Tuesday, August 12, 2014

“They’re selling postcards of the hanging …”

Many years ago, when I was but a lad in knee-pants (the rhythmic clop-clop-clop of  the milkcart horse’s hooves  echoing on the cobblestones below),
Bob Dylan minstreled:

“They’re selling postcards of the hanging;
they’re painting the passports brown….”
-- “Desolation Row

A paradoxical scene, difficult to picture.  And yet now, it (with eerie foreshadowing) pretty well represents, just what is going on in the ill-named “Islamic Caliphate”.  The ISIL fetish for hanging, crucifying, and decapitating their victims (and recently, reportedly, in the case of the Yazidis, burying them alive), is of long standing, and so far from hidden  has been publically boasted of.   Whether they actually peddle postcards I do not know, for who uses snail-mail anymore;  but videos definitely, along with (possibly) T-shirts and coffee-mugs, and maybe mousepads.  And now, in addition, they are issuing passports, for all denizens of the Dawlah Islamiyyah. (Possibly, in fact, for lack of professional printing resources, they simply take your old Iraqi passport and paint it brown, or more likely black, after the ISIL black-and-white Jolly Roger colors.)

To be valid, your passport should look like this.

(Shariah note:  Living interment is not, in fact, a Koranically sanctioned punishment.  The only time the Koran addresses the subject, is with reference to the pre-Islamic tribal practice of burying unwanted baby daughters;  the injunction was:  Stop doing that.)

ISIL ikebana

When I first saw that photo, I assumed it was a tasteful arrangement of severed heads, laid out just so.  Only now, with the news of the innovation against the Yazidis, the possibility arises that those heads in fact have not been severed, rather, the bodies have been buried  up to the neck.

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