May 25, 2010
Rifqa Bary Suffering from Cancer, Her Lawyers Bring In Her ParentsBy Pamela Geller
There has been a terrible development in the case of Rifqa Bary, the teenage girl who fled from her home in fear for her life after her devout Muslim father found out she had become a Christian. According to Rifqa, who is now in foster care in Ohio, she has been diagnosed with advanced uterine cancer.
While this is a tragedy, how Rifqa is being victimized by her lawyers and her parents is nothing less than an atrocity. Her lawyers kept her in the dark about her condition -- despite the seriousness of her cancer -- for well over a week while they conferred with her parents and their CAIR-appointed lawyers about her treatment. While most cases like this result in a hysterectomy, Rifqa is only having the advanced malignancy removed. From what I understand, the survival rate in cases like these is only five percent.
Was she allowed to get a second opinion? No.
While she was lying ill, her lawyers brought her parents to her hospital bed. She was awaiting treatment and when she saw them, whereupon she became very agitated and upset. Her parents had to be removed.
One thing that has happened as a result of this terrible development is that Rifqa has broken her silence, a silence mandated by her lawyers. For some time now, she could not talk to her friends, such as her close friend and fellow convert from Islam, Jamal Jivanjee, or to those of us who have not wavered in our support for her civil rights and religious liberty.
She reached out to Jamal, who reports that "Rifqa has already had two surgeries at this point, and she is getting ready to undergo a third surgery which will be occurring this Thursday, May 27. ... As soon as Rifqa heals from the major surgery that she will undergo this Thursday, it is expected that she will need to undergo several rounds of chemotherapy. Although she has been diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer, the extent of her condition will be known after this Thursday's surgery."
Now Rifqa is scared, and with good reason. Says Jamal, "Her situation is very serious, and she will need the help of many people in the weeks and months ahead." Her entire legal strategy, of which I have been critical, was directed at keeping her safe and securing her immigration status. Now here we are at the end of May, and this strategy is obviously an abysmal failure: Rifqa has no immigration status.
Rifqa's legal strategy has been reactive, not proactive. Her lawyers have been kept busy responding to motions filed by Omar Tarazi, who was chosen for the Barys by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a group that was named an unindicted co-conspirator in a Hamas terror funding case.
The worst example of how Tarazi fooled Rifqa's lawyers was that he compelled them to have Rifqa plead guilty to "unruliness" to secure dependency, and then reneged on his part of the deal once the guilty plea had been entered. The guilty plea continues to have negative ramifications for those who love Rifqa and have helped her. With the "unruly" plea as a pretext, criminal investigations are proceeding, and charges are pending against people who helped Rifqa, such as Brian Williams and Blake and Beverly Lorenz, who helped Rifqa when she fled from her home.
What Tarazi is doing is running out the clock so that Rifqa will be without immigration status when she turns 18 this August. Will authorities then deport her?
There is no way of knowing for sure, but CAIR and the Muslim Brotherhood reportedly have infiltrated senior levels at the State Department so deeply that it is a distinct possibility.
And in Sri Lanka, as Rifqa herself has said, she could be killed or institutionalized, with no unwelcome scrutiny interfering in the application of Islamic law.
Jamal Jivanjee explains: "Many people have thought that her eighteenth birthday would be a cause of celebration because she would be free of the immediate threat of being placed under the control of her devout Muslim parents." But instead, "Rifqa will be facing many challenges when she turns 18 on August 10." Upon her birthday in August 2010, she will be an illegal alien in need of serious chemotherapy and cancer treatment.
This is a horror. Everyone has failed Rifqa: her parents, her lawyers, the state of Florida, the state of Ohio, child protective services.
I ask all readers to keep Rifqa in your prayers.
Pamela Geller is the editor and publisher of the Atlas Shrugs website and former associate publisher of the New York Observer. She is the author of The Post-American Presidency (coming July 27 from Simon & Schuster).