It’s in Queens
#NewsFlash | Reporter discusses roots of Muslim radicalization on Nov. 13
What are they thinking?
Souad Mekhennet, an award-winning reporter for the Washington Post, will discuss her new memoir about the radicalization of young Muslims, I Was Told to Come Alone: My Journey Behind the Lines of Jihad, at the Central Queens Y in Forest Hills on Monday, Nov. 13, at 1:30 pm. Admission is free, but there’s a $8 suggested donation.
Born in Germany to a Turkish mother and a Moroccan father, Mekhennet, whose first names means “good fortune” in Arabic, describes herself as an independent, unmarried Muslim woman. Her blended background has allowed her to get access to some of the world’s most dangerous terrorist operatives, including members of Al Qaeda, ISIS, and the Taliban.
In her new book, she takes readers on a trip through European cities where terrorism breeds, meetings with terrorist leaders in Iraq and Syria, and camps on the Turkey-Syria border. All the time, Mekhennet seeks to find out why Muslims become so fervent in their belief in jihad and so unrepentant about the murder and destruction that they cause.
Readers will meet 9/11 plotters in Hamburg, a German teenager who converted to Islam and moved to Afghanistan, a Taliban militant who jokes about kidnapping the author during an interview, and a Pakistani man who claims that he radicalized after U.S. drones killed family members.
On Monday in Forest Hills, Mekhennet – whose educational attainment includes degrees in history, international relations, political science, psychology, and sociology from the University of Frankfurt in Germany as well as stints at Henri-Nannen’s journalism school in Hamburg and the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism — will discuss I Was Told to Come Alone and then participate in a Q&A session. She will also sell and sign copies of the book.
Images: Souad Mekhennet