While this is clearly a sad event, but I suspect it is far bigger and far worse than the anonymous…

I’d say it’s both this and a specific attack on the LGBTQ community.

Xulhaz’s murder is one in a long string of deaths of atheist and secular bloggers by fundamentalist Islamists and ISIS/Al-Qaeda sympathizers (it’s unclear whether they are actually technically part of ISIS/AQ or if they’re more like “fanboys”). While the attacks aren’t solely on the LGBTQ community, that community is definitely part of the people they’re targeting: people who are seen as defiling Islam, who are spreading “vice” and corrupting minds. Homosexuality is specifically called out, as are other expressions of sexuality, atheism, and apostasy.

This scares me, and many other people who have a relationship to Bangladesh even if we’re all far away now. It was never this uptight and anal. And yet now we feel too scared to dare go back and visit relatives. The Government isn’t doing anything — they just say “oh it’s safe really” — and this is a secular Government!

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