I’ve written before about the story of a 10 year old (she was believed then to be 8 year old) Somali girl, Noyoud, who demanded divorce, after being raped and beaten by her 3 times older husband.
You can watch the report now on CNN News
In todays’ ABC News, a story about a reporter, who went undercover in Haiti, pretending to search for a child, to buy and take back to the USA with him. Read this article and watch short video about how quickly the transaction was making place.
“On this trip, I’ve had sex with a 14-year-old girl in Mexico and a 15-year-old in Colombia. I’m helping them financially. If they don’t have sex with me, they may not have enough food. If someone has a problem with me doing this, let UNICEF feed them.”
Retired U.S. Schoolteacher
click on the picture to go to Trafficking in Person Report 2008 by US Department of State
News from today: FBI arrested 389 people involved in human trafficking and prostitution, after raids in 16 cities across the country. According to CNN, those involved in child trafficking are facing federal charges, which might end up in life sentences.
Innocence Lost National Initiative, till today rescued more than 400 kids and led to persecution of 308 persons. Last week they held the largest operation since 2005.
Finally someone is being serious about it. I wonder how many of the victims were from abroad.
click on the photo to go to the TRADE web site
If you want to see a recent movie about the subject, watch “Trade” Movie (free online). The story evolves around Eastern European and Mexican girls, human trafficked from Mexico to USA, humiliated, abused and treated like slaves.
Got this today from Not for Sale:
Bringing down walls. Building bridges. Beginning the process of renewal by shedding light into darkness. With the launch of SlaveryMap.org we hope that Not For Sale’s core ethos of collaboration and collective change continues to grow.
Now you can reach out to local service providers, law enforcement, legal teams, and government officials by using SlaveryMap.org to highlight the work of the modern-day abolitionist at home and across the world. Together we will continue to peel back the veil of modern-day slavery.
I’ve just finished the book “Escape” by Carolyn Jessop, former Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS) member, who escaped with her 8 children, after many years of terrifying life with a man, who was one of the leaders in the FLDS.
She grew up in a polygamous household, and had to marry 50 year old man, being only 18 years old herself and becoming the forth wife. She was abused sexually, physically and emotionally throughout the marriage, not only by her husband, but by her sister-wives also.
Carolyn is the first top on the left, here with her husband and sister wives
The whole system of FLDS keeps the women as a subject to the men-powered world, which existence is based on perversity and control. They are degrading women’s lives, by diminishing them to working slaves, playing with their minds constantly to keep them vulnerable and subjected to the men’s wishes. Brain washed by the group’s leader’s, constantly abused, kept without educational opportunities, mentally tricked and emotionally drained, sooner or later, they become mentally unstable, depressed and mostly give up.
Carolyn found her strength by caring for her children, and was granted a full custody of her children after her escape from the brutality of the system, which promised heaven, but delivered hell on earth.
Very disturbing recollections of a young woman’s journey from a total believer in the cult’s religious teachings, to the world of freedom and reason.
Again Iran, again women, again hopeless. It’s a story about 2 young mothers, heroin drug addicts, trying to survive in a male dominant, Allah prescribed society. The world is full of stories of prostitutes who can’t come out of the circle of addiction, and are trapped in the hell of prostitution. What’s the difference here then? Well, neither the government, neither Allah is opposing what’s happening to the young girls, being exploited beyond belief.
Iranian revolution started as a dream for the society, but became another dictatorship system, operating under religious laws.
The reality of a “temporary marriage” (sighe), blessed by Allah, which can last from 10 minutes to 99 years is shown in this documentary in a very disturbing way. Perfectly legal contract, where a man owns a woman for a certain time, and pays her money. Legalized prostitution, I call it. The girls are treated by the law as grown women in Iran, since they are 9 years old, and they can be married, permanently or temporarily, at this age. They are often abused physically, raped, beaten and after the legal time of marriage is over, left alone in a society, where a woman can’t survive.
This documentary was made by an Iranian woman, Nahid Persson,who escaped right after the revolution begun and lives now in Sweden. She came back 17 tears later to witness the changes in her country and was shocked of what she has found so far.
Watch it here. You will see incredible footage, nothing you can expect in an “official” documentary.
I did not want to write about it again, but after reading this article quoting the interview of Josef Fritzl with his lawyer, published as an attempt to somehow justify man’s actions, I must say, that Mr. Josef’s explanations are quite lame.
Blaming his childhood upbringing in a Nazi society and his mother’s strong personality for his tendencies to be extraordinarily firm and demanding… Blaming his daughter, Elisabeth, for paving the road to her imprisonment by herself, by associating with the wrong crowd, drinking and smoking… Blaming her for being too independent, getting out of his control… Blaming his mind entering into the “vicious cycle, where there is no way out”. Blaming his lack of control in regards to raping his daughter often and regularly…
His attempts to gain any bits of sympathy from us, who labeled him as a monster, are endless. His confession of a desire to release the prisoners, stories about bringing them flowers, presents and Christmas trees, his story times about the life “outside”, even about his wife Rosemarie being sad not having a contact with her daughter; his care for his daughter well being while pregnant as a result of constant rapes, by allowing her to get educated in the subject of prenatal care and birth and by providing her the necessities to survive this whole time; saying touchy words about building a “new family”, bonding times with them, about providing a washing machine and other luxurious equipment… it’s all sickening. It’s nothing else but keeping control over his slaves, delivering to them bare survival kit day by day, year by year. It’s nithing else but shameless admittance of his conscious and focused, deliberate exploitation of others in order to feed his demonic rage, perversion and desires.
