Friday, February 27, 2009

"Infidel" by Ayaan Hirsi Ali important book for women to read about brutality toward women among Islamic Fundamentalists

I don't know if you will remember the incident in the news where a Muslim woman, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, born in Somalia who had been elected to parliment in Holland made a ten minute film called "Submission 1" with the help of a Dutch film maker Theo van Gogh. She started receiving death threats as the result of this film about how Muslim women must submit to men and be brutalized even because it is part of the religion, so men feel more justified in doing it. She thought that Theo's life was in danger, too, but he refused to think anyone would actually kill him due to making a ten minute film on this subject, but a Moroccan man did, cutting a hole in his throat and leaving a letter addressed to Ayaan over the wrong she had done to single out Muslim men as wife abusers. In fact, Ayaan had even accused the Prophet Mohammad of being a pedofile because he allowed himself to be married to a six year old child and consummated the marriage when the child was 9. Of course this idea was so inflammatory that once it came out, Ayaan had to stay in hiding practically non stop. I don't know that the furore has died down even yet. I remember reading about her a great deal for quite some time after the murder occurred.
Her citizenship as a refugee in Holland was even revoked for lying on her application, so she was soon a woman without a country. She did come to America where this book was published, and I think you will be shocked at the life she had to live in several countries and the courage she showed in emerging from the shadows where so many Muslim women stay because of the philosophy of complete submission to the men. She was especially incensed because beating was so common among Islamic Fundamentalists that not only did the men beat and sometimes kill their wives and daughters for infractions but her mother beat her regularly, I mean really badly. Her grandmother saw to it that she and her sisters were 'cut' even though her father did not believe in the mutilation of the clitorus to keep women more pure and virginal for men. I am telling you, sometimes this book was hard to take, but I could not stop reading it. I practically wore my eyes out in one day it was so compelling an indictment of those who do not respect women's rights even to live should they assert themselves and their own ideas a little too strongly. I am glad this brave woman is still alive to tell her tale.

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