…from beneath the crooked bough, witness 230 years of brutal tyranny by the al Khalifas come to an end
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Bahrain Updates #18: Baby you can drive my car….

From: Colin S. Cavell, Ph.D.
Subject: Bahrain Updates #18: Baby you can drive my car….
Date: 06/11/2011 01:40:22 AM

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nginx

Too often we honor swagger and bluster and the wielders of force; too often we excuse those who are willing to build their own lives on the shattered dreams of others. Some Americans who preach nonviolence abroad fail to practice it here at home. Some who accuse others of inciting riots have by their own conduct invited them.

Some look for scapegoats, others look for conspiracies, but this much is clear: violence breeds violence, repression brings retaliation, and only a cleaning of our whole society can remove this sickness from our soul.

—(Robert F. Kennedy 1925-1968)

Dear Folks,
Strange that the fate of a country is reflected in the cancellation of a car race. Yet that is exactly what is taking place, for as the British chief of the Formula One Group, Bernie Ecclestone, lamented on Wednesday, June 8th, the Bahrain Grand Prix will not be held in Bahrain this year, for the driving teams refused to go along with a decision made just five days prior by the body which governs the sport. And why did the Formula One governing body initially decide to go ahead with the race in Bahrain amidst a brutal crackdown over the past two months against citizenry calling for democracy? Well, we don't exactly know, but as Ecclestone was quoted as saying: "Nothing to do with money at all. Nothing, in any shape or form," the 80-year-old told Reuters Television.
This is an interesting twist to observers who have spent time in Bahrain over the past several years, as the monarchy placed great value on building the Formula One racetrack out in the Sakhir desert just opposite the University of Bahrain and near the Sakhir Air Base. Students and professors would often complain about the noise emanating from the Bahrain International Circuit, or "BIC" as it is popularly known, and some sound filters were later added to muffle the loud buzz of the racing engines though everyone could hear when racing season was approaching as advance teams and local afficionados would bring their fastest and jazziest cars to the track to compete or just show off. Each spring, advertisements would appear months in advance all along the Shaikh Isa Bin Salman Highway announcing the upcoming Formula One Grand Prix racing days and encouraging fans to buy their tickets now. On campus, students would vie with each other to obtain a limited number of free tickets from the UOB Administration while professors would rework their course syllabi around the racing dates. For University of Bahrain students and staff, it meant one day off from school, as the three-day event would fall on at least one school day, and that day was always declared a holiday by the King.
The BIC and its sleek race cars and international driving teams represent a small slice of modernity in the island kingdom, and to not be able to go forward with the Bahrain Grand Prix is indeed a sign of a political impasse. The regime would like the world to believe that all is fine in the Kingdom and that the events that began in February are now over and done with. In some ways they are correct, as most of my in-country reports have dissipated to a trickle, with tales of fear and dread from those brave enough to send out one last email before they go silent. Yes, the regime has succeeded quite handily so far in stifling the main protests through a campaign of arrests, torture, detention, disappearances, harassment, firings, kangaroo trials, murder, surveillance, etc. But force and intimidation will not have the same stifling effect on the hearts of the opposition in Bahrain; indeed, many will harden, and some will begin to question the utility of peaceful protests down the road. Repression may end a particular unwanted behavior for a time, but desire will find an outlet somehow and in some other way. Close off democratic channels in modern society and you are certain to generate an even greater subsequent explosion.
Meanwhile, on Tuesday, June 7th, Washington officialdom, including President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, met with Bahrain's Crown Prince, Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa, to let him know, presumably, that while Washington will continue to preach non-violence to the Kingdom, no further repercussions will be forthcoming, at least not until after the 2012 elections. Obama and his advisors believe that they will be able to neutralize the Gulf monarchs with–as one of my former Bahraini students used to say–"sweet lies". But, as indicated in a previous missive, i.e. Bahrain Updates #16, Obama has already rattled the autocratic club in the Middle East infuriating them (pardon the pun) royally! As I stated then and repeat again here:

So, this brings us back to my earlier claim that the world ended on Thursday, May 19th, for history will record that date as the beginning of the end of the long-standing cordial relationship between the United States and the Gulf Kingdoms. Faced with an existential battle, Bahrain and the other Gulf Kingdoms will pour every spare dinar, dirham, riyal, etc. of oil wealth into undermining the Obama Administration in the upcoming 2012 election and backing the Republican Party to the hilt. Capitulation by Obama is not an option. Concession to democratic rule by Gulf monarchs is out of the question. Who will be left standing will write the history.

Restructuring the Middle East will be one of Obama's lasting legacies, and the autocratic regimes in the region, rightly or wrongly, see Washington's hand behind the wave of unrest which threatens to undermine their stability. Appeasement, therefore, at this point is a foolish policy for Obama's handlers to follow. Already, retaliation against American officials in Bahrain has begun in earnest. In late May, State Department human rights officer Ludovic Hood, who had worked at the US Embassy in Bahrain was forced to leave the country amidst a targeted campaign against him including anti-Semitic slurs and the publishing of his home address on a web site. Then, on June 2, Bahraini television journalist Sawsan Al Shaer berated US Deputy Chief of Mission Stephanie Williams on Bahrain TV for nearly an hour and a half demanding to know what, if anything, did the Bahraini government do wrong, while Ms. Williams merely reiterated time and again to each charge that the US Government simply wants both sides to engage peacefully.
The Gulf monarchs govern regimes that do not understand the language of peaceful negotiations. For them, either you are with them or against them. This is what Barack's handlers do not understand. The US may want to pursue gradual change in the Gulf region–given our dependence on Saudi oil–but compromise is characteristic of democracies. With autocracies, it is either my way or the highway. Compromise or middle ground solutions are seen as weakness and are to be avoided at all cost. The mentality of monarchy is based on mendacity; indeed, how else can you maintain an hereditary regime for over 200 years? Thus while sweet lies will be traded back and forth between the Obama Administration and the Gulf monarchs over the next period, behind the scenes one can be sure that planning to unseat the other is in full play.
regards,

csc

Latest Updates:

For those following developments in Bahrain closely, I refer you all to The Crooked Bough website for timely updates on the political situation in the Kingdom. As well, The Crooked Bough is now acting as a repository of all prior Bahrain Updates which are accessible at: http://www.crookedbough.com/?page_id=1154.

In addition, I urge you all to sign up to The Pearl Roundabout.org as they are sending the most timely updates as events unfold in Bahrain and are doing a superb job.
And, of course, The Bahrain Center for Human Rights is a mainstay of the struggle, and their regular updates are accurate and reliable.

About the author:


Until February 15th of this year, I was an Assistant Professor teaching in the American Studies Center at the University of Bahrain. I submitted my resignation following the Fall semester at the end of January, as my wife, a Moroccan national, was granted an immigrant visa to the US by the State Department with the proviso that we be residing within the USA by April 1, 2011. Little did we know in January, when I submitted my resignation, that we would be in a race for time before we could leave, as the Arab rebellions were sweeping from Tunisia to Egypt to Yemen and into Bahrain and beyond. We left Bahrain on February 25th, the day of the largest demonstrations in Bahraini history, and have since been residing in Seattle, Washington.

