Will xenophobia spare Strauss-Kahn jail for rape?

This video from the USA says about itself:

Hotel workers protest as Dominique Strauss-Kahn leaves court

New York City union hotel workers protest as former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn and his wife Anne Sinclair leave Manhattan Criminal Court after Strauss-Kahn‘s arraignment hearing on sexual assault charges in New York.

From the New York Times in the USA:

Strauss-Kahn Case Seen as in Jeopardy


Published: June 30, 2011

The sexual assault case against Dominique Strauss-Kahn is on the verge of collapse as investigators have uncovered major holes in the credibility of the housekeeper who charged that he attacked her in his Manhattan hotel suite in May, according to two well-placed law enforcement officials.

Although forensic tests found unambiguous evidence of a sexual encounter between Mr. Strauss-Kahn, a French politician, and the woman, prosecutors now do not believe much of what the accuser has told them about the circumstances or about herself.

“Sexual encounter”; what an euphemism for what was presumably rape.

Among the discoveries, one of the officials said, are issues involving the asylum application of the 32-year-old housekeeper, who is Guinean, and possible links to people involved in criminal activities, including drug dealing and money laundering.

Well, if you are poor, as you cannot afford a New York City rich people’s house on a chambermaid wage, then you probably live in a “poor” neighborhood. A New York City neighborhood where some people do not see other ways of making money than drug deals etc. And if those people live, eg, next door to you, then you know them, and then there is a “possible link”. It is very twisted logic to infer from this that a poor African immigrant woman probably lied about being sexually attacked by one of the richest and most powerful men in the world.

George W. Bush lied about very many things, like those supposed Iraqi weapons of mass destruction which were a pretext for the Iraq war. Yet this does not mean we should doubt Bush’s veracity when he said that Dick Cheney would be his election running mate, as Cheney indeed turned out to be his running mate.

It seems that prejudices against women, against Africans, against immigrants, against working class people, play a role amongst New York authorities involved in the Strauss-Kahn rape case.

And now, the other issue mentioned by the New York Times. “The asylum application of the 32-year-old housekeeper”. Mr Strauss-Kahn, not being female, not being poor, not being African, could get easily into the USA.

For the Guinean chambermaid, things are different. Guinea is a bloody dictatorship; there is much sexual violence against women. Yet, xenophobia in the USA makes it difficult for Guineans to get political asylum.

So, she may have, technically, “lied”. Like some other refugees from poor countries, faced with rigid bureaucracy and rigid rules in rich countries, do.

Ms Ayaan Hirsi Magan (real name of “Ayaan Hirsi Ali”), when she applied for political asylum, and later for a Dutch passport, in the Netherlands, lied about her name, about her birth date, about her whereabouts before applying for asylum. Other women (and men) of Somali origin doing that would be harshly punished with deportation by the Dutch authorities.

However, Ms “Ali” was not punished, as her attacks on Islam were useful for the political right wing in its anti-immigrant witch-hunt.

The New York City Guinean chambermaid does not seem to be useful to the establishment, like Ms “Ali” is.

Don’t let xenophobia, racism, misogyny and anti-worker prejudice prevail over justice in the Strauss-Kahn case!

Portia Crow, Inter Press Service: “Despite questions about her credibility, the Sofitel maid who is accusing former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn of sexual assault is still a victim and should be treated as one, according to her attorney… He claimed that District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. was trying to drop the case in order to save face, and stressed that the 32-year-old alleged victim still deserved justice”: here.

Violence Against Migrant Women Won’t End After DSK Case. Michelle Chen, Colorlines: “The narrative of the immigrant housekeeper allegedly assaulted by a European official perfectly illustrates an axiom of violence and power: the wider the gap between genders and races, the greater the latitude of injustice. Yet the same story plays out every day on an endless loop around the globe: a retaliatory rape against a young girl sends a warning to the enemy militia; a wife is pummeled into bloody silence, her bedroom beyond the purview of traditional local courts; a daughter is married off to pay down a farm debt. The stories weave into a pattern that a media-fatigued public has come to normalize”: here.

Nafissatou Diallo Interviews: Dominique Strauss-Kahn Accuser Speaks: here.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn Case: Hotel Maid‘s Lawyer Says Her Remarks Were Wrongfully Portrayed: here.

Nafissatou Diallo Sues Dominique Strauss-Kahn Over NYC Hotel Encounter (VIDEO) : here.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn allies allegedly offered £4m to silence ex-lover: here.

Arrests after Strauss-Kahn speech in UK. Police detain man and woman protesting against speech by French politician who quit as IMF chief over rape accusations: here.

Former International Monetary Fund boss Dominique Strauss-Kahn told a French court yesterday he was unaware that female participants at hotel orgies in Paris and Washington were prostitutes. He and 13 co-defendants are on trial accused of aggravated pimping in connection with a sex ring centred on the Hotel Carlton in Lille: here.

