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Nonie Darwish

Factsheet: Nonie Darwish

Published on 04 Dec 2018

IMPACT: A writer who has frequent speaking engagements across the US, Nonie Darwish has numerous affiliations with anti-Muslim organizations, has made false claims about Islam, and has called for Islam to be “annihilated.”

Nonie Darwish, a writer and speaker, describes herself as “an American woman born Muslim in Egypt [who] warns the West of the dangers of Radical Islam and Sharia law.”

A convert to Christianity, Darwish is founder of Former Muslims United, a program of the American Freedom Defense Initiative, a group founded by Pamela Geller that the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) considers an anti-Muslim hate group. With Geller, she has put on programs, including an event called “Islamic Apartheid Week” on some US college campuses.

Darwish is a Senior Fellow with the Center for Security Policy and has written for the David Horowitz’s Freedom Center’s Front Page Magazine. The SPLC considers both of these organizations anti-Muslim hate groups.

The Center for American Progress identifies Darwish as an actor in the “Islamophobia network.” They consider Darwish one of numerousvalidators,” a group of “individuals who claim inside knowledge about the realities of radical Islam,” not because of their expertise on Islam but because they are of Middle Eastern descent.

At a rally in 2011 organized by Geller’s Stop Islamization of America, Darwish said, “Islam is a poison to a society. It’s divisive. It’s hateful. Look what Islam is doing on our college campuses. It’s full of anti-Semitism… … Islam should be feared, and should be fought, and should be conquered and defeated and annihilated!”

In a 2013 article for the Gatestone Institute, Darwish wrote that the “so-called ‘moderate’ Muslims have often been silent enablers and defenders” of “Muslim jihadists.” In that article, she also claimed that Muslims see Islam as “more than a religion – that it is, in fact, a state, legal system and a military institution. The notion that Islam is a political ideology (and not a religion) is an idea commonly employed by anti-Muslim groups.

Darwish’s group, Former Muslims United, opposed the construction of a mosque in Murfreesboro, Tennessee in 2010. In justifying the group’s opposition to the mosque, Darwish said, “A mosque is not just a place for worship. It’s a place where war is started, where commandments to do jihad start, where incitements against non-Muslims occur. It’s a place where ammunition was stored.”

Darwish has also claimed that Islam allows lying to advance “jihad.” This claim, which has been voiced by others like Ben Carson, has been debunked by experts in the study of Islam.

Darwish has spoken at numerous universities on topics related to Sharia, women, and Israel. Some of her talks have been protested or canceled. At a University of New Mexico event, students who interrupted Darwish’s speech with protests were attacked physically by fellow attendees.

Darwish is the author of four books including Now they Call Me Infidel: Why I Renounced Jihad for America, Israel and the War on Terror and Wholly Different: Why I Chose Biblical Values Over Islamic Values.

Darwish appeared as an expert in Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West, a 2005 film from the Clarion Project, also considered an anti-Muslim group by the SPLC. She has also been interviewed for C-SPAN’s Q&A program.

Last Updated February 27, 2017