Sunday, November 27, 2005
Malaysia's Abu Ghraib? Not Bloody Likely...
The woman being abused in the video appears to be ethnically Chinese, her tormentor a Malay woman police officer wearing a Muslim headscarf. The victim is made to hold her ears as she squats and rises. Ear squats are a punishment common in Malaysian schools and are designed to humiliate.Some are saying this could be Malaysia's Abu Ghraib.
What makes this doubly uncomfortable for the authorities is that the video emerged after a number of Chinese tourists alleged they had been arrested, forced to strip in front of male police officers and robbed.
One of them, a 35-year-old housewife, filed a complaint. "A policewoman grabbed my breast and slapped me when I blushed," she told The Star newspaper. "I was then forced to take off my undergarments and do five 'ear squats'. I saw a policeman peeping then," she said.
Some Malaysians are comparing the grainy video of a woman being forced to strip and perform squats by a police officer to the abuses perpetrated by coalition forces in Iraq.Sorry, I don't believe it. For years, serious and never-ending human rights abuses by serial human-rights abusing countries, were all but ignored by the media (including Indymedia).
What happened at Abu Ghraib on the other hand, was milked for every penny. Whilst this doesn't excuse what happened there, forgive my cynicism for suspecting you won't hear another word about the Malaysian incident any more than you'll hear about Chinese executions, Arab beheadings or Syrian torture.