War on Muslim Women, a Great Conference by Abdullah Hakim Quick

Milena Rampoldi, ProMosaik e.V. – A great conference held in Australia by Dr.
Abdullah Hakim Quick, a Canadian Muslim convert and scholar of African origin
in 2008. The conference is entitled „War on Muslim Women“. It talks about the
internal discrimination of women in Muslim community, which has nothing to do
with Islam, which liberated women. So we have to change ourselves, this is
Quick’s message to the Muslim community as a whole. The concept in Islam is
cooperation and not hierarchy in Tyson’s way. The concept is separation between
women and men, but never oppression, and never gender-apartheid.

to what Dr. Quick says in the introduction to his conference, we have to deal
with ourselves, because the war on Muslim women is also an internal one, and
not just a Western war against Muslim women. Women are oppressed by Muslim men,
and this is contrary to Islam. Even if the books and the press in the West have
focussed so much on Muslim women as the enemy number one, and the target number
one of discrimination at all levels, in his opinion Muslims have to deal with
themselves and fight misogyny in their own communities and in the Ummah.
And this is
a thesis based on the following Quran verse saying:
„Allah will
not change the conditions of the people until they do not change in
themselves“. (Quran 13:11)

So the
general conclusion made by Dr. Quick is that we have to change ourselves, since
Allah is aware of all what we do. Muslims have forgotten themselves after their
victory because instead of being responsible people, they forgot their
responsibility. And so their victory became a bitter one.
We do not
promote women, and this is the main mistake of Muslim communities today.
We do not
educate girls, and this is contrary to Islam. In Muslim history, women
empowered generations. How can we disempower women today in the name of Islam?
According to Islam, women are the blood relations of the man (in Arabic: shaqiqa).
So Quick ask the Muslims: how can you oppress a woman in the name of Islam?
oppressed person is protected by Allah. In Islam, it says that if an oppressed
woman raises her head to Allah, there will not be a veil between her and Allah.
women is jahiliyya, ignorance. Islam meant liberation of women. Islam
gave rights to women at all levels. So how can the idea dominate in Muslim
society that the most I oppress my wife, the best Muslim I am.
How can you
enter Islam and put women down? This is not Islam. Since Islam is the
liberation from slavery for the human beings. In Islam there is no obedience to
the creation, when the creation does not obey to Allah.
Allah talks
about separation between women and men, but never about a second-class
treatment. This is apartheid. This is not the separation in equality of Islam.
Another problem we have in the Muslim community, so Quick, is that we always
speak about women’s obligations instead of of women’s rights.
The basis
of all community and society, is the female education. Educating women means
educating the whole community and society. If Allah gave rights to women, how
can we take them away from them?
After all
this criticism which makes us think about ourselves as Muslims, Quick makes
proposals about how to solve this situation, this internal war against women.
We all need to increase our taqwa,
especially Muslim men. In fact, in the countries where men oppress women, they
are not able to agree on anything, and fight one against another.
We have to focus more on character than on ibada.
We have to learn how to deal with our community, from Muslim to Muslim.
We have to understand the concept of manhood
and womanhood in Islam, and rethink about the real concept of leadership in
Islam. In Islam, leadership has nothing to do with hierarchy as oppressive
power, but with complementary cooperation. The Muslim man and woman complement
one another. Family is not oppression, but cooperation. Quick compares the
Muslim family to a football team.
We need
social services to look behind the veil. There are a lot of problems of abuse
behind the 
veil. Muslim men need to radically change the way they are. We need
community development and 
women’s empowerment in Muslim society today. Quick
concludes by reminding that the oppressor 
has to fear the oppressed, because
between the oppressed and Allah there is no veil.