In this week’s episode of On Contact, Chris Hedges sits down with two anti-trafficking campaigners discuss how to combat the sexual exploitation of women and girls. Suzanne Jay, co-founder of Asian Women Coalition Ending Prostitution, and Taina Bien-Aime, Executive Director of the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women, delve into the controversial topic of decriminalizing prostitution. RT Correspondent Anya Parampil reports on the global scale of sex trafficking.
Ethiopia is regularly cited as an African success story by donor nations; the economy is growing they cry, more children are attending school and health care is improving. Well GDP figures and millennium development statistics reveal only a tiny fraction of the corrupt and violent picture.
Hidden and isolated from the world the armed conflict raging in the Ogaden region of Ethiopia goes unnoticed. The killing and raping of innocent civilians at the hands of the military and their paramilitary partners in crime the Liyu police, the false arrests, torture and imprisonment remain largely hidden and unreported. The international media, human rights groups and most aid organisations (including the International Red Cross) have been banned from the region by the ruling Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) since 2007.
In the ancient land of India, where female deities deeply revered, Kali and Lakshmi, Sarasvati and Parvati, are held high upon the alter of Hinduism, where each day thousands of Hindu’s ritually bathe in the Holy waters of the Ganges, cleansed within and without by the Goddess Ganga, women and girls; in the forests, cities, villages and towns, on buses and trains, in the street, the office, at school and in the home are being violated, abused, raped and trafficked into prostitution and domestic slavery. Continue reading →
Comrades in Arms
From the book
RADICAL PEACE: People Refusing War
By William T. Hathaway
Published by Trine Day
I received this letter from an ex-soldier.
Hi Mr. Hathaway,
I got your letter (forwarded) asking for information for your book. To answer your first question, Yes, I’m enjoying living in Holland. I’m becoming the little Dutch girl — the little Black Dutch girl, but that doesn’t bother people here. They’re very tolerant and internationally minded.
Now that Andrew Kreig, of the Justice Integrity Project, has confirmed Karl Rove’s role as an advisor to the Swedish government in its prosecution of Julian Assange on sexual misconduct charges, it is important that we note the many glaring aberrations in the handling of Assange’s case by the authorities in Sweden.
Malalai Joya has been called the “bravest woman in Afghanistan” for her outspoken opposition not only to the U.S. occupation of her country, but both the corrupt U.S.-backed government of Hamid Karzai and the Taliban-led insurgency.
Joya was elected to Afghanistan’s parliament from Farah province in 2005, but was suspended several years later after other representatives claimed she insulted them. She has continued to speak out against war crimes and warlordism, in spite of numerous attempts on her life.
Joya is on a speaking tour of the U.S. for her book A Woman Among Warlords: The Extraordinary Story of an Afghan Who Dared to Raise Her Voice. She talked to Deepa Kumar about the situation in her country and the message she hopes to bring to people in the U.S.
WHAT HAS been the impact of the U.S. occupation and its puppet government on women in Afghanistan? Has the U.S. liberated Afghan women as it claimed it would?
Just Foreign Policy
by Robert Naiman
24 August 2009 – 11:52am
On Friday, Latin America scholars sent an urgent letter to Human Rights Watch, urging HRW to speak out on violations of human rights under the coup regime in Honduras and to conduct its own investigation. HRW hasn’t made any statement about Honduras since July 8.
One of the things Human Rights Watch should be investigating is allegations by Honduran feminists and human rights groups that Honduran police are using rape and other sexual violence as weapons of intimidation against Hondurans nonviolently protesting the coup regime.
While I was serving at Ramstein during Desert Storm, “Overseas!” magazine came out with an article with that incredibly cheesy title. It featured a tough looking gal in chocolate chip cami’s with a firm set to her jaw and a pair of the ubiquitous 1980’s ZZ Top “cheap sunglasses” that were being offered for sale in every AAFES store, BX, PX, and commissary. I believe she was either standing there holding a weapon or standing behind a gun emplacement. The very idea that this woman would be in combat was laughable at the time, women were having enough problems being allowed to fly C130 cargo missions for USAFE’s arm of the Desert Storm operation, Proven Force.
These videos may contain images depicting the reality and horror of war/violence and should only be viewed by a mature audience.
Bill Moyers Journal
June 19, 2009
The JOURNAL profiles Leymah Gbowee, a woman who led her fellow countrywomen to fight for and win peace in war-torn Liberia, and Abigail Disney, who produced the documentary of their struggle and triumph in the award-winning film PRAY THE DEVIL BACK TO HELL.
LOS ANGELES–American soldiers serving in Vietnam wondered what they were fighting for. U.S. troops in Afghanistan don’t have that problem. They know exactly what they’re fighting for: rapists.
After President Obama’s coming “Afghan surge” there will be 72,000 soldiers in Afghanistan. Their primary mission is to prevent Afghans from overthrowing the unpopular regime of Hamid Karzai, the former oil consultant installed by George W. Bush when the U.S. occupation began nearly eight years ago. Continue reading →
The use of rape as a tool of war is not a modern occurrence. Rape during wartime is a well-documented phenomenon that has occurred since writers and philosophers have recognized its existence. Gottschall notes, “historical and anthropological evidence suggests that rape in the context of war is an ancient human practice, and that this practice has stubbornly prevailed across a stunningly diverse concatenation of societies and historical epochs.” This claim, supported by APAP (2002), “In primitive warfare, women were targeted as a means to avoid facing the enemy again by eliminating the source of manpower for future supply,” shows the deliberate means in which a society may suffer through the use of rape as a tool of war. Wartime rape does not indicate solitary examples of rape by individuals but rather a pattern “of rape by soldiers at rates that are much increased over rates of rape that prevail in peacetime.” (Gottschall, 2004). Human Rights Watch claims: Continue reading →