Rape as a Weapon of War in Libya: New Permutations on an Old Theme


Marshall, Lucinda. 2011. "Rape as a Weapon of War in Libya: New Permutations on an Old Theme." Peace and Freedom 71 (2): 24.

Author: Lucinda Marshall


Earlier this year, when reports began to surface alleging the use of Viagra-like drugs to encourage Libyan troops to rape women as a tactic in their fight with Libyan rebels, the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) called for a complete investigation into the charges, and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said she was "deeply concerned." In Iraq, the number of honor killings rose dramatically after the U.S. invasion and, more recently, in Tehran, women protesting the government have been attacked. In Congo, women in refugee camps are gang-raped with impunity. In Burma, the army uses rape as a weapon of terror in their fight with Shan forces. In Bosnia and Rwanda, there were mass rapes. In the U.S. military, female soldiers are more likely to be attacked by male soldiers than by any enemy. One hundred forty-eight countries signed The Rome Statute, which established the Court. Seven nations voted against it, including the U.S. and Libya. It is therefore supremely ironic that the U.S. pushed for the ICC s prosecution of Libyan war crimes. But make no mistake, the U.S. does not consider itself bound by the ICC s jurisdiction, which would leave it quite obviously vulnerable to prosecution for such things as Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo, and the rape of servicewomen within the ranks of its own military.

Keywords: sexual violence, international criminal court, rape, war rape



Topics: Armed Conflict, Displacement & Migration, Refugee/IDP Camps, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, International Law, International Criminal Law, Justice, Impunity, War Crimes, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militaries, Security, Sexual Violence, Rape, SV against Women Regions: Africa, North Africa, Americas, North America Countries: Libya, United States of America

Year: 2011

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