Friday, July 11, 2008

The Female Holocaust of our Species

Updated: July 11th, added Dowry Killings
Updated : July 1st, tweaking some of the paragraphs...
Updated : June 30th 2008, Addition of Fraternal Polyandry & Trafficking for Marriage
Updated : June 21 st 2008, correction of Tora-Kari to Karo-Kari

Originally Posted: June 21st 2008

June 21st: we in Canada, had a landmark criminal charge; the first example of an Honour Killing charge in Canada... the father of a 16 year old girl, has been charged with first degree murder for the alleged premeditated planning and carrying out the her murder, in an Honour Killing... the trial will come later this year it is hoped... and a week later, the brother has also been charged with first degree murder, which implies he was alleged to also physically be involved, and helped plan the murder... for the murder of an innocent life by premeditate and deliberate means, cannot but deserve any other charge than first degree murder, and if found guilty, carrying the stiffest sentence of all, life in prison, which we hope will be, without parole... to send the strongest message into the community, that in Canada, we will not acquiesce to tribal laws...

her family killed her because she refused to wear traditional clothes, from their culture of origin... she had been raised in Western society and wished to be like other girls her own age...
she ran away 2 times, but in the end it is alleged that she was lured back by her brother, to pick up her clothes... at which time she was alleged to have been beaten and lethally strangled by her father, with the alleged aid of her brother... she had no chance to get away again...

I have not mentioned the culture, because in reality it is not just one culture that does this, it is significant in several cultures, where the female is under the control of a Patriarchal father, whose word is greater than the law of the land... whether if be Arab, Hindi, Sikh, Chinese, Argentine, Hungarian, Romanian, Italian or Greek... where the father has ultimate authority, the Patriarch or High Priest of the House, women are general regarded as property for sale as baby factories, and must be protected at all costs, to protect the family investment, honour and culture... a woman cannot choose whom to marry, nor to marry without consent, as the 'Dowry' will not be paid and the investment lost... as well, it is a stain on the family honour, as her actions may influence other females in the family and the local area...

in Canada, reports of this type are mercifully rare... however, it has come to my attention, that while crimes like this are not committed in our country, they are hatched here, and carried out abroad, by relatives or hired assassins for the family...
a man who rejected the marriage to a woman in Canada, was assassinated in India, days before he was to be married to another woman... at the request of the woman he spurned and her family...

This is a list of things done to women by societies around the world... it is not complete, as I can't for reasons of self censorship, tell all that I know, but when / IF you finish reading this, I think you will agree, this is WAY TOO MUCH, as it is...

{well, it doesn't take long on the net to be corrected, and I for one welcome any and all correction, valid of course... Trust, But Verify ;) Joanne has pointed out that I got the heading to this section on Honour Killings wrong... instead of Taro-Kari, it is 'karo-kari', thanks for the translation; as they say, close, but that only counts in horse shoes and hand grenades... ;) it is nice to have something to smile about after all this time... Thanks Joanne, for the smile and the correction... }

Karo-Kari, Honour killings, where a real or perceived slight to the families honour is held over a male or more often, female, by their relatives. The slight, can be anything, from improper dress; being seen with a person of the opposite sex in public, which is perceived to be an adulterous relationship whether real or not; being raped can lead to death, as it is perceived as a desecration of the families honour, the virginity of the woman or girl, and therefore she is damaged goods, not fit for marriage, a drain on the families wealth, and stain on their honour; the dowry not being large enough, or unable to find a marriage partner, or the woman is infertile, can cause an honour killing; refusing to abide by family decisions, ie forced marriage, deciding to marry someone not approved of by the family. This is the tip of the iceberg. For more information, go to
Whether this is done for religion or not, the fact remains that the religious and legal apparatus of the countries in which it occurs tend to back up the use of honour killings, by not supporting the women when she comes for help; condemning her if she does and often times imprisoning her or handing her over to her family for lethal punishment, and not prosecuting the offenders or handing out light sentences.
In many societies, a woman that chooses her own husband and elopes, is accused of adultery, or her husband with kidnapping and rape, where both are punished, sometimes with jail, as in one case, but most often with honour killings if caught... there is no room for interpretation of choice, it is taken as fact that a crime has been committed, no matter how much proof to the contrary is brought... the family honour has been slighted... there is no defence against the charge of dishonouring the family, the person is guilt from the time she/he is accused, and the only course is to carry out the sentence...

