With “honor” killings on the rise worldwide and in the West especially, Frontpage Symposium has decided to explore the impulse that clearly lies behind this crime against women: the fear and hatred of women’s sexuality. In this special Symposium edition, we have assembled a distinguished panel to approach this phenomenon from a specific angle that is almost always ignored in our media and culture at large. We ask: what are the toxic consequences to a culture in which males allow sexual satisfaction only to themselves? To discuss this issue with us today, our guests are:
Dr. Nicolai Sennels,**** a Danish psychologist who worked for several years with young criminal Muslims in a Copenhagen prison. He is the author of Among Criminal Muslims. A Psychologist’s Experience from the Copenhagen Municipality. The book will be out in English later this year. He can be contact at: [email protected]
Dr. Joanie Lachkar, a licensed Marriage and Family therapist in private practice in Brentwood and Tarzana, California, who teaches psychoanalysis and is the author of The Narcissistic/Borderline Couple: A Psychoanalytic Perspective on Marital Treatment (1992, The Many Faces of Abuse: Treating the Emotional Abuse of High -Functioning Women (1998), The V-Spot, How to Talk to a Narcissist, How to Talk to a Borderline and a recent paper, “The Psychopathology of Terrorism” presented at the Rand Corporation and the International Psychohistorical Association. She is also an affiliate member for the New Center for Psychoanalysis.
Dr. David Gutmann, emeritus professor of Psychology and Behavioral Sciences at Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago.
Dr. Nancy Kobrin, a psychoanalyst with a Ph.D. in romance and semitic languages, specializing in Aljamía and Old Spanish in Arabic script. She is an expert on the Minnesota Somali diaspora and a graduate of the Human Terrain System program at Leavenworth Kansas. Her new book is The Banality of Suicide Terrorism: The Naked Truth About the Psychology of Islamic Suicide Bombing.
FP: Dr. Nancy Kobrin, Dr. Joanie Lachkar, Dr. David Gutmann and Dr. Nicolai Sennels, welcome to Frontpage Symposium.
Dr. Sennels, let me begin with you.
As you referred to in our recent symposium, you are well aware – especially as a psychiatrist – of the vital role that bringing a woman sexual pleasure plays in a man’s life. If a man’s sexuality involves only bringing himself pleasure and satisfaction, and never involves bringing a woman pleasure, the consequences are not just devastating for the woman, but for the male himself. If this phenomenon occurs because the culture at large has shaped this disposition of males, and if this practice by males is therefore widespread and constitutes the norm, the effect on the male psyche in this culture, and on the culture at large, is perniciously harmful – to say the least. There are pathological and toxic results, which include not only the lust for terror against “the outsider,” but also against oneself – suicide.
The Muslim culture and religion, and the roots of jihad, clearly come to mind here.
What your thoughts to my introductory statement for our discussion here today?
Sennels: My findings are that growing up in the Muslim cultures is psychologically unhealthy on numerous realms. The positive attitude towards anger and the narcissistic concept of honor prevents many Muslims from maturing as human beings. Together with the racist and aggressive attitude towards non-Muslims, a strong identification with the Muslim Umma and favoring of Middle Age religious dogmas at the expense of common sense, human rights and science the Muslim mentality makes it impossible for most Muslims to integrate into our democratic, secular and civilized Western culture. Not only that: it makes Muslims into less happy and mentally healthy people. No wonder that the core of such a culture is based on the repression of sexuality and female qualities.
There is no doubt that Muslim men’s negative view on women has a high price not only for the women but also for the men and Muslim culture in general. We men receive a long row of qualities when we open up to women: empathy, the ability to function in groups without creating hierarchies and more mature ways of experiencing and expressing our emotions – these are among the most important.
Besides several ancient nature religions and Eastern religions such as Hinduism, Taoism and Buddhism, Gustav Jung (1875-1961) was the first in the West to discover the importance of opening up to the opposite sex: men who suppresses women never really grow up. Shy and nerd-like computer geeks and aggressive male chauvinists are the two most typical results. Both types are often lonesome, feel “empty,” are sexually frustrated and in many cases perverse, easily depressed and socially incompetent. Since aggression is seen as positive in the warrior-like Muslim tribal culture the latter is most often the result in Islamic societies. A recent study in Germany lead by the former German minister of Justice Christian Pfeiffer concluded that “Religious Muslim boys are more violent”. According to this gigantic research project involving intense interviewing of 45.000 teenagers, Muslim culture cultivates an unhealthy and aggressive Macho attitude among Muslim males.
