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Iraq

Mental Health of Transgender Veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan Conflicts Who Experienced Military Sexual Trauma: MST and Mental Health of Transgender Veterans

Citation:

Lindsay, Jan A., Colt Keo-Meier, Sonora Hudson, Annette Walder, Lindsey A. Martin, and Michael R. Kauth. 2016. “Mental Health of Transgender Veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan Conflicts Who Experienced Military Sexual Trauma: MST and Mental Health of Transgender Veterans.” Journal of Traumatic Stress 29 (6): 563–67.

Authors: Jan A. Lindsay, Colt Keo-Meier, Sonora Hudson, Annette Walder, Lindsey A. Martin, Michael R. Kauth

Abstract:

Little is known about military sexual trauma (MST) in transgender veterans. To address this gap, we examined archival data regarding transgender veterans from the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. There were 332 transgender veterans treated at the Veterans Health Administration between 2000 and 2013 (78 men, 254 women; mean age 33.86 years), with most being non-Hispanic White. Transgender status and mental health conditions were identified using the International Classification of Diseases, 9th Revision (ICD-9; World Health Organization, 1980) codes and chart review. Men and women were analyzed separately, using contingency tables and χ2 testing for categorical variables and t tests for continuous variables. Likelihood of having a mental health condition and MST were examined using logistic regression. Among the 15% of participants who experienced MST, MST was associated with the likelihood of posttraumatic stress disorder, adjusted OR = 6.09, 95% confidence interval (CI) [1.22, 30.44] and personality disorder, OR = 3.86, 95% CI [1.05, 14.22] for men and with depressive, OR = 3.33, 95% CI [1.12, 9.93], bipolar, OR = 2.87, 95% CI [1.12, 7.44], posttraumatic stress, OR = 2.42, [1.11, 5.24], and personality disorder, OR = 4.61, 95% CI [2.02, 10.52] for women. Implications include that medical forms should include gender identity and biological gender and that MST treatment should be culturally competent.

Topics: Combatants, Gender, Health, Mental Health, PTSD, Trauma, LGBTQ, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militaries, Sexual Violence Regions: MENA, Americas, North America, Asia, Middle East, South Asia Countries: Afghanistan, Iraq, United States of America

Year: 2016

Gays, Cross-Dressers, and Emos: Nonnormative Masculinities in Militarized Iraq

Citation:

Rohde, Achim. 2016. “Gays, Cross-Dressers, and Emos: Nonnormative Masculinities in Militarized Iraq.” Journal of Middle East Women’s Studies 12 (3): 433–49.

Author: Achim Rohde

Annotation:

"Much has been written about gender-based violence against Iraqi women under the thirty-five-year dictatorship of Saddam Hussein and since the fall of the regime in 2003 (Brown and Romano 2006, 56, 60–62; Al-Jawaheri 2008, 108–17; al-Ali 2005, 742–43, 754–55; 2007, 198, 207, 226–29; 2008, 413–16; Smiles 2008, 272–76; al-Ali and Pratt 2009, 78, 80, 157–61; Campbell and Kelly 2009, 24–25; Fischer-Tahir 2010, 1391–92; Ranharter and Stansfield 2015). Although the mass recruitment of men as soldiers and fighters often temporarily expanded spaces for women’s participation in the Iraqi public sphere (Efrati 1999, 28, 30–32; Rohde 2010, 86–91), militarism and militarist discourse before and since 2003 have reinforced gender polarity and heroic forms of masculinity, marginalizing and degrading the noncombat social positionalities of the majority of men and women (Rohde 2010, 124–43; 2011, 100, 104, 109–10; Fischer-Tahir 2012, 93–94; Abdulameer 2014). Nevertheless, organized violence against queer positionalities, or men perceived to violate sexual and gender norms, occurred only after 2003. This essay explores ruptures and continuities in organized violence against sex or gender nonconformity in recent Iraqi history.
 
