Posts Tagged ‘women’

The Iranian Sex Trade

In Uncategorized on May 31, 2013 at 3:32 am

The Iranian Sex Trade

The Iranian Sex Trade

Donna M. Hughes, a professor in the Women’s Studies Program at the University of Rhode Island, highlighted some frightening aspects of the Iranian regime in Islamic Fundamentalism and the Sex Slave Trade in Iran.

Professor Hughes begins:

A measure of Islamic fundamentalists’ success in controlling society is the depth and totality with which they suppress the freedom and rights of women. In Iran for 25 years, the ruling mullahs have enforced humiliating and sadistic rules and punishments on women and girls, enslaving them in a gender apartheid system of segregation, forced veiling, second-class status, lashing, and stoning to death.

This isn’t news.  This much everyone knows.  But the paper soon delves into details that are not common knowledge:

Joining a global trend, the fundamentalists have added another way to dehumanize women and girls: buying and selling them for prostitution. Exact numbers of victims are impossible to obtain, but according to an official source in Tehran, there has been a 635 percent increase in the number of teenage girls in prostitution. The magnitude of this statistic conveys how rapidly this form of abuse has grown. In Tehran, there are an estimated 84,000 women and girls in prostitution, many of them are on the streets, others are in the 250 brothels that reportedly operate in the city. The trade is also international: thousands of Iranian women and girls have been sold into sexual slavery abroad.

But surely the totalitarian Islamist government which monitors and controls every aspect of Iranian life is somehow unaware of these activities going on under their own noses? Well, apparently not:

This criminal trade is not conducted outside the knowledge and participation of the ruling fundamentalists. Government officials themselves are involved in buying, selling, and sexually abusing women and girls.

Given the totalitarian rule in Iran, most organized activities are known to the authorities. The exposure of sex slave networks in Iran has shown that many mullahs and officials are involved in the sexual exploitation and trade of women and girls. Women report that in order to have a judge approve a divorce they have to have sex with him. Women who are arrested for prostitution say they must have sex with the arresting officer. There are reports of police locating young women for sex for the wealthy and powerful mullahs.

In cities, shelters have been set-up to provide assistance for runaways. Officials who run these shelters are often corrupt; they run prostitution rings using the girls from the shelter. For example in Karaj, the former head of a Revolutionary Tribunal and seven other senior officials were arrested in connection with a prostitution ring that used 12 to 18 year old girls from a shelter called the Center of Islamic Orientation.

Other instances of corruption abound. There was a judge in Karaj who was involved in a network that identified young girls to be sold abroad. And in Qom, the center for religious training in Iran, when a prostitution ring was broken up, some of the people arrested were from government agencies, including the Department of Justice.

Not all children are used for prostitution locally. Many are sold overseas:

Popular destinations for victims of the slave trade are the Arab countries in the Persian Gulf. According to the head of the Tehran province judiciary, traffickers target girls between 13 and 17, although there are reports of some girls as young as 8 and 10, to send to Arab countries. One ring was discovered after an 18 year-old girl escaped from a basement where a group of girls were held before being sent to Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates. The number of Iranian women and girls who are deported from Persian Gulf countries indicates the magnitude of the trade.

Police have uncovered a number of prostitution and slavery rings operating from Tehran that have sold girls to France, Britain, Turkey, as well. One network based in Turkey bought smuggled Iranian women and girls, gave them fake passports, and transported them to European and Persian Gulf countries. In one case, a 16-year-old girl was smuggled to Turkey, and then sold to a 58-year-old European national for $20,000.

In the northeastern Iranian province of Khorasan, local police report that girls are being sold to Pakistani men as sex-slaves. The Pakistani men marry the girls, ranging in age from 12 to 20, and then sell them to brothels called “Kharabat” in Pakistan. One network was caught contacting poor families around Mashad and offering to marry girls. The girls were then taken through Afghanistan to Pakistan where they were sold to brothels.

In the southeastern border province of Sistan Baluchestan, thousands of Iranian girls reportedly have been sold to Afghani men. Their final destinations are unknown.

