Does Ayaan Hirsi Ali Extensively Use Ghost Writers? - Fraudulent Scholarship Suspected

By Beila Rabinowitz

December 21, 2006 - San Francisco, CA - - A journalist has revealed that former Dutch parliamentarian and current AEI scholar Ayaan Hirsi Ali used ghost writers for her speeches and newspaper articles. This includes the emotional farewell speech she made to the parliament when forced to resign for lying on her asylum application.

The disclosures were made on the radio by Alies Pegtel who works for the liberal leaning weekly magazine De Tijd/HP.

Pegtel's articles are being published as "Ayaan - The Series" with the teaser "She came - saw - and left a smoldering ruin and shattered men behind." [source]

In these investigative pieces Pegtel asks the question:

"But how much help did Ali precisely get with her writing? Did intellectual friends write complete pieces for her or was she just helped stylistically? Who were these helpful like minded people, and why did they want to help Ali? From conversations with people who were close to her it seems that the word "support" gives a very mild picture of what was actually going on. In a large number of cases friends and acquaintances simply admitted that they had written an article or a speech for her."

Doubts about the authorship of material attributed to Ali have also surfaced regarding the script for the film Submission which she sold to Theo van Gogh for nearly $20,000.

According to a 2004 article entitled "How A Cleaning Woman Became The Somalian Joan Of Arc" the degree to which the Submission script - the launching pad for Ali's career - represented her own work is in question:

"...according to the credits she was responsible for the scenario. Even the original idea had emerged from her brain. But was that really so? What is completely certain is that Theo van Gogh had to do a great deal of adjusting the scenario until one could speak of a workable whole. In addition there had also been other creative minds in the proximity of Ayaan who had also been occupied with the film..."

After Theo van Gogh was murdered [as Ali wrote, "because...she had bodyguards and he didn't] journalist Ebru Umar wrote an open letter rhetorically asking if she had used Theo van Gogh as director because his name would assure her international publicity she desired.

Far more serious than questions about authorship of the script are allegations that at least one of Ali's books have also been the product of others' labors.

In the Dutch newspaper Parool, author Bas Soetenhorst makes reference to Ali's most current work, her autobiography "My Freedom" stating that it was ghostwritten.

In the Dutch:

"Mijn vrijheid, de titel van de door een ghostwriter geschreven autobiografie, maakt duidelijk waar de enorme motivatie van Hirsi Ali vandaan komt. [source]


"'My Freedom,' the title of a ghost writer authored autobiography makes clear the enormous motivation which emanates from Hirsi Ali."

In the Dutch:

"De lijvige autobiografie, geschreven door een buitenlandse - uit veiligheidsoverwegingen anonieme..."


"The thick autobiography, written by a foreigner - who remains anonymous for security reasons..."

In a series of articles documented Ali's disastrous track record of ruthless opportunism, warning the American Enterprise Institute that, "in our opinion, Ali is a train wreck just waiting to happen."

Statement By American Enterprise Institute Scholar To Be - Ayaan Hirsi Ali - Raises Conservative Hackles

Dutch Government Falls In Wake Of Hirsi Ali Imbroglio

Ayan Hirsi Ali 24 x 7

Hirsi Ali Climbs Over Corpse Of Theo Van Gogh, Lands Gig At American Enterprise Institute

Ali's first act while on the AEI payroll was to announce in a Der Spiegel interview that she was to "use the fellowship" to write another book called "Shortcut to Enlightenment" and had sent the proposal to AEI president Christopher DeMuth. According to Ali the book would be "readable and gripping," depicting a meeting between Muhammed , Karl Popper, John Stuart Mill and Frederich von Hayek at the New York Public Library; a remarkably bold undertaking, especially in light of Ali's now suspect acumen.

In a recent interview with a Dutch paper Ali bragged about AEI funding.

"They are really independent. Anyone who wants to give money is welcome but they cannot interfere with the allotment of funds. It's even possible that I could get money from someone who is opposed to women's rights. That's really great."

Given Ali's track record the AEI may well have to concede that their newest fellow has feet of clay. At the very least the above allegations warrant an investigation into her scholarship. The organization shouldn't be expected to foot the bill for Ali's self promotion.

1999-2007 Beila Rabinowitz/, all rights reserved.