He dismisses some parts of Elisabeth’s testimony. But guess what, no matter what she says, the whole world will believe her. It’s her time to speak up, her time to decide, her time to explain, her time to be number one. It’s also her time to forgive.
We’ve heard enough from Mr. Fritzl. We are ready to hear from the hero herself.
This whole mumbling of his convinces me even more in a fact, that he knew exactly what he was doing, what were the consequences of such a behavior, and with that in mind he continued in his depravity. He wanted this life of 8,516 days of torture to continue.
If the Austrian court will decide that this explanation qualifies as a valid testimony of a person who can’t be judged because of his incompatibility with the ‘main stream society’ morals, then let’s examine the other millions who grew up in the same political, cultural and family circumstances. Let’s see how many Josefs we can find.
There was a press conference. More facts were revealed about Josef Fritzl. The cellar which he kept his daughter and her children in for years, was built by himself during 6 years period prior to imprisoning Elizabeth. That’s the time he started to rape Elizabeth regularly. He liked it so much and he wanted it to continue for his whole life. Building the dungeon was a way for this heinous crime to be continued. He forced his daughter to help him built the room inside. The cellar had 8 doors, the last two electronically monitored.
For the first 2 days of her captivity Elizabeth was handcuffed to a pole, for the next 9 months, she was kept on a leash, which allowed her only to use the toilet. He raped her about every three days. For the first 9 years Elizabeth and her 3 children were kept in one room, 35m2 (380 square feet), originally designed to be a nuclear shelter. After the 4th child was born, he added 20m2. That suggests that the children were present in the room when he was raping his own daughter year after year. There were also punishment cells in the cellar, with nothing else but bare walls.
He installed a goldfish tank for them to enjoy and he was giving them supplements of vitamin D.
The psychiatric clinic where the family is kept for now.
In the hospital: the family is reuniting daily for meals and play. They are slowly being exposed to the sunlight. Their skin is very pale. Both boys, who spend all their life in the dungeon learned everything they know from their mother or from the TV. They use a mixture of words and communicate with noises that are a mixture of growling and cooing. 5 year old Felix prefers to crawl, although can walk upright. Elisabeth thought them to read and write, but lost a lot of her knowledge. Elisabeth looks as old as her mother.
Josef. He is in prison. He is obsessed with following all the news regarding his case. His lawyer will present the case of mental illness and/or insanity. His fellow prisoners are threatening to kill him. He is in a single cell, with a window, and, his lawyer says: “He is a broken man”.
19 year old Kirsten is still in coma. She has never been seen by the doctor or a dentist before. She has lost almost all her teeth.
From the news coverage on May 7th we hear Josef denying him being a monster, being cooperative with the prosecutors and saying, that “if not for him, they all would die”.
How long will it take for these victims to even emerge as dignified human beings? Will they be able to forgive? Will they be able to enter into “normal” society and every day life? How strong is Elizabeth that she can even enjoy life as it is now? What will Josef’s wife do? How are the children going to relate to each other in the future? I have many questions…
The beginning of this story, where a father kept his daughter, Elizabeth (her picture from years ago below) in a windowless cellar for 24 years and had 7 children with her is here.
The update below is taken from here.
19 year old Kerstin is in a critical state, her predictions to survive are slim.
Josef Fritzl is being connected with 3 other rape cases back in the 60-ties.
The colour blue; birdsong, moving traffic and the rustling of leaves: all that and much more is alarmingly new for two of the Austrian children who have spent their lives locked in an underground bunker.
Bernhard Kepplinger, the supervising doctor for the Fritzl family – the three relatively well-adjusted children who were brought up above ground and the three from the cellar – is more cautious: “Each child will need individual therapy and we should be careful not to overdo it.”
One problem has been separating the two boys from their mother, Elisabeth. “They were probably overprotected by their mother in the cellar,” Dr Friedrich said.
Elisabeth, 42, had to shield them from the sexual abuse of her – and their – father, Josef. When they heard the sounds of their father having sex with their mother they would retreat to one of the bedrooms and watch television to blank out the noise. Now, influenced by so much television, the children’s view of the world is two, rather than three-dimensional.
The youngest boy is given the best chance of recovery because of his relatively short period in the dungeon. He is curious rather than threatened by the outside world. When he was first taken out of the cellar he asked a policeman: “Is that God up there?” pointing at the sky.
The older boy reportedly has problems with balance and co-ordination.
The hospital lifts have been frightening for the boys. When the doors close, they panic: fears of the cellar dungeon are still very fresh.
The younger boy is said to be confused by the ringtones of mobile phones. As for the older one, he has grown to adolescence in the improvised prison created by his father. The television has given him some idea about cars, computers and politicians, but it is all very abstract.
Some things are familiar – the smell of food from the cooking ring – and the psychiatric team is trying to build on the recognized sensations while extending his range.
Never in modern Europe has there been a case of such sustained sensory deprivation. Even Natascha Kampusch, who escaped from her kidnapper 18 months ago, spent part of her captivity upstairs, was allowed occasionally into the garden and was even taken on a trip to the mountains by her abductor. Moreover, she was already 10 years old when she was first kidnapped, already quite articulate, able to read and write and aware that she was a captive. None of the cellar children were told they were prisoners; Elisabeth presented their cellar existence as normal life.