The Horrors of Honor Violence: Terrorism At Home

by Abigail R. Esman
Special to IPT News
June 18, 2018

She was a 15-year-old student at San Antonio’s Taft High School with a soft smile and dark eyes. Like most girls her age in Texas, she favored blue jeans. Unlike most girls her age in Texas, in 2017 she was promised in marriage to a man 10 years her senior, who would pay her parents $20,000 to take her as his wife.

But the Iraqi-born Maarib Al Hishmawi had no intention of marrying so young, least of all to a man so much older and whom she hardly even knew. She refused.

Her parents, who had moved to the United States from their native Iraq two years prior, were furious. They “choked her almost to the point of unconsciousness,” said Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar. They beat her with broomsticks. Her mother, 33-year-old Hamdiya Sabah Al Hismawi, threw hot oil on her body.

Maarib escaped, running away from home in January. Claiming they feared she’d been kidnapped, her parents called in local police and the FBI to help track her down. But even from the start, Salazar told CBS News, it was clear to him that “this wasn’t an ordinary missing persons case.” When police found her in an undisclosed location some weeks later, Maarib explained her story. She and her five brothers were taken in by Child Protective Services and her parents immediately taken into custody. Her father blamed Maarib for his arrest.

This is not just a story about domestic abuse. It is a story about cultural mores, institutionalized violence against women and girls (and occasionally young men) in the name of family honor. And it happens to thousands of them every year, not just in places like Afghanistan and Somalia and Iraq, but in America, England, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, France, and elsewhere across the Western world.

Honor violence, according to Phyllis Chesler, the author of A Family Conspiracy: Honor Killings and several studies on the subject, is a form of “tribal violence.” It differs from domestic abuse in that honor violence involves “carefully planned conspiracies and may be perpetrated by multiple family-of-origin members.” Honor violence also differs from domestic abuse in aim: rather than violence directed at a woman’s immediate behavior, such as coming home late, or failing to serve a perfect meal, honor-based violence aims to punish women who “are seen to be acting too ‘western’ or who have relationships or friendships which transgress gender, caste, ethnic or religious distinctions,” according to a 2008 CIVITAS report. “Women’s behavior which is viewed as ‘unacceptable’ by families and communities can include having a boyfriend of different race, religion, caste or wearing ‘western style clothing and listening to ‘western’ music.”

Such violence is also not limited to Muslims, says Jordanian journalist Rana Husseini, author of Murder in the Name of Honor. “While some Muslims do murder in the name of honor – and sometimes claim justification through the teachings of Islam – Christians, Hindus, Sikhs and others also maintain traditions and religious justifications that attempt to legitimize honor killings,” she writes.

Weapons of choice often differ from non-honor-related abuse, involving acid attacks, burning, or hot oil as with Al Hishmawi. Many rights organizations, including the Ayaan Hirsi Ali (AHA) Foundation, also consider forced marriage and female circumcision, or FGM, to be forms of honor violence.

While Chesler’s work focuses on honor killing and not honor violence in general, her observations about the nature of honor killings applies as well to honor violence. “Brothers, uncles, fathers, and other male relatives usually commit the murder, although mothers have also been known to collaborate in the murders of their daughters; sometimes, they are even hands-on perpetrator,” she said in a recent e-mail. By contrast, “Batterers who murder in the West are usually acting in an unplanned and spontaneous way. They alone are the perpetrators. Their own families do not assist them nor does the victim’s family of origin.” Moreover, she adds, “In the West, batterers and wife killers are not celebrated—they are shunned. If possible, they are also prosecuted.” Yet those who commit honor killings and honor violence, she said, “are viewed as heroes who have saved their family’s honor. Thus, they feel no shame or remorse.”

Indeed, even the victims may feel they “deserve” their fates, or at least show understanding of their abusers. When 19-year-old Aiya Altameemi was spotted talking to a boy near their home in Phoenix, Ariz., her mother and sister padlocked her to a bed so she could not escape and then beat her severely. Officials handling the case learned later that Altameemi’s father also once held a kitchen knife to her throat and her mother burned her with a hot spoon when she refused an arranged marriage. Yet at their trial, Aiya wailed that she wanted her mother back, and later defended her to reporters. “We are Muslim,” she said. “Our culture says no talking to boys.”

While growing attention to the phenomenon of honor killings has led to greater oversight by most Western governments, many of which now recognize such murders as a distinct category, honor violence remains largely overlooked and misunderstood. Too often it is grouped with domestic violence, which ignores the true and most insidious nature of the threat. Those facing honor violence have nowhere to run – not their mothers, their sisters, their imams. Consequently, treating the problem of honor violence is far more complicated than handling domestic abuse, or simply putting the husband or other family in prison.