Now Jamie, in terms of the specific issue of our discussion, when it comes to the male not bringing sexual pleasure to a woman, this has severe consequences not only on the woman, but also on the male and on the culture in general (if this is a standard cultural ethos, which is the case with Islam). The wish to bring happiness to one’s partner – especially sexual happiness – is fundamental for being able to experience and express love. Men who does not have this wish will be cut off from the maturing experience of learning from the kind of wisdom and emotional life that only women express fully. This leaves men less mature and less happy. The point is that the more you give, the more you get – on all levels. Men who joyfully see themselves as a source of bliss, satisfaction and happiness to their female partner have found the key to their own human growth and a successful relationship. Since Islam and the Muslim culture prevents men and women from freely meeting as equal partners, Muslims are cut off from this important cause of happiness and maturity. The result is the childish fanaticism and immature ways of handling emotions that clearly characterize Muslim societies. The propagation of the Islamic scriptures and Muslim males’ suppression of women and their ignoring of female qualities and need for happiness is the main course for the suffering and hate in Islamic societies. That terrorism arises is no surprise.
The suppression of women in Islam and Muslim culture is an effective tool in keeping its propagators aggressive and emotionally cold towards their infidel victims. If we manage to liberate the Muslim women, we have Islam cornered and removed its corner teeth. In Western societies, this can only be done by creating sufficient amounts of shelters for women fleeing from violent and suppressing husbands and installing strict laws on honor-related crimes. We already have around 40 shelters in Denmark. 70 percent of the women contacting one of the biggest women shelters, Dannerhuset in Copenhagen, have “Middle Eastern back ground”. We also need to send female social workers into the immigrant homes to conduct regular interviews with the females to make sure that they feel safe and are free to use the many possibilities and rights that our countries allow them. If their male family members don’t like it they are free to leave the country.
We do not want to see the suppressive and uncivilized Islamic view on women get a hold in our countries. Finally, our Western welfare societies should only give economic support to the first two or three children. This might prevent Muslim families from moving to our countries and have a lot of children that often become a burden to society.
It also leaves the immigrant women more free to integrate and use their Western standard freedoms.
The liberation of women in Muslim countries is mainly done by diminishing the amount of child births. Being pregnant five times or more and raising the same amount of children leaves poor and uneducated mothers no chance to empower themselves. They are bound to their homes and completely dependent on their often not so gallant husbands. The most effective way is to pay people in poor countries to have less children. Instead of giving economical aid to corrupt dictators it should be given directly to the women of the families – just like the Nobel Prize winning micro loans. The amount of money should be inversely to the amount of children. Also no economical aid should be given to non-Western countries except if it is aimed at putting a lid on the over population. This would leave the women stronger and more free to live the life they want. A pleasant bonus is that it will better the economy and general human conditions, thereby lessening the possibly for religious fanaticism and conflicts – which again will diminish the flow of refugees to our part of the World.
FP: Dr. Sennels thank you.
Nancy Kobrin, give us your thoughts on the topic and on Dr. Sennels’ analysis.
Please touch on this in your answer: When Muslim males in their sexually repressive cultures get a glimpse, for one reason or another, of our female pop stars, let’s say beautiful female stars such as Byonce, Rihanna or Mariah Carey, etc., it is unsurprising what ferocious dread and rage enters their psyches. It is crucial to explore how and why this happens. First, these females clearly represent female beauty and female sexual self-determination. So the Muslim male faces a great threat immediately. We know the many reasons why. But let me narrow in on one dynamic:
Let us suppose that a Muslim male is faced with one of these women – who are in charge of their own sexuality – in a possible sexual entanglement. In other words, let’s picture the Muslim male here seeing these women and visualizing, even for a split second, the possibility of a sexual relationship with one of them. What is the thought process? We know that the Muslim male immediately faces, with terror, the reality of what would emerge in terms of a sexual encounter on an equal level of reciprocity. So, instead of just engaging in some kind of prison-like violent sexual aggression against a helpless, mutilated woman who has no rights of any kind, the Muslim male would have to try to function as a male to not only satisfy himself, but to also satisfy the woman. This means that, among other things, he would have to open himself up, not just for praise, but for possible judgment in terms of what kind of lover he is.
