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War, Rape and Genocide: Never Again?

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War, Rape and Genocide: Never Again? Martin Donohoe Conclusions We failed to act to halt the genocide in the Sudan, just as we failed to act in Rwanda And yet we ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: War, Rape and Genocide: Never Again?


1
War, Rape and GenocideNever Again?
  • Martin Donohoe

2
Special Thanks To
  • Vic Sidel and Barry Levy (War and Public Health)
  • Photographers James Nachtwey, Sebastio Salgado,
    and others

3
Outline
  • Sudanese genocide
  • History of wartime violence against women in the
    20th Century
  • VAW in the U.S. military
  • War and Masculinity
  • The Nature of Violence and Rape in War

4
Outline
  • Health Consequences
  • Refugee Camps
  • Human Rights Issues
  • Role of Health Professionals
  • Conclusions and Recommendations

5
Darfur, Sudan
  • As many as 300,000 - 450,000 deaths over last two
    years (most from disease)
  • 2.7 million in refugee camps
  • Government-supported, Islamic Janjaweed militias
    responsible for killing Black Africans
  • Arms sales to Sudan from China, Russia, France,
    Iran, Saudi Arabia, Belarus, Poland, Lithuania

6
Darfur, Sudan
  • Bush administration called situation genocide,
    yet failed to act substantively
  • Bush administration relied on Sudan, which used
    to harbor Osama bin Laden, for military
    intelligence
  • Obama administration has failed to act
    significantly, despite 2010 mass rape/indictment
    of warlord

7
Darfur, Sudan
  • Bipartisan Congressional Research Service reports
    administration concerned that holding Sudanese
    officials accountable could disrupt cooperation
  • Nevertheless, mild economic sanctions and travel
    restrictions enacted in May, 2007
  • Election to form Southern Sudan (1/11) may bring
    peace

8
Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)
  • Africas World War
  • Between 700,000 and 3 million deaths
  • 2 million displaced
  • 1.7-1.8 million women raped 3.1-3.4 million
    victims of IPV
  • 2011 48 rapes/hr
  • Unraveling of civil society
  • Life expectancy for those born in 2011 40

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11
History
  • 250 wars in 20th Century
  • Most conflicts within and between small states
  • Many in sub-Saharan Africa
  • 85-90 of casualties among civilians
  • Opposite at end of 19th Century

12
Infamous Genocides
  • China (under Mao), late 1950s early 1970s 30
    million killed
  • USSR (mostly under Stalin), 1920 mid 1950s 20
    million killed
  • Germany (under Nazis), mid 1930s 1945 over 11
    million killed
  • Japan, late 1930s mid 1940s 10 million killed

13
History
  • Women considered spoils of war
  • Abduction of Helen of Troy
  • Rape of the Sabine women
  • Hundreds of thousands raped in 20th Century
    conflicts

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History - World War II
  • Rape widespread on most sides in World War II
    (Americans least common perpetrators)
  • Japanese soldiers forced between 100,000 and
    200,000 women into sexual slavery (comfort
    women)
  • Korea, Burma, China, Holland, Indonesia,
    Phillipines

19
Comfort Women
  • Some underwent forced hysterectomies to prevent
    menstruation, make them constantly available
  • More than half died due to mistreatment

20
Comfort Women
  • 3-5 year detention
  • 5-20 rapes per day
  • For 3 yrs of enslavement, low estimate is 7500
    rapes per woman
  • Japan has not compensated any victims
  • Historical blindness to atrocities

21
History
  • Vietnam War
  • Perpetrators included U.S. soldiers
  • Few brought to justice
  • 1971 Bangladesh War for Independence
  • 200,000 - 400,000 girls and women raped by
    Pakistani army
  • 25,000 pregnancies

22
History
  • 1994 Rwandan genocide
  • At least 250,000 women raped
  • 1990s ethnic cleansing in Bosnia
  • gt20,000 Moslem women raped
  • Other 20th Century conflicts civil wars in
    Liberia, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Egypt, Libya,
    Syria

23
History
  • 2000s Well-documented, credible allegations of
    sexual humiliation and rape against female
    detainees at US facilities in Afghanistan and
    Iraq
  • Iraqs Abu Ghraib prison sexual humiliation,
    forced homosexual poses
  • Guantanamo Bay prison Muslims taunted with fake
    menstrual blood
  • Amnesty International and Red Cross have condemned

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26
Violence against women in the U.S. military
  • 5 - 20 times more likely than other government
    employees to have suffered a completed or
    attempted sexual assault
  • Higher rates of chronic pelvic pain,
    dysmenorrhea, abnormal periods, premenstrual
    syndrome, and dissatisfaction with sexual
    relations
  • all correlate with a history of sexual trauma
    while in the military

