Fighting Terrorists, Part II

How do we as a free society protect ourselves from terrorists without in the process losing our freedom to our protectors? To the extent that terrorists are part of organized groups, our counter terrorism agencies need to identify and track the members of such groups with tools and techniques that do not violate our individual privacy. As such groups often operate internationally, the information collected should be shared with similar agencies in other trustworthy countries, though this has been and will remain challenging given quite different data standards from one jurisdiction to another. Individuals identified as part of a terrorist network, or suspected of such involvement, or suspected of having potential interest in such involvement should be closely watched wherever they are. The risks of such state scrutiny to our civil liberties are obvious, but should be pursued with proper oversight and care. The careful balancing of these conflicting objectives is a critical aspect of successful, largely free societies.

The above measures can be helpful up to a point, but they cannot eliminate all risks of terrorism even if we should give up all of our liberties to a security garrison state, which hopefully we still have the courage to resist. Throwing up our arms and bunkering down every time a terrorist blows himself and others up only feeds the enthusiasm of the terrorists. Just as even the safest societies have and will always have some criminals, we can never be fully free of terrorists. Effective policing and a respected, fair, and efficient court system will minimize but not eliminate crime. Most mass murders in the U.S. have been the work of mentally disturbed individuals. While we can do better at identifying and helping those who might otherwise undertake mass murders, we will never succeed fully even if we lock up every person we think has such potential, and those Americans who still value their freedom enough to face such risks would not want to live in such a society.

In the past, terrorist attacks and mass murders in the U.S. have been perpetrated by a wide range of groups and individuals, including white supremacists, black extremists, anarchists, anti-Semites, Puerto Rican nationalists, anti-abortion radicals, and the emotionally disturbed, to name a few. Today’s best identified terrorist risks come from the Islamic State (Daesh) and the radical Islamists who join them or are inspired by them, though the vast majority of deaths in the U.S. from mass murderers since 9/11 have not been at the hands of Muslims.

The threat from Daesh is particularly challenging because it is built upon religious beliefs. The radical religious beliefs of Daesh are incompatible with modern civilization.[1] Killing non-believers, whether by suicide bombings or otherwise cannot be justified by the religious or moral beliefs held by most of humanity, whether Jewish, Christian, Muslim, humanist, or whatever. Virtually all terrorist attacks in the United States since 9/11 have been, and can be expected to be, committed by Americans. Of those few claiming to act in the name of Islam, we have benefited from American Muslims reporting radicalized, potential terrorists in their midst to the authorities. This helps explain why so few of these attacks have been by Muslims. Attempting to protect us from such attacks via the police methods noted above cannot stop those who are driven by what they believe is right in the eyes of their god (or those who are mad more generally). They are prepared and even eager to die for those beliefs. If some individuals are willing to blow themselves up for what they believe in, it will never be possible to totally prevent them from occasionally achieving their goal.

Deterring radicalized Islamist youth from their terrorist plans would require convincing them that their understanding of Islam is wrong. Given their willingness to die for their beliefs, undermining those beliefs is likely to be insufficient, though it is important. Virtually all young people seek an understanding of the purpose of their lives and moral values to guide their behavior. Muslims are best equipped and best placed to convince radical Islamists that their understanding of their religion is wrong. But all of us through our Churches, Mosques, Synagogues, schools and our culture more generally must do a better job teaching our young the moral values, and where appropriate the religious beliefs, that should guide their and our behavior toward our fellow man appropriate to living together in the modern civilized world. Coercion will not be enough.

[1] See my earlier blog: https://wcoats.wordpress.com/2015/12/18/fighting-terrorists/

Fighting Terrorists

A front-page article in the Washington Post announced that: “Saudi Arabia launches alliance to fight terrorism.”[1] This news truly gave me pause. If the irony of this does not hit you in the face, and even if it does, please read on.

Before exploring approaches to fighting terrorism, we need to define who or what our terrorist enemy is. The failure to do so clearly has badly undermined our efforts to defeat this enemy. Clearly the thousands of young men and women from around the world fighting in Iraq and Syria under the self designated Islamic State are terrorist enemies, as are Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, who killed 15 of Farook’s co workers in San Bernardino, California recently, and so are the French and Belgian Jihadists who killed 130 people in Paris on November 13th. Dropping bombs on San Bernardino or Paris or carpet bombing the Levant will not stop this enemy and the collateral damage, both human and physical,… well, you get the point.

