By Mahmoud El-Yousseph
14 July, 2009
Terror struck in heart of Europe two weeks ago and you may have not heard about it on your local TV station or in you home town newspaper. The reason is: The perpetrator of this gruesome crime was not a Muslim and the victim was neither a Jew or Westerner. That is the ugly truth!
When Muslims are the victims, news room often wants to know first if there is a local connection. Understandable. But where was the local connection as the world came to an end last November when terror struck in Mumbai, India ? There was no local connection to the innocent Israeli child who survived Mumbai’s massacre but his parents were not as lucky.
On July 1st, Marwa El-Sherbini, a 32 years old pharmacist was in involved in a court case in Dresden, Germany against Axel W. who was found guilty last November for insulting and abusing her calling her a “terrorist” and Islamic whore over wearing the “hijab” or headscarf.
Axel who is an unemployed Russian-born German was in the court room appealing the court fine of 780 euros($1370) when suddenly he stabbed his victim with the knife 18 times in front of her 3-years old son Mustafa. When her husband, Elwi Ali Okaz, a genetic engineering student came to her aid, was also stabbed and then shot in the leg by a security guard who mistook for the attacker.
The wife died instantly. The husband is in a critical condition in a German hospital, and the now motherless child is cared for by relatives. Mrs. El-Shebini remain was buried in her hometown of Alexandria, Egypt. If that was not a terrorist act, I do not know what is!
This tragic event sent a shock wave worldwide, however: German TV news and other Western news media were silent about this cruel murder, while incident with less importance were given wide coverage.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel office remained lip-tied for a whole week. Instead of condemning this crime and issuing and apology, her office issued statement that the Chancellor will offer condolences to the Egyptian president during the G 8 summit in Italy. This is the very same” Nazi Markel” who advocated two years ago, “no mosque will be built in Germany that has minarets taller than the steeple of a church.”
It is precisely this kind bigotry and prejudice attitude against Muslims that inspired people to discriminate against Muslims and target them for violent acts in Germany and elsewhere..
Meanwhile reaction from other media and politicians in Germany was lukewarm and can best be described as sluggish. This was not an isolated incident. It was a prime example of how hate crimes against Muslims are overlooked in comparison to those committed by Muslims against Westerners.
10 days after Mrs. El-Sherbini’s death 1500 residents of Dresden attended a public memorial organized by local civil rights groups at Dresden City Hall to honor the memory of the victim of this crime. Many carried white roses and laid it next to a big poster of the victim.
Mrs. El-Sherbini moved to Germany four years ago to be with her husband , who was granted a fellowship to study genetic engineering. They wanted to built a better life for themselves and their family, practice religious freedom and maintain their religious and cultural identity. That was their only crime.. Marwa is now known by fellow Muslims everywhere as ,” Hijab Martyr”.