WHAT IF PETRAEUS HAD AN OPEN MARRIAGE?

How Scandals Gave Obama Upper Hand On Military Brass

Man smart, women smarter. Is that the reason why companies now want to hire women over men? If it’s only to address gender balance at the workplace, then it will be merely paying lip service to the issue. Far more needs to be done to make women feel an important and crucial part of the workplace.

Whatever be company policies, the fact remains that given a choice, most bosses prefer male employees. The reasons are skewed. While there are numerous women employees who could easily give men a run for their money and are very competent, there is the slack minority which is often highlighted. Most forget that there are also men who are lackadaisical and laidback. Yet, the general view is that women take more holidays and come with more family problems than men, never mind the truth.

Can you imagine any male boss remaining immune to the overactive lachrymal ducts of a woman who is denied leave, say, when her child is sick? Which male boss won’t wring his hands in frustration and be dismayed when told by a bright woman employee that she’s in the family way and will need maternity leave? Most often forget they have wives who might be in similar situations.

So what can a man do? Is he expected to smile and say no problem, we will manage? It doesn’t quite work that way. Work is work and few companies have the empathy to understand a woman employee’s problems and allow for some adjustment. The woman is the linchpin of her family and her children’s education, health and upbringing are more her responsibility than her husband’s in the Indian scenario. It’s hardly ever fair and square for her here.

If companies really mean what they say, then they should show it. How about having crèches in office so that women get time for their small kids? How about allowing women other than their favourites to work part-time if they so wish? How about giving kudos to competent women for juggling work and family well? Most still think that as the man is the breadwinner of the family, women can be dispensed with during hard times. Some companies have shown the way to greater gender parity and these should be shining examples for others.

At the same time, women employees need to be professional and make sure family problems don’t come in the way of meeting targets and deadlines. And yes, it’s best to keep those tear ducts in control.

At first, this new item evoked laughter for its absurdity. It seems the managements of several private schools in Kerala have advised women teachers to wear aprons or overcoats to avoid the stares of male students. This is after students took pictures of them with mobile cameras and uploaded them on popular social networking sites.

While the very image of teachers teaching in aprons/overcoats seems ludicrous and puritanical, the fact is there is genuine concern behind this advise. With the explosion of internet and social networking sites and little parental supervision, children are free to do what they want on the web. And sometimes, it can be unsavoury.

Somehow, the use of mobile phones to take pictures of teachers when their backs are turned, speaks volumes for the loss of innocence and respect. Of the blurring of lines between what should be sacrosanct and what is deviant behaviour. Of every woman being seen in sexual terms. This moral degradation is nothing new in today’s times. We see it in politics, we see it in our daily lives. It’s when it settles in the minds of children that there is cause for worry.

Today’s teachers anyway have a tough time, what with the explosion of information, continuous assessments and constant vigil by managements and parents. To now be under scrutiny of immature and wayward students is the final nail in the coffin.

School managements, instead of asking them to cover up, should devise ways to prevent the use of mobiles in schools. Regulation and strict implementation will ensure more discipline. A fine should be imposed on children bringing mobiles to schools. Of course, they will find ingenious ways of beating the system, including hiding mobiles in tiffin boxes, etc.

Parents should be roped in to see that their wards keep electronic devices at home. More importantly, they should teach them to respect their teachers and elders from a young age.

Also, a few hours without mobiles shouldn’t be difficult for students. But when children come to playgrounds showing off their latest iPhones, it’s obvious that materialism has gripped their lives. And the blame lies with grown-ups for allowing it to infringe their lives.

General David Petraeus hasresigned his position as head of the CIA. The reason, you’ve probably heard, is that he cheated on his wife. Gawker has some wild theoriesabout who he might have been cheating with. But that’s not the most important thing.

The important thing is that he’s out of a job, and the CIA is out a highly respected leader.

While it’s a stunning lapse in integrity for someone who was widely respected, it doesn’t at first glance seem like the kind of lapse that has a lot to do with running the CIA. Does having an affair make him a less capable leader?

Maybe. Does philandering lead to other kinds of dishonesty? Would this have cost him the respect of his people? Opened him up to blackmail?

All these things are serious issues, and they add up to it being not all that shocking that breaking his marriage vows cost him his career.

The resignation has caused something of a stir among my non-monogamous friends. The conversation seems to center on the sex-negative aspects of this: did Petraeus lose his position because he had “illicit” sex? What would a world look like where you could have more than one partner and not risk your career over it? Some are wondering if you can even get security clearance if you’re in an open relationship.

I happen to know that the answer to that last one is yes; I have numerous poly friends with security clearance, who are open about their relationships with their supervisors. They’re not running entire branches of the U.S. security apparatus, of course. But they are doing their jobs with integrity, and being treated with respect by supervisors who understand the difference between an illicit affair and an honest open relationship.

I don’t see this as necessarily being about Petraeus having a lover outside his marriage. I see it as being about him lying about it.