What’s more, Western countries are only now starting to recognize the magnitude of the problem, said Amanda Parker, senior director of the AHA Foundation, an organization that fights honor violence, female genital mutilation and forced marriage. “Across the board, when you see the data being collected in each of the countries, the consensus from experts is that the estimates are low because these are crimes that are not reported, are kept under wraps within families and then there is a judgment call among those who are collecting the data,” she said in a recent phone conversation. “Are they going to actually define it as ‘honor violence’?”

Even official estimates can vary widely. In the Netherlands, the only country with a special police force dedicated to honor crimes, officials registered 452 incidents in 2015. But police receive approximately 3,000 reports of honor-related violence each year, claims criminologist Janine Janssen of the National Expertise Center for Honor Related Violence and author of the Dutch handbook Focus on Honor. According to Dutch newspaper the Volkskrant, 80 percent of these incidents take place in Turkish-Dutch families, 20 percent in Dutch-Moroccan, and 10 percent in Iraqi, Afghan, and Kurdish homes. Others occur in families with roots in the Balkans, Syria, Somalia, Pakistan, and in Hindu families from Suriname.

These numbers seem relatively consistent Europe-wide. In the UK, for instance, the Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organization (IKWRO) registered 2,823 incidents in 2011, a 57 percent increase over 2010. It is not clear whether the increase in reported assaults is due to an actual rise in the number of incidents, increased bravery among victims in reporting, or better awareness of the problem by law enforcement itself.

And in Sweden, where in 2016 a man cut off his wife’s nose and upper lip before stabbing her 66 times in her home, 97 people were serving time for honor-related crimes, according to a 2017 State Department report. A separate 2007 report estimated that 1,500-2,000 women “had been subjected to honor-related violence” that year alone, exclusively among Muslim immigrant families. The State Department report quotes cabinet minister Nyamko Sabuni, a Congolese immigrant, as saying that honor violence against women had reached “urgent proportions.”

None of these figures, however, seem to reflect the problem of FGM, which is at least as urgent in the West. “Forced marriage and female genital mutilation are acts of violence in that they are acts of physical or emotional force that are intended to preserve or improve the family honor,” said an Honor Violence Study Report produced by the Maryland-based research outlet WESTAT. The numbers are shocking. The State Department report cites data showing 53,000 victims in France, most of whom were “recent immigrants from sub-Saharan African countries.” In Germany, the numbers are similar, at an estimated 48,000 victims, with about 9,000 adolescent girls at risk; and in the Netherlands, an estimated 29,000 have suffered FGM, with 40 to 50 young girls are still at risk each year according to a 2013 report.

Although FGM is illegal in all of these countries, prosecution is sporadic. “Despite having legislation in place since 1985, the United Kingdom has failed to prosecute any perpetrators of FGM,” the AHA Foundation noted, this while the country recorded 5,391 incidents in 2016-2017. Moreover, “only 26 states in the US specifically ban FGM,” the foundation reported last month, yet more than 110,000 women and girls at risk live in the 24 states that do not. Worse: according to Amanda Parker, “The Centers for Disease Control estimates that more than half a million women and girls are at risk of FGM in the US.” And if that’s just for FGM, she says, “the numbers facing honor violence have to be giant.”

Parker and others are also concerned that recent immigration crackdowns in the United States may make the matter worse, as immigrant women and girls become more fearful of seeking help. And the lack of training among law enforcement makes it difficult to prosecute honor crimes when women do report them. “The main thing is that those who are best-placed to count these incidents are really law enforcement, and they aren’t sure what they’re looking at when they see it,” she says. Training, as has been done in the Netherlands, is therefore crucial. “If there were a box they could tick that said ‘reclaiming family honor,’ that would work,” notes Parker, “but we are very far from that at this point.”

Still, she and other activists against honor violence remain hopeful. “As slowly as things are moving,” says Parker, “they are actually moving.”

Abigail R. Esman, the author, most recently, of Radical State: How Jihad Is Winning Over Democracy in the West (Praeger, 2010), is a freelance writer based in New York and the Netherlands. Follow her at @radicalstates.

UK Has 5,000 New Female Genital Mutilation Cases in Just the Past Year

PJ Media, by Patrick Poole, July 5, 2017:

Female genital mutilation, common in some African and Asian countries, is becoming a health crisis in Western countries.

European countries are seeing reported FGM cases explode due to immigration and open support for the practice by Islamic leaders:

Meanwhile, at least two U.S. states have seen anti-FGM legislation blocked this year. Those opposed to the bills are claiming “racism” and “Islamophobia” — meanwhile, federal prosecutors have charged four individuals in Detroit in a case that may have more than 100 FGM victims:

The BBC reported yesterday:

The NHS in England recorded 5,391 new cases of female genital mutilation (FGM) in the past year, data reveals.

