Rape of women in Iraq: a few thoughts

published Sep 18, 2007, last modified Jun 26, 2013

If you have a queasy stomach, or you would like to spare a few tears, please don't visit the following pictures of Iraqi women being raped. But allow me to respond to a few comments in the article:

First: I'm a guy.

Second: These pictures disgust and offend me. I believe them to be true (but I can't conclusively prove them to be, and there are a few good arguments against that).

Third, If the acts depicted in the pictures were really rape (I already established I believe them to be), I would honestly have a very hard problem deciding whether to throw these soldiers in jail forever, or to slice their throats with my own hands. That should clear a few biases from my path.

However, I have a couple of objections (points to raise?) with the comments on the article.

I'm a man, not an abuser

To Yiva. No, men don't hate women. At least not me, not anyone in my family and none of the people I regard as friends. It's not a men thing to hate women. It's an abusive thing, which does not equal men (but does correlate in a small minority of cases, just as it correlates with women as well).

I resent you calling me an abuser that rapes you, takes your picture and sells it online, because I'm not like that, and I am offended by your generalization. Naturally, I'm not as offended by your generalization as much as I am offended by the pictures (I'd say the rapes depicted on them offend me at least twenty times more), but I just didn't think your gratuituous hate speech should go unobserved and uncontested.

Rape is rape. Calling anything else "rape" is misleading and treacherous, and devalues rape victims.

To womensspace (2): Sorry, but the act of creating the pictures is not rape, or a "version" of rape. Rape is rape. The act of taking the pictures is not. You're deliberately misusing the words to create public confusion, and I resent that -- not the least because it's a blatant lie. Let's call things by their names, instead of conveniently slapping "apple" on a "tomato" because "it's a kind of red fruit".

The confusion you seek to further is convenient for some people's agendas because they (I suspect you fit the profile) would love nothing more than to eradicate most (if not all forms of) erotica in the name of "re-humanizing" women and regaining moral values. Which is nonsense!

The pictures are not porn. The pictures are a depiction of a violent act called rape. I detest your (untimely) seizure of these incidents as a "foot on the door" for you to inject your wrongheaded notions of morality.

Sex and porn are not what triggered these incidents. They also are not to blame for the decay in moral fiber.

Watching sex does not make people animals. Obedience does.

Want real moral fiber? Stop giving out sanctimonious morality theaters. Start parenting better. Infuse your children with a healthy dose of critical thought skills. Lest they become animals in the future, like the ones depicted in the picture. Animals, not because they watched one hour of porn too many, but because they "were simply following orders".