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Iraqi Feminist in London Targeted by Islamists

Silvie | 04.03.2007 11:42 | Gender | Iraq

Houzan Mahmoud, Representative of the Organisation of Women's Freedom in Iraq has been threatened by Islamic Fundamentalists. On February 26, 2007, Houzan received an e-mail signed by Ansar al-Islam, the notoriously brutal jihadist group based in Kurdistan/Iraq.

The death threat, delivered via e-mail, read:

"With the permission of Great God, we will kill you either in Iraq or in London by the middle of March, because you are campaigning against Islam. You should be sent to God for punishment."

Houzan Mahmoud, who is currently based in London, is originally from Iraqi Kurdistan, where she recently led a campaign against the imposition of Islamic Sharia law in the proposed constitution. Houzan, aged 34, is a militant Iraqi feminist, secularist, journalist, and human rights activist. She has resolved to persist in her work, despite being targeted by Ansar al-Islam. Houzan has recently co-founded an initiative to end the occupation of Iraq and present a secular, egalitarian alternative through the Iraq Freedom Congress (IFC).

Houzan says: "I will continue doing what I am doing now, going around the world cultivating support for women in Iraq and Kurdistan as well as exposing the violence and gender apartheid that Islamists are imposing on millions of women in the region."

Comrade Houzan needs your support. Show solidarity by contacting her at:

- Homepage:


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US Puppets To Hang Several Women, For Allegedly Trying To Liberate Themselves

04.03.2007 14:25

"The death threat, delivered via e-mail"

So, there is no way to verify this, and like most of the horrors of that war, the CIA or Mossad could just as well be responsible, and the threat was made so that you could write this article.

But we all know that the Foreign Aggressor/Occupier has slaughtered more innocent women, and men, and especially, children, than any other group they try to demonize.

Their Puppets are about to hang several female Resistance Fighters, in violation of Int'l Law:

Felicity Arbuthnot: Some Mothers' Daughters - The Silence

2007-03-03 | Where are you Cindy Sheehan? On May 12th 2006 you wrote of: “A Perfect Mother's Day Gift” ( ) You invoked the horror of Julia Ward Howe, who penned the verses of the Battle Hymn of the Republic: “... so horrified at the carnage of the Civil War that she began advocating for a Mothers Day of Peace”, a Proclamation published in 1870. You are engaged by this writing: “By 1873, eighteen cities celebrated (the day)” ... still, today, we have the enduring legacy of Mothers' Day.”

We also have the enduring legacy of the United Nations International Women’s Day, 8th March. This was embraced in Iraq in 1958, under the government of Abdul Karim Kassim, who then appointed the first female cabinet Minister, Nazima Dulaimi. Even during the embargo years, women would address the few westerners and others, on this day that westerners tend to forget. The poorest would pull a single sweet from a pocket and offer, to celebrate it, with a stranger. The mother of a dying child in a hospital, denied medicine by the United Nations, which would likely save that little life, would still do the same - this is what conciliation and peace really means. Those sweets still haunt those who travelled to Iraq during the embargo years. They should.

Now there is a new meaning to International Women’s Day (with the flaccid, impotent UN, silent, as ever.) Three women are to be hanged without trial, legal representation, in Iraq, around this time. (Democracy, US/UK style.) Wassam Talib is thirty-one and has her three year old with her in prison. Zainab Fadhil is thirty-five and Liqa Mohammed (twenty five or twenty six, but around the age of your son; reports differ) is still breast-feeding the baby she gave birth to in prison. Reports say they may be executed today - for allegedly aiding the resistance. Since there has been no meaningful trial, who knows? But resisting an illegal invasion (the “supreme crime” under the Nuremberg rulings) is entirely legitimate.

You constantly write and talk of the loss of your son, Casey (whose seemingly abandoned website still stands at 1,581 US troops killed, as deaths head, inexorably, towards 4,000. Those who die in transit or on home soil, or bases, of course, do not count in Pentagon speak.)

Your son's anniversary is coming up, just a month away. He had a choice: “I would beg my son not to go to Iraq, before he left, because we both knew it was wrong.” (My Son Casey, May 29th 1979 - April 4th 2004, Palestine Chronicle, 3rd April 2006.) How many Iraqis did he kill in a deployment he “knew was wrong”, before he died? You can do something to correct his wrong. In his name.

You were in Seattle for a fundraiser for Rep. Jim McDermott (Daily Kos 10th May 2006.) You are pictured with your head on his shoulder, both beaming with delight. You are reported in the same article as: “...working with John Kerry's office ... to start bringing the troops home ... with Senator McGovern .. and on the national board of Progressive Democrats: (and that that should be an oxymoron, they should be progressive”, you are quoted as saying. They should and must. You have their ears, Ms Sheehan. You have lost your “baby”; will you stand by whilst a baby at the breast is deprived of a mother? And a three year old?)

You speak and write endlessly, of the important people, internationally, you have met on your crusade for peace and trilled about Iraq's “democratic” Prime Minister Maliki, you met in Jordan just month's ago.

In “Iraqis are People too”, this week, you wrote:
“A majority of Americans do find the casualties on both sides unacceptable, but now it's time to go from thinking ‘unacceptable’ to action. We need to get out of our comfy homes .... to demonstrate to the people of the world that citizens in democracies do not sanction killing innocent people. We need to do it for our soldiers, but more importantly for the innocent citizens of Iraq (and) to restore our reputation in the world.” Indeed.

Pull in the favours, burn out the 'phone lines, the emails, the faxes. Be a proper Ambassador for Peace and save another lynching - in the name of International Women’s Day. It is, after all, your Casey's forgotten website, which quotes Ghandi.

“To save one, is to save all”, is an Islamic belief.

Go for it.

Felicity Arbuthnot

Felicity Arbuthnot is a journalist and activist who has visited the Arab and Muslim world on numerous occasions. She has written and broadcast on Iraq, her coverage of which was nominated for several awards. She was also senior researcher for John Pilger's award-winning documentary
"Paying the Price: Killing the Children of Iraq".
and author, with Nikki van der Gaag, of “Baghdad” in the “Great Cities” series, for World Almanac Books (2006.)

Please also see:

The BRussels Tribunal

Casey's Peace Page


Who is doing all the killing?

05.03.2007 19:48

You stated "But we all know that the Foreign Aggressor/Occupier has slaughtered more innocent women, and men, and especially, children, than any other group they try to demonize."
Right so the suicide bomber who targeted and killed 40 civilians last week was a US/UK soldier? Or the one today? Hang on I know where this will go you will only somehow blame the CIA for producing suicide bombers and Al Qaeuda linked groups like Ansar Al Islam. An Iraqi feminist is a brave woman and needs the support against such misogynistic extremist groups such as Ansar Al Islam (I know it's the CIA blah blah blah).