Meet The Middle East’s Atheist Preacher

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Media Outlet: The Daily Beast

The rise of self-proclaimed Islamic State appears to have worked to atheists’ advantage. They argue ISIS shows the danger of those who adhere to strict interpretation of old text. And, they note the contrast of the brutality of ISIS and the pluralistic society they propose.

“The end goal, for them, is a place were people can be free from religious authority,” said Dr. Nadia Oweidat, a non-residential fellow at New American Foundation who researches liberal Islamic thought and countering violent extremism.



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Nadia Oweidat was a Class of 2017 Middle East Fellow at New America. She holds a D.Phil. in Oriental Studies from the University of Oxford. is a Smith Richardson Fellow at New America. She holds a D.Phil. in Oriental Studies from the University of Oxford. She is currently working on a book on social media and positive change among Arabic speakers.