The following article was originally published as a note on my facebook account on June 10, 2011. I am posting it here to expand it to a wider audience:
by BJ Murphy
I find it necessary now, more than ever, to really get into the issue of “bourgeois-feminism”. The rape charges being supported throughout the mainstream press against Gaddafi’s forces have unleashed an old weapon in the defense of imperialism: feminism. As a feminist, myself, I find it to be my duty to combat against “bourgeois-feminism”, just as it’s my duty to combat against both “ultra-leftism” and liberalism.
“Bourgeois-feminism” is a faction of feminism that places feminism first before class conscious. It’s used as a means to support imperialism; to justify it through what the bourgeois-fem’s would see as an attack against women.
What’s going on in Libya is a clear example of this. Am I stating that there’s no rape taking place by that of Gaddafi’s forces? No. But I am saying there’s no evidence to support the idea that Gaddafi has trained and sent his men out to rape other women. Let’s always keep in mind the class contradictions between Gaddafi and the rebel govt.
On one side, we have Gaddafi’s govt. Under this govt. women were liberated from the chains of Islamic fundamentalism. Women aren’t forced to wear any garments over their faces. Women are allowed to work as they please. In fact, it’s women who act as bodyguards for Gaddafi!
Then on the other side, we have the rebel govt. led by that of Islamic tribals. Under no means should women expect liberation from the likes of these people. It goes against their Islamic customs and they’ll fight with every inch of their body to ensure said customs. Let’s also keep in mind that they’re being aided by both NATO and the US’s CIA. Anyone, especially women, who remembers what happened to women’s rights after the US-funded Mujahideen overthrew the PDP in Afghanistan in ’92, should know very well what’ll come into practice for women’s rights if Gaddafi’s govt. is overthrown.
The problem, though, is that there’s several women today who’s justifying NATO’s invasion due to the rape charges flooding throughout the mainstream press. Yes, if the charges of rape are true, then they should be addressed and handled through Libyan courts, not through the barrel of the gun by NATO. Neither the ICC, nor NATO have any right to destabilize Libya’s sovereignty, justified by the mere acts of sexual crimes.
Feminists should stand up against sexual abusers, but they should also keep in mind a disciplined class analysis over their actions. Demand for an independent investigation over the rape charges, but also demand an end to NATO intervention!
Down with Bourgeois-Feminism! Down with Western Imperialism! Long Live Libyan Sovereignty!