There is this woman. She is waiting to die. Not quite a normal death. She is waiting for her execution. Not quite a “normal execution.”
She will be buried up to her chest. Her willing executioners will say “Allah is great,” and then will hurl stones at her. Not quite normal stones. They will be picked carefully. They won’t be too small to give her too little pain, or too large to kill her immediately.
Unsurprisingly, Sakineh Mohammedie Ashtiani is Iranian. But she is of Azeri descent and speaks only Turkish – the principal barrier that prevented her from fully comprehending Iran’s Islamic court proceedings.
In 2006, Ms. Ashtiani was convicted of adultery, the same “impropriety” Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan had tried hard to outlaw in Turkey a few years earlier. Since his legislative attempt failed after too many “shocked” Western faces popped up one after another, we do not know what proper penalty Mr. Erdoğan had considered accurate for adultery – but it cannot be stoning.
Ms. Ashtiani was forced to confess after being subjected to 99 lashes although she later retracted the confession. The legal proceedings were complex and straightforward. They were complex because two out of five judges were not convinced that Ms. Ashtiani was guilty. But they were straightforward “numerically.”
How could any sane human believe this is what Allah wants ?