The Maid and the Media

As  promised, Nafussatou Diallo is talking. She’s launched a full-scale media offensive.

The Sofitel housekeeper who alleges she was assaulted by Dominique Strauss-Kahn has opened Round 2 of the “he said-she said” sensationalized case. At the end of Round 1, improbably she became the villain, accused of lying by the prosecutor and being a prostitute, by Rupert Murdoch’s New York Post.  While most other media outlets did not behave that badly, as always the mob mentality led to some pretty outrageous reporting.

In one sense, Diallo had no choice but to come forward, and subject herself to now being described thusly:

“Nafi” Diallo is not glamorous. Her light-brown skin is pitted with what look like faint acne scars, and her dark hair is hennaed, straightened, and worn flat to her head, but she has a womanly, statuesque figure.

The interview with Newsweek, photograph and all,  hit the internet last night. In the ABC interview with Robin Roberts this morning she says she wants Strauss-Kahn to go to jail.

DSK Accuser Speaks | Video – ABC News…/manhattan-ny-doninique-strauss-kahn-dsk-accuser-ro12 hours ago
Dominique Strauss Kahn’s accuser speaks to Robin Roberts. Exclus

Nafi Diallo and her lawyers–and the all too willing media– are doing the hard work for the beleaguered and befuddled Prosecutor Cyrus Vance –who seemed to cave in the face of inconsistencies in her story–to the point of dropping the case.

I think these interviews, called  by DSK’s lawyers a “circus, ” will once again focus on what police say was, in total, 9 minutes of an indisputable sexual encounter: after all, evidence was  found on the floor.

Almost incredibly, Newsweek mentions an “implausible” report out of France in Le Point  that DSK admitted to his wife that he’d had sex with 3 women in NYC–something of a “last glass” toast before pursuing the Presidency of France. Really…

The Newsweek reporters come to no conclusion in their story…granted, it has its challenging aspects. This is the most they could say about what they heard from this 32 year old Guinean woman, about her encounter with one of the most powerful men in the world:

It’s possible that Diallo is a woman who has lived for the last few years on the margins of quasi-illegal immigrant society in the Bronx, associating with petty con artists and dubious types trying to get a foothold in this country. But that does not preclude her having been the victim of a predatory and powerful man. Nor does it mean she will rule out an attempt to make some money from the situation.

Given the climate of suspicion that developed around her, Diallo’s last three encounters with authorities, on June 8, 20, and 28, were difficult sessions, as prosecutors grilled her like a defendant.

Nafussatou Diallo is in the main ring, on the offensive now. Oddly enough, when you read her life story, this may not  be the biggest fight of her life.

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