CNN reports that a mass grave has been discovered on the outskirts of Daraa, the Syrian city hammered by dictator Bashar Assad during the past two months of unrest. The “shallow, unmarked” grave was said to contain “as many as 20 bodies by one account,” including at least one woman and child.
The grave was reportedly discovered by an olive farmer who smelled the stench of bodies, and discovered “a human hand protruding from the earth.” There’s another image to add to the gallery of human resistance against tyranny.
The dictator’s propaganda machine denies the report, of course, even as CNN is working to establish the authenticity of some video found on social media websites. The Syrian army is now in control of the site, which means those who ask too many questions are likely to end up in the next unmarked grave.
Assuming this report is verified and suitably documented, I have a question for the Muslim world: wouldn’t this be another violation of the Islamic burial practices we’ve been hearing so much about, since Osama bin Laden became part of the undersea circle of life?
Unlike bin Laden, an extremist who attempted to hijack and dishonor the Religion of Peace, these poor souls most likely were good Muslims. I know this because CNN says five of the bodies “were returned to relatives and given an Islamic burial Monday afternoon.”
Dr. Ammar Qurabi, who chairs the National Organization for Human Rights in Syria, said “some of the bodies were bloated, and others had been partially eaten by animals, making it difficult to ascertain the identity of the victims.” Can we expect a massive outcry against the ruthless dictator who committed this disgraceful violation of Muslim burial rights? Has anyone got those “top Islamic clerics” who howled over bin Laden’s watery disposal on speed dial?