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May 04, 2004

VIRGINIA POSTREL NOTES SOMETHING REMARKABLE:

Andrew Sullivan has a long quote from one of al Sadr supporters who reports abuse at the hands of American troops. It concludes: "They wanted us to feel as though we were women, the way women feel, and this is the worst insult, to feel like a woman." Being a Muslim woman is like being tortured and humiliated all the time? And this guy thinks there's nothing wrong with that?

She's the first one I've seen remark on it, though.

UPDATE: Actually, Ann Althouse had thoughts on this yesterday, but I missed her post. And Sissy Willis has thoughts, too.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Jim Lindgren emails:

This attitude about women in Iraq predates Islam. The ancient Assyrian Vassal-Treaties of Esarhaddon (ca. 681-668 B.C.E.) include this oath:

"If you sin against this treaty . . . may they use you like women in the sight of your enemy."

2 Ancient Near East 65, 68 (Pritchard abridged ed. 1975).

Interesting.