If we understood why they were doing what they are doing, either at home or in far off places, we might be better able to deter them. What is their goal? Several steps are needed to reach such an understanding, but they all claim to be fulfilling what they understand to be their obligation to Allah to kill non-believers who refuse to convert to Islam:

I have been ordered by Allah to fight and kill all people (non-Muslims) until they say “No God except Allah.”

The above statement is a hadith collected and recorded by Sahih al-Bukhari and Sahih Muslim, the two most important compilers of the oral history of the words and deeds of Muhammad.

So our enemies are young Muslims who accept martyrdom and the prospect of early entry to paradise by fulfilling the commands of their religion as it has been taught to them. Those of us who live beyond this period of desperate searching for the meaning and purpose of our lives and make it to a more mature adulthood generally find less demanding objectives and meanings for our lives. Do most Muslims accept this version of their religion? This is a complicated subject but obviously we see the vast, vast majority of Muslims living in compliance with the laws and customs of whatever country they live in. Have they embraced a more peaceful understanding of Islam or have they managed to ignore those aspects of their religious beliefs that are clearly unacceptable in the modern civilized world?

Following 9/11, once I was able to return to the U.S., I asked a Pakistani colleague why he and his fellow Muslims did not speak out to condemn this barbaric act made in the name of Islam. He replied that it was very difficult for a Muslim to publically criticize a fellow Muslim. I only now think I understand what he meant. For a Muslim to criticize or renounce his religion is called apostasy. According to Dr. Tawfik Hamid in his very illuminating book Inside Jihad: “The portion of Sharia concerned with apostates is known as Redda law, and according to the literal implementation of Redda in Saudi Arabia, the punishment for apostasy is death.”[2]  Thus condemning Muslim’s who kill non-believers can be dangerous.

The proponents of this strict, fundamentalist form of Islam are called Salafists. According to Dr. Hamid: “Salafists desire a return to the Islamic Caliphate. They do not respect secular states or weak Islamic regimes. They believe Sharia law should constitute, ideally, the only legal system in any society, because it is the divine law…. For Salafists, the perfect world is one in which apostates are slain, adulterous women are stoned to death, enslavement of war captives is permitted, polygamy is admired and wives can be beaten when the husband deems it appropriate.”[3] Such views are not compatible with our Constitution or culture nor with any other modern culture and should be condemned as unacceptable.

According to Dr. Hamid, Salafist interpretations of Islam promulgated around the world by the Wahhabi sect of Sunni Islam financed by the Saudi Arabian government has come to dominate the understanding of the teachings of Muhammad by most Muslims. In exchange for the commitment of the Wahhabi leadership to respect and not politically challenge the Saudi royal family, the Saudi rulers financed the Wahhabi movement and its expansion. So the irony of Saudi Arabia launching an alliance to combat terrorism is that it is Saudi Arabia that continues to finance its primary cause, the Salafist version of Islam. For starters the Saudi government should cut off the funds it now provided to the promotion and spread of such teachings.

If the United States or any other military were able to kill every ISIS fighter in the Levant (Iraq and Syria), even if it could do so without destroying the cities and communities and kill their citizens that ISIS now occupies and controls, and even if it could leave behind or install a creditable, peaceful, and broadly accepted government that could prevent a new ISIS from arising, this would not end the threat of Islamic terrorism. As long as young men and women around the world continue to believe that their ticket to paradise entails fulfilling their religious duty to kill infidels, innocent people will continue to die at their hands and we will remain at risk.

Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir has the right idea, if he means it, that “we” must “stop the flow of funds to terrorists and confront the ideology of extremism that promotes killing of the innocent.”[4] But according to Dr. Hamid, this is not enough. “Islamic terror is not likely to decrease until Muslims cease being passive terrorist and become active defenders of hard truth, true peace and real tolerance.”[5] “For every jihadist in the world there is a much larger number of individuals who quietly approve of his conduct. Islamic terror often makes passive terrorist secretly proud.”[6] This is because the passive terrorist believes on the basis of Salafist teachings that the active terrorist is fulfilling the requirements of Islam. “In the case of passive terrorists the schism is one between the cultural mind and the religious mind.”[7]

Islam needs a reformation. While peaceful forms of Islam already exist (e.g., Sufism), Dr. Hamid argues that a more rigorous and scholarly reinterpretation can emerge from a refocusing on the Koran (the word of Allah), which does not contain many of the offending texts in the hadiths and Sunnah (the words and deeds of Muhammad), and placing certain commands and acts in the historical context in which they originally occurred as is generally done when interpreting the Bible.

