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Throughout the world, women still suffer from discrimination and oppression, for no reason other than their gender. In essence, the plight and suffering of women is the same for all of us. Today, major issues such as peace, social and economic development, and the spread of democracy have become unavoidably entangled with the issues of women. The systematic and vioent exploitation of women takes many forms, depriving women of their most basic freedom, robbing them of their health, keeping them from the education they need and deserve, and condemning them to lives without economic opportunity. No country can prosper when women's voices are silenced, their bodies exploited and their rights violated. Around the globe, the oppression of women goes hand in hand with failed societies. Nations, like women and their children, have the best chance to thrive where fundamental freedoms, human rights, and property rights are ensured for all. Printed Pages: 289.