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The Violence Against Women in Darfur

September 19, 2004

Re "In Sudan, Rape's Lasting Hurt," Sept. 15: I am shaking after reading about the nightmarish existence of the women of the Darfur region. How these victims of gender, political, religious and ethnic violence can survive and, subsequently, endure is beyond my comprehension. As I rage at their myriad oppressors, I honor their strength, courage and spirit.

Regina F. Lark

Canoga Park

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It is sad that it is so easy to hide behind tradition and culture. What happened to compassion? Reading of Fatima Adam, who was repeatedly raped but now is shunned by her family and community because of what others had done to her, is horrifying. Her childhood was taken from her by no fault of her own, and now she has to raise an innocent child who will also have to carry this shame.

This is not tradition, this is an excuse to blame the woman for the weakness of man. Through the ages the fault has always been placed on the shoulders of the women. Traditions and cultures are man-made. Women of the world, it is time for us to take the lead and do away with these so-called traditions.

Rita Gonzales

Burbank

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How could you print a story on the horrific rapes of women in Sudan and not mention the damage done by George Bush reinstating the gag rule? These poor women and girls cannot receive counseling or information about abortion from any clinic that receives U.S. funds.

The U.S. under Bush joined with Sudan, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Syria and the Vatican to try to block a U.N. Special Assembly consensus on sexuality education. This has greatly contributed to the plight of women in Sudan and done nothing to stop the disgusting attitudes blaming women for being raped.

How many Sudanese girls and women are being forced to go through with a pregnancy resulting from rape? They can thank Bush and his mythical quest to promote women's rights in the Mideast.

Lisa Marquise

Westminster

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