Feb 16, 2005 3:05 pm


The war on terror has been good to Muslim women. Gone are the days of political correctness and cultural diversity uber ales. Here is and VOA additorial on the subject of Iranian women. It begins thus:

President George W. Bush has made the advance of freedom a key element of U.S. foreign policy:"As a matter of national conviction, we believe that every person in every culture is meant by God to live in freedom. As a matter of national interest, we know that the spread of liberty and hope is essential to the defeat of despair and bitterness and terror."

Mr. Bush says that basic rights can be assured only within the framework of democracy. This is true, in particular, of the rights of women, says Mr. Bush:"If people aren't free, it is likely that women will be suppressed. Human rights are defined by by a constitution; they're defended by an impartial rule of law; they're secured in a pluralistic society. The advance of women's rights and the advance of liberty are ultimately inseparable."

Iranian human rights activist, and Nobel peace prize winner Shirin Ebadi agrees."The rights of women and democracy are one," says Ms. Ebadi. And Islam, she says, is compatible with both."A dynamic interpretation of Islam will accept women's rights, democracy and human rights," says Ms. Ebadi. But some Muslim leaders, she says, distort Islam to justify dictatorship.

And here comes the UN!:

The United Nations on Sunday painted a damning portrait of women's rights in Iran, saying they had insufficient right of appeal against violence and were being sentenced to death on flimsy evidence.

Drawing upon her own status as a Muslim woman, Yakin Erturk, U.N. Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women, summed up with a cautionary note from the Koran.

"It will be asked from the girls who were buried alive: 'For what sin were we murdered?"' she said, quoting from the section of Islam's holy book entitled al-Takwir.

Yakin said in too many cases the tables were turned against women who filed suits, particularly after domestic violence.

"Those seeking redress are condemned as the guilty ones," she told a news conference at the end of a visit to Iran.

Evidence from an Iranian woman is worth half that of a man.

It's worth reading the rest and looking at the pictures!

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