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#191780 - 11/18/07 10:21 AM juvenile sex abise and homosexuality in Iran
Ken Singer, LCSW Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/24/00
Posts: 5780
Loc: Lambertville, NJ USA
A chilling story out of Iran this week, where homosexuality (according to the Iranian president) does not exist.

Ken

Iranian spared from execution
21-year-old had been scheduled to hang for ‘crimes’ committed at age 13
By Mike Stuckey
Senior news editor
MSNBC
updated 7:33 a.m. ET, Fri., Nov. 16, 2007
Amid international criticism ignited by a crusading journalist, Iran’s chief justice has spared the life of a young man who had been sentenced to be executed as the result of a cousin’s accusations of homosexual acts years earlier.

Ayatollah Seyed Mahmoud Hashemi Sharudi nullified the imminent death sentence of Makvan Mouloodzadeh, 21, for violations of Iranian law and Islamic teachings, Saeid Eghbali, the defendant’s attorney, told msnbc.com this week.

Had Sharudi not intervened, Mouloodzadeh would have joined hundreds of his fellow Iranians, some of them just children when they committed their alleged crimes, who are hanged each year in jail yards and public squares. The executions are often carried out via a method designed to enhance and prolong their suffering: A rope is placed around the condemned person’s neck and he or she is hoisted from the ground with an industrial crane.

“This is a stunning victory for human rights and a reminder of the power of global protest,” said Paula Ettelbrick, executive director of the New York-based International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, which worked to draw attention to Mouloodzadeh’s case.

With overtones of homophobia, suspicions of political retaliation and a conviction based on activities that allegedly occurred eight years earlier, when Mouloodzadeh was just 13, his case captured the attention of a number of international groups that are trying to pressure Iran into improving human rights for women, gays and children.

The groups charge that Iran has increasingly used the death penalty for people convicted of crimes that occurred when they were children or teens.


“Iran leads the world in executing children,” Human Rights Watch said in a summer press release that charged the nation with putting to death at least 17 juvenile offenders since the beginning of 2004, “eight times more than in any other country in the world.”


By comparison, according to statistics compiled by Amnesty International, Sudan executed two juvenile offenders in the same time period, while China, Pakistan, Yemen, Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia executed one each. The United States last executed a person for crimes committed as a juvenile in 2003, but is second only to Iran in such killings since 1989, having put 19 juvenile offenders to death to Iran’s 24 in that 18-year period.

Mouloodzadeh’s case came to light through the reporting of Mitra Khalatbari, a 21-year-old journalist who works for a Tehran newspaper and publishes a Persian-language blog called “Scream of Silence.”

It is a stark reminder of the differences between Western justice systems and those of Islamic nations, which consider adultery and homosexuality to be capital crimes, mandate precise numbers of whip lashes for certain offenses, allow relatives of a murder victim to decide whether the killer is to be put to death or pay them blood money, and place a higher value on the lives of Muslim men than non-Muslims and women.

In a telephone interview with msnbc.com that was translated by Hossein Alizadeh, a spokesman for the gay and lesbian rights group, Khalatbari said Mouloodzadeh’s trial “took place behind closed doors” in June. Because of her reputation for previously covering such cases, she learned about Mouloodzadeh’s death sentence afterward from his uncle, who lives in Germany.

Through interviews with family members and others, Khalatbari learned that Mouloodzadeh, from Kermanshah province in the north of Iran, was arrested without warning in September of last year. Mouloodzadeh, who at first believed that he had violated prohibitions against smoking or something else during the holy month of Ramadan, had his head shaved and was paraded through town on a donkey, a state-sanctioned humiliation ritual.

Mouloodzadeh’s family was later informed that he had been accused of numerous acts of rape and sodomy, which allegedly occurred when he was 13. The allegations were made to authorities in a letter from Mouloodzadeh’s cousin.

Attorney: No victims until police rounded them up
“That was the statement, in that letter, that triggered the whole arrest,” said Eghbali, whose interview with msnbc.com also was translated by Alizadeh. Even with the letter, the attorney said, there were no alleged victims until the police went out, arrested some men and coerced them into saying that they had committed sodomy with Mouloodzadeh as youngsters.

Even though none of the men ever alleged that Mouloodzadeh raped them and all eventually recanted their stories that any sexual contact had occurred, a local magistrate used a legal maneuver called “knowledge of the judge” to find Mouloodzadeh guilty anyway and sentence him to death, a fate upheld by Iran’s Supreme Court, Eghbali said.

“This is a scandal, a judicial scandal, because they just decided on the basis of pretrial information to pass the sentence,” said Eghbali, who noted numerous other procedural errors in a 10-page appeal to Ayatollah Sharudi.


