All cultures are not equal. Islamic culture is misogynistic and degrading to women. Vicious. Demeaning. Women have to be virgins, and the patriarchal sharia will police that by having strange men stick their fingers inside her. Got that?
The West is best.
Female military applicants in Indonesia are subjected to virginity tests – including the discredited “two finger test” to determine if the hymen is intact – in order to recruit the “best people” to the armed forces.
Human Rights Watch is lobbying countries – including Australia – who are attending an international conference on military medicine in Bali next week, to urge Indonesian president Joko Widodo to abolish the “discriminatory and invasive testing”.
Indonesian military spokesman Major-General Fuad Basya told Fairfax Media virginity tests were performed on female candidates as part of health tests required to enter the military.
“It’s against the rights of every woman”: A female military academy applicant subjected to a virginity test in 2013.
“It’s against the rights of every woman”: A female military academy applicant subjected to a virginity test in 2013. Photo: Human Rights Watch
“It is done in order to get the best people both physically and mentally,” General Fuad said.
He said doctors would know if the female candidate had lost her hymen due to an accident or another reason.
She would then have to explain why her hymen was no longer intact.
Human Rights Watch is lobbying to urge Indonesian president Joko Widodo to abolish the “discriminatory and invasive testing”.
Human Rights Watch is lobbying to urge Indonesian president Joko Widodo to abolish the “discriminatory and invasive testing”. Photo: Adam Ferguson
“If it is due to an accident we can still consider it but if it’s due to another reason, well, we cannot accept her.”
General Fuad said the tests were already in place in 1977 when he entered the military.
He said military personnel needed to be mentally fit because they had to carry guns to guard Indonesia’s integrity and sovereignty.
“It is very important.”
But Nisha Varia, a women’s rights advocacy director at Human Rights Watch, said “harmful and humiliating” virginity tests did nothing to strengthen national security.
“President Joko Widodo should set the military straight and immediately abolish the requirement and prevent all military hospitals from administering it.”
Andreas Harsono, an Indonesia researcher for Human Rights Watch, said the “two finger test” involves a doctor inserting fingers into the vagina and anus to determine if the hymen is intact.
“This unscientific approach says that if the hymen is torn between 11 o’clock and 1 o’clock it means an accident but if it is torn at 6 o’clock it means frequent sexual exercise.”
Last year the World Health Organisation issued guidelines that stated: “There is no place for virginity (or two-finger) testing. It has no scientific validity.”
This is because hymens can be damaged for reasons other than sex.
The tests became a hot topic in Indonesia after Human Rights Watch released a report in November featuring interviews with female police officers who said the digital penetration test left them feeling traumatised.
Home Affairs Minister Tjahjo Kumolo reportedly announced in December he was seeking an end to virginity tests as part of requirements for female civil servants.
However Human Rights Watch research found that the military had also been using the tests for decades and even extended the requirement to the fiancees of military officers.
General Fuad denied fiancees were also tested.
“No, we don’t do that. What’s the need?” he said.
But 11 women interviewed by Human Rights Watch said the tests were required of all women applying to enter the military or marry a military officer.
The international non-government organisation said applicants and fiancees who failed the test were not necessarily penalised but all of the women described the test as painful, embarrassing and traumatic.
“What shocked me was finding out that the doctor who was to perform the test was a man,” a female military academy applicant who was subjected to a virginity test in Bandung in 2013 told Human Rights Watch.
“I felt humiliated. It was very tense. It’s all mixed up. I hope the future medical examination excludes the virginity test. It’s against the rights of every woman.”
The International Committee on Military Medicine is holding its 41st world conference in Bali from May 17 to 22.
Human Rights Watch has sent letters to the committee and its 16 member countries, which includes Australia, asking them to urge the Indonesian military to cease all virginity tests.
Courtesy of Pamela Geller.