The wife of jailed Saudi blogger Raif Badawi, sentenced to ten years in prison and 1,000 lashes, said the first flogging (50 lashes a week for 20 weeks) nearly killed him. Of the large crowd gathered to watch, she said: "The crowd was cheering like it was a beach party."
Badawi was led by Saudi officials into the middle of the square in front of al-Jafali mosque in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. His crime is "insulting Islam by calling for free speech on his website." His treatment by authorities in Saudi Arabia is a vicious act of cruelty. In addition, Raif's lawyer received 15 years in prison for defending him. Lessons: (1) Islam is cruel and (2) there is no freedom in Islam.