The size of her breasts, the shape of her backside, and of course, her name. These are some of the details Le Monde, the French “journal de référence,” and its subsidiary Le Post published about the woman who says IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn groped her genitals and forced her to perform oral sex on him in a room at the Sofitel near Times Square.
France-Soir described the cut of her hotel maid uniform and how good she looks for a woman in her thirties, while France’s RMC radio reported that Strauss-Kahn’s attorneys were surprised by how “unattractive” she is.
And a bevy of friends and supporters rallied to the defense of Strauss-Kahn, a leading figure in the French Socialist Party, hoping to discredit his accuser lest she derail their plans for him to oust Sarkozy in the 2012 presidential elections.
A photo of the alleged victim is all over Twitter, and a Facebook profile in her supposed name was deleted shortly after links to it began to appear on blogs and social media sites. It’s unclear whether the Facebook profile was hers or a hoax account set up to smear her name. Today, another name and photo are circulating in the French media. It doesn’t matter if they get it right–the effect is the same. Just as they did to the accusers in the Julian Assange rape case, the “pro-woman” Left has launched a vicious campaign to terrorize and shame this woman into silence. Read more
Four Afghan women have achieved something that would have been unimaginable a decade ago: they are training alongside male recruits to become pilots in the Afghan Air Force. Amidst headlines about poverty, illiteracy, and breathtaking levels of violence against women, their accomplishments are beyond heartening.
Second Lt. Sourya Saleh hopes to serve as a role model for other Afghan women after completing her aviation training in the United States.
“We are very happy to be going to open these doors for the other women to come and join the military, to show them you can do this and make our country proud,” she said. “We want for all Afghan girls to know they can do anything.”
Another newly minted officer, Second Lt. Mary Sharifzada, told the Air Force Times that becoming a pilot has been her dream since she was a little girl:
“I want to show the people of Afghanistan that women are strong,” Sharifzada said. “We want to show the people of the world that the women of Afghanistan are strong and they can do anything they want.”
“They said I’m as brave as a man,” said Second Lt. Masooma Hussaini.
As brave as men, and according to Lt. Col. John Howard of the Thunder Lab training program, as capable as their male counterparts. But these women and future recruits may not get the chance to prove “they can do anything they want” if the United States selects Brazilian aircraft manufacturer Embraer to supply turboprop planes for the counterinsurgency effort in Afghanistan.
In the April 2011 issue of Smart Girl Nation, my friend Ashley Sewell explains how the Brazilian plane would bar skilled female pilots from flying Light Air Support (LAS) and light attack and armed reconnaissance (LAAR) missions:
The front-runners are the American-made Hawker Beechcraft AT-6 (a plane like the T-6 training aircraft that would accommodate 95% of women pilots) and the Brazilian-made Embraer EMB-314 (a plane that sticks to older standards thus eliminating the possibility of being flown by a woman).
Those older standards exclude more than 80 percent of women (and small men) from safely flying the planes that will be used to train and equip the Afghan Air Force.
There’s no question that operational performance and pilot safety should be the primary criteria in choosing between the Embraer and Hawker Beechcraft planes. But if the two aircraft perform comparably, can we afford to indulge the Commander-in-Chief‘s childish love affair with Brazil, forcing the struggling Afghan Air Force to sideline much needed talent?
That’s not the only reason the Hawker Beechcraft proposal is superior. Read more
In 1989, the offices of my neighborhood newspaper were firebombed by a terrorist. Molotov cocktails ignited a blaze that gutted the first floor of the building, incinerated furniture, and left computers and telephones all but vaporized.
A short time later, a man called 911 and said, in an accent the FBI later identified as Pakistani, “Can you please listen to my message very carefully. Very very important. You know that British author who wrote the book The Satanic Verses. For to protest I throw the bomb. I’m sorry but we got to do more bombs pretty soon if they don’t stop from publish that book. That’s it.”
Two weeks earlier, the novelist Salman Rushdie had gone into hiding when Iran’s “supreme leader” Ayatollah Khomeini pronounced a death sentence on him for writing a novel that questions the founding myth of Islam. Khomeini’s fatwa offered a bounty of more than $5 million to anyone who could kill the author. It also threatened “all those involved in its publication.
