Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Obama administration takes ambivalent position toward opposition in Malaysia, with trumped up anti-gay charge

The Washington Post on Wednesday May 19 has a curious editorial about the trial of Malaysian leader Anwar Ibrahim, who stands accused of consensual homosexual acts in violation of religious-based law. The link is here.

According to the editorial, it seems that the charge is trumped up by leader Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak, whom apparently the Obama administration is courting.

Anwar had been sentenced to prison for a similar charge in 1998, after which a Malaysian court said he had been coerced. He is seen as a leading exponent of democratic reform and opponent of radical Islam, and a potential resource in dealing with repressive measures from China.

When why is the Obama administration so indifferent? It’s a bit of a puzzlement, as Obama at the same time has to make progress in gay rights at home and try to overturn “don’t ask don’t tell.”

Wikipedia attribution link for map of Malaysia

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