December 18, 2007, - 11:46 am

Irony: UNICEF’s Picture of the Year Says a Lot About UNICEF

By Debbie Schlussel
If this doesn’t tell you everything about the United Nations and its sub-agency UNICEF, nothing will. Sent by reader Ari, this is the scoop of Brian C. Ledbetter of Snapped Shot. (Ari saw it on the excellent blog, Dissecting Leftism).
This is the photo UNICEF chose as its 2007 Photo of the Year. Read the caption that appeared with it, below, on the AP wire:


U.S. freelance photographer Stephanie Sinclair poses with her winning photo of the ‘UNICEF Photo of the Year 2007’ competition in Berlin, Germany, on Monday, Dec. 17, 2007. The photograph shot by U.S. freelance photographer Stephanie Sinclair shows a wedding couple in Afghanistan who could not be more opposite. The groom, Mohammed, looks much older than his 40 years. The bride, Ghulam, is still a child; she just turned 11. Stephanie Sinclair works as a freelance photographer based in Beirut, Lebanon. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

Brian of Snapped Shot writes:

Recall that the agency has tasked itself with–and is held responsible for–the well-being of children around the world. [This is] how UNICEF decides to illustrate this calling.
What better way to care for the well-being of children than by celebrating the forced marriage of an 11-year-old girl to a man over 30 years her senior, right?
Good thing the United Untied Nations still has its priorities in order.

As Ari writes,

Eeuuww! Eeuuww! Eeuuww!

Couldn’t have said it better, myself.
This is how the U.N. “protects” children. And this is also Islam.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

20 Responses

Uh, Debbie? That photo was distributed all over the world to raise awareness of the horror of forced marriages involving little girls. It is in no way a “celebration” of the fact.

wonkette on December 18, 2007 at 12:25 pm

Read Unicef’s statement on the picture, and it is crystal clear that the photo is in no way, shape, or form a “celebration.”

wonkette on December 18, 2007 at 12:28 pm

Muslim Brides Undergoing Painful Vaginal Surgery to ‘Re-virginize’ for Wedding Nights
Monday, December 17, 2007
E-Mail Print Digg This!
On her wedding night, Aisha Salim will hand her blooded sheets to her in-laws as proof of her virginity, according to a story in The Daily Telegraph of Australia.
But thereÔø?s one problem. Being a modern English university graduate, she is far from the traditional untouched Muslim bride.
Like most woman her age, Salim has smoked, drank, had sex and even lived with one of her past boyfriends.
However, if the devout Muslim family of her soon-to-be husband Ôø? or even her own family Ôø? knew this, she could be murdered.
Aisha has opted to have her virginity surgically restored in a delicate but painful surgery called hymenoplasties — where the hymen is re-created from the already torn tissue, or a new membrane is inserted.
“If my husband cannot prove to his family that I am a virgin, I would be hounded, ostracised and sent home in disgrace,Ôø? Salim told EnglandÔø?s Daily Mail.
Ôø?My father, who is a devout Muslim, would regard it as the ultimate shame. The entire family could be cast out from the friends and society they hold dear, and I honestly believe that one of my fanatically religious cousins or uncles might kill me in revenge, to purge them of my sins. Incredible as it may seem, honour killings are still accepted within our religion.
“Ever since my family arranged this marriage for me, I’ve been terrified that, on my wedding night, my secret would come out. It has only been since my surgery last week that I’ve actually been able to sleep properly. Now, I can look forward to my marriage.”
Salim is far from alone in seeking such drastic — and almost barbaric — surgery.
The rise in Islamic fundamentalism has seen 24 women in the U.K. have the procedure between 2005 and 2006.
“I’ve always adored my parents,Ôø? Salim said.
Ôø?My father, now 62, is a retired accountant and my mother raised a family of seven sisters in a five-bedroom house in Birmingham.
“I attended the local Catholic secondary school and although I wore a scarf on my head, I refused to wear a veil, telling my parents that it would make me stand out too much.
“I was one of the girls, totally accepted by my white, English friends whose lives revolved around shopping and fancying boys.
“But the moment I stepped over the doorstep, normal teenage life would cease and it was like entering an entirely different world. At home, we had to pray together five times a day.
“We weren’t allowed to watch television. My parents were so worried that Western influences might take our minds off the most important things — education and religion — that we were never allowed to bring any schoolfriends home.
“But it made all the things my friends did more attractive to me. I would sneak out on Saturday afternoons and join them in town, hanging around, shopping and chatting to boys,” Salim added.,2933,317149,00.html

JasonBourne81 on December 18, 2007 at 1:25 pm

Are they compeletly insane? If this is prevalent in their culture, how do people think we can reason with them? I mean come on. The thought of this procedure makes me want to puke.

