All 30 girls in one class

Meanwhile in Norrköping in eastern Sweden, there’s a lot of FGM going on.

Some 60 cases of genital mutilation have been discovered in Norrköping in eastern Sweden since March with all 30 girls in one school class found to have undergone the procedure.

Of the 30, some 28 of the girls were found to have been subjected to the most severe form of genital mutilation, when the clitoris and labia are completely cut away and the genital area sewn together except for a small opening.

Infibulation, in other words. What volumes that speaks of the horror of women. Why not just seal the whole thing off with a few inches of concrete? That would be fatal of course, but what the hell, at least it would be clean and pure.

Female genital mutilation has been illegal in Sweden since 1982 and can be punished with up to four years in prison. If the offence is considered to be aggravated then the penalty can be up to ten years.
Since 1999 it is also an offence under Swedish law if the procedure is performed in a different country.
When school breaks up for the summer holidays the risk of being exposed to the surgery increases for many Swedish girls due to the prospect of visits to their parents’ home countries.

But the parents love the daughters; they have them carved up out of love, right? No, not right.


  1. Omar Puhleez says

    The sooner the barbaric ideology which supports this vile practice of FGM is gone from the Earth, the better off we will all be.

    It is probably pre-Islamic, but Islam is now caught up in it, is in de facto support of it, and does not dissociate from it.

  2. quixote says

    FGM happens in Ethiopian Christian communities. It’s a barbarism found in a region and justified by all sorts of scraps of nonsense. Christian, Islamic, whatever. The important thing is to destroy women.

  3. Blanche Quizno says

    Why are we not attempting to protect boys from genital mutilation as well? Until the US bans male genital mutilation, it’s rank hypocrisy for our politicians to decry other cultures’ practice of mutilating both boys AND girls.

    Let no child be mutilated.

    And this goes for piercing babies’ ears, too. Leave the children’s flesh alone.

  4. angle says

    You don’t really mean to conflate the two, do you? There’s a difference between circumcision and having ” the clitoris and labia completely cut away and the genital area sewn together except for a small opening.”

  5. says

    Blanche Quizno
    Wow, was this necessary? What about the menz?
    Nobody here is in favour of male circumcision for non-medical reasons (you ARE aware that it is also a legitimate medical procedure, right?), but you’re comparing apples to oranges and ginger biscuits.

  6. Maureen Brian says


    Some of us are trying to act against all forms of mutilation and all non-reversible, not-medically-indicated changes made before people are of age to give their own consent.

    BUT – and it’s a big but – we have to do this in the real world, not in some ivory tower symposium. We have to do that campaigning for change in times when not everyone is equally clued up about every problem. That’s before we get to the people who are a bit selfish and will not even consider someone else’s troubles until every last one of theirs has been sorted.

    As an example, see this perfectly ordinary story in the Guardian, a junior minster announcing good news about FGM, which got all the way to comment 2 before someone wanted to talk about male circumcision instead and before long that had pretty well taken over the comments.

    We also have to let people decide for themselves which campaigns they can support from a distance, which they want to be active in and which they are acknowledging but are content to leave to others.

    It is often both politic and a good communication strategy to separate even related problems into manageable chunks in order actually to deal with them effectively.

    It is perfectly possible to acknowledge that the what-about-my willy merchants have a case but we’ve found – by experience – we sometimes need to point out to them that their case is not so strong as to justify the mutilation and life-time discomfort of a single little girl. All problems of body alteration of minors are related but you will not get away with implying that ear piercing is on a par with the total excision of the genitalia.

    Not while I’m around!

  7. says

    Ireland tries to prevent girls and women from travelling to have abortions, arguing that they are “protecting the foetus”. Yet travelling to mutilate a girl is allowed, probably because there’s no foetus involved.

    Maybe it’s time for countries to limit where girls at risk can be taken. Governments remove children from homes when they are at risk of physical, emotional and sexual abuse, social workers are sent in to monitor homes when kids have been hurt. So why don’t countries limit travel for the girls at risk of FGM to within their own country or certain regions like the EU? Because racism and islamophobia?

  8. Maureen Brian says

    No, left0ver1under, because the people determined to inflict this barbarism on small children are already clubbing together to ship in a cutter to somewhere in Europe and mutilate several girls on a sort of production-line basis.