13 thoughts on “Will xenophobia spare Strauss-Kahn jail for rape?

  1. Strauss-Kahn’s French Accuser Heard By Police

    by The Associated Press

    PARIS July 11, 2011, 09:27 am ET

    A French writer who contends that former International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn tried to rape her gave a statement to French police investigators on Monday, a judicial official said.

    Tristane Banon brought a criminal complaint last week, and the Paris prosecutor’s office has opened a preliminary investigation into her allegations that Strauss-Kahn attacked her in an empty apartment during a 2003 interview.

    A judicial official speaking on condition of anonymity in accordance with French judicial regulations said police heard from Banon on Monday.

    Banon made no official report of being victimized after the alleged attack eight years ago. Her lawyer, however, said he has evidence, including text messages related to the incident, and Banon has explained that her mother — a Socialist Party politician — dissuaded her from making a complaint immediately after the alleged incident.

    A prominent Socialist, Strauss-Kahn had been seen as a leading potential contender and challenger to conservative President Nicolas Sarkozy for next year’s elections — until the New York hotel incident embarrassed Strauss-Kahn’s party and left him in the political wilderness.

    Banon has told L’Express magazine that during an interview for a book project, Strauss-Kahn grabbed her hand and arm before the two fell to the floor of his apartment and fought for several minutes, with the politician trying to open her jeans and bra and putting his fingers in her mouth and underwear.

    Strauss-Kahn’s lawyers have called the incident “imaginary” and threatened to file a complaint accusing Banon of slander.

    Banon has acknowledged the difficulty of proving her case, saying she took action to deal with the trauma of the alleged incident and to refute those who say she’s been lying.

    Strauss-Kahn quit as head of the International Monetary Fund after he was arrested in New York in May based on accusations of assault made by a maid at a hotel there. Strauss-Kahn denies wrongdoing, and has since been released without bail after prosecutors said publicly that the maid has a history of lying.

    The ongoing saga continues to rivet France, where ahead of his judicial problems Strauss-Kahn was widely regarded as a top contender for next year’s presidential race.


  2. Judges to rule on IMF chief probe

    France: Judges are set to rule tomorrow on whether IMF chief Christine Lagarde should face a formal investigation over a payout she approved when finance minister.

    Prosecutors said that Ms Lagarde abused her authority in overruling ministry officials to drop an ongoing judicial case against businessman Bernard Tapie, who had backed President Nicolas Sarkozy’s 2007 election campaign, and award him a €285 million (£250m) settlement of claims that he had been defrauded by the Credit Lyonnais bank.



  3. New IMF boss to be investigated

    FRANCE: The Court of Justice of the Republic decided today to investigate new IMF chief Christine Lagarde’s role in a £244 million arbitration deal in favour of a controversial tycoon.

    Ms Lagarde was France’s finance minister when magnate Bernard Tapie won a settlement in 2008 with a French state-owned bank over the mishandled sale of sportswear maker Adidas in the 1990s.

    A commission at the Court of Justice of the Republic decided that an investigation should be launched into Ms Lagarde’s role.

    A prosecutor has said he suspects Ms Lagarde abused her authority in allowing the arbitration.



  4. DSK told to appear before Paris judge

    FRANCE: Former IMF boss Dominique Strauss-Kahn and author Tristane Banon, who has accused him of sexually assaulting her during an interview in 2003, have been ordered to appear before a judge to relate what happened.

    The Paris prosecutor’s office announced the order today but did not specify a date for the hearing.

    In France prosecutors can ask individuals to attend such meetings while they are investigating charges.

    Mr Strauss-Kahn has repeatedly denied Ms Banon’s allegations and has sued her for slander.



  5. Police quiz DSK about prostitutes

    FRANCE: Former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn was questioned in Lille today by police investigating a suspected hotel prostitution ring that has implicated police and other officials.

    Detectives have already questioned prostitutes who said they had sex with Mr Strauss-Kahn in 2010 and 2011 at a luxury hotel and restaurant in Paris and in Washington, DC, where he lived while he was head of the IMF before resigning his position in May.

    Two men with ties to the prominent Socialist have been put under preliminary investigation in France on charges including organising a prostitution ring and misuse of corporate funds.



  6. Strauss-Kahn invite insults women

    The Union Society at Cambridge University has invited the alleged rapist Dominique Strauss-Khan to speak on 9 March, showing a callous disregard for women.

    Strauss-Khan was forced to resign as IMF chief after allegedly assaulting hotel worker Nafissatou Diallo. Other women have also made allegations against him.

    Sign the petition for the Union Society to withdraw the invitation at http://bit.ly/dskcambridge

    If they don’t, we need to follow the example of New York hotel workers—and meet Strauss-Kahn with a large and vocal protest.

    Amy Gilligan, Cambridge



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