the baggy trousered misanthropist

missives issued from the lair

Here’s French politician and former head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Dominique Strauss-Kahn, arriving home after sexual assault charges filed against him by a maid in a New York hotel were dropped. Apparently, exhaustive investigations into the matter resulted in prosecutors determining that the maid’s evidence was not credible.

Well, it wouldn’t be, would it? She’s a maid.

Anyway. Enough of that. Judging from his ability to shake off the stench of even the most noxious of allegations, it is evident that DSK has a ‘fairly’ decent legal team at his disposal. Best not get done for libel at this stage of a burgeoning career in hectoring.

Let’s focus instead on the other person in the photo. Her name is Anne Sinclair, and she has been married to DSK since 1991. A media personality in her own right, she is independently wealthy, intelligent and in no need of a man to take care of her. Which makes her decision to stand by her husband in the wake of Guinean immigrant Nafissatou Diallo’s claims that in the hours prior to boarding the flight DSK was arrested on, he had forced her to perform a sex act on him and tried to rape her, even more difficult to understand.

When footballer’s wives appear in the newspapers in the wake of stories breaking about the nefarious activities of their husbands and say they giving him another chance, there is never a shortage of supercilious commentators (usually women), who condemn such actions as financially motivated; she isn’t prepared to give up the lifestyle her marriage affords her, she is nothing without him, the rumours couldn’t be true, blah blah blah.

When someone like Anne Sinclair does the same thing, though, she is elevated to the unlikely station of feminist freedom fighter, martyr and poster-girl for ‘warrior-women everywhere’.

Apologies. I just swallowed my sense of humour. Whole.

Anne Sinclair does not believe, for ‘a single second‘ that her husband is guilty of attempted rape, or presumably any of the other alleged offences against women that have come to the surface in the wake of the New York scandal. Which is all well and good, but he is well known in certain circles as a man of ravenous appetites – to the point where his proposed campaign in the French presidential elections was tarnished with threats of exposés by his opponents, before it even got off the ground.

Usually I would agree wholeheartedly with the assertion that infidelity is a couple’s business and no-one elses. Snuffling around in other people’s mess is best left to the tabloids.

But when high-powered individuals like Sinclair are complicit in perpetuating the myth that there are stratifications of women in society, it becomes a problem for all of us. Especially those who don’t have the blessings of superior intelligence, a wealthy upbringing and therefore protection from a section of high-powered men for whom abuse of women is merely ‘a bit of fun’, with any fallout being swiftly swept up by their team of lawyers.

I’m not saying that Nafissatou Diallo’s allegations were true or false. Neither am I presuming DSK’s guilt or innocence. Only they know what went on. But it’s obvious that Anne Sinclair doesn’t give a crap about Diallo, or Tristane Banon, for that matter. As a woman, that is shameful. As a ‘feminist’? It’s nothing short of laughable.

Image: Getty Images

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