    We will get nowhere until we persuade – by a variety of means – both parents and community leaders that this practice is not in conformity with any religion and not a good idea.

    Of course, if we’d started to speak about it openly 30 years ago ……….

  9. says

    So why don’t countries limit travel for the girls at risk of FGM to within their own country or certain regions like the EU? Because racism and islamophobia?

    Because yes, a preemptive ban would mean exactly that (BTW, it’s not a “muslim” problem per se). You put all people from a certain cultural background under a general suspicion, making them less, not more likely to cooperate.
    Banning the procedure and making it a crime even when done abroad are good ideas, but they’re only part of the solution.

  10. Pen says

    They love their daughters (usually) and have them carved up out of some very misguided ideas of what’s good for them. Sorry you don’t like the concept, but you need to deal with it.

  11. Pen says

    Here’s a film made by Muslim girls in Bristol which is radically anti-FGM, tells us a lot of things we already know, but sets the whole thing in the concrete reality of people’s lives and puts a human face on it. It also contains scenes most people (I should think) will find upsetting. Those of you who are interested in Muslim issues and multiculturalism in Britain may like to browse the rest of the site.

    The full length film is second on the page, after the trailer.

  12. Al Dente says

    One thing I’ve never understood about FGM is that if people think God wants the clitoris removed then why did God put it there in the first place?

  13. Tessa says

    Sad what forgetting a “/”does. Let’s try that again. Sorry.

    One thing I’ve never understood about FGM is that if people think God wants the clitoris removed then why did God put it there in the first place?

    Probably the age old “women are uncontrollably, sinful, lusty monsters, so let’s remove this source of temptation and they’ll be less sinful and can get into heaven.”

    So somehow it’s the girl’s fault and not God’s. Maybe that makes it easier to be so cruel.

  14. Decker says

    Well I fully expect to see more and more of this.

    Practices which were once limited to mostly Third World countries are being imported.

    Forced marriages and under-age marriages are also cropping up.

    The misogyny of these cultures is being imported wholesale and will soon be quite common as the demographics change.

    We need to readjust our aim in an effort to combat these practices and to convict those guilty of engaging in them.

    I doubt, though, that that will ever happen. I fully expect white apologists to step up to the plate and to redefine these mutilations as mere “body modifications”…like so many tattoos, tongue studs and piercings. Those who persist in denouncing these horrible mutilations will be tarred as racists; western neocolonialist bigots intent on saving brown women.

    Just watch.

  15. Maureen Brian says


    There was no shortage of misogyny in the UK, long before people started using the excuse that it was the immigrants wot did it.

    Look at the pregnant girls either thrown out or forced to marry, including forced to marry the man who was not the father. That happened to a friend of mine in the early 1960s and, boy, you should have seen the explosion when it all came out, as it was bound to.

    Or look at the fight to get an education or the vote.

    If no-one had crossed the Straits of Dover since 1800 we’d still have and be fighting more than enough misogyny.

  16. says

    And, again, it’s not about “what’s good for them.” That’s bullshit. It’s about “what’s obligatory for them.” It’s about control. It’s about scraping away the external genitalia so that the owner won’t like sex so that she won’t go slutting around. It’s about their present and future owners. It’s so that they won’t be unmarriageable and thus a burden on their parents. It’s nothing whatever to do with what’s good for them. You’re telling yourself a comforting story here.

  17. Decker says

    There was no shortage of misogyny in the UK, long before people started using the excuse that it was the immigrants wot did it.

    I won’t challenge you on that.

    However I think that having your external genitalia completely removed without anesthetic, a practice that condemns women to a lifetime of pain and life devoid of ANY sexual pleasure, is quite beyond anything women in the UK previously had to endure

    And remember, this is being done to YOUNG pre-pubescent GIRLS held down and carved up so as not to appear ‘repulsive’ to a future husband that they’ll probably not even want to marry.

    This is not your grandfather’s misogyny.

    Demeaning and belittling women, treating them as second class citizens is one thing that’s bad enough; brutally removing their genitalia when only young girls is quite another.

    It’s something I’ve trouble grasping. Like, what man with even half a brain would want a wife with no genitalia?

  18. Gordon Willis says

    They love their daughters (usually) and have them carved up out of some very misguided ideas of what’s good for them. Sorry you don’t like the concept, but you need to deal with it.

    Bollocks. Sorry, but bollocks. “Usually” loving one’s daughters is a symptom of bollockingness.

    There are rules about what girls should be like. These are not the same as considerations of what benefits a person. It is like saying that “morals are good, therefore whatever morals say must be good for our daughters”. These are not equivalent goods. When you consider what is good for a person you consider all that you know of their feelings, hopes, abilities, vulnerabilities… When you decide that something is moral because it’s moral you are not considering anything: you are only bowing to social pressure. If it’s good for your daughter to be mutilated for life because of social pressure, then where is your love for the whole, capable, hopeful, passionate, vulnerable person whom you are about to destroy?

    I said above “all that you know”. How many people who claim to love their new improved (mutilated) daughters would even dream of spending the time to know them as persons? Pen, they are mutilated because they are not required to exist as persons, and it is necessary to reduce the possibility of their becoming persons. This “love” is mere self-satisfaction, a purely sentimental attachment. You believe that the personal pride which masquerades as love is the same thing as what we know to be deep and abiding care and the compassionate desire to learn and understand. Their society has no such concept.

  19. johnthedrunkard says

    How many of the victim’s parents actually think of themselves as ‘Swedish?’

    There is a trap in the whole multi-culti mindset. Immigrants can be walled off in ghettoes to ‘preserve’ their speshul cultural wonderfulness, AND—especially with Islam—the immigrants may be encouraged to think of themselves as colonists.

    Bruce Bauer (sp?) reported on an Imam in Denmark who preached that, because his congregation was living in Denmark, the country was ‘Islamic’ and that therefore it was acceptable, even obligatory, to steal from ethnic Danes as a form of gathering the required Jizyah from the dhimmis.

    A Muslim reporter who exposed this moron had to go into hiding.

  20. Gordon Willis says

    Their society has no such concept.

    Well, alright, it may do, but it would be nice to see it. Things like

    cherish, nurture, protect, defend…

    They would help. What we seem to see is “it’s for my/the/family’s/your father’s honour”, “it’s for your own good”, “we have to kill you for my/the/family’s/your father’s honour/your own good — or chop your genitals off, or lock you in a dark room…” I’ve no doubt that one can do any or all of these things for love…

  21. says

    I’ve no doubt that one can do any or all of these things for love…

    Control enforced with abuse includes no love.

  22. Gordon Willis says

    That’s my point, Kamaka. I suppose I should have written “love”, but I didn’t think of it.

  23. medivh says

    johnthedrunkard: what you describe isn’t multiculturalism. Multiculturalism is the practice of allowing multiple languages, religious practices, what-have-you while still requiring adherence to the law. This includes the positive, rights-giving, sections as well as the negative, responsibilities-bestowing, sections.

    For example: the US’s first amendment is a multicultural law (while the main body of law may not be). The UK’s friendliness to Sharia courts is decidedly not multicultural.

  24. Apoidea Theorem says

    Unfortunately, the article got some of the facts very wrong. The first thing that struck me as improbable was the number – 30 girls from the same class. A class will usually be size 25-35 students and single-gender classes are very unusual; they basically only happen on a few of the trade schools for trades that are very gendered. So it surprised me that there would be one class with so many girls, and all of them from countries where FGM is prevalent.

    As it turned out, this was one of the things that the original report got wrong. There aren’t any classes with 30 girls in Norrköping, and the 30 girls are not from the same class. But they were all in a group – a support group for girls that have suffered mutilation. The teacher interviewed for the report had heard of this support group, wasn’t sure whether all the girls in it were from the same class or not, and the reporter didn’t verify before printing.

    All cases discovered during this last year (which is all I have the data for) are girls that are recent immigrants, mostly from Somalia/Eritrea. They were mutilated before the family moved here. No doctors have reported on any cases of mutilation of girls where the mutilation happened after immigration – which would also be illegal, whether performed in Sweden or abroad.

    My sources for the above is the Swedish radio program “Medierna” (“The Media”). I don’t have a link to it in English, but here’s a google translation of the Swedish text.

    FGM needs to be stamped out. It’s more likely to happen if the media tell the truth about it, so that we can focus on working against it where it happens instead of where it doesn’t. I would have loved to read a story focusing on what was being done to help the girls.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *