Iraq is not an easy place to do much of anything these days, but perhaps most tragically, it is an impossible place to love, which is to say, "someone else." Shia men married to Sunni women are regularly forced to divorce their wives, and vice versa. Rand Abdel-Qader was beaten to death by her father and brothers for nursing an imaginary love affair with a British soldier. Upon investigating this honor killing, the police congratulated Rand's father, who blamed his wife's lustful genes for polluting his daughter. And when said wife tried to leave him and flee to Jordan, she was assassinated. "The way he was speaking about his daughter and wife was like if they were animals and not human beaings," says journalist Afif Sarhan (above left), who spoke to Rand's father for the Guardian and was sitting in his native Brazil, probably nursing a cold beer on a beach somewhere, when he learned poor Rand's infatuation had claimed its second victim and rushed back to cover the story. "Love has to be calculated in Iraq today," a country in which Sarhan says quite simply, "they think of women as machines."
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