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Margo Okazawa-Rey on Why Women Should be Against the War


Margo Okazawa-Rey, an activist fighting for the security of women world wide, visited the Hamilton College campus on March 3to discuss why women, in particular, should be against the war with Iraq. She began by sighting some statistics on a war's impact on women. According to Okazawa-Rey, the percentage of war victims who are civilians is now around 90%, most of whom are women, children and the elderly. She also said that the increase in the U.S. national budget for the war on terrorism is three times the size of the budgets of all of the "rogue nations" combined. Okazawa-Rey lamented that "after 9/11 I saw the use of women as a justification for war."

Okazawa-Rey criticized the Bush administration for using women to justify the war after cutting U.S. aid to sexual education and health programs world wide. Laura Bush, Okazawa-Rey said, is not a feminist, and the plight of women has, until the war on terrorism, been far from her mind. She went on to discuss the economic and strategic value of Iraq, making it a more important target to the government than more dangerous nations and the lunacy of checking for chemical and biological weapons or weapons of mass destruction when the U.S. began Iraq's programs in these areas in the 1980s. "The biggest terrorists," Okazawa-Rey said, "are the ones who are calling for a war on terrorism."

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