When I immigrated to America from Morocco, I fell in love with the freedom and opportunities available in the “Home of the Brave.” I was serving my new country in the U.S. Air Force during 9/11, and I became proud to be a Muslim American. I wrote this book because of all the myths propagated about Muslims in the right-wing media, particularly Fox News, as well as by the Republican candidates in the 2016 presidential election. This Islamophobia is misguided, intended to rile up viewers and voters. That said, I’m well aware of the horrors Islamic extremism is causing throughout the Middle East and Europe as well as the dangers it poses to the United States. Based on my heritage, my service in five Middle Eastern countries (from Iraq to Saudi Arabia), and my research as an analyst for the U.S. Department of Defense, I am able to explain the dozens of causes of Islamic extremism and offer many solutions. The purpose of my book is to properly inform readers and policymakers about this vitally important issue and help them make the right decisions. I hope you will find this book valuable and worthy of your time.
About the Author
As a child, if I looked westward from the shores of my native Morocco, only the water of the Atlantic Ocean separated me from the United States. Growing up, I fell in love with the liberties, freedoms, and pursuit of happiness that the American people enjoyed, and I strove to be part of the dream. I am a middle child of ten children. My parents were previously divorced from arranged marriages, and theirs was also arranged. My father had a small electronic repair shop. He saved no money for retirement and, just like most Moroccans, who do not benefit from any type of social welfare, he died poor.
With my father’s death in 1993, we had no financial support, so my mother, without formal education or training, was required to enter the job market by selling clothes in the markets of Casablanca. She sold her merchandise in the streets, never missing a day, weathering cold, rain, and burning sun. I always dreamed of a better life, and my prayers were answered when in 1998 I was granted a U.S. immigration visa. I was ecstatic and overwhelmed, because usually only people from the Moroccan elites get to travel to the U.S. and not from the bottom of the social pyramid, because it is far and expensive.
During my first year in the land of the free, I told myself that America was a land of opportunities. I had a college degree and didn’t come here to flip burgers, so I registered with the Selective Service. I enlisted in the United States Air Force (USAF) at the end of the ’90s to thank America for the opportunity that was given to me and to defend it against all enemies, foreign and domestic. I also did it to pursue higher education and to be part of the dream.
When those terrorist attacks took place on 9/11, I was in uniform, and I pledged to contribute to the security of the U.S. homeland and its troops overseas.
Even though my life in the U.S. wasn’t a paved road, I battled, I struggled, and I overcame all the obstacles by simply believing that “impossible is possible.”
I hope you will enjoy my story and find this book—about Islamophobia and Islamic extremism—informative and valuable. I thank you for your interest in my book.