A Facebook page named “Allah”

An Egyptian blogger wrote about Waleed Al Husseini more than two years ago, when he was arrested by the Palestinian authorities.

Palestinian blogger Waleed Al Husseini has been detained by the Palestinian authorities for creating a Facebook page named “Allah”! it was reported and shut down and Waleed created this page, that page, and that page, that is already hacked, to fight those who keep censoring his thoughts.

Waleed Khalid Hasayen is a 26 year old blogger who was arrested in the West Bank city of Qalqilya by the Palestinian authorities on the grounds of religious contempt and promoting atheism. On his blog “Nour Al Akl” or The enlightened Mind, he refuted all religious arguments – specially Islam – and he wrote long detailed posts on the fallacy of religions.

Now he’s out of jail, and at a distance from the people who arrested him, but his situation is precarious. I’m hoping we (the community) can help him.


  1. says

    I’ve made contact with him, too, sent a few encouraging words. I’m not quite sure what to do, beyond this, as yet.

    I could do thousands of words here on the general privileging of religion across various societies, the way religion demonizes (and certain religions and sects thereof, especially) its critics. I’m not sure how that’s going to help anyone, either, I guess. Repetition? Maybe. But it’d be nice to get it into people’s heads a little more.

    The heaviness of the social sanctions against speaking publicly of disbelief is one of the more appalling features of religions’ impact upon culture. And here as vivid illustration we’ve a bright young guy now thousands of kilometers from his family, estranged from many of them, hated by some of them, thanks to this general mechanism. Because, dear me, he had the temerity to call it as he sees it, take one typically obnoxious religion up on its bluff, start taking apart the ‘logic’ of it, and so on. And, amusingly, even took on the ‘verse like it’ gambit…

    (And damn. Sweet. That guy, I’m really starting to like him, come to think of it. But anyway…)

    Anyway, I was particularly struck by some of the nastiness spilled at the post above in the comments threads from people going on about how dear me, this little jerk’s just looking for attention, how dare he criticize this faith that has apparently propped up a people in need and distress under occupation, and so on…

    It strikes me, again, that there’s always an excuse to try to shut down, marginalize and put back in their place anyone who too visibly and successfully calls out a religion. Always an excuse to keep that bullshit alive. This guy, apparently bright and well read and literate and so on, realizes he’s not having any of it, decides he’s going to say so, decides to take it on… And this, see, is just terribly egocentric, so we’ll attack him on that. So full of himself, simply speaking out loud on this, calling it as he sees it, showing up other folks’ simple ‘faith’, how dare he. Oh, and the ‘religion as comfort to the oppressed’ thing, that’s just gravy. Why bother going to ‘would you destroy the faith of your grandmother on her deathbed?’ when we’ve this other convenient excuse? Oh, and note also the noise about how anyone supporting him is just in it because they’re politically in favour of the occupation. What are you, some kind of imperialist, supporting a jerk like this? For shame…

    The manipulation and frank, blatant attempt at distraction is shameless. Let’s get back to the facts, shall we? The religion happens to be an insulting crock that demands and encourages self-abasement and submission. Utter balderdash, and nasty, manipulative balderdash. Same as so many of them. A bright young person noticed as much, wasn’t having any of it, and felt inclined, as young people so frequently do, to say so. He was treated like garbage, as people generally are when they do this. And now certain fucking silencing assholes are still coming after him, because he’s not sufficiently invisible, yet. What is their particular excuse? As if it fucking matters. Excuses will be found.

    It strikes me there’s a certain double jeopardy, here, too, in the context of accusations of skeptics being called out for being a humidor club: see, they’re not doing enough outreach, not trying to bring others over, just patting themselves on the back for being skeptical…

    But if you speak out and say publicly simply that you don’t believe in a god, actually argue properly in public, this is being disrespectful. Atheists, you see, we like them quiet, invisible… Otherwise, they’re just attention seeking jerks.

    I think the reality is: any excuse will be taken to criticize if you attack the prevailing religion. Because direct, open attacks–and, honestly, especially written ones that can be read by others at their leisure–and, of course, especially in this gentleman’s case, since he writes in Arabic and writes well, ones likely to strike at certain treasured and previously thought ‘safe’ target audiences–well, let’s face it, religions can’t withstand those at all. Logically they’re houses of cards and rife with blatant mythologizing and virtually made of contradiction. The trick to keeping them alive all this time has mostly been in those social sanctions: that ‘argument from shut up’ is key to the game. And here it is, playing out again, here. As brutally as it can get away with. Which here happens to be several degrees nastier than a teenager in a Rhode Island high school is likely to deal with.

    The social privilege religious belief has enjoyed simply has to be broken up, rubbished all to pieces, if miseries like this are to end. Let the young be free to say they’re having none of it, it makes no sense, this book you keep insisting is holy is just a mouldy crock of silliness. In Palestine, in Egypt, in Rhode Island, as everywhere. No more excuses. If you’re talking shit about a so-called prophet with a message from an unimpeachable authority, a divine holy book containing all of life’s lessons, or whatever the hell it is, you’re actually an arrogant, posing jerk, carrying a banner for authoritarianism of the worst kind, and you get no respect, no special treatment, and you are going to face the arguments that demolish you, with no recourse to shushing and what would your mother think and can’t we talk about something else, not to detention, nor to torture chambers. That tendency, that notion that somehow your ancient doctrine should have such protection, and you have the right to use the whip to enforce it if all else fails, that has to be shamed the hell out of all cultures, dashed into the dust and left there to rot.

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