Vani, the practice of trading girls and women like animals to settle disputes: a jirga (tribal or village court) in Sukkur has ordered that five girls be exchanged to settle a dispute arising out of an 'honour killing'. These exchanges are also made for land or other family related disputes. The girls become literal slaves to the new family, and are beaten or raped at will.

Forced suicide, occurs when the victim is locked up alone with a weapon or poison, fed minimal food to keep her alive, until she kills herself in desperation. Or is raped, beaten or tortured, by her relatives until she is mentally broken and in desperation accepts death as an escape, often pulling the trigger, taking the poison herself, jumping off of a high building or ledge, or assisting in her own hanging. This practice is in reaction to the outlawing of Karo-Kari, where the family, to get around the law, forces the accused woman or girl, to murder herself to save the family honour.

Forced Marriages, this is a broad subject in that it is not just by betrothal... in the case of betrothal, it has become practice to sell, or take dowry for a daughter... some have been thus sold into slavery as young as 6-8, where they become second, third or fourth wives and sex slaves of older men... some as much as 40 years older... it is when they can't get a suitable dowry back for a daughter, or is returned by the new husband for whatever reason, that a girl may be killed in an honour killing... being that she is not valuable enough to the family, or at fault in some way... a commodity to be bought and sold...

Dowry Killings: now this I find confusing... a Dowry is paid by the Husband's family to the wife's family, while it seems that a Gift or Dowry is also expected from the Wife's family; this I am assuming is not universal in all cultures... but, in the cultures that it does happen, if the Wife's in-laws are not happy with the dowry amount from her family, they can kill her... will try to clarify this later...

April 2010 update,

at the base of this article is this comment: As Pankaj Mishra, noted Indian essayist and novelist and a Hindu familiar with the plight of women of all faiths, writes: "Almost every day, the media berate Islam, often couching their prejudice in the highly moral language of women's rights: It is not due to oversight that Indian women murdered for failing to bring sufficient dowry, a staggering 6,787 in 2005 (and since reported at 8,093 in 2007), occupy a fraction of the print acreage devoted to the tiny minority of veiled women." 

Buying (Dowry) of women from other tribes, for Marriage: the taking of women from their states, as in India, or from other countries, for the purpose of marriage, whether legally or illegally.... in India because of the lower number of women in some states, it has become common practice to go outside the state or village to other areas, even where the people do not have the same culture or language, and buy, (that is pay the parents the "dowry") women for wives...

Polyandry the practice of one woman marrying many husbands... check out Wikipedia for examples of this around the world...

Fraternal Polyandry or Adelphogamy: this is the word for more than one husband, for one wife, by marriage to the brothers of one family; but that is predicated on the woman doing the choosing;

Buying of a woman for use of the sons of a family: Northern India, there is a practice, by brothers, of clubbing together their money, to purchase a woman, to wed one of them, so that the wife of the one in practice, is the wife of all and must provide domestic and marital services to the household :-( this is an informal arrangement, where there is no legal marriage to the whole group...
In contemporary Hindu society, due to sexual discrimination (Female Fetal Genocide and Infanticide) leading to a sharp loss in the number of marriageable women, many social scientists have expressed a fear of a compulsion toward polyandry in the near future. This is in fact happening now... and I might add, it may become a similar problem in other Asian countries, from Turkey to China, and from India to Kazakhstan... another problem area may be the reducing of the age of consent, or ignoring it all together, to expand the pool of available females, locally...

Chechen Marriage Kidnappings, a practice that seems unique to this country, in which suitors, accepted or not, will, with the help of their relatives, kidnap women off the street, and if kept over night, the victims family honour is stained, and they are forced to marry. During the kidnapping the woman is surrounded by her kidnappers and verbally abused, to force her to accept her fate. While there is some who think this a romantic thing between two consenting people, it is in many instances a forced marriage, wherein the woman is not an agreeing party.

Acid Attacks, the practice wherein a man is spurned by a woman, and in retaliation, is splashed with acid to disfigure her, so that no one else may have her, this to cleanse the honour of the spurned suitor.

