Strauss Kahn rape case in doubt – who’s got the most credibility?

1 Jul

Excellent analysis of the issues here

Prosecutors are re-considering their position in the case against former IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss Kahn, accused of the sexual assault of a hotel housekeeper in New York.

According to the New York Times, investigators have discovered “major holes” in the credibility of the woman who alleged DSK forced her to perform a sexual act against her will.

The “major holes” are apparently issues involving her asylum application; the possibility of her links to criminal activities, and a phone conversation with her fiance in which they discussed the benefits of pursuing charges against DSK. Her fiance has drug convictions, and allegedly paid some $100,00 into her bank account.

As well, investigators discovered that the information on the woman’s asylum application was not consistent with what she told them.

Strauss Kahn’s lawyers have never denied that a sexual act took place, but claim it was consensual, and that they would discredit the housekeeper’s version of events. There has been no mention of DSK offering money for the woman’s sexual services.

None of the “major holes” in the woman’s account of herself prove that her version of events in DSK’s hotel room is wrong. The case has always been about a “he said-she said” situation. Since his arrest, several other women have come forward to give details of unpleasant encounters with DSK, and his private reputation as a sexual predator has been made public.

Yet this history doesn’t seem to affect his credibility when it comes to the events of that morning.

In a he said-she said situation, it all comes down to a battle for credibility.

The power dynamics are interesting: while at first blush one could see DSK as having all the power on his side even if the sex was consensual, the consequences have been catastrophic for him, as he lost his job, and quite possibly his future as a possible French president.

Against this, the housekeeper was possibly forced into a sexual act she did not seek or want, she may also have lost her job, and her application for asylum is under serious scrutiny. In the context of her life, the consequences for her are as catastrophic as for DSK.

But he’s still wealthy.

It looks as if no one will come out of this situation unscathed including the NYPD, who are now accused by some of rushing to premature judgement.

So the morals of this he said-she said story are? If you can’t be sure it’s safe do us all a favour and keep it in your pants, chaps.

And if you’re a woman with any history, you’ve likely got little or no credibility, no matter what the truth is.

In a little footnote to these events, Strauss-Kahn’s replacement at the IMF, Christine Lagarde, commented: “In my interview at the IMF with all the 24 administrators, there was not one single woman. So while I was being questioned for three hours by 24 men, I thought it’s good that things are changing a little.”

16 Responses to “Strauss Kahn rape case in doubt – who’s got the most credibility?”

  1. gerard oosterman July 1, 2011 at 8:21 pm #

    In France, if Mr Strauss-Kahn gets acquitted, he would have vastly improved his chances of the presidency. As for keeping it in his pants, taking it out is what drives so many men.
    Why not read a good book, eat an apple instead? ( easier said than done)


  2. gerard oosterman July 2, 2011 at 8:43 am #

    He looks considerably happier and so does his wife.
    I think that rape is always violent and therefore can’t be a pleasure as enjoyed in consensual sex whether oral, genitally or any orifice or simply on one’s own.
    I don’t believe Mr Strauss-Kahn would use brutal violence to have sex. I could be wrong but he doesn’t strike me as a man that would need to chase a maid down a corridor and hurl himself on her.


    • Jennifer Wilson July 2, 2011 at 10:39 am #

      I have no idea what occurred because I wasn’t there, and I think it should go to trial. There’s lots of stories circulating about both parties, but I don’t see how it’s justice to convict either of them based on their histories and things other parties say about them.

      There’s physical evidence that the woman sustained injuries consistent with force –

      I fear no justice will be done because of the politics involved at every level, and it will come down to class, power and influence rather than a fair hearing, especially for the woman who has no power, no money, no political influence, and is an asylum seeker.

      As I heard this morning, the woman’s lawyer has come out fiercely protesting that no matter what her history is, this doesn’t mean she wasn’t raped, and I agree with that. In all fairness it needs to go to trial, but I doubt that it will. That’s a miscarriage of justice IMO


  3. Marilyn July 2, 2011 at 2:49 pm #

    I think the arrest was a rush to judgement. I have been cured long ago of believing that because rape is claimed it is true.


