Christian Arab Israeli Wins First Miss Trans Israel Pageant

An Israeli from a Catholic Arab family was crowned the winner of the country’s first transgender pageant.
Ta’alin Abu Hanna, 21, from the northern city of Nazareth, wore a white bridal dress as she was declared the first “Miss Trans Israel” on Friday at HaBima, Israel’s national theater, in Tel Aviv.
She described her victory as “historic” and said it promotes equality.
She will represent Israel at the Miss Trans Star International pageant in Spain in August — the first time an Israeli will participate.
She also will receive $15,000 worth of plastic surgery treatments from a hospital in Thailand, plus airfare and a hotel stay during the treatments and recovery.
Israel is generally tolerant of gay people, and Tel Aviv has emerged as one of the world’s most gay-friendly destinations.
The Israeli city stands in sharp contrast to many parts of the Middle East, where gay people are often persecuted.
A Christian Arab-Israeli ballet dancer, Abu Hanna told reporters she is “proud to be an Israeli Arab,” noting, “If I had not been in Israel and had been elsewhere — in Palestine or in any other Arab country — I might have been oppressed or I might have been in prison or murdered.”
Ta'alin Abu Hanna beat out 11 other finalists, a diverse group spanning Israel’s geographic, ethnic and religious diversity, including a Russian, Muslims and residents of Beersheba, Haifa, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. At least one finalist grew up in the haredi Orthodox community.
Several finalists told reporters they had struggled with the disapproval of family members — with some eventually finding acceptance and others not. Caroline Khouri, of the Arab town of Tamra, told NBC News her male relatives tried to murder her after learning of her plans to transition from man to woman.
“My cousins, my father, my brother-in-law all came and beat me and took me by force and cut my hair, tied me to the bed and left me there for three days with no food,” she said. Rescued by the police, the 24-year-old said she remains estranged from her family.
A formerly haredi Orthodox contestant, Aylin Ben-Zaken, said she “looked like a rabbi” before her transition, and ran away from home at age 15. But many in her family accept her now, she said.
“Three years ago I didn’t talk to my mom. Now she loves me, and I go to Shabbat dinner,” the 27-year-old told NBC News.
Ta’alin Abu Hanna celebrates winning the Miss Trans Israel pageant on May 27, 2016. (Luke Tress/Times of Israel)

Friday’s pageant consisted of a swimsuit competition, two formal-wear competitions and a question-and-answer portion.
Asked about “pinkwashing,” the accusation that Israel exploits its LGBT rights record as a PR coup to hide its alleged abuses of Palestinians, pageant organizer Yisraela Stephani Lev said, according to The Jerusalem Post: “Listen, there isn’t propaganda here. We live in Tel Aviv, in Israel, the only sane country in the region where people can live as gays or transgender and no one is going to throw them off the rooftop or slaughter them. This is just the reality here. It’s not some sort of brainwashing or pinkwashing or whatever.”
Lev said hundreds of trans women contacted her “from Dan to Eilat, Muslims, Jews, Christians, Bedouin,” and that they held three auditions beginning in March to select the finalists. Criteria included not just physical beauty but a “sort of coexistence and diversity,” Lev said, adding, “We are looking for coexistence, because this is the beginning of peace.”

Source: Times Of Israel, 5/27/2016


Miss North Carolina USA Allie Dunn Withdraws From Miss USA 2016 Competition; Her First Runner-Up Devin Gant Takes Over


     RPM Productions, the franchise owner of Miss North Carolina USA, has released a statement today announcing that Miss North Carolina USA 2016, Allie Dunn, will be unable to compete in Miss USA 2016 pageant in Las Vegas on June 5 due to illness. Dunn has resigned from her position and has been replaced by her first runner-up, Devin Gant. We wish Allie a full recovery and we wish Devin the best of luck in Miss USA 2016. 



Former Miss Belgium Anke Van dermeersch: Islam Threatens Women's Rights And Muslim Immigration Must Be Stopped


     Anke Van dermeersch was Miss Belgium 1991 and represented Belgium at Miss Universe 1992 pageant in Bangkok, Thailand where she placed in the top six. Today, the 6'1" blond stunner is married, a trained lawyer, and a senator of the anti-immigration party Vlaams Belang (Flemish Interest) which is also vehemently anti-Islam. It is rare for a beauty queen, even if she has pursued a political career, to speak out against Islam that seeks to destroy Western society from within and replace it with Sharia law, but Anke is an exception. She knows that Belgian culture is under Islamic threat, especially now that her country has become the largest producer of Islamic jihadists in the world.


