Nihad Barakat Shamo Alawsi is a young 18-year-old girl. Under normal circumstances, Nihad should be busy studying, enjoying with her friends and dreaming of a bright future like a million other teenagers worldwide. Sadly she has suffered atrocities that would make any sane person cringe with fear. This 18-year-old was held captive by ISIS for over 15 months. She was repeatedly raped, passed down from one ‘owner’ to another like livestock, to be raped and humiliated further. She had also given birth in captivity. She was not alone, Nihad narrated her horrors of hearing her own sister getting raped in the next room. Her sister was just 13.
Nihad has attempted suicide many times till her neighbours took pity on her and helped her escape. She considers herself lucky. Many young girls she met and hears from are not. Many keep slashing their wrists and locking themselves in bathrooms, many get killed in their attempts to escape.
16 yr old Yazidi girl Yasmin was sick of being raped by ISIS fighters . So she doused herself in gasoline & lit a match , knowing that if she survived,the militants would no longer find her desirable. Now she looks like a zombie, and children cry when they see her. pic.twitter.com/iG0uIJgza9
— Zakir Khan (@ZakirKhan012) January 30, 2018
A #Yazidi woman, 39, was sold 4 times in a slave market in #Raqqa
She escaped with the two children who had been with her. Four of her other children were separated from her when she and her family were abducted in Aug.2014 & remain missing.@hrw report (Women Suffer Under ISIS) pic.twitter.com/eiZQaaoRlv
— Yazidi (@Ezidi2) January 25, 2018
The Yazidi are a Kurdish speaking ethnic minority group living in northern Iraq who are strictly endogamous. The ISIS has been hunting them down and killing and forcefully converting them since years. The ISIS labels them as ‘devil worshipers’. The worst sufferers are Yazidi women, mostly young girls.
— Yazda (@YazdaOrg) January 24, 2018
What is striking is that while such vile and bestial torture of women is going on around the world, most of the pseudo-feminists who masquerade as champions of women’s rights are blissfully ignoring it. All around us we see ‘movements’ where self-proclaimed feminists scream for trivial issues such as smoking, drinking and what not. We have seen social media stars ranting for rights to dress a certain way, look a certain way. There was even a campaign for free bleeding!
Somehow amidst all the hurricane of pseudo-feminists, the real suffering and plights of the actual victims get choked. In our country pseudo-feminists rant about movies hurting their sentiments and simple traditions of festivals being patriarchal. How often do we see them standing up for women who actually undergo rape, abuse and oppression on a daily basis? Almost never.
How many celebrities raised their voices for the over 200 Nigerian girls kidnapped by Boko Haram? How many social media stars campaign to end Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)? Sadly the ones like Ayan Hirsi Ali who do campaign to end FGM are insulted and threatened by self-proclaimed feminists in the worst possible way.
Even in our own country, we have seen prominent ‘intellectuals’ and powerful personalities fail to support the Triple Talaq Bill – the only significant step towards granting Muslim women their legal rights after decades of injustice. Worse, they even oppose the bill from getting passed.
Rights of women get lost under the shadow of ‘political correctness’ and religious appeasement. Even when a Chief Minister ensures no school/college going girls will be harassed by street goons, he faces opposition from all quarters. Yogi Adityanath was ridiculed and opposed to no extent when he implemented the Anti-Romeo squads in UP.
Even an issue as disturbing as child marriage gets sidelined under the garb of minority appeasement.
Rape, sexual abuse, sex slavery, child marriage, Female Genital Mutilation etc are a disturbing reality of our world. While a privileged section enjoys the freedom of a liberalised nation and often takes its benefits for granted, millions of women worldwide undergo unspeakable horrors every day. We as a society, need to wake up from the narcotic of hypocrisy. For us to be women, we need to be human first.