Sunday, March 11, 2012

And the war drags on . . .

The targeting of Iraqi youth continues. Specifically, if you are or are thought to be Emo or gay, you are targeted. Mohammed Tawfeeq (CNN) speaks with a gay Iraqi youth who explains, "Ten days ago, I received a letter from militiamen threatening me that if they found me then they will not kill me like other 'perverts' but they will cut my body into pieces." The letter reads, "We strongly warn every male and female debauchee, if you do not stop this dirty act within four days, then the punishment of God will fall on you at the hands of Mujahideen." Tawfeeq also reports that a source in the Ministry of the Interior confirmed that 14 Iraqi youths have been killed in the last weeks. We need to clear something up before we go further. This isn't from Tawfeeq's report. Tawfeeq's in the region and reads Arabic so is aware of Emo. But there are two other reports we're going to be kind and not note which insist that "gay" and "Emo" are the same thing in Iraq. No, they're not. You can be gay and Emo. But Emo -- and this comes from the demonization that took place in Egypt last year -- is also seen as "Satinists" and "vampires." Again, we're being kind because for many this story is only now 'news' (only since Saturday have major outlets reported on it). However, we will note Prashant Rao damn well knows better and his report is an embarrassment. The "vampire" aspect has been especially scary (drinking blood) in a country that was bragging just last month that their security forcers had arrested "sorcerers." Brody Levesque (LGBTQ Nation) quotes Iraqi blogger Bissam who explains that "it is commonly assumed that most emos are 'f**s,' feminine (in the case of boys) or masculine (in the case of girls), and Satan worshipers. Girls wearing short skirts, tight trousers (called 'stretch') are also singled out as morally corrupt and therefore legitimate targets." BBC News notes, "Dozens of Iraqi teenagers have been killed in recent months by militias who consider them to be devil worshippers, human rights activists claim. The young people are described as /emos', a term used in the West to refer to youths who listen to rock music and wear alternative clothing. [. . .] Iraq's interior ministry recently described emos as devil worshippers. In Iraq, the term emo is also conflated with homosexuality, which although legal is socially and religiously taboo." The BBC contradicts practically everything Prahsant Rao 'reported' and the BBC is correct. If you're still not getting it, Kanchana Devi (Truth Dive) points out, "The killings have taken place since Iraq’s interior ministry drew attention to the 'emo' subculture last month, labelling it 'Satanism' and ordering a community police force to stamp it out."

Richard Spencer (Telegraph of London) reports:

Gangs of youths have devised a particularly brutal method of killing those they regard as "emos", in the West a term for youths who wear black and adopt a moody appearance but used in Iraq to describe anyone with "floppy hair" and dressed fashionably.
The method, known popularly as the "double block", involves abducting the youths and smashing their heads between two lumps of concrete. Activists say up to 90 people, all but two of them men, have been killed in this method or by shooting or beating this year accused of being either homosexual or "emo".

We'll come back to Spencer in a minute. Jasim Alsabawi (Rudaw) speaks to a variety of Iraqis including Dr. Shamil Ashu who is a psychologist and explains that emo has been in Iraq for some time, "It emerged in the 1990s when some bands were singing emotional songs to attract people's attention. Many teenagers and children who had family problems were influenced by it. These bands have unique costumes, and the suppressed emotions and frustrations among teenagers nowadays is the reason they are mimicking these imported habits."

Spencer notes that the Interior Ministry posted a statement attacking the Emos in February. He also quotes a friend of Nouri's apparently puzzled by what's going on.

Here's what's going on, Nouri's in charge.

Not just because he's prime minister but because Nouri al-Maliki has refused for one year and three months to nominate someone to head the Ministry of the Interior. With no one approved by Parliament, Nouri controls the ministry and is its acting head. So when the Ministry of the Interior website featured this last month, ""The 'Emo phenomenon' or devil worshipping is being followed by the Moral Police who have the approval to eliminate it as soon as possible since it's detrimentally affecting the society and becoming a danger. They wear strange, tight clothes that have pictures on them such as skulls and use stationary that are shaped as skulls. They also wear rings on their noses and tongues, and do other strange activities."? That was on Nouri. It was done under his watch. He most likely gave permission for it. If he didn't he wasn't providing the supervision needed. And if you're trying to convince us that a month after that popped up on the Ministry of the Interior website, Nouri's only now learning that Emos are being targeted, we're not as stupid as Nouri would hope we were. Gay Star News has started a petition to show your support for Iraqi youth and to condemn the violence.

They'll get a link but we're not quoting their article. Nazi Germany targeted Jews, gypsies, gays and lesbains and others. To pretend otherwise is offensive. By the same token, those who see their interests in Iraq soley as whether or not gays and lesbians are being targeted better grasp real damn quick how offensive they're coming off. You do not 'cleanse' the list of the 'cleansed.' That's following the same patterns of Nazi Germany. Emo and gay are not the same and, most importantly, not all targeted for being gay are gay -- a fact you would think Western societies would be damn well aware of. Tossing "and Emo" in the title of your article and then forgetting to mention them in the body of your article is very Aryan of you, very Aryan. (But so is pretending you discovered it on Friday. Al Mada reported on it days prior, Monday of last week, they are the ones who broke the news on this story -- and they are why we noted it here on Monday. The UK glory hog should be spit roasted. Slowly, for extra flavor.)

They're just there to try and make the people free,
But the way that they're doing it, it don't seem like that to me.
Just more blood-letting and misery and tears
That this poor country's known for the last twenty years,
And the war drags on.
-- words and lyrics by Mick Softly (available on Donovan's Fairytale)

Last Sunday, the number of US military people killed in the Iraq War since the start of the illegal war was 4487. Tonight? PDF format warning, DoD lists the the number of Americans killed serving in Iraq at 4488.


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