I know that under the rules of political correctness I am supposed to “celebrate diversity” and learn to “accept” other cultures and value them for their differences — but I am not going to.


Bikini ban: Emirate sets fines for skimpy swimwear

In Uncategorized on April 24, 2013 at 1:08 am

Bikini ban: Emirate sets fines for skimpy swimwear

Fines imposed for bikinis and skimpy swimwear at some UAE beaches

Associated Press – Mon, Apr 22, 2013










FILE – In this Thursday, Sept. 6, 2012 file photo, a woman reads the Quran on a beach as people in bikinis sunbathe and swim at sunset in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Bikinis and briefs are no longer welcome on some sands in the United Arab Emirates. Authorities in Ras al-Khaimah, the northernmost emirate in the UAE, have posted signs on public beaches warning of possible fines for revealing swim wear such as two-piece bikinis for women and brief trunks for men. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)

RAS AL-KHAIMAH, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Bikinis and briefs are no longer welcome on some sands in the United Arab Emirates.

Authorities in Ras al-Khaimah, the northernmost emirate in the UAE, have posted signs on public beaches warning of possible fines for revealing swimwear such as two-piece bikinis for women and brief trunks for men.

The Abu Dhabi-based newspaper The National reports Monday that the move followed complaints from local families who didn’t like sharing the sands with tourists showing too much skin. The emirate is located about 100 kilometers (60 miles) northeast of Dubai.

The UAE hosts a patchwork of different social mores among its seven semi-autonomous emirates, ranging from conservative to relatively liberal. Dubai for example urges “respectful” attire but rarely objects to outfits such as miniskirts or bikinis.

Sexy Bikers

In Uncategorized on November 29, 2012 at 5:52 am

Olympics end after historic fortnight for women, internet

In Uncategorized on August 14, 2012 at 4:31 am

Olympics end after historic fortnight for women, internet

By Brian Tynes – email

London 2012 Olympic medals designed by British artist David Watkins. (Credit: London 2012)2012 Summer GamesMore>>
Trade body says UK tourism slumped during Olympics
Trade body says UK tourism slumped during Olympics
A leading trade association for British tour operators says tourism slumped during the Olympics.More >>
The Olympics brought less tourist money to recession-hit Britain than officials expected, a trade group said Monday, with a majority of tourist businesses reporting losses from last year.More >>Belarus shot putter stripped of Olympic gold
Belarus shot putter stripped of Olympic gold
Shot putter Nadzeya Ostapchuk of Belarus became the first athlete to be stripped of a medal at the London Olympics after her gold was withdrawn for doping.More >>
Shot putter Nadzeya Ostapchuk of Belarus became the first athlete to be stripped of a medal at the London Olympics after her gold was withdrawn Monday for doping.More >>Olympics end after historic fortnight for women, internet
Olympics end after historic fortnight for women, internet
Updated: Monday, August 13 2012 6:59 AM EDT2012-08-13 10:59:27 GMTAug 13, 2012 6:59 PM Aug 13, 2012 6:59 PM
No matter how you judge success, there can be no denying that the 2012 Olympics in London were one. Team USA ran away with the medal count, led by its contingency of women, who not only made up the majorityMore >>
No matter how you judge success, there can be no denying that the 2012 Olympics in London were one.More >>EYES ON LONDON: For London Olympics, farewell time
EYES ON LONDON: For London Olympics, farewell time
This is the final installment of Eyes on London, which roamed the 2012 Olympics and its host city with journalists from The Associated Press bringing the flavor and details of the games to you:More >>
This is the final installment of Eyes on London, which roamed the 2012 Olympics and its host city with journalists from The Associated Press bringing the flavor and details of the games to you:More >>London Olympic Park deserted after big party
London Olympic Park deserted after big party
The Olympic Park in London has gone from party central to an empty, blocked-off construction site overnight.More >>
The Olympic Park in London has gone from party central to an empty, blocked-off construction site overnight.More >>(RNN) – No matter how you judge success, there can be no denying that the 2012 Olympics in London were one.

