An Open Letter to Hillary Clinton
Posted on: Saturday, June 6, 2009
Thank you, Hillary, for submitting to our patriarchs.
In a visit to Egypt which was meant to be a landmark in US-Arab relations, Hillary Clinton chose to have her head covered with a veil, thus forwarding a clear message to more than a hundred million Arab women: "if an American Secretary of State can wear it, it should be okay for you too."
Women of the Arab world and the Middle East suffered and struggled from patriarchal Islamist oppression which escalated in the last two decades. One simple example of the oppression is the excluding of females from all decision making positions as they are thought of as "emotional" and "irrational". Therefore, a woman cannot be a judge in court; neither can she be a full witness, as two women's testimony will be equal to one man. Women must dress in full black, with no openings, even for breathing...
In the religious city of Najaf , south of Baghdad 20% of the adult female population are abandoned wives with no income. They are second, third and fourth wives of men who had taken off for other women. Their husbands do not care to divorce them or to spend on their wives and their children. In the "holy" city of Najaf , masses of destitute women and children roam in the streets and may manage to live off the charity of religious institutions which had justified their abandonment and poverty in the first place.
The Islamist ideologues do not feel compelled to justify the tragedy of tens of thousands of women and children of a polygamist culture. They continue to pump a woman serves man ideology to the young generations to perpetuate the males' misogynist practices and the females' submission to misogyny as part of faithfulness and godliness.
There was a time of progressive leftist change in the Arab and Middle Eastern societies. It coincided with a world-wide movement for liberation from colonialism. Our mothers' generation benefited from that age as they reached to the university seats and became doctors and engineers.
Still, it took many years of political and feminist struggle to get rid of the veil and the control of patriarchs who imposed the veil on them. As you may know Hillary, these women were not born with the veil. It always takes a misogynist patriarch to tie it around your head and neck. But these women gracefully succeeded and got rid of the veil, the symbol of their oppression. From that point on came the female Ministers, judges, scientists, doctors, and engineers.
We are proud of our bodies and do not need to cover them to please your allies, the Islamist patriarchs. We also know that our fight for women's rights needs to parallel with a fight to end the US occupation in Iraq, as we have only witnessed deterioration in our lives and social status since day one of the occupation. Thanks to you and others like you, the Islamist patriarchs are ruling as government and militias in Iraq now. We know that women of Iraq cannot dream of a day of freedom as long as the US troops are in here.
If you need to flirt with your Islamist patriarch allies, go ahead. But never dare speak in the name of women and women's rights. Stick with the patriarchs in the boy's club as it serves you better.
Organization of Women's Freedom in Iraq, President
Archives"Press Room" Home February 2014 January 2014 December 2013 November 2013 October 2013 September 2013 August 2013 July 2013 June 2013 May 2013 April 2013 March 2013 February 2013 January 2013 December 2012 November 2012 October 2012 September 2012 August 2012 July 2012 June 2012 May 2012 April 2012 March 2012 February 2012 January 2012 December 2011 November 2011 October 2011 September 2011 August 2011 July 2011 June 2011 May 2011 April 2011 March 2011 February 2011 January 2011 December 2010 November 2010 October 2010 September 2010 August 2010 July 2010 June 2010 May 2010 April 2010 March 2010 February 2010 January 2010 December 2009 November 2009 October 2009 September 2009 August 2009 July 2009 June 2009 May 2009 April 2009 March 2009 February 2009 January 2009 December 2008 November 2008 October 2008 September 2008 August 2008 July 2008 June 2008 May 2008 April 2008 March 2008 February 2008 January 2008 December 2007 November 2007 October 2007 September 2007 August 2007 June 2007 May 2007 April 2007 March 2007 February 2007 January 2007 December 2006 November 2006 October 2006 September 2006 July 2006 June 2006 April 2006 March 2006 January 2006 December 2005 November 2005 September 2005 August 2005 July 2005 April 2005 March 2005 November 2004 October 2004 April 2004 March 2004 January 2004 December 2003 October 2003 September 2003 June 2003 April 2003 January 2003 September 2002 June 2002 January 2002 November 2001 October 2001 September 2001 August 2001 January 2001
Kat Noel, Website & Media Coordinator
PHONE: +1 212 627 0444
MADRE & Our Partners Make News
Haiti: the neoliberal model imposed on the country is failing its citizens (The Guardian, February 5, 2014)
Human rights group slams Iraq over treatment of women in prison (Miami Herald, February 2, 2014)
New Ways to Evaluate Impact (Stanford Social Innovation Review, January 24, 2014)
Poverty, Homelessness and Gender Violence Remains High Four Years After Earthquake (Uprising Radio , January 17, 2014)
Empowering Haiti's rape survivors (CNN, January 14, 2014)