The bombing of The Riverdale Press occurred shortly after the editors published “The Tyrant and His Chains,” a scathing criticism of America’s largest bookstore chains for responding to the Ayatollah’s threat by pulling all copies of The Satanic Verses from their shelves.
The chain store executives excuse their surrender to the Ayatollah by expressing concern for the wellbeing of their employees, but by knuckling under they’ve put others at risk. If a threat can knock the books from the shelves of the Big Three, terrorists may reason, think what a bomb in an uncompliant bookstore could do.
Moreover, terrorism feeds on its successes. What will Waldenbooks do when a homegrown would-be tyrant demands the removal of a politically controversial book from its shelves? And how will it handle the next step, a demand that stores stock a particular book?
The day after the firebombing, the Press published its weekly issue on schedule. Headlining the front page was an editorial titled “We Will Not Be Silenced.”
Mayoral candidates Ed Koch, David Dinkins and Rudy Giuliani gathered with hundreds of community residents to offer their support for the Press, and newspapers around the country reprinted “The Tyrant and His Chains.” As “a statement of solidarity with the publishers of the Riverdale Press,” Democratic Senator Daniel Moynihan asked that the editorial be printed in the Congressional Record alongside a resolution “condemning the threats against the author and publishers of the Satanic Verses.”
Speaking on the Senate floor just before the resolution passed, Republican Senator Bob Dole said:
Terrorism is terrorism. It is abhorrent. It must be condemned. There is no justification for it, period.
That is the policy of this country, and of civilized countries everywhere. That is the essence of this resolution.
Let us underscore our continuing commitment to this policy, this strong and necessary policy, by passing this resolution. And let that act be encouragement to those who refuse to buckle under to the threats of terrorists, and a rebuke to the Khomeinis of the world, who care not a whit for anyone’s rights or beliefs but their own.
If the Senate voted on that resolution today, would Lindsey Graham, Harry Reid, and President Obama give it the full-throated, bipartisan support it received in 1989? Who would today’s leaders hold responsible for the attack on The Riverdale Press?
Would Graham call Rushdie’s novel “a terrible thing” that “put our troops at risk”? Would he say, “Freedom of speech is a great idea, but we’re in a war”?
Would Reid kowtow to Khomeini as he did to Karzai? Would he promise to “look at” passing a resolution to censure the editors of The Riverdale Press and Rushdie for exercising their First Amendment rights?
Would the president denounce Rushdie for blasphemy against Islam and call the publication of his book “an act of extreme intolerance and bigotry“?
These are the words Graham, Reid, and Obama used to criticize the Florida pastor who burned a copy of the Koran. Rather than blame Afghan President Hamid Karzai for igniting hostilities or a barbaric culture in which violence is often the default setting, they are holding one law-abiding demagogue in Florida responsible for deadly riots in Afghanistan.
22 years after Democrats and Republicans came together to support freedom of expression and condemn the terror attack on a Bronx newspaper, we are watching the formation of a new bipartisan coalition, one that advocates wartime suspension of First Amendment rights and submission to the demands of Islamist street thugs and leaders. 22 years later, we’re announcing to the world that our Constitutional rights are fragile enough to crumble in the face of threats, intimidation, and unspeakable acts of violence abroad.
First they came for the Koran burner …
The Ohio man, who became famous during the U.S. presidential campaign after asking Barack Obama about his tax plan, is heading to Israel as a war correspondent for a conservative Web site called pjtv.com.
Dubbed “Joe the Plumber” by McCain’s campaign, Samuel “Joe” Wurzelbacher was held up as an example of an American worker who would be hurt economically by Obama’s election.
Wurzelbacher says he’ll spend 10 days covering the fighting and explaining why Israeli forces are mounting attacks against Hamas.
He tells WNWO-TV in Toledo that he wants “go over there and let their ‘Average Joes’ share their story.”
Michelle Malkin has begun the countdown to death wishes aimed at Joe The Plumber from his far left “admirers.” I’m taking bets on who will be the first to suggest he’s heading to Israel to help Bristol Palin cover up the exact date of Tripp Palin’s birth.
Vladimir Putin: “I am going to hang Saakashvili by the balls.”
Mikheil “Aweome” Saakashvili: “They wouldn’t have enough rope.”
Move over AC/DC.