In other words, the woman afterwards will make a judgment and maybe, possibly, say something negative not only to him, but to someone else about him. She might even giggle about something she found insufficient and inadequate. She might even immediately dump him because of this – and might even laugh about it to her friends. This is what we call freedom – and one of the ingredients of the human condition that might surface within freedom.
One can just imagine the psychotic rage that results in the minds of many Muslim males in repressive Islamic cultures at the very notion and possibility of this reality. They would not only want to obliterate the woman for the reality of what she may think of their performance (and for what she may also say and do about it), but they would want to destroy the society that would allow this possibility. One of the products of this ferocious hatred of this ingredient of the human condition and its possibilities is, undoubtedly, jihad.
I would like you Dr, Kobrin, and the rest of the panel, to touch on this observation and how it applies to our discussion, thanks.
Kobrin: Pleasuring a woman – which means helping her achieve orgasm – is the key issue here. This sexual problem in the Middle East has not been fully appreciated by the West. It is not discussed in the Middle East because it is a subject of extreme shame that the men are impotent. Ironically we are dealing with shame-honor cultures who do not understand that the function of shame is not to willfully spill blood to cleanse honor. This is a cover-up for not having women who are truly free because of their own terrors and sense of vulnerability. This applies to Afghanistan and Somalia as they are Muslim shame-honor cultures as well.
Jamie, you have hit the nail on the head and I am not sure most of us are aware that we are dealing with psychotic thinking. This occurs when one is vilified and the other is devalued as the bad/hated or devalued object. This is a mechanism of defense known as splitting.
The Jihadi men can appear and present themselves as normal but they are not normal.
Obviously I do not want to sweepingly say that all Muslim males are stereotypically denying their females, However, given the fact that one does not hear moderate Muslim men discuss this issue of pleasuring women, we can tell that it is too sensitive of an issue. Even in the eye of the storm for moderate Muslim men, we could assume that this is not only a highly charged issue, but one that is extremely uncomfortable. Let alone think of how this could put them into a role of competing with other men especially in democratic societies where domination and control of women are not a valued tradition. It has been said too that this is one of the reason white western men convert to Islam in significant numbers because they are at a loss as to how to socially deal with western women.
Given that we are dealing with a shame-honor society, we might consider the following psychological defenses as playing a major role:
1. Splitting, that is, thinking in terms of black and white.
2. A highly enmeshed markedly paranoid family unit.
3. Boundary confusion.
4. Unspoken sexual abuse.
5. Terror reigns, hence we encounter governmental abuse and dictatorships.
6. Shame blame when the male is emasculated, the female is severely punished, nay obliterated – female genital mutilation, honor killing etc.
I agree with Dr. Sennels concerning the high rate of frequency of domestic violence which he describes in Denmark. The Centre for Social Cohesion in the UK did geo-mapping of where they found domestic violence and the jihadis. What a coincidence! There was tremendous overlap. Such violence is a shamefully revealing phenomenon that the ummah does not want to address in appropriate ways.
By contrast look at the naked midriffs of young free Israeli women, their tummies showing and expressing themselves dancing freely in this video. As you know I have been working on this problem for years but it was when I was watching an Israel music video by one of the best funky jazz/r&b guitarists, Dudu Tassa in a song called “Zouzi” that I realized why the Saudis must really be peaved with the Israelis living so close by. It’s not just because of the verses of hatred of the Jew in the Qur’an but also the freedom of its open society.
Clearly, Hamas and Hezbollah can’t even remotely compete, that is why they resort to bonding through rage, hatred, roadside bombs, missiles and suicide bombers, etc.
Finally, I think that Dr. Sennels has a splendid idea about encouraging less children. However, it flies in the face of doing Jihad through demographics. But from a child-rearing and maternal attachment point of view, Dr. Sennels has it right. Less is more and also better and healthier. Oddly by denying women pleasure they deny themselves pleasure. Pain gets confused with pleasure and viola, you have sado-masochism.
