DSK Damaged By ‘The Cambridge Precedent’

, News Editor

DSK has withdrawn from a speaker's engagement at the European Parliament in the wake of the Cambridge campaign to disinvite DSK.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, ex-head of the IMF and recent speaker at the Union, has withdrawn from speaking at the European Parliament after criticism that it would be “indecent”. 

International media have suggested that the high-profile CUSU protest against his Union appearance earlier this month has paved the way for more organisations to snub DSK.

Due to speak in Brussels next week, DSK pulled out of his engagement following protests by Socialist MEPs defending “the dignity of women.”

Photograph by Harry Shukman

“Le Précédent de Cambridge”, as French newspaper Le Monde has dubbed it, could be responsible for kick-starting wider protests against DSK’s speeches.

Ruth Graham, CUSU Women’s Officer and coordinator of the anti-DSK demonstrations, told The Tab that she was in awe of the power that Cambridge students have when they protest.

“I am very pleased to hear that Strauss-Kahn’s speech to the European Parliament has been cancelled”.

“The fact that ‘Le Précédent de Cambridge’ has been used as an argument in asking for his invitation to be revoked shows that we are able to make a real contribution to international debate”.

  • Between the lines

    You were part of the protest weren't you? Feeling proud?

    • F. Taylor

      What are you talking about the 'writer' is part of the problem NOT the protest. Have you seen this? http://cambridgetab.co.uk/news/union-reveals-raci

      • Philosopher

        The distinction you make between the problem and the protest seems to have escaped me….

  • Still..

    Would have been interesting to hear him speak. No one condones his behaviour (if it turns out to be true) but that does not detract from the point that he was at one stage one of the most important men in the global economy. The demonstrations may be appropriate in raising awareness to the true nature of his character and the claims of rape and indecent behaviour, but the courts also have a responsibility to deal with this and thus far have seen fit to release him until the 28th March. Unless his personal life directly impinges on his views towards the global economy his experience in economics may prove to be valuable in the coming months and I think this is the more pressing matter at hand.

    • Armchair Critic

      He did speak.

      • Still..

        In the EU Parliament?

      • read the article

  • Sarcasm

    A victory for free speech and the principle of innoncent until proven guilty!

    • Spellmaster

      You know what you've done wrong. Damn, I'm anal.

      • Sarcasm

        You mean ananl?

    • anon

      Personally I don't care about whether this guy speaks or not. But allowing free speech isn't the same as giving a platform for people to speak.

      Additionally you can protest against the guy for his general lifestyle without him having to have been convicted of anything.

  • He spoke well
    • Yeah but

      None of the feminazis will have watched that, cos unless you're particularly interested in economics, the IMF, French politics etc, that talk was fairly tedious (apart from the prat who got in and asked a stupid question).

      As far as the protestors are concerned, all he talks about is raping and pillaging the women of the world, and how fun that is – the reality that he's actually talking about sensible things makes their protests rather pointless…

      • Better Watch

        those pesky feminazis…

  • DSK

    In that article it doesn't actually say anything about Cambridge having any influence on the decision, there's just that paragraph title (that really just seems like a lazy way to include the story of the cambridge protests). The protest at the union wasn't the first one against DSK, why would it set a precedent? But sure, protesters, be happy with your little win, who knew climbing on fences and pissing off security (those privileged bastards) would be so effective?

  • Man

    Well tbh, DSK's a bit of a shit. He doesn't need more people defending him, he has the vast majority of western social constructs working in his favour, I have no pity for him in the slightest. His opinions on women alone are reprehensible, let alone if they're backed up by his alleged actions (which lets be honest, were probably true, he's just got brilliant lawyers).

    • Of course

      he has the vast majority of western social constructs in his favour. Because the majority of westerners, and even more so students, support rape, hold anti-women views, and like the IMF. This explains why all the people arguing for his speech were saying 'he's a great man, and what is wrong with rape?' rather than simply saying 'I dislike him but he is innocent until proven guilty'.

      Imbecile. If people do not want to hear him speak at the Union, at the EU parliament, or wherever, they're very free not to attend. People are defending the principles and the rights of the minority before a baying mob demanding he be shut up, not the man himself. Amongst students, the privilege is precisely among those who claim to represent the weak.

