Egyptian Girl: I unclothe to exist – Afghanistan’s girls have to wear Burqas to live.
By: Kawa Gharji
Translated by: Zafar Shayan
Aliaa Magda Elmahdy, a student in the Communication Department at Cairo University, caused pandemonium in different countries around the world by posting her sex photos to her personal weblog [and social networks such as Facebook and Twitter]in the last few days.
She declares repeling against censorship and advocation from freedom of speech, in addition to protesting against the prevalence of extrimists and their pressures on women becuase of the veil, as the main stimulus of her action.
One of my friends sent me the weblog link to the Egyptian girl last night; today some acquaintances were sitting together and they externally judged, seeing her photos that; “doubted she is from an honorable family. If she has a father or a brother, they should decollate her with a knife…
Generally, we can divide those, who have written to taunt this lady, to the following categories:
a) Some predicate the action of this lady as radical and irresponsible, which has no benefit to the democratic movement, causing instead, to enhance the power of Islamists.
b) Some predicate this action as an insult to the emotions, beliefs and thoughts of the people, leading to fear of Egyptian conservatives from the reformers movement.
c) Some state that uncovering one’s body has no relevance to freedom and…
d) Some convey this action comes from anti-Islamic politics of America and England. They have written that they want to deflect the Islamic revolution of Egyptians, therefore insulting Islam and Muslims in other ways this time.
e) Some go beyond the points mentioned above; they want to act according to the Islamic rules (Sharia Law) and thus stone this young Egyptian girl, because she is encouraging the people to debauchery and immorality through her actions.
The act of this Egyptian girl happened just a few days after the nomination of a woman as the candidate represnting the Salfi Noor party at the election. The candidate put the picture of a flower instead of her own picture in her election posters; in the second poster they removed the flower and put the picture of her spouse in the poster.
There was no reaction from the democratic and civil societies in Egypt or in other countries after the distribution of the election posters. The sileince of the civil societies in Egypt can be evaluated from different angles:
– The sileince of the secular and reformer rings can be the result of fear from the extremist forces of Ekhwan-u-l Muslemin.
– Respecting to the beliefes and thoughts of Ekhwan-u-l Muslemin as well as normality violence against women in Islamic countries can also be the reasons for their silence.
Hearing non-participation of women in elections and not having the rights to vote, drive, divorce, as well as stoning and force marriages in Islamic countries have become the norm for many people of the world because of the usual discrimination against women’s rights, in addition to no publication broadcasting the action of the Noor party. Misuse of women in elections is not a new act; we have the same problem in Afghanistan.
The question here is that, if a woman cannot put her own photo on her election poster; how can she solve the problems of her constituents beside other male politicians when she succeeds.
The arguments I mentioned above are considerable. Is putting the photo of a candidate’s husband and misusing of a party from a woman acceptable? Or is it acceptable that the majority of Islamic parties try to pass and legalize laws that give men the rights to have many wives or stone women and cut their hands and legs?
Such issues are not even predicated as considerable or as radical actions; instead the operators want the people to respect them. However, the issuance of an uncover photo of a girl raises chaos and is portrayed as a radical action.
Why is the basis of this religion so feckless according to its defenders point of view, which quakes by the issuance of uncovered photos of an Egyptian girl and raises pandemonium from Iran to Egypt and America?
Why should Muslims account every action as an insult to the religion and even though the Egyptian girl clearly declares that she doesn’t believe in religion, why is accepting the right to choose this way so difficult for majority of Muslims?
How could a man be counted as a mattled person to participate in a refrendum or passing rules that allows the husband of his sister to have more than one wife? Or prevent his sister from going to school? And shout such issues after victory of a bloody revulotion?
Why should each revulotion become a calamity for women’s freedom?
How can we judge based on religion, culture and tradition when this girl has revolted against them?
Why do those men who bulge their vessel of masculinity when seeing a nude photo of a girl in the internet, do not get angry when they hear about the unclothing of immature Afghan, Iranian and Arabic girls, which daily we read and hear from the media, who uncloth theirselves to the sexual pleasure of people like Muhsini and others to satisfy their animal rut. (Muhsini is a well known case where a mullah took advantage of a minor age girl for his own sexual pleasure. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muhammad_Asif_Muhsini)
Aliaa, in response to her opposition stated in her weblog:
”First you should judge those women in the early 70’s who would stand as naked models in front of male artists, you should hide the artistic books, break the nude statues, then you should stand naked infront of the mirror and burn your bodies, which you see as scornful in order to release yourself from sexual frastration before disrespecting me with gender discrimination as well as taking the right of freedom of sepeech from me.
Nudity, for human beings, can be the symbol of their dominance on their bodies and can put it as the thermometer of democracy and absences of censorship in a country. Democracy and freedom, which Muhammad Bo Azizi with burning himself and Aliaa with uncovering herself against combinations of thousands of humiliated people who put their humiliations behind the religion and tradition and shame from their humiliated images in the mirror, wish that.
What is going on in Afghanistan? I heard the stoning of a mother and her daughter in Ghazni province two weeks ago. The daughter with her mother, who had lost her husband and sons in a dog fighting competition a few years ago, were obligated to do anything to find food.
However, half of the eligible voting population were women in the last four elections in ten years, but no woman could receive enough votes as men could in each province and the reasons for this was also clear. Afghanistan’s news of exchanging women with donkeys and selling them, cutting their noses, ears and burning them, in addition to violence against them have top position in the world.
In protests, movements and revolutions which occurred during the last few months, different Islamic parties tried to misuse the condition and accept middle age thoughts; they have been a little successful.
– Tunisia wants to codify a new constitution based on Islamic rules and Egypt has announced this issue many times as well.
– After the bloody revolution in Libya, which was full of unspeakable crimes, with support of other countries the revolutionary council announced that it will formally recognize polygamy and will carry out Islamic rules. It can seriously be a sign of threat for women in Libya and undoubted women will be the first scarifies of recent changes to the Arabic world.
According to BBC news, photos and statistics broadcasted by different medias in these recent months, one can convey that veiled women with Burqas has increases in Egypt, and the tendency to secularism in the Egyptian society, which was increasing from the initial of the 20th century to the middle of 1970s, is decreasing daily and with the downfall of Husni Mobarak, extensive extremist groups of Wahhabis and Salafies came from Saudi Arabia to Libya with enormous amount of money.
I suggest you to read the following interview of Aliaa Magda Elmahdy, the Egyptian girl, with CNN:
Mention: the published photos of this girl are not porn (?????) photos, but they are based on the method of American famous photographer, Spencer Tonic, who works against racism, attractiveness of people’s attention to melt of axis’s ices and …. He has made three films on his works yet.