FP: Very profound Dr. Kobrin. John Racy, a psychiatrist with much experience in Arab societies, has touched on many of these themes. He has noted how the Islamic culture promotes a threatening sense of inadequacy in men (and therefore women) and that impotence (and related) problems among them are common phenomena.
In his classic work, The Closed Circle, David Pryce-Jones discusses these sexual pathologies in the Arab world and notes that it is therefore no surprise that the Arab male is obsessed with proving his sexual superiority. This obsession finds its expression by targeting the Western infidel with violence. Thus, it’s not really that much of a mystery: by not veiling its own women and by giving them personal and sexual freedom and pleasure, the West enrages Islamists, leading them to unleash terror in a furious attempt to keep their own women enslaved, sexually unfulfilled, and their own personal sexual impotence hidden. (See Chapter 11, “The Seeds of Hate,” in United in Hate for a further discussion.)
Lachkar: This topic borders on the broader picture: the violation of human rights that exists throughout the Middle East. The degradation of women in the Muslim world is one theme inextricably linked to not only the role of women and their functions, but to the power of their maternal capacities and sexualities.
As an example of such violations, it has been noted that in some Arab countries, as well as in other parts of the world, clitoridectomy, or female circumcision, is still practiced. It is most often performed on females between the ages of seven or eight (before menstruation). This is a practice whereby midwives and female family members grasp the girls legs apart to expose her genitals. Then a sharp razor is used to cut off the clitoris. According to Lloyd deMause, it is a harsh and perverse act, an enactment of one’s frustration and aggression directed toward the innocent young victimized girls.
DeMause goes so far as to pronounce this act as the gateway to trauma and destruction not only for the child, but the society in general. Girls not only go through excruciating pain, but often faint from shock (no anesthetic), suffer from such after effects as blood poisoning, childbirth complications, and unbearable pain during intercourse. Some report constant urinary tract infections, infertility, and sometimes die from hemorrhage.
It is important, by the way, to make a distinction with male circumcision. What is done to a boy is circumcision, while what is done to girl/woman is termed ‘genital mutilation.’
In keeping with the theme of this discussion, the circumcision is designed to curtail a women’s sexuality and keep her repressed. This can only leave us to speculate that if Muslim men are programmed to think of women as chattel or used as sex objects for their own pleasure, how do the women achieve sexual fulfillment?
How does a Muslim man rejoice in the woman’s pleasure when he has been pre-scripted/pre-programmed to not only devalue her as a sexual object, but to deprive her of any pleasure? What seems to be most pervasive is not the sexual act in and of itself, but the idea that there is always a third bedfellow, a Koran that testifies that the way to avoid sin is to oppress women to maintain a shame/honor society. The woman can easily shame and dishonor her man by presenting herself as none less than the virgin the man will meet in Paradise, but until he gets there she must play and fit into the role of this perfect virginal paradigm. My fantasy is that as he lusts after her, he then repents by persecuting himself and maybe even abusing his wife for behaving as she did at the “scene of the crime.“ Although none of us are there to observe, as the Kafkian bug on the wall, we can only speculate as to what really goes on the bedroom.
I believe these thoughts are in keeping with Dr. Kobrin’s acknowledgement of an Arab-Muslim culture – a shame-honor culture. I might add how this differs from Judeo-Christian culture, which is based on sin and redemption, evoking guilt as opposed to shame. This difference is significant in that guilt tends to get turned inward against the self as self-punishment whereas shame is turned outward and needs to destroy the object/women who dishonored the male.
Dr. Kobrin rightfully refers to this as the psychological defense of splitting. The bad lustful “baby boy self” projects onto the devalued object, and therefore since he is fused with her he must destroy or humiliate her. Dr. Kobrin’s new book, The Banality of Suicide, details the toxic pathological attachment with the maternal object, where she not only parallels domestic violence to universal political terrorism as complimentary terrorism, but there is a synergistic and hence a power-terrorizing effect. There is no doubt that Muslim men’s negative view of women has made them and their society pay a high price.
