Arab Repression of the Media
Hypocritical Human Rights Groups Silent
Can anyone imagine the reaction if Israel had sentenced a journalist to 50 lashes for writing an "instigating report"?
Can anyone imagine the reaction if Israel were to ban Al-Jazeera from operating in its territory?
Can anyone imagine the reaction if the Israeli government were to ban TV channels from broadcasting live events from Israel?
These are legitimate questions in light of what has been happening recently in some Arab countries.
In Saudi Arabia, a journalist was recently sentenced to 50 lashes for allegedly instigating protests against a government electricity company following a series of power cuts.
Fahd al-Jukhaidib, who works for the daily Al-Jazeirah newspaper, was also sentenced to two months in prison for his "crime." He will be whipped in public in front of the electricity company offices.
The verdict has drawn little attention in the West and prominent organizations that claim to defend freedom of the media have yet to voice their opinion on this matter.
The silence of the international media and the absence of a strong response from human rights and media organizations have obviously encouraged Arab dictators to continue and even step up their repressive measures against journalists and various media outlets.
The case is unlikely to spark widespread protests in the West, most likely because Israel is not involved. Had the poor journalist been sentenced by an Israeli court, his case would have made it to the front pages of the mainstream media in Europe and North America.
Who cares if an Arab government mistreats or tortures an Arab journalist? Besides, which Western journalist would have the courage to travel to Saudi Arabia to cover a story that could get him or her into trouble with Saudi authorities?
Earlier this week, the Moroccan government suspended the operations of the Qatar-based Al-Jazeera news network over what it called "unfair reporting."
The Moroccan government accused the TV channel of "seriously distorting Morocco's image and manifestly damaging its interests, most notably its territorial integrity."
The decision was taken in response to Al-Jazeera's reporting on the Western Sahara, a former Spanish Colony that was taken over by Morocco in 1975.
While the latest measure against Al-Jazeera drew sharp protests from the station and some Arab journalists, most Western journalists and media organizations chose not to respond.
But when Israel announced a few years ago that it was considering punitive measures against some Al-Jazeera journalists, the move triggered an international outcry and drew strong condemnations from Western media outlets.
Egypt, the largest Arab country, deserves an award for excellence in suppressing freedom of the media and harassing journalists. Egyptian authorities have banned satellite channels from broadcasting live events or distributing news reports to other television stations.
The Egyptians have also blocked the transmissions of four privately owned stations, issued warnings to two others, and canceled a popular talk. Last month, newspaper editor Ibrahim Issa was fired for publishing an article written by one of President Hosni Mubarak's political rivals.
The crackdown on Egyptian journalists and media outlets comes ahead of the parliamentary elections in the country.
Such practices against the media have always been commonplace in the Arab world. But the feeling among Arab journalists is that the Arab dictators have decided to step up the campaign against the media. As long as the West continues to turn a blind eye to such practices, independent and brave journalists will become an endangered species in the Arab world.
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by Denis MacEoin
"No religion condones the killing of innocents." — U.S. President Barack Obama, September 10, 2014.
"Islam is a religion of peace." — U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron, September 13, 2014.
"There is a place for violence in Islam. There is a place for jihad in Islam." — U.K. Imam Anjem Choudary, CBN News, April 5, 2010.
Regrettably it is impossible to re-interpret the Qur'an in a "moderate" manner. The most famous modern interpretation by Sayyid Qutb (d. 1966), the Muslim Brotherhood ideologue, leads the reader again and again into political territory, where jihad is at the root of action.
If they deviated from the true faith -- as we are seeing in the Islamic State today -- "backsliders," like pagans, were to be fought until they either accepted Islam or were killed.
In India alone, between 60 and 80 million Hindus may have been put to death by Muslim armies between the years 1000-1525.
by Yaakov Lappin
Hamas's long-term ambitions are indistinguishable from those of Islamic State and al-Qaeda.
Hamas will now focus on its next goal -- trying to strengthen its presence in the West Bank and eventually toppling the Palestinian Authority from power there, just as it did in Gaza. If Israel were to withdraw from the West Bank, Hamas would certainly find such a goal easier to accomplish.
Nothing keeps the flames of jihad alight, and Hamas's popularity secure, like frequent wars.
by Alan M. Dershowitz
by Timon Dias
"Arab leaders are a reflection of their people. Arab leaders don't come from Mars or the sun, they emerged from among the people and share the same beliefs... I challenge any Arab citizen who may become a ruler to do anything beyond what current Arab leaders are doing." — Anwar Malek, Algerian author.
If anyone was trying to commit "genocide" during the Gaza War, it was clearly Hamas.
What the protestors in the Netherlands also revealed is that a killed Palestinian is only worth demonstrating for when the blame can be pinned on Israel.
The normalization and common approval of slogans that actually call for the destruction of the entire Jewish State, Israel, contribute to an atmosphere of hatred, violence and anti-Semitism that now seems as acceptable as it is overt.
by Anne Bayefsky
Why couldn't the UN... sponsor a conference on combating global antisemitism?
In theory the UN Charter demands equality of... nations large and small. In reality the UN mass-produces inequality for Jews and the Jewish nation.
The UN has launched a "legal" pogrom against the Jewish state. A "legal" pogrom is a license to kill.
Modern antisemitism targets Israel's exercise of the right of self-defense because self-defense is the essence of sovereignty.