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    It Could Happen Anywhere, But It Happened There

    It Could Happen Anywhere, But It Happened There

    There isn’t much I can add to the numerous comments regarding the “brutal and sustained sexual assault and beating” of CBS News correspondent Lara Logan by a large group of men in Tahrir square in the moments after it was announced Hosni Mubarek had resigned.

    Some of the comments around the net have been insightful, others horrid.  We only can hope that Ms. Logan has a speedy physical and psychological recovery.

    Yes, it’s absolutely true that rape and gang rape could happen anywhere, and have happened with shocking frequency particularly in war zones.  Whether it was Soviet troops in the aftermath of the conquest of Germany, or various African troops in the conquest of tribal villages, the use of rape as a means of exerting political power has been all too common and worthy of condemnation and action. Ms. Logan’s native South Africa has a particularly notorious problem of rape being used as a means of societal revenge.

    There is no single racial, ethnic, religious or political group which uniquely owns such infamy.

    But we also cannot ignore that while it could happen anywhere, it did happen in Tahrir Square at a moment of national celebration in the open and in a public place, directed at someone who must have been viewed as a symbol of the West.

    This is a fact those who glamorize the “Arab Street” have yet to deal with.

    Update:  Howard Kurtz:

    “But the sexual assault and beating that Logan endured underscores that the Middle East remains a particularly dangerous place for women. And it is hard to imagine that this was some random attack, that members of the mob didn’t realize that she was an American television correspondent.”

    Update No. 2:  The NY Post is reporting that the crowd shouted “Jew, Jew” as the men attacked Logan:

    “60 Minutes” correspondent Lara Logan was repeatedly sexually assaulted by thugs yelling, “Jew! Jew!” as she covered the chaotic fall of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in Cairo’s main square Friday, CBS and sources said yesterday…

    A network source told The Post that her attackers were screaming, “Jew! Jew!” during the assault. And the day before, Logan had told that Egyptian soldiers hassling her and her crew had accused them of “being Israeli spies.” Logan is not Jewish.

    Related Posts:
    Who’s Afraid Of The “Arab Street”?
    All Swedes Are Malmö Jews Now
    The War Against The Jews Is No “Mistake”

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    I've seen this story for a few days now, and it is indeed horrifying, but I haven't seen any details of what exactly the attack was. I'm not interested for any ghoulish or perverted reason, I'm just trying to figure out the level of violation that occurred. If she was manhandled and groped by a crowd of men, that's horrible. If she was actually raped by someone in the midst of a crowd of people who did nothing to stop it, that's horrifying. If she was repeatedly raped by more than one man taking turns in the middle of a crowd who cheered the animals on, that's an unimaginably horrific testament to a level of degradation in a culture that would allow such a thing to occur.

    I'm not a Polyanna, I don't believe that American or Western human beings are any better or worse than those from other parts of the world, but I find it really, really hard to conceive of circumstances in this country where a woman could be dragged into the heart of a mob and raped repeatedly by the mob without someone, hell, many people in the mob itself, intervening to put a stop to it.

    CBS now states that she was not raped. I think most of us assumed "brutal and sustained sexual assault" equals forcible penetration. 20 minutes of being pinched, taunted, clothes pulled at or off is horrible enough, but the CBS original statement was more provocative than necessary.

    Lee, where did you see that "CBS now states that she was not raped."

    The only quote to that effect I could find was made anonymously to the Wall Street Journal by a person "familiar with the matter", which is certainly vague enough to cover people who were not present. And he or she was not identified as being with CBS.

    The separation and assault lasted for roughly 20 to 30 minutes, said a person familiar with the matter, who added that it was "not a rape." A CBS News spokesman declined to comment beyond the statement.

    In the context of the Journal story, however, it seems pretty clear that the CBS spokesman was not commenting beyond their original statement, as that statement had been quoted at length in the two prior paragraphs of the WSJ story — i.e., the spokesman may not have been responsing at all to the quote by the anonymous person.

    I certainly hope the anonymous quote is true, and, if so, that would certainly validate what you said about the original CBS statement . . . a huge overstatement.

    According to one other story I read, CBS only issued their original statement (four days after the incident) because they found out that AP was on to the story of the assault, and was going to run with it.

    I suspect over time that more of the back story regarding bad judgment by the CBS News crew will emerge. Maybe 20/20 hindsight is best, but it is pretty clear there was woefully inadequate security, particularly given the fact that this CBS News team had already experienced a few very tense "run-ins" during the time period.

    @LukeHandCool – the quote was from the linked article. It was not Prof. Jacobson saying it; read the linked article.

    @wasdave – you must not be keeping up with the news of teens in our country today, or the mysogyny of the Muslim society. Watch The Stoning of Soraya M and read about the aftermath of those arrested in Iran after the protests. You won't doubt a public raping of a Western female with (possibly) 200 men cheering. (I don't have links now, but can provide if needed.)

    I read over at Patterico that it is "sexist" to hold the opinion that sending a woman in to report on a protest in Egypt is wrong. The person writing that is not a woman, but I am.

    Yes, she had the guts to take on the assignment, but was it wise to send her? And to send her in without proper head covering and in Western attire? Being a member of the media made her a target, as reports of other media members being attacked, property damaged, Al Jazeera being shut down, etc. show. There are times when wisdom and prudence – dare I say it? moral judgement – need to be exercised. To some degree, the CBS news team is liable for her safety.

    Like a war zone, this was a dangerous assignment. Mobs can get ugly. But that was not their perception – it was a celebration of democracy! – so therefore, it was "safe." To send a woman into a mob of reportedly 1 million+ mostly Muslim males – is that prudent or wise? I question the PC mentality that says "yeah, sure!"

    Believing such PC garbage leads to what @Foxfier says, "Blanking morons that assume folks are like them in their cultural assumptions while denying human nature…." We assume that Egyptians hold the same values as Westerners. We are the fools, and Lara Logan is a victim of the PC riddled CBS, IMHO.

    And, to top it off, if this was an act of anti-Semitism: that needs to be shouted loud and long to expose this hatred. Such hate needs to be exposed by the MSM, if true. Not holding my breath, though.

    The NY Post's comment "Logan is not Jewish" is per se grotesque, just like when straight people are gaybashed, and people say, "But he's not gay"…

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