"For the late Baʿthist period in Iraq, I analyze scholarly and journalistic sources, including items published in Iraqi newspapers and transcripts of a conversation between Saddam Hussein and tribal leaders in 1991 or 1992. For the years after 2003, I systematically analyzed four Iraqi (Arabic) daily newspapers (Al-Zaman, Al-Sabah, Al-Mada, and Al-Manara) and a weekly journal (Al-Esbuʿiyya) from late 2008, 2009, and spring 2012. I draw on other sources as well, including news videos, human rights reports, academic work, and other journalistic sources. Given the dangers and restrictions of research in Iraq, the available sources allow some preliminary analysis that can inform future systematic studies on gender and sexual diversity in Iraqi society" (Rohde, 2016, p. 433-4)

Topics: Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gender Roles, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, LGBTQ, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Violence Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Iraq

Year: 2016

Rebuilding With or Without Women?

Citation:

True, Jacqui. 2012. “Rebuilding With or Without Women?: Gendered Violence in Postconflict Peace and Reconstruction” In The Political Economy of Violence Against Women. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Author: Jacqui True

Abstract:

Chapter 8 examines the spike of sexual and gender-based violence in postconflict and peace-building environments. Despite recent UN Security Council resolutions, the invisibility of this violence against women during and after conflict marginalizes women in postconflict state-building and economic reconstruction processes. This economic and political marginalization of women exacerbates violence after conflict and hinders these peace-building efforts. The first part of the chapter applies the political economy approach of the book to reveal how gendered peacekeeping economies exacerbate violence against women. It critiques the prioritization of law and order over social and economic opportunities. The second part examines the role of women in peace-building decision making and economic reconstruction in places as diverse as East Timor; Aceh, Indonesia; Mindanao province in the Philippines; Iraq; Afghanistan; Colombia; Guatemala; the Congo; and Darfur. The chapter concludes by critically assessing two approaches to postconflict prevention of violence against women: the “good practice” of placing women peacekeepers in postconflict zones and the role of reparations in ensuring women's equal access to postconflict development.

 

Keywords: post conflict, peacekeeping economies, reparations, peacebuilding, economic reconstruction

Topics: Armed Conflict, Development, Economies, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Peacebuilding, Peacekeeping, Peace Processes, Political Economies, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, Violence Regions: Africa, MENA, Central Africa, East Africa, Americas, Central America, South America, Asia, Middle East, South Asia, Southeast Asia, Oceania Countries: Afghanistan, Colombia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Guatemala, Indonesia, Iraq, Philippines, Sudan, Timor-Leste

Year: 2012

Prosecuting Gender-Based Persecution: the Islamic State at the ICC

Citation:

Chertoff, Emily. 2017. “Prosecuting Gender-Based Persecution: the Islamic State at the ICC." Yale Law Journal 126 (4): 1050-117.

Author: Emily Chertoff

Abstract:

Reports suggest that Islamic State, the terrorist "caliphate," has enslaved and brutalized thousands of women from the Yazidi ethnic minority of Syria and Northern Iraq. International criminal law has a name for what Islamic State has done to these women: gender-based persecution. This crime, which appears in the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC), has only been charged once, and unsuccessfully, in the Court's two decades of existence. The case of the Yazidi women presents a promising opportunity to charge it again--and, potentially, to shift the lately unpromising trajectory of the Court, which has been weakened in recent months by a wave of defections by former member states. This Note uses heretofore unexamined jurisprudence of the ICC's Pre-Trial Chamber to elaborate--element by element--how the Prosecutor of the Court could charge gender-based persecution against members of Islamic State. I argue that the prosecution of Islamic State would not just vindicate the rights of Yazidi survivors of Islamic State violence. It would help to consolidate an international norm against gender-based persecution in armed conflict--a norm that, until now, international law has only incompletely realized. This Note argues that only by prosecuting the crime of gender-based persecution can international criminal law cognize violence, like the attacks on Yazidi women, that is motivated not just by race, ethnicity, or gender, but by the victims' intersecting gender and ethnic or racial identities. I conclude by reflecting on the role that a series of prosecutions against perpetrators of gender-based persecution might have in restoring the legitimacy of the ailing ICC.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Ethnicity, Women, Gender-Based Violence, International Law, International Criminal Law, Justice, International Tribunals & Special Courts, Race, Sexual Violence, Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, Sexual Slavery, Terrorism, Violence Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Iraq, Syria

Year: 2017

Death Does Not Become Her: An Examination of the Public Construction of Female American Soldiers as Liminal Figures

Citation:

Millar, Katharine M. 2015. "Death Does Not Become Her: An Examination of the Public Construction of Female American Soldiers as Liminal Figure." Review of International Studies 41 (04): 757-79. doi: 10.1017/s0260210514000424.

