Sisters Are Doing It For Themselves

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Blowing themselves up, that is: Muslim Extremist Women Fight For Right To Join Al Qaeda.

CAIRO, Egypt (AP) — Muslim extremist women are challenging al Qaeda’s refusal to include - or at least acknowledge - women in its ranks, in an emotional debate that gives rare insight into the gender conflicts lurking beneath one of the strictest strains of Islam.

In response to a female questioner, al Qaeda No. 2 leader Ayman Al-Zawahri said in April that the terrorist group does not have women. A woman’s role, he said on the Internet audio recording, is limited to caring for the homes and children of al Qaeda fighters.

His remarks have since prompted an outcry from fundamentalist women, who are fighting or pleading for the right to be terrorists. The statements have also created some confusion, because in fact suicide bombings by women seem to be on the rise, at least within the Iraq branch of al Qaeda.

A’eeda Dahsheh is a Palestinian mother of four in Lebanon who said she supports al-Zawahri and has chosen to raise children at home as her form of jihad. However, she said, she also supports any woman who chooses instead to take part in terror attacks.

Another woman signed a more than 2,000-word essay of protest online as Rabeebat al-Silah, Arabic for “Companion of Weapons.”

“How many times have I wished I were a man … When Sheikh Ayman al-Zawahri said there are no women in al Qaeda, he saddened and hurt me,” wrote “Companion of Weapons,” who said she listened to the speech 10 times. “I felt that my heart was about to explode in my chest…I am powerless.”

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Last updated: 2021-06-05 2:51 pm PDT
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