  4. Gianni July 3, 2011 at 11:33 am #

    Whilst you are right that it is a “he said she said”, her credibility becomes much more relevant as the prosecution needs to prove guilt, it is not for DSK to prove his innocence. Thus the erosion of the prosecution case is significant. The the destruction of this woman’s life, well, essentially collateral damage to dictum “better one hundred guilty go free etc”.


  5. paul walter July 3, 2011 at 1:26 pm #

    He sounds a nasty sod. They all sound unsavoury, come to think of it. I don’t find it hard to conceive of a Droit de Seigneur situation, but fortunately for Strauss-Khan the reliability of the witness has been called into question- there’s enough of a doubt thrown up to help him wiggle off, altho I tend to to think he’ll be lucky if he does so.
    Nasty sleaze-balls, the lot of them.


    • Jennifer Wilson July 4, 2011 at 7:33 am #

      I doubt it will come to trial – and DSK will probably rush home and stand for President.
      Well, the Americans coped with Clinton’s “I never had sex with that woman” moment. Though there were no allegations of rape in that instance, there were also semen stains on Monica’s clothing!

      Ah, the folly, the folly!

      It’s still interesting how the men seem to come out of these scandals pretty well, I think it has to do with the loyalty of their long suffering wives standing by their man. I watched DSK and his wife the other night and wondered how on earth she could stand by that man even if it wasn’t rape. This is why I’m not married to a rich and famous man – I’m just not pragmatic enough. Well, nobody rich and famous asked me either. Actually, I never met a rich and famous man and if I had I would have first asked him who he’d ripped off to get his money. So all in all I never had a chance for that life. Hell, what am I babbling on about in this post and why? Rhetorical.


  6. Steve at the Pub July 4, 2011 at 2:43 pm #

    She has the credibility problem, not he.

    Whoever was behind his arrest is also going to come under the microscope. Deservedly so.


  7. paul walter July 4, 2011 at 5:02 pm #

    Yes Jennifer, a delight in life for most males, is when women have “babble” moments.
    As for Clinton, who else’s business was it?
    Certainly not the people running the smear campaign against him, not on their motives.

    Heavens above Gerard, I’ve only got two hands…


  8. paul walter July 5, 2011 at 4:29 pm #

    The latest concerning this subject delice, a report in my on-line Adelaide Advertiser, telling me that a French novelist is about to come after him in court as well.
    La petite, Tristane Banon, alleges that our hero invited her back to his apartment, presumably for a scrutiny of his etchings, resulting in a following energetic pursuit by a DSK running amok, “like a rutting Chimpanzee”.
    Fascinating paper, the ’tiser.
    Also learnt about someone being hanged in jail with a pair of red jocks over their head, and Harry Potter’s battle with the bottle, as well as local identity Nicole Cornes, one time model, former Labor candidate and wife of footy legend Graham Cornes, having a win over the gutter press to the tune of $85k, probably to do with the dirty campaign run against her in the 2007 elections.


    • Jennifer Wilson July 5, 2011 at 5:05 pm #

      Yes I heard that report on DSK as well – he has apparently dismissed it as “imaginary.”

      There is a truly astonishing piece on the Drum today by Bob Ellis in which he blames feminism for the downfall by sex of famous men.

      I do love it that we live in a country where we can all risk being sued for defamation. That’s democracy


  9. paul walter July 5, 2011 at 7:16 pm #

    There’d probably be some thing similar in my “imaginary”, to DSK’s. Mine seem not to have outworked into reality in quite the same way as to his “imaginings” as compared to mine.
    Whether or not this is because his “imaginary ” escapes his fly, eg, is less in his “imaginary” than my imaginary in mine ( imaginary, that is! ), I couldn’t possibly comment..



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