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The Courageous Nonie Darwish
Last uploaded : Friday 16th Nov 2007 at 12:39
Contributed by : The Editor



On 1 November The Centre for Social Cohesion, headed by Douglas Murray, hosted a rare private meeting with the brave Egyptian-born American writer Nonie Darwish, author of ‘Now They Call me Infidel.‘

Having spent her youth in Cairo and Gaza she is now an American. The picture she painted of the propaganda machine in the Middle East was grim. In the region, speaking out for human and women’s rights or for peace with Israel is an insult to Islam, and reformers are intimidated or killed.

Pointing out that religion has more rights than human rights or women’s rights in the Middle East, she moved to the USA in 1978 and loved it but did not start to speak out until 9/11/01. The Egyptian media, according to Darwish, are always blaming the USA and Israel for all their and the world’s ills. On September 10, 2001 she arrived back to her home in Los Angeles from Egypt and the first thing her daughter said to her was how glad she was to be an American.

Why was the Western media not reporting the cursing in mosques pre-9/11? Darwish asks this with considerable anguish. I asked this, too at the time, watching the September 2001 Israel-bashing jamboree in Durban unfold under the guise of the 'United Nations Conference on Racism' ( it degenerated into an ugly hate-Israel fest.)

Nonie Darwish is correct in her summation that the insular and hermetically-sealed American media had no idea what was going on in the Muslim world pre-9/11. In July 2001 I had visitors from the United States, including one who worked at the World Trade Centre and was to lose his brother in the tragedy; not one of these people had any idea there even was an Intifadah raging or that there were any problems in the Middle East. I recall hearing the ABC News correspondent Andrea Mitchell speaking in Washington post-9/11 and saying that in the period leading up to the terror attacks the hottest story in America was the disappearance of Congressional Intern Chandra Levy. She lamented the lack of international depth and inquiry amongst news agencies, leading to the utter shock amongst Americans about the 9/11 attacks.

Darwish observed that on 9/11 she saw on television ‘ the Jihad I left behind. ‘ She wrote an article for a local Los Angeles paper and discovered she was the only Arab woman speaking out about the dangers of Jihad. All of her friends in Cairo and in Egypt said to her ( ‘they were sweet, secular, non-radical‘ she adds), ‘This was a Jewish plot, a Zionist conspiracy.’

When she was confronted by an Arab interviewer he asked her, ’Do you consider yourself an Egyptian, Muslim or American?’ She said ‘American’ and he got so angry that when he asked if her husband had converted to Islam she lied and said 'yes' because, she told us, Muslim women who marry an infidel must be put to death.

In 1980 she went to a US mosque and was asked why she was not covered. ‘We must stand apart. We want to influence them to become Muslims’ she was told by the other women. Darwish said ’They come to the West and want to subvert the system.’

Women like Darwish are becoming targets and live in fear; she said these are dangerous times for the West and that the ‘Basic message in the mosques is anger and hate. The West must end the tyranny of radical Islam. In every country in the Middle East there are radical groups that want to turn their country into a totally Islamic state -- in Saudi Arabia they want to overthrow the Kingdom.‘

Darwish feels Western leaders and media are pandering to and appeasing radicals and she added, ‘Tolerating intolerance does not work.’

In the Question and Answer session I asked Darwish about the aforementioned Durban UN conference. She replied that she was in Egypt in 2001 during the Durban Conference and that the hatred on television and in the papers was overwhelming.

I also asked her about the 2008 Presidential election. She said Romney or Guiliani would be a safe bet and that Hillary Clinton is loved by radical Muslims. ‘She will be lenient’ Darwish observed about the former First Lady.

Another aspect of turmoil in the Middle East is the plight of Copt girls who are being kidnapped, drugged and then married off to Muslims according to Darwish. Anyone who is not a Muslim in Middle East is a second class citizen. Copts in Egypt are being murdered and tortured and their churches being burned down. When she was a child in Gaza she was told, ‘Jews are monsters and make cookies with your blood.’ In every newspaper now in the region she sees ‘Go kill Americans and the infidel.’

She was condemned for writing ‘The Veil - Female form of Jihad,‘ but then on CNN in 2007 a young Muslim woman said ‘it is my Jihad.’ Darwish’s friend in Egypt in 9/01 told her he hoped she would help in the USA to ‘join the army’ ( they gave her a veil) and he said, ‘We have taken Europe and with our birth-rate we will succeed everywhere.’

She said that ‘Muslims against democracy and Western values’ was on a placard in a New York parade on 9/9/07 and that the Muslim Student Departments in the United States are virulently anti-American. She feels the West should put a moratorium on immigration from radicals’ countries.

Darwish related the tory of the ‘Blind Imam’ under suspicion on a killing, he went to Sudan, his reputation bad in the Muslim world; he then got a Visa and came to New Jersey and spoke about destroying America! Then he was involved in the first World Trace Centre bombing. Darwish foresees a separatist movement arising in Britain ‘Chechnya in London, Paris?’ She remarked that at an Egyptian university that is one thousand years old the permanent war is against Jews, Christians and pagans but that many Muslim women are being radicalised in America.

Finally she related to the group a recent incident at University of California at Berkeley: she spoke and a man in a black hood with an orange outfit shouted ‘Abu Ghraib;’ ‘Bush is a fascist;’ Darwish concluded by asserting that university campuses are the force behind USA radicalism.

It was a grim report but Nonie Darwish should be feted for her courage and fortitude. There will, no doubt, be further 9/11s but those of us who heard her speak were at least warned.
The Centre for Social Cohesion:

http://www.socialcohesion.co.uk/ .


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