     Anke is not new to controversy. On September 19, 2013, she started a campaign called "Freedom or Islam?" ("Vrijheid of islam?") in which she lent her legs for an image suggesting the consequences and reactions that women could face regarding the length of their skirts, alluding to the growing Islamic threat to Belgian culture.  Consequently, French shoe designer Christian Louboutin sought an injunction against the party's campaign, which he claimed had associated his iconic brand (the red soles) with a poster entitled "Women Against Islamization." Anke had words etched along her naked leg marking potential skirt lengths - ranging from "Sharia compatible" at the ankle, to "stoning" high up her thigh. Louboutin argued that the poster tarnished the image of his luxury footwear brand.  A month later, the Belgian court ordered Anke to stop using Louboutin's shoe wear in her campaign materials.  Immediately after the verdict, Anke slightly modified the posters showing seemingly identical shoes but with yellow soles. When asked whether it is the same brand, she replied: "I got rid of the Louboutin shoes. These ones are my Flemish nationalist shoes." 


     In the video below, Anke said that she was perplexed as to why Louboutin was attacking her, especially since she was standing up for women's rights which the designer should be appreciating. She also claimed that the inspiration for her campaign was singer Nancy Sinatra's biggest hit song, "These Boots Were Made For Walking." 

     However, a Canadian artist by the name of Rosea Lake had claimed that the Vlaams Belang's poster was based on her copyrighted work "Judgments" - which was first exhibited in January 2013 - and she accused the far-right party of hijacking her work. Compare Lake's work on the left with the party's poster on the right: 

     One could very well consider Anke as the modern-day Belgian Cassandra; in Greek mythology, Cassandra foresaw the destruction of Troy. Referring to her book "Hoer Noch Slavin" ("Neither Whore Nor Slave"), Anke stated: "We want women awaken and warn against the Islamization of Europe, because if it continues, women will be the first victims. The emancipation which our mothers and grandmothers fought, cannot simply be reduced by a misogynistic Islam."


    Last November, Anke and several members of Vlaams Belang Party visited the southern stretch of the Hungarian border and met with Hungarian representatives who were concerned about the large number of Muslim migrants invading Europe. Here's a video clip from the meeting featuring Anke and her Hungarian interpreter. She speaks in English:

     On May 14, 2016,  Anke and her party made the news again during an anti-Islam rally in Belgium when a young Muslim woman named Zakia Belkhiri, 22, took selfies next to Vlaams Belang protesters while gesturing a peace sign as her way to fight Islamophobia. A Belgian soldier named Tim Geelen and a leading Dutch website later revealed that Belkhiri had posted anti-Jew comments four years earlier on her social media (Twitter, Facebook). 