Background on Bahrain:

On February 14, 2011, the citizenry of Bahrain rose up in opposition to the Al Khalifa monarchy and demanded democratic reforms. Their voices were met with stiff resistance from the autocratic regime which has been in power for over 200 years now. Unbowed, the citizenry took to the Pearl Roundabout in downtown Manama with some advocating for a constitutional monarchy and others a democratic republic. In response, the regime unleashed a reign of terror down on the protesters. Meanwhile, the US was directing its focus on Libya and getting through the United Nations a resolution for a no-fly zone over that country, which passed on Thursday, March 17th. One week prior, on Friday, March 11th, US Defense Secretary Robert Gates flew to Bahrain and met with the King and the Crown Prince, and on Monday, March 14th, approximately 2000 to 3000 Saudi Arabian and Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) tanks and troops rolled across the causeway from Saudi Arabia into Bahrain to crush the opposition. The next day, March 15th, King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa issued Royal Decree No. 18 for the year 2011, declaring a three-month "State of National Safety". The Bahrain Defence Forces (BDF) subsequently began a systematic crackdown on anyone who was suspected of opposing the monarchy and calling for democracy. On March 18th, the BDF tore down the Pearl Monument, known to locals as either "Lulu" or "the GCC Monument" and to the international press as "Pearl Square" due to its similarity to Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt where protesters had gathered. The regime's crackdown is an attempt to wipe away the memory of the 2011 Bahraini Democratic Spring from the popular mindset, and they are sparing nothing to root out and crush, using force, intimidation, torture, and murder, any further resistance. The silence from most of the mainstream media in America is deafening.

The fact that the US Fifth Fleet is based in Bahrain and the fact that the US is completely dependent on and addicted to Saudi-monarchy oil–i.e. oil doled out by a corrupt and sclerotic regime, and that both regimes (i.e. the Al Sauds and the Al Khalifas)–indeed all GCC regimes–in turn, are kept in power by US guns, makes all the difference–for now at least. The US continues supporting the Al-Khalifa monarchy, putting its oil interests ahead of its avowed democratic principles. From all accounts, the beating into submission as well as the subsequent bloodbath continues in earnest. For US citizens, it is another lost opportunity… But with your help and voices, we can eventually rectify our country's policy in this regard and realign it with our country's avowed democratic principles.

US interests in the long term will ultimately be served by supporting democratic elements and, eventually, democratic regimes in the Middle East North Africa (MENA) region. Does that mean we should overthrow existing governments? No, but it does mean that we should not be arming, financially supporting, and enabling corrupt regimes to slaughter opposition forces advocating for democratic rights in their countries, and then remaining silent while it happens. Sycophancy in the service of autocratic rulers with decidedly undemocratic ethos is degrading and demeaning. Such a stance is an affront to humanity. Putting off the goal of aligning ourselves with democratic elements for short-term advantage will have negative repercussions not only on current US foreign policy but, as well, on US domestic policy, as millions of petro-dollars will find their way back into US politics attempting to undermine our democracy here at home. While countering theocratic influence in the region is understandable and necessary, this will require a strategy with quite a bit more sophistication than is presently being demonstrated. As well, implementing such a strategy will necessitate experienced hands who are neither intimidated by the apparent chaos often associated with democratic movements nor infatuated with monarchical tendencies and supportive of elite rule as some bureaucrats appear to be.

NOTE:

Names and other identifying information have been removed and/or redacted in order to protect the safety of the sender[s], unless the person(s) is (are) a reporter or a public activist(s) and want their names to be known, as publicity sometimes gives them some protection from regime retaliation. If you are not a known public activist and/or reporter, please inform me if you would like your name to appear along with your report; otherwise, I will redact it to maintain your anonymity.

regards,

csc

__________________
Colin S. Cavell, Ph.D.

P.O. Box 9087
Seattle, WA 98109
(206) 734-8187
———- Forwarded message ———-
From: thepearlroundabout.org <thepearlroundabout@gmail.com>

Date: Fri, Jun 10, 2011 at 6:09 PM
Subject: thepearlroundabout.org
To: ccavell@gmail.com

thepearlroundabout.org

Link to thepearlroundabout.org

Bahraini jails ‘no lonely place’ (audio)

Posted: 10 Jun 2011 02:25 PM PDT

BBC Radio 4 – Ala'a Shehabi, a British-born woman whose husband Ghazi Farhan has been arrested and is awaiting sentence, told James Naughtie how he was held in incommunicado detention for 48 days before being put on trail.

Bahrain’s unseen protests fall on deaf ears

Posted: 10 Jun 2011 02:18 PM PDT

AhramOnline –

M16 Machine gun? Nuwdreat 10 June, 2011 (video)

Posted: 10 Jun 2011 02:07 PM PDT

YouTube

Lally Weymouth talks with Bahrain’s foreign minister

Posted: 10 Jun 2011 01:58 PM PDT

Washington Post – Two top Bahraini officials visited Washington this week after the country’s king lifted a state of emergency used to counter anti-government protests. The Post’s Lally Weymouth sat down with Foreign Minister Khaled bin Ahmed al-Khalifa.

DC law firm defends Bahrain on human rights crackdown

Posted: 10 Jun 2011 01:56 PM PDT

Salon.com – The Bahraini regime has inked a contract with a high-priced Washington law firm to help fight a labor complaint filed by the AFL-CIO about an under-reported aspect of the crackdown: the firing of hundreds of workers and union leaders for participating in strikes and other pro-democracy actions.

‘Bahrain major financial spot for US, UK’ (video)

Posted: 10 Jun 2011 01:48 PM PDT

Press TV – A political analyst says the US and Britain do not talk about human rights abuses in Bahrain because the country is a major banking center for British and American finance.

Shi’ite cleric warns Bahrain nearing “abyss”

Posted: 10 Jun 2011 01:41 PM PDT

Reuters – A top Bahraini Shi'ite cleric said trials of dozens of people and the breaking up of Shi'ite religious marches were dragging the country towards destruction, not reconciliation, ahead of a planned national dialogue.

The US and Bahrain: Sending Ludo home

Posted: 10 Jun 2011 01:30 PM PDT

Al Jazeera – While US denies "recalling" diplomat from Bahrain, larger issue looms about support for American interests over values.

Rights body to take Bahrain, Britain to International Criminal Court

Posted: 10 Jun 2011 01:29 PM PDT

Tehran Times – A Lebanon-based rights body plans to file a case with the International Criminal Court (ICC) against Bahraini and UK governments for their collusion in the brutal crackdown on Bahraini protesters.

Dozens of Bahrainis on trial after protests

Posted: 10 Jun 2011 04:18 AM PDT

Reuters – About 400 people have been put on trial in Bahrain for their roles in weeks of protests that rocked the Gulf island kingdom this year, a leading opposition group said on Thursday, but the government disputed the figure.

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Date: Fri, Jun 10, 2011 at 12:29 PM
Subject: Re: the prince has come…

I guess O was asking for advice on how to treat dissenters…..

———- Forwarded message ———-
Date: Fri, Jun 10, 2011 at 12:31 PM
Subject: Shi'ite cleric warns Bahrain nearing "abyss"
To:

I found this article on Reuters Mobile (us.mobile.reuters.com) and
thought you might find it interesting:

Shi'ite cleric warns Bahrain nearing "abyss"
http://www.reuters.com/article/idAFTRE7594IN20110610

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: NYTimes.com <newstracker@nytimes.com>
Date: Thu, Jun 9, 2011 at 11:46 PM
Subject: My Alerts: Bahrain Alerts (1 article)
To: ccavell@gmail.com

The New York Times

June 10, 2011

My Alerts

ADVERTISEMENT

Alert Name: Bahrain Alerts
June 10, 2011 Compiled: 1:57 AM

SPORTS / AUTO RACING

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS (NYT)

Organizers of the Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix said they would not pursue plans to reschedule the race and stage it in October.

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———- Forwarded message ———-
Date: Thu, Jun 9, 2011 at 10:22 PM

Subject: Formula One drivers for democracy

The Wall Street Journal

REVIEW & OUTLOOK EUROPE

JUNE 9, 2011, 3:55 P.M. ET

Bahrain's Crash Course

Formula One drivers for democracy.

Formula One drivers, accustomed to fast cars and luxury locales, aren't the first people who come to mind when we think about democracy campaigners. But maybe we've sold the drivers short, given the controversy that's erupted over whether or not to proceed with this year's Bahrain Grand Prix.

The F1 race has been held in Kingdom since 2004. In February, the Crown Prince canceled the event, citing the need to build a "new national dialogue" after a crackdown on pro-democracy protestors. The protests swelled and Bahrain's security forces shot civilians, jailed several hundred people and instituted emergency law. The emergency law was lifted last week and the ruling family has made noises about national reconciliation. The sport's governing body decided it was okay to race again.

