Paul Sperry reports: Hillary Clinton’s top campaign aide, and the woman who might be the future White House chief of staff to the first female US president, for a decade edited a radical Muslim publication that opposed women’s rights and blamed the US for 9/11.
One of Clinton’s biggest accomplishments listed on her campaign Web site is her support for the UN women’s conference in Bejing in 1995, when she famously declared, “Women’s rights are human rights.” Her speech has emerged as a focal point of her campaign, featured prominently in last month’s Morgan Freeman-narrated convention video introducing her as the Democratic nominee.
However, soon after that “historic and transformational” 1995 event, as Clinton recently described it, her top aide Huma Abedin published articles in a Saudi journal taking Clinton’s feminist platform apart, piece by piece. At the time, Abedin was assistant editor of the Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs working under her mother, who remains editor-in-chief. She was also working in the White House as an intern for then-First Lady Clinton.
Headlined “Women’s Rights are Islamic Rights,” a 1996 article argues that single moms, working moms and gay couples with children should not be recognized as families. It also states that more revealing dress ushered in by women’s liberation “directly translates into unwanted results of sexual promiscuity and irresponsibility and indirectly promote violence against women.” In other words, sexually liberated women are just asking to be raped.
“A conjugal family established through a marriage contract between a man and a woman, and extended through procreation is the only definition of family a Muslim can accept,” the author, a Saudi official with the Muslim World League, asserted, while warning of “the dangers of alternative lifestyles.” (Abedin’s journal was founded and funded by the former head of the Muslim World League.)
“Pushing [mothers] out into the open labor market is a clear demonstration of a lack of respect of womanhood and motherhood,” it added.
In a separate January 1996 article, Abedin’s mother — who was the Muslim World League’s delegate to the UN conference — wrote that Clinton and other speakers were advancing a “very aggressive and radically feminist” agenda that was un-Islamic and wrong because it focused on empowering women.
“‘Empowerment’ of women does more harm than benefit the cause of women or their relations with men,” Saleha Mahmood Abedin maintained, while forcefully arguing in favor of Islamic laws that have been roundly criticized for oppressing women.
“By placing women in the ‘care and protection’ of men and by making women responsible for those under her charge,” she argued, “Islamic values generate a sense of compassion in human and family relations.”
“Among all systems of belief, Islam goes the farthest in restoring equality across gender,” she claimed. “Acknowledging the very central role women play in procreation, child-raising and homemaking, Islam places the economic responsibility of supporting the family primarily on the male members.”
She seemed to rationalize domestic abuse as a result of “the stress and frustrations that men encounter in their daily lives.” While denouncing such violence, she didn’t think it did much good to punish men for it.
“Among all systems of belief, Islam goes the farthest in restoring equality across gender.”
– 1996 article authored by Saleha Mahmood Abedin, Huma’s mother
She added in her 31-page treatise: “More men are victims of domestic violence than women . . . If we see the world through ‘men’s eyes’ we will find them suffering from many hardships and injustices.”
She opposed the UN conference widening the scope of the definition of the family to include “gay and lesbian ‘families.’ ” Read the rest of this entry »