I’m not going to defend that. Lying to your spouse is a terrible thing to do, and I’m inclined to trust someone less if I know they’ve done it. It’s not a characteristic I want in my government leadership. If you’ll lie to the person you’ve vowed to be honest with and share your life with, what’s to stop you from lying to me?

I think Petraeus’ integrity is a matter of public import. Should he have lost his job over it? Maybe not. But he should be accountable for this pretty major ethical lapse.

Would I feel the same way if he were coming out about being in an open marriage? Of course not. I know from long personal experience that an open marriage demands the utmost integrity and honesty from everyone involved.

What’s incredibly sad about this situation is that Petraeus probably never felt like negotiating an honest open relationship was an option for him. It may not have been; I don’t know the particulars of his situation.

I am sure that if we had a culture of acceptance and positivity around desire; if we recognized the many ways people can love each other and express that love; if we did away with the assumption that monogamy and commitment always go hand-in-hand, we’d have fewer scandals about adultery engulfing those in the public eye.

Some people cheat on their partners for the thrill. Some are genuinely unwilling to do the hard emotional work necessary in an open relationship. But I think a lot of people who cheat just feel trapped and like they have no choices. They do something deeply wrong because they can’t find a right way to live that honors the full expression of their sexuality.

I’m not excusing Petraeus here. We don’t all get to fully express every aspect of ourselves, and if you’ve committed to a monogamous marriage and find yourself falling for someone else, the thing to do is keep your pants on or renegotiate things with your spouse. I’m not going to side with Dan Savage and excuse some cheaters on the grounds that their spouse is just being totally unfair in not letting them have the nice sex they want. I think cheating is always wrong.

What I’d like to see is a culture where there’s much less pressure to cheat, and much more acceptance of people’s different needs and desires. A culture where having a wife and a lover doesn’t open you up to blackmail because it’s simply not a dirty secret.

In that world, I’d like to imagine Petraeus would still be heading up the CIA, not because we’d be more accepting of him cheating on his wife, but because he wouldn’t have cheated on her in the first place.

The teenage call girl accused of having sex with at least three French football stars when she was underage today broke her silence over the scandal announcing: “I loved them all.” Zahia Dehar, now 18 year-old, is the girl at the center of a French World Cup football (soccer) team sex scandal involving players, Franck Ribery, Karim Benzema and Sidney Govou. So, the young Parisian of Moroccan decent wasn’t sleeping with the entire team; just three of them that we know of so far. She came forward after police raided Cafe Zaman, a notorious brothel on the Champs Elysee. Zahia has told police she had underage sex with all three players, according to the Daily Telegraph. The English newspaper reported her saying she was “shocked” the players faced charges and that she told them she was an adult. She also said the players had treated her “with utter respect” and should be left alone.


Franck Ribery has admitted to having sex with Zahia Dehar several times in 2009 but denies knowing that she was underage. A French Judge is assessing the case whether to go ahead and charge Franck Ribery with having sex with an underage prostitute. All three men now face up to three years in prison, though she doesn’t think they should be punished, as they were very respectful and unknowing to her age. However, Ribery may have at least known Dehar was underage, as she celebrated her 18th birthday with him several months after they began. Aside from the underage factor, perhaps the bigger scandal here is that Ribery is married. I wonder what his wife, Wahiba Ribery thinks of this mess. The story is getting huge media coverage in France because it involve a under age hooker and several sports superstars. Where as the story goes they say Zahia has worked as a prostitute since March 2008, and has made a fortune sleeping with rich clients and multi-millionaire football stars.

She turned 18 less than 2 months ago. That is her below (see the skanky pictures) when she was 17. And perhaps 16 too. She would travel the world, making upwards of $30 grand a month. Along with Franck Ribery a couple of other soccer players paid Zahia Dehar £2,000 to over £3,000 ( $5,000.00 USD) a night to sleep with her. Now, some ladies might say “if being a whore gets you a trip to Dubai, sign me up!” And normally I would condemn such remarks but we are talking about a 7 star hotel here. This is a case of high-scale + high-price prostitution involving large sums of money you and I could never imagine spending on sex. But you would hope she wasn’t stupid enough to practice her craft in Dubai because I don’t even want to think of what they do to whores in a place like Dubai.

The questions about Franck Ribery, Karim Benzema and Sidney Govou come as France awaits its World Cup team to be named, in about three weeks. Ribery is the star of the French team, who in 2007 signed for about $30 million to play for the Bayern Munich team. The AP reports no charges have been filed. Prostitution is legal in France, but clients are liable if the prostitute isn’t over 18 years-old, the AP says, and offenders face up to three years in prison and a $60,000 fine. Police in Paris are investigating whether other French football (soccer) players on the French team had sex with the underage girl who’s alleged to have been working for a suspected prostitution ring at a Paris night club. Anyway, the French public will not be phased by the sex issues in the story, as the French are very tolerant to these type of issues relating to sex. And yes, even perhaps underage sex with a teen prostitute. Plus, they really want to win the World Cup. But they will love the sizzle behind the sex story, the gossip, the stars, the money, the pimps who were involved the hanky panky in the sex clubs, all that stuff the French media will feed on with relish. Click on pictures to enlarge.

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