Thursday, January 07, 2010

Somewhere along the way, we seem to have lost our insistence upon freedom. . .

Our own Lauryn Oates, in The Mark:

In the vast emptiness of the Kyzyl Kum desert that covers western Uzbekistan, there is a dark prison called Jaslyk. The very name causes local people to shudder. There, inmates are jammed into cells, 16 in each, sometimes forced to stand for days on end, forbidden to speak out loud.

One day in 2002, two men were being tortured in Jaslyk. Their names were Muzafar Avazov and Khusnuddin Olimov. Submerged in boiling water, they were literally boiled alive, a form of torture otherwise unknown since the likes of 14th-century Scotland or the Roman Inquisition.

No tabloids seized upon the gruesome photos of the bodies. There were no angry demonstrations in the streets of western cities. Unlike H1N1 or the 2010 Olympic Games, the story failed to make its way into water cooler conversations. It was almost like it had never happened at all. . .


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