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Caroline Fourest fined €6000 for defaming young Muslim victim of racist attack


Islamophobe Caroline Fourest claims to be a “Feminist” but it appears her feminism is of the Neo-colonialist variety.

via. IslamophobiaWatch

Saphir News has reported that Caroline Fourest – the French “left-wing” Islamophobe who wrote Brother Tariq: The Doublespeak of Tariq Ramadan – has been successfully sued for defamation over comments she made in June last year on the radio station France Culture.

Fourest was responding to the attacks on two Muslim women in Argenteuil, one of whom lost her baby after being kicked in the stomach by her assailants. This followed an earlier incident in which a 17-year-old woman named Rabia Bentot (pictured) was punched and kicked by racists, who also tore off her headscarf while shouting “dirty Arab” and “dirty Muslim”

Instead of Fourest declaring her outrage at the assaults, and her solidarity with the victims, this self-styled feminist expressed scepticism about the women’s accounts.

Fourest claimed that Rabia Bentot was being manipulated by her father and by the Coordination contre le Racisme et l’Islamophobie, assisted by what Fourest described as the “communalist” website, and she suggested that the story of an attack might well have been fabricated. Even if an assault did take place, Fourest asserted, the police had not excluded the possibility that Rabia was the victim of violence by her own family, who could have beaten her up as punishment for living too free a lifestyle.

Needless to say, Fourest offered no evidence whatsoever to back up these disgraceful slurs.

The Collectif contre l’Islamophobie en France comments that for someone who claims to be a feminist Fourest is very selective in her indignation, especially when it comes to Muslim women who wear hijab. The CCIF notes that trying to discredit the testimony of women victims of violence is a well-known phenomenon, and has been vigorously denounced by feminist organisations.

Rabia Bentot sued Fourest for defamation, and last week the Grand Instance Court in Paris ruled in Rabia’s favour. Fourest was fined €6000, half of which was to be paid in damages with the remainder to cover the plaintiff’s legal costs. Fourest has announced that she will be appealing the verdict.


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  • Ilisha

    McCain conceded the point, explained why he had been skeptical of a
    widely publicized date-rape accusation (against Julian Assange) and
    repeated after Christopher: “No means no; stop means stop.”

    Are you suggesting conceding a point is pointless?

    Which I’m surge you’ll dismiss, since McCain is your new super anti-Feminist hero or whatever.

    What do you all your comments seem to drip with contempt? In another comment to you, I condemned the rape threats and shameful comments aimed at Anita Sarkeesian, despite my disagreement with her views.

    Yet despite evidence that I take the issue of rape seriously, you’re sure I will dismiss any inappropriate comments McCain has made about date rape? That doesn’t make sense to me.

    I’ve opposed feminism for a long time. I only became more strident here becuase of the course of the discussion. Am I not allowed to oppose feminism? Are we actually required to endorse this ideology?

  • HeGG

    From Wikipedia:

    “Mediaite’s Tommy Christopher once took McCain to task for appearing to excuse date rape when, in a blog post, McCain wrote about promiscuity among women: “Listen up, sweetheart: You buy the ticket, you take the ride.” After indignation broke out among both liberal and conservative defenders of women, Christopher confronted McCain on-camera at the CPAC conference in March 2011, seeking clarity. McCain conceded the point, explained why he had been skeptical of a widely publicized date-rape accusation (against Julian Assange) and repeated after Christopher: “No means no; stop means stop.” Writing about this encounter, Christopher remarked that “McCain still holds many opinions that I find objectionable, but I also think that [the video] places the ‘character’ that is RS McCain into a context that simply reading him does not.”

    Which I’m surge you’ll dismiss, since McCain is your new super anti-Feminist hero or whatever.

  • Ilisha

    What comment about about date rape?

  • HeGG

    I would think that anyone with a shred of decency would find his comment about date rape deplorable, not only feminists.

    Your mileage may vary.

  • Mifeng86

    Not being listened to or believed is exactly why women are reluctant to report it when they get attacked. I think Islamophobia is a feminist issue considering that most victims of anti-Muslim violence are women. I don’t care for the tone of the article I just posted in the link, because the implication is that the women are to blame for being attacked because of their attire.

    Oh I forgot, according to Ms. Fourest being the feminist hero that she is only the opinions and experiences of Western women are valid.

  • Mehdi

    Thanks Garibaldi, I agree fully with everything you say, that’s the reason why I stayed away from this discussion (I feel bad as it was a comment of mine that initiated it), there are many forms of feminism and disagreements over the term even between militants.

    Caroline Fourest has made herself famous by attacking Tarik Ramadan and writing a book full of lies about him, she then claimed that he refused or was afraid to debate with her while he said the opposite. I once asked a a swiss journalist after a debate where he was invited on TV, she confirmed that it was Fourest who turned down the invite. Finally she had to accept an invitation on a french program and he just wiped the floor with her. I need to search for it but it’s around 30 minutes long, so translation would be difficult.

    I also despise the Femen who are also growingly losing credibility (especially after they made a stupid demonstration in the Notre Dame cathedral against the new pope, another against the Paris mosque to protest against Salafism, and after Amina Sboui claimed that she was attacked by salafists at 6am in an area usually quite crowded, only to admit she lied)…

    Now despising these women doesn’t mean I dismiss feminism. I do like this article from Mona Chollet on the femen about their “fast-food feminism”

    Chollet is a feminist and defends feminism, when there are oppressions against women, feminism or womanism or other forms of activism are important. Chollet wrote a very good book (not sure it was translated) about the new forms of alienation against women in the west such as the cult of fashion, the narcissic search for the “perfect slim body” which leads many teenagers to anorexy and depression, and many other examples.

