The Burqa Bomb

On April 17, a refugee camp at Kohat in Pakistan was struck by two suicide bombers that disguised themselves with burqas, the full-body veil worn by some Muslim women to make sure none of their skin is exposed. The attacks, which killed 41 people and injured 62, are sure to heighten the debate in Europe about whether wearing burqas and niqabs in public should be banned.

A parliamentary committee in Belgium has unanimously approved such a ban, with the final vote in the House of Representatives coming April 22 and it is expected to pass. Movements to ban the burqa in Europe are quickly growing due to concern that the burqas can be used to disguise the identities of terrorists planning attacks like those that just happened in Pakistan and over the lack of assimilation of Muslim immigrant communities.

These concerns are not unfounded. Even though Islam frowns upon cross-dressing, male terrorists dressing up as burqa-clad women in order to carry out attacks is becoming more and more part of their modus operandi. This tactic has even been used by bank robbers and other criminals on many occasions, including in the U.S., as thoroughly documented by Daniel Pipes.

Terrorists have repeatedly donned burqas in Afghanistan and Pakistan, as well as in the United Kingdom, Iraq, the Gaza Strip, India, Somalia and Mauritania. In the United Kingdom, one man who tried to set off a bomb in July 2005 in London was able to escape by wearing a burqa. The use of this clothing makes counter-terrorism more difficult because female police, which are in shorter supply, must be used to search those wearing it. The police chief of Iraq’s Babil Province in August 2008 complained about this after two burqa-wearing females attacked Shiite piligrims.

Daniel Bacquelaine of the Reformist Movement party in Belgium says that he supports the ban because it contradicts liberal democratic values. “There is nothing in Islam or the Koran about the burqa. It has become an instrument of intimidation, and is a sign of submission of women. And a civilized society cannot accept the imprisonment of women,” he told TIME Magazine. The argument follows that the ban, therefore, does not violate freedom of religion since it is more of a cultural practice than something mandated by Islam. Of course, radical Salafists like those in Saudi Arabia would disagree.

Banning or at least severely limit the wearing of burqas will cause outrage in the Muslim world and raises legitimate questions about civil liberty violations. However, a surprising amount of Muslims, including imams, support the ban. The Conference of French Imams has declared its support of the ban, saying it is not required in Islam. The chairman of the group, Hassen Chalghoumi, has had his Paris mosque stormed and has received death threats in response.

The ruling of the group of French imams is supported by Sheikh Mohammed Tantawi, who was until his death in March the Grand Mufti of Egypt and highest Sunni authority in the Islamic world.  In October, Tantawi created a stir when told a student to remove her niqab, saying it “had no connection with religion” and said it shouldn’t be worn, especially in schools.

A female Muslim in the U.K. has written an op-ed saying that “Nowhere in the Koran does it state that a woman’s face and body must be covered in a layer of heavy black cloth. Instead, Muslim women should dress modestly, covering their arms and legs.” She favors the ban because it “is a sign of creeping radicalization” and “is an imported Saudi Arabian tradition.”

Dounia Bouzar, a female Muslim who sits on the board of the Council of the Muslim Faith in France, is particularly forceful in her opposition to the burqa. “Imposition of this garment on women is one manner Salafists get individuals to renounce their individuality and submit to the extremist cult thinking that masquerades as Islam—but which is an abomination of it,” she says.

When an Indian college in September 2009 banned the burqa (and went one step further and banned the headscarf), some Muslim leaders defended the decision. Maulana Wahiduddin Khan, the author of over 200 books about Islam, said that it is “un-Islamic” to force anyone to dress a certain way, and that “the burqa is not part of Islam.” He was even lenient about the headscarf ban, saying to respect the rules of the school, and “if you don’t agree, you quit the college.” A professor at a New Delhi school that is a Muslim scholar agreed, saying “the burqa has become the symbol of rigidity and has nothing to do with Islam” and recommended that students not wear it at school.

Terrorists have shown that they have no qualms about using burqas as a disguise to carry out attacks with. The European movement to outlaw the wearing of the burqa is understandable in light of the criminal and violent activities carried out by wearing the clothing. Such a ban brings up legitimate civil liberties concerns, but those that disagree are obligated to offer a different solution. If Belgium becomes the first country to enforce the ban and other states take similar measures, they can count on extremists to portray it as proof that the West has declared war on Islam, but there will be plenty of brave Muslims that will not allow that theme to go unchallenged.

  • Hammer

    I strongly suggest that everyone on this site join SIOA and work to stop the Islamization of the USA and other Western countries. Stop Sharia dead in it's tracks!!

    • Stephen D.

      I too am a membre of SIOA. Pam Geller and Robert Spencer (who started SIOA) won a victory yesterday in Miami! They pushed back against the PC machine used by CAIR, et al and beat these dolts! I say they keep up the momentum and get this news out to every media outlet there is! Almost force the MSM to carry the story.

    • Lemac the cameL

      I wish that was all it took, but Kemal Attaturk abolished the sharia and look at Turkey today. If you have mozolems, you have izlam and all of the obligations that come with it. Sooner or later the REAL izlam will return.
      The only real solution is an absolute and total bone crushing and incineration end of izlam, et als.

  • John P

    We who have been in the US since birth object to those who come to our country and then attempt to change OUR country into what they left behind. If you are unwilling to accept our western values, you are free to leave at any time. I will kick the door closed after you leave!

