Four letters that causes so much damage: Rape


Written by: Ronak Ghorbani

Rape is a heart-wrenching, horrible thing.

At McClung’s one of our features in the spring 2009 issue was an in-depth look at the use of rape as a weapon in the Democratic Republic of Congo written by Nicole Rogers (the whole issue will be posted online shortly).

In the feature, Rogers cites testaments told by some of the women who were raped, many of which now have destroyed genitals. But using rape as a weapon of war, unfortunately, is nothing new. “An estimated 200,000 women were raped during the 1971 conflict for Bangladesh’s independence, while Sierra Leone’s 10-year civil war violated 64,000 women. The Bosnia and Herzegovina war was known for its rape hotels, while up to half a million women were raped during Rwanda’s genocide. Liberia, Colombia, Darfur, Sudan, Afghanistan, Haiti — the list goes on,” Rogers writes.

Iran has now joined this list.

Since the June 2009 uprising after the results of the country’s fraudulent elections, hundreds of people have been arrested, many are now being trialed and now there is information surfacing  that some of those arrested have been sexually abused into submission.

This is an excerpt from an article on the website Tehran Beurau:

In a letter to the head of the Assembly, Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani, Karroubi (recent defeated presidential candidate) said,” Some of the detainees of the [post-election] unrest claim that the detained girls have been sexually assaulted with such brutality that they have all sustained intense vaginal tearing.”

“The young men in detention were also sexually assaulted in a manner that some are now suffering from depression and other physical and psychological problems and are incapable of even leaving their homes.”

To read the whole article click here.

I first heard about this when I logged onto Facebook and saw a link to the article on my friend’s wall. It makes me frustrated that I am reading about such horrific things from the safety of my bedroom. Using rape as a weapon of war (and I believe that this is a war against freedom in Iran) is a horrid, horrid thing – as all forms of torture are. But to abuse such a natural thing to do (sex) in such a violent way is utterly vile.

I realize that there isn’t much depth to this blog post but if I can’t do any direct-political action against these crimes against humanity then I hope raising awareness about such situations helps. I think rape is something we all need to discuss more and support organizations that are fighting it because in reality, it can happen to anyone.

Some resources:

If you have any resources/links please post them


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