He was detained by Taliban forces. After his release, he studied Islam and chose to become a follower in 2003.
What would you feel if you were captured and captured by the enemy? It may be hard to imagine your fate will end in a happiness. Moreover, if faced allegations as spies, intruders, and so forth.
However, this is not the case with Yvonne Ridley, a British journalist. This middle-aged woman even claimed to be happy after being arrested and interrogated by Taliban forces by US mass media (US), described as a hard and cruel Islamic group.
Ridley’s experience in Afghanistan when captured by the Taliban forces has made him familiar with Islam deeper. And, in direct contact with the Taliban, Ridley felt the difference with the allegations. Ridley calls the group that many countries label the terrorist as the largest and best family in the world.
Narrated, former Sunday school teacher who is also a former drinker (fond drunk) was converted to Islam after reading the Koran after being released by the Taliban.
Working as a journalist for Sunday Express, a British newspaper, in September 2001, Ridley was smuggled from Pakistan to the border
Afghanistan to undertake journalistic duties. At that time, women born in Stanley, Durham District, England, in 1959 was trying to infiltrate Afghanistan illegally. Without passport or visa.
As reported in many media reports, British journalist who has been frequently assigned to conflict areas in the world, was caught in the east of Jalalabad City. His disguise was revealed when he fell from a donkey just in front of a Taliban soldier and his camera crashed. When arrested, Ridley was seen wearing a burqa, a kind of traditional Afghan Muslim clothing.
What he had in mind when the soldier angrily approached him was a sense of wonder. “Incredibly handsome. Green eye ball, typical eyeball from the area and with a thick beard, “he thought.
Not long after, fear began to crawl. Ridley was interrogated for 10 days without being allowed to use the phone (phone) or contact his 9th birthday daughter.
During the interrogation process, Ridley claimed to disagree with what the Taliban did or what they believed to be true. Initially, for Ridley, the Taliban is the same as that portrayed by the European mass media about this Islamic group.
However, the treatment Ridley received during his period of detention and interrogation instead changed all his views on the Taliban. According to him, the general assumption of the Taliban who has been described as a monster is very far from reality. “The Taliban are good people and they are very friendly,” he said.
In a press event held in Peshawar, Pakistan, after his release, Ridley said that while he was being held, he was physically never treated badly by the Taliban. In fact, the treatment he received was quite special compared to the prisoners’ other prisoners.
In the custody, Ridley is separated with other residents, including female prisoners. In addition, in particular, his detention chamber has been cleared of any disruption of cockroaches and scorpions. In contrast to the cell next to it, the room behind the bars was as dirty as ever, Ridley said.
On the admission of this Ridley, many parties say the mother of a daughter named Daisy is exposed to Stockholm Syndrome, where the hostages even then sided with the hostage taker. However, he denied it, “I hate those who arrest me. I spit on them, rude to them and refuse to eat. I am interested in Islam only when I am free, “he asserted.
In an interview to the Islamonline website some time ago, Ridley revealed when a prisoner of the Taliban, a scholar came to him. The cleric asked some questions about religion and asked if he would convert.
“At that time, I was afraid that if I made a wrong response, I would be killed. After thinking carefully, I thank the cleric for his good offer. And, I say that it’s hard for me to make a decision to change my life while being a prisoner, “he explained.
To the cleric, Ridley promised to study the religion of Islam after being released and returned to London. Upon returning to England, Ridley read the Qur’an through his translation to try to understand the experience he had just passed.
“I melted with what I read. Nothing has changed from the content of this book, either the point or the others since 1400 years ago, “he said.
In studying Islam, Ridley chose the only letters in the Qur’an that he wanted to read. He greatly admired the rights that Islam gave to the women
and this is what makes him most interested in Islam. In the book he wrote after his release, Ridley recounted that he also met Dr Zaki Badawi, chairman of the Islamic Center London, and discussed with him about Islamic teachings.
From here then Ridley decided to choose Islam as his new belief. Ridley’s Islamic process occurred in 2003 ago. Regarding this choice, Ridley revealed that he has joined what he considers to be the largest and best family in the world.
What was the reaction of his Anglican Protestant parents when Ridley converted to Islam? “At first, my family and friends were worried, but when they saw how happy I was. I am healthier and feel my life is more meaningful, they are very happy, “said Ridley.
Happiness, said Ridley, especially felt the mother when he embraced Islam. Happiness is due to become a Muslim, Ridley decided to leave his habit of drinking liquor. “My mother is very excited, because I do not drink anymore.”
After embracing Islam, Ridley decided to wear Muslim clothes and hijab. He also until now still runs his profession as a journalist. Ridley’s dedication as a journalist is unquestionable. This Muslimah has worked on a range of prestigious media, such as News of the World, The Daily Mirror, The Sunday Times, The Observer, The Independent and Sunday Express.
Martin Townsend’s Sunday Express editor had once commented on Ridley, “He is a very experienced and courageous journalist.” Meanwhile, Colin Patterson, the editor-in-chief of Sunday Sun, calls it a warm and friendly person.
After the Lockerbie rogue nine years ago, Ridley was the first journalist to successfully interview Ahmad Jibril, the popular leader of the Front for the Liberation of Palestine