Anke Van dermeersch is a  lawyer, a deputy in the Flemish Parliament (Vlaams Belang), a Federal Senator (Belgium) and a local council member in Antwerp. She is also the founder and the president of the European Association “Women Against Islamization”. She was Miss Belgium in 1991.
After decades of multiculturalism and related educational policies paid for with public money, what do you think is the real degree to which Muslim immigrants have been integrated into European society? Should we be speaking about "acculturation" or "Islamization"?
Multiculturalism is bad for our own European culture because we allow and even pamper foreign cultures on European territory. Our culture is the breeding ground of our pluralistic society and, therefore, it shouldn’t be replaced with blind multiculturalism that undermines pluralism.
Tolerance has its limits. To a certain extent, Western society is a result of mass immigration and a multi-cultural and multi-ethnic society. But such a “multicultural” society does not work, has never worked and never will work.
In practice, multiculturalism is equivalent to blindly accepting and embracing Islam, which automatically leads to the Islamization of Europe. 
Islamization is not a mere local problem. This is a phenomenon that is taking place in almost all Western European countries and cities. Within a few decades, many Western European cities are likely to be confronted with Islamic majorities due to the fast demographic increase in the Muslim population living in the West.
You are the President of the European Association “Association of Women against Islamization”. Do you think women are the first victims of this Islamization?
The first and foremost victims of Islamization are indeed women. Not only in the Muslim world, but also in the Islamic communities of Europe, females are systematically discriminated against, oppressed and molested. 
According to Islam, women are subordinate to men and they owe their fathers and husbands their unquestioning obedience. In the Islamic tradition, the men invariably take all important decisions over their wives and daughters. For example, Islam dictates that a man can chasten his wife if necessary in order to keep her in line. 
With respect to the treatment of women, Islam is synonymous with humiliation and discrimination. Muslim women can only inherit half as much as a man can and according to Islamic jurisprudence, the testimony of a woman is only half as trustworthy as that of a man’s. Furthermore, Islam forces females into wearing head scarves, veils and even burqas since women are deemed responsible for men’s sexual restraint. Islam also considerably curbs women’s liberty of action. Without the permission of her husband, a Muslim woman cannot even leave the house.
Savage practices such as honor killings, forced marriage, polygamy and circumcision are making inroads into our society through Islam.
The Belgian judiciary, which is so lenient towards others, has condemned your Association for some of your propaganda posters. What is behind these convictions?
I made a “leg-poster” campaign for WomenAgainstIslamization.org where I measured the degree of Islamization with the length of my skirt covering my legs. This poster is famous for many different reasons, but notably because it is still being shared across the world on the internet to this day. A famous French shoemaker sued the organization and myself because he didn’t want me wearing his shoes on the poster because I’m a right-wing, conservative politician. After a dubious, media-spun court process, I was sentenced to never wear the shoes again and to stop spreading the poster. As soon as any campaign by WomenAgainstIslamization.org is successful, we are harshly attacked and/or subpoenaed.
Belgium is a European country in which a proportionally greater number of “young women" have joined ISIS.  Is this the greatest failure of Belgian assimilation policy?
The Belgian state security services estimate the number of Muslim extremists in our country to be at 2% of the population while worldwide it is in fact 8 to 10% of the Muslim population that turns to Salafism and considers violence a legitimate means to spread Islam. Belgium also produces the largest number of jihadists in the world. Almost 500 fighters went to Syria to fight, including women. Between 10 and 30% of those jihadists have left the war zone and most of them have returned and now pose a major threat to Western countries.
Your book on the situation of women in Islam is entitled “Neither Whore nor Slave".  Does the Koran really condemn women to a position of submission and sexual exploitation?
People are usually silent about the position of women when debating Islam. In most debates, Muslims’ violation of Western equality between men and women is mentioned, but it is rarely debated in detail.  
But the position of women in Islam is indeed questionable. The Korean elevates the man as superior and according to the Koran men have authority over women because Allah has taught the one to be superior to the other. Men and women have different roles in the Koran and therefore, women do not enjoy the same rights as men. In the Muslim world, men are seen as superior to women, which obviously has negative effects on family life, where the oldest man of the family is the boss. Disobedience or disagreement on the part of the woman leads to “discussions” and sometimes even to violence. Men traditionally have their way with women and this happens without any consultation with their wives. Muslim women are indeed condemned to submission.
How is it possible that feminists do not denounce Islamists? While they are more than ready and able to attack “European patriarchy”, they don’t even say one word about Islamist discrimination against women. Is this because of fear or is it an effect of “political correctness”?
Since multiculturalism in practice is equivalent to blindly accepting and embracing Islam, it is necessarily bad for women and contradicts the objectives and ideals of feminism. Feminism thrives only thanks to Western values such as equality between men and women, autonomy, freedom, and individuality. Non-Western cultures, such as Islamic culture, do not know these values and thus naturally collide with feminism. 
The feminist movement has a turbulent history. However, what is currently taking place is an existential conflict. On the one hand, the emancipation of women with different ethnic and religious backgrounds is encouraged. On the other hand, the so-called ‘freedom of choice' to wear head scarves is defended. As I understand it, political correctness has led to absolute schizophrenia.
Are European and Islamic concepts of family and marriage and an Islamic Europe comparable?
In our country, Islam often comes into conflict with our legal provisions on family law. This is because the Koran imposes its own rules related to marriage and divorce, child custody, and rights of inheritance. In the context of migration, it is important to act strictly against marriages of convenience and arranged or forced ones. Legislation on family reunification should be strict and efficient in the field of immigration policy. In addition, society must have the courage to deny access to our territory to partners with a criminal record. Clearly, what’s needed is a tough approach in various legal and policing areas. Reluctance to integrate is facilitated by allowing the partner of a forced or arranged marriage in the home country to come and “reunite” with the other partner. This is undermining our society. 
Some Muslims and multicultural propaganda say that Muslim women wear the burqa or niqab thanks to "free choice." Do you think this is true?
There are young girls who wear the headscarf and claim that they have taken this choice in full freedom. Of course, everything depends on the interpretation of “freedom” and “choice.” Wearing a headscarf is warm, annoying, and uncomfortable; therefore most Muslim women are constantly fiddling with it. At the same time, they must also constantly make sure that their hair does not come peeping out. After all, the purpose of the headscarf is to completely cover the hair. No woman on earth freely keeps such an uncomfortable scarf at hand at all times. Instead, the point is that there are consequences for not wearing it. In Schaerbeek in our country, a 32-year-old Muslim woman of Pakistani origin experienced just how bad these consequences are when she was killed by her three brothers because she refused to wear a head scarf.
Sexual attacks occurred in Cologne and other European cities on last New Year's Eve. Can they be explained by Muslim hatred for European women?
We know that mass immigration to Europe has also brought the grooming practices of Islamic gangs (especially among Pakistanis and Somalis). Non-Muslim, underage girls are sexually abused and prostituted by these groups when under the influence of alcohol and drugs. Muslim group-rapes of non-Muslims have everything to do with the hate for women that is part of the culture of Islam. What happened in Cologne is an example of the Arab ‘taharrush’, or sexual jihad, which is described in the Koran.
Do you believe that sexual assault could become an epidemic throughout Europe if the government does not act quickly?
Women are discriminated in many ways and considered inferior in Islam. This is expressed, for example, in the inhumane and unjust treatment of women seen in such rapes. The completely twisted sexual morality of Islam says that men carry no responsibility for their sexual behavior. It is a fact that men go unpunished for such acts in the Islamic community. Letting this happen is based on the mistaken assumption that the values and standards of the surrounding society will be automatically absorbed by immigrants over time. This also ignores the fact that these  cultural and religious groups within Western society have their own ideological agendas and empower themselves based on reactionary forms of identity. I fear, as the figures already confirm, that there will be more and more such serious crimes against women in Europe.
In your opinion, what can be done to stop the Islamization of Europe?
Enough is enough. We must put a stop to the immigration of such foreigners and put a definitive stop to Muslim immigration!

