The following great piece from Hank Pellissier dates back to February 2011 – which could explain his obvious optimism that the „revolution“ could have lead to a democratisation.
While today – one year later – there are worries indicated that the signs in Egypt are more pointed to an Islamist regime than to democracy – the essence and questions of this article remain more actual than ever:
„What’s the point of the Egyptian Revolution if it doesn’t stop female genital mutilation?
If girls are chopped bloody, sexually-deducted, was the 18-day struggle at all productive?
Egypt gave itself a Mubarak-tomy – Now its time to end clitoridectomy
Let us condemn F-G-M“
Like in ALL cultures in which the mutilation of the female population is accepted and legitimate, FGM in Egypt takes place in an environment of general male violence against women, harassment, intimidation, deprivation and oppression:
„…even with Mubarak gone, it’s often a nasty men’s world in the Nile nation.
“Rampant sexual harassment, public fondling and groping of women… is used as a way to keep women indoors,” writes Asra Nomani in theHuffington Post. A 2008 survey by the Egyptian Centre for Women’s Rights says 83% of Egyptian women and 98% of foreign visiting females experience sexual harassment, and the Arab Human Development Report (2009) claims 35% of all Egyptian women have been physically attacked, a figure they suggest is grossly under-reported. The 2010 Global Gender Gap Index, a Swiss study that rates progress towards women’s equality, places Egypt in the international cellar: #125 out of 134 nations surveyed. Egypt’s rank is abysmal because it excludes women from good jobs, especially managerial positions, and only 2% of parliament is female.“
But despite the horrendous dimension of the sadistic crime called Female
Genital Mutilation in Egypt,
„Abolishing FGM unfortunately was not an agenda item that any Egyptian revolutionary spokesperson mentioned, and it was generally ignored as a subject of discussion by international media until CBS reporter Lara Logan was assaulted in Tahrir Square on February 11 by a mob of up to 200 men…“
Although Female Genital Mutilation remains to be one of the most widespread systematic crimes perpetrated against minor girls with more than 200 million victims worldwide, Pellissier rightly observes that
„The civilized outcry against FGM is not 100% universal, due to “cultural relativism” infecting some circles of feminism.“
„Let’s hope, and insist, that this cessation of abuse becomes a permanent feature in the new, ancient nation. The words “Egyptian Revolution” have a glorious sound, but not if we simultaneously hear the screams of girls….“
Fotos (c) Flickr / Aida el Baradei (1) / Francisco Abadal (2)
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