Forbes: What A Wonderful World! Get Raped In Dubai And You'll Serve 16 Months In Prison Eamonn Fingleton
Globalization continues to integrate the world into a more deeply interconnected economic system but at the same time it is providing platforms for previously silenced and marginalized voices to be heard. It allows us to become better acquainted with each other’s cultures but it does not guarantee that familiarity will breed acceptance.
(BTW, the Norwegian woman mentioned in the story has been “pardoned” as is free to leave Dubai.)
… Why would the victim of a terrible crime receive a jail sentence? Asia is not America, let alone Norway. For me, as someone who has spent 27 years watching the world from a vantage point in East Asia, the episode illustrates in microcosm an obvious and profoundly troubling fact: globalism is a one-word oxymoron. It has never made sense and probably never will. Cultures are different and, in their attitude to truth and human rights, the many brands of Asian culture are particularly remote from Western expectations.
Certainly, all American wishful thinking to the contrary, the world is NOT converging to American values. Yes, of course, more and more consumers around the world are drinking Coca-Cola KO +0.29% and eating Big Macs. But this is a superficial observation that says nothing about any values worth the name. …
… The larger point here is that Eastern and Western cultures are in many ways incompatible. Rudyard Kipling made the point more than a century ago: “Oh, East is East, and West is West, and never the twain shall meet.”
My bet is that, on appeal, Marte Deborah Dalelv will be shown some leniency. But for globalism, the Asians will never cut much slack. This applies in spades to the naïve American view that globalization and Americanization are somehow the same thing (thank you George H. W. Bush, William Jefferson Clinton, and, of course, Thomas L. Friedman). Asians are incandescent with rage at such casual cultural imperialsm but, being Asians, rarely give any explicit indication of their anger. They expect people to read between the lines….