Nonie Darwish is the author of The Devil We Don’t Know: the Dark Side of Revolutions in the Middle East and Now They Call Me Infidel: Why I Renounced Jihad for America, Israel and the War on Terror.

With a background in journalism and a degree in Sociology and Anthropology from the American University in Cairo, Ms. Darwish is an outspoken advocate for progress, minority rights, human and women’s rights in the Middle East.

Ms. Darwish was born in Cairo, Egypt, and raised in the Muslim faith. Her father headed the Egyptian military intelligence in Gaza and the Sinai in the 1950s (when Gaza was under Egyptian control), and he spearheaded the Fedayeen operations against Israel under the leadership of Egyptian President Gamal Adel Nasser. Her father was assassinated in Gaza in 1956 when Nonie was 8 years old.

In her biography, Nonie Darwish recalls how she, like most of her peers, were taught hatred, jihad, vengeance, and retaliation. She describes the culture behind the jihad and martyrdom and the impact of polygamy and oppression of women on Muslim society. She also recounts the journey that led her to renounce the jihad.

Today, Ms. Darwish is married, the mother of three, and living in the U.S. In 2004, she founded Arabs for Israel ( She lectures extensively on college campuses in the U.S. and Canada, and she has been a guest on CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, Al Arabiya TV and other major media outlets.

Her second book, Cruel and Usual Punishment: the Terrifying Global Implications of Islamic Law (2009), is a sociological analysis of the impact of Sharia Islamic Law on interpersonal relationships, female relationships, family and Muslim society. Her latest book, The Devil We Don’t Know: The Dark Side of Revolutions in the Middle East, was released in 2012.