Almost half involved women and girls living in London, NHS Digital found.

A third were women and girls born in Somalia, while 112 cases were UK-born nationals.

The practice is illegal in the UK and it is compulsory for family doctors, hospitals and mental health trusts to report any new cases in their patients.

FGM — intentionally altering or injuring the female external genitalia for non-medical reasons — carries a sentence of up to 14 years in jail.

NHS officials treated 9,179 women with FGM from April 2016 to March 2017.The 5,391 cases were victims recorded for the first time during that period:

Despite education efforts against the practice, the numbers have barely dropped:

At that present rate, the practice would take decades to eradicate. So despite being made illegal, why is FGM persisting in the UK? One obvious reason is that UK authorities won’t pursue prosecutions:

As thousands of new cases are added annually, UK officials defend their refusal to prosecute offenders:

Among the reasons offered as to why there should be no prosecutions for FGM offenders are claims that doing so would target minorities and immigrants, or incite “Islamophobia.”

In the U.S., where reports of FGM have tripled over the past 20 years, there has been similar pushback and lack of prosecution:

Those same claims of racism and targeting immigrants used in the UK were trotted out by FGM defenders when Minnesota took up legislation earlier this year:

Thereby slowing or stalling the anti-FGM bills:

A similar anti-FGM bill was stopped in Maine just last week:

What’s remarkable about the defeat of the state anti-FGM legislation is that the practice has been banned in the U.S. under federal law since 1996.

The law was amended in 2013 to stop the transport of victims across state lines.

And yet only 24 states have passed anti-FGM laws:

And some states are like Tennessee, where officials refuse to prosecute the state law:

There has only been one federal prosecution for FGM in 20 years, a case that is currently ongoing in Detroit involving victims as young as seven:

[…]

So why hasn’t the establishment media made more of this case? Well, the fact that immigrants and Muslims are involved as both victims and those charged make the media establishment queasy. They do not wish to be accused of fostering racism and Islamophobia, just like the UK and the state legislators targeted to prevent taking action against the practice.

[…]

As government statistics and now confirmed anecdotal evidence indicate, FGM is now common in Western countries.

Legislators and prosecutors must decide if women’s health is of greater concern than false accusations of racism and “Islamophobia.” As we’ve seen in Minnesota, Maine, and Tennessee this year, it’s unfortunate that this has been a tough choice for them to make.

Read more

Also see:

Leaders Try to Squelch Dar al-Hijrah Female Genital Mutilation Debate

IPT News, June 14, 2017

One mosque leader says it’s time for unity. An international Islamist activist says such discussions shouldn’t be aired publicly. Two weeks after the senior imam at the Dar al-Hijrah mosque endorsed partial female genital mutilation (FGM) as “the honorable thing to do,” a clear effort is under way to try to stifle further debate.

Don’t be “in tensions” or “in camps,” mosque board member Esam Omeish told the congregation Friday. Earlier that day, Outreach Director Johari Abdul-Malik announced he was quitting after more than 15 years at the mosque over imam Shaker Elsayed’s comments. Abdul-Malik wanted Elsayed fired, noting this was the latest in a series of “reprehensible statements made by” the imam.

Omeish preached a different message for one of the largest mosques in the Washington, D.C. area: Time to move on.

Elsayed “offered his apology” and “we stand united in making sure that we are the backing of everyone, of us,” Omeish said.

Elsayed did apologize, writing that, “Islam would never support anything that harms anybody’s well-being, such as FGM.” [Emphasis original] But Elsayed rescinded the apology shortly afterward, a fact that Omeish never mentioned. Abdul-Malik’s open letter made it clear that his decision to leave was influenced by Elsayed’s public recanting of that apology.

For those wanting Elsayed ousted, “We will not engage nor accept the tactics of coercion, and of threats, and of behaviors of picking and demonizing,” Omeish said.

In addition, the notion that “Islam would never support” FGM was contradicted Monday by an international Islamist leader. Tariq Ramadan posted a video on his Facebook page repeatedly describing the FGM debate as an “internal discussion” the mosque needs to have.

He opposes the practice. But while female genital mutilation is not mentioned in the Quran, he said, “no one can deny the fact that in the mainstream Islamic tradition … it’s discussed because they are relying on the prophetic traditions, where it’s clearly mentioning the female excision.”

In a written update added beneath the video, Ramadan emphasized his opposition to female genital mutilation, and repeated that it is rooted in Islamic tradition. “To say this discussion has no ground within the Islamic tradition is wrong: it has been debated and still is. Even though I am against these practises as I think it is not the right Islamic interpretation, it cannot be denied that it was condoned by some Muslim scholars (even contemporary ones),” he wrote.