27
Violence against women in the U.S. military
  • U.S. military now 14 female
  • While racial epithets banned, terms like bitch,
    pussy, dyke still common
  • Pornography officially banned, but easily
    available

28
Violence against women in the U.S. military
  • 2007 Pentagon report 2,085 sexual assaults
  • But est. 60-80 not reported
  • Veterans Administration study 24 of female
    patients under age 50 reported domestic violence
    within the past year
  • 2008-2011 dramatic increase in reported sexual
    assaults

29
Violence against women in the U.S. military
  • Government Accountability Office Report, 2006
  • Aggressive and duplicitous recruiting tactics on
    rise
  • Including sexual harassment and rape
  • 2008 Defense Dept. granting more moral waivers,
    due to declining recruitment, thus enlisting more
    men with records of domestic and sexual violence

30
Militarism and Masculinity
  • Pervasive glorification of war and its acceptance
    as means of conflict resolution
  • Linked to antiquated definitions of appropriate
    masculine behavior and coming-of-age rites

31
Militarism and Masculinity
  • Vocabulary and imagery laden with denigrations of
    the feminine and perverse phallic imagery of
    weapons as extensions of male generative organs
  • weapons ads employ sexual imagery
  • weapons described in terms of hardness,
    penetration, and thrust

32
War and Masculinity
  • Association of military bases with prostitution
  • Tacitly accepted by commanders
  • Men dominant decision-makers in pursuing
    militarization, fighting wars, and resolving
    international conflicts

33
Violence and Rape in War
  • Occurs against backdrop of ongoing individual and
    societal forms of violence against women
  • Rape
  • Individual acts of violence
  • Genocide (to terrorize, subjugate, humiliate, and
    ethnically cleanse subjugated population)

34
Violence and Rape in War
  • Usually more sadistic and violent than rape
    outside of war
  • Often committed in presence of womans husband
    and children, who are often then killed

35
Violence and Rape in War
  • Forced continuation of pregnancy
  • 1994 Rwandan genocide 5000 pregnancies
  • Enfants mauvais souvenir (children of bad
    blood)
  • Difficulty caring for children
  • Abandonment and infanticide

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Violence and Rape in War
  • Male victims
  • Raped, forced to commit rape against other
    victims / perform sex acts on other prisoners
    and/or guards, castrations, forced circumcisions,
    other sexual mutilations
  • All under threat of torture or death

40
Health Consequences of Rape in War
  • Traumatic injuries, including fistulae
  • STDs, including HIV
  • Pregnancy
  • Access to emergency contraception, abortion, and
    antibiotics often extremely limited

41
Health Consequences of Rape in War
  • Short-term psychological sequelae
  • Fear, profound sense of helplessness and
    desperation
  • Long-term psychiatric sequelae
  • Depression, anxiety disorders (including PTSD),
    multiple somatic symptoms, flashbacks, difficulty
    reestablishing intimate relationships, shame,
    persistent fears, and blunted enjoyment of life

42
Peacekeepers / Refugee Camps
  • 7,000 man African Union peacekeeping force in
    Darfur under investigation for raping and abusing
    local women and girls
  • Refugees forced to endure rape at border
    crossings as price of passage

43
Refugee Camps
  • Guards rape women or force them into sex in
    return for protection from bandits or for basic
    goods, including food
  • Presence of abusive guards inside camps, and
    bandits just outside, makes simple tasks such as
    going to the latrine or gathering water or
    firewood dangerous/life threatening

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50
Human Rights Issues
  • Violence against women and girls violates several
    principles enshrined in international and
    regional human rights law, including the right to
    life, equality, security, equal protection under
    the law, and freedom from torture and other
    cruel, inhumane, or degrading treatment

51
Human Rights Issues
  • Tokyo War Crimes Trial rape first identified as
    a war crime
  • Successful prosecution of some commanders
  • 1993 UN Commission on Human Rights resolution
    calls rape a crime of war

52
Human Rights Issues
  • 2001 International War Crimes Tribunal rules
    that rape in war is a crime against humanity
  • 1990s/2000s successful prosecutions of rape as a
    war crime and act of genocide
  • 2009/2010 International Criminal Court issues
    warrants fro arrest of Sudanese President Omar
    al-Bashir for human rights abuses/genocide
  • Al-Bashir still in power

53
Human Rights Issues Other International
Agreements
  • The Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of
    Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW)
  • adopted by UN General Assembly in 1979
  • calls for equality of the sexes in political,
    social, cultural, civil, and other fields
  • Ratified by 162 countries, but not U.S.

