Explain The Difference Between These Two Women

Religion, Terrorism


One of these women is a religious fundamentalist, armed with an assault rifle, and a religious text condoning the killing of those who oppose God’s prophet… The other is Muslim.

The image highlights the assumptions Americans bring to global issues and political discourse. We see Muslims decked out in camo, thumping Qur’ans and bearing assault rifles in a very different light than we do the more “harmless” Evangelical varieties in the United States. But what, really, is the difference (if any)?

One of these women, it can be argued, believes in “defending her country” with the arms she is bearing… But which woman? Wouldn’t both of these women argue the very same thing? That hardly means we should accept this explanation uncritically, but the fact that both would – and do – justify themselves in the same terms should be a sobering realization.

Sure, we can all point to this passage or that in the Qur’an and say “See! This book condones bad things.” But we can do the same with the Bible, can’t we?

Sure, apologists for the Bible will point out that “the original language doesn’t really say that.” But the same is true for the Qur’an and Islam. The vast majority of Muslims don’t believe the Qur’an says or means what many viewing it from the outside are told to believe it says.

There’s a saying “All translations are lies.” But without knowing Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek or Arabic, many pundits and self-described religious experts weigh in on what each book “really says.”

Take a good hard look at these images and tell us: is there really a difference? And if there is, is that difference really as big as we first assume when we look at these two pictures?

Well… anyone?

(Article by Ari Simeon and Isa Abu Jamal)


  1. Good question raised here, really. If I said that I believe one of these caricatures arose purely as defiance to the one that was put out first as an implied threat, which one would you think came first? I thank that’s one important difference, one may be seen as a threat and the other a response.

  2. I’ll tell you the difference… The American is not going around killing inn0cent people for her “religion”.. Her religion does not manipulate the weak to commit murder. I’m fully aware it is based on brainwashing, and controlling by fear, false promises, forced behavior but not murder,.

  3. One wins.

  4. “condoning the killing of those who oppose God’s prophet” Incorrect slanderous statement on the part of the authors to make it seem their viewpoints are correct.

    The other woman is Sherafiyah Lewthwaite, aka the White Widow who is a member of an organization that has condoned killing those who oppose their religion.

    So yeah, there’s a difference. Holly Fisher is not a Sherafiyah Lewthwaite and the author has attempted to twist reality when the facts are otherwise. The author relies on the idea people will not bother to look up the facts to determine what is true.

  5. @Mohsin – look, a lot of us have read the Koran, and the Hideth, I am one of those; and the Sura’s do talk about murdering the innocent you lying SOB. I also studied the history of your false prophet as well. If this guy is your supposed profit, you have problems. Furthermore, most wars, including even small skirmishes to WW1 and WW2 had something to do with Islamic scum. Pat any given time, there are 14 different armed conflicts in the world related to Islam (again small skirmishes to overt wars). Finally nally my family were victims of Muslim Genocide in Turkey don’t go posting your lies here; cretin.

  6. I just noticed that the Muslim on the right is holding an M4 and American Made weapon. They sure hate us but they damn sure love the guns we make. Not to mention the 11,000 stinger missiles they received from the US during the Holidays.

  7. Interesting… Neither girl has read the book in their hands close enough to understand the meaning of it; there’s this thing called context: You can’t read the Bible (or the Qur’an) without understanding A) the original language and B) the context of the writing… Neither girl can claim that she understands both things.

    One BIG difference is that one knows how to hang their flag appropriately… and one is an American.

    • If the US flag was on a wall…. it would be hung incorrectly. But this flag displays both sides so it’s fine. Understanding your own book is a great first step. Reading the other book would also be a refreshing feeling : )

      • Uhm.. no.. According to the United States If the flag is hanging over a street, the flag should be suspended vertically with the union to the north in an east and west street or to the east in a north and south street.When hung in a window where it is viewed from the street, place the union at the head and over the left shoulder. When the flag is displayed in a manner other than by being flown from a staff, it should always be displayed flat, whether indoors or out. When displayed either horizontally or vertically against a wall, the union should be uppermost and to the flag’s own right, that is, to the observer’s left.

