Friday, 6 November 2015

"I can. And I will"

Ayaan Hirsi Ali is a Somali-born author and campaigner who was overjoyed recently, as many people were, at the success of Nadia Hussein, a Muslim woman, in winning The Great British Bake Off.

So much so that she quoted Nadiya's words in response to her joyful victory:

"I am never going to put boundaries on myself again. I am never going to say, 'I don't think I can'. I can, And I will."

But as Ayaan went on to say, in many parts of the Muslim world Nadiya  would never have been allowed to appear on television or to express herself in the way she did by hugging her fellow competitors and crying for joy.

In a country like Saudi Arabia Nadiya would not be allowed out of the house on her own never mind starring on a TV show, especially with other non-Muslims, because of the repressive culture against women encouraged by the most strident voices of conservative Islam. 

So it will come as no surprise to learn that Ayaan Hirsi Ali is the author of a book: "Heretic: Why Islam Needs a Reformation Now" which is published by HarperCollins.

I haven't bought a copy yet, but it's on my list of things to do.

A few more ingredients and the PM’s recipe for beating Islamism is ready

By Ayaan Hirsi Ali

TWO wonderful things happened last week to advance the cause to which I have dedicated the past 14 years of my life. First, I heard a British Muslim woman — Nadiya Hussain — say these words after winning The Great British Bake Off: “I am never going to put boundaries on myself ever again. I am never going to say, ‘I don’t think I can.’ I can. And I will.”

Then I heard David Cameron say in his party conference speech that he would “confront — and I mean really confront — extremism . . . [a] diseased view of the world [which] has become an epidemic — infecting minds from the mosques of Mogadishu to the bedrooms of Birmingham”.

Two breaths of fresh air.