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In Arab Spring, a Young Man’s Fancy Turns to...



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…sexual assault. At the time of the attack on CBS News reporter Lara Logan, I wrote:

Is this a one-off crime? Or a cultural faultline?

Today in Tahrir Square:

Caroline Sinz told France 3 television, her employer, that she and her cameraman were set upon by young men in the square then separated on Thursday. She said she was punched, then “subjected to a sexual aggression in front of everyone in full daylight.” Providing more detail in an interview with RMC radio, she said boys 14 to 16 years old “tore off my clothes and undergarments” and assaulted her.

If the authorities intervene, it can be a mixed blessing. Yesterday in Tahrir Square:

The U.S. journalist who was brutally beaten and sexually assaulted by Egyptian riot police as she covered the Tahrir Square protests has posted a photo online which shows both her arms in plaster.

New York-based Mona Eltahawy, 44, tweeted the picture, which shows casts on her broken left arm and right hand, to demonstrate the ‘brutality’ of Egyptian police.

She claimed they hit her with large sticks, groped her breasts and tried to push their hands down her trousers – before detaining her for 12 hours with ‘no real reason’.

The American-Egyptian said: ‘I am speaking out to shame them for what they did. As I was being assaulted it was as if I was set on by a bunch of beasts.

’This is not the Egypt we love and not what the revolution is about.’

Except that it is – at least in the sense that post-Mubarak Egypt is already more institutionally misogynist.

My old friend Edward Behr, a distinguished foreign correspondent for Newsweek, wrote a memoir of his life on the front lines with the cynical title (in its London edition) Anyone Here Been Raped And Speaks English? – which, naturally, the halfwit American publisher changed to the somnolently portentous Bearings: A Foreign Correspondent’s Life Behind The Lines. These days, the fastest way to get a “yes” would be to ask his fellow western reporters.

 

 



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