        The flag isn’t flat, it’s draped, unceremoniously and without regard or respect. The flag is also inverted to the observer, as the union is on then right. The words “Holy Bible” are clearly legible, so the camera shot hasn’t “mirrored” the image, as most cellular phones would do during a “selfie”

        This woman has, in many ways, disrespected this country’s flag.

        • United States Flag Code**

          • and if she was standing on the other side, it is correct??? i think you are misinterpreting this, as a former member of a AFJROTC Color Guard, this is correct, for a halfmast usage. if it is NOT supposed to be at half mast, then this IS incorrect. that IS mounted on a “staff”, one mounted to the porch if you inspect the picture a little more carefully, it is taken on her front porch or walk, the front of the building is visible to the left of the flag, and grass is visible to the right

    • montereypinegreen

      How do you know? Have you talked to either one of them?

    • Well. that is just silly. The flag is over a sidewalk, I can see it. So this portion of the code applies:
      “If the flag is suspended over a sidewalk, the flag’s union should be farthest from the building and the stars facing away from it.”

  8. http://m.nationalreview.com/corner/382104/holly-fisher-public-enemy-number-310345204-charles-c-w-cooke

    The link above provides biographical information about both women. The American is the wife of an American soldier. She wants to protect her nation. The Muslim is the wife of an international terrorist, who herself has forsaken her nation (Britain) in order to wage jihad in an attempt to impose sharia law on Western nations.

    The debate about religion will go on forever, but in this case, there are clear differences.

    • Many would consider an US soldier an ‘international terrorist’ as the US army has been terrorizing the world since it was founded. ‘Protecting a nation’ is very subjective. Ever heard of the expression: One man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter ?

    • (firstly, i am NOT defending terrorists, or the methods they use, this is in a devils advocate viewpoint)

      the “opinion” expressed here is that most “freedom fighters” feel they are also defending their nation, but not in a way we recognize as valid. since they cant fight us on the field of battle and win, they are doing basically what WE did when we won our freedom from the British, unconventional warfare, which at the time we were the “terrorists” although i dont think they used that word but something similar i am sure. until we had uniformed soldiers and met them on the field of honor, and usually got our buts kicked at first, we were just a bunch of rabble rousers, traitors, etc.

      EVERYTHING looks different, from a different perspective.

  9. Oh Lord. You! All of you ! Have you even read the Quran? For heaven’s sake you’ve probably not even read the bible. The Quran doesn’t condemn non -Muslims to death. Stop getting your information from google and for once in your lifetime open up a book. Get real facts and figures, instead of information from pseudo-networks. And just look at your by-standards here, you claim for religious freedom for all ,yet you condemn Muslims by keeping such a view of them?

    • If only more American’s actually READ the Quran, even out of curiosity.. Instead they listen to Bill O’Reilly and other Political Pundit Hacks…

    • I agree Khalil Mohsin

    • he Quran:
      Quran (2:191-193) – “And kill them wherever you find them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out. And Al-Fitnah [disbelief or unrest] is worse than killing…
      but if they desist, then lo! Allah is forgiving and merciful. And fight them until there is no more Fitnah [disbelief and worshipping of others along with Allah] and worship is for Allah alone. But if they cease, let there be no transgression except against Az-Zalimun (the polytheists, and wrong-doers, etc.)” (Translation is from the Noble Quran) The historical context of this passage is not defensive warfare, since Muhammad and his Muslims had just relocated to Medina and were not under attack by their Meccan adversaries. In fact, the verses urge offensive warfare, in that Muslims are to drive Meccans out of their own city (which they later did). The use of the word “persecution” by some Muslim translators is thus disingenuous (the actual Muslim words for persecution – “idtihad” – and oppression – a variation of “z-l-m” – do not appear in the verse). The actual Arabic comes from “fitna” which can mean disbelief, or the disorder that results from unbelief or temptation. Taken as a whole, the context makes clear that violence is being authorized until “religion is for Allah” – ie. unbelievers desist in their unbelief.