Although the Islamic Penal Code, which is the law of the land in Iran, mandates the death penalty for homosexual acts, it also establishes an elaborate procedure to prove such cases. “If you want to follow the letter of the law, it is next to impossible to sentence someone to death based upon sexual crimes,” Eghbali said.

The case simply didn’t add up to Eghbali, who would not comment on suspicions raised elsewhere that Mouloodzadeh may have been singled out because he had relatives who have opposed Iran’s rulers politically. “What I can tell you as a lawyer is that Makvan was not tried as an innocent person until proven guilty,” Eghbali said. “From the get-go, they decided to build a case around his personality and introduce him as someone who is nothing but trouble.”

In New York, a spokesman with the Iranian Mission to the United Nations would not comment on Mouloodzadeh’s case.

Now that the death sentence has been commuted, the case will be returned to the local court for retrial, Eghbali said, although the timetable is unclear. Eghbali said he had not spoken with Mouloodzadeh since the young man learned of his reprieve but planned to travel soon to the Kermanshah jail to discuss the case with his client.

Alizadeh, of the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, said Mouloodzadeh was fortunate that journalist Khalatbari was able to write about his case.

“The only reason this young man managed to escape is that he had a relative in Germany that knew someone in Iran and that someone was a reporter and she was brave enough to make a fuss about it,” he said. “I’m sure there are many people like him who die because there was no one to hear their story.”


Many of those people, Alizadeh said, are gay, women, religious minorities or ethnic minorities. Mouloodzadeh, for instance, is Kurdish, the ethnic group that faces more discrimination than any other in Iran, said Alizadeh, himself a native of the country.

Khalatbari said she was “100 percent certain” that attention on the case swayed the ayatollah. “The judiciary and government is very sensitive to pressure, especially international pressure,” she said. “Sometimes, when a reporter finds out and starts making a fuss, they cancel the executions.”

Internal conflicts
The case also highlights the Islamic republic’s internal conflicts on how to deal with homosexuality.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad garnered headlines on a recent visit to the United States when he skirted a question on the execution of gays in Iran, declaring, "In Iran we don't have homosexuals like in your country." But this week, the Times of London quoted Mohsen Yahyavi, a member of the Iranian Parliament, as saying that gays should be executed or tortured.

Alizadeh says the government often tries to avoid appearing as if it is executing citizens just for being gay by adding other criminal charges, such as drug trafficking or rape.

Some observers remain convinced that such was the case with Mahmoud Asgari and Ayaz Marhoni, whose 2005 public hangings while they were still teenagers sparked worldwide outrage. While the pair was convicted of rape in addition to homosexual acts, some gay rights activists believe the youths were executed merely for engaging in consensual sex. Other rights groups have chosen to focus on the fact that the hangings violate international treaties prohibiting the execution of minors, which Iran has signed.


© 2007 MSNBC Interactive
URL: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21821342/page/3/


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#191796 - 11/18/07 01:41 PM Re: juvenile sex abise and homosexuality in Iran [Re: Ken Singer, LCSW]
Still Offline
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Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 6571
Loc: Never Sugar Mountain
This is truly frightening. Anyone who does not think that there are cultures and governments that are inherently evil, just read this article above. Keep in mind that Iraq was the same way until the USA interrupted them.

So according to this article, my perps would have met death for what they did to me (even I am not prepared to request that)...and eventulally, I too would have met the same fate for my acting out after the coercion stopped. Though I suspect I would have been killed for the acts during the coercion as well.

There are truly terrifying cultures!

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#191846 - 11/18/07 10:17 PM Re: juvenile sex abise and homosexuality in Iran [Re: Still]
Lazarus Offline
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Registered: 07/01/07
Posts: 851
Loc: Below the radar, USA
Rob, from what I've heard, YOU would have also been persecuted just for being the victim of homosexual rape. I heard on NPR recently that a film about the subject (made in Iran with Iranian actors) was delayed in it's release until the actors could be relocated out of the country. Otherwise, the reporter insisted, they and their families would have been persecuted, rediculed and humiliated because of his alleged homosexual rape... and this was an ACTOR!!! No sexual activity ever occured at all!

I agree that these are truly terrifying cultures. If I may get a bit political here, while I disagree with the way our current war in Iraq is being conducted, I agree that we are, and should be, at war with them and other cultures like Al Quaida and the Taliban. Their radical prejudices are even more contrary to our beliefs and morals than those of Hitler and Stalin.