Many Islamist apologists, including Reza Aslan, have long insisted there is no religious basis for FGM, describing it instead as a tribal tradition primarily in Central Africa among both Muslims and Christians.

Ramadan’s comments refute that claim. His word carries significant influence. He is the grandson of Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan al-Banna. The Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Watch describes Ramadan as “an independent power center” within the Brotherhood.

In his video, the Switzerland-based Ramadan does not explain why he took the time to weigh in on a debate within one mosque in Falls Church, Va. He does, however, argue that continuing an open debate only serves people who want to hurt the Muslim community. As the Washington Post did last week, Ramadan makes a point of attacking the messenger – the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) – which originally found Elsayed’s video and cast a spotlight on his FGM comments.

“These are Islamophobes,” Ramadan said. “And you react to them by just exposing one of your leaders, a sheikh that has been serving the community for more than 30 years? And you ask for him to be fired so quickly, just to be on the safe side of the political discussion in the United States of America, by saying – ‘oh, we have nothing to do with this’ – while your tradition is there and it’s discussed within your tradition. And whoever is attacking you, at least you have to be cautious with the people who are using this and putting you in a situation which is – yes, problematic, but, you have to stand for your rights to have opinions, and at least to have internal discussions and not react so quickly to these issues.”

Elsayed’s comments were not limited to Muslim girls. Any woman whose clitoris has not been cut is prone to becoming “hyper-sexual” and incapable of being satisfied by just one man, he said. In other words: whores.

Still, without naming names, Ramadan criticized those who spoke out and urged them to keep any disagreements private.

It is a reaction indicative of a deeper mindset. In 2003, Ramadan drew criticism when he was unwilling to unequivocally condemn stoning adulterers. Like FGM, he said he was against the practice. But he couldn’t call for its ban. Instead, he called for “a moratorium so that there can be a real debate between Muslims.”

Omeish, meanwhile, seemed concerned about the damage a debate on an ugly topic might have on the community’s influence: “For the first time, my dear brothers and sisters, we as a community have the space, have the presence, have the numbers, have the ability, inshallah [God willing], to engage and influence and discuss public discourse and bring forth what we believe in…”

He described Dar al-Hijrah as a place “embattled for so many years with a false narrative and a false paradigm that was never able to stick on Dar al-Hijrah because Dar al-Hijrah never practiced it. There is no extremism. There is none of that sense that we keep getting.”

It’s an odd argument to make, given that Dar al-Hijrah also has been home to Anwar al-Awlaki, who went on to become an al-Qaida spiritual leader and one of the terrorist group’s most effective radicalizers. Law enforcement officials also have described the mosque as “associated with Islamic extremists” and was “operating as a front for Hamas operatives in U.S.”

Omeish also made it clear that Elsayed remains a “beloved senior imam” who “will continue to be a leading member and he will be, inshalllah [God willing], kept in the highest regard” despite endorsing FGM.

In addition, Elsayed has cast Muslims as first in line for jihad and described the labeling of suicide bombers an “in-house business” for Muslims.

Now, Tariq Ramadan seems to be casting the FGM debate as “in-house business.”

Ramadan’s decision to weigh in on the matter shows that Dar al-Hijrah is an important base for the Muslim Brotherhood in America, said Abdur-Rahman Muhammad, who used to pray there often.

“Let’s make no mistake about it,” Muhammad said. “Shaker [Elsayed] is the spiritual guide to the Muslim Brotherhood in America and they’re not going to let him go down.”

Earlier this week, a Libyan House of Representatives security committee named Omeish a terrorist, saying he is an “international member of the Muslim Brotherhood.”

Meanwhile, no major Islamist organization – what Muhammad calls the “immigrant Muslim syndicate” – has publicly commented on the female genital mutilation controversy.

Muhammad locked in on another part of Elsayed’s remarks that have drawn less attention. An area woman used to conduct the procedure, Elsayed said. To Muhammad, that’s a sign that girls in the D.C. area have been subjected to mutilation. “We need to round up these animals and throw them in jail for about 30 or 40 years and send a message that we’re not having this in America,” he said in a YouTube commentary. “These girls that are being butchered – these are American girls. These are girls that are born right here on the shores of the United States of America, being mutilated, butchered, by these primitive evil people.”

FGM is a growing practice in the United States, Muhammad believes. It is being imported by Muslims from other countries. When Elsayed rescinded his apology, reportedly claiming, “I’m an American” and can believe what he wants, the congregation applauded, Muhammad said. That means “they’re going to do it (FGM).”