      Quran (2:244) – “Then fight in the cause of Allah, and know that Allah Heareth and knoweth all things.”

      Quran (2:216) – “Fighting is prescribed for you, and ye dislike it. But it is possible that ye dislike a thing which is good for you, and that ye love a thing which is bad for you. But Allah knoweth, and ye know not.” Not only does this verse establish that violence can be virtuous, but it also contradicts the myth that fighting is intended only in self-defense, since the audience was obviously not under attack at the time. From the Hadith, we know that this verse was narrated at a time that Muhammad was actually trying to motivate his people into raiding merchant caravans for loot.

      Quran (3:56) – “As to those who reject faith, I will punish them with terrible agony in this world and in the Hereafter, nor will they have anyone to help.”

      Quran (3:151) – “Soon shall We cast terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers, for that they joined companions with Allah, for which He had sent no authority”. This speaks directly of polytheists, yet it also includes Christians, since they believe in the Trinity (ie. what Muhammad incorrectly believed to be ‘joining companions to Allah’).

      Quran (4:74) – “Let those fight in the way of Allah who sell the life of this world for the other. Whoso fighteth in the way of Allah, be he slain or be he victorious, on him We shall bestow a vast reward.” The martyrs of Islam are unlike the early Christians, who were led meekly to the slaughter. These Muslims are killed in battle as they attempt to inflict death and destruction for the cause of Allah. This is the theological basis for today’s suicide bombers.

      Quran (4:76) – “Those who believe fight in the cause of Allah…”

      Quran (4:89) – “They but wish that ye should reject Faith, as they do, and thus be on the same footing (as they): But take not friends from their ranks until they flee in the way of Allah (From what is forbidden). But if they turn renegades, seize them and slay them wherever ye find them; and (in any case) take no friends or helpers from their ranks.”

      Quran (4:95) – “Not equal are those of the believers who sit (at home), except those who are disabled (by injury or are blind or lame, etc.), and those who strive hard and fight in the Cause of Allah with their wealth and their lives. Allah has preferred in grades those who strive hard and fight with their wealth and their lives above those who sit (at home). Unto each, Allah has promised good (Paradise), but Allah has preferred those who strive hard and fight, above those who sit (at home) by a huge reward ” This passage criticizes “peaceful” Muslims who do not join in the violence, letting them know that they are less worthy in Allah’s eyes. It also demolishes the modern myth that “Jihad” doesn’t mean holy war in the Quran, but rather a spiritual struggle. Not only is this Arabic word used in this passage, but it is clearly not referring to anything spiritual, since the physically disabled are given exemption. (The Hadith reveals the context of the passage to be in response to a blind man’s protest that he is unable to engage in Jihad and this is reflected in other translations of the verse). Allah will allow the disabled into Paradise, but will provide a larger reward to those who are able to kill in his cause.

      Quran (4:104) – “And be not weak hearted in pursuit of the enemy; if you suffer pain, then surely they (too) suffer pain as you suffer pain…” Is pursuing an injured and retreating enemy really an act of self-defense?

      Quran (5:33) – “The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His messenger and strive to make mischief in the land is only this, that they should be murdered or crucified or their hands and their feet should be cut off on opposite sides or they should be imprisoned; this shall be as a disgrace for them in this world, and in the hereafter they shall have a grievous chastisement”

      Quran (8:12) – “I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Therefore strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them” No reasonable person would interpret this to mean a spiritual struggle.

      Quran (8:15) – “O ye who believe! When ye meet those who disbelieve in battle, turn not your backs to them. (16)Whoso on that day turneth his back to them, unless maneuvering for battle or intent to join a company, he truly hath incurred wrath from Allah, and his habitation will be hell, a hapless journey’s end.”