Muti, in general, this means Medicine, and is a herbal attempted at healing; but in recent years it has become to mean the practice of taking human or animal body parts for ritual or ceremonial magic for good luck or to ensure a person achieves a promotion or goal. This is prevalent mostly in south and central African nations. Young people are most often sourced for the human body parts, either in attacks on the way home at night, or in home invasions. One horrific incident stands out in my mind, where 4 men invaded a single mother's home, and hacked off her teenage daughters legs at the knees, while holding her mother down, leaving her to bleed to death, in her mother's arms.
It has also been suggested, that the rape of female babies as old as 3 to 5, has been promoted as part of Muti, in an attempted to cure Aids. It has been said that if it is a white, blond haired, child it is more effective, but in practice it seems that any child will do. Of course this is not a cure for aids, but one that is promoted in tribal areas, by traditional medicine men.

Rape as a weapon of war, it has become standard practice in African and Asian wars to go on raping rampages by enemy forces against the women of opponents. There is strategic reasoning in this, as it makes the women unfit for marriage in some cultures, in all cases it traumatizes the civilian populations, causing ethnic migrations out of land that has been taken, or in cases where the women are kept as 'wives', it provides a ready breeding supply for the next generation of fighters, in other words, women are little more than baby factories.

Forced in to Prostitution, or sex slavery: this can come about by kidnapping or being sold by the parents to the brothel owner... even when rescued by police or anti-prostitution activists, the girls are no longer wanted by the family, as they are worthless for marriage, and they are a stain on the families honour... many are forced back into prostitution... this is a problem that crosses national boundaries and is a source of problems in Europe and North America as it has become fashionable, as in the Joseph Fritzl case, to go to those countries that support this practice, for sex that would be illegal in the country from which the vacationer comes from, ie child sex...
as well, the importing of women for the purpose of prostitution into European and North American countries is now becoming a noticeable problem, especially around large scale events such as the Olympics, and the World Cups, by organized crime syndicates that earn money from the women... they also import them into larger cities, where they may not speak the host language, making them easier to keep under control... here I am thinking of some east Asian women that were discovered several years ago in Toronto, held as sex slaves...
after they have past their prime I don't know what happens to them, as I have never heard of any that have been released... it is sad to think that they would be treated as disposable goods... but it is not impossible... their 'owners' would not want them around as evidence...

Female Fetal Genocide: is the practice determining the sex of a baby through Ultra Sound and of choosing to abort female fetus... this is practiced in all South Asian countries, and attempted in Western countries by people from Asia, and by Westerners who put a value on having male offspring to carry on the family name.

Female Genital Mutilation; this is the practice of altering the female to ensure that they are kept 'pure' for marriage, or to ensure that the woman remains faithful, by desensitizing her erotic organs. In order to keep her pure, one culture sews up the genital lips so that there is only space enough for urine to flow. In order to keep a woman faithful, at puberty, the clitoral nub is gouged out, often with unsterilized instruments... there is a significant death rate in societies that practice either, and as well, at the time of giving birth there is a 20% chance of death for the mother or child. This problem is now, not just a third world problem, it has entered the developed world, with immigrants that still wish to practice it. Many are now taking their children back to the home country for the procedure and bringing them back to grow up, in the 'ghettos' that they create by congregating together.

Male Genital Mutilation; this is a little known ceremony, in some African countries, not dissimilar to the Circumcision done in western hospitals; but there the difference ends... this is done with stone knives, and in a forest camp ground... the practice is in a sense a form of Muti, to usher the boys into manhood... however the death rate is real, and sadly no one is reporting on it, I add it here only because it does need reporting...

ok, by now if you have reached this point, you should be heart sick at the atrocities; that I can write this down is because I have been reading about this for the past 3-4 weeks, and in the case of Southern Africa, even longer. Yet, it still hurts, the pictures of these beautiful children haunt me, knowing that they have been shot, stoned, hung, strangled, poisoned, raped, burned and mutilated all because they were found accessible and/or accountable by their oppressors.
This post is a small pin prick in the elephant that this Holocaust is... yet if we all make posts and comments, e-mails and whatever we can do, then surly the combined weight will change the situation.

Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe recently said that the ballpoint pen cannot win out over the gun... I for one don't want to believe that... someone else said, the Pen is mightier than the sword... let us prove it by the weight of our words... we need a Fatwa against the killing of women in the name of honour, just as we have had a Fatwa against terrorist acts, by any nation... let us stand up for our daughters, mothers, and wives against the tyranny that says they are not even human beings, but items of trade, valued only for their vaginal hymen, and capacity for breeding. This is the 21st century, not the Dark Ages, have we not progressed beyond this...

In reply to Ellen: yes this is a deeply depressing post, but in the debate or discussion on the treatment of women it is necessary to be frank about the conditions in which women and girls live... I have been as circumspect as possible, even to the point, as I said at the beginning, of self-censorship... I realize that many, many would be shocked beyond endurance at what goes on, and has gone on, in the world... and I have not heard or seen it all by any stretch... if it can be imagined, I am sure that it is or has been done... sadly, the Josef Fritzls of the world are legion... the Elisabeths, Kerstins, Aarushis, Noors and the millions that are unnamed are deserving of our best efforts at securing their rescue, rehabilitation, and the punishment of the sadistic monsters, both male AND female, that prey on them... and if we who are believers, our prayers... so that when we pass through the veil, and meet those that didn't make it, we can say in all honesty:

'We tried our best; I am sorry it was not enough! Please forgive us!'

Timeline of important events in Elizabeth Fritzl's Life Time

Up dated July 11th 2008: the judicial statements by Elisabeth begun

this is a time line of important events in Elizabeth Fritzl's life, and the life of the family that she had in the dungeon...

there are two events I have not been able to track down... 1) when she started school, 2)the time period when her mother was living away from the family... that last was reported on another blog, but didn't get the source...

as well, wonder if there is a source for Birthdays for the family...
the ages in here are approximations only...
I probably should have included Rosemarie's ages in here as well...

the text does not come out exactly as formatted in the compose window, but this will have to do...

I know that this will be tedious to read, but bear with it, I really do think that this is important for understanding the situation Elisabeth found herself in... thanks for visiting...

Sources, Wikipedia Page, various newspapers...

1966 - Elizabeth was born
1977 - JF began to sexually abuse her
Elisabeth is 11
- JF began application to city for permission to extend his basement
Elisabeth is 12
1981 - Elisabeth began training as a waitress/cook
Elisabeth was 15
1982-83 - JF began work on his dungeon extension to his already planned basement extension, adding, toilet, fridge, and hot plate... it appears that it was 35m²(380 sq ft) NB but that is unconfirmed at present

1983 - she was in cooking school and fell in love
January, she ran away from home and, together with a friend from work, went into hiding in Vienna. She was found by police within three weeks and returned to her parents. She rejoined her training course.
Elisabeth is 17

1984 - upon completion of her course in the summer Elisabeth was offered a job in the city of Linz.
28th of August - JF imprisoned her in the dungeon, when she was making plans to leave and live with a sister, possibly in Linz
for 9 months, from September to the following May, she is kept in the dark, on a leash or chain attached to a pole, and fed only when she submits to JF's sexual needs... it may be that it took 9 months to break her spirit, so that she would not rebel (NB if not break her spirit, then at least to convince her that she was trapped, and not going to get out)
Elisabeth is 18/19 years old

NB 4 year gap here... SHE WAS ALONE FOLKS... at this point, there was no TV for certain; no mention of a radio or other sources of entertainment...

1988 - Elisabeth becomes pregnant for the first time; JF gets her books on child birth and pregnancy, which are all she has to prepare her for the coming event
Elisabeth is 22
- Elisabeth delivers Kerstin into the world, (NB alone??)
Elisabeth is 23

1989/90 - Elisabeth becomes pregnant for the second time
Elisabeth is 23/24, Kerstin is less than one perhaps
- Elisabeth delivers Stefan into the world, now she has two babies to look after
Elisabeth is, 24, and Kerstin is 1

1991 - Elisabeth becomes pregnant for the 3rd time
Elisabeth is 25, and Kerstin is 2, and Stefan is 1
- (August/ September) Elisabeth delivers Lisa into the world
Elisabeth is 26, and Kerstin is 3 and Stefan is 2
- May, Lisa is left on door step at 9 months
Elisabeth is pregnant for the 4th time
Elisabeth is 27, and Kerstin is 4 and Stefan is 3