Dr. Sennels notes that the Muslim culture and religion, and the roots of jihad, are linked to man denying a woman pleasure. The point I would expand on is not the sexual act in and of itself, but the entire theme of a culture of deprivation and envy. I agree with Dr. Sennels that this practice by a male can lead to devastating effects not only on his sense of manhood but upon an entire culture heading toward death and terror. In response to Jamie’s comment about “lust for terror against the outsider,” and this can pave the way to suicide, that if the deprivation becomes more than the psyche can hold or contain, I would imagine there is no way out of this toxic inferno. Dr. Sennels also nails it when he calls our attention to the amount of childbirths. One might refer to the uterus used as a subversive act of terror.
Jamie presents an interesting scenario: how would a Muslim man (and it is clear we’re referring to Muslim men who have internalized the misogynist Muslim culture) respond sexually in the face of a “normal” sexual inhibited woman? My guess, he would act in one or two ways: display a false self or a persona to hide his shame, and go after her aggressively, or he would end up feeling grossly humiliated if she were to see through his masked self. Although Kobrin does not make reference to the false self, she does confirm that the “Jihadi men can appear and present themselves as norm, but they are not normal.” Nevertheless, what is important is not how the jihadi male responds to the modern female, but how he defends an entire culture trained to repress such women so he can maintain his sense of control.
Gutmann: We all seem to be pretty much in agreement that the typical Muslim male’s stance towards women is characterized by barely disguised anger and a need to control the woman’s sexual response and pleasures. And these same neurotic tendencies are, in their turn, defenses against the man’s fear of female sexuality (a fear that can lead to impotence) and against the shame which attends such fear.
The unexpurgated “Arabian Nights” dramatize these fears. In these lurid accounts, the woman is regularly presented as sexually insatiable, just waiting for the chance to copulate with any inferior man – a slave, a beggar, a leper – who’s available, once her husband is out of the house. Her husband’s honor is perpetually in pawn to an explosively sexual woman, who is perpetually looking for her chance to dishonor him with degraded men.
The Muslim male’s fear of unchecked female sexuality is managed through legal as well as clinical means. Clinically, there is the widespread practice of clitoroidectomy, which in effect surgically removes the orgasmic female “organ.” And on the legal side we see the insistence, on the part of immigrant Muslim males, for host countries to allow the practice of Sharia law – the laws which for the most part limit female rights and freedoms, particularly in the sexual domain. The Muslim males want to enjoy their freedom from the restraints of the medieval societies that they have left, but they want to continue imposing – now in the free society – those same restrictions on their wives.
When these measures fail, there are, of course, honor killings.
On a larger scale, there is radical Islam’s ambition to do away with Israel, that nest of liberated women in the heart of the Umma, and to impose the Caliphate on the non-Islamic world. The Muslim fears modernization because it leads inevitably to female liberation – including sexual liberation, and they have gone to war against that threat. Islam is the world’s fastest growing religion – probably because so many infidels share the Muslim’s fear of the sexually liberated woman.
For me, this question remains: why are Muslim males so intimidated by the full sexual response of the female? Does it represent the retaliatory rage of their oppressed women? Does it represent the bursting forth of their deeply hidden and shame-generating female identifications? (perhaps the suicide bomber’s fascination with death-dealing explosions reflects the Muslim male’s fear of and fascination with explosive female sexuality?).
Perhaps our Psychoanalysts, Drs. Kobrin, Sennels and Lachkar, may have some answers.
Sennels: Though I would prefer to use the term narcissistic rage (instead of psychotic rage) I completely agree with Jamie. The repression and conscious ignoring of female sexuality in the Muslim world has a very simple and profound reason: Muslim men find it hard to handle the fact that women’s sexuality is far superior to the men’s. Most women can make love for longer time than men and many women can continue the sexual act after having orgasm – some can even have more than one orgasm during sex.
The question is: Why are Muslim men so vulnerable? How did Muslim men end up on such a fragile pedestal? The answer is that Islam and Muslim culture depends on male aggression and needs to suppress female sensitivity. The reason for this is that this culture is aiming on conquering and domination. In such a culture, female softness and empathy would be distracting and a hurdle. In such a culture, men are simply worth more than women. This is the reason that Muslim boys are treated as kings from birth and therefore develop a fragile glass-like personality that is unable to handle defeat, inferiority and criticism.
