Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Author Nonie Darwish Renounces Jihad

Here is a book published by the daughter of a Muslim Shahid. The following is a recommendation for the book, from the comments section for the book at Amazon.com, which gives a nice synopsis of the book and Darwish's background:

Now They Call Me Infidel: Why I Renounced Jihad for America, Israel, and the War on Terror
[Five Stars] Call Her Courageous, November 17, 2006
Reviewer: P. Cooke "trying to learn something every day" (Oceanside, CA USA) - See all my reviews (REAL NAME)


Nonie Darwish's entrancing and frightening account of her childhood and upbringing in the 50's, 60's and 70's Middle East gives the reader an opportunity to see the build up of jihad and the perpetuation of hatred towards Israel and America at a very personal level.

Her status as a Shahid's (Martyr's) daughter and being of the upper class in Egyptian Society allowed her access to the media and therefore information from the outside world that most did not share. Her early years were spent in Gaza where her father was a high ranking member of Nasser's Egyptian Army.

She was taught hatred and prejudice towards the Jews and Israel and the passion for jihad as early as elementary school. She was told not to accept candy from strangers on the street because it could be a Jew who wants to poison Arab children. She was told that Jews love to kill Arab children and use their blood in their cookies. Nonie did not buy in to the hate speech and ugliness of the propaganda that is spread throughout Muslim countries.

After her father was killed by a package bomb from Israel, her mother, Nonie and four siblings moved to Egypt. She couldn't understand, even at a young age, why President Nasser asked of her and her siblings, "Which of you will kill Jews in retaliation of your father's death?" She did not want to kill Jews.

She speaks of Egypt, her country of origin, as being more westernized than other countries in the Middle East. When she was growing up, most women did not wear the veil. There was still polygamy and she had heard tales of female circumcision. But, her mother sent them to private, Christian schools to get the best education and she was able to purchase a car and obtain a driver's license to get them to school.

Ms. Darwish's education at the American University of Cairo introduced her to diversity and open discussion. She was amazed that the average Egyptian thought that Egypt had always been Muslim, even when the pyramids were built. They never knew that Israel was inhabited by Jews for centuries before Muhammad was born. The Arab media and Dictators had been lying to their people for generations now.

She was able to "escape" to the U.S. where her personality finally found a home. She took several years to raise a family and settle in Los Angeles. Nonie tells of a time she took a visiting family friend to a mosque in her neighborhood. She was embarrassed by the hate speech in the mosques even then. According to Ms. Darwish many Muslims in America do not attend mosques because the local Imams are spreading anti-American propaganda and encourage jihad.

She felt the Jihad was coming to America. Most of the Mosques in America are built and supported by Saudi Arabia. When the Jihadists flew into the World Trade Center and into the Pentagon and that field in Pennsylvania Nonie called her family and friends in Egypt. All of them denied it was Islamic Terrorists. They said it was an Israeli plot. She was even admonished for not being a good Muslim and blaming the attacks on Muslim Terrorists. She pointed out to them that Mohammed Atta was Egyptian and they responded with anger that Nonie would not defend her culture of origin.

After 9/11 Nonie felt compelled to speak out against the Jihadist movement. Now she speaks around the world and on college campuses to refute the hate coming out of the Muslim world towards Israel and the West. She has organized a group, Arabs for Israel, to open a venue for Arabs who do support Israel's democracy in the Middle East.

This book is one brave woman's story of life in a repressed society and her escape to the freedom loving United States. Her insight into Arab culture is invaluable. There needs to be more voices, women's voices coming from these cultures so we can shine a light on the injustice and persecution still being applied to people in these countries today.

Her writing style is not aggressive or combative. Her love of the Egyptian people and the beauty that the diverse Arab culture has given the world is evident in her chapters. She simply deplores the hateful rhetoric and violent methods Islamists are endorsing. She hopes for peace for everyone in this life. Ms. Darwish was able to write her life story because she has been living in the United States for over 25 years now. She is a U.S. citizen; she has the courage of her convictions and the freedom of speech behind her now.

(bold emphasis mine. I've also added some paragraph breaks) People is the U.S. often ask "why don't more Muslims speak out against terrorism?" Could it be it's because other Muslims won't let them speak?

Nonie Darwish was invited to speak at Brown University, until she was dis-invited when Muslim students objected.

From Michelle Malkin:
Spineless at Brown University
A part of an excerpt from the NY Post:

[...] Muslims are often accused of not speaking out sufficiently against terrorism. Nonie Darwish knows one reason why: Their fellow Muslims won't let them.

Darwish, who comes from Egypt and was born and raised a Muslim, was set to tell students at Brown University about the twisted hatred and radicalism she grew to despise in her own culture. A campus Jewish group, Hillel, had contacted her to speak there Thursday.

But the event was just called off.

Muslim students had complained that Darwish was "too controversial." They insisted she be denied a platform at Brown, and after contentious debate Hillel agreed.

Weird: No one had said boo about such Brown events as a patently anti-Israel "Palestinian Solidarity Week." But Hillel said her "offensive" statements about Islam "alarmed" the Muslim Student Association, and Hillel didn't want to upset its "beautiful relationship" with the Muslim community. [...]

Brown's Muslim student's rather proved her point, by not allowing her to be heard. When the facts don't support you, you are forced to reform your views or silence your critics. Totalitarians like Jihadist supporters and Western Leftists naturally resort to the latter.

Political correctness and Multicutluralism rule the day at our universities, allowing academic elites to decide what we may and may not discuss and debate. This is yet another example the alliance of the Western Political Left and Jihadists at work. Their stagnating grip on our academic institutions, and the resultant stiffling of free debate and discussion, needs to be broken.

UPDATE 11-22-06:
Brown U. update: Darwish re-invited
Her invitation to speak has been re-issued. That sounds good, but it remains to be seen wether or not she will actually be allowed to speak. Lets hope she can.

Related Link:

Arabs for Isreal
This site has several links to interviews with Nonie Darwish.

1 comment:

Dionne said...

I saw her on excerpts from that movie Obsession and I was pretty impressed with her.