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My Letter to Obama on the Crackdown in Bahrain

by on April 10, 2011

President Barack Obama,

The continued repression of human rights advocates and dissidents in Bahrain has continued to alarm myself and many other Americans. The recent arrest of Abdul Hadi Alkhawaja was described in detail by his daughter Zeinab Abdulhadi Alkhawaja, who managed to gather the strength to use twitter to give a minute by minute account of the brutal, violent arrest of her father and assault on her relatives.

While there are countless numbers of similar human rights abuses occurring each night around the world, the situation in Bahrain is one where your immediate attention can make an effective impact due to strong bilateral ties between the Bahraini government and your own. Thus far, I’ve found the response by the United States to the crackdown in Bahrain entirely insufficient of our nation’s legacy. Worse, a recent claim by Defense Secretary Robert Gates that there’s evidence of Iran’s role in the unrest in Bahrain makes me fear Bahrain’s rulers will be emboldened to continue stifling dissent under the pretext of fighting Iranian interference.

I feel strongly that you should urgently make clear that the Bahraini people shouldn’t be subject to this crackdown carried out with vicious force by plain-clothed security forces. I have no expectation that your administration will implement the isolation of Bahrain’s authorities that the Bahraini people deserve and that is worthy of a foreign policy representing the American People. However, at the age of twenty, I don’t want to be so cynical so as to think my president is unwilling to speak out and insist Bahrain’s government cease these extra-judicial raids and arrests targeting political dissent.

I don’t yet have the audacity to hope or expect anything more. I do expect, no, demand we make a start in putting our complete slate of values to practice in our foreign policy.

– David Ferreira

I strongly encourage everyone to express your desire to see the Obama Administration effectively represent us on Bahrain by contacting the White house here. Silence is complicity.

From → On the Dole

  1. Muhanad permalink

    My message to Obama:

    President Barack Obama,

    We are really disappointed with the way the American Administration is handling the situation in Bahrain. In Bahrain there are people killed every day on the hands of the Bahraini security forces supported by the Saudi Army. In Bahrain there are more than 500 political detainees among whom at least 25 women. In Bahrain the detainees are toured to the point that 3 of them have died so far. In Bahrain the Shiite villages are under siege by the army and there are checkpoints everywhere. The soldiers at the checkpoints humiliate and beat people for no reason. In Bahrain the Shiite places of worship are being demolished or vandalized. In Bahrain the hospitals are under siege and everyone fears to go there. In Bahrain injured pro-democracy protesters are afraid to go to hospital and are treated at home.

    I think it is very clear that the Bahraini regime is in breach of all international laws and should be held accountable for this. We, pro-democracy Bahrainis, believe that your administration could do a lot to stop this barbaric attack on unarmed civilians. We believe that watching all these atrocities and remaining silent is a contribution and encouragement to the Bahraini regime to continue its crackdown on innocent pro-democracy civilians.

  2. Abu Meshari, Aldosari permalink

    Addressed to all liberals of the world
    Addressed to all peaceful freedom fighters in the world
    Addressed to all decision makers who can help make changes

    I am a Saudi but liberal, I love my country and would die for it if Iran or USA or Israel or any external power attempts to invade my country, But I am also a fair person and I would not hesitate telling the truth even if it is against me, because Islamic teachings which were tought by prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and I am sure that all previous prophets must have similar teachings.
    I will tell the truth, I am living in Bahrain, and have witnessed closely all events in Bahrain since 14 Feb 2011:
    – I am completely against my country’s foreign policy, and the way they reacted to the issues in Bahrain. they should not have sent troops to Bahrain, it was a big mistake and inhuman, and anybody supported such action in KSA or Bahrain or the GCC or elsewhere in the world must be against humanity and against freedom.
    – Most of the Bahrainis are poor and living in villages, and they are the ones who went to the streets peacfully protesting calling for reforms.
    – Security troops did many bloody massacres against the people.
    – Bahrain TV and other GCC TVs played a very dirty game to support the Bahraini government, because not condemning what is happening daily to the villagers is a crime. Bahrain TV started fabricating fake clips to show to the Sinni public that the protesters are mainlly Shiaa and are supported by Iran to change the system to bring an Iranian system to the island,Bahrain TV played a major role in dividing the society and make severe sectarian divide among the people “Divide and Conquer” which really worked because of many factors.
    – Only yesterday, and after pressure from USA the government started a dialogue (which looks like a dialogue for gaining international publicity) but no one knows if it will succeed because the basics of democracy are not there! they have created fake powers indicating that they are representing the people including AlWefaq which represents the opposition, but the government attempt is make the opposition look like a small number in this Dialogue gathering, that is why the people on the street are not believing in such Dialogue.
    – The king has also formulated an independent team to evaluate the incidents that took place during Feb and March, which also looks like a good step forward to bring justice, but also the people on the street don’t believe that such team is independent, because it is paid by the government!
    – Besides the people have been humulated since Feb, even during the marcshal law on daily basis either oh check points, entrances to villages and they are being subjected to tear gas on daily basis even after the commencement of such Dialogue, so today, yesterday, before yesterday,..etc every day!
    – Doctors, nurses, political and non political activists (men and women) such as teachers and students and opposition leaders are still detained and tortured by security forces.
    – Many Shiaa were fired from their jobs for no reason.
    – Many were given the nationality recently just to play the democracy game to increase the pro government voters.
    – All news papers with exception to Alwasat are all pro government, even they have exerted pressure on Alwasat so that to force the Editor in Chief to resign or else the news paper will be closed.
    – They did not allow for any form of freedom of speech.
    All signs in Bahrain are not positive and the poor people in streets don’t believe that any thing will change, in fact many are increasingly becoming even against ALWEFAQ for accepting to enter into such un fair Dialogue, that is why people in the villages are still going on the streets every day.
    I think my government has performed real bad by supporting and participating in killing the people in Bahrain. They should have used wisdom and should have tried to become mediators rather than freedom suppressors.
    I once again call upon all freedom fighters and liberals in the world to stand by their values in support for humanity.
    Good Luck and viva la libertie

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