Saudi-arabiske kommentatorer har full forståelse for motviljen mot tildekking av kvinner i Europa. I den arabiske og muslimske verden er man fullt klar over den politiske betydning av niqab, av at menn nekter å ta kvinner i hånden osv. Man bruker disse segregasjonsskikkene som politisk utpressing. Europa er i villrede fordi forbud bryter med liberale prinsipper, men Europa må oppdage faren ved de som utnytter friheten til å undergrave den, skriver to kommentatorer.
Saudi Liberal Columnist: The Niqab is a Political Symbol
Poetess and liberal columnist Halima Muzaffar wrote that the Islamists exploited women and used the covering as a political symbol to attain their goals, and not as a religious symbol. In her column in the Saudi daily Al-Watan, she wrote: «…Everyone knows that the exposure of a woman’s face is permitted according to clerics of all four schools [of Islam]. But one Hanbali cleric issued a contrary ruling that [exposing a woman’s face] is forbidden – which sparked a religious argument.
«Several Muslims who saw an advantage [worthy of reward by Allah] in religious extremism and excess abandoned the majority view [i.e. that such exposure is permitted] and adhered to the minority view [i.e. that it is forbidden]… Some who held the view [that it is forbidden] saw it as an opportunity to keep the burqa or the niqab as a chauvinistic tribal Bedouin custom, which had became a legitimate social custom… on the pretext that it is a part of the Islamic [concept of] hijab.
«I wonder: If [the custom of wearing the burqa and the niqab] was a commandment in the name of the religion, and part of the Islamic [concept of] hijab – as those of this viewpoint claim – then why is a woman banned from wearing the niqab and gloves while performing the Hajj?…
«Some Muslim women in Europe wear the hijab against their will, due to the piety of their families who identify with or belong to one of the Islamic political movements. Others wear it out of religious conviction… or out of political conviction, aimed at making the burqa or niqab into a political symbol, not a religious symbol. By so doing, [these women’s families] confront European racism and strengthen their affiliation with Islam, or identify with the Islamic movements… Everyone knows that women are the trump card of these movements, which exploit the [women’s] emotions and their weaknesses… while using the democracy and freedoms in the Western countries to attain their political goals.
«Therefore, the European countries have begun to fear the burqa as a political symbol, not as a religious symbol. They are not willing to lose centuries… of political struggle in which they have shed their blood for equality and stability among the diverse elements of their societies. They did not gain [this equality and stability] to lose it for the sake of political movements that have exploited Islam and have spread their dictatorial [agendas] in its name… in order to establish a party in parliament… or to build what the Islamic Revolution built in Iran or what the Taliban built in Afghanistan… [None of these movements] represent the liberality… of shari’a.»(2)
Saudi Columnist: Traditional Women’s Coverings Are Used By Terrorists
In her column in the Saudi daily Al-Watan, Saudi columnist Layla Ahmad Al-Ahdab stated that women’s coverings should be banned in Europe, because terrorists conceal themselves in them when they carry out terror attacks. She wrote: «Individual freedom must remain within the bounds of society’s security. We have already seen several terrorists using the ‘abaya [a robe worn by Muslim women] and coverings in their preparations for terror operations in several Arab countries: In the [Saudi] kingdom, [authorities have] stopped vehicles carrying workers… hiding behind the niqab, going from one place to another and undermining society’s security. Thus, Europe must ban anything that covers the woman’s face…
«Not hiding your faces from each other is part of respecting your fellow man – thus, the woman won’t view the man as if he were a wild animal, who is likely to gobble her up the minute he looks at her…» (3)
Egyptian Columnist: The Niqab Is Not Welcome in France – Just As It Is Not Welcome in Any Country That Respects Women
Egyptian columnist Mustapha Sami wrote in the Egyptian government daily Al-Ahram in support of Sarkozy’s stance against the burqa, stating that women who wear the burqa or the niqab in France should return to their native land: «Since World War II and the beginning of the emigration of thousands of Muslim Arabs from North Africa, the French government has failed to take meaningful steps or to draw up a conscious plan for integrating the Muslim minority into French society.
«But we must [also] acknowledge that the Muslim Arabs brought with them to France their [own] fears and emotional complexes, which dictated their patterns of behavior and their despicable treatment of women – to which Islam has no connection at all. Of their own free will, the Moroccan, Algerian, and Tunisian Muslims imprisoned themselves in neighborhoods that became filthy slums, where a visitor felt as if he had been immediately transported away from Paris – the most beautiful city in the world – to one of the poverty-stricken cities of the Arab countries – cities rife with tin-shack neighborhoods that export terrorists to the world.
«Since the 1990s, the niqab has been infiltrating the Arab countries, because of the jihadists and the takfiris(4) who use Allah to torment us. From there [the custom of wearing the niqab] moved also to the Muslims in Europe, and the sight of these ‘walking sacks’ in the streets and on public transportation began to arouse apprehension and strange feelings.
«To this fashion was added also women’s refusal to shake hands with men, and vice versa. This behavior is not accepted in our Arab and Islamic society, but nevertheless some Western governments have been forced to accept it for fear of extortion by [Muslim] extremists and hypocrites.
«[But] the West, with all its customs, traditions, and respect for women, is not obliged to accept those who wear the niqab.
«French President Nicolas Sarkozy is absolutely right to refuse to accept the niqab… It is better for those ghosts that hide inside those sacks out of obedience to the precepts of Islam and rejection of the infidel Western culture to go back to their native lands and live their lives in accordance with the instructions of their father or husband – who defend girls’ and women’s honor, even at the cost of killing them.
«Sarkozy was right when he said that the niqab is not welcome on French soil, because it is not a religious symbol but a symbol of subjugation. I add my voice to his, and I agree with him, perhaps for the first time. The niqab is indeed not welcome in France, just as it is not welcome in any country that respects women.(5)
(1) The burqa is the women’s traditional Muslim outer garment that covers a woman from head to toe. Other coverings for women in Islam are the niqab, which veils the entire face, except for the eyes, and the hijab, which covers the hair but not the face.
(2) Al-Watan, Saudi Arabia, June 28, 2009.
(3) Al-Watan, Saudi Arabia, June 29, 2009.
(4) Takfiris belong to extremist Islamist groups that advocate accusing other less pious Muslims of heresy.
(5) Al-Ahram, Egypt, July 7, 2009.