This article is not for the faint-hearted. I do not share a single sentiment with a single religious extremist, Jamal Khashoggi included. My heart is closed to them.
As a Muslim woman, my anger against them became especially determined when three of my relatives in Yemen, young brave, men, had left their homes and families to protect them. They joined the Saudi-backed Yemeni military to fight against Iranian imperialism, to fight for Yemeni independence, to fight for love and freedom. One was killed by a bullet; the other two on sand dunes when they stepped on landmines. Their bodies were so dismembered by explosions that it was difficult to identify them. Their families had to flee their homes; one woman, also terrified of stepping on a landmine, carrying a newborn baby in her arms.
This episode was all the more affecting as the youngest of the three men, Abdullah, wanted to marry me. Therefore, when a religious extremist such as Khashoggi is lost on the front line, my thought to him is: You got what you deserved.
When the night is quiet, in my mind, I see the symbol of France, “Marianne”, as she is known, in Delacroix’s painting, Liberty Leading the People, raising a blue, white and red flag and standing on the corpses of fallen enemies. She encourages me to hope.