That's when the uproar started. Wrote Australian driver Mark Webber on his Web site last week: "Like it or not, F1 and sport in general isn't above having a social responsibility and conscience. I hope F1 is able to return to Bahrain eventually but now isn't the right time." The drivers' association penned a letter to the Bahrain organizers citing concerns about "security conditions" and "insurance coverage." Fans are up in arms. On Wednesday F1 chief Bernie Ecclestone told the BBC "it's not on" without "the agreement of the participants."

Formula One is a private concern and its owners have never pretended to have higher moral aims other than to make money for shareholders. The drivers race in several undemocratic places, including Bahrain. Their letter noted Bahrain is "a country that has always hosted us with enthusiasm and warmth."

But it's hard to untangle sports and politics; recall sporting boycotts of South Africa during apartheid, or the U.S. boycott of the 1980 Moscow Olympics. Formula One and Mr. Ecclestone may find that good business may involve following drivers like Mr. Webber's lead.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304259304576375282897276062.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

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From: thepearlroundabout.org <thepearlroundabout@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, Jun 8, 2011 at 6:05 PM
Subject: thepearlroundabout.org
To: ccavell@gmail.com

thepearlroundabout.org

Link to thepearlroundabout.org

Bahraini poet set to face verdict for protest reading

Posted: 08 Jun 2011 01:44 PM PDT

Amnesty – A Bahraini poet faces possible imprisonment for reading out a poem criticizing the country’s King when a military court rules on her case next Sunday.

Bahrain bans seminar about crackdown

Posted: 08 Jun 2011 01:42 PM PDT

AFP – Bahrain's main Shiite opposition group said Wednesday it has been banned from going ahead with a presentation detailing abuses committed during a government crackdown on Shiite-led protests this year.

Bernie Ecclestone sides with teams over Bahrain race as revolt grows

Posted: 08 Jun 2011 01:39 PM PDT

The Guardian – Change of tack may be ploy to win backing for smaller engines. Teams wanting postponement meet in Montreal this weekend

Doctors and nurses ‘tortured with wooden boards studded with nails’ in barbaric crackdown on protests in Bahrain

Posted: 08 Jun 2011 10:14 AM PDT

Daily Mail – Doctors and nurses ‘tortured with wooden boards studded with nails’ in barbaric crackdown on protests in Bahrain

Formula 1 call-off would hit Bahrain pride and economy

Posted: 08 Jun 2011 10:10 AM PDT

BBC – If, as Bernie Ecclestone accepts, the Bahrain Grand Prix will not go ahead in October, it will be a huge and humiliating blow to the tiny Arabian island.

Sanctions now against brutal Bahraini tyranny

Posted: 08 Jun 2011 07:23 AM PDT

Tribune Magazine – The international community has failed in its duty to protect the civilian population of Bahrain. It has sat back and done nothing to rein in the regime of King Hamad ibn Isa Al Khalifa. He stands accused of terrorising his own people, resorting to mass arrest, detention without trial, torture and murder. If the duty to protect civilians applies in Libya, why not in Bahrain?

Bahrain Grand Prix will not go ahead, says Ecclestone

Posted: 08 Jun 2011 07:21 AM PDT

Channel 4 News – This season's grand prix in Bahrain, where there has been political unrest since February, will not go ahead after Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone admitted it could not be rescheduled.

Six One News: Irish-trained doctors on trial in Bahrain (video)

Posted: 08 Jun 2011 07:19 AM PDT

RTE News

Gracia defends FIA’s Bahrain report

Posted: 08 Jun 2011 05:42 AM PDT

Autosport – The president of the Spanish motor sport federation, Carlos Gracia, has defended his report on the Bahrain situation after it was leaked to the public, but pressure continued to grow on Formula 1 after more criticism following the decision to reinstate the country's grand prix.

Decision to stage Bahrain Grand Prix ‘shameful’ say MPs

Posted: 08 Jun 2011 05:40 AM PDT

BBC – MPs have criticised the decision to hold the Bahrain Grand Prix in October after the violent crackdown on political protests earlier this year.

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———- Forwarded message ———-
Date: Wed, Jun 8, 2011 at 11:29 AM
Subject: State of Emergency Bahrain makes a desperate attempt to charm Washington — while it declares war on protesters back home.
To:

http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2011/06/07/state_of_emergency?page=0,1

———- Forwarded message ———-
Date: Tue, Jun 7, 2011 at 3:52 AM
Subject: an article
[redacted]
Please read the report below from the UN. It is obvious the Bahraini officials are going on non-stop with their lies; the problem is that they don't realize that the world is not stupid. Fatma Albolousha said to Bahraini Media that the UN has received "fabricated evidence" that caused "misleading the UN's opinion concerning Bahrain". This is the answer from the UN…
Just want to know; is there any brains left inside these heads/ do they see the whole world as the audience of Bahrain TV with the "stupid" lies broadcasted everyday? How can we trust their other news concerning the officials meeting US officals and senators for instance…
Press briefing note on Bahrain
7 June 2011
Spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: Rupert Colville
Location: Geneva
BAHRAIN
The High Commissioner would like to make clear that a meeting she had last Friday with Bahrain’s Minister of Social Development and acting health minister, Dr Fatima bint Mohammed Al Balooshi and three other Bahrain government officials, has been grossly misrepresented in a report by the Bahrain News Agency. The BNA article was subsequently picked up by a number of newspapers in the region, including the Khaleej Times and the Gulf Daily News, and even by some Sri Lankan government officials and media for their own purposes.
The Bahrain News Agency, which was not present at the meeting, stated that the High Commissioner had “recognized misinformation” about the Kingdom of Bahrain, and quoted her as saying “Certain information which we received about the developments in Bahrain are untrue.”
The High Commissioner would like to stress that she made no such statement, and is disturbed by this blatant distortion of her words. She will formally request the Government officials who attended the meeting to issue a correction.
The discussions at the meeting with the Bahraini Government delegation focused mainly on the proposed OHCHR mission to Bahrain, as well as a number of other issues relating to the recent protests, including the need for transparent independent investigations into the human rights violations that have taken place there. The mission has been accepted in principle by the Bahraini government but no dates have yet been set.
ENDS
———- Forwarded message ———-
From: NYTimes.com <newstracker@nytimes.com>

Date: Mon, Jun 6, 2011 at 11:37 PM
Subject: My Alerts: Bahrain Alerts (1 article)
To: ccavell@gmail.com

The New York Times

June 7, 2011

My Alerts

ADVERTISEMENT

Alert Name: Bahrain Alerts
June 7, 2011 Compiled: 1:54 AM

WORLD / MIDDLE EAST

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS (NYT)

Dozens who treated injured antigovernment protesters during unrest in Bahrain went on trial on charges that they had participated in efforts to overthrow the monarchy.

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———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Maryam Al-Khawaja <maryam.alkhawaja@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, Jun 5, 2011 at 8:26 AM
Subject: Two more deaths and ongoing military trials. Bahrain Updates.
To: Maryam Al-Khawaja <maryam.alkhawaja@gmail.com>

Dear Friends,


Hope this email finds you well.


In the past few days there have been several continuous widespread protests across Bahrain which were met with unnecessary excessive force by the security forces. These attacks have resulted in numerous injuries, but we are unable to document how many due to people treating themselves at home because of fear of going to hospitals.


Kindly find attached a report with brief points of all the ongoing violations and numbers since February 14th.


Zainab AlTijairi, 69 years old, died on the 2nd of June due to a heart attack as a result of the extensive use of sound bombs and teargas in her village. These crowd control arms are being misused in Bahrain in which security forces will shoot continuously inside a village and sometimes even inside people’s homes.

