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Pretty bold: vilified Iraqi beauty queen fights back

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Pretty bold: vilified Iraqi beauty queen fights back

Sarah Idan uses her experiences to take on the small-minded and vindictive prejudice she has suffered

Jeremy Shepherd Smith

It was a classic example of the unintended consequences of posting in the social media age, similar to but far more devastating than what happened to Miss SA, Lalela Mswane (https://www.timeslive.co.za/sunday-times/lifestyle/2021-12-13-miss-sa-lalela-mswane-finishes-runner-up-at-miss-universe/), when she went ahead in the face of opposition and took part in the Miss Universe competition in Israel recently.

There were demonstrations and calls for Mswane to boycott the pageant as it was being held in Israel and the department of sport, art and culture withdrew its support for the Miss SA organisation after failing to persuade it not to compete. Mswane came third in the competition, survived the hatred and threats from anti-Israeli groups and is now living her life as normal. 

But Sarah Idan’s experience in 2017 was much scarier and five years later she still has threats to her life, so much so that she has a direct telephone line to the FBI in the US to which she reports the constant death threats...

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