Also see:

Brigitte Gabriel: FGM and Honor Killings Downplayed Because ‘Islamists Have Perfected the Public Relations War’

AFP

Breitbart, by John Hayward, June 7, 2017:

Brigitte Gabriel, president ofACT for America and author of They Must Be Stopped: Why We Must Defeat Radical Islam and How We Can Do It, was a guest on Wednesday’s Breitbart News Daily with SiriusXM host Raheem Kassam.

Kassam asked Gabriel to expand on the article she wrote for Breitbart News on Monday, “The War on Girls.” The piece includes the harrowing account of a 16-year-old girl stabbed to death by her Palestinian father in a 1989 honor killing. A recording made of the incident captures the girl screaming and begging for her life while both father and mother order her to die quickly and quietly. The murder occurred not in the Middle East, but in Missouri; the girl was killed because her father thought she had become too “Americanized.”

“This is ‘honorable’ in Islamic societies, unfortunately, in many places around the world,” Gabriel said. “It is so sad that we in the West are starting to see such a rise in honor killings due to the rise of Islamic immigration into our countries.”

“I believe it is our duty to stand up for girls who are born in America, or England, or anywhere else in the world because they are Western girls,” she urged. “They want to adopt Western lives. They want to wear makeup. They want to get a job. They want to be able to drive a car and get out of the house with their friends to a coffee shop. But these are the sins that in some cases parents are killing their daughters for. That’s why this killed Tina, his daughter, because she got a job, she wanted to wear makeup, and he thought she was becoming too Westernized.”

Gabriel noted that in Europe, in 2004, “all European police associations held a meeting at the Hague to discuss the rise of honor killing in Europe.”

“The situation has gotten worse,” she said. “I know that in 2005, in London, in England, the British police reopened 1500 cases where originally they had thought it was just killing, just murder. 1500 cases were all reopened because they believed they were all honor killings, and the situation has just gotten worse.”

Kassam asked why the political Left seems to believe the defense of Islam takes priority over “the rights, and freedoms, and liberties, and lives of young women.”

“This is the perplexing question that we all are asking, and trying to figure out,” Gabriel replied. “I can understand why they’re not going to line up and say, ‘Oh my gosh, I don’t think we need to stop immigration, or we should be able to welcome refugees,’ et cetera. That’s fine. But when it comes to women’s rights, when it comes to genitally mutilating young girls – as young as six or seven years old – when it comes to killing women in the name of honor, you would think that the women’s movement at least would stand with us shoulder-to-shoulder to say this is not acceptable.”

“These are young girls – in the case of female genital mutilation, you are literally damaging the girl’s life for the rest of her life until the day she dies. The psychological effects, the medical effects, for years and years of misery to come. But they are not doing it,” she observed.

Gabriel suggested this was because “in order for them to admit that we’ve got to stand up for this, they’re going to have to shine the light or put the cause of this under the microscope.”

“People say well, it’s cultural. I say to them, if it is cultural – honor killing or female genital mutilation – how come we do not see Jews from North Africa or the Middle East genitally mutilating their daughters, or killing their daughter in the name of honor? How come we don’t see Christians from North Africa and the Middle East genitally mutilating their daughters or killing their daughters?” she said.

“The statistics speak for themselves. This is done almost 99 percent on Muslims by Muslims. It’s an Islamic practice, sanctioned in the Islamic code, for an Islamic religion,” she declared.

“For the lefties to basically say, ‘We need to stop this, what is causing this?’ to march against it will be literally standing up against and having to shine a light on the cause du jour for them, which is the Islamic cause, because they feel that Muslims are the underdog, and the oppressed, and we need to stand for them,” said Gabriel.

“What they call the right wing, or what they call wealthy business owners, they’re not poor. In the minds of the Left, you’ve got to be poor and downtrodden in order for you to be worthy of standing up for. This is why they are siding with the Islamic side instead of us,” she said.

Kassam suggested the Left pay attention to “the hard data that there is one case of female genital mutilation reported every hour in the United Kingdom,” and between 12 and 15 honor killings in the U.K. just last year. He said they should also be disturbed by the difficulty of obtaining solid numbers about such incidents in the United States.

Gabriel said the Left refuses to understand the problem, in part because “the Islamists in our countries, whether in Europe or whether in the United States, have perfected the public relations war.”

“They have perfected manipulating the media, which was already halfway there because, because as you know the Saudis and all the other money flowing from the Middle East into our universities has done an incredible job in brainwashing students in our political science departments and Middle East studies departments. By the time they graduate, they’re completely lock, stock, and barrel bought into the Islamic propaganda machine and ideas. They are today the news anchors, the news writers, the newsmakers, the policy shapers, the foreign policy makers. That’s why we’re seeing the attitudes and the resistance we’re seeing right now to our messages,” she said.

