The Khaled AlFadala Story – UPDATE!

The Kuwaiti Times reported that they overturned the convictions of two men who are working for reform in that nation. Khaled AlFadala and journalist and blogger Mohammed Abdulqader Al-Jassem were ordered released yesterday. Khaled was the subject of an essay last week, and the Citizen was surprised to see readers from every corner of the world reading the article.  It was nice to see widespread support for men who were willing to sacrifice for the values Americans take for granted.

This should serve as a reminder of how precious the liberties guaranteed by the Constitution truly are – or should be – for Americans. When men suffer fines and prison sentences for being critical of their government, we should think about our activities. How many of us would be willing to continue blogging, being active in our special interest groups and criticizing government – if a prison sentence was a price of speaking out?

The Citizen joins a lot of other people celebrating the ringing of the Bell of Liberty in Kuwait. Let’s pray that it continues to ring, that it draws more people from behind their closed doors.

  2 comments for “The Khaled AlFadala Story – UPDATE!

  1. observer
    July 18, 2010 at 9:35 pm

    The convictions were not overturned, but Al Fadhala’s sentence was lessened considerably.
    Al Fadhala, like I explained in your previous post, committed a crime by making an outright accusation, in a public forum, of a public official, accusing him of stealing without proof or evidence. The Prime Minister took his case to court, and the courts decided that a crime of slander and false accusation was committed, and passed the conviction. Al Fadhala appealed, and in return got a less serious sentence.

    We are not “..people from behind their closed doors.” We have a very active democracy in which we are free to say what we want, and those who find offense in it and equally free to take us to court if they think we are making false accusations.

    • The Citizen
      July 19, 2010 at 5:58 am

      Observer –

      You are indeed correct that the sentence was 'lessened considerably'….as in the time he had served. One could conjecture that this is an elegant compromise for a judge seeking to apply a remedy to an unfair charge and conviction without insulting the 'honor and dignity' of the Prime Minister – which in Kuwait is always a member of the royal family. As long as any member of your government is above reproach, then your government will never be a true democracy.

      I have no problem with dealing with a non-democratic government. Let's not pretend that your nation is something it's not. Did the government explain the millions of unaccounted expenditures? Who got that money? Where did it go? How about the government's admission – admission – that they use money to presumably secretly purchase the loyalty of the press?

      I understand the charge was slander. It should have been lese majesty….but that would have been a little too obvious, wouldn't it?

      This conversation is closed.

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