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March 15, 2012

Asma Assad is Pumped

Alma Assad leather pumps

A daily stream of photos showing Assad’s atrocities against his own people is one thing. As blasphemous, perhaps, are images of domestic indulgence, items of vanity that reveal the bubble the Assad’s have been swimming around in as the blood flows in the streets.

Those domestic items acquired by Syria’s first couple — revealed in allegedly authentic, purloined emails — are indeed galling. (My bad for not knowing of the existence of bulletproof L.L. Bean-style casual wear!)  The design of this £945 pair of shoes that Asma purchased, however – the same brand and style above published by the Guardian — is, given the political circumstances, truly out there. I guess metal spikes or the steel toe is all the rage in Syria’s upper echelon these days.

In a media sphere overly enamored with power, attraction, youth and good grooming, Bashar’s wife, the London-born former hedge fund and investment banker, has been an object of fascination. Beyond the shockingly fawning portrait of the “Rose of the Desert” published, then erased by Vogue magazine (recovered here) just as the Arab Spring was heating up, there was this confusing piece in the Daily Beast the other day, replete with a illustrated portrait, suggesting that poor Mrs. Assad — theatrically labeled “the good wife” — might just be a victim in all this.

My question is: If that’s somehow true and the country is liberated, do you think she would consider returning the shoes?

UPDATE: I am actually curious how the readership interprets the design of these shoes as well as imagines what the fascination is/was.

UPDATE 2: Just looked up the product description for the $1,595 Christian Louboutin Asteroid 140’s, which strikes me as ghastly, referring to “daring gunmetal spikes and eye catching crystals.”

via Guardian slideshow: Bashar and Asma al-Assad’s shopping – in pictures

(photo: Christian Louboutin caption: Christian Louboutin Asteroid 140 suede and patent-leather pumps, £945)

  • Majorie Cunningham

    Such a far cry from the related post on Nachtwey’s family portrait.

    But those shoes, whoa. Opens up all sorts of unwanted images in my head.

    • bks

       Sandra Fluke delivering a blow for all women to Limbaugh’s cajones?

    • bks

       Sandra Fluke delivering a blow for all women to Limbaugh’s cajones?

  • Susan

    I have always seen spike heels as a weapon against women’s autonomy.   Maybe you can’t run in these shoes, but you can sure hurt somebody with them.  So relax and buy them, your legs will look fabulous!

  • Gasho

    Somewhat a-typical of the 99%.

    But the shoe fits for the radically rich.

    Show No Mercy, No Compromise, No Compassion;
    Be Fierce, Stunning, Daring and Exquisite.

    The radically cold-hearted indulgence of the upper upper class
    is well captured by this newly minted icon.

  • Shirley

    For me, these hideous shoes (and they are — what possible redeeming value could this design have, short of satirical?) conjure up a whole host of questions about the complicity of the fashion and culture “elite” in the enabling of the abusive power elite (ie, Assad et al). Also, for some reason, this was the first other image to come to mind:

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