IN THE FRAY OF CLASHING WORLDVIEWS
PART 2 of 4
By Debra Rae
As a single woman living, working and traveling in Muslim countries, I gained experience that resonates with accounts I’ve read of Queen Noor of Jordan, Hirsi Ali of Somalia/Saudi Arabia, Dr. Azar Nafisi and Betty Mahmoody of Iran.
As they, I learned well these inalterable Islamo-lessons: (1) women are by no means equal to men and, from the Muslim’s viewpoint, (2) Israel has no right to exist; (3) America is the Great Satan, and without exception, (4) the Palestinians are perpetual victims. Finally, (5) Islam is unique in its confronting Christianity head on.
1 - Subservience of Women
For women to network, Queen Noor of Jordan established female iftars (traditionally male-attended evening meals during Ramadan), but the Royal Court pressured them to stop. Even women royalty must be in subjugation to “the good old boys” of Islam.
A Westerner in Kuwait, I nonetheless was intrigued by the novelty of separate sections in public places for women and men, and I was amused that school announcements went something like this: “All students and female teachers will/will not [directive following].” More often than not, men were excluded from need to comply.
However, in the late 1990s, when my husband was hospitalized in Djibouti, I was less amused by the inferior role of working women when an attending nurse, a Muslim, refused to touch her male patient; and I was left wondering which of three possible destinations was intended for placing the thermometer she handed over!
2 - Israel Doomed to Extinction
To the radical Muslim, it was Ishmael, not Isaac who received Abraham’s blessing. Muslim guides to living (the Quran, Hadith and Medina) all assign to Islam every piece of ground trodden by a Muslim. Until Muslims obtain each and every inch, they will continue to wage successive jihad meaning “struggle [against infidels].”
The conflict goes beyond a heated contest over land. In the Muslim mindset, Israel has no right even to exist. Case in point: Our school’s inflatable globes were rendered useless even before they reached classrooms because zealous censors knifed out the word, “Israel.” Correct nomenclature was (and is) “Occupied Palestine.” While my personal Bible was not banned, its repeated reference to Israel inflamed passions. Even in personal correspondence, any mention of Israel got bleeped.
Jamal Abdel Hamid Yussif admits: “Our people love death.” Furthermore, he adds, “our goal is to die for the sake of God; and if we live, we want to humiliate Jews and trample on their necks.” Perhaps it is no coincidence that the word “Arab” comes from a primary root word meaning “to lie in wait” or “to engage and meddle with.” These lie in opportunistic wait for the “many men made for hell” that they might “find, seize, fight, beleaguer, and slay” them (Sura 7:179; 9:5, Quran).
In more recent years, outspoken wives of terrorists have expressed their longing for Allah “to make Jewish women widows and their children orphans.” An HAMAS candidate elected to the Palestinian Legislative Council, Mariam Farhat, wishes she had one hundred sons to sacrifice as martyrs. Three of her sons have already paid the ultimate price. In celebration, Farhat handed out halva and chocolates to her friends. She has three more to go (maybe then her own life added to theirs).
3 - America, the Great Satan
When the late, former Prime Minister of Pakistan Benazir Bhutto addressed Hillsdale College (September of 2002), she explained that America symbolizes modernity, diversity and democracy; and all three are “the fanatics’ worst fears.” Religious and leftist organizations, most particularly the Mujahideen and Marxist Fedayin, supported hostage taking from the American embassy (a “nest of spies”). To kidnappers, composed of a ragtag group of Iranian students, America is the land of Lucifer and Paradise Lost.
On one of several trips to Iran before the revolution, I was taken aback by a conspicuous sign plastered over the door of a mosque. It read: “Christians are not welcome; they will be losers in the after world.” Posted in English, the message clearly targeted Westerners from whom legendary codes of Eastern hospitality were apparently withheld.
With unfolding of the Iranian revolution, Americans assumed unflattering characterization as “the Great Satan,” against whom a fatwa had been issued. Daily, enraged cries against the West, Imperialism, Zionism and their internal agents escalated. At the Tehran airport, giant posters echoed the sentiments: DEATH TO AMERICA! DOWN WITH IMPERIALISM & ZIONISM! AMERICA IS OUR NUMBER-ONE ENEMY!
4 - Palestine, Perpetually Victimized
Few women, if any, surpass the beauty, grace, intellect and activism of Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan. To read her memoir is to meet one exceptional lady. Born to an Arab-American family, distinguished for public service, the queen boasts her own highly impressive résumé.
That being said, when it comes to cross-cultural understanding, Queen Noor is a master bridge-builder; however, not without “blind spots.” Review of Leap of Faith: Memoirs of an Unexpected Life by Queen Noor (Miramax Books, March 2003) compelled Kenneth Jacobson with the Anti-Defamation League to expose the queen’s blatant bias.
In Queen Noor’s view, Jews, Muslims and Christians had lived together peacefully for centuries—that is, until the rise of Zionism and the creation of Israel. It was then, she explains, that “animosities took root." Queen Noor clearly believes that Israel is always the aggressor; and Palestinians are always oppressed.
The Queen concedes that Palestinian terrorists at the 1972 Olympics bore full responsibility for the Munich massacre of Israeli athletes; nevertheless, Israel’s self-defense against Palestinian terrorists is never justified. On the other hand, for Jordan to fight Syria and the PLO is not only justified, but imperative. The queen conveniently omits from her otherwise exhaustive memoirs that the terrorist cell calling itself Black September was so named in September 1970 when the king himself ordered mass Palestinian expulsion from Jordan!
On second thought, the true underdog may not be displaced Palestinians, as Muslims contend. If size is a factor, as surely it is, consider this: Israel’s land mass is roughly that of Iowa. By comparison, her more than 140 million enemies inhabit a surrounding land mass exceeding that of the entire United States! While it may be true that non-Muslims are permitted to live, but only under Islamic domination, the Quran nonetheless commands that non-Muslim infidels be beheaded.
If bullying factors in, and it does, these enemies refer to the Jews as “despised and rejected apes” (Sura 7:16, Quran). Accordingly, the 1981 Mecca Declaration released Islamic jihad against Israel. Thereafter, in 1988, Osama bin Laden issued a fatwa or religious edict calling on Muslims to kill Americans anywhere in the world where they can be found.
Be sure, HAMAS’ founding document proclaims the war to be open “until Israel ceases to exist … and the last Jew in the world is eliminated.”
Talk about perpetual victimization!
5 - Islam Confronts Christianity Head On
Of the ninety-nine names of Allah “recorded on the palm of the hand,” “God is Love” is not one of them. A popular Arab saying goes like this: “When your enemy is strong, kiss his hand and pray that it will be broken some day.”
Ill fated, albeit well intended Western bridge-building efforts ignore clear tenets of Islam, for the Quran expressly forbids taking Jews and Christians as friends and protectors. Instead, wherever Muslims find them, the Dar al Hob (House of Infidels) including People of the Book (Jews and Christians) must be seized and subsequently slain (Sura 4:89; 5:14, Quran).
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In an interview with Cal Thomas, former Attorney General John Ashcroft summarized the clash of worldviews when he opined: “Islam is a religion in which God requires you to send your son to die for him, but Christianity is a faith in which God sent His son to die for you.” For part one click below.