Iranian Canadian activists Shadi Paveh and Shabnam Assadollahi have translated an interview with Hamid Mohammadi, an Iranian official working as Cultural Counselor to the Embassy in Canada; as released by Fox News, this alarming article reveals that Iran has been using its embassy in Canada to mobilize loyalists of Islamic Republic to infiltrate the Canadian Government and, some terrorism experts worry, attack the United States.
If feminism means: “The advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men, and is the belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities”, why haven’t the “feminist” Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, condemned oppression and atrocities against women living under Islamic Law?
In Iran, under Islamic constitution women are denigrated as second class citizens.
I was in my early teens when Ayatollah Khomeini came into power and replaced Iran’s constitution with Islamic law. Overnight, all women, including elementary school girls, were forced to cover their bodies from head to toe and were ordered to only wear dark colors.
We were no longer allowed to attend school with the opposite sex. Our once-praised school curriculum was replaced by Islamic studies, including the Quran which we were so unfamiliar with.
I was robbed of my teen years by an Islamic regime that sought to force its values on the masses. My childhood memories were replaced by a reality created by a regime where we (women) were now treated as second class citizens, and even the most mundane detail of our lives was strictly controlled by the regime’s Revolutionary Guards Forces and morality police.
What we no longer had and would never have again under the Islamic Republic was freedom of speech. Those who spoke up put themselves and their families in grave danger or simply disappeared behind the walls of the notorious Evin prison in Tehran. At that time, even 12-year-old children faced the firing squad for political dissidence.
Imagine for a moment a mother in Iran living a quiet, uneventful life with her children. Imagine the horror of that same woman when in the early hours of the morning she comes face-to-face with the notorious Revolutionary Guards, forcing their way into her home to arrest her 16-year-old daughter. That teen was me.
There are no words to describe what life in prison was like for a teenager who had never been apart from her parents and I can tell you that there is only one experience worse that being tortured in this way: having to listen to others scream and beg, not for their lives but for their death.
I was wrongfully imprisoned at age 16 in Iran for 18 months for expressing my free speech and for questioning Islam, the religion which I was born into.
In the end, I was given an 18-month sentence. In reality, according to the Islamic law, I should have been hanged for my views. To this day I have no idea why and how my life was spared.
In Islam, politics and religion are inseparably intertwined. For this reason, apostasy in Islam is equal to treason. A notable expression in Islam says it all, “Islam is a religion and a state.” The Penal Code of The Islamic Republic of Iran Mandates Death for Converts. Article 225-1 of this code reads, “Any Muslim who clearly announces that he/she has left Islam and declares blasphemy is an Apostate.” Bukhari (52:260) reiterates the above very clearly, “The Prophet said, ‘If somebody (a Muslim) discards his religion, kill him.’” According to Ayatollah Khorasani, a prominent Shiite leader in Iran, “The promotion of Christianity in Iran must be stopped.” The Ayatollah’s views are directly in line with statements found in the Quran.
In countries and societies ruled by Islamic Law, women essentially have no rights and no equality. Under Islamic Law women have fewer inheritance rights compared to men and lesser status as witnesses. Women in Islamic countries ruled under Sharia Law are subject to harsh penalties for violation of modesty laws and have no choice but follow the modesty laws such as ‘dress modesty’. In Iran modesty law and activities of country’s modesty police has been handed over to Iran’s current president, Hassan Rouhani’s Ministry of the Interior. Failure to comply with modesty laws has been subject to extreme violence from modesty police in countries like Iran, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan and Sudan.
These violations frequently result in state-sponsored violence against women (even death) in Islamic countries. As well, female foreigners travelling to Islamic countries governed by Islamic Law are advised to dress modestly (wearing the hijab, head cover and Islamic garment) and not travel unaccompanied by a man.
A prime example of such embedded inequality is exemplified in marital relations: a man is entitled to have up to four wives. A husband, in divorcing one of his wives, need only make a declaration in front of an Islamic judge without the woman’s consent or even the requirement of her presence. However, if a woman wishes to divorce her husband, his consent is required.