Author: Katharine M. Millar

Abstract:

Since the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, over 150 female American military personnel have been killed, over 70 following hostile fire. Given Western society’s long-standing practice of reserving the conduct of collective violence to men, these very public deaths are difficult to encompass within the normative and ideological structures of the contemporary American political system. This study examines the ways in which the public duty to commemorate the heroism of soldiers – and the private desire to accurately remember daughters and wives – poses a significant challenge to coherent discursive representation. In doing so, the study employs hermeneutical interpretation to analyse public representations of female soldiers and their relation to death in US popular culture. These representations are examined via Judith Butler’s concept of grievability – the possibility of receiving recognition as a worthy life within the existing social imaginary. It is argued that female soldiers are grievable as both ‘good soldiers’ and ‘good women’, but not as ‘good female soldiers’. The unified subject position of ‘good female soldier’ is liminal, and thus rendered socially and politically unintelligible. The article concludes with an analysis of the implications of this liminality for collective mourning and the possibility of closure after trauma.

 

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Female Combatants, Gender, Women, Masculinity/ies, Gender Roles, Femininity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militaries, Militarism Regions: MENA, Americas, North America, Asia, Middle East, South Asia Countries: Afghanistan, Iraq, United States of America

Year: 2015

Cowboy of the World? Gender Discourse and the Iraq War Debate

Citation:

Christensen, Wendy M., and Myra Marx Ferree. 2008. “Cowboy of the World? Gender Discourse and the Iraq War Debate.” Qualitative Sociology 31 (3): 287–306. doi:10.1007/s11133-008-9106-0.

Authors: Wendy M. Christensen, Myra Marx Ferree

Abstract:

In this article we examine the debate preceding the most recent war in Iraq to show how gendered framing can compromise the quality of debate. Drawing on a sample of national news discourse in the year before the war began, we show that both anti-war and pro-war speakers draw on binary images of gender to construct their cases for or against war. Speakers cast the Bush administration’s argument for invasion either as a correct “macho” stance or as inappropriate, out-of-control masculinity. The most prominent gendered image in war debate is that of the cowboy, used to characterize both President Bush and US foreign policy in general. The cowboy is positioned against a diplomatic form of masculinity that is associated with Europe and valued by anti-war speakers, but criticized by pro-war speakers. Articles that draw on gender images show a lower quality of the debate, measured by the extent to which reasons rather than ad hominem arguments are used to support or rebut assertions.

Keywords: gender, Iraq war, News debate, Cowboy masculinity

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Masculinity/ies Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Iraq

Year: 2008

Feminist Theory and the Failures of Post-9/11 Freedom

Citation:

Anker, Elisabeth. 2012. “Feminist Theory and the Failures of Post-9/11 Freedom.” Politics & Gender 8 (02): 207–15. doi:10.1017/S1743923X12000177.

Author: Elisabeth Anker

Abstract:

After the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, freedom was the dominant term used to describe the United States in national political discourse. It was articulated as sovereign power, unencumbered agency, and military triumph. “Freedom” eventually animated global violence, becoming a justification for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as for substantial increases in state surveillance. A significant body of feminist scholarship has interrogated the discourse of post-9/11 freedom, examining how the call to “free the women of Afghanistan and Iraq” legitimated the push for war (Bhattacharrya 2008; Marso 2007; Mohanty 2008). For these scholars, “freedom” transformed feminist concerns into tools of militarism and imperialism, while worsening living conditions of women across the globe. In this essay, I also examine the discourse of post-9/11 freedom from a feminist perspective, but I ask a different question: How can feminist political theory critique the discourse of American freedom and challenge its trajectory of sovereign and violent state power? In other words, I examine the discourse of Americans upholding their own freedom, rather than their quest to free others, and insist that feminist theoretical arguments are directly relevant to post-9/11 problematics.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Feminisms, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Nationalism, Terrorism Regions: MENA, Americas, North America, Asia, Middle East, South Asia Countries: Afghanistan, Iraq, United States of America

Year: 2012

Huda, Rihab, and Jessica: Orientalism and the Construction of Gender in Representations of the War on Iraq

Citation:

Riley, Robin. 2009. “Huda, Rihab, and Jessica: Orientalism and the Construction of Gender in Representations of the War on Iraq.” Presented In Le Centre Sheraton Hotel, Montreal, Quebec, Canada: International Studies Association. 

