The arrest of Dominique Strauss-Kahn on charges of attempted rape strikes me as one of those pieces of news that is simultaneously astonishing – and not entirely surprising.
First, let’s be clear that nothing has been proven and that Strauss-Kahn is presumed innocent until a court decides otherwise. Second, let’s acknowledge that it has been an open secret for years that – even by the standards of French politicians – Strauss-Kahn has a reputation as a womaniser. I remember speaking to a European colleague of his, who was laughing with astonishment at the open lechery that Strauss-Kahn had displayed at an official dinner. Strauss-Kahn was also reprimanded by the IMF board for a “serious error of judgment”, after an affair with a subordinate.