Hirsi Ali Comes Home Again
Ayaan Hirsi Ali, the famous Dutch legislator and author, has admitted to lying on her original asylum application. She will be leaving her post(fr.) and travelling to America for a position with the conservative think tank, the Enterprise Institute. Unfortunately, the story is a lot more complicated that a simple job change. Her explanation does not simplify things, but it is very convincing.
Hirsi Ali has been remarkably successful in a place where most immigrants do not thrive, coming from places where no one thrives. She did well in the Netherlands. She started as a cleaning lady and worked her way up. Her name came to prominence in America as the author of a short film about the place of women under Islam. The film is justifiably entitled Submission. Dutch Muslims did not like it and one of them killed the director of the film, Theo Van Gogh, in a spectacular fashion, leaving a note with threats against Hirsi Ali pinned by a dagger to Van Gogh's body.
Hirsi Ali has pressed a political agenda for women's rights and free speech. She has supported Denmark's free speech position on the Mohammed cartoons. She is still writing about the hostility of Islam towards women. Her dishonesty, to whatever extent, makes me uncomfortable. Reading her eloquent statement, however, makes it seem more likely that this is a case of political pressure applied by her political enemies and Islamist groups. She has basically been forced out, but she is a survivor. She will be welcome here.
5/16/2006 8:55 PM