The United States and other secular societies need the help of peaceful Muslims, those who have accepted the secular laws of their country (e.g. the U.S. Constitution) and thus rejected those Salafist teachings that contradict them. We need their help in attracting Muslims to its acceptable and peaceful versions and we need their help in isolating and exposing the few Islamic terrorists among them. These peaceful Muslims, in turn, need our condemnation of the intolerant and violent elements of Salafism, to help support their campaign for reformation. To ignore that Islamic terrorists are acting on their understanding of their religion, i.e. that they are Islamic, undercuts any effort and hope for the reformation that Islam needs in order to peacefully take its place in the modern world.

In his farewell speech to the Nation in 1988 Reagan spoke of America as a shinning city on the hill: “In my mind it was a tall, proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, windswept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace; a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity. And if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here.” Implicit in Reagan’s vision was that anyone “with the will and heart to get here,” had already embraced the laws and customs of their new land. Those who have and who satisfy our other requirements for immigration should be welcomed.

[1] https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/saudi-arabia-launches-islamic-military-alliance-to-combat-terrorism/2015/12/15/ad568a1c-a361-11e5-9c4e-be37f66848bb_story.html

[2] Tawfik Hamid Inside Jihad: How Radical Islam Works, Why it Should Terrify Us, How to Defeat it, Mountain Lake Press, 2015 page 83. http://www.tawfikhamid.com/

[3] Ibid.

[4] Washington Post Op. Cit.

[5] Hamid, Op. cit. page 98

[6] Ibid. page 87

[7] Ibid. page 102

Some Afghan views on restrictions on women in the name of Islam

Most non-Muslim American’s, myself included, know relatively little about Islam. Unfortunately, what we do hear often comes from Muslim radicals, or anti Muslim hate mongers. I find it very interesting and enlightening to listen to discussions of Islamic teachings among Muslims. I belong to the Afghan Intellectuals Network on Facebook, which gives me a very good opportunity to listen in to such discussions among young Afghans (I snuck in with an age waver). You will get a very different picture of Islam in a very traditional society than you are likely to find in the American media. The following discussion was provoked by the announcement reported in the following newspaper article. I find the sharply conflicting views absolutely fascinating and hope that you do too. You might also be interested in my earlier blog on “Shariah and America” and comments on that blog:   “Comments on Shariah and America” 

President defends scholars’ guideline regarding women

by Mir Agha Samimi  Mar 6, 2012 – 16:18

KABUL (PAN): President Hamid Karzai on Tuesday said a guideline concerning women issued by the Afghanistan Ulema Council, involving the country’s top religious scholars, was in accordance with the Sharia.

Issued on Feb. 2, the guideline prohibits women from meeting men in public places like bazaars, offices and educational institutes. It said women, while travelling, must always be accompanied by male guardians.

But western media reports quoted some people as saying that the guideline was in conflict with the Constitution and amounted to curbing women’s right.

At a news conference in Kabul, Karzai said: “The Ulema Council, which issues a guideline every month, has in fact supported women in line with Islamic laws.”

Last Friday, the president added, the scholars handed out a statement that supported women’s stance in keeping with Islamic values. “It represents the country’s Islamic viewpoint and all Muslims of Afghanistan are bound to respect it.”

Wazhma Sadat  I am working on ways to stop the Ulema from making it illegal for women to travel. Inbox me if you want to work with me! You don’t have to be a woman, an Afghan, or a Muslim to disagree with this. This law is taking the most basic rights from women: the right to education. In a country with such limited resources, we travel thousands of miles away to gain education, so our kids won’t see the violence we’re used to today. And this law, if passed, will limit every sliver of hope we’ve built so far. If we’re talking about Islamic law, then the most respected Mullahs of Afghanistan need to learn the Sunnah of the prophet first, which includes respecting women, including women in the high-level decision-making process, and more importantly, the Fard (obligatory duty for every Muslim) of education for both men and women.