Briefly, let me tell you the story of Muhammed that I learned from the local when I visited Egypt; He is the one who pillaged allmost all of the Alabaster that used to cover the great pyramids of Giza in order to build himself a great palace. When it was complete, he invited all the Kings of the Middle East to a peace conference in his new 'Palace of Peace'. But once he had them all there, he had the gates sealed and proceeded to slaughter every one of them. Only one king escaped, and he and his entourage did so by jumping of a precipice of the palace on their horses, sacrificing the horses but saving themselves.

Muhammed is the saint that the Muslims worship next to Allah, and whose name or likeness cannot be slandered or even caricatured under penalty of death. In other words, this guy is their patron saint.

I do not trust a one of them. They have been in a holy war for almost 3000 years, and now we have gotten dragged into it, or rather we have finally entered into it. My opposition to this war is that it is a limited war. I believe that if we are going to do this, we need to do it all the way as in a fight for life or death. There is no co-existance with this kind of mentality. The simple fact that we try to negotiate with them is seen as a sign of weakness. There will be no peace until one or the other is wiped from the face of the earth.

It's not just homophobia, it's zenophobia. These fanatical muslim groups hate everyone who is not like them, to the extent that killing one of us is a virtuous act.

There is no reasoning, no rational, no compromise, and no sanctuary. They will not rest until we are all dead or converted to Islam. The only possible outcomes are either their complete analliation, or ours. I'm not saying that all Muslims are like that, but the Al-Quieda's and Taliban's are like a rabid dog; they MUST be exterminated or as long as they live they will try to terminate us. Nothing less than a fight to the death will satisfy them.

Sorry to get all political on you, but that's the topic.

Lazarus

_________________________
"That which does not kill us, surely makes us stonger." - Neitsche

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#192962 - 11/28/07 10:26 AM Re: juvenile sex abise and homosexuality in Iran [Re: Lazarus]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Guys,

Islam is full of fanatics, yes, but so are Christianity and Judaism. One of the greatest and most visionary steps taken by the Founding Fathers in the USA was to keep religion out of politics. Otherwise who knows where we would be today. Once religious authorities gain political power, no matter where, they seek to turn their religious orthodoxy into state policy and oppress all opposing points of view as "heresy".

"Homosexuality" in Islamic culture focuses on the passive partner; to have sex with another man is not such a big deal, so long as you are the "top". For it to be otherwise is a terrible shame in the Middle East, and that extends to victims of rape or sexual abuse. Almost no guy from the Middle East or an Islamic country will talk about it, and the few survivors I know from the Middle East were ALL told by their families to keep quiet to protect the family honor.

The existence of homosexuality in Islamic countries is almost always explained as a perversion brought in from outside; that is, it's nothing "we" would do. Among the Arabs, for example, it's usually blamed on the Iranians; the Iranians will have their own scapegoats, etc. These days it's convenient for traditional Muslims to see it as the ultimate sign of the decadence and decline of the Western world and to despise gays in their own countries as tainted and corrupted by Western influences.

Because of this, the President of Iran of course has to say there's no homosexuality in Iran, and by this he means the only gays in the country are those tainted by the West, and these are disposed of as soon as they are discovered. In the Arab countries the more usual version of this nonsense is to say "there's no AIDS in our country".

Muhammad is not a saint in Islam; he's the last prophet sent by God to mankind. The story about Muhammad pillaging the pyramids is a legend; Egypt wasn't conquered by the Muslims until 13 years after Muhammad's death. By then the pyramids were already antiquities thousands of years old, and the marble "skin" of the monuments had long since been carried away for use in later Greek and Roman buildings - that is, already before the rise of Islam.

I have no use for the Taliban or al-Qa'ida, but neither do many Muslims. I have always been treated with affection and respect in Muslim countries and by Muslims everywhere, from Egypt to Afghanistan, even at times when Israel has been bombing the local area using American weapons.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#193096 - 11/29/07 03:07 AM Re: juvenile sex abise and homosexuality in Iran [Re: roadrunner]
thegoatherd Offline
New Here

Registered: 11/29/07
Posts: 1
Moderator, If this is a world politics forum, then please publish the below response to Larry's misleading and inflammatory statement. Otherwise, please remove his comments from the forum.

Larry,
I cannot speak to your anecdotal experiences, but the reality is that any western tourist in Egypt is incurring a significant risk, (to say nothing of tourists in Afghanistan!!!). There are well-organized Moslem groups who proudly attack busloads of tourists at the Pyramids. To them, unless you are a moslem, you are a just a Dhimmi. In case you don't know, "Dhimmi" is for Moslems what "N___ger" is for the Ku Klux Klan - a subhuman. Despite denials on the part of westernized Moslems, Islam teaches that non-moslems are to be converted or killed; that it is permissible to lie about that fact; that murder of innocent civilians to achieve a political end is admirable and will get you a ticket into paradise.

