Nudity at last
By Khalid Amayreh in the West Bank
In a brazen disregard for Muslim (and Christian) sensibilities, the Palestinian Authority (PA) is reportedly allowing a westernized group of women to organize a beauty queen contest in Ramallah later this month.
In the pageant contest, scantly clad young women will display their naked bodies in front of a selectively-invited audience.
The organizer of the contest, a woman by the name of Salwa Yousuf, was quoted as saying that 58 pageants would participate, including 26 from Israel and 32 from the West Bank. None would come from the Gaza Strip.
Yousuf said officials from the PA ministries of Information and Culture would be invited to take part in the committee that would choose the winners.
The winner will receive a brand new car, $2700 and free 10-day trip to Turkey.
In the west, where I lived for many years, the so-called beauty-queen contests are more or less exercises of visual prostitution, where pageants are reduced to sexual objects, deprived of real honor, dignity, and humanity.
I really don’t know how the PA can justify this horrendous act of profanity. Indeed, it is hard to imagine how displaying our women’s bodies would contribute to promoting the Palestinian cause and freeing our people from the shackles of Zionist colonialism.
This is a question I put to our “cultured” officials who think the road to enlightenment and modernity begins with encouraging nudity, sexual permissiveness and prurient behavior.
But I know well that these agents of moral decadence wouldn’t dare tell us what their real agenda is. Instead, they will start barking like mad dogs, calling the vast bulk of Palestinians names such as “agents of obscurantism” and “forces of darkness.”
Well, I really wonder what is so enlightening about displaying women’s naked bodies before the gluttonous eyes of sex-crazed men and women who readily surrender to the reality of women’s sexual exploitation.
Similarly, I fail to understand what makes these ‘cultured people’ more intellectual and more enlightened than those of us who reject this contemptible denigration of at least 50% of humanity.
Muslim as well as Christian leaders in occupied Palestine have rightly denounced this shameless endeavor to corrode our moral heritage and collective dignity as a people struggling against foreign occupation, oppression and racism.
We must maintain this honorable image of a people who constantly guard against moral depravity, a virulent character that could destroy the moral essence of our people and enable our enemy to obliterate us from the face of earth.
Indeed, one really wonders how victory would be granted to a people that keep silent while pornographic shows are organized in Ramallah and Jerusalem , in the vicinity of the Aqsa Mosque.
It is sad and lamentable that the PA regime is contributing to the deterioration of Palestinian moral values.
On Wednesday, the usually reliable Israeli journalist Amira Hass reported that a sex trade was flourishing in the occupied territories.
“Young Palestinian women are being forced into prostitution in brothels, escort services, and private apartments in Ramallah and Jerusalem, including in areas inhabited by Jews,” said Hass, quoting a report by a Palestinian women group called SAWA.
So, what is the PA doing about this? And why are the PA security agencies not hounding those beastly persons who are exploiting poverty-stricken women and forcing them to sell their bodies for food?
One of the most popular sayings in occupied Palestine says “Taju’uo al Horratu wala Taakulo bethadyayha” meaning “a noble woman would rather starve than sell her body for food.”
This proverb squarely applies to any girl that agrees willingly to display her body for money or other inducements.
Since time immemorial, the role model for a Palestinian woman has always been that of a mother, daughter, sister or wife of a martyr or prisoner who would stay the course.
Hence, pageants who would display their bodies in so-called beauty contests, which are likely to be funded by Zionist organizations, can never reflect the reality of Palestinian women.
Having said that, I realize that it is unlikely that moral degeneration rather than poverty is the driving causes behind this moral downfall.
I do hope that Muslim Ulema will devote their sermons on Friday to raise people’s awareness against these “immoral plots” targeting our people.
I also hope that it is not too late to prevent the agents of moral decadence from holding their pornographic contest in Ramallah, which is less than 15 miles away from the Aqsa Mosque.
Some people might think that we are making an issue out of nothing.
But, Nay, for a people who allow these abominations to occur in their midst will not have the moral immunity to resist, let alone defeat, their enemies.
I believe that a single pornographic or semi-pornographic party in occupied Palestine would have an impact more disastrous than a hundred Israeli air raids or forays against our population centers. Zionist raids kill humans and destroy buildings. But moral decadence destroys the collective soul of a people.
Finally, does anyone think that we could repulse fanatical Jewish settlers seeking our destruction and extirpation from our ancestral homeland by displaying the naked bodies of our women in x-rated parties in Ramallah?