1994 - February, Elisabeth delivers Monika into the world
Elisabeth was 28, Kerstin was 5 and Stefan was 4
JF began work on the extension of the dungeon, by digging a walkway to an already excavated area of at least 2 room... this would expand the dungeon from it's
35m²(380sq ft) to 55m²(600 sq ft)
December, The fourth child, ten-month-old Monika, was found in a stroller outside the entrance of the house. Shortly afterwards, a phone call was made to Rosemarie, apparently, from Elisabeth. The caller asked Rosemarie to take care of the child. However, it is assumed that JF was able to use a recording of Elisabeth's voice to make the call. Rosemarie reported the incident to the police, expressing her astonishment that Elisabeth knew of their new and unlisted phone number. (NB these "cults" sure have great investigative powers to find Rosemarie's unlisted number, ie why didn't the police investigate this)

1995 - Elisabeth is pregnant again, this time with the twins
Elisabeth was 29, Kerstin was 6 and Stefan was 5
1996 - May
, Elisabeth delivers Michael and Alexander into the world
Michael dies after 3 days and is cremated in the boiler
Elisabeth was 30, Kerstin was 7 and Stefan was 6
1997 - August, Alexander is left outside the family door after 15 months with Elisabeth, Kerstin and Stefan... (NB, God, but that has got to have hurt, all of them, big time; parting with him, he was probably beginning to walk and be a little angel)
Elisabeth was 31, Kerstin was 8 and Stefan was 7

1998 - JF goes on a 4 week vacation to Thailand, presumably leaving Elisabeth and family with enough food in the freezer
Elisabeth was 32, Kerstin was 9 and Stefan was 8

NB Then there is a big gap here... 3 years

2001 - Elisabeth is pregnant for the 6th time and last time
Elisabeth was 35, Kerstin was 12 and Stefan was 11
2002 - May, Elisabeth delivers Felix into the world
Elisabeth gets a washing machine as a present so she did not have to wash her own clothes and that of the children by hand anymore NB so that means for 18 years she washed clothes by hand, and dried them by hanging them out, no wonder there was mold all over the dungeon, one police officer described it as like being in a submarine; and the police that had to investigate the dungeon, needed psychological counseling afterwards
Elisabeth was 36, Kerstin was 13 and Stefan was 12

NB another big gap, nothing reported of note, Felix was kept in the dungeon, because it was felt that Rosemarie had enough to do, handling the raising of the other 3

2008 - April 19th - Kerstin has been having stomach cramps and fainting spells, Elizabeth begs her father to take her daughter to the hospital, when over the counter medication don't help anymore... JF waits several days, until Rosemarie leaves for her annual holiday, and then brings Kerstin out to the world; and either takes her to the hospital or sends her in an ambulance; but takes Elizabeth back to the dungeon before leaving for the hospital himself... Elizabeth may have put a letter on Kerstin's person, asking for help, but that has not been confirmed by police or the hospital; they do mention a letter in which the mother of Kerstin, begs them to look after her daughter and make her well again

2008 - April 26th - for a week, she, Felix and Stefan will be glued to the TV, and watching the news, see the request by the doctors, for Kerstin's mother to come forward from the 'cult'... Elisabeth again begs her father to let her go... by this time Rosemarie is back, having heard about Kerstin, and JF brings the kids up, (NB whether before Elisabeth goes to see Kerstin or after is not clear) and tells her that Elisabeth has returned home...

Evening of April 26, Elisabeth comes out of the dungeon for the second time in a week, and this time rides to the hospital with JF to see Kerstin and the Doctors. The Doctors, inform the police and both Elisabeth and JF are taken into custody, separately.
night of April 26/27 police arrest Elisabeth on suspicion of child abandonment of Kerstin, (NB they don't know yet about the dungeon or the other children) when she came to visit Kerstin in hospital in Amstetten for the first time out. But after 2 hours of questioning, hearing her story, go to the house with JF who confesses and shows them the dungeon... (NB that is one version of the events, but until the trial we won't know for sure the exact sequence)

May 12 they had started to reduce medication that was keeping Kerstin in a coma.

