It appears that the governor of Jubaland, Somalia, has banned the use of single-use plastic bags on the grounds that “they pose a serious threat to the well-being of humans and animals alike”. It has also forbidden the logging of rare trees. The governor, Mohammed Abu Abdullah, is head of a terrorist group allied with al-Qa’eda.
Ah, you think, maybe groups like this are edging into a more civilised mode and are at least protecting the environment. And then you find out that Mohammed Abu Abdullah is alledgedly funding his government by selling banned ivory to the Chinese and by continuing to kill innocent civilians. It was recently responsible for murdering at least ten people in Mogadishu with car bombs and by storming a government building.
This feeds into the perception of Islam as a violent, inhumane religion. Sensible readers know well that a huge majority of people of the Islamic faith are peaceable decent folk, who deplore everything al-Qa’eda stands for. But governor Mohammed Abu Abdullah and his thugs play straight into the hands of right-wing racists and religious nuts in the West.
A pox on all of them! Except for the fact that they have far too much influence on our own immigration policies and attitudes. Case in point is the US ban on moslem visitors from certain moslem countries, a ban that enjoys huge support from a certain (christian?) segment of the population. We need to defend our borders, yes. But blanket bans are un-Epicurean.