On the 3rd of June, another death was reported. Salman Abu Edrees had been submitted to the hospital on the 16th of March, and according to his family had been missing until the announcement of his death. http://yfrog.com/3tzycz

The ministry of Interior has denied responsibility in both deaths, as all other cases.


Mohammed Albuflasah, a Sunni ex-military man who gave a speech at the Pearl square on the 15th of February and went missing shortly after, was supposed to be released on the 14th of February as he had been sentenced to two months imprisonment on the following charges:

1- 1. Engage in political activity
2- Participate in the gathering
3- Incitement against the regime

AlBuflasah was not released as the military prosecutor extended his detention for 45 days till further notice which often means to an unknown period without any new charges or clarification. Since June 1st, according to his family, AlBuflasah started a hunger strike. There is great concern over his health and well-being.

Received from BYSHR http://byshr.org/?p=555


Tomorrow will be the second hearing for the 20 year old poet Ayat AlQurmezi, and the first hearing for the doctors and nurses of Salmaniya hospital. Despite the lifting of the state of national safety, military trials are still ongoing.


Kindly find attached the list of people who are undergoing or were sentenced or acquitted through military trials.


Child Report 2: http://bahrainrights.hopto.org/en/node/4186


BCHR Report: Committee on the Rights of the Child discusses the violations against the children in Bahrain http://tinyurl.com/689y9ev


Kindly find attached a letter of appeal written about the situation of students in Bahrain.


Aluminium Bahrain (ALBA) dismisses hundreds of its employees in flagrant violation of domestic laws & international conventions: http://bahrainrights.hopto.org/en/node/4178


Amnesty International: Bahrain government failed to conduct independent investigations into alleged abuses by security forces http://ow.ly/5a1Be


Amnesty: Bahrain: human rights briefing http://amn.st/mA9k6m

Regards,

Maryam Al-Khawaja
Contact: +44-7587303080 / +1(401)572-6597
Head of Foreign Relations Office
Bahrain Center for Human Rights

———- Forwarded message ———-
Date: Sun, Jun 5, 2011 at 7:21 AM
Subject: Bahrain

http://www.opednews.com/articles/Continuing-Bahraini-State-by-Stephen-Lendman-110605-783.html

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From: NYTimes.com <newstracker@nytimes.com>
Date: Sun, Jun 5, 2011 at 12:30 AM
Subject: My Alerts: Bahrain Alerts (1 article)
To: ccavell@gmail.com

The New York Times

June 5, 2011

My Alerts

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Alert Name: Bahrain Alerts
June 5, 2011 Compiled: 2:33 AM

SPORTS / AUTO RACING

By REUTERS (NYT)

The Australian driver Mark Webber has spoken out against Formula One’s controversial decision to race in Bahrain this season and said he did not expect the rescheduled race to happen.

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Date: Sat, Jun 4, 2011 at 10:46 AM
Subject: an important article on Wallstreet

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304563104576363833015079742.html?mod=googlenews_wsj


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From: NYTimes.com <newstracker@nytimes.com>
Date: Fri, Jun 3, 2011 at 11:08 PM
Subject: My Alerts: Bahrain Alerts (2 articles)
To: ccavell@gmail.com

The New York Times

June 4, 2011

My Alerts

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Alert Name: Bahrain Alerts
June 4, 2011 Compiled: 1:34 AM

WORLD / MIDDLE EAST

By NEIL MacFARQUHAR (NYT)

Ignoring pleas from human rights activists, organizers scheduled the Bahrain Grand Prix for October, after it had been delayed because of an antigovernment uprising.

SPORTS / AUTO RACING

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS (NYT)

Formula One’s governing body, FIA, rescheduled the canceled Bahrain Grand Prix for Oct. 30.

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From: thepearlroundabout.org <thepearlroundabout@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, Jun 3, 2011 at 6:03 PM
Subject: thepearlroundabout.org
To: ccavell@gmail.com

thepearlroundabout.org

Link to thepearlroundabout.org

‘International action needed against Al Khalifa’

Posted: 03 Jun 2011 07:00 AM PDT

Press TV – Press TV has conducted an interview with Maryam al-Khawaja from the Bahrain Center for Human Rights regarding the protests in Bahrain and aggressive tactics being used by the Bahraini army.

Bahrain police fire at protesters marching toward landmark square after emergency rule lifted

Posted: 03 Jun 2011 06:49 AM PDT

Washington Post – Bahraini police fired tear gas and rubber bullets at protesters marching toward the landmark Pearl Square in the country’s capital Friday, eyewitnesses said, just two days after authorities lifted emergency rule in the Gulf kingdom.

Bahrain protests resume

Posted: 03 Jun 2011 06:46 AM PDT

ABC News – Brendan Trembath interviews Nabeel Rajab

Bahrain police open fire at protesters in capital

Posted: 03 Jun 2011 06:40 AM PDT

AP – Bahraini police fired tear gas and rubber bullets at protesters marching toward the landmark Pearl Square in the country's capital Friday, two days after authorities lifted emergency rule.

Bahrain Formula One grand prix will be run on 30 October

Posted: 03 Jun 2011 06:28 AM PDT

The Guardian – • Zayed R Alzayani: "This is welcome news for Bahrain" • Decision went against wishes of F1 teams

FIA approves return of Bahrain Grand Prix to Formula 1 calendar

Posted: 03 Jun 2011 06:25 AM PDT

BBC – The race, originally due to be held on 13 March, was called off in February because of pro-democracy protests in which more than 20 people have died. The Indian Grand Prix, which originally was due to be held on 30 October, will now be held in December.

Bahrain decision not about money – Ecclestone

Posted: 03 Jun 2011 02:15 AM PDT

Reuters – A decision on whether to reschedule the postponed Bahrain grand prix will have nothing to do with money and is about satisfying safety concerns, Formula One commercial supremo Bernie Ecclestone said on Friday.

Bahrain unrest continues on eve of FIA meeting

Posted: 03 Jun 2011 02:14 AM PDT

ESPN – On the eve of the decisive World Motor Sport Council meeting, Bahrain looked unlikely to return to the 2011 Formula One calendar as reports of continuing unrest continued to circulate.

Mosley warns of PR disaster if Bahrain GP goes ahead

Posted: 03 Jun 2011 02:12 AM PDT

ESPN – Former FIA president Max Mosley has said the Bahrain Grand Prix should not take place in 2011 and would certainly not have done had he still been in charge.

Formula One teams against restaged Bahrain Grand Prix but money talks

Posted: 02 Jun 2011 03:20 PM PDT

The Guardian – • Formula One teams do not want December racing • Financial realities may force teams to race

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———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Esam Al-Amin <alamin1919@gmail.com>

Date: Fri, Jun 3, 2011 at 12:39 PM
Subject: CounterPunch: The Determination of the Arab Revolutions by Esam Al-Amin (6/3/2011)
To: alamin1919@gmail.com

COUNTERPUNCH

Weekend Edition
June 3 / 5, 2011

Autumn of the Autocrats?

The Determination of the Arab Revolutions

By ESAM AL-AMIN

After the relatively swift triumphs of the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions in deposing their dictators earlier this year, other Arab dictators drew a different set of lessons than their populations did.

Fed up with decades of repression, corruption, and the break down of state institutions, as well as the complete loss of faith in any meaningful political or social reforms in their societies, people across the Arab world this spring have waged simultaneous mass movements to force sweeping changes.

Arab autocrats, sustained for decades by the powerful security state, were shocked and startled as they observed in horror the dismantling of the security apparatuses in Tunisia and Egypt, facing fearless populace willing to sacrifice their lives to liberate themselves from the yoke of tyranny and regain their freedoms and dignity.

To their credit, in both the Tunisian and Egyptian models, the armies refused to shoot at their people after the failure of the security forces to clamp down. The popular uprisings spread across each country with incredible determination and zeal as the fear barrier of the ruthless regimes completely broke down.