Men are allowed to have “temporary” marriages, a form of legal Islamic prostitution where it can even last less than half an hour – a situation allowed by some religious scholars. Temporary marriage is also known as a “pleasure marriage,” called Mutah which was established within Islam by the Muslim prophet Mohammed himself as a way to reward his jihadists for services rendered to Allah.
A minimum marriage age for girls set as young as 12 or 13 is not uncommon in Muslim-majority countries such as Iran, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan and Yemen, to name a few. In Yemen and Afghanistan there are cases where eight-year-old girls died of internal injuries suffered on their wedding night.
According to a report by Al Jazeera, Nearly 14 percent of Yemeni girls married before the age of 15 and 52 percent before the age of 18.
Closer to home, in a report published by CIJ News, “Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips, a Canadian and Toronto-based Muslim scholar clarifies the Islamic Law regarding the popular practice in Muslim countries of circumcising girls. Bilal Philips asserts that Islam prohibits female genital mutilation, but permits female circumcision, which is a “slight” cut that does not affect the ability of women to achieve sexual satisfaction.”
Muslim Canadian author, Suhail Kapoor in his book, Balancing Life and Beyond, advocates that within the tenets of Islam, it is permissible to “lightly” strike your spouse if she exhibits serious moral misconduct. In a chapter entitled “Does Islam Allow Wife Beating?” Kapoor outlines the circumstances under which it is appropriate for a man to punish his wife using “light” slaps on the wrist with a small wooden stick.” In a statement to QMI Agency (March 12, 2013) Suhail Kapoor said the permission to reprint his book was granted by the Ottawa-Centre MPP, Yasir Naqvi’s office. MPP Naqvi is a Pakistani born Canadian and the Ontario Liberal Government House Leader. Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services.
Surat An-Nisa’ (4:89) states:
“They wish that you should disbelieve as they disbelieve, and then you would be equal; therefore take not to yourselves friends of them, until they emigrate in the way of God; then, if they turn their backs, take them, and slay them wherever you find them; take not to yourselves any one of them as friend or helper.”
Other verses supporting death for apostates in the Qur’an are: 2:217, 9:73-74, 88:21, 5:54, and 9:66.
It is evident that Islam is not a race, but it is an ideology and Canadians have the full right to disagree with Islam and its prophet and against any faith group, ideology or religion which is Called Democracy.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tells Canadians that Islam is compatible with Western secular societies while at the same time, ICNA Canada and a Canadian Imam contradict Prime Minister Trudeau’s statement and publicly state that “Islam and democracy are contradictory, absolutely incompatible”.
The Government-initiated “Islamophobia” Petition e-411 sponsored by Federal Liberal Member of Parliament, Frank Baylis calls for limiting the rights of Canadians to critique Islam, is contrary to our Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
Canada is a multicultural society made up of many expatriates from troubled areas who came to Canada to escape tribalism, oppressive regimes and threats to their personal freedom and safety. Now in Canada, we see a government that appears to be encouraging the kind of cultural changes and the promotion of ideologies of dictatorial regimes and regimes governed by sharia law—things those who fled had hoped never to experience ever again.
As a Canadian of Iranian origin, I feel I am without a state and have lost my Canadian identity since the Trudeau Liberals have taken power and are ruling over Canada without considering the views of Canadian citizens like myself. There is growing radical Islam in Canada, and some of the policies being considered by elected government further enables Islamist radicalism, homophobia and attack on women’s rights.
As someone who was tortured in Evin prison as a teenager by the Islamic Republic of Iran, I want assurance by the Government of Canada that my interest, security and freedoms will be protected.
As a human rights and peace activist, my desire is the same as my fellow Canadians to maintain the liberty and diverse multiculturalism that we have enjoyed. As Canadians, we love our peaceful Muslim families that also take pride in this freedom that diversity brings. However, it is also imperative to emphasize that peaceful Muslims are also under threat from radical Islam.
That being said, this is why we must keep the secular state and religion separate so no one’s religion is given preference. Our end goal is, and must remain, equal treatment for all. Equitable pluralistic human dignity and respect can only be achieved when the government acts constitutionally without bias or favouritism towards any particular religious belief system.