• Title: Infidel
  • Author: Ayaan Hirsi Ali
  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Free Press (February 6, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743289684
  • ISBN-13: 978-074328968

I was in Amsterdam, on business, when Theo van Gogh was murdered by an Islamic extremist angry over the short film, Submission Part 1. The author of this book, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, wrote the screenplay and was threatened with death as well. That evening, I walked a couple of blocks near to Dam Square and heard quite a racket; it turned out that was the demonstration where Dutch citizens were banging pots and pans to protest the killing. I learned of his murder the next morning; I happened to take a cab with a Pakistani driver who suggested seriously that Muslims should leave the Netherlands since they can’t assimilate and remain faithful – it was an interesting conversation to say the least.

Fast forward to a couple weeks ago where I was in Detroit leaving the next day for Chicago and not having a book for the flight. I wanted something on the story of Lilith, but saw this book and had to read it given what I wrote above.

But, this entry is to discuss the book Infidel. This book exceeded my wildest expectations. Ali’s life is amazing; born in Somalia, lived in Saudi Arabia, Ethiopia, Kenya, The Netherlands, and now the United States. She almost died a few times. She was circumcised in Somalia. And she got her Masters in Political Science and became a member of the Dutch Parliment. This is simply an amazing story of a common person becoming an uncommon hero.

Her stories about Islam jive well with conversations I’ve had with Muslims, especially in Saudi Arabia.

If I were to complain it would be that there are a few times where Ali moves ahead in time; this deconstructs the timeline that she’s building and caused, at least for me, some confusion.

I’m going to read her other book and start looking for what she’s doing now.


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