“However, we don’t have to stand back and wonder and watch them demonstrate, with us sitting on the sidelines talking about it and wondering why they’re doing this. We are organizing on our own. I can tell you that we in America, my organization ActForAmerica.org, this Saturday in just three days we are having rallies nationwide in the United States, in 29 major cities across the country, in 21 states,” Gabriel announced.

She said participants would “march against sharia, march for human rights, march for national security.”

“People can go to our website, ActForAmerica.org, click on ‘March Against Sharia,’ and find a rally near you,” she said. “We are the resistance movement that Europe did not have. America is not going to roll over and let the Islamists walk all over us, like what they have done in Europe. Here we are very organized, we are very passionate. We stand strongly behind our Second Amendment right, and we will defend ourselves.”

“We are applying pressure on our elected officials to do the right thing,” she added. “We have passed laws stopping sharia law from being instituted in many states in America. We have a bill called ALAC, American Love for American Courts, which has now passed in 12 states and is now introduced in another 10.”

***

On Saturday, June 10, 2017, ACT for America is having March Against Sharia events in cities across the nation.

Also see:

Dar al-Hijrah Imam Endorses (Partial) Female Genital Mutilation

IPT, by John Rossomando  •  Jun 2, 2017

Female genital mutilation (FGM) can be an effective tool to prevent promiscuity among girls, the imam at a prominent northern Virginia mosque claimed in a recent lecture flagged by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).

Without it, “hyper-sexuality takes over the entire society and a woman is not satisfied with one person or two or three,” said Dar al-Hijrah Islamic Center Imam Shaker Elsayed in a May 19 talk, “Foundation of a Happy Family.” Only tip of a girl’s clitoris should be cut, he said, otherwise it creates “serious harm in the sexual life of the child when she grows up. And this is why the West thinks of alkhikah as sexual mutilation…”

The video remains posted on the Falls Church, Va. mosque’s YouTube channel.

Muslim societies which prohibit FGM are making a mistake “to prohibit the tradition and they end up causing a lot of damage on the other extreme side of the sexual life of a woman,” Elsayed said.

He isn’t the only prominent voice in the U.S. Muslim community endorsing female genital mutilation. The Assembly of Muslim Jurists in America (AMJA) endorses the practice in two fatwas posted on its website, using justifications similar to Elsayed’s. While not required, one fatwa says, “it is considered an honorable thing for females.”

Islamist advocates argue that FGM has nothing to do with Islam

After several Detroit area doctors were charged with violating Michigan’s ban on female genital mutilation in April, activist Linda Sarsour denounced denouncing the practice as contrary to Islam.

“FGM has no place in Detroit or anywhere else in the world. FGM is barbaric & not an Islamic practice,” Sarsour wrote.

She should target that message to its proponents. Sarsour spoke at a fundraiser at Elsayed’s mosque six days before his talk on female anatomy and promiscuity. FGM did not come up, but Sarsour described Islam’s prophet Mohammed as “a feminist in his own right.”

U.N. Survey: 3 Out of 4 Men and over Half of Women in Egypt Support FGM

Photo/Amr Nabil

Breitbart, by John Hayward, May 3, 2017:

A new United Nations surveyof male attitudes toward “gender equality” finds precious little appetite for it across the Middle East.

“Male attitudes towards the role of women in the workplace and at home, and of their participation in public life, were stereotypically sexist in the study of views in Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco and Palestine,” writes the UK Guardian in summarizing the report.

Egypt scored the lowest on the report’s “Gender Equitable Men” scale and is the source of the most striking headlines. For example, CNS News reports that “70 percent of Egyptian men approve of female genital mutilation.” For that matter, 56 percent of Egyptian women also voiced approval for the hideous procedure, which is illegal but not unheard-of, in much of the world.

Egyptian men also supplied 90 percent agreement with the statement that “a man should have the final word about decisions in the home,” and 58.5 percent of Egyptian women agreed. Only 31 percent of Egyptian men thought married women have the same rights to work outside their homes as men. 93 percent of men thought a husband should “know where his wife is at all times.” 96 percent thought a wife should agree to sex whenever her husband desires it.

53.4 percent said “there are times when a woman deserves to be beaten.” 90 percent agreed that “a woman should tolerate violence to keep the family together.” Roughly 45 percent of Egyptian men said they had been violent to their wives.

Only 25.7 percent of male Egyptian respondents said that women should “have the same freedom to access sites on the Internet as men.”

