Baghdad, Iraq – It’s an all too familiar story in the wake of war. Young women, desperately poor with the primary breadwinner gone, being forced into menial and demeaning work in order to make ends meet. Often that work is in the sex trade, the
one task unskilled and uneducated women have little trouble performing. Such is the situation in Iraq where thousands women, some left widowed, others the victims of gangs which have gained power in the chaos in the country, have been forced into sex slavery in order to survive.
Of course there’s sex and then there’s sex. Because of that nature of traditional Iraqi society many of the women being forced into prostitution are largely inexperienced in sex making the pay rates significantly less than they would be in more liberal countries. Those low revenues have, in turn, forced hundreds more into the trade in an effort to make up for lost revenue. None of that is helping the industry though which is starting to see a rapid decline in interest with many men feeling like their money is not being going nearly as far as it should.
“This is a major concern for many of us in the industry. There are those who simply
put more product into the market hoping that it will make up their bottom line but what it is really doing is hurting the reputation of the industry as a whole. That means that a lot of clients will simply go elsewhere and cause the domestic market to completely dry up, hurting us and hurting the workers,” said an anonymous sex trade executive. “The younger workers still make good coin but there is limited demand for them and inevitably we are going to run that well dry. They will gain a lot of experience which will help in the long run but by then the demand for our product might be gone. We need to act now to improve the quality for the good of the industry as a whole.”
Though many solutions have been proposed the most likely is a large scale training program which all women, save the very young, will have to pass before being put into the field.
“We wouldn’t want the younger workers, say anyone under 15 years old or so, being too used. Part of their appeal is their lack of experience. For anyone over that age though they need to be trained properly so that men do not feel as though they are wasting their money. It’s essential for our industry to survive,” continued the executive. “We have to realize that there are so many options out there that we simply cannot allow our business to overtaken by less than scrupulous employers looking to make a quick buck. For the future good of Iraq we must change the way we are doing business.”
Officials also noted that in order to expand outside the country’s borders the brand’s image needs to be drastically improved.
“Generally when people think of prostitution they think of Eastern Europe. Those countries have the natural gift of quality of production and lots and lots of experience, both of which have served them very well on the world stage. Outside that competition, Iraq’s general reputation in the world is working against it meaning they will have to work extra hard to make a dent,” said Scrape TV Business analyst Ken Green. “Sure, they will have some success because of the novelty of it but inevitably that will wane once people start to realize that the quality just isn’t there.”
Growing strength in the Iran is also cited as a major threat to the Iraqi industry.
Emil Uliya, International Correspondent