Taking a whack at prognostication at the end of 2005, it wasn’t hard to imagine, as I did, that 2006 would be a rotten year for freedom of speech. Both inside the Islamic world and, more alarmingly, outside the Islamic world, Shariah laws prohibiting criticism of Islam were already working smoothly. When in 2005 we watched the death-penalty-seeking prosecution of editor Ali Mohaqeq Nasab for “blasphemy” in U.S.-liberated Afghanistan, we could see we were dealing with a Shariah state. When in 2005 we watched the early stages of what later became known as “Cartoon Rage” in Denmark, we could see we were dealing with a Shariah state of mind. It wasn’t exactly going out on a limb to predict things would only get worse.
And, of course, in 2006, they did.
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