From The Independent:
Last week, a report revealed how female students at Kabul University lived in fear of predatory male lecturers demanding sexual favours for good grades. This week, an evolutionary psychologist published his “discoveries” into, among other things, the dangerous sexual desires that motivate Muslim men to become suicide bombers.
Next week, a provocatively titled book, Behind the Veil of Vice: The Business and Culture of Sex in the Middle-East, by John R Bradley intends to take us on a “riveting journey” (his publisher's words) through the “underbelly of the region to expose its sexual mores”. Much of this coverage seeks to highlight the degree of sexual perversion arising from the practice, or malpractice of Islam and while such sexual abuses endemic to various cultures should be brought to attention, it is worth admitting to our own unhealthy cultural obsessions too. The plethora of reports on murky sexual customs in the Arab worlds are shocking, but also reflect our fixation with the Muslim male libido, which appears to be feared, loathed and fetishised, and which, it is intimated, must be urgently civilised by the liberal West. Zena Al Khalil, author of the memoir, Beirut, I Love You, feels it should not be assumed that Muslim women always end up as victims. Just as in the West, it is the rich who are the all-powerful consumers of the sex trade, be they women or men. “There are Saudi princesses who come to Lebanon to buy sex, as well as Saudi princes,” she says.