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    It could happen anywhere, but it happened there again

    It could happen anywhere, but it happened there again

    We all know about the sexual assault on Lara Logan during celebrations over Mubarak’s resignation, see my post It Could Happen Anywhere, But It Happened There.  There also were the cases of the French journalist Caroline Sinz and US-Egyptian journalist Mona Eltahawy assaulted in Tahrir Square, see my post, It could happen anywhere, but it keeps happening there.

    Now there is yet another case, British student journalist Natasha Smith.  Her horrifying ordeal during celebrations over the election of Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohamed Morsi is set forth on her blog.

    There has been relatively little U.S. mainstream media coverage of the assault on Smith, although to its credit CNN has covered it (via Mediaite):

    I’ll repeat what I said with regard to Logan:

    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.


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    SeanInLI | June 29, 2012 at 10:18 pm

    “Women were crying and telling me “this is not Egypt! This is not Islam! Please, please do not think this is what Egypt is!” I reassured her that I knew that was the case, that I loved Egypt and its culture and people, and the innate peacefulness of moderate Islam.”

    After reading that, even if I had been sympathetic to begin with, any traces of sympathy would have utterly washed away with that statement.

    I won’t say she deserved it, because no one does, but she had to go to a lot of trouble to ignore a great deal of reality that could have informed her that this was very likely to happen.

    RosalindJ | June 29, 2012 at 10:35 pm

    I read a comment on her blog that resonated with me:

    “I am fed up with “this is not the true Islam” . Terrorism : “this is not Islam ” Beheadings “this is not Islam” Honor crimes “this is not Islam” Excision “this is not Islam ” women forced to wear burka “this is not Islam ” young women forced to marry a man they don’t want “this is not Islam” Call for murder because of caricatures “this is not Islam” Journalist, politicians, teachers threatened or killed ( Theo Van Gogh, Ayan Hirsi Ali…) “this is not Islam” …

    Happily, most muslims are not terrorists but they ( and you) should try to find out why “such a beautiful religion ” ( as muslims say) can generate such monsters and so horrible behaviours…and protest against this..”

    Happens all the time in Amish country. A guy buys a new buggy and everyone just goes crazy – bam! Gang rape. Gather for a barn raising, have a few glasses of lemonade – bam! Gang rape.

    I guess it’s just human nature, huh?

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