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Nonie Darwish: Now They Call Me Infidel

Tomorrow presents an interesting opportunity for our Hanover readers to hear from activist and author Nonie Darwish. She will be speaking on “the roots of jihad, tolerance, and finding peace with Israel”. Looking at her background, one might be surprised to find Darwish speaking on behalf of both Israel and the War on Terror. Born in Egypt, she was the daughter of Lt. General Mustafa Hafez, leader of the fedayeen [known for orchestrating attacks against Israel] and commander of Egyptian Army Intelligence in the Gaza Strip. She spent the first eight years of her life in the Gaza Strip before her father was killed by the Israeli Defense Forces, at which point her family returned to Egypt. A graduate of the American University in Cairo, Darwish now lectures to promote peace between Palestine and Israel. Her book, published in 2006, is titled ”Now They Call Me Infidel: Why I Renounced Jihad for America, Israel and the War on Terror”. She also is the founder of Arabs for Israel.

Rejecting the terrorism in which her own father took part, Darwish showed personal strength as well as intellectual criticism. In an interview, Nonie recounted a time when she and her siblings were asked by Egyptian president Gamel Abdel Nasser “Which one of you will avenge your father’s death by killing Jews?” Though initially blaming Israel for her father’s death as she was taught, she later rejected the hate filled language of the jihad in favor of peace between Arabs and Israelis. She promises to offer an interesting and credible perspective on relations with the Middle East. Do consider attending.

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