      Quran (8:39) – “And fight with them until there is no more fitna (disorder, unbelief) and religion should be only for Allah” Some translations interpret “fitna” as “persecution”, but the traditional understanding of this word is not supported by the historical context (See notes for 2:193). The Meccans were simply refusing Muhammad access to their city during Haj. Other Muslims were allowed to travel there – just not as an armed group, since Muhammad had declared war on Mecca prior to his eviction. The Meccans were also acting in defense of their religion, since it was Muhammad’s intention to destroy their idols and establish Islam by force (which he later did). Hence the critical part of this verse is to fight until “religion is only for Allah”, meaning that the true justification of violence was the unbelief of the opposition. According to the Sira (Ibn Ishaq/Hisham 324) Muhammad further explains that “Allah must have no rivals.”

      Quran (8:57) – “If thou comest on them in the war, deal with them so as to strike fear in those who are behind them, that haply they may remember.”

      Quran (8:67) – “It is not for a Prophet that he should have prisoners of war until he had made a great slaughter in the land…”

      Quran (8:59-60) – “And let not those who disbelieve suppose that they can outstrip (Allah’s Purpose). Lo! they cannot escape. Make ready for them all thou canst of (armed) force and of horses tethered, that thereby ye may dismay the enemy of Allah and your enemy.”

      Quran (8:65) – “O Prophet, exhort the believers to fight…”

      Quran (9:5) – “So when the sacred months have passed away, then slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captive and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush, then if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate, leave their way free to them.” According to this verse, the best way of staying safe from Muslim violence is to convert to Islam (prayer (salat) and the poor tax (zakat) are among the religion’s Five Pillars). This popular claim that the Quran only inspires violence within the context of self-defense is seriously challenged by this passage as well, since the Muslims to whom it was written were obviously not under attack. Had they been, then there would have been no waiting period (earlier verses make it a duty for Muslims to fight in self-defense, even during the sacred months). The historical context is Mecca after the idolaters were subjugated by Muhammad and posed no threat. Once the Muslims had power, they violently evicted those unbelievers who would not convert.

      Quran (9:14) – “Fight against them so that Allah will punish them by your hands and disgrace them and give you victory over them and heal the breasts of a believing people.” Humiliating and hurting non-believers not only has the blessing of Allah, but it is ordered as a means of carrying out his punishment and even “healing” the hearts of Muslims.

      Quran (9:20) – “Those who believe, and have left their homes and striven with their wealth and their lives in Allah’s way are of much greater worth in Allah’s sight. These are they who are triumphant.” The Arabic word interpreted as “striving” in this verse is the same root as “Jihad”. The context is obviously holy war.

    • There are but a few of the sad rhetoric that comes from this book that is of a cult, Not of a true GOD . Even the Old Testament of the Bible spews out Death and Killing of those that do not beleive in there way. Only Jesus and Buddha spoke peace.

  10. on the RIGHT you have an Islamic Militant that represents Hamas which is classified as a terrorist organization by many countries around the world. This is an organization that uses violence and totalitarianism to force people to follow their radical ways and religion. They demean and subjugate women and consider them less important to their society then their livestock…… they brainwash children into blowing themselves up …..im sure you heard that they were just recently responsible for the kidnap and murder of three Israeli teenage boys…….. Their flag is a representation of their dominance over the poor people they concur … they even have the Gaza Strip on it painted in green to represent their dominance over the Israelis….. the Flag in this picture is the Hamas Military flag which is primarily used and is used to threaten their opposition by representing the radical violent force of their crusade…. her religious book is her (their) REASON for living and is used as an excuse to murder and oppress anyone that is not a follower…… the gun, grenades, and military uniform she is sporting is a symbol of power and force that represents the oppressive and totalitaristic way that they dictate their people (they have secret police, they do not allow their people to own guns, they kill unarmed civilians)…..i can keep going………… on the LEFT you have an American civilian girl that is free to do what ever she wants…. she is allowed to be educated, she is treated like an equal, she is free to were a tank top with her hair out……. she has a flag behind her that does not represent oppression or control… it represents purity, innocence, strength, valor, and unity……. her bible represents her beliefs and morals that she lives BY not FOR…….. her gun represents her freedom and her ability to protect it…. (not what she is going to use to go door to door with and promote Christianity)……….in closing there is a BIG difference with these two pictures …. the person that wrote this article inspires a very important conversation of the actual difference and hopefully people will take the time and learn about the difference rather than “Like” it and move on ……perspective is important when it is educated and substantiated….

