Nagla Al Imam, recently announced her conversion to Christianity in Cairo, Egypt. The announcement brought shock waves in and beyond Egypt. This is perhaps the first case ever of its kind, where a Muslim woman, who is also a Sharia expert, has openly challenged Islamic apostasy laws from within the Muslim world.
Nonie Darwish, FrontPage Magazine, August 3, 2009
Very few people in the West know what is going on inside the Muslim world and what it portends for them. The fact is that through the dominant media, such as CNN, Americans are subjected to much of the same misinformation with regard to Islam that I grew up with inside the Muslim world. The result is that Americans are in the dark attempting to formulate their strategy of how to defend themselves against the threat of terror, domestic jihad and Sharia. While Americans get ridiculed for being “Islamophobes,” the Muslim world itself is undergoing a huge and painful awakening.
For instance, a prominent Egyptian lawyer and women’s rights activist, Nagla Al Imam, recently announced her conversion to Christianity in Cairo, Egypt. The announcement brought shock waves in and beyond Egypt. This is perhaps the first case ever of its kind, where a Muslim woman, who is also a Sharia expert, has openly challenged Islamic apostasy laws from within the Muslim world.
Ms. Al Imam’s incredible courage was on display in an internet chat room, where she announced that she is not afraid, will stand up for the human rights of apostates and refuses to leave her homeland, Egypt. This was immediately followed by attacks and calls (‘fatwas’) for death of the 36 year-old graduate of Al Azhar Islamic University.
Egyptian media not only reported the threat but also participated in the attacks. Ms. Al Imam was literally entrapped by a TV station ‘Al Mihwar’ with the pretext of inviting her for an interview. Upon arrival to the TV studio she was told the show she was to appear on was cancelled. She was then taken forcibly to a room where she was held against her will for hours inside the studio. She was assaulted, threatened and insulted by several people. She was able to escape, and went to her internet chat room telling the world what happened and said she will demand protection from the Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.
Such action is common not only against apostates but anyone who deviates from the dictates of Islam or demands reform. Many Muslim journalists, intellectuals and feminists who consider themselves Muslims but are critical of Sharia are often intimidated, threatened or even killed for the slightest independent views using the apostasy card to keep them quiet.
Another recent case in Egypt is that of a brilliant intellectual by the name of Sayed Mahmoud El Qemany. He was recently accused of apostasy even though he denied it on TV and insisted he is still a Muslim. But fatwas of death were immediately issued against him. Mr. El Qemany recently wrote the following:
“I was granted the State Award for Social Sciences, on June 25th 2009. The hard-line radical militant groups considered that the state has adopted this intellectual secular trend
officially, infuriating the mentioned group which called on the State to withdraw the prize with the declaration of my defection from Islam and excommunication which means in our country, I could be slain; any citizen is allowed to kill me and be awarded by God in Paradise. The following parties have participated in the statements of atonement:
1 – Al-Azhar Scholars Front headed by Yahya Ismail Habloush, which issued the first statement of atonement on July 10, 2009.
2 – The Islamic Group (condemned terrorist group) issued a statement of atonement on July 10, 2009.
3 – The Muslim Brotherhood hailed the atonement, and were presented at the parliament by Hamdi Hassan requesting the withdrawal of the award and the declaration of religious-defection and excommunication on July 7, 2009. The Muslim Brotherhood also declared my excommunication on Mohwar Channel on July 11, 2009 and on Al Faraeen Channel on July 13, 2009.
4 – The Salafi (Fundamentalist) Group (condemned terrorist group) dedicated its Internet site named “The Egyptians” for excommunicating me and incitements to kill me, since the date of obtaining the prize until today.
5 – Al Nas channel, which represents the theoretical side of bloody terrorism which declared excommunication and demanded “all citizens who can” to kill me immediately, on July 24 and 25, 2009.
6 – The Hisbah Sheikh Youssef Al Badri in Egypt declared on the channel “ON TV” on July 3, 2009 that I have cursed God and the Prophet Mohammad in my books even though I have challenged him and others to refer to a single text written by me where such claims were made. Due to this proclamation, he has issued an incitement to kill me.
7 – A member of the Al-Azhar scholars, Sheikh Mohammed El Berry, on Mihwar TV Channel on July 11, 2009 announced my atonement as he also said that he did not read any of my writings since he does not read “garbage”. He repeated the same words on the channel “ON TV” on July 22, 2009.
8 – Sheikh Ali Gomaa, the former Chairman of the “State Religious Affairs Advisory Board”, issued a statement declaring my infidelity and calling for slaying me for “insulting the Prophet of Islam, the God of Islam” on July 24, 2009.
9 – The Sheiks of more than 5000 mosques on Friday prayers on July 24, 2009 declared the incitement to kill me, especially in my hometown, which led to the rampage against my family and relatives, and that could possibly evolve to some serious consequences in the coming weeks.
Due to the above, I call upon the conscience of all humanity in the free world to come to me and my children’s rescue by providing moral support and the condemnation and denunciation of the radical thinking with quick solutions to save us from the danger that is luring around us. This is a distress call to all bodies and individuals. A call to the consciences of every free individual in the world.
Signed: Sayed Mahmoud El Qemany- Researcher.”
In spite of the cover up, this is perhaps the first time in the history of Islam that Muslims finally have access to the truth about their own religion, thanks to the Internet and satellite dishes (invented by infidels). There are daily news reports of heart-broken Muslims who say they cannot believe what is written in Muslim scriptures and say that Muslims have been living under the greatest lie in human history. Others simply deny and say that it can’t be so. While Saudi Arabia is spending billions to Islamize the West, many Muslim prisoners of Islamic submission are dying or leaving the religion quietly.
The relatively few number of Muslims who dare to convert to Christianity do it in extreme secrecy. That is because the penalty for leaving Islam is death in all schools of Sharia, both Sunni and Shiite. Those who wrote Sharia centuries ago knew that keeping Muslims in total submission would be very difficult to maintain, and thus they established barbaric laws condemning Muslims to death for exercising their basic human rights to choose their own religion. Sharia never entrusted its enforcement only to the formal legal system. Islam promises heavenly rewards to individual Muslims who take the law into their own hands. Sharia also states that the killers of apostates and adulterers are not murderers and therefore are not to be punished. That is why, for Islam to achieve 100% compliance to Sharia enforcement, Muslim individuals are encouraged to take matters into their own hands.
The end result is a chaotic society where everything happens behind closed doors but at a very heavy price to interpersonal relationships. Fear and distrust of others exists in all Muslim societies. Muslims are not just distrustful of the West, but they are distrustful of one another. In Muslim society, people are often more afraid of their neighbors and family members than of the police. Thus, we see husbands or fathers pressured to apply Sharia by killing an adulterous wife or daughter, or a perfect stranger participate in the killing of an apostate in the public square. Very few get arrested or punished for such crimes across the Muslim world. The ingenious Sharia uses vigilante street justice to bring about Islamic submission. That is why civil unrest and honor crimes go wherever Islam goes. The power of Islam comes from turning Muslim against Muslim — with a reward in heaven.
The above two examples of Islamic tyranny are not unique to Egypt, but exist in all Muslim countries. Islamic tyranny is encapsulated in a law that some Muslims claim to be their religious right in America. Many American citizens who left Islam are living in constant fear from Islamist individuals and groups right here, in the land of the free and home of the brave. I am one of them.
Nonie Darwish is an American of Arab/Muslim origin. She is co-founder of Former Muslims United. Her new book is Cruel and Usual Punishment: The Terrifying Global Implications of Islamic Law.