On February 25th, I attended a panel at the Church Center entitled “Women and Security and a Just Peace.” The basis of the discussions was United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325, which discusses resolutions based on women and peace. The document can be found at http://www.un.org/events/res_1325e.pdf
Rosemary Barerbet, a professor from Jay College of Criminal Justice, brought a particularly unique perspective to the table. Along with discussing many concerns regarding the implementation of UNSCR 1325, Barberet shared with the group her perspective on Women and Peace in its relation to Crime and justice. She asserted that peace building equals crime prevention and asked the difficult question, “should the burden of peace giving be placed specifically on women?”
The following are a few of Barbeert’s reasons why this weight should NOT be placed specifically on women:
• By emphasizing women, the resolution puts men off the hook in terms of peace.
• We need to expand the idea of gender. Today gender is placed with other issues such as culture, race, and religion, yet the resolution is gender specific.
• Having women in high government positions does not mean that these women will work for women’s rights.
Overall, UNSCR 1325 is victim focused. Barberet asserted that the focus should not be on the victims of war crimes, but also on the perpetrators. Crime research has shown that looking at just the victims of crime is not as effective as looking at both the victims and the perpetrators. When creating resolutions for war crimes, the Security Council should do the same.
Ambassador Anwarul K. Chowdhury (Former Under-Secretary-General and High Representative of the UN; President of the UN Security Council)
Jan Marie Fritz (Professor, University of Cincinnati and Senior Research Fellow with the Centre for Sociological Research, University of Johannesburg; Executive Committee Member, International Sociological Association and President of ISA Clinical Sociology division)
Rosemary Barberet (Associate Professor and Director, Master of Arts Degree Program in International Crime and Justice, John Jay College of Criminal Justice)
Pernille Brix Jorgensen (Head of Section, International Gender Issues, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Denmark)