Ford Jones on December 18, 2007 at 2:17 pm

The much more improtant question, Ford Jones, is why are we allowing these people to come to our country and import their barbaric way of life here???

RepublicanPatriot on December 18, 2007 at 2:38 pm

Debbie, you would do yourself a favor if you actually did some reseach before spouting off about what certain organizations do and don’t do. Aside from the 7 treaties which, in part, touch on eliminating child marriage UNICEF does quite a bit of work to reduce/eliminate the incidence of child marriage. Just to name a few things: They work to increase access to primary education in rural and impovrished parts of the world (since lack of such an education makes child marriage much more likely); they push governments to set a minimum age for marriage at 18 (and to enforce the laws that are on the books); and the provide services to the victims of child marriage who are fortunate enough to escape, helping them reintegrate into society.
Don’t let your blind hatred of everything UN control your opinion of every aspect of every UN agency. Don’t let it make you distort the truth. Your post still states that UNICEF is “celebrating” the child marriage, when UNICEF’s own statement makes it crystal clear that they are NOT celebrating it, but rather condemning it. For the sake of your own journalistic integrity, you should either take down your post or correct it ASAP.

Conscience of a Conservative on December 18, 2007 at 3:16 pm

Being that pedophilia was part of the foundation of Islam,I don’t find this picture to be so shocking.Within certain tribes of Afganistan, its quite common for a 3 year old girl to marry a man who’s old enough to pass for her grandfather and I’ve seen pictures of such.It all just makes me sick to the stomach that these little girls are having their childhood robbed from them to a bunch of lascivious old men. They are no different from the child luring sex predators we have here.Heck, marital rape in such countries is not recognized as a crime.No suprise there, is it?

Jew Chick on December 18, 2007 at 4:52 pm

Republican Patriot: You are absolutely right. The twisted, perverted ways of Islam should be illegal in the USA. I should also be illegal to go around in disguise like these Muslim women(we think)do.
I read somewhere that the Muslim practice of polygamy creates a lot of their perverted behavior. There simply are not enough women to go around what with the multiple wives and child brides. The result is a lot of young men who are seething with anger because there are no wives for them and they have to settle for donkeys and sheep.

lexi on December 18, 2007 at 5:23 pm

My heart goes out to that child…the man should be jailed…in a sane world..he would.

storagemanager on December 18, 2007 at 5:39 pm

UNICEF is a typical phony UN program. It stops short of being the “real deal”. But I do not doubt that they are doing some good and minimal harm. However, if this little girl is waiting for UNICEF to help her or others like her, they would be better off buying a twelve pack of “carbon credits” from “Shifty” Al Gore . . .

JoeBoy on December 18, 2007 at 8:45 pm

Debbie, on Halloween a couple of nice Jewish kids came by to my house with UNICEF cans and were kind of pushy. One kid I gave a few pennies to since I knew her dad and had the coins in pocket. The other one I gave the brushoff. The kid persisted in asking me for change , since all the 8 year olds here are completely empowered and think they’re running a business. I gave the kid candy but told him no coins. I figure any money going to a UN program eventually underwrites terorism and anti-semitism, but I also don’t like being shaken down for money by kids already shaking me down for treats.

Anonymous1 on December 18, 2007 at 11:19 pm

The UNICEF photo competition was actually to illustrate the hardships children face and this one in particular was accompanied by several other finalists that depicted other horrifying acts perpetrated against children. UNICEF does indeed fight hard against the violence and exploitation of children. Distributing these photos worldwide and having them here on this website is a perfect example of just a fraction of their work.

13 Martyrs on December 19, 2007 at 6:57 am

I went to the web site and tried to read about all of the things UNICEF is actually doing to stop this, in addition to this photo contest. Oddly enough all of the pages in Engish were unable to be displayed. However the German ones worked fine.
NO conclusions here, just an observation.

DocLiberty on December 19, 2007 at 9:47 am

Here is the leftist logic:
“Gayness” is a sexual preference.
Sexual preferences are not chosen, any more than skin color.
Therefore, if it is wrong to discriminate on the basis of skin color, it is wrong to discriminate on the basis of sexual preference.
Leftists inevitably react with rage whenever, as I often have, I insert (no pun intended) “pedophilia” in the “gayness” spot. But I’ve never had one refute the logic.

