March 14, 2011

al Qaeda Glamour

So this is the cover of the new Al Qaeda magazine reportedly patterned after Glamour, Cosmo or Elle. (By the way, are those mags equivalent?)

(And here she is, front and back. This is closer view of the cover with title translations.)

Called Al-ShAhamikha or “majestic woman,” I feel cross-culturally challenged to really understanding this cover.  Based on the backstory, the articles, in equal measure, emphasize modesty, beauty/self-care and jihad.  Certainly, what looks like a clipping or sticky note top left of a woman fully veiled, the size and design actually makes her one of the more distinctive cover girls I’ve ever seen. I suppose the scale does a good job of balancing the tradeoff between modesty and “you.” On the other hand, though, I’d say the real beauty object, with the light shimmering off of it and the gleam of light shining through it, is that sexy piece of jihad hardware.

Bottom line, though, I’m wondering, what with al Qaeda going Cosmo (if we’re still keeping score nearly 10 years after 9/11) if the West has finally won.

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Michael Shaw
See other posts by Michael here.

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