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Underground Railroad For Muslim Women?

Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Muslim apostate who fled an arranged marriage (Albert H. Teich / Shutterstock.com)

I need your help, readers. Well, it’s not me, but it’s a young woman from a Muslim country who is here in the US on a visa. Her family has decided that she must return and enter into an arranged marriage. She doesn’t want to do this. The family’s relatives in the US are threatening to kill her if she doesn’t do the will of her family. She is terrified, and doesn’t know what to do.

I don’t know this woman. I was contacted by a friend and reader of this blog whom I trust absolutely, and who is trying to save this young woman’s life, and her future. I was able to put the reader in touch with some folks I know who work in this area, and who might be able to help. But the situation is extremely dire, and life-threatening. I know more about the situation than I’m letting on here, but trust me, this is real, and it’s happening right now.

The Muslim woman is afraid to talk to anybody, out of fear that her US relations will kill any American who helps her.

Can you help? Write me privately if you prefer — I’m at rod (at) amconmag — dot — com. I will pass on any useful information you give me to the reader. Don’t wait. Both the Muslim woman and the reader, who is trained in dealing with domestic violence cases, believe that her life is in danger right now. It is hard to believe this is happening in America, but, well, here we are. I’m trying to crowdsource a solution out of desperation, frankly.

It is hard to overstate the degree of terror this Muslim woman has internalized. And again, the reader, who knows the world of domestic violence trauma, believes it is real. There is evidence. That’s all I can say here. Understand that if the woman defies her family and escapes without harm, she will never be able to see them again. They have told her she will be dead to them. She is facing the prospect of being all alone, in a strange land, with no family, no friends, and nothing but her freedom. That is a very frightening prospect. Could you leave every single person you have ever known behind, forever?

Said my reader/friend:

She asked me, “If I stay and walk away from my home, my family, and my friends, what then? Can the strong woman I know I am make enough difference in this world to make up for everything I give up? And is my purpose to be the woman who starts on the path so other women have the courage to take it and go farther? Maybe I don’t become great, but some woman after me chooses this road and does something great. Was what I gave up to be the first one worth it? Am I sure I am supposed to be the first one? If so, it is worth it. If not, I give up everything in believing a lie.”

Did I mention she is an amazing young woman?

From what I understand, the woman does not want to leave her faith, but may have to for the sake of her own life, if she bolts from the arranged marriage plan. At this point, she is at the point of surrendering and returning to her home country. It breaks my reader friend’s heart. The reader and I are trying to find solutions … which is why the reader gave me permission to reach out to the rest of you.

If you can help, or have any ideas, please let me know, either privately or in the comments section. If you pray, please pray for this desperate woman.

about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. A veteran of three decades of magazine and newspaper journalism, he has also written three New York Times bestsellers—Live Not By Lies, The Benedict Option, and The Little Way of Ruthie Lemingas well as Crunchy Cons and How Dante Can Save Your Life. Dreher lives in Baton Rouge, La.

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