Skip to comments.Of human bondage...
Posted on 09/03/2006 9:05:39 PM PDT by pickrell
People normally will not dial 1 (800) ENSLAVE-ME. It has in the course of human history always been more subtle than that.
Instead of one Somalian woman/ one vote/ one time, it was, rather, a series of small steps into the pit. Each one probably seemed appropriate. And each one was taken looking forward, instead of also glancing backwards to realize where their path was taking them. It should be a tragic lesson for all, but it probably won't be. Because the ones who can see it- probably don't need to, and the ones who need to- certainly won't see it before the click of the chains comes home to them.
Somalian women only knew that they didn't have enough to feed their children. The bowl of millet they had learned to survive on had ceased to be forthcoming. The warlords had seized control of all of the food, and starvation is a powerfully effective tool of warfare.
When the Americans intervened, the GI's were greeted as saviors. This was a step. But those who alleviate hunger, also alleviate 'control'. And for every weapon there is a counter- weapon.
Warlords pointed out that the Americans would take away the power of their clan. Children were needed to prepare an ambush, and restore the dignity of the Somalians. Children with guns. When the Americans acted to remove the worst of the clan leaders from control, the 'clan warriors' were ready and waiting. This was a step on a different path.
After the ambush, the Americans left- their exercise of Wilsonian alleviation of suffering not necessarily bad, but, in the case of the clans of Somalia, certainly extended towards the wrong people. Americans would remember that, next time starvation threatened isolated peoples. That was also a step.
After the Americans had gone, the warlords were left to resume their battle, and the deprivation returned- this time with no further prospect of the American salvation. Those who had cheered at the smoke of the helicopters were left to ponder what they had won, and what they had done.
As the carnage mounted, and the warring clans destroyed the last chances of bearable life in that country, another step had to be taken.
The actual planners of the ambush now stepped forwards and offered the people relief from those same warlords, and those who had orginally cheered on their clan, now stepped to offer relief from all of those other clans. When the Al Qaida acted to remove the worst of the clan leaders from control, the 'clan warriors' were taken by surprise. Attacks from behind often have that effect.
It was nearly an afterthought when their clan structure was also demolished. The Somal-iban was now firmly in power. It was a small step for womankind.
Those women who previously had simply thought to feed their daughters... now were instructed to begin the education of their daughters in Islamic law. Those daughters needed to be disabused of any further American attitudes that they were people, and accept the realization that they were now property. If they behaved, they would escape some beatings. But other beatings would be necessary to drive home to them just what the new reality held.
But once again they might again get their bowl of millet every day. But this time they would not be allowed to eat supper with the men. They had to take those small steps towards the stable, to eat beside the other livestock.
As the mothers look out over the bleak landscape, they glance at the village cow, penned into it's crude corral, and then at their granddaughters, heads now hung low in fear for their future. The National Organization of Women is somehow nowhere to be seen, since abortion rights are not an urgent consideration in a country where the law now regards females and livestock with the same oversight. They seem to have stepped out for the moment.
The chains will not now be lifted in their lifetimes, or those of the grandchildren whose futures they held in their hands. They have found their peace, their exit strategy. They needn't be concerned about politics anymore, and headlines will no longer bother their progeny. For those females will never be permitted to learn to read or to speak of such things. They will know the safety of the corral.
Meanwhile, in America, elections loom in November. Women are urged to do something about this conflict they now witness in the news. No longer will the battle between conservative and liberal be allowed to rage unabated. It is time to eliminate this clan warfare, and seek that peace over the horizon, with a vote for change.
Time for them to decide on their next step.