Sometime in 1989, Donald Trump has a “scalp reduction” operation to remove a bald spot he’s insecure about. He was under the impression the surgery would be relatively painless. He was wrong.
Content Warning: Violence, Sexual Assault
Back at home, Trump is enraged that he’s in pain, and he takes his rage out on the person who recommended the doctor: his wife, Ivana. Trump grabs Ivana by her hair, ripping a handful out, and forces her down while he has his way with her.
Ivana spends the rest of the night locked in one of their bedrooms, crying. When she comes out the next morning, Trump asks her “with menacing casualness” if it hurt.
Ivana shares the details of what happened in a sealed divorce deposition a year later. Her testimony is obtained by Trump biographer Harry Hurt III and revealed in his book Lost Tycoon, an exposé on Trump’s personal life. Hurt says the story is confirmed by two of Ivana’s friends.
Lost Tycoon hits shelves in 1993 with a statement from Ivana that confirms Hurt’s reporting and protects Donald from repercussions.
Before Hurt’s book came out, Trump’s lawyers pressured the publisher, W. W. Norton, to paste a clarifying statement from Ivana into the flyleaf of every copy. In it, she confirmed that she had said in a deposition that her husband had “raped” her, but added that she did not want those words to be interpreted in “a literal or criminal sense.” She also said, “As a woman, I felt violated.” Hurt said that he considers the note a non-denial denial, and believes that Ivana agreed to amend her words in order to secure the divorce settlement, in which she reportedly received fourteen million dollars in cash.The New Yorker
Donald Trump denies the allegations, including having the operation.
Hurt’s reporting also reveals that Ivana bought a book on female orgasms to teach Donald the correct way to have sex and that Donald forced Roy Cohn to write a new prenup to convince Ivana to stay with him.
Photo: Sonia Moskowitz, obtained from AZRA