Thursday, April 23, 2009

LAT covers the ongoing femicide in Iraq

A young woman imprisoned in Tikrit, north of Baghdad, sent a letter to her brother last summer, appealing for help. The woman, named Dalal, wrote that she was pregnant after being raped by prison guards.
The brother asked to visit her. Guards obliged. The brother walked into her cell, drew a gun and shot his visibly pregnant sister dead.
His goal: to spare his family the taint of a pregnancy out of wedlock, a disgrace in Iraq often averted through so-called honor killings of women by their relatives.
For prison guards, the killing was also a relief.
"They believed that her death would end the case," said a lab worker at Baghdad's central morgue, where the victim's body -- still carrying the 5-month-old fetus -- was sent.

The above is from Tina Susman and Caesar Ahmed's "In Iraq, a story of rape, shame and 'honor killing'" (Los Angeles Times) which explores how common assaults on women are and how easily buried. No one is imprisoned for either raping Dalal or for murdering her. No one was fired. Nothing. It's part of the ongoing femicide and you won't hear about it from the Queen of Panhandle Media Amy Goodman but she will have time to explore 'grizzlies' because, after all, there isn't already a Discovery Channel and several Nature broadcasts on PBS each week already. Next up for Goody, cat photos and those who love to share them online! Or maybe she'll just find some more sexism to spew. Listen to the garbage from the grizzly guest and, if you don't catch what's taking place, pay attention to the film clip about how "men" and "boys" (and Boy Scouts) have certain "rights" and if you're not getting that the language is intentionally non-inclusive wait for the bit on how even the man who murders his wife has these "rights." Around that time, you may find it harder to justify the continued crap Amy Goodman serves up daily. Grasp that when the Los Angeles Times is covering the ongoing femicide in Iraq, Amy Goodman's serving up murdering wives as something to chuckle over. Grasp again why this woman decided to publish in Larry F**nt's H**tler rag. (Not to mention fawn over him on air.) Grasp again how much damage she does every damn day and that anyone else on Pacifica would be in huge trouble for the glorification of domestic abuse.

In this morning's New York Times, Timothy Williams' "U.N. Report Lays Out Options for an Oil-Rich Iraqi Region" covers the United Nations' proposals for Kirkuk. The UN hasn't released the proposals publicly. Which, after reading Williams, seems even more strange. Williams has a source serving in the Parliament who explains the four proposals the UN has made:

A member of the Iraqi Parliament who read the report said that one of the four proposed options was the creation of an independent or autonomous region run by Kurds, Arabs and Turkmens. The budget of the region would be financed with a percentage of Kirkuk's oil revenues, according to the United Nations plan.
A second option, according to the member of Parliament, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the report publicly, was for Kirkuk to become a special region, to be jointly administered by the regional and central governments. Under this proposal, a referendum would be held within five years to determine whether residents wanted Kirkuk to become part of the Kurdistan region or to be incorporated into the central state.

While Williams notes "Kirkuk was excluded from" the January 31st provincial elections held in 14 of Iraq's 18 provinces, he fails to note that Iraq's Constitution required a referendum to be held on Kirkuk back in 2007. The UN appears to have proposed . . . nothing. Nothing. What was all the work for? To prevent a decision from being made apparently.

In "Simmering in Iraq" today, the Boston Globe editorializes on Kirkuk and also

One sign of trouble is how Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's government has been treating the so-called Awakening Movement. Some 96,000 former insurgents of the Awakening accepted pay from the US military to eradicate Al Qaeda from its previous stronghold in the Sunni Arab west of the country. This switch of allegiance by Sunni Arab forces was a decisive element in bringing down the violence in Iraq.
The Awakening fighters were promised that once Al Qaeda was crushed, they would get jobs in the police and other security forces. But the Shi'ite-dominated government appears to be breaking that promise. Not only has it been slow to hire former Sunni insurgents, but it has allowed several Awakening leaders to be arrested on the basis of flimsy allegations.
If this sectarian behavior is not stopped, sooner or later it may result in a resumption of calamitous Sunni-Shi'ite violence. The reluctance to hire Awakening members may in part be explained by budgetary strictures related to the plunge in oil prices. But the broken promises to the Awakening also reflect deep, unresolved conflicts about the future character of Iraq.

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oh boy it never ends