The Victims Have Faces

In Saudi Arabia, journalist Fahd al-Jukhaidib, who works for the daily Al-Jazeirah newspaper will be publicly whipped for “allegedly instigating protests against a government electricity company following a series of power cuts.”  He is sentenced to receive 50 lashes; in addition, he was also sentenced to two months in prison for his actions.

In Iran, Mohsen Manju is “accused of having ridiculed the Koran, ‘reciting it in a western and anti-Islamic style.’” Thus, this Iranian artist has been sentenced to five years in prison for having put the Koran to music, a move “considered offensive to Islamic morality.”

A fatwa against American cartoonist Molly Norris has resulted in Ms. Norris going into hiding on the advice of the FBI.  She had urged an “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day” which drew the ire of the Muslim world.  German supermodel Claudia Schiffer was threatened with death after she wore a dress printed with a saying from the Koran.  In Afghanistan Sayed Perwiz Kambakhsh has been sentenced to death because he distributed material about the mistreatment of women in Islam.  Ayaan Hirsi Ali is under constant surveillance as a result of her writing and film work which calls for the emancipation of women living under the tyranny of Islam.

In June of 2010 Palestinian Authority TV, which is under the direct control of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s office, held a game show between competing Palestinian universities.  The accepted “correct answers” denied Israel’s existence and sought to promote the notion that “all of Israel is ‘Palestine.’” 

Ibn Warraq, author of Why I Am Not a Muslim, has highlighted the work of Giulio Meotti.  Neither an Israeli nor a Jew, journalist Giulio Meotti authored a book entitled A New Shoah, “a necessary book on the ‘unsung dead of Israel.’” Meotti reminds readers that until Arabs and Muslims “recognize the right of Israel to exist; until Islamic countries add the State of Israel to the maps used in schools” there can never be peace.

Ibn Warraq writes of “an authentic hazkara, an act of remembrance for these victims of Islamic terrorist hatred.  Thus, in Israel in the last 15 years, there have more than 150 suicide/homicide attacks.  Perhaps less well known is that more than 500 suicide attacks have been prevented; 1,557 people have been killed and 17,000 injured.  Rachel Teller and Abigail Litle were teenage girls murdered by terrorists.  Ironically these two girls worked on an Arab-Jewish project for peace.

The ongoing United Nations demonization of Israel, and the never-ending attacks on individual expression of ideas makes all of us victims, some sooner than others.

The silence of the international media is deafening.  Human rights groups have long abdicated any sense of true righteous indignation, and with the Western world ignoring the cancer in their midst, we will continue to see more crackdowns on artists, musicians, and journalists who will ultimately fear for their safety. Thus, until all terrorist groups are outlawed; until all sponsorship of terrorism is punished, until all anti-Israeli propaganda is eliminated, there will be many more victims.  The Jew has always been the canary in the mine, but clearly anyone who disagrees with governments who crack down on freedom of expression becomes a casualty. Who will be next?


Eileen can be reached at