This post received 64 comments. Here are a few of the more interesting ones

M. Ishaq Ahmadzai So, Wazhma jan..what do you want to get from this? Are you interested in challenging the law/religion. Islam does allow in certain cases when there are no options available. A woman can give birth to a child in the presence of male doctor but only if there is no gynecologist.

Wazhma Sadat I guess I am just hoping that our so-called Ulama learn about the real facts of Islam before imposing their own racial, gender, ethnic based agendas in the name of Islam. Islam, Alhamdulellah, is much more fair that what we practice in the name of it in Afghanistan. I am Muslim. I live Islam. I wouldn’t challenge it. But I do challenge thoughtless, and baseless rules on vulnerable people of our country. If the government wants me to stop studying in another country because I am not traveling with a mahram, then they should pay for my father to come live with me. AND they should guarantee for my father to get a US visa, as well. These rulings are pathetic: totally political to suppress women, and minorities in many cases. We live in a society where we call each other Kafir! In Islam Takfeer is haram. But look at how we address different sects of Islam within the country. The Ulema should talk about eradicating opium production, corruption, ethnic based discrimination. They should educate us men and women of Afghanistan to have mutual respect to each other. But look at what they choose to talk about. A woman’s traveling alone has not created the mess we are in now. The Ulema’s baseless rulings have!

Please don’t think that I am pro seeing women in tight shirts and jeans in Kabul. I respect my culture and religion as much as anybody else. But I want the Ulema to understand the importance of education. AND the importance of women’s education, which would be hurt really badly by this rule.

Ali Sher Learn the importance of education at what cost ? I’m sure they have good reasons. We have to give them the benefit of doubt. We really do not know or do not have enough information as to what’s really going on in Afghanistan. All we see is what’s on Afghan TV and what I see is that things are getting worse and worse as the years are getting closer to DOJ.

Wazhma Sadat We do have to give everyone the benefit of the doubt, including the women in Afghanistan. Not every woman who meets someone outside is dating. Innamal A’mal bennyyat. And ONLY Allah subhanahu ta’alla knows our intentions. Many women have had to work outside to support their dying family members. I don’t think every woman who talks to a man is wanting to attract the man. Remember the times that women came to the prophet and asked him questions, very openly.

Plus, we have lived the worst days in Afghanistan, not those who are in authority right now, including our president. He did not suffer poverty like all average Afghans did and still do. He did not see his wife get beaten in front of men on the streets by the Taliban for wearing white tumbaan. His female relatives did/do not have to choose prostitution to bring food to their family. Nor did any of these Ulema go through what an average Afghan goes through everyday. Do they think of the widows of our country? Do they think of the daughters who want to make their fathers proud… who want to help their ill mother gain better health? What about this is un-islamic?

True, we are getting close to yawm ul Qiyyama [The Day Of Resurrection – Day of Judgement], and I see the signs too. The signs include the hypocrisy of these people who discriminate everyone who is not like them. I see the signs when these ulama don’t talk about the hadith/Quran verses that talk about MEN lowering their gaze, but only impose laws on women. A society is never made sustainable if you have rules only imposed on a particular part of it. We know better what is going on in Afghanistan than those people who spend their weekends in Dubai.

Why don’t these Ulama remember Bibi Ayesha, Bibi Fatima, Bibi Rabia (who was the first person to introduce God’s love in Islam to the rest of the world). Did prophet Muhammad ever tell any woman not to go to school? Did he EVER force his wives to do anything? Anything?

In fact, what we call “dating” today, is allowed in Islam in certain circumstances like if we have the intention to marry the person and if we are meeting in a public place and if there is at least a third person present. What is not allowed is to force girls to get married before seeing the man (usually the old guy who is ‘buying’ a bride). This happens in Afghanistan and it IS un-Islamic. Think about it. For once, put yourself in an Afghan girl’s position, please.
Gaining education is fard in Islam. The Ulama and the gov. should be MORE islamic and build schools and make it MANDATORY for EVERY Afghan man and WOMAN to go to school BECAUSE it is Fard (like praying). They should make it illegal for people to stay illiterate, because amokhtan ilm ba hard wa zan musulman farz ast. The reason why we travel is not because we love leaving our families, and we love being at mercy of other people and countries. The reason why we travel is because our parents are not ministers to pay the bribe it requires to get into to Kabul University.

