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In America, a murder is a murder and must be treated as such. There are no “cultural” justifications or multi-cultural justifications that belong in an American court of law.
In 1989, in St Louis, Missouri, 16 year-old Palestina Isa was the first young girl who was known as a victim of an honor killing on American soil. Her crime? She was academically ambitious and dared to have an African-American friend, a boy (not a romantic interest). But Palestinians, like many Muslims, are anti-African and anti-black and they viewed Palestina as a “whore.” She was routinely beaten and often turned up at school with bruises and a black eye. Her mother and sisters clamored for her death. Her mother held her down for 20 minutes while her father stabbed her 13 times. Based on FBI tapes of the actual murder, (the FBI was monitoring him as an Abu Nidal terrorist), Zein Isa was convicted of murder and sentenced to death. He died in prison of diabetes. Palestina’s mother Maria’s death sentence was commuted to life imprisonment without parole.
In 2006, in Ottawa, Canada, 16-year-old Aqsa Parvez was strangled to death by her brother (at the instigation of her father) because she refused to wear a hijab. The father and the brother were both convicted of second-degree murder and were given sentences of 18 years to life. However, her mother, who sweet-talked her into returning home from the shelter for battered women, was not charged with complicity.
In 2008, in Irving, Texas, a suburb of Dallas, 18-year-old Sarah Said and 17-year-old Amina Said were shot to death by their highly abusive Egyptian-born father because of their “Western” ways. (He physically, sexually, and psychologically abused them from the time they were children.) Nevertheless, both Sarah and Amina were academically talented, dressed like Westerners, and had infidel boyfriends who were actually trying to help them save their lives. Their American-born mother had lured them back home to their deaths. The father escaped and is still a fugitive, and their mother was never charged for her complicity in the murders.
The laws in America allow for conspirators to also be tried. Thus far, that has not happened here. It has happened in Europe.
For example, in 2006, in Denmark, Ghazala Khan was shot to death by her brother at the order of her father because she had married an “unapproved” man. A Danish court sentenced nine members of the family to lengthy jail terms for their part in the conspiracy: the father got life; the brother, an aunt and two uncles got 16 years; and four other members of the family got sentences of between 8 and 16 years.
Great Britain passed legislation which allowed police to return British-Muslim girls and women whose families had tricked or kidnapped them into marriages in southeast Asia against their will. If the police had knowledge of this and could find such women, and if they indeed asked to be “repatriated,” the police did just that. In 2004, Great Britain also began re-classifying old murders. In 2006, in London, Banaz Mahmod was raped and strangled to death by two of her cousins and a hired gun at the order of her father and uncle. Her “crime” was that she had left an arranged marriage. The two cousins fled to Iraq after the murder; they were the first suspects ever to be extradited from Iraq to Britain. All five men involved were sentenced to life in prison; the men will be eligible for parole after 17-23 years.
Immigration, cultural identity, and religious freedom are complex and emotionally charged issues. Immigrants need to bring something of “home” along with them; food, language, religious practices have, in the past, been assimilation-friendly. Many Muslim immigrants are sophisticated and Western-oriented; some are even staunchly secular and/or anti-Islamist. However, the kinds of Muslims (or Sikhs and Hindus) who commit honor murders on our soil are not. They are importing barbarism and criminal misogyny. The remedies will be costly and take a great deal of time and will include a combination of careful screening procedures, combined with citizenship, police, judicial, and social work education.
I don’t think this will solve the problem. I am not sure what will, other than closing our doors to Muslim immigration which is something that I cannot in good conscience recommend. Many Muslims and other immigrants from Third World countries are in flight from at-home tyranny; many Muslim girls and women are in flight from being honor murdered or genitally mutilated in their home countries. Do we really want to close our doors to them?
Editor’s note: See Jamie Glazov’s recent speech before the San Fernando Valley ACT! for America chapter on March 16, 2011, in which he did a power-point presentation on honor-killing victims (including Noor Almaleki) to respect their memories — and to expose the Left’s agenda of burying their memory and excusing their murderers:
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