It has been 7 days since the Egyptian pharmacist, Marwa Al-Sherbini was brutally stabbed to death by a nutter in a German court. The attack lasted 30 seconds and resulted in 18 stabs. I am not sure what the police or court security were doing during this time, but they seem to have managed to jump to action when her husband came to her rescue, but then only to shoot him. Egyptians are clearly angered and upset, Marwa -may she rest in peace- was buried in her hometown of Alexandria the other day, and Egyptians flowed into street protests chanting La Illaha Illa Allah wal al-maan a3daa2o Allah (There is no god but God and the Germans are the enemies of God) (The Huffington Post).
There are many elements of the case that puzzle me, how could a 30 second attack be sustained in court without anyone intervening? Where were the court security at the time? It must have been clear who the assailant was, why shoot the husband when he tries to intervene? and finally why cant I find any news stories in English about this?
All I have come across is a translation of a German article by the blogger Too Much Cookies, and a comment in the Guardian newspaper, which I must say felt more like a denouncement of the reaction of Egyptians and Arabs to the case. The writer was objecting to their paranoia, because apparently they were convinced that there was a premeditated European media blackout on the case while Europe ‘over report’ Muslim attacks on non-Muslims, thus signifying an era of justifiable attacks on Muslims.
Now, personally I prefer to avoid such conspiracy theories, and having lived in Europe, and dealt with Germans in the workplace, do not believe that they are generically racist Islamophobes. But this case and its fallout has me confused and surprised me, it certainly does feel the crimes committed by Muslims, even if they are in isolation, are well reported in the media, but this crime committed by a Russian immigrant and compounded by the bizarrely incompetent (and dare I say prejudiced?) behaviour of the German court security has barely made it into even the most left wing British newspaper! and even then only as a pithy comment written by someone with a conveniently Muslim sounding name.. seriously this case has me worked up enough to start reading meaning where none may exist!
Sure, it is a massive leap from this case, and the way it has been handled, to conclude that Europe is on the cusp of Islamophobia, or that Germans are in general the enemies of God (and yes that is a racist ignorant thing to say regardless of how you are feeling!)… but still the facts of the case are unclear, and whether the court security personnel are being subjected to an investigation has not been reported, but I hope they are. And I hope Marwa rests in peace, and that her family find a way to live with their horrific loss, 3athamma Allaho 2ajirhom.
After a more careful search of The Guardian I found two more articles (here and here) but again they are more focused on the reaction of Egyptians and her family to the murder, rather than the murder and circumstances that lead up to it.
Turns out the BBC also has an article, again focused on the reaction to the murder, and they claim that the defendant was in court for ‘insulting her religion’ (her being Marwa).. when acccording to the Guardian he called her a ‘terrorist’ and ‘islamist whore’ and was in court on charges of defamation (link)