These are the signs I see and fear. I am saddened that Islam is not practiced the way it should be in Afghanistan, where women are respected, where corruption is non-existent, where education is at its peak, where hypocrisy has no room to live. This is the Islam I know of and I live for, Inshallah. The life in Afghanistan seems so far away from what I believe Islam is.

Wazhma Sadat

1: what the Taliban did was crimes against humanity. Not Islam AT ALL. I wouldn’t use the word “impose” here, since it has a diplomatic connotation. The Taliban were very far from anything close to that. And they still are.
2: Yes women get raped in the west, but who is comparing US with Afghanistan? The problems in other countries should not be the reason why we could justify our society’s flaws.
3: “We need to bring our women back to Islam so they can raise children that grow up to respect women and give them their rights. Our women are more and more involved each day in music, drama, movies, etc., etc.”?? — I am speechless. I think we need to bring our MEN back to Islam. Make them stop going to prostitutes and increasing the demand for such a terrible and un-Islamic practice. Make them stop harassing women.

Music, drama and movies have not been the problem in our history. I wish there were more movies if that kept us away from fighting with each other based on ethnicity, or if it kept us away from suicide bombing and other forms of crimes. Plus, if we watched movies like The Message, we would learn more about Islam than what our so-called, mostly illiterate Ulama have to offer.
4: dating in the west could mean whatever. Meeting with a non-mahram can be permissible according to Islam under certain circumstances.

Last: I don’t think it is the Ulama’s duty to “bring women back to Islam.” They are the reason why so many of people run away from Islam, sadly.

I am not going to fill everyone’s notification with more comments. I pray that we are all guided towards the right path. I pray that we all start thinking about major things like children dying in our country, women getting raped, small boys used for bachabazi, politicians using the people as their disposable promotional tool for fame. And most of all, I pray that we all strive to learn more about Islam and the beautiful path is has to offer through EDUCATION for ALL.

Abdul Waheed St  I just read your second comment…I totally disagree with You dear. Do You know what our Afghan Muslim females who have been studying on a scholarship in US or other countries do??? I guess You are one of the scholarship holders in US. Do You think that is the way a Muslim girl should live and study. They wear tight jeans and shirts with no scarf on their head, actually not studying there, but enjoying a few years of their life away from their parents.

[name withheld by request] It is not so my dear Waheed jan. Whenever we judge West we judge them from their clothes and Hollywood movies. But that is not the true reflector of US culture. Don’t look at their clothes, look at their mindset and the way of thinking.

Abdul Waheed St  Americans have a mindset of and thinking of occupying the world, killing innocent people, destroying peoples life, culture and basis. I think sending Afghan females abroad whether it is US or any other country is just destroying our culture and mixing our culture.

[name withheld by request]  Waheed jan the idea that Americas want to occupy the world and kill innocent people is what comes from Halwa Khoor Mullahs who don’t have the real knowledge of how the world works. If so then why is US spending billions of dollars a year in the world?

Abdul Waheed St  Well Walid Jan minds are different and everyone see the facts from different angels but I guess clever is someone who observes and sees the facts from every angel. US is spending Billions for their interest not for mine or yours…

[name withheld by request]  And if you look from the other angle, which you have never ever looked from, it is in our mutual interest. You need to widen your perspective rather than being strongly influenced by a Mullah who is less educated than you.

Wazhma Sadat  Salaam again! I am not going to go into details about what people wear or whether they continue to hold onto their values as Muslims and Afghans while abroad, because that is their personal choice and Allah is a better judge, inshallah. But if you are specifically talking about me, then you should learn more about me, brother 🙂

Additionally, who said we were talking about the US? How about women going to Jordan to study Islamic studies? One of the sad things about my education experience in Afghanistan was always lack of understanding of Islam! My teachers in many institutions in Afghanistan did not know much about Islam. I think by limiting people’s freedom to go abroad to get an education, we are limiting their opportunity to learn about many things that are not offered in Afghanistan, including a thorough understanding of Islam. Islam is not about judging people based on what they wear… the tightness of jeans does not determine people’s imaan. Who are we to judge.

