This headline caught my eye, and disgusted me, all at the same time, “Egyptian General Admits ‘Virginity Checks’ Performed On Some Protesters.” As one would deduce, the headline means WOMEN protesters.
This is disturbing on so many levels, not the least of which how women continue to be treated. At first there were denials that any such thing had occurred:
A senior Egyptian general admits that “virginity checks” were performed on women arrested at a demonstration this spring, the first such admission after previous denials by military authorities.
The allegations arose in an Amnesty International report, published weeks after the March 9 protest. It claimed female demonstrators were beaten, given electric shocks, strip-searched, threatened with prostitution charges and forced to submit to virginity checks.
At that time, Maj. Amr Imam said 17 women had been arrested but denied allegations of torture or “virginity tests.”
And now, there is the justification for these, um, “tests” by the military:
But now a senior general who asked not to be identified said the virginity tests were conducted and defended the practice.
“The girls who were detained were not like your daughter or mine,” the general said. “These were girls who had camped out in tents with male protesters in Tahrir Square, and we found in the tents Molotov cocktails and (drugs).”
The general said the virginity checks were done so that the women wouldn’t later claim they had been raped by Egyptian authorities.
“We didn’t want them to say we had sexually assaulted or raped them, so we wanted to prove that they weren’t virgins in the first place,” the general said. “None of them were (virgins).”
This demonstration occurred nearly a month after Egypt’s longtime President Hosni Mubarak stepped down amid a wave of popular and mostly peaceful unrest aimed at his ouster and the institution of democratic reforms.
Afterward, Egypt’s military — which had largely stayed on the sidelines of the revolution — officially took control of the nation’s political apparatus as well, until an agreed-upon constitution and elections. [snip] (Click here to read the rest.)
Wow. I scarcely know what to say about that admission. It is despicable, deplorable, and horrifying.
Of course, women were not the only ones tortured, as the video below makes clear:
As horrible as the treatment sustained by some of these male protesters is, and it is, it does not compare to the torture, and threat of MORE torture, the women endured. The threat of electrocution or surrender to “virginity tests” is not much of an option, is it?
And here is where the “I told you so” part comes in. Many of the Lefty stripe were celebrating turning over Egypt to the military. Picture Alfred E. Newman when you read this: “What could go wrong?”
Plenty. Not only are they teaming up with the Muslim Brotherhood (told you so about that, too), but women continue to bear the brunt of the anti-woman structure there. Can you imagine any woman in the United States, or Europe, being forced to decide between Electrocution and a Virginity Test? Hell to the no. And it is not okay that our Egyptian Sisters are being forced to do so at the hands of the military.
The rights, and dignity, of women are being subjugated in Egypt. Amnesty International is all over this, thank heavens (I am a card carrying, regular contributor to AI). But between the Muslim Brotherhood and the military, I continue to fear for the safety of women in Egypt.
And I still want to know why Obama wants to send them so damn much money given these human rights abuses, and the strong role of the Muslim Brotherhood. Again, I must ask – where is the hue and cry? So far, the silence is deafening…