News+and+politics religion philosophy the cynic librarian: Occupation, Sex, Murder and Prostitution

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Occupation, Sex, Murder and Prostitution

The ugly story behind any occupation of another country is the need by occupying soldiers to find sexual release. In a high-stress environment like Iraq, it is no different. Even with the plethora of online pornography sites, there is still the need for that human intimacy that no porn pictures can satiate...

A recent story reports that a US soldier was court-martialed for killing a 17-year old Iraqi boy after having consensual sex with him. The soldier was given 25 years in prison. According to the Associated Press:

...The News & Observer of Raleigh reported Saturday that records show Merida and the Iraqi were on guard duty May 11 in a tower on the perimeter of an Army camp near Tikrit in northern Iraq. At about 10:30 p.m., Merida shot the teen 11 times with his carbine.

Merida first told investigators the teen demanded money at gunpoint. Later, he said he killed the boy because he forced him to have sex. In a third interview, Merida said he got angry after the two had consensual sex.

While this story is no doubt an exception, the rule is that where there are soldiers there will be prostitutes, perhaps proving the truth of the old maxim that where there's a demand there'll be a supply.

But this should not bring a glint of satisfaction to those who want to place the blame on either side. Often, those who provide the services are impoverished by the war and have no other means of subsistence. In many cases, as well, young girls are forced into this by their families who need to feed themselves and their children.

In an online forum in August, I posted a link to an article that described this situation in Iraq. A soldier who'd been there detailed the circumstances of much prostitution that he saw. According to Patrick Lackatt:
Prostitution, he tells me, once illegal before the American occupation, is now rife in Iraq, and hundreds of girls throughout the country are being sold into the seedy world of brothels and sex slavery.

"For one dollar you can get a prostitute in Iraq for one hour," Patrick says.

"For $10 you can get a room, wash her up and do the business," he adds.

He grins and shrugs his shoulders when asked whether this constitutes freedom, adding he has little time for the man who claims that from time to time as the reason Americans are still being sent there.
These stories, no doubt, can be used by both sides of the war debate to fit their own agendas. One thing, at least seems true: when you put an occupying army into a country and ravage it, human misery and corruption will follow.

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