by Marc Lebuis
Pour la version en langue française cliquez [ICI]
Last month, as Canada was debatting whether or not to specifically address the question of honor killings in Canada’s Criminal Code, the August American edition of Marie Claire magazine carried a special article on honor killings in America. Abigail Pesta’s fine investigative piece is particularly interesting because it focuses on Texas’s Noor case.
Ms Pesta reveals several pieces of testimony, police reports and how the courts are handling the situation. Through this, she shows that the murder had all the ingredients of an honor killing: religiously-motivated hostile parents, other members of the immediate family, extended family support. In other words, a father who allegedly kills his own daughter, a mother’s complicity, an extended family that may have assisted the fugitive father.
Honor killing is ordinarily distinguished from conventional domestic violence by the former’s rather elaborate involvement of intra-family premeditation and conspiracy. In short, honor killings are usually committed with the complicity of members of the victim’s family. The Marie Claire « must read » investigation brings to mind the fact that Canada and Quebec welcome a very important part of their immigration from countries known in many ways to countenance or play down Islamic honor homicides: Pakistan, Yemen, Iran, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Somalia and North Africa, in general. There is a warning, here: Canada’s own capacity to deal with the escalating problem of honour killing will be limited because of the politico-demographic shift being brought about by the sheer numbers of newcomers from those radical jurisdictions.
Tragically, Canada’s situation will worsen, thanks to what is increasingly derided as « Kenneymigration » – Immigration Minister Jason Kenney’s policy of importing votes by unjustifiably driving up immigration and refugee numbers to the highest per capita levels in the world. And this, during a time of economic slowdown and transnational terrorism targeting Canada and the West.
I am reminded of an interesting article by Dr Farrukh Saleem, an Islamabad-based economist and analyst whose text was published in the Pakistani Daily Times newspaper on December 19, 2007, in reaction to Canada’s Aqsa Parvez murder.
Here is an excerpt:
« Honour killing is our export to Canada. [...]
According to the UN’s Special Rapporteur « honour killings had been reported in Egypt, the Islamic Republic of Iran, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Pakistan, the Syrian Arab Republic, Turkey and Yemen ». Egypt is 90 percent Muslim, Iran 98 percent, Jordan 92 percent, Lebanon 60 percent, Morocco 99 percent, Pakistan 97 percent, the Syrian Arab Republic 90 percent and Turkey 99 percent. Of the 192 member-states of the United Nations almost all honour killings take place in nine overwhelmingly Muslim countries. Denial is not an option.More recently, honour killings have taken place in France, Germany, the United Kingdom and Canada. Intriguingly, all these honour killings have taken place in Muslim communities of France, Germany, the United Kingdom and Canada. Denial is not an option. «
You can read the rest of his entire article: Truth and denial, by Farrukh Saleem in theThe Daily Times (Pakistan), Decembre 19th 2007.
With this in mind, below, the Marie-Claire Magazine special « Must Read » investigative article:
An American Honor Killing
By Abigail Pesta
Marie-Claire Magazine, August 2010
In a quiet suburban parking lot outside of Phoenix, a father floors the gas on his Jeep Grand Cherokee and heads straight for his 20-year-old daughter. His goal: to protect his family’s « honor. » Yes, honor crimes have washed up on our shores. By Abigail Pesta
Around the sprawling, sunbaked campus of Dysart High School in El Mirage, Arizona, not many people knew about the double life of a pretty, dark-haired girl named Noor Almaleki. At school, she was known as a fun-loving student who made friends easily. She played tennis in a T-shirt emblazoned with the school mascot – a baby demon in a diaper. She liked to watch Heroes and eat at Chipotle. Sometimes she talked in a goofy Keanu Reeves voice. She wore dark jeans, jeweled sandals, and flowy tops from Forever 21. She texted constantly and called her friends « dude. » In other words, she was an American girl much like any other.
But at home, Noor inhabited a darker world. She lived a life of subservience, often left to care for her six younger siblings. Noor’s father, 49-year-old Faleh Almaleki, was strict and domineering, deeming it inappropriate for her to socialize with guys, wear jeans, or post snapshots of herself on MySpace. Her responsibility was to follow orders, or to risk a beating. From her father’s perspective, the only time Noor’s life would ever change would be when she married a man he selected for her – back in his homeland of Iraq. Noor, however, had a different vision for herself. Having lived in the U.S. for 16 years, she held dreams of becoming a teacher, of marrying a man she loved, and, most importantly, of making her own choices.
On a cloudless, breezy afternoon in late October 2009, her father set out to end those dreams. As Noor walked across a suburban parking lot to a Mexican restaurant with a friend – a 43-year-old woman named Amal Khalaf – Faleh Almaleki gunned the engine of his Jeep Grand Cherokee and bore down on his 20-year-old daughter and her companion. The women took off running but were no match for the SUV, already traveling close to 30 miles per hour. Suddenly Amal turned, held up her hands in a futile attempt to stop the Jeep, and froze. Moments later, the vehicle struck the women, tossing them into the air. Amal hit the pavement; Noor landed on a raised median, in a patch of pebbly landscaping. Faleh wasn’t done, though. Swerving onto the median, he ran over his daughter as she lay bleeding, fracturing her face and spine. Then, he reversed and sped away.
Passersby heard the roar of the engine, screams, the impact of the bodies as they hit the Jeep’s grill. They saw the women lying on the ground, their sandals scattered across the lot. A witness called 911, and emergency vehicles converged. Amal’s condition was stable; Noor was comatose.
Local police characterized the incident as an attempted « honor killing » – the murder of a woman for behaving in a way that « shames » her family. It’s a practice with deep, tenacious roots in the tribal traditions of the Middle East and Asia. (The United Nations estimates that 5,000 women die annually from such crimes.) Women are stoned, stabbed, and, in the recent case of a teenage girl in Turkey, tied up and buried alive. But honor killings in America are a chilling new trend. In Texas, teen sisters Amina and Sarah Said were shot dead in 2008, allegedly by their father, because they had boyfriends. That same year in Georgia, 25-year-old Sandeela Kanwal was allegedly strangled by her father for wanting to leave an arranged marriage. Last year in New York, Aasiya Hassan, 37, was murdered in perhaps the most gruesome way imaginable: She was beheaded, allegedly by her husband, for reportedly seeking a divorce. And this past spring, 19-year-old Tawana Thompson’s husband gunned her down in Illinois, reportedly following arguments about her American-style clothing.
Read the rest by clicking HERE