Team USA ran away with the medal count, led by its contingent of women, who not only made up the majority of the team, but also won a majority of the medals.

Missy Franklin was stellar in her debut, Rebecca Soni set two world records, Katie Ledecky proved age is just a number, the women’s gymnastics team racked up a ton of hardware, Kayla Harrison won the first American gold medal in Judo, American women outperformed their male counterparts on the track, Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings earned their third gold medal in beach volleyball, Kim Rhode became the first American woman to win gold in five consecutive Olympics and the women’s basketball team followed suit.

Even McKayla Maroney has to be impressed.

The 16-year-old Maroney made history in quite another way. She made the gymnastics team because of her specialty on the vault, and only competed in that event the entire Olympics. She was all but guaranteed a gold medal in the event.

She was so guaranteed, in fact, that when she landed on her backside rather than her feet on her second vault in the event finals, no one could recall the last time she’d ever made such a mistake. Her first vault was good enough to raise her average to second place, but her disinterested expression after receiving the silver medal has gained her far more fame than a gold medal would have anyway.

Case in point, Maroney used her vault skills in the team competition to power the team to a gold medal, but what she is more remembered for is the viral internet meme of her being unimpressed with everything, including the Apollo 11 moon landing, the World War II flag raising over Iwo Jima, Moses parting the Red Sea, the McRib, Paul Ryan’s selection as Mitt Romney’s running mate (she can’t vote anyway), the destruction of the Death Star, Queen Elizabeth II, the birth of Jesus, the opening ceremony from the 2008 Beijing Olympics and, in a bit of comic irony, the final vault by Kerri Strug on an injured leg that clinched the gold medal for the women’s gymnastics team in 1996.

That last one is understandable, though, because newborns are rarely impressed with anything.

The only thing truly disappointing for Team USA was the men’s gymnastics team, though Maroney seemed to have no opinion on that one. She was, though, unimpressed with Michael Phelps, and is undoubtedly the only person to feel that way.

Phelps wrapped up his career by clinching the all-time medal count in impressive fashion. He had almost quit swimming and only trained about half as much as he normally would have and yet was still the best swimmer, American or otherwise. Had Phelps not been there, Ryan Lochte would have surely been the star, but he was no match for the swim legend. Lochte did beat Phelps in their first race, but that came early in the Games and was overshadowed by Phelps’ later dominance and Lochte’s mother’s comments that he likes one-night stands.

The race Lochte won over Phelps – the 400-meter individual medley – was one Phelps swore he was done with after Beijing, much like he swears he’s not competing in Rio de Janeiro in 2016. Only time will tell if he breaks that promise.

Rest assured, NBC hopes he does (more on that in a minute).

Phelps was the biggest story of the first week, but Usain Bolt was the biggest story of the second. He became the first man to win the 100-meter dash and 200-meter dash in consecutive Olympics.

That drew allegations of illegal drug use from American sprinting legend Carl Lewis, who until this year was the only man to win the 100-meter dash consecutively (technically, he only won it once in 1984, but he was awarded a gold medal in 1988 after Ben Johnson had it stripped following a drug violation). Lewis accused all of Jamaica of illegal drug use.

Jamaica’s track team won gold and silver in the men’s 100-meter; gold, silver and bronze in the men’s 200-meter; gold in the men’s 4×100 relay; gold and bronze in the women’s 100-meter; silver in the women’s 200-meter; and silver in the women’s 4×100 relay, one spot behind the U.S., who set a world record. All other individual medals in sprinting were won by Americans.

So, it was a pretty eventful two weeks, especially due to this being the first Games following the rise of Twitter and all the positive and negative things that come with that.

Lolo Jones became a star partly because of her admission of being a virgin and partly because of her entertaining tweets. When she expressed disappointment over the silver medal performance of the men’s archery team by asking when the shooting competition started, that fame almost backfired. The comment came about a week after a shooting in a Colorado movie theatre that left 12 dead.

For what it’s worth, the U.S. later won three gold medals in shooting events.