    • umm

      "alleged actions (which lets be honest, were probably true"

      Probably true? How would you even know? The prosecutors dropped all charges because "they were not convinced of his culpability beyond a reasonable doubt due to serious issues in the complainant's credibility and inconclusive physical evidence". The alleged victim repeatedly lied to police and admitted that she'd lied about the events that took place.

      Your opinion is just based on prejudice and nothing more.

      • mmm

        Let's not forget that she lied about being raped in the past, and on being confronted about it by the police, claimed (falsely) that she made it up to back up claims in her immigration documentation.

        "DSK, go away, justice for Diallo"

        Indeed. That justice would probably involve her being locked up.

  • Viva Le Précédent

    Another anit-CUSU rant from The Tab!!!!

    We love Gerard.

    (and the jumper he got for christmas)

    • VIVE le précédent

      I see that CUSU supporters' record on free speech is rivalled only by their linguistic naus

      • ironically

        it's nous, not 'naus'

  • ugh

    feminazis blowing their own trumpet over the harassment of an innocent man. Apparently simply being accused by a proven liar of being rapist is cause enough to badger and bully someone.
    Truly sickening.

    • erp

      'Cause enough' implies that this was the sole argument for his speech being protested. Which, you know, it wasn't. As a lot of people have said, repeatedly.

      You don't seem to get that the people you keep coquettishly labelling 'feminazis' (oh, you!) have thought about this significantly longer and harder than you have, and, judging by the mental alacrity on display here, perhaps ever will. The protesters' stance, or, better, stances – they were plural – were complex, nuanced, well-reasoned and far from absolutist. That complexity disappears once you're all shouting as a unified mass, granted, but how people came to be in that mass to begin with matters, just as it matters how and why each audience member came to be in the Union chamber on that evening.

      • Really though?

        It was pretty much the sole argument for his speech being protested. Expand 'accused by a proven liar' to include 'other unproven allegations', and I think that takes out most of the substance of what the protest was about.

        I think you're giving them too much credit by claiming that every protestor's stance was nuanced and well-reasoned: for example, take the banner held in the photograph at the top of this article: "Rape survivors don't get this platform". DSK was invited to (and did) speak about the IMF, not rape, because it was considered an interesting topic for Union members. I'm sure if a rape survivor became the head of the IMF, they'd be considered for an invitation at the Union too, so if rape survivors don't get the same platform, it's probably more that they haven't been the head of the IMF and contested the French presidency than anything else…

      • oh matron

        i'm not sure how to feel about a feminist using "coq-", "longer" and "harder" in the same sentence…

  • dailymail reader

    comments defending dsk read just like comments people make on dailymail articles… take that as you may.

  • tabreader

    well done, you silenced a socialist economist from speaking at the European parliament

    feeling proud?

    • he was

      on the farthest right of the french socialist party, and his policies as head of the IMF (and the IMFs policies now, obviously) are the antithesis of socialism. do you think lefties ought not to criticise blair because he was once in the (rightwing) of the labour party?

      and the european parliament decided to 'silence' DSK, not CUSU. I'm sure the EU wonks are grown up enough to make their own decisions. And the hyperbole of 'silencing' is ridiculous – the unelected DSK was disinvited from speaking at one of the most important representative political institutions in the world. How oppressed, bound, gagged, SILENCED he must be

  • CUSU

    On the CUSU Women's Campaign facebook group, there are 18 posts about DSK. Aside from that, without loading 'older posts', there is ONE link to a TCS article about the under-representation of women, ONE link about a talk from one of the first women to be admitted to Clare, and ONE call to vote in CUSU elections, especially for the women's officer.

    Thank God there aren't any other issues for women in Cambridge. How much longer is this going to carry on for? CUSU is paying someone to link to articles about a (currently innocent) man, who now has nothing to do with the university. Prioritise.

    • bigger picture

      It is an unfortunate trend that has been creeping into CUSU, the former CUSU President was just as guilty of this last year – they see their roles as entirely ‘campaign focused’ and measure their ‘success’ in their time as sabbatical officers almost exclusively by the column inches or media airtime they secure.

      That aside…

      CUSU Women’s Officer: “…The fact that ‘Le Précédent de Cambridge’ has been used as an argument in asking for his invitation to be revoked shows that we are able to make a real contribution to international debate”.

      A good starting point on the facebook group might be a clarification as to how a campaign to prevent somebody speaking constitutes a "real contribution to.. debate"?

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