54
Human Rights Issues Other International
Agreements
  • UN Security Council Resolution 1325
  • adopted in 2000
  • mandates the protection of, and respect for, the
    human rights of women and girls
  • calls on all parties to armed conflict to take
    specific measures to protect women and girls from
    gender-based violence, particularly rape and
    sexual violence
  • U.S. has not signed

55
Human Rights Issues Other International
Agreements
  • International Criminal Court
  • established by international treaty in 2002
  • codifies accountability for gender-based crimes
    against women during military conflict by
    defining sexual and gender violence of all kinds
    as war crimes
  • 139 countries have signed on, U.S. has not

56
Role of Health Professionals
  • Document incidents of rape
  • Use medical data to verify widespread rape
  • Use techniques of medical science to validate
    victims testimonies
  • Treat individual victims

57
Management of victims of sexual violence during
war
  • Conduct a full history and physical examination
  • Treat physical injuries and sexually-transmitted
    diseases
  • Offer emergency contraception and referral for
    abortion
  • Provide counseling and psychological support

58
Management of victims of sexual violence during
war
  • Facilitate reporting to appropriate authorities
  • Gather forensic evidence
  • Provide documentation of findings (in triplicate,
    with a copy for the victim, the United Nations
    High Commission of Refugees and the providers
    medical agency)

59
Management of victims of sexual violence during
war
  • Health exams should be conducted in a
    confidential manner by trained workers in a safe
    environment
  • Female providers should be widely available

60
Management of victims of sexual violence during
war
  • In refugee camps
  • Place water collection points and latrines in
    central, well-lighted areas
  • food distributed directly to women
  • House female-headed groups and unaccompanied
    children in safe areas
  • Women should be involved in designing and running
    the camps

61
Conclusions and Recommendations
  • Each war represents a failure of our species to
    live in harmony, a waste of precious human
    capital, a further scourge on the environment,
    and a crime against all humanity
  • Rape in war represents the malevolent nadir of
    human behavior

62
Conclusions and Recommendations
  • Given the increasing spread of technology and
    materials for the construction of weapons of both
    small- and large-scale destruction, the enormity
    of the social and environmental problems facing
    humanity, and the realistic potential for the
    demise of the human species, rapid change is
    desperately needed

63
U.S. Must Play Leadership Role
  • Limiting consumption
  • Cutting unnecessary military programs
  • Increasing funds and using troops for
    international peacemaking (instead of making war)
  • Building alliances with the UN to solve
    international disputes

64
U.S. Must Play Leadership Role
  • Vigorously investigate its own human rights
    abuses and fully prosecute those responsible
  • Sign on to international agreements CEDAW, UNSC
    Resolution 1325, ICC, the Convention on the
    Rights of the Child, the Convention on Economic,
    Social, and Cultural Rights, and the Convention
    for the Suppression of Traffic in Persons, others

65
U.S. Must Play Leadership Role
  • Pass International Violence Against Women Act
  • Would require US government to prevent and
    respond to violence against women and girls as a
    part of US foreign policy and aid programs
  • Stalled in Congress
  • Join forces with international community to
    rapidly apply both economic and military
    pressure, including the protective use of
    military troops, to halt genocide and mass rape

66
Conclusions
  • We failed to act to halt the genocide in the
    Sudan, just as we failed to act in Rwanda
  • And yet we continue to say, Never again.
  • It is time for our nations policies to match
    this rhetoric

67
References
  • Donohoe MT. Individual and societal forms of
    violence against women in the United States and
    the developing world an overview. Curr Womens
    Hlth Reports 20022(5)313-319.
  • Donohoe MT. Violence and human rights abuses
    against women in the developing world. Medscape
    Ob/Gyn and Womens Health 20038(2) posted
    11/26/03. http//www.medscape.com/viewarticle/4642
    55
  • Donohoe MT. Violence against women Partner abuse
    and sexual assault. Hospital Physician
    200440(10)24-31. Available at
    http//www.turner-white.com/memberfile.php?PubCode
    hp_oct04_partner.pdf

68
References
  • Donohoe MT. War, rape and genocide Never again?
    Medscape Ob/Gyn and Womens Health 20049(2)
    posted 10/22/04. http//www.medscape.com/viewartic
    le/491147
  • Donohoe MT. Violence against women in the
    military. Medscape Ob/Gyn and Womens Health
    200510(2) posted 9/13/05. Available at
    http//www.medscape.com/viewarticle/512380

69
Contact Information
  • Public Health and Social Justice Website
  • http//www.phsj.org
  • martindonohoe_at_phsj.org
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