    • On the right, you find a woman ready to fight for her cause, country, and religion. On the left a woman ready to fight for her cause, country, and religion. But, which one is right, and which one is wrong? In America, we would more than likely say the one on the left is the correct picture, and to hate the one on the right. In Iraq, they would more than likely say the one on the right is correct. Why? Because it’s about culture.

      I could say, because she still would be holding a bible in her hand it would make her a hypocrite. Because to be a christian is to follow not only the book of old, but the new testament as well. Where even in the bible and the torah it states, thou shalt not kill? yet they see their enemies as agents of the devil, no matter what form they take. Think of this though, the Christians and Islam’s fore-fathers have been at war since the Crusades. Even Jews and Christians are at war with each other. Each calls for coexistence, yet they cannot have it. Each religion must prove that it is the chosen one. The one religion for the One True God. But none of you make any effort to prove your existence of a God or Gods. You all set double standards, even within your own religions. How many denominations of Christianity are there? How many sects of Jewish and Islamic religions are there? And even amongst your own “Denomination” you fight and point your finger. No religion IS good religion. You all have blood on your hands…when will you finally wash and atone for YOUR sins?

      • I have a couple of quibbles with your statement. in Hebrew 8:13 it states the coming of christ makes the old covenant obsolete. as in the old testaments rules, etc.

        secondly, many people have shown it was NOT thou shalt not kill, but thou shall not MURDER, a little difference there, as Israel, until the coming of the romans, was a very victorious army and killed LOTS of enemies of their state, both in offensive and defensive moves.

        and by the end there you are saying you are an atheist i take it????

  11. The difference is, when is the last time you heard of christians flying planes into buildings, or bombing trains, or kidnapping little girls, or killing innocent civilians in a mall, or bombing markets, or….Oh hell the list is too long. You get it though.

    Oh and before you assume, I am not a christian, I am actually an Odinist.

    • Agnostic here, we do all that too, we fly drones into weddings, we kick down peoples doors, we shoot up people bassed on association and assumption….

      Oh and before you assume, I was a US Marine with 3/1 who served in Iraq, I think I can testify to this shit first hand. (This also covers my terrible gramar. ) Have a nice day!

      • Wow a Marine huh? ”We do all that too?” You automatically assume that the people making the decisions to send troops to Iraq and drone strike weddings is the act of Christian fundamentalism. In case you didnt know the United States Government is far from Christian. Hello!! We have a Muslim President. You as a Marine I think would know how savage the Muslim extremists are. How dare you Imply that all of our troops are bloodthirsty religious radicals. Just to clarify not all Muslims are Terrorist. But all terrorists are Muslim. This side by side comparison of a Christian and Muslim woman with a gun flag and a holy book is just leftist garbage it has no merit, and no intellectual value. “Whats the difference between those girls?” I dont know I havent met either one. But to be fair Lets have a picture of a US Paratrooper from WW2 with his rifle and his flag. Lets put it next to a Nazi SS soldier next with his rifle and swastika. Now you tell me what the difference is.

    • Unibomber, Austrian family rapist, Hitler, etc. Christians. Read the holy texts. Understand the stances of the prophets. Then blame individuals for their behavior. Blaming similarities is easily manipulated. Look how many white men have led their countries to war. So, we should avoid electing them in the future, right?

      • well Hitler created his own brand of Christianity, he didnt follow any known sect at the time, he rewrote it (or had it done) so he is a big if i would say.

        yes there have been christian terrorists, McVie (cant believe you all missed him) and it was a religious statement as well, against civilians.

        Wub, if you did and/or saw those things and didnt report excesses or violations, you are as guilty as those who did it and gave the orders. you have the RIGHT, and the DUTY to defy unlawful orders. too many people forget that in a time of war, and think that it is what is needed to be done to win, heck even just to LIVE through it. but it just makes us the same as the “bad” guys.

