into their lives.
Unsettled by the decision of a court last month that it had no jurisdiction in Islamic matters and that a non-Muslim had no remedy under common law, the minorities, led by moderate leaders, are putting up stiff resistance.
Observers say the resistance has placed the government of Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi in a delicate position because it needs to balance the competing demands from the majority Muslims. While non-Muslims want common law and the secular constitution of Malaysia preserved and protected, Muslims demand a society based on Sharia….
In Malaysia, a strong undercurrent of dissatisfaction has been building up among the country’s minority communities against fundamentalists pushing the Islamic way into many matters – from banking and halal food to family matters, education and personal issues such as religious conversion.
In effect, two parallel societies – Muslim and non-Muslim – have gradually replaced what was a pluralistic, secular Malaysian society based on common law that was the legacy British colonials handed over upon independence in 1957….
The last straw was the forced burial last month of a 36-year-old soldier and mountaineer, M Moorthy, as a Muslim, over the protest of his Hindu wife. Judge Mohamed Raus Sharif ruled that his civil court had no jurisdiction to hear an application by S Kaliammal that her husband was Hindu.
Sharif refused to alter an ex parte judgment, obtained from a Sharia court by the Islamic Affairs Department Sharia, that deemed that the dead man had converted to Islam – in effect telling non-Muslims that they have no remedy in such cases.
The protest has, thus far, been peaceful – a candlelight vigil at Sharif’s office, a signature campaign, and a memorandum to the prime minister.
In addition, about 30 influential Hindu organizations have formed an umbrella Hindu Rights Action Force (HRAF) to protect the rights of minorities to religious freedom. The HRAF mounted a protest outside the palace this week and petitioned the king, who is constitutionally the head of Islam, to intervene….
The crux of their demand is a repeal of Article 121 (1A) of the constitution that was amended in 1988 to state that the civil court had no jurisdiction on matters under the purview of the Sharia court….
However, Muslim organisations have warned that any attempt to repeal Article 121 (1A) would be strongly resisted.
The Malay National Force (TERAS), a Malay non-government organization, said in a statement that Article 121 (1A) provided specific guarantees that the civil court will not interfere in Islamic matters.
“The Sharia court should not be seen as an institution that denies justice to non-Muslims. On the contrary, if its laws are fully applied, there is an assurance of better justice here compared to civil laws, which are the heritage of British colonial rule,” said TERAS president Mohamad Azmi Abdul Hamid.
This is the common Muslim assertion that the Sharia offers a superior societal model. This assertion founders on fact in regard to freedom of conscience, the rights of women, the rights of religious minorities, and more.
Human-rights lawyer P Uthayakumar asked: “How can anyone even suggest such a remedy to non-Muslims? What becomes of the civil law, the judicial system and the secular constitution?
“We non-Muslims have suffered long enough. The government should intervene immediately and put an end to non-Muslim fears and misery,” he said. “The uncertainties have gone on for far too long.”…
Abdullah has offered a cautious response. “I am looking into the matter and hope to prevent problems like this from happening,” he said this week.
But non-Muslims, who fear that Sharia is becoming the supreme law of the land, want more than soothing words to alleviate their anxiety that common law and the civil justice system are under threat.