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AP Writer Sees Open Sale of Hardcore Pornography in Baghdad Streets as a Good Sign, but Not Everyone in Iraq or U.S. Would Agree

Contact: Robert Peters, Morality in Media, 212-870-3210

NEW YORK, Aug. 24 /Christian Newswire/ -- According to an Associated Press story (T. El-Tablawy, "Porn offers window into Iraq's chaotic politics") released yesterday, "Change...is afoot in Iraq. Hundreds of porn DVDs are stacked elbow deep...on a table...on a downtown sidewalk." The story continues: "Its reemergence...reflects how security has improved but also how the fragile government is busy with more pressing issues than spicy videos."

The story also observes that "with the Western troops and their supporting army of foreign security contractors came the porn once strictly forbidden under Saddam's regime" and that the titles of many videos now available, "along the lines of 'The Rape of the Coeds' -- offer disturbing insight into the possible psychological effects the years of indiscriminate violence have had on Iraqis..."

Robert Peters, President of Morality in Media, comments:

It is interesting that in a 957 word article about the open sale of pornography in Baghdad streets, no mention is made of the harms of pornography and no one is quoted who is against it.

It is also interesting that the AP writer would infer that the presence of Western military and other personnel contributed to the current situation without mentioning that this could negatively affect the war against terrorism. According to a Gallup poll ("Iraq and the West: How Wide is the Morality Gap," Gallup, 11/25/03): "Gallup's Poll of Baghdad asked a representative sample of adults to describe in their own words what, if anything, they most resent about the West... More than a third (36%) of Baghdad residents said they believe Western culture has undermined moral standards by spreading sexually indecent influences ['pornography' and 'fornication']."

It is also interesting that under Saddam Hussein's regime pornography was "strictly forbidden." Since Saddam was not known for his religious fervor, why would he have "forbidden" porn? Could it be that Saddam recognized that pornography was detrimental to society? Did he understand that allowing open sale of pornography would cause political unrest?

It is also interesting that the AP writer would attribute interest in sexually violent pornography to the effects that "indiscriminate violence" has had on the Iraqi people. Earlier this month, a U.S. citizen living in Montana made a complaint to the www.obscenitycrimes.org tip line about a hardcore pornographic website that provided links for (among other things) "anal rape," "forced sex," and "beaten." The website has connections to California and the Netherlands.

It is also interesting that the AP writer, who concedes that the videos he observed "ranged to the startlingly extreme, including bestiality" would describe these videos as "spicy." The word "spicy" is defined in part as, "Slightly scandalous; risqué: a spicy Hollywood romance" (www.thefreedictionary.com).  

Not surprisingly, the AP writer quoted an unnamed Iraqi official who said authorities "currently have bigger challenges than cracking down on porn vendors..." That is also the thinking of the Obama administration, which has turned a blind eye to the proliferation of hardcore adult pornography on the Internet and elsewhere and the adverse affects of that proliferation on our own nation.