Author: Robin Riley

Abstract:

The volume of news coverage generated around Jessica Lynch's capture by the Iraqis, her rescue, and her subsequent return to the US, hid from view not only other US American women who were similarly situated like Native American, Lori Piestewa, and African American Shoshona Johnson, but it also obscured the peril and devastation that first sanctions, then the war, imposed on Iraqi women. Instead, the Iraqi women westerners were made familiar with were the ominously nicknamed, Dr. Germ and Mrs. Anthrax. The suffering of Iraqi women due to sanctions, was not a part of Western consciousness, and in the build-up to the war, women were not the focus of the western press who were obsessed with the detailing of Saddam Hussein's sins and predictions of his future actions. Even as the war commenced, we, in the US were rarely treated to images of ordinary Iraqi women who attempted to go about their lives while the bombs dropped around, and sometimes on, them. Today, we still have little knowledge about whether Iraqi women were imprisoned by US American or British troops as they swept across Iraq, or how many Iraqi women were killed as a result of American aggression. Consequently, Rihab Taha and Huda Salih Mahdi Ammash, two evil women who worked in Saddam Hussein's administration came to represent all Iraqi, indeed, all Arab women. The news stories about Rihab Taha and Huda Salih Mahdi Ammash were used in US American popular culture to buttress Orientalist ideas about the West and its relationship to Iraq and the Arab world, and to reinforce old ideas about mysterious, often sinister woman of color. These narratives work not only to support the Bush administration's foreign policy and aggression against Iraq, but they also reinforce male supremacy and white supremacy. This research is an analysis of popular news accounts of the time including newspapers, magazines and television news stories. These stories reveal how the US thinks of itself in relation to the rest of the world and how enforcement of the proper practice of gender is always the subtext of these accounts.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Democracy / Democratization, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Violence Regions: Africa, MENA, Americas, North America, Asia, Middle East Countries: Iraq, United States of America

Year: 2009

Gender Quotas: A Key to Equality?: A Case Study of Iraq and Afghanistan.

Citation:

Dahlerup, Drude, and Anja Taarup Nordlund. 2004. Gender Quotas: A Key to Equality? : A Case Study of Iraq and Afghanistan. Stockholm University.

Authors: Drude Dahlerup, Anja Taarup Nordlund

Topics: Gender, Women, Men, Gender Balance, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality Regions: Africa, MENA, Asia, Middle East, South Asia Countries: Afghanistan, Iraq

Year: 2004

'Honour’-Based Violence in Kurdish Communities

Citation:

Gill, Aisha K., Nazand Begikhani, and Gill Hague. 2012. “‘Honour’-Based Violence in Kurdish Communities.” Women’s Studies International Forum 35 (2): 75–85. doi:10.1016/j.wsif.2012.02.001.

Authors: Aisha K. Gill, Nazand Begikhani, Gill Hague

Abstract:

While there is a considerable body of literature dealing with various forms of violence against women, comparatively little research has explored the phenomenon of ‘honour’-based violence (HBV) within the Kurdish diaspora. This paper seeks to challenge both dominant understandings of HBV and the institutional structures that underpin its context-specific practice as a method for controlling and subjugating women. In doing so, the paper draws on original research involving thirty-four in-depth interviews with stakeholders working to address HBV in Kurdish communities in Britain: the interviewees included police officers, prosecutors, staff from government bodies and staff from women's non-governmental organisations. After exploring the role of ‘shame’ and ‘honour’ in Kurdish communities, and how value-systems predicated on gendered understandings of these concepts give rise to HBV, the paper offers a number of recommendations for improving policy and practice, especially in relation to police responses.

Topics: Gender, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Justice, Post-Conflict, Torture, Violence Regions: Asia, Middle East Countries: Iran, Iraq, Syria, Turkey

Year: 2012

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