I am sure that Dr. Kobrin and Dr. Gutmann are right about Israel: It is an unwelcome showcase in the Middle East that risks tempting the area’s Muslim women by promoting gender equality, human rights and freedom. This of course provokes the insecure Muslim men and contributes to their hate and wish for destruction of Israel and Western civilization in general. The hate of women is in this way is very closely connected with Islam’s wish for destruction of the free world.
Dr. Lachkar has a very interesting point: Muslim women – and their husbands – are in no doubt in a deep dilemma during the sexual act. On the one side the man wants the woman to display enjoyment to excite him and to confirm his abilities as a lover. On the other hand, she is expected not to enjoy it too much… How can love grow in such a garden? How can a culture bring happiness to people when it does not allow the women to be happy and does not allow the men to rejoice in women’s happiness? Islam does not care about such questions: As everybody who studies the Quran knows, love and happiness are not the goals of Islam.
Kobrin: Jamie, you make the observation of targeting the infidel. I would stress that within this mindset, the other is the female. It doesn’t matter if you are male and other, you are still the female and a threat. The thinking is very simplistic because of the splitting – male vs. other = i.e. female. The splitting compensates for the inability to integrate self as a whole person and separate from one’s mother psychologically. Everything gets split off and projected outwards but nothing is really resolved.
But why? Because the male identity is so confused due to not being permitted to separate from the female who has no power. The male baby is misused by the mother as her narcissistic source of power. This in turn strips the male baby of ever feeling safe to trust, because he is so bound up in his mother’s identity. The unhealthy dependency feeds into the erotics of Arab Muslim culture and other shame-honor cultures.
They are not only just confused, they do not have a sense of their own healthy empowerment. If they did, they would not attack and destroy the female. I ascribe to what Dr. Gutmann says about the suicide bomber when he writes:
“Does it represent the bursting forth of their deeply hidden and shame-generating female identifications? (perhaps the suicide bomber’s fascination with death-dealing explosions reflects the Muslim male’s fear of and fascination with explosive female sexuality?)”
I would add that this explosiveness is also entwined with the “explosiveness” and bloody nature of birth, hence life. Its opposite is death.
I won’t quibble so much with Dr. Sennels about narcissistic rage. To me there is always a hidden component of the psychotic because of this significant distortion about the female. A well encapsulated psychosis occurs in borderline and narcissistic pathology.
Dr. Lachkar raises the broader issue of human rights violations in the Middle East. This is key because the violations are tinged with the abuse of the female. We may surmise that this public behavior is extremely revealing because they have externalized rageful behavior against the other. We can hazard the guess that the public persona is emblematic of the private given the nature of cruelty. Most of life is psychosexual in nature though many would probably deny that because it arouses too much in them and that is scary as it makes them feel “out of control.”
The unspoken problem of not being able to pleasure women is really one of sadomasochism. Pain is confused with pleasure. What arouses one sexually is learned early in life so if as Dr. Sennels says that this is a culture hostile to pleasure, that means that it is going to be very difficult to undo the sadomasochism of arousal. I would even suggest that this sadomasochism which infuses Arab Muslim culture is very attractive to those on the left in the West as voyeurs. However, this is probably a subject for another symposium.
Lachkar: I remember attending a seminar about terrorism in the Middle East and during the question and answer period I mustered up the courage and blurted out a comment about how I felt the entire conflict to be linked to the role of women and their persecutors. The reaction was not only negative but they accused me of being rather “simplistic.” After reviewing the comments of my colleagues in this symposium, I might take this view a step further, and paraphrase the well known phrase: “Drive the Jews into the Sea” as a replacement to “Drive the Women into the Sea!” This is in accordance with Dr. Kobrin’s dramatic view of free Israeli neighboring women cavorting around in skimpy bikinis!
Dr. Gutmann also offers justification, first when he states, ”The Muslim fears that modernization leads inevitably to female liberation,” and second his reference to clitoridectomy, the process which surgically removes the orgasmic female organ of pleasure. Nonie Darwish, dramatically states how drastic and traumatic this is, and how the effort to reduce female orgasmic pleasure is in part to impose Sharia law throughout the world. Dr. Sennels also asks: why are men so vulnerable and agrees with Jamie that when it comes to sex, women are far more powerful and superior on several realms. This is a reality that the Muslim male cannot tolerate. Vulnerability has always meant something negative to the Muslim male, and he interprets it with weakness, impotence and smallness. Ironically, in clinical practice, to achieve vulnerability is the goal, especially with male abusers who think being a bully is a sign of strength and masculinity. So it makes sense for insecure men to destroy the power of the women and to diminish them into victims. In this way, fragile men think they are getting rid of the “weak” parts of themselves that they cannot tolerate. In psychoanalytic terms, this is referred to as projective identification.
