It’s worth contrasting the extensive mainstream, human rights, and of course feminist media coverage of a few hundred to a few thousand women killed, with the near complete media blackout on the catastrophic targeted slaughter of tens, if not hundreds of thousands of men in Iraq. Here are the stark facts of the matter:
* According to the Iraq Body Count, There have been between 96,803 and 105,553 recorded civilian deaths during the conflict up to the time of writing. There are likely to have been many, many, more unrecorded deaths, not to mention countless numbers of injured.
* Where the sex of the victim is known, 89% of the fatalities are male.
* Different attack methods result in different gender ratios. In general, the more inherently indiscrimate the attack mode, i.e., the less control the attacker has over the choice of victim, the less one-side the gender ratio, so for example, morter attacks and pure airstrikes kill males 56% and 54% of the time respectively.
* Contrariwise, Where the attack mode gives the attacker a high degree of control over the choice of victim, the gender ratios are large. For example 91% of the victims of small arms fire are male.
* In kidnap-executions, where the attacker has total control over the choice of victim, 95% of victims are male.
* Men are particularly targeted for torture. In those kidnap-executions where there is evidence of torture, 98% of victims are male.
These are not merely the unsubstantiated claims of an activist. These figures came from solid peer-reviewed research. The last figure is truly astounding. If there was ever a form of violence that qualified as gender-based – the targeted abduction, torture and murder of men in Iraq is it. Yet they are almost completely erased from the gender discourse.
The result of this inordinate focus upon female suffering, combined with the erasure of male victimization, is that a wholly false picture is painted of how violence does operate within these conflict-torn communities. That false picture in turn is used to justify the inordinate focus upon female victimisation.
See link for sources and discussion.