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    IFLAC is a voluntary Association that strives for peace by building bridges of understanding and peace through culture, literature and communication. IFLAC is founded and directed by Egyptian-born Israeli writer Ada Aharoni (Ph.D), since 1999.


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    Middle East’s Paradigm Shift: Rape is No Longer Accepted Here

    By Yvette Nahmia-Messinas, Israel

    “Women and men of the Middle East condemn the rape of our bodies, the rape of our dignity and freedoms.”

    ***

    Former President of Israel Moshe Katsav was sentenced to seven years by the Tel Aviv District Court on March 22nd for two counts of rape and other sexual offenses against female employees. Once enjoying public acclaim and attention at the top of Israeli society, Katsav is now to enter prison in May.

    What Katsav did on an individual level—forcing his body on his victims—is perpetrated by other male monarchs, despots, kings, and rulers in the region who force themselves and their rule on their people. A similar downfall awaits those Middle East rulers who reign by might—”raping” societies of the freedom to choose their governing bodies.

    With a rape verdict handed down to former President Katsav, Israel is saying, “Enough is enough” to the old system of abusing power. Likewise among young, liberal Middle Easterners there is a refreshing, liberating sensation: “Change is possible. Let us bring it about.”

    Read the whole article at peacexpeace.org.

    ***

    Comment from Ada Aharoni:

    Dear Yvette,

    Your piece on “Middle East’s Paradigm Shift: Rape is No Longer Accepted Here,” is well written and reported. Unfortunately, not only monarchs are raping women but also the liberal men of Midan El Tahrir who raped the American journalist.

    Let’s hope that your optimistic view of a more liberal Middle East will indeed ensue after the popular upheavals in most of the Arab countries, and that the fanatic “Brotherhood”, that murdered President Sadat, and who are the most organized group in Egypt and in some of the other countries – don’t take the lead. It would be the worst thing that can happen to women – and it could end in forcing them into Burkas!



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