On Thursday, Judicial Watch (JW) released over 1,600 pages of documents from the U.S. Department of State, and among them were a slew of emails involving Huma Abedin, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s deputy chief of staff, one of which indicated that Abedin’s mother advised Clinton to eschew standing up for women’s rights when she spoke in Saudi Arabia.
On February 12, 2010, Case Button, a Clinton speechwriter, asked Abedin if her mother, a professor at Dar Al Hekma, a women’s university in Saudi Arabia where Clinton held a town hall meeting, would be willing to give him advice on talking points he was preparing for Clinton. Abedin responded, “Talk to my mom for sure. She will have good points for you.” After reviewing Hillary’s draft remarks, Huma’s mother, Saleha Abedin, (a controversial Islamist activist), offered some advice: “Do not use the political terms such as ‘democracy/elections/freedom.’ Do not use the term ‘empowerment of women’ instead say ‘enabling women’ Do not even mention driving for women! Don’t sound sympathetic to ‘women’s plight’ or be ‘patronizing’ as other visitors have done and made the students extremely annoyed. They rightly consider these as in-house issues …” No references to these issues appear in Clinton’s speech.
Saleha Abedin was a founding member of the Muslim Sisterhood, the women's division of the Muslim Brotherhood. When she served as editor-in-chief of the Journal of the Institute of Muslim Minority Affairs, she blamed America for the 911/2001 attacks, asserting that America's “spiral of violence” was creating huge “anger and hostility” in the Muslim world, while “injustices” (such as economic sanctions) that the U.S. had imposed on Muslim countries were triggering a “time bomb” of Islamic rage.
Saleha Abedin edited Fatima Umar Naseef's 1999 book, Women in Islam: A Discourse in Rights and Obligations. She labeled Naseef “a prominent Saudi scholar.” As Discover the Networks notes:
… the book asserts that all Muslim women must wear the hijab, or veil; that Sharia offers women “the only escape” possible from the tyranny of manmade laws that “enslave” them; that female genital mutilation is permissible; that stoning and lashing are appropriate punishments for adultery; that apostates should be executed for abandoning the Muslim faith; that those who kill apostates should not be subject to the death penalty; that women are not only permitted, but obliged, to participate in violent jihad; that social interaction between the sexes is forbidden; that women have no right to abstain from sex with their husbands; that a woman should not let anyone into her family's house unless approved by her husband; and that free speech should not be permitted if it does not “benefit” Islam.