Posted in Change, Commitment, goals, Health, Human Rights, Thoughts, Uncategorized, Women


I consider myself to be emotionally tough when it comes to reading about horror, suffering, and injustice. Don’t get me wrong though, I can be moved to great emotion and feeling, yet have instilled in myself over the years of working in a caring profession, where I see tragedy, upset and suffering on a frequent basis, a harder protective exterior. I may recoil over news reports concerning atrocities, death and famine, yet nothing, but nothing has affected me quite like the reading in the Guardian newspaper- 3rd November concerning the execution of a 13 yr old Somali girl accused of adultery and stoned to death.

I can not bear to write the details here even, all I can ask is that you go to the link to read for yourselves. Not being too melodramatic, but that event, so heinous and so terrible, was a defining moment for me. Something inside me just clicked, changed, moved, happened. I can not begin to explain it but it was after reading this report, that I vowed; yes it was that strong, vowed that I would move with an hardened commitment in my aim to work with women who suffer violence and abuse. This includes women’s health, human rights and my passion concerning the eradication of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). See Zero Tolerance for Women.

Many of us are procrastinators and I’m no exception. My flaw has been that I can make excuses for doing sometimes little. I have been stressed, busy, working, waiting for this and that. Wait until I have my degree, then I will be in a real position to do something. Waiting until there is enough money for a regular train fare to London to visit the organisation of Foreward, a UK charity formed for the eradication of FGM. Well, yes some of those restraints still exist but I’m afraid I can’t wait any longer.

That is why two evenings ago, in spite of being busy preparing to go back to work after a month off sick, I made the time to post a letter to join Amnesty International. But I am not going to just “chuck” money at organisations and causes, as I have done in the past. My aim is to get involved practically at any level concerning the overall human rights of man, and not just women; though women’s studies are a passion and will continue to be.

I am doing this in the name of Aisha Ibrahim Duhulow. I have written her name in my notebook so as never to forget it. A girl, the age of my daughter, who suffered the most appauling double horror, injustice and death at the hands of men, evil beyond all defintion. Her death will not be in vain and for nothing. I owe it to her and to every other human being abused, tortured, oppressed and murdered, not to just sit, read and do little If I have a compelling force to do other wise. I don’t know what I can do or where this will take me. But I pray with God’s will it will take me somewhere. And in the mean time, yes, I will finish my Diploma, try real hard to obtain my degree and to do all the million other things that life expects. I know it won’t be done all at once and I know other things nearer to home have top priority. However, a start has to be made somewhere and I have started.

And I am never going to stop!!!!!!!!!!!

NB: After writing this blog, I have discovered more information regarding this crime which took place on October 27th. I have included a Radio 4 interview here with the Director of Amnesty International which reports the incident from an eye-witness account, but also explains the background as to why Somalia is such a violent place and why it’s people remain largely unprotected against such atrocities, and why no-one is brought to justice. On saying that, BBC news 24 has just reported, at time of wrting in draft 04/11/08, two men have been flogged in Mogadishu in relation to this death. My comment about that punishment will be witheld from here but I suspect you can quess what I think to it.

I have decided to create another blog site for the specific purpose of concentrating on humanitarian and human rights issues. This will report Amnesty Internationals work and what involvement I have. All my blogs concerning FGM will be now written on this new site. This blog site will remain for my general stories. I have as yet to think of a suitable name but it will be dedicated to the memory of Aisha, the girl murdered in this story.



Committed to the education of children and the health and human rights of women and mankind. I also enjoy taking photographs and sometimes I write poetry.

7 thoughts on “Aisha

  1. Great blog (and great photo too). I was horrified by this story as well. There is something dreadfully horrible about it in so many ways – the rape, the decision to punish the victim, the method of execution, the age of the human being. Your actions will be a wonderful tribute to this young woman. It is such a tragedy that she will never know how she is being honoured.

  2. Yes, I found this very upsetting too. I read the article after you linked to it on Twitter but didn’t comment because the Twitter box is just too small and I don’t know, I didn’t feel I had any words.

    What you say about doing too little, strikes a chord as well. I do nothing. I used to do a small amount of voluntary work with rape victims (and very briefly with offenders) but I have not done so for many years. I actually found it took too much – not time really, just sucked me back to thinking about stuff I am probably better off forgetting. But it does not make me feel good about myself to read these articles and just BE upset. What is the good in that? But I cannot risk my own sanity really – I have people who depend upon me. Selfish but true.

    I am impressed with how this has galvanised you for action. I only wish I could be be as energetic and proactive.

  3. To athinkingman:

    Thanks for the response and the desire to spread this blog by your efforts, re: sharing this piece.
    I was deeply affected by this incident, if you can even call it that.
    When I collected the stones from my work shop, (I had painted some beach stones), so I had some, I felt their weight and shuddered. I could not bear to handle them and had to put them in my pocket quickly. I could imagine, stones similar to these ones pounding a head. It was direct connection I felt and I recoiled in the horror.
    Everytime I try to imagine the scene, it defies all imagination. I have to block in out to a great extent. Apparently, I read some time ago, the size of the stones are very important when it comes to this kind of execution. Too large and they will knock you out too quickly, too small and they won’t do enough damage. No, these stones are picked carefully to maximise pain but minimise a quick death. It can 30 mins plus to die in this way. I feel sick writing this.
    I agree with all what you say concerning what happened here. We may feel we can do little when up against such a tide of extremist evil but but we have to try.
    We owe that much to her and to others.

  4. Thanks Reluct for your reply.

    I wanted to write back to you to say a few points.
    Firstly, I am impressed truely with the work you have done yourself concerning victims of rape and offenders.
    I think what I want to say is this.
    We all have our own way of doing what is right and best. You do care very much and your contributiion here is valuable.
    I had a conversation once via e-mail with athinkingman and my passion concerning FGM. While he supports my cause he could no way ever get personally involved for all sorts of reasons. I too would find it hard to apply myself to all kinds of other causes.
    You can read articles and be upset but feel unable to do much more. I have felt like this in other situations.
    The fact that you are you doing all other kinds of things for your boys and the work that you do is part of what makes us all unique.
    I would not want anyone to feel quilty because I want to take up the human rights stick and see what I can do.
    You have a deep conscience I can see. I admire you for that very much.
    Thanks for your contribution on here. It is greatly appreciated.

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