Monday, January 10, 2011

Anti-Totalitarian Round-Up.

In its continuing brute-force harassment of Azadiya Welat, Turkey's only Kurdish-language daily newspaper, 24-year-old former editor Emin Demir has been sentenced to a 138-year prison term. Emin is on the run, but at least nine of the newspaper's journalists are in jail. Another former editor, Vedat Kursun, was sentenced last May to 166 years in prison. Last February, Ozan Kilinç was sentenced to 21 years in prison.

In Tehran, human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh has just been sentenced to 11 years in prison and banned from practicing law and traveling for 20 years. She got five years for “acting against national security,” five years for “not wearing hejab during a videotaped message,” and a year for “propaganda against the regime.”

In Tunisia, 14 protesters were killed in "clashes with security forces" over the weekend. The country is being brought to its knees by police-state oppression, rising unemployment and skyrocketing food prices. In neighboring Algeria, at least three people were killed and 300 others injured in riots sparked by rising food costs and a housing crisis.

In Kabul, an Iranian embargo on fuel which has caused heating costs to skyrocket has prompted hundreds of protesters to gather at the Iranian embassy. The demonstrations are being led by Afghan MP Najib Kabuli, whose television station was shut down last year - at Tehran's insistence - for persistently exposing Iran's subversion of Afghan democracy.

There's bad news and good news, but at least there appears to be something of an anti-totalitarian surge underway here and there. Pro-democracy activists should be very wary about who they talk to, of course, lest Julian Assange rat them out. In Canada, you establish your radical credentials by whining about Don Cherry in the valiant struggle to force the CBC to broadcast your preenings and mewlings during Hockey Night in Canada broadcasts. Meanwhile, in Tunisia, the state's media censors are now moving to shut down blogs, e-mail servers and Facebook accounts, and our comrades are facing bullets:


Blogger kellie said...

More Tunisia links.

5:23 AM  
Blogger dmurrell said...

"Hockey Fans for Peace"? Sounds like a group with contractictory beliefs. It's difficult to see how some people who favour peace can sit and enjoy a fight-filled NHL hockey game. And like most "peace" advocates, this group would remain silent when and if the Taliban take over, and begin horrendous human rights violations.

3:32 AM  

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