Ten Years of Working for Peace in Iraq

(c) OWFI

10 Years Since the US Invasion of Iraq: Click Here for an Interactive Timeline

Articles & Statements

Update on Support for Iraqi Children (March 20, 2013)

MADRE and Partners in Iraq Speak Out on 10th Anniversary of Invasion (March 19, 2013)

A Decade of Occupation for Iraqi Women, by Yifat Susskind and Yanar Mohammed (March 19, 2013)


MADRE Partner Yanar Mohammed On Women and Democracy in the Middle East (June 13, 2012)

A Message to MADRE Supporters from Yanar Mohammed (June 22, 2011)

Pro-Democracy Activists in Iraq Under Threat (April 12, 2011)


Promising Democracy, Imposing Theocracy: Gender-Based Violence and the US War on Iraq (March 2007)



10 years after the US invasion, Iraqi women find their lives under threat and their rights stripped away.

Abuse, "honor killings," public beatings, and rates of rape and suicide have all spiked under the US occupation. Violence against women has been systemic, orchestrated by some of the very forces that the US boosted to power. Sectarian militias and clerics with a social vision for Iraq that depends on the subjugation of women have been cultivated as allies in the war. US officials believed these men could bring stability; now, trained and funded by the US, they carry out gendered violence and violate women’s human rights. Iraq's new constitution, drafted by the US with support from Islamist fundamentalist parties, is a huge step backwards for women, replacing earlier civil family law that offered women equal rights in the courts.

Across the country, women and children bear the physical and psychological scars of a decade of military intervention. In places like Haweeja, those scars are all too visible. For years, US soldiers detonated explosives and ammunition in an open field just one mile upstream from the center of town. Now, hundreds of children are suffering unprecedented rates of birth defects and cancers. Haweeja is just one of many communities in Iraq contaminated by radioactive waste from US weapons.

Along with our partners at the Organization for Women’s Freedom in Iraq, MADRE will continue to offer support to women, children and human rights activists through our network of shelters and our efforts in the international human rights system.

Iraqi women want to move beyond mere survival and build the country they dream of. MADRE stands with them in their efforts to make that dream a reality.