Today, a 26-year-old Algerian man has become the first person arrested after a string sexual assaults during New Year’s Eve celebrations in Cologne, Germany. The assault on female German citizens has caused an angry debate over the country’s ability to integrate Syrian migrants into society.
Another unidentified asylum seeker had also been arrested over the weekend. He is accused of groping a German woman and robbing her phone. There are several other Arabic men being investigated for related crimes that night.
The problem isn’t only in Germany, however. In Sweden, a gang of migrant youths groped young girls at a festival and police are now under investigation for covering up the fact that the perpetrators were Syrian migrants.
Three weeks after the chaos in Germany a total of 838 people have filed criminal complaints. Some 497 women are alleging sexual assault. Some of the victims have jointly filed a single complaint, so that the number of alleged crimes stands at 766, of which 381 are sexual offences, including three rapes. In addition to the sexual battery, many women were robbed.
For those of you already aware of this situation, this is old news, but what you may not know is that what the city of Cologne witnessed during the New Year’s celebrations is rooted in an Arabic Gang Rape Phenomenon called “Taharrush” which translates to “collective harassment.”
Some Arabs say that Westerners are misinterpreting “Taharrush” as something sinister and that it’s simply rooted in mild public flirtation. But what many Germans witnessed that day three weeks ago was anything but flirty and fun. There was groping and fondling, full-fleged rape and even robbing.
What the practice of “Taharrush” entails is a group of men encircling a woman, who is almost always alone, as a form of intimidation. They then fondle and grope the woman, sometimes taking it to the point of rape. While the sexual assault is happening, some of the men in the crowd act to distract onlookers from what is happening to the victim. Usually, the victim is in a state of shock and cannot do anything to prevent being assaulted and robbed. “Taharrush” almost always happens in public gatherings, where there is safety in numbers and chaos.
This is exactly what’s been happening in Europe, and it’s precisely what’s causing a major backlash against Chancellor Merkel’s move to take in so many Syrian refugees. Not only that, but attacks on Muslims is steadily on the rise.
Even Arabic scholars agree that if “Taharrush” was historically a peaceful form of flirting with the opposite sex, it has most certainly changed since the Arab Spring.
The first introduction of this Arab gang-rape phenomenon to Westerners was when South African CBS reporter Lara Logan was attacked by a large group of men while reporting on celebrations in Tahrir Square, Egypt, in 2011.
Logan described what happened with these men as, they “raped me with their hands.”
The 44-year-old reporter revealed terrifying details of the 40 minute-long attack in Cairo, including how she became separated from her crew after someone in the 200+ crowd shouted “Let’s take her pants off.”
“Suddenly, before I even know what’s happening, I feel hands grabbing my breasts, grabbing my crotch, grabbing me from behind. I mean, and it’s not one person and then it stops, it’s like one person and another person and another person.”
Finland and Sweden today are the latest European countries to issue warnings to women to be wary of the threat of sex attacks following fresh reports of sexual assaults in the last week. The Viennese police chief advised women not to go outside alone in Vienna.