In his address to a joint session of Congress on September 20, 2001, nine days after we watched the twin towers collapse, then–President George W. Bush said, “Americans are asking, ‘Why do they hate us?’” He set the stage for the subsequent and ongoing “War on Terror” with his answer:
“… they hate our freedoms: our freedom of religion, our freedom of speech, our freedom to vote and assemble and disagree with each other”. And the invasions began.
“They hate our freedoms” is an explanation we all seem comfortable with. And tragically, we seem agreeable to the so-called “War on Terror,” which has cost the lives of hundreds of thousands of Muslims. But, as someone who has lived five years in the Muslim world, I found Bush’s explanation unsatisfying. With respect to direct causality, surely there must be a more definitive answer. Why would well-educated men from stable family backgrounds forfeit their lives in order to kill hundreds of American civilians? How could the culture that I had experienced as so hospitable and gracious produce men who would fly airliners into skyscrapers? “They hate our freedoms” wasn’t doing it for me. Suicide attacks are the acts of desperate men and women. I had to know why. With trepidation I set out to explore the subterranean caves of Islamic terror. I was shocked by what I found lurking within the deep labyrinth.
(Status: First draft complete. Manuscript is with my amazing editor, who is doing her magic. TopReads has been selected as my publisher, and we are working to a timeline to release summer 2018)
16 years after the 9/11 attacks, Islamophobia is at an all-time high, even though the mathematical odds of being killed by a Muslim terrorist in the United States are less than being killed by lightning-strike. In my hard-hitting and eye-opening book, I debunk the popular mythology surrounding Muslims and the religion of Islam. I then definitively connect the dots between cause and effect for the rise in Islamic terror. I offer my unique perspective and draw from my experiences in Kazakhstan, where I lived with my family for 5 years.
Is Islam inherently a religion of terror, or one of peace? Did Mohammed produce conversions with the edge of the sword? Does the Quran teach jihad against infidel Christians and Jews? Does Islam teach the repression of women? Is Sharia law about stoning, amputation, and beheading? By examining the historical facts surrounding the creation of Islam and its subsequent viral growth, Why Do They Hate Us? erases powerful misconceptions about Muslims in language understandable to ordinary Americans.
Sprinkled with stories from the everyday lives of mainstream Muslims, you will have the opportunity to catch a glimpse of a different side of Islam than portrayed in the media. I hope to transform the image from that of an angry Arab ready to detonate a vest full of explosives, into something closer to actual reality – such as the young Pakistani industrial engineer and father, working hard to provide for his family while leading a small Muslim community, or the Kazakh family of 12 living out the richness of their ancient traditions on the Central Asian steppe, or even the young Arab man who, out of the blue, propositioned me for sex.
With a better grasp on the faith and practices of the mainstream, I next focus on Islam’s radicals and bring to light the hard connection between US foreign policy and the undeniable rage of terrorists. I present clear proof that terrorist attacks are triggered by the political/military acts of foreign governments and not by Islamic ideology.
The United States is now at a crossroads with the world of Islam brought about by the “War on Terror.” It has already cost the lives of 1.2 million Muslims, and the US currently has active military operations related to the “War on Terror” in at least six countries. In order to break the cycle of increasingly horrific acts of mutual retribution, I offer concrete, constructive strategies to tap into Islam’s moderates, who are also the victims of terrorism, and abhor it. The power of Islam lies with its 1.5 billion mainstream adherents, not with the radicals. As such, it is critical that Americans understand this group and join hands with them in the fight against the blight of terrorism. As it turns out, it is we who must ask ourselves, “Why do we hate them?