May 14 a handmade poster created by Elisabeth, her children and her mother at the therapy facility was displayed in the Amstetten town center. The message thanked local people for their support. "We, the whole family, would like to take the opportunity to thank all of you for sympathy at our fate," they wrote in their message. "Your compassion is helping us greatly to overcome these difficult times, and it shows us there also are good and honest people here who really care for us. We hope that soon there will be a time where we can find our way back into a normal life. "

May 15 Kerstin opened her eyes and shows that the feared brain damage was far less likely after she laughed nervously at those around her. (NB I wonder what she was thinking at that moment, as her last memory may have been falling over in the dungeon)

May 15th to June 1, Elisabeth travelled back and forth from the clinic to the hospital (NB possibly daily) to be there to encourage Kerstin. The doctors acknowledge that this was a big part of the reason for Kersin's recovery, (NB understandably, there is a strong bond between these two women that probably goes way beyond mother daughter relationship, and perhaps can only be understood by military personnel who have trained, and gone into combat together, but that is my own opinion, not having read anything on it in the press)

Sunday 1 June at nine o'clock in the morning, the moment of truth arrives,
when the breathing apparatus that had kept her alive until then had been removed.

June 8th Kerstin is taken to the clinic where her mother and family were waiting for her; she went sitting up in the seat (NB: doesn't say if in front or back; cannot imagine how this must have felt for the young woman. First time in a vehicle and watching the world, not through a TV screen.)

June 11 the family was moved into a house on the clinic grounds and now move up to a more intensive regime of therapy

June 24th update on Kerstin: doctors caring for the family say that Elisabeth's daughter Kerstin, 19, was making great progress since she had started getting specialist help from ergonomics experts. Ergonomics is more commonly applied to designing office environments. But by useing a mixture of scientific and evidence-based information about an individual's physical and psychological capabilities and limitations, they are able to design an environment that will help her to fit in and grow stronger after her ordeal.

JUNE 24TH we learnt on July 15th that the family had been moved out of the clinic's house, into a house in a secret location, to continue their recovery... this was revealed at the same time that Elisabeth was going through her recorded testamony... which had been leaked by an annonomous person in the Judicerary office... obviously we were not to know that because we had the day before the leak, had been told it would be 2 weeks before the testamony... a pattern has emerged, of telling us after the fact, that something major in Elisabeth's life had happened...

June 26, the children have been tutored by female teachers, half days, and are being prepared for end of term exams; surprisingly, Stefan is finding it easier than expected, and shows an advanced level, and will be allowed to take some of the exams

July 10th, the proscecution made the announcement that the pretrial hearings to take Elisabeth's victim statements will be held in the next 2 weeks...

July 11th, it has been stated on the BBC that the statements process began today, quoting unnamed judicial officials... Elisabeth was taken to a secret location, where, with the judge, her lawyer, doctor and the prosecution, video linked to Josef Fritzl's lawyer, (Josef declined to participate) where her statement process was begun... this will continue next week... for some reason 1 day of unspecified hours was not enough... it is to be hoped that there was no medical reason for needing more than one day...

July 19th, the pre trial testamony of Elisabeth has been complete, it is over... unless there is a need to clarify an item, which will be a short interview, there is going to be no more full day testamony... it is not clear if there will be a need for the testamony of her mother, children or other members of the family... this may be all they need...

For Elisabeth now, I feel that it is all over but the waiting to see what happens at the trial, which will be anti-climatic... she will get on with her life and with the raising of her children... it has been 3 months since Kerstin was released from the dungeon to go to the hospital... and in that time, they have done a huge amount of recovering from their ordeals... very often the biggest part of the recovery, over 50% is done in the few months after... how much more they can recover will depend on themselves and how much they work at it...
I will note the times and outcome of the trial, but not much detail... it now has nothing to do with Elisabeth... unless she comes forward to say something to the public, it is time to put this to rest... God bless you dear and lovely lady... you have touch all our hearts, in ways you cannot imagine, and you will not be forgotten... {{{XX}}} to all of you... Schnee Wolfe 1948

Elisabeth is 42 (NB possibly turning 43 as I saw mention of her passing that mile stone), Kerstin is 19, Stefan is 18, and Felix is 5 turning 6