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Author Topic: Iraqi Women as Victims of the Occupation
Babbler # 7194

posted 11 December 2004 10:18 PM      Profile for majorvictory64     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
In the raging headlines about Iraq’s agony, one large question is being ignored. What is happening to women, who are 65 percent of the population?

By Megan Cornish

Al-Jazeerah, December 3, 2004

In a telephone interview with Nadia Mahmoud in the London office of the Organization for Women’s Freedom in Iraq (OWFI), this reporter got some chilling answers. Women suffer unrelenting deprivation and are under horrific attack from the U.S. occupation, Islamic fundamentalists, and sex traffickers.

But, at the same time, Iraqi women are showing incredible bravery in organizing against all the enemies they face, and are reaching out for support.

The social wounds of past wars and U.S. sanctions.

The story of how the situation of women became so dire is a textbook example of U.S. imperialism at work.

In 1959, long before Saddam Hussein’s Baath Party came to power with the help of the CIA, organizing by Iraqi women won them the most advanced family civil code in the Arab world.

Initially, because Iraq’s expanding economy needed wo-men in the workforce, Hussein kept and even extended these rights, with policies that outlawed sex discrimination and provided free higher education and maternity leave.

But the seven-year Iran/Iraq war, provoked by the U.S., bankrupted the country and precipitated a steady decline of women’s rights. Then, Uncle Sam’s Gulf War in 1991 and 10 years of U.S./UN economic sanctions sharply worsened both the economy and the position of women. Many women became jobless, while their freedom of choice in marriage and right to travel without a male relative were revoked.

As it became harder for women to make a living, prostitution increased. During 2000-2001, the Hussein regime beheaded 350 women accused of prostitution. Some were in fact political dissidents.

From: Toronto | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
Babbler # 5594

posted 12 December 2004 02:11 AM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Too, Iraq owned the lowest infant mortality rates of all Arab nations before US led sanctions were enforced on them. This includes comparison with Kuwait, a nation where only about 10 percent of the people are allowed to vote for Prince al Sabah, and vote for him they must.

The UN estimates that over 700 000 Iraqi children have died of malnutrition and US military attacks since 1991. More than 1.5 million Iraqi's have perished overall during the same time.

From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Babbler # 6061

posted 12 December 2004 05:54 PM      Profile for Stargazer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Oh but its all for 'freedom' remember?

I actually had one American tell me that even though he didn't endorse the war in Iraq he would rather see 100,000 dead Iraqi's then 1 wounded American soldier.

I had no idea how to reply to this. I was shocked at the level of sheer nationalistic pride, despite all this person supposedly knows (he is aparently a US history professor).

From: Inside every cynical person, there is a disappointed idealist. | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
Babbler # 7346

posted 14 December 2004 02:12 PM      Profile for dillinger   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
i can't think of any calm and persuasive reply to that kind of attitude. maybe a sacrastic, "sure, why not? they're all uttermenschen, right?"

it looks like in the US there's still a real lack of political will to end the war in Iraq, which leaves only a military solution. the American public needs to wake up and ask itself, "how much are we willing to bleed before we give up and bring our sons and daughters home?"

From: Toronto | Registered: Nov 2004  |  IP: Logged
BLAKE 3:16
Babbler # 2978

posted 14 December 2004 02:56 PM      Profile for BLAKE 3:16     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Organization for Women's freedom in Iraq English homepage.

In the late 90s I knew a number of the exiled Iraqi sisters who were doing their best to fundraise and support women's shelters in Iraq. Please check out their news and campaign sections. Our ability to support secular pro-feminist Iraqis is severely hindered, but any attempt is better than none. Thanks for the story, mv64.

The Worker Communist Party of Iran has regular updates on women's issues in the region and is a leading opponent of the fundamentalists.

From: Babylon, Ontario | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
Babbler # 4722

posted 14 December 2004 04:13 PM      Profile for Bacchus     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Hmm interesting link, thanks Blake
From: n/a | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged

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