Shortly after the fall of the Egyptian dictator, people across the Arab world took to the streets in peaceful uprisings against their long time repressive rulers. The concurrent massive demonstrations were especially widespread in Yemen, Libya, Syria, and Bahrain, against the decades-old repressive regimes of Muammar Gaddhafi in Libya (41 years), Ali Saleh in Yemen (33 years), the Assad family in Syria (Bashar and his father before him- 40 years), and the minority Al-Khalifah dynasty in Bahrain (230 years.)

The primary lesson learned by the Arab masses watching the revolutions unfold in Tunisia and Egypt was that the people’s collective power and determination can ultimately triumph in the face of isolated regimes that have been ruling them with an iron fist.

However, the authoritarian regimes drew different lessons from the Tunisian and Egyptian experience. They did not see the power and determination of the people but the weakness of the regimes and fragility and indecisiveness of its leaders.

In each case, though engulfed in its own particular circumstances and distinct features, the overall framework of how each regime dealt with its own popular uprising is strikingly similar.

As in the Tunisian and Egyptian models the first response of each regime was to rely on the security forces to put a quick end to the uprisings before they spread. When such attempts fail within the first few days, the next step is to try to contain the demonstrations by embracing the demands of the protesters while asking for a return to calm in order to implement reforms.

The problem with these initial steps is that they are perceived by the people as disingenuous and are almost always too late. Like Tunisia and Egypt before them, in each of the cases in Yemen, Libya, Syria, or Bahrain, the initial brutal response of the security forces had an adverse effect and did not stop the protests. In fact, the increasing casualties in the streets intensified the opposition and the revolts became widespread.

For instance, the initial demonstrations that started in Benghazi in mid-February to protest the arrest of a human rights lawyer quickly spread to western Libya, where they were met with repression. Similarly the protests in Yemen spread the same week from Sanaa to the rest of the country as Saleh’s security forces cracked down on the demonstrators. When the people of the southern city of Dar’aa in Syria protested in mid-March calling for freedom and reforms, the protests quickly spread as the Syrian army shortly thereafter surrounded the city killing dozens and arresting hundreds of protesters.

In the next phase of the confrontation between the people and the authoritarian regimes the dictators would call for dialogue and claim to have embraced the calls for reforms. For example, within days of the fall of the eastern city of Benghazi to the opposition, Qaddafi’s son, Saiful Islam, promised that if the protests ended then all demands were on the table. But then he asserted that no reforms or dialogue would be initiated unless the protests ended. President Saleh in Yemen made similar overtures to his people promising to form a national unity government and initiate political reforms if the protests ended.

In Syria the regime announced several steps for political reforms and the end of the state of emergency, which had been in place for almost a half century. The Syrian people held hope that their president would announce, and immediately take steps for far-reaching constitutional and political reforms.

But when the Syrian president addressed the parliament at the end of March it became clear that the reforms embraced by the regime were superficial and vague while requiring a significant amount of time to implement, a ploy that seemed designed to contain the popular uprising. Moreover, the party officials entrusted to propose and implement these reforms were themselves people known to defend the status quo that has favored them for decades.

As in Egypt, when the trick of calling for dialogue and the embrace of a reform agenda fails to attract the people and the opposition groups – mostly marginalized for decades- the regimes would then mobilize their supporters to mount counter-demonstrations.

However, many of the supporters of these regimes act like goons, bullies, and criminals, as they beat up and abuse the opposition. Such elements supporting the regimes include thousands of security officers or party loyalists roaming the streets in civilian clothes. They were called baltagies in Egypt, balatega in Yemen and Shabbiha in Syria. Their main role is to brutalize the people and punish them for their protests in a desperate attempt to halt them. But often times, the end result is the opposite as the people link these thugs to the regimes and become even more enraged.

As the casualties mount and international condemnations of the regimes become widespread, the dictators employ a new tactic by charging that there are armed “Islamic terrorist” groups tied to Al-Qaeda who are killing the protesters and wreaking havoc upon society.

Ultimately, the main strategy of each regime is to regain the initiative from the streets so they continue to use these different tactics in order to split the opposition or wear down the people. Endless promises, delay tactics, and old style propaganda techniques and maneuvers are utilized. President Saleh employed his infamous delaying schemes to wear down the opposition, thus promising to step down five different times as a result of the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative, only to renege each time. Eventually, the GCC itself completely abandoned its own initiative. The Syrian president officially lifted the state of emergency. Yet since then, over 1200 people have lost their lives and over 12,000 have been detained without trial. Electricity as well as water and phone lines were cut off from some cities that were under siege by the military for many days.

Watching Hosni Mubarak, his sons, and other high-ranking officials in Egypt dragged to prison and tried for political and financial corruption solidified in the minds of these regimes the fate that awaits them. In essence, the dictators and their cronies are fighting, not just to stay in power, but also to literally escape punishment for their crimes. But perhaps the most brutal and effective tactic to derail any peaceful revolution is to drag the country into civil war.

Regional players such as Israel and the Saudi ruling family, as well as other international players are very nervous about the popular discontent and the changes sweeping the region. The status quo has benefited these regimes and the international order for a long time.

People in the Arab world are instead determined to rely on themselves with an uncompromising will to continue their just struggle for freedom and dignity echoing the voice of another young leader in the Latin American jungles many decades ago, as Che Guevara reminded his comrades “Until victory always” but “better to die standing, than to live on your knees.”

Esam Al-Amin can be reached at alamin1919@gmail.com

———- Forwarded message ———-
Date: Fri, Jun 3, 2011 at 12:31 AM
Subject: Alwefaq Society is a partner in the crackdown; it lost its credibility as a society of Opposition
[redacted]
Top News
FEATURE-Did Bahrain opposition squander democracy chance?
Tue, May 31 12:20 PM EDT

* Opposition may have lost best chance at winning reforms

* Sunni leaders say opposition was waiting for Iran guidance

* Emergency law to be lifted on June 1

By Andrew Hammond

MANAMA, May 31 (Reuters) – As martial law comes to an end in the Gulf Arab state of Bahrain this week, opposition activists are wondering whether they threw away what might have been the first real chance for democracy in the Gulf Arab region.

Shortly after young Bahrainis, inspired by uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia, converged on a roundabout in early February, the government offered dialogue with opposition parties on political reforms. But the talks failed to get off the ground.

After weeks of behind-the-scenes discussions during which sectarian tension worsened between the Shi'ite majority and Sunnis who saw the ruling Al-Khalifa family as protection, Saudi troops poured in on March 15, martial law was declared the next day and the roundabout encampment was broken up on March 16.

Critics say the leading opposition party Wefaq, headed by Sheikh Ali Salman, failed to show leadership during the unrest, allowing hardliners within the ruling family and among the Shi'ite opposition to steer events.

"What a massively missed opportunity. Wefaq should have had the conviction to stand ahead of the others and sit at the table. I'm sure they rue it," one Western diplomat said.

When talks eventually resume, he said, "the ceiling will be lower" and reforms could have been set back by a decade.

King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa authorised talks on democracy in 2001, but the opposition boycotted elections in 2002 because the upper house of parliament — royal appointees — was to retain key powers.

Seven opposition parties including Wefaq took part in 2006 elections, but hardliners broke away to form the Haq movement.

Haq's exiled leader returned during the protests on Feb. 26 and announced with other groups on March 8 that he wanted to turn the small island kingdom into a republic. That was anathema to Saudi Arabia which financially backs Bahrain to help stave off Iranian influence.

On Tuesday King Hamad called for reform talks "without preconditions" from July 1. But the parameters were vague, and with opposition leaders in jail, protesters off the streets and Wefaq attacked daily in state media, the government will have the upper hand to steer them away from parliamentary reforms.

FEAR OF LOSING THE STREET

Munira Fakhro of secular opposition group Waad says Wefaq was paralysed by fear of losing the street — Shi'ite protesters radicalised by the deaths of their comrades when security forces made a botched attempt to clear the roundabout on Feb. 17.