I am sorry if you’ve had a bad impression of girls who’ve been abroad. I am sure I don’t have to tell you that no one represents one another. And that we are not to judge who wears what with what intention (Islamically). Plus, not everyone is away from home to “enjoy”… many study day and night with the hope to return. Let’s not generalize, inshallah.

Inam Ul Haq Humdard  Dear Brothers and Sisters please don’t give fetwas from your stomach while you have not studied Islamic Scriptures….. don’t read those books which are written by so called Muslims/Wahabis and for exact detail read those books which are written 200 years ago by ulemas of that time…….thanks

Abubakr Asadulla There is absolutely no limitation to women traveling in the Quran. There are a few contradictory Hadiths—5 to be exact— that point to limiting women’s travel distance.
1) Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (Radhiyallaahu Anhu) reported Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) as saying

‘It is not permitted for a Muslim woman to make a journey of a night unless accompanied by a Mahram.’

2)Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (Radhiyallaahu Anhu) reported that Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) said,

‘It is not permitted for a woman who has faith in Allah and the last day to make a journey of a day and night.’

3) Abu Saeed (Radhiyallaahu Anhu) reported Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) saying, ‘It is not permitted for a woman who brings faith in Allah and the Last Day to make a journey of more than three days unless she is accompanied by either her father, brother, husband, son or a relative who is her Mahram.’

4) Hadhrat ibn Umar (Radhiyallaahu Anhuma) reported Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) saying, ‘A woman must not make a journey of three days unless accompanied by a relative who is her Mahram.’

5) Hadhrath ibn Abbas (Radhiyallaahu Anhuma) reported that Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) said, ‘A woman must not make a journey unless accompanied by a Mahram or her husband.’

Based on Islamic principles, men and women have equal rights and Surah an-Nisa’ 4:1 states that men and women are created from a single soul (nafs wahidah). One person does not come before the other, one is not superior to the other, and one is not the derivative of the other. Thus, if they are equal in God’s eyes why are they being treated under TWO laws. If a woman can’t travel without a Maharam, why can’t it be expected from men to travel without a Maharam? Both men and women are vulnerable to Satan; why pick on women? The simple truth is that many of these attributed Hadiths to the prophet were written at a time of tribal warfare, when neither men nor women were safe to leave home. Those same rules can not be taken literally to pertain to the 21th century. Fortunately, women can travel safely and there is no apprehension about them being harmed any more than men, as long as appropriate judgment is used to their destination.

We have to remember that the earliest documents attributed to prophet (PBUH) are at least 100 years after he passed away. Moreover, it should be mentioned that many of today’s restrictions on women originate from after the prophet (PBUH) had passed away and they are a reflection of Arab customs and traditions rather than Islamic law. For example, Saudi Arabia doesn’t allow women to drive. Does that make it Islamic for women in Islam to stop driving?

Abubakr Asadulla Any philosophy left to the hands of semi-literate is a dangerous phenomenon. The interpretation and application of Islam isn’t a privilege of a few, on the contrary it is a collective endeavor. Islam was complete with the death of Prophet (PBUH) and any philosophy thereafter is left for interpretation and modification, as someone pointed out, in Islam we are gifted with the right to Ijma and ijtihad. Ijtihad representing my right to utilize my intelligence to conform with what my goal is to worship God, and Ijma to have a consensus amongst people for collective good, in situations that are unique to our time and era.

In opinion of many scholars, this restriction on women, assuming this Hadith is really from the prophet, had limited application and duration. Times have changed and so have dangers to men and women. Above all we have been given the Ilm of Aqalia (knowledge of common sense) which in my mind and I am sure others dictates equal rights for both men and women.

If there is fitna in society, it is the failure of societies to have appropriately educated its population. One cannot restrict women for men’s evils. There are millions of women that travel freely without a consequence, why are we picking on Muslim women? Limiting women’s travel is insulting to women and our creator, which calls men and women equals (Quran 3:195).

Unfortunately, the truth is that men and women are prone to haram regardless of travel or not. We shouldn’t pass a blank law categorically limiting women’s movements out of fear of a few that may transgress. If such is the case no man should be allowed outside of their rooms, let alone their homes. At the end of the day, instill the right tools in your family, give them the right tools to judge right from wrong and trust Allah that He will guide to the straight path.