Egyptian women were significantly more supportive of women’s rights on most of these questions, although one point of agreement concerned women at work. While women were over twice as likely as men to say that women should have the right to work, they largely agreed that it was more important for men to work when jobs were scarce and that marriage was more important for women than a career.

Inability to find work was a major source of shame, anxiety, and depression for men.

The survey noted that younger men and women, especially younger women, were more likely to support gender equality. Of the regions surveyed, Egypt scored lowest on the Gender Equitable Men scale, while Lebanon scored the highest.

Morocco produced some alarming results about sexual harassment, with over half of men saying they have sexually harassed a woman, and over 60 percent of women reporting they have been harassed. A higher percentage of female Moroccans (78 percent) agreed that provocatively dressed women deserve harassment than men (72 percent).

The survey, which was conducted by UN Women and a non-profit organization called Promundo, involved 10,000 respondents in Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, and the Palestinian territories.

Mohammad Naciri, regional director of Arab States UN Women, looked for optimistic signs in the report. “Amidst the stories of men’s violence against women, we found stories of men’s caregiving in the home. For every story of a man who compelled his daughter to marry against her will, there were stories of men who empowered their daughters,” he said.

“The patriarchy works for the very small minority who are on the top of that pyramid,” lead researcher Shereen El Feki told the BBC. “For the rest down below, lots of women, but also from the results of the survey, many, many men, life is very tough.”

Promundo CEO Gary Barker told Reuters that “everywhere else we have done these research… young men typically have more progressive views that their fathers and the older generation. That was not so here.”

***

Also see:

Study: Genital Mutilation Imposes Segregation on Immigrants’ American Daughters

AP

Breitbart, by Dr. Susan Berry, April 24, 2017:

The imported practice of genital mutilation can segregate hundreds of thousands of American girls from their peers in mainstream American society, say two New York psychologists.

The hidden segregation, however, is being ended by President Donald Trump and his deputies, who announced mid-March a new national campaign against “Female Genital Mutilation” that is commonplace in some immigrant communities.

Genital cutting by immigrant parents “sets these [American victims] apart from the mainstream culture and may complicate their efforts to adjust to life in the United States and cause intergenerational conflict in some families,” according to Adeyinka M. Akinsulure-Smith and Evangeline I. Sicalides, the authors of “Female Genital Cutting in the United States: Implications for Mental Health Professionals.”

Immigrant “parents may consider it important for their [American] daughters to be cut, regardless of the girls’ wishes, as a way to maintain their identity with the family and its [foreign] cultural community of origin. Others may want the girls in their family to undergo FGC as a way to protect them from aspects of American culture,” according to their article published in the October 2016 issue of Professional Psychology: Research and Practice.

Female genital cutting (FGC) and female circumcision (FC) are politically correct terms for the practice of “Female Genital Mutilation.” The process removes part or all of the clitoris, or even all of the external genitalia, in female infants, children or adults. The practice is widespread in Islamic northern Africa, where the most radical versions of the process are inflicted in Somalia. In many cases, the damaged woman is made unable to provide genital lubrication, which is deemed sexually distasteful in some communities that practice FGM.

FGM is in the news because Trump’s deputies at the Department of Justice and the FBI have promised to end the practice — and have already arrested a group of Muslim doctors in Detroit for performing FGM on several American girls. “The practice has no place in modern society and those who perform FGM on minors will be held accountable under federal law,” said the acting U.S. Attorney in Detroit, Daniel Lemisch.

Trump’s effort to save hundreds of thousands of Americans girls from the peculiar institution replaces the say-nothing, see-nothing policy of the pro-immigration,  pro-multicultural policy imposed by former President Barack Obama.

The two New York psychologists are not political activists seeking to reduce and protect the practice as it spreads by immigration into Western Europe and the United States. Instead, they are therapists who help other experts deal with the after-effects of the imported practice.

“[I]t is our professional and ethical responsibility to be informed about this cultural practice, and to possess the awareness, knowledge, and skills to intervene,” the psychologists say.

The psychologists’ primary concern is that females who have been cut may become patients of U.S. healthcare providers who have no awareness or acceptance of the immigrant practice and may bring “unexamined opinions and attitudes” to their treatment of these females.

Their recommendation is that healthcare providers exempt themselves from the politics, and merely treat FGM as a medical issue. Providers should avoid “pathologizing the experiences of all girls and women who have undergone FGC,” while also familiarizing themselves with the legal issues and physical and psychological complications associated with the procedure, they wrote.

“A thorough understanding of these factors is fundamental to promoting appropriate care for those who have had FGC and for developing effective interventions to prevent new FGC cases in the United States where the practice is illegal,” the authors write.

