Yesterday, CBS News revealed its chief foreign affairs correspondent, Lara Logan, "suffered a brutal and sustained sexual assault and beating" while covering reaction to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's resignation in Cairo's Tahrir Square last Friday. Logan returned to the United States the next day and was treated at a hospital; she is now recuperating at home. According to the Post, CBS News decided to make the statement because it started to get questions from other media outlets: A source said, "A call came in from The [Associated Press]... They knew she had been attacked, and they had details. CBS decided to get in front of the story."
CBS News said that Logan, who had been detained by Egyptian authorities during an earlier, recent trip, was separated from her colleagues "in a mob of more than 200 people whipped into a frenzy." The Wall Street Journal reports, "The separation and assault lasted for roughly 20 to 30 minutes, said a person familiar with the matter, who added that it was 'not a rape.'" Sources tell the Washington Post, "I doubt if we'll ever find out" who the attackers were. The Washington Post also reported, "Some at CBS likened the assault to the "wilding" that occurred in New York's Central Park in 2000, when at least seven women were attacked and some were sexually abused by a wild, cheering mob after a parade."
While a recent study has shown that 86% of Egyptian women had been harassed on the country's streets (also: 98% of foreign women visitors say they have), the attack on the high-profile CBS reporter was an opportunity for journalist and NYU fellow Nir Rosen to complain about the attention Logan was getting and belittle the situation on Twitter, "Lara Logan had to outdo Anderson" (referring to the attack on Anderson Cooper), "Yes yes it's wrong what happened to her. Of course. I don't support that. But it would have been funny if it happened to Anderson too," "Jesus Christ, at a moment when she is going to become a martyr and glorified we should at least remember her role as a major war monger," and "Look, she was probably groped like thousands of other women."
At first, Rosen was semi-apologetic, "Ah f--k it, I apologize for being insensitive, its always wrong, that's obvious, but I'm rolling my eyes at all the attention she will get," but later he wrote, "As someone who's devoted his career to defending victims and supporting justice, I'm very ashamed for my insensitive and offensive comments," and "I am deeply ashamed because they do not represent who i am, and i would like to convey my most heart felt apologies to Ms. Logan, her family, her friends, all women and too everyone I have hurt, angered and disappointed." Rosen also resigned from NYU's Center on Law and Security. A spokeswoman for the center told the Daily News that Rosen's resignation "in no way compensates for the harm his comments have inflicted. We are all horrified by what happened to Ms. Logan, and our thoughts are with her during this difficult time."