Women Without Power: First of an Ongoing Series

“I was given the ‘honor’ to temporarily marry young girls before they were sentenced to death,” said a member of the Basij, Iran’s paramilitary militia, in an anonymous interview.

In the Islamic Republic it is illegal to execute a young woman, regardless of her crime, if she is a virgin, he explained. Therefore a “wedding” ceremony is conducted the night before the execution: The young girl is forced to have sexual intercourse with a prison guard – essentially raped by her “husband.”

“I regret that, even though the marriages were legal,” he said.

Why the regret, if the marriages were “legal?”

“Because,” he went on, “I could tell that the girls were more afraid of their ‘wedding’ night than of the execution that awaited them in the morning. And they would always fight back, so we would have to put sleeping pills in their food. By morning the girls would have an empty expression; it seemed like they were ready or wanted to die.

“I remember hearing them cry and scream after [the rape] was over,” he said. “I will never forget how this one girl clawed at her own face and neck with her finger nails afterwards. She had deep scratches all over her.”

Here is a subtle but terribly revealing detail in the story.  The guard was arrested after the recent demonstrations for freeing two young teenagers.

He said he “honestly” did not know why he had released them, a decision that led to his own arrest, “but I think it was because they were so young. They looked like children and I knew what would happen to them if they weren’t released.”

He said that while a man is deemed “responsible for his own actions at 13, for a woman it is 9,” and that it was freeing the 15-year-old girl that “really got me in trouble.

Now why do you think a girl is held “responsible for her own actions” at 9?  The implications are chilling.  One is that it legitimizes the forced marriage of girls that young, who can be said to be old enough to “consent.”  (How Orwellian is that?)  Another is that females may be killed for actions for which males are excused, and that a girl can’t even be allowed to finish her childhood before that iron cage of mistrust and total control is dropped over her.

(Hat tip:  Althouse)

Wherever women are without power, we must remember that it is because they have such great natural power.  Who bothers to chain the weak?

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Published in: on July 19, 2009 at 10:15 pm  Leave a Comment  

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