imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
latest news
best of news




A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List


IMC Network:

Original Cities africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Crackdowns, Torture and Intimidation in Bahrain

by Stephen Lendman Saturday, Jul. 16, 2011 at 9:45 PM


Crackdowns, Torture and Intimidation in Bahrain - by Stephen Lendman

Largely ignored by Washington, Western governments, and America's media, the ruling Al Khalifa monarchy continues cracking down brutally against nonviolent protesters since civil resistance began last February.

On July 14, UK Telegraph writer Richard Spencer headlined, "Bahraini woman poet tells of torture while in custody," saying:

Incarcerated after reciting a poem critical of government policies, "Ayat al-Qurmezi (age 20) became one of the symbols of the (ongoing) protests....After she was arrested....she was beaten, electro(shocked) and threatened with sexual assault while in custody."

On July 11, the Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR) headlined, "Teachers ordeal in Bahrain: arrested, tortured, sacked, suspended and prosecuted," saying:

Teachers and Bahrain Teachers Association (BTA) members participated in protest demonstrations, demanding respect for human rights and democratic change. As a result, they faced "arbitrary arrests, military prosecution, torture, suspensions, salary cuts, and investigation."

BTA board members were arrested, held incommunicado with no access to family or lawyers. A month later, some were released. Others are still detained, including BTA President Mahdi Abu Deeb, charged with:

"deliver(ing) speeches haranguing and instigat(ing) protesters and inciting them against the political regime, flouting the real voluntary and lofty goals of the association."

On June 6, Deeb and BTA Vice President Jaleela Al Salman were tried in military court charged with:

"inciting others to commit crimes, calling for the hatred and overthrow of the ruling system, holding pamphlets, disseminating fabricated stories and information, leaving work on purpose and encouraging others to do so and taking part at illegal practices."

So far, at least 66 teachers were arrested. In addition, riot police repeatedly targeted 15 or more girls' schools. Teachers and students were arbitrarily arrested, detained, and "physically abused."

Other schools were also attacked. Many teachers were arrested, interrogated, intimidated, abused, charged with going on strike, participating in peaceful protests, and inciting anti-regime sentiment.

In custody, they were beaten and tortured. One female teacher said:

"Around 10 policewomen were asking me and beating me at the same time. Then they handcuffed me and kept beating me on the head and back while kicking me and stepping on my feet."

Others were threatened with rape and beaten. A woman who had major back surgery was repeatedly kicked there after explaining her medical condition.

Many faced secretive military trials and convicted. More trials are expected. Many others were arbitrarily suspended from positions or sacked. More remain under investigation. Intimidation throughout Bahrain is pervasive.

On June 14, Human Rights Watch headlined, "Bahrain: Stop Military Court Travesty of Justice," saying:

HRW called for ending military tribunal injustice, and "free(ing) everyone (including opposition politicians, medical professionals, students, teachers, journalists, and human rights activists) held solely for exercising their rights to free speech and peaceful assembly."

HRW's Middle East director Joe Stork said:

"Most defendants hauled before Bahrain's special military court are facing blatantly political charges and (unfair) trials."

Human Rights First (HRF) on Bahrain

On July 14, a HRF press release headlined, "NEW REPORT: Despite National Dialogue Crackdown Continues in Bahrain," saying:

The Bahraini government "continues to intimidate, torture, and detain human rights defenders, and shoot at civilians." According to HRF's Brian Dooley:

"Human rights defenders with whom we spoke are wary that the dialogue is (nothing) more than elaborate play-acting for the international community's benefit."

The report titled, "Bahrain: A Tortuous Process" presented findings based on a July 6 - 12 fact-finding mission. It included interviews with human rights defenders, other activists, victims and their families, dozens of recently released detainees, journalists, medical professionals, students, and Bahraini government officials.

In addition, HRF personnel "witnessed riot police firing on unarmed women without warning with a variety of weapons."

Nonetheless, peaceful marches and protests continue, despite security force attacks, using sound bombs, tear gas, rubber bullets, and live fire.

Human rights defenders are prime targets, facing arrests, detentions, torture, and illegitimate trials. In fact, (on June 21) prominent activist Abdulhadi Al Khawaja received life in prison in one of many show trials.

Others like him express views anonymously, fearing reprisals if go public. They also assume their phones are tapped and goings monitored. A Bahrain Youth Society for Human Rights member said:

"We live under the constant fear of arrest. They can come at any time for us."

Another activist said homes and other facilities are regularly raided, adding:

"I still wake up scared. I have clothes ready, next to the bed. I get up sometimes in the middle of the night and look out the window if I hear a noise, thinking it's them again. It's a permanent fear that they could come at any time, day or night."

Human rights defenders complained about Washington's double standard, muting its regime criticism, stressing Bahrain's an important regional partner, ally, and home to the US Navy's Fifth Fleet.

Disingenuously on July 2, Obama welcomed Bahrain's National Dialogue, calling it "an important moment of promise....The United States commends King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa for his leadership in initiating the dialogue."

In contrast, one participant told HRF:

"There are four halls, each having between 50 to 80 participants" allowed five minutes to speak. "The session ends while some still have not talked. Nothing is known about how all these chaotically dispersed talks will end up...." King Hamad has final say.

