Saturday, March 21, 2009

Iraqi Women Before & After The USA Invasion

Iraqi Women Before and After the Invasion


Women are half the society …They ,therefore, have rights and duties ..Women are mothers, wives, sisters , daughters …….They carry babies ,,,take care of them ,,,bring them up ,,,,they also manage to do all the housework ,,,care for each member of their families …this is almost most if not all women all over the whole world do and so these are their daily ,,,homely duties ,,,
At the same time women or shall I say a large number of women have careers ,,,professions and so their responsibilities are not only inside their homes ,,,their responsibilities go outdoors with their jobs … for years and years women have held many important jobs ,,,there are queens , presidents , prime ministers ,,,ministers ,,,director generals ,,, presidents of universities ,,,heads of departments ,,, professors… teachers ,,,doctors, dentists ,,engineers ,,,nurses, ,,pilots ,,,,drivers ,,, there is not any field that the women have not occupied,,,,
Within the last 100 years , the Iraqi women have witnessed many political changes in the country which had affected their life ,,,their jobs and their destinies … At the early nineties , most Iraqi women were concerned in getting married ;staying at home ,,taking care of their husbands,, families and bringing up children ,,,that was the most important job of women and they were content and happy to do it without any objection or ambition to think otherwise ….
Then women had taken the biggest step by joining schools ,,,,carrying on their education and joining colleges ,,,the first woman continued her undergraduate education in the college of law in the early ninety. .
A bigger step was taken in 1958 during Abdul-Kareem Qasim regime when he appointed Nazeeha Al-Dilaimi as a minister …,,,in the fifties and sixties, the Iraqi women were very educated, liberated and most of them had jobs,, ,responsibilities other than the home and the children ….they had careers and were independent ,,,,they travelled abroad to pursue their studies and got doctorates and were appointed in influential posts ,,,their roles had become more important in offices and ministries ….all those responsibilities went side by side with their responsibilities at home ,,they were happy mothers ,,,wives,,, sisters,, ,daughters ,,,,
In the past , Iraqi women as most Arab women were obliged to marry whoever suitors their fathers or families chose ,, they were not allowed to object as it was the tradition or the convection that the family should choose the man not the woman herself …it was out of question ..so they had to accept no matter what or who the man was ,,,,and of course they were not allowed to see the man till after the wedding or the actual marriage …..that was a long long time ago …..
After women were liberated ,,got their rights ,,,were educated ,,,had their dignity ,,,independence ,,,prestige and careers …the picture changed and therefore women’s views ,,thinking had changed so they were no more willing to accept such arranged marriages ,,,,they were by then more legible to accept ,,,to refuse ,,,and , in fact , to choose whoever they want ,,,there were stories of admiration ,,,love and the right to choose the men they like ……or divorce the husband who mistreated them ….which was not accepted before unless the family take and make this decision …..Women have become stronger by their education ,,,,ability to …..choose ,,,,decide ,,,,judge ….accept ,,,refuse ,,,,they became more powerful intellectually ,,,,mentally ,,psychologically and thus they got almost all their legal rights and still they were the same loving ,caring ,devoted females in their small kingdoms …their homes …So the woman was the same mother ,,,wife ,,,sister ,,,,daughter ,,,,,but now with a better character and a fine personality …more education and wider scope ….
Within time the Iraqi women proved their existence and their roles have been significant in the society so the whole world realized that they are no longer the oppressed denied indefinite partners ,,,they are exactly the same as all other women all over the world …..in fact , during Saddam’s regime ( I do not want to say that during that time all Iraqi women were living in heaven ) …women have occupied serious positions …However, during the gulf war ----the tragedy started when about a million soldiers died in that war leaving behind widows and orphans ,,,,the large number of prisoners of war who stayed in Iran resulted in another tragedy …..even those who returned were not in a normal psychological or physiological conditions ,,,,so thousands of Iraqi families have deteriorated ,,,,broken houses ,,,,,domestic problems ,,,,,and ,of course, miseries and broken hearts …..more deterioration psychologically ,,,more pain,,,,, more loss….backwardness ……
Another era in Iraqi women comes with the USA invasion that has changed almost every thing ,,,,,with the immigration …displacement …unemployment …killing and kidnapping …..death of about a million and a half caused by the blasts ,,,bombs and explosions ,,,,,all these and other factors have affected women’s life and deteriorated their situations turning everything into a melancholic sad life and even unforeseen mysterious future despite the increase of NGOs which are trying their best to solve some problems and give support and help ,,,,, to achieve something positive ,,,still the situation of women , now , is far from good ,,,,
