Sunday, June 01, 2008

Liberal Left Islamophobia (part IV) : Lebanon

A number of liberal left blogs have been posting photographs of women supporters of Hizbullah who appear in "western" clothing (T-shirts etc.). The overt and subtext message of these photographs is something that I've addressed earlier on a blog entry titled "scantily clad orientalists."

The message is that: "their women dress just like ours, therefore we got nothing to worry about."

But there is also another message that is sent: Most of the photographs that make the rounds of left-liberal blogs depict women as passive participants in the rallies (as one blogger titled his entry: "Sexy Lebanese girl with Hezbollah t-shirt attends Nasrallah's speech.")

It is not that photographs showing women as active participants are not available:

And this one from Iraq:

"Parliamentary member Maha Adel al-Douri speaks, in front of a poster showing Mohammed Sadiq al-Sadr, late father of Muqtada al Sadr during a meeting in Sadr main office in Sadr City to discuss the proposed U.S.-Iraqi security agreement on Saturday, May 31, 2008. The final statement of the meeting showed the absolute rejection of this agreement, and it urged Iraqis to set off peaceful demonstrations till the cancellation of this agreement. Writing on the fingers on the poster in the back read, from the top, Terrorism, Sectarianism, Occupation, Zionism, Colonialism."

But it seems that, while the liberal left will clamor about rights of women, and "feminism" - the criteria is very different for Muslims. The prime directive of many on the liberal-left for Muslim women is that, liberation means appearing passive and "sexy" at rallies.

In effect what the Liberal-Left Islamophobes are advocating is that (Muslim and "middle-eastern") women must appear a certain way to get their approval.

If any (and many Muslim women do) appear at rallies, fists raised, wearing a chodor or hijaab, or niqab, advocating a revolutionary Islamic movement as their platform, they are relegated to the "fundamentalist bin" or to the "false consciousness" bin.

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