An occasion that should have been marked by excitement, smiles and unity spiraled into death and rape threats for Miss Iraq 2017, Sarah Idan, after the country's first pageant representative in 45 years posed for a photo with then-competitor Miss Israel, Adar Gandelsman, with an Instagram caption reading "Peace and Love."
And the backlash hasn't stopped.
In the initial wave of anger, the Iraqi government demanded their national representative take down the photograph, apologize and condemn Israel – which Idan refused to do. Two years on, Adnan’s daily life remains plagued by death threats and accusations of being a “traitor.” Her family – all Iraqi Muslims – have since had to flee their homeland.
Still, the former beauty queen and TV host remains a vehemently forthright champion of inter-religious tolerance and is an anti-Hamas activist, making her a deeply polarizing and widely ridiculed public figure in her homeland.
The level of hatred shown towards Israel and anything and anyone that speaks up on her behalf in the Middle East is remarkable and disturbing.