Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Where Are The Feminists?

Feminists make a big deal out of (perceived) unequal treatment of women vis-à-vis men. I certainly won't deny that such inequality may exist. But I will suggest that most western feminists have a misplaced emphasis on what occurs in the U.S. or Europe, while conveniently ignoring what goes on in the Middle East. In support of that position, I offer the case of Rengin Yusuf.

I sincerely hope you will appreciate and honor the supreme sacrifice made by Rengin Yusuf. As you will see, she overcame many obstacles, not the least of which was being a woman, to fight on the side of the angels against an evil, vile, and despicable foe.

The Mother Who Fought ISIS to the Death
(Rengin Yusuf was) in her 30s. She was a mother ... she served in a women’s regiment in the fight against the radical Islamists of ISIS ... They asked me not to call them “women Peshmergas” because, they said, there is no such thing. A Peshmerga is a Peshmerga, or, in Kurdish, “someone who confronts death.”

The regiment’s youngest woman, Rengin Yusuf was strikingly attractive, with long black hair and a furtive smile. Our conversation didn’t extend beyond what was expected of us. I was the foreign correspondent; she, the Peshmerga. She and the others had been ordered to speak to me to demonstrate that the Kurdish “army” is free of sexism.

As I write these lines, it has been a month since Rengin Yusuf died ... I recalled our meeting vividly: The women telling me that theirs is a combat unit. Me nodding, but privately incredulous—wondering if these mild-mannered, middle-aged mothers really get sent to the front.

Only in the wake of Rengin Yusuf’s death did I confirm that Kurdish women are not only fighting but are also among the bravest Peshmergas. There is a silent revolution under way in Iraq replete with fallen female heroes, who, besides defending their homeland, sought to prove something to men—with deeds not words, without “feminist” slogans.

From a combat perspective the male and female units are no different. Each is the same small-arms-equipped force with intrepid soldiers. Sexism is ingrained across much of the Middle East, of course, and we foreign correspondents have unwittingly reinforced it by reporting on women soldiers as if they are different. But they go into battle, and die, just like the men.

As for Rengin Yusuf’s death, this is what I learned: On Oct. 4 she participated in a Kurdish-led offensive to recapture the city of Daquq, near Kirkuk. Yusuf acted as a sniper as the Peshmergas pursued ISIS troops, who while retreating showed mercy neither to people nor animals. She was shot. Several AK-47 machine-gun rounds passed through her body; she wasn’t wearing a bulletproof vest.

Her fellow Peshmergas carried her, wounded, over the sand dunes to a hospital. But the doctors couldn’t save her. She died in great pain on Oct. 11.

Rengin Yusuf was a woman. A Peshmerga. A warrior. She left behind two little daughters.
Where are the feminists now? How many are protesting the unequal treatment of women by muslims? How many are honoring the heroism and sacrifice of women like Rengin Yusuf?

How many will help take care of and raise her two orphaned daughters...?

God Bless Rengin Yusuf and her fellow warriors.


Old NFO said...

All I'm 'hearing' is crickets... sigh

CenTexTim said...

Interesting, isn't it, how selective the left can be when it comes to women's issues.