I had never really understood the acronym ROTFLMAO properly until I read about the wretched Mehdi Hasan and his hypocritical denunciation of the Daily Mail, after having applied with cringing desperation to the same paper for a job. (Dacre told him to get lost, which is to his credit). My colleague Nick Cohen has filed an excellent analysis of this business, to which you should be directed if you yourself haven’t also had the opportunity to ROTFLMAO.

But at least Mehdi will be in no trouble with his religion. He is, of course, famous for quoting the Koran to the effect that unbelievers are regarded as “cattle”. And by the same logic it is perfectly ok for a Muslim to lie to a non-believer; it falls under the terms “taqiyya” or “kitman”. “These circumstances are typically those that advance the cause of Islam, in some cases by gaining the trust of non-believers and defeating them,” is the quote from my “How To Be A Good Muslim” primer. And from the Koran: “Allah and his Messenger (that’s Mohammed, or Mehdi) are free from liability to the idolators.”

So at least in that one respect we need not question his principle.

Tags: Daily Mail, Islam, Media, Mehdi Hasan