Saturday, April 13, 2013

Feminists Launch ''Topless Jihad Day'' to Protest Islamic Oppression !

A number of my female readers around the world contacted me after my March 29th posting, ''Are You Being Groped Like an Egyptian?'' telling me about a Ukrainian women's activist group named FEMEN that have instigated an international outrage over human rights abuses in Islamic countries. Their outrage was called ''International Topless Jihad Day'' and was displayed by many hundreds of their members in major European cities including Berlin, Brussels, Milan, Kiev and Paris. With their bodies painted with slogans such as, ''bare breasts against Islamism,'' the activists protested outside of mosques and Tunisian embassies in each city. (photo right)

These feminist rallies on last week are in support of a 19 year old Tunisian activist dubbed Amina Tyler who posted two pictures of herself online on Facebook last month with a slogan across her breasts that read in Arabic, ''My body belongs to me and is not the source of anyone's honor''  and the other in english, ''f**ck your morals.'' (photo below) The Femen organization published a corresponding reply, ''We're free, we're naked, it's our right, it's our body, it's our rules, and nobody can use religion, to abuse women, to oppress them.''  On Jihad Day, while outside a Paris mosque, a Muslim man kicked an activist donning a black hijad (photo left), there were dozens of Femen members chanting outside a Berlin mosque in freezing temperatures, ''We'll fight against them. And our boobs will be stronger than their stones." The reference to 'stones' is a scary and a real possibility.

Tunisia, the birthplace of the Arab Spring, has, according to Human Rights Watch, ''long been viewed as the most progressive Arab country with respect to women's rights.''  Yet, in the two years since the revolution, the rise of Islamism has seen women's rights deteriorate. The ultraconservative deadshit Salafis have gained in might since 2011. The Salafi cleric Almi Adel, leader of Tunisia's Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice , called for Tyler to be punished according to sharia, with eighty lashes, but because of the severity of the act she has committed, she deserves to be stoned to death.''  He warned that her act could be contagious and give ideas to other women. Tyler is in hiding after receiving death threats and said ''I must leave Tunisia.''

In late March, Tyler told Italian journalist Federica Tourn that she believed she would be beaten or raped if Tunisian police tracked her town. She claimed that ''nothing they could do would be worse than what already happens here to women, the way women are forced to live every day. Ever since we are small they tell us to be calm, to behave submissively, to dress a certain way, everything to find a husband. We must also study to be able to marry, because young men want a woman who works.''  She added, ''Women are ready for change: We have reached the height of self-determination, we no longer meekly obey authority, neither family nor religious rules. We know what we want and we make our own decisions. The revolution promised us a more broader freedom and they have taken it away.''

The Way I See It....FEMEN deserves the support the Arab Spring got. They are giving the patriarchy and mealy-mouthed relativists....a kick up the arse! And you thought this stuff was complicated. Religious traditions, respect for cultural difference, fear of legitimating Islamophobia. You'd think twice about declaring a jihad on Islamic attitudes to women and their bodies...right?

Not Femen. At a time of tight-lipped liberal relativism when even the president of the United States is damned careful what he says about the nastiness of Islam, here are women bearing their bodies, quoting Tyler's anti-religious message......standing up for the Sisterhood. Clearly, the protest is provocative, as the above Paris mosque photo shows. Some of the media have criticised Femen's ''jihad'', arguing that it is naive to defend the rights of women in north Africa in this cheerfully secular way. But what is wrong with stating clear principle and shining the West's glare on a medieval system of female subjugation as the Arab Spring goes cold?

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