NBC: 'Wave of violence' against women in US-occupied Iraq
"Iraqi women were once the most emancipated in the Arab world," says correspondent Tom Aspell. "Educated, encouraged to work and vote; even allowed to divorce."
Women in US-occupied Iraq, in sharp contrast, are frequent targets of violence at the hands of Shiite militiamen and "religious zealots," according to the Iraqi government, especially in the southern city of Basra.
"I'm sorry to say that we've started to lose," says Iraqi MP Safia al-Souhail.
In Basra, over fifty women are known to have been murdered, often after being humiliated, but police are often too scared to investigate.
Says al-Souhail, a lot of women are killed for how they dress, wearing makeup, or for having jobs.
"They want us to be just like the Taliban," says Iraqi television reporter Hadil Sabbagh, having received death threats from such extremists even while on assignment in Baghdad, considered cosmopolitan in comparison to Basra.
The entire report, as broadcast on NBC's Nightly News on November 23, can be viewed below.