“We went to Kineshma, that’s in Ivanovo region, to visit his parents. I went as a heroine and I never expected someone to welcome me, a front-line girl, like that. We’ve gone through so much, we’ve saved lives, lifes of mothers, wives. And then… I heard accusations, I was bad-mouthed. Before that I’ve only ever been “dear sister”… We had tea and my husband’s mother took him aside and started crying: “Who did you marry? A front-line girl… You have two younger sisters. Who’s going to marry them now?” When I think back to that moment I feel tears welling up. Imagine: I had a record, I loved it a lot. There was a song, it said: you have the right to wear the best shoes. That was about a front-line girl. I had it playing, and [his?] elder sister came up and broke it apart, saying: you have no rights. They destroyed all my photos from the war… We, front-line girls, went through so much during hte war… and then we had another war. Another terrible war. The men left us, they didn’t cover our backs. Not like at the front.” from С.Алексеевич “У войны не женское лицо”
In Soviet Union women participating in WWII were erased from history, remaining as the occasional anecdote of a female sniper or simply as medical staff or, at best, radio specialists. The word “front-line girl” (frontovichka) became a terrible insult, synonimous to “whore”. Hundreds thousand of girls who went to war to protect their homeland with their very lives, who came back injured or disabled, with medals for valor, had to hide it to protect themselves from public scorn.
This has always happened in history: Women do something important. Then they get shamed for it (so nobody will talk about it) and it gets erased from history.
And then certain men will say: “Women suck, they’ve never done anything important.”
Look into history and learn that women have played a far greater role then douches (present and past) wanted you to know.
Hey Will (and Jack) I got you something.
So this is important. Let me tell you a story.
All the time I spend debating about women in combat, I’ve picked up on a trend that disturbs me. Supporting or attacking, people are quick to draw on biology, psychology, law, but very rarely - almost never - do I hear about the history of women in combat, and the evidence their service lends to this debate.
Hundreds of thousands of women faced combat in WW2, and on both sides, and on all fronts, and it is a history that has been almost completely erased from contemporary awareness. I have been given arguments about how women can not psychologically handle combat. And about how women in mixed-gender combat units will automatically disrupt group cohesion - the brotherhood, if you will. Both of these assertions are erasure.
Women have not lived in a protective bubble untouched by combat for all of history. Women have been killed, wounded, and captured in combat, and tortured after. We are not living a world where these are hypothetical situations women have yet to prove they can handle. Unfortunately, they have, they can, in the future, they probably will, again and again. Soviet women served as partisans, snipers, tank drivers, fighter pilots, bombers. And more.
Both British and American women served in mixed-gender AA units. I could drag you through several examples of British women performing exemplarily despite being wounded, or seeing their comrades die. The Luftwaffe did not discriminate. Between the British and the Americans, it was determined that mixed gender units actually performed much better than all male units, because of teamwork. Because women are better and certain tasks, men are better at certain tasks, and at other tasks they are comparably efficient, and in a team, hopefully, in combat, you let the best do what they are best at. For the most part, they were proud to serve together.
German propaganda never commented on the British AA units, but they thoroughly smeared the Soviet fighting woman - flitenweiber. People often argue with me that women are a threat to group cohesion because men naturally give women preferential treatment. Which certainly explains why men are more likely to survive shipwrecks. And history shows us that Germans soldiers had no chivalrous compunction when it came to shooting captured Soviet women who were armed.
We’re fed a history of war that almost exclusively features white male figures, most of whom fit into this destructive constructed myth of the soldier that is somehow both chivalrous and charmingly womanizing and who’s sense of brotherhood is unshakably dependent on the band being all man. There is no history of woman at war, none. I hear a lot about how women have no upper body strength, I hear nothing about the Front-Line Female Comrade.
THE WORD FRONTOVICHKA BECAME A TERRIBLE INSULT - are you fucking kidding me? Fuck, that made me cry. At first when I started reading I thought I was reading alernate history fiction. I’m ashamed to be ignorant about this, and full of rage and much worse bitter shame that this history is constantly repressed, suppressed, hidden. WHAT THE FUCK. D: D: D:
I didn’t know that bit about the AA (Anti-Aircraft) units.
And even in this article I don’t see a mention of the women of the Israeli Army, or women of the resistance if we’re just sticking to WWII. I didn’t know about the Russian soldiers, only the fighter pilots, the night witches, and I’ve spent years poking into the corners of history trying to find women who will serve as ammunition when men tell me women can’t fight.
The best explanation I’ve heard of what happened to women after WWII comes from “A League of Their Own,” the publicist’s character: “What is this—the war is over, Rosie, turn in your rivets?” Women all over the world had to step into the same old ruts.
I don’t think it’s any mistake at all that Betty Friedan wrote her ground-breaking text for the second wave of feminism, THE FEMININE MYSTIQUE, just 10 years after WWII, after women had dined on a full plate of the same old, same old.
And shame on the men who never stood up for the women who worked and fought beside them, and saved their lives.
Some girls like the Broken Bad Boy, but for me Honest Asshole Han will always be my kryptonite.
No good deed goes unpunished.
This is me:
I’m the girl who got headbutted. You might recall this incident from a few years back with either a feeling of support and the urge to high-five me, or an intense dislike because I’m mad feminist, hell-bent on making up stories to demonise men. If you are not familiar with the story, I will give you the short version; I saw a man attacking his girlfriend and I stepped in to stop him, resulting in him headbutting me after a lengthly confrontation where he threatened to have me killed. The man was prosecuted. I made a post about it on my personal blog which had about two hundred followers. The post gained a monumental amount of attention, but a couple of months later, someone decided to ‘prove’ that I had made all of it up. I was the centre of an online witch hunt for months. I was threatened, bullied, laughed at and shot down whenever I tried to offer a rebuttal. I wasn’t too bothered, because the man had been sent to prison and I stayed in contact with the young girl who was very grateful that I had stepped in. It didn’t matter to me that a few thousand people thought I had made it up; I knew the truth, the police knew the truth and my friends and family knew the truth. I stopped using my blog and ignored all the mad comments.
But it continued. It snowballed dramatically. Before I go on, I can assure you that this happened. I promise. You can Google my name, Laurie Malyon, and you are one click away from finding numerous articles very clearly stating my attacker’s sentencing.
I’ve put up with comments and threats for almost two years now, and whilst everyone around me tells me to ignore it I can no longer sit back and watch people slander me on the Internet. I realise that I am utterly powerless in changing the opinions of 500, 000 people who are too lazy to spend five seconds doing some research on Google, but I’m going to give it one last go before I stop talking about this godforsaken controversy forever.
I did a good thing. I am proud to say that. I stepped in when many others would not have. It’s very easy to see something like that and pray that someone else stops it so you can remain a bystander, but there was no one else around to stop it when I saw it and I’ll be fucked if I’m ever going to sit by and watch somebody be harmed intentionally at the hands of someone else. I am still in contact with the girl. I see her perhaps once every two months, and she still thanks me every time she sees me. I helped her out of a situation that everyone was too scared to help me out of when I was her age. I stepped the fuck up.
The comments I have received about the situation make me very, very upset. I am a human with real feelings and I can read everything that people write. I’m put to shame on feminism blogs that read the ‘debunking’ post and didn’t think to research it. They say that I’m giving feminism a bad name by lying. They say that I’m an attention whore. They say that I’m an idiot for claiming to have stepped into a domestic situation because that can often make it worse. They ask if I’ve ever even heard of a domestic situation. They tell me I deserve to be in a domestic situation for lying. They say that I’m ugly. They say the amount of makeup I wear in my photos is silly and I look like a slag. Now forgive me if I’m wrong, but isn’t that absolutely negating the entire point of feminism? As a well educated and practising feminist, it is not the comments from men saying that they’ll ‘give me a real black eye’ that upset me, it’s the comments that are hateful and shaming from my fellow sisters.
A lot of people speculate (because I’m a loony feminist) whether or not I’d have stepped in if it were a woman beating a man. Of course I would have. Violence is violence and I completely agree that anyone attacking anyone should be stopped. Twisting it into this and challenging me on it creates even more diversion from the real issue. Why the hell are people trying to pick so many holes in my story? Was it really that difficult to believe that I was a normal girl, on her way to work, who simply stepped in when I saw someone in need? Why have I been questioned and scrutinised for two years? Surely the anger shouldn’t have been directed at me for posting about it, but towards the man who succeeded in assaulting two young women, entirely unprovoked?
I am not taking it any more. I am not remaining silent whilst people call me names and post about how I deserve to die. I am sick to the back teeth of being branded a ‘whore’ by feminists who aren’t really feminists if they’re using a word associated with slut shaming when nothing about my story even mentions anything sexual. I am fed up with being told by men that they’d rape me then give me a black eye with their dicks and how no one would believe me if I tried to get them arrested because I’m that mad man-hating feminist who lied about being headbutted.
I’m trying to undo all the unfair comments with this post. I’m speaking out to the 3.6 million of you who have read about the situation, whether I was portrayed as a do-gooder or a liar. I am asking you to share this so that I can attempt to clear my name. I understand that the post has spread like wildfire throughout the Internet in it’s entirety and that it’s unlikely I will get any kind of redemption from this, but even if this makes 100 people believe me I’ll feel a little happier about the whole situation.
I’d like to thank the masses of you who believed me and who have offered me your kindness and support from the start, and I’d also like to mention that the chap who ‘debunked’ my original post is on my side. He deleted his blog and apologised to me over a year ago. We went out for a burger to talk it over. We cool.
It kills me to see the notes on this post and see how many women are still attacking her. Is not the point of feminism to support each other? Whether or not she lied, what does it matter? What is the point of tearing another woman down when there are other, more insidious and pressing matters are the ones that need to be torn down?