A few weeks back I was contacted by a think-tank organization in Washington DC to share my thoughts on ways to combat global terrorism. This well-respected nonpartisan organization, which is comprised of Harvard educated political scientists, has taken a proactive approach in identifying practical solutions to end global terrorism by engaging people from the Middle East in productive discussions.
The lady exclaimed on the phone that by reading a few of my articles on a “progressive Arab Islamic website”, the organization had decided that my input might be valuable, even educational. She added that the idea is to gather honest and edifying contribution from prominent Middle Eastern scholars on ways to stop religious violence without military action.
At first I thought one of my friends had put the woman up to this. My friends and I often play practical jokes on each other and I assumed that my time had arrived to be a part of an elaborate practical joke.
But judging by the lady's perfect Shakespearian English and dry demeanor, the thought of being implicated in a practical joke quickly skipped my mind.
I told the lady she had it all wrong. I was not a smart guy and I sure as hell am not prominent in any way or form. I told her that I spend my days mostly under the influence of heavy doses of antidepressant medications and alcohol and I gather most of my political and social news from pages of Playboy magazine. I also confessed that my nine-year-old nephew has a higher IQ than I do.
The lady, obviously disappointed, sighed and whispered, “I'm sorry but our research department recommended you as a reliable source. I'm confused.”
I told the lady that people often get the wrong impression that just because you write a book or articles on popular websites you actually know what you're talking about.
“Well, please accept my apologies,” the woman said, “and I thank you for your time.”
“Wait up,” I said. “Before you hang up, what is it that you wanted to know?”
“Well, I was interested in knowing your thoughts on what fuels insurgency in the Moslem world?” the woman asked.
“Prostitution,” I said without hesitation.
“You want to know how to stop terrorism in Moslem countries?”
“Yes, that is the idea behind the research,” the woman said.
“I don't understand what prostitution has anything to do with Jihad.”
“It has everything to do with Jihad,” I said.
“Oh, yes I will. You see, you have to look at countries that breed terrorists and Jihadists. Let's name a few: Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, and Palestine. What do all these countries have in common?”
“I'm not sure what you're driving at?” the woman said.
“They all have one thing in common … prostitution is illegal in all those countries. Why is it that you don't see any terrorists from Turkey or United Arab Emirates? Because prostitution is legal, tolerated and encouraged there.”
“And so, there are millions of sexually frustrated, horny, unemployed young men with libido oozing out of their pimples, running around trying unsuccessfully to get laid. Allah herself has designed us that way.”
“Are you trying to tell me that insurgents fight U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan because they are sexually frustrated,” the woman asked.
“Exactly. Imagine yourself at age nineteen … sex drive erupting like a volcano through your entire body … hormones out of control … the only thing you think about is sex, sex, sex. You look around and all you find are ugly, hairy men. Women are either bundled in burka or hiding in their homes. You need to get some. It's natural. What do you do?”
“You're asking me?”
“Yeah. You're straight? Aren't you?”
“Yes, but I'm a woman.”
“Yeah, but if you were a man, you would go to a brothel and take care of the business. Discreet, clean, regulated, no questions asked. You're back on the street with a big smile on your face and you go about your business and call it a day. You won't blow yourself up or hijack airplanes and run them into buildings. You know why?”
“Because you look forward to getting laid tomorrow and the day after and the day after.”
“But research shows that many Middle Eastern men marry at a very young age,” the woman said.
“Exactly. Men should not be married at a very young age. They should be having fun. Marrying at a young age especially to a woman you don't know can really mess-up your head.”
“But President Bush at the UN summit told the world that poverty is the number one cause of terrorism. Do you agree?"
“Bush is wrong like always. Open up a couple of Bunny Ranches in Iraq, import a few blond bombshells and all insurgents will be lining up at the door. Hell, even Osama and Zawkawi will be getting busy there.”
The phone went dead.
“Hello … hello!”