Bending the Third Rail
Because We Should, We Can, We Do
Wednesday, February 21, 2007
Rape Follow-up
Remember that awful rape story?

The official Iraqi (al Maliki) response was to deny it happened. Now Maliki has taken it a step further:
BAGHDAD, Iraq - Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki on Wednesday fired a top Sunni official who had called for an international investigation into the rape allegations leveled by a Sunni Arab woman against three members of the Shiite-dominated security forces.

A statement by al-Maliki's office gave no reason in announcing the dismissal of Ahmed Abdul-Ghafour al-Samaraie, head of the Sunni Endowments. Al-Samaraie, whose organization cares for Sunni mosques and shrines in
Iraq, had joined other prominent Sunnis in criticizing the government's handling of the case.
Maliki must have attended the George Bush Jr. school of government.

Rape is a big deal everywhere, but for a Muslim woman to come forth with rape allegations is a big deal fraught with risk for the accuser:
Rape is considered especially heinous in conservative Muslim countries, and victims rarely come forward since they risk not only public scorn but possible "honor killing" at the hands of male relations seeking to restore the family's honor.
The alleged victim was treated by Americans who are not releasing the details of her examination. The woman is Sunni, so of course the entire episode is just adding fuel to the sectarian divides. And guess who's in the middle of the whole thing?

Update: A nurse who examined the woman corraborates her story:
A nurse who said she treated the woman after the attack said that she saw signs of sexual and physical assault. The woman, according to the nurse, could identify one of her attackers because he was not wearing a mask, as were the others, and could identify a second attacker by a mark on his genitals.