Reports indicate a rise in sexual abuse of Iraqi women following the US-led invasion of the country in 2003, saying female trafficking has become a growing business.
In her article, published by Inter Press Service (IPS) news agency on August 27, Rebecca Murray noted how prostitution and sex trafficking have become epidemic in Iraq during the post-invasion military occupation of the country by US-led forces.
In the past eight years, the country has been witnessing unrelenting violence and deadly terror attacks which smashed national institutions, impoverished the population and torn apart families and neighborhoods.
"Wars and conflicts, wherever they are fought, invariably usher in sickeningly high level of violence against women and girls," Murray cited an Amnesty International statement as saying.
The article told the story of Rania, who fell victim of Iraqi officials' sexual assault at 16, during a 1991 brutal crackdown on Iraq's Shia south by executed dictator Saddam Hussein.
Outcast Rania escaped to Baghdad and ended up as a sex trafficker's deputy after living and working in Baghdad's brothels for a while.
She describes female trafficking a lucrative business in Iraq, saying many virgin teenage girls are sold for around 5,000 dollars, and trafficked to destinations like northern Iraq, Syria and the United Arab Emirates.
After being arrested six years ago by US forces on charges of abetting terrorism, Rania was sent to jail in Baghdad's al-Kadimiyah detention and finally ended up as an undercover researcher for a women support group she got to know in prison.
In one of her harrowing findings, Rania and two other girls discovered a house in Baghdad's al-Jihad district, where girls as young as 16 were held to cater exclusively to the US military personnel.
The brothel's owner told Rania that an Iraqi interpreter employed by the Americans served as the dealer, transporting girls to and from the US airport base.
Before the Persian Gulf War in 1991, Iraq enjoyed the highest female literacy rate across the Middle East, and more Iraqi women were employed in skilled professions, like medicine and education, than in any other country in the region.
Norwegian Church Aid report last year highlighted the US-led war and the chaos it has generated among other factors giving rise to mounting prostitution in Iraq.
Yes. morals are awful in anyplace the US touches, unlike, say, the home country of this report:
Atefeh Rajabi Sahaaleh (Persian: ; 1988 - August 15, 2004) was a 16-year-old Mazandarani Iranian schoolgirl from the town of Neka, Iran who was executed a week after being sentenced to death by Haji Rezai, head of Neka's court on charges of adultery and "crimes against chastity". Rezai, who served as the prosecutor, judge and witness also carried out the execution of the teenager himself by placing the noose round Atefeh's neck before she was hoisted on a crane to her death telling her This will teach you to disobey!
After the execution of Atefeh, Iranian media reported that Judge Rezai and several militia members including Captain Zabihi and Captain Molai were arrested by the Intelligence Ministry. Inside sources informed the media that in addition to the confession of his rape of Atefeh, Judge Rezai who served as judge, jury and executioner, also confessed to torturing her during interrogations to extract names of others she had relations with. He also confessed to covering up what he and the militia members had done to Atefeh, by speeding up the verdict of execution. Judge Rezai insisted that the verdict and the execution were fully in compliance with the laws of Islam, permitted and sanctioned by the religious authorities. No charges have been made against Rezai.
The execution is controversial because as a signatory of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, Iran promised not to execute anyone under the age of 18. Atefah's father had passed her birth certificate to the civil authorities, lawyers involved, journalists and Judge Rezai himself but according to a witness, "the judge just looked at her body, because of the developed physique ... declared her as 22." Pursuant to continual complaints filed by Atefeh's family, and very heavy international pressure about her execution and the way the judge mishandled the case, the Supreme Court of Iran issued an order to free Atefeh, but only after it already knew she was dead.
 Early life
Atefeh's mother died in a car accident when she was five. Shortly after, her younger brother is said to have drowned in a river. Her father became a drug addict, and she was forced to care for her octogenarian grandparents. Despite her attending to their needs they are reported to have completely ignored her. She grew up in the town of Neka, Iran and was described as a "lively and intelligent girl," who everyone knew, and was often seen wandering free on streets. She was called "gypsy of Neka" by the locals, as she was not restrained in her behavior, having no parental guidance .
She was arrested three times by the Moral Police and convicted for having sex with unmarried men. On each occasion she was jailed and given 100 lashes, the punishment for single women who have sex with single or married men, according to the penal code of Iran. (If a married woman has sex with single or married men, she will be punished by stoning, according to this code.) Atefah herself was not married.
 Fourth and final arrest
On the day she was due to attend a wedding, the Moral Police arrested her as she was preparing dinner for her grandparents. As she had not committed an offense, a petition was presented declaring her a "bad influence". It was not signed.
She was convicted for crimes against chastity, based on her admission, obtained through torture, that she had repeatedly had sex with a 51-year-old ex-revolutionary guard turned taxi-driver Ali Darabi, a married man with children, who raped her several times. She kept the relationship, which lasted over three years, a secret from both her family and the authorities. However, while in prison, she finally told her Grandmother, saying that afterwards she could only walk on all fours because of the pain. In the court the judge was Haji Rezai. As Atefah realised she was losing her case, she removed her hijab, an act seen as a severe contempt of the court, and argued that Ali Darabi should be punished, not her. She even removed her shoes and hit the judge with them. The judge later sentenced her to death.
Atefeh appealed her conviction. Her family could still not afford a lawyer, and none was provided, in contravention of Iranian law. Although such appeals are usually not resolved within a year, her death sentence was upheld by the Supreme Court. Haji Rezai, the religious judge, was reportedly so incensed with Atefehs "sharp tongue" during the trial that he travelled to Tehran personally to convince the mullahs of the Supreme Court to uphold the death sentence. According to the BBC, the documents presented to the Supreme Court of Appeal described her as 22 years old, but her birth certificate and death certificate stated that she was 16. The issue of her age was not brought to proper attention before it was too late.
Amnesty International and a number of other organisations have reported that she suffered from psychological illness, both before and at the trial.
She was publicly hanged from a crane in Neka, Iran, on August 15, 2004. The judge in her case, Haji Rezai, also acted as executioner and applied the noose himself. She was left hanging for 45 minutes. He later boasted that she had been "taught a lesson" for her "sharp tongue". Her father was not notified of her execution. The next day her body was stolen from her grave. It has never been recovered.
Amnesty International and many other human rights organizations from the international community declared her killing to be a crime against humanity and against children of the world.
<table cellpadding="10"><tr><td></td><td>"The chief aim of all government is to preserve the freedom of the citizen. His control over his person, his property, his movements, his business, his desires should be restrained only so far as the public welfare imperatively demands. The world is in more danger of being governed too much than too little.
It is the teaching of all history that liberty can only be preserved in small areas. Local self-government is, therefore, indispensable to liberty. A centralized and distant bureaucracy is the worst of all tyranny.
Taxation can justly be levied for no purpose other than to provide revenue for the support of the government. To tax one person, class or section to provide revenue for the benefit of another is none the less robbery because done under the form of law and called taxation."
John W. Davis, Democratic Presidential Candidate, 1924. Davis was one of the greatest trial and appellate lawyers in US history. He also served as the US Ambassador to the UK.</td></tr></table>