While much in the international news today is dominated by the utter barbarity and heinousness in how the Islamic State tortures and executes its victims, a look back in history shows that it's possible the jihadis have taken pages from the torturous playbook of the authoritarian North Korean government.
On Monday, the Iraqi News reported that IS (also known as ISIS or ISIL) killed six of its own members who fled the battlefield in Iraq by crushing them to death with a bulldozer in the group's largest Iraqi stronghold of Mosul.
This is not the first time that the terrorist group has crushed its victims to death under the weight of heavy machinery. In a video released last October, a Syrian soldier is shown being crushed to death underneath a battle tank. more >>
A woman in the landlocked African nation of Uganda was beaten unconscious by her Muslim husband and hospitalized because she attended a church service and allegedly converted to Christianity.
Twenty-one-year-old Fatuma Baluka, who lives in Uganda's eastern Budaka District, recently told the Christian persecution watchdog website Morning Star News that she was knocked unconscious and ferociously beaten by her husband, Hussein Kasolo, last Sunday after she attended a nearby Christian church with her friend.
"When I arrived home, my husband shouted at me as an 'infidel,' and then and there started hitting me with a metallic object," Baluka said. "I fell down, only to find myself in a hospital bed." more >>
Controversial Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte reportedly brought God into a debate on the death penalty on Monday, and asked why He doesn't intervene and stop babies from being raped and killed.
"The bleeding hearts, the priests and all, said there was death penalty before, and nothing happened. Then I can simply say, death penalty didn't work because it wasn't imposed. Every president along the way would just say, one because of the Catholic Church; second the bleeding hearts, because only God can kill. The problem there, I ask you, what if there is no God? So we allow the criminals? " Duterte said in a speech in Malacañang, according to The Manila Times.
"So where is now God when a one year old baby, 18-months-old baby is taken from the mother's arms brought under a jeep and raped and killed. So where is God?" he added. more >>
An atheist group celebrating the upcoming International Blasphemy Rights Day on Friday, has said that laws around the world that restrict or punish those who criticize religion take away the rights of atheists, Christians, and other people.
"In too many countries around the world, criticizing religion is illegal. We've seen the consequences of these laws too many times — when a tweet or a post on Facebook declaring one's atheism or questioning a tenet of religion leads to arrests, beatings, prison, and sometimes death sentences," the Center for Inquiry, which set up the first event in 2009, said in a statement on Monday.
"Sometimes religious militants make their own laws, deciding for themselves that expressions of dissent justify brutal killings, like the grisly murders of secularists in Bangladesh, or attacks on religious minorities in Pakistan," the group added. more >>
The Communist Party of China has intensified its ongoing crackdown of Christianity and other faiths with the publication of new rules and regulations that tighten the government's grip on underground churches, persecution watchdog groups have said.
China Aid, which reports on religious freedom issues in China, said late last week that the new restrictions are aimed at dispersing Christian house churches and silencing Tibetan and Xinjiang separatists.
The Revised Draft of Regulations on Religious Affairs is expected to formally come into effect early in October, and includes prohibitions on "organizing citizens to attend religious training, conferences and activities abroad," "preaching, organizing religious activities, and establishing religious institutions or religious sites at schools," and "providing religious services through the internet." more >>
Officials from the U.N., the United States, Russia, and other nations are pointing fingers and accusing each other of "barbarism" after the latest round of bombings by Syrian forces killed at least 85 people on Sunday in the besieged city of Aleppo.
Matthew Rycroft, British ambassador to the U.N., said Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his Russian allies have been carrying out war crimes against Syrian civilians in the continued bombings aimed at taking out rebel forces in the civil war.
"After five years of conflict, you might think that the regime has had its fill of barbarity — that its sick bloodlust against its own people has finally run its course," Rycroft said, according to CNN. more >>