"My analysis is that after all this anger and death among Shi'ites the street was tilted towards Mushaimaa. Ali Salman was afraid that if he accepted the crown prince's proposal without assurances he would be cheated at the end of the day," she said, referring to opposition anger over the upper assembly in 2002. "I told them, 'the crown prince wants to reach out to you but he's alone because no one is supporting him from his family, you must support him'."

Mushaimaa and the republic supporters are now among 21 men on military trial. The defendants also include Waad's Sunni leader Ibrahim Sharif and some independent Shi'ite rights activists prominent during the protests.

Salman, a young cleric born in 1965, says he didn't agree with the escalation in protests or the open call for a republic, but acknowledges that they complicated the position of Wefaq and the rest of the opposition.

"There is a view that we were late to respond to the call for dialogue, but we had our reasons," he said at Wefaq offices overlooking the waters of the Gulf.

"We did not go to public talks, but we talked behind closed doors. I met the crown prince three times alone during the crisis and my working team was meeting his working team almost daily. But there were no results until March 13."

That day the crown prince said again he was interested in dialogue, but specified this time that it would centre on seven principles, including representative government and a parliament with full powers.

On March 14, Wefaq and six other opposition groups said they wanted clarifications before entering direct talks with the crown prince.

IMPASSE

The government and Sunni leaders have another theory for why the opposition appeared to drag their feet over negotiations: Wefaq was waiting for approval from Iran.

"We think so. How else would you explain them not coming to the negotiating table?" said Sheikh Abdul-Aziz bin Mubarak Al Khalifa, Senior International Counselor at the Information Affairs Authority.

"We need a rational, practical leader who doesn't look for religious blessings before he can embark on a political reform initiative," he said. "We didn't see leadership emerging from their side and they didn't let themselves loose from radical elements or come to the negotiating table."

Sheikh Abdullatif Al-Mahmoud, leader of the mainly Sunni National Unity Rally which emerged as a counter-weight to the Shi'ite opposition during the unrest, goes further.

"In the second week of March their clerics were telling the Shi'ite masses that the Hidden Imam was about to come. That held them up going into talks since they thought the Shi'ite state was coming," he said.

The twelfth Imam of mainstream Shi'ism disappeared in 9th-century Iraq and many believe he will return one day. Mahmoud also suggested the U.S. navy was coordinating with Wefaq and Iran could have been planning a military intervention.

Wefaq leaders roll their eyes at these accusations.

They say they are not interested in Iran's system of clerical rule, and that in any case most Bahraini Shi'ites look to Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani in Iraq as their reference in religious affairs. Bahrain's most senior Shi'ite cleric is Sheikh Issa Qassim.

Mahmoud, Salman and other government and opposition figures spent all of March 13 at Wefaq offices in what proved to be fruitless last-minute talks before a decisive Saudi intervention.

Wefaq wanted a guarantee from the crown prince on elections to a constituent assembly to write a new constitution before entering face-to-face public talks.

Mahmoud wanted the royal family to have guaranteed representation on the assembly and a high bar on the percentage required to approve constitutional amendments to avoid Sunnis being permanently hostage to Shi'ite numerical superiority.

In a sign of the mistrust now prevailing, Mahmoud says that when news came in that Saudi troops were really coming, Salman stood up and announced: "We will seek the help of Iran."

Wefaq says he never said that. (Editing by Reed Stevenson and Jon Hemming)

———- Forwarded message ———-
Date: Thu, Jun 2, 2011 at 3:45 PM
Subject: Bahrain TV Interview between Sawsan Alshaeer and Stephanie Williams

[redacted]
First, forgive me for my tone if it is not neutral, and it has been a long while since I wrote such a thing. I feel it is my duty to comment in the interview mentioned above; the interview was between Sawsan Alshaeer, a journalist who has been for two motnh ivolved only in one-sided shows. She spends all the time of her program creting and spreading hatred based on sunni/shiite dialogues. She never interviewed Shiites at all, and her interviews and talks were as follows. She attacks and condemns a certain person or a certain group, and on the same night, early morning, the targetted group is arrested and their house are raided by the thugs – military in civilain disguise. before around three weeks, she publicly condemned BBC network as spreading "iranian agenda", and that "Amnesty, FrontLIne and others" are manipulated by Shiites. In another show, she directly said "Obama, don't think that you will create a new Iraq in Bahrain; we have men to defend Bahrain; and it will remain a Khalifate Kingdom despite your program."
The interview with Stephanie Williams who is the highest post in the embassy right has a couple of points as follows:
1. Since Ms Williams is a diplomat, their should be certain protocols in the dialogue. Throughout the interview, Sawsan was atacking Ms Williams as "conspiartor" against Bahrain. She did not speak with any kind of attequette or respect. I am sure that since Ms Williams is American, she does not see a problem, but from the Bahraini point of view, this treating her with "what she deserve"s as the Sunnis say. She never gave her chance to speak her opinions and she interrupts her to avoid any inconvenience despite the "neutrality" of Ms Williams.
2. The questions were condemning America on all levels. For example, Sawsan claimed that the US does not have the right to state opinion supporting the "oppostion" because this is "direct intervention in interior affairs" and the US should respect "the soveregnty of Bahrain." I wonder then what the hell the Fifth Fleet is doing? Did the US take permission to do that? what would happen to Bahrain if the US only threat to retreat? i.e. we all know that the US is the manipulator of all Arab government, why is this different now? Moreover, she accused the embassy of avoiding and preventing any meetings with Sunni parties. I never thought their are any Sunni oppositions in Bahrain except Waad, headed by Ebrahim Sharif.
3. Sawsan condemned the "sectarian discrimmination" that is commited by the US embassy against Sunnis. She believes that the US embassy advocates Shiites only and belittles the Sunnis. First, as she claims, they talks with Shiite parties only – and although Ms Williams tried to explain that they contact people who respond to them, and this is natural because the majority of Bahrain are SHiites, Sawsan insisted that "the US is practicing Sectarian discrimmination against the Sunnis of Bahrain." In addition, Sawsan claims that the US keeps stating "the majority Shiites are ruled by the Minority Sunnis" and this is not true because the demography of people changes. Sawsan does not know that what the US and all the world is based on the officla site of the CIA of Population count, last updated in 2010. It showed the Shiite ratio withdrew from 85% to 70%; but Sawsan still insisted that this is not true. For those who do not know history; Bahrain was 100% Shiites before the Khalifa family came to Bahrain. Untill the 1990's, the ratio was 85% Shiites and 15% Sunnis. The family carried out a huge top confidential program and nationalized many people from Syria, Jordan, Yemen, and Pakistan to change the religous demography of Bahrain.
4. Sawsan criticized the speech of Mr Obama about the opposition behind the bars of prisons and jails. Ms Williams insisted that the US believes in Obama's speech, highlighted and ascertained by Mr Toner "there cannot be any serious dialogue with the legitimate Oppostion in prison." Sawsan showed selected videos but there was no live video of any protester killing a securty person. So, Ms Williams told her that "we were terrified by what was going on; but we support the freedom of speech and protest."
5. Sawsan attacked the American Sudies Centre and the embassy because they "steal" Bahraini youth and brainwash them with American agendas to destabalize Bahrain, example is Mariam Khawaja and many others – i cant believe that there are still people obsessed with "false conspiracy theories". She accused the States of supporting terrorists like Mriam, Matar Matar and many others who played a vital active role in these events. [redacted]
Although Ms Williams expressed that the US is very proud of these exchange programs, Sawsan inisted on attcaking her and the Congress and Mr Obama himself. Actually, this attack on the ASC was begun by university of Bahrain itself. The Sunni satff wanted to boast and show off with their "patriotism", so they established a site to show the "traitors of UOB." Dr Colin was described a jew who hates Islam. I wonder how American would see this; I geuss they will say "the Sunnis are anti-semetic" :)
6. Sawsan tried to embarrass her geust with a consumed question about Iraq, but Ms Williams answered that Iraq is a baby democracy that is growing fast and that secatrain tensions are doomed to end because people want to live not to fight.
Final note:
There is an important plot behind this scene. As you know, Mr Lodovic Hoods, the inchanrge of Human Rights Reports in the US embassy has returned to Washington DC becuase he has been receiving threats from the Sunnis, loyal to the government. These threats were by messages and on forums. It is thought that the extremist parties of the family are behind this. I belive that this is a threat to any American and not only Mr Hoods. They described him as "the dirty jew" and serving "iranian agenda" – I know this looks stupid but this is the level of the Sunni audience. Now, the Sunnis are threating Ms William. A former Parlaiment Wahhabi member acused he of being a "bitch" and a "dirty Barbie". She is also threatened now, and there was a meeting between her and Dr Abdullateef Almahmood, and the letter was not received well by the embassy in general. Ms Williams said she will send a complaint about this to DC directly but I don't know how far is this from the truth.
All Americans are threatened if these two people are threatened. This incident also shows us an important thing. Although the SHiite party accused Obama of giving the family the green light to this crackdown, they did not threat the security or life of any American. On the ocntrary, the SHiites insisted that it is Mr Obama who will save them. After Obama's speech, Shiites will carry American flags in their protests. Regardless to how pinkish or naiive this look, it shows who sees the world with a dark heart full of hatred and who cannot live without sectarian discrimination.
This interview will condemn Sawsan as a journalist who is spreading hatred and sectarian discrimination and I am sure now Ms Williams understand who these people are really and what they are doing.
[redacted]
[redacted]
hope you are doing great; I have something for you. Yesterday, there was an interview between Sawsan Alshaeer and Stephanie from the embassy; it was paethetic. Sawsan is used to one-sided dialogues, and she is accusing Washington DC directly. I will send you the link now, but I will send a lengthy commentary on it because it is in Arabic. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WixonFsvu2w
[redacted]



