Victory Celebrates Contributions of Women

By Pfc. Eric J. Martinez

13th Public Affairs Detachment

Multi-National Corps - Iraq celebrated "Women's Art, Wormen's Vision" at Al Faw Palace Tuesday during a Women's History Month presentation sponsored by the 11th Signal Brigade, Task Force Thunderbirds.

The observance honored accomplishments of influential female artists by showing their art and telling their stories. The guest speaker was Lt. Col. Kris Kramarich, commander, 44th Expeditionary Signal Battalion.

"In Violet Oakley's visionary murals she poetically sought to express her desire and hope for world peace, equal rights and the unification of the people of the earth," Kramarich said. "She passed away in 1961, but her vision doesn't differ from many of today. Women in Afghanistan have made significant strides in equal rights in a fairly short time."

The theme for this Women's History Month was chosen by the Women's National Movement. Many wanted to use the standard "Women in the Military" angle for the observance, said Lt. Col. Lynn Jackson, MNC-I equal opportunity program manager. However, 11th Signal Brigade Commander Col. John Hildebrand decided on moving forward with appreciation of great female artists.

The observance focused on the artistic accomplishments that women have made, and served to disprove negative stereotypes.

"It focuses on the artistic accomplishments that women have made in the past and their impact on the future," said Pfc. Jennifer D. Wright, human relations specialist, MNC-I.

Jackson said she learned a lot at the observance. "I wasn't familiar with a lot of the artists. The presentation was well put together and, if nothing else, it opened people's eyes to women artists.

"Women's history month is important to us because it forces us to come together and celebrate the accomplishments of women," Jackson said.