Compiled by Rafa Delfin, May 24, 2016


Former Miss Dominican Republic Universe Wins Nuestra Belleza Latina 2016

Dominicans back to back! Congratulations are in order for Clarissa Molina for becoming the new beauty queen from “Nuestra Belleza Latina” in its VIP edition, which brought past seasons contestants for another shot at the coveted crown. Fellow Dominican and last year’s winner Francisca Lachapel crowned Molina in a grand finale Sunday night (May 22) that left everyone celebrating.

Julión Álvarez y su Norteño Banda opened the show with an exciting performance that featured the four finalists: Colombian Setareh Khatibi, Puerto Rican Catherine Castro, Dominican Clarissa Molina and Colombian Bárbara Turbay dancing along to a choreographed routine in shiny red dresses.
Colombian Bárbara Turbay was named the third finalist of “Nuestra Belleza Latina VIP” and Puerto Rican Catherine Castro took the second finalist spot yet again just as she did last season when she first competed for the show. Julión Álvarez performed one last time, while Setareh and Clarissa walked one last time as contestants before one of them became the new Latina beauty queen.
The big moment finally came, and Francisca Lachapel took one last walk down the runway as Nuestra Belleza Latina and crowned her fellow Dominican Clarissa Molina, who won the audience’s votes and was able to finally win the coveted crown. Setareh Khatibi was named first finalist and she won the CEA Scholarship.
Source: LatinTimes.com, May 22, 2016
Clarissa Molina competed in 2015 Miss Universe pageant where she placed in the Top 15.


