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Sunday, February 1, 2004

Iraqi Women

From Riverbend I've learnt a while ago about the present Iraqi goverment resolution to change the secular Family Law to the strict religious one. I'm wondering what is the response of the USA women - are you flooding the mail boxes and phones and faxes of your goverment, are you running any rally in support?

Iraqi women are fighting for equality.

Where are the promises of democracy? Buried that fast...

Here is an excerpt from a new diary, with an unforgetable report, by Yanar, straight from Iraq:

"...I was in the front porch heading for the main door when two men smoking their after-lunch cigarettes started waving their hands pointing to the side door saying 'Awa'el enna' which means 'families this way'. My head heavy with sleepiness, I decided to ignore them and to step into the mainstream society door... and anyway I looked so dull I thought that nobody will pay any attention.

The moment I stepped inside, almost five men around me informed me of the same issue... 'Awa'el... Awa'el... and they pointed at the side door. Now, I became impatient and decided to defy their being mentally retarded and just sit down and order food the way I did 3 months ago.

It seems I misjudged the situation that exploded all around me. All the men in the room started shouting like one big choir in total agreement Awa'el...Awa'el... I turned left and right to the big outraged audience... looked for one single opposition. None was there.

I went, totally humiliated and outnumbered into Awa'el... and began wondering. Being a woman at this point in time and place... who are my first and most dangerous enemies... Is it the disperse American tanks outside on the highway that need Iraqi army to protect them on the road to Tikrit and Smara that has turned into a sries of pitfalls (every pit of which means an exploding mine and a few American lives), or are my real enemies the ones sitting inside the restaurant that suffered euphoria and panic because of a veilless woman stepping into their no-woman zone.

I had a feeling that the enemy outside hiding inside the tanks and flying the helicopters left and right of the highway would be leaving us someday... imply in order to run for their lives (same as they did in Vietnam). Then again, the enemies that want me to disappear from their eyesight, whether by hiding in the Awa'el, under the veil, in my house or behind any man... these will be staying around... and for a long time."

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