Dr. Kobrin was on the verge of quibbling Dr. Sennels about narcissistic rage. Since she didn’t, I would like to take on that challenge. I do not see anything narcissistic with the collective psyche of the terrorist, In fact, I would go so far as to say they share a more collective borderline disorder – of even a psychotic one. Narcissists use women as self objects, women who empower their grandiose omnipotent self. A self object is respected. For example, Mrs. Milosevic was an empowering self mirroring object for her husband. She gave him the okay to murder and slaughter thousands of Albanians. The Muslim male cannot make use of a powerful women as a self object because his culture and his forefather have already diminished her existence. Second, narcissistic rage takes on an entirely different shape. The narcissist, when personally injured, will withdraw and go into isolation. The borderline, on the other hand, when injured, will spend the rest of his life retaliating, revenging and getting even. “We will not stop until we have destroyed every infidel through bombing, honor killings or whatever it takes.”
Will Smith in The Strong Horse: Power, Politics and The Clash of Arab Civilizations (2010) reinforces the two of the most perverse ways that the woman is viewed as powerful. First, her womb used as a weapon: “The womb of the Arab woman is her strongest weapon.” Secondly, the veil used as a protection or shield, not to guard against man’s lustful impulses, but rather to be used for her own protection. In other words, it is her choice to wear the veil as opposed to it being an object thrust upon her (Smith, 2010).
To conclude, I would like to end with a quote from Golda Meir, “We will have peace with the Arabs when they love their children more than they hate us.”
Again thank you Jamie and everyone on this panel for your insightful contributions, and even where we differ, I hope this psychodynamic view of the conflict will open a new vision and way of thinking.
Gutmann: This time around I’m getting compelling answers to the question I raised in my first post, namely: why the excessive fear of female sexuality among Arab men?
Dr. Sennels suggests the possibility of “Vagina Envy” among Arab men, who feel shamed by a female sexual response stronger than their own. Dr. Kobrin refers to what men fear as a toxic identification with the mother, while Dr. Lachkar explores the ways in which Arab men use women as dumping grounds for denied aspects of the self. These insights pretty much cover the waterfront. However, in addition to these possibilities, Arab male homosexuality – hinted at by Drs Kobrin and Lachkar – should also be considered.(../2010/07/19/in-defense-of-muslim-women/)
Phyllis Chesler recently reminded us that homosexuality and pedophilia are deeply established Arab traits, and clinical experience teaches us that, when the homosexual drive comes under repression, it can lead to precisely the kinds of paranoid fears of the sexual woman that we have been considering. As we know, the repressed homosexual identifies with the female sexual role, and, like the woman, wants to be penetrated by men. This wish, in the mind of the repressed homosexual, is intolerable, and is projected on to the spouse or girl friend: it is she who desires sex with other men. This projection leads to an associated fear of the female sexual response: the stronger that drive, the more likely that the woman will seek multiple partners to satisfy it. As a consequence, the female sexual appetite must be surgically blunted, and the sexually mature, unappeasable woman must be kept in purdah (out of sight), away from temptation.
When these measures fail, there is always the venerable practice of Honor Killing to fall back on.
Strange that the world is wracked by terrorism, women are kept in bondage, and we face nuclear war because of the quirks in the Islamic unconscious that this panel has explored. Psychoanalysis has gone out of fashion, but its methods and insights are needed more than ever.
FP: Dr. Nancy Kobrin, Dr. Joanie Lachkar, Dr. David Gutmann and Dr. Nicolai Sennels, thank you for joining Frontpage Symposium.
_Editor’s note: To get the whole story behind why Islam demonizes and disallows female sexual pleasure, read Jamie Glazov’s most recent book, “ United in Hate: The Left’s Romance With Tyranny and Terror.”_
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