Please lift all threats of death or other punishment by your courts against Mr. Abdul Rahman for converting to Christianity. At a state department briefing today we were told that the Afghan constitution provides freedom of religion. Freedom of religion must include a freedom to change beliefs – regardless of what Sharia Law provides.
It appears that the threatened punishment could be the result of a fundamentalist Judge who may be ignoring the constitution in favor of Sharia Law. In the U.S., a judge can be removed for refusing to uphold the supreme law of the land. I recommend the government remove this judge if he does not uphold the constitution.
Please realize how appalling this case is to the Christian majority in the United States. One of your courts is threatening to kill a man simply because he shares the same beliefs as the majority of Americans. Further, this case could become a blight on Islam, which is at risk of being perceived in this country as another totalitarian foe like the Soviet Union. We were sickened when the Soviet's puppet East German government shot its citizens who attempted to leave their country – now we are witnessing militant members of Islam seeking to kill those members who attempt to leave it.
Afghanistan has received the benevolence of the United States. I fear that will not last if Mr. Abdul Rahman is punished for his religious beliefs.
Tuesday, March 21, 2006
Another Checkpoint Charlie
Below is the body of an email I sent to the Afghan Embassy related to a case in Afghanistan where a man is at risk of being put to death for converting from Islam to Christianity.