Shlomo Greenwald, Jewish Press, October 4, 2006
The latest example of radical Muslim interference with free speech took place without even a hint of a fatwah.
Last week a book publisher told Nancy Kobrin, a psychoanalyst and lecturer on counter-terrorism, that they were withdrawing the publication of her book, “The Sheikh’s New Clothes,” because they were afraid of fundamentalist repercussions, according to Kobrin.
The book, subtitled “The Naked Truth about Islamic Suicide Terrorism,” tackles the psychology of fundamentalist Islamic terrorists and tries to understand the roots of their radical behavior.
Kobrin had been working on the book for about a year, and signed a contract with Looseleaf Law Publications in September 2005. The book was scheduled for publication in about a month.
According to Kobrin, Mary Loughrey, a vice president with the book publisher, called to tell her that “because of security reasons they feared for the safety of the staff and themselves.”
She said Loughrey mentioned Muslim reaction — including calls for assassination — following Pope Benedict XVI’s recent speech as part of the reason they were concerned.
Looseleaf Law Publications specializes in law-enforcement and criminal justice titles for professional readers.
This would have been the first published book for Kobrin, whose clinical expertise focuses on post-stress disorder. Kobrin has written many articles, including several with author Phyllis Chesler, who wrote the introduction for the book.
“If the Western world continues to give into and appease violence of jihadists, if we’re afraid of violence against us for speaking the truth, then we’re lost,” remarked Chesler, who said that Looseleaf is “not the bad guy” and that she understands why they made their decision.
Kobrin and Chesler said that the U.S. Army has used parts of an earlier manuscript of the book to help train their soldiers in its psychological operations unit. Kobrin has also lectured at Army and Air Force bases.
Chesler said that since Looseleaf’s withdrawal has generated interest on a couple of blogs in the last few days, two other book publishers have approached her about reading the manuscript, and that both said they would not be afraid to publish the book.