Little Outrage Over Student Beating at Princeton University

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Silent Night?

UPDATE: Here's a quick update on our Grapevine about The New York Sun story concerning the Princeton student who alleged he had been beaten -- after coming out against the school distribution of condoms. The Daily Princetonian says Francisco Nava has admitted he made up the story and fabricated e-mails threatening his life and those of other students and one professors.

Nava reportedly confessed to police on Monday. He has been released with no charges so far. The school says its investigation is ongoing.

Conservative students and faculty at Princeton University are questioning the absence of campus and community outrage — following the beating of a student leading a morality movement at the school. The New York Sun reports Francisco Nava was attacked by two men last week and told to shut up. The beating came two days after Nava received death threats by e-mail.

Nava — who is a Mormon — wrote in the student newspaper that a school campaign to distribute free condoms on campus was a — "tacit sponsorship of hookup sex." Three other members of the morally conservative Anscombe Society also received the threats, along with a conservative professor.

Princeton graduate Michael Fragoso tells the Sun — "There would rightly be outrage had the student been part of some other minority on campus. I have yet to see that right now, and that's rather disappointing."

No suspects have been identified and Princeton Township Police say they will not comment on the pending investigation.

Crime and Punishment

The Saudi rape victim who was sentenced to 90 lashes for being alone with an unrelated male — then had her punishment upgraded to 200 lashes for complaining about it — has been pardoned.

Saudia Arabia's King Abdullah made the decision following international condemnation of the original sentence — and the increased punishment. The Saudi Justice Ministry had defended the penalty by saying the woman was having an illicit affair with the man at the time they were both attacked.

Now the justice minister says the king is still convinced the verdicts were fair — but is acting in what he calls "the interests of the people."

Tough Guy

The diplomat in charge of the United Nations climate talks in Bali is known as the "hard man" of climate negotiation — broke down in tears during the conference last week.

The London Daily Mail reports Yvo de Boer of the Netherlands burst into tears while addressing the conference and was escorted from the platform. De Boer was attempting to defend his staff against charges from Chinese officials that his team ignored conference protocol — a relatively minor procedural matter. Moments earlier de Boer had warned delegates that a failure to reach an agreement on greenhouse gas emissions could — "plunge the world into conflict."

Then, one observer said, — "He was in a flood of tears. Three colleagues — one of them a woman — formed a protective group around him and escorted him out of the hall. It was all very dramatic."

Pulling the Plug

Iranian police closed down 24 internet cafes and other coffee shops in a single day as part of a broad crackdown on behavior deemed immoral by the government. Official media report 23 people were detained.

Many Iranian young people use Internet chat rooms to socialize with the opposite sex — a practice banned by Islamic law. Many Web sites considered un-Islamic are blocked. Other activities were also targeted.

One police commander explains — "Using immoral computer games, storing obscene photos .. and the presence of women wearing improper hijab were among the reasons why they have been closed down."

Police say they inspected a total of 435 coffee shops in just 24 hours. In addition to the 24 that were closed, another 170 were given warnings.

FOX News Channel's Martin Hill contributed to this report.