There is a famous saying: “We see things as we are, we do not see things as they are.”
This is how most of the world thinks American media covers their stories. In truth, I think all people see things as “we are” and not as “they are” no matter where we are in the world.
But America is seen as a global power and the main leader in the world — one that everyone admires, and many are hurt by. So what does it mean to see things as “they are” — how people from different countries or cultures experience stories and see issues from their perspective?
This is the very spirit of The Zainab Salbi Project, an original new series that is premiering on The Huffington Post.
I traveled around the world for these stories and here’s what I learned: Muslims see ISIS as the biggest enemy of Islam itself; the third gender revolution is happening in India, where people no longer have to choose between male or female on any legal form; Mexico has one of the highest rates of journalists being killed; Buddhist monks in Thailand are setting fire to women’s monasteries; and behind closed doors, the stories of French families whose sons joined ISIS are ones of love and loss. They shocked me with new revelations on why these young men are leaving their home countries to join ISIS.
It is my hope that this series will start the process of shattering stereotypes, thereby building new bridges of understanding.