Lina Khatib has an interesting article over at Foreign Policy about Wednesday’s attack on the U.N. Special Tribunal investigators at a gynecological clinic in Beirut. She comments on Nasrallah’s strategy here:
“He went on to question, “who would accept someone looking at the gynecological files of a mother or a sister or a daughter?” By invoking the issue of women’s honor, Nasrallah is appealing to a traditional set of values that makes the event dogmatically unacceptable. The STL’s investigators provided the perfect pretext for this framework, not only by physically entering a Hezbollah stronghold where they are certainly unwelcome, but also by sending men to a gynecological clinic.”
Lina is right: as legitimate an excuse as the STL may have had to visit the clinic, they seem to have played directly into the hands of Hizbullah, which has slowly but surely developed the most sophisticated messaging strategy this side of Cupertino, CA.
Not that this is so relevant, but can anyone imagine a more succinct exemplum of the lessons of Foucauldian (well, more like Saidian or Massadian) critiques of political, medical, and sexual imperialism? Behold the White Doctor stride self-righteously into the colonial clinic! Watch him violate the honor of the subject race, just as the empire preys on the defenselessness of the colonized’s body politic… Is this not what (a post-colonial studies graduate student’s) dreams are made of?