A whole bunch of Islamic female students have been protesting the destruction of a series of illegally possessed mosques.
Several hundred female students from an Islamic seminary in the center of Islamabad have been holed up for the last month inside a public library, in an unprecedented protest that poses a dilemma for President Pervez Musharraf’s government.
The young women’s ostensible demand is the rebuilding of half a dozen mosques in the capital that the government tore down because they were constructed on illegally seized land. Dozens more are under demolition orders.
As the article mentions, the Western world is breathing down Musharraf’s neck to see to it that he is cracking down on radicals.
But I am more interested in the role that women are playing in the move towards more fundamental forms of Islam. Not only are these women integral to building a nation, vision and future that is vastly different from Western democracy, they are willing to die for it. From our perspective it may seem that these women are fighting for their own oppression, to live under strict Muslim rule.
But the reality is they are fighting (alongside or sometimes without men) for what they believe in. Is this a moment of feminist empowerment?
via LA Times.