'American Bride' Author Warns Women Against Jihadist Marriages

Wednesday, 13 Aug 2014 02:30 PM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

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Lonely, bored, or "mentally ill" women trying to escape from their "dysfunctional families in the West" will be "jumping from the frying pan into the fire" if they marry into Middle Eastern families to seek a new life, author Phyllis Chesler warned on Newsmax TV on Wednesday.

Chesler, author of the memoir "An American Bride in Kabul" appeared on "America's Forum" to discuss reports that the Islamic State (ISIS) is recruiting women to join its jihadist crusade. She told co-hosts J.D. Hayworth and Miranda Kahn that she knows from experience that Western women can put their lives in danger by marrying into a foreign culture.

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"When I was very young, I married a man from Afghanistan, [who was] very Westernized," Chesler said. But after the young couple went to Kabul for a visit, she was trapped there with "no idea what I was walking into."

She learned that her husband's family practiced polygamy, and there was constant pressure for her to convert to Islam.

"I was lucky I got out, but I learned that these barbaric customs are not caused by the West or by foreign influence," said Chesler, who said she was married in 1961, before Taliban rule.

She is worried there will be young women who are naive as she was, and could be lured to the Middle East with "false promises" but not check to see what real life is like as the wife of a jihadist, where she could be beaten daily, forced into numerous pregnancies, and made to remain fully veiled.

Women are being lured, she said, because many of them want structure, not "Western freedom" or choices.

"They want to be told what to do, and they believe falsely that if they follow the rules they'll be rewarded," Chesler said.

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