Why Men Are Attracted to High-Earning Women

In Uncategorized on June 2, 2012 at 4:55 am

Why Men Are Attracted to High-Earning Women

There used to be a romantic stigma for single women who made money, but those days are numbered
By Liza Mundy | @lizamundy | March 15, 2012

Today’s high-earning women are justly proud of their paychecks — I explore the rise of the female breadwinner in this week’s TIME cover story — but they still often feel that men will be intimidated rather than attracted to them as potential mates. They think their success will seem too threatening and be held against them. As a result, some women in the dating pool devise camouflage mechanisms. A young ob-gyn working in Pittsburgh tells men she meets that she “works at the hospital, taking care of patients” — subtly encouraging the idea that she’s a nurse, not a doctor. When a university vice president in south Texas was on the dating market, she would vaguely tell men she worked in the school’s administrative offices and avoid letting them walk her to her car for fear they would see her BMW. “I want them to give me a chance,” says the Pittsburgh doctor. “I want them to at least not walk away immediately.”

But a growing body of research shows that while there may have once been a stigma to making money, high-earning women actually have an advantage in the dating-and-marriage market. In February 2012, the Hamilton Project, a Brookings Institution initiative that tracks trends in earnings and life prospects, found that marriage rates have risen for top female earners — the share of women in the very top earning percentile who are married grew by more than 10 percentage points — even as they have declined for women in lower earning brackets. (The report also suggested that the decline in those lower brackets may be because women can support themselves and are dissuaded from marriage by the declining earnings of men.)

We got the first indication of a major shift back in 2001 with a study by University of Texas at Austin psychologist David Buss that showed that when men ranked traits that were important in a marital partner, there had been a striking rise in the importance they gave to women’s earnings and a sharp drop in the value they placed on domestic skills. Similarly, University of Wisconsin demographer Christine Schwartz noted in a 2010 study in the American Journal of Sociology that “men are increasingly looking for partners who will ‘pull their own weight’ economically in marriage” and are willing to compete for them.

Indeed, men may be readier to cede their role as breadwinner than they are given credit for. Last year, Stanford University economist Ran Abramitzky, working with two European colleagues, published a fascinating study that suggests exactly this. Looking at demographic records for the French population after World War I, they found that men in regions that had suffered higher mortality rates (and were therefore short on men) were more able to “marry up.” Given the opportunity to marry into a life with more resources and prospects, the men hastened to do so. To Abramitzky, the surprise was “how flexible this marriage market was” and how quickly men were able to adapt to the changing demographics.

Now that women are poised to become the major breadwinners in a majority of families within the next generation, this research suggests that men will be just as adaptive and realize what an advantage a high-earning partner can be. Men are just as willing as women to marry up, and life is now giving them the opportunity to do so. So, women, own up to your accomplishments, buy him a drink, and tell him what you really do.,9171,2109140,00.html?pcd=pw-op

A movie for women who light up the world

In Uncategorized on April 22, 2012 at 5:39 am

Women are caregivers, friends, mothers, heads of households, bosses, employees…the list goes on and on. What women accomplish is amazing!

VIRGIN test in Africa

In Uncategorized on January 4, 2012 at 4:49 am

Women in Rural Argentina Speak Out on Climate Change

In Uncategorized on October 20, 2011 at 7:34 am

Women in Rural Argentina Speak Out on Climate Change
By Marcela Valente

A provincial official (speaking) and the members of the Tribunal at the opening of the Hearing.

Credit:Marcela Valente /IPS
Buy this picture

RESISTENCIA, Argentina, Oct 13, 2011 (IPS) – Rural and indigenous women in northern Argentina, hit hard by the expanding agricultural frontier, deforestation and the spraying of toxic pesticides, spoke out about their problems and set forth proposals for discussion at the next global summit on climate change.

They did so at the Women’s Hearing on Gender and Climate Justice 2011-Argentina, held Tuesday Oct. 11 in Resistencia, the capital of Chaco province, 950 km north of Buenos Aires, attended by representatives of organisations from the northern 10 of the country’s 23 provinces.