Let's also consider the Israelis. They have been the victims of Moslem terrorism for decades. Don't blame them for defending themselves vigorously!!! If YOUR children were being shot at, wouldn't you want to protect them? While palestinians teach hatred and murder to their children, Israel prays for peace. It is an outrage to characterize Israel as "bombing the local area"- your tone implying that said bombing is casual and indiscriminate!! The fact is that Israel does not attack civilians- they attack people with rockets and guns who are headed to the border to try to kill some Dhimmis. In fact, the Israel Defense Force goes to great lengths to avoid injuring civilians. Granted that they are not always successful, but at least the intent is present. In contrast, the palestinians go to great lengths to kill as many civilians as possible.

America should be proud to, and continue to, provide arms to Israel.


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#193188 - 11/29/07 07:18 PM Re: juvenile sex abise and homosexuality in Iran [Re: thegoatherd]
Paul1959 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/17/06
Posts: 525
Loc: NYC
Gee, Larry, I sure wish you would learn something about this Arab stuff before you say things. :-)
Loads of Love,
Paul


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#193190 - 11/29/07 07:37 PM Re: juvenile sex abise and homosexuality in Iran [Re: Paul1959]
Lazarus Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/01/07
Posts: 851
Loc: Below the radar, USA
Larry, I never thought I would disagree with you, but here I am. I appreciate your Peacekeeper mentality, and I wouldn't speak against Muslims as a society, but the fact remains that a large percentage of Muslims hate all Christians and Jews (and Buhddists and any other religious group that is not Muslim) to the extent that they feel vindicated in persecuting them. I have never seen another society, or fraction, that is as adamant about their hatred as these, except perhaps the Nazis under Hitler. But even the Nazis didn't hate everybody else, but just the Jews. We had total world war to change that. Nothing short of extermination of these radical muslim groups will change their thinking. They will not compromise, they will not negotiate and they will not be tolerant of us. The only thing that our not-at-all esteemed President has said of late that made any sense at all was, "If we don't fight them there, we will have to fight them here."

And if you don't think Muhammed is worshiped as a saint, just remember the riots that occurred when he was portrayed in a comic strip in London a few years ago. As I recall, the portrayal itself was not defamatory, but the fact that he was simply IN the comics was incitefull to them. Of course the next few portrayals of Muhammed by some media was defamatory, done just to taunt them I suppose. But after a few bonbs, nobody does that anymore. Right?

With these guys, it's "Either you're with me or you're against me." There is no middle ground, no agreeing to disagree.

Which, I hope, we can do on this subject.

Love ya, Larry

Lazarus
P.S. Shouldn't this thread be in a different forum? World News, perhaps? Would you check into moving it there so we can have a wider audience? (Now, if I were Taliban, I would be demanding that this thread be expunged from the site, and the participants banned at the very least. See my point? LOL)

_________________________
"That which does not kill us, surely makes us stonger." - Neitsche

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#193220 - 11/30/07 08:50 AM Re: juvenile sex abise and homosexuality in Iran [Re: Lazarus]
Still Offline
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Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 6571
Loc: Never Sugar Mountain
Clearly there are extremists in any category of humanity. Maybe the murderous types ought not be grouped according to their religion, even if they murder in the name of their religion. Maybe the murderous types ought to be categorized as just that.

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#193237 - 11/30/07 12:27 PM Re: juvenile sex abise and homosexuality in Iran [Re: Lazarus]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Guys,

Sorry my comments on the contemporary scene diverted Ken's thread on gay issues into politics. You're of course welcome to your views on these matters, as on any others.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#193244 - 11/30/07 02:33 PM Re: juvenile sex abise and homosexuality in Iran [Re: roadrunner]
mogigo Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/24/07
Posts: 1331
Loc: Colorado
There seems to be a disbute related to time here, Larry says any group has commited these crimes and I agree with him but he also says we need to have a perspective related to a difference of hundreds of years, this is not helpful for what is happening today. It's like saying we should have "our" perspective without the hindsight of WW2, impossible!. Again, not helpful today, we do have the perspective of WW2. I've run into this much with regards to politics and cultures. Larry is asking us to drop to their level instead of them coming up to our's. It can be related to crime as well. They key is to educate on our perspective instead of falling to a lower, more primitive level to show "respect".

I think in the end it's what is right, but we're lost on how to teach that without insulting. A hard problem definately, but we shouldn't lose what works so as not to offend.

They are wrong.

Mike

_________________________
Thriving

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