"You have it all predetermined and the final document has already been decided. These meetings are nothing more than a camouflage. It is a joke to call it a dialogue to start with."

Based on numerous interviews, HRF reported "credible, consistent accounts of torture," other forms of abuse and humiliation, including detainees forced to kiss photos of the king, belly dance, make animal noises, and sign confessions.

One former detainee said he was blindfolded for weeks, forced to stand for hours, wasn't allowed to wash or pray, and was even beaten when permitted to use the toilet. Others had similar horror stories. Injured detainees were also abused, including on their wounds. Intimidation, humiliation, and forced confessions are routine.

On July 6, HRF's Brian Dooley witnessed riot police attacking peaceful pedestrians, saying:

"People were standing in doorways, chatting....It was a calm, chatty atmosphere....(S)uddenly riot police (with) shields appeared behind us." With no warning, they opened fire, using "sound bombs, tear gas canisters, and rubber bullets."

People started screaming. Some were struck, including by shrapnel. "I could see people ahead of us running, panicking. The police kept on firing at us....We were not part of a rally, or even near (one). There were a few dozen people spread out along the length of the street in small groups like ours, and the police just appeared and attacked us."

Others told HRF similar stories, police firing on unarmed, peaceful civilians without warning. People not in detention face harassment. No one feels safe. Abuses continue regularly.

Protected by Washington, Bahrain is a lawless police state, targeting anyone seen challenging regime authority and many others for being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Nonetheless, peaceful protests continue, despite punitive reprisals, including arrests, detentions, torture, show trials, and imprisonment. Nary a word from Washington complains.

A Final Comment

A new Zogby International Arab American Institute poll shows unfavorable attitudes about America. In fact, Obama's 10% or lower approval rating surpasses Bush's lowest level. In fact, he scores worst on Palestine and engagement with the Muslim world.

In five of six countries surveyed, Washington scored lower than Turkey, China, France or Iran. Specifically, "US interference in the Arab world" is called the greatest obstacle to regional peace and stability after Israel's occupation of Palestine.

Libya perhaps was one war too many. Waging it increased negative perceptions about America and Obama.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at

Also visit his blog site at and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

Report this post as:

Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 1 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
The Global Satanic Government (The CIA) Trojan Horses in Arabs Clothing Attack Islam CIA Trojan Horses in Arabs Clothing Tuesday, Jul. 19, 2011 at 7:44 AM

Local News

More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena J02 12:16PM

"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena J02 12:08PM

Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles J30 4:26PM

Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! J10 11:58PM

Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California M30 10:20PM

Change Links June 2018 posted M28 12:41AM

The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years M22 1:01PM

Unity Archive Project M21 2:42AM

Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi M17 3:22PM

CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police M10 2:08PM

Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies M10 1:57PM

California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings) M02 1:31PM

Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico A29 4:47PM

Change Links May 2018 A27 1:40AM

Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed A26 10:37PM


lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Children Incorporated Earns 4-Star Rating on Charity Navigator J16 11:24AM

Democratic Socialists of America J14 4:57PM

Leonard Peltier Non Violent Native American Political Prisoner since 1970's J14 4:18PM

Paraphysique miscellanées de l'aggiornamento J14 12:54AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Cleanup J13 4:14PM

FBI Investigated LA County Sheriff Baca,Why Not Hank Skinner's Persecution? J13 3:52PM

Updated Partial List Of Famous Vegetarians, Vegans, & Fruitarians J13 2:59PM

The Shortwave Report 07136/18 Listen Globally! J12 4:36PM

Social Policy as Social Infrastructure J12 3:38AM

Vol I: 84 Varieties Of GOP Election Fraud J12 1:50AM

Texas Can Call it An Execution,But It is A State Sponsored Murder of Hank Skinner.. J11 6:48PM

June 2018 Honduras coup update J11 3:35PM

Maria Estrada doubles down on racist support J11 1:40PM

New York Women in Film & Television Announces 2018 NYWIFT Ha Phuong Scholarship Recipients J11 10:14AM

Trapps de la domination, trapps de l'aliénation J11 1:31AM

Please Work For The Defeat Of Brett Kavanaugh And Why J09 8:54PM

Change Links 2018 July posted J09 1:27PM

Transinhumanisme ( transe inhumanisme ) J09 12:44PM

Google, World's Biggest Censor, Was Founded By The CIA J09 10:25AM

For a World Free of Nuclear Risks J09 8:29AM

Corrupt CDC Ignores Meat Fish Recalls J09 4:55AM

The (Temporary) End of Globalization J09 3:03AM

Aternatives to Abortions such as Plan B the pill, condoms and IUD J08 4:03PM

U.S Congressional Legal Minds Know Better Than Allowing Texas To Murder Hank Skinner J08 3:37PM

ACLU in many US states defends in court KKK and American Nazis Sometimes for Money J07 11:28PM

Judge Brett Kavanaugh: 12 Of Many Reasons To Oppose Him J07 9:00AM

Insensibilité engrammée J07 2:37AM

Silver Lining J07 12:21AM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy