Zardari Slapped With Fatwa for Flirting With Palin

Pakistani feminists also angry at president for 'shameful' behavior
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 2, 2008 12:32 PM CDT
Republican vice presidential candidate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, left, meets with Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari, Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2008, in New York.    (AP Photo/Henny Ray Abrams)
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(Newser) – Asif Ali Zardari’s overly-friendly interaction with Sarah Palin earned Pakistan’s president a fatwa from a conservative mosque for salacious behavior, not to mention the scorn of feminists who accuse him of objectifying the US vice-presidential candidate, the Christian Science Monitor reports. At the UN last week, Zardari told Palin she was “gorgeous,” continuing, “Now I know why the whole of America is crazy about you.”

The fatwa accused the husband of late prime minister Benazir Bhutto of “indecent gestures, filthy remarks, and repeated praise of a non-Muslim lady wearing a short skirt,” but stops short of ordering violence. Feminists charge Zardari’s behavior demeaned Palin: “He was looking upon her merely as a woman and not as a politician in her own right … it was shameful,” one said.