These women are on the front line of indiscriminate logging, erosion, loss of biodiversity, drought, floods and pesticide pollution. They are all too familiar with the impact of the productive model that is exacerbating global warming, and they are demanding a stop to it.

“When the trees are cut down, we lose the rain, we lose everything, we are left without water, without firewood and without crops,” said Basilea Barrientos from Colonia Aborigen, in Chaco. “Our community has always believed that when resources are used, they must be replaced.”

“When the forests are felled, the wind blows the soil away, cold and heat become extreme, campesinos (small farmers) emigrate and agribusiness companies fumigate us,” Jorgelina Córdoba, of the Indigenous Campesino Assembly of Formosa province, told IPS.

Córdoba is well aware of what she is talking about. A widow with 11 children, she lives in the place where she was born, Bañado La Estrella (a wetland created by annual flooding of the Pilcomayo river), where she leads the resistance against the encroaching bulldozers.

“We know how to raise cattle on arid land, but now the campesinos are leaving, and the trees on their lands are being felled to make way for soy,” she complained.

Participants at the Climate Justice Hearing.

Credit: Marcela Valente /IPS
Soy is now Argentina’s top export crop; the transgenic variety resistant to glyphosate, an herbicide, is grown on a large scale for export to Asia. However, spraying with glyphosate destroys biodiversity and harms human health.

Cándida Fernández of the Formosa Campesino Movement told IPS that in her village, Loma Senés, children are being born with malformations caused by the toxic herbicide. Local people are also being affected by the spread of cattle feedlots.

Unlike traditional ranching in Argentina, in which cattle range freely and feed on natural pasture, expansion of soy crops has caused cattle to be raised in feedlots where the animals are confined in pens and fed on grains. “The smell is unbearable, and they are only metres away from houses and the school,” Fernández said.

Next to the fields where small farmers grow crops using sustainable techniques, waste channels from feedlots carry endless flows of animal dung, urine, and even carcasses.

The hearing was convened by Global Call to Action against Poverty (GCAP), a coalition of NGOs, and the Feminist Task Force, affiliated to GCAP, which works on underlining poverty as a women’s issue and calls for “gender equality to end poverty.”

Cándida Fernández, from Formosa province, testifies about harm caused by pesticides.

Credit: Marcela Valente /IPS
Similar hearings and tribunals will be held in October and November in another 14 countries in Latin America, Africa and Asia, as part of the “Strengthening Voices: Search for Solutions” 2011 Women’s Tribunals.

In Argentina the hearing was organised by the Institute for Social Development and Human Promotion (INDES) which is part of the Encuentro network, a member of GCAP. In an interview with IPS, INDES representative Analía Delssin said the aim is for the conclusions and contributions of the hearing to reach decision-makers at national and global level.

The hearing was presided over by a tribunal made up of one member of INDES and two women from organisations affiliated to GCAP.

A report documenting the women’s testimonies and proposals will be drawn up and sent to the 17th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 17), to be held in Durban, South Africa Nov. 28-Dec. 9.

Delssin said climate justice is about highlighting the fact that some groups are more vulnerable to climate change than others. Among the more vulnerable groups are women, and especially rural women. “They have to walk further to fetch water, firewood, and craft materials, and they struggle to care for their sick children who get respiratory illnesses from exposure to pollution,” she said.

But women are also the people who are most knowledgeable about the problem, and they are part of the solution, so they should participate when decisions are taken about measures and financing for adaptation and mitigation of the effects of climate change. In fact, several women brought valuable experiences of mitigation to the hearing, such as teachers in rural schools in Chaco, who are developing educational programmes to promote sustainable farming based on agroecological principles, in spite of resistance from neighbours who farm in the traditional way.

Lucrecia Marcelli, head of the School of Family Agriculture in the Chaco town of General San Martín, said that her secondary level students have an organic vegetable garden, and have shown neighbouring producers that cotton can be grown without the chemicals that the other farmers use to the detriment of the school.