———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Maryam Al-Khawaja <maryam.alkhawaja@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, Jun 2, 2011 at 11:01 AM
Subject: Re: Urgent: Bahrain targets Abdulhadi Alkhawaja's daughter to put pressure on him
To: Maryam Al-Khawaja <maryam.alkhawaja@gmail.com>

Dear Friends,

Relieved to let you know that Zainab Alkhawaja has been released. Important to note that their remains to be hundreds of political prisoners who are still kept in prison, many of whom have detained for more than 2 months with no due process.
Regards,

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Maryam Al-Khawaja <maryam.alkhawaja@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, Jun 2, 2011 at 8:22 AM
Subject: Urgent: Bahrain targets Abdulhadi Alkhawaja's daughter to put pressure on him
To: Maryam Al-Khawaja <maryam.alkhawaja@gmail.com>

Dear Friends,

As Zainab Alkhawaja heads to the police station, I write to you in urgency as I just received confirmed news that her father Abdulhadi Alkhawaja was told in prison that if he does not comply with their demands and accepts what they're asking of him, they will get his daughter Zainab as they "already have a file on her". They also told him to instruct Nabeel Rajab and his other daughter Maryam Alkhawaja to stop the pressure on the government.
Zainab Alkhawaja, also widely known as @angryarabiya on Twitter and for her hunger strike which then inspired a mass hunger strike, released this picture minutes before she left to the police station: http://yfrog.com/hsqjywej. If detained, Zainab will be the 6th member of their family to be detained.
Zainab's husband Wafi, was arrested 55 days ago and it is still unknown where his location is or what the charges against him are. He has had no access to lawyers or to his family. Now with Zainab being summoned, if arrested, their 1 and a half year old daughter will have both her parents in detention. Both of their arrests are seen to be a tool used by the regime to put pressure on Abdulhadi Alkhawaja, prominent human rights activist, and his other activist daughter, Maryam Alkhawaja.
It is not new in Bahrain that they use a family member to pressure someone to do what they want. In a testimony I recorded in late February I was told: "They brought my younger brother in front of me and stripped him naked except for a blindfold. They told me if you don't do as we say, we will rape him in front of you. I said ok, I will do whatever you want, and they made me sign documents without letting me read them."
This is clear targeting of a human rights defender's family to put pressure on him and we urge you to do all that you can to put pressure on the Bahraini government to comply with human rights standards and release all political prisoners.
Regards,

Maryam Al-Khawaja
Contact: +44-7587303080 / +1(401)572-6597
Head of Foreign Relations Office
Bahrain Center for Human Rights
———- Forwarded message ———-
From: NYTimes.com <newstracker@nytimes.com>
Date: Wed, Jun 1, 2011 at 11:38 PM
Subject: My Alerts: Bahrain Alerts (1 article)
To: ccavell@gmail.com

The New York Times

June 2, 2011

My Alerts

ADVERTISEMENT

Alert Name: Bahrain Alerts
June 2, 2011 Compiled: 1:54 AM

WORLD / MIDDLE EAST

By KATHERINE ZOEPF (NYT)

Security forces attacked peaceful protesters in more than 20 villages with rubber bullets, stun grenades, shotguns and tear gas, according to human rights observers in Bahrain.

About This E-mail

You received this e-mail because you signed up for NYTimes.com's My Alerts tool. As a member of the TRUSTe privacy program, we are committed to protecting your privacy.

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: s.yousif mohammed <s.yousif1982@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, Jun 1, 2011 at 10:47 AM
Subject: Urgent Appeal: Daughter of Abdulhadi Alkhawaja and internationally known hunger striker summoned to police station
To: Maryam Al-Khawaja <maryam.alkhawaja@gmail.com>

: Dear Friends,
In alarming news and despite promises of reform by the King, Zainab Alkhawaja (known on twitter as @angryarabiya) has been summoned to the police station tomorrow at 6pm.
Zainab Alkhawaja went on a 10 day hungerstrike in response to her father, uncle, husband and brother in law getting arrested. (read more: http://axisoflogic.com/artman/publish/Article_62778.shtml) Her hunger strike received worldwide media attention. Her father and uncle are now undergoing a military, (please read: http://www.frontlinedefenders.org/node/15241). Her husband and brother in law are still in detention with no access to lawyers or family, and it is unknown under what charges they are being kept or their location.
The summoning raises great concern as her father, Abdulhadi Alkhawaja, told his family a few days ago that security forces inside the prison kept threatening that they had arrested and raped his daughter Zainab. Therefore this is an urgent appeal for international pressure to prevent any physical or psychological harm to Zainab Al-khawaja.
Regards,
Said Yousif Almuhafdah
Bahrain Center For Human Rights
———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Maryam Al-Khawaja <maryam.alkhawaja@gmail.com>

Date: Wed, Jun 1, 2011 at 8:39 AM
Subject: Urgent: Several attacks on peaceful protests now
To: Maryam Al-Khawaja <maryam.alkhawaja@gmail.com>

Urgent: attacks on protests right now. Several protests have started today in many parts of Bahrain, all of which have been violently attacked by security forces using teargas, sound bombs and bird shotgun pellets.Due to fear of going to hospitals protesters are treating themselves at home.

Bahrain: Show trial of prominent human rights defender Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja continues before military court against background of torture and intimidation : http://www.frontlinedefenders.org/node/15241

Poet Ayat AlQurmezi is due to go on trial tomorrow in a military court. More on her case: http://bahrainrights.hopto.org/en/node/3865

Best,

Maryam Al-Khawaja
Contact: +44-7587303080 / +1(401)572-6597
Head of Foreign Relations Office
Bahrain Center for Human Rights
———- Forwarded message ———-
From: NYTimes.com <newstracker@nytimes.com>
Date: Tue, May 31, 2011 at 11:34 PM
Subject: My Alerts: Bahrain Alerts (1 article)
To: ccavell@gmail.com

The New York Times

June 1, 2011

My Alerts

ADVERTISEMENT

Alert Name: Bahrain Alerts
June 1, 2011 Compiled: 1:48 AM

SPORTS / AUTO RACING

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS (NYT)

Bahrain asked Formula One’s governing body to reschedule its Grand Prix race this year and hopes to hold it in October or November.