DocLiberty on December 19, 2007 at 10:06 am

DocLiberty: I’m not reacting with “rage,” but with astonishment at the stupidity of your argument. Pedophilia may well be a sexual “preference” that is not chosen by the pedophile, any more than “straightness” is chosen. I won’t argue that point. I agree that it is wrong to discriminate on the basis of one having pedophiliac tendencies. HOWEVER, and this is the big clue here: acting on pedophiliac tendencies involves harming a person who is UNABLE TO GIVE CONSENT. Acting on straight tendencies or on gay tendencies, with CONSENTING ADULTS does not. THAT is the difference. Easy, no?

wonkette on December 19, 2007 at 10:48 am

It is time for Debbie to weigh in and admit she went off impulsively and wrongly. The picture and the recognition were attempts to publicize and criticize child marriage. It is fair to say that UNICEF has been in the wrong before and is usually wrong. It has funded terrorism in Gaza, Judea and Samaria. The UN itself does far more harm than good to my mind. However, in this case, UNICEF, for once, is on the right side and Debbie blew it with an understandable prejudgement.

Papa Bear on December 19, 2007 at 1:32 pm

Wonkette: This is usually how it starts: pro-“preference” types calling me “stupid” (bigoted, homophobic, etc., zzzzz…) You won’t argue the point about pedophilia being just another preference, because you can’t.
As far as “consent” goes, “Gays” argue that they never “recruit” straights — that their “gaydar” allows them to limit their passes to willing recipients. So too do the NAMBLA types. Who are you to say that some arbitrary “age of consent” consitutes “harm” is it’s not adhered to! How dare you impose your “stupid” age limits on other cultures! Pedophobe!
Incidentally, I am illustrating absurdity by being absurd here. But I AM curious — in the numerous times I have raised this argument, I have never yet had a leftist say this: “Doc, you’re right. Pedophilia is just plain wrong. And even if the American Psychiatric Association declares it’s OK, and NAMBLA becomes the #1 contributor to the Democrat Party, and Oprah has them as honored guests, and Massachusetts elects the first openly pedophile Senator — even if all that happens, I will stand with you and your conservative friends in opposing pedophilia, because IT’S JUST PLAIN WRONG.”
Would you care to be the first?

DocLiberty on December 19, 2007 at 6:33 pm

The first? Um, I can say with 100% assurance that most “liberals,” are against pedophilia. And I have no idea if pedophilia is an inborn trait, something acquired as a result of early trauma, or what. The fact is, it doesn’t really matter: acting on pedophilia is wrong. It involves sexual acts with NONCONSENTING children. Chidlren who are incapable of giving consent.
Would you care to refute the argument that that is FUNDAMENTALLY different from acts between CONSENTING ADULTS, straight or gay?
You are raising the strawman that there is absolutely no difference between being gay and being a pedophile. I have pointed out the fundamental difference and you do not address it directly. Please do.

wonkette on December 20, 2007 at 10:40 am

Wonkette: Yes, the FIRST. You come closer than anyone else has yet.
Now, as far as “fundamental differences”:
Pedophilia is a sexual preference. So is “gayness.”
Pedophilia is looked on with revulsion in the US by virtually everyone who is not themselves part of the “preference.” “Gayness” was once looked on with revulsion in the US by virtually everyone who was not themselves part of the “preference.”
“Gayness”, on the other hand, was accepted in other countries long before it was here. Pedophilia is accepted in other countries currently (see above).
“Gay” activists began as small, isolated, ignored or reviled pressure groups. Pedophiles currently have small, isolated, ignored or reviled pressure groups.
“Gay” sympathetic scientists published articles in journals that suggested “gayness” was not a psychiatric disorder, and steadily worked toward a reversing of the APA classification — which eventually happened. Pedophile sympathetic scientists have already published articles in journals that suggested man/boy love is not a psychiatric disorder.
And, as far as “consent” goes: One of the tactics adopted by “gay” activists to gain sympathy was to claim that they never seduce anyone who wasn’t “really gay” (no recruiting, everyone consents). Pedophiles claim that they never seduce anyone who isn’t “really open to it” and that they are trying to “end the oppression of adults and children who have freely chosen mutually consenting relationships.”
Now, you may believe that a society that has come to accept same-sex relationships will continue to uphold legal and social sanctions based on an arbitrary (from the pro-pedo point of view) age limit. But I’m not optimistic.

DocLiberty on December 20, 2007 at 8:00 pm

DocLiberty is an over-educated fool. Anyone who would argue that homosexuality in adults is the moral equivalent of pedophilia is stupid.

Norman Blitzer on December 21, 2007 at 6:06 am

Leave a Reply

* denotes required field