1) Seyed Mehdi Kazemi's appeal for asylum by Dutch authorities has been turned down. Mehdi is a 19 year old gay Iranian, who was 'outed' in Iran when a friend revealed his relationship with Mehdi to the authorities. The friend was subsequently hung on sodomy charges... He faces a possible death sentence in Iran for being a homosexual... Mehdi will be sent back to the United Kingdom. It is likely the Home Office will deport him to Iran. Reference here.
Under Sharia law, the death penalty for homosexuality (defined as "lavat") is being enclosed in a bag and then being thrown into the ravine at the top of a cliff.
Under a Jewish theocracy, we would do the same thing. Vayikra 20:13. The only difference is that the condemned isn't put into a bag before he is flung over the cliff as this could possibly cushion his fall too much and cause him undue pain!
2) Afghanistan is home to numerous invaluable global cultural heritages, mainly Buddhist statues, including two huge stone statues of Buddha (55 meters and 38 meters) believed to have been built between 4th and 6th century AD and located in Bamiyan in central Afghanistan. On 26 February 2001, the Taliban's supreme leader, Mullah Mohammed Omar issued an edict to destroy all ancient statues in Afghanistan, including Buddhist stone cave carvings, stating that they represented idolatry, which is forbidden by Islam. Reference here.
Under a Jewish theocracy, we would do the same thing. Bamidbar 33:52. (Although you might have a few rabbonim say that Buddhism isn't avodah zarah, or alternatively try and get some Buddhists to "mevatel" the idols!)
3) There are over 100 persons in Pakistani jails accused of blasphemy, and either awaiting trial or under sentence of death. Most are Muslims, although a few are from minorities such as Ahmadis and Christians. Reference here.
Under a Jewish theocracy, we would do the same thing. Vayikra 24:10. (But it must be recognized that under Jewish law, the penalty for blasphemy is restricted to blaspheming God. Under Sharia law, blasphemy against Mohamed is included.)
4) Two Iranian sisters convicted of adultery face being stoned to death after the supreme court upheld the death sentences against them, the Etemad newspaper reported. The two sisters were found guilty of adultery – a capital crime in Islamic Iran – after the husband of one of the pair presented video evidence showing them in the company of other men while he was away. Reference here.
Under a Jewish theocracy, we would do the same thing. Vayikra 20:10, Devarim 22:22. (Hmmm, I wonder if video evidence would count for the Sota procedure?)
5) A man could be sentenced to death after being charged with converting from Islam to Christianity, a crime under Afghanistan's sharia laws, a judge said yesterday.
Under a Jewish theocracy, we would do the same thing. While it is a well-known machloket as to the status of Christianity vis a vis avodah zarah, I believe most hold that it indeed is considered avodah zarah for a Jew.
Except for some fundamentalist Moslems, I think it fair to say that most folks - including frum yidden - are deeply disturbed by these accounts. We like to say how barbaric Sharia law is but never stop to think how close it is to Jewish law! In capital cases there are, indeed, major differences that restrict the imposition of the death penalty, although a king may have someone executed even without proper warning or witnesses (see Rambam, Hilchot Melachim 3:10). Nevertheless, all of these penalties are still "on the books" and theoretically will be re-instituted if a Jewish theocratic monarchy is re-established. Even if not, we are a malkos happy nation, so I can see the whip being used for not only lavs, but for all kinds of violations of rabbinic enactments, reading of banned books, not wearing an approved sheitel - the sky's the limit!
For most of this, this problem is moot simply because we don't have to deal with it on any practical level. Many take the easy way out and say "I'm not going to worry about it. It'll all be figured out when Moshiach comes". But I find this a profoundly disturbing issue and am not satisfied with such a glib answer. So is there any way out of this dilemma for someone who simply cannot square the strict standards of Torah law with one's own - and I would argue more evolved - ethical standards?
I'll follow up later with my own thoughts but would first like to hear yours!