About This E-mail

You received this e-mail because you signed up for NYTimes.com's My Alerts tool. As a member of the TRUSTe privacy program, we are committed to protecting your privacy.

———- Forwarded message ———-
Date: Tue, May 31, 2011 at 8:32 PM
Subject: Bahrain: Bad To Worse

Bahrain: Bad To Worse

Posted on Tuesday, May 31, 2011

by Elliott Abrams

Not so long ago Bahrain was considered one of the more liberal Arab states. No longer.

The situation in Bahrain is deteriorating further, despite occasional government claims that things are stable and even improving. The most recent proof is the Bahraini treatment of the human rights officer at the U.S. Embassy, Ludovic Hood, who is being forced to leave the country after a vicious campaign against him. The story is told in a recent Miami Herald item entitled “U.S. Yanks Diplomat From Bahrain After He’s Threatened.” The U.S. diplomat was the target of anti-Semitic slurs and his address was published in a web site tied to the Bahraini government, a sure effort to intimidate.

The Miami Herald story ends this way: “In his final message to his friends in Bahrain, Hood apologized that he had had to assume a low profile in his final weeks and couldn’t say goodbye. In his message, he sounded like a man ordered home on short notice. ‘Hello,’ he wrote. ‘I am leaving Bahrain today and moving back to Washington. I will start my new assignment at the State Department in June. I am sorry I was not able to say goodbye properly. Given recent developments affecting the Embassy, it was prudent for me to keep a low profile during my final weeks in Bahrain.’”

The State Department has said little about the incident, but it is a mark of how bilateral relations have soured and should get more attention. This intimidation of an American official should be forcefully protested and condemned by the United States. It is the kind of incident that should have us thinking out loud about the future of the Fifth Fleet headquarters in Bahrain.

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———- Forwarded message ———-
From: thepearlroundabout.org <thepearlroundabout@gmail.com>
Date: Tue, May 31, 2011 at 6:05 PM
Subject: thepearlroundabout.org
To: ccavell@gmail.com

thepearlroundabout.org

Link to thepearlroundabout.org

Bahrain set for renewed protests as state of emergency ends

Posted: 31 May 2011 01:31 PM PDT

Amnesty International – Amnesty International has urged the Bahrain authorities not to again use excessive force against protesters, as activists called for mass anti-government demonstrations across the country on Wednesday.

MSF staff member in Bahrain remains detained

Posted: 31 May 2011 09:30 AM PDT

MSF – An employee of the international medical organization Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) has been detained for weeks in Bahrain after being severely beaten upon arrest by authorities, with no information provided about his condition and whereabouts, including to his family and lawyer.

Silencing Bahrain’s journalists

Posted: 31 May 2011 09:11 AM PDT

Al Jazeera – Lamees Dhaif tells Al Jazeera: "They can stop us from telling stories now, but they can't stop us forever."

Bahrain Lifts Martial Law on a Skeptical Public

Posted: 31 May 2011 09:03 AM PDT

The Media Line – Politicians, rights activists, say the military presence is still in full force Bahrain is preparing to lift martial law on Wednesday in a bid to close a brief but controversial chapter in the country’s history. But human rights activists and politicians say they don’t expect life for the country’s one million citizens to change much on the ground.

Bahrain king calls for dialogue from July 1

Posted: 31 May 2011 09:01 AM PDT

AFP – Bahrain's King Hamad called on Tuesday for a national dialogue to begin on July 1, as the authorities readied to lift a state of emergency enacted during a crackdown on demonstrators, BNA state news agency said.

Bahrain: Bad To Worse

Posted: 31 May 2011 09:00 AM PDT

Elliott Abrams – Not so long ago Bahrain was considered one of the more liberal Arab states. No longer.

Bahrain: Tough line remains on protest groups

Posted: 31 May 2011 08:57 AM PDT

AP – Bahrain's Justice Ministry warned Tuesday that authorities will not ease pressure on anti-government groups after emergency laws are removed even as the nation's king appealed for dialogue.

Bahraini authorities have sentenced more than 60 demonstrators

Posted: 31 May 2011 07:54 AM PDT

BYSHR – Full list of convicted demonstrators.

The Battle for Bahrain and the Future of the Middle East

Posted: 31 May 2011 05:15 AM PDT

The Trumpet.com – A massive geopolitical earthquake is shaking the Middle East. For more than six decades, Saudi Arabia has bound itself to America for security. But a series of strategic blunders and missteps in the region has broken Saudi confidence in the United States. Consequently, the Saudis are striking out on their own—cobbling together their own alliance to face off against Iran. That may not sound like such bad news, but it is actually a signal that time is running out for America, Britain, and the tiny nation of Israel.

Mistrust abounds as Bahrain to lift emergency law

Posted: 31 May 2011 05:10 AM PDT

AFP – Tanks have begun withdrawing from Manama's streets ahead of the planned lifting Wednesday of a state of emergency enacted amid a crackdown on demonstrators but mistrust still abounds in Bahrain.

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———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Maryam Al-Khawaja <maryam.alkhawaja@gmail.com>
Date: Tue, May 31, 2011 at 2:12 PM
Subject: Re: Urgent appeal: Nabeel Rajab summoned by military prosecutor
To: Maryam Al-Khawaja <maryam.alkhawaja@gmail.com>

Nabeel Rajab has been released.

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Maryam Al-Khawaja <maryam.alkhawaja@gmail.com>

Date: Tue, May 31, 2011 at 1:30 PM
Subject: Urgent appeal: Nabeel Rajab summoned by military prosecutor
To: Maryam Al-Khawaja <maryam.alkhawaja@gmail.com>

A few hours after the King's speech about reform and dialogue, leading human rights activist Nabeel Rajab, president of BCHR, Deputy Secretary General 4 FIDH, Chairman of CARAM Asia & MENA Advisory member of HRW, was summoned by the military court, and has yet to be released. (Summon letter attached)

The military prosecutor summoned the President of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights, Mr. Nabeel Rajab, to appear before the court today at 6 in the evening and the summon was conveyed to Mr. Rajab at 4 in the afternoon the same day.

Mr. Nabeel Rajab proceeded to go to the Center where he was summoned accompanied by his lawyer, but has since been missing in action and has not made any contact up until the writing of this appeal.

The call by the prosecutor comes 1 day before the lifting of martial law in Bahrain, as it has been ordered by the King. Martial law has been in effect in Bahrain since March 15th, 2011.

During this two and a half month period of Martial law, Mr. Rajab has been victimized and stripped of his human rights on more than one occasion.

· On March 20th, 2011, Mr. Rajab was arrested for a few hours by a group of armed government sent men. During his detention, Mr. Rajab was beaten and threatened with rape before releasing him.

· Mr. Rajab was also present at his domicile when his house was showered with tear gas and up to the point of nearly suffocating his mother to death.

This appeal goes out to voice fear of torture and coercion of Mr. Rajab due to the track record of recent documented cases of torture of detainees by the Government of Bahrain and the death of four opposition members whilst in custody of the Government of Bahrain.

Background on Nabeel's case: http://bahrainrights.hopto.org/en/node/4144

Regards,


Maryam Al-Khawaja
Contact: +44-7587303080 / +1(401)572-6597
Head of Foreign Relations Office
Bahrain Center for Human Rights

———- Forwarded message ———-
Date: Tue, May 31, 2011 at 11:57 AM
Subject: Bahrain news


———- Forwarded message ———-
Date: Sun, May 29, 2011 at 10:54 PM
Subject: The Pearl Revolution magazine

Dear All,

Attached is the English version of "the Pearl revolution" magazine.

As received

[redacted]

http://www.crookedbough.com/pearl/The_Pearl_Revolution.pdf

It takes about 4+ minutes in the browser, which is faster than most email. The file size is 15mb (my compression), you might mention this in the update.