    So yes, one can and should criticize some forms of feminism but dismissing feminism as a whole goes way too far as I’m concerned. There are many many forms of feminism, some are a new form of western imperialism, as I related on the comment of Tunisian feminists telling the Femen to leave as they created un-necessary tension to their legitimate fights for protecting women’s social, legal rights or to fight sexual abuse or domestic violence. I also deeply respect many figures such as the ones on the link I posted or people such as Arundhati Roy, or Angela Davies, whether they describe themselves as feminist or not is a side point. Saying that these people are puppets of capitalism is unfair to them.

    Women’s issues has evolved (and are different depending on the places) and require new forms of struggle, and it’s up for women to find these solutions and talk about them. We have the right to criticize some forms of militancy when they go too far or end up being forms of bigotry, but I will never attack feminism as a whole for two reasons:
    – Being pro or anti when there is “ism” involved often ends up with black and white simplistic representations. As I told a friend recently, I don’t fancy communism but anti-communism is often silly and has been a tool for US imperialism or McCarthy’s witch hunts, I am pretty
    leftie and dislike extreme capitalism but I do live in market world and
    live with it, and we have already been over debates about the term islamism. Saying I’m pro or anti for all these terms is simplistic, similarly I can’t saying pro or anti for feminism, some of its forms should be criticized by many others deserve support and respect.
    – There are many organizations who target feminism are either religious fundamentalists (and I mean all religions here), or fascist, and tend to use some forms of excessive militantism to pursue their agenda of oppressing women. Nuance is important here, as I will never accept to have my voice or criticism by such people. In some sense everyone in this forum has been criticizing ISIS or other Muslim extremism, it’s legitimate but noone in this forums would be happy to see its arguments used by Islamophobes, one way of trying to avoid that is by expressing critcism with nuance.

    Sorry for the length of the response.

  • The greenmantle

    There are over ten million people of Irish decent in the UK . So I suspect you are mistaken . :-)

    Sir David

  • downwithpants

    Okay can I have a cool reflective vest? O master of all Dhimmis!
    I already pay the jizzya when I go to the bank….the sperm bank

  • Jekyll

    I do not agree with everything you say, especially the last paragraph, but the idea of inter sectional feminism was relevant.

  • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

    I can’t unfortunately read this whole thread but I would just agree that Fourest is a joke and I’m glad she’s making a greater fool of herself for the world to see. Perhaps those who slavishly cite her as some authority when bashing Islam or Muslim scholars like Tariq Ramadan will think again. By the way you should translate that video of their interaction into English!

    I don’t know where to post this on the thread but my two cents on the issue of Feminism more broadly, I’d note that within Feminist circles there’s a lot of disagreement not only on methodologies, priorities but also the term itself. In the US for instance the issue of the term is contested as it does not resonate for some.

    Black women deeply rooted within the Christian tradition started taking exception to the term “feminism” around the mid to late 80s. They found that their experience was of a different nature and that the Feminist movement as constructed did not jibe with their own experiences. They came up with the term/social theory of “Womanism.”

    The need for something like “Feminism” (call it what you want) comes from a real, organic place; the oppression of women. Speaking from strictly within a Muslim paradigm, from my observation, the voices of Muslim women have to be at the forefront of this discussion. There are women who are living miserable lives and who have suffered the consequences. I can give innumerable examples and citations, from women and their allies who are working on these exact issues within Muslim majority nations/communities.

    The tricky balancing act for such scholars and activists is to be cognizant of imperialist White Feminism. The famous words of Gayatri Spivak come to mind in regards to this type of Feminism, “White men saving Brown women from Brown men.” At the same time as one must be on guard against these malicious forces one also has to keep in mind the very real issues plaguing women: unequal access to education, health, security, economic resources, etc.

    From my reading of what can be termed Islamic Feminism, by which I refer to a trans-national movement that burgeoned in the late 80’s and grew in the 90’s is that most who are associated with this group are doing their darndest to navigate and balance these competing forces and achieve real, tangible results. The work of Anissa Helie, Ziba Mir-Hosseini, Homa Hoodfar, Leila Ahmed, Hooria Hayat Khan, Asma Jahangir, Amina Wadud is just some of what comes to mind. (By the way, as should be obvious, that’s not an endorsement of all their views, but a recognition of their contributions)

  • Ilisha

    (1) I’m still allowed to clarify my position and make it clear it isn’t about him.

    (2) …I find, as I said, repulsive, and you weren’t familiar with him

    Okay. Thanks for telling me that charges against him. Good to know. Though knowing feminists think he’s a “rape apologist” impresses me not at all.

  • Ilisha

    You’re, of course, free to continue to find merit on them and excuse or ignore whatever unpleasant qualities he might or might not have

    It’s not about HIM. I’m not reading the articles because he’s the author or because I’m a fan of his. I’m reading the articles for the CONTENT.

    what is this Feminist Thought Police you’re referring to?

    The self-appointed thought policy who hound and smear anyone who dares to question feminist orthodoxy. You need look no further than this thread for examples.

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