    Especially bad are Islamicists who demand special treatment. We need to be vocal and forceful in not allowing this subjucation of our culture. If a mosque preaches violent Jiahad, then the mosque needs to be closed, demolished, and the preacher imprisoned, then deported.

  • BS1977

    burqas, fatwas, jihad….I am so sick of hearing about this insanity. I wish I never heard of this stuff. Nothing new tho….blowing up fellow Muslims in a marketplace or on a street…nothing new here at all. Every week something like this happens, perhaps every day. It is a mental illness….a terrible affliction of the mind, body and spirit that makes brainwashed automatons out of human beings….a scourge on the planet……..Let's all say it: Less burqa, more bikini. Less Terror, More Kindness.

  • S Langton

    Here is a chance to stem the tide of islamisation. The entire EU community MUST back Belgium and not hesitate to voice their support in the face of what will surely be vociferous cries of "islamophobia" and "racist". Will any of our prospective leaders in the UK be prepared to enforce the same ban should they be elected? Unlikely I fear.
    Ultimately if they wish to wear strict islamic dress, and abide by sharia law, they should move to the paradise of an islamic country; or does that not appeal?

  • Fred Glass

    A question to ponder: Why are many Muslim leaders also in favor of the burqua ban? I suspect that the more intelligent leadership realizes that an overly repressive face of Islam will retard jihad goals which they think can better be advanced by stealth.

  • Martin K.

    Yes Fred Glass, the overall goal for them is all the same, global acceptance of Islam as the only religion. If the give up some piece of cloth in the meantime, it's a small sacrifice in the long run.

  • jim

    Rag heads, Bomb heads all a bunch carzy heads

  • Bob the Aussie

    We have a mosque in Lakemba Australia, time and time again it has proven to be a location that is used to spread radical Islam. Radio shock jocks who expose it are threatened by muslims.
    Our weak politically correct govt. lead by PM Kevin Rudd gives into these people because he wants their votes. The govt. won't even listen to the advice of its security service or Immigration dept. and is allowing radical muslim clerics to illegally stay in Australia, just insane!!!

  • Keithrage

    Islam the religion of fear, I was in Malaysia at a sea side resort that was full of burqa wearing Islamist couples, the hotel staffs biggest problem was trying not to give the wrong room keys to a women who's only identity was a pair of eyes, the whole idea is wrong,cover up you have to hide, yes, hide the sexual repression, hide the pedophilia of mohamed, hide the murder of innocents, what God approves of this, none, only the devil.

  • Impedimentia

    Islam is indeed a religion of fear. The biggest threat to any kind of world peace there is, time to evolve as a species NOT live in the 6th century tribal assbackward anachronism you'd want every living soul on this planet to abide by.

    I'm sick to the teeth of the news on the screen
    of hisbullah scum and jihad the obscene
    whose men plant the bombs and then live feeling free
    to watch women and children be killed on T.V.

    which satan delivers a child a death curse
    in the name of a worn out collection of verse
    I've not read the book so I cannot recite
    but I'd bet Salman Rushdie is just about right
    underneath the black cloud of islam

  • Impedimentia

    Bit off topic, sorry, but y'know same old nonsense really, all that violence I bet their devil god is really juiced up!
    South Park
    The organization protested the 200th episode of South Park, over that show's depiction of the Prophet Muhammad wearing a bear costume, which it described as insulting. The threat was posted by Abu Talhah al-Amrikee, the username of an emerging Revolution Muslim leader. [19] The Revolution Muslim website said that violent retaliation "will likely happen” to the show's creators, Matt Stone and Trey Parker, and provided the addresses of both Comedy Central's New York office and Stone and Parker's production office in Los Angeles. Although the group characterized it as a warning rather than a threat, it generated considerable attention.[20][21] Abu Talhah al-Amrikee has a history of publicizing terrorist propaganda and promoting violence against non-Muslims through a variety of web sites and blogs. He first commented about his issue with the South Park episode via Twitter the day after the episode aired, tweeting that he prayed for Allah to kill the show’s creators and “burn them in Hell for all eternity.

  • Abelard

    Whatever happens and due to whichever motives, it's time to eliminate any sorts of Islâmic dresses like niqabs, burqas, chadors and hijabs!!! They're all too excellent for all sorts of nefarious (i.e., EVIL) purposes!!

    Also, it's time to stop allowing any Muslim immigration to the West – and those that are here and who want Islâmic law and customs instead of what we believe in here should be encouraged to leave ASAP!!! I'll ALWAYS continue to insist on this, just as Cato Censor perpetually insisted that Ancient Rome destroy Carthage, period!

    • Linda

      Abelard, I couldn't agree more!!!! All I hear are a lot of complaints about this and that once they are here. They are trying to convert this country. enough is enough.

      • Abelard

        They're out to convert the whole world by hook or by crook, with naked force not only welcome but expected and encouraged!! All dissent is meant to be destroyed – and sadistically so when they like to slit throats!

        Nope, let them stay in their "dar al-Islâm" and stew in that pigsty!!!

  • grog

    In the old west, covering your face (unless in a duststorm) was what outlaws (criminals)
    did. If you walked into a bank with a mask over your face it was assumed(correctly) that youve come to rob it.,, and would be received accordingly!!! screw them and their bukas. Theres no place in our society for this crap.

  • mohamed

    sooner or later u gonna get it ,so forget about the good old days .