We need a #MeToo norm and protest at the international level too

We need a #MeToo norm and protest at the international level too


By Jan Oberg

March 5, 2018

About 1:50 into this video comment I suggest that we should think of elevating the idea of #MeToo to the international level and apply it when a country is abusing another country against its will – even to the extent that we can justifiably talk about rape and death.

Apart from the obvious similarity – the lack of consent and the violence and humiliation it is expressive of – there is also the issue of proportions:

People – i.e. entertainment celebrities in particular – engage very much (and rightly so) in the present #MeToo campaign – and many also in the issue of domestic gun violence (again, rightly so) but the same people hardly every have a critical word to say about their own government raping entire countries, violating international law, killing thousands of people, building bases and selling the arms that have only one result apart from profit: to make a real conflict-resolution process virtually impossible.

And while I am at it: The pervasive American puritanism was unbearable bizarre already during the Clinton year.

He started the catastrophic expansion of NATO and bombed in Afghanistan, Sudan, Bosnia, Kosovo, Serbia and the US Embassy helped with the huge ethnic cleansing of Serbs out of Croatia in 1995 in Croatia – while his Secretary of State, Madeleine Albright said she thought it was OK to have killed 500.000 innocent people in Iraq by sanction – the only reason impeachment of the President was talked seriously about was his relationship with Monica Lewinsky in the Oval Office.

It’s good that the #MeToo tells us to look up. But there are more ways of looking up. One is to look from the individual to the global.

Or is that too much to ask in an “atomizing” cultural time – Zeitgeist – where everything is “me”, “I” and “myself” and social bonds are decaying my the day?


7 Responses to "We need a #MeToo norm and protest at the international level too"

  1. fjahanpour   March 5, 2018 at 3:19 pm

    It would be futile to ask powerful countries to voluntarily give up some of their power. The only way is to mobilise public opinion throughout the world to call for the ending of military bases in so many countries and forcing big powers to give up their war-mongering policies. Wars should be made illegal without a proper Security Council debate and approval, and even that under the most exceptional cases, and the offending countries and those who ordered those wars should be brought before an international criminal court. War is not the solution to any problems. Peace and dialog are the only civilised ways of resolving differences.

    • Vibeke Larsen   March 5, 2018 at 3:24 pm

      Some of the sad reasons of war is not interests one can talk about.
      But just okkupation.

  2. .Vibeke Larsen   March 5, 2018 at 2:18 pm

    I think it might be a potential resource since the expression is understood.
    Though im not to happy of the various ways it can and is flattening serious matters in some cases. Also to be used to make fun of something.
    The matter at hand is very important. And true the Western war games will stop at a point .

    • JO   March 5, 2018 at 2:43 pm

      Dear Vibeke – we agree completely that the #MeToo campaign is very very important but I think, knowing your serious interest in international affairs, that we both really want violence – all kind of it and not just one – to be reduced. #MeToo is irrelevant in my view it it attacks only men idividually and not the male-dominated power structure and that – patriarchy you may call it – is part and parcel of militarism, too. Therefore I believe there is already a connection – but it is not pointed out. And war is also a terrible abuser of women everywhere it is fought out. In that regard, I think film stars and other celebrities have come close to “monopolizing” the whole thing and women around the world are hardly served by that in the long run. And we want this campaign to evolve and last for long and not just be a short-lived fad, I’m sure. Best – Jan

      • Vibeke Larsen   March 5, 2018 at 3:16 pm

        Exactly. This culture of power/killing.
        And the metoo as a tool AGAINST men – not my cup of tea.

        I could imagine countries coming out: metoo we are also occupied by others military etc. Some dag One day they will come out. Or die

        The, for some, hidden hand must be people themselvess, I believe

  3. kurt-willy kühl   March 5, 2018 at 2:08 pm

    YES !!!

    • JO   March 5, 2018 at 2:37 pm

      Oh … yes! 🙂


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