Julie Bindel’s evisceration of Galloway and the broader implications of his offensive comments is a must read:
“But some liberal-lefty men have been bending over backwards to rewrite definitions of rape to suit their blanket adoration of Assange. They seem to be too stupid to work out that you can admire and defend WikiLeaks without canonising its founder. In the world of Assange-lovers, women who allege rape and sexual assault are either lying vixens or silly unsuspecting pawns in the fight between freedom fighters and the US.
Galloway and those who spout rubbish about what “real rape” really is (ie nothing other than that committed by a stranger wielding a knife who attacks a virgin) are not rape apologists, but rape deniers. Most rape falls into the category that Galloway has decided is simply “bad sexual etiquette”, ergo most women are lying, and most men are the victims of spurious accusations from women who should read up on rape legislation. “
Everyday Sexism: What’s the big deal? should get you thinking, unless you are an Assange supporter or suffer from Galloways offensive mentality.
Whirled Peas argues:
“Despite their disagreements on a variety of other issues, Galloway, Assange, Akin, are all of a kind: they seem to think that there is ambiguity around the subject of rape. There is not: without consent, it’s rape. This is the beginning, the middle and the end of the matter; there is no post-modern analysis to be made, no fiddling about with subjective criteria, no softening of the edges or blurring of the lines. If the women in question did not agree to sexual activity, they were violated. This is a crime, not just in reference to British, Swedish, American and even Ecuadorian law, but rather it is a transgression which violates the sanctity of the person. Our fundamental freedoms rest upon an assumption: you may not own another person, but you own yourself. You may give of yourself, but no one is entitled to take. To suggest that under certain circumstances that such “taking” is acceptable or less than a gross violation is to undermine this concept; it threatens liberty itself. It is no wonder that President Obama rushed to condemn Akin by stating clearly, “Rape is rape”; it is puzzling that British politicians have not responded similarly to Galloway’s comments nor been as forceful in dismissing Assange’s claims. Labour’s reticence is particularly inexplicable: they stand a good chance of reclaiming Bradford West if they go in for the kill. “
The Swedes have cleared up the issue of extradition to the US and the death penalty:
“In an interview with the German newspaper Frankfurter Rundschau, the deputy director of the Service for Criminal Cases and International Cooperation of Sweden’s Justice Ministry Cecilia Riddselius has specifically said Sweden “will never surrender a person to the death penalty”.
Sweden is currently at the center of the WikiLeaks scandal as it seeks to extradite Julian Assange from the UK to face a rape investigation. Assange’s supporters suggest that the scandal is politically motivated and argue he would later be extradited from Sweden to the US to face the death penalty for espionage.
Riddselius also says that they would demand strict assurances from the US that “the prisoner will not be executed in any case” and added that Sweden has not received an extradition request at present. She admitted that it was impossible to tell without the request whether Assange would be extradited without the request. “
The LRB blog reminds us of stools:
“Galloway’s law that not everybody needs to be asked at each point of insertion suggests that Galloway and Assange, at least, naturally possess a special skill in distinguishing those who do need to be asked from those who don’t. How can those not so blessed tell which is which? Galloway considers Assange to have shown poor manners in having sex with two women who did not know about each other (he doesn’t mention Assange’s wife). It might have been ‘really bad manners not to have tapped her on the shoulder and asked do you mind if I do it again’ but it is, he booms with evangelical rhetoric, ‘not rape, or you bankrupt the term rape of all meaning’. You see, he is much more serious about the vileness of rape than the rest of us. In any case, Galloway asks finally in an epic non-sequitur, granted that Assange is a rat, are not the US and British empires rats too? ‘Imperialism is a bigger rat than Julian Assange, no?’ he demands, with all the satisfaction of Martin Luther successfully passing a stool. Actually, the biggest rat may well not be any of his three options, but a photo-finish between Galloway and Akin. “
Final word, goes to F Word’s “We are not Julian” round-up which is amusing, disheartening and informative in equal measures.