Maria Amelia Bertoldi, from a primary school near Pampa del Infierno, in Chaco, talked about a programme to train “eco-guardians” to protect the environment. They are students and teachers who take part in studying and analysing toxic agricultural chemicals, environmental laws and other activities to promote eco-friendly development.

Examples of eco-friendly agricultural production were also presented, for instance by Zunilde Poggio of the Bella Vista Ecological Association, in a rural area in Corrientes province, where some 20 families produce natural foods.

“The goals of agroecology are food sovereignty, respect for biodiversity and natural resources, avoidance of toxic chemicals and of air, water and soil pollution. And it is not large-scale farming, it does not use hired labour but instead encourages families to stay rooted to the land,” she told IPS.

However, this form of environmentally friendly farming is under threat. “We have three large rice plantations nearby, where they use pesticides, and we have not been able to get the 1994 law against toxic agricultural chemicals enforced,” Poggio complained.

“We must change the large-scale agricultural production model, which causes pollution and employs only a few people. That is what summits like Durban are for,” she said.

And it is the Durban summit that the dozens of rural women – whose meeting in Resistencia was held just ahead of the International Day of Rural Women, to be celebrated Oct. 15 – are determined to reach with their proposals and testimonies about the impacts they are already feeling on their environment, production and way of life. (END)

World badminton branded ‘sexist and dated’ over women’s dress ruling (pic)

In Uncategorized on September 23, 2011 at 7:51 am

World badminton branded ‘sexist and dated’ over women’s dress ruling (pic)

World badminton’s attempts to glamorise the sport with a mandatory rule for women to wear skirts have been branded “dated and sexist” by one of Scotland’s leading mixed doubles players.The Badminton World Federation’s new dress code was due to come into effect from Sunday – the start date for Olympic qualification – requiring all female players to wear skirts or dresses “to ensure attractive presentation”.

However the BWF has now pushed back the new dress code until June 1 after criticism from players and governing bodies.
Some players believe that the ruling will hamper their movement on court while Pakistan officials say that it contradicts the country’s religious principles.

Those who fail to play tournaments under the new rules will be fined $250, though players may continue to wear shorts but underneath a skirt.

Leading the calls for women to have freedom in what they can wear on court, Bankier, currently inside the world’s top 20 with English partner Chris Adcock, told Telegraph Sport: “You can’t make demands like that to make women more glamorous.

“It is our right to choose what to wear on court and I will certainly fight to make sure this dated and simply sexist rule doesn’t happen.

“It is ridiculous; tennis certainly doesn’t have this problem so why should we have to put up with it.”

The BWF said that the skirt requirement does not “in any way discriminate against any religious or other beliefs and respects women”.

The governing body’s plans were first approved in 2009 before Octagon, the agency handling BWF’s marketing strategy, made a series of recommendations to raise the profile of the sport.

Jamie Dean, a sports marketing expert at Radar, said: “As the game of badminton grows on a global basis it needs to encourage commercial investment into the sport through sponsors so the decision is the right one.

“But badminton needs to become a better viewing experience to enhance sponsor interest. What scares the sponsors away are the low viewing figures.”

What they say…

Badminton Asia Confederation Vice-President Syed Naqi Mohsin: “The BWF states that the new regulation will not discriminate against any religion or beliefs. How can wearing skirts not clash with the religious beliefs of female Muslim players?”

Vita Marissa, Indonesia’s mixed doubles player: “The point of going into competitions is for us to be champions, and we have to feel comfortable while playing.”

Indian shuttler Jwala Gutta: “I don’t think it’s the right way. You can’t pressurise anybody to wear anything. What kind of clothes a person wears is totally up to them. It’s totally a personal choice.”

“I did wear a skirt in the All-England tournament last month but it was so big that even affected my performance.”
Last year’s Asian Championship winner Li Xuerui

“You can’t force anyone to become more glamourous. Probably, they can ask the sponsors to design better clothing like the tennis girls wear.” India’s doubles specialist Jwala Gutta.

My new Tatoo

In Uncategorized on August 22, 2011 at 3:37 am