    • Unibomber was Christian, as was Adolph Hitler… So not too long ago actually… After 1981, members of groups such as the Army of God began attacking abortion clinics and doctors across the United States, anti-abortionist Scott Roeder murdering Wichita doctor George Tiller on 31 May 2009.. I could go on..

  12. This article isn’t written very well. More research should have been done before making such bold statements. I understand and appreciate your ideas, but this article is full of holes and that devalues your overall point.

    For example, the Quran has never been translated from its original text. It remains the same as when it was first constructed. Therefore, your claim that the same argument can be made for the Quran in comparison to the translation issues of the Bible is very well founded.

    Again, I appreciate your notion here, but it would be more powerfully expressed if you weren’t so hasty to make claims without backing them.

    • Oops – “isn’t very well founded.” *

    • Jackchurch25, you are very wrong. The Qur’an has been translated into many different modern languages by many muslim scholars and that include English. So, the authors of this article is correct in their comparison.

  13. “Religion may be defended by arms but not propagated by arms.” -Johannes Wollebius, 1660

    The big difference is that Christianity believes that Religion may be defended by arms but not to force conversions. Islam believes that one must kill all kefirs (unbelievers) and must force conversion at the sword. There is a huge difference here.

    But with regarding to the picture above, the Christian on the left most likely does not understand biblical theology or understand defending religion or the biblical doctrine of defense of self and defense of others and is most likely touting a Republicanism. Which is really an unfair comparison to Islam and the picture on the right.

    • Untrue. The Quran says you may only use arms in defense. It allows believers in the One God (Christians and Jews) to keep their religion. The enemy in the eyes of Muhammad was the majority of idol worshipers. You may be taking your point about forced conversion from the political leaders of regions in and around Arabia in the 8th, 9th centuries. The leaders of tribes and kingdoms would force their people to convert to improve their economic power. This is the fault of greedy individuals and has nothing to do with the religion itself. Much like the kings and queens of England switching back and forth between Catholicism and Protestantism.

  14. Ross the Christian’s slaughtered untold millions in the Crusades because they would not convert. Indians were slaughtered by the thousands when they did not convert. Imagine Christianity can be as intolerant as any religion. Educate yourself. Read a book other than something that doesn’t have pictures and word bubbles or has Bill O’Reilly’s name on it

    • “Yea well, ‘they’ did ‘this’ way back in the past” Yea dude that was 1500 years ago lighten up. Christians evolved to playing soccer, eating chick filet, sponsoring mega churches, and having bake sales. While many Muslims teach their kids Hate, how to shoot an AK47, how to burn a flag, and stone women to death for adultery. We’re not talking about the crusades. And just by mentioning Bill O’Reilly you lost credibility, you could’ve had me, but you had to use that name. Thanks for that friend..(People were getting limbs chopped off for shoplifting back then, so naturally the religious nuts are gonna be doing some mass murder) -Common Sense.

  15. Err, “the girl on the left” is what that last sentence is supposed to say .

  16. Jumped through the hoops to say this: please, do your goddamn research. I am all for what this article is supposed to say, but the woman on the right is Wafa Idris. She’s known for being the first female suicide bomber, and not just for Hamas. If we’re going to have our points be taken seriously we have to make sure we don’t do this kind of stupid shit again. Unless the girl on the right wounded 100 people and killed another, along with herself, then there is a pretty big difference here.

  17. Here’s the difference… The one on the left will shoot you to protect her innocent children from being blown up… the one of the right will shoot you to clear a path so she can blow up your innocent children.

  18. this is stupid. i’ll explain the difference for you. one religion has millions of members hell-bent on destroying anyone who doesn’t follow their doctrine, and it isn’t christianity

  19. Other then country and which Religion they are……not much difference….both could be a fanatical crazy person or both could just be one of those blind believers.

  20. The peaceful majority are irrelevant. It is the radicals that kill.

  21. Your opening statement is self defeating since you contradict yourself by explaining how both sides use apologist to interpret the text of their religion differently. Nice try though.

  22. A little one sided on the information are you? I love how you defend one interpretation as biased and take literally another. While I in no way defend either pictures I can’t condone this type of journalism.

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