Thursday, March 07, 2013

White House To Honor Woman Who Exulted In Murder Of Israelis In Bulgaria (Update: Samira Ibrahim Speaks)

Today is the anniversary of 9/11. May every year come with America burning.
Samira Ibrahim, recipient of the Secretary of State’s International Women of Courage Award

Samuel Tadros reports on The Weekly Standard Michelle Obama and John Kerry to Honor Anti-Semite and 9/11 Fan:
On Friday March 8, Michelle Obama will join John Kerry at a special ceremony at the State Department to present ten women the Secretary of State’s International Women of Courage Award. The award, says the press release, is given to “women around the globe who have shown exceptional courage and leadership in advocating for women’s rights and empowerment, often at great personal risk.”

Five of these awards are being given to women from Muslim-majority countries, underscoring the unique plight of women in those countries. The only problem is that one of the women to be recognized is an anti-Semite and supports the 9/11 attacks on the United States.
That woman is Samira Ibrahim.

The State Department describes describes Samira Ibrahim as "among seven women subjected by the Egyptian military to forced virginity tests in March 2011" and in a press release notes that Ibrahim “was arrested while in high school for writing a paper that criticized Arab leaders’ insincere support to the Palestinian cause."

The State Department apparently did not vet the award recipients very carefully. If it had, the State Department would have found that Ms. Ibrahim has been very busy on Twitter -- rejoicing in the murder of Jews:
  • When she heard that five Israeli tourists and their Bulgarian bus driver were killed in suicide bombing attack last July, Ibrahim celebrated the event, tweeting:
    An explosion on a bus carrying Israelis in Burgas airport in Bulgaria on the Black Sea. Today is a very sweet day with a lot of very sweet news.
  • Ibrahim's hatred is not limited to Israelis. The following month, commenting on demonstrations in Saudi Arabia, Ibrahim described the ruling Al Saud family as "dirtier than the Jews."

  • That same month, she tweeted in reference to Adolf Hitler:
    I have discovered with the passage of days, that no act contrary to morality, no crime against society, takes place, except with the Jews having a hand in it. Hitler.
  • Ibrahim is not too fond of the country that intends to honor this week either. When the mob attacked the US embassy in Cairo on the anniversary of 9/11, Ibrahim wrote on twitter:
    “Today is the anniversary of 9/11. May every year come with America burning.”
With her award about to be given, Ibrahim made a weak effort on Wednesday to distance herself from her comments by tweeting:
My account has been previously stolen and any tweet on racism and hatred is not me
As Tadros notes, Ibrahim has never made any mention before of her account being stolen -- nor has she removed her antisemitic and anti-American tweets from Twitter.

It is an embarrassment for the US in general and the Obama White House in particular to be giving such a reward to a woman so obviously undeserving.

UPDATE: Jeffrey Goldberg writes about the State Department trying to verify whether Samira Ibrahim's Twitter account was hacked:
This is where the story gets even stranger. Tadros, in The Weekly Standard, wrote on Tuesday -- the same day the Holocaust Museum told the State Department about Ibrahim's tweets -- that, "Just today, apparently after having been warned that her vicious tweets might cause her trouble during her visit to the U.S., she has written on twitter: 'My account has been previously stolen and any tweet on racism and hatred is not me.'" Tadros went on to write, "However, in the past she never made any mention of her account being 'stolen.' The record of her anti-Semitic tweets is still available online."

It is entirely possible that her account was hijacked. These things happen all the time. But the tweets in question appeared over many months, and she is a regular user of Twitter. I've asked a State Department spokeswoman about this, and will report back when I hear from someone. I've also been trying to reach Ibrahim herself. The obvious question: Did the State Department look at Ibrahim's feed before it was decided to give her this award, and did the State Department ascertain that she was indeed the victim of a Twitter hijacking?

UPDATE: Veteran State Department reporter Nicole Gaouette just tweeted, "State officials tell me they've looked at 1000s of her tweets & believe her account was hacked." Waiting for more information from State. [Hat tip: DG]

UPDATE:State Department puts Ibrahim's award on hold:
Hannah Allam‏@HannahAllam:
State Dept:We're going to defer presenting women of courage award to Egyptian Samira Ibrahim, will review her alleged anti-Semitic remarks
Hannah Allam is a journalist with McClatchy Newspapers.

UPDATE: Times of Israel reports: Samira Ibrahim is Probably Lying: Technical Evidence, based on the fact that the alleged hacks into her Twitter account are all done "via Twitter for Android", while her tweets are either "via Twitter for Android" or "via web."
Now, it’s pretty unusual to use a hacked account on a phone. If someone had gone to the trouble of compromising Samira Ibrahim’s account and then using their access to tweet incriminating statements over a period of months, they’d be more likely to use a computer behind some sort of proxy.
Nevertheless, the proof is not ironclad, since it could be an coincidence that she and the hacker use the same apps.

Still, there are other indications that Ibrahim is lying when she says she did not write those tweets:
The tweets were sent over a period of a few weeks, and in the meantime she was active on Twitter as usual. And, when she referenced ‘Jews’ in the Saudi tweet, another tweeter helpfully contacts to her to suggest she uses ‘Zionists’ or ‘Israelis’ in the future. Samira (or the supposed hacker) replies to this suggestion politely saying she would learn from it!
For now, the State Department is better off not having made the decision to defer giving the award to Samira Ibrahim.

Hat tip: Noah Pollak

UPDATE: The State Department has removed Samira Ibrahim from its website:

On its original list of Secretary Kerry To Honor Ten Women of Courage on International Women's Day, Samira Ibrahim's name appears second of the 10 women honored:

Now if you check that page, there are only 9 women listed:

Similarly, on the original page giving bios for the 2013 International Women of Courage Award Winners, Ibrahim appears right after Tsering Woeser.

But not any more:

This seems like more than just a deferral.

Samira Ibrahim is listed as the coordinator for Know Your Rights.
Apparently, she forgot she had the right to remain silent.

Hat tip: BL

UPDATE: Seth Mandel writes about Kerry’s “Courage” Award Debacle, noting how the revelation of the State Department's failure to properly vet the recipients of the award diminishes it:
Presumably the others will still receive their Women of Courage awards, but this incident will likely dim their excitement. After all, the fact that the State Department is conferring this honor on them doesn’t seem to mean the State Department actually knows anything about them.

But then again, we already knew that vetting people is not a strong point of this White House.

UPDATE: Lee Smith writes that Samira Ibrahim Speaks -- and she ain't apologizing:
Finally, Ibrahim herself has spoken, writing in Arabic on her Twitter page. Egyptian democracy activist Mina Rezkalla provides the translation:
"I refuse to apologize to the Zionist lobby in America regarding my previous anti-Zionist statements under pressure from American government therefore they withdrew the award.”
This would seem to settle the question as to whether or not her page had been “stolen.” Now all that’s left is for the State Department to demand that Ibrahim reimburse American taxpayers for her trip to the United States.
I'm sure that will impress Ibrahim's friends and fans -- but it is a cop out.
She apparently did not apologize for voicing her approval of 9/11.

Some hero.
If you found this post interesting or informative, please it below. Thanks!

Technorati Tag: .

No comments: