Subject: [fem-women2000 724] Women's GlobalNet #179: Hear the Voices of Women
From: iwtc <>
Date: Tue, 25 Sep 2001 22:46:33 +0000
Seq: 724

Initiatives and Activities of Women Worldwide
By Anne S. Walker

September 25, 2001


The photos of smiling families and individuals -all victims of the 
September 11 attack on the World Trade Center twin towers, are beginning 
to disappear from the walls, phone booths, bus stands, light poles, 
trees and vans in downtown New York City. Some have fallen because of 
rain. Others are being taken down and collected by city officials for a 
possible memorial collage. Yet families and friends keep hoping that 
someone will be found in the mountains of rubble. They hold onto hope 
with quiet desperation.

Against this background, I sit at my corner desk looking out at a very 
subdued United Nations building reading through hundreds of emails from 
women in every world region. And what I hear are women's voices calling 
for justice, calling for restraint, calling for the use of a system of 
global justice already in place that utilizes international and national 
courts of law. And calling for military force not to be used against 
more innocent and defenseless victims.

The following "voices of women" have been gleaned from these hundreds of 
e-mails. Most comment on the need for immediate and long-term solutions 
in an unequal world capable of producing such violent acts of rage. And 
they all reflect the growing determination of women to be part of the 
decision-making processes that will shape our next steps.

AFGHANISTAN: "While we once again announce our solidarity and deep 
sorrow with the people of the US, we also believe that attacking 
Afghanistan and killing its most ruined and destitute people will not in 
any way decrease the grief of the American people. We sincerely hope 
that (America) can differentiate between the people of Afghanistan and a 
handful of fundamentalist terrorists." Revolutionary Association of the 
Women of Afghanistan (RAWA).

INDIA: "Declaring a war against terrorism alone will not bring peace and 
security. We need to stop the war against the planet and the people. We 
need to work for the recovery of democracy and ecological security." 
Vandana Shiva. 

JAPAN: "The United Nations should establish an International Criminal 
Tribunal to prosecute and punish the perpetrators of the terrorist 
attack. A just and co-existence world should be created in order to 
eliminate the root causes of terrorism." Violence Against Women in War 
Network (VAWW-NET).

EAST TIMOR: "We have all been overwhelmed by the attacks in the USA. 
Timorese women responded by putting flowers and candles outside the US 
Mission. But the Timorese never called for Jakarta to be bombed when 
their whole country was destroyed (by Indonesian forces) two years 
ago.the US President could learn from them." Janet Hunt, Dili, East 

KOSOVO: "We have lived through war. We know what it is like to be 
attacked, to grieve, and to feel anger. We understand the urge for 
revenge is strong. And we know that it must not be given in to. We know 
that a violent response can only bring more violencenot justice. 
Instead, it kills more innocent victims and gives birth to new holy 
avengers. It begins a new cycle and perpetuates more hate, more 
insecurity, more fear and ultimately more death amongst civilians. We 
therefore urge.部he US and its allies to temper their anger and to 
refrain from the folly of a sweeping military solutions. Terrorists are 
not nations. And nations must not act like terrorists." Medica Mondiale 
Kosovo, Women's Center. 

GLOBAL: "The Hague Appeal for Peace urges the US administration to use 
the greatest possible restraint. We call for a national day of healing 
We must not allow the atmosphere of hatred to justify acts of war 
against unidentified enemies. We cherish the force of law, not the law 
of force." Cora Weiss, The Hague Appeal for Peace.

KOREA: "We who are women who know about wars are convinced that violence 
and military force can never bring peace. In this belief, we are 
strongly united against any acts of war, and demand peaceful resolution 
of all conflict. We are working hard to create and maintain peace in the 
world." Women Making Peace.

SPAIN: "Thousands of people in the heart of Western civilization (New 
York) have had to die in order for the international community to react 
and consider putting an end to (terrorists/fundamentalist leaders.) The 
West never cared when the Taliban attacked Afghan women's rights, when 
they assaulted them, when they killed them. It has looked in the other 
direction while in Algeria radical Islamic groups have kidnapped, raped, 
killed and ripped to pieces scores of women." Montserrat Boix, 
journalist and coordinator of Mujeres en Red. 

CANADA: "This is a crime against humanity and an international court 
should mete out the punishment鰭This is the latest gruesome chapter in 
an ever expanding cycle of violence that has already claimed cities, 
countries and whole generations. How does it increase our security to 
bomb countries into the stone age?" Alexa McDonough, leader of the New 
Democratic Party of Canada.

GLOBAL: "Once again our deepest beliefs hold that true security can only 
be rooted in social justice and strengthening the domestic and 
international rule of law." Women's International League for Peace and 

UK: We need strategies for an inclusive and equal global society, not 
strategies of war So long as poverty and hunger, injustice and 
exploitation are the experience of many people in many countries, 
genuine despair will lead to hatred of the super powers whose policies 
are seen to contribute to them, and will be used to legitimate 
terrorism." Women in Black, London. 

PAKISTAN: "As victims of terrorism for a long time, we know very well 
what it means to humanity. But we do not want Afghan and Pakistan 
innocent people to be victims of another war in the name of curbing 
terrorism. No terrorism against terrorism. It solves nothing." Asma 
Jahangir, former Chairperson of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan. 

SWEDEN: " How can we find a clever strategy and pass it around all 
women's networks?If we are silent, we say OK to all war decisions. If 
we do not act, we pass over the power to the war machines." Evy Warholm.

KUWAIT: "Women of Kuwait also condemn the terrorism that we are sure is 
not related to Islam. However we don't agree with any retaliation on 
victims who always include children and women very heavily. We should 
all support the fight against terrorism and support war against 
terrorists浮ased on justice and fair and wise act." Fatima Al-Abdali. 

GREECE: "There is solidarity around the world today. You are so right to 
ask for conflict resolution. To ask for peace. Now more than ever, all 
of us women, from around the world, need immediately to re-organize and 
form new alliances that will look to peace and conflict resolution." 
Christiana Lambrinidis.

CROATIA: "The only way out is through strengthening international legal 
mechanisms and international co-operation in investigation, extraditions 
and punishment of those who are directly responsible for organization 
and performance of terrorist acts. We firmly demand a thorough 
investigation and oppose revengeful military actions." B.a.B.e., Be 
active, Be emancipated, Women's Human Rights Group.

CANADA: "We firmly believe that it is the role of legal institutions, 
such as the International Criminal Court, to hold accountable those 
individuals responsible and bring them to justice. Our hopes lie in 
working to end injustice and oppression, in building positive 
cooperative relationships amongst all people. In short, in creating a 
global culture of peace." Voice of Women for Peace.

INDIA: "How will the hurt and the consequent anger be assuaged? Would 
the quest for justice to the loss of lives of the innocents lead us all 
into other conflicts? How do we work together towards conflict 
resolution and peace?" Ila Pathek, Ahmedabad Women's Action Group 

USA: "Those responsible must be brought to justice Ultimately peace 
and security cannot come through military power alone, but must be borne 
of thoughtful, determined diplomacy and negotiation." Women's Action for 
New Directions (WAND).

GLOBAL: "Our work for international peace, women's rights, economic 
justice and development feels ever more urgent and important. The levels 
of poverty, oppression and marginalization related to power imbalances 
need to be acknowledged and redressed. International solidarity, 
understanding and action are essential." Association for Women's Rights 
in Development (AWID).

Women's petitions and statements, vigils and marches are some of the 
actions already undertaken or being planned. The following web-site set 
up by the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (UN Office) 
contains many of the petitions and statements. 

Actions being planned will be reported in our next Women's GlobalNet. 

IWTC Women's GlobalNet is a production of:

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