BBC: Afghan senate backs death penalty. Afghanistan’s upper house of parliament has issued a statement backing a death sentence for a journalist for blasphemy in northern Afghanistan. Pervez Kambakhsh, 23, was convicted last week of downloading and distributing an article insulting Islam. He has denied the charge. The UN has criticised the sentence and said the journalist did not have legal representation during the case.

This case shocks the conscience. Journalists — all of us — should be trying hard to stop this outrage.

If Afghanistan kills this man it will lose support from people who care about liberty, and at a time when it most needs that support. Surely Americans will ask themselves why our soldiers are dying to preserve such a loathsome regime. I know I will.