First of all is the part that some influential ruling parties who call themselves religious and legislative , have taken vengeance of women who do not wear head scarves ,,,are fashionable , who drive cars,,,, work as hair dressers ,wear make up ,,,work late and even Christian and non Muslim women were killed , kidnapped and tortured for these reasons ,,,even women doctors have been having their share of this sick group so a large number of them were killed for nothing only because they work late in hospitals , ,, announcers,,, journalists ,,professors and al sorts of jobs were banned one way or another according to those groups ,,, ,such acts have been the main cause for the deterioration and backwardness of Iraqi women in the post war period ,,,,,
The second issue is the killing of a million and a half persons among whom a large number of men ; this resulted in the increase of widows( most of whom were unemployed) - those become unable to support their children ….the displacement and migration of thousands of families have caused another serious problem ,because all those families spent whatever they had within some time then they were penniless,,, ,homeless abroad and therefore a large number were pushed to prostitution especially those who were venerable, ,,morally weak and who were unqualified and have no experience in any field of decent jobs … Even those with experience and qualifications were not allowed to work in many countries such as Egypt wherein the laws prevent the Iraqis to work unless they share with Egyptian partners or companies ….
As for those who stay, here, in Iraq ever since the invasion ,,,,all qualified working women were and ,still, are being threatened by insurgents and terrorists ,,,,in short ,,women have become an easy bait and a target for those sick maniacs who think that women are only good at home and should not have a career . A large number of females have dropped schools , universities and education since the invasion ,,,
Before the invasion ,women took almost all their rights …they had very important and prominent roles in society ,,,,
It is a pity that after 5 years of invasion , even the mentality of women has deteriorated so now if you talk to most women , you will find that a large number of them are only interested in the way they look ,,,,,how to wear the latest fashion ,,,most attractive, movie stars make up ,compete with each other in who should look better and look more like a certain singer or actress ,,,who should be able to tell the Turkish TV series or who should be able to dress more fashionable clothes and gold ornaments …in short most Iraqi women have become very shallow in their thinking ,,,,,their own concern , now , how to catch a husband rather than how to develop and educate themselves and her children ,,,,,a very small number of women in Iraq , are now trying their best to rebuild what have been broken ,,,they try to support and help other women to stand up for these obstacles ,,,there are , however, still a few who pretend to do something good for Iraqi women : those are holding important and influential posts in the government and ministries – yet all their concern is to keep their posts and they have , in fact, never laid a finger in changing women ‘s conditions – especially women having hard times in bringing up their children and those having difficult problems ….
There are cases wherein mothers are digging inside the rubbish to get some left over food to feed their hungry children ; or buying themselves abroad to carry on their life; some women are still till this moment struggling in finding a place or shelter to themselves and their children ….
Every day , we hear in the news about hundreds if not thousand of projects to solve the Iraqi families ,,,,women ,,,children …….IN reality ,,,there is nothing taking place concerning these projects ,,,,many associations, ,,organizations ,,, bodies,, ,,and committees with pompous significant names such as Women for Women and others who should really be interested in solving such problems ,,,,BUT these ,,,as all other organizations are just names added to the bigger names such as the UN whose only concern is to employ a large number of foreigners distributing them all over the whole world to have a nice refreshing international journeys and pampering special groups of international staff from all over the world ( MOSTLY AFRICAN) in order to perform a marvelous play and a wonderful tour to impress some ignorant people who still think that these organizations are really solving the problems of nations that need help and support …
I hope that the Iraqi government try to solve the accumulated files which are full of miseries of the Iraqi people and particularly of the Iraqi women who are now lost and deteriorating in all aspects ….
I do pray that one day some one who has honesty ,,,decency ,,,,authority , and who is in a powerful and influential post READ my blog and …of course TAKE ACTION ,,,but not in imprisoning or killing me or my husband BUT in
HELPING …SUPPORTING and SOLVING the IRAQI PEOPLE`,,,FAMILIES ,,,WOMEN ’s problems …
PRAY WITH ME FOR A BETTER LIFE
PRAY WITH ME FOR A MORE DECENT LIFE
PRAY WITH ME FOR A MORE DIGNIFIED LIFE
PRAY WITH MR FOR MORE HUMANITARIAN LIFE
PRAY AND TAKE ACTION IF YOU CAN

Dr. Nidhal

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