Miss Morocco 2016

Casablanca – Sara Belkziz was crowned Miss Morocco 2016 on Saturday evening in a ceremony held in Casablanca.
Sixteen candidates took part in the final of the third edition of Miss Morocco, which was held at the Morocco Mall in the presence of large audience and significant media coverage.
The lucky winner received the highest number of votes of Moroccans, who were called to choose their favorite candidates on social media.
The title of first runner up went to Saloua Bergayou (Casablanca), while the second and third runners up were won respectively by Yassmine Bennani from Fez and Racha Racha Zair from Casablanca.

On Friday, Miss Morocco’s organizing committee posted the pictures of the 16 finalists on its official page and called on Moroccans to vote for their favorite candidates by sending text messages to the number 9050.
Unlike beauty pageants organized in Western countries where contestants are required to wear swimsuits, Miss Morocco’s candidates wear the emblematic Moroccan caftan.
The selection of the 16 candidates who took part in the final required several weeks of work from the organizing committee. During the first stage, several castings were organized in Casablanca, Fez, Agadir, Tangier, Marrakech, and Rabat to select the candidates.
At the end of the first stage, 16 young women were chosen to spend a 10-day training under the supervision of coaches and professionals in the fields of choreography, communication, and personal development.

Source: Morocco World News, May 21, 2016


Former Miss USA And Ex-Muslim-Turned-Christian Rima Fakih Ties The Knot With Lebanese Music Producer Wassim Salibi


Former Miss USA Rima Fakih married Lebanese-American music producer Wassim Salibi in Lebanon on Sunday.
The wedding included attendance of Canadian singer The Weeknd, Moroccan-American rapper French Montana and Lebanese singers Haifa Wehbe and Wael Kfoury.
The beauty queen’s husband, Salibi, 35, was recently recognized by Billboard magazine for being one of the most influential music producers under the age of 40.
After the wedding, Lebanese-born Fakih, 30, tweeted “I'm married !!!!! Thank you Lord for always giving me wings and helping me find my true soul mate.”

View image on Twitter
View image on Twitter

I'm married !!!!! Thank you Lord for always giving me wings and helping me find my true soul mate

Fakih, born a Muslim, had recently been the topic of media speculation after she reportedly converted to Christianity earlier this year.
Rima came to fame after winning the national Miss USA pageant in 2010, when she became the first Muslim and Arab woman to be crowned Miss USA after competing in the pageant – which at the time had been owned by current US presidential hopeful Donald Trump.

Source: Al-Arabiya English, 5/17/2016

Meet Miss 52 Alexandra Miller - Chosen By Fans To Compete in Miss USA 2016!


Alexandra Miller is no stranger to the pageant world, but because she is in her last year of age eligibility, she never thought she'd make it onto the Miss USA stage. 

"I was [current Miss USA] Olivia Jordan's first runner-up when she won the title of Miss Oklahoma USA, and she actually won Miss USA on my 26th birthday, which meant I had to decide if I wanted to compete my last year or take over her title," Miller tells PEOPLE. 

Miller decided to step in as Miss Oklahoma USA, meaning she would no longer be able to compete for the Miss USA crown.

However, thanks to a fan vote for a 52nd contestant, the pageant pro will be able to compete. Miller was chosen from 10 ladies vying for the final spot, after competing in a nationwide search for Miss 52, a woman who best embodies Miss USA based on originality, personality and a web interview. 

"This is a chance for me to resurface a dream that I thought was long gone," says Miller, who has been competing in pageants for the past eight years – and who has been first runner-up twice for the Miss Oklahoma USA crown. 

Miller first became interested in the pageant world when she saw her older sister competing in their hometown pageant, and decided to try it herself when she was a senior in high school. 

"I didn't even place but I enjoyed it so much," she says. "I come from a competitive background – I was an athlete for the majority of my life – so this was just another avenue for me to push myself and my limits." 

Miller has always wanted to be a part of the Miss USA competition in particular because she feels its mission is in line with her personal goals. 

"The Miss Universe organization wants to promote confidence and believing in yourself and perseverance. I think that's who I am as a person, and that's why I was always interested in it," she says. "You have a unique opportunity as a title holder within the organization to inspire other people – whether it be young females or males across the world. That's why I want to be a part of the organization, and I'm so honored to have this incredible opportunity."

Source: PEOPLE Magazine, 5/18/2016