"Islam elevates women…"

At a hundred miles an hour:

Afghanistan: Women crowd secret shelters with scars from “fists, knives, burns, electrical cords”

Here is another report that describes the prevalence and severity of domestic violence in a Muslim country without considering Islam’s role. The broadcast version of the story, aired tonight, mentioned attempts to convince men that such behavior was un-Islamic and not what Muhammad would want; even that is absent from the online version excerpted below.

Other news:

But the Qur’an (4:34) says you can beat your wife — never mind the parenthetical additions of “lightly” by some Western translators. That doesn’t help the women in Afghanistan. Nor do fanciful re-translations of the Arabic term. There can be no meaningful discussion of domestic violence in the Muslim world without acknowledging that Islam’s scriptures, believed to be the direct word of Allah, approve of the idea of resorting to violence to “control” supposedly disobedient women.

As for Muhammad, he was a wife-beater himself, as Aisha recounts in this hadith that “He struck me on the chest which caused me pain.” When, per Qur’an 33:21, a man who marries a child and beats her is your “beautiful pattern of conduct,” you’ve got a serious problem.

That problem continues to manifest itself across the Muslim world. “Exclusive: The Secret Shelters That Protect Afghan Women,” by Margaret Ako and Mark Mooney forABC News, March 11, JW:

Not every Afghan is hoping the Americans soon leave their country. Some are actually dreading it.

“You can’t leave Afghanistan,” Manizha, who helps run a shelter for battered women, recently warned “World News” anchor Diane Sawyer. Behind Manizha, women who were beaten, bruised and badly scarred shake their heads in urgent agreement.

The secret women’s shelter is run by Manizha — who, like most Afghans, goes by only one name — and by New Yorker Esther Hyneman. It is one of a string of shelters and counseling centers that opened in 2007 and have since helped about 1,500 Afghan women escape beatings and abuse that can shock even battle-hardened combat surgeons.

Among the most heartbreaking is the story of Bebe. She is 17, and she says her face was mutilated by her husband, a Talib. Bebe’s nose and ears were cut off as punishment for running away to escape the constant pummeling by her husband and his family.

She was married to the radical Muslim when she was 12, Manizha told Sawyer. Her marriage was the result of an outlawed tribal custom called “baad” in which the daughter was given away as compensation for a crime or offense committed by a male member of Bebe’s family.

Girls given away in baad transactions are often little more than slaves. Bebe was forced to sleep in a stable with the animals, and beatings and pain became part of life for her.

Bebe tried to escape but was captured. Her husband was ordered by the Taliban to punish her by disfiguring her face. While her brother-in-law held her down, her husband sliced off her nose and ears.

Left for dead, she crawled to her uncle’s house, but he refused to help. Bebe staggered on to her grandfather’s house. He called her father. The local Afghan hospital was unable to treat her wounds, and suggested her father take her to the nearby U.S. military base, Forward Operating Base Ripley in Oruzgan province.

“She was very scared. She covered up,” said Air Force Sgt. Lindsey Clark, a medic who was on duty when Bebe arrived three days after the attack.

Maj. Jeff Lewis, an Air Force surgeon, told ABC News he was used to seeing war wounds, but Bebe’s injuries appalled him.

“It was barbaric and shocking to see this, that somebody had done this to this young girl… It was unlike anything I’ve ever seen,” Lewis said. “I’m surprised that … it still exists, this type of problem in the world.” Despite their scars — from fists, knives, burns, electrical cords — there is an argument that the women at Manizha’s shelter are the lucky ones.These women have found a way out of their brutal marriages. Millions of Afghan women are routinely handed over for marriages while they are still children and endure lives of constant battering.

“Ninety percent of Afghan women have experienced some form of human rights violation, 15 million Afghan women probably need our help,” Manizha told Sawyer….

3 thoughts on “"Islam elevates women…"”

  1. Sheikyermami, are your sure about Quran (4:34) and beating wives? In my copy of Quran, it says at 4, 34: “Whoever will act thus by iniquity and spite, we will make it consume by fire. Admittedly, that will be easy with God.”
    I don’t doubt there is such a verse in the Quran, but where do you see it?

    The Urantia Book (P.1051 – §4), speaking of pros cons of each major religion, reminds us about islam that (quotes are supposedly from the original Qran)…
    the force of Islam resided in its quite clear presentation and well specifies of Allah like only and single Deity. Its weakness was to associate the military force with this promulgation, and also to degrade the women. But Islam firmly maintained its presentation of Single Deity of all “which knows the visible one and the invisible one. In truth, God abundantly distributes his kindness to all men. “And, when I am sick, it is him who cures me.” … “Where three people at least speak together, God is present like a fourth”, because isn’t it “the first and the last, and also considering and hidden?

    1. Frédéric:

      Pickthall: “and scourge them”
      Yusuf Ali: “(And last) beat them (lightly)”
      Al-Hilali/Khan: “(and last) beat them (lightly, if it is useful)”
      Shakir: “and beat them”
      Sher Ali: “and chastise them”
      Khalifa: “then you may (as a last alternative) beat them”
      Arberry: “and beat them”
      Rodwell: “and scourge them”
      Sale: “and chastise them”
      Daryabadi: “and beat them”
      Asad: “then beat them”

      Pickthall, Yusuf Ali, Al-Hilali/Khan, Shakir, Sher Ali, Khalifa, Daryabadi and Asad are Muslims. Are their translations all incorrect?

      Then, of course, there are the Islamic clerics who preach & teach wife beating on Arab TV, like this one here:

      “There must be violence against women,” by Maged Thabet Al-Kholidy in the Yemen Times

      there is always more….. you just need to keep your eyes open….

      German police raid 30 mosques to confiscate wife-beating books

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