Akinsulure-Smith and Sicalides attribute the rise of FGM in the United States to the increase in immigration from countries that perform the procedure:

The precipitous rise in women and girls who are affected by FGC reflects a growth in immigration to the United States from countries with high FGC prevalence rates. More specifically, 55% of U.S. women and girls at risk come from Somalia, Egypt, and Ethiopia where the prevalence rates for females ages 15–49 are 98%, 91%, and 74%, respectively (Mather & Feldman-Jacobs, 2015). Sixty percent of these women and girls live in eight states: California, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Texas, Virginia, and Washington (Mather & Feldman- Jacobs, 2015).

In the United States, approximately 513,000 females are either at risk of FGM or have already been cut, an estimate that is more than double the 228,000 observed in 2000 and three times more than the 1990 estimate of 168,000, established by the World Health Organization (WHO).

According to WHO, FGM has “no health benefits, only harm.” The immediate consequences of the procedure can include severe pain, excessive bleeding, fever, infections, shock, and even death. Long-term difficulties include urinary problems, sexual and childbirth complications, and psychological issues, says WHO.

Akinsulure-Smith and Sicalides downplay the ties between FGM and Islam, saying the practice is sometimes “required by faith” – though they do not mention Islam or the Muslim faith. FGM, the authors note, is also performed on females to reduce sexual desire in women, assure virginity before marriage, and to increase male sexual pleasure. Additionally, some perform the practice because a woman’s genitalia is viewed as “dirty” and “aesthetically unpleasing.”

FGM became illegal in the United States in 1996, for girls under the age of 18. The practice is viewed as “gender-based torture” and as a “human rights violation,” note the psychologists.

Initially, U.S. law “excluded cultural grounds as a way to justify the practice of FGC,” the authors note. “To circumvent this law, parents and/or guardians sent girls abroad to undergo FGC, usually during the summer months. This practice came to be known as ‘vacation cutting.’” In 2013, however, Congress outlawed the “vacation cutting” practice as well.

Since 1994, 24 states also have criminalized FGM and at least 12 states have made the practice a felony for parents who allow their daughter to undergo the procedure.

States without specific FGM laws utilize their own child protection or child abuse laws as a means of reporting the procedure, Akinsulure-Smith and Sicalides observe. They add, however, that mandated reporters – such as school personnel and healthcare providers – are “often unsure whether FGC constitutes [criminal] abuse and whether they have a legal obligation to report suspected cases of cutting.”

When female children have been cut, they are often hesitant to speak with state authorities for fear their parents or other relatives may be arrested, the authors explain.

The Trump administration Department of Justice has recently announced a national campaign to end the practice of FGM, even as the politically correct attitudes of the establishment’s media has minimized the public’s recognition of the problem among many Muslim immigrant families.

In a joint statement about the media’s failure to identify the exploitation of young girls exposed to FGM, Media Research Center president Brent Bozell and founder of anti-terror group ACT for America Brigitte Gabriel, said:

Where is the outrage? The hypocrisy is staggering. The networks, which have for years championed the causes of left-wing feminists and women’s rights, are conspicuously silent on this case and their silence is deafening. This is real exploitation of young girls and the usual suspects who ought to care have little to say about this form of torture making its way to America. This practice is illegal and immoral. The networks have an ethical responsibility to report that it’s happening here at home. If they don’t, they are guilty of aiding and abetting violence against women out of a politically correct fueled fear of offending Muslims.

Breitbart News recently reported three Detroit doctors have been arrested in what represents the first prosecution in the United States for FGM.

Dr. Jumana Nagarwala, owner of the Burhani Medical Center, and Drs. Fakhruddin Attar and Farida Attar have been charged in the FGM of two seven-year-old girls. Nagarwala was charged with allegedly performing the procedure on the victims, and the Attars – husband and wife – with allegedly being present during the cutting. According to the news report, Farida Attar was allegedly heard on a federal wiretap encouraging the parents of FGM victims “to deny they had brought their daughters to [the] Burhani clinic for the procedure.”

The report continues:

According to the complaint against Nagarwala, the victims’ parents brought them to the Detroit area for the gruesome procedure. The girls were told it was to be a “special girls trip.” The parents also allegedly said the cutting would “get the germs out” and that they were not to talk of what happened inside the Burhani clinic.

One of the girls later told the FBI she screamed in pain as she endured what Dr. Nagarwala called “getting a shot.” She then said she was barely able to walk as she left the clinic. Upon examination by doctors working with the FBI, both seven-year-olds were found to have genitalia that was “abnormal looking” with “scar tissue” and “small healing lacerations.”

Nagarwala was trained at Johns Hopkins University, but is reportedly the daughter of two Indian immigrants from the Bohra sect of Shia Muslims.

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