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The sacrifices of Strauss-Kahn`s wife

Posted July. 04, 2011 03:00,   


When Former International Monetary Fund Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who resigned after being accused of the sexual assault and attempted rape of a worker in a New York hotel, was released from house arrest, his wife Anne Sinclair smiled brightly in happiness. When Strauss-Kahn was implicated in sex scandals in the past, she ignored it by saying the ability to seduce is a politician`s asset. When the latest incident erupted, she said she was not suspicious of her husband even for a second and hired renowned lawyers to defend him. Sinclair paid the rent for a luxurious house in which her husband was detained and a huge amount of bail for his release. Korean men might envy Strauss-Kahn and think that the magnanimous act of his wife is mysterious.

When Italian actor and singer Yves Montand, a known womanizer, was rumored to have an affair with American actress Marilyn Monroe, his wife Simone Signoret protected him, saying, “How on earth could a man resist Marilyn Monroe when she is in his arms?” On the alleged sexual relationship between former U.S. President Bill Clinton and a nightclub singer in 1992, his wife Hillary Clinton, now U.S. secretary of state, appeared on TV with her husband and said, “I love and respect my husband.” Her comment helped Bill take office. Amid the scandal involving White House intern Monica Lewinsky in 1998, Hillary took the same attitude as she did in 1992 and helped her husband avoid impeachment. In her autobiography, however, Hillary confessed that she wanted to wring her husband`s neck at the time. Strauss-Kahn`s wife might have attacked him when journalists were absent.

The generosity show by Strauss-Kahn’s wife apparently reflects France`s more liberal views on sex and the will to power of wives with powerful husbands. A woman living in Paris said, “Powerful spouses are partners who have strived together for political goals. It’s been a long time since they slept together so they remain cool. In this way, spouses exhibit a solidarity that France values.”

Strauss-Kahn and his wife are Jewish, and she devoted herself to her husband`s bid for the French presidency. She used to host a popular talk show but left broadcasting to marry Strauss-Kahn. Sinclair even let her husband utilize her connections and converted her inheritance into political funds for her husband. In France, political solidarity between spouses seems to trump remaining faithful in marriage.

Editorial Writer Lee Hyeong-sam (hans@donga.com)